Time to accept that soon, the climate science deniers will be in charge

ANYONE who places any stock in safeguarding the current and future climate (and for that matter anyone who doesn’t) should prepare themselves for the risk that very soon, climate science deniers, contrarians and sceptics will be running the show.

All the polls suggest that a Liberal-led coalition will sweep to power at next year’s Federal election. Current Liberal leader Tony Abbott, if we care to remember, once described climate change as “crap“.

Views shared among Abbott’s parliamentary coalition ranks are that climate science is a “leftist fad” and a “work of fiction”.

The Liberal-National Party’s new Queensland Premier Campbell Newman and his environment minister Andrew Powell have both said they’re unable to accept the evidence of human-caused climate change, going against the scientific findings of the CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology and every major science academy on the planet.

Instead the Newmans and Abbotts of this world would rather stake the future of their constituents, our economies, our food supplies and our coastlines on the ideologically-blinkered pseudo-science of narrow vested interests and free market fundamentalists.

The latest snapshot on this inglorious race to the bottom came last week during the Queensland LNP state conference with a motion proposed by the Noosa LNP member Richard Pearson.

Pearson’s motion called on the state’s education minister John-Paul Langbroek to “remove environmental propaganda material, in particular post-normal science about ‘climate change’, from the curriculum and as adjunct material at exam time”. The motion was passed with party members overwhelmingly in favour.

LNP state representative Glen Elmes recently thanked Pearson in parliament for helping him win his Noosa seat at the state election earlier this year (perhaps those visits to Noosa by fake experts Christopher Monckton and Professor Bob Carter have rubbed off on the Sunshine Coast community).

As reported on Brisbane Times, Pearson said: “Few people understand that the so called science of climate change is really what can be defined as ‘post-normal’ science,” before apparently arguing that climate change went beyond traditional understanding of science based on experimentation and falsifiable theories.

To Pearson and others, the experiments of John Tyndall in 1859 which established the warming properties of what we now know to be greenhouse gases just didn’t happen. Not in existence either, are the reams of scientific papers over many decades which have attempted but failed to falsify the “theory” that burning fossil fuels is causing the world’s average temperature to rise, the oceans to become more acidic, the sea levels to rise and the ice at the poles to melt.

Also not in existence is last week’s study by almost 400 scientists (they’re everywhere) which showed that greenhouse gas emissions were increasing the likelihood of extreme weather events.

So far, Premier Newman has clarified that while Pearson’s motion has been passed by the party, this doesn’t mean it will be adopted by the parliamentary group which he leads.

“We will always do the right thing by Queenslanders ahead of the LNP”, he said, forgetting that just a few weeks ago he told Queenslanders the state was actually “in the coal business”.

Regardless, reaction to the motion has been damning. Anna-Maria Arabia, the chief executive of Science & Technology Australia, which represents almost 70,000 scientists and technology experts in Australia, described it as “extremely harmful”.

The secretary of the Queensland Teachers’ Union Kevin Bates told The Australian that it was important schools taught children to have an “open mind” (but presumably not so open that your brain falls out). “Our greatest concern is that this is a government that is going to interfere in the education process,” he said.

One blogging research scientist wrote that the motion was “preparing our children for future ridicule“.

Helping in this process is the Institute for Public Affairs, which has been sending out a discredited book on climate change to Australian schools. The book How To Get Expelled From School, written by Professor Ian Plimer, a member of the board of two of Gina Rinehart’s mining companies, was launched by former Prime Minister John Howard.

At the launch, Professor Plimer said “one of the aims of this book is to maintain the rage, because we have an election coming”.  Clearly, Professor Plimer sees his book as a political tool.

While consistently claiming that school children are being brainwashed by climate change “propoganda”, those who push this line rarely (if ever) produce any actual evidence. Pearson didn’t define what he meant by “propoganda” or “post normal science”.

Plimer’s genuine piece of propaganda was described by the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change, which analysed his book, as “misleading” and based on “inaccurate or selective interpretation of the science”.

It should not be forgotten that Tony Abbott isn’t afraid of pushing his own misinformed climate dogma on young schoolkids when given the chance.

