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Tag: alarmism

The Climate Youth Brigade

The history of the twentieth century is replete with radical groups scaring children about the future they are to inherit, and encouraging them to take to the streets to shout slogans they did not understand, to denounce their parents, and to demand political changes they could not comprehend. It is not a happy company.

The reason children cannot make major life decisions for themselves, and cannot vote, is that they do not yet have the perspective or background or thinking skills to understand scientific and political issues, or the long term outcomes of environmental or economic policies. Like greenies, they have difficulty with complex ideas and situations, and are not good at weighing different theories, or the objective analysis of risk. They are impressed by scary stories and scary pictures, and suggestions they will miss out or are being hard done by through the irresponsible actions of businesses, politicians and parents.

Children need to be exposed to a wide range of views, and encouraged to think about them carefully and critically.

Advocacy is a great and necessary thing, most of the time. It can also be a very dangerous thing, when the facts are incorrect, or theories wrong. Think of children in Communist China chanting Mao’s slogans in the street during the cultural revolution. Before taking sides, we need consider the sides carefully. A good education encourages and supports children to do this.

Become emotionally engaged, certainly. But be sure you have your facts right first, or you will do more harm than good. Good intentions, divorced from reality, are a fast track to disaster.

Schools and other authorities which encourage activism in children without ensuring facts are correct, and without encouraging critical analysis of diverse scientific and political views, are using children rather than aiding them, and indoctrinating them rather than educating them.

Have children been indoctrinated rather than educated?

Have they been told that current global temperature is between eight and ten degrees below the average for the last 200 million years?

Have they been told we are still in an ice age (it is an ice age whenever there is ice at the poles), and that there has been ice at the poles for less than 20% of earth’s history?

Have they been told that warming over the last 150 years amounts to less than one degree Celsius – a difference so small you would not even notice it moving from one room to another?

Have they been told half of this minor increase occurred before any significant human output of CO2, and that over the last twenty years, as CO2 output has increased, there has been no measurable change in global temperature?

Have they been told that changes far greater, in both directions, have happened frequently in the past without any human influence?

Have they been told that since the beginning of the current inter-glacial period, it has been both warmer and colder than now, and that the general temperature trend for the last 10,000 years has been downward?

Have they been told that CO2 levels in the atmosphere have been more than ten times higher than they are now, with no ill effects?

Have they been told that CO2 is vital for all life on Earth, and that at the beginning of the twentieth century, CO2 levels were almost catastrophically low, near starvation level for many green plants?

Have they been told that if the atmosphere were a stadium of 10,000 people, only four of those people would be CO2, and only one of those possibly of human origin?

Have they told that this minimal increase in this vital, non-toxic trace gas has resulted in new forest growth, more resilient grasslands, and better crop yields?

Have they been told there is no correlation between human production of CO2 and changes in global temperature?

Have they been told that Tuvalu and Kiribati, islands which were to have sunk by 2015, and from which we were expected to take the entire populations as desperate climate refugees, have actually grown in size?

Have they been told the origin of the media claims that 97% of scientists agree with catastrophic anthropogenic climate change, and given the opportunity to consider the merits of those studies?

Have they been encouraged to consider the work of leading climate scientists, geologists and physicists like Tim Ball, Richard Lindzen, Judith Curry, Will Happer, Murray Salby, Ian Plimer, Bob Carter, John Christy, Willie Soon, Ian Clark, Ernst Beck, or the thousands of others who have raised questions about the computer modelling behind the climate scare, and suggested that the scare is not supported by the data?


Then they are being used rather than aided, and indoctrinated rather than educated.

Antarctic Ice Sheets Formed While CO2 Was 600 ppm

Currently CO2 makes up about 390 parts per million of the atmosphere.

The assumption of the global warming alarmists has been that a doubling of CO2 from pre-industrial levels, from about 290 ppm to about 580 ppm, would drive the world over a ‘tipping point.’ So much heat would be captured, they claim, that the atmosphere would warm by as much as ten degrees, mass extinctions would occur, polar ice caps would melt, sea level would rise catastrophically, etc, etc.

These claims are made despite the fact that it is well established that the world has been through periods of very much higher CO2 than at present (over 1000 ppm) with no ill effects.

