Dissent Rises from Crumbling Climate Change Consensus

Jim Tonkowich | Institute on Religion & Democracy | Friday, February 06, 2009

Dissent Rises from Crumbling Climate Change Consensus

February 6, 2009

On January 28, former vice-president Al Gore appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. According to the Washington Post he urged the senators “to adopt a binding carbon cap and push for a new international climate pact by the end of this year in order to avert catastrophic global warming.” 

The straight-up news story about Gore’s testimony by Juliet Eilperin stood in stark contrast with the mockery by her Post colleague Dana Millbank:

The lawmakers gazed in awe at the figure before them. The Goracle had seen the future, and he had come to tell them about it. What the Goracle saw in the future was not good: temperature changes that “would bring a screeching halt to human civilization and threaten the fabric of life everywhere on the Earth—and this is within this century, if we don’t change.”

It seems all but certain that, despite an already weakened economy, some Congressional leaders will push for us to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on one sort of global temperature mitigation scheme or another. 

The irony is that they will do it as a flood of scientific evidence minimizing the extent and effect of human-induced global warming is breaking out of the cone of silence placed over it by the global warming alarmists and their friends in the media. It turns out that Earth’s atmosphere and climate are far more complicated than is imagined by those who attribute everything to carbon dioxide levels.

One example is Howard Ambler’s "Mr. Gore: Apology Accepted" at the left-leaning Huffington Post. The climate, writes Ambler, “has always changed, and always will” and the claim that climate science is settled is “the biggest whopper ever sold to the public in the history of humankind.” The debate has hardly begun due in large measure to efforts by climate change alarmists to smother debate in the crib. Ambler writes:

Mr. Gore has gone so far to discourage debate on climate as to refer to those who question his simplistic view of the atmosphere as “flat-Earthers.”

Mr. Gore’s insistence that “the debate is over” is contradicted by, among others, a minority report of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, “More Than 650 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims: Scientists Continue to Debunk ‘Consensus’ in 2008.” Here is a sample.

According to solar physicist Dr. Pal Brekke, senior advisor to the Norwegian Space Centre in Oslo, “Anyone who claims that the debate is over and the conclusions are firm has a fundamentally unscientific approach to one of the most momentous issues of our time.” The report notes, “Brekke has published more than 40 peer-reviewed scientific articles on the sun and solar interaction with the Earth.”

“It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don’t buy into anthropogenic global warming,” says U.S. Government atmospheric scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Noting the global cooling that has been occurring since 1998, geologist Dr. David Gee, chairman of the science committee of the 2008 International Geological Congress and author of over 130 peer reviewed papers, asks, “For how many years must the planet cool before we begin to understand that the planet is not warming?”

Foreseeing the damage climate change alarmism is doing to science, Dr. Kiminori Itoh, who served on the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), called fears of catastrophic warming “the worst scientific scandal in the history… When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists.”

Harold Ambler concludes:

To re-tool our economies in an effort to suppress carbon dioxide…, when other, graver problems exist is, simply put, wrong. Particulate pollution, such as that causing the Asian brown cloud, is a real problem. Two billion people on Earth living without electricity, in darkened huts and hovels polluted by charcoal smoke, is a real problem.

So, let us indeed start a Manhattan Project-like mission to create alternative sources of energy. And, in the meantime, let us neither cripple our own economy by mislabeling carbon dioxide a pollutant nor discourage development in the Third World, where suffering continues unabated, day after day.

These are precisely the conclusions reached by IRD Adjunct Fellow Dr. E. Calvin Beisner in the IRD’s Mount Nebo Paper “What Is the Most Important Environmental Task Facing American Christians Today?” available at our website.

It is the reason the IRD supports the WeGetIt.org Campaign that seeks a million signatures in support of a theologically informed approach to care for creation while loving our neighbors—especially the poor—wisely and appropriately. Let me encourage you to read the WeGetIt.org Declaration and sign it.

To learn more visit the IRD  and the Cornwall Alliance websites. And, if you can, encourage some of our lawmakers to do the same—before they do some real damage.

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