I received a nice note back. I am mildly impressed. So far so good. They said they would forward my concerns to the fact-checker and the expert. No names nor qualifications, but oh well. Apparently if my concerns prove out, they will edit future printings. Hmm…
Dear Editor:
Regarding your issue on extreme weather, I must point out how exaggerated and even wrong nearly every statement in the issue appears to be.
Can you provide me references to back up your assertions? More importantly, can you provide me context wherein I can assuage the fears your magazine engendered in my children?
Perhaps you can visit this reference page:
and explain to me why each item is wrong, and provide at least two references to counter each.
Also, please don’t refer to the hypocrite-of-hypocrites Al Gore. He has recently proven his money-grubbing motives for all to see. Please refrain from referencing activists and radical environmental organizations. I’m looking for real science, where I can go check. No models that are proven more unreliable by the day, please.
Also, please reference this very old (for the internet) reference, http://scotese.com/climate.htm
Please explain to me Dr. Scotese assertion: “During the last 2 billion years the Earth’s climate has alternated between a frigid “Ice House”, like today’s world, and a steaming “Hot House”, like the world of the dinosaurs.”
Please refer to, consider and understand, his figure. Please note that the current commonly referenced temperature that the earth has risen to since the Little Ice Age is 14°C. Please note that Dr. Scotese indicates a slightly lower temperature, of 12 or 13°C. Alarmists predict a 1, 2, 3, even 5 or 6°C increase over the next several decades. These projections are proving daily to be grossly exaggerated. Still, please explain how a temperature that has obtained for nearly the entire prehistory of life on earth can be so catastrophic. Please.
Before I make a point about the paleotemperature record, please let me point out a simple truth for perspective:
The global temperature as estimated from paleological proxies varied between 10 and 25°C, with two very brief (geologically speaking) excursions to approximately 27°C. Note: 10°C = 283.15K and 27°C = 300.15K. From that, we see that throughout the history of life on earth, the temperature has been remarkably stable. That is, 17K is less than 6% of 300K, thus earth’s global mean temperature is 290K ± 3% or less. Remarkably, stable. AND, currently we are well within the natural bounds.
Now, my final point regarding the Scotese graph. Note that the hottest excursion EVER according to the paleological record was just before the Early Eocene. That temperature excursion was 13 to 15°C greater than current earth temperature, more than double the wildest claims by the alarmists. What happened then? Was it a great extinction? Well, it seems some microorganisms in the ocean had a bad time of it, but quite the contrary, the main mammals emerge in the record then and primates about then too. Hmm… We seem to like it hot just as much as the dinosaurs did!
Further, with so much evidence that warm periods in the history of civilization were times of advancement in all aspects of good and civil society (the Minoan Warm Period, the Roman Warm Period, the Medieval Warm Period {we used to call these climate optimums until global warming became a cause for panic}), and cool periods like the Little Ice Age resulted in famine, disease, civil unrest, and war, why try to scare kids to death with computer model outputs that are proving more wrong every day? (We are well over 16 years now with no warming. Even the radical activist James Hanson has recently admitted to it. Not long ago the meme was it would take a full 15 years without increase to invalidate the models. Well?)
For a well reasoned hypothosis regarding why earth doesn’t overheat please see here:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/06/14/the-thermostat-hypothesis/ (published here: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/24/willis-publishes-his-thermostat-hypothesis-paper/; http://multi-science.metapress.com/content/nm45w65nvnj3/?p=593f3e397da34c23b3806982df0b915e&pi=0)
Note: it is also why carbon dioxide, one of the three truly essential ingredients of life, will not significantly raise our temperature while we burn up all the available fossil fuel. (Note the three essential ingredients to life are dihydrogen monoxide, oxygen, and carbon dioxide. The first two are also responsible for a great deal of death, pain, destruction, and devastation throughout our world both now and throughout all of history. Not only do we live on a water planet, so there is no getting away from the dihydrogen monoxide, but it is the most important greenhouse gas, accounting for at least 75% of the effect, probably more than 90%, maybe a full 95%. On a water planet–go figure.)
Weather is not getting more extreme. If the storm of September 1938 happened today, no one would consider Sandy significant. (http://www.erh.noaa.gov/box/hurricane/hurricane1938.shtml)
Every generation throughout the centuries has claimed the worst was upon them, or was just about to happen, if society did not repent and turn from its evil ways. What is different this time? The only difference is the source of prosperity, food, and shelter for all who enjoy abundant fossil-fuel energy versus “sin” or idolatry.
Please, I ask these questions in earnest. I truly would appreciate a full, detailed, point-by-point response. One lesson I live by and try diligently to teach my children is that it is always better to be corrected than to remain wrong. My sometimes-rebellious redheaded 19-year-old daughter still has not come to grips with the notion that some people would rather remain wrong than admit to it.
I have been accused of caring nothing for the future. But that is utterly false. I am raising five of the best children the world has ever known, and I want them to have a better place to live than I have. EPA statistics show we are doing better in pollution. Technological advances keep food and energy ahead of demand most of the time. Only short-sighted politics seems a real threat, and ideological demagogues masquerading as objective scientists. We need to remember Feynman. We ourselves are the easiest to fool. We must take pains do find out our mistakes and blind spots.
One final question: Will not the proposed cure certainly cause more harm in the very real present than the supposed disease will cause in the very distant future?
Lonnie E. Schubert