It’s about time to review the evidence for man-made global warming

From my colleague and good friend John McLean, of Melbourne, comes a penetrating discussion about evidence that’s long been missing from science, let alone the unmoderated disputes in the global warming branch of science. His sixth paragraph is surgically astute. I will have a contribution in this area ready soon. – RT

— by Dr John D. McLean
first published at American Thinker on March 27, 2019

American Thinker

Some people seem to think man-made global warming has been proven. Others believe there’s no evidence that man-made warming exists. Neither is correct. Evidence exists, but, as people familiar with courts of law will know, what’s submitted as evidence is not automatically proof.

Firstly, a judge might decide that what is submitted as evidence is inadmissible because it’s not evidence at all (e.g., irrelevant, opinion, hearsay, obtained by unacceptable methods) or of negligible value. Secondly, lawyers for the two parties ask questions that test the credibility of the evidence, and the witnesses are compelled to answer those questions. Finally, it’s up to the jury to decide if the evidence is conclusive.

None of this happens with scientific “evidence.”

Like having no court case in between

Chapter 1 of the IPCC’s 2013 climate assessment report describes evidence as “data, mechanistic understanding, theory, models, expert judgment.”

Regarding the IPCC’s claims of man-made warming, I don’t think these amount to much at all. Many of the data are uncertain, the “mechanistic understanding” says only what might be happening, and the theory might not be true in the real world. Models are not evidence, especially when they have not been verified, do not accurately include all factors, and are weighted toward the prime “suspect.” Expert judgment is merely opinion, and opinion is usually accepted as evidence only when applied to very specific issues in court cases.

Some people seem to think the IPCC’s evidence is conclusive proof. This would be like the police presenting evidence and then the judge jailing the person, with no court case in between to test the evidence. [emphasis added]

Other people seem to think they are capable of evaluating the scientific evidence for man-made warming. In reality, probably less than 5% of the population has the appropriate education to understand the issues, and even fewer have the interest in exploring climate matters in depth.

IPCC just doing what they’re told

With no examination of the evidence, we don’t know the truth of the matter. It makes no sense to dismiss alternative ideas or to label someone a denier when the truth hasn’t been established, but that’s what has happened.

The IPCC can’t examine the evidence it gathers because the organization’s charter is to report on the human influence on climate and what might be done about it. It was told to consider just one “suspect,” so, naturally, it tries to find evidence to support a case against that suspect.

Science as a whole has shown itself to be incapable of resolving disputes. It has no forum in which the evidence can be questioned and evaluated, no forum that demands responses to questions and challenges. Some scientific disputes have dragged on for years without resolution.

It’s true that scientific truths are provisional in case new evidence overthrows an old theory, but that shouldn’t stop the open, impartial, and detailed examination of evidence so as to clarify what is known with reasonable certainty, what’s speculation, and what flaws exist in a scientific claim.

When companies want to commercialize scientific findings, the first thing they’ll do is verify that the claims stack up. To do that, they examine both the methods used and the evidence supporting the findings.

When governments’ policies are based on science, then it’s up to the governments to first determine if the science is solid. It would simply be irresponsible of any government not to do so.

Testing the evidence requires an open, impartial, and objective evaluation. The process cannot be political, because it has to recognize an essential difference between politics and science. Politics is settled by consensus (i.e., votes), but science is interested only in how well certain ideas (i.e., hypotheses) account for what’s been observed and how those ideas relate to accepted science. Science also has a “null hypothesis” that argues that an apparent causal link between two factors might be a coincidence or might be driven by some other factor.

President Trump’s proposal for a review of climate science looks like the kind of evaluation that’s needed. For far too long, warmists have avoided close scrutiny of their claims.

More scrutiny on a pub brawl than a global catastrophe

Let’s just hope that it’s like any court case, with witnesses cross-examined in regard to statements they’ve made, compelled to answer questions, and maybe even subpoenaed to attend.

It would be ridiculous to put more effort into testing evidence in court for a minor crime than testing scientific evidence that threatens to put a large financial burden on the U.S. and much of the world.

Usually, when people believe their evidence to be compelling, they can’t wait to get to court and show the truth of their claims. The warmists tell us that their evidence is compelling, but they seem curiously reluctant to try to prove it in a formal inquiry. Maybe their argument is far weaker than they’ve been claiming. If that’s the case, then it’s all the more reason for an open, impartial, and objective review.

