February 2005


The Cooler Heads Coalition




The George C. Marshall Institute


invite you to

a Congressional and media briefing on



The Kyoto Protocol and Beyond


A Roundtable Discussion on the Future of International and U. S. Climate Policy




2:304 PM

Thursday, February 10th

406, Senate Dirksen Office Building


Light refreshments

Please RSVP by calling Elle Collver at 202-296-9655
or e-mail




 The Kyoto Protocol will enter into force internationally on February 16th without the participation of the United States or Australia.  Senator James M. Inhofe, State Department Senior Climate Negotiator Harlan L. Watson, and other experts will discuss the prospects for implementing the Kyoto Protocol, what new international agreements and efforts may follow Kyoto, what this means for future U. S. climate policies and international involvement, and where we should be going on climate policies.    


Panelists include:


       Senator James M. Inhofe (R- Oklahoma), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

       Dr. Harlan L. Watson, Senior Climate Negotiator and Special Representative at the U.S. Department of State

       William O’Keefe, CEO of the George C. Marshall Institute

       Myron Ebell, Director of Global Warming Policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute

       Christopher C. Horner, Counsel to the Cooler Heads Coalition

       Jeff Kueter, Moderator, President of the George C. Marshall Institute


WASHINGTON — Injecting synthetic “super” greenhouse gases into the Martian atmosphere could raise the planet’s temperature enough to melt its polar ice caps and create conditions suitable for sustaining biological life. In fact, a team of researchers suggests that introducing global warming on the Red Planet may be the best approach for warming the planet’s frozen landscape and turning it into a habitable world in the future.

Margarita Marinova, then at the NASA Ames Research Center, and colleagues propose that the same types of atmospheric interactions that have led to recent surface temperature warming trends on Earth could be harnessed on Mars to create another biologically hospitable environment in the solar system. In the February issue of Journal of Geophysical Research-Planets, published by the American Geophysical Union, the researchers report on the thermal energy absorption and the potential surface temperature effects from introducing man-made greenhouse gases strong enough to melt the carbon dioxide and ice on Mars.

“Bringing life to Mars and studying its growth would contribute to our understanding of evolution, and the ability of life to adapt and proliferate on other worlds,” Marinova said. “Since warming Mars effectively reverts it to its past, more habitable state, this would give any possibly dormant life on Mars the chance to be revived and develop further.”

The authors note that artificially created gases–which would be nearly 10,000 times more effective than carbon dioxide–could be manufactured to have minimal detrimental effects on living organisms and the ozone layer while retaining an exceptionally long lifespan in the environment. They then created a computer model of the Martian atmosphere and analyzed four such gases, individually and in combination, that are considered the best candidates for the job.

Their study focused on fluorine-based gases, composed of elements readily available on the Martian surface, that are known to be effective at absorbing thermal infrared energy. They found that a compound known as octafluoropropane, whose chemical formula is C3F8, produced the greatest warming, while its combination with several similar gases enhanced the warming even further.

The researchers anticipate that adding approximately 300 parts per million of the gas mixture in the current Martian atmosphere, which is the equivalent of nearly two parts per million in an Earth- like atmosphere, would spark a runaway greenhouse effect, creating an instability in the polar ice sheets that would slowly evaporate the frozen carbon dioxide on the planet’s surface. They add that the release of increasing amounts of carbon dioxide would lead to further melting and global temperature increases that could then enhance atmospheric pressure and eventually restore a thicker atmosphere to the planet.

Such a process could take centuries or even millennia to complete but, because the raw materials for the fluorine gases already exist on Mars, it is possible that astronauts could create them on a manned mission to the planet. It would otherwise be impossible to deliver gigaton-sized quantities of the gas to Mars. The authors conclude that introducing powerful greenhouse gases is the most feasible technique for raising the temperature and increasing the atmospheric pressure on Mars, particularly when compared to other alternatives like sprinkling sunlight-absorbing dust on the poles or placing large mirrors in the planet’s orbit.

2500 minus one

by William Yeatman on February 1, 2005

in Politics, Science

Dr. Christopher Landsea of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administrations Hurricane Research Division at NOAAs Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory, has withdrawn as an author of the Fourth Assessment Report under preparation by the UNs Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change for release in 2007.

       Landsea has written more than forty articles on hurricanes and other tropical storm systems for refereed scientific publications during the last twelve years (see www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/Landsea/landsea_bio.html for specific references). As an author, he contributed to the last two IPCC Assessments and had primary responsibility for sections describing the past, present and future behavior of tropical cyclones.

       He recently wrote and circulated an Open Letter among his colleagues to announce and explain his decision to withdraw from further IPCC participation. We have his permission to quote it. We have added bold-faced emphasis to certain section that are not in the original.

Dear colleagues,

      After some prolonged deliberation, I have decided to withdraw from participating in the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). I am withdrawing because I have come to view the part of the IPCC to which my expertise is relevant as having become politicized. In addition, when I have raised my concerns to the IPCC leadership, their response was simply to dismiss my concerns.

