A post by Maynard

Discussion about global warming has degenerated into a (ahem!) heated exchange of dogma. We’re getting blasted with junk science and fragmentary truths. As a public service, I’ll try to lay out the basic situation.

Be warned that what you’ll see here deviates from the “conservative” party line. But, if it makes you feel any better, “liberals” will likewise find these comments disagreeable. I’m just setting down the data as I understand it, and let the chips fall where they may. Continue reading if you dare. If you don’t like what you see, you may say I’m wrong and stupid, but please don’t call me a liberal. The difference may be nuanced, but it matters to me.

Let’s start with known facts.

First and foremost: The percentage of carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere is rising. See the Wiki article. At this point we’re about 40% higher than the norm of the past few hundred thousand years. This rise coincides with the industrial revolution. It is caused by human activity.

Yes, carbon dioxide is natural and necessary. Yes, there are plenty of other sources of CO2. But the historic rise is because we’re burning stuff. This is not the result of volcanoes, forest fires, or cow belches.

Second, and equally important: Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas. CO2 will retain more of the Sun’s energy than the gas it has displaced. That’s a hard fact.

That’s what we know. Beyond this point, things get speculative.

In the simplest model (which is NOT an accurate model of the ecosystem, but it’s our starting point), the build-up of a greenhouse gas will cause the Earth to trap more solar energy, and thus get hotter than it otherwise would have. That’s the fundamental basis for concerns about global warming. You can see why it makes sense.

But the simple model isn’t complete. The Earth’s ecosystem is immensely complicated, and CO2 is just one small component. So the essential question is: How will the alteration of this factor percolate through the ecosystem? Will the Earth adjust to the changes and maintain familiar stability, or will it be thrown out of whack?

This is where the dogma comes in. Everyone “knows” what the rising level of CO2 will do to us. Academics that “study” the problem have an embarrassing tendency to find exactly what they expect (or are paid) to find. And those who see a problem then “know” the solution. But really, nobody knows much of anything.

Here’s what I think.

First of all, the concern about global warming is reasonable. Humanity is tampering with a fundamental parameter of the ecosystem. This may produce an effect that is not benign. We must investigate the question.

Unfortunately, politics being what it is, political factions treat this situation as an opportunity to expand their power. The panic button is being pushed, and we’re all supposed to cower in fear and do what the government says. Every weather event becomes another excuse for more fear-mongering. The “green” movement is responsible for countless lies and payoffs and boondoggles and regulations and taxes. I’m not sure any of this has done much good in terms of figuring out whether the planet’s in jeopardy, or addressing the problem if it’s substantial.

For the sake of brevity, I’ll skip the politics here. Plenty of other people are talking about politics. The true question should be: How do we properly evaluate the effect of the rise in CO2 on the ecosystem?

The answer is conceptually simple. The Holy Grail of global warming science is the creation of a computer model of the Earth’s ecosystem. Such a model is hugely difficult to build, because the ecosystem is complex beyond imagining. But our ability to model and compute is also immense, and growing. This model will ultimately be created.

When we have a computer model of the ecosystem, it will tell us how the world will react to the carbon emissions. It will clarify the urgency, or lack thereof.

The reasonable question you’ll ask is: How will we know the computer model is correct? Everybody’s building models. They’re all imperfect. How do we test a computer model?

The answer is logical. We test a computer model by feeding it old data, and evaluating its ability to “predict” events that have already happened. For example, we evaluate the data for 2005 to “predict” the climate for 2006. Then evaluate the data from 2006 and get a “prediction” for 2007. The valid model will prove itself by perfectly “predicting” the past. This will be rigorously tested and verified by the academic institutions of the world.

The model that can correctly “predict” the past can be expected to do well in predicting the future.

For further reading, check out this article from the (conservative!) National Review, Prediction Time. Also, see the reasonably balanced explanation in this Global Warming Primer.

Oh, and about the cold snap in America and Europe…no, this does not disprove global warming. Local heat and cold say nothing about the state of the planet. If an arctic storm hits New York, then maybe Greenland got the heat we should have seen here, and the next report you’ll hear is of ice melting.

