Sunday, December 16, 2007

If the MSM Doesn't Report it, Does Scientific Truth Make a Sound?

If man-made global warming is settled fact, why are 100 scientists petitioning the U.N. to look before leaping?:
It is not possible to stop climate change, a natural phenomenon that has affected humanity through the ages. Geological, archaeological, oral and written histories all attest to the dramatic challenges posed to past societies from unanticipated changes in temperature, precipitation, winds and other climatic variables. We therefore need to equip nations to become resilient to the full range of these natural phenomena by promoting economic growth and wealth generation.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has issued increasingly alarming conclusions about the climatic influences of human-produced carbon dioxide (CO2), a non-polluting gas that is essential to plant photosynthesis. While we understand the evidence that has led them to view CO2 emissions as harmful, the IPCC's conclusions are quite inadequate as justification for implementing policies that will markedly diminish future prosperity. In particular, it is not established that it is possible to significantly alter global climate through cuts in human greenhouse gas emissions. On top of which, because attempts to cut emissions will slow development, the current UN approach of CO2 reduction is likely to increase human suffering from future climate change rather than to decrease it.

The IPCC Summaries for Policy Makers are the most widely read IPCC reports amongst politicians and non-scientists and are the basis for most climate change policy formulation. Yet these Summaries are prepared by a relatively small core writing team with the final drafts approved line-by-line by ­government ­representatives. The great ­majority of IPCC contributors and ­reviewers, and the tens of thousands of other scientists who are qualified to comment on these matters, are not involved in the preparation of these documents. The summaries therefore cannot properly be represented as a consensus view among experts. . .

The UN climate conference in Bali has been planned to take the world along a path of severe CO2 restrictions, ignoring the lessons apparent from the failure of the Kyoto Protocol, the chaotic nature of the European CO2 trading market, and the ineffectiveness of other costly initiatives to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Balanced cost/benefit analyses provide no support for the introduction of global measures to cap and reduce energy consumption for the purpose of restricting CO2 emissions. Furthermore, it is irrational to apply the "precautionary principle" because many scientists recognize that both climatic coolings and warmings are realistic possibilities over the medium-term future.

The current UN focus on "fighting climate change," as illustrated in the Nov. 27 UN Development Programme's Human Development Report, is distracting governments from adapting to the threat of inevitable natural climate changes, whatever forms they may take. National and international planning for such changes is needed, with a focus on helping our most vulnerable citizens adapt to conditions that lie ahead. Attempts to prevent global climate change from occurring are ultimately futile, and constitute a tragic misallocation of resources that would be better spent on humanity's real and pressing problems.
Also note this from a new AEI report:
A careful reading. . . will disabuse any fair-minded reader that many important aspects of climate science are "settled" and beyond argument.

It is nowadays considered at best an act of bad faith to inquire about "uncertainty" in our understanding of climate change and its potential impacts on human welfare, yet the terms "uncertain" and "uncertainties" appear more than 1,300 times in the 987-page full report of WG I (The Physical Science Basis of Climate Change). In other words, the term "uncertain" or its equivalent (such as "limited" or "incomplete understanding") appears on average more than once per page. The seventy-four-page Technical Summary of WG I alone identifies fifty-four "key uncertainties" in our scientific knowledge of climate change. These acknowledged uncertainties often concern key points that bear directly on an assessment of the likely magnitude of future climate change and therefore have great relevance to policymakers in terms of policy choices and implementation time scales.

In fact, the IPCC does not develop its certainty or uncertainty estimates in any scientifically rigorous way. Rather, the IPCC polls the very authors who write the reports and asks them to state their personal opinion about how confident they are that what they are saying is correct. . .

It should be no surprise that most people will assert that most of what they say is more likely correct than not; it is the equivalent of asking an in-house pollster or consultant for a presidential campaign how confident they are that their candidate is going to win the election. And this is made explicit in footnote twelve of the SR-SPM, which explains that confidence levels about the impacts of climate change on ecosystems are "[i]dentified on the basis of expert judgment of the assessed literature and considering the magnitude, timing, and projected rate of climate change, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity" (emphasis added). But most of these ecosystem impacts are derived based on computer projections not only of how the climate will change, but also of how people will react--a project with many subjective elements.

Randall Hoven at American Thinker:
The Kyoto treaty was agreed upon in late 1997 and countries started signing and ratifying it in 1998. A list of countries and their carbon dioxide emissions due to consumption of fossil fuels is available from the U.S. government. If we look at that data and compare 2004 (latest year for which data is available) to 1997 (last year before the Kyoto treaty was signed), we find the following.
  • Emissions worldwide increased 18.0%.

  • Emissions from countries that signed the treaty increased 21.1%.

  • Emissions from non-signers increased 10.0%.

  • Emissions from the U.S. increased 6.6%.

In fact, emissions from the U.S. grew slower than those of over 75% of the countries that signed Kyoto.

Nolan Finley in the Detroit News:
Al Gore has met the global warming enemy, and it is U.S.

The former vice president and recent Nobel Peace Prize winner declared with great disdain at the international climate change talks in Bali that the United States bears the blame and shame for stalling the crusade against greenhouse gases. . .

Gore could have spoken another inconvenient truth at the talks, if he weren't so hell-bent on casting America as the boorish ogre of the global warming drama.

He could have reminded the delegates that in 2006, total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell 1.5 percent -- and the intensity of those gases fell 4.2 percent -- without an international pact.

By contrast, the European Union, which is loudly proud of signing on to the Kyoto Protocol, increased greenhouse gas emissions 0.4 percent.

The decrease in U.S. emissions is attributed to a greater use of natural gas in electricity production, declines in agricultural and industrial methane output and better land-use and forestry practices, among other things.

That's some good news and might have started the conferees thinking about the effectiveness of voluntary, market-based solutions to global warming.

But that would rub hard against Gore's agenda of forcing America to accept a lesser place on the planet.
(via Moonbattery, Mark Steyn, Conservative Grapevine)

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