Global Warming Archives

Robert VerBruggen at Blogger News Network takes a closer look at the UN climate report.

First of all, the scientists are 90 percent humans cause warming to what degree? I don’t think anyone has said that natural fluctuations don’t affect climate at all. If emissions cause 1 percent of warming, that’s not that helpful for solving the problem. Even if you’re 100 percent certain.

Indeed, that’s a key question. If all our efforts and our billions of dollars won’t make a dent, is it really worth the effort? Robert looks into the report for the answer.

To answer the question I read the report itself (OK, the policymaker summary, sue me). Soon after claiming a 90 percent chance that humans have caused more warming than cooling (page 3), the report claims that “most” of the warming is “very likely” (90-95 percent) to have been human-caused.

So of the warming that is happening, the UN panel says that >50% is caused by humans. Except that they’re less sure when they’re dealing with actual data than when they’re doing their predictions of the future.

Finally, take a look at the chart on page 7 of the report, where the researchers look at various trends — whether they occurred, whether human activity caused them and whether they’ll continue in the future. Somehow, the first two columns have “likely” and “very likely” popping up a lot, but the future predictions have two “virtually certains.” In every single category, the scientists are equally or more certain about the future than the past.

Tell me how is it, exactly, that the panel is better at predicting the future than at analyzing established data? For example, it’s “very likely” that there were fewer and warmer cold days in the late 20th century, and “likely” human activity contributed to it, but “virtually certain” this will continue in the future.

Good question. In the coming days, I expect more folks will be taking a closer look at this. If we really are causing most of the global warming–if we broke it–we should fix it. And in the meantime, there are so many simple things we can do to reduce our energy requirements (florescent bulbs, telecommuting, etc.) that there’s no real reason to ignore this.

At the same time, in the current not-so-scientific climate where people are being cowed into silence by man-made-global-warming proponents, you’ll have to forgive me for being a bit wary of any report from scientists who are in lockstep agreement on the issue.

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Solar (System) Warming

Kim Rowe consolidated a number of news articles in her comment here on the scientific “consensus” on global warming. If it’s largely man’s fault on earth, why then is it also happening on:


According to a September 20 NASA news release, “for three Mars summers in a row, deposits of frozen carbon dioxide near Mars’ south pole have shrunk from the previous year’s size, suggesting a climate change in progress.” Because a Martian year is approximately twice as long as an Earth year, the shrinking of the Martian polar ice cap has been ongoing for at least six Earth years.

The shrinking is substantial. According to Michael Malin, principal investigator for the Mars Orbiter Camera, the polar ice cap is shrinking at “a prodigious rate.”

“The images, documenting changes from 1999 to 2005, suggest the climate on Mars is presently warmer, and perhaps getting warmer still, than it was several decades or centuries ago,” reported Yahoo News on September 20.

Pluto (same link):

Sallie Baliunas, chair of the Science Advisory Board at the George C. Marshall Institute, said, “Pluto, like Mars, is also undergoing warming.” However, Baliunas speculated it is “likely not the sun but long-term processes on Mars and Pluto” causing the warming. However, until more information is gathered, Baliunas said, it is difficult to know for sure.


Observations made by the Hubble Space Telescope and ground-based instruments reveal that Neptune’s largest moon, Triton, has warmed significantly since the Voyager spacecraft visited it in 1989. Our science editor Dr David Whitehouse reports.

“Since 1989, at least, Triton has been undergoing a period of global warming – percentage-wise, it’s a very large increase,” said Dr James Elliot of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


The latest images could provide evidence that Jupiter is in the midst of a global change that can modify temperatures by as much as 10 degrees Fahrenheit on different parts of the globe.

Not all of these instances are necessarily directly tied to the heat of the Sun, though that is one explanation since the Sun has been getting hotter, and its changes mirror Earth’s temperature changes going back 3 centuries. The point is, though, that these things are happening throughout the solar system, and warming is happening all over. And even without Martian SUVs destroying the ozone. There are many natural processes–Solar Warming being just one of them–that are occurring. The fact that the Earth is getting warmer doesn’t mean there’s anything we can do to significantly change that.

UPDATE: But never mind all those natural causes. The UN has determined that it’s 90% sure that global warming is caused just by us.

PARIS (AP) — The most authoritative report on climate change is using the strongest wording ever on the source of global warming, saying it is “very likely” caused by humans and already is leading to killer heat waves and stronger hurricanes, delegates who have seen the report said Thursday.

