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State Climatologist Might Lose Title For Voicing His Opinion on Global Warming

There has been a good deal of reporting lately about government scientists being pressured to say or not say certain things about global warming. Democrats even had hearings on it. I guess then they will be eager to defend George Taylor.

In the face of evidence agreed upon by hundreds of climate scientists, George Taylor holds firm. He does not believe human activities are the main cause of global climate change.

Taylor also holds a unique title: State Climatologist.

Hundreds of scientists last Friday issued the strongest warning yet on global warming saying humans are "very likely" the cause.

"Most of the climate changes we have seen up until now have been a result of natural variations," Taylor asserts.

Taylor has held the title of "state climatologist" since 1991 when the legislature created a state climate office at OSU The university created the job title, not the state.

His opinions conflict not only with many other scientists, but with the state of Oregon's policies.

So the governor wants to take that title from Taylor and make it a position that he would appoint.

I saw a 60 Minutes report a year or so ago about a scientist who said those in the Bush administration had him change some wording in a report which was stated as fact, to being identified as his opinion (which it was). He also said he had been pressured during the Clinton administration, but in the opposite direction. The reporter didn't seem very interested in that though. I guess it was just ancient history or something.

In Delaware the state climatologist, a global warming skeptic, is being accused of being funded by (gasp!) BIG OIL. (cue sinister music). I wonder how many global warming prophets are being funded by the environmentalist movement, or for that matter, being funded by groups that are anti-capitalism. I guess many of those would be one and the same though.

(Links via Drudge.)

Comments (108)

This issue is very much lik... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

This issue is very much like the Athiest-Darwinian Theory of Evolution vs. the Intelligent Design Theory of Evolution in that the left trys to pass off what is little more than religious dogma as science.

Yes, athiesm is a religion and it is being taught in schools in violation of the mythical "separation of church and state" just as the leftists religious thoeries about human induced global warming are.

The leftists have no problem with religion being taught in schools, as long as it's their religion.

Brilliant! Make a scientis... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:

Brilliant! Make a scientist's position a political appointment!

Advocates of that might want to imagine what it would be like if "the shoe was on the other foot", politically speaking.

So your point is, we should... (Below threshold)

So your point is, we should believe Mr. Taylor's position because his research is funded by EXXON, and he has inflated his position to one that does not exist?

Well, that is much better than the consensus view of hundreds of scientists and government officials.

The screamers latch onto th... (Below threshold)

The screamers latch onto the screamers but no one pays attention to the 1500+ experts that signed a petition saying Global Warming as hyped today is total BS.
Which of you global warming believers is willing to pay my 'over' normal heating bills for the winter, of course less the rip off by the power company. I estimate it will exceed $500 over any normal or slightly abnormal winter.

Hey scrappie, how about we ... (Below threshold)

Hey scrappie, how about we agree to a contract that for the next ten years I will pay your "over average" heating expensive, and you pay my "over average" central air electric bill. PLUS, you pay me your under average savings each winter, and I will do the same for you?

Well, that's just super tha... (Below threshold)

Well, that's just super that the states are making certain that scientists working for the state have the appropriate beliefs. But why stop there? State politicians should produce a list of all the polically correct positions required of all state workers including: Must drive hybrid cars; Must not buy food at McDonalds; Must not shop at WalMart; Must be a Democrat; Must not have a religion other then environmentalism; Must be anti-any-war; First marriage can be of opposite sex - second marriage must be of same sex, . . .


The state should mandate th... (Below threshold)

The state should mandate that Mr. Taylor consume a goblet of hemlock!

State Climatologist Migh... (Below threshold)

State Climatologist Might Lose Title For Voicing His Opinion on Global Warming


Taylor is not among the leading Oregon scientists, including Abbott, whom Gov. Ted Kulongoski asked to help develop a state strategy on climate change. The governor last week questioned whether Taylor can legitimately call himself state climatologist since the position is not officially authorized in state law.

"He's not the state climatologist," the governor said. "I never appointed him. I think I would know.

"He's not my weatherman."

The position of state climatologist was dissolved by the Legislature in 1989, Abbott said. Taylor runs the OSU-based Oregon Climate Service, which performs many of the same duties that the state climatologist once did, and OSU gave him the same title.

Oh no, he's going to lose the title he never had! How so, you ask? Well...

Taylor has held the title of "state climatologist" since 1991 when the legislature created a state climate office at OSU. The university created the job title, not the state.

His opinions conflict not only with many other scientists, but with the state of Oregon's policies.

So the governor wants to take that title from Taylor and make it a position that he would appoint.

In an exclusive interview with KGW-TV, Governor Ted Kulongoski confirmed he wants to take that title from Taylor. The governor said Taylor's contradictions interfere with the state's stated goals to reduce greenhouse gases, the accepted cause of global warming in the eyes of a vast majority of scientists.

"He is Oregon State University's climatologist. He is not the state of Oregon's climatologist," Kulongoski said.

So he's not Oregon's "State Climatologist" and his views are in direct conflict with the group that was actually appointed by the governor to craft the state's strategy, and he's funded in part by ExxonMobil (shocking, I know). Since he is dishonestly representing himself, the governor has decided to create the position of State Climatologist and appoint someone not in the pocket of an oil company. And this is a problem, why, exactly?

Yeah, this is a step in the... (Below threshold)

Yeah, this is a step in the right direction. Why not just have the politicians dictate the acceptable science and then mandate that non-believers need not apply. This is just silly.

Barney, where did you find the Exxon info? I didn't see it mentioned in the linked article.

Well, that is much better than the consensus view of hundreds of scientists and government officials.

Like government officials are experts on this topic? And there are plenty of scientists out there who disagree with your so-called consensus. This article, and the names in it, would be a good place to start.

So let me get this straight... (Below threshold)

So let me get this straight, the State created the State Climatology Office, and the climatologist working there isn't the State climatologist? (oh, and the University calls him the State Climatologist, because... that's what he was before the office was created) And why is this? Seriously, this is splitting hairs if I've ever heard of such a thing.

And where exactly does it say he works for Exxon?

"Consensus" means nothing i... (Below threshold)

"Consensus" means nothing in science - only facts do. The consensus of scientists in the mid 70's was that the earth was heading into another ice age.

Barney, where did you fi... (Below threshold)

Barney, where did you find the Exxon info? I didn't see it mentioned in the linked article.

I'll take you to the source. He's listed as scientific advisor to CO2Science.org, who are generously funded by Western Fuels and ExxonMobil.

So Taylor is a technical ad... (Below threshold)

So Taylor is a technical advisor for a website that is in part funded by ExxonMobil and he has written articles for websites funded by the oil industry. Yeah, sounds like he is bought and paid for, can count his opinions or interpretations of sceintific data. Give me a break.

And the whole issue about the title State Climatologist seems silly really. I guess it woudln't have been a problem if he had just fallen into line like everybody else.

"Barney, where did you find... (Below threshold)

"Barney, where did you find the Exxon info? I didn't see it mentioned in the linked article." JR

You find his affiliations with EXXON funded groups here:

This one good. Check out the list of contributing authors

Here is Taylor's Bio from the same organization as above.

The consensus of scienti... (Below threshold)

The consensus of scientists in the mid 70's was that the earth was heading into another ice age.


"Since he is dishonestly re... (Below threshold)

"Since he is dishonestly representing himself, the governor has decided to create the position of State Climatologist and appoint someone not in the pocket of an oil company. And this is a problem, why, exactly?"

Because he'd be in the pocket of the governor. Oh, but that matters not to you mantis huh, I forgot that whatever the libs want to do is fine but god forbid the republicans do the same. Also, he is in no way dishonestly representing himself, the article clearly states that the University created that job title, not the Taylor.

Sorry can should say can't ... (Below threshold)

Sorry can should say can't above.

And thanks mantis, I found a reference about his connections in the Oregon Live article you linked to and was responding as you posted more links above.

OK, time for a moment of le... (Below threshold)
Peter F.:

OK, time for a moment of levity.

This headline is now appearing on seattletimes.com

"Sims announcement launches day of global-warming efforts"

See it for yourself here.

It's even funnier when you take into account that Sims is one of Wa State's most powerful Democrats and King County Executive. Then again, maybe it's just "in" Seattle joke :-)

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- ... (Below threshold)

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- A think tank partly funded by Exxon Mobil sent letters to scientists offering them up to $10,000 to critique findings in a major global warming study released Friday which found that global warming was real and likely caused by burning fossil fuels.

I wonder how much money the inscrutable Mr. Taylor has or will receive?

"I wonder how many global w... (Below threshold)

"I wonder how many global warming prophets are being funded by the environmentalist movement, or for that matter, being funded by groups that are anti-capitalism." Lori

How is this for an idea, why don't you research it and find out?

I have provided documented evidence that Mr. Taylor has a financial relationship with EXXON/Mobile, and others have pointed out his lies about his position in the state government of OR.

What proof do you have?

I wonder how much the scien... (Below threshold)

I wonder how much the scientists received for working on the IPCC report?

Of course that wouldn't apply because they were just doing that report in the interest of science right? No agenda at the UN, right Barney?