In 2010, he told a class of five and six year olds in Adelaide: “OK, so the climate has changed over the eons and we know from history, at the time of Julius Caesar and Jesus of Nazareth the climate was considerably warmer than it is now.”

Nobody should be surprised that conservative politicians are unable to accept climate change science. A survey of political representatives at local, state and federal level carried out in late 2009 found that acceptance of climate change science was divided along political lines.

The University of Queensland survey found only about one third of Liberal/National politicians accepted the world was warming because of human activity. This compared to nine out of ten Labor politicians and practically all Greens.

Then there’s the “conservative white male effect” discovered by scientists (yes, them again) in the US linking the described demographic to the denial of human-caused climate change.

The Australian conservative political movement’s lurch towards the denial of human-caused climate science is like a mirror-image of the same enlightenment-crushing ideas of many US Republicans.

None of the recent candidates for the Republican presidential nomination (excusing possibly  John Huntsman) were able to publicly back climate change science, with some reverting to scepticism after previously accepting the issue.

Also in common with the US, is the existence of Tea Party-style “grassroots” activism in Australia helped along by free market think tanks that claim regulating greenhouse gas emissions is an attack on our freedom.

But rather than have an honest debate about a policy response to a real world risk, they sink to trying to discredit climate science while telling the public that carbon dioxide from burning coal is just “food for plants”.

Earlier this week the climate sceptic organisation the Galileo Movement, founded by two retired Noosa (!) businessmen, tweeted a link to a document written by Viv Forbes claiming coal was not dirty and CO2 was plant food. No mention anywhere in the document that Forbes is a director of Stanmore Coal.

Galileo’s patron is Sydney radio host Alan Jones, who recently told a crowd that climate science was “witchcraft” and a “hoax”.

Our descent into the deluded world of pseudo-science occupied by astrology, creationism, crystal healing and homeopathy is almost complete. It’s a place where progress dies and business-as-usual thrives.

UPDATE: This blog has been reposted on Brisbane Times…. and also on DeSmogBlog with a couple of additions.. and on ClimateProgress too.. oh, and it’s now on Independent Australia and also RenewEconomy.

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Author: Graham

Graham Readfearn is a Brisbane-based journalist. Go to the About page in the top navigation for more information.

53 thoughts on “Time to accept that soon, the climate science deniers will be in charge”

  1. Thanks for this grim overview. It rings true to me.

    However, I wonder whether you might stretch your horizons in a future post to consider the places in the world where climate change has not been politicised.

    For example, South Korea – where the recent carbon price legislation was passed by 146 votes in favour and 3 abstemtions. Or Copenhagen City Council that voted unanimously in favour of a strategy to be carbon neutral by 2025 (or something). How did Scotland set a goal for 100% renewable electricity by 2020 without bipartisan support.

    And what about the latest research that debunks the myth that it is rich western countries that have the best environmental protection laws? Bolivia leads the world in that.

    I could give more examples, but I’m sure you can do better.

    When we fix our eye only on Australia and the US (and Canada) we get a very warped picture of the world.

    BTW, I agree with your view about the next election, and accordingly I started a correspondence with my Federal member – a safe LNP seat. I figure he needs educating, at the very least. I don’t have much hope that anything will come of it, but a few facts and figures might give him pause to think.

  2. Excellent post Graham. Much more measured than my angry post which you linked to. I used to be proud to call myself a Queenslander but should Newman adopt this policy, I will be embarrassed to say that I am. I’m just glad I don’t live there anymore so my kids won’t be subject to that kind of lunacy. Its funny but Queenslanders have always prided themselves on their ability to toss a government to the curb, but I wonder how many are regretting that decision now?

  3. Graham, it’s depressing and yet true.

    As the impact of climate change begins to manifest itself more so, so many appear to be running into the comforting delusion that there is no such thing.

    I have said many times, it is the Counter-Enlightenment.

  4. Judging by Pearson’s reference to ‘post-normal’ science, I’d say James Delingpole’s visit was also influential. Delingpole sees this philosophy as proof that climate scientists and environmentalists are ‘watermelons’.

