This is a continuation of a remarkable thread that has now received 10,000 comments running to well over a million words. Unfortunately its size has become a problem and this is the reason for the move.

The history of the New Statesman thread goes back to December 2007 when Dr David Whitehouse wrote a very influential article for that publication posing the question Has Global Warming Stopped? Later, Mark Lynas, the magazine’s environment correspondent, wrote a furious reply, Has Global Warming Really Stopped?

By the time the New Statesman closed the blogs associated with these articles they had received just over 3000 comments, many from people who had become regular contributors to a wide-ranging discussion of the evidence for anthropogenic climate change, its implications for public policy and the economy. At that stage I provided a new home for the discussion at Harmless Sky.

Comments are now closed on the old thread. If you want to refer to comments there then it is easy to do so by left-clicking on the comment number, selecting ‘Copy Link Location’ and then setting up a link in the normal way.

Here’s to the next 10,000 comments.

Useful links:

Dr David Whitehouse’s article can be found here with 1289 comments.

Mark Lynas’ attempted refutation can be found here with 1715 comments.

The original Continuation of the New Statesman Whitehouse/Lynas blogs thread is here with 10,000 comments.

4,543 Responses to “Continuation of the New Statesman Whitehouse/Lynas blogs: Number 2”

Pages: « 177 78 79 80 81 [82] 83 84 85 86 8791 » Show All

  1. 4051
    manacker Says:


    Welcome back.


  2. 4052
    Brute Says:

    Tony N,

    The new setup looks great.

    [TonyN: Thanks Brute! I was expecting everyone to say, "It all looks different and that's horrible". Just goes to show that not all climate sceptics have a conservative outlook.]

  3. 4053
    tempterrain Says:

    Yes the new format looks good.

    I gave up commenting for Lent :-) Anyway its over now but I do think that comments like the one below show that I am essentially wasting my time, and why I should really give up .

    “CO2 is a natural trace gas in our atmosphere, which is essential for all life on our planet, therefore it is not a pollutant;”

    There are lots of other things which are essential for life too. For example, nitrates in river water are necessary, in the right small quantities for the growth of aquatic plants which are, in turn, necessary to support all the other life, like fish, otters, wildfowl etc that would be expected to be found in a healthy river.

    So does this mean that nitrates can never be a pollutant? Well, according to the above logic, if that’s the right word for it, no it can’t. Yet, we all know if too many nitrates are added to a river from say a sewage outlet or a runoff from fertilisers used on farms then big problems can result.

    You don’t really need me to point this out to you. You are quite capable of working it out for yourself. In fact, I’d be surprised if you hadn’t already worked out that your logic was faulty, but had decided to say nothing because it undermined one of your pet arguments.

    A characteristic of a scientist is that he, or she, is keen to look for these sort of inconsistencies and avoid them.

  4. 4054
    peter geany Says:

    PeterM Welcome back, but please lets not descend into stupidity. CO2 is not a pollutant and you know it. Just like water is not a pollutant but if you drink too much it kills you. We animals must have CO2 and not just the bit we expire. CO2 only becomes poisonous to animals and humans at concentrations that it would be inconceivable to achieve in our atmosphere given current conditions.

    Now of far more importance to us all at present is the implosion that looks like it is finally going to happen with the Euro. I have been commenting this is going to happen for some time, but don’t wish to take any credit for being clever here. On the contrary this has been forecast by experts both economic and political for sometime. What is really interesting is the extent to which MSM organs such as the BBC are ignoring the issue.

    Just to give a flavour of this half the banks in Germany are insolvent. Its only because they have some strange way of accounting for the Capital in these banks that this issue is being ignored or covered up. If you assume that Greece, Ireland and Portugal will all default then the European central bank itself is insolvent. The latest crisis has kicked off in Greece because the IMF wanted reassurance from the EU (not Greece you note) that their next payment to Greece wasn’t good money after bad.

    Now here in the UK we have several strange things happening, or not so strange depending on your point of view. For 8 months or so there has been a concerted campaign in the media about cuts, without any real substance behind them. The campaign I believe has been aimed at the Lib Dem’s in Coalition who are feeling the heat because they in the main have promised things they could never deliver or never thought they could ever be in a position to deliver. This has left them vulnerable to criticism and the opposition has perhaps thought that the Coalition would collapse. If it did it would be the end of the Lib Dem’s as Scotland has demonstrated.

    I believe it is starting to dawn on the current Government that the Taxes they have increased are going to have a negative effect on the economy and not the positive effect on revenue they had hoped. We are starting to see them cut back on many things that seemingly were safe from cuts the first time around. These include many environmental study programs. Expect some whaling from the Lib Dem’s. Just perhaps those fully appreciate the extent of the Government Debt are starting to get their way.

    Chris Huhne the energy secretary looks like he may be in a spot of bother which will pile more pressure on the Lib Dem’s and the political classes. All these things could signal a seismic shift in the Governments attitude to spending on climate change. They have had a continuous line of business leaders to the steps of No 10 complaining about energy policies, policies that have so far increased prices, scored and own goal on inflation and stifled investment in manufacturing. We need to watch this space very carefully.

  5. 4055
    manacker Says:

    Peter Geany

    “Governments gone crazy” is not limited to the UK (where, hopefully, the excessive lunacy of the past Labor government on AGW will not be totally repeated). Will Chris Huhne survive? Will the windmill folly continue?