Fact: This most recent bout... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Fact: This most recent bout of global warming we've been experiencing began tens of thousands of years ago and tens of thousands of years before the first fossil fuel was burned and tens of thousands of years before George Bush or any modern day "neo-cons" were born.

The clause "Global warming is real" is designed to fool idiots into believing the rest of the statement "and likely caused by human activies" is also true.

"The consensus of scientist... (Below threshold)

"The consensus of scientists in the mid 70's was that the earth was heading into another ice age.


We all know you'd love to revise history mantis, but it is absolutely true. Here you go, may 1975 NYT, "sooner or later a major cooling of the climate is widely considered inevitable"...


From TIME, 1974,
"Scientists figure that only a 1% decrease in the amount of sunlight hitting the earth's surface could tip the climatic balance, and cool the planet enough to send it sliding down the road to another ice age within only a few hundred years."


Some more choice headlines:


D-hoggs, if you know anyone... (Below threshold)

D-hoggs, if you know anyone suffering from cancer, please be sure to show this:

"Lorraine Day, M.D. tells her electrifying and hope-filled personal story of recovery from terminal breast cancer, without chemotherapy, radiation or mutilating surgery. She reveals how she found the courage, faith and strength to hang on when she was dying and defy everything she had been taught in her medical training in order to get well by following God's totally natural health plan."

See according to an expert, we don't need doctors, we can just need to follows God's diet.

Barney,I applaud y... (Below threshold)


I applaud you for your skepticism of any "scientist" that might be carrying water for the evil oil industry...

Its just too bad that you don't extend your dilligence and skepticism to any scientists that might be working for the agenda of an organization like the UN, or other leftist political organization with an agenda...

We all know you'd love t... (Below threshold)

We all know you'd love to revise history mantis, but it is absolutely true.

Gee, I had no idea that the NY Times and Time magazine were scientific bodies representing the consensus of scientists. Thanks for clearing that up. Have a look here for a rundown on the global cooling myth.

Because he'd be in the p... (Below threshold)

Because he'd be in the pocket of the governor.

Wait, wasn't this the sort of thing Wizbang was recently defending?

Oh, by the way, Hoggs, why ... (Below threshold)

Oh, by the way, Hoggs, why don't you read the articles you post? The very first paragraph from the NYTimes piece:

The world's climate is changing. Of that scientists are firmly convinced. But in what direction and why are subjects of deepening debate.

Sounds like consensus to me! From the Time article:

Some scientists like Donald Oilman, chief of the National Weather Service's long-range-prediction group, think that the cooling trend may be only temporary. But all agree that vastly more information is needed about the major influences on the earth's climate.

Wow, absolutely unequivocal! Why don't you try reading a real scientific publication once in a while and stop slinging bullshit about what a couple of magazines and newspapers wrote about what was then a very young science. Science, as you would know if you ever spent a day in your life, is a process, not an absolute. Experiments and conclusions are constantly refined and retested, leading to ever-more robust theory. If you had any clue of the work that has been done on climate change since the seventies you would see how foolish your assertions are, but of course you choose to live in ignorance, ever searching for your next Gotcha! moment, regardless of how ill-founded it is. You are pathetic.

Its just too bad that yo... (Below threshold)

Its just too bad that you don't extend your dilligence and skepticism to any scientists that might be working for the agenda of an organization like the UN, or other leftist political organization with an agenda...

Too bad I have never, ever seen anyone give any sort of evidence that any prominent (or not-so prominent) scientist is "working for the agenda of an organization like the UN, or other leftist political organization with an agenda."

The vast majority of climate scientists, at least in this country, are funded by government grants. Are you saying our government is a "leftist political organization?"

I one time got in a discuss... (Below threshold)

I one time got in a discussion with a liberal about global warming when I quoted something Michael Crichton said about the hype of man made global warming. The lib was aghast and said something about what in the world made Crichton an expert on the subject?

I then said and what makes Al Gore and Laurie David (producer of Inconvenient Truth) experts on the subject? And besides, Crichton has more degrees than either of them.

Needless to say he got very quiet very quickly.

A "consensus" is what one s... (Below threshold)

A "consensus" is what one strives for when one lacks proof. Further, extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

There's a very rough long t... (Below threshold)
John S:

There's a very rough long term correlation between carbon dioxide levels and global temperatures but there is no scientific proof of causation. Interesting thing is when you look into global warming you'll find the long-range temperature records. About 13,000 years ago the earth for no reason warmed by 20 degrees and the glaciers melted. Native Americans watched it happen, didn't hurt them a bit, their oral tradition is full of stories of the massive waterfall that filled Lake Huron for example.

There's been four ice ages in the past 1 million years. They typically last more than 100,000 years and are interrupted by brief (10,000 year) interglacial warm periods. The entire course of human history fits into one of those warm spells and the next ice age already is 2,000 years overdue.

12,000 years ago Boston was under ice 3 miles deep. 5,000 years from now it'll be under 3 miles of ice again. Maybe with global warming we can reduce it to 2.5 miles of ice. But the pathetic small amount of carbon dioxide we're pumping into the air won't amount to a piss hole in the snow when the glaciers return.

But the Democrats can try to reduce CO2, won't hurt anything (unless they destroy the world economy in the process). But it also won't have any effect on so-called Global Warming either.

Too bad I have never, ev... (Below threshold)

Too bad I have never, ever seen anyone give any sort of evidence that any prominent (or not-so prominent) scientist is "working for the agenda of an organization like the UN, or other leftist political organization with an agenda."

Um, dude... read the article... the guy who is "replacing" the current climatologist is exactly that.

You won't "see" anything unless you open your eyes...

I then said and what mak... (Below threshold)

I then said and what makes Al Gore and Laurie David (producer of Inconvenient Truth) experts on the subject? And besides, Crichton has more degrees than either of them.
Needless to say he got very quiet very quickly.

What he should have done is shown you where Gore cites his sources in the scientific community, and then asked you to show him where Crichton cites his. And then pointed you to the myriad sites out there like this.

Um, dude... read the art... (Below threshold)

Um, dude... read the article... the guy who is "replacing" the current climatologist is exactly that.

Um, dude, I did read it. Care to point out in the article where it names the person to be appointed Oregon's State Climatologist (not replacing Taylor, since he never held the position in the first place)? Also kindly point out where it states how he/she is funded by a "leftist political organization."

What he should hav... (Below threshold)
What he should have done is shown you where Gore cites his sources in the scientific community, and then asked you to show him where Crichton cites his.

Don't know about Crichton, but Gore's movie is hardly an airtight case. See
http://www.cei.org/pages/ait_response-book.cfm for details.

There may be scientific cha... (Below threshold)

There may be scientific challenges to Gore's case. But if I were you, I wouldn't be citing as science a report written by a political hack who includes in his attack on global warming science that it doesn't adequately consider the health benefits to the world of higher temperatures and increased CO2 emissions.

Sorry is this story has alr... (Below threshold)

Sorry is this story has already been quoted or linked - I scanned but didn't see it above.

Scientists offered cash to dispute climate study

Ian Sample, science correspondent
Friday February 2, 2007
The Guardian

Scientists and economists have been offered $10,000 each by a lobby group funded by one of the world's largest oil companies to undermine a major climate change report due to be published today.

Letters sent by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), an ExxonMobil-funded thinktank with close links to the Bush administration, offered the payments for articles that emphasise the shortcomings of a report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Travel expenses and additional payments were also offered.

The UN report was written by international experts and is widely regarded as the most comprehensive review yet of climate change science. It will underpin international negotiations on new emissions targets to succeed the Kyoto agreement, the first phase of which expires in 2012. World governments were given a draft last year and invited to comment.

The AEI has received more than $1.6m from ExxonMobil and more than 20 of its staff have worked as consultants to the Bush administration. Lee Raymond, a former head of ExxonMobil, is the vice-chairman of AEI's board of trustees.

The letters, sent to scientists in Britain, the US and elsewhere, attack the UN's panel as "resistant to reasonable criticism and dissent and prone to summary conclusions that are poorly supported by the analytical work" and ask for essays that "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs".

Climate scientists described the move yesterday as an attempt to cast doubt over the "overwhelming scientific evidence" on global warming. "It's a desperate attempt by an organisation who wants to distort science for their own political aims," said David Viner of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

"The IPCC process is probably the most thorough and open review undertaken in any discipline. This undermines the confidence of the public in the scientific community and the ability of governments to take on sound scientific advice," he said.

The crap being foisted on the world by Bush and his Exxon pals is criminal.

You find his affiliation... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

You find his affiliations with EXXON funded groups here:

Those who aren't aware should know that exxonsecrets.com is an arm of Greenpeace, who of course have a certain agenda. Not exactly an unbiased source.


10,000 is chump change. Th... (Below threshold)

10,000 is chump change. They could make millions if they stuck with the group think and got grants out the wazoo if they claim what the left wants them to claim.

Sorry, but I'll take the word of the scientists who are not getting ready to make millions through government grants.


Brian I am sure you are una... (Below threshold)

Brian I am sure you are unaware that some of the claims/stats in Gore's movie have already had to be changed. Some by half.

Sorry if we're not all going to hop on board the propaganda bandwagon. Especially if believing it does nothing but help the Left in this country and the world get elected.

