Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

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01 September 2008

Mischief of US Climate Change Science Project

Dr. Patrick Michaels is a research professor of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia and is senior fellow in environmental studies at the Cato Institute. In a commentary published on 31 August in the Washington Times, he writes about having reviewed a report called Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States by the U.S. Climate Change Science Program. This report concluded that "Aggressive near-term actions would be required to alter the future path of human-induced warming." The "product lead" is Tom Karl, who heads the Commerce Department's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. and Michaels says he is a very politically savvy guy.

He says the report implies that only bad results come from global warming. This is not the case. Growing seasons become longer and higher CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere cause plants to grow better. Americans like warmer climates so much, they often choose to move to warmer areas of the country. It claims that the elderly are especially vulnerable to extreme heat, but Phoenix and Tampa have many elderly inhabitants and very few heat-related deaths. Generally, the report is very unscientific according to Michaels.

This is not surprising. The senior editor is Susan J. Hassol, who wrote the HBO global warming documentary "Too Hot Not to Handle," and is not a climate scientist. The executive producer is Laurie David, who orchestrated Al Gore's inconveniently false "An Inconvenient Truth." She was also the executive producer of the HBO documentary. With these two producing this document, it is hardly surprising that it is science fiction.


Miss Breeziness said...

Yes, far more temperature related human deaths are due to COLD rather than heat! Bjorn Lomborg pointed this out, I believe.

And good point about the mistaken idea that global warming can only lead to bad things. It wouldn't be too bad if more places became tropical, about the places that are already very hot, like the Polynesian islands? Is there something that will stop them from becoming unbearably hot, if global warming is real? (I believe someone said something about it, but I forgot.)

Charles R. Anderson, Ph.D. said...

Hi Miss Breeziness,

As the earth's average temperature increases, the effect is principally on the colder and temperate regions. The temperature in the tropics tends to remain stable. This is due to the cooling effect as more water evaporates and to increasing cloud cover.

Miss Breeziness said...

Ah yes, that was what that other person said too! Thanks for the reminder.

Longer growing seasons can't be a bad thing, that's for sure.

Problem is...this whole global warming thing is very agenda-driven as opposed to science-driven. Agenda-driven people tend to look for facts that support what they want to believe (e.g. the liberals who claim that American society today is just as bad as it was in the days of Jim Crow as far as racism is concerned, citing every instance of a black person being unfairly targeted by cops, or how few blacks have university degrees, etc).

I must admit that the other side is the same. TSo, the only question is: Which side is more on the side of hard science and facts?

Charles R. Anderson said...

Yes, the issue of global warming does need to be evaluated critically on the basis of the science. This involves checking the claimed facts against your own knowledge, checking those claimed facts and theories for self-consistency, and checking the arguments for violations of logic and for completeness.

I have read several books on the subject and many, many articles and performed such evaluations. On this basis, I have found that natural forces are dominant and they are very capable of causing the large temperature variations of the past when man-made CO2 was clearly not the issue.

What has changed now? A small recent increase of CO2, which is nonetheless very small compared to past CO2 atmospheric concentrations is the change. Now, because man caused it (presumably) it will have catastrophic consequences (presumably). However, in the past the higher CO2 concentrations were not so catastrophic, so is it not clear that the present catastrophe takes root in a prejudice against man?