The theory of Anthropomorphic Climate Warming (AGW) rests on a three-legged stool. The first leg of the stool is that is that global average temperatures are at historic highs. The second leg of the stool is that CO2 levels are also at historic highs. The third leg of the stool is that peer-reviewed articles on global warming show a clear consensus of opinion. The recent release of e-mails from Britain’s Climate Research Unit, dubbed “climategate” by the media, have made available information that kicks all three legs out from under the stool.
What we see instead, is a group of “scientists”, and I use that word loosely, become so involved in pushing a political agenda, that they corrupted the scientific method. This essay will examine those agendas and how they have corrupted the science.
When one looks critically at the politics of global warming, it becomes obvious that global warming was never about the science, it was about money and power. There are several different agendas in play; world governance and wealth redistribution, population control, and, of course, money. The pursuit of these agendas, along with a mentality that the ends justify the means, enabled many climate researchers to abandon all principals of scientific integrity and professionalism.
The principal agenda is that of the United Nations attempting to establish itself as the World’s Governing Body. Their words illustrate that agenda far better than anything I could write.
“The common enemy of humanity is man. In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill. All these dangers are caused by human intervention, and it is only through changed attitudes and behavior that they can be overcome. The real enemy then, is humanity itself.” Alexander King Co-Founder of the Club of Rome, (premier environmental think-tank and consultants to the United Nations) from his 1991 book The First Global Revolution
“No matter if the science of global warming is all phony… climate change provides the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.” Christine Stewart, former Canadian Minister of the Environment.
“We’ve got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.” Timothy Wirth, President of the UN Foundation.
“Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?” Maurice Strong, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and Founder of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC)
“The concept of national sovereignty has been an immutable, indeed sacred, principle of international relations. It is a principle which will yield only slowly and reluctantly to the new imperatives of global environmental cooperation. It is simply not feasible for sovereignty to be exercised unilaterally by individual nation states, however powerful. The global community must be assured of environmental security.” IBID
”[The Earth Summit will play an important role in] reforming and strengthening the United Nations as the centerpiece of the emerging system of democratic global governance.” IBID
The reason governments are so quick to embrace anthropogenic climate change is that it represents an opportunity to significantly increase revenues though regulatory taxes. The same week that the “Climategate” scandal broke, California announced that it was moving forward with a state-wide cap and trade program.
Cap-and-trade, a centerpiece of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s push for flexible market-based regulations, could yield $2 billion to $4 billion per year in revenue to the state from affected industries. (California pushes cap-and-trade plan, LA Times Greenspace, November 24, 2009).
With between $2 and $4 billion dollars of revenue potential for cash-strapped States, you can be sure that the science does not matter.
But money also played a significant role influencing the science as well. Prior to wide-spread public alarm over global warming, there was little funding for climate research. The University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) could barely make ends meet and most researchers weren’t even guaranteed salaries in the early years. Thanks to the global warming alarmism stirred up by the U.N., CRU director Phil Jones was able to raise $19 million for climate research, including grants from the U.K. National Environmental Research Council, the U.S. Department of Energy and NATO. “Or consider the cash that Michael Mann—another climate establishment figure whose name comes up frequently in the leaked emails—has helped pulled for Penn State University. In 2000, before Mr. Mann joined the faculty, the university banked $20.4 million in research funding for environmental sciences. By 2007, two years after he came on board, Penn State counted more than $55 million a year for environmental research, much of it government funded.” (The Economics of Climate Change, Wall Street Journal Online, Opinion Journal, 30 Nov. 2009)
Now that we have established the motive, let’s look at the crime
“The data doesn’t matter. We’re not basing our recommendations on the data. We’re basing them on the climate models.” Prof. Chris Folland, Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research.
The IPCC was established in 1988 to assess “the scientific, technical and socioeconomic information relevant for the understanding of the risk of human-induced climate change”. In other words, as opposed to charging scientists with studying climate change, the IPCC assigned scientists the job of demonstrating that climate change is caused by humans. As such, the “answer” was pre-ordained.
In order to carry out the IPCC’s mandate to show a human cause for global warming, climate scientists have resorted to three unethical “tricks”; cherry-picking the data, outright manipulation or altering the data and corrupting the peer-review process.
To show that global warming is human-caused, it has been necessary to eliminate the fact that 1,000 years ago, the world, for entirely natural reasons, was warmer than today. In n the mid 1990’s, climate researchers were admonished in an e-mail reportedly from Dr. Jonathan Overpeck of the University of Arizona and one of the lead authors of the IPCC reports, to do just that. The e-mails state “we have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.”