Dennis Miller said it best tonight. Now that the U.N. has "confirmed" this, it is REALLY time to start doubting.


Sorry, but I trust Exxon's ... (Below threshold)

Sorry, but I trust Exxon's motives rather the Left's motives on anything because as many people see it, the Left has lost all credibility.

And it's a shame that it has come down to that, but that is the state of modern day liberalism.

P.S. And I don't follow ANYTHING that Hollywood tells me to follow. They are on the level of a sick cult.

This post reminds me:... (Below threshold)

This post reminds me:

Has Pelosi gotten permission to use the gas guzzling plane yet?

You find his affi... (Below threshold)
You find his affiliations with EXXON funded groups here:

As far as potential biases, anyone that's ever been involved in the research 'market' knows that it's all about the funding. If you're a climatologist in search of a grant, it's much easier to get that funding if you can convince others that the research topic is of critical importance.

The research/funding game is hugely political.

A physicist can say that gr... (Below threshold)
Greg Barton:

A physicist can say that gravity doesn't exist. They're entitled to their opinion.

But would I want that physicist working at NASA?


Same thing.

who funds what is a red her... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

who funds what is a red herring. examine the science that has been peer reviewed. then we can have an intelligent discussion. and the guy/girl screaming about his heating bill is simply showing his ignorance on the topic. arguments over this and creationism and terry schiavo etc just amaze me. they also lessen my faith in the educational system of this country. how is it that so many are incapable of individual and critical thought?

Why exactly do you think po... (Below threshold)

Why exactly do you think politicians who receive their money from corporations of all types, are better decision makers in regards to science than scientists. We are paying tax dollars for their professional peer reviewed work which the government is then surpressing. The problam with Mr Taylor, is his funding issues and his lack of peer reveiw of his data.

madmatt...i think we... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

i think we are saying the same thing.
this administration has a long well documented history of supressing science that does not agree with their ideology. hopefully the dark ages will be over on january 20th, 2009...the end of an error.

It's interesting that when ... (Below threshold)

It's interesting that when the majority of climate scientists were talking about major climatological changes due to the (non-human influenced) "el nino" events, the wingnuts weren't questioning them as "advancing a liberal agenda". Now they are. Do you trust the (very transparent and reviewable) work of our scientists or not? If not, stop making claims about science without publishing your own research.

Why don't you actually take some time to read the science and stop depending on conservative blogs for your information. www.realclimate.org

Most of the people who see ... (Below threshold)

Most of the people who see dissent and debate over global warming in the scientific community are seeing the result of the battle amongst scientifically-ignorant fanatics of both stripes as waged in the popular media (the same media that over-hyped the global cooling thing in the days when models were immature and reliant upon fragmentary data).

Freakishly cold spells do not disprove global warming. Freakishly warm spells likewise do not prove that it is true. People or the media that try to convince you otherwise *don't understand the science*.

Likewise people who make stupid assumptions that global warming implies that it will be warmer and wetter *everywhere* and therefore an unalloyed good thing *don't understand the science*.

There are fringe scientists who doubt global warming. Hell, there are still 'scientists' who doubt that cigarette smoke is harmful. In 20 years the global warming naysayers will be regarded in the same light as people who clung to the idea that smoking isn't harmful, that evolution is a fraud, and that the Earth is flat and at the center of the universe. You can take that to the bank.

biffbolt...haven't y... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

haven't you been listening? evolution is just a theory. like gravity. just kidding...well said.

The US government climate m... (Below threshold)

The US government climate model predictions for my part of the US, The pacific northwest, has called for higher year round temperatures with milder, wetter winters and hotter dryer summers. It's already happening. It's changed to the point that grape growers here in the willammette valley are already starting to replace their frost tolerant Pinots and Chardonays with Zinfandels and Sauvagnons.
I may or may not believe the government, but these guys make their living off of wine making and the vines need a decade to mature. Global warming isn't a "theory" and there isn't any "controversy". It's already happening. I just happen to live somewhere that's going to benifit from the change.
If I lived near the sea, or in an already arid climate or an area prone to tornados or Hurricanes, I might be a good deal more concerned.
Texas is the center of the oil industry. It's got a 1000 miles of coast line, plenty of semiarid prairie, a history of both tornados and hurricanes. I just love poetic justice.
By the way, I've appointed myself the Oregon State Wine Sampler.

It saddens me that we can't... (Below threshold)
Carl Gordon:

It saddens me that we can't come up with a suitable way that we can all come to some kind of agreement about the threat of climate change without engaging in mean-spirited para-diddle or political flaming-bag-of-dogshit-on-the-front-porch rhetoric. I thought that about a wheeled large six foot high jelly doughnut, which represents the spoon-fed naiveté and Diane Sawyer-esque candy-assed gloss over that we, as a country, tend to force-feed an ever-grateful body politic that still thinks it's cool to do the Fonze "thumb-up" thingy. By filling the large doughnut with plastic vacuum-molded life-sized replicas of baby arms and legs and heads, the disenfranchised parade crowd, sitting in their own pews, would perhaps contemplate the other-worldly, alien-like gradual osmosis of the skeptical side of the duality of the mind and the true revelation of the "real" you behind the voice in your head that everybody just assumes is the true self, pardon the contradiction. Obviously, by now, you're spitting grape nuts, acknowledging my obvious ignorance of the laws of physics, for it does not take a half scoop of fresh brain to realize that after a while, the effects of gravity and the tendency of objects with higher density suspended in a colloidal sweetened material matrix would mean that the plastic replicas would eventually start a premature breakdown of the glutens in the already jelly weakened cell walls of the doughnut and gradually break down the electron shells to the degree that arms, heads, and legs would begin to slowly extend, as if they were being shitted, from the bottom, although the appearance would suggest that "they" are holding on to the confectionary mother ship with a passion, grasping dough-like the terra-firma of their doomed existence, as we all must.

Care to point out in the... (Below threshold)

Care to point out in the article where it names the person to be appointed Oregon's State Climatologist (not replacing Taylor, since he never held the position in the first place)? Also kindly point out where it states how he/she is funded by a "leftist political organization."

Posted by: mantis at February 7, 2007 08:03 PM

The liberal governor of Oregon is appointing someone to replace Taylor - somebody who toes the line... he is in effect losing his title because the Governor doesn't agree with him. If this was a Republican doing this, you'd see the problem. You are blinded by your bias.

If you want to talk about science, read the actual document that the IPCC scientists submitted - not the "political talking points" written by people with a political agenda.

There are very serious problems with the approach that Al Gore et al are taking to global warming. Just because someone is not repeating the same old warn out warnings that you are doesn't mean they're somehow compromised or "in the pocket of big oil"...

jak k.,The argumen... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

jak k.,

The argument is not over whether or not global warming is occurring. Of course it is. Were it not there would still be over a mile of ice on top of the spot where I am now sitting. The argument is whether or not and to what degree human activities are influencing it.

Just as the argument over evolution is not whether it occurred or not. Of course the earliest life forms on Earth were simple single celled organisms and gradually more and more complex forms appeard. The argument is over whether this happend through "natural forces" a.k.a. random natural genetic mutation or was the genetic mutation directed by an intelligent designer.

Lefties like to think they can win an argument by misrepreseting the opinions of the other side. You see that every day in the comment threads on this blog. But you have to be pretty ingnorant not to see it or to be actually doing it.

How is it that so many of you on the left are incapable of individual and critical thought?

Your are right about 1 thing though, it does have to do with the faulty left-dominated education system where leftist religious dogma is often presented as fact.

Sorry, I meant "jay k." not... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Sorry, I meant "jay k." not "jak k."

The liberal governor of ... (Below threshold)

The liberal governor of Oregon is appointing someone to replace Taylor - somebody who toes the line

He's not being replaced, they are creating (re-instating, really) the position of State Climatologist that Taylor never actually held. I notice that you didn't back up your assertion that the governor is appointing someone working for a "leftist political organization with an agenda." Maybe it has something to do with the fact that no one has been appointed yet, and you are making baseless assumptions? You were saying something about bias?

he is in effect losing his title because the Governor doesn't agree with him.

Or because he works for groups funded by energy interests. Conflict. Of. Interest. And he's not losing the title he never had.

If this was a Republican doing this, you'd see the problem.

Nope, I would be pleased as punch if Republicans were to replace government scientists who have conflicting interests.

You are blinded by your bias.

My bias towards objective science? True, I am.

If you want to talk about science, read the actual document that the IPCC scientists submitted - not the "political talking points" written by people with a political agenda.

I have read it. Hell, I know the co-chair of the panel! Have you read it?

There are very serious problems with the approach that Al Gore et al are taking to global warming.

Don't care a lick about what Al Gore says.

Just because someone is not repeating the same old warn out warnings that you are doesn't mean they're somehow compromised or "in the pocket of big oil"...

Nope, but when they're getting paid by big oil, well, you figure it out. Would you trust a government scientist who was also getting funding from Greenpeace?

