TCS Daily


Rachel Goreson

By Roy Spencer - June 8, 2006 12:00 AM

Al Gore's new movie, An Inconvenient Truth is a powerful visual rendering of a variety of natural events that are claimed to prove that manmade global warming is upon us and rapidly getting worse. We all know that a well-done film can have a powerful emotional impact. This is a well-done film.

While you might have been under the mistaken impression that such things have happened before the modern global warming era, Gore associates severe weather events such as floods, droughts, and storms (for instance Hurricane Katrina) with mankind's use of fossil fuels. Other than the possibility that current tropical warmth could be making hurricanes a little stronger (which is debatable), there is little or no scientific evidence that global warming has caused more severe weather.

One of the more dramatic themes of the movie is the melting of the ice sheets -- Greenland and Antarctica -- and their contribution to sea level rise. Views in the movie of ice crashing into the ocean as it calves from glaciers will no doubt have the intended effect -- to scare people into believing that global warming is serious, ergo we must do something about it. Many people will come away from the film thinking, "global warming is obviously real because all that ice is falling into the ocean." But glaciers are continuously flowing entities. As long as snow continues to fall on them, they slowly spread outward like thick molasses, dramatically dumping their frozen cargo into the ocean.

Global warming is not required for this ice calving process to occur, any more than it is required for a river to flow toward the sea. It is part of the Earth's natural hydrologic cycle, whereby the ocean continuously evaporates water into the atmosphere, which is later returned back to the ocean again, either in liquid or frozen form.

Yet these movie visuals will appeal to our emotions, confusing our more rational thought processes. The intent is to associate in our minds these entirely natural processes with manmade pollution. Al Gore recently told Grist Magazine, "I believe it is appropriate to have an over-representation of factual presentations on how dangerous it (global warming) is..." I am reminded of Gore's angry, bellowing accusation of President Bush with respect to Iraq: "He played on our fears!" That is exactly what Mr. Gore is doing in this movie.

If we move beyond the emotional appeals, we find that the current science on the subject of whether the ice sheets are losing more ice than they are gaining from snowfall (the real issue), is somewhat mixed. Currently, the consensus of opinion is that the Greenland ice sheet has been experiencing a net loss in recent years, while the same conclusion about Antarctica is much less certain.

But a note of caution: our ability to actually measure this net loss is quite new and -- like all global warming related measurements -- subject to large uncertainties in both the measurements themselves and whether the measured changes can be attributed to mankind's activities. As an example, it has been fifteen years since John Christy and I started measuring global temperature trends from satellites. Yet we (and others) are still finding new corrections that need to be made to the data. The signals of global warming are so small compared to natural climate variability that it is usually difficult to measure them with any degree of certainty.

Another common mistake among scientists (and we never seem to learn our lesson on this one) is to infer some sort of long-term trend from an observed short-term change. If Greenland has lost ice in recent years, just the possibility that this could be part of a long term trend is sufficient to get lots of press claiming this conclusion as fact. But even if Greenland has been losing more ice than it has been gaining in recent years, this says nothing about whether the process is due to mankind.

But let's assume that the current period of global warmth is mostly due to mankind, and that this warming is indeed causing a net loss of ice from the ice sheets. What should we do about it? It's one thing to point out a problem, but another thing entirely to do something substantial to fix the problem. Therein lies the potential danger of movies such as "An Inconvenient Truth."

Al Gore's movie is reminiscent of Rachael Carson's 1962 book Silent Spring, which helped give birth to the modern environmental movement. The book provided scientific evidence, conveyed through eloquent prose, that our indiscriminant use of the pesticide DDT was having some negative environmental, and possibly human, side effects.

Unfortunately, it is often the case that policy decisions based upon emotion rather than facts can lead to unintended, negative consequences. As an eventual result of Carson's book, many countries of the world severely restricted the use of DDT. But without access to even very small amounts, some African countries now have a combined death toll of about 1-1.5 million people per year from malaria. Many millions more are permanently disabled.

Only relatively recently has the pendulum begun to swing with regard to DDT, and Africans are increasingly employing small amounts of the substance (despite international restrictions) and experiencing dramatic reductions in the incidence of malaria.

