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European weather chaos spawns outrage, questions

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Ah yes, they don't plan for extreme cold weather anymore, because simply, we're experiencing global warming. Thats not supposed to happen. Ah, but since it does, they decided to change the name to 'climate change'. A catchall term used to describe anything and every change in the weather. Thus, mankind can be blamed for rain, sleet, snow, and ice, as well as extremes in heat as well. Ain't this poliscience great.

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“It’s pathetic—you would think this is a Third World country,” said Janice Phillips,

I think many in London have just found out that that is exactly what they are. Pity.

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Hardly third world, so the new definition of third world is airports closing when it snows, i guess Africa is now 1st world as the snow isn`t such a problem there. So by this logic, the UK, Germany, France, Holland are all third world countrys. All of them have struggled with the weather at the airports. Simply, they are not prepared for weather like this, very poor management by airports and lack of being forced to invest by the govts. Hopefully they take a leaf out of Scandanavian and Finnish airports and invest properly in neccesary equipment.

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The airports by being unprepared have proven to be third world if not the entire country.

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Hardly third world

Yeah..well, some posters here love to call London Third World (strange logic) in this context simply because they want to spit on London. Pity.

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European transportation networks need to prepare for greater weather fluctuations due to global warming. Heat acts like a fuel in the atmosphere. Heat is why weather changes. If you add more heat, in the closed atmospheric system, yes, eventually you will get more heat everywhere, but in the meantime, the heat causes more drastic fluctuations in weather patterns. That's why it is possible to get colder temperatures in some areas due to global warming. It has nothing to do with politics, just junior high school physics. Europeans need to adapt.

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What do you expect from Heathrow?

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You would think the government could do a better job.”

Yet another person who is still asleep and doesn't know what is going on. Heathrow airport is owned and operated by a company called BAA Ltd. which in turn is owned by ADI Ltd., an international consortium led by the Spanish construction company Grupo Ferrovial SA. It has nothing to do with the UK government.

Gee, it sure is a good thing the private sector is in charge, think how bad it would be if the government was running things and a few centimeters of snow fell. We all know that the private sector is always so smart and efficient, and the public sector so stupid and inefficient. Maggie said so. She read it in a book you know. It had nothing whatsoever to do with some guys wanting to get their grubby little paws on the cash flow.

Private ownership of public infrastructure is a violation of the basic principles of capitalism. Instead of blaming the government of today, she should blame the sleazeballs who claimed that it isn't.

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Inside, puffy-eyed passengers shuffled across the cold concourse, watching anxiously as the line periodically spurted forward. One older man played Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” on his harmonica. The crowd livened up when he switched to Europe’s “The Final Countdown.”

I'm suprised he wasn't stabbed or something. What an idiot.

“The Final Countdown” on harmonica must be torture to the ears.

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Europeans dont need to adapt? Sweden and Denmark do just fine with the snow. When i was a kid in third world England!? (about 20 years ago) it snowed just as much as it is now and everything stopped just like now. Then it started getting warmer and there was no snow (10 years ago) just for 1-2 days. Now in the last 3 years it has started getting cold again in winter. There has been no investment in heavy snow clearing equipment as they didnt really need it, maybe we do now, maybe not, it might start getting warm again. Not too sure of the global warming argument, study geography and see the world gets hot, too hot, then goes into an ice age to redress it, then gets warm again. Been doing it for millenia. Btw, i`m going to start sending food parcels back to my parents as they are obviously living in poverty according to some, please donate.

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Questions were spawned? Didn't they read the Wikileaks reports about Climate Gate? Those reports spelled out pretty clearly the news that global warming was never the real picture. Those articles from the British papers back in the year 2000 or so about how we are not likely to ever see snowy winters again look pretty damn silly now...

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Didn't they read the Wikileaks reports about Climate Gate?

This article is about weather not climate. They are different words with different meanings. I know English is a difficult language, but it is not that difficult.