Bunyan --And why i... (Below threshold)

Bunyan --

And why is the debate about whether we caused the current warming? It's true that the earth is warming more and faster than at any point in the climate record and that this warming precisely corresponds to the model predictions given the CO2 we've added -- but you don't have to believe that demonstrates causation to know that global warming is a problem.

The REAL debate is over whether we should do anything about the fact that we've increased the atmospheric CO2 content by over 30% and it's only going to get worse.

No one doubts CO2 is going up.
No one doubts we're the primary cause.
No one doubts increasing CO2 by 30, 40, 50% WILL change the climate.

So why are we debating niggling details like exactly HOW MUCH of the CURRENT warming is due to us? Who cares?

Ralph: "No one doubts ... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Ralph: "No one doubts increasing CO2 by 30, 40, 50% WILL change the climate."

Well you said 2 true things then followed it with a blatantly false statement, or a best very, very misleading statement. So very typical of a lefty.

There is no proof of what the effects of this very, very minor increase in CO2 in the atmosphere will have. It's all guesses and opinions, but nothing in that arguement is fact.

Just as the argument ove... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

Just as the argument over evolution is not whether it occurred or not.
P. Bunyan

Completely false. There are plenty of creationists who believe the Bible is literal and the world is only 6000 yrs old. Those people are (almost) entirely on the right side of the political spectrum, so don't blame the liberals for the right's lack of scientific credibility.

Your are right about 1 thing though, it does have to do with the faulty left-dominated education system where leftist religious dogma is often presented as fact.
P. Bunyan

Care to elaborate on this? So far, our "left-dominated education system" has produced the most technologically advanced society on earth. How exactly does that discredit it with respect to scientific findings, theories, etc.? And how would a "right-dominated education system" improve our country's science education?

I know one thing, a "right-dominated education system" would make science class a whole bunch easier.
Teacher: "P. Bunyan, what force attracts protons and electrons?"
P. Bunyan: "Ummm ..., the Jesus force?"
Teacher: "Correct!"

I call your bluff. Show me... (Below threshold)

I call your bluff. Show me anyone credible (i.e. an actual climate scientist) who says that increasing CO by 30% is

a) "very, very minor" [It'll be a 50% increase soon -- how on EARTH is that minor?] and

b) insufficient to change global climate

You'll find a lot of folks making noise saying we HAVEN'T changed the climate YET, and lot of folks talking about the uncertainty of HOW we'll change the climate, but who are you thinking of that insists that nothing will happen? Certainly not the usual list of climate skeptics.

Bunyan -- Nice distr... (Below threshold)

Bunyan --
Nice distraction from my main point, by the way, which was this: why are debating whether the climate has ALREADY changed, as you insist? Shouldn't the debate be about the future of the climate, not the present?

p bunyan...you are l... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

p bunyan...
you are living in an upside down world.
i did not say the argument (there really is no argument) isn't about who or what is causing warming. i simply said examine peer reviewed science. peer reviewed science, as opposed to cherry picked facts and figures, says overwhelmingly that humans are causing global warming. it seems that you are intent on winnning an argument by misrepreseting the opinions of the other side...a tactic your president has used to great effect...call it rovian debate...see also; straw men, false choices, hyperbole, and outright lies.
as to religious dogma...i'm sure your dogma is far more superstitious than my dogma.

p bunyan..."..The argument ... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

p bunyan..."..The argument is over whether this happend through "natural forces" a.k.a. random natural genetic mutation or was the genetic mutation directed by an intelligent designer..."
how can you have an argument based on superstition? is bad luck caused by walking under a ladder...our panel will discuss thia after the break. you are watching fox news. i mean faux noise.

Jesus Force. Is there anyth... (Below threshold)

Jesus Force. Is there anything it can't do?

"..Jesus Force. Is there an... (Below threshold)
jay k.:

"..Jesus Force. Is there anything it can't do?"
Find us a good option for Iraq.

Find us a good option fo... (Below threshold)

Find us a good option for Iraq.

That's just because you don't believe in it enough. Trust the Jesus Force.

And here I thought the Demo... (Below threshold)

And here I thought the Democrats were exaggerating how ignorant the Red Necked Republicans actually were!

If anything the comments I'm reading here demonstrate that the average is Republican is infinitely DUMBER than the Democrats have led us to believe.

I've actually read people on here wondering aloud, "Why is it getting abnormally colder if it's supposed ta be getting hotter? Me no understand!"

Climate change means all seasons get abnormal - the winters get colder, the summers get hotter and flood prone regions get wetter.

It's stunning how ignorant Republicans are. Truly, the cliché of the barefoot tobacco chewing retarded Redneck is a fact and not a smear.

Oh! And let's not forget the grand "environmental conspiracy" apparently being orchestrated by Freemasons, the Jews and god knows what other evil cabal of sinister people.

So everyone who advocates for LESS cancer-causing toxins in our drinking water is doing so to - what?--destroy capitalism????

Exactly HOW does protecting ourselves and our families from CANCER caused by TOXINS achieve the goal of destroying capitalism????

Recently declassified docum... (Below threshold)

Recently declassified documents show that Adolf Hitler planned to "destroy America" by reducing the amount of cancer causing agents in the US's air and water. The plan was to reduce the number of cancer-related illnesses in the US in an effort to "destroy capitalism."

Are Republicans really that retarded?

"I'm a real American! And real Americans want as much carcinogens as possible in the air! If you don't have cancer caused by the toxins PG&E dumps in the water --- then you must hate America!"

Seriously, are you guys really that stupid?

Forget that all the scientists on planet earth agree on climate changed is caused by CO2 levels.


Just reducing ordinary toxins and carcinogens will make YOU healthier. Exactly how stupid are you that you think protecting yourself from getting cancer is a "communist plot"????

Oh, Chris, don't be naive. ... (Below threshold)

Oh, Chris, don't be naive. Those toxins don't ACTUALLY cause cancer (not much, anyway), but if you CLAIM they do, they provide a convenient excuse to shut down plants, sue corporations into bankruptcy, and thus ruin the economy, sending us into a depression and creating the necessary conditions for a Communist revolution!

Any true capitalist knows that the market solves all problems -- if the water REALLY caused cancer no one would drink it, and the supplier would go out of business!

Besides, those who choose to succeed can afford to drink bottled water. As for those who choose to fail, well, it's their own fault if they cancer.

Ah, that goes along with th... (Below threshold)

Ah, that goes along with the Republican Theory of Poverty:

"Only evil people who are lazy, stupid and do drugs ever become poor. Likewise everyone who is wealthy MUST be a genius and a saint utterly incapable of evil. Just look at Enron. Worldcom. Arthur Anderson. Adelphia. Etc."

If toxins are dumped into the water or pollution is spewed into the air causes someone to have cancer - then that person must be "poor" and therefore deserves to suffer (why else would they be living next to a factory for goodness sake!) Is that how Republican logic goes?

That still doesn't really explain why Republicans are violently (psychotically?) opposed to improving Americas natural resources and improving the health of our citizens.

It just doesn't make sense. Even if you have the insane belief that "People are only poor because it's Jesus' punishment for sinners!" - the carcinogens in the air are still going to give THEM cancer too!

Unless they are so insane (or scientifically stupid) that they think they are somehow "immune" from getting cancer?

I just can't grasp why anyone would fight to the death to LOWER the standard of living in America to Mexico's level.

Why do Republicans have such a psychotic hatred of America that they will fight (to the death if necessary) to prevent any reductions of cancer causing toxins in our air and water?????

Lets go back to George Tayl... (Below threshold)

Lets go back to George Taylor -that's what this article is about after all.

Ore-fricken-gon STATE University gave him the title "State Climatologist".

He's going to lose this title, which was bestowed to him by Oregon STATE University because he's skeptical about Global Warming.

The Oregon Government created the Climatology deptartment, and they were perfectly happy with George Taylor being called the "State Climatologist" - Aparently until the Governor discovered the embarassing truth that he's not falling for the whole Global warming scare hook, line and sinker.

This hasn't been about scientific discussion - this has been about poltical expediancy, and it is troubling.

Lots of people (and some of them right here on this board) seem to be of the opinion that there is no good science, or no reputible scientists who doubt global warming as its being played in the media. Link after link, quote after quote has been posted here, and elsewhere. I've noticed that the stock response is "bought by oil", or some other such nonsense. Regardless of what you hear in the press, there is still a lot of scientific discussion about issue, it is not closed, and when we're talking about such drastic changes, we ought to make sure they're really going to accomplish something, don't ya think?

George Taylor bought-off by big oil? I hardly think that providing consulting on a website compared to drawing a salary from OSU (for 16 years, no less) it stands to reason that if he were really being bought off, it would be by OSU - the ones paying most of the money...

"Regardless of what you hea... (Below threshold)

"Regardless of what you hear in the press, there is still a lot of scientific discussion about issue, it is not closed, and when we're talking about such drastic changes, we ought to make sure they're really going to accomplish something, don't ya think?"

I'm not sure I take you're meaning -- are you saying that there is debate about whether or not reducing cancer causing toxins and cancer causing carcinogens is a GOOD thing?

Because it seems like the Republicans are trying to make the case that all those toxins evil Democrats want to reduce are "totally harmless" and the ONLY thing these toxins are suspected of doing is global warming.