The dangers of misguided global warming policies resulting from activist movies like An Inconvenient Truth could have similar or worse effects on the world's poor than what has resulted from restrictions on DDT. While responsible DDT use has many more human benefits than dangers -- with virtually no negative effects on the environment -- the effect of DDT restrictions on our daily lives pales in comparison with the negative consequences that restricting access to affordable energy would bring.

Human health and longevity are directly related to wealth generation, which in turn requires abundant, inexpensive energy. Humans must alter their environment in order to thrive, and this takes energy.

I fear that Al Gore is becoming a modern day Rachel Carson. The New York Times book critic Michiko Kakutani favorably compared the book and film versions of An Inconvenient Truth with Silent Spring. The New Republic's Frank Foer called it a "cinematic Silent Spring." Emotional appeals will effect public policy changes, which will have widespread, unintended negative consequences.

On a positive note, Gore's movie provides an opportunity to spur public debate on the global warming issue. It is critically important for us to become better informed about global warming, how much of it is natural versus manmade, and especially what might be done from a policy standpoint about the manmade part.

We must be wary of letting emotional appeals govern policy decisions that have real world, life-or-death consequences, especially in the poorer countries of the world.

Dr. Roy Spencer is a principal research scientist for the University of Alabama in Huntsville and the U.S. Science Team Leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer (AMSR-E) on NASA's Aqua satellite.

Categories:

143 Comments

comparisons
The comparisons the author stated are true, but he forgot to mention the fact that both Gore and Rachel both used phoney evidence and stats. And the comparison could be further broadened to mention that leftist evironmentalists are well know for lying to the gullible public. I think one of them once said something like: "it doesn't matter about the truth, we're out to save the world".

What do you expect from liberals?
Liberals want to FEEEEL good, not solve problems.

It is worst than that
Liberals dream of non-solutions to non-problems which create real problems, e.g. DDT ban.

DDT
There was a problem with DDT, you must admit.
But the problem was in assuming it could be indiscriminately sprayed. I saw film footage of picnic areas, with food, being fogged with DDT in the 50s.
Everything in moderation.

The Real Reason for Al Gore's Messiah Complex
Have you ever noticed that these various environmental alarms are inevitably initiated by children of priveledge?

I'm thinking specifically of RFK Jr. and Algore. I think these messianic delusions are signs of emotional privation masquerading as a messiah complex. These people grew up wanting for nothing, looking down on the rest of the world as needing (their) leadership and never quite sure whether they are accepted for themselves or their last name/family connections.

Nature hates a vaccuum and I wonder such a person is desperate to FEEL anything and therefore attaches themselves to causes- which provides narcotic delusions of grandeur and enlightenment but especially the adulation of braying jackasses who look to LAWYERS, for informed comment on scientific complexities.

Al Gore is a pathetic individual, but a dangerous polemic. Unfortunately, there is "no controlling legal authority" of pied pipers.

DDT
The proplems with DDT were real, but they were also greatly exagerated.

FOr example, the study that "proved" that DDT caused egg shells to thin was fatally flawed. In fact it was designed to find shell thining regardless of whether DDT caused it.

They took chickens, put them in a hot, noisy environment, then fed them calcium poor diets, with a little bit of DDT laced in.

Let's see, we have a study, in that study we have 3 things that are known to produce thin shelled eggs, (hot, noisy, low calcium), we have one thing that we don't know if it produces thin shells (DDT).

When the chickens start laying thin shelled eggs, we immediately jump to the conclusion that it was DDT's fault.

The Real Reason for George Bush's Messiah Complex
A good point and one that is equally applicable to the current US president - except that George Bush does actually wield power, highly irresponsibly in many cases.

There are, incidentally, no climatologists un-linked to commercial interests (such as oil companies) that don't believe that global warming and climate change are not happening - if that's not too many negatives in one sentence....

You're fooling only yourself if you think otherwise.

I'm rereading Silent Spring
The first time around, I was a teenager, and it was scarey. Now, having had some exposure to science, epidemiology, radiation, statistics and psychology, I come up with a different idea.

