Thirty years ago, pollution standards were under pressure from advocates of global cooling, who said the earth was heading for an ice age because of man’s profligate use of resources and burning of fossil fuels. Now, many of these same advocates are on the other side of the coin arguing that the planet is in danger of warming to dangerous levels. Entire species will be wiped out in the floods arising from the melting of the polar ice caps, soil will lose its life-giving properties as the higher temperatures bake these items to the point that very little will grow. Our children—the children!—will be left to wander around a parched earth searching for water (a non sequitur if the tides are rising) and food because their parents and grandparents were too stupid to curb their reckless polluting.
The latest chapter in this comic soap opera is the latest “report” from the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It has opened the latest round of garment rending and finger pointing in the whole global climate “debate” to the point where climatologists and U.S. Senators are demanding that those who hold a differing view from this “consensus” opinion recant and repent, or be subject to censure. It’s as though a high school drama club had hijacked the idea for a drama critical of the current culture and decided to present it from the point of view of Senator “Tailgunner Joe” McCarthy. It would be funny if it wasn’t so damned serious.
Let’s be clear about this: The IPCC’s science summary is based on forced consensus, that is, it is demanded of the participants that they come up with a view with which they all can agree. By this standard, we would still be “certain” the sun revolved around the earth, with Galileo, Copernicus and all the other “heretics” burned at the stake both figuratively and actually. It also is based on secondary sources as the group does no original research. Even more questionable is that fact that its work is “peer reviewed” by experts and governments. Governments? I don’t trust them to spend my tax money wisely. Doubtless they do about as well with “science.”
This committee’s best estimates of temperature rise by 2100—a neat trick since they can’t tell me with any accuracy what the temperature will be over the next 10 days—gives them the chance to pick from an “average” or “possible” or “probable” temperature rise as if this was a multiple choice exam! Yet they never mention that other groups—using the same base data—are predicting a cooling of up to two degrees Celsius at the same time they are choosing from a range that rises anywhere from 1.1 to 6.4?C. I swear, they must have a different definition of scientific consensus than the one I’m used to.
Never mentioned in the summary is the work being done on defining the effect of water vapor and air borne particulates on warming. One of the fastest-growing segments of climatology, it seeks to strip away the uncertainty in the models by investigating the theory that clouds form when cosmic rays land on particles of sulfuric acid where droplets form. In fact, researchers in Copenhagen, Denmark, have created clouds in a laboratory in this manner, which—if it plays out—could explain at least part of the relationship between what goes on “out there” (space) and “in here” (earth). It also would vindicate those with an agenda of following where science leads them rather than where they think it should go, who have hypothesized that it is the relation of cosmic rays and water vapor—not carbon dioxide—as the culprit behind what we euphemistically call “climate change.” New studies are now investigating the fossil record to compare variations in oxygen isotopes trapped within rocks and fossils to variations in cosmic ray activity. Early signs show no relationship between changes in the CO2 patterns and temperature, but a strong one between water vapor and cosmic ray activity. By comparison, “accepted” climate science is riddled with inconsistencies, its models increasingly imprecise with each parameter added. The error ranges alone are enough to create near-absolute uncertainty, yet those with an agenda claim this “science” to be irrefutable. It is not. The only question is whether this hijacking of science is an aberration, or a growing trend that threatens the knowledge—and freedom—of us all.