May 25, 2009 5/26/2009 10:55:46 AM
News / Politics

No scientific “consensus” about “global warming”, says SPPI

The Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI) in Washington reports that a leading expert on climate and former advisor to Margaret Thatcher as UK Prime Minister, has dismissed as false a recent claim by the Washington Post that “most scientists now say there is a consensus about climate change”; that warming is “unequivocal”; and that most of the warming of the past century was manmade.

Christopher Monckton, in a new paper for SPPI entitled Unequivocal ‘Consensus’ on ‘Global Warming’, says:

“There is ... no sound or scientific basis for the notion, peddled by the Washington Post, that there is a scientific ‘consensus’ to the effect that anthropogenic ‘global warming’ has occurred, is occurring, will occur, or, even if eventually it does occur, will be significant enough to be dangerous.”

The SPPI paper reveals the following facts that are usually overlooked or ignored –

Ø      Science is not done by “consensus”: the argument from consensus is an instance of the Aristotelian logical fallacy known as the “head-count” fallacy.

Ø      The decision by the UN’s climate panel to attribute more than half of the past 50 years’ warming to humankind was taken by an unscientific show of hands.

Ø      The UN’s chapter attributing most of the past half century’s warming to humankind was rejected by most of the UN’s own official reviewers.

Ø      The warming rate from 1975-1998, when humankind might have had some influence, was the same as the rate from 1860-1880 and from 1910-1940, when humankind’s influence was negligible.

Ø      There is no anthropogenic signal at all in the global temperature record.

Ø      For 15 years there has been no statistically-significant “global warming”.

Ø      For 7.5 years there has been rapid but largely-unreported global cooling.

Ø      The greatest warming rate in the past 300 years was from 1645 to 1715, before the Industrial Revolution began. That warming rate was eight times the 20th-century warming rate.

Ø      The warming of the past 300 years is indeed unequivocal, but the mere fact of the warming tells us nothing of its cause. There is no scientific basis for attributing most of it to humankind.

Ø      The notion that “2,500 scientists” personally agreed with the 2007 assessment report of the UN’s climate panel is nonsense.

Ø      The largest-ever survey of scientific opinion – the largest to date – found more than 31,000 scientists did not consider the human contribution to “global warming” significant enough to be dangerous.

Ø      Much of the UN’s reports are written by environmental campaigners, not scientists.

Robert Ferguson, SPPI’s president, said: “In a May 19 article by David Fahrenthold, yet again the Washington Post has been caught out publishing false science, selective data, and faulty conclusions. It is time that certain sections of the news media realized that, as every opinion poll shows, fewer and fewer of the public are any longer believing the politically-driven nonsense they write about ‘global warming’”.

Asks Ferguson, “Has the Washington Post resurrected former Post reporter Janet Cook?  Instead of fabricating an 8-year-old heroin addict, has Fahrenthold fabricated a “consensus” about global warming science?  Like Cook’s story, the Post’s report proves bereft of evidence and reality. On April 17, 1981, shortly after Cook and the Post were exposed, the New York Times editorialized, ‘When a reputable newspaper lies, it poisons the community; every newspaper story becomes suspect.’ We could not have said it better.  Even more tragically, these climate fantasies put at risk the economies and liberties of the Western World and the lives of many in the Third World. Where is the accountability?”