Friday, November 23, 2007

Significant Accumulations

The Nature Reports article from which this graph was taken suggests that by way of their efforts to assess climate models on their ability to reproduce 20th Century temperature changes, the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) "may give a false sense of [the models'] predictive capability." As becomes evident by observing the levels of scientific understanding (LOSU) and the associated uncertainties for each radiative forcing component, there is a great deal yet to be understood about the elements that comprise climate simulation models.

While the tone of the piece was predictably supportive of the theory of anthropogenic global warming, it did indicate the possibility that
"the forcings used in the models did not span the full range of the uncertainty." In plain English, the models may underestimate the uncertainties associated with factors used in their models (or climate researchers may overestimate their understanding of forcing factors.)

The air of infallibility surrounding both the researchers and models supporting global climate change hardly bespeaks what observable data support. As much was expressed in a blog post to Icecap by John Coleman, a founder of the Weather Channel and meteorologist with KUSI in San Diego. Given his extensive background, and his own research on the global warming hypothesis, Coleman saw no need to pull any punches.

[Global warming] is the greatest scam in history. I am amazed, appalled and highly offended by it. Global Warming... it is a SCAM. Some dastardly scientists with environmental and political motives manipulated long term scientific data to create an illusion of rapid global warming. Other scientists of the same environmental whacko [sic] type jumped into the circle to support and broaden the "research" to further enhance the totally slanted, bogus global warming claims. Their friends in government steered huge research grants their way to keep the movement going. Soon they claimed to be a consensus.
The viability of certain models and explanations for observed changes in climate is also being challenged in other venues, with a recent NASA press release indicating that "not all of the large changes seen in Arctic climate in recent years are a result of long-term trends associated with global warming." The press release referred to a paper recently published in Geophysical Research Letters (subscription required) that involved researchers from both NASA and academia measuring changes in the weight of columns of Arctic Ocean water. According to the NASA statement, lead researcher James Morison was quoted as saying "many changes seen in declines in Arctic Ocean circulation in the 1990s were mostly decadal in nature, rather than trends caused by global warming."

I suspect this press release did not pass under the watchful gaze of NASA's James Hansen. One would forgive him for not taking notice; doubtless he was too focused on the dollars flowing his way from George Soros' Open Society Institute. According to an Investor's Business Daily editorial, Hansen received $720,00 in Soros-funded distractions in 2006. (Curiously enough given his present conviction that greenhouse gases inexorably contribute to global warming, a separate IBD editorial describes Hansen's previous involvement in research suggesting that exhaust from cars would cause global cooling.)

In a perfect world, the global warming kerfuffle would manifest itself as an internecine squabble between "quant jocks," with nary a slide rule hurled in anger. In such a scenario, how dangerous could it all be? Alas, we do not live in any sort of nirvana, scientific or otherwise. And if the latest news out of Britain is to be taken at face value, the full court press of global warming zealots can have quite a number of adverse sequela that go well beyond the moral hazards discussed elsewhere.

The U.K.'s Daily Mail informs us of two women who have decided to abstain from childbearing in order to "protect the planet," as one put it. The Mail article profiles Toni Vernelli, a 35 year-old employee of an environmental charity, who describes having children as "selfish" and further condemns it as being about "maintaining your genetic line at the expense of the planet." At the age of 27, Vernelli underwent surgical sterilization in order to ensure that she would remain childless.

For her part, Sarah Irving also concluded that "never having a child was the most environmentally friendly thing I could do." She and her fiance Mark Hudson agreed that he would have a vasectomy, thereby adding to his green bona fides.
Sarah and I live as green a life a possible. We don't have a car, cycle everywhere instead, and we never fly.

We recycle, use low-energy light bulbs and eat only organic, locally produced food.

In short, we do everything we can to reduce our carbon footprint. But all this would be undone if we had a child.

That's why I had a vasectomy. It would be morally wrong for me to add to climate change and the destruction of Earth.
That environmentalists from the prominent to the picayune refer to global warming as a moral issue does not surprise, as it allows them to avoid discussing the aforementioned dubious science surrounding the issue. If anthropogenic climate change were discussed rationally as a scientific hypothesis, it would hardly be the issue that it has become. By shrouding it in discussions of ethics, global warming aficionados can shape the conversation exactly as they wish. Inevitably, proposed solutions to the "problem" revolve around more robust government regulation and redistribution of wealth as the invigorated government would dictate.

But global warming hysteria also has ramifications in the microcosm. When individuals are convinced that humanity is the obstacle in saving the planet, the logical conclusion is that human life must be sacrificed in order to atone for sins against nature, as well as to prevent further injury. It starts small, with couples deciding to forgo reproduction, but the road is short and straight from that proposition to one that posits the morality of an environmentally friendly euthanasia (what with the absolutely huge carbon footprint created by all those hospitals and nursing homes.)

To be sure, global warming is neither an issue of science - the environmental Left having decided long ago to uncouple its wagon from the horse of objective scientific inquiry - nor an issue of morality. It results from a commingling of greed, hysteria and an outsized self-importance on the part of its adherents. In as much as global warming evangelists have revealed their contempt for human life, their ideations are now too dangerous for the rest of us to ignore.

No comments: