What Scientists Really Say about Global Warming

What Scientists Really Say about Global Warming
October 18, 2007

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is managing editor of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly... (read full bio)

Utah's Sutherland Institute is mailing to state citizens 10,000 copies of survey results of what climate scientists really say about global warming – and global warming alarmists don't like it one bit. Alarmists are upset because the survey of more than 500 climate scientists from 27 countries shows there is substantial disagreement about the causes and future impacts of the earth's moderate recent warming.

Climate scientists at Germany's Institute for Coastal Research compiled approximately 100 questions related to global warming. The full results, available at http://www.heartland.org/Article.cfm?artId=20732, show that only one in three climate scientists believe climate models can accurately predict future climate; less than half of climate scientists trust the accuracy of global warming computer models; barely more than half believe climate change is mostly the result of human influences; and less than half believe the science is settled enough to turn the matter over to social scientists and politicians.

For global warming alarmists who falsely proclaim "the science is settled" and "the debate is over," the views of climate scientists are an inconvenient truth.

In an August 18 Deseret News article on the climate survey, a spokesman for the environmental activist group the Sierra Club alleged that "basically all the world's scientists"--in the form of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)--believe in alarmist global warming theory.

Yet a direct survey of climate scientists shows exactly the opposite. IPCC consists of both scientists and non-scientists appointed through the UN by politically motivated governments. Its findings merely reflect the views of a few politically appointed "lead authors" (some working for environmental activist groups such as Greenpeace and Environmental Defense), and have been roundly criticized by IPCC scientists themselves. Even so, each successive IPCC report unfailingly predicts less temperature rise than prior IPCC reports.

The Deseret News also quoted an assistant professor at the University of Utah asserting that the science has changed since the 2003 climate survey. Indeed it has. Knowledge gained since 2003 continues to throw cold water on alarmist global warming theory.

For example, in 2006, scientists reported in Geophysical Research Letters that Greenland is in a prolonged cold spell unmatched since the 1910s.

The 2007 IPCC report forecasts the Antarctic ice sheet will not shrink at all during the entire next century.

In 2007, scientists reported in American Scientist that temperatures rarely if ever rise above freezing at Mt. Kilimanjaro, and that any glacier retreat there is unrelated to global warming.

In 2006, scientists reported in Science and New Scientist magazines that the Gulf Stream is in no danger of shutting down as a result of global warming.

In 2007, the London Telegraph reported that global polar bear populations are booming.

In 2007, scientists at the National Hurricane Center reported there has been no increase in hurricanes as a result of global warming.

In 2007, the scientific journal Geology reported that Africa is experiencing unusually stable, wet conditions compared to the droughts of past centuries.

In 2006, scientists at the Danish National Space Center reported solar activity is higher than it has been in at least 1,000 years.

And in a letter just accepted for publication in Journal of Geophysical Research, scientists report carbon dioxide has only one-third the warming properties as previously believed, and global warming will likely be much more moderate than previously thought.

In light of such scientific evidence, it is no wonder climate scientists themselves are reluctant to embrace alarmist global warming theory.

James M. Taylor (taylor@heartland.org) is senior fellow of environment policy at The Heartland Institute.

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is managing editor of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly... (read full bio)