Now researchers Mark Pagani, Matthew Huber et al have shown that when the deep antarctic ice was formed some 34 milion years ago, atmospheric CO2 was about 600 ppm – well beyond the alarmists’ supposed polar ice melting tipping point:

By analysing ancient algae found in deep-sea core samples, Professor Matthew Huber and his colleagues determined that the mile-thick ice which now covers the south polar continent formed around 34 million years ago. At that stage the atmosphere held much more CO2 than it does now, some 600 parts per million (ppm) as opposed to today’s level of 390 ppm.

There is often concern that the Antarctic ice sheet might melt due to global warming (though in fact, despite much publicity over losses of ice from the Western peninsula, Antarctic ice has been steadily increasing in extent for the last 40 years). It would seem that this is highly unlikely given current and near-future levels of atmospheric CO2: at current rates of increase it will take a century at least to reach 600 ppm, the level at which the ice sheet formed itself, and higher levels would be needed to actually start it melting.

via The register.

And Right On Cue

Five minutes after I posted the previous article about global warming alarmists losing debates and resorting to insults, an article by professor of psychology Stephan Lewandowksy appeared on the ABC’s Drum website.

It starts off well enough:

Science is self-correcting.

In the long run, occasional errors that slip into the peer-reviewed literature are ironed out.

Errors and mistaken assumptions cannot persist because publication of a peer-reviewed paper is only a first stage of peer review: The subsequent, even more rigorous stage of peer-review occurs after a paper’s publication and involves the scrutiny of scientific work by the entire field.

All good. Scientific papers are subject to peer review before they are published, and their publication leads to further research, discussion, and possibly refutation. This is how knowledge grows, through a kind of Hegelian dialectic. Which is just a fancy way of saying a discussion in which various points of view come to the fore, are discussed, modified, and then replaced with ideas that build on those that came before.

Sadly, Lewandowksky’s article then immediately lapses into the kind of name calling that characterises alarmist debate.

The pretext for his article is the resignation of Wolfgang Wagner as editor of the journal Remote Sensing. Wagner’s  resignation followed the publication, after peer review, of a paper by Roy Spencer and Danny Braswell.

Wagner describs his reasons for leaving:

…In other words, the problem I see with the paper by Spencer and Braswell is not that it declared a minority view (which was later unfortunately much exaggerated by the public media) but that it essentially ignored the scientific arguments of its opponents. This latter point was missed in the review process, explaining why I perceive this paper to be fundamentally flawed and therefore wrongly accepted by the journal.

OK. But if the concern is that the arguments are poorly made, or have already been rebutted, or are just plain wrong, why not simply call for responses? In other words, why not address the preceived errors?

Roy Spencer responds:

But the paper WAS precisely addressing the scientific arguments made by our opponents, and showing why they are wrong! That was the paper’s starting point! We dealt with specifics, numbers, calculations…while our critics only use generalities and talking points. There is no contest, as far as I can see, in this debate. If you have some physics or radiative transfer background, read the evidence we present, the paper we were responding to, and decide for yourself.

If some scientists would like do demonstrate in their own peer-reviewed paper where *anything* we wrote was incorrect, they should submit a paper for publication. Instead, it appears the IPCC gatekeepers have once again put pressure on a journal for daring to publish anything that might hurt the IPCC’s politically immovable position that climate change is almost entirely human-caused. I can see no other explanation for an editor resigning in such a situation.

But that is not good enough for Professor Lewandowsky. The scientists who wrote this heresy, and anyone who thinks like them, must be discredited. Instead of addressing any issues of fact or methodology in the Spencer/Braswell article, he simply resorts to the customary alarmist insults:

Although most so-called climate “sceptics” prudently avoid peer review – preferring the internet as an outlet for their pseudo-science – very occasionally a “sceptic” paper does appear in a peer-reviewed journal.

In a dramatic turn away from what has been the normal method of scientific advance, those who question the currently popular view are not to be considered scientists. They are not even sceptics. They are pseudo-scientists, who are cunning enough to avoid exposing their views to review by other scientists.

Wrong. For example, the CO2 Science website has a report in which the most common alarmist claims are countered with references to over 600 peer reviewed articles, all of which question some aspect of the anthropogenic global warming schema. The 2009 NIPCC Report is even more comprehensive, quoting thousands of peer reviewed articles and concluding that there is no credible evidence of dangerous human influence on global climate.

