By Dr. Willie Soon 01/28/2002
Winston Churchill once remarked that "a
lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants
on." If my recent travels are any
indicator, the Last Lion may have understated the case.
If you want to contribute with our work, sending no money,
"Dear Guest, We are committed to energy
and resource conservation. Energy conservation helps reduce the effects of global
warming, acid rain, and smog, and protects our natural resources."
That gentle note was placed on my pillow in the Hilton Towers hotel room in
Washington earlier this year.
"More than 160 countries, including
all other major industrialized nations, reached an accord November on implementing
the Kyoto Protocol, a treaty on global climate change. Under it, dangerous greenhouse
gases would be reduced by 2010, to the benefit not only of our current generation
but of also of many generations to come. A recent paper by the National Academy
of Sciences made it unequivocally clear that global warming is real and that
human actions contribute in considerable measure to the greenhouse gases that
So intoned Stephen M. Wolf, the chairman of US Airways, in a confident but highly
misleading statement in the January issue of Attache magazine while my flight
was guzzling its share of gasoline hovering back and forth between Boston and
"Global warming, not of [the poor's]
making but originating with the wealthy few, will affect their fragile ecologies
most. Their situation will be desperate and manifestly unjust."
So lectured 110 Nobel Laureates -- from physicists to poets - claiming that
"global warming and a weaponized world"
shall be the "most profound danger to
world peace" in the next hundred years.
What is going on here? At every turn it seems I am bombarded with environmental
doom and gloom scenarios. This is all the more odd since there is very little
in the current climate science that justifies such rhetoric.
For example, the Earth will warm or cool regardless of what the hundred Nobel
Prize winners think or do. Indeed, ascertaining the impact of CO2 on current
and future climate is still largely an enterprise driven by immature science
contained in climate models. All climate models have failed in their efforts
to emulate the relevant observations of the current climate. Therefore, no matter
how anxious we are, clear causal links of carbon dioxide emissions to global
warming are yet to be identified.
While running the climate models endlessly and projecting the pattern of computerized
change into the future can certainly produce scary warnings - providing fodder
for hotel operators, airline CEOs and Nobel laureates alike - it is not likely
to provide any realistic guidance on how to deal with the risks and benefits
of potential future global warming. Confusion and alarmism are the price, however,
to be paid later by society. As well as economic hardship.
Most objective analyses evaluating the future restricted CO2-emission scenarios
reveal heavy economic burdens to be visited upon the economies of the industrialized
and developing world. Unfortunately, these facts don't factor into the concerns
of the green pessimists, including the Nobel laureates who on December 7, 2001
issued their declaration in order to maximize the "negative
aspects" of CO2's possible global
warming effects and touted concerns over "historical
Why they do not consider an energy restriction scheme such as the Kyoto protocol
an "economic injustice"
- certainly one of "historical"
proportions - remains to be seen.
After all, we've had good news lately. On January 9, 2002, two University of
Alabama scientists, John Christy and Roy Spencer revealed that "global
temperature for 2001 was 0.06 degrees C warmer than the 20-year average (1979-1998)"
or "the ninth warmest (and the 15th
coolest) since satellite instruments started gathering global climate data."
And, new scientific reports are showing that the Antarctic continent has been
cooling for the last 35 years, a fact contrary to the predicted global warming.
This news undermines the U.N's weather agency and the United Kingdom Met Office,
which declared, prematurely, "2001 temperatures
to be high" and "much
of the temperature change is down to human influence."
While there is much uncertainty in climate science, in the scientific discussions
over global warming there is, however, at least one sure scientific fact: man-made
global warming has not been confirmed at
all from available records. So cheer up
Hilton, cheer up US Airways, and cheer up distinguished Nobelists: the
truth is out there, and he is getting his pants on.
Dr. Willie Soon is a Physicist at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics,
60 Garden Street, MS 16 Cambridge, MA 02138, USA, email (Internet): email@example.com
This article was taken from TechCentralStation
website. Pay a visit to their EnviroScience page!.
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