A Free-Market Energy Blog

U.S. National Academy of Sciences: Doubling Down on Climate Alarmism (and taking science down a notch with it)

By James Rust -- March 27, 2014

“The NAS … should be an organization that promotes careful examination of all factors involving climate change and not take sides on areas of controversy.  Global temperature history and lack of climate model validation demonstrates lack of objectivity.  Merging of science with politics may damage trust in the scientific community for decades.”

Last month, the United States National Academies of Sciences (NAS) issued the following news release inviting the public to a joint meeting with the UK Royal Society:

Join NAS and The Royal Society for the Launch of a Joint Publication on Climate Change Science

On Thursday, February 27th, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and The UK’s Royal Society cordially invite the public to the release of Climate Change: Evidence & Causes, a new publication produced jointly by the two institutions. Host Miles O’Brien from the PBS Newshour will guide a discussion about the publication with authors Dr. Eric Wolff of the University of Cambridge (UK lead), Dr. Inez Fung of the University of California, Berkeley (US lead), Sir Brian Hoskins* of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change, and Dr. Benjamin Santer* of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone, President of the National Academy of Sciences, and Professor Sir Paul Nurse,* President of the Royal Society, will kick off the event. The publication, which is written by a UK-US team of leading climate scientists and reviewed by climate scientists and others, is intended as a brief, readable reference document for decision makers, policy makers, educators, and other individuals seeking authoritative information on some of the questions that continue to be asked. The publication makes clear what is well-established and where understanding is still developing. It echoes and builds upon the long history of climate-related work from both national academies, as well as on the newest climate-change assessment from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The event will be held on February 27 from 10:00-11:30 EST at the National Academy of Sciences building at 2100 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington DC or via webcast.  For more information, and to register to attend, go to our website. The publication and webcast will be available at http://americasclimatechoices.org and at http://royalsociety.org. *by videoconference

Following this announcement is reference to a video by NAS on “The Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change” A new video

The video features Prof. Jim White, of the University of Colorado (Boulder), as speaker.  Prof. White presents as fact a United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on climate Change (UNIPCC) chart of a 3 foot rise in sea level predicted by 2100.  This is followed by statements of possible greater than 3 foot sea level rise by the end of the century.  A 3 foot rise in sea level in 30 years is given as an example of abrupt climate change.  Prof. White points out a sea level rise of 6 inches may have caused subway flooding in New York City by the October 2012 Hurricane Sandy.

Déjà Vu–1932 Perhaps Prof. White was influenced by the May 15, 1932, New York Times article predicting a huge rise in sea level during the 1910-1940 increase in global temperatures–Next Great Deluge Forecast By Science.  One scientist quoted a sea level rise of 50 feet and another scientist quoted 151 feet.  Hurricane Sandy took place on a day of a full moon.  A six inch increase in storm surge height was reported due to the moon’s additional gravitational pull.  Does NAS consider events happening on a full moon an abrupt climate change impact? Experimental data show a sea level rise of 11 inches the past century with a reduced rate the past decade.  Is this another example of NAS abrupt climate change impact? Temperature Alarmism Amid the Pause Not to be outdone by Prof. White, the Royal Society had a video by Prof. Eric Wolff of the University of Cambridge who stated climate change is happening and global temperatures will increase by 5.4 to 9 degrees F. by the end of the century.  It does not take a genius to observe climate change is always happening.  The large temperature increase by 2100 is another UNIPCC computer model fantasy. All UNIPCC statements about climate change are based on computer models that predict increased global temperatures as time progresses.  None of these computer models show the pause in global warming the past 15 years (1998-to present) with atmospheric carbon dioxide levels increasing 8 percent.  In addition, computer models can’t explain global warming from 1910-1940 without increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels; followed by a slight decline in global temperatures from 1945 to 1975 and increasing global temperatures from 1975-1998, at the same rate as the 1910-1940 increase, when atmospheric carbon dioxide levels increased about 16 percent.  Another problem with computer models is they predict a hot spot in the upper atmosphere from latitudes 30 degrees South to 30 degrees North that have shown to be non-existent by decades of radiosonde and satellite temperature measurements.  Climate models are not accurate enough for policy decisions. The Other Side A thorough coverage of global temperatures, climate model failures, and errors in IPCC Reports is found on the Internet from a group of scientists, the Nongovernmental International Panel On Climate Change, and their most recent report Climate Change Reconsidered II:  Physical Sciences. Another report by Popular Technology lists 1350 + peer-reviewed papers challenging global warming by categories such as Arctic, sea level rise, temperatures, etc. The fallacy of NAS joining the movement to stop fossil fuel use from global warming fears is outlined by Australian Prof. Garth Paltridge, emeritus professor at the University of Tasmania, in his essayClimate Change’s Inherent Uncertainties”  in the February 1, 2014 Quadrant magazine. Prof. Paltridge wrote the following:

The trap was fully sprung when many of the world’s major national academies of science (such as the Royal Society in the UK, the National Academy of Sciences in the USA and the Australian Academy of Science) persuaded themselves to issue reports giving support to the conclusions of the UNIPCC. The reports were touted as national assessments that were supposedly independent of the IPCC and of each other, but of necessity were compiled with the assistance of, and in some cases at the behest of, many of the scientists involved in the IPCC international machinations. In effect, the academies, which are the most prestigious of the institutions of science, formally nailed their colours to the mast of the politically correct.

Since that time three or four years ago, there has been no comfortable way for the scientific community to raise the spectre of serious uncertainty about the forecasts of climatic disaster. It can no longer use the environmental movement as a scapegoat if it should turn out that the threat of global warming has no real substance. Conclusion: NAS, Cleanse Thyself It can no longer escape prime responsibility if it should turn out in the end that doing something in the name of mitigation of global warming is the costliest scientific mistake ever visited on humanity. The current redirection of global funds in the name of climate change is of the order of a billion dollars a day. And in the future, to quote US Senator Everett Dirksen, “a billion here and a billion there, and pretty soon we’ll be talking about real money”. The NAS shows the lack of judgment written by Prof. Paltridge.  It should be an organization that promotes careful examination of all factors involving climate change and not take sides on areas of controversy.  Global temperature history and lack of climate model validation demonstrates lack of objectivity.  Merging of science with politics may damage trust in the scientific community for decades. The future may show embarrassment for many in the scientific community.  Videos by NAS and Royal Society members on climate change impacts will be entertainment of scientists gone wild—but at our expense with their big budgets and bad policy.  —————- James H. Rust is a professor of nuclear engineering and a policy adviser of The Heartland Institute.

Leave a Reply