This is despite the best efforts of people like Phil Jones to ensure strict controls are put in place to stop sceptical papers appearing:

From Phil Jones To: Michael Mann (Pennsylvania State University). July 8, 2004
“I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”

The next step in Lewandowsky’s oh so prediuctable diatribe is to imply that sceptical scientists are corrupt, making the claims they do because they have been lured into pseudo-science by bribes from oil companies. Some scientists’ research has been funded in part by oil companies. Most acknowledge this openly. So what?

As Jo Nova has pointed out, government funding for climate alarmist research is approximately 1000 times oil company and other private funding. On that basis, there should be 1,000 times more questioning about possible alarmist bias for financial gain or job security than for sceptical science.

Lewandowsky finishes with this extraordinarily insulting dismissal of climate researchers who do not share his views:

Ideology, subterfuge, and propaganda. That is all there is to climate denial.

Tell that to leading and internationally recognised scientists like Roy Spencer, Timothy Ball, John Christy, Freeman Dyson, our own Ian Plimer and Bob Carter, and thousands of others.

In the end, what matters is evidence. The key question is ‘Is there any evidence of correlation between human activity and changes in global climate.’

The answer is ‘No.’

Perhaps a more interesting question for a professor of psychology would be why the ‘experts’ (ordinary people seem a bit more resilient despite the best efforts of the legacy media), fall so readily for each successive costly and eventually falsified scare campaign (Y2K, SARS, DDT, the population bomb, etc, etc), and why those same experts so quickly demonise any dissent.

PS. The reason the alarmists are desperate to discredit Roy Spencer is that he is so widely recognised as a leading climate scientist:

Roy W. Spencer received his Ph.D. in meteorology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1981. Before becoming a Principal Research Scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville in 2001, he was a Senior Scientist for Climate Studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, where he and Dr. John Christy received NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal for their global temperature monitoring work with satellites. Dr. Spencer’s work with NASA continues as the U.S. Science Team leader for the Advanced Microwave Scanning Radiometer flying on NASA’s Aqua satellite. He has provided congressional testimony several times on the subject of global warming.

Dr. Spencer’s research has been entirely supported by U.S. government agencies: NASA, NOAA, and DOE. He has never been asked by any oil company to perform any kind of service. Not even Exxon-Mobil.

That is the bio from Dr Spencer’s website. His blog has a useful summary of the issues addressed in the Remore Sensing paper.

Scientists vs Alarmists

A letter from 36 leading climate scientists responding to the latest round of alarmism. Longish, but worth quoting in full:

February 8, 2011

To the Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate:
In reply to “The Importance of Science in Addressing Climate Change”

On 28 January 2011, eighteen scientists sent a letter to members of the U.S. House of
Representatives and the U.S. Senate urging them to “take a fresh look at climate change.” Their
intent, apparently, was to disparage the views of scientists who disagree with their contention
that continued business-as-usual increases in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions produced from the burning of coal, gas, and oil will lead to a host of cataclysmic climate-related problems.

We, the undersigned, totally disagree with them and would like to take this opportunity to briefly
state our side of the story.

The eighteen climate alarmists (as we refer to them, not derogatorily, but simply because they
view themselves as “sounding the alarm” about so many things climatic) state that the people of
the world “need to prepare for massive flooding from the extreme storms of the sort being
experienced with increasing frequency,” as well as the “direct health impacts from heat waves”
and “climate-sensitive infectious diseases,” among a number of other devastating phenomena.
And they say that “no research results have produced any evidence that challenges the overall
scientific understanding of what is happening to our planet’s climate,” which is understood to
mean their view of what is happening to Earth’s climate.

To these statements, however, we take great exception. It is the eighteen climate alarmists who appear to be unaware of “what is happening to our planet’s climate,” as well as the vast amount of research that has produced that knowledge.

For example, a lengthy review of their claims and others that climate alarmists frequently make
can be found on the Web site of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
(see That report
offers a point-by-point rebuttal of all of the claims of the “group of eighteen,” citing in every
case peer-reviewed scientific research on the actual effects of climate change during the past
several decades.

