For various reasons, my first ever article on the “Global Warming Scam” done in 2008 is no longer easily thorugh the Lenzie Village website where it was published. 6 years on, how good was it?
February’s Update news: According to revised official Met office1 figures, January 2008 was still the coldest month globally in 14 years2. At only 0.056°C higher than the nominal reference3 We must look back to February 1994 to find a colder month. Global temperatures peaked in February 1998 at 0.75°C and with February coming in at 0.194°C there is a definite and accelerating cooling trend of -0.1°C/decade.
By the Met Office’s own statistic’s it is highly unlikely that the forecasts could be consistently too high by chance and therefore this is clear proof of a consistent error in the forecasting model. That is to say, the cooling temperature clearly contradicts the theory of manmade global warming, because although CO2 levels continue to rise, global temperatures have cooled.
|1 For Official Met Office monthly data click the graph
2 Initially reported as 0.037°C
3 relative to the average temperature for the period 1960-91
4 Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Now stand aside, worthy adversary4
There was a time (around the turn of the millennium) that I thought anyone who didn’t believe in Global warming was a deluded, oil-industry paid Charlie-ton! And, I had a point, because at that time the evidence was clearly showing a rise in temperature in the latter half of the 20th century and there were some people who simply would not admit that temperatures had risen and that there was reason to be concerned. But then again, there was a time when we all thought the world was going to end at midnight 31st December 1999, because what the experts told us was the “an impending disaster” known as the millennium bug. Strangely, the millennium bug never happened, and we all seem to have forgotten how close we were to the end of western civilisation!
Looking back now, it wasn’t just the “
deniers” as the global warming brigade call them who were deluded, it was sensible, scientifically trained people like me who were wrong. My excuse? In life, even if you are a trained scientist, you simply cannot check every detail yourself and you have to judge arguments based on the authority and credibility of people presenting those arguments. Even someone trained in the most rigorous science (physics) like me has to rely on others and unfortunately, sometime we misjudge people.
My “tipping point”?
It happened when I tried to engage a group of these “climate experts” in a simple discussion. Working in the wind industry, I had met numerous of these so called experts at conferences and whilst some of what they said seemed a little over the top, the simple fact that temperatures had risen seemed to suggest there was a lot of truth in what they were saying. Moreover, I saw these people as “lovable underdogs” in a way seeing them as those eco-warriors “fighting the capitalist tyranny of the oil companies”. When you see the “pro-warming” group as the honest underdog, and the anti-warming as being in the pay of the oil-lobbyists you tend to listen to those you think are “honest”. Then through my interest in energy matters, I read that there wasn’t enough oil and gas to cause global warming and try as I might I couldn’t find any mention of this by the “pro-warming lobby”, so I wanted to see how this fitted in with their calculations. It seemed an innocent question and fairly obvious that if CO2 causes temperature increase, and the amount of manmade CO2 is limited by the amount of fossil fuel, then there must be a physical limit to the amount of warming that is possible, and I simply wanted to know what the worse case scenario was if all the accessible fossil fuel was burnt.
What I didn’t realise was, that this didn’t fit in with the climatologists view of the world: it wasn’t part of their calculations, it wasn’t something they even considered. When they say “if we carry on burning fossil fuels”, they didn’t consider the possibility that fossil fuels might run out, they literally meant that there was no limit to available fossil fuels. As someone firmly convinced of global warming, it was very strange, to find myself being labelled a “
denier” for simply stating the obvious: that there was a practical limit to the amount of fossil fuels and therefore there must be a limit to the amount of manmade global warming.
To cut a long story short, I finally came to my senses when I realised that I had met precisely the same people with the same attitudes at school – I began to realise these climatologists weren’t using the normal rational arguments you expect of scientists, they never answered simple questions like “where is the proof that CO2 is causing global warming”. They spouted facts and figures, dodged and dived, citing this authority and that, never really allowing themselves to be pinned down nor to answer the simple questions like “what happens when the oil runs out” …. imagine my horror, when it turned out these climatologists were same narrow minded, “born again Christians” who stubbornly refused to believe in evolution, that it took millions of years to create the Universe, or that Jesus might have been a human, the same people who frustratingly answered every question by asking one back.
