In a letter to NASA’s Administrator, 50 former NASA scientists and astronauts voice their displeasure over the climate change stance NASA has taken finding it to be unsubstantiated by science. They request that NASA “refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject.” Among those signing the letter is Dr. Chris Kraft, the former Apollo Flight Director and Director of Johnson Space Center for 24 years.
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.
The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.
As former NASA employees, we feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate. We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject. At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.
Apparently Dr. James Hansen’s most recent charge that global warming is the moral equivalent of slavery was the last straw, and the men and women who signed the letter refuse to suffer the embarrassment he continues to bring to NASA in silence.
Note the last sentence in the first paragraph where the letter writers make the most obvious point – the science, despite claims by alarmists to the contrary, is NOT settled. Additionally, much to the displeasure of the alarmists, as more and more scientific information comes available on the subject, the majority does NOT support their theory.
Thus the desperation exhibited by alarmist advocates like Hansen and his “slavery” nonsense.
The scam is coming apart at the seams and those like Hansen who’ve staked their professional reputations on the bad science that undergirded it are now suffering the appropriate consequences.
That is, being dismissed as a serious scientist.
And deservedly so.
Roger Pielke Jr notes that the new IPCC report covering climate change seems to take the skeptical argument to heart and stick much more closely to actual facts and what is really known empirically. Says Pielke:
The full IPCC Special Report on Extremes is out today, and I have just gone through the sections in Chapter 4 that deal with disasters and climate change. Kudos to the IPCC — they have gotten the issue just about right, where "right" means that the report accurately reflects the academic literature on this topic. Over time good science will win out over the rest — sometimes it just takes a little while.
His examples from the report:
A few quotable quotes from the report (from Chapter 4):
-"There is medium evidence and high agreement that long-term trends in normalized losses have not been attributed to natural or anthropogenic climate change"
-"The statement about the absence of trends in impacts attributable to natural or anthropogenic climate change holds for tropical and extratropical storms and tornados"
-"The absence of an attributable climate change signal in losses also holds for flood losses"
The report even takes care of tying up a loose end that has allowed some commentators to avoid the scientific literature:
-"Some authors suggest that a (natural or anthropogenic) climate change signal can be found in the records of disaster losses (e.g., Mills, 2005; Höppe and Grimm, 2009), but their work is in the nature of reviews and commentary rather than empirical research.
Maybe he’s right. Maybe, finally, science will “win out”. And I also hope that the administration that has said it will use science in its policy making process will now actually do so.
In fact, it seems as if it isn’t really much of a debate anymore.
First, let me be clear, the debate among scientists isn’t whether CO2 is a greenhouse gas or whether, even, it can cause warming, but instead on what real (if any) total effect it has overall on the climate. In other words, is there a saturation point where additional CO2 has little marginal effect, or does it build to a tipping point where the change is radical? Robust climate or delicate climate?
Evidence is building toward the robust climate theory, which would mean that while there may be more CO2 being emitted, it has little to no effect on the overall climate. That, of course, is contrary to the AGW crowd’s theory.
So, on to the latest high profile defections:
One of the fathers of Germany’s modern green movement, Professor Dr. Fritz Vahrenholt, a social democrat and green activist, decided to author a climate science skeptical book together with geologist/paleontologist Dr. Sebastian Lüning. Vahrenholt’s skepticism started when he was asked to review an IPCC report on renewable energy. He found hundreds of errors. When he pointed them out, IPCC officials simply brushed them aside. Stunned, he asked himself, “Is this the way they approached the climate assessment reports?”
Vahrenholt decided to do some digging. His colleague Dr. Lüning also gave him a copy of Andrew Montford’s The Hockey Stick Illusion. He was horrified by the sloppiness and deception he found. Persuaded by Hoffmann & Campe, he and Lüning decided to write the book. Die kalte Sonne cites 800 sources and has over 80 charts and figures. It examines and summarizes the latest science.
Vahrenholt concluded, through his research, that the science of the IPCC (if you can call it that) was mostly political and had been “hyped.”