  5. “All the polls suggest that a Liberal-led coalition will sweep to power at next year’s Federal election.”

    That line says it all. The MAJORITY of Australians don’t want a carbon tax. The majority of Australians don’t like Labor anymore and I suspect that the majority of Australians don’t want their kids being subjected to propaganda at school.

    Gillard has dug Labor’s grave by introducing a tax she promised everyone that she wouldn’t. “There will be no carbon tax under a government I lead”… words that still ring as loud as the day they were spoken. Is it really a surprise that Labor is polling so poorly?

    Some people want the carbon tax, but all the polling suggests that most don’t. Majority rules, and after next year’s election it will most likely be a liberal rule. You might not like that, but you’re in the minority on this issue.

  6. There are almost no examples of political leaders who tried to be elected with the promise of a new tax and actually were elected. People can’t bring themslelves to vote for a new tax. The promise of a new tax is the promise of defeat.

    I can’t wait to see Gillard and her band of green fascists go down in flames.

    Can’t wait.

  7. And you actually think that there’ll be changes for a new tax that could help us. That’s too way impossible. And about the climate change, that happens every day. Just notice what’s happening around your environment.

  8. Very soon the scientifically educated will be advising their children not to have children of their own and to move south to a suitable location in the mountains. Somewhere that has a deep artesian water supply and arable land for self sufficiency and there build a bunker and arm themselves to defend it from ignorant LNP disciples who will be starving and poor.
    The LNP elite, in 30-40 years time will be encouraging ignorant Australians to breed as fast as possible so their children can be canon fodder in wars over food, water and arable land. Boat people will be welcomed but must serve 2 years in the military, defending their new country before being allowed to become Australians. LNP elite lifestyles will be unchanged and they will strive to keep the masses ignorant with religion and other propaganda.
    Has this movie been made yet?

  9. Excellent article! It’s funny about the witchcraft, pseudoscience bit etc. Lots of crap is talked, for sure.

    I tell you what- why doesn’t the scientific community publish a peer reviewed paper that finally nails these pesky denier claims? Just a simple one, one that shows how man made CO2 emissions have had a harmful impact on the climate. Empirical and all that, so not too complex for those denier nuts.

    That’ll show’em!! Their arguments will dissolve in seconds.

  10. @Skeptikal

    This continual harping about Julia Gillard’s broken promise is so childish. Get over it. When circumstances change, sensible people change their minds.

  11. Graham Readfern writes as though he actually knows the science of the so called green house gases.
    The fact is that humans have changed the climate but the rise of CO2 is definately not the cause for the influence of it as a green house gas has been vastly over rated.
    The actual causes of climate change are being ignored.
    A predominant one is increase of ocean turbidity from a variety of causes such as disposal of waste, fallout of soot.
    Another factor has been the extensive clearing of land.
    Graham would do well to study some actual physics before writing as though he knows everyting about climate chante

  12. No evidence of school children being brainwashed? Ok, here you go – this is what our primary school children are being taught. Children are being fed fears about ocean acidification where they carry out experiments involving putting coral in petri dishes with tap water (neutral 7 pH) and varying ratios of tap water and vinegar (acidic with pH 2). The students measure the pH levels with pH strips and watch the acidic ones bubble away eating the coral.

    All very interesting and educational – however seawater is alkaline, not acid, which means it is a process of becoming less alkaline (not more acidic) – but of cause, our climastrologists prefer to use ‘scary’ words like acidification. In the context of real world science the experiment is nonsense. We will remember that the pH scale is logarithmic and since I last noticed, the oceans cover 70% of the planet and are kilometres deep – what this means is that you need ginormous changes in CO2 to cause the slightest change in pH. The pH of sea water has supposedly changed from 8.2 to 8.1 over the past 200 years or more. For it to even begin to become acidic (assuming continued emissions at current rates and disregarding buffer effects) it would take thousands of years over hundreds of generations. As for the vinegar component, well, just keep adding thousands of years… This is the sort of totally warped junk science that is fed to primary school students.

