Mrs Merkel and climate change

Last week the  EU’s effective political leader Mrs Merkel said she was worried by the big gap between the views of the establishment who see climate change as the gravest  threat facing us and the climate sceptics who do not. She asked for a proper dialogue between the two sides, presumably to search out some common ground or a way of respecting each other’s positions,.

As someone who is lobbied strenuously by all sides, I remind  the EU and governments that  climate change scepticism is not a single doctrine or united group of dissenters against current policy. It is not traditional right or left, and may  be motivated by many different considerations. So let us today consider some of the different forms of scepticism there is over this issue.

The first thing to grasp  is most climate sceptics do not deny the underlying science which rightly asserts that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Nor do most deny that if nothing else changes and mankind pumps out a lot of extra CO2 average temperatures will rise.

Some sceptics however argue that current climate models do not capture the complexities of greenhouse gases. Natural CO2 exceeds manmade and that could vary in either direction. Volcanic activity can have a big impact on world climate. A view needs to be taken on the stability of various carbon sinks, including  the oceans. Water vapour is a more common greenhouse gas than CO2 so models need to capture variations in water vapour concentrations.  That also gets the forecaster into wind directions and cloud formation, which we see have daily big impacts on the weather and over time can affect the climate , if new trends and patterns emerge. These sceptics either say you cannot gauge temperature direction from simply measuring manmade CO2 or go further and argue other trends may be or are offsetting manmade CO2.

Some sceptics point out that the sun  is the main  source of warming the earth, and that there needs to be more information about solar activity rates, as the sun itself produces variable output over time as well as from night and day and the seasons.

Some sceptics are unconvinced that there has been a linear increase in average temperatures during the long period of industrialising since say 1820. They raise issues about historical records, and about how you actually calculate an average world temperature, as well as pointing to periods in  the published records when temperatures did not rise.

Other sceptics accept the predictions that manmade CO2 will take temperatures higher whatever the other forces do. They ask whether it is not wiser and cheaper  to spend money on adaptations where warming has adverse consequences rather than trying  to wean China and the USA off fossil fuels in  time to meet the needs of carbon reduction to head off the problem.

So I say to Mrs  Merkel she needs to engage her experts and the EU in a new dialogue which examines these various strands of sceptic thinking and deals with them sensibly, rather than castigating anyone who asks questions. A lot of people are in the middle on  this issue, seeking better information and guidance on the nature and scale of the threat. They are more likely to be persuaded  by well informed people with knowledge and balance than by angry politicians asserting you either accept their version or are some kind of denier of the truth.

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337 Comments

  1. Pominoz
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    Belief that mankind can control climate change is down to one thing. The vanity of mankind. The forces of nature are so incredibly immense that our miniscule contribution – for good or for bad – will have little effect.

    There is no doubt that climate is changing. It always has and always will. Can mankind affect climate locally? Yes – look at the London smogs of the 1950s. Look at the present pollution in Beijing and certain other large cities worldwide. Sensible local changes to the identified cause can be beneficial as has already been proven in London.

    On a global scale, solar and volcanic activity and meteor strikes have an effect which makes anything mankind can do completely meaningless. Mankind should just accept that the climate will change – temperatures increasing presently, but within a very short time likely to reverse. Pursuing emission free power, thereby making basic heating and manufacturing completely unaffordable will be far more damaging to mankind than pragmatically accepting that we must live with an acceptable degree of climate change.

    If nature itself decides that mankind’s presence on this planet is really having too great a detrimental effect, you can rest assured that nature will cull our numbers to an acceptable level – and there will be absolutely nothing that we will be able to do about it.

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:19 am | Permalink

      Why is pursuing emission-free power unaffordable? We have made great strides in this direction already, and it has not been unaffordable so far.

      It also makes the air cleaner for us and our children.

      I don’t see why this is a bad thing?

      Also our ‘miniscule contribution’ appears to have been making temperatures rise consistently for the last 180 years. So it’s not that miniscule.

      And yes it would be great to know the effects of sunspots, magnetic fields and so forth – but we can’t work them out as the heat-reflection caused by rising CO2 levels is dominating everything else, so there is currently too much noise in the system to look at other effects.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

        Leaver, You are using words you don’t understand. If, as you claim, “CO2 levels dominate everything else” then that is a signal not the “noise in the system” you suppose. As it is, CO2 does not “dominate” everything else, the Sun dominates everything else. CO2 is entirely passive and injects no energy into the system at all, merely slowing down the escape of IR into space.

        • hefner
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

          NickC, You are using words you don’t understand. The Sun is obviously the source of the solar/shortwave radiation, in wavelengths between 0.15 and a bit more than 4 micrometers. In that solar-related part of the electromagnetic spectrum, there are very little in ways of absorption bands of CO2. The dominant gases for absorbing this solar radiation are ozone, high up in the stratosphere, and water vapour in the troposphere. The limit between tropo- and strats-sphere varies between around 8 km in polar regions and 15-18 km in the equatorial regions. So where is the effect of CO2? CO2 has very strong bands of absorption around 4.3 micrometers and between 13.5 and Q18 micrometers. The one at 4.3 micrometers does not do much because it is still within the low values of the so called Planck function defining the emission of radiation by a body at a given temperature (cf. wikipedia or any introductory book on atmospheric physics). At temperatures relevant for the Earth, 250K to 320K (-23 C to + 47 C) the peak of the emission varies between about 20 and 13 micrometers, so mainly where the absorption by CO2 (and H2O) happens. So indeed CO2 is entirely passive and does not directly inject energy in the Earth’s atmosphere system, but through its absorption contributes to heating/increase in temperature. As you correctly say, this absorption by CO2 (and H2O and some other gases, CH4, N2O, CFCs, HFCs) slows down the escape of infrared radiation to space.

          • hefner
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

            Oops, main point is that most of the effect of CO2 is not within the solar part of the spectrum but in the terrestrial/infrared part of the spectrum.

        • hefner
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

          NickC, I do not agree with your statement. The Sun dominates the part of the electromagnetic spectrum between roughly 0.15 and 4 micrometers (more or less the distribution of radiation emitted by a blackbody at 6000K). In this interval of wavelengths, there is only one relatively small absorption band of CO2. Most of the absorption of solar radiation is done by O3 (ozone) in the stratosphere and H2O (water vapour) in the troposphere (roughly below 10 km).
          As you know, the absorption bands of CO2 (and other gases, H2O, O3, CH4, N2O, CFCs and HFCs) are in the infrared part of the electromagnetic spectrum, between 4 and 50 micrometers, where a blackbody at temperatures corresponding to the Earth’s surfaces and atmosphere emits. The main absorber is clearly water vapour. Absorption of radiation leads to a heating, and heat is energy. So in that respect, any absorption by one of these gases has an impact on the energy distribution within the atmosphere, so is not, as you say, entirely passive. CO2 being one of these gases is not passive and contributes to exchanges of energy in the system.

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:22 am | Permalink

            Hefner, Look, there’s a squirrel. It’s not the spectrum, it’s the energy. The energy is supplied by the Sun, apart from a small amount of internal heat from the planet. GHGs are entirely passive, emitting no more energy than they have absorbed.

          • hefner
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

            So according to you the energy from the Sun (in the shortwave spectrum) which contributes to heating the surface and the atmosphere above it is all there is to see/study? Nothing is happening at wavelengths larger than 4 micrometers?
            How do you explain that gases that have no or practically no absorption bands in the solar spectrum can be measured by various devices in the IR part of the spectrum?
            You know what? I think you are of good faith and serious in your scientific arguments, but you need a primer on radiative energy.

          • NickC
            Posted January 30, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

            Hefner, The Sun originates the energy. The GHG molecules do not. Put simply, GHGs are passive converters.

      • hefner
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

        Leaver, not quite true. The Americans launched eight Orbiting Solar Observatories between 1962 and 1975 providing measurements of sun spots and some of heliospheric activity. Time series of these measurements are available between 1962 and 1978, date when OSO-8 died. Measurements of the incoming solar radiation continued with the Earth Radiation Budget satellite, followed by the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment satellites. Then from 1995 NASA and ESA have had the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory in orbit measuring on top of the previous measurements a lot related to magnetospheric activity. Other satellite experiments were also producing data, in particular SORCE, the Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment, measuring X-ray, UV, visible, near-infrared and TSI. Most of these data are part of the long time series of TSI (Total Solar Irradiance).
        These long time series of solar observations show the impact of fluctuations in the far-UV on the occurrence of the so-called sudden stratospheric warming episodes affecting the polar vortex and potentially the weather at lower latitudes.
        However the level of such fluctuations and the variations seen within a so-called 11-year solar cycle appear to contribute minimally to the overall global temperature.

        • Leaver
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

          Hefner, you clearly know far more about this field than I do, and indeed NickC, so I will happily yield to your expertise. I am not a climatologist, not would profess to be one.

          I was simply trying to make the broad point that other variables , such as magnetic fields and solar effects, tend to be drowned out by the far greater effect of CO2.

          And NickC, thank you for the snarky comment. In fact I do have some understanding of scientific terms, enough to be perfectly aware of the Dunning-Kruger effect.

    • agricola
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:03 am | Permalink

      Spot on.

    • Wil Pretty
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      Currently there are known and universally agreed natural hazards that lead to considerable loss of life and property that we do not, or cannot rectify.

      Building on floodplains.
      Living on coasts subject to hurricanes, tsunami, storm surges.
      Building in forests in parts of the world that experience forest fires.
      Building in places liable to earthquakes.

      It makes no sense to ignore these and concentrate on a hypothetical hazard of a warmer climate.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

        ah….but where there’s muck there’s brass, in the cases above there’s a profit to be made. Let the buyer beware. No authority stops it.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

      Pominoz. Great post again from you. The renewables have made our energy prices go through the roof and will continue to rise to and unaffordable level for many people. It is obvious that only the scientists that conform to the theory that CO2 levels are to blame will be the only ones listened to as has happened in the past. As you say, we are so up our own backsides that we think we can control nature. Nature controls us and so far I see no signs of anything improving the way we think it should even with all the measures we have taken. By the time we get the whole world to change the climate will have altered yet again. It’s a similar situation with the people who advise about diet. The low fat diet has been responsible for more health problems but because the food manufacturers pay researches to find in their favour nobody has come out and admitted this. We are controlled by the few but behind it all is big money while minions like us pay. It really is a depressing reality. I am all for cleaning up our environment, better animal welfare and buying local food to cut down on carbon footprint but trying to change nature and the climate….. forget it. Let’s spend our money mitigating against what may be a disaster and live with the planet and climate we have got.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

      I would suggest that as our contributions have been increasing for 180 years then if we are having serious impact the increase in temperature would yield a curving graph not the straight line I have seen.

    • Dennis Zoff
      Posted January 30, 2020 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

      Quite so….control over the elements: King Canute springs to mind?

  2. Peter Wood
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:42 am | Permalink

    Good Morning,

    Oh dear, if there is one reason to be sceptical about climate change forecasts, its because politicians are leading the claim. Where are the real climatologist scientists?

    Sir John, front page of the FT today, the fight is now joined on Fisheries; WE MUST NOT TRADE OUR FISHING AREAS AWAY AGAIN.

    • Andy
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:19 am | Permalink

      Why not? It is how trade deals work. You want something, you give up something in return.

      More than 70% of what our fishermen catch is sold to the single market. The EU will, rightly, say if you want that easy access to their market to continue you need to give something up in return. So what are you going to give up?

      If you give up nothing two thirds of our fishermen go bust – and fast. As they won’t be able to sell their catch. And, no, we won’t eat it here. The British don’t like eating the fish caught in our waters!

      You might say to the EU that they can have easy access to our market in return for easy access to their market. They don’t want this. They don’t sell much fish here. Most of our fish imports come from outside the EU.

      So our fishermen need their market to sell fish. What are you giving up to secure that access? If you don’t secure access swathes of fishermen go bust. You’ve had three years to work this stuff out. You have to start making these hard choices on Saturday. So what’s it to be?

      • Timaction
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:16 am | Permalink

        Total idiot. What are they giving us in return for access to our fishing grounds? Vineyards, energy, water? Why on earth do we need to give them anything with a £100 billion trade deficit. Go back to school and get some sceptic teachers!

      • Alison
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

        Andy, The CFP quota distribution skews the allocations so that the UK has a much smaller % allowance of the fish that we eat in the UK.

      • agricola
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:00 am | Permalink

        Trade deals are about trade. Only the EU think they can encroach on sovereign rights to achieve them.

        We should say some of you can fish in our waters if you obey our rules on conservation, method etc. The EU consumes fish like the UK consumes opiates so they will buy all they can from us. Hypothetically let’s assume that there is no trade agreement and the EU shut the door to UK caught fish. Who buys just as much fish as the EU, the Japanese. It is about 10 Hours by air Leeds/Bradford to Tokyo, and they pay top dollar for fish and shellfish. No need to give up anything to sell our fish and even the EU are not that stupid to think otherwise.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        Andy, There is no reason to give the EU trade access to the UK and our fishing resources, in exchange for UK trade access to the EU. According to your thinking we should insist on the return of Normandy for the EU’s trade access to the UK. No normal trading deal is so one sided.

        • Andy
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

          Fine. No access to UK waters for EU fishermen, means no easy access to the single market for British fishermen. They currently send more than two thirds of their catch there.

          You’ve made your choice. Will you be telling the hundreds of British fishermen who’ll lose their jobs within months or would you like someone else to do it?

          I know none of you like making these choices. Brexiteers have spent 4 years putting off tough choices. And now you are going to have to make them. It’ll be fun to watch.

          • dixie
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

            Then the EU will not have “easy” access to our internal market.

            So we leave without a deal – suits me

          • NickC
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

            Andy said: “Fine. No access to UK waters for EU fishermen, means no easy access to the single market for British fishermen.”

            No, that does not follow. You’re still mixing up a resource (our fishing grounds) with the act of trading. Trade is where the EU sells us their fish; and we sell the EU our jet engines.

          • Otto
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

            If UK fish can’t be sold in the EU then perhaps much of the extra fish available here will be much cheaper and UK consumption will go up.

            I buy very little fish as its too expensive – make it cheaper and I’ll eat it 3/4 times a week instead of twice a year.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

            As Otto says – cheaper means we’d buy a lot more – in our case probably 3 times more than at present. And our fishermen were basically left high and dry ( oops! ) when they were sold out to the EU years ago. Boats got sold cheaply because the fishermen were going to go bust.

          • Andy
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

            It’s amusing watching you all get angry about this – but I’m afraid these are the annoying things you are going to have to decide.

            The EU does not want to sell jet engines in return for our fish. It wants access to our waters in return for our fishermen having easy access to the single market. You are perfectly entitled to say no. But then you will put many fishermen out of work.

            You’re in charge now. It may be awkward for you all but as unfair as you think it is and as much as you all rant about it you now have to make hard choices.

            If the EU stands firm on its demand you have to decide how many UK fishing jobs are a reasonable price for zero EU access to our waters. Tough one.

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

            Andy, The EU cannot selectively exclude UK traded fish, any more than we can exclude the EU’s traded fish – we’re both in the WTO and will continue to be so. And it was the EU’s fish and our jet engines. Or didn’t you know we buy fish from the EU, and they buy our jet engines?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

      You are in no position to use words like “must”. With a majority of eighty the Government will do as it sees fit.

      On topic however, John’s assertion that Mrs. Merkel is the European Union’s effective political leader is without a solid basis. The Council of all twenty-eight leaders is its highest authority, and in some regards Malta is just as powerful as Germany, e.g. in using its veto against the UK’s extensions if it had so chosen. And Germany only has about twelve percent of MEPs – not that they vote along national lines anyway, but rather, ideological ones.

      Moreover, as one of the Big Three, the UK would have continued to have had regular conversations with Mrs. Merkel, and to have been highly influential on the consensus among the major nations of the European Union.

      However, at the urging of John and others, those influenced by them won a referendum, for the country to throw away all that and more.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

        another Germany pulls the strings denier, eh?

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

          Yes, a fact accepter, lie rejecter.

          • Fred H
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

            you continue to make me laugh.

          • Anonymous
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:29 pm | Permalink

            Did you vote Labour ?

        • Edward2
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

          The biggest economy equals the most power.
          Germany has the biggest economy in Europe.

          • Dennis Zoff
            Posted January 30, 2020 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

            Edward2

            “Germany has the biggest economy in Europe” Maybe not in 30 years time…Rule Britannia, we are back!

            A question often asked by my European clients: Will the UK start manufacturing again?

            …well John?

      • agricola
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

        Within the EU there are about 20 dependant nations and 8 nett contributors of which Germany is the largest. Two and three are debatable between the UK and France. Depending on who gets the most back. If you wish to know where the power is ,follow the money.

        The UK was frequently at odds with the EU because we have a long and deep seated relationship with democracy. Whereas most EU members are only beginning to discover what democracy is and find it sadly lacking within the EU. John’s instinct in following the path he has, has been absolutely right, nothing has been thrown away and much has been regained. EU members might come to realise this in the future. The EU started well as a trading area but got hijacked by the politically unscrupulous, losing the ever increasing consent of its people as it progressed.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

        Martin, False, the highest authority in the EU is the treaties, not the Council. Then, provided the Council follow the treaties, the leaders of the most powerful countries have in practice more power than the leaders of the smaller countries. And of course the only power of originating laws within the EU is held by the unelected Commission. It’s all part of the general sleaze that is the EU.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

          OK, the highest sentient authority, if you want to be that silly.

          No, the Citizens’ Initiative means that the people of the European Union can propose their own laws too.

          Private Members bills would mean the election of party political government for the European Union, and an adversarial rather than consensual method of passing law. I wonder what you would have said about that?

          In any case virtually all of its laws are in non-controversial areas anyway, under the very limited remit of the Treaties.

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:36 am | Permalink

            Martin, Now you’re being silly – it’s not about sentience, it’s about power. The EU treaties put no limits on the laws that the EU can create. EU laws have primacy, so every sub-state’s law must conform to the EU, and the EU’s courts. The EU can, and does, make laws in every area from woolly sheep ornaments to defence. All without democratic oversight. That’s not “limited”, it’s totalitarian.

        • Dennis Zoff
          Posted January 30, 2020 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

          NickC

          ….”the highest authority in the EU is the treaties, not the Council”….sadly you are mistaken “it’s Money” all else is subservient!

          I have personally seen Political authority change in a heartbeat when money enters the room?

  3. William Pentelow
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    “Nor do most deny that if nothing else changes and mankind pumps out a lot of extra CO2 average temperatures will rise.”

    That sentence in itself is an untruth.Most scientist without a financial induced agenda do disagree on that very point.

    Mankind made CO2 is virtually insignificant.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

      William P, That is a critical point. There is ample evidence from geology that CO2 levels have been much higher in previous epochs (Jurassic 5x higher). Yet there was no runaway (catastrophic) global warming. Therefore there are natural mechanisms which prevent such catastrophes – that is, negative feedback. The GCMs assume a positive feedback without evidence.

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:06 am | Permalink

        Feedback between temperature and humidity is positive. Feedback between temperature and decrease of surface albedo (via glacier melt, sea-ice melt, greening of previously desert areas) is positive. Some negative feedbacks exist: if higher sea surface temperatures give more evaporation and more low-level cloudiness with relatively smaller droplets, these clouds would scatter/reflect more solar radiation and that would be a negative feedback.
        To say as you do that GCMs assume A positive feedback is asinine as GCMs used for weather forecasts and climate research are much more complex that what you seem to assume.
        And if you were to look for the information, you would find that many satellite agencies and meteorological services have been involved for more than fifty years in various in situ/ground experimental campaigns to figure out the details of this type of interactions.
        Yesterday we had on this blog a comment by LL about the Guardian piece of news on the Thwaites glacier. What LL did not point out was that this was a several months long campaign (International Thwaites Glacier Collaboration) with scientists (glaciologists, oceanographers, meteorologists) from the UK (British Antarctic Survey, the guys who pointed out the ozone hole in the ‘80s), the USA, S.Korea, Germany, Sweden and nine different projects all aiming at understanding what is happening over there (projects DOMINOS, GHC, GHOST, MELT, PROPHET, TARSAN, THOR, TIME, SCO). I’ll let you do your homework to find out what exactly these projects are about. Maybe a bitty more complex than “assuming a positive feedback without evidence”.

        • NickC
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

          Hefner, You’re looking for squirrels again, and think we can be distracted too. If, as you claim, increasing levels of CO2 always directly results in increasing global temperatures, then in the past – where there has been many times the amount of CO2 in earth’s atmosphere than we have now – there must be have been negative feedback to counteract the effects of increased CO2. Otherwise our planet would have become a cinder long ago – as you are telling us we will get now for a trivial amount of extra CO2. Unless you’re also claiming our CO2 molecules are different to, say, the Jurassic CO2 molecules.

    • Bob
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

      Regarding the the “97% of scientists agree” claim:
      There are millions of scientists in the world, how many were asked?
      When did this survey take place?
      Who conducted the survey?
      What were the questions?
      Are the survey results available for scrutiny?

      Answer these questions and you will quickly discover that the 97% claim is a crock.

      The BBC will not allow a platform to anyone to challenge these false claims because they don’t stand up to scrutiny.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

        Bob, Agreed, the “97% of scientists” claim is entirely bogus on both counts. It originates from a paper by John Cook which was merely a literature search of the abstracts of 11,994 scientific papers. Of those papers “32.6% endorsed AGW, 66.4% stated no position on AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and in 0.3% of papers the authors said the cause of global warming was uncertain” (Cook’s press release). Cook ignored the 66.4% in order to produce his “97%” figure (1 – (0.7+0.3)/32.6 pu). Note as well that it was “97%” of papers, not 97% of scientists.

        • DaveK
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

          Earlier than that was the Doran/Zimmermann paper which asked 10,257 Earth Scientists at academic and government institutions. 3146 of them responded, these 2 questions:

          Q1: “When compared with pre-1800s levels, do you think that mean global temperatures have generally risen, fallen, or remained relatively constant?” 76 of 79 (96.2%) answered “risen.”

          Q2: “Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?” 75 of 77 (97.4%) answered “yes.”

          So as you see 75 people became the much repeated 97%.

    • cornishstu
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

      You beat me to it! It is temperature driving CO2 levels not as the followers CAGW would have us believe.

  4. Mark B
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:16 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    No one denies that the climate changes. I mean, we had Wooley Mamoths living Kent. Why ? Because at the time there was an Ice age.

    And this is the thing. Those that promote this SCAM never admit to this. They never admit that for a whole host of reasons the earth’s climate changes and it has nothing to do with mankind.

    The people promoting this SCAM tend to be the same kind of people. Politicians, the very wealthy, extrem environmentalists, and what they call, opinion formers. ie celebs. Never ordinary folk.

    I think Chancellor Merkel has been spoken to by German business both large and small. They have, like us, signed up to very damaging environmental international agreements. With President Trump not signing the Paris agreement and fracking driving down energy costs Germany will face stiff competition for manufactured goods. And they know it.

    This has nothing to do with building bridges and holding out hands. It is about protecting German business and interests.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      The other people promoting this alarmism are complete hypocrites princes, actors, deluded school girls and the likes who wiz about in helicopters, flying first class, in private jets or £ million racing yachts with crew flown out but then lecture others saying things like:- “With nearly 7.7 billion people inhabiting this Earth, every choice, every footprint, every action makes a difference.”

      I notice that Justin Rowlatt the BBC chief environment correspondent seems to be yet another Oxford PPE chap. Are the BBC perhaps not allowed to employ any solid scientists – not even their science editor is it seems?

      • Hope
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

        I wônder if it has anything to do with Siemens building wind machines? How about Germany getting half of its gas from Russia and electric from France to lower Germany’s own alleged carbon footprint? Wherever Germany receives its energy it should include the carbon that goes with it.

        Paris agreement is not about climate change it simply about helping move industry to poorer countries. Trump spot on, again.

        We are currently reflecting on Germany’s disgusting behavior 75 years ago and the effects it had on the world.

      • Bryan Harris
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        The BBC decided some years back that climate change was a man-made activity, so they can justify their lack of balanced reporting and total lack of real scientific backup on their religion – they believe without question.

      • Hope
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

        It is anticipated U.K. debt will be £1.8 trillion by March this year. Tory govt still runs a deficit, that was meant to end by 2015. The debt should have been paid down for five years. Tory govt makes a promise to be carbon neutral which will cost another £1.5 trillion! Tory economics is a joke when it slams Corbyn and Labour.

        Germany gets gas from Russia, electric from France and 30 percent of electric from coal fired power stations! All forms of energy should be counted towards Germany carbon footprint both home and abroad.

    • jerry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      Mark B; “No one denies that the climate changes.”

      Indeed, but had you not noticed the full claim has changed over the years, from “Global Warming” (dropped when it was pointed out that temperatures have been dropping), then it became “Man Made Climate Change” (the first two words being dropped when raw data proved that man can not influence the climate), now it is just “Climate Change” because they know no one can argue against that, and no one is, what people are arguing against is the politics of the ‘cure’.

      “I mean, we had Wooley Mamoths living Kent. Why ? Because at the time there was an Ice age.”

      The flip side of a climatic cold period; there is evidence that the occupying forces of the Roman Empire 2000 years ago were growing grape vines next to Hadrian’s Wall, try doing that today, even with so called climate change…

    • Wil Pretty
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      During the last interglacial (warm period between ice ages), it was much warmer than it is in the current one.
      The sea level was 6 metres higher in this country.
      How can anyone be sure that something similar is not the cause of the current minor warming?

  5. dixie
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    “They are more likely to be persuaded by well informed people with knowledge …”

    Unfortunately, I fear the political establishment have pissed too long in the well. The “climate” debate has become so politicised, such a religious creed and scientists so tainted that there are few that can be trusted.

    The gravest threat facing us is an autocratic establishment who are well on their way to destroying democracy and trust in the scientific community.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      The real climate catastrophe is the absurd waste of tax & bill payers money and the diversion of engineering resources to expensive “renewables”. With tax payer funded subsidies, market rigging and other damaging lunacies. Resources that could be spend on things that would be thousands or even millions of times more useful and could save millions of lives here and now. Things like those suggested by the sensible economist Bjorn Lomborg.

      It is mainly retired (and thus independent) physicists, engineers and geologists that talk the most sense on this matter. In private most physicists (Piers Corbyn for example) know it is largely another deluded religion and is (at the very least) a gross exaggeration and (at worse) a gigantic & blatant fraud against the tax payer.

      Anyone who thinks you can predict the climate for 100 years when we cannot even do it for next month is clearly a total fraudster, as is anyone who thinks C02 concentrations are some kind of world thermostatic control. We cannot even know all the variables and even if we did the chaotic climate systems still could not be predicted reliably.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        L/L Correct again about the expensive scam of wind farms. Just go and look at Dr John Constable and his information on his site Renewable Energy Foundation and see the figures for Scottish wind farms which are turned off and earning more money off than on. It’s a total disaster not to mention the millions of trees that have been cut down to accommodate them. Disgusting!

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:42 am | Permalink

      It didn’t “become” politicised by some spontaneous process.

      It was deliberately made so by massive vested interests in fossil fuels etc., who finance certain politicians or their parties.

      They have also paid large sums for pseudo-science, masquerading as science, to attempt to discredit the latter.

      They are not the only 0nes to have done this – so did the nuclear industry.

      • dixie
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

        Provide evidence for each of your assertions.

      • L Jones
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

        ”Massive vested interests in fossil fuels…”
        What about the ”massive vested interests” in so-called ”renewables”? Are THOSE interests free of all suggestion of coercion or financial gain? Or don’t they count from your own ”scientific” viewpoint?

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        Martin, The global warming zealots have also paid large sums for pseudo-science, masquerading as science, to attempt to discredit the latter.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

          Taking ice cores and examining trapped air bubbles for historic CO2 levels and the rest is expensive.

          It is real science, not specious mumbo-jumbo, however.

          • Drew
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

            Yes Martin in Cardiff, although a proxy, it is real science.
            Google “GISP temperatures holocene” and get graphs (Images) showing the average temperatures derived from ice cores for last 10,000 years or so. Notice how for most of the holocene it has been warmer than it is now… despite lower CO2 concentrations.
            Maybe something else is affecting atmospheric temperatures.

          • NickC
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

            Martin, See the Climategate emails.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

            You’ve fallen for the “Plebgate” fallacy.

            That is, because one witness was shown to be bent, so were all the others.

            The many others were, in fact, straight in both instances, however.

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

            Martin, So you do admit at least one climate scientist was “bent”? Well that’s progress of sorts. Actually if you study the Climategate emails and the fake “hockey stick” you will see that there were dozens of “scientists” involved.

  6. SM
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:32 am | Permalink

    1. Humans need to care for the environment, ergo no plastic in the seas, sensible management of rubbish, toxic emissions and waste, and sewage, etc.

