Crushing the Consensus

A new article in Environmental Communication:
“Beyond Counting Climate Consensus” by Warren Pearce, Reiner Grundmann, Mike Hulme, Sujatha Raman, Eleanor Hadley Kershaw & Judith Tsouvalis,
is discussed in the Guardian, of all places.

It is notable (among other reasons) for citing our own Ben Pile and our number one below the line fan AndthentheresPhysics, as well as Tol, Corner and other familiar names. Authors include sensible sociologist Reiner Grundmann and thoughtful retired climate scientist Mike Hulme. Here’s a short summary of the Abstract (I think I’ve got the gist):

The emphasis on scientific consensus as a persuasive technique in the climate wars risks spoiling the efforts of sensible social scientists such as ourselves to influence the debate. Sooner or later the public will discover that the consensus argument was invented and promoted by a tiny bunch of mad activists (Oreskes, Lewandowsky, Cook etc.) who lied and cheated their way into the peer reviewed literature and imposed an absurd meme on gullible politicians. Someone’s got to call this bunch of mendacious charlatans to account, or it’s all up with the sociology of science. We’ve picked the filth up and flung it as far as we can. Now we’re washing our hands of it.

Lead author Warren Pearce repeats the above argument (more or less) in the Guardian article cited above, going as far as to mention the Guardian’s own comedy team of Abraham and Nuccitelli – “the Gallant 97%”, as they call themselves. According to Pearce, there’s already been a sharp rebuke from the Rockefeller-financed Cook clones at Climate Nexus at their subscribers-only newsletter. To get a flavour of Climate Nexus, see this article, in which 97%ers Doran & Zimmerman are thrown to the wolves in the interest of saving the rest of the team.

This could get interesting.

26 thoughts on “Crushing the Consensus

  1. I thought most of the paper excellent but with an underlying flaw.

    “claims such as “humans cause global warming” are distractions from the more urgent matters of knowledge, values, policy framing and public engagement.”

    The authors and many people like Dr Betts want to assume that AGW is real and move on to other issues of what we do about it. As if it doesn’t matter how much warming AGW causes. As if it wasn’t THE most important question. If we don’t know the answer how can you quantify a response? At one extreme we could stop all non essential industries and engage in a war time style manufacture of nuclear power stations, the ‘weapon’ to defeat CO2. We could restrict medicines and aid to reduce populations in developing countries. We could put the nation on a low calorie, rationed diet. We could start engineering cooling. We could offer bribes for voluntary euthanasia. We would stop all non essential flights. At the other extreme we could just invest in new technology research until a good one came along. No need for windmills or solar panels. No awareness videos. Build a few sea walls and make flood safe housing. No AGW scare industry at all.

    At the moment we are just wasting money, public good will and our best landscapes to something little more than a sacrifice to the gods. The ‘every little helps’ mentality is green woolly headedness at its worst.

    If we don’t and can’t know how much warming there is in store we should do the only thing that benefits us, no matter what happens. Build nuclear. Build them as a replacement for existing stations, calmly and not in a panic to grab the first option that comes along. Build more if we want to get rid of heating. Build more if we want to change transport. Make the output cheap to attract heavy industry back from coal powered competitors. Make it cheap to persuade the public that new heating and transport is better than what they’ve got. I’d even advocate nationally owned power stations because the unnatural nature of such a market is government ownership in all but name and profit/loss anyway.

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  2. PS you don’t do what the GEGB did over nuclear where they made each station different with new sets of problems and an inability for staff to move seamlessly from one station to another.

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  3. I note with interest that one of the co-authors is Mike Hulme, the “thoughtful retired climate scientist”, (sorry Geoff, he makes me angry!)

    Hulme it was who was in the vanguard of climate scares with the founding of the Tyndall Centre in 2000, from the anonymity of an assistant lectureship at CRU to the Directorship of the flagship climate scare organisation in the UK.

    Here is a sample of Tyndall Press statements from the time:

    7 November 2000: “What can we do about climate change?”

    “As Britain battles through floods and major transport disruption, and the nations gear up for the UN climate conference at the Hague, how can responsible businesses and organisations prepare for climate change?

    Dr Mike Hulme, the Centre’s Executive Director, said: “Society is at last waking up to climate change. What might once have been considered unusual weather conditions for the UK – the recent storms and flooding, for example – are likely to be much more frequent occurrences.”