Germany’s flagship weekly news magazine Der Spiegel today also featured a 4-page exclusive interview with Vahrenholt, where he repeated that the IPCC has ignored a large part of climate science and that IPCC scientists exaggerated the impact of CO2 on climate. Vahrenholt said that by extending the known natural cycles of the past into the future, and taking CO2′s real impact into effect, we should expect a few tenths of a degree of cooling.
That, as I said, points to the “robust” climate model.
Once more to make the point before I leave the subject:
Skeptic readers should not think that the book will fortify their existing skepticism of CO2 causing warming. The authors agree it does. but have major qualms about the assumed positive CO2-related feed-backs and believe the sun plays a far greater role in the whole scheme of things.
As Dr. Roy Spencer says, CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Adding CO2 should cause warming. The argument is “how much” and that’s based on competing theories about the climate’s sensitivity. Skeptics think the sensitivity is very low while alarmists think it is very high. The building evidence is that rising CO2 has little warming effect in real terms regardless of the amount of the gas emitted. That there is a “saturation level”. If that’s true, and indications are it is, then there’s a) no justification for limiting emissions and b) certainly no justification to tax them.
That, of course, is where politics enter the picture. Governments like the idea of literally creating a tax out of thin air, especially given the current financial condition of most states. Consequently, governments are more likely to fund science that supports their desired conclusion – and it seems that in this case there were plenty who were willing to comply (especially, as Patrick J. Michael has noted, when that gravy train amounts to $103 billion in grants).
What Vahrenholt is objecting too is the IPCC’s key definition in which it clearly states that “climate change” is a result of and because of “human contributions”. As noted above, he thinks that the sun is a much greater factor (something mostly ignored in the models) and he finds past CO2 trends to forecast nothing like the IPCC’s forecast.
What we’re finding as this argument goes forward is that Patrick Michaels was right – “AGW theory functions best in a data free environment”.
Todd Stern, the Obama administration’s “Special Envoy for Climate Change”, held a quick press conference in Durban, South Africa where a UN conference on climate change is being held. He first made it a point to deny that the US was taking a “time out” until 2020. He then said a couple of things which should make clear the administration’s agenda.
First, without a viable alternative for fossil fuel to this point, the intent of the administration is to increase prices on those fuels that will ensure they’re “priced the way they ought to be”. Stern:
You need to use less energy through efficiency and to develop renewable energy sources more and more to the point that they get to what’s called grid parity, so that standing on their own they actually become sources of energy that can compete with sources like coal and so forth, fossil fuels.
And it is a very good thing to have those fossil fuel sources priced the way they ought to be, to have a price on carbon. That’s what we were trying to do with our legislation, it didn’t pass, but that kind of legislation obviously is in place in Europe, and hopefully it will come into place more and more.’
Now remember, this is from the administration that has claimed the mantle of champion of the middle class. Yet its plan is to price much of the middle class into energy poverty if it can ever get its legislation passed. And for those that will try to argue that it’s a plan for the future when there are, arguendo, viable alternatives, that’s nonsense. “It didn’t pass” tells you all you need to know about that claim.
Secondly, this administration has bought into the 100 billion (a year) dollar fund that the “rich countries” are supposed to fund to help the “poor countries” (like China and India). Stern:
We will also be working hard to ramp up the funding that is supposed to reach a 100 billion dollars a year by 2020. There’s a ton of work to be done in the years. We have been doing a lot of work on this, this year, and we will be continuing to do that as are many other countries. And all at the same time, if we get the kind of roadmap that countries have called for — the EU has called for, that the U.S. supports — for preparing for and negotiating a future regime, whether it ends up being legally binding or not, we don’t know yet, but we are strongly committed to a promptly starting process to move forward on that.
Tell your grandkids to start saving up, because the Obama administration is getting ready to shackle them and their future earnings to a global redistribution scheme based in fraudulent science (regardless of what Sen. Barbara “Ma’am” Boxer claims).
