“This is the opinion of a group of abot 20 people, some of whom are famous for it.”
chrisd3 on Feb 20, 2012 at 08:12:27
“"This is the opinion of a group of abot 20 people"
And the hue and cry from the NAS membership was immediate and overwhelming.
Oh, wait, there was no hue and cry.
Please, if you want to be taken seriously, don't try to pawn off stuff like that around here. Your initial comment was treated respectfully. That will cease if this sort of nonsense continues.”
gallon on Feb 19, 2012 at 23:02:41
“Whoa! The money quote from the National Academy of Sciences was "This is the case for the conclusions that the Earth system is warming and that much of this warming is very likely due to human activities."
That statement was the orgainzational statement of the National Academy of Sciences, about 2,200 of our very best scientists. About one in ten of them holds a Nobel Prize. And you just dismiss them with a "this is the opinion of a group of about 20 people."
And you said you had a PhD? Well, it is said that you work for Heartland. These statements of yours dismissing the science are to be expected.
Heartland/Koch Bros/Scott Walker (and DavidWojick?)
St Valentines Day 2012
Lying and Denying reasonable rates”
“It is true that DOE has not funded me to do climate research, but they have funded me to do science education research. Under a DOE SBIR grant my team of teachers developed a model of the concept structure of K-16 science education. The result for DOE was a search algorithm that sees the grade level of science education writing. The prototype is running on http://www.scienceeducation.gov. They also fund me to study the cognitive structure of science itself, in order to improve their science communication database systems.
My expertise in the climate science debate comes from 20 years of study. My Ph.D. is in the philosophy of science, especially the logic of complex issues. My funding comes from free lance writing and policy analysis. While climate scientists study climate, I study their reasoning.
These two research thrusts came together when I noticed that almost all of the Web-based educational resources on climate change merely parrot the company line about dangerous human induced warming. There is very little on the scientific debate, which I see as one of the great scientific debates in history. So I have set out to fill this void. The debate is now so widespread that any science teacher who cannot demonstrate knowledge of it will quickly lose credibility. But the grand challenge is that scientific controversy is not typically taught in K-12, even though it is the heart of the scientific frontier. This is the fun part.”
chrisd3 on Feb 21, 2012 at 09:05:42
“Dr. Wojick seems to have taken a powder without answering any of the very reasonable questions he was respectfully asked.
What a surprise.”
doriath22 on Feb 20, 2012 at 23:12:55
“I've been a working Chemist for over thirty years, and I can't think of a single one of my colleagues who thinks there is any debate over the factuality of AGW. Magnitude and rate, yes, but that there is observable human-driven climate change, no.”
angryangel on Feb 20, 2012 at 18:18:35
Since your training is in philosophy of science and presumably various types of logic, I (whose training is in mathematics) have some questions for you that I think would be right up your alley:
"While climate scientists study climate, I study their reasoning."
Does this include studying the reasoning of those climate scientists who deny climate science?
I'm thinking of climate scientists like Roy Spencer, who deny not only climate science but other sciences like evolutionary science.
Before you object that evolutionary science denial is irrelevant to climate science denial, please consider how it is relevant:
Have you heard of "An Evangelical Declaration on Global Warming", of which Spencer is a signatory?
Are you aware that those who deny climate science and those who deny evolutionary science are almost entirely the same bunch, and that therefore it follows to study their reasoning in their denial of each science? I see the same types and patterns of logically fallacious reasoning in their denial of each science, and this includes all scientists like Spencer who deny each science. If you do not see this, then please share your reasoning.”
Robco1 on Feb 20, 2012 at 13:02:29
“Well well well. Dr. Wojick. Tell me about your great scientific debate once you've explained this:
BTW, How much are you getting from Heartland? I mean, Watts is getting, what, $85k for an astroturf site, and he's just a weatherman! I love how their "donors" go to production meetings and call the shots on issues and talking points. Wouldn't that make them a PR firm? And what would that make you and your effort to shill denial to schoolchildren? http://ijish.livejournal.com/29235.html
Gotta admit, its a great gig. Raking in all that fossil fuel industry cash to drum up a fake controversy, and all it takes is some shrewdness and the ethical development of a flukeworm.”