    Since the Fukushima disaster, German demonstrators has gone ballistic against nuclear plants and the government is reluctantly moving the deadline forward for shutting down all nuclear plants. Everyone is aware that moving out of nuclear will make reducing CO2 near to impossible, but the fear of added CO2 is apparently much less than the fear of a nuclear meltdown.

    Switzerland has also reacted and the government is now proposing that “no new nuclear plants” be built (leaving the door open for “modernizing” or “upgrading” – and expanding – existing plants). The talk is all about “renewables” here, but there is a strong lobby against more hydroelectric plants and everything else is peanuts.

    But all of this nuclear anxiety is causing the CO2 question to be pushed to the back burner here, as well.

    It looks like it’s also pretty much dead in the USA today, with Obama hardly mentioning greenhouse warming anymore (it’s obviously not a topic that will help him get re-elected next year).

    It also hasn’t started warming again, which makes the case for “urgent action on curbing CO2″ even weaker.

    So what is going to happen?

    Is the whole “dangerous AGW” movement imploding?

    Or are the proponents just waiting for some kind of a weather catastrophe somewhere in the world to blame on AGW in order to try to breathe some life back into the movement?

    Interesting times.

    It must all be pretty disappointing for PeterM.


  6. 4056
    tempterrain Says:

    Peter G,

    An air pollutant is defined, by the United States Code of Federal Regulations, as ” any agent or combination of such agents, including any physical, chemical, biological, radioactive (including source material, special nuclear material, and byproduct material) substance or matter which is emitted into or otherwise enters the ambient air.”

    “”emissions of which, in his (the EPA administrator) judgment, cause or contribute to air pollution which may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare”

    Carbon Dioxide has been defined as a pollutant since 2009 in the USA.

  7. 4057
    Brute Says:

    Wow Peter. Using the above definition, a case could be made for anything being a “pollutant”………..Oxygen, Nitrogen……….anything.

    It’s all dependent upon the (unelected) histrionic bureaucrat’s definition of what he deems needs to be regulated/taxed.

  8. 4058
    tonyb Says:

    Peter Geany

    Unfortunately I have to agree with everything you say. The net result is a huge amount of economic uncertainty including the implosion of parts of the euro and the potential dislocation of insolvent overseas banks who have managed to hide the true extent of their indebtedness. In the meantime we are spending money we haven’t got on extremely inefficient and unreliable sources of renewable power to try to solve a non problem. The net result is much higher costs for business-who will go elsewhere- whilst piling the agony on private households who are already highly indebted.

    We’re awaiting an announcement expected today about the building of 11 new nuclear power stations-we need 40. My power bills have doubled in 5 yrears and are expected to double again in another 4. Massive petrol taxes mean it is almost impossible to drive anywhere whilst new taxes on air travel make it increasingly difficult for the inmates of the UK to escape their asylum.

    The enormous costs we are being asked to bear will theoretically lower temperatures by .00007C over 40 years-which of course will make it all worthwhile.

    Unfortunately the green madness isnt abating at the heart of our govt…


  9. 4059
    Brute Says:

    Tony b,

    I know what you mean. I can’t get a break over here.

    Gold is down, silver is down, stocks and bonds are down. The value of the dollar is dropping.

    Food prices are sky high. Gas is over $4.00 per gallon. Taxes keep rising. Unemployment at 18%.

    People are spending less causing tax revenue shortfalls.

    This entire socialist Ponzi scheme is going to collapse.

  10. 4060
    peter geany Says:

    Brute, thanks for putting peter straight. That definition of a pollutant is a political one and not one normal people would recognise as being scientific.

    Other than that Oh my god what is happening!!!!! I was seething on Sunday when I learnt what the idiot Huhne was to announced today, and more so that PM himself seemed to ensure it would go forward. I calmed down on Monday when I learnt that there was a get out clause. So all it was in reality was another piece of Political theatre. How depressing it is that these people feel the need to play these games.

    I can confidently say it won’t happy, one because the industrial effort would be greater than that during WWII and we don’t have the capacity even if we turned our economy into a war economy, and two there is no money. This last point seems to completely pass by the likes of Chris Huhne. And just how did they calculate it will cost us £50 a year!!!!!!!!!!! By the way informed word is Huhne is toast.

    As if to poke me in the nose the BBC ran and article on the 10 o’clock news about German banks and their debt and the toxic debt of the European Central Bank. Does someone at the Beeb read you blog Tony????

    The spot of bother that the head of the IMF is in is going to have ramifications far beyond his job with the IMF. Its too early to judge what the man did but some of the wailing coming out of France points to this being just another example of what we have seen with the expense scandal. Public figures taking the P**S Hopefully the French press may look more closely at their public figures in future as it wasn’t as if they didn’t know this mans behaviour but turned a blind eye. I have worked for 2 people in my career who displayed similar behaviour. They were both untrustworthy and poor at their jobs. I wouldn’t expect this person to be any different.

  11. 4061
    Brute Says:

    Peter Geany,

    The IMF guy, (Strauss?) is currently locked up tight at Rikers Island…….(tough prison)………denied bail.

    The Socialist Party presidential candidate is charged with forcibly sodomizing the chamber maid during an encounter inside his $3,000.00 per night Manhattan New York hotel room (In the style and manner of Al Gore).

    Word is after she screamed bloody murder he hustled himself to the airport to skip town on an Air France jet that he apparently has on standby………….it seems that he has some sort of “agreement” with Air France wherein he simply tells them that he needs a seat and they accommodate him……….

