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UN climate claims ‘based on student essay’

I picked this up at ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Company).  There is a lot of talk about Climategate and Glaciergate but now we find a new instance of the IPCC reports that were not based on peer-reviewed scientific information.

Now that the IPCC has admitted one problem, it is obvious that everyone is going to go through every claim with a fine-tooth comb. For the sake of the IPCC, I hope that there aren’t more problems discovered. If there are, then the entire global warming conversation will take a significant move towards skepticism.  It is interesting that this is almost precisely the problem that Michael Crichton described in his novel on global warming “A State of Fear” and why he spoke out about the issue of bad scientific discover.

U.S. global warming rules won’t change to help polar bears

The LA Times is running with an article that says that the Obama administration will not reverse the Bush administration in using the scarcity of polar bears to curb emissions. About a year ago, the US listed the polar bear as a threatened species. The concern of many was that this ruling would be used to control, tax, and sue individual companies to reduce their CO2 output. The Bush administration said that wouldn’t be happening and now the Obama administration appears to agree.

I originally found this article by reading Watts Up With That so go over there and check out his handling of this story.

Glaciers on California’s Mt. Shasta keep growing

July 8, 2008 – USA Today

The reasons that a glacier grows or shrinks are not solely due to air temperature (regardless of what Mr. Gore implies).  This story in the USA Today is a prime example of proving this false.  Unfortunately, this mountain seems to be the only mountain in the lower 48 states of the USA that has growing glaciers.

Due to Mt. Shasta’s elevation and proximity to the Pacific ocean with its prevailing winds, the area is seeing an increase in precipitation in the form of snow.  This snow is forming glaciers.

This does not mean that global warming doesn’t cause glaciers to shrink!  This just means that the formation and the maintenance of glaciers is more complicated than just ambient temperature.

Tracking Carbon Trail To Find Why So Much Fills the Atmosphere

Wall Street Journal – December 28, 2007

I have written about the Carbon Tracker service before, but this recent article is very interesting in discussing the lack of understanding that we have in our atmosphere.

Where did all of the carbon go?  It is concerning that we are embarking on a global escapade to reduce, tax, and punish carbon dioxide production but we still can’t answer this very basic question! How does a nation effectively tax carbon production when scientists can’t even tell where 25% all carbon dioxide goes? This begs the question as to if we can appropriately tax the correct polluters and reward the correct sinks.

Global warming makes Mont Blanc grow

Telegraph – October 15, 2007

First of all, the Mont Blanc in this story is not the famous luxury pens. Rather it is the mountain that the pens were named for. And the mountain really isn’t growing but rather more snow and ice are being added to it, which does factor into the official measurement evidently.

It seems that France has been having warmer summers lately (I didn’t independently verify this) and that has caused more snow and ice to accumulate on the higher elevations of the mountain. This is a known phenomenon that it is not just cold temperature that creates (or eliminates) glaciers but also the correct levels of humidity.

Recent glacier and climate variations in the Pacific Northwest

Quaternary Research Center, University of Washington

There does not appear to be a date on this article nor does it appear to be peer reviewed in a scientific journal. The author does appear to have some credibility though as it credits him as being with the University of Washington and URL implies that he is with the faculty of that august learning institution. His website also credits him with writing multiple articles since 1962.

The article tracks a specific glacier and its shrinking over the course of several hundred years. It is very apparent from the graph from that article that the shrinking has been relatively consistent since the mid 1800s and in fact may have slightly slowed down in recent decades (maybe we could put a hockey stick on this and show that the glacier is actually growing now).

Is global warming destroying Mount Everest?

HowStuffWorks

This article details how things are changing on Mount Everest, the worlds tallest mountain. While the article doesn’t lay blame on the cause of the warming, it does describe what happens as the concentration of ice and glaciers changes. The article also goes on to describe the other great calamity affecting the area around Everest – trash.

Peter Hillary and Jamling Tenzing, in an interview with British newspaper The Independent, lamented that global warming is radically altering the appearance, ecology and climate of Mount Everest and the surrounding area of Tibet. Inaction, they warn, could lead to an environmental disaster.

With Corn Prices Rising, Pigs Switch To Fatty Snacks

WSJ.com – May 21, 2007

There is a much greater demand for corn with the increased demand for ethanol. This demand has had a dramatic impact on the cost of corn and has made it too expensive for some ranchers to use corn to feed their livestock. Instead, they appear to be using over-supply of food that is traditionally used for humans.

This, of course, begs the question as to the USA’s ability to effectively produce ethanol. If we are using our food to power our cars will that significantly hurt the poorest people in our nation, not to mention our exports to foreign lands that are impoverished.

Global warming may save the snows of Kilimanjaro

This is a very interesting blog entry. I haven’t been able to find further evidence of the claim aside from the CNN story that the blog references. Rather than quoting the CNN story though, I thought it was more interesting to read the thoughts of the author of the blog especially since the title of the blog is “Classically Liberal” but the stance is not typical of a liberal in the US political scene.

The author begins by describing multiple references to snow disappearing on Kilimanjaro but then proceeds to ridicule these references by citing the CNN story. For the purposes of this entry, I will focus on the new claims and leave it to you to click through to the entire treatment.

Global warming melts Andean glaciers toward oblivion

Reuters – June 7, 2007

You will see different versions of this article floating around the internet.  This article discusses the major impact and hardship that will befall the people of Bolivia due to the melting of their small glaciers that are in the Andean mountains.  These glaciers are melting, so the story claims, because of global warming.

If you have read this site for any length of time, you know that some people believe a myriad of evils has been delivered on us (or will be delivered) due to climate change. I have written of several examples of this (here and here and here).  I don’t discount that these glaciers may be melting since the article gives us data to support that claim.  I also do not refute that this will cause these people harm – in fact, my heart goes out to them in their plight.