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I took a look at the program. It is cleverly made. A real gem in propaganda wars
(but fraught with distortions and half truths):
A number of my observations are listed below:
• "The IPCC is political." This is correct, but the other way round than suggested.
In the summary for policy makers statements of the last IPCC report various conclusions
were toned down due to objections (on a political basis!!) by e.g. China. (see:
Gobal warming obstructionism) If the IPCC report is biased, it might well be on the cautious side.
• Political interference in science: If there is one government politicizing science it is
the Bush government! Its interference is much more pervasive than in the IPCC case.
• There is talk of censorship. However: No specific examples are given. It is off course
possible that minority view are shoved aside. This happens everywhere, so also in
science. However: If I look into newspapers, I observe that sceptics get (often much)
more attention than mainstream scientists.
• The complot theories on a monster alliance between Thatcher (anti coalminers) and the Greens look in my view pretty ridiculous; almost as ridiculous as the "WTC controlled demolition complot stories" for September 11th 2001.
• "There is no link between CO2 and the temperature on Earth (Veizer et.al.) on a long
geologic timescale (500 million years)." However: One very important factor was not considered in his
study: The configuration of the continents on this planet.
• "The middle ages were warmer than today." Not true. "There were vineyards in northern
England." Doubtful. There were in the south of England. You know why it stopped?
In the 16th century wine drinking went out of favour ... That was the main raison!
There are many fairy-tales about it ...
• "Climate has always changed". Correct, but not relevant for the current discussion. The relevance is that (partly due to human influence) the average world temperature is going up by 0.15 - 0.2°C per decade. In western Europe it is (at least) double of that.
• Statement: "When the economic growth after the war went up spectacularly, the
temperature went down." This can be explained by (yes!!) solar activity and aerosols
partly due to human activity (SOx, dust, soot).
• "Volcanoes are emitting more CO2 than mankind." False! They emit a couple of hundreds of millions tons of CO2 per year on a long year average basis. So: A couple of %'s of the human emissions.
• "The natural CO2 mass flows dwarf the human emissions (800-900 billion tons per year
versus ~30 billion tons)." However: About half of the human emissions accumulate in
the atmosphere. So again: Distortion, propaganda.
• "The CO2 concentration followed the warming during the Ice ages." This may well be
correct, but doesn't invalidate the opposite. Since Svante Arrhenius (more than 100
years ago) it is known that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. More over: If CO2 helps to
warm the world, it also leads to more water vapour in the atmosphere, thus amplifying
the effect to some extend.
• "Cosmic rays - in conjunction with solar activity influence climate." At most this has a
• Straw man tactics: It is stated that "according to theory" tornadoes / mid latitude
storms will grow stronger. This is not the case, and it is not stated in the IPCC report.
There are even (slight) indications that mid-latitude storms decrease in intensity.
• Finally the highly malicious suggestion that environmental policies "deny the developed world to develop". This is rubbish. It is in principle possible for many people to get a life quite a bit like ours. The real issue is that we (in the West) get rid of our wasteful use of precious (finite) resources. One can also think in terms of "convergence and contraction".
Humanity (over 6 billion people ... ) can cope with change, but cannot cope with too fast change.
I always think of the famous assertion by Ghandi: "There is enough in the world for every bodies need, but not for every bodies greed." The level of civilization / wealth, which can be attained, will to quite an extend - but not all - be connected to the level of technological development.
Some more on my rough view on this issue can be found in this small article.
Summarizing: 'The great global warming swindle' is in my view itself to quite an extend a swindle. One can point out quite a few distortions and half truths in it. The only point which I agree with is their criticism addressing some environmental action groups (grossly) overstating their positions.
Evert Wesker, 14/3/2007
Below a very useful site which summarizes the half truths and falsifications in a very complete way.
• idem, pdf file
The program itself can be watched here.