Climate has been in flux over the eons. Ice ages have come and gone. Change, no matter what the cause, makes life difficult, because our habits and infrastructure are only as useful as our ability to predict future weather. In some places you grow wheat, in others you grow citrus, in others you hunt polar bears. Any change in climate is a hit to our economy, not to mention our survival. The concern about global warming isn’t simply that temperatures will rise by a degree, but that weather patterns will shift. That would be a bad thing. Therefore, unusual weather events such as the cold snap would be, if they indicate anything at all, evidence of a problem rather than proof that no problem exists. But next year it probably won’t be so cold, and this event will pass into history as Hurricane Katrina did.

I’m trying to finish up here, but there are a couple more points I need to make.

First of all, let’s all hope that the rise in carbon dioxide is benign, because it’s not going to stop. Even if we shut down America, economic growth in Asia and India and Brazil etc. is picking up the slack. So we’ll be producing more CO2…if not here, then elsewhere.

Of course we still need to model the planet for the purpose of predicting weather. But we may use that model to plan for the changes to the climate (if any) rather than to prevent them.

Finally, although I’m concerned about the possibility of long-term CO2-driven eco-catastrophe, I think the nation and the world are vastly more at risk from short-term economic and political catastrophe. We’re going to die because we went broke or somebody blew us up long before we succumb to atmospheric carbon dioxide. It’s an ironic commentary on the human condition that our politicians are frantic about the state of the planet in a century, while at the same time they put us on a path that will destroy us within a few years.

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  1. MainelyRight says:

    Interesting post, Maynard. Thank you for your thoughtful comments and measured consideration. When the issue of increasing CO2 is presented as a fact that requires scientific ongoing inquiry, we’re all more likely to open our minds to the issue. I’ve been wary of the global warming faction because of the extreme politics at play. I’ve felt that if it was really a problem to our way of life then I would expect the experts/scientists of the world to put their heads together to discuss, model, present ideas in an open forum rather than allowing the likes of Algore to scream at us, make us feel guilty and tax/legislate us back into the 19th century (or worse, the Stone Age).

    We need to keep the dialogue open and stop the short-term insanity that is, of course, the great irony you point out. We need to stop the short-term path to destruction that makes the long-term consequences of global warming moot.

    Thanks, Maynard, I enjoyed reading this.

  2. Alain41 says:

    I don’t agree that we will ever have an accurate computer model of earth’s ecosystem. I do believe that we will have many episodes of people declaring that what they have developed is an accurate model; therefore, listen to them and change your ways as they say. Regarding shifting weather patterns, the weather patterns shift without any contribution of man, so how do you know when it’s caused by man ? I agree with conclusion that planning should be for changes in climate rather than futile attempts at prevention, that way it doesn’t matter whether man had any contribution. Thanks for the post, I love science (and hate fraud). Is that redundant?

    • makeshifty says:

      Agreed. When I took computer science about 20 years ago my professors talked about how mathematicians, looking at what was “computable,” had shown that attempts to model any chaotic, non-linear system with much accuracy was almost impossible. They seemed to open a slight window of possibility that under certain conditions it might be possible, but it was remote, and we didn’t discuss what the more ideal conditions would be. Our climate has been characterized as a coupled, chaotic, non-linear system. Our economy is similar. It is a chaotic, non-linear system. When I took a freshman course in economics in college our teacher told us that economists used computer models for simulating scenarios, but it was well understood in the profession that these models could not be used for prediction. It was used as a way of looking at how an economic theory might play out if the conditions in the computer model were the actual conditions. So it was a way of establishing some boundary conditions for a theory. The simulation was totally theoretical, and it was understood as such. More recently I’ve wondered if economists have forgotten about the wisdom their forbearers had about computer models on the economy. Alan Greenspan said after the ’08 crash that “our computer models predicted that housing prices would not fall. What we did not know was that our models assumed housing prices would not fall.” In other words, the models were skewed, unbeknownst to people like Greenspan. This is not to say that the model in itself was “flawed,” just the interpretation of it. Had they known that the underlying assumption of the models were that housing prices would never fall, they could’ve looked at them with an appropriate level of skepticism.

      I’ve gotten a sense that, unfortunately, people in leadership positions have become too confident in computer models, forgetting the limitations of computing technology (I’m talking in terms of structure/architecture, not speed), and have willingly fooled themselves into believing them. Even the prediction that the ’10 “stimulus” bill would limit unemployment to 8% was based on a prediction made by a computer model about the economy…which did not work.