Dozens of scientists and bureaucrats from 113 countries are editing the new report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in closed-door meetings in Paris. Their report, which must be unanimously approved, is to be released Friday and is considered an authoritative document that could influence government and industrial policy worldwide.

Three participants said the group approved the term “very likely” in Thursday’s sessions. That means they agree that there is a 90 percent chance that global warming is caused by humans.

So a UN report trumps the warming happening throughout the Solar System, and even trumps the Sun. Brilliant.

The report will also say that global warming has made stronger hurricanes, including those on the Atlantic Ocean such as 2005’s Katrina, according to Fields and other delegates.

They said the panel approved language saying an increase in hurricane and tropical cyclone strength since 1970 “more likely than not” can be attributed to man-made global warming.

The panel did note that the increase in stronger storms differs in various parts of the globe, but that the storms that strike the Americas are global warming-influenced. In 2001, the same panel had said there was not enough evidence to make such a conclusion.

And, as noted earlier, over 70% of environmental professionals don’t think they’re global-warming induced. Oh, and the Earth has it in for America, since it’s the ones that hit us that are due to global warming.

In the rather lengthy category of “Liberal Good Intentions Gone Bad”…

As the delegates hold their evening session, the Eiffel Tower, other Paris monuments and concerned citizens in several European countries were expected to switch off their lights for five minutes to call attention to energy conservation, heeding a call by French environmental campaigners.

Some experts said that while well-intentioned, turning the lights out could actually consume more energy than it would conserve by requiring a power spike when the lights turn back on _ possibly causing brownouts or even blackouts.

Too funny.

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Scientific “Consensus”

Back in November, the National Registry of Environmental Professionals asked 793 of their members from 47 states some questions about global warming; its existence and causes, public policy response, and how it affects their jobs. Here’s the existence and causes section.

The existence of global warming today

  • 82 percent of professionals report they think global warming is a real, measurable, climatic trend currently in effect.
  • 66 percent respond that the rate at which global warming may be occurring is a serious problem facing the planet.
  • 64 percent attribute certain phenomenon such as rising ocean levels, increased storm activity, severe drought, massive habitat loss, depletion of the Earth’s oxygen sinks, i.e. rain forests and ocean plankton, to the effects of global warming.
  • 68 percent agree that global warming is a trend that must be addressed as soon as possible.

The causes of global warming

  • 59 percent respond that current climactic activity exceeding norms calibrated by over 100 years of weather data collection can be, in large part, attributed to human activity.
  • 71 percent of environmental professionals, however, do consider the recent increase in hurricane activity in the Atlantic through 2005 and the Pacific through 2006, to be part of a larger natural cycle and not, for the most part, attributable to human activity.

82% is a pretty good number for considering the idea that global warming is happening. But beyond that, you can only get about two-thirds to agree on its affects and its urgency.

But it’s the causes that really show how little consensus there is. Only 59% believe that the warming that exceeds 100-year norms is caused largely by humans. Put another way, 41% of environmental professionals either disagree or are not sure that humans are a significant contributor to warming. Thus, skepticism of it is hardly in the same league as Holocaust deniers.

The Weather Channel’s most prominent climatologist is advocating that broadcast meteorologists be stripped of their scientific certification if they express skepticism about predictions of manmade catastrophic global warming. This latest call to silence skeptics follows a year (2006) in which skeptics were compared to “Holocaust Deniers” and Nuremberg-style war crimes trials were advocated by several climate alarmists.

The Weather Channel’s (TWC) Heidi Cullen, who hosts the weekly global warming program “The Climate Code,” is advocating that the American Meteorological Society (AMS) revoke their “Seal of Approval” for any television weatherman who expresses skepticism that human activity is creating a climate catastrophe.

Further, 71% think that the heavy 2005/2006 hurricane season was generally just part of the normal, natural cycle of weather. The NOAA said that and they got targeted by environmentalists. Now, all this does not mean that a former Vice President, in the movie poster for his Oscar-nominated film, can’t try to draw a direct line between factories and hurricanes. It just means he’s bucking the consensus. [Irony alert!]

So when somebody says to you that the debate about human-induced global warming is over, just have them ask the professionals, not the politicians.

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Yeah, this is a hat tip to a 2-day-old Instapundit post, which is eons in blog time, but I thought it worth highlighting. In this story about how the tiny country of the United Arab Emirates beats the United States per capita in putting “demand on the global ecosystem”, this line is mentioned about the second place US.