hp blogger Shawn Lawrence Otto on Feb 20, 2012 at 10:46:43
“David, thank you for engaging. Had you answered my email request for an interview, I would have included your perspective in the article. But your comments that "There is very little on the scientific debate, which I see as one of the great scientific debates in history. So I have set out to fill this void." and "the grand challenge is that scientific controversy is not typically taught in K-12, even though it is the heart of the scientific frontier. This is the fun part." belie a misunderstanding of the facts. There is no great scientific controversy among climate scientists. The controversy is political, and is being promulgated by others not trained or published as climate scientists. To prepare K12 units in science emphasizing a political controversy is a confusion of knowledge with ideology and opinion, and a great disservice to the critical thinking skills we need to be providing in our children's education. As a philosopher of science, I'd encourage you to read my book, Fool Me Twice, which reviews Locke and Bacon and empiricism, and how knowledge differs from "mere belief or opinion." You are conflating them in order to achieve a political end.”
Publicola on Feb 20, 2012 at 02:53:49
“Dear Dr. Wojick,
As a Heartland Institute paid consultant, please answer this simple -- for those who understand basic linear trend analysis -- question about your Heartland paid consultant colleague Dr. Robert M "Bob" Carter:
In Sydney Mining Club lecture Bob Carter claimed:
"There was no temperature increase from 1979 to 1995"
"There was no change [in temperature] between 1999 and through today"
As can be seen in that link, to support his assertion Carter shows UAH global satellite temperature data and puts flat "lines" across the data over those time periods.
The statistically uneducated observer might be mislead into assuming that the lines Carter drew there are statistically-valid trend lines. That assumption however would not be correct; statistically-valid linear trend lines over those periods with respect to that data instead show warming trends.
My 'yes' or 'no' question to you again, Dr. Wojick, is the following:
Do you agree that Bob Carter's temperature trend analysis that I have addressed here is not statistically or scientifically valid? 'Yes' or 'No'?
And if 'No':
Please explain in statistical and scientific detail why you instead think that Bob Carter's analysis that I have addressed here is statistically and scientifically valid - thank you.”
chrisd3 on Feb 19, 2012 at 23:33:29
“One of the Heartland documents states that you have proposed an educational "module" on air pollution, one of the bullet points of which is that "natural emissions [of CO2] are 20 times higher than human emissions”.
Is that an accurately stated summary of something you plan or planned to include in the "module"?
If so, please explain why the ratio of natural to human-generated emissions is relevant in the context of anthropogenic global warming. Does it indicate that emissions from human activites are unimportant, or that they are not the root cause of the continuing increase in atmospheric CO2 content?
Jim Milks on Feb 19, 2012 at 21:58:30
“"There is very little on the scientific debate, which I see as one of the great scientific debates in history."
There is currently very little debate in scientific circles about whether or not global warming is happening or the cause of that warming. The current scientific debate is mainly over how fast warming will occur and how climate and ecosystems will change in response to warming. How do you intend to portray the scientific debate, especially the evolution of that debate from the 1970s to the present, to science teachers on the K-12 level?”
ILoveFiction on Feb 19, 2012 at 21:44:24
“The great debate!
On the one side is science.
On the other is Heartland and its minions.
By the way, how are things going, minion-wise?”
gallon on Feb 19, 2012 at 21:25:09
“Do you do work for Heartland?
What you are calling one of "the great scientific debates in history" is not considered as such by actual working Physicists and Chemists.
“The NJ ES standards (http://www.state.nj.us/education/cccs/2009/final.htm) are 14 pages long. There are just 2 sentences on fossil fuels and climate, both made more or less in passing. It is clearly a minor topic:
“Human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, also affect the global climate.” and “Explain how the climate in regions throughout the world is affected by seasonal weather patterns, as well as other factors, such as the addition of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere and proximity to mountain ranges and to the ocean.”
This lack of attention is typical of most states. I also suspect many teachers avoid the issue because it is so politicized.”
“You folks know a lot about climate and energy, but most people don't. That does not make them dumb, just disinterested. It might help if you knew how K-12 science education works. Content is specified by state standards. There is about 100 hours of instruction (not much) per year. One to two basic concepts are taught per hour. Fossil fuel is a basic concept, so is climate. Each gets maybe an hour, unlike the hundreds of hours you people have spent studying them. If you want them taught more you need to say which other basic concept should be dropped. It is a cognitive budget problem, a zero sum game. See http://www.stemed.info”
crankyCrackPot on Oct 22, 2010 at 11:14:52
“All the more reason to choose your state carefully. :-) Christie is sure to do his damn-est but here in NJ the core curriculum includes a full year in high school for earth sciences and a full year for biology and both climate and fossil fuels receive much more than an hour.