      Unfortunately, as these things go, there may come a day when the people funding these simulations will finally throw up their hands and realize what a fraud this is, and stop funding it altogether. I say “unfortunately,” because, as their forbearers probably knew, these simulations can be a valuable tool for developing better theories of how these systems work. They just shouldn’t be used to predict actual events in these systems. That is the real mistake.

      Secondly, computer models of other, more linear phenomena are much more accurate, though any computer simulation is going to have its limitations. As with all scientific theories, there will always be some level of error, and that should be understood from the get-go.

      • varmint says:

        Weather prediction as done by Piers Corbyn has become a bit more linear because he has been incorporating the solar and lunar effects. I read that farmers and the like are starting to pay a lot of attention to his long range predictions. I think I read that he has had about 85% accuracy. He was said to be betting on his predictions and people apparently don’t bet with him anymore.
        Svensmark theory would be part of it and a recent Japanese study proved it to be right. The study proved that reduced solar magnetic output during the Maunder Minimum gave us increased precipitation and the little ice age. Scientists already knew that climate was tracking solar magnetic output. Now they know why.

        • makeshifty says:

          I know of Piers’s predictions, and they sound impressive in their accuracy. It’s interesting to me that if he is so accurate (I haven’t kept up with them) that he hasn’t been consulted more often by the news outlets, instead of just mouthing the party line about AGW.

          There was a documentary made about Svensmark’s work called, “The Chilling Stars,” which I’ve seen. You can find it on YouTube (in 5 parts). It goes up to the point where his theory gets published, but not to where it’s been tested/confirmed by other scientists. I think it’s a beautiful theory, and if true, I think it would explain a lot of things about our past climate history, but until others try and reproduce his results I prefer to withhold belief. I haven’t been keeping track of AGW stuff since last year, so I may have missed the confirmations, if there were any.

  3. rustybx says:

    Contrary to popular myth CO2 is a minor contributor. Water vapor is 90% and the spectral absorption bands of water and oxygen overlap CO2. What this means is adding more CO2 does very little to increase the greenhouse effect. Radiation can only be absorbed once. Once you have a little CO2 in the atmosphere there’s little remaining radiation for additional CO2 to absorb.

    For example, to double the pre-Industrial Revolution warming from CO2 alone would require about 90,000 ppm (9%) CO2. This is ludicrous as CO2 becomes lethal at around 6,000 ppm…and we couldn’t generate that much CO2 if we tried (CO2 is only about 380 ppm today – up from 285 ppm in 1850).

    Think of it this way – a kevlar vest stops bullets. But if you’re behind a reinforced barrier the vest is irrelevant. Just like CO2 when water vapor is present.

    One can argue persuasively the supposed warming doesn’t even exist. For decades remote monitoring stations around the world have been shut down leading to an urban heat island bias. The closing of the majority of Siberian stations coincide exactly with the largest ‘increase’ in the data set. Other methods such as satellite and ocean temperature show zero or even negative temperature trends but these data sets only go back to the 1970s.

    I highly recommend reading these links. All but the last one is very heavy on science so be prepared to think hard 🙂


  4. Southrider says:

    I must disagree with the notion that there is proof that CO2 levels resulting from man’s activity causes global warming, global cooling, or really has any statistically significant, enduring, impact on climate.

    I work with environmental ‘scientists’; my background is more in, well, the application of technology to political/military problems so I take an engineers’ approach to determining what is true. Hearing unbelievable claim from the like of Gore for years I finally determined to look into it myself a year and a half ago. My first resource was Burt Rutan, probably our greatest engineer, and a man who has a lifetime of environmentally conscientious work behind him, including his award winning sustainable home.