    5 September 2001
    “At Risk from Climate Change: Wildlife, Plants … and Scotland”

    … research carried out by Dr Hulme for the Scottish Executive modelled the possible effects of climate change on Scotland: “over the coming century warming of up to 3 degrees Celsius could take place across Scotland; this would be accompanied by increases in average wind speeds at all time of the year and increases in rainfall intensity, especially in winter. Information of this type should be incorporated into planning regulations and design guidelines for new infrastructure,” he said.

    4 April 2003
    “Climate change – can the natural world cope with the damage already done?”
    Hulme: “We have changed our environment significantly throughout our history. Global climate change poses a different type of threat: the rate of warming already exceeds anything experienced in the last 10,000 years.”

    Wednesday 30th November 2005
    “UK’s Tyndall Centre further funded for its groundbreaking work on climate change solutions”

    “Professor Mike Hulme is pleased to announce a further three years funding from the UK’s Research
    Councils to support the unique mission of the Tyndall Centre in doing high quality climate change science
    that is truly useful for both scientific theory and for policy practice. “We will continue to break new ground
    in innovative research on several national and international climate change themes and be a world
    exemplar for doing joined-up science for society” said Professor Hulme.”

    In 2006, he went off message, with this offering “Chaotic world of climate truth ” http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/6115644.stm, when he attacked the UK Chief Scientist and the Prime Minister for promoting the very catastrophism he had earlier embraced.

    He was off again in 2007, in a review of the Singer and Avery book, “Climate Change – every 1500 years”, when he introduced the concept of “post-normal science” and was taken to task by Melanie Phillips: https://web.archive.org/web/20070325171818/http://www.melaniephillips.com/diary/?p=1469
    for this claim:

    “Self-evidently dangerous climate change will not emerge from a normal scientific process of truth seeking, although science will gain some insights into the question if it recognises the socially contingent dimensions of a post-normal science. But to proffer such insights, scientists – and politicians – must trade (normal) truth for influence. If scientists want to remain listened to, to bear influence on policy, they must recognise the social limits of their truth seeking and reveal fully the values and beliefs they bring to their scientific activity.”

    The Tyndall Centre has gone from strength to strength and has major input into government policy. You can read more about their impact here:

    Global Warming – “The Social Construction Of A Quasi-Reality”
    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/science-papers/reprint/social-construction

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  4. Len do I really have to answer that for you? Because the idea is to make people swap from fossil fuels to nuclear powered electricity not give stuff away. One way or another it has to be paid for. If you make it too cheap people will just waste it. Compared to transport, heating is relatively easy to swap but people won’t if it’s more expensive than gas. Other renewables are useless because they don’t deliver 24/7 regardless of any dumb battery ideas. You can’t have two energy resources running side by side for when one side can’t deliver.

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  5. “Because the idea is to make people swap from fossil fuels to nuclear powered electricity not give stuff away.”

    No, you said you want to sell it cheaply enough to attract industry:

    “Make the output cheap to attract heavy industry back from coal powered competitors.”

    So you are not averse to the idea of giving money (or below cost electricity which = money) to industry to move here. So where do you stop? If you can attract some industry with ‘cheap’ energy, think how much more you can attract with free electricity.

    And once you accept the idea of subsidies for nuclear, why not subsidies for solar, wind, batteries and gynormous pumped storage?

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  6. Silly me, and there I was believing there already were subsidies for solar, wind, batteries and “gynormous pumped storage”.

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  7. From the Guardian article:
    “…..six in ten Americans are worried about global warming, seven in ten think global warming is happening and eight in ten think humans have the ability to reduce global warming”
    So why are we not, as TINYCO2 suggests, going all out to build nuclear or hydropower? Can it really be that we are distracted by the 97% discussions? It is more likely that we are paying lip service to the AGW scare and do not really believe. Thus Al Gore and Leonardo continue to enjoy their high carbon footprint.

    Remember this guy?
    https://climateaudit.org/2009/12/10/weaver-solves-climategate/
    Andrew Weaver is now leader of the Green Party in British Columbia and holds the balance of power with a few seats. He campaigned against construction of the 1100 MW Site C hydroelectric dam on the Peace River. So clearly he’s not worried about climate change either.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Er, yes, Alan. That was the point.

