The IPCC: A Counterblast

I’ve recently received a copy of a new report by the NIPCC (Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change) — a body set up deliberately in parallel to the IPCC, to provide a voice for independent and sceptical scientists.  The report was written in response to the IPCC’s report on climate change — a report so fraught with misstatements and out-dated information that it hardly qualifies as a scientific document. 
 
The NIPCC’s report, entitled “Climate Change Reconsidered”, explains methodically and soberly how many of the assertions made by the IPCC were based on unsupported hypotheses and scenarios and computer simulations with no real-world applications.  A main theme of their argument is that rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere can be shown not only to have a negligible effect on the earth’s many ecosystems, but in some cases to be a positive help to many organisms.  For example, plants’ use of CO2 is essential to photosynthesis, a process essential to agriculture.  Rising CO2 levels are our best hope of raising crop yields to feed an ever-growing population.   In addition, rising CO2 levels cause plants to emit higher levels of carbonyl sulphide gas which, in its eventual collection in the low-pressure stratosphere, is transformed into aerosol particles which act as a solar-radiation-reflecting agent resulting in an atmospheric cooling effect.  The basic idea is that higher levels of some so-called “greenhouse gases” may be contributing to higher oxygen levels and global cooling, not warming. 
 
CO2 is a greenhouse gas — but a much less important one thanm water vapour, which we cannot hope to control.  There is an enormous natural carbon cycle involving volcanoes, the ocean, the atmosphere and the bioshpere, and human emissions of CO2 are estimated at only 3% of the total volume involved.  Moreover at existinmg atmospheric levels CO2 is already delivering just about all its potential greenhouse effect already, and further increases will have a trivial effect.
 
The report goes on to recap what we level-headed persons refer to as “The Medieval Warm Period”, the well documented period during the last millennium, when recorded temperatures averaged 2-3°F warmer than they are today.  This fact also debunks the claim that modern climate change is a prelude to massive species extinction.  Since most of the globe’s wild species are at least 1 million years old, they have displayed remarkable resilience to hundreds, if not thousands, of climate cycles.  Our noble polar bear, a mascot for the left’s climate hysteria, has actually seen its population increase in recent decades.
 
This NIPCC report is not a political manifesto.  It is not a call to arms against the political power grab by the world’s governments under to guise of environmental protection.  It is a collection of facts, supported by published and peer-reviewed research, illustrating a simple truth: Climate cycles are a natural part of the earth’s history, they will occur with or without us present and will go on long after we are gone. 
 
The report is also a very solid piece of scholarship, running to nearly 900 pages, and annotated with hundreds of references to peer-reviewed science.  You’re probably not going to read 900 pages, but the first ten, the Executive Summary, give a fascinating and striking summary.  I thoroughly recommend it.  Find it here.

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2 Responses to The IPCC: A Counterblast

  1. Alfred says:

    Roger, you might want to consider changing your link to
    http://www.climatechangereconsidered.org/

  2. anonymous says:

    It is about time the volumes of empirical research debunking the climate alarmists’ claims came into view. This “discussion” has been so one sided that it can hardly be called an argument. Good review.

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