    New York’s finest (police), boarded the plan and removed him from the flight.

    So, this hero of the Left………….this “crusader” for the “common man” is apparently living large; at the expense of the “little people”.

    Another Leftist phony baloney. I’m certain that his fellow inmates will provide ample opportunity for him to satisfy his “desires”.

  12. 4062
    Brute Says:

    Peter Martin,

    Does the above definition of “pollutant” include water vapor?

  13. 4063
    Brute Says:

    Chris Huhne under pressure from his own party over speeding ticket allegations

    To roars of laughter from colleagues, Meg Hillier, the shadow energy secretary, said Mr Huhne had adopted a “go-slow” policy on green issues and added that there was a need to “accelerate” the pace of reform.

  14. 4064
    tempterrain Says:

    Is water vapour a pollutant? I guess it would be possible to find an example of water vapour from fountains or steam emissions causing some sort of minor local problem. It could then be said to be a pollutant. However, generally, it isn’t. Excess water vapour in the atmosphere precipitates out quickly.

    The same isn’t true of CO2. It stays there for years. Naturally those who reject getting on for 200 yeras of science regarding CO2 and the GH effect don’t have any trouble denying that CO2 is a problem. So who’s right you or the science?

    I’m not sure why Chris Huhne is brought into this discussion. If you want a socialist perspective on the what he’s getting up to you could look up something like:

    I wouldn’t comment on the IMF guy, until after his trial, but I’d recommend reading Stieg Larsson’s Millenium trilogy and which does tackle this very issue. Besides that they are a cracking series of novels.

  15. 4065
    Brute Says:

    We’ll Pete, since water vapor accounts for 98% of the “greenhouse effect”, shouldn’t humankind be concentrating on tackling this insidious, harmful, pollutant? Or, does that make too much sense?

    I suppose it’s primarily because some clever “activist” hasn’t come up with any mechanism for taxing or regulating water vapor to date…….but, give them time.

    Can’t pin the blame on “greedy” oil companies or military industrial complex for expelling too much water vapor……….or can we?

  16. 4066
    Brute Says:


    There are three “shadow” boxes next to the 3 boxes at the bottom of the page where you’d type name, mail and website.

    At least that’s how it appears on my screens.

    [TonyN: Thanks for the feedback. The mangled comment form headers are the result of conflict with a plugin and this problem is on my ‘to do’ list.]

  17. 4067
    tempterrain Says:

    “….since water vapor accounts for 98% of the “greenhouse effect”, Not correct. This is just a made up number used by climate contrarians.

  18. 4068
    tempterrain Says:

    You may be interested in this web site:

    Of course, I’d probably disagree with the authors of this site on many social, political and economic issues. And these kind of disagreements are quite normal in any democratic society. However, they are smart enough, unlike many of those on the political right, to realise that it makes no sense at all for political disagreements to extend into scientific issues, even when the implications of the scientific case may make for some difficult political re-evaluations.

    Some comments that caught my eye were:

    “If Al Gore decides to champion the cleanup of a river that is clearly polluted, that fact does not make the river any more or less polluted, nor does it have any bearing on the merit of cleaning the river up. The same is true with climate change. Just because Gore wants to make something his own (he also once claimed to have invented the Internet) is no reason to cede it to him.”

    “A climate conservative will recognize that reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and shifting away from dependence on fossil fuels has many benefits to our nation beyond keeping our atmospheric chemistry in balance, and that there are very important economic and national security reasons to do so.”

    “While liberals tend to favor complex, overly prescriptive solutions, some who claim to be conservative are content to dismiss any policy that increases the cost of pollution as a tax.”

  19. 4069
    tonyb Says:

    Pete Ridley

    TonyN is always keen about keeping on topic for a thread.You said on the other one;

    “I was delighted when Professor Iain Stewart appeared on the screen talking about climate change, accompanied by his little girls whose future he is so concerned about in that regard. Only recently I had been watching Professor Stewart’s performance at the launch of the Green It Like You Mean It ( (GILYMI was a private “community interest” company – CIC – so I’m puzzled about why its launch took place in the House of Commons). All of the 8 presentations at that launch are revealing and I was able to form a better understanding of what motivated Professor Stewart to present the BBC’s Climate Wars program in the manner that he did. Stewart’s ” .. the fundamental science is pretty clear .. ” is just the kind of exaggeration that I have come to expect from Professor Stewart after looking into his “Climate Wars” offerings.”

    Unfortunately my browser doesnt seem to support that link for some reason.

    My opinion would be that Stewart is a old fashioned showman, and indeed I heard one of his students say he liked to illustrate his lectures with dramatic gestures. I think we saw that with him parading the hockey stick billboard through the streets and also in the experiment you mention-they are graphic and memorable and he comes over in real life as enjoying the stage he has been given.

    His tv personna annoys me no end, but in the flesh he’s a nice guy who courteously answered our questions.


  20. 4070
    peter geany Says:

    Peter M ““….since water vapor accounts for 98% of the “greenhouse effect”, Not correct. This is just a made up number used by climate contrarians.”

    This is a relief we don’t then have to worry about the feedback theory.

    Peter you are bringing back into your discussions nonsence about left and right and confusing this with policy choice. Brute sent you a nice video that explained the difference. Perhaps you can stick to the acedemic meaning of left and right wing rather than your own.

