The Week That Was (Feb 23, 2008)–Brought to you by SEPP


The last of the books have been mailed. If you have not received your book by March 1, please notify with subject line “Didn’t receive book”.

Quotes of the Week:

“[Bill] McKibben has cast his lot with the U.N. empire builders, research grant seekers, report riggers, data falsifiers, PR flacks masquerading as scientists, bogus computer projections, disaster book and film peddlers, enviro groups sucking up direct mail contributions, partisans out to shed George W. Bush's blood, and assorted goofies wandering about in polar bear suits.”  John McClaughry (Ethan Allen Institute)


Here is what I wrote recently in the WSJ blog in response to McFarlane on McCain    Posted: Sat Feb 09, 2008 6:45 am.  Re: The Right Is Wrong on McCain

“Robert McFarlane is absolutely correct in his evaluation of John McCain.  He is certainly the best candidate (from either party) to meet the terrorist challenge of radical Islam.  And because of his background and experience he has more credibility and could be more effective than George Bush.

      But I am concerned about the strength of the US economy to carry this fight.  McCain evidently believes that global warming is a threat and needs to be fought by cutting emissions of carbon dioxide, i.e., by controlling energy use.  But is he aware that the science has changed profoundly just in the past year?  Climate change is mostly natural and therefore unstoppable.  CO2 is not a pollutant.  This fact demands a re-thinking of energy policy that will strengthen not weaken the economy.  Does McCain really want to preside over the de-industrialization of the United States?”



China & India do not need western subsidies  [ITEM #1].

The Ice Age Cometh?  [ITEM #2]

Global warming -- right on schedule [ITEM #3]

Readin', Writin' And Warmin' [ITEM #4]

Biofuels are bad for feeding people and combating climate change [ITEM #5]

Detroit's (long) quest for fuel efficiency [ITEM #6]

How polar bears survived [ITEM #7]

Sampling of articles in past few weeks [ITEM #8]



Democrats attack McCain’ GW record



“The global warming hysteria is one area of public policy entirely in the hands of experts. Only fully-qualified eco-scientists, and then, only those in the employ of the United Nations and the various national environmental bureaucracies, are consulted on the issue.  These are the sages of today, and fools of tomorrow.

      There is a vast and growing literature of extremely well-qualified skeptics, who doubt the very premise behind the international hysteria -- that fluctuations in human-caused CO2 emissions have anything much to do with either global or regional temperature trends.  Most have noticed that the trends coincide much better with solar cycles, beyond human control.  But, by definition, these skeptics are not in the pay of the environmental bureaucracies, or at least, do not remain in their pay for long.
 --David Warren, The Ottawa Citizen, 16 February 2008   [Courtesy CCNet]



MORE ALARMIST NONSENSE:  Another meaningless climate model exercise, which the editor of Science saw fit to publish in Science Express on 31 January 2008.  Now cluttering up the pages in Science 22 February 2008: Vol. 319.  pp. 1080 – 1083, by Tim Barnett, Ben Santer, et al “Human-Induced Changes in the Hydrology of the Western United States” The predictable conclusion: “a coming crisis in water supply for the western United States.” Shades of Al Gore’s discredited Nat’l Assessment Report [2000]



Philip Stott:  “An Obstinate Rationality”





Chemists poke holes in ozone theory: Reaction data of crucial chloride compounds called into question.

Nature 449, 382-383 (27 Sept 2007) | doi:10.1038/449382a; Published online 26 Sept 2007

By Quirin Schiermeier


As the world marks 20 years since the introduction of the Montreal Protocol to protect the ozone layer, Nature has learned of experimental data that threaten to shatter established theories of ozone chemistry.  If the data are right, scientists will have to rethink their understanding of how ozone holes are formed and how that relates to climate change.



Lord Monckton at Cambridge University.   See also TWTW of Feb 16.   

Paul Biggs reviews Apocalypse NO!



The George C. Marshall Institute is releasing a report offering perspective on some of the fundamental questions concerning the science of climate change.  Climate Issues and Questions ( provides clear and succinct summaries of what we know and do not know about our climate system and the human influence on it. 


And finally:  A Heartland Institute invitation to the Climate Conference in NY City, March 2-4, with hundreds of GW skeptics [See TWTW of Feb 9].  This momentous event will be difficult to ignore.  For details, see



Letter to CCNet  by S. Fred Singer []

“China and India don't need subsidies from the US, EU, or UN to acquire technology to make their power generation more efficient.  Such technology is available commercially or through license -- a minor expense compared to the savings in fuel costs derived from higher efficiency.”

EDITOR'S NOTE: Good point, Fred. The only problem is that more efficient power generation on its own won't bring down Asian CO2 emissions in the next 30-40 years.  Inevitable economic growth will easily outdo any reduction in carbon intensity.


China, India and the rest of the developing world won't agree, indeed cannot agree - in the interest of social and economic stability - to any post-Kyoto deal that adds any burden on them. A post-Kyoto deal would only be acceptable to the developing world if the Western world were willing to transfer technology, wealth and know-how to their rising competitors - for free, of course, because global warming, as we all know, is caused by rich people.  It will be interesting to see whether relentless apocalyptic climate scare mongering has been enough to weaken the West's self-confidence and self-interest to such an extent that it is now ready to commit economic suicide.    --Benny Peiser, CCNet 5 November 2007



Straight from today’s headlines: chilling facts on global warming

By Tom Randall, February 21, 2008     <>


Headline 1:  “Cold Snap kills 7650 in Afghanistan…harshest winter to hit Afghanistan in decades.” ­ AFP

Headline 2:  “A raging snow storm that blanketed most of Greece over the weekend continued into the

    early morning hours on Monday, plunging the country into sub-zero temperatures.” ­ Jerusalem Post

