Saturday, July 31, 2010

Global Warming Alarmists Struck Down but They Won't Admit It

So what happened that struck down the global warming alarmists?

Much more than I can give here. But since I wrote my last blog entry on why the war on global warming is a war on the poor, new information has come to light that. Just today (07/30/2010) a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) came out about the best evidence so far about global warming. It drew on research from 48 countries. The article came from Bloomberg News, and was entitled, Report: Warming is unmistakable. It starts with the usual alarmism about global warming. It’s not until the end of the article that we get the actual facts. After all, why let the facts get in the way?

I’ve written previously that the best evidence shows that the Earth is heating at the rate of about 3 degrees Fahrenheit (F) per century. And I’ve also said that it is possible that this may have a net positive value for humanity.

So what does the NOAA conclude from its most recent data? The Earth warmed about 1 degree F over the last 50 years. For those of you that are mathematically challenged that comes out to 2 degrees per century. Are you scared yet?

What about the prediction made by the global warming alarmists?

Not unexpectedly, the article did not mention the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) final report, and its predictions using various climate models? It also didn’t mention Al Gore’s predictions that he gave in his documentary, An Inconvenient Truth.

No, neither of these were mentioned, nor were any other previous predictions. I can only presume that the reason for this is that more people will realize that it is a waste of money to try to mitigate this level of global warming, especially if the mitigation method has to do with reducing our “carbon footprint.”

So let look at the United Nation’s IPCC final report and cut to the chase. One part of the report gives the various estimates of how much the temperature will increase by 2100. The estimates vary from 2 to 11 degrees F.

First, I’ll bet that you didn’t realize how much variability there was in the IPCC report. This variability wasn’t written about much, because most people would think, what kind of ridiculous prediction is that? Maybe they will soon predict that the Sun will come up in 2100. Actually, I have to give the authors of the final report credit for being honest about how little they knew about how much the temperature might change over the next century.

And let’s be honest here. The current evidence is that the Earth will warm 2 degrees F by 2100, and that is precisely the low end of the IPCC’s estimate. Kudos to them. However, their best estimate was 5 to 6 degrees F, so the Kudos are minimal. (Just to let you know the IPCC predicted that sea level would rise by 7 to 23 inches by 2100. If it ends up being at the low end, it would be about the same as the estimated rise during the 20th century of about a foot).

The estimate for the 20th century was that the temperature rose about 1 to 1.5 degrees F. Did anyone notice?

But what is the Earth does start warming faster than it has been over the last few decades?

This is certainly possible. It’s even possible (but less likely) that the Earth will cool. Notice that I haven’t predicted what the global temperature would be by 2100, I just extrapolated from current data. Frankly, I have no idea what the global temperature will be in 2100, and neither do you, or Al Gore, or anyone else.

But if the Earth does starting warming at rate of more than 3 degrees per century, it would probably be wise to attempt to mitigate this. Not by attempting to cut our carbon dioxide emissions, which my last blog pointed out will have no discernable effect. Rather there are cost-effective geo-engineering solutions that research is currently being done on. For more information on these see my blog post about global warming.

And if you want good solutions that will improve our environment, make us less dependent on foreign oil, and save us money, check out my post on Rational Environmentalism.

So why are there so many in the media and so many groups that are worried that we are “destroying the Earth?”

It’s hard to know exactly. Part of the reason, I believe is that people like to believe strongly in something, and believing that you are helping to save the Earth is quite motivating.

With respect to the media, it is natural for them to print the bad news, or at least try to make news sound bad, even when it isn’t. Such news sells better than a story about Girl Scout cookies.

But I also think that some people have an almost unconscious guilt that they are trying to assuage. They might feel guilty about the U.S. being so prosperous compared to most other countries, and that our prosperous ways are harming the Earth.

How can this be countered?

It can be countered by developing what might be called a “prosperity consciousness”. Let’s all look around objectively and see that the most prosperous nations have the highest standards of living, less pollution, less poverty, more choices, are better educated, and live longer and healthier lives than nations that are not as prosperous. And when some disaster occurs, they can deal with it much better than less prosperous countries.

We should want all good people of this world to be prosperous, and there are plenty of resources available on our planet to be able to do this.  This is the attitude that I'd like us all to adopt.

Tim Farage is a Senior Lecturer in the Computer Science Department at The University of Texas at Dallas. The views expressed herein are those of the author. You are welcome to comment upon this blog entry and/or to contact him at



Unknown said...

"War on the poor"? That's a little over the top, even for a right-wing blog.

Tim Farage said...


I'm not sure what you mean by a "right-wing blog", but my blog is based upon my belief that the people of the United States should be free to live their lives in peace. Don't see how that's right wing.

As far as the war on global warming being a war on the poor, the main reason for saying that is that any sort of carbon tax will increase the cost of everything to everyone, and the poor, as usual will be harmed the most.

Of course, if there were some off-setting benefit, the equation might change, but as I explained in my blog entry, such a carbon tax will have no effect on global warming, so it is useless.

When I’ve looking at the data, it’s shown a global temp. increase of about 3 deg. F per century. The most recent data shows 2 deg., but I consider that “about 3”. I’m not sure how much of that is anthropogenic, but it seems like some of it is. But I am not an anthropogenic global warming denier, just one who thinks that any form of carbon tax will be worse than useless.

To get a bit more specific:

1)Who’s to say what the ideal temperature is for humanity? Let’s say that it’s 3 deg. F more than it is today. Certainly, there will be negative consequences to that (e.g. the coral reefs), but there will be positive ones as well, such as longer growing seasons in the U.S. Midwest, Russia, etc. We won’t really know until after things have stabilized to see if such an increase is a net positive.

2)No matter how much (or little) global warming occurs, the U.S. implementing a carbon tax or some sort is about the most ineffective thing we can do. This is mainly because developing countries such as China and India will keep increasing their carbon output. So why cost us more money for no benefit?

3)If global warming does occur to a significant extent, there are geo-engineering techniques that can mitigate it, and are very inexpensive. (These are given in my blog on environmentalism).

4)My blog entry on environmentalism also gives ways to reduce pollution (and CO2) by 80% by 2050, while creating more prosperity, rather than poverty.

One thing that remains a very sore point with me is that any rational scientific analysis of nuclear power would find that (done properly) we can use it to generate electricity from Uranium and Thorium for at least a million years, and with no pollution. France did this starting in the 1970s and now they get 80% of their electricity from nuclear power, and are even selling electricity to England and Germany. We are idiots for not doing the same. But our emotional response to “The China Syndrome”, a fictional movie, Chernobyl, a reactor built and run by Communists, and Three Mile Island, in which not a single person died, kept us from building more reactors. Pathetic.

(The nuclear wastes are much less of a problem than most people think. For instance, we are constantly finding new ways to use what used to be nuclear wastes, and using them as a source of energy. For instance, breeder reactors, and the up-and-coming Thorium reactors are able to extract energy from our current wastes, leaving very little nuclear waste left. What is left would be radioactive for about 200 years, which can be easily dealt with. Actually, even that waste should be stored so that we can get at it. We may soon be able to extract its energy, and leave no waste at all).

Soon we’ll have cost-effective battery-powered cars, and if our main source of electricity were nuclear, even our cars wouldn’t be giving off pollution.

Unfortunately, only a tiny per cent of those in the U.S. understands science and economics. And until that changes, our irrational policies will continue. And as usual, the poor will suffer the most.

Tim Farage said...
This comment has been removed by the author.

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