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President Vaclav Klaus At The GWPF Inaugural Annual Lecture: Quasi-live Blogging

Since I couldn’t get enough connectivity in the conference hall tonight, here are my quasi-live notes about President Václav Klaus’ Inaugural Annual GWPF Lecture at The Great Room of Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce in London (UK):

(these notes are provided as they are, with very little corrections – I will post my own reflections later)

(UPDATE: see also Reuters)

(UPDATE: full text of the lecture at the GWPF website)

Atrocious weather getting worse…is Al Gore in town, by any chance?

Around 70 people. Klaus’ book free to all attendants.

I meet Rupert Wyndham of BBC’s Complaint Procedure fame

Packing up quickly. Many are diplomats, as I have later learned.

7:07 Lawson and Klaus

Peiser starts. There is a lectern this time and a microphone. Videorecording equipment.

Klaus introduced as political leader but also an intellectual, of the classical liberalism variety: individual liberty, limited government, freedom to dissent.

“couldn’t have chosen a more appropriate speaker”

Copenhagen failure, Climategate, IPCC debacle: change in the political atmosphere.

Pres Klaus has been calling for rational and freedom-loving people to respond to the threat posed by collective environmentalist hysteria.

Klaus’ accent sounds better than mine

Special thanks to Nigel Lawson. Large range of institutions that support those that doubt current-prevailing dogma. This is not enough. Bias, carefully-organised propaganda needs to be countered with rationality.

Cites Bob Carter. The issue is not the warming, but the “dangerous human-induced warming”. Scientific debate is not about the policy. Public-policy debate has enormous implications. Governments, politicians, lobbyists search to grab more decision power for themselves.

Response to climate change can become the most costly mistake in history after Communism.

Cites McKitrick. Nobody is an expert on global warming. Too many aspects. Every body is an amateur on many if not most topics.

There are many respectable but highly-conflicting scientific takes on the subject. We must resist the attempt to shut down the debate. Real risk is to end up renouncing democracy.

Need to separate environmentalist myths from theories.

Has followed the literature. Carbon dioxide is a minor player, not primary cause of global warming. Cites Nobel-laureate: carbon dioxide across geological scales. Planetary changes don’t ask for permission.

Dangerous public policy consequences: many have concluded the current hypothesis is very weak. Not sufficiently tested. Can’t be used for policy decisions without looking at alternatives, opportunity costs, etc.

That is why he wrote the book about “green shackles”. (humor: since you’ve all got it, no need to continue speaking). Published in 16 different languages including Japanese and Arabic.

A year after publication, “Appeal to Reason” by Nigel Lawson. Klaus wrote the preface.to the Czech edition.

We are not on the winning side yet, but looking back since the launching of the AGW propaganda at the Rio Summit in 1992 and subsequent general pickup of the hypothesis, things have been improving.

Reputation of the scientific integrity of some of the most prominent researchers has been undermined, eg the Hockey Stick that was the basis of the 2001 IPCC report: pseudoscientific mindset, faulty data selection, frenzied propaganda, unscrupulous campaign, dubious statistics, etc etc (it’s a citation)

Copenhagen 2009 showed heterogeneity of views,

Three simple facts GW armies should keep in mind

1- Global mean climate does change, has changed, and will undoubtedly change

Over last 10k years, climate has been much the same and average temperature has not changed. Long-term, slight cooling.
GW armies are presenting a few decades as a threat to the planet to respond to with a wholesale change of our lifestyles.

Why are they so successful? Doctrines usually take much longer. Specifics of our time? Constanlty online? Religions less attractive? Desire to refill the emptiness with a new noble cause, saving the planet?

Environmentalists discovered some “more noble” than our down-to-earth lives. Can’t be accepted by somebody that lived under “noble” communism.

2- Medium-term timescales, 150 years (joke about Keynes), temperatures have shown a warming.

This is since the Northern Hemisphere emerged from the LIA two centuries ago. Trend was repeatedly interrupted.

Warming is modest and everything suggests future warming and consequences are not a cause for concern and something to battle against.

3- CO2 in atmosphere sometimes precedes, sometimes follows temp increases. Not fully understood.

No need to dispute those facts. Dispute is when people claim the coincidence in time is a “proof” of AGW. This is the current doctrine. This has existed for centuries, always with nature as the “starting point” to go back to. People are considered a foreign element. But it makes no sense to speak of a world without people, because there would be nobody to speak to (laughter).

Mentions his studies of econometric modelling. No conclusion can be based on correlation of two or more time sequences. So simple correlations do not exist.

Eg CO2 emissions did not start to grow visibly until 1940s. Temperatures at times moved in the opposite way of CO2.

Statistical analysis doesn’t demonstrate anything. Two Chinese scientists used random walk model for global temp variations. Result shows the model perfectly fits the data. No need to add human effects. No other model has given a btter fit.