Headline 3:  “Snow delays Jerusalem schools…snow continued to fall in Jerusalem Tuesday after an

    overnight storm that blanketed city streets.” ­ Jerusalem Post

Headline 4:  “Enduring Tajikistan’s coldest winter…after suffering its worst winter in 50 years, Tajikistan

     has finally appealed to the United Nations for help.” ­ BBC

Headline 5:  “The worst winter in 50 years has cost China’s forestry sector…deployed 306,000 soldiers to

     combat the effects of snow in the southern parts of the country.” ­ ENS

Headline 6:  “Deep freeze in Western Greenland.  The ice between Canada and southwestern Greenland

    has reached its highest level in 15 years.” ­ BBC

Headline 7:  “Near record cold chills interior Alaska.  February 8th readings down to –72F at

    Chicken…Cold spell longest since 2000.” ­

Headline 8:  “Scientist says earth may soon face new ice age.” ­ RIAN News Service


Comment:  What’s a person to do?  Just one inconvenient truth after another.




By Peter Friedman, February 21, 2008


Although there are many uncertainties in climate science, we do know with reasonable assuredness that the earth is currently experiencing a modest warming trend. We also know that CO2, which is a small contributor to the "greenhouse effect," is increasing in concentration in the atmosphere.


The short-term confluence of these trends has led many to disregard the more convincing longer-term data and jump to a conclusion that there is a cause-and-effect relationship. But while the media have decided that the science is settled, many in the scientific community are skeptical — and with good reason.


Much of the current panic began when Dr. Michael Mann and his coauthors published their now-discredited "hockey stick" temperature plot — so named for its shape that showed a long trend of steady temperature over a thousand-year period and a sudden rise since the early 1900s. Dr. Mann's hockey stick became the foundation for policy leaders advocating mandatory emissions caps.


Fortunately for mankind (but unfortunately for the professional reputation of Dr. Mann), the hockey stick was convincingly shown to be an artifact of his flawed statistical methodology, which exaggerated recent data and smoothed older data. Stephen McIntyre even demonstrated that Dr. Mann's erroneous methodology generated hockey stick plots even when random data were inserted.


In contrast with Dr. Mann's conclusion, the current modest temperature trend is consistent in both magnitude and timing with the natural temperature cycles that the earth has been experiencing for millions of years, and it is nothing to fear.


The earth's climate cycles result from a number of long- and short-term driving forces. Long-term cycles, which include a 100,000-year orbital eccentricity cycle, a 41,000-year axis tilt angle cycle and a 23,000-year orbital "wobble" cycle, are responsible for major ice ages and interglacial periods.


Superposed on top of the long-term climate fluctuations are smaller and shorter climate cycles that have a period of roughly 1,500 years, theorized to result from solar variation.


Convincing evidence for these short-term cycles has been found all over the world. Originally, these 1,500-year cycles were discovered by studying isotopes in ice cores taken from Greenland, which provided a 250,000-year geologic record. Similar results have been uncovered on the opposite side of the world in Antarctic ice cores.


Hundreds of peer-reviewed articles in the world's leading scientific journals have documented additional evidence using a variety of proxies from all over the world. These include coral samples, cave stalagmites, tree rings, ocean glacial deposition, pollen deposition, bore holes and fossils, as summarized by renowned scientist and skeptic of the current CO2 hysteria, Dr. S. Fred Singer, in his recent New York Times best seller, "Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years."


Historical records from a broad geographic sampling corroborate the physical evidence. For example, records showed that the agricultural range of temperature-sensitive plants expanded and contracted in a manner consistent with the temperature cycle.


The current modest warming trend is the predictable temperature rise in the 1,500-year cycle following the "Little Ice Age," which lasted from 1300 to 1850. For its part, the Little Ice Age followed the Medieval Warming Period, which followed the Dark Ages cooling period, which followed the "Roman Warming Period," which followed another cold period before that and so on for millions of years.


Should we be concerned? Not if history is a guide — warm periods in the world's climate have historically been prosperous and bountiful, while the colder cycles have been characterized by mass starvation, disease, increased weather severity and civil unrest.


The Medieval Warming period, which lasted from 950 to 1300, saw great expansion of food production in the northern latitudes and flourishing communities.


Greenland (aptly named at the time it was settled by Eric the Red) became a thriving Viking colony, known for its fertile coastal farmland and bountiful ice-free waters — that is until the Little Ice Age turned it into an ice-covered wasteland, surrounded by pack ice. Yet Greenland's ongoing recovery from the Little Ice Age is treated as an enigma today.


Earlier, the Roman Warming period (200 B.C. to A.D. 600) was prosperous and enlightened. The following cold cycle coincided with the Dark Ages.


While there is little we can do that would alter Earth's temperature cycles, we may be leading ourselves down a road of economic suicide. Here in Massachusetts, our Legislature is in the process of capping CO2 emissions levels at 20 percent of 1990 levels by the year 2050. Does anybody who is knowledgeable about energy production believe that this is even achievable?


Although our Legislature will not be able to alter the millions-year-old climate cycle, they have repeatedly shown that they are very capable of making life more expensive here in Massachusetts. For example, coal is much more plentiful and economical for power generation than alternatives such as natural gas. But because of regulatory reasons in Massachusetts, we rely on natural gas for about half of our electrical generation, raising the cost of both electricity and natural gas and making us more dependent on imported LNG.


Internationally proposed "solutions," which exempt developing nations, are an even greater mistake. Does it really make sense for the United States to sign a treaty that gives another economic advantage to China?


Although many are gripped in fear of global warming today, 30 years ago we feared the opposite. During my teenage years in Florida, cold weather kept creeping farther down the state, destroying more orange groves every year. "Experts" were predicting that the Florida orange industry would be wiped out as a result of the cooling climate, which was incidentally also blamed on human activities.