I concede that a 6th grader's exposure to the topics is limited but they are taught the concepts eventually.
That said, like most things in life, I have learned a lot more about the subject as an adult than I ever did in school.”
“This sounds like Eco-Marxism, which fortunately has very little political traction in the US. It is, however, indicative of the political underpinning of the global warming scare. This is why it is far more than a scientific debate. It is a catastrophe theory with an agenda.”
martintillier on Sep 12, 2010 at 09:28:54
“DavidWojick -- There we go, you just made-up a term "Eco-Marxism" I'm not entirely sure what that's supposed to mean but anyway, If you care to investigate DfID (UK) and other International Development bodies, you will find that behind the political rhetoric is the annexing of resources and utility infrastructure ( some of which has just been built by private companies owned by US,UK,French,Chinese,Russian, Saudi and other nations). In any case you will soon see what I mean because these consolidations of resource control and ownership are all happening right now, so you don't have long to wait to see the results. BTW do you care to define the agenda that you attach to the so-called "theory" (facts) of the up-coming resource-decline catastrophe ? I am not a politician, nor am I in the process of applying for any research grants on climatology or resource-decline and ownership. I am however very concerned about the mismanagement and annexing of vital resources by international corporations who have a track-record of environmental damage and exploitation of slave-labour, especially in Africa and China.”
“You are lumping a lot of things together to make it sound scary, when it is not. Increasing CO2 may not be a problem, it might even be beneficial. Note however that ice core CO2 measurements are not particularly reliable on decade to century scales. We know that previous interglacial periods have also seen CO2 spikes, which are natural. We know they have gone to 300 ppm but maybe much higher.”
martintillier on Sep 12, 2010 at 08:56:47
“DavidWojick --- You say " Increasing CO2 MAY not be a problem" I agree that on its own it MAY not, especially if we stop burning fossil fuels this century, however, the combination of atmospherically affective emissions,decreased carbon absorptive medium and solar activity seem to be having a greater effect than many deniers would accept. IPCC climate measurements show that CO2 has risen from 280ppm to 379ppm since pre-industrial times, this is just CO2, the other greenhouse gases I previously mentioned should be taken into account as well. If, as you and others seem to insist, the outlook is more optimistic, why are climatologists being employed to produce models and predictions at all ? It may well be that all our fears regarding human industry-accelerated climate-change will not be fully realised, but we must err on the side of caution and treat the findings of the IPCC with some seriousness or we risk burying our heads in the sand of unfounded scepticism as regards the cumulative and combinatory effects of human industry on the global environment.”
“It is not trolling if he makes substantive points. Some skeptics, like some warmers, are extremely dedicated. That is the ideological aspect of the debate. Given the preponderance of warmers on this site you should be thankful you have a dedicated skeptic.”
“On the contrary, science is still struggling to understand climate change. Temperatures oscillate up and down naturally and we do not know why. What role, if any, the CO2 increase has had in the oscillations over the last 100 years is unknown. The public debate reflects the scientific uncertainties quite accurately. This is both surprising and gratifying.”
NickDearth on Sep 10, 2010 at 15:33:15
“If you are going to say "on the contrary", it would help if you presented something contrary to the very specific points I made. You didn't. In Galloping Gish fashion you simply ignored them and moved on to something else. Even worse, the something else you moved on to is, at best, incredibly misleading. Temperature oscillations are very well understood by studying scientists, though not completely. The scientific literature reflects this understanding, regardless of whether the public discourse or your knowledge does. The role of CO2 on the climate over the past 100 years is very well understood. Is it understood completely? Nope. Is it "unknown"? No. Such a statement is completely false. To make a false statement like that as part of the public discourse and elevate it to the level that you claim it reflects scientific uncertainty is patently absurd. No matter how many times you say it does not make it true. It is akin to me saying that the shape of the earth is unknown. Any attempts to make it known to me reflect a public debate, which in turn reflects a scientific debate. That you can't see the absolute absurdity of this train of thought says a great deal about you. None of it positive.”
“You seem confused, so let me try a little more detail. The two basic lines of skepticism are regarding theory and observation, the two basic sides of science. But the arguments for the hypothesis of dangerous human induced warming are complex, so skepticism is as well. In fact there are many forms of skepticism. Moreover, the number of points at issue grows exponentially with level of detail. In the case of climate change science it is well into the thousands.