    Burt’s analysis is here – and remember his first presentation was before the release of the ‘Climategate’ information.
    http://rps3.com/Pages/Burt_Rutan_on_Climate_Change.htm see ‘Engineers Critique’

    The Climategate emails and computer programmers notes subsequently made it clear what we have is a conspiracy to present fraudulent data as real to support Cap and Trade and anti-US and anti-west agendas. The truth was best revealed in the emails when the head of the National Center for Atmospheric Research wrote to a colleague, “The fact is, we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment, and it is a travesty that we can’t.” In a subsequent interview with BBC Phil Jones, the source of one of the temperature databases tampered with to support the fraud, admitted there’s been no statistically significant global warming since 1995 http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1250872/Climategate-U-turn-Astonishment-scientist-centre-global-warming-email-row-admits-data-organised.html .
    Subsequent analysis, made independent of Jones, etc., makes it clear man caused CO2 and temperature is not significantly related.


    Looking further, when I checked, each of the other fantastic AGW related claims have turned out to be frauds. For example, ocean rises. Here’s what the most respected man reviewing the IPCCs report said happened – he approved the report then it was changed …
    “I accused them of this at the Academy of Sciences in Moscow—I said you have introduced factors from outside; it’s not a measurement. It looks like it is measured from the satellite, but you don’t say what really happened. And they answered, that we had to do it, because otherwise we would not have gotten any trend!

    Bottom line – we were warned – in 2003 – by a brilliant man that ‘science’ was being corrupted. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/09/aliens-cause-global-warming-a-caltech-lecture-by-michael-crichton/ Few seemed to listen. Now we’ve gotten the Climategate evidence and it’s time to prosecute and imprison the individuals who took government funds and manipulated data to support the AGW myth.


  5. rustybx says:

    One more thing…

    The creator of three of the leading climate models said (paraphrasing) – “We don’t know how to model clouds. Our understanding of clouds is so poor we can’t even estimate model inaccuracies”.

    With clouds being 70% of the greenhouse effect his statement should halt any policy decisions based on climate models.

    What the non-scientist often don’t understand is how theoretical modeling is used. Models are useful for determine relative relations. If I change A then what happens to B is an example. Models increase our understanding by relative means. Using theoretical models for exact, precise predictions is fraud. Electrical circuit simulation is likely the most advanced and precise modeling available. It’s still approximate.

  6. rossashdown says:

    We need to think of these things in the proper ratio aspect. CO2 has risen, that is a fact. Now let’s look at the ratio. On Christmas my wife cooked a turkey. She used (1) grain of salt to season the entire bird. I argued with her that we should use another 1/100,000,000 of a grain of salt for added flavor. The fight ensued. We finally came to a compromise. We agreed to spend 1 trillion dollars to determine if either of us can actually taste the salt. Next Christmas we’ll budget 2 trillion dollars for the same test. We still can’t find the problem for the liberal solution……perhaps 3 trillion will do it!

  7. karllembke says:

    We test a computer model by feeding it old data, and evaluating its ability to “predict” events that have already happened. For example, we evaluate the data for 2005 to “predict” the climate for 2006. Then evaluate the data from 2006 and get a “prediction” for 2007. The valid model will prove itself by perfectly “predicting” the past. This will be rigorously tested and verified by the academic institutions of the world.

    Jerry Pournelle has asked his contacts, and on his website, whether any climate models have actually demonstrated their ability to “predict” the past climate. No one has told him of any.
    One would think a computer model that passed this test would be announced with considerable fanfare.

    Where’s the noise?

    • Charles_TX says:

      A layman’s view of the computer models: The inability of the models to move from the past to the present with any sort of precision is a fundamental problem. If you ask a modeler (at a conference for example) whether they have done this simple test, the entire room of modelers will turn on you with a vengeance. (personal experience) If you can’t model known temperature changes to within a few percent, why would you trust their extrapolations?

      There are even worse limitations to the models. First, they don’t handle future technological innovations in a meaningful way (“unknown unknowns” – Donald Rumsfeld) and assume a sort of quasi-static energy production scenario. The effects of fission and fusion reactors are not included. Second, the models don’t seem to handle the known insolation rate variations based on Fourier or wavelet analysis of the insolation rate measured by satellites. In other words, solar variations may or may not be correctly included. Third, ocean-atmosphere interactions are in the initial stages of being incorporated and are relatively primitive. Ignoring one of the largest thermal reservoirs on the planet for so long was just plain wrong.

      So, there is no noise. Won’t be any for many years.

  8. RuBegonia says:

    Have we collected appropriate and accurate data in the past without a garbage in garbage out result?

