Tampering the Climate Evidence (Pt3)

Aractus 22, March, 2012

You’ve probably heard that Anthropogenic Global Warming is an incontrovertible scientific consensus and truth. In fact just the other day Michael Mann was on the telle box rattling on about how it will affect sea levels rise (I don’t know what else he talked about, but I think it involved defending his hockeystick graph). How can I take him seriously when global sea level rises are nearly entirely consistent going back 150 years or more, and the temperature wasn’t? How dare he say mean surface temperature is driving it when in the global cooling period in the 20th century it still rose at exactly the same rate – another invented “dire” consequence to make the topic more serious to us!

Allow me to tell you a story of science. Ignaz Semmelweis was an Hungarian physician who worked at Vienna General Hospital. They had two maternity clinics, First Clinic births were administered by medical students, Second Clinic births were administered by midwife students. Mortality rates of women giving birth due to puerperal fever in the First Clinic was about 10% per year, in the second clinic less than 4%. Women in labour would plead not to be administered to the First Clinic (of course this wasn’t possible as the wards actually operated on alternating days), many even resorted to giving birth on the streets. Even the women who gave birth on the streets had a far lower mortality rate than the First Clinic itself. This worried Semmelweis deeply.

Semmelweis became convinced that the clinics were identical except for the people working there. A close friend of his contracted a similar disease and died after a student accidently cut him whilst they were working with a cadaver. Semmelweis theorized that the women were being poisoned from the cadavers, and immediately had students in his clinic wash their hands when they had come from the morgue to the maternity ward. Because his views went completely against medical and scientific consensus, his students complained to his superiors that it was an unnecessary hardship. They cared more about their own convenience. And since Semmelweis couldn’t offer a coherent scientific basis for his theory, ultimately he lost his job (less than 2 years after he introduced the handwashing policy and despite its success). At age 42 he was put in mental institution, there he was beaten severely by guards and died two weeks later from an infection – probably the result of the beatings. Isn’t life great when we have a firm scientific consensus?

Physicist Ivar Giaever resigned from the American Physical Society (APS) with a letter that began: “I did not renew [my membership] because I cannot live with the [APS policy] statement: ‘The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth’s physical and ecological systems, social systems, security and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now.’ In the APS it is OK to discuss whether the mass of the proton changes over time and how a multi-universe behaves, but the evidence of global warming is incontrovertible?” He is a noble-prize winning well respected physicist. Both these serious and well respected scientists are giving us the same message: the conclusions have already been reached regardless of real world observational data.

In 1996 the IPCC released their Second Assessment Report on Global Warming. It consists of data collected and prepared by three working groups, two thousand experts were directly, or indirectly involved with the report. The working group that reported on the science of climate change consisted of 28 authors. Chapter 8 of the report mainly considered just two research papers – one by Ben Santer, the other by Lawrence Livermore. They had signed off on their finial draft in 1995 and submitted it. In parts it read:

“None of the studies cited above has shown clear evidence that we can attribute the observed [climate] changes to the specific cause of increases in greenhouse gases.”

“While some of the pattern-base studies discussed here have claimed detection of a significant climate change, no study to date has positively attributed all or part [of the climate change observed] to [man-made] causes. Nor has any study quantified the magnitude of a greenhouse gas effect or aerosol effect in the observed data – an issue of primary relevance to policy makers.”
“Any claims of positive detection and attribution of significant climate change are likely to remain controversial until uncertainties in the total natural variability of the climate system are reduced.”

“While none of these studies has specifically considered the attribution issue, they often draw some attribution conclusions, for which there is little justification.”

“When will an anthropogenic effect on climate be identified? It is not surprising that the best answer to this question is, `We do not know. “‘

After it had been signed-off and submitted, it was altered by none-other then Ben Santer – the same author who’s paper was reviewed in the chapter. I don’t need to tell you that that’s a conflict of interest. He would override the consensus view of the 28 that wrote the chapter, by removing the offensive passages listed above, and writing a new conclusion along the lines of:

“There is evidence of an emerging pattern of climate response to forcing by greenhouse gases and sulfate aerosols … from the geographical, seasonal and vertical patterns of temperature change. … These results point toward a human influence on global climate.”

“The body of statistical evidence in chapter 8, when examined in the context of our physical understanding of the climate system, now points to a discernible human influence on the global climate.”

It was presented as being consensus view, and it duped countless scientists into believing it.

In conclusion, the consensus isn’t that CO2 drives temperature. The consensus is that human influenced GHG’s are a primary driving factor in climate change. Even on that point, the consensus isn’t over exactly how much of the recent global warming can be attributed to GHG’s, despite what Al Gore et al. claim. Next entry we draw the climate mini-series to a close focusing on Inconvenient Truth. Stay Tuned!

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