A friend sent me a link to a video that is supposed to be the final proof that global warming is not happening and that millions of scientists around the world have got together and planned this massive lie!
This conspiracy is about scientists getting… ummm… sorry, what exactly do people think that all these researchers will be achieving? Well, that does not matter… what matters is that they must have it wrong!
The video is from John Coleman – founder of the Weather Channel and a meteorologist. If you are bored and having nothing to do and see what kind of silliness that is being thrown around, then you can find it here.
I have put together this blog because I was asked for a response and thought that it would be worth sharing with all you good people. The arguments are pretty standard climate change denial stuff and rather than going through each of the points, there are some things that are important to note…
1. Carbon has always been here
John Coleman begins by saying that there has always been carbon it the atmosphere. Yes John, this is correct and no one is denying this. The problem is how much carbon is in the atmosphere. There has never been so much as there has in the last 200 years… check this out.
It is important to note that carbon is not the only problem but also the associated gasses but I will not get into this at the moment.
On this issue of massive amounts of carbon, it is hard to understand how anyone could imagine this much pollution is released in the atmosphere without having effect. There has never been such an increase of a gas before – unless we go back to the dinosaurs – and we all know what happened then.
2. Ice ages
Coleman then shows that ice ages and warmings have never been influenced by carbon, so he asks, ‘why now?’ This is correct to a point. Previous ice ages and warmings have been disconnected but now we are seeing a dramatic increase in global pollutants.
It is here that Coleman pulls a neat trick – a swift movement John, but a dishonest one. What Coleman does is swap between time lines: over a 100,000 year period we see no dramatic increase in temperature though we have 200 years of pollutants.
He quickly moves back and forth to prove no link – but it is comparing apples and oranges. We see 200 years of carbon, then 100,000 years of temperature. It is a dishonest ploy.
3. The Earth can take it
Coleman then argues that the earth always takes stuff in. This is also true but argued out of context. This is because the earth, like our lungs and any organism that takes things in, has points of saturation (known as tipping points). That is, it is like saying I drink one beer so alcohol has nothing to do with me getting drunk. But it takes six beers and there is always a lag depending on the person.
In other words, do I count the last beer or all six? Well, try arguing that with one of NSW’s finest John and see how far you get!
So the earth can take so much in but then it tips over (crossing the threshold)… and it is at this point that scientists argue we are at.
It is also worth noting that this is the same argument that pro-smokers used: Look, I have smoked a pack a day for 20 years but do not have cancer, so cop that you doctors! This is the same concern here: there will always be a lag effect once you cross the threshold…
4. Solar activity
Coleman argues solar activity is key: yes, of course it is. The problem is that it is not just solar activity that we are seeing now! We are seeing a changing nature in the pattern of human activity and the atmosphere and natural elements, such as solar, are increasingly becoming secondary.
5. Leaked emails
Ok, a bunch of emails were leaked that showed some scientists where saying that they were hiding data. There are a bunch of responses here, but mostly that we saw a handful of emails leaked, out of context, just before Copenhagen.
There is so much more information available showing that deniers are doing dodgy things but this does not seem to get the same coverage – and John fails to mention it, don’t you John?
Many of the emails seemed to be ‘jokes’ – like ‘we should hide this data’ etc. Coleman should have also discussed some of the emails that showed the coal lobby has funded sceptics to ‘confuse’ the debate rather than disprove anything.
6. It is getting cooler
This is a clear lie! It was recently reported that this is the hottest decade on record.
We are seeing more and more extreme events – it is getting hotter here, colder in Europe and so on. The drought in Africa is getting worse, the waters are rising in Bangladesh and we are seeing more and more savage fires here.
My final point is this… we are playing with the future of humanity. I would love to be wrong about this – but we are not talking about de-industrialisation just a better industrialisation. That is, away from polluting cars to clean cars; less dirty coal to renewable resources and so on.
Even if we are wrong and the sceptic’s rights, is it not better to move a cleaner atmosphere with less cancer and such diseases, rather than breathing in dirty air?
I hope you find this useful in your discussions… and remember you can find more responses to deniers and sceptics under the ‘social change’ tag.