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NanbanOnigiri that is some story about how third world England used to get snow and it affected people then and then it got warmer and then just a few years ago it got bad winters again. It's too bad that England has the same affliction that Japan has, Complacency. Complacency is bad especially when these third world places never learn from their past. I hope people from more developed countries can get home from Heathrow for the holidays or I hope that at least they can get a meal from some food stalls outside the terminal. It tough times people really can come together and I'm willing to bet that those not suffering from Soccer Match Syndrome can really forge some good friendly relationships at this holiday time of the year.

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. That's why it is possible to get colder temperatures in some areas due to global warming. It has nothing to do with politics, just junior high school physics.

Heat makes things colder... OK. So if it is simple junior high school physics, why were the same climate scientists trying to decide how to melt the ice caps in the 1970s in order to prevent the next "ice age"? Maybe they skipped junior high school?

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why were the same climate scientists trying to decide how to melt the ice caps in the 1970s in order to prevent the next "ice age"?

Contrary to the soundbites you pull your opinions from the majority of climate scientists in the 70s predicted warming. Newsweek picked up on a paper that suggested a new ice age might be coming due to its sensational nature. Newsweek does not equal scientific consensus.

Climate science was a fairly new, unresearched and unrefined genre in the 70s.

Obviously it's not the 'same scientists' now as then as that would mean all climate scientists are at least 50. Plus scientists are generally quite apolitical and aren't adverse to changing their opinion when confronted with new evidence. You could try it some time.

Climate models have been predicting more extreme weather events as a result of global warming for many, many years now.

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In times of economic stringency, extreme weather episodes are going to be difficult to deal with; the only thing to do is just get on with it. Neither the companies who operate transportation, nor the governments are going to have instant access to equipment, supplies, or back up transport to cover events that might only occur for a few days every few years. Quite clearly, from this report and from all other news reports, the recent weather has hit a lot of areas in Western Europe, including Germany, France, Holland, Ireland, as well as Britain. Nevertheless, as seen in this report, and in some of the comments, there is a tendency from some North Americans (thankfully a small, though vociferous minority) to moan about "third world" any time they come across a problem in a foreign country. I guess it comes from a combination of lack of international experience and a rather vicious inferiority complex.

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Looks like Europe has to prepare itself for more spending and education in case of floods, snowfall, heatwaves, terror, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, meteorites, droughts, wildfires, mudslides, hurricanes...did I miss something? Thanks God, we here in Japan are well prepared and educated for all kinds of disasters.

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Obviously it's not the 'same scientists' now as then as that would mean all climate scientists are at least 50. Plus scientists are generally quite apolitical and aren't adverse to changing their opinion when confronted with new evidence. You could try it some time.

Takes the cake for funniest comment I've read all day. Especially about climate scientists being apolitical. If it was real scientists then obviously you'd be correct, but climate science is all politics now. Theres hardly any actual science being done anymore. Anything that contradicts accepted views is attacked, and if you want to be successful in the field, you have to be part of the in-group, or else your papers won't get reviewed properly, you won't be published, and you won't get funding. Like I said, people in the field of climate these days really do fit the term, poli-scientists. Though perhaps faux scientist would be more accurate.

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Molenir:

If you've bothered to read some literature (or even watch Day After Tomorrow) , and not just listen to Fox, then you'll know that 'global warming' does not mean every single damn place on this planet gets hotter from the point go. Certain areas may experience colder climates, just as some places can get droughts or floods.

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It is hard to explain Global Warming when you are covered in snow. I asked Santa about this and he said his reindeer felt that "it was going to be a cold one". I don't trust the Al Gore Globalists anymore and instead get my global weather predictions from someone with expert historical Winter weather knowledge.

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Molenir, one day do yourself a favour and actually go out and meet some of these scientists you freely insult. Send an email to your nearest lab, ask for an interview, whatever. Enlighten yourself rather than just throw the media narrative of your choice.

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Yoko,

You're dealing with people that think the earth is flat and was built in 6 days.