It's like the Republicans want to pretend that they DON'T cause cancer or illness and therefore, if global warming is in doubt, then there is no reason whatsoever(!) to reduce those emmisions.

They cause cause.

People get sick.

People die.

People who can't afford chemotherpy are getting cancer, getting life saving treatment, defaulting ont heir hospital bill and the hospital is passing those costs on to you inthe form of a higher bill.

Let's stop pretending these toxic emissisions are harmless. Even if gloabl warming were a communist hoax -- we'd STILL need to reduce them to improve out quality of life, wouldn't we????

"....This procedure and thi... (Below threshold)
Carl Gordon:

"....This procedure and this form of execution, which you now have the opportunity of admiring, have at present no open supporters left in our colony. I am their sole defender, and at the same time the sole defender of the legacy of our former commandant. I can no longer contemplate any further development of the system; all my energy is consumed in preserving what we have.".
· Franz Kafka, "In the Penal Colony".
"If you bet on humanity, you'll never collect on a winning ticket",
· Charles Bukowski
As the honeyed ripples and successive talc encrusted waves of cybernetic messages broadcast by the machine elves continue to flow through the collective unconscious membrane, past the inner recesses of my grey meat sponge, thrashing restlessly with the resultant ennui by-product of a ga-ga culture increasingly obsessed with the black box that talks but never listens, its mysterious inner workings, and what's in Britney's panties, it is beginning to dawn on me that the control I have always feared relinquishing to the machine elves and their clever use of beanies has never been mine to give. Painful to me in that, by all standards of decency I have come to take for granted, what I think of as individual consciousness is as much a deluded mind figment as the hero sandwich in my head I unintentionally but inescapably keep slathering sexual mayonnaise on. But random senselessness has served me well in combating that which attempts to snub me out like a discarded Camel butt, or more appropriately, as expressed through a camel's butt. Vague uneasiness takes me right into the heart of my darkness since they turned off the power in the white trash neighborhood of my mind, of the failed relationships between author/programmer/algorithm/text/reader, flowers of my creativity casually cast to the gutter without so much as a "thank you". Angst is my tool of choice, that rusty pickaxe that liberates me from authoritative discourses with the much affected minions of Bozo-ry, internalized cryptograms of which I'm purposely and blissfully unaware, and places control of the text firmly in your hands to do with what thou whilst.

OK, computerguy -- what ev... (Below threshold)

OK, computerguy -- what evidence do you need? Give us a threshold -- what do you need to see before you are persuaded that increasing atmospheric CO2 by more that 30% is a bad thing.

As for big oil, don't you find it at least a little bit suspicious that just about every single climate skeptic has ties to big oil? Don't you find it at least a little bit suspicious that there are so few climate skeptics with actual climate science credentials (i.e. they've gotten a degree in it and published in a peer-reviewed journal)?

Most importantly, why do you believe those few and not the many from government, big oil (BP), the insurance industry, and academe who say that this is a problem?

Could it really be that conservatives have such a conditioned distrust for environmentalism that they'll believe in a vast, left-wing conspiracy by the world's scientists to perpetrate a hoax upon the world before they'll believe anything Al Gore says? Because after this latest IPCC report, that's the only ground the climate skeptics have left.

"I wonder how many globa... (Below threshold)

"I wonder how many global warming prophets are being funded by the environmentalist movement, or for that matter, being funded by groups that are anti-capitalism."

I'm betting none.

So, please find one 'Global Warming Prophet', that is, a degreed scientist, who is being excelusively funded by the "environmentalist movement".

I'll be happy to discuss th... (Below threshold)

I'll be happy to discuss this with anybody - but please don't put words in my mouth. Nobody is talking about putting toxins in the atmosphere or any other rediculous straw men things the previous posters have said... we're talking about CO2 and the Greenhouse effect.

Just for reference, did you know how much CO2 of the CO2 in the atmosphere currently is produced by human activity? (according to the IPCC, somewhere around 3.4%). If its that much of a big deal, why don't we go after the source of more than 96% of this "evil gas"?

What gas do agricultural growers use for optimal growing conditions for plants (add to the air)? Would you believe, Evil CO2? What are the optimal conditions inside a greenhouse for plant growth? Glad you asked, around 700ppm - 1000ppm... much more than what's in the atmosphere now... so yeah, I'm not all that worried about levels increasing by 30%. There will naturally be more plant growth, which will help to regulate CO2 (most of which we're not emitting anyway...)

And finally, what atmospheric component accounts for as much as 95% of global warming? Wait for it... water vapor.

If you look at this with skeptical eyes, you'll start to wonder why this is so important.

US didn't ratify Kyoto simply because it was targeted at reducing our ability to compete in the global marketplace. It would have forced us to reduce our output of CO2, while letting many countries continue to generate "evil CO2". If it was as important as claimed, it would be applied to the whole world equally.

I have no problem with CO2 caps... as long as they're not unfairly administered, or put any one country at a disadvantage. We operate in a global economy, and whatever controls you put on one nation need to be put equally (and enforced equally) on all.

The actual IPCC report (not the political summary) is very interesting and enlightening to read... no where near the doom and gloom of the summary...

It's scientist's job to warn us of potential disasters... Earthquake scientists warn us of "the big one" (which will happen), Astonomers warn us potential destruction by comet or meteor (which will happen at some time in the future)... Climatologists make models and then give us their worst predictions - its how they get paid (just ask how much people will pay (via grant) to study things that won't cause anybody any harm... if its not sexy or dangerous, it doesn't sell seats... the key is that humans always have and always will ADAPT to whatever nature throws at us.

The earth will heat up in the future, and the earth will cool in the future - its happened in the past, and it will happen in the future - whatever we do, we should be prepared for both...

Thecomputerguy:What ... (Below threshold)

What a well thought-out response!
It seems that this becomes an area of belief instead of science. Some have asked you what it would take to make you believe. I think that is the real problem with both sides of this "debate".
Okay then, here is my take on the whole global warming thing. The northern hemisphere is warming. It has been warming at a pretty good clip since the mid 1800's or thereabouts. The IPCC says that the warming amounts to about 0.8C over this time span. Their evidence seems plausible, even highly probable. CO2 has increased drastically in the last 40 years give or take a few. The CO2 increase is largely caused by human actions. This evidence is also plausible, very probable.
Great harm will come to us all if we don't change our ways and live green lives? There is no real evidence other than some computer models that indicates this. Computer models are really great at interpolating between known data points but they generally suck for extrapolating at any distant point. It appears to me that most of the 0.8 degree rise was from causes OTHER than humans. We don't really understand the reasons behind the majority of the temperature rise, yet we focus on the smaller part caused by humans. Temperatures have been higher in the past than they are now. Temperatures have also been colder. For me to completely change my way of life, possibly destroying our economy and the economies of all those Asians who rely on us buying Nikes, requires that the science be a slam dunk case. Global Warming folks make a plausible case, but they make nowhere near a slam dunk case.

computerguy, I'm sure the I... (Below threshold)

computerguy, I'm sure the IPCC report itself will be an interesting read... when it comes out. It will be published in 4 parts over the coming year. What report are YOU reading?

Also, your 3.4% number for the amount of CO2 increase is completely inaccurate. The number is 34% (from a pre-industrial level 280 ppm to nearly 380 ppm today). That's not small. Please cite where you think the IPCC says that only 3.4% is caused by humans -- perhaps you missed a decimal place or are looking at a number for just the last few years?

RicardoVerde, the Earth has been warming over the last 200 years, but that trend has dramatically increased in the last 50. Most natural climacic fluctuations are much slower than that. This dramatic increase closely corresponds to the recent increase in CO2 emissions (the first 50 ppm of anthropogenic CO2 took 200 years to get into the atmosphere, the next 50 ppm took 33 years). This is completely consistent with and explained by computer simulations.

You say we don't really understand why the temperature is increasing, but the IPCC says we do, to 90% confidence. How much more confidence do you need? If that doesn't convince you, what will?

Besides, if we add 50 ppm of CO2 to the atmosphere every 30 years, and there was only 280 ppm to start with, how can you possibly say that that won't warm us up? Disagree with the details of the weather models if you want; it's going to get hot and the seas will rise. That's just physics.

Well Ralph, the earth has b... (Below threshold)

Well Ralph, the earth has been warming as a general trend for more like 10,000 years but that would be splitting hairs. We don't have real good weather data except for the last hundred or so. All the stuff before then is just so much inference anyway.

I didn't read all of the comments above (shame on me!) but I think the 3.4% figure probably was the contribution of the CO2 component to the "greenhouse effect". The greenhouse effect is overwhelmingly influenced by water either in vapor form or by droplets (clouds, fog). What I don't get is why everyone acts as if the greenhouse relationship of CO2 is either linear or higher order. My memory is that the relationship tends to be more nearly logarithmic, that is, the effect gets smaller as the percentage increases. This effect is hardly ever the cause for a runaway in any kind of system. Another way of looking at the "physics" as you say is that most of the effect of increasing CO2 content has already occurred.

