Climate Science Strikes Back

If a letter appearing in the May 7, 2010, issue of Science is any indication, it looks like climate science traditionalists are trying to stage a comeback. The article by P. H. Gleick and a cast of hundreds, entitled “Climate Change and the Integrity of Science,” states that “we are deeply disturbed by the recent escalation of political assaults on scientists in general and on climate scientists in particular.” Decrying the attacks on climate scientists by “deniers,” the letter reiterates the signatories' support for dogmatic climate change theory. While admitting that the IPCC “quite unexpectedly and normally, made some mistakes,” they call for an end to “McCarthy-like threats” against themselves and their colleagues. Painting themselves as victims, they have gone on the offensive—like the evil Empire of Star Wars fame, climate science is striking back.

Likening climate change to the theories of the origin of Earth, Evolution and the Big Bang, the letter's signatories state: “There is compelling, comprehensive, and consistent objective evidence that humans are changing the climate in ways that threaten our societies and the ecosystems on which we depend.” They quickly play the uncertainty card, repeating the tired better-safe-than-sorry argument, saying “for a problem as potentially catastrophic as climate change, taking no action poses a dangerous risk for our planet.” Their song remains the same: we don't have real proof but we should act anyway, just in case we are right.

A foreshadowing of the letter's credibility was the use of a now famous photoshopped picture of a single polar bear, stranded on a small ice-flow (clicking on the small picture at the begining of the article will bring up the bogus “collage”). The Science article on-line contains this correction:

Due to an editorial error, the original image associated with this Letter was not a photograph but a collage. The image was selected by the editors, and it was a mistake to have used it. The original image has been replaced in the online HTML and PDF versions of the article with an unaltered photograph from National Geographic.


The replacement image, perhaps acknowleding that the ice isn't melting.
Photo: Paul Nicklen/National Geographic/Getty Images.

If only they would admit their larger transgressions so easily. Aside from the pictorial faux pas, the letter itself repeats the same tired old arguments. And of course, they can not help but call those who question their theory “deniers.” If anyone is in denial it is this group. The central points of the letter are reproduced below, judge for yourself.

Many recent assaults on climate science and, more disturbingly, on climate scientists by climate change deniers are typically driven by special interests or dogma, not by an honest effort to provide an alternative theory that credibly satisfies the evidence. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other scientific assessments of climate change, which involve thousands of scientists producing massive and comprehensive reports, have, quite expectedly and normally, made some mistakes. When errors are pointed out, they are corrected. But there is nothing remotely identified in the recent events that changes the fundamental conclusions about climate change:

(i) The planet is warming due to increased concentrations of heat-trapping gases in our atmosphere. A snowy winter in Washington does not alter this fact.

(ii) Most of the increase in the concentration of these gases over the last century is due to human activities, especially the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation.

(iii) Natural causes always play a role in changing Earth's climate, but are now being overwhelmed by human-induced changes.

(iv) Warming the planet will cause many other climatic patterns to change at speeds unprecedented in modern times, including increasing rates of sea-level rise and alterations in the hydrologic cycle. Rising concentrations of carbon dioxide are making the oceans more acidic.

(v)The combination of these complex climate changes threatens coastal communities and cities, our food and water supplies, marine and freshwater ecosystems, forests, high mountain environments, and far more.

These cranky boffins must think that, if they repeat the same lies enough times, everyone will start believing them again. No serious skeptic claims that a single cold winter reverses the past century's warming trend, though AGW supporters constantly trumpet the warmest this and that. The truth can be seen in the chart below, produced by NASA's GISS.


Mean global temperature has not changed for over a decade. NASA/GISS.

This graph appeared in “Playing the Uncertainty Card,” but bears repeating, as does the statement by Mark A. Cane: “Over the past decade, the mean global temperature did not rise much, if at all.” Gleick et al. assert that Earth's climate is “now being overwhelmed by human-induced changes.” Dr. Cane, a distinguished climate scientist from the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, seems to think that nature is doing the overwhelming: “This pause in global warming cannot be attributed to cutbacks in greenhouse-gas emissions by the planet's human population, so it must be nature taking a turn towards colder temperatures.”

At the end of the letter, it is claimed that skepticism of anthropogenic global warming has created a hostile environment for climate scientists. These pedants are amazed that people get upset when they are purposefully lied to, when data are manufactured to prove climate scientists' pre-ordained outcomes, and when leading experts collude to mislead the public. The same protests have been made by hucksters and confidence men down through the ages.