    You talk as if being a right winger is bad, when in actual fact it is what we shaould all aspire to because it means less government and more freedom. Left wing is bad because it is what Starlin and Hitler were. What you reallly mean is you are judging people on their response to policy choice. Its a bit like racial descrimination Peter.

  21. 4071
    Pete Ridley Says:

    As TonyN requested I am bringing this comment over from the “Is this Cameron’s neo-soviet moment?” thread (

    Hi tonyb, I wasn’t aware that Ernst-Georg Beck had sadly passed on so thanks for telling me. As for Ferdinand, he and I exchanged E-mails back in December and I found, as you say, that he is very affable. His position was QUOTE: .. As far as I know there is little doubt that the CO2 levels as measured in the ice cores are what they were at the time the bubbles closed: .. measurements of CO2 in surface air and from air in between the firn layers (top down from the surface to the solid ice) show the same levels of CO2 near the surface as in the atmosphere to slightly less at 72 m depth (10 ppmv difference at Law Dome). The in situ CO2 levels from firn and indirectly collected from already closed air bubbles in the ice at closing depth were identical within the accuracy of the methods (1.2 ppmv – 1 sigma). If there was a lot of adsorption, firn air measurements should show (much) lower CO2 levels, due to a much larger ice/air surface. CO2 migration in ice has been a hot topic lastly, but even in relatively “warm” cores (Siple Dome) it is minor (a broadening of the smoothing) and not measurable in the coldest ice cores…”.

    I don’t disagree with his first sentence but that is a long way from being the same as they were at the tim e the snow flakes pulled atmospheric air down tro thte top of the ice sheet.

    I don’t know why he focussed on adsorption because I didn’t mention it in my E-mail and was asking about size-dependent fractionation and collision v kinetic diameter. I did also make reference to Professors Jaworowski, Hartmut Frank and Hans Oeschger and if you are interested I can pass on a copy of our exchanges.

    I have just seen your comment about Professor Iain Stewart and suggest that you try Firefox browser, although I have just tried the link on Internet Explorer and it worked fine. As for Professor Stewart being a showman, maybe so, but he is also promoted as being a scientist and I do not believe that blatant exaggeration in order to get across a personal viewpoint does any good for the standing of science in the eyes of the general public. In my view it is essential that scientists are honest about whether what they are saying is fact or opinion and in my opinion Professor Stewart did not make that distinction in his presentation of Climate Wars, contrary to what Professor Brian Cox seems to think (see my comments of 17th and 18th on the other thread).

    As for responding politely to questions, he has not responded at all to the questions that I E-mailed to him in April about the misleading Climate Wars demonstration that I talked about in the “What does Iain Stewart’s CO2 experiment Demonstrate” (, another of my threads locked by The Naked Scientist admin team before the discussion was completed. The designer of that demonstration set-up, Dr. Jonathan Hare, had the decency to respond but not a sound from Professor Stewart. Have you read the description of the set-up that Dr. Hare provided on his “The Climate Wars CO2 is a greenhouse gas” thread ( and watched Professor Stewart’s video presentation of that “CO2 demonstration” to which he links (

    I look forward to your reaction to my threads on The Naked Scientists forum, meanwhile, it is interesting that this thread involves commentary about staunch environmentalist Mark Lynas. It was he who started me on my 4-year journey from very concerned grandparent to CACC sceptic after reading a review of his propaganda booklet “Six Degrees: Our Future on a Hotter Planet” (

    I wondered if there was any connection between The Sunday Times and New Statesman and Google brought up this Quote: .. Scientists predict that global temperatures will rise by between one and six degrees over the course of this century and Mark Lynas paints a chilling, degree-by-degree picture of the devastation likely to ensue unless we act now!”Six Degrees” is a rousing and vivid plea to choose a different future.’ Daily Mail ‘The saga of how, in the world as imagined by thousands of computer-modelling studies, global warming kicks in degree by degree. “Six Degrees”, I tell you now, is terrifying.’ Sunday Times ‘Brilliant and higly readable.’ Sunday Times ‘Buy this book for everyone you know: if it makes them join the fight to stop the seemingly inexorable six degrees of warming and mass death, it might just save their lives.’ New Statesman ‘An apocalyptic primer of what to expect as the world heats up!it’s sobering stuff and shaming too. Despite its sound scientific background, the book resembles one of those vivid medieval paintings depicting sinners getting their just desserts.’ Financial Times ‘Gripping ***.’ The Scotsman ‘Mark Lynas!has time-travelled into our terrifying collective future!Go with him on this breathtaking, beautifully told journey!I promise that you will come back!determined to alter the course of history.’ Naomi Klein, author of ‘No Logo’ ‘Clear, lucid and informative.’ New Statesman ‘A thoroughly engaging and well-researched book.’ Times Literary Supplement ‘Written with passion and packed with an impressive amount of information.’ The Guardian ‘In this highly accessible book, Lynas lays out just what we can expect with each progressive temperature rise, before stating exactly what needs to happen regarding decreasing carbon emissions, among other things. This stuff used to be the preserve of scientists and governments. As Lynas makes painfully clear, it is now our problem, too.’ Metro Independent
    `This book is not for the faint-hearted…Lynas gives us something think about .. UNQUOTE.