    Our reefs are subject to a great number of impacts, ocean acidification is by far the least concern.

  13. Graham, right back at the beginning, the GW Scientists and leaders of the Kyoto and Copenhagen Conferences said they were using GW to bring about Global Governance. They said the dams would never be full again. When the Record Breaking Flooding Rainfalls commenced they changed the words Global Warming to Climate Change. I know that GW is taking place but it is not man made. It is the SUN. When the SUN becomes burning, searing HOT it will dry up the surface water. We can prepare for it but not while the deception is being taught that it is man made.

  14. @Robert,

    You need to learn something about the pH scale. First, it’s continuous, going from highly acidic at 0 to highly alkaline at 14. So “less alkaline” means exactly the same thing as “more acidic”. Second, it’s a logarithmic scale, so a pH change from 8.2 to 8.1 corresponds roughly to a 25% rise in hydrogen ion concentration.

  15. I can also imagine Robert’s position on ocean temperatures…

    The oceans aren’t warming – they’re just become less cool!

    …on drought affected areas…

    There’s no increase in drought – there’s just less and less rain!

  16. Acushla:

    I know that GW is taking place but it is not man made. It is the SUN.

    Of course! Climate scientists have NEVER considered the influence of the sun on global temperatures! You’re absolutely right. I trust you’ve called them all and told them to redo all of their sums. Were they embarrassed that all the climate research conducted by thousands of scientists over the past fifty years completely overlooked solar forcings? Thank goodness for scientific savants like you!

  17. klem:

    I can’t wait to see Gillard and her band of green fascists go down in flames.

    …and I bet klem is a climate change denialist who gets upset whenever someone calls him/her a ‘denialist’.

  18. Dear Sammy,

    Typically, you refuse to debate the actual science and just immaturely fling accusations and begin the usual name calling and pronouncements of who’s enlightened and who isn’t. So what?

    We’ve been waiting decades for evidence of significant anthropogenic warming. Yes, we all know about John Tyndall, ho-hum! but we also know that 95% of the greenhouse effect results from water vapour, that the absorption bans for CO2 strongly overlap with that of water vapour in an already close to saturated system – what that means is that the ‘Tyndall effect’ counts for very little and that is already accepted science within the scandal riddled IPCC. The exaggerated IPCC predictions that never came true are due to the feedback which, without any empirical evidence (computer models are not evidence), are still just a guess.

    Once upon a time, the left campaigned against this sort of government corruption and fraud – now they have sullied themselves in the same stink that they purport to fight against. “Die CO2 Lüge” is front page news even in Germany and no surprise that the credibility of anthropogenic climate change is splitting the left – one by one, even environmentalists are realizing, they’ve been duped.

    The evidence of variations in solar radiation having an impact on our climate and it’s correlation with the 20th century temperature record (yes, it does increase!) is too compelling to ignore. However the IPCC conveniently gives scant reference beyond blind dismissal. Reference Vahrenholt’s “Die Kalte Sonne” http://www.kaltesonne.de (PS they’re working on a translation)

  19. And, Robert, we know that
    (1) The amount of water vapour in the atmosphere is controlled by the non-condensing greenhouse gases
    (2) The idea that the system is close to saturated is bunkum
    (3) IPCC reports don’t make predictions, they outline a number of scenarios corresponding to different conditions
    (4) No one ever claims that computer models are evidence. All fields of science use models to help them understand what the real-world evidence means.
    (5) Correlation doesn’t mean causation. Variations in solar radiation do not explain the current rate of warming

  20. Graham Coghill,

    “Correlation doesn’t mean causation.”

    Try to remember that when you choose to link CO2 to the recent temperature rise… not that the global temperature has risen all that much over the last decade.

  21. Graham Coghill,

    “When circumstances change, sensible people change their minds.”

    At least you understand why Labor is polling so poorly.