As far as CO2 being a greenhouse gas is concerned, I said that is not generally disputed. That is a statistical fact about the debate. However, there are a number of scientists who dispute the very existence of the greenhouse effect, mostly on thermodynamic grounds. If skepticalscience.com has picked up this line of argument, good for them.
Are we clear now?”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 21:50:50
“Lol, we've been clear from the start :o) I don't post for your benefit or the hundreds of others who make similar unsubstantiated claims. My posts are mainly for the silent ones who may stumble upon these threads and see the points you and others make, which are supported by absolutely nothing. I take the opportunity to post what the science says. I imagine someone will come along and learn something about what the science actually shows. I know I learned quite a bit by doing that very thing. It's easy to fall for the sophistry laid out by you and others like you. Left unchallenged I fear some will. So I challenge it with what the science actually says, rather than what you vaguely posit is going on in the scientific community. I don't expect you to learn a thing, but I appreciate the opportunity to once again set the record straight. Have a good night.”
“Metaphors are a bad plan in this context but in your case my claim is that the gun fired and the bottle did not shatter. If you do not understand the feedbacks and processes that are posited to counter the CO2 induced warming I suggest you read further. Start with the processes that the warmers claim nullified the warming form 1940 to 1978. Then look at the processes the warmers claim nullified the warming from 1998 until now. Then look at the processes posited by skeptics.
"CO2 went up so it warmed" simply does not cut it scientifically. Everybody knows that. If it did we would not be here, nor would we need these supercomputer models to try to tease the observed temperature history out of the CO2 rise. You need to think about where the science is, and why it is there.”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 10, 2010 at 02:28:00
“If CO2 did not cause the warming then what did? You just hand your hands and say we don't know. That is not science, that is not being skeptical. For that you would have to have some alternate theory that can be tested and you don't have that.
That is why you are a denier. Faced with overwhelming evidence you simply ignore it and say we don't know what is happening.”
“I never said that warming has stopped while the temperature goes up. The average temperature has not gone up. I understand very well how trends are measured.”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 10, 2010 at 02:20:26
“"The average temperature has not gone up."
Wrong. The average temperature in the 2000's was higher than the 90's. When the average temperature increases, that means it went up! Why do you keep claiming up is down and down is up! This is always where denier arguments wind up. Complete denial of reality and logic.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 22:15:03
“If it's true that you understand then you are being purposefully misleading.”
“CO2 is not just "in" the global food supply. CO2 is the global food supply. Everything else is a trace element, or what we call a vitamin of mineral. That CO2 is the food supply is part of what is meant by saying that that life on earth is carbon based.
Unfortunately, but no doubt deliberately, the Clean Air Act includes a relatively recent definition of "pollutant" that includes any emission that induces climate change, independent of the fact that it is the global food supply. Given this (probably faulty) legal definition the Supreme Court had no choice but to rule that CO2 is a pollutant under the Clean Air Act. EPA, who no doubt wrote this legal definition, has (as always) jumped to the occasion and is trying to regulate CO2 emissions as a pollutant.
The fact remains that CO2 is the global food supply, and that natural emissions are from 20 to 30 times human emissions, for which we must be thankful, so we can all eat. CO2 per se does not disrupt ecosystems, on the contrary it feeds them.”
“Science is about precision, so it is important to be precise. Nothing you have said contradicts my point that it has not warmed for 12 years or more. The decade of the 2000's is indeed warmer than that of the 1990's. I did not say it wasn't. My precise point is that if you take a linear trend from 1998 to today it is flat, with no warming. Warming means an upward trend. It may well be warm but it is not warming. There is a basic difference.
Also try to stay on point. My point was that this is an example of the fact that temperature change does not correlate well with CO2 change, that is all. CO2 went up significantly in the 2000's but the temperature did not. Likewise for the middle 20th century when temperature went down for around 40 years, while CO2 went up. In fact the temperature has only trended upward for one 20 year period during the last 70 years, while CO2 has risen steadily throughout the 70 years. This simply does not offer prima facie support for the hypothesis of CO2 induced warming. That is my only point at this point.
Keep in mind that we are not debating the science here. We are debating whether there is any science to support skepticism, as Lehner claims there is not. No facts he says. Clearly he is wrong.”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 10, 2010 at 02:23:58
“"if you take a linear trend from 1998 to today it is flat"
Not in any normal mathematics. You must be using some bizzaro denier form of math. Down is not up, and up is not down, no matter how much you keep claiming that it is. Using real math, the Earths temperature went up, not down.”