    2. Humans need to accept that climate is deeply affected by matters beyond our control, such as solar activity, the axis of Earth etc.

    3. Politicians and princes should abstain from indulging proto-religious individuals and groups that are designed to capture adolescent minds and incite hysteria.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      Just a thought, we have all been using plastic for more than most of us can remember. Up until recently there was never any real signs of it popping up in the Oceans.

      So a little confusion when UK supermarket carrier bags washed up on beaches in the Pacific – the worlds oceans don’t flow that way.

      In the last few years we had the urge to recycle everything, this in turn meant sending masses to China, our people couldn’t be bothered. Then China said this has to stop. Yet shippers were still paid vast amounts of money to ship Containers to China, they just don’t seemed to have arrived. It is know that in rough seas containers do fall over-board never to be seen again. So the stuff leaves the UK never arrives at its destination. Does that make Plastic the villain? Does that make us all slobs? Or is something else going on.

    • IanT
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      Yes, absolutely agree SM.

      As an aside, Mr Portillo has been ‘training it’ in Alaska recently. He went to look at one of their huge Glaciers on a side trip – which has been in steady retreat for over 100 years. The lady scientist he interviewed, when asked about “Climate Change” was pretty clear that “long term” climate changes were responsible – mentioning Sun flares etc. It is so rare to see anything on TV where something is ‘melting’ without man-made carbon being blamed…

    • dixie
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      sounds reasonable

  7. bill brown
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:47 am | Permalink

    Sir JR,

    Very well presented

    thank you

    • hefner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:22 am | Permalink

      +1

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Indeed. But the government funding of research (and the appallingly biased BBC) is all completely one sided in pushing climate alarmism endlessly. CO2 is only one of millions of factors that affect the climate many are not even knowable let alone very predictable like sun spot activity, volcanos or genetic changes in plants. The indications suggest that slightly higher CO2 levels are not a real problem. Any warming will not be very significant (or remotely catastrophic). On balance it is likely to have more positive effects than negative such as increased crop yields, slightly warmer and slightly more precipitation and in greening the planet.

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:32 am | Permalink

      Er … this is just plain wrong.

      CO2 is well-known to be the dominant effect heating the planet. Almost all climatologists believe this. It is also the only variable which correlates with rising temperatures. And your statement about volcanoes heating the planet is spot on. Why? Because they produce prodigious amounts of CO2 and gases which lead to CO2. Your own statement contradicts itself.

      You claim to be scientific, yet you do not believe the scientists who are experts in what is a profoundly complex field. This is a political opinion, not a scientific one.

      • cornishstu
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

        No it isn’t. It is a hypothesis based on climate models which have yet to be able to predict past observed climate let alone predict the future.
        Ice cores show temperature leading CO2.

      • dixie
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

        Er … this is just plain wrong, the climate system is more complicated than simply more CO2 = more warming. According to the American Chemical Society it is water vapour that is the most important greenhouse gas controlling Earth’s temperature and clouds join in to make things more complicated.

        BTW the 97% of scientists myth was put out by a cognitive psychologist, not a climate scientist. So which experts are actually objective and experts in the field.

        I’ll not even listen now to anyone who describes AGW as climate change, uses the word “denier/denialists”, claims the “science” is settled” and stiffles argument, criticism and questions.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

        Leaver, Er … this is just plain wrong. Dr R W Spencer explains it in simple terms:

        The temperature change in anything, including the climate system, is the result of an imbalance between the rates of energy gain and energy loss. (First Law of Thermodynamics).
        Global warming is assumed to be due to the small (~1%) imbalance between absorbed sunlight and infrared energy lost to outer space averaged over the Earth …
        But we don’t know whether the climate system – without human influence – is in a natural state of energy balance [or not].

        Energy incidence from the Sun 1360W/sq m (common knowledge). The energy effect caused by a doubling of CO2 is 3.7W/sq m (quantum mechanics). That small it’s almost noise. We haven’t doubled CO2. And there is no written law which specifies what the optimal or “official” level is. And we don’t know what the natural energy balances have been over the last century, even though the GCMs assume zero. No wonder the predictive capability of the GCMs is so poor.

        • hefner
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

          NickC, I am sure you know that: the variation in the amount of solar radiation at the top of the atmosphere is about 1 Wm^2 between the minimum and the maximum values within a 11-year solar cycle (and that’s from observations).
          So what were you exactly saying about the importance of the Sun?

        • hefner
          Posted February 4, 2020 at 8:52 am | Permalink

          No, NickC, GCMs (even if the scientists in charge of them wanted it) cannot ‘assume’ zero energy balance. It is unfortunately clear you have a limited knowledge of how those models are built, how physical processes are represented, … How could you force such a GCM to have a zero energy balance, say globally and over one year or a 11-year solar cycle, when for example as produced by the model there would be too many or too few clouds or a unrealistic vertical distribution of clouds, or biases in ocean or land surface temperature, or … or …
          As so often a little knowledge is worse than no knowledge at all. And before you answer, I do not pretend knowing/understanding what is within the O(10^5) lines of code. But if you think you are up to the task … Sir John is very liberal in what he allows to be published on his blog.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

        Water vapour and clouds have far more effect than C02!

        • tonyb
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 9:32 am | Permalink

          Correct. The IPCC on page 666 of AR% confirm that water vapour is by far the dominant greenhouse gas contributing 66% of the warming.

          Co2 represents much of the remainder but 95% of that is from natural sources not man

        • hefner
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

          LL, you are obviously right, water vapour with a typical recycling lifetime of 5 days (between evaporation, condensation, precipitation) and clouds with shorter or similar lifetimes are much more important than CO2 or other greenhouse gases on these time scales. Water vapour and temperature are linked by a positive feedback, low-level liquid water clouds are very likely producing a negative feedback. Work is still being done on high-level cirrus-type ice clouds as in most instances particularly at night they prevent cooling of the atmosphere below them (a positive feedback if their cover were to increase with temperature).

          One of the unresolved questions is whether the 3-/4-dimensional distribution of clouds is remaining stable (globally and latitudinally speaking) or has it been/will it be affected over the (coming) years. One of your scientists of choice Dick Lindzen was (before he retired) particularly interested in this last topics. A shame that he now gets his kicks at the GWPF.

    • graham1946
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:45 am | Permalink

      It’s a long time since I read any of this stuff, but I do remember one thing, maybe you will know. I seem to remember that at above 400 ppm CO2 it is held that the planet may warm a little, but at 200 ppm, the planet dies, so it seems reduction of CO2 is the dangerous theory. I am sure that over the next few decades, whatever the outcome, man with his ingenuity will cope with it.

      I also hear people saying ‘the science is settled’. If the science really is settled why do we need to pour more billions into the researchers pockets?

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic, Right in every respect.

    • Drew
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

      After reading the comment from Leaver, I am motivated to add my support for the comment of Lifelogic.

      Leaver; you are blindly accepting the assertions of the wrong “Scientists”.

  9. eeyore
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Isn’t this yet another of those debates which demand to be conducted in numbers, a form of dialogue which neither politicians, journalists nor activists excel in?

    Among the more important numbers are the level of “green” taxes which politicians have eagerly identified, and the value of “green” research grants to scientists from governments anxious to justify their new taxes.

    My guess is there are no grants to prove polar bears are thriving (according to some they are).

    • Bryan Harris
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      Indeed – Polar bears are thriving, but with very limited publicity – Those that push MMCC are never keen to show any hint that they could be wrong on any count.

      While the arctic may have lost some ice, the fact that the Antarctic ice has been growing at a faster pace is ignored.

      Now it seems that due to their large numbers polar bears are infringing on human settlements…

      • DaveK
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

        There is a facebook meme going around along the lines of ” There were 5000 polar bears when Al Gore was a youngster and today there are barely 30,000 left”. Google Dr Susan Crockford to get real science on polar bears.

  10. Andy
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    There is no point engaging with climate change sceptics.

    They have lost – even if they do not realise it.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      we have the same problem with you….

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      My impression is the alarmists are in a desperate panic mode. This as all their over the top predictions have proved to be alarmist drivel and were clearly wrong (all in the same direction of course). Plus they have clearly fiddled the records in many cases by being selective on proxy data and the choice of thermometers used so often in far more urban (thus hotter) areas.

      You cannot keep exaggerating the increase in temperature records, sooner or later it catches up with you. Rather like a quoted company exaggerating its profits year after year until the lies can be extended no more.

    • jerry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      Either the usual @Andy has has a total political conversion or there is another ‘Andy’ posting, could someone clarify?!

      Perhaps our host should check IP numbers because there might be impersonation taking place.

    • agricola
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      Climate change sceptics have very little scientific understanding, they are flat earth visionaries. The real debate should be on what controls climate, be it single or multiple causes. What man can do, if anything, to control those causes and what man can do to mitigate the effects that cannot be controlled.

      • jerry
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        @agricola; Climate change advocates have very little scientific understanding, they are flat earth visionaries.

        There, corrected that for you. 🙂

        The real debate should be on what controls climate, be it single or multiple causes.”

        That is exactly what most ‘sceptics’ are asking for, in return they are told “the debate is over” they are accused of being “deigners”, and often far worse abuse.

        Climate Change scientists always refuse to publish their full and unabridged raw data, whenever they are asked for it there is always just reams of nonsense as to why it can’t be released. What are they hiding?

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

        For thousands of years ‘scientists’ have had their theories debunked later on. Their ‘opinions’ are of interest, of course, but don’t tell me they are fact! Our grandchildren or their offspring may well laugh at looking back to 2000’s for the nonsense claims passed off as science.

    • Bryan Harris
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:41 am | Permalink

      JR – Your point about this not being a left or right argument…?

      The likes of the poster above, who is still a remoaner, suggest that the hard left push anything that allows them some sort of control, while those on the right that support freedom of thought and fight against those that want to end democracy and impose their will.

    • Edward2
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      Tell us percentage that mankind’s CO2 output drives the total temperature rise seen since 1850.
      Is it 100% ?
      Or some other figure?
      Am I being a sceptic just for asking?

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

      Andy, There is no point engaging with global warming zealots. They have lost – even if they do not realise it.

    • Graham Wheatley
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      You’ll be familiar with the Name ‘Tom Segalstad’?
      …Professor Tom Segalstad?
      ….Ex Professor of Geology at the University of Oslo who used to be a Special Advisor to the InterGovernmental Panel on Climate Change? (No, I thought not).

      He quit with the parting shot that “the IPCC’s view of Earth Processes is, at best fanciful, and at worst deluded”, following their insistence that he (et al) change a paper to fit with the abstract released by the IPCC (….and released without having cleared it with the authors of the paper).

      The IPCC aren’t interested in facts, only in their own agenda and if the facts don’t fit, then they ignore them. Worse; they twist them into lies.

      • Andy
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

        That’s one ‘scientist’ you have. Any more?

        • jerry
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

          @Andy; At least the person Graham refers to is a real scientist, unlike those you worship like they are Gods…

          The UN’s IPCC panel has been given an pre-defined answer to which it has been told to find a problem that fits that pre-defined answer – that is pseudo-science.

          • DaveK
            Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

            In the same fashion as the “Citizens Assembly” have been tasked with getting to zero emissions by 2050. I bet the first question wasn’t Why?

  11. Lifelogic
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Radio 4 this morning for example claimed that the “Thwaites Glacier was melting faster and has already contributed to a 4% rice in global sea levels”

    4% of what? The average ocean depth is about 12,000 ft. So are they saying is have contributed to 480 ft already? Why do the BBC employ so many dimmish & imprecise art graduates?

    Or did they intent to day 4% of the (very small) rises we have seen so far is due to this Glacier melting? Do these people ever think about what they are saying or they do they just read out press releases from the many alarmist groups?

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      The BBC meant 4% of the rise in sea levels. The clue is in the word ‘rise’.

      Otherwise they would have said 4% of sea levels.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      The wording was revised later without any explanation.

    • jerry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:57 am | Permalink

      @LL; Heard that too, and to compound their errors the BBC reporter also stared clearly that scientists were “drilling down to the sea water below”, so this glacier must at least be in part floating, and thus some or all of its volume has already been displaced, the sea level has already been affected, no?

      • acorn
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

        What was actually written was, “It already accounts for 4% of world sea level rise each year – a huge figure for a single glacier – and satellite data show that it is melting increasingly rapidly.”

        Have a read of the actual article and learn the difference between a grounded Ice Sheet and an ungrounded section of Glacier. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-51097309

        PS. Why are all climate change sceptics invariably “leave” voters as well?

        • dixie
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

          I doubt anyone thinks the climate isn’t changing, however some of us are skeptical about the extent of anthropogenic global warming.

        • jerry
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

          @acorn; Did you hear the report, stop telling me what I heard!

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

          “Why are all climate change sceptics invariably “leave” voters as well?”

          Well if you are sensible on one thing you are more likely to get the other one right too!

        • Lifelogic
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

          The wording was changed later!

        • Narrow Shoulders
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

          @acorn re your ps

          If we also frame the question as why are all climate change advocates invariably remain voters (zealots?) as well? then we may find the answer in relative approaches to accepting authoritarianism and trying to reduce / increase* the cash flow to the establishment from the taxpayer.

          * delete as appropriate for right or left policies.

        • NickC
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

          Acorn, Probably because we are more intelligent and/or better technically qualified than the “retail” level Remain or CAGW enthusiast (often one and the same).

          • bill brown
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

            Nick C

            Silly not substantiated generalizations, when do you learn?

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

            Bill B, But pretty cool nevertheless given the ad hominems from Remains over the last 4 years!

    • Bryan Harris
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      If the oceans were rising, wouldn’t we have noticed it, SOMEWHERE.

      Shouldn’t cliffs be crumbling and seaside resorts be awash?

      The logic of rising oceans can be judged by the way that the likes of Obarma are buying seafront properties.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

        @Bryan Harris. And Al Gore who has a lovely condo by the sea. What drivel they all come out with.

      • DaveK
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:12 pm | Permalink

        Global average sea level rise is 16 – 21cm per century. There has been an acceleration since 1993 to 30cm per century if it continues at that rate for 75 years.

    • acorn
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      Global sea level rose about 8 inches in the last century. The rate in the last two decades, however, is nearly double that of the last century and is accelerating slightly every year. NASA

      • jerry
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

        @acorn; 500 years ago the high water mark off the coast around here was between 0.5 and 1.0 miles further out to sea, when there are very low spring tides the remains of the old part of the village is uncovered, 10K years ago the high water mark was something like 5 or more miles inland! If these changes were due to climate neither man nor CO2 had little or no cause.