    Potentilla, for hydro, perhaps nobody wants their valley flooded. For nuclear, David Mackay’s parting thoughts were that we should build it. I can’t disagree, but the choice of available designs is perhaps not so good, yet.

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  9. Len BECAUSE THEY’RE F*CKING CR*P! If you’ve got lots of reliable nuclear you don’t need windmills and solar. It’s like choosing to wee a fire out rather than use the fire engine next to you. It’s like adding foot pedals to a racing car. Money wasted on solar and wind is money not spent on the only* non CO2 energy source we have now that can be used 24/7 365 days a year give or take maintenance, which you can schedule for the summer when the demand isn’t so high. Every country/region piling on the renewables is countng on their neighbours to get them out of an energy hole. The only problem is they’re all relying on France which is planning to ditch many of its nukes. What then? Do we look further and further east for fossil fuelled power at the same time the rest of the EU is in short supply? It would only take a seriously cold winter with maybe a strike or two. Isn’t a return to ‘normal’ what you seek?

    Personally I don’t want to cut CO2 particularly so I’d be happy buying steel from a coal fired country and heating my home with gas and driving my diesel car. I’m pointing out what should be done if we really were worried about CO2. As it is, despite all the subsidies Germany and the UK have stopped reducing CO2. They’ve picked the low hanging fruit. The percentage of reliable supply is at a limit where much lower and the grid wouldn’t have enough power to replace the renewables. Fossil fuel suppliers can already hold the grid to ransom.

    So are you worried or not?

    *hydro is fine but there is no real location in the UK for more than we’ve got.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Tiny, I just looked at gridwatch. Our vast fleet of wind turbines is currently producing 0.4GW, 1% of our electricity. We are importing from France 2GW, 6% (France’s electricity is about 3/4 nuclear).

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  11. Getting back on topic, there’s another recent paper,
    The legitimacy of environmental scientists in the public sphere,
    which says similar things to the Pearce et al one.

    “Consistent with other research on public beliefs about climate change, we find that perceptions of environmental scientists are polarized across multiple measures. Moreover, while previous theory and research have emphasized beliefs about scientific consensus on climate change, we find that perceptions of scientists’ under-standing of the issue and the integrity of their policy advice are each stronger predictors of scientists’ legitimacy in the public sphere.”

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  12. Exactly Paul, the calculations in power supply aren’t anywhere near as complicated as climate science but warmists still struggle to grasp the obvious. I think the Lens of this world think that if they patch enough unreliables together, they’ll become reliable. Batteries are their secret plan for when they know there will be zero supply. What they don’t understand is the length of time the renewables could be giving little or no supply. Batteries don’t run forever, they need to be recharged but if we’re using all available power already, there’s no spare to charge the fleet of batteries. Their plan is more renewables and more batteries to solve the lack of power from the first set. This then lets them imagine a perky supply from Europe to make up the shortfall. Ignoring the fact that they’d be in the same boat if they had masses of renewables. The Sun may have never set on the Empire but the EU only gets an extra 3 hours after the UK.

    The authors of this paper are smart enough to see that the consensus meme is a spent force but they have no more idea what will work than Len. More, better, smarter communication won’t work. Fundamentally the public won’t sacrifice themselves on the alter of climate change without a powerful reason. Climate science is too shoddy to give it to them even if it is right. A stationary wind turbine, a moonlit solar panel and a high electricity bill are a powerful reminders how rubbish they are. The lack of action on CO2 is a mix of low motivation and poor solutions. There’s too much reliance that households and businesses can radically change their energy useage. Even warmists are failing to put themselves in any realistic low CO2 future.

    So while I think the authors are starting to listen, they’ve still got a long way to go.

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  13. How long have we been trying to point out that the ‘consensus’ was a daft idea? It was partly the mention of it that turned me into a sceptic. When they said ‘the debate is over’ I wanted to know when it happened. If they were prepared to lie about having a debate, they’d lie about anything.

    Why don’t the authors think it might be smart to talk to us as equals and really find out what the other side thinks? Because even on this reasonable paper, their own side want them punished for fraternising. One of these days they might start to wonder if they’re the bad guy side.