Only people who want to misrepresent the science (or the willfully ignorant)make claims about short term trends being meaningful or imply that AGW theory says there should be a precise rise in temps matching the rise in CO2. Scientists don't ignore short term and internal variability. Those who misrepresent the science do. That is precisely why it is bogus to pick a short time frame and make any meaningful claims about climate forcings.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 22:07:05
“"Keep in mind that we are not debating the science here. We are debating whether there is any science to support skepticism, as Lehner claims there is not. No facts he says. Clearly he is wrong."
You claim I misrepresented you, yet here you are misrepresenting the author by taking comments out of context. He lays out four basic tenets he claims are not being debated in the scientific arena, therefore it is incumbent upon journalists to stop pretending there is doubt in the scientific community. Those tenets are:
1. Burning fossil fuels adds CO2 to the atmosphere.
2. CO2 is accumulating in the atmosphere.
3. CO2 is a greenhouse gas.
4. Temps are going up as a result.
Your point about about fitting a line to two endpoints is a complete red-herring. It is totally irrelevant. Trends aren't found by picking an anomolous year and fitting a line the an endpoint. You simply cannot draw any relevant scientific or meaningful statistical conclusions from this practice, so the etnire point is totally and unequivocally irrelevant. Statisticians have specific reasons and methods for choosing time frames in order to draw meaningful conclusions. For example http://tamino.wordpress.com/2010/08/13/changes/”
“You have misconstrued my position into something silly. Assuming this was not deliberate it exemplifies a common feature of the debate, namely that warmers often do not understand what skeptics are saying.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:45:05
“"Reading all the comments below makes it clear that there is a significant scientific debate."
What part of your position did I misconstrue? You claim that comments on a HuffPo article debating scientific points means a scientific debate exists. That's absurd. Completely indefensible. You still have failed to point out where inthe scientific literature the debate exists over the specific points raised by the author. He says the science is settled on 4 specific points.
1. Burning fossil fuels adds CO2 to the atmosphere.
2. CO2 is accumulating in the atmosphere.
3. CO2 is a greenhouse gas.
4. Temps are going up as a result.
Below you you agree with all these points. Period. That's the point of the article. The author says that journalists need not pay attention to and cite as experts (for the sake of "balance") those who dispute any/all of the above points. You seem to be going far out of your way to agree with this, without admitting that you agree.”
“This effect is not generally disputed so it has little bearing on the climate debate. It is, if you like, the starting point for the debate, not the end. Many warmers do not understand this. They think the mere fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas settles the issue. It does not. (First a technical point, namely that CO2 does not trap heat, it merely lengthens the random walk heat takes before it escapes into space.)
The debate arises for two reasons. First, there are feedback mechanisms in the climate system that can, in principle, nullify the effect of added CO2. Whether they are operating, and to what degree, is an open topic of research. Second the effect is not observed, in the sense that the correlation between the CO2 increase and temperature rise is poor. For example, there has been no significant warming for at least 10 years, possibly longer, according to most estimates. So what role the CO2 increase plays, if any, is still an open scientific question. This is what skeptics are pointing out.
It is also worth noting that if there were no other factors at work the rise from doubling CO2 would be only about one degree, mostly in the early stages of the increase, which is not considered dangerous and may already mostly have occurred. The dangerous warming forecast is only obtained by invoking very large positive feedbacks, while minimizing negative ones. Skeptics question these assumptions as unfounded.”
MLaursen on Sep 9, 2010 at 15:00:07
“In addition to everything you have explained, it should also be said that questions about what, if anything, government should do about global warming is not even in the realm of science. The science behind global warming or climate change tells us very little about what we should or should not do about it -- yet, many people think that accepting the scientific consensus somehow implies that one must accept public policy proposals that are often mentioned in the same breath as the science.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:56:32
“"Many warmers do not understand this. They think the mere fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas settles the issue."
Lik who? The scientists seem pretty clear on the point of the greenhouse effect existing settling the issue of whether the greenhouse effect exists. I believe this is a known starting point for them, as is clearly spelled out in Spencer Weart's "The Discovery of Global Warming".
"The debate arises for two reasons."
That seems to contradict comments you made elsewhere.