If the “group of eighteen” pleads ignorance of this information due to its very recent posting,
then we call their attention to an even larger and more comprehensive report published in 2009,
Climate Change Reconsidered: The 2009 Report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on
Climate Change (NIPCC). That document has been posted for more than a year in its entirety at

These are just two recent compilations of scientific research among many we could cite. Do the
678 scientific studies referenced in the CO2 Science document, or the thousands of studies cited
in the NIPCC report, provide real-world evidence (as opposed to theoretical climate model
predictions) for global warming-induced increases in the worldwide number and severity of
floods? No. In the global number and severity of droughts? No. In the number and severity of
hurricanes and other storms? No.

Do they provide any real-world evidence of Earth’s seas inundating coastal lowlands around the
globe? No. Increased human mortality? No. Plant and animal extinctions? No. Declining
vegetative productivity? No. More frequent and deadly coral bleaching? No. Marine life
dissolving away in acidified oceans? No.

Quite to the contrary, in fact, these reports provide extensive empirical evidence that these things are not happening. And in many of these areas, the referenced papers report finding just the opposite response to global warming, i.e., biosphere-friendly effects of rising temperatures and rising CO2 levels.

In light of the profusion of actual observations of the workings of the real world showing little or
no negative effects of the modest warming of the second half of the twentieth century, and
indeed growing evidence of positive effects, we find it incomprehensible that the eighteen
climate alarmists could suggest something so far removed from the truth as their claim that no
research results have produced any evidence that challenges their view of what is happening to
Earth’s climate and weather.

But don’t take our word for it. Read the two reports yourselves. And then make up your own
minds about the matter. Don’t be intimidated by false claims of “scientific consensus” or
“overwhelming proof.” These are not scientific arguments and they are simply not true.
Like the eighteen climate alarmists, we urge you to take a fresh look at climate change. We
believe you will find that it is not the horrendous environmental threat they and others have made it out to be, and that they have consistently exaggerated the negative effects of global warming on the U.S. economy, national security, and public health, when such effects may well be small to negligible.

Signed by:
Syun-Ichi Akasofu, University of Alaska1
Scott Armstrong, University of Pennsylvania
James Barrante, Southern Connecticut State University1
Richard Becherer, University of Rochester
John Boring, University of Virginia
Roger Cohen, American Physical Society Fellow
David Douglass, University of Rochester
Don Easterbrook, Western Washington University1
Robert Essenhigh, The Ohio State University1
Martin Fricke, Senior Fellow, American Physical Society
Lee Gerhard, University of Kansas1
Ulrich Gerlach, The Ohio State University
Laurence Gould, University of Hartford
Bill Gray, Colorado State University1
Will Happer, Princeton University2
Howard Hayden, University of Connecticut1
Craig Idso, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
Sherwood Idso, USDA, U.S. Water Conservation Laboratory1
Richard Keen, University of Colorado
Doral Kemper, USDA, Agricultural Research Service1
Hugh Kendrick, Office of Nuclear Reactor Programs, DOE1
Richard Lindzen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology2
Anthony Lupo, University of Missouri
Patrick Michaels, Cato Institute
Donald Nielsen, University of California, Davis1
Al Pekarek, St. Cloud State University
John Rhoads, Midwestern State University1
Nicola Scafetta, Duke University
Gary Sharp, Center for Climate/Ocean Resources Study
S. Fred Singer, University of Virginia1
Roy Spencer, University of Alabama
George Taylor, Past President, American Association of State Climatologists
Frank Tipler, Tulane University
Leonard Weinstein, National Institute of Aerospace Senior Research Fellow
Samuel Werner, University of Missouri1
Thomas Wolfram, University of Missouri1