      With this open letter to the community, I wish to explain the basis for my decision and bring awareness to what I view as a problem in the IPCC process. The IPCC is a group of climate researchers from around the world that every few years summarize how climate is changing and how it may be altered in the future due to manmade global warming. I had served both as an author for the Observations chapter and a Reviewer for the 2nd Assessment Report in 1995 and the 3rd Assessment Report in 2001, primarily on the topic of tropical cyclones (hurricanes and typhoons). My work on hurricanes, and tropical cyclones more generally, has been widely cited by the IPCC. For the upcoming AR4, I was asked several weeks ago by the Observations chapter Lead Author Dr. Kevin Trenberth to provide the writeup for Atlantic hurricanes. As I had in the past, I agreed to assist the IPCC in what I thought was to be an important and politically-neutral determination of what is happening with our climate.

      Shortly after Dr. Trenberth requested that I draft the Atlantic hurricane section for the AR4’s Observations chapter, Dr. Trenberth participated in a press conference organized by scientists at Harvard on the topic “Experts to warn global warming likely to continue spurring more outbreaks of intense hurricane activity” along with other media interviews on the topic.  The result of this media interaction was widespread coverage that directly connected the very busy 2004 Atlantic hurricane season as being caused by anthropogenic greenhouse gas warming occurring today. Listening to and reading transcripts of this press conference and other media interviews, it is apparent that Dr. Trenberth was being accurately quoted and summarized in such statements and was not being misrepresented in the media. These media sessions have the potential to result in a widespread perception that global warming has made recent hurricane activity much more severe.

      I found it a bit perplexing that the participants in the Harvard press conference had come to the conclusion that global warming was impacting hurricane activity today. To my knowledge, none of the participants in that press conference had performed any research on hurricane variability, nor were they reporting on any new work in the field. All previous and current research in the area of hurricane variability has shown no reliable, long-term trend up in the frequency or intensity of tropical cyclones, either in the Atlantic or any other basin. The IPCC assessments in 1995 and 2001 also concluded that there was no global warming signal found in the hurricane record.

      Moreover, the evidence is quite strong and supported by the most recent credible studies that any impact in the future from global warming upon hurricanes will likely be quite small. The latest results from the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory (Knutson and Tuleya, Journal of Climate, 2004) suggest that by around 2080, hurricanes may have winds and rainfall about 5% more intense than today. It has been proposed that even this tiny change may be an exaggeration as to what may happen by the end of the 21st Century (Michaels, Knappenberger, and Landsea, Journal of Climate, 2005, submitted).

      It is beyond me why my colleagues would utilize the media to push an unsupported agenda that recent hurricane activity has been due to global warming. Given Dr. Trenberths role as the IPCCs Lead Author responsible for preparing the text on hurricanes, his public statements so far outside of current scientific understanding led me to concern that it would be very difficult for the IPCC process to proceed objectively with regards to the assessment on hurricane activity. My view is that when people identify themselves as being associated with the IPCC and then make pronouncements far outside current scientific understandings thatthis will harm the credibility of climate change science and will in the longer term diminish our role in public policy.

      My concerns go beyond the actions of Dr. Trenberth and his colleagues to how he and other IPCC officials responded to my concerns. I did caution Dr. Trenberth before the media event and provided him a summary of the current understanding within the hurricane research community. I was disappointed when the IPCC leadership dismissed my concerns when I brought up the misrepresentation of climate science while invoking the authority of the IPCC. Specifically, the IPCC leadershipsaid that Dr. Trenberth was speaking as an individual, even though he was introduced in the press conference as an IPCC lead author. I was told that that the media was exaggerating or misrepresenting his words, even though the audio from the press conference and interview tells a different story (available on the web directly); and that Dr. Trenberth was accurately reflecting conclusions from the TAR, even though it is quite clear that the TAR stated that there was no connection between global warming and hurricane activity at this time. The IPCC leadership saw nothing to be concerned with in Dr. Trenberth’s unfounded pronouncements to the media, despite his supposedly impartial important role that he must undertake as a Lead Author on the upcoming AR4.

      It is certainly true that “individual scientists can do what they wish in their own rights,” as one of the folks in the IPCC leadership suggested. Differing conclusions and robust debates are certainly crucial to progress in climate science. However, this case is not an honest scientific discussion conducted at a meeting of climate researchers. Instead, a scientist with an important role in the IPCC represented himself as a Lead Author for the IPCC and has used that position to promulgate to the media and general public his own opinion that the busy 2004 hurricane season was caused by global warming, which is in direct opposition to research written in the field and is counter to conclusions in the TAR. This becomes problematic when I am then asked to provide the draft about observed hurricane activity variations for the AR4 with, ironically, Dr. Trenberth as the Lead Author for this chapter. Because of Dr. Trenberth’s pronouncements, the IPCC process on our assessment of these crucial extreme events in our climate system has been subverted and compromised, its neutrality lost. While no one can “tell” scientists what to say or not say (nor am I suggesting that), the IPCC did select Dr. Trenberth as a Lead Author and entrusted to him to carry out this duty in a non-biased, neutral point of view. When scientists hold press conferences and speak with the media, much care is needed not to reflect poorly upon the IPCC. It is of more than passing interest to note that Dr. Trenberth, while eager to share his views on global warming and hurricanes with the media, declined to do so at the Climate Variability and Change Conference in January where he made several presentations. Perhaps he was concerned that such speculation though worthy in his mind of public pronouncements would not stand up to the scrutiny of fellow climate scientists.