"Skepticalscience.com is a useful site if one knows what to look for. Despite its name it is not a skeptical site. Rather it purports to refute the most prominent skeptical scientific arguments. Last I looked there were something like 120 separate skeptical arguments responded to. That alone shows there is a lot of scientific debate."
The 120 rebuttals are to a huge variety of (not necessarily scientific) skeptical claims, some of them relating to feedbacks and forcings, some of them relating to the relationship between temps and CO2, but the vast majority of them unrelated to both points. So you are claiming the debate arises for two reasons, as well as admitting that the greenhouse effect is not generally dsiputed, yet you are also claiming that the existence of 120 rebuttals to skeptic arguments means there is a lot of scientific debate, and oddly enough one of those 120 points is on an issue you say is not really in dispute!”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:48:02
“If CO2 is proven in the laboratory to absorb heat, then what do you propose is the mechanism that negates this basic physical property when CO2 is in the atmosphere? And if CO2 is not to blame for the Earth's warming temperatures, then what is? Why did the temperature continue to rise when the sun's output was at a minimum if it was not CO2? Why is the Earth's infrared radiation measured from space decreasing if it is not caused by CO2? Why is the drop in radiation at exactly the wavelengths that are absorbed by CO2 if it is not CO2? If CO2 is not absorbing that heat, then what is? And what ever is absorbing the heat, wy would the additional heat not raise the Earth's temperature, especially when measurement's indicate the Earth's temperature is rising?
There is no other cause that can answer these questions other than increased CO2 in the atmosphere, trapping heat, causing the Earth's temperature to rise.
Your position is like seeing a gun fire at a bottle, seeing the bottle shatter, and saying "The bottle shattering has not been proven" and "The role of the gun in the bottle shattering is unclear", and "I didn't see the bullet shatter the bottle, so it is still an open scientific question as to what exactly caused the bottle to shatter".”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:47:12
“CO2 prevents infrared (heat) from the Earth's surface from reaching space. That's what we mean when we say that CO2 traps heat.
"For example, there has been no significant warming for at least 10 years, possibly longer,"
2005 was the warmest year ever recorded up to that point and notably, that was less than 10 years ago. While the warmest years, like 1998 generally occur during El Nino events, 2005 was not an El Nino year. http://climate.nasa.gov/news/index.cfm?NewsID=249
Tied for the second warmest are these years: 1998, 2002, 2003, 2006 and 2007 and 2009. Note that 5 of 6 of those were in the past ten years.
The past 12 months have been the warmest 12 month period ever recorded. Nature doesn't have to follow humans calendar conventions for the start and end of the year. Interestingly, this occurred during the deepest solar minimum in at least 100 years.
The average of the 2000's was much higher temperature than the 90's. The decade over decade change was the largest ever measured. The coolest year of the 2000's, 2008, was still warmer than all but one of the 90's. If the temperature was the stock market, it would be a very strong bull market. Not only has warming not ceased, it is accelerating.
Saying that warming has stopped while the temperature goes up is not being a skeptic, it is being a denier.”
“Reading all the comments below makes it clear that there is a significant scientific debate. Lehner is therefore wrong in claiming there is no such debate. And the press is right to report the debate as it continues to unfold, in fact it has an obligation to do so. The public debate reflects science at work.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 09:29:25
“The comments on a HuffPo article aren't representatve of what is happening in the scientific community. The public debate reflects a debate in the public arena. The public debates things like a vaccine-autism link, which is not a scientific debate. Same for evolution-Creationism. There is no scientific debate about whether evolution or Creationism explains the diversity of life. There is a public debate. To conflate the two is illogical.
Lehner is claiming there is no *scientific* debate that burning fossil fuels emit vast amounts of carbon dioxide, that carbon dioxide is accumulating in the atmosphere, that the excess carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, and that temperatures are rising as a result. He's absolutely correct. Not even the most prominent scientific skeptics in relevant fields, such as Roy Spencer, debate these points. Their issues lie with actual uncertainties, such as how much warmer the planet will get as a result of increasing amounts of CO2. Lots of scientists want to think they are a modern day Galileo and wish to dispute the basic tenets of AGW, but that doesn't mean a scientific debate still exists. Wishing it were so doesn't make it so.”
“CO2 is not pollution, it is the global food supply. Watching a child grow is watching atmospheric CO2 being reprocessed.”
