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The IPCC: on the run at last

By Bob Carter - posted Monday, 31 March 2008

Global warming theory indicates that temperature rise due to increasing carbon dioxide emissions should be most prominent at heights of 5-10 km in the lower atmosphere; instead, more warming is occurring at the surface. For the lower atmosphere, the satellite data indicate that, since the 1998 El Nino when temperatures spiked 1 degree C due to a rise in water vapour emissions (the principal “greenhouse gas”), global temperatures dropped sharply, then stabilised and now show signs of continuing down - is global cooling next? (data courtesy of Professors John Christy and Roy Spencer, University of Alabama, Huntsville; a best-fitted spline curve represents longer term temperature trends).

That there is a mismatch between model prediction and 2007 climate reality is again unsurprising. For as IPCC senior scientist Kevin Trenberth noted recently: “... there are no (climate) predictions by IPCC at all. And there never have been”. Instead there are only “what if” projections of future climate that correspond to certain emissions scenarios. Trenberth continues, “None of the models used by IPCC is initialised to the observed state and none of the climate states in the models corresponds even remotely to the current observed climate”.

Knowing that their models are non-predictive and that despite their exhortations world temperature isn’t currently increasing, the IPCC has the effrontery to argue in 4AR that a decline in the sun’s activity and increased eruptions from volcanoes would “likely have produced cooling” of the planet were it not for offsetting human-caused warming. And this when there have been no recent volcanic eruptions of global import, and after 15 years during which the warming alarmists have consistently denied that solar activity is a significant cause of recent climate change.


The self-serving nature of these arguments is breathtaking, and transparently the alarmists are now positioning themselves to explain away any continuation of the downturn in temperature that is now underway short-term.

Such stunts deny scientific method, because they fly in the face of Occam’s Razor, or the principle of parsimony. Of course volcanic dust or other aerosols might have affected the global temperature over the last few years. But only persons who are searching desperately to save a favourite hypothesis make such assertions in the absence of reliable evidence.

To avoid acknowledging the recent flat-lining of global temperature, IPCC alarmists have another favourite pea and thimble - or is it elephant and circus tent - trick, which is to assert some variation on the statement that “eleven of the last twelve years (1995-2006) rank among the twelve warmest years in the instrumental record”. Given the cyclicity of the climate record, and that the planet is probably now poised near the peak of an ascending temperature cycle, this statement is no more useful than observing that over an annual cycle the hottest days each year cluster around midsummer’s day.

Having failed to convince the world that human-caused warming of the atmosphere is dangerous, IPCC has been casting around for new causes to espouse. A Royal Society of London report in 2005 on “Ocean acidification due to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide” has proved to be good feedstock, because of its claim that the average pH of the oceans will fall by 0.5 units by 2100 if global emissions keep rising at their current rate. That this estimate is known to be exaggerated by a factor of about 3 has not prevented the IPCC and others from recently publicising the ocean acidification legend. Clearly, they now seek to move the epicentre of the climate scare from the atmosphere, which stubbornly refuses to warm, to the ocean, whose depths doubtless still contain many scientific surprises.

The roughly 50 computer experts and scientists who form the core advisory group for the IPCC’s stance must have realised for several years now that the game was up. There is indeed copious evidence that climate is changing, as it always has; and that natural biological and physico-chemical systems - again as always - are changing in response. But as to human causation - the evidential cupboard is bare.

For the last three years, satellite-measured average global temperature has been declining. Given the occurrence also of record low winter temperatures and massive snowfalls across both hemispheres this year, IPCC members have now entered panic mode, the whites of their eyes being clearly visible as they seek to defend their now unsustainable hypothesis of dangerous, human-caused global warming.


To try to top The Ring of the Niebelung, composers after Wagner abandoned classical key structures and turned to the apparent aural chaos of atonalism. Similarly, to pursue the higher cause of saving the planet, the IPCC has now largely abandoned classical (empirical) science and adopted the sophistry of deterministic computer modelling. The result is neither melodious nor meaningful, let alone useful for sensible environmental planning. The time has surely arrived for sovereign governments to commission an independent reassessment of the UN’s hysterical global warming scare.

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First published in Canada Free Press on March 25, 2008.

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About the Author

Professor Bob Carter is a researcher at the Marine Geophysical Laboratory at James Cook University. Copies of scientific papers and other media articles by Bob Carter can be accessed through his website.

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