Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Killer questions for climate extremists

The dynamic speaker Lord Christopher Monckton is on a speaking tour of Australia. For dates see travel bar this page.

Lord Christopher Monckton poses some killer questions for climate extremists:

1. CO2 concentration has risen by 10% in the past 23 years, but the RSS satellite global lower-troposphere temperature-anomaly record shows warming over that period that is statistically indistinguishable from zero. How come?

2. Aristotle, 2350 years ago, demonstrated that to argue from "consensus" is a logical fallacy - the headcount fallacy. Some 95% of all published arguments for alarm about our influence on the climate say we must believe the "consensus". Why was Aristotle wrong?

3. Aristotle, 2350 years ago, demonstrated that to argue that the "consensus" is a "consensus" of experts is a logical fallacy - the fallacy of appeal to authority. What has changed since 2350 years ago to make argument from appeal to authority acceptable rather than fallacious?

4. There has been 0.6º Celsius global warming since 1950. There are 5-7 times more polar bears today than there were in 1950. In what meaningful sense, then, are polar bears a species at imminent threat of extinction caused by global warming?

5. A recent paper shows that a naturally-occurring reduction in cloud cover has had four and a half times more warming effect than manmade increases in CO2 concentrations. Why are you so certain that the recently-published paper is wrong?

6. In the past 247 years - almost a quarter of a millennium - the trend in rainfall over England and Wales shows an increase of just 2 inches/year, or 5%. Why do you regard so insignificant an increase over so long a period as being beyond the natural variability of the climate?

7. Australia's carbon tax, a typical measure intended to make global warming go away, will cost $150 billion over ten years. In that time, the tax is intended to abate 5% of Australia's CO2 emissions, which represent 1.2% of global emissions. Do you agree, therefore, that at a cost of $150 billion the Australian scheme, if it succeeds, will abate just 0.06% of global CO2 emissions over ten years, at a cost of $150 billion?

8. The IPCC's own climate-sensitivity equations show that abating 0.06% of global carbon emissions would reduce CO2 concentration from a predicted business-as-usual 410 microatmospheres to 409.988 microatmospheres, and that this would reduce global mean surface temperature by just 0.0006º Celsius degrees - if the carbon tax succeeded every bit as fully as its framers had intended. Do you consider that spending $150 billion to cut surface temperature by 0.00006º Celsius degrees is a sensible, proportionate, cost-effective use of other people's money?

9. If Australia's carbon tax were adopted worldwide, and if it worked every bit as well as its inventors had intended, it would cost $317 trillion to abate the one-sixth of a Celsius degree of warming that is predicted for the current decade. That is $45,000 per head of the global population over the period, or 59% of global GDP? Compared with the 1.23%-of-GDP cost of paying to abate the damage from 1/6º C of warming the day after tomorrow, is it worth spending 59% of GDP today?

10. In 2005 the UN said there would be 50 million climate refugees because of rising sea levels and other effects of global warming by 2010. Where are they?

Nothing unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about our planet's current level of warmth.

CO2 Science review a paper published in Vegetation History and Archaeobotany reviewing the Middle and Late Holocene Period in the upper Don River in Russia.

Novenko, E.Yu., Volkova, E.M., Glasko, M.P. and Zuganova, I.S. 2012. Palaeoecological evidence for the middle and late Holocene vegetation, climate and land use in the upper Don River basin (Russia). Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 21: 337-352. 

The authors write that "during the last 30 years, archaeological and palaeogeographical studies were undertaken in the central area of the East European Plain which includes the upper Don River and its tributary, the Nepryadva River," citing as examples of this work the studies of Folomeev et al. (1990), Khotinsky (1993), Glasko et al. (2000), Gonyanyi et al. (2007) and Novenko et al. (2009) and reporting that these multidisciplinary efforts, as they describe them, "focused initially on the reconstruction of natural landscapes at the time of the Kulikovo battle of 1380 (in which the Russians defeated the Tartar-Mongol forces)."

What was learned
The four Russian researchers report that temperatures during the mid-Atlantic period "were warmer than the present, mainly due to the higher winter temperatures," while noting that mean January temperatures were "about 3-5°C higher than the present climatic conditions." They also state that in the late Atlantic period, "the mean July and the mean annual temperatures rose to about 2°C higher than the present," after which, in the middle and late Subboreal period, they indicate that summer temperatures were "about 1-3°C higher than present values," while noting that that period's "mean annual temperatures could have been 1-2°C higher."

What it means
It seems that the more one studies palaeoclimates in various places around the world, the more one begins to appreciate the fact that there is nothing unusual, unnatural or unprecedented about our planet's current level of warmth, especially when it is realized that at these earlier times there was much less CO2 in the air than there is nowadays.

Read More at CO2 Science.