Tom Cruise's latest blockbuster is called Oblivion. In it an alien conquers Earth by destroying the Moon and unleashing catastrophic climate change. Until Oblivion Hollywood has been firmly in the man-made climate change [AGW] corner. Of course Hollywood has plenty of money but little credibility.
AGW science probably has as much money as Hollywood to spend, the question is does it have more credibility.
Stephan Lewandowsky is a leading AGW scientist and advocate. Like Cruise Lewandowsky recently had a major project involving the Moon. Lewandowsky's paper is called: NASA Faked the Moon Landing-Therefore, (Climate) Science Is a Hoax An Anatomy of the Motivated Rejection of Science.
This paper is a bad paper. It has been subject to sustained and cogent criticism but the paper's defects are aptly summed up by the inherent contradiction between its thesis and reality. Lewandowsky's position is that sceptics are susceptible to conspiracy theories and so could be expected to subscribe to other conspiracies such as the Moon landing being a fake.
There have been 12 humans who have stood on the Moon. Along with the great and recently departed Neil Armstrong, the first who stood on the man was "Buzz" Aldrin. Buzz thinks the climate has been changing for billions of years and today's climate is no different. Buzz has a PhD from MIT. Likewise the last astronaut to stand on the Moon was Harrison Schmitt. Schmitt thinks natural causes dominate any human effecton climate and that AGW support is political because people are scared they would lose their funding. Schmitt has a PhD from Harvard.
So, we have on the one side Lewandowsky saying sceptics are likely not to believe in the Moon landings and on the other side we have two celebrated astronauts with impeccable qualifications and experience, who have actually been on the Moon and who are sceptics. In fact so many of the ex-astronauts and NASA staff who worked on the Apollo missions are sceptics they have formed their own project to oppose the misinformation about AGW.
In a recent talk Lewandowsky's collaborator, blogger John Cook described the effect humanity has on the climate as being comparable to the Hiroshima atomic bomb. And not just one bomb but 4 bombs going off every second.This orgy of destruction was first raisedby the father of all AGW exaggerators, the regularly arrestedJames Hansen. Hansen had previously said Earth was going to become like Venus, but when that undesirable scenario did not resonate then introduced atomic bombs into the predictions about the fate of the Earth. Hansen said AGW is "…equivalent to exploding 400,000 Hiroshima atomic bombs per day 365 days per year.That's how much extra energy Earth is gaining each day."
Energy professor Mike Sandiford also contributed to the general gloom by standardising the Hiroshima effect and calling it the Hiro. So everyone could now calculate their destructive impact on the climate by expressing it in Hiros; as in I had a great last night, it was an 11 Hiro occasion. Or when Buzz Aldrin was walking on the Moon he used about 9 Hiros.
This of course is patent nonsense. A detailed critique of the Hiro has been done by Watts. Watts compares Cook's 4 Hiros per second to what the Sun does which is 1000 Hiros per second. And that is if one accepts the premise of the Hiro. But what Cook and his predecessors in the Hiro blast-chain don't consider is that human activity is incremental and does not consist of continuous bomb blasts. They also don't consider that AGW is wrong, a conclusion which now has the support of overwhelming evidence.
So, for AGW science it's Hiros all round and given the warfare context who better to comment than a retired military man. At the latest Climate Commission end of the world gathering former Defence Force chief Admiral Chris Barrie said that due to AGW "There's a one in two chance that by 2100 there'll be no human beings left on this planet."
This is grim news unless of course he was referring to the possibility that all of humanity will immigrate to the Moon just to prove Lewandowsky wrong. Unfortunately given the stern demeanors of both Admiral Barrie and his Climate Commissioner buddy Will Steffen it is more likely he meant all that stands between humanity and extinction is the toss of the coin.
This is delirious alarmism, especially coming from a military man who could be expected to have a more mature and informed perspective. More than anything this sort of extreme hyperbole has undermined AGW science. It is as though AGW scientists know their science is weak so they overcompensate by ramping up the threatened consequences.
Since AGW started nearly every imaginable catastrophe including more lawyers has been predicted to happen due to AGW. The cry of Wolf has been so loud and constant that people have seen through the lies.
The way AGW science is going it would not be a surprise if Wallace and Gromit's trip to the Moon is revealed to have been a conspiracy. Cheese anyone?
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