President Franklin Roosevelt said during the Great Depression, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." The same could also be said about global warming.


Dr. Peter Friedman is an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at UMass Dartmouth and a member of the American Geophysical Union. His e-mail address is






A lawmaker from the Silicon Valley wants to require "climate change" to be taught as "science" in all California public schools. Warmers can't convince the adults, but they can brainwash the children.

    "You can't have a science curriculum that is relevant and current if it doesn't deal with the science behind climate change," says the bill's sponsor, California state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto. "This is a phenomenon of global importance, and our kids ought to understand the science behind that phenomenon."


So should adults such as Al Gore, who declares the debate over even as evidence debunking the junk science behind Simitian's proposal surfaces daily.


We don't know who'll write the climate change curriculum, but we'd guess it wouldn't be Dr. William Gray, professor emeritus of the atmospheric department at Colorado State University, who has become known as America's most reliable hurricane forecaster.  "We're brainwashing our children," Gray told 300 meteorology students at the University of North Carolina last year. "They're going to the Gore movie and being fed all this. It's ridiculous."  This scientist and student of global warming said, "The human impact on the atmosphere is simply too small to have a major impact on global temperatures."


Climatology pioneer Reid Bryson, founding chairman of the department of meteorology at the University of Wisconsin, says, "You can go outside and spit and have the same effect as doubling carbon dioxide."

Bryson agrees the Earth's temperature is rising but says man has little to do with it. "Of course it's going up," he says. "It has gone up since the early 1800s, because we're coming out of the Little Ice Age, not because we're putting more carbon dioxide into the air."


Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., ranking member on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has released a minority report that lists some 400 scientists who challenge Gore's assertions that the debate is over and the planet is in imminent danger. We don't expect any of the 400 to be invited to speak at California school assemblies or to submit materials for the textbooks.


"I find it disturbing," says Sen. Tom McClintock, R-Thousand Oaks, "that this mandate to teach this theory is not accompanied by a requirement that this discussion be science-based and include a critical analysis of all sides of the subject."  So do we, but McClintock forgets that, according to Gore, the debate is over.


We recently commented on the British government's decision to make Gore's opus, "An Inconvenient Truth," part of the British secondary school curriculum. The environmentalists were happy, if for no other reason than convincing impressionable children and future voters is easier than defending their theories before award-winning pioneers in the field.


Stewart Dimmock, a school governor in Kent, attacked the government's decision, saying it amounted to brainwashing of children. Justice Michael Burton of the High Court in London agreed in large part with Dimmock in a ruling that found that it was "common ground that it is not simply a science film . . . but that it is a political film." 


Judge Burton found the devil in Gore's details, permitting the film to be shown to British students on the condition that it be accompanied by new guidance notes for teachers to balance Gore's "one-sided" views. Burton documented nine significant errors with Gore's film.  One of the claims Burton ridiculed was Gore's that polar bears were drowning while searching for ice not melted by global warming. The only drowned polar bears the court said it was aware of were four that died after a storm.


Schoolchildren, however, do not read British High Court decisions. Nor do they read the articles and opinions of award-winning skeptics. But they will listen to their teacher when she says the polar bears are drowning and their schools and homes will one day be under 20 feet of water.


Turning our public schools into Gore re-education camps and sending children to bed thinking we're all going to die is child abuse.





Converting corn to ethanol in Iowa not only leads to clearing more of the Amazonian rainforest, but also would do little to slow global warming -- and often make it worse, according to a study published in Science magazine.


According to University of Minnesota ecologist, and co-author, David Tilman:


o   Converting the grasslands of the United States to grow corn results in excess greenhouse gas emissions of 134 metric tons of CO2 per hectare -- a debt that would take 93 years to repay by replacing gasoline with corn-based ethanol.


o   And converting jungles to palm plantations or tropical rainforest to soy fields would take centuries to pay back their carbon debts.


Diverting food crops into fuel production leads to ever more land clearing as well, according to Joseph Fargione of The Nature Conservancy, and study co-author:


o   Ethanol demand in the United States, for example, has caused some farmers to plant more corn and less soy.


o   This has driven up soy prices causing farmers in Brazil to clear more Amazon rainforest land to plant valuable soy.


o   Because a soy field contains far less carbon than a rainforest, the greenhouse gas benefit of the original ethanol is wiped out.


The environmental price tag of biofuels now joins the ranks of other, cheaper domestic fuel sources --such as coal-to-liquid fuel -- as major sources of globe-warming pollution as well as unintended social consequences.  As a result, 10 prominent scientists have written a letter to President Bush and other government leaders urging them to "shape policies to assure that government incentives for biofuels do not increase global warming."


By David Biello, "Biofuels Are Bad for Feeding People and Combating Climate Change," Scientific American, February 7, 2008.  [Courtesy NCPA]





With gasoline over $3 a gallon, the effort for fuel efficiency is gaining new urgency.  In this atmosphere, it's useful to glean some lessons from a half century of efforts to revolutionize the automobile, says Paul Ingrassia, former Dow Jones executive and former Detroit bureau chief of the Wall Street Journal.


For instance, incremental progress shouldn't be dismissed:


o   Today's version of incremental progress is diesel engines, as opposed to the revolutionary but still-unproven hydrogen fuel cells and lithium-ion batteries that grab all the attention.


o   Diesels have a lousy reputation, thanks to decades of sooty, smoke-belching trucks and to the clunky car diesels from GM in the 1970s.


o   But the latest high-tech diesels from Europe are a different story; the new Jetta diesel that Volkswagen will introduce to the United States later this year could get more than 40 mpg in combined city-highway driving, and meet air-pollution standards in all 50 states, including California.