In 1999, responding to Overpeck’s admonishment, Mann, along with co-authors Bradley and Hughes published the now famous “hockey-stick curve” (Figure 1). However, to create the Hockey stick, Mann and his colleagues had to cherry-pick the data. Christopher Booker illustrates just how cherry-picked the data was in his article Climategate reveals ‘the most influential tree in the world’ (5 Dec. 2009, Telegraph.co.uk):
The most celebrated attempt to demonstrate this was the “hockey stick” graph produced by Dr Mann in 1999, which instantly became the chief icon of the IPCC and the global warming lobby all over the world. But in 2003 a Canadian statistician, Steve McIntyre, with his colleague Professor Ross McKitrick, showed how the graph had been fabricated by a computer model that produced “hockey stick” graphs whatever random data were fed into it. A wholly unrepresentative sample of tree rings from bristlecone pines in the western USA had been made to stand as “proxies” to show that there was no Medieval Warm Period, and that late 20th-century temperatures had soared to unprecedented levels.
Although McIntyre’s exposure of the “hockey stick” was upheld in 2006 by two expert panels commissioned by the US Congress, the small group of scientists at the top of the IPCC brushed this aside by pointing at a hugely influential series of graphs originating from the CRU, from Jones and Briffa. These appeared to confirm the rewriting of climate history in the “hockey stick”, by using quite different tree ring data from Siberia. Briffa was put in charge of the key chapter of the IPCC’s fourth report, in 2007, which dismissed all McIntyre’s criticisms.
At the forefront of those who found suspicious the graphs based on tree rings from the Yamal peninsula in Siberia was McIntyre himself, not least because for years the CRU refused to disclose the data used to construct them. This breached a basic rule of scientific procedure. But last summer the Royal Society insisted on the rule being obeyed, and two months ago Briffa accordingly published on his website some of the data McIntyre had been after.
This was startling enough, as McIntyre demonstrated in an explosive series of posts on his Climate Audit blog, because it showed that the CRU studies were based on cherry-picking hundreds of Siberian samples only to leave those that showed the picture that was wanted. Other studies based on similar data had clearly shown the Medieval Warm Period as hotter than today. Indeed only the evidence from one tree, YADO61, seemed to show a “hockey stick” pattern, and it was this, in light of the extraordinary reverence given to the CRU’s studies, which led McIntyre to dub it “the most influential tree in the world”.
Figure 1: Comparison of Mann’s “hockey-stick” curve compared with Loehle’s Curve (2004)
Note that the Mann curve excludes the impact of the Medieval warm Period
As you can see, temperatures today are at, or below, the temperatures of 800 -1000 ad. So much for leg 1 of the stool!
Temperature data is not the only data that has been cherry-picked to implicate man as a cause of global warming. We now know that the “smoking gun” of Anthropogenic Global Warming, the rapid post 1800 increase in CO2 is an image produced from cherry-picking data. Figure 2 is a figure modified from the article “Sun warms and cools the earth (Dr Zbigniew Jaworowski; 2008, New Zealand Centre for Political Research). Note that the blue data points are points that were cherry-picked for publication (Callendar G. S.,1958, On the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Tellus 10, 243-248), the red data points, although valid CO2 measurements, were excluded.
Figure 2: CO2 concentrations measured in air from 1800 to1960. Red data points were published. Blue data points were excluded.
As we can see, CO2 values have fluctuated widely since 1800. When examining the red (published) data, we see a clear warming trend. However when we examine all of the data, we see a cooling trend from 1800 to 1900. More importantly, at 500 to 550 ppm, CO2 levels from 1800 to 1850 were substantially higher than the present day 380 ppm. So much for leg 2 of the stool!
Not only have climate researchers cherry-picked the data they use, they cherry-pick the information they report to the public. The climate researchers are careful not report anything that may indicate that the science is not settled. “We need to get some broad based support, to capture the public’s imagination… So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements and make little mention of any doubts… Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest.” (Prof. Stephen Schneider, Stanford Professor of Biology and Global Change). Any scientist that has to think about being honest should be fired.
One of the prevailing arguments for global warming is that all of the average temperature charts show a clear upward trend in temperatures since 1820. In that 1820 marked the end of the “Little Ice Age”, it is not surprising that temperatures have increased. However, in light of the data manipulation that has come to light in the wake of climategate, how much they have increased, and whether or not they are still increasing is highly questionable.
For example, the climate of New Zealand, along with the rest of the world’s, is supposedly warming. That claim is supported by a plot generated by New Zealand’s National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research (NIWA). According to NIWA New Zealand’s average temperature has increased by over 1oC since the late 1800s (upper plot, Figure 3). The lower plot is a plot of the same data set compiled by The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition (Are we feeling warmer yet?, 25 November, 2009).
Figure 3 New Zealand’s average temperatures from 1853 to 2008 inclusive. Upper curve is from (NIWA) and the lower curve is from the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition.
Investigating the difference in the curves, the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition found that the data in the upper curve has been adjusted even though the station histories needed no adjusting. About half the adjustments actually created a warming trend where none existed; the other half of the adjustments greatly exaggerated existing warming. In other words, the reported warming trend is the result of manipulating the data.