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For a recent example of how wrong your statement is do some google research on the paper by Lindzen and Choi that was published last year in GRL, claiming that climate sensitivity could be explained entirely by a few parameters in the tropics - about as anti-consensus as you'll find. A comment paper submitted to the same journal highlighting the serious problems in the paper was rejected out of hand.

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You're dealing with people that think the earth is flat and was built in 6 days.

We're nearly in 2011 and if people still can't even bother to use google to check if they're talking nonsense I think they should forfeit their computer and donate it to poor kids for Xmas.

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If you've bothered to read some literature (or even watch Day After Tomorrow) , and not just listen to Fox, then you'll know that 'global warming' does not mean every single damn place on this planet gets hotter from the point go. Certain areas may experience colder climates, just as some places can get droughts or floods.

Anyone who wants to claim to follow real science, and then brings up Day After Tomorrow, obviously doesn't need to be listened to. The movie is a joke. Even if you accept some basic premises, so many things about it are wrong, that its just laughable. Its about as close to reality as Star Wars is. Just use the Force!

Molenir, one day do yourself a favour and actually go out and meet some of these scientists you freely insult. Send an email to your nearest lab, ask for an interview, whatever. Enlighten yourself rather than just throw the media narrative of your choice.

Until only a few years ago, I was university student. I've worked for, and with some of them. Have you ever really gone out and done your own research on the subject? Perhaps considered what it is that is precisely being suggested by these so called scientists. Perhaps do a bit of research on the total amount of CO2 naturally released, and compare it to the amount released by all of mankind.

You're dealing with people that think the earth is flat and was built in 6 days.

Honestly, I think the people who want us to believe in the 'climate change' really are flat-earthers. They deny science, disregard and dismiss anything that challenges their viewpoint. Hell, read some of those emails, where they discuss how to 'hide the decline' in temps, or other completely unscientific endeavors. When you have the reality that is exposed in their emails, when you do a bit of research to find out precisely how their models hold up, and then tweak em a bit to find out the results, its amazing how little faith you put in these snake-oil peddlers.

The reality is, that real scientists are being hurt by those pushing the climate scam. Because the the current situation is one that allows no honest dialog, and the scientific method can't take place in that kind of current climate.

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bobobolinski: Nevertheless, as seen in this report, and in some of the comments, there is a tendency from some North Americans (thankfully a small, though vociferous minority) to moan about "third world" any time they come across a problem in a foreign country. I guess it comes from a combination of lack of international experience and a rather vicious inferiority complex.

Yeah I guess Janice doesn't know what she's talking about with that inferiority complex and lack of international experience. She's been there and I mean 2 weeks they've been talking about it and then when it happens, transportation grinds to a virtual halt. I mean some places have been doing it for years. Europe is not new to winter weather. Heathrow must look like some "Carry On at Heathrow" movie by now.

From the article:

“It’s pathetic—you would think this is a Third World country,” said Janice Phillips, 29, trying to get back to Minneapolis and sitting next to her sleeping boyfriend, head propped up on a backpack with his mouth ajar. “I’ve been here for two weeks and all they’ve been talking about was this snow forecast. You would think the government could do a better job.”

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Have you ever really gone out and done your own research on the subject? Perhaps considered what it is that is precisely being suggested by these so called scientists. Perhaps do a bit of research on the total amount of CO2 naturally released, and compare it to the amount released by all of mankind.

I haven't worked in the field, but I've been following it for years out of personal interest. I've seen numerous papers and reports for, against, in between and around. And you're right, the amount of CO2 we're responsible for is a small fraction of those due to natural processes but the naturally CO2 would be reabsorbed by other natural processes (dynamic equilibrium). Out of what we emit about 40% gets absorbed by these same processes, the rest stays. Not much in a year but over the course of a 100+ years it adds up and knocks the equilibrium out. Facts are the CO2 in the atmosphere has increased 100ppm in 120 years where best estimates say it would take 5,000-20,000 years for the same change to take place 'naturally'. Meanwhile the extra absorption required to compensate our emissions is impacting on the sinks e.g. increased acidity in the oceans threatening coral reefs.