Endorsed by:
Rodney Armstrong, Geophysicist
Edwin Berry, Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Joseph Bevelacqua, Bevelacqua Resources
Carmen Catanese, American Physical Society Member
Roy Clark, Ventura Photonics
John Coleman, Meteorologist KUSI TV
Darrell Connelly, Geophysicist
Joseph D’Aleo, Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Terry Donze, Geophysicist1
Mike Dubrasich, Western Institute for Study of the Environment
John Dunn, American Council on Science and Health of NYC
Dick Flygare, QEP Resources
Michael Fox, Nuclear industry/scientist
Gordon Fulks, Gordon Fulks and Associates
Ken Haapala, Science & Environmental Policy Project
Martin Hertzberg, Bureau of Mines1
Art Horn, Meteorologist
Keith Idso, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
Jay Lehr, The Heartland Institute
Robert Levine, Industrial and Defense Research and Engineering1
Peter Link, Geologist
James Macdonald, Chief Meteorologist for the Travelers Weather Service1
Roger Matson, Society of Independent Professional Earth Scientists
Tony Pann, Meteorologist WBAL TV
Ned Rasor, Consulting Physicist
James Rogers, Geologist1
Norman Rogers, National Association of Scholars
Thomas Sheahen, Western Technology Incorporated
Andrew Spurlock, Starfire Engineering and Technologies, Inc.
Leighton Steward,
Soames Summerhays, Summerhays Films, Inc.
Charles Touhill, Consulting Environmental Engineer
David Wojick,

1 – Emeritus or Retired
2 – Member of the National Academy of Sciences

From The Science and Environmental Policy Project.

Why Climate Change Nonsense Has to Stop

Climate change alarmists need to be called to account.

When they talk about global warming, they actually mean three separate things:

1. The world is getting warmer in an unprecedented, or at least highly unusual and alarming, way.

2. This unusual warming is caused by human activity, specifically, the use of fossil fuels.

3. The world getting warmer is a bad thing.

Is the world getting warmer at an unusual rate?


No one argues about the fact that the world is getting warmer.

But the last century has been one of remarkable climate stability. There has been an average global temperature increase of less than 1 degreee Celsius over the last 100 years.

Given that we have just come out of a period of extreme cold that lasted for 500 years, this minor increase is neither unusual or alarming.

This very small rate of warming has continued unchanged except for minor fluctuations for the last 150 years. There is no evidence of any correlation between temperature change and human activity.

The real ‘climate change deniers’ are the global warming alarmists, who persistently ignore or downplay much faster and larger historical changes in climate, or worse, deliberately alter data to make past temperatures look colder, and recent records look warmer.

Everyone has heard of the HadCRUT/Mann/‘hide the decline’ alterations to the twentieth century temperature record.

But even little New Zealand’s official record keepers have done the same thing – changing the temperature record to hide the fact the raw temperature data show no warming at all.

Organisations which depend on creating alarm over alleged climate change in order to gain funding cannot make their case without lies and exaggerations.

More recently the NASA GISS records have been tampered with in the same way.

Comparing the data they offered as fact in 1999 with data they assure us is correct now, it takes two seconds to see that over that ten year period, earlier temperatures have been reduced, while later temperatures have been increased. The resulting graphs change from one that shows a mild and moderate increase in temperature, to one that shows a much greater increase.

From WUWT:

James Hansen and NASA GISS Telling Fibs Again

Climate change alarmists need to be called to account.

‘Recent extreme weather events are because of global warming!’

Really? Is there any real world evidence of an increase in the number or intensity of extreme weather events?

‘Our modelling shows…’  No. Forget the computer games. Is there any evidence of an increase in extreme weather events.?

‘Well, no.’

“Sea levels will rise catastrophically!’

Really? Is there any real world evidence of an increase in the rate of sea level rise?

‘Our modelling shows…’ No. Forget the computer games. Is there any evidence of an increase in the rate of sea level rise?

‘Well, no.’

‘The world is warming at an unprecedented rate!’

Really? Is there any real world evidence that recent climate change has been unusual?

‘Our modelling shows…’ No. Forget the computer games. Is there any evidence of unusual warming over the last century?

‘Well, no.’

‘Damaging climate change is caused by human activity! We have to stop using fossil fuels!’

Really? Is there any real world evidence of a correlation between human activity and changes in global temperature?

‘Our modelling shows…’ No. Forget the computer games. Is there any evidence of correlation between human activity and climate change?

‘Well, no.’

Over 100 billion dollars has been spent on this farce.

This money, completely wasted, could have made a real difference if spent on, for example:

  • Real environmental issues. 
  • Disaster – flood/fire/cyclone – preparation and mitigation.
  • Fusion research.
  • Building roads, hospitals, schools or other infrastructure.
  • Eradicating malaria, measles, polio.

The list could go on…

Climate change alarmists need to be called to account.

The climate change farce has to stop.

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