  22. Skeptikal,

    Correlation is a strong hint that there may be a relationship, but identifying the exact nature of that relationship requires more evidence. Climate science has examined all of the variables that may influence the relationship and looked for evidence supporting or rejecting the influence of each. They have also found a mechanism that explains the causal relationship.
    What we know is this: burning fossil fuels has put increasing amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere: carbon isotope studies show that the increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere came from fossil fuel combustion rather than from some natural cause; the greenhouse effect, a fact of physics, requires that the more CO2 in the atmosphere, the higher the temperature.
    If you’re going to deny the causal relationship, you’ll have to explain what unknown factor prevented the greenhouse effect from causing a temperature increase due to the increased carbon dioxide. You’ll also need to explain, if indeed the greenhouse effect was somehow put on hold, what natural process caused the temperature rise. Scientists have examined all of the processes they can think of – solar activity, volcanoes, aerosols, ozone, but none of these alone or in any combination can explain the increase.
    So, no, correlation doesn’t mean causation, but when all other possibilities have been ruled out, and you have a perfectly satisfactory mechanism, based in fundamental physics to explain the relationship, you’d have to be a denier to deny it.

  23. Robert:

    We’ve been waiting decades for evidence of significant anthropogenic warming.

    You’re not looking very hard.

    You guys remind me of creationists. “Where’s the evidence!?” you cry, only to firmly plug your fingers in your ears and shut your eyes when the evidence is presented.

    You enthusiastically cite the opinions of Fritz Vahrenholt, but I do wonder if you’ve ever turned your ‘skepticism’ upon his claims. It seems he’s never published a paper related to climate science, instead opting to write a book and air his ideas in newspapers. He openly admits that he doesn’t do any climate research, claiming that he merely summarizes the existing research of climate scientists. The problem is – he does an exceptionally poor job. When it comes to the evaluation of the scientific evidence for AGW, I think I’ll go with the multitude of experts involved with the IPCC instead of the CEO of an energy company who’s never written a climate science paper in his life. But that’s just me.

  24. Graham Coghill,

    “a fact of physics, requires that the more CO2 in the atmosphere, the higher the temperature.”

    The facts,
    CO2 in 2002… 375ppm
    CO2 in 2012… 395ppm
    Rise in global temperature between 2002 and 2012… zero.

    To quote from a famous leaked email…

    ‘The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.’ ~ Kevin Trenberth

    Call me a denier if you like, but I think it’s a bit premature to be pointing the finger at CO2 and demanding economically damaging action when we really don’t know how our climate works.

  25. Keep frothing at the mouth if you want.
    It only takes one ugly fact to disprove a beautiful theory in science.
    The second law of thermodynamics means the ‘greenhouse effect theory’ is bunkum – look up these concepts.
    Understand what ‘post normal science’ means.
    Do an experiment yourself and try to prove your ideas – that just might be science. Then you will have some credibility.
    regards Dr Richard Pearson

  26. Richard Pearson: I hope you live a long and happy life. I mean you no harm or ill-will. But it would be very helpful to you and to Queensland’s schoolchildren if you visited this site with an open mind and read every single word:
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Second-law-of-thermodynamics-greenhouse-theory.htm
    Then immediately go to a good dictionary and look up the meaning of the word “hubris” – and carried it around in your head for the rest of your life. Then, please, if you want credibility – just shut up.

  27. Richard Pearson:

    The second law of thermodynamics means the ‘greenhouse effect theory’ is bunkum…

    You strike me as the type of person who hasn’t considered any of the arguments against your position. Ever. I urge you to take Bluebottles advice.

  28. Skeptikal:

    The facts,
    CO2 in 2002… 375ppm
    CO2 in 2012… 395ppm
    Rise in global temperature between 2002 and 2012… zero.

    You must be one of those people who looks at temperature data and sees THIS, while everybody else sees THIS.

    Regarding Kevin Trenberth and the supposed “lack of warming” – see here.

    …we really don’t know how our climate works.

    Speak for yourself.

  29. A patient falls ill and starts running a temperature. Since the patient was initially warmer than the surrounding air, the high temperature must result from energy moving from cold to hot, and since this would ‘break’ the laws of thermodynamics, ‘medicine theory’ must be bunkum.

    Dr Pearson should really stop worshipping this post-normal medicine religion.