Rachel was totally paranoid about chemistry, radiation, anything man-made. Perhapps it's that she was dying of cancer and, by the normal human reaction, had to blame something.

Most of the "studies" she quoted were anecdotal reminiscings of people, "there used to be lots more songbirds..."

I see the same reaction in Al. Something bad happened to his child, and we have to blame something.

Fooling myself? Prince Albert in the Can.
I'm only fooling myself If I think I can make sense of that middle paragraph.

However..The multiple negatives are just the beginning. Should I believe that a climate study sponsored by the Sierra Club or Greenpeace is thoroughly unbiased? Or should I conclude that no climatologist's research is unbiased by the prevailing opinion of his/her sponsor? Maybe its just research sponsored by organizations that produce something of value? Then again, maybe I should consider large issue advocacy NGO's to be as commercial an interest as Exxon.

If I further assume that you assert there is some climatic warming, then for Gore's movie to be valid, I must also ascribe to the following implicit assertions.

The current Climate Change is Unnatural, Unusual or Unprecedented. (negative- the midatlantic was once covered in glaciers-so what's "normal"??)

The current climate change is part of a long term trend, rather than a short term one.

Climate change is not subject to environmental reactions that will cause "homeostasis".

Climate change is predominately or completely anthropogenic.

Specific causes can be isolated and quantified.

Climate Change is reversible.

Reversing the climate change is controllable.

There in lies the problem. Well, that plus Gore is a serial liar and exaggerator, and in a perfect world, Price Albert would be in the can for perjury, treason and dereliction of duty.










2 points
1) you are of course quite wrong about climatoligists and their funding.

2) even if you were right, so what?

Arctic's tropical past uncovered--from the BBC of all places!
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5034026.stm


A sediment core excavated from 400m (1,300ft) below the seabed of the Arctic Ocean has enabled scientists to delve far back into the region's past.


An international team has been able to pin-point the changes that occurred as the Arctic transformed from this hot environment to its present cold status.

The findings are revealed in a trio of papers published in the journal Nature.

Unlocked secrets

Until now, our understanding of the Arctic's environmental history has been limited because of the difficulties in retrieving material from the harsh, ice-covered region.

But in 2004, the Arctic Coring Expedition (Acex) used ice-breaking ships and a floating drilling rig to remove 400m-long cylinders of sediment from the bottom of the ocean floor.

The cores were taken from the 1,500km-long (930 miles) Lomonosov Ridge, which stretches between Siberia and Greenland.

The core holds layer upon layer of compressed fossils and minerals, which when studied can tell the story of millions of years of Arctic history.

The bottom end of the cylinder helped scientists to uncover what had happened to the Arctic during a dramatic global event known as the Palaeocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, which occurred about 55 million years ago.

"This time period is associated with a very enhanced greenhouse effect," explained Appy Sluijs, a palaeoecologist from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, and the lead author on one of the papers.

"Basically, it looks like the Earth released a gigantic fart of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere - and globally the Earth warmed by about 5C (9F).

"This event is already widely studied over the whole planet - but the one big exception was the Arctic Ocean."

The core revealed that before 55 million years ago, the surface waters of the Arctic Ocean were ice-free and as warm as 18C (64F).

But the sudden increase in greenhouse gases boosted them to a balmy 24C (75F) and the waters suddenly filled with a tropical algae, Apectodinium.

When current climate models were applied to this period of the Earth's history, said Dr Sluijs, they predicted North Pole temperatures to be about 15C (27F) lower than the core shows.

Blanket layers

The second of the three papers, led by paleaoecologist Henk Brinkhuis, also from Utrecht University, reports that the Arctic Ocean underwent another transformation about 50 million years ago.

The water changed from salty to fresh, and the ocean became covered with a thick layer of freshwater fern, called Azolla.

"We assume from climate models from the early Eocene Period that there was lots of fresh water coming into the basin via precipitation and giant Canadian and Siberian river run-offs," said Professor Brinkhuis.

"And, at a certain point, this gave rise to this whopping great growth of Azolla."