  9. HughM says:

    I understand your point.
    If we could come up with a computer model that could accurately align with past climate events, we might have a model that could predict future climate events. But we don’t. One of the best arguments against all the “scientific” predictions of climate disaster.
    However, your concern about a possible CO2 eco-catatstophe is misplaced, IF you listen to Lord Christopher Monckton. Anyone who is interested in the bogus Man-Made Climate Change theory and has not listened to several of Lord Monckton’s seminars on YouTube will be greatly relieved to find out that we are in no danger from an additional 0.002% CO2 in the atmosphere that we might be putting there.
    A decent volcanic eruption would do more in a day than all of mankind’s output of several years.

  10. flaggman says:

    Homo Sapiens is an adaptive species. When the climate changes we figure out how to deal with it. Humanity inhabits less than 2% of the earth’s surface. I don’t believe we could have anything more than a marginal effect on climate, even if we tried!

    Now, whether or not CO2 is rising in the atmosphere, I have no idea. There is no reliable past data to compare today’s data to. But even if rising CO2 is true, it will not necessarily lead to catastrophe. In fact, the one thing it will certainly lead to is improved crop yields and tree growth for most of the developed world. So Maynard, while I appreciate your attempt to be rational on the issue, I believe true reason stands on the side of forgetting about this whole irrelevant trumped-up issue, and letting ourselves get on with living honourable, useful and happy lives without letting our minds get constipated with neurosis.

  11. flaggman says:

    And FYI: the CO2 chart Maynard uses in this post contains the oldest statistical trick in the book – it employs the misleading non-zero vertical axis to exaggerate the increase. A primer here:


  12. varmint says:

    This chart includes the Medieval warming period, plus enough climate history to put our current situation well in context. It makes it obvious that we have no worries coming from CO2 since our era is not a standout for being warm.


    I love this bit, quoted from the writer:
    “The control-and-tax proponents would have you believe that our planet has been enduring unprecedented global warming (now coyly referred to as “climate change”), but the facts do not bear that out. Facts. Oh, those damnable facts.”

  13. thierry says:

    there is of course the concept that CO2 is rising BECAUSE of ‘warming’… or more accurately because of the activity of the sun- something which we have absolutely no control over.

    let’s force social justice upon the sun-let’s regulate , fine and tax it! bad racist sun!

    of course, al gore could heave his considerable bulk at the sun, forcing a change in it’s orbit…. seriously, we should consider it.

    “Ice core samples from Antarctica have been used as proof of how warming over the centuries has been accompanied by raised CO2 levels.

    But Professor Ian Clark, an expert in palaeoclimatology from the University of Ottawa, claims that warmer periods of the Earth’s history came around 800 years before rises in carbon dioxide levels.

    The programme also highlights how, after the Second World War, there was a huge surge in carbon dioxide emissions, yet global temperatures fell for four decades after 1940.

    … ‘ It is ridiculous to see politicians arguing over whether they will allow the global temperature to rise by 2c or 3c.'”


    long before industrialization the earth experienced extremes of weather- cycles that sometimes have wiped whole populations of living beings out, forever changing the very surface of the planet. not that we should spew poisons out willy nilly, but the whole ‘scientific ‘dialog has been perverted nearly beyond redemption- the very language used is misleading and corrupted-specifically for some people to make a lot of money.

    the whole charade has absolutely nothing to do with saving the earth. human arrogance knows no bounds. a meteor could hit us tomorrow, taking out the entire planet- should we tax the rich countries, giving the money to al gore and his green pals, to build a net to try and catch it? so many fools scared to death of the truth- they are insignificant .they are not gods. and scientists are rarely objective. it is not acting responsibly toward the planet to sanction falsehoods merely in service to personal greed. that’s not science – it’s a demented irrational religious cult headed by malignant self serving gurus.

    and in the midst of all this madness, the larger corporations- let alone the whole of China- that are the biggest polluters on earth with likewise huge lobbying pocketbooks, are unregulated or exempted from following laws meant to curb their toxic wastes and emissions while the rest of us are being pursued relentlessly by the Light Bulb and Plastic Shopping Bag Death Squads.