I think it would be great to get away from burning hydrocarbons as fuel. Putting a bunch of CO2 in the atmosphere is probably not a good long term thing to do, even though I think the global warming thing is mostly smoke and mirrors. Oil is much better used for making synthetics/plastics and other everyday organic chemistry wonders. There is just not enough evidence yet to destroy the world's economy for another doomsday scenario.

We eliminated most all of the CFC's that deplete ozone, what, 10 or 12 years ago? The ozone hole over Antarctica has done what since then? Oh, it's gotten bigger, which is also an indication of dropping temperatures.

Days late, I know, but just... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:

Days late, I know, but just in case anyone is still checking, here's some fairly new information on the topic:

Look To The Sun: An experiment by Danish scientists offers convincing evidence linking global warming to an increase in cosmic radiation


Ian Douglas Clark, Financial Post
Published: Thursday, October 12, 2006

Since Newton's inadvertent experiment with gravity beneath the apple tree, scientists have constrained their theories of how nature operates with the need for experimental evidence -- replicable measurements and quantifiable data -- as proof. While the evidence may sometimes prove the obvious, it may also completely change the accepted view of fundamental processes. Ptolemy's theory of the Earth-centred solar system involved impossibly intricate gyrations of the sun, moon and planets. Copernicus' celestial measurements and Galileo's telescope provided experimental observations of moons orbiting Jupiter and reversals in planetary motion to prove we have a sun-centred solar system.

The science of global climate change is no different, where a heated debate exists between two theories -- climate warming forced by CO2 from human activities (anthropogenic global warming or AGW) and natural warming by changes in the Sun's activity.

Last week, the Danish National Space Center released the results of an experiment that demonstrates how cosmic rays could influence natural warming. In so doing, it ruptured a bedrock of some in the AWG camp. As put by Eigil Friis-Christensen, director of the Danish National Space Center, "Some said there was no conceivable way in which cosmic rays could influence cloud cover. [Our] experiment now shows how they do so, and should help to put the cosmic-ray connection firmly onto the agenda of international climate research."

For decades now, the 20th-century increase in global temperature has been largely blamed on the rise in CO2 from human activities. And why not, given that CO2 is a greenhouse gas that can trap infrared radiation and warm the atmosphere? The problem is that the rise in CO2 is not enough to account for this temperature rise. To compensate, the AGW theory assumes an amplification by water vapour of two to three times.

Water vapour is the major greenhouse gas in the atmosphere and accounts for as much as 95% of the natural greenhouse warming that keeps the Earth habitable. According to this theory, a minor amount of warming by CO2 triggers a larger increase in water vapour. Computer models incorporate this amplified forcing and extrapolate over the next 100 years to predict temperature increase of 1.5 degrees to 4.5 degreesC. Further extrapolation of climate feedbacks has produced the wild speculations of an overheated planet that have led to the catastrophic predictions of The Day After Tomorrow and An Inconvenient Truth.

Supporting the other side of the debate, there are remarkably strong correlations between measures of past solar activity and global temperature. For example, the coldest periods of the Little Ice Age, some 300 years ago, occurred when no sunspots were observed on the face of the sun. Moreover, the rise in temperature over the past 100 years occurred when the sun increased its output to its highest levels in the past 1,000 years.

The problem in this theory is that radiant heat from the more active sun is not enough to explain the rise in 20th-century temperatures. However, a change in solar activity affects more than the light the sun emits. It also changes the sun's magnetosphere that sweeps out past the Earth and partly shields us from the harmful high-energy cosmic radiation originating from supernovae deep in the Milky Way. The theory is that these cosmic rays affect our climate by ionizing particles and gases in our atmosphere. These ionized molecules act as nucleation points for water droplets and lead to the formation of clouds. Clouds reflect sunlight back into space and have by far the greatest impact on the Earth's energy balance and climate. Changes in solar activity, then, have a second and more potent impact on our climate through changes in the cosmic ray flux and thus on cloudiness.

This brings us to the burden of scientific evidence in the climate debate. Until now, the evidence for both sides has relied essentially upon wiggle-matching -- how well the ups and downs in temperature over time match with the ups and downs of solar activity, or of CO2 in the atmosphere. Until now, both theories lacked experimental evidence.

The Danish discovery has changed this. Researchers led by the Space Centre's Henrik Svensmark published experimental evidence in the proceedings of the prestigious British Royal Society showing that high-energy cosmic rays do have the ability to ionize molecules in our atmosphere and nucleate clouds. Mr. Svensmark's team managed to reproduce the gases and chemistry of the lower atmosphere inside a chamber of seven cubic metres. Into this simulated atmosphere, they fired a beam of charged particles like the high-energy cosmic radiation that manages to penetrate the Earth's magnetic shielding. Their measurements of the charged particles they created and the rates of nucleation match with those required to have a measurable impact on climate. They provide experimental evidence to support the theory.

The Danes are not the only team to have sought experimental evidence for cosmic ray forcing of the climate. University of Ottawa researcher Jan Veizer and colleague Nir Shaviv use geology and meteorites to show a cosmic ray connection with climate over the past 600-million years. The research team at CERN, the EU's foremost centre for high-energy physics, announced last month that their new CLOUD experiments would test the theory of cloud formation by cosmic rays. NASA is also taking the solar connection more seriously. This past spring, two new satellites were launched to collect data on the link between cloud formation and climate. All this activity signals a recognition that the solar-cosmic ray-cloudiness connection must be taken seriously in climate research.

While these Danish experiments provide new evidence to support the theory of solar-forcing of climate change, the CO2 warming theory remains untested and unverified. Beyond wiggle-matching, no experimental evidence has been produced to show that an increase in CO2 can accelerate the water cycle and increase greenhouse warming with water vapour. In fact, ice core evidence from the past shows that it doesn't.

In the natural sciences, if you can't measure it, you can't prove it.


Dave A.: there's a reason ... (Below threshold)

Dave A.: there's a reason why the scientific community hasn't seized on Lassen and Friis-Christensen's work; it didn't survive peer-review.

When their graphs are corrected for filtering errors, "the sensational agreement with the recent global warming, which drew worldwide attention, has totally disappeared."
[Damon and Laut, 2004. See http://stephenschneider.stanford.edu/Publications/PDF_Papers/DamonLaut2004.pdf]

The only people still promoting a link between solar variance and global warming are not astrophyisicists. They are journalists and right-wing bloggers who ignore the follow-up stories that disproved the early contentions. Hell, even the scientist most responsible for studies that suggested a link between the solar cycle and temperature variations is today convinced that it plays a very small role in the warming we are seeing today.

"[A]ccording to our latest knowledge on the variations of the solar magnetic field, the significant increase in the Earth's temperature since 1980 is indeed to be ascribed to the greenhouse effect caused by carbon dioxide."
[Sami Solanki, solar physicist and director at the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research.]

Thanks for the info, Biffbo... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:

Thanks for the info, Biffbolt. As an engineer, I'm always open to going where the data leads (albeit slowly and skeptically).

I tried your Stanford link and got a Page Not Found error. Any idea where the page has been moved to?

I'm also wondering how the results did not survive peer review since they were "...published experimental evidence in the proceedings of the prestigious British Royal Society..." Does the Stanford article provide insight on that, or does it just take a contrary position?

I'm also curious: The Stan... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:

I'm also curious: The Stanford link string suggests you are referring to a 2004 paper. The article I posted indicates the Friis-Christensen work in question was published in 2006. I must be misunderstanding something here, because a 2004 paper can't shed light on research published in 2006.

Biffbolt: Hmm... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:


Hmmmmm. I'm now wondering (suspecting?) that the info in the article I posted is newer than the peer-review issue you are citing. The gist of the study is still posted on the website of the Danish National Space Center.

See: http://www.spacecenter.dk/research/sun-climate/

Please correct me if I am mistaken.

Come to find out the right-... (Below threshold)

Come to find out the right-wing media/ blogs are pimping a fake story.

Go figure.

One more thing: I found yo... (Below threshold)
Dave A.:

One more thing: I found your Sami Solanki quote, Biffbolt, and it's from 2004, again predating the new research I posted. Here's the link:

Given all of the previous, it seems best to assume the research is accurate until shown otherwise.

It should be noted, however, that it is only evidence, not conclusive proof.

And it's probably not good for people to get emotionally attached to one side of an argument or another; it closes the mind.

Interesting to see so many ... (Below threshold)

Interesting to see so many posts that try to invalidate global warming by stating that certain climate changes are not explained by global warming theory. I wonder if those people would apply the same logic to stories like this.

Ralph:There is a m... (Below threshold)


There is a more concise breakdown of this somewhere, I'll have to find it - still, this from the IPCC report:


Start with this... look at the first graphic (natural CO2 cycle), then look at the second (Human Perturbation). The percentages for the human component total 3.4% when compared to natural sources of CO2. Out of the roughly 6%, according to the IPCC 1.9% goes back into the Ocean. (some of the rest comes from sources such as deforestation).

As I've said, the actual IPCC report is very interesting... the "political" summary is highly alarmist.