Market forces, not government regulation, provide the most effective impetus for higher gas mileage:


o   America's Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) law first became law in 1975, but didn't prevent the SUV boom in the

1990s, where consumers and car companies were reacting to market forces, not CAFE.


o   For consumers, the market force was cheap gasoline, for auto makers it was profits, which are more substantial on SUVs than they are on fuel-efficient small cars.


o   This sorry situation might change now; thanks to the new contracts with the United Auto Workers union the Detroit Three finally might find profits in the smaller, fuel-efficient vehicles that more Americans now want.


Likewise, market forces are spurring research on alternative engine technologies that could produce a breakthrough in five to 15 years.  CAFE is unnecessary at best and damaging at worst. Further, the regulatory costs might wipe out much of Detroit's savings from the new labor agreements.


Source: Paul Ingrassia, "Detroit's (Long) Quest for Fuel Efficiency," Wall Street Journal, Feb 19, 2008.        .  [Courtesy NCPA]




By Willie Soon, Kesten C. Green, J. Scott Armstrong 08 Feb 2008

Have you ever wondered how polar bears survived the ice ages? Yes, ice ages! The question arises because scientists have found that when spring conditions are more than usually icy, fewer ringed seal pups (the bears' favorite food) are born. With less food available for the mother bears, fewer bear cubs are born and survive.

You might also ask: How did the ice-loving polar bears survive periods much warmer than we are currently experiencing -- times when there was little or no ice around the Arctic basin and Hudson Bay area? The most recent such period occurred between 6,000 and 9,000 years ago and it was even warmer between 110,000 and 130,000 years ago.

The bears not only survived these periods of dramatically different climate and environment, but provided an invaluable source of food, clothing, and raw materials for tools and trade goods for peoples living in the Arctic regions. In more recent times, during the 1950s and 1960s in particular, hunting with the help of modern technology and in excess of subsistence requirements reduced the population to perhaps as few as 5,000 bears. As their survival as a distinct species for as long as 250,000 years suggests, however, polar bears are robust. Once hunting restrictions were enforced the population grew quickly and there are now estimated to be as many as 27,000 bears; enough of them to pose a danger to Alaskan townsfolk.

Given the historical facts about polar bears, then, we were surprised when we learned that a team of experts commissioned by the U.S. Geological Survey had predicted that the population of bears would fall by two-thirds by the year 2050. These predictions were made " Support U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Polar Bear Listing Decision," under the federal Endangered Species Act. We wondered whether the bear experts' forecasting methods could be trusted.

Fortunately, the trustworthiness of the bear experts' forecasting methods is not just a question of opinion. Scientific research on forecasting has been conducted since the 1930s and has led to a set of evidence-based principles (rules or guidelines) that dictate which procedures are appropriate for the conditions. The forecasting principles have been published, and are easily available at

Using an Internet search, we found roughly a thousand published papers that addressed the problem of forecasting polar bear numbers. None of them made reference to the scientific literature on forecasting. Most importantly, neither did the nine government reports prepared in support of the listing decision.

We judged two of the reports (Steven Amstrup was the lead author of one and Christine Hunter was the lead author of the other) to be the most relevant forecasting documents. Both Amstrup's and Hunter's forecasting procedures started with the assumption that the sea ice predictions from the General Circulation Models (GCM) that are favored by some climate researchers are valid. They are not. The Models do not constitute scientific forecasting methods and do not deal correctly with what is known about the physics of ice. Since the underlying assumption that the GCM sea ice forecasts are valid is false, the polar bear forecasts are of no value.

We nevertheless used forecasting principles to audit the forecasting procedures used by Amstrup and by Hunter in order to determine whether their procedures would be useful for making conditional forecasts of bear numbers. That is, what would be the bear population in 2050 if low ice conditions prevailed over the intervening decades?

Amstrup's forecasts were the product of a complex set of assumptions. We could not rate his procedures against 26 relevant forecasting principles because his report did not contain sufficient information. Of the 90 relevant principles against which we were able to rate Amstrup's procedures, 73 were violated. Some of the violations were sufficient by themselves to render the forecasts invalid.

One polar bear expert specified variables, relationships, and inputs. The same expert then made adjustments until the forecasts conformed to his expectations. In effect, then, Amstrup's forecasts were the opinions of a single expert (himself) unaided by forecasting principles. Much research has shown that unaided expert opinions are not valid for forecasting in situations with high complexity and much uncertainty, as is the case with the polar bear population.

Hunter's forecasts were also the product of a complex set of assumptions. Complexity makes errors hard to detect, and when knowledge of the situation is weak, erroneous assumptions multiply and lead to large errors. Hunter's procedures violated 80 out of the 105 principles against which we were able to rate them. Amazingly, Hunter and her colleagues extrapolated the polar bear population nearly 100 years into the future on the basis of five years of data. Even the five years of data were of doubtful validity.

As far as predicting the future of the polar bear population is concerned, the opinions of polar bear experts have no value without the aid of scientific forecasting procedures.

A decision to list polar bears as endangered would be expensive for the government authorities to police. It would also lead to new burdens for businesses and for people living in Alaska. Recently, villagers from the town of Noorvik, Alaska killed a polar bear that was threatening residents. Would they have been allowed to do this if polar bears were an Endangered Species? Would it be fair to ask people to abandon their homes if a polar bear decided to include them in its range?

Polar bears are magnificent creatures and the cubs look cute. But decisions about listing a species as threatened or endangered should not be based on emotional responses. Without scientific forecasts of a substantial decline in the polar bear population and of net benefits from feasible policies arising from listing them, a decision to list would be irresponsible.

