Monday, November 30, 2015

Man made global warming far from being settled science

Man made global warming (AGW) is a hypothesis with some supporting evidence and some refuting evidence. This is a far cry from "settled science." If a consensus exists among many scientists and politicians, it is not due to the science but to other factors--human desire for consensus, or action, or to find fault with Man's interactions with nature.

Our solar system is spinning through the universe on a roughly 24,000 year cycle. We have recently learned that 94% of the universe is dark matter, which we barely understand.

Do you think that these facts--and they are provable facts--have some effect on our climate? It's hard not to. Guess what role they play in climate models?

A few more points to ponder:

1) There are thousands of peer-reviewed Atmospheric studies studies that denounce AGW as alarmism.

2) AGW climate change ideas have never progressed beyond the theory stage.

3) Not a single AGW climate change hypothesis has survived scientific challenge and scrutiny.

4) AGW climate change zealots cannot identify a specifically trend change outside norms that is permanent and not a temporary outlier that was caused by man's actions or inaction.

5) AGW climate change zealots never try to separate naturally occurring climate from man-made climate changes because they can't and they don't even want people to think about how small our actions might be in the overall theory.

6) No scientist can state, with any authority, that a reduction of X activity will result in Y climate change "improvement" and whether that result is meaningful.

7) No realistic quantification of required resources to make an X% "improvement" has been developed

8) No outline of what the trade-offs would have to be in order to achieve said X% improvement has been explained or whether it is realistic that we could achieve it.

9) Climate change zealots do not expect to make any personal changes to their lives otherwise demand would be outstripping supply for so-called green technologies, smaller homes if not tents, vegetarian restaurants, etc and supply would be outpacing demand for airlines services, hotels, single use plastic bottles etc.

10) Climate change slush fund activities undermine real efforts to improve the environment and tackle real challenges and undermine the credibility of the sciences and of real scientists.

Climate change? What climate change? Scientific facts? Allow me a slight diversion.

Lately people like to refer to the “explanatory power of climate change” because that sounds scientific! When they do be alert to a con job being pulled on them by politicians, who may have been conned themselves by a higher authority. It illustrates perfectly a misunderstanding and mistake continuously made about how science is done and what it means to say that there are scientific answers.

First and most important is to understand that what science does is propose models that help explain natural phenomena. F=ma or e=mc2 are just models and they serve to explain only certain phenomena, not all. A model is by definition a simplification of reality. These two are extremely simple and in and of themselves have tremendous explanatory power.

The case of climate change, however, is completely different. There are a very large number of forces that are known to affect climate, anywhere from butterflies flapping their wings, cars emitting CO2 and cows emitting intestinal gases, all the way to volcanic eruptions, ocean currents, solar spots and other solar phenomena. It is practically impossible to include all of those forces in a model of climate change—for one scientists don’t have the data, and for another they don’t have the precise causal relationships, or even the mathematics and computing power—so they simplify.

One thing that scientists do know fairly well is the weather. For this they have fairly good models, although these tend to be all over the place as anyone who follows hurricanes knows, so when scientists build more comprehensive models of climate change, they normally include some elements of those weather models.

Now, there are many models of climate change, these are more or less complicated, and some will include elements of weather models, or elements of other phenomena. The thing to keep in mind is that the climate change model was built to explain climate change using more or fewer sets of better known and understood causal relationships. When you refer to the explanatory power of a climate change model to explain some narrower phenomenon, you will normally be using one of those sets of causal relationships, each of which alone doesn’t explain climate change but can explain the particular phenomenon in question.

So when people claim that a climate change model explains, for instance, weather patterns over the US this winter they are mixing apples and oranges. What they are really saying is that some elements that are used to build a larger climate change model, can be used to explain the weather this winter BUT NOT necessarily climate change itself. To explain climate change one first has to be very clear what they mean by climate change. After all climate changes all of the time.

Unfortunately but very conveniently, those who speak of climate change never clarify what they mean. Remember that it used to be “global warming,” but that ceased to be credible after it was shown that the earth has actually been cooling, or at least not warming, for the last ten years. So to continue the con, the powers behind all of this nonsense changed “global warming” to “climate change,” but as I said, climate is always changing so what do they mean other than trying to pull a fast one over us?

I’ve followed the global warming and now climate change debate for many years by reading not what is in the media or in reports aimed at a general public, but scholarly articles by true experts on the subject, and what I have concluded is that there is still a lot of controversy and huge unknowns.

When the issue was global warming I concluded that even if we don’t really know what causes it and whether humans contribute to it in any significant way, perhaps the wisest way forward was caution and buying some insurance, but just by avoiding taking actions that are not really necessary and might aggravate the problem against the possibility that indeed there might be one.

Then there was the famous UN IPCC commission report, which had incredible holes in it. It surprised me a great deal that there were actually so many “scientists” who agreed with its conclusions despite gaping holes, the biggest one that I remember being that if there is a causal human factor it is more likely to be methane than CO2, albeit less directly, yet everybody, including the IPCC and what the data in their own report said, ignored methane in favor of carbon dioxide.

Anyway, to say that something is more credible because 97% of scientists agree with it is downright foolish. The most that it should get from anybody is perhaps a second glance, like was the case for me, but certainly not a belief that the proposition is therefore true. Scientists are just humans no different from any of us.

And now to add insult to injury, or rub salt in an open wound, when global warming was shown to be a very iffy proposition, its advocates just changed the terms of the debate and instead referred to it as climate change. Climate of course changes all of the time and as long as they are not clear about what they mean by climate change its advocates can continue conning gullible people without actually being liars.

I am not convinced that CO2 is the driver in temperature variation, but more of a follower and that CO2 in creases (which have not caused a net warming in 17 years now—the trend has been flat despite CO2 concentration increases) may be as much from natural imbalances in natural CO2 emission / absorption. It would also be more consistent with ice core data that showed CO2 spiking in the past as a result (follower) of warming, not as the leader.

Humans account for a small fraction of the globally emitted CO2 and the so-called "human fingerprint"—a ratio of carbon isotopes, supposed to mean the CO2 came from humans—has been questioned, since CO2 from vegetation has a similar fingerprint (warmer temperatures means longer growing seasons and more CO2 generated by decaying plant matter).

The science is not settled and (unfortunately) it's not real science either—its advocacy. The behavior of those dependent on and invested in this theory is shabby, to say the least. Not scientific-like, more like a religion and one that is ignoring facts—just like the witch doctor would. So lets not make idiotic policies based on nothing but a bunch of wrong guesses and the desire of politicians to extract more of our money in taxes.

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