Monday, May 19, 2008

Global Warming Science Consensus? Not At All

At some point it seems the only scientists who will remain believers in man-caused global warming will be those who make their living promoting the concept. What will it take for politicians salivating over the opportunity to raise tax revenue from "carbon emissions" to realize they are wrong? When will the public wake up to the hoax that is man-caused global warming, and let their political leaders know they are not buying into the scam? Let us hope it is soon, before even more harm is done.

Financial Post, 17 May 2008
By Lawrence Solomon
Question: How many scientists does it take to establish that a consensus does not exist on global warming? The quest to establish that the science is not settled on climate change began before most people had even heard of global warming. The year was 1992 and the United Nations was about to hold its Earth Summit in Rio. It was billed as - and was - the greatest environmental and political assemblage in human history. Delegations came from 178 nations - virtually every nation in the world - including 118 heads of state or government and 7,000 diplomatic bureaucrats. The world's environmental groups came too - they sent some 30,000 representatives from every corner of the world to Rio. To report all this, 7,000 journalists converged on Rio to cover the event, and relay to the publics of the world that global warming and other environmental insults were threatening the planet with catastrophe.In February of that year, in an attempt to head off the whirlwind that the conference would unleash, 47 scientists signed a "Statement by Atmospheric Scientists on Greenhouse Warming," decrying "the unsupported assumption that catastrophic global warming follows from the burning of fossil fuels and requires immediate action."

To a scientist in search of truth, 47 is an impressive number, especially if those 47 dissenters include many of the world's most eminent scientists. To the environmentalists, politicians, press at Rio, their own overwhelming numbers made the 47 seem irrelevant.Knowing this, a larger petition effort was undertaken, known as the Heidelberg Appeal, and released to the public at the Earth Summit. By the summit's end, 425 scientists and other intellectual leaders had signed the appeal. These scientists - mere hundreds - also mattered for nought in the face of the tens of thousands assembled at Rio. The Heidelberg Appeal was blown away and never obtained prominence, even though the organizers persisted over the years to ultimately obtain some 4,000 signatories, including 72 Nobel Prize winners.

The earnest effort to demonstrate the absence of a consensus continued with the Leipzig Declaration on Global Climate Change - an attempt to counter the Kyoto Protocol of 1997. Its 150-odd signatories also counted for nought. As did the Cornwall Declaration on Environmental Stewardship in 2000, signed by more than 1,500 clergy, theologians, religious leaders, scientists, academics and policy experts concerned about the harm that Kyoto could inflict on the world's poor.

Then came the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine's Petition Project of 2001, which far surpassed all previous efforts and by all rights should have settled the issue of whether the science was settled on climate change. To establish that the effort was bona fide, and not spawned by kooks on the fringes of science, as global warming advocates often label the skeptics, the effort was spearheaded by Dr. Frederick Seitz, past president of the National Academy of Sciences and of Rockefeller University, and as reputable as they come.The Oregon petition garnered an astounding 17,800 signatures, a number all the more astounding because of the unequivocal stance that these scientists took: Not only did they dispute that there was convincing evidence of harm from carbon dioxide emissions, they asserted that Kyoto itself would harm the global environment because "increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.

"The petition drew media attention, but little of it was for revealing to the world that an extraordinary number of scientists hold views on global warming diametrically opposite to those they are expected to hold. Instead, the press focussed on presumed flaws that critics found in the petition. Some claimed the petition was riddled with duplicate names. They were no duplicates, just different scientists with the same name. Some claimed the petition had phonies. There was only one phony: Spice Girl Geri Halliwell, planted by a Greenpeace organization to discredit the petition and soon removed. Other names that seemed to be phony - such as Michael Fox, the actor, and Perry Mason, the fictional lawyer in a TV series - were actually bona fide scientists, properly credentialled.

Like the Heidelberg Appeal, the Oregon petition was blown away. But now it is blowing back. Original signatories to the petition and others, outraged at Kyoto's corruption of science, wrote to the Oregon Institute and its director, Arthur Robinson, asking that the petition be brought back. "E-mails started coming in every day," he explained. "And they kept coming. " The writers were outraged at the way Al Gore and company were abusing the science to their own ends. "We decided to do the survey again."Using a subset of the mailing list of American Men and Women of Science, a who's who of Science, Robinson mailed out his solicitations through the postal service, requesting signed petitions of those who agreed that Kyoto was a danger to humanity.