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22 Thoughts on “It’s about time to review the evidence for man-made global warming

  1. Simon on 29/03/2019 at 1:08 pm said:

    “American Thinker” is a great oxymoron. A home for all sorts of wacko conspiracy theories.
    Warming of the climate system is unequivocal. Every scientific organisation and climate research centre has confirmed this statement.

  2. But they don’t confirm it’s man-made. As you knew.

  3. Gwan on 29/03/2019 at 5:55 pm said:

    I see that simple Simon is back here again .
    What don’t you get ?
    The climate has warmed very slightly in the last 40 years ,BUT remember in the 1970s we were heading for an ice age which was the last climate scare .or was it a scam.
    The theory of runaway global warming based on increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere has certainly not been proven.
    All things being equal a doubling of CO2 from 300 parts per million to 600parts per million could raise the temperature of the earth point six of a degree 0.6C.
    “warming of the climate system is unequivocal” That is a the dumbest statement I have ever read.
    The climate has warmed slightly and scientists working on behalf of the UNIPPC could not find any evidence that this warming was not a natural climate variation .
    Then along comes Ben Santer a lead author and he made up science fiction and wrote the report that stated that the finger print of human induced warming “was unequivocal ‘ when that was never the conclusion or any solid proof from the contributing scientists.
    You have been hoodwinked Simon as has most of the worlds media .

  4. Andy on 29/03/2019 at 11:03 pm said:

    “Wacko conspiracy theories”. Such as?

    It’s a bit rich for any of the MSM to refer to alt media as “conspiracy theorists” when they have been peddling the lie about US-Russian collusion in the 2016 elections for years. They are literally crying on camera now that their ludicrous narrative has been exposed

  5. Simon on 30/03/2019 at 9:30 am said:

    If you don’t like the IPCC, the WMO released their state of the climate 2018 yesterday.
    Even the Murdoch owned newspapers have given up on climate change denial. Your only platform is places like American Thinker, where you also deny Russian interference in US elections.

  6. Andy on 30/03/2019 at 11:48 am said:

    The Mueller investigation showed no Russian collusion in the US election and the fake news media like CNN are literally crying on camera that their fake narrative has been exposed.

    Why should anyone trust these people ever again?

  7. Ian Cooper on 31/03/2019 at 11:26 am said:

    When people talk about ‘denial’ Simon, they need not look any further than you for an example of someone in ‘denial!’ We don’t have to deny Russian interference in the US election of 2016. The investigator two spent more than 2 years on this ‘denies’ it! If you disagree with him, show us your proof. Then again with your track record that will never happen!

  8. Dennisa on 01/04/2019 at 6:01 am said:

    WMO, IPCC, all part of the UN machine and all reading from the same hymn sheet which they wrote themselves. In many cases, the same people are involved and certainly the same institutions.

  9. Simon on 01/04/2019 at 7:28 am said:

    34 people have been charged or pleaded guilty. The big question was whether Russia had kompromat on Trump or whether he was merely a useful idiot. Mueller’s investigation suggests that it was the latter.
    The case for obstruction of justice is much stronger but the US had a history of not charging present or former presidents.
    The main stream media often gets things wrong but it also gets a lot of things right.
    You can’t dismiss inconvenient facts as fake news.

  10. Ian Cooper on 01/04/2019 at 12:53 pm said:

    Where are these ‘inconvenient facts’ Simon? Once again you allude to things that don’t exist. If YOU have the proof to back up your claims, then out with it! Otherwise, shut your trap. You always make out that you know more than anyone else who contributes here, but time after time you fail to deliver. This is another example!

  11. Gwan on 01/04/2019 at 1:33 pm said:

    Simon. You are really simple .
    You think that as the special counsel Muller found no proof of collusion ,but you know better .
    The whole Russian interference story came about because on the day Trump was elected the Democratic Party thought that they had been cheated .
    They looked around for something to blame their defeat on and attempted to upset the election .
    The whole thing has back fired on them as all their dossiers and proof was fake and did not stand up to a thorough inspection .
    Now they and you seem to be saying ” Muller was in Trumps Pocket ”
    You are a troll simple Simon so crawl back under your bridge .