The authors (JSA, KCG, WS) are the team of inter-disciplinary scientists



Marc Morano, Communications Director, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) Inhofe Staff

Arctic Sea Ice Sees 'Significant Increase' in Size Following 'Extreme Cold' (CBC February 15, 2008)
Excerpt: There's an upside to the extreme cold temperatures northern Canadians have endured in the last few weeks: scientists say it's been helping winter sea ice grow across the Arctic, where the ice shrank to record-low levels last year. Temperatures have stayed well in the -30s C and -40s C range since late January throughout the North, with the mercury dipping past -50 C in some areas. Satellite images are showing that the cold spell is helping the sea ice expand in coverage by about 2 million square kilometres, compared to the average winter coverage in the previous three years. "It's nice to know that the ice is recovering," Josefino Comiso, a senior research scientist with the Cryospheric Sciences Branch of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland, told CBC News on Thursday. “Winter sea ice could keep expanding.” The cold is also making the ice thicker in some areas, compared to recorded thicknesses last year, Lagnis added. "The ice is about 10 to 20 centimetres thicker than last year, so that's a significant increase," he said. If temperatures remain cold this winter, Langis said, winter sea ice coverage will continue to expand. 


Too Much Ice: Polar Bears Starving
Excerpt: Apparently, according to a report, Svend Erik Hendriksen, a certified weather observer in the Kangerlussuaq Greenland MET Office, who is responsible for all the weather observations at Kangerlussuaq Airport (near to Sisimiut), says that the cause is too much sea ice: Several polar bears located (at least 6) close to Sisimiut town on the West coast ...Too much sea ice, so they are very hungry...Error number 36 in the movie An Inconvenient Truth Al Gore says the polar bear need more ice to survive... Now we have a lot of ice, but the polar bear is starving and find their food at the garbage dumps in towns. It's also influence the local community, polar bear alerts, keep kids away from the schools and so on.... The first one was shot at February 1st. Sadly, that first one is the poor female hung out in the newspaper photograph.


Alan Greenspan sees global warming bills causing economic troubles (Trade publication Greenwire - 02/15/2008)
Excerpt:  Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan warned that cutting emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases under a cap-and-trade scheme could hurt the U.S. economy and put people out of work. While saying that emissions trading made sense, Greenspan added, "I don't think there has been enough discussion about what we mean by a cap." Tackling global warming by trying to lower emissions to 1990 levels would cause problems, he said.  "That can only occur with much lower levels of economic activity," Greenspan said at the Cambridge Energy Research Associates conference here. And while many presume that technological advances can address global warming, he said the evidence is mixed. "It is a much more difficult problem than we like to talk about politically," he said. Greenspan's comments come as leading congressional Democratic and some Republican lawmakers are pressing to enact legislation that would mandate steep cuts in emissions. The chairman of the Federal Reserve from 1987 until 2006, Greenspan is widely seen as one of the world's most influential voices on economic matters. Asked whether the U.S. economy is in a recession or close to it, Greenspan replied, "We are clearly on the edge. It is 50 percent or better." []  Greenspan also endorsed increased use of nuclear power to address climate change despite concerns about managing waste. "The way that makes the most sense and, ultimately, I truly believe that what is going to happen, is a very substantially larger nuclear base," he said.  (Subscription required Greenwire)



Report: General Motors executive Lutz calls global warming concerns 'total crock of sh**'
Excerpt: Global warming is a total crock of ****. Then he added: I’m a skeptic, not a denier. Having said that, my opinion doesn’t matter. (With the battery-driven Volt), I’m motivated more by the desire to replace imported oil than by the CO2 (argument). []During a closed-door session with several journalists, Lutz declared that: Hybrid cars like those made by Toyota make no economic sense, because their price will never come down, and diesel autos like those touted by Chrysler are also uneconomic. The only place in Europe that diesel-driven cars are big, he said, is where diesel fuel is half the cost of regular gasoline; in most places there, the costs are comparable and diesel has little market penetration.

New Peer-Reviewed Study Shows Arctic COOLING Over last 1500 years!
(Study published in Climate Dynamics, and the work was conducted by Hakan Grudd of Stockholm University’s Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology - Published online: 30 Jan 2008)

Excerpt: The late-twentieth century is not exceptionally warm in the new Tornetrask record: On decadal-to-century timescales, periods around AD 750, 1000, 1400, and 1750 were all equally warm, or warmer. The warmest summers in this new reconstruction occur in a 200-year period centred on AD 1000. A Medieval Warm Period is supported by other paleoclimate evidence from northern Fennoscandia, although the new tree-ring evidence from Tornetrask suggests that this period was much warmer than previously recognised. < > The new Tornetrask summer temperature reconstruction shows a trend of -0.3C over the last 1,500 years. Paper available here: & Full Paper (pdf) available here:

Report: Solar Activity Diminishes; Researchers Predict Another Ice Age - Sunspots have all but vanished in recent years.
Excerpt: Dr. Kenneth Tapping is worried about the sun. Solar activity comes in regular cycles, but the latest one is refusing to start. Sunspots have all but vanished, and activity is suspiciously quiet. The last time this happened was 400 years ago -- and it signaled a solar event known as a "Maunder Minimum,"  along with the start of what we now call the "Little Ice Age." Tapping, a solar researcher and project director for Canada's National Research Council, says it may be happening again. Overseeing a giant radio telescope he calls a "stethoscope for the sun," Tapping says, if the pattern doesn't change quickly, the earth is in for some very chilly weather. [] In 2005, Russian astronomer Khabibullo Abdusamatov predicted the sun would soon peak, triggering a rapid decline in world temperatures.  Only last month, the view was echoed by Dr. Oleg Sorokhtin, a fellow of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences. who advised the world to "stock up on fur coats." Sorokhtin, who calls man's contribution to climate change "a drop in the bucket," predicts the solar minimum to occur by the year 2040, with icy weather lasting till 2100 or beyond. Observational data seems to support the claims -- or doesn't contradict it, at least. [] Researcher Dr. Timothy Patterson, director of the Geoscience Center at Carleton University, shares the concern. Patterson is finding "excellent correlations" between solar fluctuations, a relationship that historically, he says, doesn't exist between CO2 and past climate changes.