    Lynas certainly gave me something to think about and I thought about it very hard indeed. I realised that he was simply scare-mongering in the manner that Professor Steven Schneider encouraged back in 1989 (see my comment of 18th May @ 11:46 am on the other thread). Careful research of that booklet reveals numerous distortions and omissions that I drew to Lynas’s attention on his blog in 2007/8 but he never responded and eventually closed his blog to comments. If you are interested I commented on this on Lynas’s “Why it’s wrong to preach climate justice” article at the New Statesman on 1st February 2010 ( It seems that Mark has now closed all of the relevant blogs – I wonder why.

    Best regards, Pete Ridley

  22. 4072
    manacker Says:


    Here is a study that says:

    Water vapor is the most important greenhouse gas!
    In a very rough approximation the following trace gases contribute to the greenhouse effect:
    60% water vapor
    20% carbon dioxide (CO2)

    The rest (~20%) is caused by ozone (O3), nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4), and several other species.

    This report concludes:

    Due to the so called “greenhouse effect” – caused by atmospheric trace gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2), ozone (O3), and water vapor (H2O) – infrared radiation from the earth is stored temporarily in the atmosphere. Of all these trace gases, water vapor represents the most important constituent. It contributes to the natural greenhouse warming process by approximately 60%. Water vapor amplifies the anthropogenic contribution to greenhouse warming through a positive feedback. This amplification is counteracted by the increased reflection off clouds. How these two factors combine in the real atmosphere still remains an open question.

    Sounds reasonable to me, Peter (except I would have written “absorbed temporarily and re-radiated by” instead of “stored temporarily”).

    NCDC tells us:

    Water Vapor is the most abundant greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, which is why it is addressed here first. However, changes in its concentration is also considered to be a result of climate feedbacks related to the warming of the atmosphere rather than a direct result of industrialization. The feedback loop in which water is involved is critically important to projecting future climate change, but as yet is still fairly poorly measured and understood.

    Also makes sense to me (especially the “poorly measured and understood” part).


  23. 4073
    manacker Says:

    Pete Ridley

    You cite (4071) a quote from the review of Lynas’ “Six Degrees”:

    Quote: .. Scientists predict that global temperatures will rise by between one and six degrees over the course of this century and Mark Lynas paints a chilling, degree-by-degree picture of the devastation likely to ensue unless we act now! ”Six Degrees” is a rousing and vivid plea to choose a different future.’

    To quote another part-time philosopher: “I’m getting that déjà vu feeling all over again”.

    Back in 1988 James E. Hansen also “painted a chilling picture” of how our temperature would rise above that seen in the “Alithermal and Eemian Times” if we did not stop CO2 emissions.

    Problem is, it never happened. Hansen’s temperature forecast for “scenario A” (business-as-usual, as we actually had) is off by a factor of 2X compared to the actual record!

    OK. Lynas can be excused for making silly scare mongering predictions. After all, he’s just a confused writer and not a scientist. And, what the hell, someone might actually buy his book.

    But when Hansen (supposedly one of the great climate “gurus”) makes such a silly mistake, that’s a different story.

    And when he later stonewalls claiming his forecast was right, after all, rather than admitting and correcting his mistake that’s plain idiotic.


  24. 4074
    manacker Says:


    Is this a recent picture of Professor Iain Stewart?


    PS Or is it Mark Lynas?

  25. 4075
    Pete Ridley Says:

    Max (Anacker), just before reading your comment about the father of CACC propaganda, Professor James Hansen I had searched on – “James Hansen” “ice core” CO2 – and came across an interesting recent paper of his (et al) “Earth’s Energy Imbalance and Implications” in which they say that “ .. Hansen and Sato (2011) show that confidence in this fast-feedback climate sensitivity is increased by data for the entire 800,000 year period in which GHG amounts are known accurately from ice core records .. GHG amounts are known throughout the industrial revolution from ice core data .. In the period of precise ice core CO2 measurements, covering the past 800,000 years, CO2 varied between 170 and 280 ppm, until human burning of fossil fuels and deforestation of the past century” ( No expression of any doubt about those estimates of past atmospheric CO2 levels, but neither is there any indication of why he is so convinced that those ice core measurements are representative of the actual atmosphere during those 800,000 years. If anyone can point me towards anything of Hansen’s that justifies his confidence in those attempts to reconstruct past atmospheric CO2 concentration from air “trapped” in ice for decades, centuries and millennia then please let me know.

    Another recent paper of Hansen’s (et al) “The Case for Young People and Nature: A Path to a Healthy, Natural, Prosperous Future” ( says “ .. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted in burning of fossil fuels is, according to best available science, the main cause of global warming in the past century. It is also well-understood that most of the CO2 produced by burning fossil fuels will remain in the climate system for millennia. The risk of deleterious or even catastrophic effects of climate change driven by increasing CO2 is now widely recognized by the relevant scientific community .. The rapid warming during the past three decades is a forced climate change that has been shown to be a consequence of the simultaneous rapid growth of human-made atmospheric greenhouse gases, predominately CO2 from fossil fuel burning (IPCC, 2007) .. The basic physics underlying this global warming, the greenhouse effect, is simple .. ” but where is the evidence to support such a claim? Also (as far as I could see, although I soon became tired of their scare-mongering) Hansen et al made no attempt to explain the contradiction of the virtually static global mean temperature during the past decade.