When you have the reality that is exposed in their emails, when you do a bit of research to find out precisely how their models hold up, and then tweak em a bit to find out the results, its amazing how little faith you put in these snake-oil peddlers.

Models are first back-tested against historical data. If they can't explain past trends they don't make the cut and are constantly being improved. And predictions are always given as a distribution of scenarios. The inputs ARE tweaked to cater to uncertainties. If anything the models have been conservative in their predictions - actual sea level rise is just within the upper limit of the band predicted in 1990. Arctic ice melt has happened much faster than the models predicted likely due to feedback mechanisms unknown when they were made. Those models will be improved and predictions will become more accurate, this is how science works in real life.

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If anything the models have been conservative in their predictions

Wait, you mean models such as the hockey stick, that not surprisingly always managed to show a huge jump in temperature? You sure you want to call that conservative?

Arctic ice melt has happened much faster than the models predicted likely due to feedback mechanisms unknown when they were made. Those models will be improved and predictions will become more accurate, this is how science works in real life.

See, this is the kind of science I believe in. Real science. However when they start politicizing it, ascribing everything to man-caused 'climate change', then I take a step back and say simply... prove it. Thats where the problem is. See, people see a result and assume that because a hurricane exists, somewhere a butterfly flapped its wings. Then they point to a specific butterfly and say, its that ones fault. Sorry, I don't buy the causality. Yes things are changing, yes people do impact the environment, but the 2 things are not definitely connected, and unless and until they can be connected, and unless and until a real plan of action, one that can be proven to have a real impact, can be brought forward, Kyoto style ideas simply are meaningless, and will merely enrich a few, at the expense of everyone else.

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Wait, you mean models such as the hockey stick, that not surprisingly always managed to show a huge jump in temperature? You sure you want to call that conservative?

The hockey stick's not a model, it's a temperature record.

At least we're on agreement on a couple of things though. The knee-jerk way people attribute everything weather-related to global warming irks me as well and I have next to know faith in the ability of competing governments to solve anything or change their ways for the betterment of all. Solutions will come (and are coming) from the bottom up.

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The hockey stick's not a model, it's a temperature record.

It is a model. One whose algorithm is designed to output a specific result. In other words, no matter what you input into it, after a certain period of time, you'll always see a spike in temperature. Thats simply the way it was designed. Its stuff like this, that gives real science, a black eye.

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then I take a step back and say simply... prove it.

Molenir is clearly unable to see the hypocrisy of his position. He claims to know that man made global warming is not happening, and demands that scientists prove that it is. Problem is he claims to have knowledge that scientifically, logically, and rationally he can not possibly have. Whether he is right or not is beside the point. It is impossible for him to prove his own position and back up his own claims, but he thinks everybody with a different view must provide him with proof.

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kamonochoumei - If you add more heat, in the closed atmospheric system, yes, eventually you will get more heat everywhere, but in the meantime, the heat causes more drastic fluctuations in weather patterns. That's why it is possible to get colder temperatures in some areas due to global warming.

Heat causes cold. What a brilliant observation. Is the "global" tempurature increasing? Not just the "land" temp but the "global" temp? Not just Japan's summer temp but Europe's winter temp. Not just 11 months of, for instance, 2010 but all 12 months including December.

The infamous "hockey stick" is not a model and it's not a temperature record. The data that was used to produce the original graph was manipulated by the IPCC to create a more "hockey stick" like appearence to emphisize their view that man-made CO2 is evil.

The actual global temps have proven the man-made CO2/climate change zealots wrong.

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Molenir, it is not a model. It's the best estimate of temperature records over the last 1000 years taken from various sources. The spike is the most reliable part of it since these were direct measurements, the much bigger uncertainty is the 'stick' which is taken from proxies such as tree rings, ice cores etc. Was the temperature as stable over the 100 years as these sources suggest? The error margin is about +/-0.5C pre-1600AD.