Another prominent scientist dissents from ranks 'consensus' of UN and Gore.

Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Art Douglas. recently retired Chair of the Atmospheric Sciences Department Creighton University in Omaha Nebraska. (Bio info for Douglas here: )
Excerpt: Whatever the weather, Douglas said, it's not being caused by global warming. If anything, the climate may be starting into a cooling period. [] The amount of sea ice is the largest ever seen in the Southern Hemisphere, and it has even snowed in Buenos Aires, Douglas said. "Within four or five months, it appears that a warming trend can go very rapidly in the other direction." Douglas said the climate can quickly correct itself, restoring lower average temperatures in as little as two years. He said he doubts global warming. [] Douglas said he believes the weather patterns the world is now experiencing are regional phenomena and not a global pattern. He also noted that the warmest year on record was 1998, but questioned why, if we're in a warming trend, it hasn't gotten any warmer than it was that year. Douglas said warming trends put more moisture in the atmosphere, resulting in more snow, which leads to cooling.

Claim: Loch Ness Monster Killed by Global Warming 
Excerpt: LEGENDARY Nessie hunter Robert Rines is giving up his search for the monster after 37 years. The 85-year-old American will make one last trip in a bid to find the elusive beast. After almost four decades of fruitless expeditions, he admitted: "Unfortunately, I'm running out of age." World War II veteran Robert has devoted almost half his life to scouring Loch Ness. Despite having hundreds of sonar contacts over the years, the trail has since gone cold and Rines believes that Nessie may be dead, a victim of global warming.


Harvard astrophysicist says global warming caused by Sun
Excerpt: In her lecture series, "Warming Up to the Truth: The Real Story About Climate Change," astrophysicist Dr. Sallie Baliunas shared her findings Tuesday at the University of Texas at Tyler R. Don Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center. Dr. Baliunas' work with fellow Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics astronomer Willie Soon suggests global warming is more directly related to solar variability than to increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, an alternative view to what's been widely publicized in the mainstream media. "Some people argue solar influence is large; some argue it is small. I'm somewhere in the middle," she said during a press conference Thursday afternoon. Her research goes back to time periods when the amount of carbon emission was small enough that it wasn't a major player. "If you go back far enough you eliminate some of your variables," she said. "I've always been interested with the changes of the sun and how they impact the earth. I decided to look at a narrower time scale this time." Baliunas asserts that increases and decreases in solar output led to historically warmer and cooler periods. [] She also said civilizations have always looked for the cause of climate changes. In 16th and 17th century Europe, thousands were executed for what was called "weather cooking," where religious and political institutions blamed witches - mostly women - for poor growing periods or storms.

Dr. Baliunas received her M.A. (1975) and Ph.D. (1980) degrees in Astrophysics from Harvard University. She serves as senior scientist at the George C. Marshall Institute in Washington, D.C., and chairs the Institute's Science Advisory Board.

Big Climate's strange 'science'
Excerpt: For example, climate models are being developed with very little ability to test out of sample. Furthermore, the climate science bandwagon has come about solely because of supposed anthropogenic climate change, which means that their funding is intrinsically tied to climate change happening and being man-made. A more self-interested group I could not find anywhere, even looking at the researchers who were paid by big tobacco companies to tell us cigarettes are safe. The scientists who interest me in this field are those who can draw on the experience of a lot of people who have come before them. And uniformly in these areas I find scepticism. People who write mathematical models of complex systems for a living tend to find the climate models very unconvincing. Geologists find the arguments very unconvincing. Engineers find the arguments unconvincing. And astrophysicists find the arguments unconvincing. [] Climate groupthink - The climate models seem to be largely driven by over-fitting to a small sample set and positive feedback. The small sample set - at most 30 years of accurate data - might be enough to try and predict one or two years, but 50 year predictions? Ignoring the biggest effect on global warming - water vapour - is surely going to cause problems.


Antarctic summer thaw 'later than normal'
Excerpt: Actually, the summer thaw down there was later than normal, and NASA believes that La Nina might have something to do with that. Usually, the breakup of fast ice around the Antarctica Peninsula occurs in early to mid-December, but this area was solidly frozen well into January. By the way, according to the Polar Research Group at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the current southern hemispheric sea-ice area is at 2.9 million sq/km, which is about 400,000 sq/km greater than the normal level expected for this time of year, or slightly above-normal. Based on the latest trend on the chart, it appears that the southern hemispheric sea-ice area could be right at normal by March.


Greenland climate not varying from natural climate variability (Dec. 2007)

Excerpt: RECENT PAPER ON THE HISTORY OF GREENLAND ICE MASS Showing that, although the Greenland melt has increased during the 1992-2006 period, the melt was even higher in 1900s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. So there is no indication that the current melt is above natural climate variability. Of course people who look just on the 1990 to 2007 period "see" great melting acceleration and influence of carbon dioxide and anthropogenic climate change.


U.S. Senate Report Debunks Polar Bear Extinction Fears Jan. 30, 2008

Excerpt: The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is considering listing the polar bear a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. This report details the scientists debunking polar bear endangerment fears and features a sampling of the latest peer-reviewed science detailing the natural causes of recent Arctic ice changes. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service estimates that the polar bear population is currently at 20,000 to 25,000 bears, up from as low as 5,000-10,000 bears in the 1950s and 1960s.  A 2002 U.S. Geological Survey of wildlife in the Arctic Refuge Coastal Plain noted that the polar bear populations may now be near historic highs.  The alarm about the future of polar bear decline is based on speculative computer model predictions many decades in the future. And the methodology of these computer models is being challenged by many scientists and forecasting experts.


