By Bjorn Lomborg • New York Post
Activists tend to exaggerate the impacts of climate change while underestimating the costs of tackling it. The reception to the new US climate assessment was instructive. The report largely attempts to remain soberly scientific, and follows the even more careful global report by the United Nations’ climate-science panel, known as the IPCC.
Sadly, accurate science doesn’t make for good television; predicting the end of times does.
Among many others, widely quoted climate scientist Michael Mann talked up the report to NPR and CNN, saying its predictions are already borne out in today’s “unprecedented weather extremes.” Continue reading
By H. Sterling Burnett • Investor’s Business Daily
Recently, Real Clear Energy published a thoughtful analysis of carbon taxes authored by Vince Ginn and Jonathan Williams, allies of mine in the fight to promote individual liberty, constitutionally limited government, and U.S. energy dominance.
As Ginn and Williams show, the case for taxing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions — intentionally and misleadingly called a “carbon tax” — is fundamentally flawed and, accordingly, has been rejected every time Congress has considered one. For instance, in 2009 and 2010, President Obama and Democrats, despite having control of Congress, failed to pass climate change legislation.
Ginn and Williams rightly note a carbon tax would raise energy prices, meaning it would increase the price of almost everything. Indeed, according to a 2014 Heritage Foundation analysis, the creation of a $37-per-ton carbon tax would lead to a loss of more than $2.5 trillion in aggregate gross domestic product, amounting to $21,000 in lost income per family by 2030.
In addition, a carbon tax would result in a loss of more than 1 million jobs, including 500,000 manufacturing jobs, by 2030.
By David French • National Review
This morning, the New York Times published an essay by University of Notre Dame English professor Roy Scranton that began with this remarkable paragraph:
“I cried two times when my daughter was born. First for joy, when after 27 hours of labor the little feral being we’d made came yowling into the world, and the second for sorrow, holding the earth’s newest human and looking out the window with her at the rows of cars in the hospital parking lot, the strip mall across the street, the box stores and drive-throughs and drainage ditches and asphalt and waste fields that had once been oak groves. A world of extinction and catastrophe, a world in which harmony with nature had long been foreclosed. My partner and I had, in our selfishness, doomed our daughter to life on a dystopian planet, and I could see no way to shield her from the future.”
I couldn’t help but think back to the day when my son was born — my second child. I had tears in my eyes twice that day as well. The first, when he was born (seemingly healthy), and the second time when he was pulled out of our arms for emergency care. He had Continue reading
Inconvenient Science: NASA data show that global temperatures dropped sharply over the past two years. Not that you’d know it, since that wasn’t deemed news. Does that make NASA a global warming denier?
Writing in Real Clear Markets, Aaron Brown looked at the official NASA global temperature data and noticed something surprising. From February 2016 to February 2018, “global average temperatures dropped by 0.56 degrees Celsius.” That, he notes, is the biggest two-year drop in the past century.
“The 2016-2018 Big Chill,” he writes, “was composed of two Little Chills, the biggest five month drop ever (February to June 2016) and the fourth biggest (February to June 2017). A similar event from February to June 2018 would bring global average temperatures below the 1980s average.”
Isn’t this just the sort of man-bites-dog story that the mainstream media always says is newsworthy?
In this case, it didn’t warrant any news coverage.
In fact, in the three weeks since Real Clear Markets ran Brown’s story, no other news outlet picked up on it. They did, however, find time to report on such things as tourism’s impact on climate change, how global warming will generate more hurricanes this year, and threaten fish habitats, and make islands uninhabitable. They wrote about a UN official saying that “our window of time for addressing climate change is closing very quickly.”
Reporters even found time to cover a group that says they want to carve President Trump’s face into a glacier to prove climate change “is happening.”
In other words, the mainstream news covered stories that repeated what climate change advocates have been saying ad nauseam for decades.
That’s not to say that a two-year stretch of cooling means that global warming is a hoax. Two years out of hundreds or thousands doesn’t necessarily mean anything. And there could be a reasonable explanation. But the drop in temperatures at least merits a “Hey, what’s going on here?” story.
What’s more, journalists are perfectly willing to jump on any individual weather anomaly — or even a picture of a starving polar bear — as proof of global warming. (We haven’t seen any stories pinning Hawaii’s recent volcanic activity on global warming yet, but won’t be surprised if someone tries to make the connection.)
We’ve noted this refusal to cover inconvenient scientific findings many times in this space over the years.
Hiding The Evidence
There was the study published in the American Meteorological Society’s Journal of Climate showing that climate models exaggerate global warming from CO2 emissions by as much as 45%. It was ignored.
Then there was the study in the journal Nature Geoscience that found that climate models were faulty, and that, as one of the authors put it, “We haven’t seen that rapid acceleration in warming after 2000 that we see in the models.”