As with health care reform, there is no popular support in the US for this sort of nonsense, yet your enlightened rulers certainly believe they know better – just ask them. And they intend to push their ideological agenda instead of doing the will of the people. As for you little people, just suck it up and learn to appreciate (and pay for) their enlightened rule, OK?
Why? Because there’s a UN meeting beginning in Durbin, South Africa on “climate change” and the propaganda will be freely flowing.
A new round of United Nations climate talks is getting under way in Durban, South Africa, Monday. And domestic struggles here in the United States are hampering the global talks.
The United States is second only to China in emitting gases that cause global warming. Despite a presidential pledge to reduce emissions two years ago, we’re spewing more carbon dioxide than ever into the atmosphere.
That’s putting a crimp on the 20-year-long struggle to develop a meaningful climate treaty.
Really? That’s what’s putting a crimp on it? Or is the unquestioned acceptance of the premise “emitting gases” causes “global warming” perhaps the problem when it appears the “science” is falling apart?
What is interesting to me is to watch those who unquestionably accept this premise ignore the profound problems the “science” that supports this nonsense has shown.
Christopher Booker does a good job of distilling the problem, here speaking of the UK government:
To grasp the almost suicidal state of unreality our Government has been driven into by the obsession with global warming, it is necessary to put together the two sides to an overall picture – each vividly highlighted by events of recent days.
On one hand there is the utterly lamentable state of the science which underpins it all, illuminated yet again by “Climategate 2.0”, the latest release of emails between the leading scientists who for years have been at the heart of the warming scare (which I return to below). On the other hand, we see the damage done by the political consequences of this scare, which will directly impinge, in various ways, on all our lives.
Like driving up energy costs to a point that energy poverty will be a common problem. Booker has another nice body slam to the “premise” later on in his article:
While our Government remains trapped in its green dreamworld, similar horror stories pile up on every side, from that UBS report on the astronomically costly fiasco of the EU’s carbon-trading scheme, to our own Government’s “carbon floor price”, in effect a tax on CO2 emissions rising yearly from 2013. This alone will eventually be enough to double the cost of our electricity, and drive a further swathe of what remains of UK industry abroad, because we are the only country in the world to have devised something so idiotic.
All this madness ultimately rests on a blind faith in the threat of man-made global warming, which no one has done more to promote than the scientists whose private emails were again last week leaked onto the internet.
It is still not generally appreciated that the significance of these Climategate emails is that their authors, such as Michael Mann, are no ordinary scientists: they are a little group of fanatical insiders who have, for years, done more than anyone else to drive the warming scare, through their influence at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. And what is most striking about the picture that emerges from these emails is just how questionable the work of these men appears.
That’s entirely true if you actually read through the released emails. What you read isn’t science, it is “scientists” tailoring their “science” to fit a political agenda in order to keep the grant gravy train rolling. The deniers, in this particular horror show, are the true believers who have, on faith, accepted the “premise” and refuse to question it or examine the evidence which argues strongly against it.
To be clear, the whole debate revolves around “climate sensitivity” to CO2. Those on the side of man-made global warming claim the environment is highly sensitive to CO2. The so-called “deniers” claim it isn’t at all. And for those who’ve followed the debate, the real science seems to support the so-called “deniers”.
The climate may be less sensitive to carbon dioxide than we thought – and temperature rises this century could be smaller than expected. That’s the surprise result of a new analysis of the last ice age. However, the finding comes from considering just one climate model, and unless it can be replicated using other models, researchers are dubious that it is genuine.
As more greenhouse gases enter the atmosphere, more heat is trapped and temperatures go up – but by how much? The best estimates say that if the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere doubles, temperatures will rise by 3 °C. This is the "climate sensitivity".
But the 3 °C figure is only an estimate. In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said the climate sensitivity could be anywhere between 2 and 4.5 °C. That means the temperature rise from a given release of carbon dioxide is still uncertain.
But you wouldn’t know that by listening to the alarmists (and much of the press) who continue to claim the science is settled. And that’s in the face of this:
The global output of heat-trapping carbon dioxide jumped by the biggest amount on record, the U.S.Department of Energy calculated, a sign of how feeble the world’s efforts are at slowing man-made global warming.