We also call for an end to McCarthy-like threats of criminal prosecution against our colleagues based on innuendo and guilt by association, the harassment of scientists by politicians seeking distractions to avoid taking action, and the outright lies being spread about them. Society has two choices: We can ignore the science and hide our heads in the sand and hope we are lucky, or we can act in the public interest to reduce the threat of global climate change quickly and substantively. The good news is that smart and effective actions are possible. But delay must not be an option.

Do they really expect everyone to accept their assertions of imminent disaster based on the flimsy, and often falsified, evidence present by the IPCC? Do they really think that the peoples of the world would accept a crash program to reorganize the economies of every nation without overwhelming proof that significant change was occurring? These “scientists” not only don't live in the real world, they have abandoned it in favor of perfidious computer models. Immersed in their models' fantasy worlds, they can play god with Earth's climate and reassure themselves that their half-formed notions are true.

The signatories are all members of the US National Academy of Sciences but do not claim to be speaking on its behalf. The Academy itself, however, has embarked on a new course of open advocacy and decided to overtly recommend a cap-and-trade program or a carbon tax. “We really need to get started right away. It's not opinion, it's what the science tells you,” said academy panel vice chairman Robert Fri, prompting Roger Pielki Jr. to label that statement “the boneheaded comment of the day.”

Pielki uses the term “stealth issue advocate” to describe someone, like Fri, who hides their advocacy behind science. The Gleick et al. letter is a veritable who's who of stealthy and not so stealthy advocates. Below is the full list of signatories to the Science letter. I propose that, when the notion of dangerous, human caused global warming is finally put to rest, we raise a monument to scientific folly, with a bronze plaque containing the names of those listed here.

Be safe, enjoy the interglacial and stay skeptical.



The signatories:

P. H. Gleick,* R. M. Adams, R. M. Amasino, E. Anders, D. J. Anderson, W. W. Anderson, L. E. Anselin, M. K. Arroyo, B. Asfaw, F. J. Ayala, A. Bax, A. J. Bebbington, G. Bell, M. V. L. Bennett, J. L. Bennetzen, M. R. Berenbaum, O. B. Berlin, P. J. Bjorkman, E. Blackburn, J. E. Blamont, M. R. Botchan, J. S. Boyer, E. A. Boyle, D. Branton, S. P. Briggs, W. R. Briggs, W. J. Brill, R. J. Britten, W. S. Broecker, J. H. Brown, P. O. Brown, A. T. Brunger, J. Cairns, Jr., D. E. Canfield, S. R. Carpenter, J. C. Carrington, A. R. Cashmore, J. C. Castilla, A. Cazenave, F. S. Chapin, III, A. J. Ciechanover, D. E. Clapham, W. C. Clark, R. N. Clayton, M. D. Coe, E. M. Conwell, E. B. Cowling, R. M Cowling, C. S. Cox, R. B. Croteau, D. M. Crothers, P. J. Crutzen, G. C. Daily, G. B. Dalrymple, J. L. Dangl, S. A. Darst, D. R. Davies, M. B. Davis, P. V. de Camilli, C. Dean, R. S. Defries, J. Deisenhofer, D. P. Delmer, E. F. Delong, D. J. Derosier, T. O. Diener, R. Dirzo, J. E. Dixon, M. J. Donoghue, R. F. Doolittle, T. Dunne, P. R. Ehrlich, S. N. Eisenstadt, T. Eisner, K. A. Emanuel, S. W. Englander, W. G. Ernst, P. G. Falkowski, G. Feher, J. A. Ferejohn, A. Fersht, E. H. Fischer, R. Fischer, K. V. Flannery, J. Frank, P. A. Frey, I. Fridovich, C. Frieden, D. J. Futuyma, W. R. Gardner, C. J. R. Garrett, W. Gilbert, R. B. Goldberg, W. H. Goodenough, C. S. Goodman, M. Goodman, P. Greengard, S. Hake, G. Hammel, S. Hanson, S. C. Harrison, S. R. Hart, D. L. Hartl, R. Haselkorn, K. Hawkes, J. M. Hayes, B. Hille, T. Hökfelt, J. S. House, M. Hout, D. M. Hunten, I. A. Izquierdo, A. T. Jagendorf, D. H. Janzen, R. Jeanloz, C. S. Jencks, W. A. Jury, H. R. Kaback, T. Kailath, P. Kay, S. A. Kay, D. Kennedy, A. Kerr, R. C. Kessler, G. S. Khush, S. W. Kieffer, P. V. Kirch, K. Kirk, M. G. Kivelson, J. P. Klinman, A. Klug, L. Knopoff, H. Kornberg, J. E. Kutzbach, J. C. Lagarias, K. Lambeck, A. Landy, C. H. Langmuir, B. A. Larkins, X. T. Le Pichon, R. E. Lenski, E. B. Leopold, S. A. Levin, M. Levitt, G. E. Likens, J. Lippincott-Schwartz, L. Lorand, C. O. Lovejoy, M. Lynch, A. L. Mabogunje, T. F. Malone, S. Manabe, J. Marcus, D. S. Massey, J. C. McWilliams, E. Medina, H. J. Melosh, D. J. Meltzer, C. D. Michener, E. L. Miles, H. A. Mooney, P. B. Moore, F. M. M. Morel, E. S. Mosley-Thompson, B. Moss, W. H. Munk, N. Myers, G. B. Nair, J. Nathans, E. W. Nester, R. A. Nicoll, R. P. Novick, J. F. O'Connell, P. E. Olsen, N. D. Opdyke, G. F. Oster, E. Ostrom, N. R. Pace, R. T. Paine, R. D. Palmiter, J. Pedlosky, G. A. Petsko, G. H. Pettengill, S. G. Philander, D. R. Piperno, T. D. Pollard, P. B. Price, Jr., P. A. Reichard, B. F. Reskin, R. E. Ricklefs, R. L. Rivest, J. D. Roberts, A. K. Romney, M. G. Rossmann, D. W. Russell, W. J. Rutter, J. A. Sabloff, R. Z. Sagdeev, M. D. Sahlins, A. Salmond, J. R. Sanes, R. Schekman, J. Schellnhuber, D. W. Schindler, J. Schmitt, S. H. Schneider, V. L. Schramm, R. R. Sederoff, C. J. Shatz, F. Sherman, R. L. Sidman, K. Sieh, E. L. Simons, B. H. Singer, M. F. Singer, B. Skyrms, N. H. Sleep, B. D. Smith, S. H. Snyder, R. R. Sokal, C. S. Spencer, T. A. Steitz, K. B. Strier, T. C. Südhof, S. S. Taylor, J. Terborgh, D. H. Thomas, L. G. Thompson, R. T. Tjian, M. G. Turner, S. Uyeda, J. W. Valentine, J. S. Valentine, J. L. van Etten, K. E. van Holde, M. Vaughan, S. Verba, P. H. von Hippel, D. B. Wake, A. Walker, J. E. Walker, E. B. Watson, P. J. Watson, D. Weigel, S. R. Wessler, M. J. West-Eberhard, T. D. White, W. J. Wilson, R. V. Wolfenden, J. A. Wood, G. M. Woodwell, H. E. Wright, Jr., C. Wu, C. Wunsch, M. L. Zoback

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: petergleick@pacinst.org


The climate science Empire striking back under cover of England's winter snow.

gleickenspiel

Dear Mr. Gleick,
1. I refer to your letter to Science captioned the letter “Climate Change and the Integrity of Science”

2. The letter was heavily AGW oriented.

3. The publisher saw fit to embellish it with a photoshopped image of a desolate Polar Bear adrift on a solo ice floe presumably heading to extinction.

4. The web site carries the copyright notice of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

5. Footnote:“The signatories are all members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences but are not speaking on its behalf”

6. Mr. Gleick states “not all NAS members were ASKED to sign” yet puts forward the letter as representative of NAS members – “all members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences”

7. The starting ‘A’ or ‘B’ represent a geographically disperse and discipline diverse set – they are not your drinking buddies.

8. Given “all members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences” it is reasonable to take it that only NAS members were polled.

9. Given geographic and discipline spread it is hard to accept these 250+ had personal connections to you Mr. Glieck.

10. So is it your position 250++ names were pulled from a , solicited their signatures and “that vast majority of those asked to sign, signed”

11. Please advise who was polled to sign this tawdry document.

12. If not the full 2,500 odd members of the NAS how was the subset selected

13. How many declined to sign

Do tell

gleickenspiel

Dear Mr. Glieck,
Referring to your alarmist publication on sea level rise on the CA coast noting in the 'Executive Summary' a forecast rise of 1000 to 1400mm.
Do you stand by that figure? Do you assert Deaconess Solomon's sworn testimony of 600mm was incorrect by a factor of 2?