Nor did the press see fit to report on findings from the University of Alabama-Huntsville showing that the Earth’s atmosphere appears to be less sensitive to changing CO2 levels than previously assumed.
How about the fact that the U.S. has cut CO2 emissions over the past 13 years faster than any other industrialized nation? Or that polar bear populations are increasing? Or that we haven’t seen any increase in violent weather in decades?
Reporters no doubt worry that covering such findings will only embolden “deniers” and undermine support for immediate, drastic action.
But if fears of catastrophic climate change are warranted — which we seriously doubt — ignoring things like the rapid cooling in the past two years carries an even bigger risk.
Suppose, Brown writes, the two-year cooling trend continues. “At some point the news will leak out that all global warming since 1980 has been wiped out in two and a half years, and that record-setting events went unreported.”
He goes on: “Some people could go from uncritical acceptance of steadily rising temperatures to uncritical refusal to accept any warming at all.”
Brown is right. News outlets should decide what gets covered based on its news value, not on whether it pushes an agenda. Otherwise, they’re doing the public a disservice and putting their own already shaky credibility at greater risk.
By Valerie Richardson • The Washington Times
Al Gore has been accused of hypocrisy for talking the talk on climate change despite burning through fossil fuels at a rapid clip, but it turns out he’s not alone.
A study by Cornell and the University of Michigan researchers found that those “highly concerned” about climate change were less likely to engage in recycling and other eco-friendly behaviors than global-warming skeptics.
Published in the April edition of the Journal of Environmental Psychology, the one-year study broke 600 participants into three groups based on their level of concern about climate change: “highly concerned,” “cautiously worried,” and “skeptical.”
The “highly concerned” cluster was “most supportive of government climate policies, but least likely to report individual-level actions, whereas the ‘Skeptical’ opposed policy solutions but were Continue reading
by Haris Alic • Washington Free Beacon
A civil suit playing out between five American oil companies and the municipalities of Oakland and San Francisco started off poorly for climate change activists.
In preparation for California v. Chevron, the date for which has yet to determined, U.S. District Court Judge William Alsup ordered the litigants converge for a “climate change tutorial” in an effort to ensure all parties understood the scientific foundation that would form the basis of the trial. The city attorneys of San Francisco and Oakland, the suit’s plaintiffs who are championed by climate change activists, were reportedly thrilled by the prospect. Some activists even compared the tutorial to the infamous Scopes Monkey Trial, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The suit accuses the energy companies–BP, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Conoco Phillips, and Shell–of contributing to climate change and conspiring to cover up their knowledge of the associated detrimental effects.
The lead attorney for the plaintiffs, Steven W. Berman, is expected to argue that because of the companies’ contributions to climate change, municipalities are now being forced to commit financial resources to combatting environmental changes.
In defense, the companies’ lawyers don’t seem to be questioning the science behind climate change, but rather their clients’ responsibility. The lawyers are expected to argue that the individuals who burn fossil fuels, rather than companies, are responsible for contributions to climate change. Continue reading
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration may have a boring name, but it has a very important job: It measures U.S. temperatures. Unfortunately, it seems to be a captive of the global warming religion. Its data are fraudulent.
What do we mean by fraudulent? How about this: NOAA has made repeated “adjustments” to its data, for the presumed scientific reason of making the data sets more accurate.
Nothing wrong with that. Except, all their changes point to one thing — lowering previously measured temperatures to show cooler weather in the past, and raising more recent temperatures to show warming in the recent present. Continue reading
by H. Sterling Burnett • American Spectator
So-called “consensus” climate science reaches new lows nearly every day, with many researchers now better resembling dogmatic, fire-and-brimstone preachers — the kind of people who burnt heretics at the stake during the Middle Ages and suppressed scientific discovery — than scientists engaged in the pursuit of knowledge.
I don’t begrudge scientists who either believe their own research shows, or who believe the dominant number of peer-reviewed papers indicate, humans are causing climate change and the changes will be dangerous. But I do disagree with many of the assumptions made by proponents of the theory of anthropogenic global warming (AGW). Data and evidence show most of their projections concerning temperatures, ice, hurricanes, species extinction, etc. have failed. As a result, I don’t think their projections of the future climate conditions are trustworthy, especially not to make the kind of fundamental, wrenching, costly changes to our economy and systems of government that have been proposed as necessary for fighting climate change. I don’t think climate scientists can foretell the future any better than the average palm reader.
Making matters worse, AGW proponents discount, or ignore entirely, powerful studies that seem to undermine many of their assumptions and refute most of their conclusions. Continue reading
Spurred on by trial lawyers and environmental activists, whose political support is crucial for any up and coming progressive, state and local elected officials have been trying to prove as a matter of law that the nation’s energy companies lied for years to their stockholders and to the American people about the possible impact of global warming.
