IPCC report: no surprises, not much hope either
The climate is a-changin'
Humanity is "very likely" to blame for global warming and, regardless of what action is taken now, recent increases in atmospheric carbon will have a profound effect on the planet.
In the first of a series of four reports to be published this year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has fingered humans as the culprits in global warming, with a probability of more than 90 per cent.
Climate Change 2007: the Physical Science Basis warns that by the end of this century we can expect sea levels to rise by between 28cm and 43cm, that increased temperatures (between 1.4°C and 4°C globally) would lead to more frequent and powerful tropical storms.
Co-author Kevin Trenberth, director of climate analysis for the National Centre for Atmospheric Research said the warming of the planet "is not something you can just stop", and that in 100 years time the planet will have a very different climate.
But Martin Rees, president of the Royal Society stressed that this is no carte blanche for politicians to elect to do nothing.
He said: "The IPCC strongly emphasises that substantial climate change is inevitable – and we will have to adapt to this. It also highlights the enormous cost of not doing anything. This should compel all of us – world leaders, businesses and individuals – towards action rather than the paralysis of fear."
The report, published today, is not the full scientific report: that is not expected until the summer. It is, in fact, a 21 page summary written by scientists and politicians and designed to inform policy makers.
Register readers inform us that the science "has yet to be edited to agree with the conclusions", but we detect a slightly sarcastic undertone in their typing.
Benny Peiser, a professor of anthropology at Liverpool University, and a vocal critic of the consensus view of global warming, said that regardless of the conclusions, there were still massive problems to be overcome before the issues raised in the report could be tackled.
He told us: "What the report won't be able to do, however, is to come up with any consensus on what to do about climate change. The economics of climate change and climate policy remain - as ever - the most contentious problem."
A paper published in the journal Science compared predictions about global temperatures from the 2001 IPCC report with what has actually happened. The IPCC said global temperatures would rise between 0.25°C and 0.35°C; they have actually risen by 0.33°C, close to the top end of the predicted range.
Meanwhile, sea level has risen much faster than predictions, leading some to speculate that the IPCC scientists have been too conservative in their forecasting so far. ®
Why bother with facts when you can make stuff up?
The great thing about being a skeptic is that you just get to make stuff up and tell everyone else they're wrong. Being a skeptic, you can just use the enormous powers of your gigantic mind to deduce things without doing all that boring work that scientists have to do.
Witness the comments of steven W. Scott:
"There are about 160,000 glaciers around the world. Most have never been visited or measured by man. The great majority of these glaciers are growing, not melting."
Okay, so if these glaciers have never been visited or measured, can you please tell me how on earth *anyone* can say whether they are growing, shrinking, staying the same size or turning purple with yellow spots?
Easy - just become a climate change skeptic today, and you too can just invent any reality you want to live in.
Sleepwalking to disaster
Its hard to stomach the smug complacency and inertia of those with power, politicians and civil servants, corporate executives and developers, who refuse to take seriously or act on the repeated warnings given regarding climate change. The irresponsability is monumental. They have been used for too lomg to getting their own way in enforcing the status quo on targets that don't resist (much), they don't unerstand that nature is not a soft target and will get retribution in the end.
Fundidng for the boys
All this shrill whinnying about the "scientific" theory of global warming, sorry, "man-made global warming" as they are now apparently interchangeable terms has reminded me of something.
There is an apparent certainty of data and consensus of "scientists" who now have the ears of all governments but as yet there appears to be no actual "science"? Can speculation really be this good, I thought we were taught to theorise, test and then amend.
Hands in funding cooky jar perhaps? The doomsayers at last can ride their (wind-powered) gravy train to its ultimate destination at the heart of government. With safe knowledge they are the good guys.
Oh now I remember, I studied environmental science in the early 90s, climate change - i.e. normal oscillation of climate between ice ages - was well known if not understood. Back then all the nodding-head sages were prepping us for another catastrophe.
Global cooling anyone?