  12. Andy on 01/04/2019 at 9:33 pm said:

    I’m looking forward to the $250 million lawsuit against CNN being pursued by Nick Sandmann’s lawyers.

    It’s about time these charlatans are taken to the cleaners

  13. Barry Brill on 02/04/2019 at 8:54 pm said:


    I’ve had a quick look at the WMO “State of the Climate 2018” which you referenced. I can’t see any alleged evidence that the current climate is human-caused. Could you please let us have a page reference?

  14. John in NZ on 12/04/2019 at 8:13 pm said:

    I have a theory that believers in AGW are believers in the hockey stick.

    They think the warming that has happened is unusual and therefore any warming that is observed they consider to be evidence that CO2 caused it.

    This is why Simon says
    “Warming of the climate system is unequivocal. Every scientific organisation and climate research centre has confirmed this statement.”

    He thinks this is good evidence and doesn’t understand why people like me are not convinced.

  15. Simon on 13/04/2019 at 5:23 pm said:

    Read Marcott (2013). The current rate of warming is unlike anything seen in the past 11,300 years. This is a good thing as it means that climate is not sensitive to small changes in input.

  16. John in NZ on 14/04/2019 at 8:52 am said:

    Hello Simon.

    Thank you for providing evidence that my hypothesis is correct. You do indeed believe that the warming that is happening is unusual and therefore any warming that is observed is evidence that CO2 caused it.

    Marcott et al. (2013) might initially appear to support this position however Shaun Marcott himself said, “Our global paleotemperature reconstruction includes a so-called “uptick” in temperatures during the 20th century. However, in the paper we make the point that this particular feature is of shorter duration than the inherent smoothing in our statistical averaging procedure, and that it is based on only a few available paleo-reconstructions of the type we used. Thus, the 20th-century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusions.”

    In other words, this study cannot be legitimately used to make claims about the 20th century warming. There are many studies that have found that neither the rate nor the amount of warming in the 20th century is unusual when compared to the rest of the Holocene.

    If these studies are correct then claims that warming has occurred is not evidence that CO2 caused the warming.

  17. Brett Keane on 15/04/2019 at 10:25 am said:

    If Simon comes to consciousness with that info, all is forgiven……..Brett

  18. Simon on 15/04/2019 at 3:39 pm said:

    Ha-ha nice selective quoting. You left out:
    Our primary conclusions are based on a comparison of the longer term paleotemperature changes from our reconstruction with the well-documented temperature changes that have occurred over the last century, as documented by the instrumental record.

    The conclusion is:
    Global temperature, therefore, has risen from near the coldest to the warmest levels of the Holocene within the past century, reversing the long-term cooling trend that began ~5000 yr B.P. Climate models project that temperatures are likely to exceed the full distribution of Holocene warmth by 2100 for all versions of the temperature stack (Fig. 3), regardless of the greenhouse gas emission scenario considered. By 2100, global average temperatures will probably be 5 to 12 standard deviations above the Holocene temperature mean

  19. Maggy Wassilieff on 19/05/2019 at 10:29 am said:

    Seems it is not man-made CO2 that is causing warming, but hectares of concrete, asphalt and steel.

    How much has urbanisation affected United Kingdom temperatures?

  20. Richard Treadgold on 19/05/2019 at 1:58 pm said:

    Thanks, Maggy.

    Goddard and Tett report the annual urban heat island intensity (UHII) from 1990–2017 is 1.90 ± 0.88 K, however the uncertainty estimates suggest the range could be from 1.0–2.8 K. They use a land cover dataset covering most of Europe derived from satellite data. I see the UAH anomaly for April is +0.44 °C. It’s possible that’s heavily influenced by UHII — maybe we’re cooling much faster than we realise. But we’ll have to wait for an assessment of how the global data might be modified by these conclusions, or for an expansion of this analysis.

  21. Simon on 22/05/2019 at 2:42 pm said:

    The climate is not cooling.
    UAH estimates lower troposphere irradiance; urban heating is not going to have much effect on irradiance
    in the lower 2km in the atmosphere.
    Homogenisation removes the UHI increase component from urban weather stations when calculating temperature anomalies.

  22. Brett Keane on 24/05/2019 at 8:50 pm said:

    Of the Holocene, Simon? Spare us your idiocy, please. What have you been eating, holdover psylocin? Brett Keane

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