Report finds global warming 'may save lives' (BBC)
Excerpt: The risk of a fatal heat wave in the UK within five years is high, but overall global warming may mean fewer deaths due to temperature, a report says.

A seriously hot summer between now and 2012 could claim more than 6,000 lives, the Department of Health report claims. But it also stresses that milder winters mean deaths during this time of year - which far outstrip heat-related mortality - will continue to decline. The report is to help health services prepare for climate change effects. A panel of scientific experts commissioned by the Department of Health and Health Protection Agency (HPA) has looked at the way the UK has responded to rising temperatures since the 1970s, and how the risks are likely to change. While summers in the UK became warmer in the period 1971 - 2003, there was no change in heat-related deaths, while annual cold-related mortality fell by 3% as winters became milder - so overall fewer people died as a result of extreme temperatures.


Call to examine climate science: 'There is no need to...solve a non problem'

By Australian & New Zealand groups
Excerpt: We are all of the view that CO2 in the atmosphere is a benefit not a threat to humans, and there is no need to launch a massive assault on our lifestyle, industry and prosperity to solve a non problem. [] The science is definitely not settled. Hundreds of qualified independent scientists around the world now question whether sufficient attention has been paid to the proven historical influence of natural solar cycles, and many other aspects of climate science. Since the scientific investigations for the IPCC fourth assessment report were completed 18 months ago, new research and new observations have cast serious doubt on many of the IPCC’s conclusions. "Everyone, from the highest government minister to the lowliest taxpaying consumer, must realise that unless it can be proved beyond reasonable doubt that carbon dioxide causes excessive global warming, there is no justification for imposing restrictions and costs on emitters of carbon dioxide. These burdens will pass inevitably on to the whole community, and will fall most heavily on those who can least afford them. No valid, verifiable scientific proof has yet been established. All we have are hypotheses and speculations based on computer models. Governments have a duty to create an opportunity for the full range of scientific evidence to be examined and evaluated. This can best be done by way of a Royal Commission of Inquiry.

Canadian Environmentalist David Suzuki calls for skeptical politicians to thrown into jail!
Excerpt: At a Montreal conference last Thursday, the prominent scientist, broadcaster and Order of Canada recipient exhorted a packed house of 600 to hold politicians legally accountable for what he called an intergenerational crime. [] What I would challenge you to do is to put a lot of effort into trying to see whether there’s a legal way of throwing our so-called leaders into jail because what they’re doing is a criminal act, said Dr. Suzuki, a former board member of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. It’s an intergenerational crime in the face of all the knowledge and science from over 20 years.


Comic Relief: NYC Mayor Bloomberg compares climate change to terrorism: Warming 'has the potential to kill everybody'
Excerpt: "So long as there's no penalty or cost involved in producing greenhouse gases, there will be no incentive" to meet targets set by international institutions, the mayor told the General Assembly. "For that reason, I believe the U.S. should enact a tax on carbon emissions. "Terrorists kill people. Weapons of mass destruction have the potential to kill an enormous amount of people," Mr. Bloomberg told reporters after addressing the U.N. General Assembly, but "global warming in the long term has the potential to kill everybody."


Coral Reefs May Be Protected By Natural Ocean Thermostat
Natural processes may prevent oceans from warming beyond a certain point, helping protect some coral reefs from the impacts of climate change, new research finds. The study, by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS), finds evidence that an ocean "thermostat" appears to be helping to regulate sea-surface temperatures in a biologically diverse region of the western Pacific. The research team, led by NCAR scientist Joan Kleypas, looked at the Western Pacific Warm Pool, a region northeast of Australia where naturally warm sea-surface temperatures have risen little in recent decades. As a result, the reefs in that region appear to have suffered relatively few episodes of coral bleaching, a phenomenon that has damaged reefs in other areas where temperature increases have been more pronounced. The study* lends support to a much-debated theory that a natural ocean thermostat prevents sea-surface temperatures from exceeding about 88 degrees Fahrenheit (31 degrees Celsius) in open oceans. If so, this thermostat would protect reefs that have evolved in naturally warm waters that will not warm much further, as opposed to reefs that live in slightly cooler waters that face more significant warming.


Scientist debunks notion of consensus
Excerpt: In 1914, there was a consensus among geologists that the earth under our feet was permanently fixed, and that it was absurd to think it could be otherwise. But in 1915, Alfred Wegener fought an enormous battle to convince them of the relevance of plate tectonics. In 1904, there was a consensus among physicists that Newtonian mechanics was, at last, the final word in explaining the workings of the world. All that was left to do was to mop up the details. But in 1905, Einstein and a few others soon convinced them that this view was false. []So I use these specimens only to show two things: (1) from the existence of a consensus, it does not follow that the claims of the consensus are true. (2) The chance that the consensus view turns out to be false is much larger than you would have thought.

Report: Will Media Expose Global Warming Con Job?
Excerpt: In the past several months, a new "crisis" has heated up the controversy over man-made global warming. A few major-media writers and TV personalities are actually reporting statements by credible scientists who are challenging the assumption that carbon dioxide is the primary force causing global warming. There's a real possibility that big-name journalists will break ranks and pursue their next Pulitzer Prize by exposing the lack of scientific consensus on CO2 as a planet-heating pollutant. That would create a crisis of confidence among the activists, researchers and global-governance apparatchiks who want a global carbon tax to build their political and financial power base.


2030: Entire World's Current CO2 Emissions to be Equaled by China?