The response rate was extraordinary, "much, much higher than anyone expected, much higher than you'd ordinarily expect," he explained. He's processed more than 31,000 at this point, more than 9,000 of them with PhDs, and has another 1,000 or so to go - most of them are already posted on a Web site at Why go to this immense effort all over again, when the press might well ignore the tens of thousands of scientists who are standing up against global warming alarmism? "I hope the general public will become aware that there is no consensus on global warming," he says, "and I hope that scientists who have been reluctant to speak up will now do so, knowing that they aren't alone."At one level, Robinson, a PhD scientist himself, recoils at his petition. Science shouldn't be done by poll, he explains. "The numbers shouldn't matter. But if they want warm bodies, we have them."

Some 32,000 scientists is more than the number of environmentalists that descended on Rio in 1992.Is this enough to establish that the science is not settled on global warming? The press conference releasing these names occurs on Monday at the National Press Club in Washington.

Copyright 2008, Financial Post

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Bin Gore, and his "Green Taliban".........

taking credit for a new phrase.....which may become famous.....and hereby crediting it to "Duckalou".....

"Bin Gore, and his Green Taliban"
Oh man, I love it!!! Do you mind if the rest of "The Fellowship of Scientific Truth" uses your phrase?
"They should have thrown Bin Gore in jail for "Fraud" instead of giving this proven liar and hot C02 salesman the Noble Peace prize."
I just gotta love ya, what a wonderfully factual statement.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


This rather lengthy essay states what to me at least, is, or should be, obvious. That is wealthier, Democratic countries suffer fewer deaths, injuries, and illness from natural disasters than other countries. They may suffer more economic damage, but only because they have more to lose. The lesson is if we truly care for all people, and truly want to alleviate suffering, the answer lies in improving people's standard of living and promoting Democracy and freedom. Trying to prevent natural disasters, or trying to "stop global warming" or "climate change" is sinfully, and tragically misguided, as I think the following study aptly illustrates.

Geotimes, October 2007

Gregory E. van der Vink and co-authors Amartya Sen won the Nobel Prize in economics in 1998 with the observation that there has never been a famine in a nation that has a democratic form of government and a free press. A similar relationship exists for natural disasters: Deaths associated with natural disasters are lower for nations with democratic forms of government and the associated higher national income, or Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

In general, the World Bank's Democracy Index, a measure of how strong a democracy is, and a nation's GDP are stronger predictors of a natural disaster's humanitarian impact (as measured by deaths) than either the size of the event or the population density in the area of the disaster.

Global increases in democracy and GDP may therefore partially explain the apparent paradox of the generally decreasing death toll associated with natural disasters despite the increased population density in high-risk areas. Natural Disasters Natural disasters result from encounters between natural events and human infrastructure and activity. It is logical, therefore, that the rapid global increase in human population should place more people in the path of natural events, raising both the number of natural disasters and their accompanying death tolls. In addition, climate change, sea-level rise and other environmental phenomena may be increasing both the severity and frequency of events such as floods, hurricanes and other extreme weather that can result in natural disasters.

A historical comparison of annual natural disaster occurrences and disaster-related deaths, however, is inconsistent with the assumed relationship. Despite the increase in natural disasters, reported deaths are actually decreasing - both as a percentage of global population and in total numbers. The average annual percentage of the global population killed by natural disasters decreased 10-fold from the period 1964 to 1968 compared with the period 2000 through 2004, from 0.01 percent (roughly one killed for every 10,000 people) to 0.001 percent (one in 100,000) respectively.

At the same time, the average annual number of recorded disasters increased five-fold between 1964 through 1968 (64 per year) and 2000 through 2004 (332 per year). The events that continue to result in the major number of fatalities are the relatively small percentage of events that occur with large recurrence intervals, such as massive floods, strong earthquakes and direct strikes from intense hurricanes, or events that are unusual in the area in which they occur.

Clearly, the impact of a natural disaster is not simply a function of the natural event itself, but is determined also by society's ability to respond to the disaster. Over the same time period that we observe a decreasing number of disaster deaths, two great global socioeconomic trends of the last half century have also occurred: democratization and economic development.

To evaluate the role that democracy and economic development play in reducing the humanitarian impact of natural disasters, we measured 133 countries' natural disaster death tolls against both their average democracy ranking and their average per capita GDP. We excluded only those nations with a population of fewer than 1 million people, or which have experienced five or fewer disasters between 1964 and 2004.