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  14. Tiny, I largely agree with you on building nuclear (though I’m not so sanguine about subsidies) and on the lack of seriousness the failure to do this demonstrates. From my perspective it is depressing.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Dennis, I think the decades since Hulme’s comments are sufficient water under the bridge to move on. His arguments now seem to welcome the possibility of debate — scientific, political, moral, economic — which have for many of us been the *actual* point of scepticism. I.e. too much was expected of science, to take the weight of non-scientific arguments, or to hide naked political campaigns behind scientific authority. Thus, I don’t think Philips’ or other criticisms of Hulme have been fair in dismissing his emphasis on PNS or seemingly ‘postmodern’ approaches. There is a difference between descriptive and prescriptive accounts of the world, and the world is ‘postmodern’. Moreover, far from being a rejection of science, some attempts to identify the postmodern condition emphasise precisely the dependence on technical expertise in the management of public matters. Only rarely in pomo ideas does ‘science’ become ‘just another narrative’, and unfortunately yet more rarely (and rightly) does it cast the same sceptical eye over institutional science. (Notwithstanding pop pomo which of course embraces relativism absolutely, because it allows f**kwits from low rent unis and aesthetic arts degrees to argue/sing anything).

    If I have any criticism for Pearce, Grundmann, Hulme and co, it is that the article misses the real target of Consensus Enforcement. Whereas the debate appears to be about public opinion, it is primarily a campus police force.

    That is to say that in the postmodern world of post normal science and the such like, public opinion…

    — Really. Does. Not. Matter. —

    In the UK, the public were never asked for their opinion. A political consensus was formed between political parties. The broadcasters and print media have given barely a thought to investigating the debate. You can count the hours of programming given to the sceptical perspective in 20 years on the fingers of one hand.

    Michael Gove, erstwhile critic of organisations with acronyms who repeatedly get their doom-laden predictions wrong, folded under pressure from WHO and FoE, to ban internal combustion engines. There is no vehicle — pardon the pun — for public opinion to either express its assent to or dissent from such schemes, much less express contempt for such cowardly and vapid hacks as Gove has shown himself to be.

    What matters is that academics are not seen to be departing from the compact between academe and government. When I wrote the article linked to, Dana was outraged that I had seemingly been given credibility by an academic body. Ditto, when Hulme joined the discussion, the outrage was directed at him, more than me, to undermine his authority. No matter that he was given the space to defend his arguments, as should be the good-humoured norm of most academic disputes, the response was characteristically about the effect of disagreement on an impressionable, passive, gullible, ‘public’ – very few of which would have taken an interest in the debate, much less my article – hungry for excuses to continuing their carbon-profligate ways. Hand-wringing about ‘An accurately informed public’ being misled by unauthorised opinion is a ruse. What upset him about the event under discussion — an episode of the Daily Politics — was that another academic, Richard Tol, had been cited, to contradict Ed Davey’s dependence on the paper Dana co-authored. Even if Tol hadn’t successfully debunked Cook et al, (he had), he nonetheless demonstrated there was at the very least an academic debate about the debate.

    We can think of Consensus Enforcers as post-graduate social justice warriors, determined to banish debate from academia. Not smart enough to excel in their own fields, but smart enough to know that making ‘the public’ the proxy for the campus is more effective than direct policing, the Consensus Enforcers promise to hound and harass, one way or another, those who fall out of line.

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  16. dennisambler (07 Aug 17 at 3:12 pm)

    Thanks for the comment, as always replete with useful links. I avoid criticising Mike Hulme precisely because he went off message in 2006 and has stayed off message since. I can be rude about people I disagree with when I’ve examined carefully what they say, which I haven’t with Hulme. There’s always the faint hope that he and people like him might one day debate with Ben Pile or Paul Matthews or someone else who might be embarrassed to be associated with someone like me who indulges in vulgar insults.

    The article by Ben Pile cited in the Pearce article is at

    http://blogs.nottingham.ac.uk/makingsciencepublic/2013/07/23/whats-behind-the-battle-of-received-wisdoms/

    The debate below it is very interesting. I’ve got as far as Mike Hulme’s comment:

    Mike Hulme July 25, 2013 at 6:39 am

    Ben Pile is spot on. The “97% consensus” article is poorly conceived, poorly designed and poorly executed. It obscures the complexities of the climate issue and it is a sign of the desperately poor level of public and policy debate in this country that the energy minister should cite it. It offers a similar depiction of the world into categories of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ to that adopted in Anderegg et al.’s 2010 equally poor study in PNAS: dividing publishing climate scientists into ‘believers’ and ‘non-believers’. It seems to me that these people are still living (or wishing to live) in the pre-2009 world of climate change discourse. Haven’t they noticed that public understanding of the climate issue has moved on?