The new figures for 2010 mean that levels of greenhouse gases are higher than the worst case scenario outlined by climate experts just four years ago.
… Prof Curry said, the project’s research data show there has been no increase in world temperatures since the end of the Nineties – a fact confirmed by a new analysis that The Mail on Sunday has obtained.
‘There is no scientific basis for saying that warming hasn’t stopped,’ she said. ‘To say that there is detracts from the credibility of the data, which is very unfortunate.’
… [S]he added, in the wake of the unexpected global warming standstill, many climate scientists who had previously rejected sceptics’ arguments were now taking them much more seriously.
They were finally addressing questions such as the influence of clouds, natural temperature cycles and solar radiation – as they should have done, she said, a long time ago.
But the true believers gathering in Durbin SA? Still reject the fact that the so-called “science” of global warming is under fierce and sustained attack and is being found to be increasingly wanting in both substance and fact.
And I don’t know about you but it seems incredible to me that, as Prof. Curry notes, scientists are “finally addressing” the influence of “clouds, natural temperature cycles and solar radiation”.
Finally!? How in the world could “science” not have included those originally? How could they have somehow been factored out?
That’s actually an easy question to answer.
Because including them wouldn’t have given the “scientists” in question the results necessary to support the “premise” cooked up by those pushing the man-made global warming agenda. And that, of course, meant an end to the grant money of multi billions of dollars.
Meanwhile in Durbin this week, the real deniers are going to be busily trying to trade away your ability to purchase cheap and plentiful energy through various schemes which will advance their agenda and put the rest of humanity in an unrecoverable energy deficit.
Delegates at the conference will also be hammering out the details of a plan to administer the Green Climate Fund, money that is to help poor countries deal with climate change.
The fund is expected to grow over the next eight years to eventually distribute about $100 billion a year. However, it is still unclear where all of that money will come from and how it will be distributed.
In addition to the usual international development funds from the West, proposals include a carbon surcharge on international shipping and on air tickets, as well as a levy on international financial transactions.
This is what junk science tied to a political agenda brings. And, as usual, you’ll be levied to pay the bill they agree on with your money and your way of life.
As of today, FOIA.org released another 7zip file—which can be obtained here—containing 5000 unencypted, and an additional 250,000 encrypted, climate change emails from all the usual suspects we remember from Climategate. FOIA.org says they don’t plan on releasing the encryption keys for the remaining emails yet, but the 5,000 unencrypted emails are…interesting.
One quick take-away: Michael Mann’s temperature results may be…questionable.
I thought I’d play around with some randomly generated time-series and see if I could ‘reconstruct’ northern hemisphere temperatures.
[…] The reconstructions clearly show a ‘hockey-stick’ trend. I guess this is precisely the phenomenon that Macintyre has been going on about.
That would seem to be a pretty big vulnerability in the "hockey stick".
And the IPCC process seems…really questionable.
Observations do not show rising temperatures throughout the tropical troposphere unless you accept one single study and approach and discount a wealth of others. This is just downright dangerous. We need to communicate the uncertainty and be honest. Phil, hopefully we can find time to discuss these further if necessary […]
I also think the science is being manipulated to put a political spin on it which for all our sakes might not be too clever in the long run.
The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guid[e] what’s included and what is left out.
In my [IPCC-TAR] review […] I crit[i]cized […] the Mann hockey[s]tick […] My review was classified “unsignificant” even I inquired several times. Now the internationally well known newspaper SPIEGEL got the information about these early statements because I expressed my opinion in several talks, mainly in Germany, in 2002 and 2003. I just refused to give an exclusive interview to SPIEGEL because I will not cause damage for climate science.