It's the job of the models to replicate the temperature records of the past as best as possible. If they can explain trends in the past they should be able to do a decent job of predicting future trends.

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GJDailleult - Molenir is clearly unable to see the hypocrisy of his position. He claims to know that man made global warming is not happening, and demands that scientists prove that it is.

Yes, scientists SHOULD be able to prove that their theory has become fact. They don't get to claim that "someday" they will be proven right if we just wait another 20 years or even 50 or 100 years. The actual "global" temps have proven the UN's IPCC scientists wrong so far.

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The data that was used to produce the original graph was manipulated by the IPCC to create a more "hockey stick" like appearence to emphisize their view that man-made CO2 is evil.

In what way exactly? You need to start providing specifics instead of vague accusations. As I said different attempts made to recreate historical temps give some variation in the 'stick' but all show the same basic hockey stick shape. And all do require some selectivity and manipulation as we don't have direct measuremnts however noone has been able to produce a record disproving the hockey stick that has stood up to both peer review and examination, although Exxon Mobil have a good deal of money trying :) The spike is not in doubt, these are direct measurements.

Is the "global" tempurature increasing? Not just the "land" temp but the "global" temp?

Yes, the oceans have been heating up. Again I bring up the google argument. If you can't use the internet properly in 2010 give your computer to some poor kid who can. Merry Xmas.

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Molenir is clearly unable to see the hypocrisy of his position. He claims to know that man made global warming is not happening, and demands that scientists prove that it is.

Not what I said at all GJ, perhaps you should reread my post. Think I was pretty clear that I am skeptical of the 'science' of global warming. However I accept as a basic premise the idea that people do in fact impact the planet. Unlike some other people I'm refusing to name, I actually have an open mind on the subject. However I insist on real science, not just 'consensus opinion', and if they're going to suggest something is happening, they need to prove causality. If you tried this in any other scientific field, you would be laughed out of the room. Seriously. Think of a chemistry and physics. Imagine trying to put forward an idea without any causal connection being established. That is precisely what these so called scientists are doing. They see an egg and think ah well that must mean a chicken will hatch. What they don't realize is that it might be a duck egg, or the egg might not have been fertilized. Hell, something might have eaten the insides and its hollow. You cannot simply say ah temps are up a bit, ooh, mankind is to blame, and that is precisely what they're doing.

The actual global temps have proven the man-made CO2/climate change zealots wrong.

I actually disagree with you here. I don't agree with the so called skeptics either. Climate change is happening, and always has been. Mankind does affect the environment, we can prove that. Thus you cannot simply say they're wrong, you can only say, that the evidence thus far does not support their conclusions.

The spike is the most reliable part of it since these were direct measurements, the much bigger uncertainty is the 'stick' which is taken from proxies such as tree rings, ice cores etc.

The spike is just one of the problems. It assumes that the temperature will continue rising. Meaning that since there was a little uptick in temps, that that means the temp will continue on that trend. But the system doesn't work that way. Mann knew it didn't work that way. Any rational person with even the slightest bit of scientific knowledge knows it doesn't work that way. Its a dynamic system, meaning there are going to be fluctuations, rises and falls in temps. Not only that, it completely disregarded things like the Medieval Warm Period. Mann just left that out. Hence why it has now been completely discredited.

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Yes, scientists SHOULD be able to prove that their theory has become fact.

Actually, no they don't have to. Their job is to set out the probabilities and do a risk assessment. The have no obligation to prove the theory is fact for the simple reason that it is an unprovable theory. There can be no baseline measurement of what the natural climate activity would have been without the human activity of the last 200 years, so therefore you can't prove a variation from it. And you can't prove there is no variation from it either. Now it appears that molenir did not actually claim to know that it was not happening, and I just assumed that is what he was saying, but the main point still stands. Deniers and skeptics are equally unable to prove their position, but they don't seem to care about that. They want proof that they themselves can't provide either.

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My brother travelled from Paris to London on the Eurostar last night and said that there were only two people in his carriage, so it seems the long queues should be gone by now.

