Yes, argues Daveed Gartenstein-Ross in The Atlantic (Sep. 17, 2012). Gartenstein-Ross is the author of Bin Laden’s Legacy: Why We’re Still Losing the War on Terror. I haven’t read the book, but judging from the favorable reviews, Gartenstein-Ross has the ear of defense hawks of both parties. Does he offer sound advice on global warming?
In his Atlantic article, Gartenstein-Ross chides Republicans for taking a “decidely unrealistic tack” on climate change. “The available evidence overwhelmingly suggests that climate change is real; that extreme weather events are increasing; and that this dynamic will have an impact on American national security, if it hasn’t already,” he avers. He goes on to blame this summer’s drought on global warming, citing NASA scientist James Hansen’s claim that the 2003 European heat wave, the 2010 Russian heat wave, and the 2011 Texas-Oklahoma drought have “virtually no explanation other than climate change.” (For an alternative assessment, see these posts.)
Since 2010, notes Gartenstein-Ross, the Department of Defense has classified climate change as a conflict accelerant — a factor exacerbating tensions within and between nations. Well, sure, what else is Team Obama at DOD going to say in an era of tight budgets when no rival superpower endangers our survival? The concept of an ever-deepening, civilization-imperilling climate crisis is an ideal mission-creep accelerant.
Gartenstein-Ross concludes by urging Republicans to face “reality” and take action on climate change. However, he offers no advice as to what policies they should adopt. Does he favor cap-and-trade, carbon taxes, the EPA’s greenhouse gas regulatory cascade, ‘all of the above’? Gartenstein-Ross doesn’t say. He ducks the issue of what economic sacrifices he thinks Republicans should demand of the American people.
Below is a lightly edited version of a comment I posted yesterday at The Atlantic on Gartenstein-Ross’s article: [click to continue…]
49 former NASA astronauts and scientists sent a letter to NASA, requesting that they stick to using empirical data to evaluate the effects of carbon dioxide, and to back off the claims of catastrophic climate change. The text of the letter is pasted below:
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.
The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.
As former NASA employees, we feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate. We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject. At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.
For additional information regarding the science behind our concern, we recommend that you contact Harrison Schmitt or Walter Cunningham, or others they can recommend to you.
Thank you for considering this request.
There are an impressive 49 signatories including well-known astronauts such as Walter Cunningham and Charles Duke. Check out the rest of the signatories here
. While they don’t mention him by name, the letter signatories most likely take significant issue with the public actions of James Hansen, a well known global warming activist, who recently made the news for his insightful comparison
of climate change to slavery.
Indeed, it isn’t at all hard to see the moral similarities between the burning of fossil fuels (which has made the lives of everyone in the world much better off throughout history) with the brutal practice of enslaving individuals, denying their right to life and liberty.
Matt Ridley, a prolific author (among many other professional accomplishments) recently name-checked by Bill Clinton as one of the “smartest, most penetrative thinkers” remains one of the highest profile skeptics toward the likelihood of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Last week he delivered the 2011 Angus Millar Lecture at the Royal Society of Arts in Edinburgh. The title of his talk was “Scientific Heresy,” and it detailed extensively why he remains skeptical on this issue. You can read the entire text of the talk here. A PDF with accompanying graphs and charts is here.
Here are a few excerpts, though the speech in its entirety should not be missed if you follow this debate:
Using these six lessons, I am now going to plunge into an issue on which almost all the experts are not only confident they can predict the future, but absolutely certain their opponents are pseudoscientists. It is an issue on which I am now a heretic. I think the establishment view is infested with pseudoscience. The issue is climate change.
Now before you all rush for the exits, and I know it is traditional to walk out on speakers who do not toe the line on climate at the RSA – I saw it happen to Bjorn Lomborg last year when he gave the Prince Philip lecture – let me be quite clear. I am not a “denier”. I fully accept that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, the climate has been warming and that man is very likely to be at least partly responsible. When a study was published recently saying that 98% of scientists “believe” in global warming, I looked at the questions they had been asked and realized I was in the 98%, too, by that definition, though I never use the word “believe” about myself. Likewise the recent study from Berkeley, which concluded that the land surface of the continents has indeed been warming at about the rate people thought, changed nothing. [click to continue…]
Newt Gingrich, like other Republican ‘candidates’ — if you can really call him one — is walking back previous climate change positions:
“I was trying to make a point that we shouldn’t be afraid to debate the left, even on the environment,” Gingrich said on WGIR radio of the 30-second television commercial. “Obviously it was misconstrued, and it’s probably one of those things I wouldn’t do again.”
Odd, the clip doesn’t sound like much of a debate. Gingrich’s decision to sit with Nancy Pelosi and chuckle whimsically about how much they disagree on non-climate related issues has, understandably, drawn ire from the few remaining people who pretend to take Gingrich seriously. The extent to which he truly has no consistent political beliefs is astounding, having provided talking points for every side of every issue. He hadn’t changed his mind 6 months ago when asked:
Gingrich told us Friday: “I meant exactly what I said in that commercial.”