Do tell

GLEIKENSPIEL

Dear Mr. Glieck,
Do you accept NOAA tidal data for Alameda, the closest tidal station to the trans-national headquarters of that august body the 'Pacific Institute', does not show any sea level change for the entire recording period? Flat line. None. Nothing. At the mean less than 1 mm per annum in the period 1939 to 2010, at the lower confidence level 0.3mm. No trend tracking of the discredited hockey stick. No trend tracking atmospheric CO2. Does your 1400mm projection apply to Alameda where the NOAA projection is as low as 30mm?

Do you agree the scary blue Alameda graph at :-
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrends_station.shtml?stnid=9...
is within instrumental resolution essentially a flat liner?

Does your California Inundation Shock and Terror report benefit the $8 trillion merchant banker investments directed by ''Pacific Institute'"partner Ceres?

Do tell.

Gleikenspiel

Dear Mr. Glieck,

From Ceres annual report:-

"'CERES COMPANIES More than 70 companies worldwide, many of them Fortune 500 firms, are “Ceres Companies.” Companies apply to officially join Ceres, and once accepted gain exclusive access to many benefi ts, such as strategic advice, GRI reporting, emerging issues and access to leading investors and sustainability experts."'

Mr. Glieck please confirm the 'science'of that august tax exempt charity the 'pacific institute''' is not in any way influenced by the partner Ceres connection with the $8 trillion investments of those who gave us the global financial crisis.

Mr. Glieck are institutional donors to the 'pacific institute'and the taxpayers who indirectly fund it by way of tax exemption aware of these connections?

Do tell

For Shame

These absolutely-not-scientists are despicible gutless v-----s.

The Global Warming Hoax itself is a sideshow to the idea that conscientious dissenters like myself are driven by money from corporate interests. That lie is orders of magnitude more ridiculous and overstated than manmade global warming.

Secondly, none of these so-called victims have apparently ever tried to post a comment on RealClimate.com. By simply considering out loud the idea that man is not behind the totally fabricated statistically manipulated .5C climate change of the past century, Gavin and Tamino will say things and call you names that would make your mother blush. Of course they have the option of pretending this doesn't happen because these same two scumbags will then delete your post to maintain the appearance that everyone agrees with them. Hence the birth of "censoredbyrealclimate.com". One trip there and you find more proof that these same scientists are guilty of what they accuse others of, than you'll ever find supporting manmade Global Warming. Look long enough and see why Gavin Schmidt has a face rearranging coming to him if he ever has the balls to come within a hundred miles of me.

Global Warming is a sham. Everyone knows it, and this letter and the accompanying embarrassing picture only prove how pathetic, fraudulent and shameless its promoters are.

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Climate Science Strikes Back

If we examine AGW, Eugenics, Lysenkoism, Intelligent Design and other Pseudosciences we find a number of commanalities between these movements or schools of thought.

1. Founded or thought to be founded on the science of the day.
2. The scientific method was or is ignored or improperly applied.
3. Social/political/economic ideas were substituted for deductive reasoning and falsifiable hypotheses on "experimental design and result interpretation.
4. Contrary data, opinions, ideas, hypotheses and theories are rejected based on deviation from the dogma or orthodox.
5. "Believers" made and are making concerted propaganda and sophistic efforts to influence public policy and application of economic resources toward their definition of the greater good.
6. The scientific method was or is ignored or purposefully misrepresented, to achieve those ends believed or touted to be in the greater good.
7. Quasi public (advocacy groups), public and academic bodies are recruited or created to assist in dissemination of the dogma.
8. Believers claim a moral and sometimes divine purpose for the objectives.
9. Where possible, legal, economic and governmental pressure is recruited to further the objectives.
10. Emotional rationales replace the scientific method as information contributed to making public policy.
11. Much is made of potential catastrophes and fear is replaced by reason.
12. Propaganda and keeping the funding flowing supersedes science.

I do this in two essays at Http://retreadresources.com/blog

I believe my comparison is fair but in two short essays not comprehensive.

My concluding remarks are:
"One last word on Eugenics. When one looks at a list of those who supported this concept in both philosophical and legislative terms in the United States, the list includes many notable scientists, university presidents, politicians, men of letters and arts, The National Research Council and National Academy of Sciences and so on.

In the recent debates and publications relating to AGW we see the same list. NRC, NAS, politicians, men & women of letters & arts, university presidents, heads of scientific associations and so on. These are often those looked to by society as experts and authorities today, as in the past. This parallel is far to striking to simply ignore. Is this hubris, greed, lust for power or willful ignorance? I suspect all of the above.

The last word goes to George Santayana, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.""

Dennis Nikols