        • Fred H
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

          – the woodhenge surfaces at low tide off E.Anglia.

    • Graham Wheatley
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

      :o) 4% rice in the sea? That’s a lot of rice. Make sure it’s washed properly. ;o)

  12. agricola
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    That climate is an everchanging phenomena is a fact. That for millions/billions of years it has been driven by the Sun is also a fact. That continents have been in a constant state of motion is also a fact. CO2, natural or man made may or may not be a contributing factor.

    Man is a great abuser of the Earth. We destroy animal life for pleasure, misbegotten medicinal and sexual purposes,
    and for financial gain in wrecking their habitat. We use the sea both directly and indirectly as our litter bin and of late dump plastic waste of almost infinite life into it in vast quantities. We pollute our atmosphere with man made gases and particulate to the extent that in areas of concentration we cause heart and respiratory diseases that cause us a reduction in quality of life and great national expense, via the money we put into the NHS. When watching tv news on the Corona virus in China, check out the visibility in the city shots. It is not good.

    All this environmental abuse is in mans hands to correct, and not necessarily by following yet another cult solution of electrifying everything. When you politicians, thought and cult self proclaimed leaders have sorted the environment and provided us with a better place to live, prepare yourselves for disappointment because the Sun will still be there making its contribution.

    In the UK I suggest that you clean up mans act and then mitigate against the effects of climate change with sea walls, tidal gates, properly dredged rivers and streams and more intelligently sited housing estates away from flood plains. There is the possibility of whole new industries with export potential within the process of the clean up act. See it as a pot half full.

    • agricola
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

      Long overdue for moderation.

      • SM
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

        agricola – you are aware that our host has a day job, aren’t you?

  13. TooleyStu
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    Mankind made CO2 is virtually insignificant.
    CO2 is about 400 ppm, of which human effect is about 5% (estimated).
    This puts human CO2 at 20 ppm, or
    (20/1000000) x100 = 0.002% of the atmosphere.

    Human CO2 = 0.002% of the atmosphere.

    Check out Dr Willy Soon videos on youtube.
    Or Piers Corbyn.
    Or any actual scientist (Not M.Mann, proven fraud)

    Tooley Stu

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      Co2 levels have risen about 40% as a result of manmade activity.

      And yes, 400 parts per million doesn’t seem like much. But, as rises in global temperature are demonstrating, it packs a heck of a punch.

      Also bear in mind that a 1% level of carbon dioxide causes severe headaches, and 10% is fatal. Not that I’m suggesting we will reach these levels – but it’s a powerful gas. I don’t know Piers Corbyn, but I’ll listen to the vast majority of climatologists who seem united on this matter.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

        Leaver, Excess carbon monoxide causing headaches and later death is much more likely than excess carbon dioxide. Typically 70ppm of CO results in similar symptoms to c4000ppm of CO2.

        • hefner
          Posted February 4, 2020 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

          NickC, indeed CO is much more dangerous than CO2, no question about that fact. WRT climate, CO has a lifetime of one-two months, CO2 one of a couple of centuries.

      • DaveK
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

        Lucky that there is only 0.0414% then 😉 and 0.0388% of that is natural.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:54 am | Permalink

      Nor the BBC’s favourite alarmist scientist – Prof. Joanna Haigh.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:24 am | Permalink

      Wrong, wrong, wrong.

      Atmospheric CO2 has risen by about 45% since pre industrial times.

      If it were all in a layer, then it would be about six metres thick now, rather than four metres or so as it was then.

      That is MASSIVELY significant.

      For comparison, the essential, life-saving ozone, if in a layer, would be just a few millimetres thick.

      • Drew
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

        Martin in Cardiff,

        Perhaps you might try google “Phanerozoic carbon dioxide levels”.
        Then you can access many images showing how CO2 and temperature have varied over that period. I appreciate that these are proxy-driven, but they are well accepted as being fairly good estimates and show CO2 levels approaching 10,000 ppm.
        I can see no correlation between CO2 and temperature in these graphs.

  14. Bob Dixon
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    I am more concerned with air pollution.China is a good example.Many reporters covering news from a major city does so in smog like conditions . I am concerned with vehicle emmitions in our towns not helped by drivers parked up with their engines running.

    • jerry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

      @Bob Dixon; The reduction in upper atmosphere particulates might explain why we are merely coming out of a cooler climatic year period that stems from burning dirty coals and the such during the industrial revolution through to the mid 1950s when most countries started to have clear air laws and switch to (relatively) cleaner fossil fuels such as petrol and light fuel oils to power industry and the domestic home etc.

    • Bryan Harris
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

      Agreed – So often the climate Change discussion goes on to incorporate plastics and air quality – They are very different things, but just an example of how we get manipulated.

      We need Co2 to grow food, which will give us more clean oxygen, while to getting better at not creating a mess.

    • Mark
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

      Vehicle emissions in our cities have been falling quite sharply over recent decades, as NAEI data clearly shows.

      https://naei.beis.gov.uk/

      They will continue to do so if we aren’t dissuaded from replacing our older vehicles with newer ones with better technology: the anti-diesel lobby is perversely not helping, because few buy impractical and costly EVs, and petrol engines are more polluting than the modern generation of diesels.

  15. Ian Wilson
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Congratulation on a well balanced post without the usual hysteria on the topic.

    I commend the statement by 500 professional climate scientists of the Climate Intelligence Foundation (Clintel) which summarises as, there is no climate emergency, CO2 is just one of many influences on climate and the rise in the gas has been good for mankind in increasing food output (about 14%). The statement may not be well known as the BBC never reported it (no surprise there) and it seems the Green Mafia have nobbled Clintel’s website as they presumably realise the merchants of hysteria are losing the argument.

    The fundamental question which climate prophets of doom should answer is how life did nicely over millions of years when CO2 levels were 10 or 20 times higher than today yet there was no runaway warming and indeed there were ice ages in those eras.

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      Great point about India and China polluting with impunity. I agree. We need to come up with a global agreement to punish people for polluting, so that everyone else doesn’t have to foot the bill.

      You are right that temperatures have been 7 degrees centigrade higher than today, and we are coming out of the back end of an ice age. However, it doesn’t change the fact the world is heating up and we need to get a grip on it as nobody, including the climatologists, know what the effects of rapid heating will be.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

        Stop buying Chinese products, that results in the pollution pumped into the atmosphere.

        • Narrow Shoulders
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

          Quite. Climate zealots always expect everyone else to do the heavy lifting yet answers are within our own grasp if we so choose.

  16. Andy
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    My question to climate change sceptics is a simple one, which they can never answer: what if you are wrong?

    I accept, as a believer in man made climate change, that I might not be right. It might not be real. All the evidence may be misleading.

    But – if I am wrong – what are we genuinely losing by tackling climate change anyway? Long term renewable power makes sense. Ditto energy efficient homes and electric cars. Young people are already eating less meat. Sure some of this stuff is expensive but it’s a bill we face one day anyway. We are just bringing the payments forward. The worst that happens if I – and most climate change experts – are wrong is that we spend a bit extra a bit sooner.

    If you are wrong – and climate change is real and we don’t tackle it – then the worst that happens is on a different scale. You risk our entire planet. Swathes of Earth may quickly become uninhabitable. Hundreds of millions of people will be displaced. Millions will die. Entire eco-systems will be destroyed. Vast numbers of species will become extinct.

    We have no planet B. I genuinely don’t think you can justify risking the one we have under any circumstances. You are risking our very futures to try to prove a point. That, in my view, is a monumentally stupid thing to do and a pointless risk to take.

    • tonyb
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      ‘We have no planet B.’

      We will need a planet B, C and D to supply all the rare earths and other materials needed for the solar panels, wind turbine generators, electric cars, smart phones , computers, batteries etc. Being ‘green’ is not green. Have you any idea of the environmental damage caused by the mining of these materials-much in Chinese hands?

      If you are wrong and I think you are, we will spend fantastic amounts of money to reduce our emissions which only represent 1% of the global ones and which, according to Nature magazine will theoretically reduce global temperatures by 3 hundredths of a degree by 2050.

      In other words we are irrelevant and becoming more so every day as China has a free rein to do what they want

      Reliance on renewables (have you seen the figures for output over the past gloomy week) means we will not have enough reliable energy to supply our needs (it can’t be effectively stored) and we will inevitably regress to a much less comfortable period-a sort of modern medieval period

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

        If you are wrong and I think you are, we will spend fantastic amounts of money to reduce our emissions which only represent 1% of the global ones

        So you just don’t count the emissions caused producing the goods we import. How convenient.

        • Edward2
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:46 am | Permalink

          What control does the UK have over other nation’s CO2 output?
          A bit of lobbying maybe?
          The enthusiastic attempts to go green in Europe has been the main reason we have de industrialised and got our goods made in countries who have much worse standards.
          The net result has been a rise in global CO2.
          And pollution.

          • hefner
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

            Sorry Edward2, but a good part of the deindustrialisation in this country occurred in the 60s-70s-80s at a time when there was still no or very limited attempt to go green, neither in the UK or in the EEC, or elsewhere for that matter.
            If you remember, the first IPCC Report came in 1990 and was the start of some green (CO2 and greenhouse effect) efforts. Before that it was more about effect of pesticides, acid rain or what Rachel Carson was calling Silent Spring in 1962.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 30, 2020 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

            Wrong Hefner.
            I’ve spent decades in engineering.
            The rush to China and elsewhere really took off in the 90s.
            Cheap land …yes
            Cheap labour…yes
            But for many industries the cost of energy in the UK was a big factor.

        • NickC
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

          Mike W, Errmm . . . that is exactly how UK emissions are counted.

    • Old Albion
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:34 am | Permalink

      Well done Andy. After years reading this blog, you’ve finally typed something I (partially) agree with. If you read my post below, you’ll see why.
      The point I’m trying to make is instead of putting the onus onto Joe Public, to stop flying to Spain once a year. Or to stop driving his car. Or most ridiculously stop easting meat.
      Let’s stop destroying the rainforest. Let’s end nuclear weapons testing. Let’s tackle the big issues.

    • agricola
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Your penultimate para misses the point. Climate Change is real. The confusion arises in apportioning cause and balance of cause if you accept that there is more than one. Within your contribution there is no mention of the Sun. The Sun has been irrefutably the controller of climate on Earth for billions of years, do you assume it has decided to take a holiday. As I have said today, when it eventually gets moderated, man needs to clean up its act in many fields of activity for a myriad of reasons other than climate change. Let’s assume man does what is necessary, but climate goes on changing, proving the Sun is still in business. The Greta apostles will suffer trauma, but we will still have to mitigate the effect of climate change by building sea walls and many other things. In what we do could be many export opportunities, so think positive.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:00 am | Permalink

      What if the alarmists are wrong (as they surely are) and millions of people have died as a result of pissing money down the drain in a pointless war against Carbon, This when the £billions could have been spent on clean water, better nutrition, better drains, safer housing, cheaper energy, tsunami warnings, not having to use open fires, electricity and gas for areas without it, countering diseases, vaccinations, malaria, flood schemes, hurricane proof shelters …………

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

        L/L Fantastic examples.

        • hefner
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

          The extremely funny bit here is that obviously LL is right in wanting improvements in clean water, …, hurricane proof shelters. Unfortunately, there are others on this blog who have been asking for years for the suppression of the DfID and ODA, maybe because they are not making the link between those agencies and the above improvements.

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

            Hefner, Because there isn’t such a link? Lifelogic is talking about the £bns spent all round the world, not by DfID.

    • MPC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:07 am | Permalink

      You underestimate the costs of the‘precautionary principle’ you advocate. Also China and India under the Paris Accord, have carte blanche to increase their co2 emissions as much as they like until 2030 – and they are. So what’s the point destroying UK businesses that have to compete and lumbering poorer people with unaffordable energy costs in the absence of true scientific evidence? There have been climate/‘ecology’/population doomsayers from the 1960s and their predictions have never come true. The current crop have no qualms scaring children with their hyperbole which is truly unforgivable.

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      I’m not so sure that climate change is so much of a problem, when compared with habitat destruction through human activity. Global warming can be measured and the results analysed – how much is caused by human activity is open to question.
      So, let’s deal with both problems, one certain and the other uncertain by doing our bit. We can’t stop tropical countries cutting down their rainforests, or sub-tropical regions turning their grasslands into desert by over-grazing, but we can stop more woodland and meadow being turned over to housing.
      Lets show an example and refuse further immigration. We could also do without the ‘deprived’ offspring of dead-beat dads, but I don’t know what can be done about that.

    • Man of Kent
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      ‘All the evidence may be misleading ‘

      I have seen no evidence , merely assertions and computer projections with no connection to reality .

      If I could find real evidence I would be on your side but there is nothing and I have really tried .

      Even so the projections of the IPCC are for a rise of 1.5C by 2100 of which we have already had 1C rise since the industrial age say 1850 .
      So 0.5C to go , hardly the biggest threat to mankind .

    • Edward2
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:17 am | Permalink

      Do you also believe the world will end in 12 years?

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        Ha,ha. According to the ‘experts’ Gore and Prince Charles it should have ended 20 years ago. I’m still here…. I don’t know about the rest of you?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:28 am | Permalink

      They don’t work on the Precautionary Principle Andy.

      Running blindfold across a motorway is perfectly safe, because no one could prove conclusively that you would be killed.

      That is what passes for logic with them.

      All European Union policy must conform to the Precautionary Principle, however.

      These people reject the values of the Enlightenment in their entirety.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

        That’s very odd logic.
        We would never drive cars or fly planes or try to do new things just in case they were potentially dangerous.

        Mankind has lived on this planet successfully for hundreds of thousands of years in areas that range in temperature from 40c to Zero yet we are told that 2 degrees change in the next decades will kill us all.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

        even bigger laugh from Marty….when do you move to live up a Swiss mountainside?

      • dixie
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

        Applying your “logic” – the risk of being run over by a car is many times greater if you are outside you house than if you are in your bed, so perhaps you should not get out of bed much less step out your door.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Did you work on the precautionary principle when Prince Charles warned us we had less than 100 months to save the planet back in 2009? Me neither.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

      Andy, Are you “engaging with climate change sceptics”, which you said there was no point in doing? You’ve changed tack in less than an hour. That makes your views rather unstable.

      The evidence from the geological past is that catastrophic (only Antarctica inhabitable, etc) global warming does not occur. Ever. The effects of “our” CO2 molecules are not different to the effects of CO2 molecules in the Jurassic – unless you propose re-writing the laws of physics.