  14. makeshifty says:

    This analysis presented here, while thoughtful, is once again a bit frustrating (I say “once again,” because I’ve seen a lot of presentations like this, though not as thoughtful). Just to give a boundary condition to all this, the main reason people are so concerned about CO2 is because of the planet Venus. Scientists looked at why Venus was such an inhospitable place, and found that the reason was CO2, particularly the amount of it in the atmosphere, resulting in a runaway greenhouse effect. It’s worth noting that Mars has a CO2 atmosphere as well–a much thinner one–and it does not have the characteristics of Venus. The typical daytime temperature on Mars is 32 degrees F, right at what we’d call “freezing” here on Earth.

    The problem with transferring the notion of the runaway greenhouse effect on Venus to Earth is that our planet and Venus are practically polar opposites. Venus’s atmosphere is 97% CO2. By contrast, Earth’s atmosphere, as noted earlier, is 0.038% CO2. CO2 is a heavy gas (heavier than air), and Venus has a much thicker atmosphere than ours, which explains why probes that we send through the atmosphere of Venus get crushed by the atmospheric pressure.

    Another fact about CO2 is that its impact is logarithmic, not linear, or exponential. From what I understand, this is not controversial in either camp. What this means is each doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere has less impact on warming than a prior doubling had. The question that can be legitimately asked in either camp is, “Okay, where are we on the logarithmic scale with respect to CO2?” Here’s an article on that:


    Another factor I never see considered in alarming presentations about CO2 is what’s going on with the actual greenhouse effect! You would think that since it’s always pointed out that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, which we all know (supposedly) is related to the greenhouse effect, and that it’s rising, that we would be **curious** about what’s going on up there! But no, that’s skipped. It’s usually explained away, saying, “Well it can’t be measured accurately,” and then whoever is presenting the material acts like it doesn’t matter, and they go on to explain that there’s been a rise in surface temperature, and that this correlates very well to the rise in CO2, that the correlation is *statistically* significant, and therefor explains the rise in temperature. Well, that’s just not how science works. In order to validate a theory you have to test it with experiments, or at least observations. I don’t know if they teach this in school anymore, but I was taught that data correlations are dangerous things. They can fool you into thinking you’re seeing cause and effect, when in fact you’re not. I like to use the example of the Aztecs. They believed that daily human sacrifices pleased the Sun god, and therefor the Sun would rise the next day. There was in their minds a one-to-one correlation. On the day, they would sacrifice some people. The next day, the Sun would rise. Hey, there’s a correlation! Do this for a hundred years, the correlation is perfect! Fortunately, this is not cause and effect.

    Analysis of temperature measurements of the “greenhouse layer” (though there is a high level of error in the measurements, from what I understand), which is about 3 miles up in the atmosphere, in the middle of the troposphere, shows that there has been a very slight increase in temperature there. Christopher Monkton has pointed out that there have been thousands of measurements of the temperature at the greenhouse layer over decades, because of weather balloon, and satellite measurements. The vast majority of them show no “hot spots” that would indicate a runaway greenhouse effect. And even if a few show up, they only last for a few days, and then disappear. He said, and I agree with this assessment, that even though the error level of each individual measurement is high, the fact that the same test has been run thousands of times, and the vast majority of them show similar results (that there has been a slight increase in its temperature), indicates that this is close to the truth.

    The surface temperature record is a troubled thing. There are a few published global surface temperature records, and they each vary from each other by quite a bit. So no real valid assertions about what exactly has happened to surface temperature can be made, except that there are indications that the surface temperature has increased somewhat. How much is inconclusive. Without this, though, it’s difficult to say whether the greenhouse effect is the primary cause of the surface warming or not.

    Monkton said, and I agree with this as well, that our contribution of CO2 has to have some kind of effect on temperature. That just stands to reason. From what we’ve been able to measure, though, it’s so minimal it’s not worth getting worried about right now. Scientists have been looking for years for the “human signal” in greenhouse warming, and the most honest among them will tell you they still haven’t found it. It’s as good as background noise, from what I can tell.

    The climate scientist who publishes what he works on and what he thinks on a regular basis, and who I found to be the most sober on the subject, is Roger Pielke, Sr. For people who are concerned about the issue I’d encourage you to check him out. The interesting thing about his analysis is he says that we *are* altering the earth’s climate, but in a variety of ways, which are being ignored because “everybody who’s anybody” is worried about the impact of industrial CO2. In other words, we’re missing the real problem!