The United States is no longer bound by Kyoto, which the Bush administration rejected after taking office in 2001.

But as Glenn notes, based on a passage from what he calls “the not especially Bush-friendly Wikipedia”, that is simply not true. You can chalk it up to “mere” incompetence or “simple” laziness, but it seems that almost always when the mainstream media get incompetent or lazy, conservatives and/or Republicans suffer (and liberals and/or Democrats look better). Honestly, when’s the last time any news source (or your friendly, neighborhood liberal buddy) correctly noted that Clinton never submitted it to the Senate for ratification? If your going to insist that Bush”rejected” it, you must say the same thing about Clinton & Gore (notwithstanding Gore’s “symbolic” signing of it; liberal good intentions don’t count if they don’t produce results).

Somehow, the fact that 80-90% of journalists vote Democrat just doesn’t seem to register with folks like Eric Alterman who insist that the media lean conservative. That Bush “rejected” Kyoto is such a Known Fact(tm) in those circles does make its way into reporting, and it ain’t the only thing that does.

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The Worst News for Climate Change Folks

“The Reference Frame” enumerates a long list of bad news for those who say we’re to blame for global cooling warming climate change.

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First we had Walter Cronkite and Sen. Edward Kennedy come out against wind power in their backyard of Nantucket Sound. Now the Left is protesting clean-burning natural gas.

Former James Bond actor Pierce Brosnan and other celebrities gathered Sunday to protest a natural gas facility proposed for a site 14 miles off the Malibu coast.

“We have to use our voices and band together and stop this,” said Oscar winner Halle Berry.

The gathering _ also attended by Cindy Crawford, Jane Seymour, Dick Van Dyke and Tea Leoni _ was intended to raise awareness about how the energy industry has invested billions to liquefy and ship natural gas across oceans.

There are five facilities proposed for California, with three along the Southern California coastline. One of the world’s largest energy companies, Australian-based BHP Billiton, is seeking to build the terminal off the coast of Malibu and Oxnard. A decision is expected next year.

BHP officials say the terminals would provide a reliable source of low-polluting energy. Opponents, however, say the terminals would not meet clean air requirements and could be terrorist targets.

“Could be terrorist targets”? Hey, let’s stop building high-rise buildings, or shopping malls, or theaters to watch your movies in. They could be terrorist targets, too. And this natural gas plant would be 14 miles away from shore, not in the middle of a crowded suburbia.

This isn’t just a NIMBY issue–Not In My Back Yard–it’s an attempt to keep this clean fuel it out of anyone’s backyard.

Brosnan, who hosted the protest, said his opposition to the terminals extends beyond the beach in his backyard. He plans to oppose other proposed terminals, including one in Long Beach and one in Port Hueneme.

Where do these liberals elites expect clean energy to come from? You have to build wind farms, or solar farms, or natural gas plants or geothermal plants or something. If you’re serious about caring about global warming, why be against something like this? As soon as they come up with some sort of energy that will replace all our energy needs, not take up space, not ruin views, and not be a terrorist target, then let’s talk. Until then, this is simply actions that belie their words.

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Global Warming Deniers Should Go On Trial?

If some blogger wrote that those who disagreed with the current global warming orthodoxy should be tried Nuremberg-style, would you just write it off? Perhaps. He might be just fringe kook. OK, how about if that blogger was a writer for an environmental magazine?

Grist Magazine’s staff writer David Roberts called for the Nuremberg-style trials for the “bastards” who were members of what he termed the global warming “denial industry.”

Roberts wrote in the online publication on September 19, 2006, “When we’ve finally gotten serious about global warming, when the impacts are really hitting us and we’re in a full worldwide scramble to minimize the damage, we should have war crimes trials for these bastards — some sort of climate Nuremberg.” ( )

Can you still write him off? Maybe. Could be just a fringe paper.

OK, how about if the paper had a good reputation among some big names?

A U.S. based environmental magazine that both former Vice President Al Gore ( ) and PBS newsman Bill Moyers, for his October 11th global warming edition of “Moyers on America” titled “Is God Green?”

( ) have deemed respectable enough to grant one-on-one interviews to promote their projects, is now advocating Nuremberg-style war crimes trials for skeptics of human caused catastrophic global warming.

Still writing him off? Still wondering if man-made global warming is some sort of article of faith among the true believers?

(Hat tip: KnightHawk at PoliPundit.)

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