      The precautionary principle only works if there is something to be cautious about, and we know how to mitigate the risk of it. The effects of your “precautions” have turned out worse than the effects of very mild warming. So the risks of doing what you advocate are greater than the risks of mitigation. We are thankfully emerging from the little ice age. That is good, not bad.

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

        Strictly speaking you would want to take into account a different distribution of continents and volcanic activity to make such a strong comment about Antarctica. Otherwise I agree that CO2 molecules must have always behaved the same way, given the mix of other gases potentially present in the different periods.

        • NickC
          Posted January 30, 2020 at 10:35 am | Permalink

          Hefner, It was Professor Sir David King who said, in 2004, that Antarctica could become the world’s only habitable continent, not me.

      • Chris
        Posted January 31, 2020 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

        NickC, I’m intrigued by your assertions over co2 levels. I’m using Wikipedia as a reference (http://wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_dioxide_in_Earth%27s_atmosphere) which states that co2 levels are now higher than they have been than in the past 800,000 years. They have been higher in the past, but then there was no ice at the antarctic, which if that happened again would be a serious problem. I couldn’t find any good references for any of the climate sceptic claims here. I saw that clintel was run from a fossil fuel scientist whose science claims had very low scientific credibility. So I’m very interested to see your sources.

        Of course the climate has changed a lot in the past, been much warmer and colder, but we humans are used to a stable climate and stable water level. All our big cities , like London, or New York are low lying and close to water. If sea levels rise as the IPCCC predict humans have a very serious problem to deal with.

    • a-tracy
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

      I agree that some things we can change should be speeded up, such as Governments only buying electric vehicles, Motability car choices becoming environmentally lower cc categories etc. government, council and public buildings turning off lights in car parks that are empty all night and encouraging private sector enterprises to do the same, lights that only come on out of hours if a person is there, more solar roof installations on all new houses instead of normal roof tiles bus replacements not being diesel.

      “Young people are already eating less meat.” a) how do you know that young people are eating less meat? Have schools stopped serving it? and b)how exactly is this helping? and what tests have been done to see what happens to someone’s long term health if you cut out a food group? All I see in the supermarket are rows and rows of unsold plant-based ready meals.

      Surely if animals are a problem then culling pets first is more sensible ecologically than culling animals that provide clothing, glue, protein, vitamins, minerals, iron, B12 an enjoyable healthy balanced life, who knows what GM foods produced on a large scale to replace meat in our diet would affect moving forward. You see one persons – “what does it matter if we cut this out” is someone else’s preferred choice.

      Studies have shown that people not consuming meat are more likely to suffer from neurotransmitter problems such as depression, anxiety, somatoform diseases, and eating disorders. Or do you only support science that supports your point of view.

    • Mark
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Well, what if the climate scientists are wrong, and in fact we are on the brink of the next ice age (as they were suggesting a few decades ago)? We will have wasted money on preparing for the wrong outcome. Adaptation is a much better strategy, especially since it is quite impractical to achieve the reductions in atmospheric CO2 recommended by alarmists. We would do far better to research to improve alternative energy provision than to impose high cost, ineffective non-solutions now. The only sources likely to keep us powered in the longer term will depend on forms of nuclear energy, which is really the only kind capable of meeting our needs.

    • Neil. Catto
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

      As a simple meteorologist I deal with weather facts. Perhaps you could explain how for the last 21+ years the correlation between CO2 and temperature is negative. Which means CO2 does not increase temperatures in the UK.

      You might like to look at https://www.weather-research.com/ for some usefull information about weather and climate.

      • Andy
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

        The UK is (for now at least) one country. Global temperatures are rising.

        And weather is not climate. But then you knew that, right?

        • Edward2
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

          Well just over one degree since 1850 measured globally as an average.

          And when it suits the warmists agenda weather is climate.
          Hotter or colder, wetter or drier every natural event is portrayed as proof of climate change.

        • NickC
          Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

          Andy, The point you’ve missed is that global temperatures have not risen in lockstep with rising CO2 levels.

          • bill brown
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

            NIckC

            Proof and not just say so

          • NickC
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

            Bill B, Almost any graph on the internet shows global temperature oscillating whilst CO2 rises smoothly. Therefore there are factors other than CO2 at work.

          • Edward2
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

            This isn’t a University site bill.
            There is plenty of data to look up on the web that shows CO2 lagging way behind temperature rises rather than the other way round.
            You should do some research instead of always demanding links.

    • Anonymous
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

      Thunberg’s proposals would kill countless people.

    • Graham Wheatley
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

      If YOU are wrong, and we reduce CO2 levels enough, then we risk:-
      1) Starvation levels of CO2 for food crops
      2) Triggering another mini ice-age with…
      3) …the compounded effect on food crop production, leading to….
      4) widespread famine.

      With an ever increasing world population, that’s going to help ENORMOUSLY with feeding everyone, isn’t it?

    • Andy
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      Point proven. None of you can answer – what if you are wrong? What if man made climate change is happening? What if we fail to do anything about it? What is your plan B?

      I have no qualms if those of us who accept man made climate change as fact are wrong. The measures we need to take to tackle are things we should do ANYWAY. 100% renewable energy, electric cars, lower foodmiles, less meat and so on. There is no downside to taking action now. And we are. You all lost. Get over it.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

        But we are doing things about it.
        Billions are being diverted.
        You talk in ridiculous absolutes andy.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

        Andy, Point not proven. You have not shown that we have (or can) do anything about it. No one sane would risk the planet (remember no planet B) merely on your say-so with unproven meddling.

        As I said above “The precautionary principle only works if there is something to be cautious about, and we know how to mitigate the risk of it.” We don’t. But you’ve ignored the answers. As you usually do. Quite why you’re so besotted with the global temperature and CO2 levels of 1850 you still haven’t told us.

      • dixie
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:06 am | Permalink

        What point, what proof?

        I am not skeptical about climate change, climate changes.

        I am skeptical about the theories and wild ass proposals to change the climate put forward by the AGW/climate alarmist acolytes.

      • tonyb
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 9:20 am | Permalink

        Andy

        “100% renewable energy”

        From what sources and from which resources that we don’t have enough of

  17. alastair harris
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    Climate change science is OK although the consensus claimed is myth. It’s the political responses that aren’t. Our own climate change act for example produces worse outcomes than doing nothing. And the folly of government championing unproven technology like battery powered cars is entirely absurd. But the real killer is the way the BBC is attempting to manipulate public opinion by shutting down debate. Merkel’s approach seems to be more of this.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:02 am | Permalink

      You are right that the things being done are pointless (or worse). This even if you do accept the exaggerated C02 “pollution” religion.

    • Mark
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps the IPCC and the Grantham Institute should be the sole funders of the BBC.

  18. Will Jones
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    Since the historical record never shows CO2 leading temperature rises, it is far from established that CO2 does drive global temperature.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      It is certainly not proven or even remotely likely that it drives it significantly to be remotely catastrophic.

    • Graham Wheatley
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:22 pm | Permalink

      Exactly.
      But that fact doesn’t fit with their agenda. So they twist it.

  19. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    A measured piece today Sir John.

    You might have added that the doubters ask that politicians follow the money and that we also wonder why we should disadvantage ourselves when the difference the UK can make is so small.

    I also object to the pejorative tag “sceptic”. Its use infers we are incorrect rather than questioning.

    • hefner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      If a sceptic is a person who generally maintains a questioning attitude towards some putative knowledge, I cannot see why you think it is pejorative. “Sceptic” was often used in a moral or religious context. Many people here consider climate change as a new religion. So what’s wrong with the word?
      Would you prefer “doubter”, “denier”? What do you propose?

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

        As you will read in this blog @Hef there are as many views as people, therefore lumping them all as sceptic, doubter or denier (especially denier) is unhelpful.

        I don’t do identity politics so I don’t like or need labels.

        Your definition of sceptic is correct but the tone it is now sneered in and its use as a collective noun I find pejorative.

        As the language police are so quick to crack down on how language is used in everyday life I feel they should be held to their own standards.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:10 am | Permalink

      I am always sceptical as any good scientist should be. I object rather more to the word deniers or phrases like “people who deny climate change”. Who on earth would deny that the climate changes! The question is:- is it caused by humans, to what degree and will it be dangerous or beneficial?

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

        We are people @LL. We don’t need to be identified as anything.

        In the context of today’s blog you are Lifelogic who asks that alternative points, data and views are considered before spending more money or inconveniencing ourselves further.

        Not as pithy as sceptic for the marketing boys or activists but more accurate.

        In the words of the Prisoner. I am not an identity I am a free man.

  20. Lifelogic
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    So what about the Huawei decision. I have not decided yet on balance but it clearly is a very serious risk. Boris risks annoying both the US and China.

    We will regret letting Huawei virus infect us says Charles Moore today in the Telegraph, he is usually right I find.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

      Any one with access to your personal and some would say private data puts you at risk. Any foreign Country that has collected personal data, collated it and removed it from the Country is by default given the power over you. That’s why countries have spies. Then if a government dictates foreign powers must have access to your life – who is securing whom?

      If at the outset it was a serious criminal offence to even try to collect data and all communications systems had to have encryption implemented as standard, this conversation wouldn’t need to take place.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

      Lifelogic, Free trade is possible within nations, but less so in conglomerates such as the EU, and globally. However the necessity of national capabilities for critical national infrastructure and production overrides free market doctrine – as much for 5G networks as for warships.

      • bill brown
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

        NickC

        good we have some real facts about this instead of your guesses, pleaase

        • NickC
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

          Bill B, Do you actually contribute anything, or do you just snipe from the sidelines? If you think there’s a global free market, when it is clear that nations promote their own businesses at the expense of other nations, then I suggest you should get out more.

        • Edward2
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

          Be nice to see you write some posts with facts bill, instead of your usual one line comments.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

      Oh, so you’re scared of the US and of China.

      So much for “taking back control”, yes?

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Huh???

        • Fred H
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

          yes – it lost me too.

    • dixie
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      You think we should trust the French, Germans, Swedes, Finns or Americans more?

  21. BCL
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    I was struck by the recent record high temperature for a month announced on the BBC. It was said to be the third highest since 1850 (or thereabouts, I forget the exact date) with one other higher in between. This was said to show that warming was happening. No explanation was given as to why the current high is “proof” of global warming but the previous two, one in 1850, were not the result of global warming. What caused those highs then? One assumes they were just natural variations in temperature. If so, why is the recent high not also a natural variation?

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

      BCL, Actually the BBC said that “last year was the second warmest in a record dating back to 1850“. So not 1850 itself (which was >1degK colder than now). Indeed, “warming” is generally defined as happening in the industrial age and 1850 is often taken as the base.

      What the BBC and other CAGW fanatics fail to accept is that whilst now is warmer than 1850, it is equally valid to say that 1850 was colder than now. Hence we can ask the BBC why they think the global temperature in 1850 was optimal?

      • Fred H
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

        and the world population in 1850 was appox 1.2bn. compared to world population now of approx 7.7bn.
        Anybody draw any conclusions?

  22. Alan Jutson
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    I may have more time for politicians thoughts on Climate change if they did not want to fill their ever growing coffers with additional Taxes, as that is what seems to be their answer to almost everything they dislike or do not agree with.

    Tax fuel, tax waste, tax certain products and services.

    Climate change and pollution of the earth are really two different topics which require very different actions.

    Yes of course the climate changes, day-day, year on year, that is why the weather is different each day and in different parts of the World, but exactly how much of it is man made ?

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:50 am | Permalink

      You are confusing the climate and the weather.

      The weather changes day-on-day, year-on-year.

      The climate is about looking at averages over much longer periods. Indeed, the data is freely available if anyone chooses to look. If you examine average global temperatures versus CO2 levels over the past 150 years, the correlation is almost exact.

      Also, isn’t is just obvious that pumping lots of gas into the atmosphere is going to have an effect?

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

        Leaver.

        Yes I do understand the difference, so why do the experts not publish the exact figures month by month, year on year for the last 150 years to prove their point, rather than just picking figures at random.

        Perhaps because the results are not as conclusive as they would like ?

        Perhaps because readings taken 150 years ago are not as accurate as they are now ?

        One could make a simple argument that the reason why average temperatures have been rising, is because so at the same time has the earths population !

        Yes it could be as simple as that !.

        The onus is for those who believe, to supply the evidence so as to prove their point !

        • hefner
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

          Why do the experts not publish the exact figures month by month, year on year for the last 150 years?
          Very good question. I do not know for the period 1850 tp 1899, but the data are available day by day from various meteorological centres, e.g. for the UK The MetOffice in Exeter, or ECMWF in Reading. Those two organizations have websites and a request for data can be posted on them.
          They might even ask you whether you want a bit more compacting of the data, by month or by year, or over some areas (I guess the maximum resolution that can be ordered in 2.5 x 2.5 deg^2.
          So why don’t you ask for some data? They usually come on DVDs, which most PCs or Macs can handle.
          Be brave!

          • hefner
            Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

            Oh, I forgot. These data for non-institutional people (that’s you and me) are free (after registration) thanks to some EU money.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

        Climate is just average weather! Furthermore the weather today affects the weather tomorrow. So if you cannot predict the climate for next month how on earth can you do so for the month after that or the one after that?

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

      Alan, add to that tax a tax on meat if we don’t go plant based. Are we allowed to live our lives anymore?

  23. Richard1
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    It’s pity President Trump hasn’t so far forced a red team-blue team exercise on this issue. This is the US process under which major expenditure programmes (eg new weapons systems) are subject to a rigorous debate between proponents and sceptics to test how robust the proposition is. The proposition which needs testing of course is the ‘green’ one under which radical (but always unspecified) govt action is required to magic the level of global energy dependence on fossil fuels from c. 85% where it is now to 0% by some future year.

    On this issue however there is a simple refusal to engage. For example on that very rare day, under the guest editorship of Charles Moore, when the BBC’s today programme permitted the appearance of a sceptical scientist, the BBCs environmental correspondent mr Harrabin simply refused to interview him. Is that not extraordinary?

    Anyone even slightly sceptical on this issue is traduced – denied platforms in the media, forced from academic positions as we’ve seen at a number of universities and insulted and smeared in an attempt to shut down debate. It’s a recipe for bad policy.

    • Leaver
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      Like Sir John said, there are different kinds of sceptics.

      What is settled is that CO2 levels are rising and are the main cause of the 1% rise in global average temperatures since 1850 odd.

      There is no point disputing this any more than debating whether the earth is flat. However, if you mean there needs to be a debate over how to deal with the problem, then yes – I agree whole-heartedly. We should not sacrifice the economy on the altar of the environment.

