Part of the atmosphere from above. Thin, isn’t it? All the weather we’ll ever see happens right there.
AGW theory may not be a hoax, but it fails because it’s wrong
I’d never heard of Bill Moyers until Bob Carter circulated the link to what Bob calls this piece of malignant venality (have to love that wordsmithing!).
Mr Moyers, an ancient US journalist, runs billmoyers.com, on which Joshua Holland,
a few days (oops) three weeks ago, published “pseudo-scientific climate claims debunked by real scientists“, which he sought from climate scientists and offered “as a public service.” Joshua gets sceptical thinking all wrong and regurgitates errors, while the arguments his scientists rely on have been widely discredited. Still, he does us a service, conveniently listing eight arguments for us to refute. Mr Holland finally reveals, at the very end of his post, that they come from the famous alarmist web site, home of John Cook, Stephan Lewandowski and their disreputable, widely discredited and fraudulent “97% consensus” paper: the Skeptical Science web site.
Joshua introduces the sceptics:
Most people who deny that human activity is warming the planet just dismiss a massive body of scientific evidence as a big hoax.
This is not true. People who decide to check the facts of global warming for themselves don’t find a hoax, they find errors. For example, they might decide to search out the global temperature records, only to discover that it hasn’t been warming for the last 17 years or more. Their natural curiosity is aroused at this unexpected dichotomy between the forecasts of catastrophe and the facts.
When the science contains major mistakes, it’s obviously wrong, so the dangerous anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory dies and is no longer a target for public policy. The main reason why international conferences have failed to forge a new agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol is there’s no need for it. So it might be interesting to discuss where it came from, but the AGW theory remains irrelevant.
Joshua reckons sceptics deny any human contribution to global warming. But there’s actually no evidence either way, so we say sure, there could well be a human influence at the global level, since we see it clearly at the local and regional scale—it’s just that so far it’s been undetectable. We know our emissions have increased the level of atmospheric carbon dioxide, but how much temperature rise that has caused remains indistinct. Even the IPCC has to guess.
Some elements of the AGW theory are accepted on both sides of the debate. For example, both sides agree that there has been some global warming with some human contribution during some periods. But how much warming there’s been, exactly which periods have warmed and the magnitude of the human contribution to that warming are all vigorously disputed. It’s wickedly inaccurate to say that sceptics “dismiss a massive body of scientific evidence as a big hoax.”
There are points that are bitterly contested, such as whether the atmosphere can warm the oceans, or heat “hide” in the ocean depths without being detected passing through the surface layers, or atmospheric water vapour provide feedback sufficient to cause dangerous warming, or whether clouds globally cause warming or cooling (yes, scientists don’t know), or whether the tiny human emissions of CO2 could cause ocean acidification (of course not), or even whether sea level rise has accelerated over the last decade or two (it hasn’t). To overreach all those uncertainties and claim boldly that the AGW theory as a whole is “settled science” is uneducated drivel. Only non-scientists could confess holding that outrageous belief. Except for Jim Hansen, but he’s a full-time fanatical crusader now and no longer qualifies as a scientist.
Birth shaped by a conspiracy?
If you’re looking for a conspiracy you might find one right back at the beginning, in 1988. The WMO (World Meteorological Organisation) and UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme), in creating the IPCC, constructed a definition of “climate change” to mean, precisely, that we cause it. Quite clever (in much the same way as a punch in the face is subtle) because, by definition, it’s always our fault, isn’t it? Here’s the definition:
2. “Climate change” means a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.– UNFCCC (pdf, 51 kB), page 7.
Note that it need only be attributed to human activity—even in ignorance. Whether it’s true or not is unimportant. Now, that’s a real global conspiracy, not one of these imaginary conspiracies!
conspiracy definition has meant that for the last 26 years, when we thought the IPCC was objectively investigating the science behind global warming, it wasn’t. The IPCC didn’t need to research whether we were causing warming or how much of it might be natural. The IPCC already knew there was climate change and it had been told that we were causing it. Its only task was to say how bad it was going to get. That’s not science, it’s politics. Left-wing, control-everyone politics. Humbug.
Joshua also says:
But there’s a more sophisticated set of climate “skeptics” who make arguments that, at least to the lay ear, sound like they’re grounded in scientific evidence. And because most of us lack the background to evaluate their claims, they can muddy the waters around an issue that’s been settled in the scientific community.
He casually reviles sceptics with a feeble-minded generalisation and, in claiming sceptics “muddy the waters,” he blames them for his own sin.
This is too long now. These are Joshua’s eight climate claims; I’ll start on the first claim in a separate post. It’ll be fun. 🙂
- No, the Earth Hasn’t Stopped Warming Since 1998
- No, the IPCC Makes Projections, Not Predictions
- Yes, the Temperature Readings Are Reliable
- Yes, There Is a Scientific Consensus
- It’s Not the Sun’s Fault
- Doubling Down With “Global Cooling”
- Yes, It’s Been Warm Before
- No, Antarctic Ice Isn’t Increasing