Vår trogne läsare på andra sidan Atlanten, Chales Battig, deltog nyligen i mötet ”Closing the Gaps”, som tog plats den 15 maj i Washington, DC. Enligt honom har de nya klimatpolitiska förslagen dåligt stöd i vetenskapen. Nedan återger jag det brev som Charles efter mötet skickade till vår egen Gunilla Carlsson, ordförande i Commission on Climate Change and Development, en organisation som tillsammans med World Resources Institute, tog fram rapporten med samma namn som mötet.
Dear Ms. Carlsson:
It was my privilege to be able to attend your presentation “Closing the Gaps” at the House of Sweden, May 15, 2009.
I am a science writer with advanced degrees in engineering, as well as a Doctor of Medicine degree. For over ten years, my particular interest continues to be the general topic of climate issues. It would be of great interest to my readers if you might have the opportunity to respond to the following questions prompted by the presentation.
There was no definition of “climate change” presented. Does your working definition include global cooling? I would hope so, since the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, acknowledged in January 2008 that there had been a plateau in the global temperature record since 1998, in spite of continuing increases in carbon dioxide emissions. Since then, all four major international global temperature monitoring agencies have documented a continuing global cooling trend, refuting the assumed linkage of global warming and increases in manmade carbon dioxide emissions. All of the manmade greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide, are generally quoted as being responsible for 3 to 4 per cent of the greenhouse gas effect. Water vapor in its various forms accounts for about 95 per cent.
The Commission report claims that the climate is “changing faster than imagined 20 years ago – or even 2 years ago.” Does this claim include global cooling as well as warming? Could you please give the scientific documentation for this claim; whose “imagination”? Is imagination a substitute for the scientific method; is imagination the code word for climate modeling? What marker of climate change has your Commission used to make this claim? What climate at what place on earth do you use to define the desired normal climate state?
Your report states that “the only solution to climate change is a rapid move toward a low-carbon global economy.” What is your scientific analysis to justify such a dogmatic claim?
In 1988, Dr. James Hansen the U.S. NASA science advisor to Mr. Al Gore testified before the U.S. Congress that in the coming ten years there would be sea level rises of many feet, yet by 1998 the actual rise was only a few inches. Dr. Nils-Axel Morner of Stockholm University has written extensively on sea level rise, his area of expertise, and has stated that it has remained about ten centimeters per century.
Your report makes extensive references to coming climate disasters. What is the reference for these claims? The IPCC assessment reports specifically deny the ability to predict the future climate. The Third IPCC Assessment Report states “in climate research and modeling, 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” (TAR page 774). The Fourth Assessment report states “the set of available models may share fundamental inadequacies, the effect of which cannot be quantified”, (FAR page 805).
This recognized inability to accurately predict long term climate states was documented by the American meteorologist Edward Lorenz in his paper “Does a Climate Exist” published in 1964 in the Swedish meteorology journal Tellus. In this seminal paper he questioned the existence of any such thing as a stable, long-term average state for the earth’s weather/climate.
The IPCC generates scenarios and projections for global climate changes, not predictions. Their many climate models have been demonstrated to be deficient in a variety of assumptions as applied to the many variables chosen to represent the physical world. In particular, the effects of the various forms of solar radiation, cosmic particles, water vapor (the number one greenhouse gas) in the form of clouds, and the forcing effect assigned to carbon dioxide are little more than guesses. A forthcoming report by Amy Bower of Wood’s Hole, set to appear in NATURE, is described as requiring the complete revision of the traditional climate model assumptions regarding the Atlantic conveyor belt (also known as the thermohaline circulation).
The invalidity of the IPCC computer projections of future climate change is demonstrated by the fact that none of them had predicted the present global cooling trend. The Viking history documents the earlier period of global warming during the medieval warm period when colonization in Greenland and “Vineland the Good” succeeded until the subsequent little ice age froze these settlers to death. Climate models are unable to reproduce that series of events taking place long before significant rises in carbon dioxide emissions.
Your report mentions the current financial crisis. The suddenness of this financial shock was not forecast by the many, extremely sophisticated computer models of the financial world. They predicted the financial future no more accurately than the climate models can predict the future climate.
Panelist Saroj Kumar Jha’s presentation seemed to be more accurately focused on the essential task of assisting the underdeveloped countries in the process of adaptation. As he noted, this is the essence of survival of all life forms. The recent and localized climate changes are said to be more rapid than in the past. Human memory is fallible and short in comparison the geological time span. Our ancestors have successfully survived numerous catastrophes much more serious than a one degree Celsius rise over one hundred years.
The noble urge to help the less fortunate countries can do without the forced linkage to an ill-defined climate crisis. If that premise were replaced with the much more concrete goal of improving the standards of living in such countries, the rest would follow. Politically stable and ethical forms of self governance, preservation of individual human rights, improvements in sanitation, access to health care, improved education, and access to affordable and reliable energy would allow such countries to deal with their unknown future climates.
The worldwide push to biofuels is one example of an ill-conceived energy policy impacting negatively on the poorest countries. Subsistence farmers have cut down virgin forests to plant biofuel plants. Worldwide food prices have risen as food is burned in an attempt to replace gasoline.
Over the past decades, hundreds of millions of dollars of donor aid has been distributed to developing countries. Have the wished for goals been achieved? If not, why not?
Your report mentions carbon trading as part of your proposed scheme. I note that panel member Mr. Jonathan Lash is listed on the Advisory Board of Generation Investment Management (GIM). Mr. Al Gore is listed as a co-founder on the GIM website. Mr. Gore has been active in promoting the climate crisis scenario. However, October 10, 2007, a British court did rule that his film “An Inconvenient Truth” contained a number of errors of fact and would have to be labeled as political propaganda, if shown in the British public schools. Do you see any conflict of interest or bias when the commission promotes carbon trading, and the commission has as a member affiliated with a commercial, carbon trading enterprise?
Charles Battig, M.S.,M.D.