They’ve been unsuccessful, largely because the charge is untrue — as several of those who’ve already brought these lawsuits have been forced by the facts to admit. Still, it all continues. Local governments in California, where energy taxes subsidize the out-of-control spending in which Gov. Jerry Brown and the Democrat-controlled state legislature engage with such abandon, recently sued 18 energy companies claiming the threat of rising sea levels in future years present a substantial risk to their communities.
The allegation of near-certain future harm caused by rising sea levels stemming from anthropogenic climate change is an old complaint made many times before. Former Vice President Al Gore famously (and incorrectly) predicted the polar ice caps would have by now all melted for the same reasons.
Environmentalism: A new study published in the prestigious journal Nature finds that all those global warming doomsday scenarios aren’t credible. Not that you would ever know based on how little coverage this study is getting.
The study, published on Thursday, finds that if CO2 in the atmosphere doubled, global temperatures would climb at most by 3.4 degrees Celsius. That’s far below what the UN has been saying for decades, namely that temperatures would rise as much as 4.5 degrees, and possibly up to 6 degrees.
Basically, the scientists involved in the Nature study found that the planet is less sensitive to changes in CO2 levels than had been previously believed. That means projected temperature increases are too high.
Of course this is just one study, but it supports the contention climate skeptics have been making for years — that the computer models used to predict future warming were exaggerating the impact of CO2, evidenced in part by the fact that the planet hasn’t been warming as much as those models say it should. Continue reading
By Robert Tracinski • The Federalist
If we have such an overwhelming scientific “consensus” about the supposed threat of catastrophic man-made global warming—and about the political and economic solutions to it—then why do advocates have to sue scientists to prevent them from questioning it? That’s the question raised by a $10 million lawsuit lawsuit filed by Stanford engineering professor Mark Z. Jacobson accusing other scientists of defamation for critiquing his scientific work in favor of “renewal energy.”
That’s not how science works. That’s not how any of this is supposed to work.
Jacobson made a name for himself and became something of a media celebrity for publishing a study in 2015 that claimed the United States could provide 100 percent of its energy needs from wind, solar, and hydroelectric power by 2050—and at a lower cost than with fossil fuels. Continue reading
By Megan G. Oprea • The Federalist
It’s all over the news: Syria has joined the Paris climate agreement, leaving the United States as the only country in the world that is not a signatory. Many observers and commentators are using this as an opportunity to chastise America for holding out where a roundly abhorred government has given in. But the questions people should really be asking are why Syria joined the Paris agreement and why it chose to do so now, two years after the agreement was first adopted. The answer is simple. Syria is seeking international legitimacy.
No doubt, copy editors across the mainstream media relished the chance to write headlines like, “As Syria Joins Paris Climate Agreement, US Stands Alone” or “As Syria Embraces Paris Climate Deal, It’s the United States Against the World,” emphasizing America’s isolation over climate change and juxtaposing Syria as the “good guy” with the United States as the “bad guy.” After all, if even Syria is signing on, how bad does that make America? Continue reading
By Wendy Wilson • Tennessee Star
On the surface, it would appear that Roy Spencer has a comfortable life.
He is a principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, where he directs climate research projects and has authored books and numerous articles for scientific journals.
Unfortunately for Spencer, he comes down on the wrong side – the politically incorrect side – of global warming and climate change, for which he has taken a lot of heat.
“Nothing we are seeing today is really out of the ordinary,” he said Saturday, sounding exasperated and battle weary as he discussed weather patterns. Continue reading
by Lorrie Goldstein • Toronto Sun
It’s like something out of George Orwell’s 1984.
Canada’s Competition Bureau, an arm’s length agency funded by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government to the tune of almost $50 million annually, investigated three organizations accused of denying mainstream climate science for over a year, following a complaint from an environmental group.
The bureau discontinued its 14-month probe in June, citing “available evidence, the assessment of the facts in this case, and to ensure the effective allocation of limited resources”, according to Josephine A.L. Palumbo, Deputy Commissioner of Competition, Deceptive Marketing Practices Directorate. Continue reading
Global warming is “settled science,” we hear all the time. Those who reject that idea are “deniers.” But as new evidence trickles out from peer-reviewed science studies, the legs beneath the climate change hypothesis — that the earth was doing just fine until carbon-dioxide spewing human beings came along — is increasingly wobbly.
A new study published in the journal Nature Geoscience purports to support action by global governments to reduce carbon dioxide output in order to lower potential global warming over the next 100 years or so. But what it really does is undercut virtually every modern argument for taking radical action against warming.
Why? The study admits that the 12 major university and government models that have been used to predict climate warming are faulty. Continue reading