I was lucky enough to avoid Heathrow on Sunday, flying Tokyo-Copenhagen-Birmingham. There was/is plenty of snow in Copenhagen, but everything works. The Heathrow operators are simply inept: they don't invest in snow clearing equipment and don't make much of an effort at all. Airlines like BA are equally as bad, giving up at the first sign of snow. Then, even when the runways are eventually cleared, the airports are unusable because BA's planes are blocking all the gates.

Large fines should be imposed on BAA for every hour their airports are closed. That is the only way to ensure they get their act together.

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Obviously it's not the 'same scientists' now

actually, the most influential scientists in the climate scare movement are the SAME ones from the 1970s advocating melting the ice caps. :-) Look it up.

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The spike is just one of the problems. It assumes that the temperature will continue rising.

Sorry but this is just incorrect. Having a spike in the temperatures means it has to be explained because as you know there are no such things as just 'natural' effects. Even natural changes have a driver, the increase came from somewhere. The models to date have not been able to explain the increase in temperature when man-made CO2 emissions are excluded. When its effects are added in the fit is very good. So the projections of temperature increase are not because they simply assume that trends will continue but because the models strongly attribute the warming trend to CO2 buildup in the atmosphere which is ongoing, and even if all industry suddenly ceased and our emissions dropped to zero, the current levels would still cause warming to continue.

So if there's an argument to be made here it's that there is some factor which has been considered yet that's driving the increase. So far noone has managed to find it. That doesn't mean CO2 is 100% definitely the main driver but it's a hard sell to say otherwise.

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^^^Should read "which HASN'T been considered yet"

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GJDailleult - Actually, no they don't have to. Their job is to set out the probabilities and do a risk assessment. The have no obligation to prove the theory is fact for the simple reason that it is an unprovable theory.

I'll have what you've been having. Scientists don't have to prove their theories? Then what was the point of creating theories in the first place? Boredom?

There is a historical record of "global" tempuratures. The "global" temp is either increasing, decreasing or staying the same. The "global" warming zealots began insisting 20 years ago that the "global" temp would increase and that man-made CO2 was definately the reason why. The actual "global" temp hasn't cooperated with the UN's IPCC predictions and the IPCC can't explain why. Oops.

The deniers and skeptics position is that the UN's IPCC theory hasn't been proven. Until the IPCC can prove their theory, there is nothing to disprove.

From 1945 until the early 70's, man-made CO2 increased due to increased manufacturing. Annual "global" temps dropped during that period causing some scientists declared that we are on our way to the next ice age. CO2 up and "global" temp down or "global" temp down and CO2 up. Either way you look at it, CO2 doesn't seem to be directly related to "global" temp.

However, third world countries are still demanding their share of the $100 billion USD that they were promised if they supported the global warming zealotry.

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Scientists have nothing to prove when you've got a bible to believe in....

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Have a look at Kiwi-gate for an example of why some are perplexed by these politically tainted theories.

NIWA makes the huge admission that New Zealand has experienced hardly any warming during the last half-century. For all their talk about warming, for all their rushed invention of the “Eleven-Station Series” to prove warming, this new series shows that no warming has occurred here since about 1960. Almost all the warming took place from 1940-60, when the IPCC says that the effect of CO2 concentrations was trivial. Indeed, global temperatures were falling during that period.

Almost all of the 34 adjustments made by Dr Jim Salinger to the 7SS have been abandoned, along with his version of the comparative station methodology.

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Scientists have nothing to prove when you've got a bible to believe in....

Probably because the people who believe in the bible, don't necessarily believe in science, and vice versa. But if you want to be a scientist, you have to prove your assertion, and creating policy based on unsound, and unproven theories, is bad policy.

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"But if you want to be a scientist, you have to prove your assertion, and creating policy based on unsound, and unproven theories"

Meh.

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creating policy based on unsound, and unproven theories, is bad policy.