(Oh, and to add to the list of scientists that are alarmist about human demise - epidemilogists - notice they're always claiming that the next superbug is going to wipe out man kind?) Listen folks, according to these various groups, something is going to wipe us out any day now - so might as well enjoy life while you can, because when the next asteroid impact, or gianormous earthquake, or flood, or plague, or volcano comes, we won't be around to cause any global warming, now will we?

wow, computerguy -- misinte... (Below threshold)

wow, computerguy -- misinterpreting a 6-year-old report and calling it actual amazing skeptic-supporting numbers from the new one. Nice going.

Looking at that fascinating diagram, those are RATES of CO2 exchange. The relavent number is HOW MUCH CO2 is in the air and HOW MUCH TOTAL CO2 we've added to the system. We've increased the NET CO2 in the atmosphere by 30%, which is 10x more than you claimed.

As I said, the ACTUAL IPCC report is still forthcoming. You keep calling this "the report", but the one in the news now isn't even published yet. You linked to the old one, which doesn't even support your numbers. You should get your story straight.

Ralph,I must be mi... (Below threshold)


I must be misreading what you're saying.

It sounds like you're saying that we're adding 3.4% annually, but we're responsible for 30% of the total? We're either one or the other, but its not possible to be both, is it?

And what exactly is wrong with the 2001 report? If the IPCC was wrong with the report they published back then, why in the world would you expect them to be right today?

Nothing's wrong with the 20... (Below threshold)

Nothing's wrong with the 2001 report. The latest report is much better, but that one is fine. What's wrong is you claiming that you had read the new report ("the actual IPCC" report you called it). The recently released summary is not a summary of the old report you cited, it's a summary of a report yet to be released. I was pointing out that you don't know what you're talking about.

The fact that you're confused about the 3.4% vs. 30% indicates that you haven't read (or understood) even that report very well. Let's break it down, shall we?

According to your reading of the rates of CO2 (sources and sinks) into and out of the atmosphere, the human contribution is a 3.4% perturbation on the natural input level. In steady-state (a good approximation over many years), the input and output balance at an atmospheric concentration of around 280 ppm. If you increase the amount you put in each year, the amout taken out will also increase, but by not quite as much, so the equilibrium level will go up a bit unitl the input and output balance again.

You can't calculate what the new equilibrium level will be unless you know things like how efficiently the oceans absorb CO2 as a function of atmospheric concentration, how much faster plants grow with higher levels, and stuff like that. You need models to do that calculation. You have to go out, make measurements, do lab work, that stuff. That's what makes a climate scientist a climate scientist: he knows these numbers, how to calculate them, where they came from, how reliable they are. You and I can't figure out what they are just by thinking and reading and posting to blogs.

Anyway, at the moment we've increased the annual injection rate of CO2 into the atmosphere by some amount (let's say 3.4% [I haven't checked your number, but it sounds close]). That means every year 3.4% more goes up than would have gone up without us. But the amount taken out of the atmosphere by plants and the ocean also goes up a bit, but not by quite enough to compensate (there's a time lag to the increased uptake, but also many other effects, like deforestation, etc. -- it's a very complex, nonlinear system, but it IS model-able). The net result is that at the end of the year the total concentration in the atmosphere is a bit higher than the year before. So it shouldn't be surprising that the 30% number isn't obvious from the 3.4% number -- you need models to get from one to the other -- but both numbers are measureable, and the models predict PRECISELY the measured values.

The same thing happens, year after year. In the first 200 years or so since the industrial revolution we added a total of 50 ppm (from 280ppm) to the atmosphere. In the last 33 years we've added another 50 ppm. How much longer, as we continue to increase our CO2 output, before we reach the next 50? And the next 50? And the next? How far do you think we can push it before we should start to worry?

Do you really think that in 50 years CO2 won't be a problem? 100 years? 150 years? If the climate scientists tell you we're already at that point, why don't you believe them?

I usually don't visit conse... (Below threshold)

I usually don't visit conservative blogs, but I wanted to check out how this story was being handled. All I can say is "Wow!" mantis and others are trying to present the actual facts of the case (e.g., the OR state climatologist position was abolished in 1989), and his claims fall on deaf ears. The UN is behind the issue of global warming? Wow.

Apparently the argument quickly changed from the OR story to the truth of global warming; but what's important to see is that the story was carelessly researched or was clearly meant to mislead readers. In my experience, most liberal blogs could not get away with such a story because readers do not hesitate to point out false or misleading information. Just sayin'.

In my experience, most l... (Below threshold)

In my experience, most liberal blogs could not get away with such a story because readers do not hesitate to point out false or misleading information. Just sayin'.

Yeah, that's because the readers that would do so are usually banned before they get the chance. Just sayin'.

Ralph,May I parphr... (Below threshold)


May I parphrase what I believe you're saying:

You concur that nature itself is the largest contributor of CO2, and man contributes a small minority amount, but nature can only reabsorb the amount that it puts into the atmosphere, and no more, so that means that anything we put in causes the total amount to increase.

And to this I would say that if this is truely an issue, wouldn't it be better for mankind to try to develop technology to reduce the majority contributors of CO2, rather than his own (relatively insignificant) contribution? Or better yet, work in increase those things in the enviroment that absorb CO2? Wouldn't that be overall a potentially more effective and have less effect on humans?

And if Kyoto was serious about capping CO2, I believe a reasonable position would be to apply CO2 caps equally to all countries, and not to put the US at an economic disadvantage - if this truely such a grave crisis.

Another question "does the enviroment truely release a steady amount of CO2, or are their natural fluctuations that may make any reductions in our release of CO2 meaningless?" For example, in my understanding, large volcanic eruptions can release tremendous amounts of CO2 - periodically... if this is the case, then what exactly do we expect to gain? It seems very interesting to me that with all these components that release variable amounts of CO2, that somehow man's contribution (with is one of the smallest amounts) is enough to throw the system out of balance. Delicately balanced systems like this do exist, but they are usually by design, and do not come into existance without some intelligent input - are you really saying that enviroment had an intelligent design that was setup to handle only the amount of CO2 release by thousands of different systems (some with outputs that vary tremendously), but this system cannot handle *any* additional CO2 - regardless of the amount?

The greenhouse effect is responsible for keeping the earth habitable... without it the earth would be well below freezing... and CO2 is only a very minor contributor to global warming - doesn't it seem a little odd to go after a minor contributor (man's 3.4% contribution to CO2), which is only responsible for a small percentage of the global warming effect- which is in itself an inheriently benefical thing?

And finally do you understand that there is a limit to the amount of global warming that concentrations of CO2 can cause?

There are lots of good reasons to be skeptical...

Oh, and Ralph, I have read ... (Below threshold)

Oh, and Ralph, I have read one of the drafts of the report. The IPCC doesn't want this out, but some organizations have broken the embargo (means they probably won't be shown drafts of the next report)... and it will be especially interesting to compare this with the final report (because they'll carefully change the wording of the final report to match the summary (report written by scientists (more or less fairly reputable - summary written by polticians - and I trust politicans as far as I can throw them) - good science, huh?)

Not that you'll read it or anything, but stop calling me a liar, it doesn't put you in a very positive light:


Lets look at this as if it ... (Below threshold)

Lets look at this as if it was a financial planning excercise:

Suppose you earned $100 a day at your job ($100 = 100% of the earth's carbon cycle to absorb CO2 for a year).

Now suppose that you spend $3.40 a day on eating, and keeping yourself warm in the winter, and cool in the summer, and getting to work, and keeping your food fresh, and driving to work, and keeping yourself clothed and entertained.($3.40/day = 3.4% per year human contribution of CO2 as per 2001 IPCC report).

The other money that is spent is consumed by activities that vary randomly. Every few days, something random happens - like you get mugged, and $25.00 is stolen from you (lets say, corresponding to a volcanic eruption of the earth, releasing 8x as much CO2 as humans do for a year), and your rent varies somewhat from day to day (representing varaible CO2 contribution from things like forest fires, and weather changes that affect crop growth). Oh, and there are also probably many random events that may happen from time to time that we can't predict, and maybe are not aware of (maybe you find a quarter on the sidewalk, or a dime falls out of your pocket). - this would represent uncertaintees about our complex climate system... in the short term, think of when weather forcasters botch a forecast, because really, the weather is too complex to accurately predict or understand at this time...

Over a period of a few weeks, you notice that your bank balance is very slowly going down - oh, and you're not exactly sure what your bank balance was with any certainty more than a few months in the past (representing our understanding of the carbon cycle on earth, and climatic changes from ice ages to very warm periods on the earth, and how our certainty of CO2 concentrations has only recently been increasing).

Now, if you talk to a dozen different financial planners, some will tell you that you need to reduce the $3.40 you spend every day staying alive, happy, and healthy). Some will tell you to figure out how to make more money. Some will tell you to explore ways to control your "random expenses". Personally, I believe that in this sceanrio, we may benefit some from ensuring that the $3.40 never gets much higher than it is now... On the other hand, some times in life, you have to spend money to make money (build technlogy that will control levels of CO2 over time). Many financial planners will paint the worst possible picture to get you to act (tell you it looks like you will go broke and die) - even though without knowing what your balance was a year ago, they really don't know that (don't know with great certainty how the atmosphere has changed in the past, or how it is trending).