Hence the AR4 Section 184.108.40.206.2 dismissal of the ACRIM composite to be instrumental rather than solar in origin is a bit controversial. Similarly IPCC in their discussion on solar RF since the Maunder Minimum are very dependent on the paper by Wang et al (which I have been unable to access) in the decision to reduce the solar RF significantly despite the many papers to the contrary in the ISSI workshop. All this leaves the IPCC almost entirely dependent on CO2 for the explanation of current global temperatures as in Fig 2.23. since methane CFCs and aerosols are not increasing.
I find myself in the strange position of being very skeptical of the quality of all present reconstructions, yet sounding like a pro greenhouse zealot here!
But, remember, the science is settled!
The results for 400 ppm stabilization look odd in many cases […] As it stands we’ll have to delete the results from the paper if it is to be published.
 What if climate change appears to be just mainly a multidecadal natural fluctuation? They’ll kill us probably […]
Although I agree that GHGs are important in the 19th/20th century (especially since the 1970s), if the weighting of solar forcing was stronger in the models, surely this would diminish the significance of GHGs.
[…] it seems to me that by weighting the solar irradiance more strongly in the models, then much of the 19th to mid 20th century warming can be explained from the sun alone.
would you agree that there is no convincing evidence for kilimanjaro glacier melt being due to recent warming (let alone man-made warming)?
[tropical glaciers] There is a small problem though with their retreat. They have retreated a lot in the last 20 years yet the MSU2LT data would suggest that temperatures haven’t increased at these levels.
There shouldn’t be someone else at UEA with different views [from "recent extreme weather is due to global warming"] – at least not a climatologist.
I am not convinced that the “truth” is always worth reaching if it is at the cost of damaged personal relationships
Phil, thanks for your thoughts – guarantee there will be no dirty laundry in the open.
He’s skeptical that the warming is as great as we show in East Antarctica — he thinks the “right” answer is more like our detrended results in the supplementary text. I cannot argue he is wrong.
<4470> Norwegian Meteorological Institute:
In Norway and Spitsbergen, it is possible to explain most of the warming after the 1960s by changes in the atmospheric circulation. The warming prior to 1940 cannot be explained in this way.
It is interesting to see the lower tropospheric warming minimum in the tropics in all three plots, which I cannot explain. I believe it is spurious but it is remarkably robust against my adjustment efforts.
You know what else is remarkably robust against adjustment efforts? Reality.
Researchers at CERN, the big European physics laboratory, have released some interesting findings that, if true,would cast doubt on a fundamental conclusion made by Einstein’s theory of relativity.
From 2009 through 2011, the massive OPERA detector buried in a mountain in Gran Sasso, Italy, recorded particles called neutrinos generated at CERN arriving a smidge too soon, faster than light can move in a vacuum. If the finding is confirmed by further experiments, it would throw more than a century of physics into chaos.
For over a century, since Albert Einstein published the Special Theory of Relativity (SRT)—buttressed further in 1916 by the General Theory—it has been settled science that the speed of is nature’s ultimate speed limit. As an object approaches the speed of light, its mass increases. At the speed of light—were it possible to reach it—the object’s mass would be infinite. That would require, of course, an infinite amount of energy to propel the object. Hence, moving faster than the speed of light is a physical impossibility.
Since 1905, through direct experimentation, mathematical modeling, and, later, measurements taken during the space program, as well as computer models, science has time and time again proved that the Special Theory of Relativity does, in fact, accurately model the way the universe works. The entire foundation of modern physics is built upon SRT. It has been proven correct over and over again. Clearly, SRT is settled science. An attempt to overturn it is, essentially, an attempt to overturn the entire body of physics that has been so painstakingly established over the past century.
Obviously, SRT is true. Its conclusions are beyond questioning. Again, the science is settled, and there is almost universal scientific consensus about the truth of SRT.
Since that is so, one wonders what purpose the experiments at CERN might be. SRT needs no further validation, so there must be other motives. Who is funding this experimentation? Why are they so interested in denying SRT? If SRT is overturned, the implications throw cosmology in general into disarray. Out would go the Big Bang theory. Is this new experiment real science, or is it just another ploy of Big Plasma to overturn the settled view of cosmology?