  15. Ralph Buttigieg says:


    Hours can be spent discussing the science, but politicians and most of us here are *not* scientists. Whats important is what, if any action we take, ie the policies, the political actions. So I ask, how many degrees cooler will the world be after a carbon tax? How much would cap and trade scheme cost and for what effect? How many countries would need to implement such policies for it to have any effect? And at what cost.?I’m in Australia and when I ask that of our politicians I usually get a blank expression.



  16. MainelyRight says:

    I’ve enjoyed reading all the thoughtful comments here. I wish the powers that be, the scientists of the world and the politicians were as open minded, honest and practical as the TAMS. I don’t believe in global warming. Meteorologists can’t even always predict the weather with accuracy; I can’t trust their predictions on global warming. That said, I do keep my mind open to serious discussion. The powers that be could take a few lessons from you all.

  17. ChrisL says:

    Maynard has effectively beat the bushes and flushed out some brilliant TAM responses. I enjoy it when Tammy’s peeps reveal their intellect and character as they’ve done here. On a more humorous note, here’s concrete supporting evidence for an alternative theory. http://www.theoildrum.com/node/7282#comment-755966

    • ChrisL says:

      Dang! It appears the specific chart that link was pointing to has been removed. It showed a definite correlation between rising temperatures and rising postage rates. The two traces followed a distinctly similar plot, so that proves cause and effect. The debate is over.

  18. kenalamo says:

    I keep a tab linked to http://www.wattsupwiththat.com. I hope that Maynard will begin regularly visiting the site (Maynard, even your statements of what you think we KNOW are incorrect). The WattsUpWithThat site is the most visited of all the climate change sites. It often gets updated 3 times a day. The thing I most enjoy about it is that it typically references climate change related events or papers and then comments on the validity of the event/presentation. There a many real scientists who then comment on the article that is presented.

    With the help of this site, I have concluded that my instinct was correct in regard to the utter hoax that is being presented to the world in regard to man-made global warming. The reason that I recommend daily or (at least) weekly visits to the site is because there is such a continual effort by so many to present man-made globally warming as fact that I believe it is necessary to have continual credible, scientific pushback against it.

  19. DaveVA says:

    Maynard, I am disappointed. I cannot speak as eloquently on the scientific stuff as others have here, but I have enough reading under by belt to know a couple things:
    *CO2 is not poison and pretty insignificant in the atmosphere
    *Clouds, water vapor and the sun have way more to do with our climate
    *We do not (and will not) control weather patterns

    A few days ago I watched the local news in the early am before going to work to check the weather forecast for the next day on my day off. The forecast was for a daytime high of 40 F. When I got home that evening I checked again and the forecast had changed to a high of 44 F. I see this frequently. How am I supposed to believe these people (I know there is a difference between climatology and meteorology) can predict 100 years or 50 years into the future if they cannot get the same day forecast 100% right 100% of the time.

    The politicians scare me, not the climate.

  20. ChrisL says:

    After viewing all this informative discussion and some of the terrific data links in this discussion thread, it occurs to me that Algore has shot himself in the foot. To ensure success, he should have pushed through the whole global warming scheme before he invented the internet!

  21. Conservatarian says:

    Oh man, enough already. Are you having some kind of guilt attack? When logical conservative folks start getting wishy-washy on global warming, it’s usually due to the inability to withstand the pressure. Anti global warming doesn’t = anti environment. There are plenty of other things we could be doing to help the environment that are more beneficial than the carbon tax which is the coveted prize for this campaign. First of all the data is corrupt, you can’t build off that – temp stations shutdown, ignored, improperly located, etc. The data has been manipulated. Any model that doesn’t include solar activity is not valid, we’ve all heard of mother nature, but the sun is the daddy. By changing the name of this “phenomenon”from global warming to climate change should be regarded as suspect. As a scientist, you don’t just change the name of your theory without going back and re-evaluating your data. The entire motive of this religion is enough to show that this isn’t about the environment or science, it’s all politics (control and money). Just like Obamacare isn’t about providing better, cheaper, more healthcare. Global warming, uh , climate change is not about the environment. I shouldn’t have to explain to this audience what its all about. Also to pick and chose which events we can consider applies further doubt to this scenario: it’s hot, it’s global warming, it’s cold, it’s global warming, too much rain, drought, etc – it can’t all be global warming. Ignore this cold snap, I think not. Ignore the lack of hurricane activity since Katrina – nope. The earth goes through change that has nothing to do with human activity, we are not that important and the need to elevate ourselves and explain everything usually leads to great scientific discoveries but this time political opportunists have taken this to a place no one should go. Alot of people failed science in school for a reason and these politicians, media heads, and bloggers are not Scientists. The Scientists that are pushing this fraud are federally employed and or putting their ideology ahead of the basics of scientific theory. So go plant some trees, you will feel better and it won’t kill jobs or make my bills sky rocket.