The Role of Democracy
More than 80 percent of the total global disaster deaths from 1964 to 2004 occurred in just 15 countries, including China, Ethiopia, Sudan, Indonesia and Bangladesh, among others. Of these fifteen nations, 73 percent are below the median global GDP and 87 percent are below the median democracy index. The democracy index is the average of the World Bank's Worldwide Governance Indicator values for voice and accountability, political stability, absence of violence, government effectiveness, regulatory quality, rule of law and control of corruption.

The exceptions to the trend that high GDP correlates with a low death toll after a natural disaster are Iran and Venezuela, both oil-rich countries with significant wealth but low democracy indices. Because the two outliers have high GDP and relatively high death tolls, they suggest that democracy, rather than GDP, may play the more pivotal role in reducing deaths from natural disasters. The strong exponential correlation between democracy and GDP, however, makes it difficult to differentiate the two.

El Salvador also stands out as an outlier. Despite its democratic ranking, the impoverished nation experiences a large number of deaths in the aftermath of a natural disaster. El Salvador does not have a very high democracy rating (-0.1) in general compared to the global median (-0.3). (By contrast, the U.S. democracy index is 1.4, and Finland, which has the world's highest democracy index, is 2.47.) In fact, El Salvador's democracy ranking may be misleading in the context of this analysis. Its democratic constitution was drafted only in 1983, after a long period of political instability and civil war.

Two common characteristics are notable in the countries in which the deadliest disasters have occurred since 1964. First, they all were (and many still are) developing nations: All except one (Peru) had a per capita GDP of less than $1,000 (U.S.) at the time of the disaster. Second, they were (again, many still are) non-democratic states: All except one (India) had a non-representative government or was at war (1965) when the disaster occurred, and India was facing a virtual war against militant Islamists.

Notably, the type of disaster (including earthquakes, storms and floods, for example) varies among the top 10, again implying that the characteristics of the disaster itself count for much less than the characteristics of the nation. The two unifying traits of the nations with the deadliest disasters or, more exactly, the two qualities distinctly lacking in these nations, are democracy and development.

Flooding in Nepal from last summer's monsoons killed hundreds and left millions across Southeast Asia homeless. Regions such as Nepal's Bardiya District in the southwest were particularly hard hit. New research indicates that countries with lower per capita GDP and a lower democracy index are more likely to face a lot of deaths when a disaster strikes than richer countries with stronger democracies.

In contrast, the three costliest disasters occurred in countries that are highly developed and highly democratic - the 1995 Kobe earthquake in Japan, 2005's Hurricane Katrina in the United States and an earthquake in southern Italy in 1980. However, the three costliest disasters resulted in a relatively miniscule number of deaths.

The dichotomy is striking: Natural disasters that occur in undeveloped, non-democratic nations result in a high humanitarian cost but a low economic cost, whereas natural disasters that occur in developed, democratic nations result in a low humanitarian cost but a high economic cost. There is clearly a link between democracy, development and the impact of natural disasters.

The strong exponential correlation between democracy and GDP makes it difficult to resolve the determining factor. In addition, the reason for the strong correlation between the World Bank's Democracy Index and per capita GDP is not fully known. Similarly, it is difficult to determine exactly which of the factors that go into the calculation of the World Bank's Democracy Index have the greatest influence in determining the relationship to the death toll. These considerations are beyond the resolution of our analysis.

What is clear, however, is that the death tolls associated with natural disasters are undeniably linked to level of democratic rule within the nation that the disaster occurs. The relationship between the humanitarian impact of a natural disaster and the democracy of the nation in which the disaster occurs is consistent with the relationship that Amartya Sen discovered between democracy and famine. Deaths from natural disasters are more likely to occur in nations with low levels of democratic rule.

Furthermore, we also calculated the pattern of humanitarian relief aid from both the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) - the U.S. Agency for International Development's disaster assistance department - and the U.N. World Food Programme: The analysis indicates that the populations of less democratic nations are more vulnerable to natural disasters. Of the 577 World Food Programme grants awarded between 1987 and 2004, 92.5 percent were given to nations with negative democracy values. Only 12 countries with positive democracy values received aid, and only one (Botswana) had a democracy value greater than 0.5. The majority of both World Food Programme and OFDA aid grants are received by nations with negative democracy scores.