      I personally cannot in good faith continue to contribute to a process that I view as both being motivated by pre-conceived agendas and being scientifically unsound. As the IPCC leadership has seen no wrong in Dr. Trenberth’s actions and have retained him as a Lead Author for the AR4, I have decided to no longer participate in the IPCC AR4.


Chris Landsea

            What Landseas letter illuminates is yet another example of what climatologist Patrick Michaels, our senior editor, calls the predictable distortion of global warming in his book Meltdown in which he argues that, in general, climate scientists are not policy-neutral. Professional advancement often is best-served by exaggerating threats of climate change in public discourse. A glaring example was the complete omission of the word satellite in the Summary for Policymakers of the 1996 IPCC Second Assessment. As a result, policymakers were not aware that orbiting temperature monitors show no statistically significant warming a difference with the surface thermometer record that nine years later is yet to be resolved.

            Ironically, previous IPCC report sections on hurricanes (for which Landsea was a major contributor) were accurate and comprehensive. In the Second Assessment, for example, Landsea provided the IPCC a graphic showing that the average maximum wind speed attained in Atlantic Ocean tropical storms and hurricanes declined between 1944 and 1993 (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Annual average maximum wind speeds recorded in Atlantic basin tropical cyclones (Landsea et al., 1996).

            Updating this data through 2004 shows that even considering the recent upswing in hurricane activity over the past decade there has been no long-term change in the average maximum wind speed. This observation runs counter to proclamations that anthropogenic changes to the earths atmosphere have made hurricanes more severe. Landsea probably would have ensured such an updated figure became part of the upcoming IPCC report. Now it is unlikely to appear.

            As more scientists find the heavy-handed tactics of the global warming fanatics to be unsettling, the oft-heard claim that IPCC findings represent the consensus view of 2,500 scientists will need to be modified. If not, such a statement will fail to reflect the fact the remaining participants in the IPCC process are distorting climate science. What else can anyone conclude given the now abundantly clear fact the IPCC leadership encourages and participates in such activity. This latest flap over hurricanes, resulting in Landseas resignation, should signal IPCC participants theyd better prepare to reap the whirlwind if this trend remains unchecked by courageous acts similar to Landseas.

February 2, 2005


Landsea, C.W., et al., 1996. Downward trends in the frequency of intense Atlantic hurricanes during the past five decades. Geophysical Research Letters, 23, 1697-1700.

Michaels, P.J., 2004. Meltdown: The Predictable Distortion of Global Warming by Scientists, Politicians, and the Media, Cato Institute, Washington DC, 271pp.

COPAP has developed a new detection device that will aid research into global climate change, environmental studies, life-science research and environmental monitoring and improve understanding on aerosols.

“It is now recognised that aerosols play a central role in a range of environmental problems such as respiratory diseases, climate change and decreased visibility,” says Dr Vidmantas Ulevicius, Head of the Environmental Physics and Chemistry Laboratory at the Lithuanian Institute of Physics, the project’s lead partner.

The problem arises because the majority of the mass in fine aerosol particles is not directly emitted but formed through numerous reactions with other gasses in the atmosphere. These reactions are extremely difficult to define as many reactions are short lived and others produce minute particles in the atmosphere. It is these secondary aerosol particles that create environmental problems; these can now be detected thanks to the research in this project.

The sources of each of the major chemical constituents of the aerosols must be known and their role in atmospheric processes must be determined, in order to regulate and reduce their detrimental effects. “In this sense, aerosol science is now at the same level as the measurement of most gaseous pollutants was over a decade ago,” says Ulevicius.

To help increase knowledge and thereby develop efficient abatement strategies, the EUROENVIRON COPAP project designed a new particle counter able to measure the concentration of these small aerosol particles. It can measure particles as small as 5 nm in diameter, in concentrations between 0.01 and 105 particles/cm3.

The new device will provide reliable aerosol data, the lack of which has until now hindered the understanding of the formation of secondary aerosols and evaluation of ways to regulate and prevent environmental damage.

Professor Markku Kulmala, who leads the Physics Department at the University of Helsinki, co ordinated the Finnish academic and commercial partners and supervised the theoretical, calibration and field studies. He says: “EUREKA was crucial. Without it, this work would not have been possible.”

Ulevicius agrees: “EUREKA not only helped in the development of the new instrument but also forged co operation between scientists and commercial companies in Lithuania and Finland.”

The project is set to increase the turnover of the commercial partners – Eltera Ltd in Lithuania and Dekati Ltd in Finland – both of which will manufacture and market some 50 instruments per year.