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Mike Hulme expanded his thoughts further.
    http://blogs.nottingham.ac.uk/makingsciencepublic/2013/07/23/whats-behind-the-battle-of-received-wisdoms/#comment-182771

    Mike Hulme July 25, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Steve – my point is that the Cook et al. study is hopelessly confused as well as being largely irrelevant to the complex questions that are raised by the idea of (human-caused) climate change. As to being confused, in one place the paper claims to be exploring “the level of scientific consensus that human activity is very likely causing most of the current GW” and yet the headline conclusion is based on rating abstracts according to whether “humans are causing global warming”. These are two entirely different judgements.

    The irrelevance is because none of the most contentious policy responses to climate change are resolved *even if* we accept that 97.1% of climate scientists believe that “human activity is very likely causing most of the current GW” (which of course is not what the study has shown). And more broadly, the sprawling scientific knowledge about climate and its changes cannot helpfully be reduced to a single consensus statement, however carefully worded.

    The various studies – such as Cook et al – that try to enumerate the climate change consensus pretend it can and that is why I find them unhelpful – and, in the sprit of this blog, I would suggest too that they are not helpful for our fellow citizens.

    Mike

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  18. Over the years, Hulme has increasingly struck me as being somewhat of a Teflon kind of guy, in that nothing seems to stick to him and his post-modernist polemics and/or ever-changing positions.

    Certainly the “consensus” meme has been flaunted, floating and flourishing for quite some time. Yet, when he had an early chance to do so, to my mind Hulme was somewhat tepid in his denunciation** thereof.

    This, I suppose, is quite understandable considering his key role in manufacturing this “consensus” – along with such virtuous paragons as Joe Alcamo and Rob Swart – back in 1997.

    **As that post notes, Hulme’s “shrinking” went through a few iterations. But this did not deter him from concluding (my bold):

    Some commentators have called my point pedantic, but I think it is important to explain how knowledge is assessed by experts and how headline statements come into being. By the way, I think this is an entirely credible process of knowledge assessment, but people should not claim that it is more than it is.

    And for the record … I believe that the warming of the climate system is unequivocal and that most of the observed increase in global average temperatures since the mid 20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations.

    Perhaps Hulme has changed his “belief” in the intervening years. But, if so, I must have missed it;-)

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  19. Climate Nexus’s criticism of the Pierce Grundmann Hulme paper (quoted by Paul in the first comment above) is perfectly correct. “..this piece is a commentary. It provides no new polling or survey numbers, and provides no new insights. Basically, this is just an op-ed in a journal.”

    The thesis defended by Climate Nexus, put forward in the paper by Lewandowsky Gignac & Vaughan (2012) is that insisting on Consensus is an efficient propaganda ploy, and Pearce et al provide no evidence that it isn’t. What they do provide is evidence that the claim of consensus is bollocks, when they show up the discrepancies between Cook and Oreskes. But they go on to say that countering the consensus claim is not their aim.

    The point is that the Lewandowsky claim about the efficacity of promoting consensus may well be true, whether the claim of consensus is true or not. The consensus is a Big Lie, and Lewandowsky is merely providing scientific support for Goebbels’ insight.

    Pearce Grundmann Hulme et al seem to realise that the consensus claim is bollocks (indeed, they demonstrate the fact in their article) but, instead of saying so in a peer-reviewed article, they simply state, without really supporting their claim, that it’s not persuasive as an argument.

    There is no evidence for a consensus because no-one has ever conducted a survey to find out. Doran and Zimmermann asked the wrong questions and threw out 99% of their data. Oreskes and Cook are reading tea leaves, using different strainers. Perhaps it would not be possible for Pearce et al. to say so in a peer reviewed article. So I shall go on being polite. But Climate Nexus is right. They have not refuted Lewandowsky and Goebbels.

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  20. BENPILE says:08 Aug 17 at 5:37 pm

    Ben, I agree with what you say, however it is difficult to move on from the problems that Hulme produced, because they are government policy. The quotes merely served to show the alarmist stance he had, but what concerns me most is the political thrust and impact that he gave to the Tyndall Centre. These are some extracts from his final report as Tyndall Director, in 2006, the impacts are ongoing:

    “The second phase of the Tyndall Centre was officially launched on 4 May 2006 at The Atrium in Westminster with an attendance of over 150 stakeholders and academics. The two guests of honour were The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and the Right Hon. John Gummer MP, representing, respectively, the Church of England and the Conservative Party, two organizations newly committed to making climate change a central issue in their strategizing.