NickDearth on Sep 9, 2010 at 08:39:02
“Under a broad definition a pollutant is a substance that causes instability to an ecosystem. CO2 fits that description, whether it is in the global food supply or not. The EPA draft found that found that carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulphur hexafluoride are causing changes in the global climate. The high levels of the six gases in the atmosphere are "the unambiguous result of human emissions" and are responsible for more intense heat waves, storms and wildfires; increased flooding and droughts; and other "effects on public health and welfare," the agency said.”
“1. I suppose my ranking is based on the number of people involved (including their rank) and the length of time the issue has been unresolved. I think it ranks with the Copernican revolution and the evolution controversy.
2. I can't list the unresolved scientific issues, as there are thousands. See my response to your skepticalscience.com posting above for the derivation. If you want to pursue this in detail you can join my Yahoo! group at www.climatechangedebate.org
3. Science is not determined in blogs but it is found in blogs. The blogs accurately exhibit a lot of the serious scientific arguments. In fact one can track a given argument back through progressively more expert blogs right into the peer reviewed journal literature. Thus Lehner's claim that there are no facts on the side of the skeptics is factually incorrect. Serious arguments are available for public inspection.”
NickDearth on Sep 8, 2010 at 19:08:44
“1. So you have arbitrary, not quantified criteria to back up an irrelevant and hyperbolic claim? OK. Moving on.
2. Your response to the very specific claims in the links I provided was to wave your arms and make vague statements. To say that was unconvincing is to put it VERY mildly. Your link does not work, nor does it really matter. There are dozens of sites that do the very same thing. I will stick to the ones written by and commented on by relevant, publishing and/or knowledgable scientists. Feel free to jump in to any of those (Skeptical Science being one). Let me know what name you are posting under and I will look for you to post the *scientific* rebuttals to what the scientists are publishing. You can also try RealClimate, Only In It For The Gold, Scholars and Rogues, Open Mind, Rabbet Run, Jules' Blog, Stoat, Deep Climate, or several others.
3. The author's claim was based on the idea that AGW is real, whereas some claim it is not. He spells out the very simple points supporting this (CO2 emissions from humans leading to an increased greenhouse effect). Deniers have no facts in opposition to this, despite whatever the blogs say. If you can find the published science that withstands the slightest bit of scrutiny and opposes these simple notions, please show us.”
“Skepticalscience.com is a useful site if one knows what to look for. Despite its name it is not a skeptical site. Rather it purports to refute the most prominent skeptical scientific arguments. Last I looked there were something like 120 separate skeptical arguments responded to. That alone shows there is a lot of scientific debate.
Of course the responses are supposed to end the debate, but they do not. Note that in many cases there are 3 or 4 distinct scientific claims made in a single response. So there are maybe 400 response arguments. What is not shown is that there are well known skeptical counter arguments to each of these 400 anti-skeptical arguments. And once again, in many cases there are multiple lines of counter argument. And as always, debaters on both sides proffer peer reviewed papers to support their case.
In short the scientific debate is huge. Skepticalscience.com's 120 skeptical arguments are merely the tip of the iceberg of debate. There are actually several thousand scientific arguments in play. Most are active areas of research, which is why the news keeps coming.”
NickDearth on Sep 8, 2010 at 17:41:13
“You said a lot and said absolutely nothing at all. Lots of bluster and vague statements with nothing substantive to support it. My points remain, as does every single point on Skeptical Science. The threads there are open. Sign up and post your counterarguments. Simple as that.”
“There are alternative explanations for some of the "above effects" that you list. More importantly, there are other observed effects which are equally strong evidence against CO2 induced warming. In fact you have simply selected the best evidence for your hypothesis. For example, if you had continued your string of "were hotter than's" you would have hit an equally long string of "were cooler than's" but you didn't.
Contrary to Lehner's extreme claim, the lists of facts pro and con are both long. That is precisely the problem. Each side thinks it can rebut the other side's list but the lists are still there nonetheless. Denying their existence, when they are so visible, is simply silly.
Most importantly perhaps, there are a host of natural effects that we simply cannot explain, so we do not know if they are operating today or not. Abrupt natural warming for example, or the little ice age. What we do not understand, we cannot rule out.”