Basically, by daring to question whether global warming might have a “natural end” when fossil fuel runs out, I was committing a heresy! It turns out that Global warming is little more than another doomsday religion clothed in a thin veneer of science, and to even ask whether it may self-limit, undermines the basic tenant of this religion and so is heretical! And, as a heretic I had to be converted or ostracised. Slowly I realised, that far from the “pro global warming group”, being a disorganised but well-being bunch of people trying against the odds to get their message across in the face of multi-national organisation hell bent on perverting the public perception, in fact if anything, the pro-lobby were a highly organised, ruthlessly efficient well-oiled publicity machine that was railroading their ideas based on only the flimsiest of evidence. And once I started asking myself “what exactly is the evidence to link CO2 with recent warming”, I began finding that virtually nothing I had assumed to be scientifically “proven” about global warming was anything of the sort. In fact, the whole theory really boils down to nothing more that the coincidental change of two (probably) entirely unrelated variables: global temperature and CO2. The science linking the two was non-existent, no one had sat down in a lab and proved a link, it was all someone’s opinion about this, someone’s interpretation of that, and much of the interpretation was clearly questionable – I had been conned, and what is worse I had conning other people by suggesting a link between manmade CO2 and a recent rise in temperatures when no honest scientist could have stated a causal link!
The Con Trick
Many people are concerned by global warming, but try to argue about the “evidence”. The fact is that science is on the side of the sceptic, it is not up to the sceptic to prove there is no link between CO2 and global warming, science requires those asserting a link to prove it. But global warming isn’t like that you can’t prove or disprove global warming, because global warming simply can’t be pinned down, it can’t be disproven, because it is fundamentally a scam. The scam behind global warming is one of the simplest cons known to mankind and to show you how it works, I will draw a parallel with fortune telling:
Environmentalism (aka Global Warming)
|Find some people who want to believe something. In this case, a public who are daily been told to consume more and more, who want to believe that “there’s no such thing as a free lunch” and so there must be a downside to all this consumption.||Everyone wants to believe in love, life, etc.|
|Look at every measurement of anything at all you can in the natural environment. Given enough measurements, and the natural variability of all measurements, sooner or later one of them is going to “look odd” and start heading “away from normal”.||Look deeply into your crystal ball muttering things about lovers, life, death, until you get a reaction from your client.|
|Having found a measurement heading “away from normal”, extend the line into the distant future and whether the outcome is historically seen as “good” (warm periods) or “bad” (cool periods), predict an “impending disaster”.||Having found a line of interest predict it forward using the usual ambiguous language of “love is coming into your life”, “I see death”.|
|Now find a suitable “peg” to link this doom with mankind’s “evil ways” (aka human consumption). In this case suggest the very small and inconsequential rise in natural CO2 which seems to be related to human consumption.||Ask the client to tell you how this relates to their life. Get them to tell you the person they think this relates to.|
|Having found your an “impending doom” variable and the “guilty conscience” variable, tentatively suggest the two are related.||Suggest your dire prediction might relate to the person suggested by your client (note it is the client that makes and confirms the link)|
|Having suggested a link between human consumption and the “impending disaster” allow the public’s innate belief in a downside for everything including consumption turn this “suggestion” into a certainty that “there must be a link”.||Though there is no actual prediction as such, just a suggestion that “love is in the air, and I see your friend is close” – the client’s own desire for a link allows them to use their imagination to add bells and whistles because this is what they want to believe.|
|Now get government to spend billions on “research” which effectively tries in ever more complicated ways to replicate the line you originally drew, giving the external appearance of being “scientific” and ensuring that there are more and more so-called “scientists” on the pay-roll daily re-enforcing the idea of this “scientific” prediction without anyone ever fundamentally questioning the fundamental assumption of a link.||Having convinced the client that they have a prediction, let them tell everyone in their words about your prediction and let them work to bring it to fruition.|
|If temperatures rise, take all the credit, if they don’t rise – bamboozle the public (mention the difficulty of predicting the climate, blame the politicians for “not having listened to the warnings” carefully hidden in all the reports. … ) and quickly find another scare “even worse” to preoccupy them.||If your prediction has any truth at all claim this as the “miracle” of your powers, if it does not, remind them about all the predictions you have “successfully made” (got right by chance) and if necessary remind them about the ambiguous language you used and show how “they did not fully understand the nuances of the prediction and so misunderstood”.|
The reason global warming works as a scam, is that most people have a gut feeling that it ought to be true. We want to believe that all this consumption has got to be bad. Unfortunately, this makes our society extremely susceptible to accept anything that fits in with this belief. Whilst it is possible there is a link between CO2 and temperature, the actual historical evidence suggests that changes in world temperature lead changes in worldwide CO2 levels, so if anything the relationship is that changes in temperature lead to changes in worldwide CO2. But mere evidence like that doesn’t affect for those who believe there must be a link.