  30. Skeptical:
    You say: :The facts, CO2 in 2002… 375ppm CO2 in 2012… 395ppm
    Rise in global temperature between 2002 and 2012… zero.”

    1. You want facts? First, “global temperature” – the average of land AND ocean temperatures – actually has risen over the past decade, as it has done for the past six decades, each one hotter than the last. You can’t only look at the land surface temperature (70% of the planet is ocean).
    Even so, you may be unaware that the globally-averaged land surface temperature for June 2012 was the all-time warmest June on record (i.e. since 1880), at 1.07°C above the 20th century average. The Northern Hemisphere land and ocean average surface temperature for June 2012 was the all-time warmest June on record, at 1.30°C above average. The combined global land and ocean average surface temperature for January–June 2012 was the 11th warmest on record, at 0.52°C (0.94°F) above average.
    [Source: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2012/6%5D

    2. You seem to think that temperature and CO2 levels should rise in rigid lockstep, a bit like watching the pressure on a tyre rise steadily as you pump in air. It doesn’t work like that: the Earth is not a rigid tyre – it’s dynamic system. Likewise, you can’t reasonably measure climate trends (as opposed to weather) on the basis of just one decade of data. The smallest reasonable unit for measuring climate trends is about three decades. So we need to go back to 1982 (not 2002) and look at what has happened since then, right?
    So, since 1982, CO2 levels have risen from 341 ppm to 395 ppm. Land surface temperatures have risen by 0.25 C. Ocean temperatures have risen by 0.13C.

  31. Dear Sammy,

    Your puerile smug arrogance is refined to the highest degree. None of your suggested evidence proves the warming is in anyway anthropogenic – the warming is not what is disputed, but what drives that warming – solar radiation, milankovitch cycles etc

    Vahrenholt is a past reviewer of the IPCC. The IPCC itself, i’ll point out, do NO climate research of their own, and are headed up by a railway engineer. The core scientists that write the reports of the IPCC number only about 50 – the fact that they cherry pick and namecheck a long list of references counts little considering there are lists of over a 1000 scientists that have openly discredited the organisation. As you suggest you’ve heard of Charles Darwin, you might understand that it takes just one scientist to prove entire institutions wrong. Censensus and scientist head counts have nothing to do with the scientific process.

    The peer review process has been replaced by corruption, secrecy and censorship (refer hockey stick and climategate). That some paper gets a peer reviewed rubber stamp counts little – what matters is how the science stands up to independent scrutiny and to what extent it is supported by empirical evidence.

    As for your suggested temperature record, sorry, I paid it no heed, I only bother to look at temperature records that aren’t corrupted by the heat island effect.

    You haven’t yet accused me of working for exxon or believing in a flat earth! – please refer to your rule book.

  32. Robert makes an important point: “what matters is how the science stands up to independent scrutiny and to what extent it is supported by empirical evidence”

    What empirical evidence do we have that humans are causing global warming? The increased greenhouse effect has been directly measured by satellites. Less heat is escaping to space at the exact wavelengths that carbon dioxide absorb heat. This is the human fingerprint on climate change. Those who deny there is a greenhouse effect are denying direct, empirical measurements.

    Do these measurements stand up to independent scrutiny? Surface measurements find more heat returning to earth at the very same wavelengths that carbon dioxide absorb heat. Which makes sense – less heat escaping to space, more heat returning to Earth. The scientists who measured this effect concluded “this experimental data should effectively end the argument by skeptics that no experimental evidence exists for the connection between greenhouse gas increases in the atmosphere and global warming”.

    You have to smile at their optimism – they obviously had no notion of the human capacity to deny inconvenient evidence.

  33. Robert,

    I’m starting to think you might be a Poe. Genuine denialists usually unleash one (or perhaps two) denialist talking points per comment, but you’ve given the game away with your last offering. You offer:

    “It’s the sun!”
    “The IPCC don’t do any original research!”
    “Pachauri is an engineer, he can’t be trusted. Vahrenholt is a chemist, he can be trusted!”
    “The IPCC is corrupt!”
    “Bazillions of scientists disagree with the IPCC!”
    “Scientists have been wrong in the past, so they must be wrong now!”
    “Peer review doesn’t work!”
    “The hockey stick is broken!”
    “Teh Climategate!”
    “Temperature records can’t be trusted (unless I think they show cooling) because of the urban heat island effect!”