He believes the prolific growth of this fern, may be linked to the later drops in temperature in the area.

"When you have so much of this plant in this giant sea, you have a mechanism to pump out carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. It is sort of an anti-greenhouse effect," he said.

"We argue that this sits right on the break from the really warm hot house period into the time when the ice house begins."

Future predictions

Further up the core, the first evidence of ice formation emerges.

"Five hundred thousand years above where the Azolla was found, we found the first drop stones," explained Professor Brinkhuis, who is also a co-author on the third paper which details Arctic ice-formation.

"These are little stones that come from icebergs, icesheets or sea ice. So it must have been cold enough to have ice.

"Before we did this, it was thought that the ice field in the Northern Hemisphere only began about three million years ago; but now we have pushed that back to 45 million years ago."

Although the data tells us how the world changed from one with greenhouse conditions to one with ice house conditions millions of years ago, it may also help scientists to predict what will result from the present changes in climate.

Appy Sluijs points out that the data reveals that some of the climate models used to detail the Arctic's history got things wrong; and, as they are the same models that predict our future climate, they may need adjusting.

Kate Moran, lead author of one the papers and professor of oceanography and ocean engineering at University of Rhode Island, agrees: "We anticipate that our data will be used by climate modellers to give us better information about how climate change occurs and possibly where global climate might be leading.

"Today's warming of the Arctic can, in all likelihood, be attributed to mankind's impact on the planet; but, as our data suggest, natural processes operating in the past have also resulted in a significant warming and cooling of the Arctic."




Greenpeace and the Sierra Club don't fund climate studies
NASA, the NSF and the NOAA do.

For your other points:

"The current Climate Change is Unnatural, Unusual or Unprecedented. (negative- the midatlantic was once covered in glaciers-so what's "normal"??)"
The earth's climate has changed a lot over hundreds of millions of years. One thing we've discovered is that an increase in C02 (from whatever source) is always accompanied by climate change.

"The current climate change is part of a long term trend, rather than a short term one. "
It can easily be both. And if positive feedbacks are involved (see below) short term can turn into long term.

"Climate change is not subject to environmental reactions that will cause "homeostasis".
The problem is that climate change seems to be subject to environmental reactions that produce positive feedback loops. Homeostasis eventually produces a new stability point, but it isn't necessarily where we want to be

"Climate change is predominately or completely anthropogenic."
Climate change in general isn't. Scientists believe that changes now taking place are.

"Specific causes can be isolated and quantified."
C02 is one of many elements in climate. It's one that we have isolated and quantified. The increase is due to human activity, and is almost certainly the cause of observed warming.

"Climate Change is reversible."
C02 increase is at least potentially reversible.

"Reversing the climate change is controllable."
Human actions can have climate consequences, yes. Whether its too late to do anything is an open question.

Here's a detailed account of the DDT science
Note that it is the metabolite DDE, not the precursor DDT, that causes the (well documented) problem.

http://www.environmentalreview.org/vol01/anderson.html

Why Fund a Study When You KNOW THE ANSWER
I just googled "sierra club" plus climate warming and got thousands of hits- all presupposing long-term reversible, measurable and anthropogenic global warming. Apparently, there's no need for empirical research. The point was hypothetical-The assertion was that only "commercial" interests produce biased reports.

The rest of your responses are filled with the normal vageries, non sequitirs and unproven assertions- your second response on homeostasis contradicts your first on duration. You refer to "scientists" as if there was absolute uniform or monolithic viewpoint (except of course for opinions you don't like-which are biased or fraudulent, of course). You acknowledge natural climatic variation and CO2 variation, but make the grand statement-"Scientists believe that changes now taking place are"-believe? Theologians believe-scientists are supposed to do empirical work.

The last point about controllability-wasn't even answered-what if you successfully cool the world and return us to the ice age-is that "where we want to be?"

Of course lets not let any ctiticism enter the arena, this is an article of faith with the left. Now that it has no credibility on macroeconomic matters-it wants to convince us it can correctly manage weather.

However, for all the reference to science- Al Gore is a second rate lawyer with a credibility gap. I'm sure he'll make it to his movie opening by Jet and Limo, though.

