Another Blast From The Past! Ross McKitrick!!! And The Elusive Climate Consensus!

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Well, it could just be me.  I’ve long consider the climate question a dead issue.  So, I don’t frequent the climate blogs nearly as much as I used to.  I try to, every day I’m posting, to include some of the real world data which directly refutes the climate catastrophe lunatics sophistry.  Things such as the snow, ice, temps, fires, hurricanes, tornadoes, crops, etc ….  all of those topics are in direct contradiction to what the lunatics said would happen.  They also contradict some of the other zanier notions the lunatics have which are the foundation of their catastrophic notions, such as the heated death spiral due to the albedo of ice.  Personally, I believe what I present is enough.  The things which are happening with snow, ice, crops, etc. ….. are enough to demonstrate the idiocy of their advocacy.  Things are simply happening in the exact opposite as to what their idiotic theories said would happen. 

Still, I hadn’t heard from Ross in quite some time.  I found it pretty interesting that he’s contributing to Townhall.

The Increasingly Elusive Climate Consensus

We are often told nearly all climate scientists agree on… something. But on what, exactly, do they agree? In 2013 President Obama sent out a tweet claiming 97% of climate experts believe global warming is “real, man-made and dangerous.” As it turns out the survey he was referring to didn’t ask that question at all. At a recent debate in New Orleans I heard climate activist Bill McKibben claim there was an expert consensus that greenhouse gases are “a grave danger.” But when challenged for the source of his claim, he promptly withdrew it.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change asserts the conclusion that most (more than 50%) of the post-1950 global warming is due to human activity, chiefly greenhouse gas emissions and land use change. But they do not survey their own contributors, let alone anyone else, so we do not know how many experts agree with them.

One commonly-cited survey asked if carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and human activities contribute to climate change. But these are trivial statements that even many IPCC skeptics agree with. And neither statement speaks to any potential harm done by climate change. So there are no policy implications of such surveys, regardless of the level of agreement.

The most highly-cited paper supposedly found 97% of published scientific studies support man-made global warming. But in addition to poor survey methodology, that tabulation is often misrepresented. Most papers (66%) actually took no position, and of the remaining 34%, 33% supported at least a weak human contribution to global warming. So divide 33 by 34 and you get 97%: but this is unremarkable since the 33% includes many papers that critique key elements of the IPCC position.

Two recent surveys shed more light on what atmospheric scientists actually think. Bear in mind that on a topic as complex as climate change, a survey is hardly a reliable guide to scientific truth. But if you want to know how many people agree with your view, a survey is the only way to find out.

In 2012 the American Meteorological Society (AMS) surveyed its 7,000 members, receiving 1,862 responses. Of those, only 52% said they think global warming over the 20th century has happened and is mostly manmade (the IPCC position). The remaining 48% either think it happened but natural causes explain at least half of it, or it didn’t happen, or they don’t know. Furthermore, 53% agree that there is conflict among AMS members on the question.

So much for the 97% consensus. Not only do about half reject the IPCC conclusion, more than half acknowledge that their profession is split on the issue.

The Netherlands Environmental Agency recently published a survey of international climate experts. A total of 6,550 questionnaires were sent out, and 1,868 responses were received, a similar sample and response rate to the AMS survey. In this case the questions referred only to the post-1950 period. Sixty-six percent agreed with the IPCC that global warming has happened and humans are mostly responsible. The rest either don’t know or think human influence was not dominant. So again, no 97% consensus.

But the Dutch survey is even more interesting because of the questions it raises about the level of knowledge of the respondents. Although all were described as “climate experts,” a large fraction only work in connected fields such as policy analysis, engineering, and computer science, and may not follow the primary physical science literature.

Regarding the recent slowdown in warming, here is what the IPCC said: “The observed global mean surface temperature (GMST) has shown a much smaller increasing linear trend over the past 15 years than over the past 30 to 60 years.” Yet 46 percent of the Dutch survey respondents – nearly half – believe the warming trend has stayed the same or increased. And only 25% agreed that global warming has been less than projected over the past 15 to 20 years, even though the IPCC reported that 111 out of 114 model projections overestimated warming since 1998.

Three quarters of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed with the statement “Climate is chaotic and cannot be predicted.” Here is what the IPCC said in its 2003 report: “In climate research and modelling, we should recognize that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”

Looking into further detail there are other interesting cases in which the so-called experts aren’t aware of discrepancies between models and observations regarding issues like warming in the tropical troposphere and overall climate sensitivity.

What can we take away from all this? First, lots of people get called “climate experts” and contribute to the appearance of consensus, without necessarily being knowledgeable about core issues. A consensus among the misinformed is not worth much.

Second, the “97%” mantra is untrue. It is nothing but a phony claim of unanimity meant to squelch debate and intimidate people into silence. Barack Obama’s website says “97% of climate scientists agree that climate change is real and man-made… Find the deniers near you—and call them out today.” But what we really need to call out is the use of false propaganda and demagoguery regarding one of the most complex scientific and policy questions of our time.