These "scientists" at CERN say that more experimentation is needed to validate these results. But, they are so clearly wrong, it’s difficult to see what purpose further experimentation along these lines would serve. This transparent attempt to return physics to the limited and primitive world of physical experimentation, rather than the modern use of sophisticated mathematical models, is deeply subversive.
Now, there are calls for trying to replicate this experiment—at US taxpayer expense—at the Fermilab, here in the US. I see no reason to risk the scientific integrity of our premier physics laboratory pursuing the dreams of these SRT deniers at CERN.
SRT’s proof is incontrovertible, and any attempt to prove otherwise is a perversion of science. The science is settled. Consensus is almost universal. So, let’s not pursue these silly, pointless experiments. The important thing to remember about science is that, once you question the received wisdom proven repeatedly in the past, the result is chaos. It is vitally important that we do not throw all of modern physics and cosmology into disarray over some odd experimental results that really have no real-world application.
That would just be silly.
Well this should be fun:
"24 Hours of Reality" will broadcast a presentation by Al Gore every hour for 24 hours across 24 different time zones from Wednesday to Thursday, with the aim of convincing climate change deniers and driving action against global warming among households, schools and businesses.
The campaign also asks people to hand over control of their social networking accounts on Facebook and Twitter to it for 24 hours to deliver Gore’s message.
"There will be 200 new slides arguing the connection between more extreme weather and climate change," Trewin Restorick, chief executive of the event’s UK partner Global Action Plan, told Reuters on Monday.
"There will be a full-on assault on climate skeptics, exploring where they get their funding from."
Remember, much of Al Gore’s movie, “An Inconvenient Truth” has been shown to be nonsense. So this is sort of a make or break moment for Gore, I suppose. He’s either cleaned up his act and is prepared, with his new slide show, to actually present scientific fact and argument, or we’re going to be treated to “An Inconvenient Truth 2.0”.
I’m guessing 2.0.
Concern about climate change in the United States, the world’s second biggest emitter, has fallen steadily to 48 percent in 2011, from 62 percent in 2007, an opinion poll showed in August.
Obviously the economy figures into some of those numbers (by displacement if nothing else – whatever we have to do to get it rolling again and that puts such concerns in a lower priority), but this is a trend that began before the economic collapse. It should be interesting to see his “double down” presentation and the argument and debate that follows.
The exposition and conclusion he presents concerning funding should also be interesting. Sounds more like a political assault than a scientific one. We’ll see.
James Hansen is paid $180,000 per year by the taxpayers as the Director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Happily, we apparently weren’t paying him today, when he was arrested—again—for taking part in a protest at the White House over the proposed K7 pipeline.
Prior to the protest, Hansen told environmental blog SolveClimate News of his plans to join the protest and risk arrest, because the threat the pipeline poses to the climate is too great to ignore.
"If [Obama] chooses the dirty needle, it’s game over because it will confirm that Obama was just greenwashing, like the other well-oiled, coal-fired politicians with no real intention of solving the addiction."
Canada is going to sell its dope, if it can find a buyer," Hansen said.
This is the "dope" that prevents us from freezing to death in the dark, by the way.
By the way, guess what Dr. Hansen does. He’s NASA’s top climate scientist, and he’s firmly in the AGW camp. He’s called for the equivalent of war crimes trials for oil executives for "high crimes against humanity and nature". He is one of the leading figures in the world in pushing AGW.
But I’m sure that he’s completely objective in reviewing any science that conflicts with his activism. After all, that’s what we’re paying him 180 grand per year to do.
In this podcast, Bruce Michael, and Dale discuss Hurricane Irene and the results of CERN’s CLOUD experiment.
The direct link to the podcast can be found here.
As a reminder, if you are an iTunes user, don’t forget to subscribe to the QandO podcast, Observations, through iTunes. For those of you who don’t have iTunes, you can subscribe at Podcast Alley. And, of course, for you newsreader subscriber types, our podcast RSS Feed is here. For podcasts from 2005 to 2010, they can be accessed through the RSS Archive Feed.