    In light of all this, I have a strong suspicion that you are just someone having a lend. In all of my interactions with climate change denialists I’ve never seen a post containing so many zombie talking points. I call Poe.

  34. Dr Pearson (and Skeptical and Robert);
    You seem to think that scientists are idiots; that either they are corrupt or their data and equipment is; that none of them has properly considered the points you raise; that all this global warming thingy is some recent ideological concoction etc etc.
    Please, even if you just skim it, read something about the long history of this branch of science. For example, in:
    * 1824 Fourier calculated that the Earth would be far colder if it lacked an atmosphere;
    * 1859 Tyndall discovered that some gases block infrared radiation and suggested that changes in the concentration of these gases could bring climate change;
    * 1896 Arrhenius published the first calculation of global warming from human emissions of CO2;
    * 1897 Chamberlin produced a model for global carbon exchange including feedbacks;
    * 1930s A global warming trend since late 19th century was reported and
    Milankovitch proposed orbital changes as the cause of ice ages;
    *1938 Callendar argued that CO2 greenhouse global warming was under way;
    *1956 Plass calculated that adding CO2 to the atmosphere would have a significant effect on the radiation balance;
    * 1960 Keeling accurately measured CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere and detected an annual rise;
    * 1963 calculations suggested that feedback with water vapour could make the climate acutely sensitive to changes in CO2 level;
    *1967 Manabe and Wetherald made a convincing calculation that doubling CO2 would raise world temperatures a couple of degrees;
    *1971 an SMIC (Study on Man’s Impact on Climate) conference of leading scientists reported a danger of rapid and serious global change caused by humans and called for an organized research effort;
    * 1975 Manabe and collaborators produced complex but plausible computer models which showed a temperature rise of several degrees for doubled CO2;
    *1979 a US National Academy of Sciences report found it highly credible that doubling CO2 would bring 1.5-4.5°C global warming;
    *1985 the Villach Conference declared consensus among experts that some global warming seemed inevitable and called on governments to consider international agreements to restrict emissions;
    *1990 the first IPCC report said world had been warming and future warming seemed likely;
    *1991 James Hansen verified computer models of the effects of aerosols by correctly predicting that the eruption of Mt Pinatubo would have a cooling effect, and global warming skeptics wrongly predicted that 20th Century temperature changes were linked to the solar cycle;
    *1995 The second IPCC report detected the “signature” of human-caused greenhouse effect warming and declared that serious warming is likely in the coming century;
    . . . and so on.
    You can read all about it here [which is my source for the above]:
    http://www.aip.org/history/climate/timeline.htm/

  35. Bluebottle,

    Ours is much bigger, more colourful and more recent…

    “A story of intrigue, deception and secrecy”

    http://jonova.s3.amazonaws.com/climategate/history/climategate_timeline_banner.pdf

    (less than 1MB)

    A few random highlights:

    1975 Scientists ponder why the world’s climate is changing: major cooling widely considered to be inevitable.

    1990 75% of world temperature stations disappear from NOAA’s GHCN data – remaining stations have warming bias.

    1999 Cover up of the Medieval warming period begins in Mann’s Hockey Stick, incorporated into 3rd assessment report, later corrected

    1996 Sun determined as major climate factor – results suppressed

    2000 Climate Research Unit gets funding from Shell, BP and ESSO

    2003 Vostok ice core data – CO2 does not drive temperature – it is the other way round

    2003 realclimate co-founder takes over suppression of sceptic pages on wikipedia

    2005 Scientists begin scheming and hiding research against Freedom of Information requests

    2005 Jones admits that he knows the earth has been cooling for 7 years, “but it isn’t statistically significant.”

    2006 Al Gore’s Science Fiction film is released

    2007 89% of the world most ‘accurate’ temperature stations fail to meet siting requirements due to urban heat island problems.