Apparently, you know the answers better than the scientists
You write:

"I just googled "sierra club" plus climate warming and got thousands of hits- all presupposing long-term reversible, measurable and anthropogenic global warming. Apparently, there's no need for empirical research."

The Sierra Club and others are basing themselves on empirical research funded by NSF, NASA, NOAA and others. You may not share their conclusions, but they're shared by many, many scientists.

"The point was hypothetical-The assertion was that only "commercial" interests produce biased reports."

"Reports" are one thing. Scientific findings published in peer-reviewed journals are something quite different. Do you think the research in Nature and Science is biased?

"The rest of your responses are filled with the normal vageries, non sequitirs and unproven assertions."

which you seem unable to take issue with factually.

"your second response on homeostasis contradicts your first on duration."

Actually, it amplifies the response on duration, as explicitly noted. A short term effect can lead to long term consequences if it triggers a feedback situation.

"You refer to "scientists" as if there was absolute uniform or monolithic viewpoint."

If you prefer, substitute, say, "the National Academy of Sciences" for "scientists;"e.g., "the National Academy of Sciences believes tha the changes now taking place are of human origin."

As to "belief," not all belief is based on faith. Belief can also be based on demonstrated facts.

As far as "let's not let any criticism enter the arena" --- who's suggesting this? Criticize away. But do so based on facts, please, rather than political slogans.


"climate report" vs. "study"
Also: what you wrote was this:

"Should I believe that a climate study sponsored by the Sierra Club or Greenpeace is thoroughly unbiased? "

"climate study" in this context clearly implies scientific research, which the Sierra Club, etc. don't do. When this was pointed out, you shifted to talking about "reports."

"that only "commercial" interests produce biased reports."


Sierra club "research"
The Sierra Club does not so scientific research, does not fund scientific research, and does not claim to do ro fund scientific research. What those thousands of sites you googled do is report the results of scientific research. They warn people of the danger of global warming and suggest strategies to reduce it.

Some of them are good. In particular, check out

http://www.sierraclub.ca/national/programs/atmosphere-energy/climate-change/ten-myths.html


It answers lots of the questions raised every day on this site: is it real, is it bad, is it reversable? You might be able to rebut their arguments, of you might save time and just presume they're wrong.

Bush/Gore
Both were from weatlhy political families.

Gore was raised in a hotel.

Bush grew up in Midland, TX.

Bush Sr. was a fighter pilot and was shot down. Bush Jr. earned his wings, which is not without danger even if he did not go into combat.

Gore was a reporter in Vietnam.

Bush actually ran corporations and a state.

Gore, like his daddy, was in Congress.

Comparing the two, Bush's achievements are many while Gore's are few.

No Subject
"The earth's climate has changed a lot over hundreds of millions of years. One thing we've discovered is that an increase in C02 (from whatever source) is always accompanied by climate change."
You have that backwards, climate change is alwasy accompanied by CO2 change. According to the ice cores, CO2 change always trails climate change.

"It can easily be both. And if positive feedbacks are involved (see below) short term can turn into long term."
The evidence points to the fact that the dominant feedback mechanisms are strongly negative.

"The problem is that climate change seems to be subject to environmental reactions that produce positive feedback loops. Homeostasis eventually produces a new stability point, but it isn't necessarily where we want to be"
Positive feedback loops are postulated in the models, but none have been identified in the real world.

"Climate change in general isn't. Scientists believe that changes now taking place are"
I know of no scientist that denies that there is climate change going on. There is a very heated debate regarding how much of it is due to man's influence. A recent Duke university study concluded that 45-55% of the current warming is due to the influence of the sun. Other studies have shown that a substantial amount of the current warming is due to inadequate compensation for the UHI.

there you go again
claiming that all scientists hold a particular position.
This is not the case, never has been.

Rachel Goreson
DDT was only damaging the environment while the internal combustion engine, per Mr. Gore, is more dangerous than nuclear weapons stockpiles.
When and where does anyone in the MSM, other than lonely John Stossel at ABC-TV, get to trumpet anything other than junk science? There are a few voices--Huber,Sowell,Williams,Crichton, for example-- but they get buried under an avalanche of bovine excrement (which, by the way, can be recycled into clean burning fuel!!)