    Their claim that “ .. the basic physics .. is simple .. ” is in direct conflict with the words of Professor Barry Brook, Adelaide University, in April 2009 “ .. There are a lot of uncertainties in science, and it is indeed likely that the current consensus on some points of climate science is wrong, or at least sufficiently uncertain that we don’t know anything much useful about processes or drivers. But EVERYTHING? Or even most things? Take 100 lines of evidence, discard 5 of them, and you’re still left with 95 and large risk management problem .. ” ( The significant words from Brook’s comment, which I totally agree with, are in the first sentence, the rest simply being an attempt to imply a far greater understanding than actually exists. That 95% figure appeared to be simply pulled out of the air using the IPCC’s favourite trick when trying to quantify uncertainty, the use of “expert opinion”.

    At this point I decided to waste no more time reading Hansen’s blather and instead followed up with a search on Max Anacker. The first link in the list was to your comment of 3rd April 2007 @ 4:16 am on the Thinkers Podium blog article “Global Warming For Dummies Pt II: Denialist Fallacies 5-10” ( I have no disagreement with much of what you said there, which was just around the time that I was made aware of Mark Lynas’s scare-mongering propaganda booklet “Six Degrees .. ”.

    In that comment you said with no hint of uncertainty “ .. Have atmospheric CO2 levels risen? Yes. From around 290 to 375 ppm over the period from 1900 to 2000 ..”. Am I correct in thinking that the 290ppm figure came from the measurement of air recovered from ice core? If so you must have good reason for believing that figure to accurately represent the mean global atmospheric CO2 concentration in 1900. Please would you share the evidence upon which the figure is based as it could resolve my concerns about “Another Hockey Stick Illusion?” (

    You also make indirect reference to Andrew Montford’s original “The Hockey Stick Illusion; Climategate and the Corruption of Science” ( when talking about QUOTE: .. Is the “warmth of the last half century unusual in at least the previous 1300 years”, as the IPCC report states? No. This is not true. It ignores the existence of the scientifically proven and historically well-documented global Medieval Warm Period, with temperatures higher than today .. UNQUOTE.

    As you said “ .. This all sounds pretty scary (as it is obviously intended to do by the writers) .. ”.

    BTW, why did you never go back to that blog to present your evidence, as Bruce predicted on 3rd April 2007 @ 7:18 am?

    Best regards, Pete Ridley

  26. 4076
    manacker Says:

    Pete Ridley

    It’s true, I never went back to that site after my one post there.

    Instead, I got involved at RealClimate, Grist, ClimateAudit and this site. I lurked at ClimateProgress, but gave up on that one pretty fast. RealClimate got on my nerves by censoring out posts that raised questions about the dogma. Then there were also a lot of AGW groupies on the site that kept hurling ad homs at any critics of the AGW party line, so that got annoying, as well.

    Montford’s Bishop Hill site also has interesting threads from time to time and I’ve spent some time there.

    At the time I collaborated with a blogger named PaulM (and a few others) on ClimateAudit to gather the many cases where IPCC exaggerated, distorted or fabricated data, ignored reports, included errors, etc. in its AR4 WG1 report. This ClimateAudit thread has now been abandoned, but PaulM has put this all together in a handy reference file:

    I was active on this site (Harmless Sky) for over two years. TonyN kept new topics coming in and the discussion here was lively with no personal insults being tolerated. (TonyN has slowed down right now as he is busy writing a book, but I still check in from time to time.)

    Right now I have spent time on Judith Curry’s site, Climate Etc. This site does not have any posters who use ad homs to get their point across, it has a balance of skeptics and believers and does not do any censoring of posts. Curry keeps the topics interesting.

    My interest in the global warming debate started around 2005, but I did not become a skeptic until after the AR4 SPM report in February 2007. When I started checking some of the claims there against the published literature, I found major discrepancies, which made me more skeptical of the whole story. That’s also when I started blogging.

    One can learn a lot by reading the posts of others (on both sides of the debate). Some are interested and curious about the “science” behind the AGW scare while others are more interested in the political implications. They often cite new studies, which are also interesting to read.

    It has also been interesting to watch how the “dangerous AGW” bandwagon has been derailed. It has been a fairly short time since Nobel Peace Prizes and an Oscar were handed out, the media were eagerly publishing scare stories, climate scientists and the IPCC were the heroes of the day, media darlings and Hollywood were jumping on board and the doomsayers were basking in glory.

    Since Climategate and the other revelations, the picture has changed. Public opinion has shifted drastically, skeptical scientists are coming out of the woodwork with new data and the media are no longer supporting the climate scare 100% as global temperature has stopped rising despite record CO2 levels and winters have become harsher across the northern hemisphere.

    It looks like the multibillion-dollar bandwagon is headed for the ditch. Another few years of “no warming” will probably mean the death blow as the “dangerous AGW” hypothesis is falsified by the facts on the ground. But it will be a slow, agonizing death, IMO, because of the billions of dollars involved.

    At any rate, it should be interesting to watch.

    As far as CO2 is concerned, I think any estimates prior to 1959 should be taken with a grain of salt. TonyB, another poster here, has done a lot of research on historical data, including discussions with the late Ernst Beck. He has also gathered a lot of data on the Medieval Warm Period. There have been many independent studies from all over the world using different paleo-climate technologies, which confirm a warmer MWP than today, along with the historical records as well as physical evidence. Yet IPCC ignores all this and stubbornly sticks to its “warmest in 1,300 years” story, even though the hockey stick, upon which this claim was originally based, has since been thoroughly discredited.