So he meant exactly what he said, except that it was obviously misconstrued, and he probably wouldn’t do it again. Oh okay, that makes sense.
Here is Newt being paid to promote ethanol interests, then denying that he is any sort of ‘lobbyist’ for the industry.
Repeat after me: “the media is too balanced on global warming, the media needlessly gives two-sided reports on global warming…..” When ordinary people learn why mainstream media journalists repeat this and where it originates, they will understand how the overall smear of skeptic scientists threatens to turn from the success it is into a failure that can bring the whole so-called global warming crisis to a halt.
What “balance”?! We’ve heard non-stop, one-sided coverage of our certain demise from man-caused global warming for the last decade! In my first American Thinker blog on this in late 2009, I pointed out the sheer lack of skeptic scientists appearing on the PBS NewsHour, while noting instances of this repeated ‘too much balance’ assertion going back to 1995. Eight months later, I was amazed to see a blogger link to a set of graphics supposedly proving skewed media reporting of global warming compared to an ‘overwhelming scientific consensus’, yet when I looked into it, I found immediate problems with the citation about the media researchers, the Boykoff brothers, and what certainly looked like a circular reference between the Boykoffs and the main promoter of the accusation saying skeptic scientists are corrupted by fossil fuel industry money, Ross Gelbspan. In a 2004 paper, the Boykoffs not only cited Gelbspan’s work four times, they also thanked him for his help in their acknowledgments section. I wrote about those problems at a pair of Heartland Institute blogs.
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Someone alert the Guinness Book of World Records! In 2010, humans set a new all-time high for global greenhouse gas emissions, according to an International Energy Agency analysis released yesterday.
If you are an alarmist, then this is one of your many causes for concern. If, however, you are a global warming “denier” like me, then this is a cause for celebration, because more emissions translate into more wealth creation!
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GlobalWarming.org’s blog features highly credentialed Competitive Enterprise Institute analysts along with a few others of equal caliber. Why is complete nobody like me here? The importance is not who I am, but instead what I represent: any run-of-the-mill citizen who sees a massively expensive, unsound decision relying on only half the information available. Any rational person seeing such ill-informed decisions feels a gut level urge to yell, “Stop! Are you crazy? What about these (fill in the blank) problems?!”
One of the main priorities for Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) promoters is to steer the general public away from hearing the skeptics’ side of the story. They’ve been amazingly successful so far, aided by legions of environmentalist bloggers. But these efforts require constant maintenance. When people notice contradictory elements and other details that don’t square up, tough questions start getting asked. Evasive answers or dead silence to those only speeds the erosion of credibility for the issue. If nobody can legitimately explain why skeptic scientists should be ignored, then the whole idea begins to erode uncontrollably.
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British columnist Johann Hari recently took to the Huffington Post to try to whip up alarm about the supposed dangers posed to drinking water by ‘fracking,’ a.k.a hydraulic fracturing, an American-made technological miracle in natural gas production that has roughly doubled known North American gas reserves in only the last five years. I rebutted Hari’s baseless environmentalist talking points in a previous post, and I am much pleased to report this morning that the British Parliament agrees with my debunking of his nonsensical claims.
According to Public Service Europe (by way of the Global Warming Policy Foundation),
“Shale gas drilling has been given the go-ahead by members of the UK parliament who have insisted that the process is safe. An inquiry by the Energy and Climate Change committee concluded that fracking, the process by which gas is extracted from shale rock, poses no risk to underground water supplies as long as drilling wells are properly constructed.”
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The British Conservative Party seems intent on fulfilling Prime Minister David Cameron’s promise to be the “greenest government ever.” This week, the coalition government announced it would cut emissions 50 percent, averaged over the years 2023-2027, by 2025. The government conceded that the policy would cost British homes about $700 a year, or 1 percent of Britain’s GDP, which is almost certainly a lowball. There is, however, an escape clause: The targets are binding only if the rest of the European Union commits to the same emissions cuts. Even if the EU were to adopt similar targets, it would not be terribly surprising if a future government suspended or rescinded this ultra-expensive “Green Deal,” as recent polling suggests that only a quarter of Britons believe that the risks of climate change are greater than the benefits.
If you hate success but love long meetings, and even longer plane trips, then the State Department is looking for you: Become a climate diplomat.
As I explain here, here, and here, negotiations for a legally binding, multilateral treaty to address the supposed problem of “global warming” are futile. According to the International Energy Agency, it would cost $45 trillion to de-carbonize global energy production to the liking of global warming alarmists. There is simply no precedent for international burden sharing of this magnitude, short of war, and the threat of winters gradually warming doesn’t galvanize interstate cooperation quite like the threat of, say, the Nazis.
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