      • Richard1
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

        There is no need to debate whether the Earth has warmed by c 1C since pre-industrial times indeed, nor that CO2 is likely to be the main factor. What is worth debating is whether or not we are on a path to dangerous warming (such as 4C, the top of IPCC estimates) or harmless warming (1.5C, the low end of IPCC estimates). The current trend – 0.1C or so per decade indicates the low end. Nor have we seen the increase in extreme weather events such as droughts storms hurricanes fires that were forecast. Though in any given month it’s normally possible to cast around and find something somewhere.

        What’s also of course worth debating is what to do about it. Should we have global socialism and shut down industry as urged by the child prophet Greta or should we rather focus on technologies which we know work and can produce large quantities of energy at zero or at least lower CO2 emissions, such as nuclear and shale gas?

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

        Leaver, The global temperature has not risen by 1% since 1850, it has risen by about 1degK – possibly. It is not “settled” that rising CO2 is the main cause. Indeed what do you mean by “main” anyway – more than 50% – how much more? You are completely imprecise and evidently have little understanding of science. So no I don’t believe your mere assertions.

    • Sharon Jagger
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:20 am | Permalink

      Richard 1
      “Anyone even slightly sceptical on this issue is traduced – denied platforms in the media, forced from academic positions as we’ve seen at a number of universities and insulted and smeared in an attempt to shut down debate. It’s a recipe for bad policy.”

      And I would argue, what are they trying to hide, by their actions in denying sceptics a voice – the truth?

    • Man of Kent
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:42 am | Permalink

      Agreed .
      Just remember what happened to Prof David Bellamy RIP.

    • agricola
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Not just a recipe for bad policy it is intellectual anarchy.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      Richard1, Yes, shutting down the debate as the BBC has tried to do is a recipe for bad policy.

  24. Graham Wood
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    “Nature and scale of the threat”. What threat? It is purely imaginary alarmism.
    There is not a shred of evidence – only speculation. Not a basis for deciding public policy with such massive economic implications.

  25. Ian Wragg
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    After leaving the EU the climate change lobby will be the next frontier. The remain crowd will regroup to try and hobble the country lead by St Greta of Thunberg. Leaving the EU has been a bitter to the one world government globalist elite. I fear that the battle has just begun.

    • Hope
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      I think a good point to start with is for these climate looney tunes to tell us how the world warmed up several times to take us out of ice ages.

      Secondly, there is much evidence that the figures recently produced are false. We were warned in the 1970s man made actions would bring about an ice age!

      Yes the climate has changed and has done so since the world began, it has yet to be proved man has significantly contributed.

      The world does not spin perfectly it wobbles, we are told this causes climate change.

      We note today that the Tory govt is to sign a stupid deal with Haewie a Chinese company allowed to spy for China. The country is a world polluter according climate alarmists and govt policy. So why support China?

      China is not an ally, US is.

      China has a very poor record on human rights, told U.K. not to interfere with Hong Kong, cyber space eaves dropping, copying and stealing intellectual property/copy right etc. Yet Johnson is going to let them into our technology networks! He should not even be considering it. Is it because the civil service want to side with the EU rather than the US? Another reverse Brexit ploy? Should Sidwell be in charge of security and cabinet office is a question that should be addressed.

      When is the Sidwell/Williamson dispute going to be finalised, both cannot be telling the truth. Is Sidwell allegation true or not or was he trying to get rid of a minister decenter against his EU preference for China?

      • Hope
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        Cameron claimed at the height of the expense scandal that the lobby issue was the next scandal waiting to happen.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Bitter setback

  26. Old Albion
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    Since I was a child I had an interest in protecting the planet from damage, particularly that caused by human activity. At that time 60 years ago, nobody with any power was interested.
    I’m still keen to see destructive activity come to an end. Anything from throwing litter to destroying the rainforests and all in between.
    However, hysterical claims made by a sixteen (now seventeen) year old child and ‘scientists’ making claims beyond possibility, do not help.
    If you believe the data? The planet has warmed by one degree centigrade over a period of 170 years or so.
    During that time we have had an industrial revolution, two world wars, the launching of who knows how many space rockets and dozens of nuclear explosions. Hardly surprising that C02 has risen. But as if a one degree temperature rise is important!
    Would it not be better to take a measured and sensible approach to protecting our planet instead of attacking the public for taking a flight to Spain or daring to drive a car, whose engine runs cleaner than ever before.
    If the preachers of ‘climate change’ really believed, they would be picketing the embassies of China, Brazil, Indonesia, Russia, India and Germany. But of course they don’t.

    • Mitchel
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps,for her next feat of daring,Greta would like to sail out to China on a bamboo raft and glue herself to the doors of the Great Hall of the People.

  27. Roy Grainger
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    30% of German electricity is generated by burning coal, maybe Mrs Merkel should put her own house in order before lecturing others. Beyond that, if there is a climate emergency, shouldn’t we impose sanctions on India and China who totally dominate CO2 emissions ? Whatever UK does one way or another is totally irrelevant.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      Exactly.

  28. Bryan Harris
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    TBH it’s not dialogue that we need – it’s a reevaluation of the science behind alleged climate change(CC).
    Many scientists now deny the claims that Co2 is leading our world to disaster, and there have been far too many lies and fake stories, scare stories, and outright hysteria for people to accept the establishment view.
    The models have been consistently wrong, and we’ve been hearing the same ’10 years to save the planet’ claims for decades, and there is still no evidence of oceans rising or polar bears becoming extinct.
    The way the establishment has gone about taxing carbon use is another sore point – all this does is make certain privliged people rich, and the rest of us worse off for no good reason.
    Our science is not up to taking into account all the factors that should go into a climate model, and yet the establishment are intent on making us accept their views.

    Merkel supports the Kalergi plan, and protests against Putin for not accepting the inevitability of the New world order – She is not someone we can trust.

    • Roger Hall
      Posted January 30, 2020 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

      You are soooh right Bryan Harris!

  29. Martyn G
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:30 am | Permalink

    It is hard not to be sceptical when one sees the BBC and MSM pumping out endless so-called facts whilst shutting down any contrary opinions. The BBC claim that ‘the science is settled’ and broadcast no opinions other than that. Only a fool would believe that science is never settled – it can only move on and science alone, not the politicians or climate activists, will be able to suggest ways forward. How can any normal thinking person really believe that the human-made 0.04% of CO2 in the atmosphere will be the doom of humankind?

    • Annette
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:58 am | Permalink

      If the ‘science is settled’, then there’s no need for any further public funding.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:23 am | Permalink

      Indeed. Plus the solutions they propose clearly do not really work – not even at the C02 level. Perhaps sickest of all is the carefully selected “Citizens’ Assembly” “Consultation”. But they are told they cannot question the official alarmist line. Then they even have to listen Sir David Attenborough.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:37 am | Permalink

      Giving equal airtime to established fact and to unchallenged, self-evident rubbish is not “balance”.

      The BBC was rightly hammered for that during the pre-referendum period, but too late.

      Farage was allowed to spout his distortions more than any other politician.

      • Edward2
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

        I must have missed that.
        Panels are stuffed with one side only.
        It would be nice to see and hear both sides of an argument just once in a while.

      • dixie
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

        What established “facts”

        In a 2007 IPCC report it was asserted that;
        “Glaciers in the Himalaya are receding faster than in any other part of the world and, if the present rate continues, the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high.”

        In IPCC terms “very high” means a 90% probability of happening.

        Unfortunately the IPCC had not done proper due diligence on the source material which turned out not to be a peer reviewed research report but a wild ass guess, politely termed “speculative”.

        Hows that for unchallenged rubbish.

      • NickC
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Some scientists accept AGW, some scientists don’t. There are very few indeed that accept the CAGW you believe in. One scientist even claimed that CAGW was invented by global warming sceptics to discredit the science. That means you’re discrediting the science by promoting CAGW.

  30. The Prangwizard
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    And would we not wish this be adopted by the BBC and the rest of our MSM; we don’t get a true picture from them, who in their ideological certainty decided long ago that their view was the correct and unchallemgeable one.

    I wonder if our host had something similar in the back of his mind as he penned his piece today.

  31. Kevin
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    angry politicians asserting you…accept their version”

    I believe that this perception of politicians was part of the context in which the People voted to Leave the EU: the perception that, at the present time, international agreements are being used to put certain politicians’ opinions beyond the reach of democratic opinion. For example, as I have mentioned recently, the “level playing field” clause (Clause 77) of the Political Declaration (“PD”) provides that the future relationship “should also promote…effective implementation of…the Paris Agreement” (emphasis added). As I understand it, the Paris Agreement itself does not contain binding provisions for its own effective implementation. If so, the Conservative Party’s PD could end up making the Paris Agreement more enforceable on the UK than the Paris Agreement itself does.

  32. Pete
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    In fact Mrs Merkel is worried that more people are coming to see the climate hysteria as a massive fraud. The underlying cause of that is that climate hysteria is a fraud. It is designed to extract wealth and remove freedom from the people. Many of the people most involved in the project admit it is nothing to do with climate but all about control. The pseudo science used to push it is disputed by thousands of scientists because much of the alleged evidence is non existent. If I hear one more idiot ranting about rising sea levels I shall scream, probably whilst standing on the same rock on the seashore that I stood on 50 years ago and seeing the water at the same level as then.

  33. Stred
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    Mrs M cancelled nuclear and allowed the expansion of coal to back up renewables. As a result CO2 emissions increased and German consumers have high costs. Industrial use is charged less. Now she is being forced to close coal and perhaps is reading all the blogs which show that it doesn’t work and is even more expensive. She needs to wriggle out of her self imposed straitjacket.

  34. oldtimer
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    Climategate, remember that?, revealed a world of collusion between those promoting “man made global warming” as it was then labelled. The scare story has been given different names since then; we are now at “climate crisis” or something like that. At the time the HoC Select Committe that investigated the climategate emails brushed it all under the HoC carpet.

    What struck me at the time was the fact that the climate scientists changed how they recorded and measured global temperatures in 1990. They failed to compare the results of the new method with the old method to establish what difference the changes made (a reduction in the number of recording stations from over 4000 to c1200). This elementary failure to conduct a parallel run means we have no reliable way of judging the extent of the differences in temperature caused by the different methods. It is unlikely to be zero degrees because the new sites are at or close to sea level whereas the old sites included those at altitude (up to c1000 feet). It was also established that there was a geographical shift towards the equator.

    It is also known that the historical record has been “homogenised” in recent years by climate scientists. The consequence of all this is that I have no faith or confidence in comparisons of global temperatures over the decades, especially those that claim it has become much worse since 1990.

    • oldtimer
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      PS The University of East Anglia was asked by the HoC Committee to conduct the parallel run to compare the difference between the two methods. The UEA replied that they could not do so because they had long since destroyed their records! So much for climate “science”.

  35. David
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    You can smell the SCAM. Consider the lie that climate change is causing extinctions. I think we all know what is the cause of the challenges faced by wildlife and while the Climate Change Act will be ruinously expensive it’s easy option compared with attempting to face the real problem.

  36. Annette
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    Imagine, if you will, a world where people believe that you can change the climate of the planet by giving the Government more money, & giving up their freedoms & liberty to Govt ‘control’.
    For that is what declaring an ’emergency’ for scientifically disputed evidence actually does, as some Govts have declared. It allows those in control to suspend civil liberties & take any actions required, including military force, ‘until the emergency is over’. It is totalitarianism writ large.

    The voices of ‘dissent’, i.e. ‘disbelievers’, many of whom are scientists are denied a voice on our propagandised tv, whether as part of a subject debate or, more darkly, never work on tv again once they question the ‘facts’. Much like with the EU, others will spout the required platitudes & deference as their livelihoods depend upon it. Like with the EU, people have had to look elsewhere than our ‘impartial’ broadcasters for evidence in order to form a proper opinion. So bad is the perceived bias of the BBC, that if they said that the sky is blue I would have to go and check for myself. Time for it to be a subscription service & whither on the vine, & I say that as an ex-employee. News is the BBC’s opinion, not news. They omit anything that does not fit their agenda, eg les Gilets Jaunes & Brexit, & exaggerate others (why was the death of someone who 99% of this country hadn’t heard of their top story?) They no longer inform (with balanced information), educate (indoctrination is not education & neither is rewriting our country’s history for modern political agendas) & their so-called ‘entertainment’ is unwatchable turgid political messages of one view.

    I can’t help but think that the insane Govt policy is being driven by Govt & other vested interest funded lobby groups so that the Govt can then say that it is ‘public’ pressure, i.e. a Govt engineered result.

  37. Ian @Barkham
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    The rise in warming on Earth, just about matches the rise in the population on the planet. Could that also be the problem?

    There is a tendency of those with more radical climate table thumping position to be the same ones that want to see the destruction of society so they can build it in their image. They have a lot in common with the Corbinistas, the hard left. No other way but their way.

    Without the constant technical progress there can be no chance of change. Which is the opposite to those that want to ban everything and revert to the stone age.

    Rising taxation to deter the 60million in the UK or even the 300 million in the EU will have no impact if the if the other 7billion we share this planet with takes a different path. It will just impoverish us while the others grow and improve their own quality of life.

  38. Newmania
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    most climate sceptics do not deny the underlying science which rightly asserts that CO2 is a greenhouse gas. Nor do most deny that if nothing else changes and mankind pumps out a lot of extra CO2 average temperatures will rise.

    That would be like denying the boiling of water, and even this worthless admission is wrung from you, as acceptance of evolution was painfully extracted from the Church of England.
    Like the Christian church, each position is abandoned, only as the tide of opinion submerges it. ( I am not incidentally an atheist myself but the historical facts are as they are ). Now you have retreated into attacking details so as to discredit the whole. Precisely the same tactic was used by devout Victorians,as it was later by tobacco companies against medical facts, often with the help of some tame scientist .

    There is a debate to be had about the choices climate change gives us .We cannot have it with people who deny expertise evidence or public good exist as objective realities and have removed the UK form the International stage anyway.
    Brexit is not just an attack on the economy and the country, it is an attack on enlightenment values, on the very idea that there is any objective truth; in short on civilisation.

    Reply Try reading what I wrote. The piece was about the range of views in this debate and a response to Merkel’s wish to see a wider discussion. I did not express my own view.

    • Richard1
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

      Indeed there are no civilised countries outside the remaining 27 in the EU. Not Canada or Australia, not Switzerland or Norway. Not of course now the U.K. or the US. Not New Zealand (I guess they should want to merge with Australia or be accused of lacking enlightenment values). And of course there was no enlightenment before the EU came into existence in 1992 (or maybe let’s say 1957). It was the dark ages.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      Newmania, CO2 is one of many “greenhouse” gases. Whether mankind adding CO2 to the atmosphere will result in increased global temperatures depends on many factors: natural variations; the balance mechanisms between CO2 sinks and sources among them. There is no evidence of evolution across species boundaries. Unfortunately for me, since I am an atheist.