    The Tyndall Centre has been able to input into both organizations, a sign that the Centre has firmly established its authority and competence with a wide range of institutions in UK society.

    From the Energy Programme, a commissioned report examined the carbon reduction implications for the UK of achieving the 2ºC EU policy goal, suggesting that reductions of up to 90 per cent by 2050 may well be necessary, rather than the conventional wisdom of 60 per cent.

    Our work has also been widely cited in the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the IPCC, the ultimate strategic assessment of climate change. Eight Tyndall Centre staff have had lead author responsibilities in Working Groups 2 and 3 of AR4, and Neil Adger (Working Group 2) and Terry Barker (Working Group 3) have been co-opted onto the drafting teams for the crucial Summary for Policy Makers.

    The Tyndall Centre initiated and/or contributed to a number of agenda-setting activities related to the science and policy of climate change. Prominent among these was the contribution made by Tyndall researchers to the Stern Review on the economics of climate change. (They wrote large parts of it, Terry Barker edited several chapters.)

    We have also had opportunity to engage with senior executives and commissioning editors at the BBC about strategies and options for communicating climate change to diverse audiences.

    …our Science Communication Officer (Laura Middleton) was hired by the Corporation to act as a researcher for some of their climate change programmes, including the major documentary fronted by David Attenborough.

    We have also engaged with the UK Parliament in a number of ways – presenting oral evidence to Select Committees (e.g. Science and Technology, cross-Party committee on climate change, Environmental Audit committee), speaking at Party political conferences (Labour and Lib Dems), and acting as consultants to the Conservative Party quality of life policy review. And we have briefed the new Environment Secretary (David Miliband) on climate change.”

    The Tyndall Centre was his baby and he was forefront in the queue for the research “manna from heaven” funding which arrived with the AGW meme. The cloth he helped to weave will take a long time to unpick.

    Whilst it is good to have a “sinner who repenteth”, it’s a bit late and the damage is done. Whilst he was eagerly received by Blair, when telling him what he wanted to hear, now, as a perceived “dissenter” from the “catastrophic” idea of AGW, he is not listened to by government and is frozen out by his peers, as you have shown.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Further to the article and Geoff’s comment of 09 Aug 17 at 7:00 am, it needs to be asked why does climatology need the consensus propaganda tool?
    A clue lies in the big claims of imminent climate apocalypse made by AR4 2007, and others around the time. This include
    – Himalayan Glaciers largely gone by 2035.
    – “By 2020, in some (African) countries, yields from rain-fed agriculture could be reduced by up to 50%”.
    – Arctic summer sea ice cover to be effectively gone by 2015. This would lead to accelerated global warming.
    – Vast methane losses from melting permafrost, leading to accelerated global warming.
    – Increased hurricanes following Hurricane Katrina 2005.
    – In Britain, the strong drought of 2006 was projected to lead to a permanent lowering of the water table, damaging supplies.
    – A catastrophic drop in rainfall in the Amazon and shift in the Indian Monsoon.
    – Acceleration in the rate of ice melt on both the Greenland and Antarctic
    – Heatwaves like that of 2003 becoming more frequent.

    These have all turned out to be false prophesies. Rather than admit that admit the CAGW hypothesis is not being borne out by real world evidence, the proponents have retreated to the very indirect and manipulated evidence of alleged academic belief in a banal form of the global warming hypothesis (Cook et al 2013), or that some recent warming is human caused (Doran and Zimmerman 2009). Then it is left to the propagandists to turn this into a statement like that of Bernie Saunders earlier this year.

    As you may know, some 97% of scientists who have written articles for peer-reviewed journals have concluded that climate change is real, it is caused by human activity, and it is already causing devastating problems in the US and around the world.

    It is similar to criminal courts, in failing to find real world evidence of crimes that can be cross-examined, rely on banal statements by police officers to the effect
    “We believe that the accused is a criminal and that if they are not locked up they will commit far more serious crimes and more frequently in the future.”

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  22. Pingback: An Inconvenient Split? | Watts Up With That?

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