Oh! You have a draft of th... (Below threshold)

Oh! You have a draft of the new report! Why didn't you just say so when I asked which report you were reading? When you linked to the old report I naturally pointed out the descrepency as evidence that you didn't know what you're talking about. If you had the new one the whole time you could have saved us all a lot of trouble and just said so in the first place. I'm sorry I suggested you didn't have it, but you gave me plenty of reasons to doubt you.

You earlier wrote about the 3.4% / 30% thing "they both can't be right, can they?", giving even more evidence that you don't know what you're talking about. You now seem to have accepted that they both CAN be right (although you still haven't retracted your original statement that only 3.4% of atmospheric CO2 is anthropogenic).

But then you go and post those ridiculous volcano numbers. 25% of the annual CO2 uptake? Are you kidding? You CERTAINLY didn't get THAT from the report.

The annual volcanic contribution to CO2 is 0.15 GT/y -- or, in the monatary units of your example, 7 cents. Not $7, but $0.07, vs. the human component is $3.40. The number you cite is probably from the "8x the human output" number that skeptics throw around and is a complete fabrication -- no basis in fact or science anywhere, just a product of the internet echo chamber. Go ahead, look for ANY actual source of the number. It's nonsense. In fact, its IMPOSSIBLE. If volcanos had really added 25% to the atmospheric uptake in any given year you'd see obvious spikes in the modern CO2 records, and you don't. Look for yourself.

And your claim of heading off nature's portion of CO2 instead of our own is good. We COULD offset 20% percent of our own emission by buying more fuel efficient cars and increasing our use of nuclear power, but that's too much trouble -- we get the same reduciton by capping the world's volcanos! At least you're presumptively in favor of stopping deforestation.

Why do you keep parroting the skeptic's worn arguments when the slightest bit of critical thinking followed by the most cursory bit of research will show that they're wrong? How long do think it took me to find the proper volcano numbers? That you were citing the old report? What was wrong with your 3.4% number?

The natural purturbations you seem to think dominate the system are either so small as to be insignificant (volcanos) or operate on such long timescales that they are not relavent to the discussion at hand (solar variability, orbital variability, etc.). In the parlance of your example, it's like saying you can afford to spend extra because you'll be getting a raise in 40 years, or your rich uncle will die and might leave you some of his money, or that you occationally find pennies on the way to work.

Look at what we DO know in the parlance of your example -- if we take as given that we don't really know how much CO2 we put up as a fraction of the total (we don't balance our register) -- even then what we DO know is how much we've added (how large our credit card bill is and how fast it grows) and we can easily see -- no assumptions needed! -- how soon before we double the atmospheric CO2 (double our debt) -- today's children will see it.

If your descretionary spending $3.40 a year and you can reasonably go down to $2 without too much pain and $1.40 corresponds to the growth of the debt, then doing cutting down will avoid having creditors hound you day and night and put liens on your stuff -- well, you'd be a fool not to do it!

Yes, greenhouse warming keeps our planet habitable -- it keeps it quite warm and prevents it from freezing. If greenhouse gasses warm the surface by 10s of degrees, then it doesn't take much of a fractional increase in them to take it up another degree or two, does it?

I'm done with this thread, but I hope you'll check numbers and claims with actual climate scientists (the index at realclimate.org is a good place to start) before posting them in the future. When you post numbers that are demonstrably false you just add noise to this very important discussion.

Ralph:Volcanos emi... (Below threshold)


Volcanos emit CO2 all the time whether they are erupting or not. The emissions this year may well total .07 out of the $100 - but they do vary, and there are thousands of natural sources, more than just volcanos. There also haven't been any major eruptions in a while. I'm sure the daily output of a volcano pales in comparison to a big eruption - guess we'll have to wait for the next one to be sure...Volcanos also emit more than just CO2 - they also emit (during eruption) about 10 times as much water vapor very high up into the atmosphere - and as you well know, water is more than 10 times as effective a greenhouse gas than CO2, so I wouldn't take volcanos out of the picture just yet.

As far as the old report, I cited it because it's a common technique of the left to attack the source. A draft of the IPCC report is a poor source in an argument, because, well, its a draft - whereas a final report (even an older one) is a stronger source... between the two though, the newer one at this point is less alarmist than the old one... If this trend continues, we'll have to worry about Global cooling soon... oh wait...

one more point about volcan... (Below threshold)

one more point about volcanos... CO2 is a "greenhouse gas" no matter where it is in the atmosphere, right?

CO2 is also fairly inert, correct? (If I'm wrong, let me know, this is just off the hip)... that means that in order to be "cycled", CO2 has to get to the ground (specifically to plants)... My inclination is that when CO2 is blasted into the upper atmosphere by a volcano, it probably takes a very long time to make its way back to the ground, wouldn't you think? That would mean that the CO2 blasted high into the atmosphere would be active as a greenhouse gas for a much longer time (thereby multiplying its effectiveness in warming the planet).

I think your numbers on CO2 from volcanos is daily emissions - which are probably many orders of magnitude (if not many hundreds of orders of magnitude) smaller than a full scale eruption...

As far as the rest of your post, you if keep building straw men, you're going to need to dig up Ray Bolger and start paying him royalties...

You are wrong. Those numbe... (Below threshold)

You are wrong. Those numbers are for all volcanic output, eruptions included, not just dormant-state emissions. It took me 1 minute to find actual, scientific references:


But I don't know why I bother. At this point it looks like you don't care that you're wrong about that, or about the anthropogenic fraction of atmospheric carbon.

Can you admit that you were wrong or will you just post those numbers again in another thread as if they were true?

Ralph,Your link do... (Below threshold)


Your link does state the output of volcanos everywhere (1/150th the amount of CO2 that man puts out), but doesn't state anywhere about the output from a large eruption - at least not that I could see.

As I said, if CO2 were released high in the atmosphere, it would seem to me that its effect would be multiplied... normal emissions from volcanos are released at ground level... but large eruptions throw gas and debris high into the atmosphere... and as I said, 10 times as much water vapor as CO2, and Water Vapor is 10 times as effective as a Greenhouse gas - so maybe we should be talking about the warming effects of volcanos in general, and not just their CO2 emissions...

But lets not get stuck on Volcanos... Mankind contributes only 3.4% of the total CO2 contribution to the Atmosphere - that's the important point... Nature's the real problem when it comes to CO2...

actually, that's not quite ... (Below threshold)

actually, that's not quite correct - water vapor is 20 times more effective at causing global warming than CO2... so the global warming effect of the water vapor from a volcano is 200 times more than the effect of the CO2...

You are wrong on every sing... (Below threshold)

You are wrong on every single point:

Those volcano rates include eruptions, which are a negligible source of CO2:

Volcanic water vapor doesn't matter because it rains out so fast that the atmospheric concentration is essentially independent of input level. Water vapor IS an important greenhouse gas, but its atmospheric concentration has more to do with CO2 emissions than H20 emissions:

CO2 is "well-mixed" -- it does not take long for CO2 at any level to become evenly distributed. The timescale for CO2 to be removed from the atmosphere is centuries, so for the injection height to matter the CO2 would have to stay high in the atmosphere for centuries, which is exactly what well-mixed gases don't do (by definition).

This is all really basic stuff. You should do more research before you make such demonstrably false claims as if you know what you're talking about. I know it's tempting to blindly make assertions your "gut" tells you are true, but it only make you look bad:

How can nature be "the problem" if we can't control its rather steady CO2 emissions and it's our controlable, ever-increasing, extra contributions causing the unprecedented rise in CO2?

Stay tuned for my response.... (Below threshold)

Stay tuned for my response. It's being held up by the moderator for excessive numbers of links.

Hey RalphI'll make... (Below threshold)

Hey Ralph

I'll make you a deal - if your sources don't at least give a passing nod to water vapor in the atmosphere as a "greenhouse gas", then just go ahead and save yourself some typing, because I'm not interested.

Water Vapor is 20 times more effective a greenhouse gas than CO2... most of the arguments about global warming hinge on leaving water vapor out - the problem is that even worst case scenarios (computer modeling), when you factor in water vapor, humans have a very small contribution to global warming. (less than 1% of observed warming)

Its been fun sparing with you, but alas, I have a life, and much better things to do with my time...

Thanks, and best of luck to you.

Sneak preview:<br ... (Below threshold)

Sneak preview:

Volcanic water vapor doesn't matter because it rains out so fast that the atmospheric concentration is essentially independent of input level. Water vapor IS the most important greenhouse gas, but its atmospheric concentration has more to do with CO2 emissions than H20 emissions:

In other words, put all the H20 in the air that you want, it will all come out in the next rain, so it DOESN'T MATTER.

DITTO man!!They've... (Below threshold)
Beonda Pale:

DITTO man!!

They've NEVER "proven" that cigarettes cause cancer either.

They've also NEVER "proven" that evolution exists in anyway what so ever.

Damned libruls - all they do is fake science.

Just like this report from the pinko "National Academy of Sciences" on "Global Climate Change"


Our brave leader COMMISSIONED this report and they BETRAYED him.

When will people see that the grand majority of scientists are really just commies in white coats. Same goes for most "professors" at "universities".

They must be stopped - floridating our water, killing God, telling us that bathing is healthy. line 'em all up against a wall.

Praise God






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