  39. Sydney Ashurst
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    I am sceptical of the degree of warming due to anthropogenic CO2 alone. This is prompted by my knowledge of meteorology in my aviation career.
    The BBC blames temperature rises on the records of the last 170 years as though previous records did not exist. The Earth has never had a set temperature.
    Meteorological information since WWII has increased a thousandfold due to aviation and now ocean buoys. Weather satellites help the meteorologist to see the weather forming before it arrives.
    The scam consensus saying 97% of scientists agree and published by the Guardian hoodwinked the politically correct politicos into believing it. Unfortunately for them many respected scientists are not in agreement.
    There is no mathematical formula and conversion factor for CO2 amount to degrees C. Climate models produce an extrapolated approximate figure and are running hot. We are still on a learning curve.

  40. Adrian Kerton
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately the hsyteria about Carbon, as it is popularly known will probably lead to a hundred thousand deaths per year in 2025.Why? In the 2017 to 2018 winter period, there were an estimated 50,100 excess winter deaths in England and Wales. If you look at the govt own figures for electricity generation by 2050, when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doeesn’t blow like last week, we will have a massive deficit in supply and when the electricity doesn’t flow electic heating doesn’t work neither does the pump for the gas central heating. See my analysis
    https://adriankerton.wordpress.com/005c-will-the-lights-go-off-in-january/
    So how many of our people are we willing to sacrifice to supposedly save the planet?

    • Fred H
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

      are you seriously blaming cold homes for the extra 50,000?

  41. Iain Moore
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    I fear we will not come away from this year unsacthed by some silly climate law our Parliament will impose on us. The year began with the BBC losing the plot big time banging on about climate change , even more than they usually prothletise their religion to us. Now we have this democratically grotesque Climate Assembly going on, no doubt the decision these people will come too has already been written. Then at the end of the year this Glasgow sumit , where I feel sure, as the hosts, Boris will make some stupid gesture that will cripple our economy and trash our living standards.

    Greenery was always said to be a watermelon movement, green on the outside red on the inside. The socialists having lost the economic argument are seeking to impose their command economy on us by using climate change. If there was substance to the climate change ‘science’, then scientists, politicians and media would be talking about population sustainability, because demand in part correlates with population, especially in the West. Yet we hear noting of that, in fact the people who prothletise about climate change are the very same people who promote mass immigration driven population increase . So we have this schizophrenic situation where the left bang on about climate change to get their command economy , while staying silent on mass immigration because its too difficult a subject for them.

    It takes 50 to 80 tons of CO2 to build a house, adding a million people to our country every three years means we have to build a lot of houses.

    Merkle moved a million people from Syria (per capita CO2 of 3 tons) to Germany (per capita CO2 9 tons)

  42. Alison
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

    Clear post. I am worried about CO2, but I am far more worried about loss of habitat and effective destruction of habitat, wiping out species which underpin our ecosystems.

    Pro-EU people say that climate change will figure in level-playing field discussions. Up here in Scotland, influential pro-EU people are wondering about divergence of Scottish environmental legislation from rUK. They wonder, if Scottish environmental legislation stays closer to the EU, could Scotland face “climate dumping” from rUK. Could rUK face a carbon border tax? Then there might be gains for Scotland, as a non-EU country signed up for the EU emissions trading system, showing the way to other non-EU countries.

    Just reporting – no comment, other than noting this tool of legislative divergence …

  43. villaking
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Sir John,
    You mentioned recently that you wanted fewer and more concise contributions and contributions with less invective. Nothing personal towards him but could you perhaps limit Lifelogic’s contributions? So far today LL has supplied 5 of the 33 published responses, 4 of them repeating his rather dull position on climate change (we all know he is a sceptic) and 1 completely off topic. The next time you blog about the EU we will also see some of his insulting words about anyone who disagrees with him (“traitor” for anyone who did not want a no-deal Brexit for example). I like the stimulation of hearing from the other side, but LL is just too boring and verbose.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

      Villaking. I happen to think L/L makes some really good points. If you go down this route then cutting Andy and Marty out would be better. I for one am fed up with Andy’s views on old people which I find insulting and belittling and without foundation. I note that both of them never agree with the general consensus and always have to have a completely opposite of sensible point of view. I think they both just like to wind people up with their constant drivel.

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

        FUS, what about relying on one of CP Scott’s comments: “Comment is free … but facts are sacred”.

        And comments distorting facts should be shown as what they are: misinformation or “mistakes”; disinformation or “lies” and “hoaxes” (which are false and spread deliberately to deceive); malinformation or “gossip” (which might be correct but intended to harm).

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:01 pm | Permalink

      Villaking, I doubt that Lifelogic posts more than Martin-in-Cardiff. Don’t complain when Leaves retaliate against the torrent of personal abuse directed by Remains at Leaves since 24 June 2016.

  44. glen cullen
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Over 300 climate sceptic USA scientists barred from google

    Scientists David Bellamy barred from BBC

    Scientist Piers Corbyn barred from media interviews

    Citizens Assembly for climate hasn’t taken any evidence from climate sceptics

    Interesting who controls the message

  45. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    “We must stop using fossil fuels” scream the world leaders – after they have all flown great distances to stay in posh hotels at the taxpayers expense.

    “What can we do? ” comes next – -” Well that’s obvious – put up taxes” – big cheer from those attending.

    I’m more concerned about the deliberately organised culture change to this country by mass immigration of the 3rd World, who then we seemingly can’t deport, no matter what horrendous crime they commit here, just to claim they’ll be persecuted if sent back.

  46. Piet
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    It’s not correct to say that Mrs Merkel is the EU’s effective political leader- but from Friday onwards the EU will have twenty seven political leaders- all very effective in their own right and that’s how it works. The fact that Britain didn’t grasp that simple concept in its time and during over forty years to network and build bridges with other members is the greatest failure of successive governments and politicians. So now UK has to start over to make a new deal, a deal that many in Tory circles still think will be like ‘having cake and eating it’ but will very soon find out differently.

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

      Piet, Name two major policies that went the British way in the EU. And it depends what type of cake – if you mean independence cake then I believe we can have it and eat it. But you can’t, stuck in the outmoded EU.

      • bill brown
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

        NickC

        You and your usual empire nonsense and subjects instead of member nations wake up

        • NickC
          Posted January 29, 2020 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

          Bill B, Errmmm, I didn’t say the EU “empire” above, just “the EU”. Do you actually read what you’re criticising first, or just blunder in?

  47. Norman
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    I know this crowd, from of old! They take a seemingly just cause, and blandish their suburban sophistries to tyrannise everyone else into submission.
    In my animal health and welfare role, I found the world was certainly not perfect. But, driven by some mysterious polemic, there was always a ‘lefty’ fringe that despised the people of the land and the eating of meat. Although I could understand their reasons, I could also see their error. Their ranks included not a few government scientists, who felt they could shut down all argument, in a totalitarian sort of way. This clash of worldviews has spiritual roots. Guess whose side the media invariably favours!

  48. kzb
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    UK is 1.06% of global CO2 emissions and falling. If we stopped all CO2 tomorrow it would be the equivalent of a few months’ growth of CO2 from China. Western jobs have been exported from low-carbon economies to high-carbon economies.
    If we were truly serious about it, the west would re-structure import tariffs so that they are proportional to the carbon footprint of the goods. Including both manufacture AND transport. What’s the chances of that? Zero. Therefore we are not truly serious about it.

    • Turboterrier
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      kzb

      Correct

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

      UK is 1.06% of global CO2 emissions and falling. If we stopped all CO2 tomorrow it would be the equivalent of a few months’ growth of CO2 from China. Western jobs have been exported from low-carbon economies to high-carbon economies.

      Indeed. So, what proportion of global emissions are we responsible for if you include the emissions caused manufacturing all the stuff we import?

      • tonyb
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 9:26 am | Permalink

        by that logic you have to assign elsewhere all the stuff WE export.

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

        And given the lifetime of atmospheric CO2 (a couple of hundred years), any time-series and resultant budget of CO2 emissions would point out an island on the western side of Europe as having had a major contribution to those emissions if not now but in the 19th-first half of the 20th century.

  49. acorn
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

    There is a good article in Nature Mag about how empires go down hill when they start denying the authority of science. The Arabs did it, as did the Romans; Trump is doing it now to the US. “The rise and fall of scientific authority — and how to bring it back” Robert P. Crease harks back to the shapers of our scientific infrastructure and what they can tell us about how to handle the threat we now face.

    While NASA / NOAA still have state funding they are my definitive source for climate stuff simply because of the brain power and technology they possess..
    https://climate.nasa.gov/

    • Edward2
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      When we are told the science is settled we are not in an age of enlightenment.
      Science evolves.
      Theories need challenging.

  50. Leslie Singleton
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    Dear Sir John–Never seem to read much about the easily and reliably measured acidification of the seas–carbonic acid–one ghastly consequence of which is that the shells of the likes of lobster are being dissolved and getting progressively thinner.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

      but easier to eat?

    • NickC
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

      Leslie, You have been misinformed. The seas are not acidic, though they may be very slightly less alkaline than a couple of centuries ago.

      • Leslie Singleton
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

        Dear Nick–Have degree in Chemistry. Precisely, they are alkaline but I didn’t say they were acidic, I said they were suffering acidification which they are. pH coming down if you prefer that

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

        Well, please how do you call becoming less alkaline?

        • NickC
          Posted January 30, 2020 at 10:42 am | Permalink

          Why not use “becoming less alkaline”??

      • hefner
        Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

        Less alkaline, is that not some acidification? My chemistry days are long gone but I would have thought any decrease in pH would have been accepted as an acidification by my chemistry teacher. Has chemistry changed that much in 45 years?

        • NickC
          Posted January 30, 2020 at 10:45 am | Permalink

          Hefner, the pH of the seas is c8.1 (ie basic); 7 is neutral; 6 would be acidic.

          • hefner
            Posted January 30, 2020 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

            I know that, thank you. You were the one disputing the word ‘acidification’. So tell all of us here how in the NickC’s terminology is the ocean pH losing a few tenths of a unit called. An oceanic NickCification?

          • hefner
            Posted January 30, 2020 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

            A general web search shows ‘acidification’ to be the commonly used terminology (even the Smithsonian in Washington uses it). So I don’t think there was any use of ‘correcting’ LeslieS.

  51. DaveK
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    Years ago, whilst browsing the internet I happened upon a site run by an American Meteorologist who was interested in the warming up of the average US temperatures. I believe it was called surfacestations.org. The gentleman wanted to find out if the locations of the weather stations was having an effect on this, so he was trying to get information and pictures of them. People from all around the country were sending him photos of the stations and their siting. It did appear that a larhe proportion of them had been affected by the changes over the years. Examples such as one in an airport in the early part of the century was now seen to be at the end of a modern jet airport runway, others in urban areas surrounded by tarmac and concrete high-rise buildings. To cut a long story short, this led to a website called WattsUpWithThat created by Anthony Watts which is the most read science website on the internet.
    I would advise Sir John that you have a read of the above and a chat with luminaries such as Lord Peter Lilley, Sir Nigel Lawson and Sir Matt Ridley for useful information on this topic. As you can see from your replies already it is a political topic which even high-ranking officials of the UNIPCC have admitted has nothing to do with changing the climate it is just a re-distribution of the worlds wealth (see Paris Accord etc). Ms Thunberg has even stated the task is to destroy capitalism.
    The West is expected to destroy its economies to “save the planet”. Mr Trump appears to have seen through this. My question is how gullible are our MPs?

    • Ian terry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      DaveK

      My question is how gullible are our MPs?

      Very. Over the years a few brave ones have tried to be listened to but they are never heard, just ignored till it all goes wrong, by then its all too late.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

        A rather large problem we have with the H of C, and an even out-of-touch one with the H of L.

  52. Dave Clemo
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    I want to know exactly how the increase in taxation will prevent the sea allegedly rising by a fraction of an inch, or will alleviate the supposed increase in temperatures?

  53. a-tracy
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    I think that sums things up pretty well, I’m in the middle on this. We should do what we can and we should encourage other large Countries to make the changes we made to get rid of smog etc.

    If Universities only churn out one side of this science this concerns me.

    The Germans are harming their own industries because people are holding off purchasing cars until they know the repercussions spending, tax and car duration.

  54. Atlas
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    A fair summary John,

    A scientific paper in a very recent edition of the Journal “Nature”:

    https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-019-0677-4

    demonstrates that other factors than Carbon Dioxide are also at play in the Climate. The factors are the presence of gases which not only deplete the Ozone layer but are also potent green-house gases (eg CFCs).

    I am worried that the recent frenzy over the climate is going to result in some very bad knee-jerk decisions being taken.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

      No self-respecting climatologist would deny that there are many factors involved in setting average global temperatures, of which atmospheric carbon dioxide is just one.

      However, given that the sun’s output is remarkably constant over time, it is a major one.

      • Fred H
        Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

        Time being last week, month, year, decade, millenia, light year? Supernovas do change output old chap. I imagine you are concerned with your lifetime only?
        Hawking has a bit to say!

      • dixie
        Posted January 30, 2020 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        @MiC are you claiming to be a climatologist?

  55. glen cullen
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    Forget climate change I understand that the UK now has a new early warning war system

    When all our mobile phones go dead and other associated 5g systems stop that’s the signal that China is about to invade Taiwan

    Who controls the off switch

  56. Edwardm
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:31 pm | Permalink

    A good article – there are many factors affecting climate – many of which we have no control over. And indeed a truly independent and informed examination of all the contributing effects (and we probably don’t know them all) is what is needed for a rational and proportionate understanding.

    The problem with simplistic assumptions about climate change (i.e. all due to CO2), is that it leads to the formulation and expenditure on non-solutions and at unnecessary inconvenience.

    Plants consume CO2, if it were not being continually returned to the atmosphere, it would eventually all be consumed and plant life would die. Returning CO2 to the atmosphere should not be such a worry – so long as tropical rainforest destruction is stopped.

    O/T Giving the go-ahead to Huawei is a very bad decision – one of the worst ever security decisions made by our government. Why not develop the engineering capability within the UK to supply 5G equipment?

    • Ian terry
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:08 pm | Permalink

      Edwardm

      O/T Giving the go-ahead to Huawei is a very bad decision – one of the worst ever security decisions made by our government. Why not develop the engineering capability within the UK to supply 5G equipment?