    2007 Over 400 prominent scientists dispute man-made global warming – US Senate report (updated to 700 in 2009)

    2009 Global Warming ate my data – The world’s source for global temperature record admits it’s lost and destroyed all the original data

    and on and on it goes…

  36. Ah, that “ours” bit confirms it unequivocally – you are not a sceptic, you believe in conspiracies and you really do think scientists are idiots and corrupt.
    Glad we got that sorted.
    No point talking to you about science, then.
    So, Robert, why don’t we move right into your territory: what’s the climate conspiracy for then?

  37. Yes, he’s serious. You see, facts and the credibility of sources mean nothing to Robert, Skeptical and Dr Pearson. What matters is the narrative. Since Robert has not responded, I’ll give it a bash:
    The conspiracy is that the forces of darkness have made a pact to take over with a one-world government via the IPCC, the UN and international environmental and trade agreements. They will stop at nothing. They have enlisted the vast majority of the world’s scientists, using the threat of cutting off the vast public funding resources of world science – a huge slush fund for pampered educated types swanning about the world in luxury jets and staying at the finest hotels that ordinary people could only dream of – they mix with Foreigners, Leftists, Reds, Greens, Muslims and others intent on Government interference to take over national rights and let Foreigners run everything, threatening our sovereignty, taxing our hard-earned savings and stealing our children’s birthright to be free. Only a brave few stand against them, shining the light of reason and truth on this wicked pact. It’s time to stand up and be counted!
    Or something like that.

  38. Sammy Jenkis said “…and I bet klem is a climate change denialist who gets upset whenever someone calls him/her a ‘denialist’.”

    You don’t understand denialists at all. I am a climate change denialist who loves being called a climate change denialist. Its a badge of honour, its a goal that I strive to achieve and I’m not alone. Whene someone resorts to name calling, its a sign that I’m getting under their climate religeous skin, it means I’m gettng through to them, I’m making them question and doubt their climate doomsday faith. When I hear them call me a denialist, it means I’ve won.

    cheers

  39. klem:

    Whene someone resorts to name calling, its a sign that I’m getting under their climate religeous skin, it means I’m gettng through to them, I’m making them question and doubt their climate doomsday faith.

    You’re sorely mistaken. The only thing you’ve made us question, if anything, is whether there’s something better we could be doing with our time rather than trying to teach you basic physics, the scientific method etc.

  40. ‘ANYONE who places any stock in safeguarding the current and future climate (and for that matter anyone who doesn’t) should prepare themselves for the risk that very soon, climate science deniers, contrarians and sceptics will be running the show.’ – article above.

    We can only hope. The nonsense about ‘climate change’ (an expression with an infinitely malleable interpretation, if ever there was one) being the precursor to the End of the World as We Know It, has just got to stop. No one is falling for this rubbish anymore, because most people are starting to wake up and realise that this whole scare-campaign is based upon (extreme left-wing) ideology, and not science.

    It is a fact that the Earth’s climate has always changed, and always will; there is nothing to fear about this, it is perfectly natural. If the scare-mongers actually understood science, even just a little, they would know that:
    a) Change is one of the very few things that we can truly count upon, whether it concerns meteorology and/or climatology or not.
    b) Dissent and scepticism are NOT crimes, so stop equating us with ‘holocaust deniers’; it’s offensive.
    c) Computer modelling is no substitute for experimentation and verification (i.e. the scientific method). The outcomes of computer models are nothing more than possibilities, not certainties, and if you happen to neglect to input one minor component in your model that may have an impact upon the outcome, then your precious ‘model’ is worthless as a forecasting tool. Even the most minor variations in initial conditions can, and do, alter outcomes to an extent that simply cannot be calculated, no matter how ‘powerful’ your fancy computer may happen to be, which is the major reason why weather forecasters more often get it wrong than right.
    d) Mankind has survived, and will continue to survive, far worse fluctuations in mean global temperature than a few degrees Celsius. It’s nothing new (ex. Medieval Warm Period, Little Ice Age et cetera).

    Now go away, and stop scaring the sheeple!

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