There are other aspects of the doctrine, not just the simple relationship between temps and CO2. Another is the idea that increasing temperatures will be detrimental to the planet.

Many environmentalists don’t want to save man, but nature. Economics for them is irrelevant. For example the Stern review and its unreasonably low discount rate (that was what prompted Klaus to join the debate). The choice of discount rate is critical (cites Lawson). High discount rate=little meaning in any intervention.

We should use the market rate, as it is the “opportunity cost” of climate mitigation. Stern and others do not want to do that.

Klaus doesn’t deny increasing temps will see losers and winners. Even if overall is going to be detrimental, with proper discount rates the consequences are too small to worry about.

Why do many people think differently? Many have invested too much in GW alarmism. Fear of losing out on the political and professional side. Biz people hoped to make a fortune and are not ready to write it off. There is a coalition of powerful special interests endangering us. (hence the subtitle of his book.

We need to stand up against all attempts to undermine our democratic society.

We need to be prepared to all kinds of future climate changes but never accept to lose our freedom

ends at 19″43

room is packed. >100

there is a video being taken

Peter Glover: Arctic forum. No engagement at all on the two sides. The “other side” never seems to have thought things through logically.

Klaus: Many scientists are engaged Journalist in The Times keeps receiving articles and books about the dogma. The fact that the other side doesn’t listen is not new to people that lived under Communism.

Q: Roll back the ETS in Europe?

Klaus: Cap-and-trade is one of the policy measures in the hands of the environmentalists. It’s not just the USA staying away from it. But the EU is post-democratic (laughter)

Hartwell (metallurgic engineer): Presentation is political. Royal Society published paper on climate change. Many scientists there are seriously interested. We should manage the risk of future rises in temperatures

Klaus: Not impressed by science established by committee or vote. Remember nobody is an expert in GW. Another quote from Bob Carter: wide range of disciplines among “climate” scientists. Most alarm from scientists from meteor and computer modelling. Geologists see no cause for alarm.

(argument ad providentiam)

Klaus says he has used computer models too. Computer modellers are not climatologists.

Q: Ecological modernisation used by many groups to look for environmental problems to push for technology. Amount of money in the academic community is very strong. WG-III is real push for IPCC.

Klaus: can’t understand sustainable development. Environment should be differentiated from GW.

Physicist: Comment on RS. Previous head didn’t’ give space to “deniers”. current document requires further revision. Draft Copenhagen agreement deals with putting together a world government (57? 58?). Why didn’t you use that?

Klaus: Only retirees dare write against AGW. COP-15 was so confused there was no point to go there. Details impossible to follow and not relevant. Documents have no writers and no readers

Q: Bloggers have changed the nature of the debate

Lawson: Yes. Extremely-expensive decisions should not be taken without a proper debate and there hasn’t been one. The RS has been obliged to move a little bit, not much, but more than nothing. Even the BBC says dissenting voice ought to be heard.

My questions

What would convince Pres Klaus that there is something to worry about? What would he choose, climate disruption or liberty?

Klaus: Empirical evidence is what is needed. Starting point still remains. Quality of measurements for example is important. Models are not convincing, too many mistakes in the methodologies, statistics, I am not convinced

Philosopher: The psychological side. Green lobbyists want to have cars and dirty industries banned. They found the scientific reason in AGW. Political agenda feeds on fear.

Klaus: One reason for scaring us disproved, another one pops up. My interests at the beginning of the 1970a. Could get only economical reviews and scientific publications. Couldn’t understand Club of Rome and Limits to Growth. That’s total nonsense. Same computer modellers of LtG continued with AGW. Same people.

Q: AGWers are organised by somebody?
Piers Corbyn: Prepare for extreme events…ask the UN to do that?

Klaus: Anybody controlling? People that have outlived communism are oversensitive regarding the issue of getting controlled

Q: Oxford Union debate, victory. Other side went for ad-homs. Wind farms are completely useless and evidence is transparent. How do rational politicians live with that knowledge?

Klaus`; Times journo asked if other leading politicians are against AGW? Many have similar views but are afraid to say it openly. Anecdote. Some nonsense is very evident. Solar energy during the night. Wind farm generation by electrical motors.

Lawson concludes. Mentions Klaus’ bravery as he is still in office.

end at 20:29


  1. Fay Tuncay
    2010/10/21 at 22:04

    Glad to hear about the GWPF video, it does make a big difference when trying to get the message out. I was just wondering if anyone has any thoughts about next weeks Climate Fools Day Rally Weds Oct 27th 2pm at Parliament

    It’s a Piers Corbyn’s event under the banner of “A ClimateSense – Campaign against Carbon Capitalism – Cut the Carbon Con not welfare provision! – Save £18 billion per year! “

    I want to show support and will try to attend, but I am concerned that it’s focus will be too left-wing orientated and will alienate other parties or possible supporters. Any campaign has to be acceptable to broader society. I much prefer focus on the repeal of the Climate Change Act itself. Language and communication is everything in any campaign and the greens are so slick and professional when it come to presenting their side of the debate.

    • 2010/10/22 at 00:03

      I don’t think it will be left-wing orientated, I am sure it will be Corbyn-wing orientated 😎

  2. 2010/10/21 at 12:36

    Some videos of speeches by Vaclav Klaus are available at the ….

    “Fraudulent Climate of Hokum Science”

    When at that website, see the video index, and they are on Video Wall #7 near the top. Many other videos at that website. From Fraud to Eugenics, all in the name of “climate science”. MUST SEE VIDEOs.

    As soon as the GWPF Klaus video is available, it will appear under the other two.

    • 2010/10/22 at 12:19

      OK Folks the Video Is ** NOW ONLINE ** at Video Wall #7

      Actually this video was originally released as an Apple
      Quicktime movie and is about 420MB in size. So then
      if it is just embedded as a Quicktime “object & embed”
      plugin, the video starts loading from the GWPF server
      immediately upon page load ( though it doesn’t play
      until a user clicked on the play button).

      This had certain disadvantages, like …. erm downloading
      another 420 MB file every time the page was loaded. This
      was a nuisance, and so at the Fraudulent Climate Website,
      a placeholder image, with a live “play button” link, sits in
      place and no data is downloaded from the GWPF servers
      until you click the Play Button. Then the HTML is swapped
      out and a new HTML is swapped in as an i-Frame, which
      contains the Quicktime plugin, and the player set to stream
      the video immediately upon HTML swap.

      If you don’t have Java Turned on, you won’t see any of this !

      If you have i-Frames restricted, you won’t see the video either.

      I expect that this video will eventually become available as
      Adobe Flash, and this complex solution will not be necessary.

      • 2010/10/25 at 05:52

        ** NOW AVAILABLE AS FLASH VIDEO ** in a java custom player.
        Plays on any operating system that can play FLA1 & MP3
        Second video on Video Wall #7 at the Fraudulent Climate Website
        (click on the name … Axel Morris above, select from Quick Page Menu)

  3. 2010/10/20 at 22:11

    Just to add to what others have written – very good summary. According to Bishop Hill, there will also be a video of the talk available on the GWPF website later in the week.

    Fay Tuncay: “There has to be a totally new cadre of politicians for this grand narrative to fall. But where are they?”

    A good question; I’m wondering whether it will be the case that a new cadre of politicians emerges just as the narrative begins to fall, and these two events will be more or less concurrent.

  4. Messenger
    2010/10/20 at 10:25

    When I looked a couple of days ago there was nothing on Google about Klaus’s forthcoming visit and talk apart from GWPF- and yet he is the head of a friendly state. Have the papers had anything? If not, why not? Or do I already know the answer?

  5. 2010/10/20 at 06:10

    Excellent second-by-second report, Maurizio, thanks! I added a small link inside the article, too but I guess not too many visitors will be redirected haha.

  6. 2010/10/19 at 23:21

    Thank you for this excellent summary Maurizio. The McKitrick point is key. But so is the courage of Klaus, as Lawson appreciates. It is remarkable to have such a top-level politician in Europe as this.

  7. Fay Tuncay
    2010/10/19 at 21:35

    Thanks for the update. Still a small gathering – any students present? Anyone under 35yrs. And I was wondering if there is anything new in the book. Perhaps you could do a short review of The Green Shackles later? I’m not sure whether I should buy it.

    And I notice there was no mention of a strategy to move this debate forward.
    This would have been my question if I had been invited: Is the GWPF waiting for this to become THE issue at the next general election with a NEW leader of the Conservatives repealing the Climate Change Act? And who might this NEW leader be? There has to be a totally new cadre of politicians for this grand narrative to fall. But where are they?

    • 2010/10/19 at 22:13

      Fay – I can make sure you’re invited, next time…please remind me!!

      Moving forward? Klaus says the existence of non-dogmatic outfits such as the GWPF is the way forward, as it makes a public-policy debate possible.

      ps yes there were quite a few <35, perhaps I should have mentioned that. All of them reasonably well dressed.

  8. TinyCO2
    2010/10/19 at 21:04

    Thanks for blogging on these meetings. Is sounded like a good lecture.

    I particularly liked the McKitrick citation – “Nobody is an expert on global warming. Too many aspects. Every body is an amateur on many if not most topics.” I think that’s why climate change science is fundametally flawed. There aren’t enough people taking the overview to see the fractured bigger picture or enough people involded in each area of the science to take divergent views. Everyone relies on everyone else to have got their bit right. A daisy chain of misplaced trust.

  1. 2010/10/28 at 06:58
  2. 2010/10/28 at 06:57
  3. 2010/10/24 at 22:53
  4. 2010/10/20 at 10:24

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