That cuts both ways. The scientific consensus is climate change is real and it's man made. If I had to bet, I'd put my money on the consensus of scientists. If I'm wrong, I lose a few points of GDP and maybe reduce my reliance on middle eastern oil in the process. If I'm right, I may be able to avoid a disaster.

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Global warming is great fun. Where is Al Gore to explain it all?

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jamal2609 - The scientific consensus is climate change is real and it's man made.

Except there is NO actual scientific consensus just the repeated "claims" that one exists. Just something else "they" can't prove.

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Except there is NO actual scientific consensus just the repeated "claims" that one exists.

According to whom? Can you quote a legitimate survey of climate scientists that shows even a plurality that doubt it is real and man made?

I'm not a climate science expert, but I've read the results of surveys conducted in academia asking climate science experts these questions and something on the order of 97% of them agree that climate change is real and that it is man made.

I think that qualifies as a consensus. These are published surveys one can download and read for themselves.

I'm not sure what it would take to prove climate change is real, but I consider the scientific consensus to be expert opinion. It would be neither the first nor the last time government has or will develop policy based on expert opinion.

If we maintain the status quo, we would be doing so in spite of expert opinion telling us it's not a good idea, and dependence on middle eastern oil, among other things, would continue. If we are right, we would have the status quo. If we are wrong, it could be a major disaster.

If we take steps to reduce emissions, we would be doing so in accordance with expert opinion, and we could reduce our dependence on middle eastern oil in the process. If we are right, we could avert a major disaster. If we are wrong, we have fewer pollutants and cleaner air.

Reducing emissions is the better policy, and not just because climate scientists say it's a good idea.

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jamal2609 - According to whom? Can you quote a legitimate survey of climate scientists that shows even a plurality that doubt it is real and man made?

I'm not a climate science expert, but I've read the results of surveys conducted in academia asking climate science experts these questions and something on the order of 97% of them agree that climate change is real and that it is man made.

Hahahaha. 97%. Really? Then then would be NO opposition to the UN's IPCC un-scientific findings and we know that ain't true. Where did you get this 97% number? Did you find it in a COP 15/16 handout or maybe an Al Gore fantasy film?

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Lawrence Solomon does a really good job of debunking that famous 97% in the Financial Post this week. It is a must-read for all those who believe all the data used is accurate. Sorry for the long italic quote here:

To their embarrassment, most of the pundits and press discovered they were mistaken — those 2,500 scientists hadn’t endorsed the IPCC’s conclusions, they had merely reviewed some part or other of the IPCC’s mammoth studies. To add to their embarrassment, many of those reviewers from within the IPCC establishment actually disagreed with the IPCC’s conclusions, sometimes vehemently.

This number will prove a new embarrassment to the pundits and press who use it. The number stems from a 2008 master’s thesis by student Maggie Kendall Zimmerman at the University of Illinois, under the guidance of Peter Doran, an associate professor of Earth and environmental sciences. The two researchers obtained their results by conducting a survey of 10,257 Earth scientists. The survey results must have deeply disappointed the researchers — in the end, they chose to highlight the views of a subgroup of just 77 scientists, 75 of whom thought humans contributed to climate change. The ratio 75/77 produces the 97% figure that pundits now tout.

The two researchers started by altogether excluding from their survey the thousands of scientists most likely to think that the Sun, or planetary movements, might have something to do with climate on Earth — out were the solar scientists, space scientists, cosmologists, physicists, astronomers and meteorologists. That left the 10,257 scientists in such disciplines as geology, geography, oceanography, engineering, paleontology and geochemistry who were somehow deemed more worthy of being included in the consensus. The two researchers also decided scientific accomplishment should not be a factor in who could answer — those surveyed were determined by their place of employment (an academic or a governmental institution). Neither was academic qualification a factor — about 1,000 of those surveyed did not have a PhD, some didn’t even have a master’s diploma.

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Look for Lawrence Solomon 97 cooked stats at the Financial Post and you should get the article. published 2011/01/03

Cheers.

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