Grant numbers are corrected for the number of countries that fall into each democracy category, so the observed decrease cannot simply be explained by the larger number of less democratic countries. Taken together, data from the OFDA and the World Food Programme further enforce the previous finding that nations with low-levels of democratic rule are more likely to suffer severe humanitarian consequences from natural disasters. The spread of democracy over the last several decades may therefore partially explain why the total number of deaths associated with natural disasters is decreasing despite the increase in the number of events.

Reducing Hazard Vulnerability
Amartya Sen discovered that famines are distinctly non-natural phenomena. Certain climatic conditions, such as droughts, make famines more likely, but they are not the inevitable consequence of environmental circumstances. States and their citizens have the power to prevent, or bring about, as it may be, a famine - and likely other disasters. If famines are almost entirely within the control of governments and citizens, how are we to understand what are collectively referred to as "natural disasters"?

Such events as earthquakes, windstorms (hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones and tornadoes), landslides, volcanic eruptions, floods and droughts are referred to as "natural," implying that they are beyond the sphere of human influence and agency. But are they really? No state or society can prevent the occurrence of an event such as a hurricane or an earthquake. That is beyond the range of human capability. But one can not argue that disasters are wholly independent of human action. After all, a disaster is only a disaster if it affects humans themselves. That is, any natural disaster is the intersection of a natural event and a human population. But if we cannot prevent the event itself, we can certainly influence - reduce or exacerbate, depending on the circumstances - the impact of the immutable event.

Asked in another way, do certain characteristics of any given society or state predispose it to a greater impact or enable it to reduce the impact from natural disasters than states lacking or possessing in smaller or larger amounts those characteristics? And how is one to quantify the impact of a disaster: Should it be measured in terms of lives lost (humanitarian) or money spent (economic) or some combination of the two? Are the incentives for a state to respond in a certain manner moral, societal or financial? If the impact of natural disasters in humanitarian and economic terms is not solely natural, then there exists a clear opportunity for societies and communities at all scales, from familial to global, to influence the impact.

We have to capitalize upon this remarkable opportunity to effect change, ensuring that the influence is a positive one and that more lives are saved and not lost. Vulnerability to natural hazards includes not only the risk of an event - the risk involves both the probability of occurrence and how much infrastructure, both societal and economic, is exposed - but also the resiliency of the infrastructure and the national capacity to respond. Governments with low levels of accountability to their citizens may feel less pressure to maintain a high-level capacity for response to the humanitarian impact of natural disasters. Even if a nation has a comparatively low level of accountability to its own citizens, it may still have a high level of accountability to the global community.

If individual nations become accountable for many of the deaths that occur within their borders in the aftermath of a disaster, a strong international incentive (pressure from the world community) may take the place of accountability through democratic rule. Advances in global communications and economic interdependency may now be making all governments accountable to global citizenry. Deaths from natural disasters can no longer be dismissed as random acts of nature. They are a direct and inevitable consequence of high-risk land use and the failures of governments to adapt or respond to such known risks. If so, then perhaps the most important and possibly least expensive methods for reducing the humanitarian impact of natural hazards is to increase the transparency of risk, improve global awareness of the consequences of high-risk land use and hold accountable governments that place their populace in harm's way without a capacity to respond.

Van der Vink teaches courses on environmental science and natural hazards in the Department of Geosciences at Princeton University in New Jersey. His co-authors are Peter DiFiore, Andy Brett, Edward Burgess, Jacalyn Sproat, Heather van der Hoop, Pamela Walsh, Ali Warren, Logan West, Daphne Tess Cecil-Cockwell, Alain Chicoine, Jevon Harding, Christian Millian, Elena Olivi, Sara Piaskowy and Grace Wright. The authors would like to acknowledge the World Bank and the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance for making their data available for this study. They further acknowledge the Department of Geosciences, Princeton University for their support of this project.
© 2007 American Geological Institute. All

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Chaiten Volcano, Chile---A Factor In Climate Change?

If this recent volcanic eruption in Chile causes significant global cooling, we may want all the CO2 in the atmosphere (that allegedly causes warming) that we can get. The links in this article and the linked satellite photo are excellent.