Even though the New Zealand temperature profiles (upper curve) are used in the IPCC reports, the main basis for the claims of global warming come from East Anglia Climate Research Unit (HadCRUT), NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and NOAA. Are these curves similarly “adjusted”? The answer is a qualified yes. The answer has to be qualified as both the CRU and NASA have refused requests to provide the raw data. Having examined temperature data from hundreds of individual stations (http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/station_data/) I can say with certainty that the curve of average temperatures published by NASA does not resemble the majority of individual stations.
A review of NASA temperature figures by John Goetz (Rewriting History, Time and Time Again, 6 April 2006, Climate Audit), indicates that the agency has reworked the numbers, adjusting recent numbers upwards and older numbers downwards. The methodology used by NASA to estimate rates of climate change are resulting in dramatic shifts in previously published historical temperature data, causing figures for estimated global surface temperature prior to 1970 to now be lower and figures since 1970 to now be higher—and appearing to provide evidence for those who say the Earth is warming (Does ‘climate change’ mean ‘changing data’?, May 04, 2008, WorldNetDaily).
As for NOAA, it is unknown whether or not they curves are adjusted, although their similarity to the other curves would suggest that they are. More significantly, a review of over 1000 of the 1221 temperature stations monitored by NOAA has shown that the majority of them are sited outside of NOAA’s guidelines, with 69% of the stations so improperly sited that they have expected errors greater than or equal to 2oC; an error that is more than an order of magnitude greater than the total post-1820 increase in global climate (http://www.surfacestations.org/).
Some of these stations are so poorly sited as to all but guarantee they will measurer warmer temperatures. But temperature increases that result from air conditioning exhausts, reflection of heat from parking lots and brick walls, or from crematoriums (Figure 4) do not indicate global warming, only the affect of urban heat islands.
Figure 4: Two years ago, this Max-Min Temperature Station (MMT) was moved two blocks to this location in a parking lot near a crematorium. (NOAA Collects Global Temperature Data at a Crematorium, The Virginian, 5 January, 2009).
The leaked e-mails from the CRU indicate that Phil Jones of the CRU and Michael Mann of Penn State collaborated to control the peer-review process. Editors that allowed publication of papers that did not support the ‘official’ global warming line were threatened or marginalized. Once they had control of the peer-review process, they, along with the IPCC, made peer-reviewed articles the standard by which all papers on climate science are judged.
If the peer-review process is corrupted, peer review can be a mechanism for an entrenched establishment to exclude legitimate challenges by simply refusing to give critics a hearing. And that is precisely what the leaked e-mails reveal. Note the circular logic employed here. Skepticism about global warming is wrong because it is not supported by scientific articles in “legitimate peer-reviewed journals.” But if a journal actually publishes such an article, then it is by definition not “legitimate” (Robert Tracinski, 24 November, 2009, ClimateGate: The Fix is In, Real Clear Politics). So much for leg 3 of the stool!
Global warming has served as a tool to serve a number of political agendas. The United Nations is using the threat of global warming to pass a series of international agreements that would allow it to regulate the amount of energy you use. That regulation will be aimed at redistributing wealth from developed countries to undeveloped countries. Just to be clear, that is your wealth they intend to redistribute.
Governments are using the threat of global warming to regulate CO2, not to save the planet, but to raise revenues. So, just in case the U.S. Senate fails to pass cap and trade legislation, the Obama Administration has set the stage to simply take your money by having Lisa Jackson, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, declare carbon dioxide to be a dangerous pollutant. As Jonah Goldberg explains (Global Warming as a Political Tool, 10 December, 2009, Townhall), with that declaration, Jackson sent a strong message to Congress;
“If you don’t pass this (cap-and-trade) legislation ... the EPA is going to have to regulate in this area. ... And it is not going to be able to regulate on a market-based way, so it’s going to have to regulate in a command-and-control way, which will probably generate even more uncertainty.”
And such “uncertainty” is a huge “deterrent to investment,” which will hurt the economy even more.
Translation: We don’t want the EPA to kick the economy in the groin, but if Congress doesn’t act, well, a-groin-kickin’ we shall go.
I do not need to tell you whose groin the EPA intends to kick. It is up to all of us to send a clear message to our legislators to not pass cap and trade, to not ratify a treaty allowing the U.N. to regulate our energy use, and to not let the EPA kick us where it counts.
To present a thorough report of the depths of agendaism, and of the corruption now apparent in climate science would require a book, which is clearly beyond the scope of this column. So, for those of you who are interested in pursuing the information, I have provided a series of web links.
For more thorough understanding of the role of the United Nations and the Club of Rome in global warming politics, refer to the following websites:
For more thorough understanding of climate science, climategate and the unethical practices of the climate science community refer to:
All of Dr. Tim Balls articles at canadafreepress.com
Steve McIntyre’s site climateaudit.org/
And finally, the Science and Environmental Policy Project run by Dr. Fred Singer at sepp.org/
One word of caution, before you begin your research, you may want to have your blood-pressure medicine close by!
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