I am compelled to fear that science will be used to promote the power of dominant groups rather than to make men happy. ~Bertrand Russell
It would appear that the "CO2 is all we have to worry about" global warming crowd is starting to feel the heat from other scientists who have their doubts. Remember, the issue is not whether we have global warming; that is pretty much a given. The real issue is what are we going to do about it. When last I wrote, I tried to make this point with some force, but my voice is tiny, while the voice of the scientific establishment, which seems to have invested a lot in the carbon dioxide theory, is very large.
No one, of course, is taking the time to poo-poo anything I'm writing, but they are attacking anything that goes against the emissions dogma. One of the latest is described in an article from the BBC, screamingly entitled, " 'No Sun Link' to climate change." Fundamentally, what goes on here is that the BBC had a science program that pushed the cosmic ray cloud theory and showed a decrease in cosmic ray activity followed an increase in the suns brightness over most of the last century. Apparently, the data in the TV show stopped around 1980. Ah-HA! scream some researchers. They stopped in 1980 because cosmic ray activity dropped after that, therefore the entire theory is junk, and let's get back to stopping CO2.
Well, not so fast, chuckles. Yes, beginning in about 1987, it does appear that solar activity is declining with an increase in cosmic rays. But, by 1997, the trend goes toward increased activity again. In fact, as one learns from the article the overall trend for the twentieth century is increasing solar brightness. The assumption that average temperatures will react instantly to such increases is absurd. Because the Earth has an immense heat sink covering 7/8 of its surface, overall planetary heating due to long term solar brightness increases is likely to be slow. But, once the heat is in the ocean, the temperatures are going to take time to decrease. And, in fact, one sees slight variations in the rate of temperature increase. So, it takes a while for warming to start; once it gets going, it takes it some time to slow and reverse.
Keep in mind that the folks who have been telling you about the dead certainty about emissions causing warming and other factors having nothing to do with it are the same people who told you about all those hurricanes we were supposed to have last year. These are the same people who haven't said much about how, over the long term, hurricane activity has had many more active periods. Excepting our crazy burst of a couple of years ago, we have been living in a comparatively quiet era for tropical storms.
The bottom line is that the Royal Society is playing games. The global warming crowd has talked about long-term cause and effect, yet they are willing to ignore 80 years of increasing solar brightness to focus on the last 20 years when it suits them. This report hardly can be consider to "settle the debate", as Dr. Mike Lockwood claims. In fact, the same Dr. Lockwood hits us with this gem: "You can't just ignore bits of data that you don't like."
The irony is that this is just what he is doing, just as he ignores the hurricane data, the global warmings of the past, the current warming of Mars and Neptune.
Meanwhile, in my earlier article, I made reference again to the fallacy of using food stocks for fuel. My profound concern is that giving oil companies control of corn or wheat or beets is a recipe for disaster, especially when we are looking at the grim possibility that climate change will reduce arable land. Well, we've been given a preview.
So durum wheat stocks are becoming tight; next it will be corn, then something else. And while we're starving, the CO2 crowd will be helping to kill us while driving their biofuel cars to their seminars.
At the beach in Nebraska.