PAY ATTENTION!!!!
AL GORE IS A LIAR, ER I MEAN A LAWYER

Didn't Presume They Were Wrong
Can you guys on the left read at all? I didn't say they were wrong, just that they have a known public position-and that they promote that position-in short they have a bias. The fact that they are alarmist and extremist makes me question their credibility, however and the willingness to question their own orthodoxy.

The radical greens are the same people in the West that become wahabbist imams in other countries

I'd like to take your word for this
But what you wrote above about DDT was completely wrong. If what you say here comes from the same places you got the DDT information, it's useless.

Can you speak about this issue in terms of the facts, instead of labels?
What you've been doing is talking about liberals and radical greens and alarmists and extremists. It seems as though you think the only people who aren't wild-eyed fanatics are people who agree with you. Instead of throwing around these names, could you try just talking about the facts?

Sierra Club ? Research"?
That's the GOOD site? What are the bad ones?? Sit in a room of climatologists and if and when one of them begins to question the dire-man-made global warming theories he'll get a 10lb text book tossed at his head with a "G*d Dammit--if you publish that I'll lose my funding!"
The Sierra Club and the Goresons of this world do a LOT more harm than good.

THAT'S SUCH A DEEP AND WELL-ARGUED POSITION!!!
AND THE CAPITAL LETTERS MAKE IT SO MUCH MORE LOGICAL AND COMPELLING.

Where did this happen?
Who was the climatologist?

Polar Warming Schwarming
What the BBC 'forgot' to mention is that the ANTARTIC has been known for a long time to have had a tropical past as well.

Our climate has varied wildly over the millenia and will continue to do so until the end of time, irregardless of the presence or absence of mankind.

try doing a little research
I never said that DDT was not a problem, I said the problem was exagerated. I then pointed out well known problems with a particular well known study.

Since you failed to address the point I made, rather than the strawman that you set up, I don't see how you proved me wrong.

also
I mentioned chickens being fed DDT,
You point out that inside the body DDT is metabolized to DDE.

I don't see how your point disproves my point.

There's also the Oregon Survey
to date over 17,000 signatures of actual scientists.
This is a internet survery, so yes it has been spammed. But each spammed name has been removed when pointed out.

There's also the 60 climate scientists who recently wrote a letter to the new Canadian Prime Minister.

Since you asked nicely
Fischer, H., Wahlen, M., Smith, J., Mastroianni, D. and Deck B. 1999. Ice core records of atmospheric CO2 around the last three glacial terminations. Science 283: 1712-1714.

"In all three of the most recent glacial terminations, the earth warmed well before there was any increase in the air's CO2 content. In the words of the authors, "the time lag of the rise in CO2 concentrations with respect to temperature change is on the order of 400 to 1000 years during all three glacial-interglacial transitions." During the penultimate (next to last) warm period, there is also a 15,000-year time interval where distinct cooling does not elicit any change in atmospheric CO2; and when the air's CO2 content gradually drops over the next 20,000 years, air temperatures either rise or remain fairly constant."

Sorry, you're not responding
Your post about DDT contained allegations that were simply wrong. Not the part about "exagerated." The part where you talked about the science.

Now you're talking about climate science. Since you were dead wrong about DDT, you need to give some reason why we should believe you on this subject. That means you doing your research, not readers.

As far as "proving you wrong" - I didn't and don't have to. You did that yourself with what you wrote about DDT.

regarding feedback
The earth has warmed up by 0.6C over the last 100 years.
From 1915 to 1945, it warmed up 0.4C.
From 1945 to 1975, it cooled 0.2C.
From 1975 to 1998, it warmed up 0.4C.
From 1998 to present, it has been constant.

There are many scientists who believe that at least part of this number is due to UHI and problems with the ground based measuring stations. (Did you know that there are only 8000 stations? And I won't even get into the fact that they are all ground based, as opposed to ocean based.)
BAMS April 2005. (I think I have the date right.)