May 06, 2008
The Chaiten Volcano - Could it Be a Factor?
By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM
The news is reporting a relatively large and long lasting volcanic eruption in Chile. According to the AP, the Chaiten volcano spewed lava and blasted ash more than 12 miles (60,000 feeet) into the sky on Tuesday, prompting a total evacuation of the provincial capital and other settlements. The volcano’s five-day eruption has sent a thick column of ash into the stratosphere, streaming across Patagonia to the Atlantic.

In earlier stories, we noted that there are usually 8 to 12 volcanic eruptions on-going at almost all times. Most are the small guys which emit just lava or if eruptive have their ash and gas clouds only reaching thousands to a few tens of thousands of feet in the air, remaining within the troposphere where the ash and gases quickly falls or gets rained out within a few days or weeks.
It is the bigger eruptions that reach above this tropospheric layer into the more stable stratosphere that can have long lasting (up to several years) and extent effects (global).

Pinatubo in 1991 reached over 110,000 feet and El Chichon 105,000 feet in 1982. Both Mt. St. Helens in 1980 and Cerro Hudson in 1991 reached around or just over 60,000 feet. Chaiten may fall into that category of a St Helens or Cerro Hudson and have some effect on the climate. the activity has not ceased and it is still possible a larger eruption will follow. The long lasting (5 days plus) nature of this eruption adds to the likelihood of an effect. It’s higher latitude means a a lower stratosphere and increases the chances of material being injected into that stable layer.

See larger image here

Note how much a major eruption can reduce incoming solar energy. This would add to the global cooling from the ocean flips and the a super long cycle 23 and possibly quiet solar cycle 24.
See larger graph here.

We have written on volcanic potenital effects here and here.

One other note, back over a decade ago, there was some speculation that volcanic activity led to El Nino development as the ash reduced the thermal and thus pressure gradients and through them the equatorial easterlies, reducing cold water upwelliing in the eastern Pacific and favoring the sloshing east of warm water from the western Pacific. Anecdotally the super El Nino of 1982/83 followed El Chichon and the El Ninos of 1991/92 and 1992/93 followed Pinatubo and Cerro Hudson. Stay tuned as better assessments are made of how much Chaiten may play a role on what’s ahead.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Adding Carbon Dioxide To The Atmosphere May Be Beneficial, Says Roy Spencer

Here is another article by Dr. Roy Spencer. He reiterates his doubt about the myth of man-caused global warming. In addition he speculates on the reason why man's addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere may really be beneficial, instead of harmful, as so many people mistakenly believe. If he is is correct, then all of our efforts to limit CO2 emissions are a terrible, tragic waste of effort and resources.

Of course Dr. Spencer is not the first person to come to this conclusion, but he is one of a growing number of scientists who have come to the same conclusion. Search the blog here for Roy Spencer and you will find much more of what he has to say on the weather, climate, and global warming. Also, please note he has a new book out titled "Climate Confusion: How Global Warming Hysteria Leads To Bad Science, Pandering Politicians, And Misguided Policies That Hurt The Poor".

More Carbon Dioxide, Please: Raising a Scientific Question.
By Roy Spencer in National Review Online
There seems to be an unwritten assumption among environmentalists - and among the media - that any influence humans have on nature is, by definition, bad. I even see it in scientific papers written by climate researchers. For instance, if we can measure some minute amount of a trace gas in the atmosphere at the South Pole, well removed from its human source, we are astonished at the far-reaching effects of mankind’s “pollution.”

But if nature was left undisturbed, would it be any happier and more peaceful? Would the carnivores stop eating those poor, defenseless herbivores, as well as each other? Would fish and other kinds of sea life stop infringing on the rights of others by feasting on them? Would there be no more droughts, hurricanes, floods, heat waves, tornadoes, or glaciers flowing toward the sea?
In the case of global warming, the alleged culprit - carbon dioxide - just happens to be necessary for life on Earth. How can Al Gore say with a straight face that we are treating the atmosphere like an “open sewer” by dumping carbon dioxide into it? Would he say the same thing if we were dumping more oxygen into the atmosphere? Or more nitrogen?

As a climate researcher, I am increasingly convinced that most of our recent global warming has been natural, not manmade. If true, this would mean that global temperatures can be expected to peak in the coming years (if they haven�t already), and global cooling will eventually ensue. Just for the sake of argument, let us assume that manmade global warming really is a false alarm. In that case, we would still need to ask: What are the other negative effects of pumping more CO2 into the atmosphere? Read what they are and why they may not be problems