  27. 4077
    Brute Says:


    Another fib by the enviro-maniacs……….no surprise.

    Polar bear population – no change

  28. 4078
    Brute Says:

    England Expecting Hot/Cold/Wet/Dry Summer

    But Oates said southern Britain could be in for the same sort of long hot summer enjoyed in 1976. It could also turn out to be another 2007 when the jet-stream dropped after a lovely April, causing bad weather and then extensive flooding.

    “Whatever happens, this is going to be a memorable summer,” says Oates.

  29. 4079
    manacker Says:

    Brute (4078)

    That’s the kind of forecast I like – the headline carries the scaremongering message*, but the fine print adds the disclaimers.

    *(Although I really can’t imagine why anyone in the UK would be frightened by the prospect of a mild, sunny summer.)


  30. 4080
    tempterrain Says:


    You write “Left wing is bad because it is what Starlin and Hitler were. What you reallly mean is you are judging people on their response to policy choice. Its a bit like racial descrimination Peter.”

    You mean Stalin as in the dictator? Hitler too eh? What about Hirohito and the Japanese miltary leaders like General Hideki Tojo? Were they all secret Marxists whose only interest was in spreading worldwide proletarian revolution! You’ll be telling us next that Hirohito had given express orders that he wasn’t to be called “your highness’ or anything like that but instead to use the term “Comrade Emperor” !

    Racial discrimination? Oh dear. You feel that you might have to sit in the back of the bus. You’d not be allowed to use the same shops and beaches etc as us good liberal folks! Blood transfusions would have to be kept separate. You might be in favour of that yourself. I give a bottle or two from time to time, and blimey, you wouldn’t want any of that if you were ill would you? You might find yourself wondering if maybe climate scientists had a point after all. You might end up thinking the Daily Mail was all lies and the Guardian was a much better paper. :-)

  31. 4081
    tempterrain Says:

    If you are reading this, the chances are that Harold Camping’s Doomsday prediction hasn’t quite come true. I suppose he must be feeling a bit depressed about that this morning, but hey cheer up, Harold, its not the end of the world:-)

    Its easy to take the piss out of religious nutters like Harold but apparently there are 40% of Americans who may not have agreed with Harold over his precise timing, but nevertheless, they still believe that its all going to happen sometime before 2040. And of course if you think that, it hardly seems worth anyone’s while to worry about trivialities like climate change.

    I’m just wondering if the idea of universal suffrage may need some slight modification. Should people who suffer from strange delusions actually be allowed the vote? Its a difficult one.

  32. 4082
    peter geany Says:


    Lets just get it straight

    Left-wing = Total Government = Dictator, Monarch, military junta.

    Right-wing = Minimal Government = Anarchy

    The Western world is in between but Europe is sliding left with the un-elected EU.

    Policies that any government pursue have to be judged on how they are implemented and whether its by coercion or by agreement. But individual policys do not of themselves determin the flavour of a government.

    PeterM can you not see this?

  33. 4083
    Brute Says:

    Yes, Peter Martin, Harold Camping’s Doomsday prediction was a non-event.

    Everyone knows that he is a false prophet.

    Only Jimmie Hansen, Al Gore, Michael Mann and the rest of the global warming doomsday soothsayers know the true actual day of reckoning.

    Global Warming: The Gathering Apocalypse

  34. 4084
    Brute Says:

    The Apocalypse Vs. The Tipping Point

  35. 4085
    tempterrain Says:


    So you are saying the Japanese Empire in WW2 and pre-war times was essentially socialist?

    Anarchism, as I’m sure you’ll know, was quite a strong force in Republican Spain in the thirties. So according to you, they were the forces of the Right who fought against the Left-wing General Franco and the Spanish Army ?

    Have I got this “straight” now?

  36. 4086
    tempterrain Says:

    PS PeterG Maybe I’ve misjudged you! So you’re into this sort of thing?

  37. 4087
    Brute Says:

    Peter Martin,

    Certainly you cannot be this obtuse.

    Government control over:

    The Means of Production

    In essence, STATE control over the lives and property of the citizenry. Both the National Socialists (Nazi) and the Japanese Empire of the time were Socialist (National Socialist). Socialism is the step before Communism (both under the umbrella of Marxism). Totalitarian Socialism is probably a more accurate description in the case of Germany and Soviet Russia.

    A planned economy where activities are regulated, directed and for the benefit of, the STATE.

    No rights of the individual.

    As much as you would like to deny it, these are the historical political systems that you seek to emulate when you advocate Socialism.

  38. 4088
    tempterrain Says:

    So what about England in medieval times? There was ceratinly government control over all these things (means of production, movement, property) and we can include what could be written in books as ‘media’

    So this was socialism in action too?

  39. 4089
    manacker Says:

    Solar Highways

    Here is an “out of the box” idea that may not be that far “ahead of its time”.

  40. 4090
    manacker Says:


    Re 4087

    Believe they called that “feudalism”, but it had many of the same features Brute listed.


    PS Don’t think we want to go back there, either.

  41. 4091
    manacker Says:


    Should people who suffer from strange delusions actually be allowed the vote? Its a difficult one.

    Who defines “strange delusions” ?

    Would you include doomsayers, such as James E. Hansen or Al Gore in this category? That’s the hard call, Peter.


  42. 4092
    tonyb Says:


    Solar Highways.Interesting idea.

    I had an idea years ago that motorways could be turned into power stations.