Excerpt: It's long been said that China was adding one new coal power plant per week to its grid. But the real news is worse: China is completing two new coal plants per week. If China's carbon usage keeps pace with its economic growth, the country's carbon dioxide emissions will reach 8 gigatons a year by 2030, which is equal to the entire world's CO2 production today. If the Chinese economy steps into our carbon footprint, all other greenhouse gas reduction efforts will be for naught.
Alexis Madrigal, Wired, 8 February 2008
China has one of the largest coal reserves in the world, and coal accounts for 67% of its primary energy use, compared with 24% for the world average. China is currently bringing two additional coal-fired power plants to the electric power grid every week. In a hypothetical scenario in which carbon intensity keeps pace with a GDP growth rate of 7%, by 2030, China would be emitting as much as the world as a whole is today (8 GtC/year).
Ning Zeng et al., Science, 8 February 2008

Faced with electricity shortages in more than half the country, the Communist Party responded with an old-style mobilization campaign. Last week, President Hu Jintao visited the Tashan mine and ordered all state-owned mines to produce more coal, and produce it faster, in order to guarantee supply for power plants in the south.

The New York Times, 9 February 2008
China has long been a huge supplier of coal to itself and the rest of the world. But in the first half of last year, it imported more than it exported for the first time, setting off a near-doubling of most coal prices around the world. For the world, which uses coal for about 40% of its electricity, the result is similar to what happened after China became a net importer of oil in 1993.
The Wall Street Journal, 12 February 2008

Physicist questions climate change finding (jet condensation trails)
Excerpt: A York University professor has ignited a controversy by challenging a supposed prime example of man-made climate change that jet condensation trails, know as contrails, act like clouds, cooling the Earth during the day and keeping it warmer at night. Physicist William van Wijngaarden says he found no evidence to support this climate effect in Canadian temperature records for the contrail-free days immediately after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That contrasts with a 2002 study by U.S. researchers that concluded the temperature spread between day and night over the lower 48 states increased by 1.5C over long-term averages between Sept. 11 and 14 in 2001, when commercial air flights were mostly grounded over North America. Those results initially reinforced theories that thin jet contrails may spread out over large areas for days, becoming invisible from the ground but still blocking infrared radiation, or heat. < > "There's been a lot of groupthink going on about this," Wijngaarden said in an interview in New Orleans at the annual meeting of the American Meteorological Society. < >

New York Times waits until a skeptic dies, then immediately claims he agreed with climate alarm
Excerpt: From a New York Times obituary on Robert Jastrow (who headed NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies for 20 years): Dr. Jastrow also became a prominent skeptic on climate change issues, arguing that scientists who warned of a global warming crisis were misattributing natures effects on climate to the effects of mankind. Dr. Arking, a climate scientist at John Hopkins University who continued to visit his old mentor on a regular basis until two days before his death, recalled arguing the issue with Dr. Jastrow, finding him less and less willing to make any concessions in their discussions. I tried to dissuade him on some issues, Dr. [Albert] Arking said, recalling that Dr. Jastrow responded: Yeah, you’re probably right, but this is the way we have to put it. We have to convince people that this is not the catastrophe that people were making it out to be. From an December 2001 piece by Frederick Seitz and Robert Jastrow: We find the scientific evidence clearly indicates the global warming in the last 100 years is likely not due mostly to human activities.


Gore is $1 Million Dollars Richer - Wins Israel's most prestigious prize
Excerpt: Al Gore, famous for educating the world about the dangers of global warming and climate change, will be arriving in Israel this May after winning one of Israel's most prestigious prizes, the Dan David Prize, valued at $1 million. The prize is part of $3 million in award money offered annually by the Dan David Foundation, a philanthropic organization housed at Tel Aviv University and endowed by Israeli businessman Dan David. The foundation's mission is to award cash prizes that will impact the fields of human knowledge and foster the next generation of scholars. "The 2008 Dan David Prize honors Al Gore for establishing climate crisis as a moral and spiritual imperative, thereby helping to galvanize international action against global warming," said the prize jury.^l1980


DiCaprio defends jet-set lifestyle: 'I do what I can for the sake of our planet but nobody is perfect'
Excerpt: DiCaprio has fired back at criticism of Hollywood's green actors over their jet-set lifestyles. The Titanic actor is one of Tinseltown's leading eco-celebs but still hops on and off jets. "I've heard the stuff about artists flying everywhere, but we are also citizens," said Leonardo. "I do what I can for the sake of our planet but nobody is perfect. "If I can influence anyone in any kind of way and get them to listen to these issues using my position, then that can only be a good thing."


“Hummers are greener than Prius" study makes it into an episode of ABC's Boston Legal
Excerpt: Boston Legal is an ABC TV series about a law firm. In the episode Green Christmas (first aired Dec. 18, 2007), the law firm, Crane Poole and Schmidt, is sued by a group called "Green People" for fraud because they said they were green but actually were not. In the court case, a board member of Green People is asked which car he drives? He says a hybrid, to which the Boston Legal firm's lawyer Katie responds saying a Hummer is greener because of the way batteries are made. On top of that, she says hybrids reduce the cost of driving which encourages more driving and in the end more pollution. You can watch the video above. Here's exactly what Katie says: Hybrid batteries contain nickel that is mined and smelted in a plant in Sudbury, Ontario. A plant that has caused so much environmental damage and acid rain that NASA uses the so-called dead zone around the plant to test its moon rovers. ... That nickel then has to be shipped via massive containers to a refinery in Europe. Then off to China to be made into nickel foam, then to Japan to be manufactured, then finally all the way back to America. All that, just to put a single hybrid battery into a car. When you combine all the energy it takes to built and drive a hybrid it adds up to almost fifty percent more that it does to build and drive a Hummer.


Pravda: Vegetarianism proves to be perversion of nature
Excerpt: Vegetarians can be referred to as true fanatics. On the other hand, they are seriously misled in their beliefs. Practically nobody argues with them, since it is really difficult to convince a vegetarian of his or her self-deception. May be that is the reason why the vegetarian movement develops so actively around the globe and continues to recruit many new members.