Man-made climate change: politics not science

Man-made climate change: politics not science

Peter Finlayson

Like many of our fellow citizens, Alex Gardner depends very much for his position on man-made climate change on his faith in the reliability of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The book by Singer and Avery, published in its 2nd edition in 2007 just before the IPCC Fourth Technical Assessment Report (AR4), exposes much more evidence than space available in the March AD2000 allowed and shows that the findings in the IPCC reports do not conform to scientific orthodoxy and are not consensus documents. May I suggest that what Professor Gardner refers to as scientific orthodoxy is more correctly called political orthodoxy.

One piece of such omitted evidence was the fact that six separate sentences in an earlier draft IPCC report that cautioned against linking carbon dioxide to global warming were removed in the final report and replaced with the overarching conclusion that such a linkage is proven by the scientific data, a position which became the mantra for the alarmist lobby thereafter.

Climate scientist

In relation to the reports being 'consensus' documents, a letter to me from one of the 'orthodox' climate scientists who contributed to the IPCC reports states about their collation:

'The IPCC 'consensus' is a few activists who are lead authors and primary reviewers and a large number of contributors. The contributors send in their research on the basis that it will be reflected accurately but are not involved in formulating the findings or recommendations. Only about 100 scientists sent in reviews to the Draft AR4 and most of these individually sent in only about half a dozen comments relating to their own area of work or expertise. A few, like myself, sent in comments covering the Summary and Technical Overview but were largely ignored.'

Even more compelling evidence of the lack of scientific orthodoxy in the IPCC findings are the conclusions of the (March) 2008 International Conference on Climate Change held in New York, attended by 500 scientists, climatologists, academics and economists (News Weekly, 29 March 2008). (See

Its conclusions were largely contrary to those of the IPCC reports, which had been politicised to suit a particular alarmist agenda. This conference, free of the Green and environment lobby 'noise', and including the President of the Czech Republic, V‡clav Klaus, reinforced the dominant influence of the sun and oceans on climate.

On the 'moral' issues the conference supported initiatives to diversify energy sources and improve energy efficiency, but not to control climate. In that context, an important moral consequence of precipitously replacing cheap coal with expensive renewable sources of energy will be the negative impact on developing countries' economies and their citizens' livelihoods.


In relation to the omission of 'irradiance' in my article, I accept this criticism with due humility, mainly because this is part of the many uncertainties about the details of the complex climate science.

At the risk of confusing the reader, my understanding is that there is good correlation between sun spot activity and global temperatures, which has been known for a century, but the process involved is not yet understood. The IPCC's conclusion that solar irradiance has a minor influence on warming is an orthodox finding. However the IPCC AR4 omitted to adequately account for the solar-terrestrial factor, (which is where the science gets a bit 'heavy', for me anyway!)

The best way to understand this concept is to consider the earth and its atmospheric envelope as a giant evaporative cooling system. Thus, at its simplest, like the Coolgardie safe, as temperature rises, more moisture is evaporated from the oceans (and latent heat is exchanged), which ascends and condenses to form clouds, which thereby lower the surface temperature.

The calculated relationship between surface temperature rise and evaporation is well known to climate scientists. However, the IPCC, in acknowledging a relationship, chose to underestimate its cooling effect by two-thirds, presumably to ensure that the sensitivity of the climate models to carbon dioxide remains dominant.

This is another example of the data being adjusted to fit the ideology of the IPCC's politicised 'drivers'.

This piece of orthodox science highlighting the seriously incorrect rate of increase of evaporation with temperature in the IPCC models has been confirmed in two recent peer-reviewed papers, and adds to the other major flaws that have been identified in the computer models that form the basis for the IPCC's 2007 global warming projections. They explain why the Garnaut and Stern carbon dioxide economic impact analyses are grossly exaggerated.

Of course, political orthodoxy ignores these data to sustain its global hoax, just as it ignores the data that show that the pre-industrialisation climate was no more stable than it has been since.

Be assured, I am very comfortable with the orthodoxy of the sceptics' science, however unpalatable it may be to Professor Gardner's position on the issue: there is just too much solid evidence to simply discard as irrelevant.

From a man-made climate change sceptics' website which likens IPCC and the alarmists to Chicken Little who warned everyone that the sky was about to fall

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