This gives me a wonderful trip down memory lane.  Ross was one of my first reads in my quest to understand the climate issue.  But, this is where I differ from Ross, Steve Mac, and many others.  I don’t believe it’s anymore of a question than to wonder if moon is made of cheese or not. 

As Ross demonstrates, the “97%” idiocy, is simply untrue, as is all of the other idiotic claims the lunatics have made.  It’s not a question, the question has been answered.  The question is, “is it true?”  The answer is clearly, “no”.

One day, perhaps, but, I doubt it, we may know what causes our climate/weather.  We may come to the knowledge of how it all works.  But, we certainly won’t in my lifetime, nor, my children’s.  But, throughout the rest of my life, the entirety of my children’s and their children’s, we’ll always have with us a bunch of lunatics claiming to know, and telling us that the human race is bad for the world, but, we can fix it, if only we give them tax money and what’s left of our autonomy.  They are only for our amusement and scorn, and nothing more.  

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12 Responses to Another Blast From The Past! Ross McKitrick!!! And The Elusive Climate Consensus!

  1. Latitude says:

    This has all been twisted around so…..people have taken their eye off the ball.

    The ‘theory’ of global warming is that a slight increase in CO2, will cause a slight increase in temperature, and that slight increase in temperature will cause humidity to rise…it’s actually run away global humidity

    Which is so frickin ludicrous I can’t believe this crap every got off the ground in the first place!

  2. leftinflagstaff says:

    And countless generations before us also had their rain-dancers, and sacrifices to their Bringers of Good Weather.

  3. omanuel says:

    The National Academy of Sciences

    Thanks to the global climate scandal, I discovered that one hundred and fifty-two years (152 years) ago, President Lincoln assigned an independent and private and self-perpetuating group of distinguished scholars in 1863 the responsibility of advising the nation on matters of science and technology:

    The original distinguished scholars are dead, and today their descendants, seven to eight generations later, are reviewing budgets of federal research agencies for Congress, and directing the flow of billions of dollars to their pet projects with little or no direct accountability.

    Some NAS members are distinguished scholars today, but they almost all lost the ability to speak after Climategate emails surfaced in 2009.

  4. omanuel says:

    The central question is just this: Can the National Academy of Sciences be accountable for

    1. Deceiving Congress, and

    2. Abusing NAS review of budgets of federal research agencies to deceive the public about the energy that provides heat and light to planet Earth and sustains our lives?

    See: http://www.nasonline.org/about-nas/mission/

    “The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a private, non-profit society of distinguished scholars. Established by an Act of Congress, signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, the NAS is charged with providing independent, objective advice to the nation on matters related to science and technology.”

    How can present descendants of ” a private, non-profit society of distinguished scholars” in 1863 be accountable for “providing independent, objective advice to the nation on matters related to science and technology” in 2015 ?

    After Eisenhower established the research-military-industrial complex, a private, self-pertetuating goup (NAS) reviewed annual budgets for billions of dollars for government research agencies with very little or no public accountability.

    The Climategate emails surfaced in 2009.

  5. Latitude says:

    If they can hold huge parades like this….and they have done it many times
    …why can’t we cluster bomb them?

    • suyts says:

      I would only assume that they’re concerned with collateral damage … or, at least, that’s what they’ll say.

      • Latitude says:

        figures…..but there’s so many holes in that……ISIS either kills or runs off everyone that isn’t ISIS when they take something over
        It’s just amazing to me, when you have them all at the convention…and you don’t blow up the convention center

      • DirkH says:

        “I would only assume that they’re concerned with collateral damage … or, at least, that’s what they’ll say.”

        Well in Japan the US solved that concern by dropping leaflets before nuking H. and N. So that’s a pretty old technology. “Keep a distance of 100m to the next ISIS jeep.” Should be possible to translate that into Arabic.

        THe reason the US does nothing is that Chaos in Iraq has to be maintained, and that that Chaos can be guided say against Saudi, or against RUssia (via Chechnia) or against China (via Uyguristan) … Remember how fast the Al Qaida guys went from Libya to Syria, exactly as needed by the US? That’s also how they’ll move from Iraq to Chechnia or Uyguristan… might be a bit more difficult given more SAM’s over there…

  6. Bruce of Newcastle says:

    They are certainly getting shriller lately. I think that is a huge tell that they (eg McKibben, Schmidt) know well that their hypothesis is wrong and the skeptics’ hypothesis is the correct one.

    But so much political power rides on it I think they can’t get out of the mess anymore.

    Btw the pause in the TLT data is now 18 years and 6 months.

    • suyts says:

      20 years is just around the corner!

      • Scott says:

        If the so-so El Nino currently happening would go away and one corrects for Pinatubo, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the trend be zero for 21-22 years. People forget that two major volcanic eruptions happened in the first half of the satellite record and we haven’t had anything major in > 20 yr.

        -Scott

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