Even the IPCC says that at least 20% of the above mentioned warming is due to the sun getting brighter.
There is a secondary affect. Increased solar radiation blocks cosmic radiation from reaching the earth. It is known that cosmic radiation plays a role in creating clouds, and clouds on the whole (at least the type created by cosmic rays) block sunlight and cool the earth. Less cosmic rays, fewer clouds, the earth warms.
Groups that attempt to estimate how much of an affect the cosmic ray influence has, put the amount of warming due to changes in the sun at between 30% and 75%. The Duke study that I mentioned falls in the middle of that range and seems to be the most solid.

Back to the subject at hand.

In a world without any feedbacks, the CO2 increase we have seen to date, should have resulted in an increase of about 1C.

We have seen only 0.6C of warming, and not all of that (exact amount still subject to debate) is due to CO2.

That is why I state that the real world shows that negative feedbacks are dominant.

The modelers have assumed that relative humidity will stay constant as the earth warms. This puts more water into the atmosphere, and since water vapor is by far the strongest of the greenhouse gases, this is how they get their predictions of 3C to 10C of warming. Unfortunately, their assumption of constant relative humidity is just that. An assumption. One study has shown that at least in the tropics, as air temperature rises, storms become more efficient at removing water from the air.

One final point.

The affect of CO2 in the atmosphere is near logarithmic in it's affect.

That is, each doubling of CO2 concentrations, has only half the impact of the previous doubling.
Putting some numbers to that.

Increasing atmospheric CO2 levels from 280ppm to 560ppm, will increase the forcing by 2.7W/m. (That's where the 1C rise in temperature comes from.)

Doubling CO2 again, to 1120ppm, will result in a 1.35W/m increase in forcing.

Doubling again to 2240ppm, will result in a 0.675W/m increase in the forcing.

Most forecasters don't think CO2 is going to rise much about 560ppm.

The reason for this is simple. The rate at which the world's population is growing, is slowing. Depending on who's numbers you believe, the population will peak out between 2050 and 2075, then start dropping.
Also as time goes on, the world is getting more efficient in how it uses energy. (Don't get me started on the wonders of white light LED's.)

Dead wrong
I don't see how anything you wrote proved me wrong, much less dead wrong.

evidence
your post linked a friendly interview with an activist who made a number of claims.

You may consider that to be scientific proof. I don't.

"Belief" vs. "Know"
Lemuel, if you hold a ball in your hand and let go of it (drop it) do you "believe" it will fall to the ground or do you "know" it will fall to the ground.

Thus when you say you believe something, that means to most of us that you THINK, MAYBE that something is likely factual. And we you say you know something, then that something is absolute.

Global warming on the other hand is a 'belief'. It is something some people choose to think is happening. Is it an absolute? Hardly. Hell, using the same modeling applications they can't even predict the weather for a few days at a time. Global warming belief is much like that story of a chicken who is standing around the barnyard and a nut falls from a tree and bust the chicken on the noggin. Though some gyrations the chicken came to the conclusion that the sky was falling and went running about warning all of the other citizens of the barnyard. Perhaps you should read the story (Chicken Little) or if thats a tad too creepy for you try "Flatland".

It was not what I wrote
It was the interview I posted which reviewed, in detail, the research about DDT and DDE, giving full exposure to all its criticism, criticism that you repeated as established fact.

The Oregon survey...
That survey was put out under misleading circumstances, bundled with something that looked like a peer-reviewed article from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, but in fact was not; was a partisan survey with errors. The survey did not restrict signers to only scientists with expertise or advanced degrees in climate science. Moreoever, it didn't say global warming wasn't a reality, it just said "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate."

"Catastrophic" is a relative word. That said, even if you accept all 17,000, and all 60 signatories, that is still only a small fraction of the geoophysical world. All of the relevent organizations of scientists in the field have checked in on the other side.

A painstakingly fair story about the "skeptic" phenomenon is at
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2003040068_warming05.html

Then here's the word "know"
I'm afraid this doesn't speak to the real issue.