NickDearth on Sep 8, 2010 at 21:02:56
“Where are the list of *facts* that run counter to the author's claims that humans have increased CO2 from burning fossil fuels, CO2 is a greenhouse gas, CO2 is accumulating in the atmosphere and temps are rising? I will await your "long" list of facts. Actually I'd pretty much settle for any verifiable facts from you at this point :-)”
“Have you not seen the cooling forecasts? There are bunches of them around. People are mostly looking at solar cycles and ocean cycles, such as the PDO. The facts in this case are mostly statistical models, because we do not understand the physical mechanisms involved. Time scales are out to several decades, or more. The long term concern is that since we don't know what caused the little ice age we don't know if we are entering another one.”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 8, 2010 at 16:33:32
He asked you for facts. According to mggwa there are facts that support cooling.
Forecasts are not facts. For instance, I can forecast that I will become a billionaire next month. That is not a fact.
"we don't know if we are entering another one". And we have no evidence that we are entering another one. No plausible theory that we are entering another one. Typical denier argument: just make stuff up.”
NickDearth on Sep 8, 2010 at 16:26:37
“References for your claims would be fantastic. I have heard of solar cycles and the PDO. I have seen people saying global cooling is happening/imminent/pick a time frame. I have not seen a single claim hold up to the slightest bit of scrutiny and I have never seen a credible prediction that internal variability (PDO) or the solar cycle will overcome the long-term warming trend driven mainly by increases in CO2 emissions.
A good deal is known on the causes of the LIA, as well.
I will await your scientific references fro your claims.”
“Indeed, your quote shows that Lehner has no idea what the scientific debate is all about. Science is about explaining the specifics of what we see happening, not vague hypotheses. The fact is that we cannot explain the behavior of the global temperature -- warming and cooling in cycles -- simply using the hypothesis of human induced warming. Thus the skeptics are skeptical. Those who believe the hypothesis have developed elaborate models to try to explain the observed temperature changes, but the skeptics are unconvinced. Too much is left out. There is clearly a great deal of natural warming and cooling involved and it is far from clear how much, if any, of the intermittent warming is due to human influence, at least in the skeptics' eyes. That the human induced component, if any, is dangerous is even less settled. The skeptics know the science very well. They are neither ignorant nor stupid, nor are they few in number.
This is a legitimate controversy, so the medium is the message. It is news. Lerhner may well wish the news would go away but it will not. Bashing the press is a stupid strategy.”
BlackbirdHighway on Sep 8, 2010 at 16:46:45
“The amount of CO2 has increased: very explainable.
The extra CO2 is the type produced by burning fossil fuels: very explainable.
The Earth's surface temperature has increased: very explainable.
The ocean temperatures have increased: very explainable.
Satellites in space measure a decrease in the amount of infrared radiation coming from the Earth; very explainable.
Nighttime lows have increased in temperature faster than daytime highs: very explainable.
The lower atmosphere temperature has increased; very explainable.
The upper atmosphere temperature has decreased; very explainable.
The Arctic ice is melting: very explainable
Glaciers all over the world are melting: very explainable.
Greenland is losing ice: very explainable
Antarctica is losing ice: very explainable
The oceans are becoming more acidic: very explainable
Your argument is where the vague hypotheses are to be found. You don't offer any specifics, just hand waving: "we're not convinced" and "we cannot explain the behavior". You are not at all convincing.”
“Climate change is one of the greatest scientific controversies in history. Many people, including scientists, accept the hypothesis of human induced (and dangerous) global warming, while many others, including scientists, do not. Despite tens of billions in research over more than 3 decades, the science is still perfectly inconclusive, so each side finds plenty of evidence to support its position. The blogs on both sides display a great deal of scientific depth. To deny this is to deny the obvious.
However, it is not a sporting event, rather it is a political and ideological struggle. The science and the ideology are inseparable, because the weight of evidence is in the eye of the beholder. Reasonable people of good will often look at the same evidence and come to opposite conclusions, and so it is with climate change. The press is right to report it as a contest, for it is a struggle of ideas.”
NickDearth on Sep 8, 2010 at 15:50:46
“"Climate change is one of the greatest scientific controversies in history."
It is? Explain how you came up with the rankings, please.
"...the science is still perfectly inconclusive...
I'm not really sure what "perfectly inconclusive" means, but I'd like to know which parts of the science, specifically, are not conclusive. Please be very specific and provide citations where possible.
"The blogs on both sides display a great deal of scientific depth. To deny this is to deny the obvious."
I disagree. Totally. More than that, I find this to be terribly irrelevant. Science isn't determined in blogs, much to the dismay of every wannabe scientist and D-K sufferer out there.”