    The road itself could respond to the pressure of vehicles by generating power. The central barrier is the ideal place for solar collectors and wind turbines (natural wind and that created by the speed of the vehicles) . Both the road surface and the central barrier could also generate hydro power using rainfall and the water thrown up by the vehicles. The advantages are that motorways are already inj place so would not destroy any more countryside (like wind farms do) and they are well maintained. Patent not pending


  43. 4093
    manacker Says:

    OK. The “Solar Highway” solution I just cited (4089) sounds good at first glance, but let’s look at it more closely.

    Let’s assume that 75% of the US Interstate highways could be converted to “solar highways”.

    There are 46,700 miles (75,200 km) of Interstate highways. 75% of this total could support 1,25 billion m^2 of solar panels, which (at 150 Watt/m^2) could generate 188 million kW.

    If solar panels have an average “on-line factor” of 25%, this would equal 407 billion kWh/year.

    The total US electrical power demand was ~4,000 billion kWh in 2009, so the “solar highways” could generate around 10% of US demand when fully installed.

    Solar panels are stated by the industry to cost around $12 per Watt installed. Allowing another $6 for paving modifications, tie into grid, etc., this program would cost $3.4 trillion to install.

    Coal-fired power plants have an on-line factor of 90%, so the 407 billion kWh/year would require an installed capacity of 52.2 million kW.

    Coal-fired plants cost $3,100 per kW installed in 2009. Assuming 10% higher cost today, this equals $180 billion to install.

    Gas-fired (combined cycle) plants also have an on-line factor of 90%, but only cost around $1,200 per kW (2008). Assuming 15% higher cost today, this equals $72 billion to install.

    So, at $3.4 trillion (and a less reliable supply) it looks like the “solar highway” solution has quite a way to go to become economically viable. If solar panels can come down to around one-tenth of current costs, it might become interesting.

    And, in any case, “solar highways” could only cover around 10% of the total US demand.


  44. 4094
    Brute Says:

    Peter Martin,

    Re: # 4088

    You attended government run/public school………correct?

    (Judging by your “grasp” of basic political systems, the answer to my question is patently obvious).

  45. 4095
    tonyb Says:

    Hi everyone

    I see Anthony Watts has just posted an excerpt from my latest article on the history and reliability of Historic temperatures.

    I would be pleased to have your input.


  46. 4096
    Brute Says:

    Spanish Socialists hammered in local elections

    You guys would be more knowledgable about this.

    What will be the result of this in regards to Spain’s “green” initiatives?

  47. 4097
    Brute Says:


    RE: Solar Highways

    It’s funny because I was thinking about this very thing last summer as I was driving through North Carolina.

    The United States has thousands and thousands of miles of interstate highways which occupy massive amounts of land……..not only the pavement itself but the median strip of divided highways, thousands of acres of land off of the shoulders and inside on ramps/off ramps.

    I thought…….”what a waste of perfectly good land”……The only things that grow there are grasses……..sometimes trees, but I believe the intent is to keep the shoulders and medians clear of obstructions. Sometimes the state will plant indigenous wildflowers in the median…….which is nice.

    Why couldn’t these pieces of land be used to erect solar panels to collect light used for photovoltaic?

    In the end, after running the numbers, (as Max did) the photovoltaic generators have no attractive payback. I believe that they would not even produce enough electricity to pay for themselves over the course of their useful life.

    Installation costs would be enormous as would maintenance costs. Also, the first drunk driver that ran off the road into a field of panels would sue the state for creating a hazard.

    Then I thought about glare blinding people’s vision…….on and on and on.

    I snapped myself out of my enviro/”free” energy fantasy and back into reality where the government has no business getting involved with the energy business…….

    Hell, government has failed at the government business…………so it was foolish of me to expect anything positive to come of government involvement with anything that would involve accountability or (gasp) making a profit.

  48. 4098
    manacker Says:


    If you are reading this, the chances are that Harold Camping’s Doomsday prediction hasn’t quite come true.

    Neither has Hansen’s.

    Guess all “nutters” (as you call them) are alike.


  49. 4099
    manacker Says:


    I very much enjoyed your article on WUWT.

    So did Judith Curry, by the way.


  50. 4100
    Brute Says:

    Polar Bear Population Remains Stable

    As deadly carbon levels continue to rise due to our slowness in submitting to a medieval subsistence existence imposed on a global level by a socialist oligarchy, let’s check in on the plight of the imperiled polar bears:

    The Polar Bear Specialist Group of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the organization of scientists that has attempted to monitor the global polar bear population since the 1960s, has issued a report indicating that there was no change in the overall global polar bear population in the most recent four-year period studied.

    “The total number of polar bears is still thought to be between 20,000 and 25,000,” the group said in a press release published together with a report on the proceedings of its 15th meeting.

    20,000 to 25,000 polar bears worldwide is exactly the same population estimate the group made following its 14th international meeting.

    However, just because the population of these human-hunting monsters is regrettably not going down is no reason for bureaucrats to refrain from destroying the economy on their behalf.

    In 2008, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service declared the polar bear a threatened species under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. The declaration was not based on an actual decline in the polar bear population but on the government’s conclusion that future declines in Arctic sea ice will reduce the bear’s habitat and put it at risk.

    That is, actual numbers don’t matter, because they can be replaced by fanciful suppositions about what might happen in the future if harmless and ubiquitous CO2 isn’t rigorously suppressed.

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