The real scam of course, is to call global warming “scientific”. The basis of science is testable hypothesis. That is to say, you develop a theory based on the data available which you then test against new data. What makes Global warming bogus, is that the theory has been developed to fit a recent rise in temperature, and then that theory is being “tested” by seeing whether it fits that same data – and guess what it does! At its very simplest, what this means is that during the decades 1970-2000 temperatures, rose, and someone drew a line through this rising temperature and then they say “it’s proved” because look the temperature has risen along the line we predicted! This is the science of quack medicine. This is the science of spoon-benders of ESP, it is not proper science.
But of course, in science it is not possible to prove anything by the absence of data. So the “Pro” pseudo-scientific lobby have a great advantage, for having found two variables that might appear to be linked, the available data inherently coincides with their interpretation and so they are able to spread the “gospel” of causality, even though this is entirely untested. But those who are more rigorous and therefore sceptical, cannot disprove an apparent link until more data comes along …. and even when contrary data becomes available, this will only cause a temporary halt to the bogus science, because pseudo-scientists by their very nature have no problem “tweaking” the theory to incorporate “explanations” for such “temporary aberrations” and so such pseudo science can never really be proved “wrong”.
Indeed, it is only if the rigorous scientists, can develop a more plausible mechanism and test this against data, that there is any real hope of debunking this bogus science. And although there is some suggestion that world temperatures seem to change periodically is due to solar activity (historically, the number of sunspots seem to affect the world’s temperature) this relationship is complex and poorly understood and the so called “scientific consensus”, sucks up all the funding that might take this science forward. The problem is that the news media and through them the public are so obsessed with global warming, that most publicly funded research money comes with strings saying “this money must be used to help solve global warming”. So, it is understandable, that the researchers who get the money are those who are most vocal about tackling global warming, and the researchers least likely to get funding are those who express any doubt about CO2 being the cause of the temperature rise in the latter half of the 20th century. The result is that virtually nobody is looking at the other possible causes of the 20th century’s temperature rise and so in the absence of funding looking at alternatives, their is now an overwhelming “consensus” amongst “scientists” not because a link has been scientifically proven, but because the only explanation which any significant number of scientists are investigating is the consensus.
To put it another way, the science community is being manipulated by the environmentalists who demand that the scientists explain the warming of the latter half of the 20th century. But having no proper scientific explanation, and having only researched one possible causation, the science community have no option but to offer rising levels of CO2 as their “best” explanation of the warming, not because it is a “good” or scientific explanation, but because however bad it is, there is currently nothing better!
Proper science makes predictions and then tests those predictions against the real data, and guess what, since around 2000 worldwide global temperature have been stable. But, given the rate at which global temperatures change, it will be at least 2020 before we will really know whether this stabilisation is real, a temporary halt in the rise, or a possible turning point suggesting cooling temperatures. Worse still, it will only be sometime around 2030-40, and only if temperatures continue to be cooler than 2000-2010 that we will know that those climatologists making so much money from spreading the gospel of global warming were like those who spread the crisis of the “millennium bug” – talking absolute rubbish!