  22. Maynard's Guide to Global Warming…

    [Source: Tammy Bruce] quoted: We’re getting blasted with junk science and fragmentary truths. As a public service, I’ll try to lay out the basic situation….

  23. ChrisL says:

    A beautiful thing! Oh the irony!

  24. echosierra says:

    After two killer winters, even the Euro’s are realizing it’s a crock. Checkout. Climatedepot.com.

  25. otlset says:

    I say we legislate and tax hard until the earth reaches the desired temperature and climatic norms! Take our money and give it to poor countries — that’ll do the trick! A little tax here, a little there — and before you know it, voila, climate you can depend on!

  26. mindy says:

    It is ridiculous to think man can control the climate. We need to be concerned with what we can control–our economy.

  27. Charles_TX says:

    The graph used in this post only contains half of the data obtained from ice cores: the temperature data is missing. If you had included that data, you would have seen that CO2 changes are a lagging indicator of temperature changes. You also needed to point out that the regions where the CO2 concentrations where highest were the interglacial periods between ice ages. The long gradual downward trends between (kybp=kiloyears before present) 400-350 kybp, 320-250 kybp, 230-120 kybp, and 120-17 kybp were Ice Ages. It turns out that Ice Ages are the planet’s way to scrub CO2 from the atmosphere.

    You have not considered the Ocean-Atmosphere system in your analysis. The heat capacity of the oceans is orders of magnitude greater than the heat capacity of the atmosphere. If I recall my college environmental science (pre-AGW) correctly, most of the carbon dioxide on earth is tied up in the oceans. Since the oceans exhibit multi-decadal (sp?) temperature oscillations, you would expect those to be exhibited in both the atmospheric temperature and in the CO2 levels. (Home experiment: compare the fizziness of a can of warm Coke with a can of cold Coke.)

    Nor have you included the effects of particulates, aerosols, or cloudiness. Climatologist Cliff Harris has an interesting graph of global temperature with the effects of volcanic activity included. http://www.longrangeweather.com/global_temperatures.htm This graph shows that there were 90 major volcanic eruptions during the Little Ice Age compared to low activity associated with warm periods.

    I’m not an expert, but it seems to me that pinning all of the blame for global climate change on Demon CO2 and Demon Man is a bit hasty.

  28. Conservatarian says:

    One more thing and then I’m done – if you closely inspect the temperature/carbon dioxide chart, you will see that higher temps can increase CO2, not the reverse. So it’s not causation or correlation it’s just a fraud.

  29. morecowbell says:

    I thought we were all suppose to be dead by now because the Ozone layer was to be eaten away by hair spray and refrigerator coolant (freon). Antarctica was suppose to melt, penguins were to become extinct and we were all going to be cooked off just before the atmosphere was going to drift off into space by the year 2000. .. at least that’s what the turtle-neck-wearing-Carl -Sagan wannabees of the 80’s were spewing.

    Just saying….. to quote Jeff Goldbloom in Jurassic Park: “mother nature finds a way”.

  30. TooMuchTime says:

    When we have a computer model of the ecosystem, it will tell us how the world will react to the carbon emissions.

    No, it will not. Complexity theory tells us that complex systems are too difficult to understand because there are so many unknowns involved. You just can’t account for everything. I would point you to a few speeches by Michael Crichton explaining this but those in charge of his website have removed the speeches. They don’t agree with the intelligence that the late Dr. Crichton exhibited in his public comments or books.

    Suffice it to say, see if you can find his speeches on Global Warming and Complexity Theory. It will open your eyes.

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