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Saturday, March 22, 2008

Is the Earth still warming?

Christopher Pearson of The Australian discusses an interview between Michael Duffy, the co-host of ABC's Counterpoint and Jennifer Marohasy, a biologist and senior fellow of Melbourne-based think tank the Institute of Public Affairs. The short answer is one we keep hearing more and more frequently:
She replied: "No, actually, there has been cooling, if you take 1998 as your point of reference. If you take 2002 as your point of reference, then temperatures have plateaued. This is certainly not what you'd expect if carbon dioxide is driving temperature because carbon dioxide levels have been increasing but temperatures have actually been coming down over the last 10 years."
Could the models be wrong?

Maybe all of the actual data pointing to the effects of the Sun and other natural inputs really are having a big effect.

Marohasy: "Well, the head of the IPCC has suggested natural factors are compensating for the increasing carbon dioxide levels and I guess, to some extent, that's what sceptics have been saying for some time: that, yes, carbon dioxide will give you some warming but there are a whole lot of other factors that may compensate or that may augment the warming from elevated levels of carbon dioxide.

"There's been a lot of talk about the impact of the sun and that maybe we're going to go through or are entering a period of less intense solar activity and this could be contributing to the current cooling."

Duffy: "Can you tell us about NASA's Aqua satellite, because I understand some of the data we're now getting is quite important in our understanding of how climate works?"

Marohasy: "That's right. The satellite was only launched in 2002 and it enabled the collection of data, not just on temperature but also on cloud formation and water vapour. What all the climate models suggest is that, when you've got warming from additional carbon dioxide, this will result in increased water vapour, so you're going to get a positive feedback. That's what the models have been indicating. What this great data from the NASA Aqua satellite ... (is) actually showing is just the opposite, that with a little bit of warming, weather processes are compensating, so they're actually limiting the greenhouse effect and you're getting a negative rather than a positive feedback."

Duffy: "The climate is actually, in one way anyway, more robust than was assumed in the climate models?"

Marohasy: "That's right ... These findings actually aren't being disputed by the meteorological community. They're having trouble digesting the findings, they're acknowledging the findings, they're acknowledging that the data from NASA's Aqua satellite is not how the models predict, and I think they're about to recognise that the models really do need to be overhauled and that when they are overhauled they will probably show greatly reduced future warming projected as a consequence of carbon dioxide."

"The models need to be overhauled" ... And we have governments making public policy to control carbon dioxide content that will directly cause a destruction of economies. These policies will cause a loss of livelihoods for many and disaster for 3rd world countries whose progress is stifled by misguided fools jumping to the wrong conclusion because of an incomplete data set. And to what end?

  • Al Gore should have his Nobel revoked.
  • Governments should recognize that they cannot regulate a gas we exhale
  • Alarmists need to recognize that their credibility is coming to a fast end
10:1 odds that none of the above happens even as we head into the next ice age (which has also been discussed several times).

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