What we must do?
Fortunately, whilst “tackling global warming”, isn’t doing a lot of good, it isn’t likely to do much harm either, and it does keep a sizable & troublesome section of the population preoccupied. Whilst it is unlikely that burning fossil fuels is going to lead us into the “fiery hell” of global warming (indeed, historically warming tends to be beneficial to mankind) the idea that we must reduce fossil fuel usage is useful, because the key fossil fuels for the western economy (oil and gas) are fast running out.
However, unlike “global warming” which is something “we have to do something about” (i.e. we have to actively stop ourselves burning oil) if oil begins to run out, we don’t have to do anything – because that’s not how it works, we don’t have a choice – you can’t burn oil that isn’t there and when oil runs out, the price will rise until it is as such a level that people simply cannot afford to drive their cars, heat their homes, even turn on the fridge – if that is what it takes to reduce our energy consumption. “What must we do?” isn’t the right question, the energy that was stored in fossil fuels took millions of years to lay down, and we can’t replace it. When it is gone, it is gone, and whilst nuclear may marginally stem the end, it can’t stop us going back to what will be essentially a pre-fossil fuel economy.
We don’t have to do anything – we’re not in control – we are a passenger on a driverless carriage with no option but to hang on and hope we survive the ride! That’s all we have to do!
Does it pay to be precautionary?
If my mistakes about Global Warming taught me anything, it is to be skeptical about everything I hear even from those proporting to have a rigorous scientific training. I even now question those who say something that seems blatantly obvious such as “fossil fuels are running out”. And, don’t make me laugh by mentioning the “precautionary approach”. That doesn’t help when you fundamentally can’t trust the people telling you to take the precautions. It comes down to this: Which way is it right to be skeptical? Is man made global warming real? If it is real is it going to benefit us as the past or is history somehow going to be overturned and the warmer period will be worse? But if mankind is warming the globe and warmth is good for mankind, isn’t the logical thing to increase fossil fuel use? Isn’t that the precautionary approach? So many people have been deluded, and so much nonsense written that the only precaution is not to trust anyone so don’t even trust those who say oil is running out – for there may be far more oil and gas, or there may be much less!
Only time will tell!
I wasn’t looking forward to reading this as I was sure I would have made a huge clanger. Surprisingly the biggest changes are nothing to do with warming:
The first is that with the rise in fracking, I don’t see “the end of oil” as a big problem.
The other change is along with many other people I was misled about the views of sceptics. However, after forming the Scottish Climate & Energy Forum I learnt that almost no sceptics “deny” and so I am sorry I used this term.
The key thing about this post, is the Met Office predictions. Unfortunately, as so many others have found, historic temperature data keeps changing and so it is impossible to verify the figures. I found this as early as my submission to the climate gate inquiry. However, as I had monitored the HADCRUT figures for several years I am fairly confident the figures were right and the predictions were taken from the Met Office press releases.
The question, one has to ask is this: “what is the chances of getting so many predictions consistently high by pure chance?” This can’t be excused. Even if all the years are related, the Met Office knew this and would have taken this into account. So statistically they should have had about half high and half low. Instead there was a consistent bias causing a consistent error and that consistent error was a belief in global warming.
And finally, like flies, to dung – there will be some who criticise the graph. I still remember doing it. I just plotted the two series on one graph in excel and that is what it produced. It clearly showed that the trend in temperature had diverged from the trend in CO2.
I notice the graph and text don’t quite tie up. From memory, I updated the graph for a couple of months after the initial post after the January 2008 massive dip. One of the reason I produced this original article was because of the blatant propaganda produced by the Met Office and BBC just prior to the release of this “coldest January in 14 years” – itself delayed in order to allow the Met Office to bombard the media with global warming stories ahead of the release of this data (which I sent out a press release and it was totally ignored).