Why Climate Change is Unbearably Naked

What do I find so impossibly sloppy to bear, about Climate Change in its contemporary definition, as the result of human activities (also known as “Anthopogenic Global Warming” or AGW, and usually associated to CO2 emissions caused by humans)?

Yesterday’s incredible (counter-)discovery by Anthony Watts on CO2 measurements getting corrected upwards after having gone downwards “for the first time in history” provides an opportunity for a non-exhaustive list (I may add links to each point next week) of all that depaupers Climate Change of actual meaning:

  • Climate models are all based on forcings, something that cannot be measured. The tool has become the cause.
  • Those same models are demonstrably “right” whatever happens, either warming or cooling (once again, as all they show is that forcings are supposed to do)
  • Proponents are fixated on negativities (not just the newsmedia and the Stern Report…I have some interesting findings about a recent book on Climate Change, and I will publish them this week or next)
  • Climate change is improbably comprehensive in its effects, and yet “Attribution”, the ability to pinpoint a particular change as having something to do with Climate Change, is still up in the air
  • The IPCC itself cannot see much evidence for change in 2/3 (two-thirds!) of the planet
  • The “truth” is that temperatures are going up but if one looks at actual measurements, they are continuously adapted and adjusted. Measurement stations are not increasing in the number, and locations are far from perfect.
  • And now of course, on-the-fly upward adjustments of CO2 data appear just as values begin to go “the wrong way”.

I personally agree with Watts when he writes: “While nefarious motives may not be there, its just damn sloppy IMHO, and given this is the crown jewel for CO2 data I expect far better“.

And please don’t get me wrong…I am perfectly aware that such generalized sloppiness is part-and-parcel of modern Science, with genetists looking for Mendelian transmission of what is not Mendelian and a whole generation of Cosmologists trained on calling 96% of the Universe as “Dark Matter” and “Dark Energy”, two names for the same thing (“Total Ignorance”).

“Institutionalized Science” is of course 80% rubbish, as per the famous 80/20 rule.

But the whole Climate debate is much more than Science. And for that, there is still so much it needs to be dressed with, before it can be shown as properly thought of, and ready for being a solid basis for a revolution in societal mores.

If I read about “scientists demonstrating that train travel is impossible” I may get a laugh, as people at the time surely did. But when I see all the massive propaganda machine put in place to convince people to turn carbon-free by way of guilt, there isn’t much to be amused of.

If the keys to absolute gullibility are ever found, we may as well all turn back to live up the trees.

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  1. 2008/08/13 at 12:50

    Where did the idea come from that warming was bad, when people who live in the cold flock to warmer climates every chance they get?

    Not to mention that there is much, much greater species diversity in warmer climates.

    Cold weather is a far more dangerous thing than excessive heat, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes combined:

    http://www.nsc.org/research/odds.aspx
    (See items X30-X39)

    Of course warming has negative consequences. Our job is to figure out how to capture the benefits of warming while mitigating the costs.

    Kyoto, even if successfully implemented, will have a negligible impact on global warming; is that not a clue that maybe it’s caused by factors that we don’t understand, and is something highly unlikely for us to be able to prevent?

    Thanks for offering a skeptical view of all this. I would really love to see a detailed cost/benefit analysis that adds the obvious benefits of warming (a better overall life for most living in developed countries) balanced against the likely costs. People ignore the idea that warming has benefits and that makes me believe most work on this subject is a fraud.

    D

  2. 2008/08/12 at 21:45

    I agree with Barbara & consider this site to be a very refreshing counterbalance to the frenzied doomsayers of the media. Keep up the fine work, Maurizio.

    KuhnKat, the phlogiston link is really interesting – I had heard of phlogiston but hadn’t realised just how persistent and compelling the theory was, in its day. This surely deserves a blog post of its own!

  3. 2008/08/11 at 13:02

    thank you barbara for your kind words. Actually I wish I posted less often, because that would mean I would be more on vacation, as I was until a few hours ago ūüėČ

  4. 2008/08/08 at 22:14

    One thing to remember is that AGW has had a couple of decades to build up momentum, like some gigantic ship that takes an age to turn around. There are scientists out there making observations that appear to go against the great clumsy behemoth of AGW (a good example being the scientists of the Alfred Wegener Institute, who have cautiously reported cooling oceans in both hemispheres) but their voices are not really being heard yet. I think a quiet persistence may be key here. If the oceans are cooling, if sea level rise has slowed or stopped, if it turns out that man-made CO2 is not raising global temperatures, the truth will become impossible to hide. But we may have to wait a while, before it is able to build up some momentum of its own.

  5. KuhnKat
    2008/08/08 at 07:00

    Mendellian transmission, Dark Matter/Dark Energy, AGW, Phlogiston…

    http://www.jimloy.com/physics/phlogstn.htm

  6. barbara
    2008/08/07 at 01:48

    This may not be the right place to put this. I just wanted to say that I really like your site. You discuss the facts without a lot of ranting and are very informative.

    I just wish you posted more often.

    Thanks for your work and your attention to this issue.

    Barbara

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