IPCC Rainforest eco-tastrophe claim confirmed as bunk
Official UN website still shows it as fact, though
More bad news today for the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), as another of its extravangant ecopocalypse predictions, sourced from green campaigners, has been confirmed as bunk by scientists.
The UN body came under attack earlier this year for suggesting that 40 per cent of the Amazonian rainforests - dubbed the "lungs of the planet" by some for their ability to turn CO2 into oxygen, and also seen as vital on biodiversity grounds - might disappear imminently. This disaster would be triggered, according to the IPCC's assessment, by a relatively slight drop in rainfall of the sort to be expected in a warming world.
Unfortunately it now appears that just such conditions have already occurred, and in fact the Amazonian jungles were unaffected.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the baseless IPCC projection originated in a study produced in 2000 by hard-green* ecological campaigning group WWF, which was also implicated in the IPCC's equally invalid prediction that the glaciers of the Himalayas will all have melted within a generation from now.
According to the WWF report (pdf), which was not subject to scientific peer review - it was written by a freelance journalist and published by WWF itself - drying-up of forests will lead to runaway wildfires that will destroy the jungle and perhaps the entire planetary ecosystem. The document is full of terrifying phrases such as "the year the world caught fire". It warns of imminent doom caused by drought cycles:
The world faces a positive feedback cycle in which climate change, exacerbated by forest fires and deforestation, increases the frequency of the El Niño phenomenon, which in turn causes more forest burning.
The world faces warmer more violent weather, and more forest fires ... scientists believe the whole Amazon itself is threatened, with the rainforest being replaced by fire-prone vegetation. This has global consequences ...
It was bad enough that the IPCC included this sort of speculative scaremongering in its 2007 Fourth Assessment Report. But now it has been conclusively disproven - so much so that even IPCC members pour scorn on it, though they haven't retracted or amended their original endorsement of it.
NASA-funded scientists analysing the past decades of satellite imagery of the Amazon basin say that in fact the rainforests are remarkably resilient to droughts. Even during the hundred-year-peak dry season of 2005 the jungles were basically unaffected.
Next page: "WWF made it all up" - IPCC member speaks
The IPCC again?
How people can still believe a word these so-called 'experts' say it beyond me.
Here is how I see it: climate change is happening - just as it has since the earth began. I don't believe that it is human driven in the slightest.
Ignoring that, I still believe that green energy is the way to go. I'm fed up of all these ridiculous claims being purported by the media. We should want renewable energy for the sake of having renewable energy, not because some heavily subsidised scientists or hardline environmental groups say the world is going to end in a few years.
Why not take the money away from scientists who are paid to find the many ways humans are supposedly altering the earths weather patterns and put it into proper energy research. The world will change regardless of whether we change with it, we should think about the future of housing, food production and power generation instead of wasting pointless hours on trying to prove or disprove human involvement.
Here's your chance to prove deniers wrong
Obviously, you can post your complaints about the coverage from El Reg. How about your put yourself to work and provide competing research that falls on the IPCC support side of things. Maybe you'll really sway people with some convincing evidence (or you'll shut your pie hole and crawl back under that rock you live under). I don't really care either way, but don't blame the Reg for covering a side that doesn't really appear important to the rest of the media now that there's no disasterous doom impending.
For the record, I'm an IT pro and not a scientist (though I have two Ph.D biologists in my immediate family who are convinced all this global climate change is real, but completely normal and not human influenced). Personally, I think very little in the "debate" has a damn thing to do with science, as most of the discussion is really just political bullshit, positioning one group against another for hands outs of money from the governments of the world (and people stupid enough to donate to such causes).
Any day someone can provide some real science, I'll gladly listen. Unfortunately, I don't expect that to occur any time soon, as climatology is really more of a soft science, like sociology and psychology. Call me a sceptic, but I thought that was a requirement for critical thinking and science in general.
"Bear in mind, if the climate change people are wrong, but we go along with their suggestions, we'll still end up with a better planet"
Evidence, please! This is widely touted, but all the solutions presented so far involve paying people off, not dealing with the problems. Those are the ok solutions, we won't mention the solution of population control .
"It would be nice if you would publish a few articles pointing out the inaccuracies (and worse) published by the sceptic community."
Why? Serious question. If you mean the reputable skeptic community, then fine. But the point is that the IPCC predicts disasters, and is pushing (or its results are responsible for pushing) a massive and expensive social engineering campaign. It has attracted the lunatic fringe of the green movement (i.e. the aforementioned WWF). The entire world is affected. If they've been taking predictions from WWF and Greenpeace promotional literature then they might as well have hired Dan Brown to write the damn thing.
There are good reasons to reduce CO2 emissions. Acidification of the oceans, for instance. This climate change scare isn't one of them