To The Daily Sun,
Some false and misleading claims concerning climate-change need to be addressed.
First, CO2 has not doubled in many thousands of years. (In my previous letter I mistakenly assumed as fact the false claim by climate alarmists that CO2 has doubled recently.)
CO2 started increasing about 250 years ago, long before the increase can be explained by man's actions, from about 275 of 1 million molecules (i.e., 275 ppm (parts per million) or about one in every 4,000 molecules) to about 400 ppm today. But humans didn't contribute enough CO2 to the atmosphere until about 1960 to account for the CO2 increase. Which raises the question of how much of the CO2 increase is really the result of human, rather than natural, e.g., warming oceans release CO2, forces?
The earth's temperature increased by about one degree Fahrenheit (F) between 1850 and 2000. Most of this warming was before 1940, before any significant human contribution of CO2. This one degree F temperature increase is far less than that predicted by the Greenhouse effect theory (about 4 degrees F) based on the CO2 increase.
The earth's current level of CO2 is nowhere near a threat to human life. It is low compared to what people put into their greenhouses, about 1/8th of the level at the times of our primate ancestors (about 3,000 ppm), and about 1/12th of the level that the U.S. Bureau of Mines says is safe for humans (5,000 ppm). Some scientists, including physicist Dr. William Happer, argue that much higher levels of CO2, e.g., 1,000 ppm, would be better for humans, for plants, and for the earth.
Obviously very little about the effects and optimum level of CO2 is settled.
Second. We've all heard that 97 percent of scientists agree with man-made climate-change; this claim is meant to deceive us. The Doran/Zimmerman report is based on a graduate student's study which reviewed 77 selected responses from a survey sent to 10,000 selected "scientists." The Cook Study reviewed the abstracts of about 12,000 peer-reviewed papers which researchers judged as agreeing (the paper at least implies that humans cause global warming), denying that humans cause global warming, or no opinion. (NASA cites these and similar studies which is particularly amusing since 40 years ago some NASA "scientists" told us to fear the coming ice age!)
The Climategate and Climategate 2 scandals revealed attempts to shutdown publishing dissenting papers, efforts to conceal scientists' data because of its weaknesses and manipulation, and that some scientists pursue climate-change as a political cause rather than a real scientific study.
Frankly, the questions in both studies are so general that almost all scientists (alarmists, deniers, and end-of-days believers) agree. The honest debate is over the significance of human influence and whether it is good or bad.
A survey American Meteorological Society members indicates that barely over half (52%) agreed that global warming is mostly human caused. (http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/BAMS-D-13-00091.1)
Rather than accepting the 97 percent claim as meaningful, people should visit www.petitionproject.org to see the 31,487 American scientists who signed a petition stating: "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth."
The term "denier" is just used by climate alarmists to try to marginalize anyone who doesn't help justify spending trillions of dollars on further climate studies, conferences, bureaucrats, and to reward politicians' and their supporters.
Third. Alarmists charge that the oil companies spend lots of money to disprove man-made global-climate-change. Compared to government funding which I understand to be about $2.5 billion annually to prove man-made climate-change, the amount spent on research to fight the climate alarmist claims is miniscule. Scientific American reports that has averaged less than $8 million per year spread among about 100 organizations to contest the alarmists' claims. The last identifiable Exxon (one of the last major oil company holdouts) contribution was in 2008.
By now most business executives have jumped on board the climate change band wagon recognizing that it is easier to go along with the politicians rather than antagonize them as long as they can continue doing business and sometimes earn extra profits by taking advantages of the politician provided subsidies and regulations.
Exxon, BP, Chevron, Conoco-Philips, Marathon, and other oil companies pursue reduced environmental impact. Many invest in non-fossil fuel energy generation, e.g., Chevron generates twice the electricity from geothermal in Indonesia and the Philippines than are provided by all solar generation in the US. Feel free to check their websites for more information.
Fourth. Don't confuse weather and climate. We are used to weather changing significantly on a daily basis, e.g., rain/no-rain, snow/no-snow, and 20-40 degree temperature swings. Climate considers longer periods of time, at least 15 years, in which temperature and other changes are usually minor and slow. As stated above the earth's climate warmed about 1 degree F between 1850 and 2000. The earth's climate has had long periods of much colder and much warmer temperatures, generally the earth has been much warmer than today.
The earth's climate has and will continue to change no matter what humans might contribute to climate change by building cities, roads, cutting or growing forests, water use and management, perhaps some from burning fossil fuels, etc. Natural forces such as the sun, ocean currents and temperatures, volcanoes, earthquakes, clouds, and hundreds, perhaps thousands of other factors however are the dominant influencers of our climate.
How much human action influences the natural forces and whether the results are beneficial for humans is still being debated. Warmer is better, that's why Canadians go to Florida in the winter.
The first sentence of the conclusion of the Cook Study reveals its purpose is not science but to influence the public: "The public perception of a scientific consensus on AGW (man-made global warming) is a necessary element in public support for climate policy."
What should be a scientific issue became a political issue which "scientists" and politicians exploit to increase their power and wealth at the expense of other citizens.