Dedicated to the balanced discussion of global warming
The Heartland Institute – May 2007
This is a very good article. I will not be able to adequately capture all of its observations adequately. Please click through and read the entire article. The author, the past president of the American Association of State Climatologists, takes many of the points of the Oscar-winning file “An Inconvenient Truth” and analyzes them as to their scientific and mathematical accuracy.
I will reproduce some of the highlights below.
Al Gore, An Inconvenient Truth, carbon dioxide, corn, emissions, ethanol, food, gasoline, glaciers, Greenhouse gas, Greenland, heartland institute, IPCC, Kyoto, methane, nobel, ocean, satellite, science, Senate, temperature, United Nations
From Hollywood to Capitol Hill, Al Gore’s global warming horror movie An Inconvenient Truth is receiving a tremendous amount of attention this spring. It is a riveting work of science fiction.
The main point of the movie is that, unless we do something very serious, very soon about carbon dioxide emissions, much of Greenland’s 630,000 cubic miles of ice is going to fall into the ocean, raising sea levels more than 20 feet by the year 2100. Where’s the scientific support for this claim? Certainly not in the recent Policymaker’s Summary from the United Nations’ much-anticipated compendium on climate change.
Under the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) medium-range emission scenario for greenhouse gases, a rise in sea level of between 8 and 17 inches is predicted by 2100. Gore’s film thus exaggerates the rise by about 2,000 percent.
Atmospheric methane concentration hasn’t changed appreciably for seven years, and Nobel Laureate Sherwood Rowland recently pronounced the IPCC’s methane emissions scenarios as “quite unlikely.”
According to satellite data published in Science in November 2005, Greenland was losing about 25 cubic miles of ice per year. Dividing that by 630,000 total cubic miles of ice yields the annual percentage of ice loss, which, when multiplied by 100, shows Greenland was shedding ice at 0.4 percent per century. “Was” is the operative word. In early February, Science published another paper showing the recent acceleration of Greenland’s ice loss from its huge glaciers has suddenly reversed.
The Kyoto Protocol, if fulfilled by every signatory, would reduce global warming by 0.07 degrees Celsius per half-century. That’s too small to measure, because the Earth’s temperature varies by more than that from year to year.
The Bingaman-Domenici bill in the U.S. Senate would have less effect on global temperature than Kyoto–i.e., less than nothing–for decades, before mandating larger cuts, which themselves will have only a minor effect out past somewhere around 2075.
President George W. Bush proposes we replace 20 percent of our current gasoline consumption with ethanol over the next decade. But it’s well-known that even if we turned every kernel of American corn into ethanol, it would displace only 12 percent of our annual gasoline consumption.
…the United States would become the first nation in history to burn up its food supply to please a political mob.
Even the Pollyannish 20 percent displacement of gasoline would reduce our total emissions by only 7 percent below present levels–resulting in emissions about 20 percent higher than Kyoto allows.