The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Saturday, February 11, 2023

46 Scientists

The increasingly shrill narrative that predicts a climate apocalypse is actually quite similar to the shrill COVID-19 narrative that began in early 2020 and continues to this day. In both cases, the narrative is: 

  • based on highly questionable science and cherry-picked data that often excludes results that might invalidate the narrative; 
  • uses highly questionable models that cannot reproduce real world results and have been proven to be grossly inaccurate;
  • promoted by so-called experts who, when investigated, have more than a little to gain if policies based on the narrative are adopted;
  • shilled by an largely ignorant and dishonest media that blindly accept claims when they come out of a leftist ideological mindset;
  • established as "settled science" in which any questions or criticism are unacceptable and anyone who promotes an alternative view is demonized or even censored via social media as a "denier;" 
  • lacked objective context or statistical analysis that might cause an observer to question the projected severity of the problem;
  • promoted "solutions" (e.g., lockdowns or CO2 mandates) that have a very low probablility of success and focus on many of the wrong parameters;
  • used claims that lead to mass hysteria that affects a non-trivial percent of otherwise well-educated and knowledgeable people, and
  • became the the cornerstone of catastrophically bad governmental policies that will have both intended and unintended consequences—almost all of them bad.

The parallels between Covid catastrophists and the climate alarmists are eerily similar. In both cases, a witch's stew of hysteria and extreme ideological blindness has resulted in an authoritarian approach that is strong on meaningless gestures and weak on policies that might actually address the underlying problems highlighted in the narrative.

In a recent article surveying statements made by past scientific members of the UN IPCC (the go-to source for the prevailing climate change narrative), Matthew M Wielicki writes: "... we usually always get to hear the inconvenient and raw truth about taxpayer funded, unelected, bloated government bureaucracies when members eventually leave and are not subject to bullying and financial repercussions." He then goes on to quote 46 scientists, all past members of the IPCC, who have a rather different view than "the consensus" that we're told makes climate alarmism a "settled" issue. Here are a few samples:

  • Dr Robert Balling: The IPCC notes that “No significant acceleration in the rate of sea level rise during the 20th century has been detected.” This did not appear in the IPCC Summary for Policymakers.
  • Dr Lucka Bogataj: “Rising levels of airborne carbon dioxide don’t cause global temperatures to rise…. temperature changed first and some 700 years later a change in aerial content of carbon dioxide followed.”
  • Dr John Christy: “Little known to the public is the fact that most of the scientists involved with the IPCC do not agree that global warming is occurring." Its findings have been consistently misrepresented and/or politicized with each succeeding report.
  • Dr Rosa Compagnucci: “Humans have only contributed a few tenths of a degree to warming on Earth. Solar activity is a key driver of climate.”
  • Dr Richard Courtney: “The empirical evidence strongly indicates that the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis is wrong.”
  • Dr Robert Davis: “Global temperatures have not been changing as state of the art climate models predicted they would. Not a single mention of satellite temperature observations appears in the IPCC Summary for Policymakers.” [Because those observations largely invalidate the narrative]
  • Dr Willem de Lange: “In 1996 the IPCC listed me as one of approximately 3000 “scientists” who agreed that there was a discernible human influence on climate. I didn’t. There is no evidence to support the hypothesis that runaway catastrophic climate change is due to human activities.”
  • Dr Johannes Oerlemans: “The IPCC has become too political. Many scientists have not been able to resist the siren call of fame, research funding and meetings in exotic places that awaits them if they are willing to compromise scientific principles and integrity in support of the man-made global-warming doctrine.”

The courageous medical doctors and public health experts who questioned the COVID narrative and the policies derived from it were proven to be correct in their criticism and concern. The earth and climate scientists exhibit the same level of courage in questioning the prevailing climate change narrative. It is almost certain that they too will be proven to be correct.

But before that happens, the catastrophists and hysterics can and will do great damage to lives and livelihoods—and accomplish absolutely nothing except to enrich a few while harming many.

UPDATE (02-13-2023):

The parallels continue. Just as we allowed a group of academics and "policy experts" to dictate catastrophically bad COVID policy—that not only didn't work but also ruined lives and livelihoods, we're now seeing the beginning of the same approach for climate change.  The Wall Street Journal reports on a new study out of the University of California:

Replacing all gasoline-powered cars with electric vehicles won’t be enough to prevent the world from overheating. So people will have to give up their cars. That’s the alarming conclusion of a new report from the University of California, Davis and “a network of academics and policy experts” called the Climate and Community Project.

The report offers an honest look at the vast personal, environmental and economic sacrifices needed to meet the left’s net-zero climate goals. Progressives’ dirty little secret is that everyone will have to make do with much less—fewer cars, smaller houses and yards, and a significantly lower standard of living. 

The Left has used climate change as a way to generate mass hysteria—at least among a large cohort of people who accept their unscientific and dishonest claims about the climate and our ability to affect it. Among that cohort is a significant percentage of national Democratic leadership. The result is catastrophically bad policy that will ruin lives and livelihoods and at the same time do nothing to remedy the perceived problems that climate alarmists list as their primary concerns.

The WSJ article concludes with this statement:

Progressives’ ultimate goal is to reduce consumption—and living standards—because they believe humans are a menace to the Earth.

Uh ... not all humans, just the ones who want to see living standards go down. After all, they and their elites will be certain that their living standards (e.g., big houses on the water, limousines, private aircraft) remain untouched while the little people suffer. Talk about a menace! 

UPDATE (02-14-2023):

The editors of Issues and Insights do what editors do:

Hot, cold, wet, dry, sunny, clear, snow, no snow – it doesn’t matter, it’s caused by global warming, the climate alarmists tell us over and again. Their desperation is palpable, the cords that keep them tethered to reality fraying more than ever, their charade coming apart.

For more than 30 years, the crisis peddlers have carried the narrative that man’s carbon dioxide emissions are creating an existential threat. They’ve cajoled, bullied, lied, deceived, screeched and burned an immense volume of fossil fuels to get their hard-left agenda codified and executive ordered, and they have some successes to refer to. But their efforts have been, and always will be, useless.

The editors go on to note:

“​​There has been no trend in the UAH global mean lower-troposphere temperature anomalies since September 2014: eight years, five months and counting,” reports Christopher Monckton on Anthony Watts’ website, where he helpfully also posts a chart of University of Alabama-Hunstville data to show us what he means.

Going back further, to the date when the satellite measurements – the most trustworthy data we have – began, the temperature record shows only a mild warming of 0.134 degrees Celsius per decade. Hardly anything to be concerned about.

By the way, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels since 1980 have grown from 339 parts per million to 415 PPM in 2021, a 20% increase, according to federal data. Seems the global temperature rise can’t keep pace with CO2 growth.

Also countering the narrative is the true story of sea levels. We’ve been told that man-made global warming will turn coastal cities into underwater attractions as the overheating planet melts ice and snow. But the oceans are not rising. They are stable.

“​​There is no evidence whatever to support impending sea-level-rise catastrophe or the unnecessary expenditure of state or federal tax monies to solve a problem that does not exist,” say researchers Jay Lehr and Dennis Hedke.

Just as we saw with COVID and the hysteria that accompanied it, climate facts belie the narrative. Too bad the catastrophists (in both cases) prefer fantasy over reality. Too bad our current leadership sides with the catastrophists and creates policies that will be as or more damaging than the idiocy they implemented in their insane response to the pandemic.