If you want the word "know," here it is in the press release about the report of the National Academy of Sciences

"We know that greenhouse gases are accumulating in Earth's atmosphere, causing surface temperatures to rise," said committee chair Ralph Cicerone, chancellor, University of California at Irvine. "We don't know precisely how much of this rise to date is from human activities, but based on physical principles and highly sophisticated computer models, we expect the warming to continue because of greenhouse gas emissions."

Are you really sure you understand this better than Dr. Cicerone?

not an "activist"
It was an interview with a biologist, a specialist in the subject, who did not bring ideology into it. He dispassionately went down the history of the research, point by point

>You may consider that to be scientific proof. I don't.

It's not a "scientific proof." It's an interview with an expert discussion the scientific evidence, what science has proved. What he said totally contradicts the allegations about DDT you made. If you can disprove any of what he says, please bring your evidence.

The hothouse/icehouse cycle
Sorry about the format, but I can't seem to make this thing to paragraphs.

Over the last 500 or so million years there have been about four cycles from hothouse conditions, where there are no polar ice caps at all, to icehouse, where there usually are. I say usually because during one of the icehouse phases, there is some evidence that there may not have been ice caps. These cycles appear to be fairly regular. However, none of the reconstructions of greenhouse gas concentrations over that time that I know about correlate at all well. One hypothesis that attempts to explain this phenomenon is that galactic rotation causes cyclic changes on this time scale in cosmic ray flux from the black hole at the core of our galaxy. The cosmic rays are ionizing radiation. The ions formed can act as nuclei for water droplet formation i.e. clouds. More cosmic rays means more clouds which means colder temperatures. This has been observed to happen on the time scale of the sunspot cycle by satellite measurements. Unfortunately, there is no good long term record of cosmic ray flux on the time scale to required to support the galactic rotation hypothesis.








We have been in an icehouse phase for 40 million years or so, so saying that scientists thought that ice caps formed only about 3 million years ago is disingenuous at best. Even in an icehouse phase, however, there are temperature cycles and the ice caps grow and shrink as in, for example, what we call ice ages and interglacials, which have a cycle length of about 140,000 years.

Sad Part Is
The sad part of all this is, whether this is man made or not, we are in for a interesting 100 years or so.
Anyone deny that coast lines won't be moving with the melting of polar caps?
Mankind will sit around and debate this subject on who's to blame, much like this forum, meanwhile we will have a global crisis on our hands.
Suggestions for helping people in coastal regions with increased hurricanes, typhoons?
Suggestions for less land base and more crowding of the already overpopulated planet(another nicely avoided media subject)
Suggestions for a changing land base? meaning who is going to grow the food? Nobody can deny desert regions are expanding. Meanwhile we grow nice green lawns to replace them?
Suggestion for the greenhouse refugees? or do we let them all drown? The netherlands will be looking for new country I hear.
Whether this is man made or not..we are in for a world of shyte.

Sad Part?
The last Ice Age ended around 10,000 years ago....we've been warming ever since. Most of the warming of the past 100 years took place in the 1st half of the century....was man (read George Bush/Capitalism/the GOP) so powerful and diabolically clever that the warming came BEFORE the sins that caused it?
Gimme a break....

No Subject
...look at the 1975 Newsweek article on 'Global Cooling' and pick a name...same players, bigger money.
Follow the money, sir....follow the money.

Irrelevent at best
The question wasn't about the Newsweek article. You said sceptics were currently being assaulted. did you make this up?

No Subject
That is not a serious question, is it??
....For example, Gore's SciFi fantasy is nothing if not an attack on any and all who think other than does he. How much more current do you want it to be?
Read Roger Ebert's genuflection to the Gore God masquerading as a movie critique and get back to me.
Good Night...

So anyone who puts forward their own views...
... is attacking everyone who disagrees?
So - when you put forward yours, are you attacking people who disagree with you? If so, why is it ok for you but not for others. If not, why is it true for others but not for you?

So anyone who puts forward their own views...
... is attacking everyone who disagrees?
So - when you put forward yours, are you attacking people who disagree with you? If so, why is it ok for you but not for others. If not, why is it true for others but not for you?

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