      Yet another case of knee jerk reaction, our leaders seem to excell at. Add to which we really piss of the POTUS and this is the man who is/was totally committed to giving us a trade agreement. Our leaders have learnt three fifths of naff all over the last few decades. That is why we find ourselves in the position we do with climate change, Hs2, Airport expansion to name but a few. When we make decisions we live to regret it is primarily because they were never thought properly out at the first time of asking. OMG the trillions that have been wasted on lame duck schemes. Totally outrageous even more so when nobody is ever responsible or accountable

  57. Mark
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Mrs Merkel is unconvincing because her policies have failed. Instead of reducing carbon emissions, Energiewende has seen German emissions rising, and the cost of energy with it. Moreover, Germany now faces a massive looming electricity shortage, as identified by energy consultancy Timera in a recent blog – due to planned closure of too much dispatchable coal and nuclear power and attempting to replace it with renewables that do not work in weather such as we have just experienced – low wind, no sunshine. The expectation is that German dependence on Russian gas will increase markedly as a last minute way to avoid catastrophe, since batteries would be quite incapable of bridging the gaps at economic cost.

    When she shows she can produce a policy that works we can pay more attention to her. But we should ignore her entirely while she pursues impractical and expensive alternatives.

    • Mitchel
      Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      A Nordstream III is on the drawing board!

  58. John S
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    There are 2 ways man affects the climate. Firstly, the urban island heat effect and secondly, deforestation which has an effect on radiation reflected. CO2 is neither her nor there as it’s influence is dwarfed by water vapour.

  59. John S
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Sorry typos: here not her and its not it’s.

  60. Graham Wheatley
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    The climate change ‘enthusiasts’ seem to ignore the fact that changes in CO2 levels lag temperature change.

    Temperature is the controller on CO2 level, not the other way around.

  61. Richard1
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Today we read a report by medical royal colleges that homes hermetically sealed – in line with green regulations to reduce CO2 – are harming children’s health due to poor ventilation and low air quality.

    The big problem with the atmosphere of shrill hysteria in which greens try to shut down all debate by traducing opponents, is public policy is rushed into bad and ill-thought through decisions. An example is The big EU-UK move into diesel in the early 2000s, fanned by statements such as that of the chief scientific advisor sir David king that by the end of the C21st Antarctica will be the only inhabitable continent. (Of course he might be right, there’s still 80 years to go, but it seems unlikely).

    Better to have a calmer and more rational debate, leave the virtue signalling and the name calling, and try to discover sensible, and achievable, solutions.

    • Fred H
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      ‘The big EU-UK move into diesel in the early 2000s,’
      Completely ignoring diesel soot and aerosols such as ash particulates, metallic abrasion particles, sulfates, and silicates. But supported by Brown in the UK, believing some scientist idiot. How about that for a foolish tax incentive -STILL costing thousands of lives, and millions of hours off work!

  62. cosmic
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Supposing there’s substance to these claims that CO2 induced global warming is going to lead to catastrophe, what exactly are the measures to stop emissions going to do? They might put off disaster for a short time, less than a year. Also, it’s spoken about in the UK as if we, with less than 2% of global CO2 emissions, as solely responsible and our actions are pivotal, which they are not.
    Consequently we have ridiculous tick box solutions, such as driving energy intensive businesses abroad, which most likely increase global emissions.

    What I see in this is something akin to religious mania and also an attempt to herd us into a big state political arrangement which couldn’t be sold honestly, because people would reject it. This is what we can see flimsily disguised in The Green New Deal in the USA.

    Don’t get caught up in this nonsense, or be tempted to conflate it with genuine environmental problems.

  63. MartinC
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    To understand the flaws in the man-made CO2 global warming model, see Tony Heller’s channel on YouTube.

    For the latest information on the role of solar forcing of the climate, see Suspicious Observers on YouTube.

  64. Lester Beedell
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I’m very sorry to disagree fundamentally with our kind host, C02 is not a greenhouse gas, we each exhale approximately 30 tonnes in our lifetimes, it’s the gas that commercial growers pump into their glasshouses to speed crop growth, if was so dangerous wouldn’t there be moves afoot to ban it?
    The Climate Change hysteria was further pushed this morning on the news by stating that a particular glacier was melting and would raise sea levels by 10 feet, perhaps someone should mention this to Barack Obama as he’s building a multi million dollar mansion on the shoreline at Martha’s Vineyard, the number of prophesies concerning the approaching apocalypse, quite frankly I’ve lost count, and if it wasn’t for the stupid project to reduce our Carbon emissions to zero which will result in us being unable to achieve all the brilliant goals provided by Brexit, it would be laughable
    If Saint Greta is so concerned why doesn’t she visit Beijing or Delhi?

  65. Dunc.
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    Other sceptics also point out that we are in an interglacial period of the Quaternary ice age, the Holocene you may have heard of it, for most of the last 500 million years average global temp has been much higher than today’s 14.5 degrees Celsius yet all mammalian life evolved( 24.5 was the norm).
    Generally CO2 levels have also been higher yet no great catastrophe occurred. We didnt turn into Venus, sorry Stephen Hawking, stick to mathematics.
    As humans live in areas ranging from -40 degrees Celsius to 50 degrees Celsius and pretty much every day we have a 5 to 20 degree temperature variance , what exactly is catastrophic about 2 degrees Celsius.

  66. John Lees
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    There is no such thing as a greenhouse effect, not even for real greenhouses (see Woodhouse’ greenhouse experiment, 1905) It’s all just a scam.

    The sun is the only source of heat for the Earth’s surface and atmosphere, and warms the oceans directly. The atmosphere simply evaporates the ocean surfaces and cools them.

    If the greenhouse effect were to try and operate from the sun-warmed rocky surface, it would contravene the laws of thermodynamics anyway. Like I said, it’s all just a scam.

    Regards
    John Lees

    • hefner
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

      I admire your grasp of thermodynamics. Good to see … “knowledgeable” people …

    • Fred H
      Posted January 29, 2020 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      erm…..what about the effect of volcanoes and escaping gases from the earth’s crust?

  67. Patrick Fossett
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    Have you read Professor Patrick Moore’s presentation to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers?
    https://www.thegwpf.org/patrick-moore-should-we-celebrate-carbon-dioxide/
    Verb sap.

  68. miami.mode
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    Governments love the current climate change scenario because they can tax it and control our behaviour.

  69. A Howard
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    according to a scientist billions of years ago a bacteria produced CO2 which together with water froze the Earth. Today, man made CO2 warms the Earth. Peculiar to say the the least. See article below

    Hundreds of millions of years later, the cyanobacteria (or blue-green algae) arose, using the oxygen molecules in water as electron donors. Unlike other photosynthetic organisms, the cyanobacteria produce molecular oxygen as a waste product.
    After hundreds of millions of years, that oxygen accumulated in the atmosphere. It reacted with early Earth’s methane, producing carbon dioxide and water, which greatly reduced our planet’s greenhouse effect. Thus the cyanobacteria’s success translated into disaster for the planet, causing a mass extinction as the planet froze over entirely. Simultaneously, the corrosive, toxic oxygen killed off most of the other, non-oxygen-using life-forms.

    https://www.commentarymagazine.com/articles/are-we-alone-in-the-universe/

  70. TooleyStu
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL…
    Not only the writing of the original post, but most comments too.
    50 odd replies at 4pm, and most have seen through the Climate Crisis.

    The wall-to-wall propaganda has failed, BBC, Sky News, Greta.co.uk…. all to no avail.

    Tooley Stu.

    • Drew
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

      Tooley,
      I would very much like to agree and hope that you are correct, but worry that we are just in our own little echo chamber.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

      The wall-to-wall propaganda has failed, BBC, Sky News, Greta.co.uk…. all to no avail.

      I think you’ll find that 50 or so commenters on here is not much of a representative sample.

  71. Ian
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    Well done, the majority appear to not be taken in by the BBC
    I am old enough to remember the early 70s .Then the scare was a nuclear winter, the Gulf Stream was going to dive and living here was going to be like living on the East Coast of Canada ?
    Some months ago NASA had photos showing the North Pole 16% bigger than the year before.
    Do not get me wrong, we can help ourselves look after this beautiful planet, yes clean it up, I pick up rubbish on beaches, we all should

  72. JOHN WARD
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    I think this to be a first in blogosphere history – that is, a measured article about climate change.
    The key point here is, I think, the sheer multiplicity of effects on the biosphere, and the inability of some climate scientists on both sides to rethink their initial conclusions. Were they to do so, I suspect a few shibboleths would be shattered, particularly:
    1. The species of tree that slow warming versus others speeding it up
    2. Rate of escape of CO2 from the atmosphere
    3. Use of empirically observed data versus modelling assumptions
    4. Other gases more potentially dangerous than CO2
    5. Beyond climate, more immediate dangers – notably population rise versus potable water supplies, and the seemingly irreparable damage to the ozone layer.

  73. Lazlo
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    For goodness sake grow up – mrs merkel is in the past she is on her way out.

    More importantly listening to Trump and Netanyahu today both with their simplistic plans for peace in the Middle East has me much more concerned. That we have world leaders that can talk in such childish terms and then think the rest of the world people are going to swallow this nonsense- Trump and Netanyahu- one being impeached and the other being bei g indicted for criminal corruption trying to lecture the rest of us on the way to peace- the mind boggles

  74. DOMINIC
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Hauwei. Shameful and shameless. Some are saying it’s a brave move. It isn’t brave, it’s utterly immoral that we are aligning ourselves with a despotic government that crushes its own people

    This is what happens when you vote for a party that bears no relation to the name on the tin. As with Labour, the surface conceals a rotting carcass underneath

    This wouldn’t be happening with a proper opposition composed of BP MPs. We’d also see the BBC privatised in under 12 months

    Vote Tory get New Labour

  75. Nordisch geo climber
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful article much needed debate.
    Too much of the ignorant establishment will not debate.

  76. Mike Wilson
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

    As I understand it:

    The Industrial Revolution put a load of sooty stuff into the atmosphere. The particles congregated (for want of a better word) in clouds. This caused the clouds to reflect more sunlight back into space. The effect is called global dimming and it caused global temperatures to drop – at the same time as all the carbon gases in the atmosphere were causing the temperature to rise. One offset the other and we had no noticeable increase or decrease in global temperatures throughout the industrial revolution. In modern times we are still putting the gases into the atmosphere, but nowhere near as much soot as we burn coal much more cleanly and it is not used to heat every house – as it used to be. So, global temperatures are now increasing. Seems logical to me.

    Notwithstanding that, the simple fact is that burning hydrocarbons for energy is a dirty process. And, one day, we will run out. It strikes me that renewable energy is just basic common sense. I can’t understand why anyone is opposed to it.

  77. gregory martin
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    Why do you all think that excess CO2 derives from fossil fuels when its surely the production of leavened bread, fermented beverages, and carbonated colas, the production of which have been proportionate to the burgeoning population growth from 3.5 to 7.5 billion in a single lifetime?

  78. ukretired123
    Posted January 28, 2020 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

    I came to the conclusion long ago that Andy posts classic attention seeking Mixed Messages which end up hijacking SJRs blog and confuses himself in the process / unstable thinking.

    Stephen Hawking is worth reading who acknowledged we will be vulnerable for the next 100 years due to over-population, pollution etc and the probable risk of a major asteroid after that.

  79. MikeP
    Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    This cause isn’t helped, indeed it’s badly hindered, by the BBC’s arrogant decision to no-platform climate change sceptics in their belief that the science is “settled”. When there are reports every month of ex-IPCC members resigning or not supporting the formal reports. when every weather disaster is lazily put down to climate change, when NASA produces date contradicting received CC zealot wisdom, it is surely time to be open-minded about other impacts like cosmic rays, volcanoes and cloud cover.

  80. Ian Dempster
    Posted January 29, 2020 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    Carbon Dioxide is a very MINOR greenhouse gas, water vapour has far more effect. Carbon Dioxide is used up constantly by the seas, trees, grass and bushes and produces ALL of our food supply. Water vapour comes from the seas in great quantities. As Sir John states, Sol is a variable star. It has as far as we know always varied as has the climate of Earth. The temperature of Earth has risen from around 1850 since we emerged from the little ice age.
    We are according to the scientists still in an ice age. The definition of an ice age being that ice can be found at either pole during each hemispheres summer.

  81. Peter van LEEUWEN
    Posted January 29, 2020 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Whom to trust in complcated matters?
    Apparently SHELL trusts the IPPC conclusions.
    Worth noting that being climate-sceptic would have been an easier choice for a fossil fuel company.

  82. Tabulazero
    Posted January 29, 2020 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Why this obsession with the EU ? That is the second post this week about the EU. That is unhealthy.

    The UK is leaving. What happens next inside the EU is for the EU to sort out. The UK has its own path to make.

    You are going to have to find a new subject.

    Reply Shy of debate about your favourite institution? When I last looked we were still in it, and will be following its rules for the rest of this year so it is very relevant

    • Tabulazero
      Posted January 29, 2020 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

      Reply to reply: and how long does it take for any legislation passed in the EU Parliament to get translated into national legislation ?

      Years.

      What ever gets discussed this year will never impact the UK comes 2021, especially with no-deal being the most likely outcome to boot.

      It’s completely irrelevant. The UK is leaving. You won. Congratulations. Farvel, Tot ziens, Näkemiin, Au Revoir, Auf Wiedersehen, Yasou, Slan, Arrivederci, Żegnaj, Adios, Adjö….

      P.s. : I am not really sure Chancellor Merkel reads your blog. She is therefore unlikely to head your advice no matter how kindly it is given.

    • margaret howard
      Posted January 30, 2020 at 12:23 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply

      I’m not quite sure why you believe in your last paragraph, and I quote:

      “So I say to Mrs Merkel she needs to engage her experts and the EU in a new dialogue which examines these various strands of sceptic thinking and deals with them sensibly, rather than castigating anyone who asks questions.”

      when in your very first para you write:

      “Last week the EU’s effective political leader Mrs Merkel said she was worried by the big gap between the views of the establishment who see climate change as the gravest threat facing us and the climate sceptics who do not. She asked for a proper dialogue between the two sides, presumably to search out some common ground or a way of respecting each other’s positions”

      Surely that is just what she IS doing?

      Reply No sign of it happening

      • margaret howard
        Posted January 30, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Reply to reply

        Could that be because it only happened last week? And what is the future contribution of your government going to be?

  83. Geoff S
    Posted February 5, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    If the Torys were as concerned about the environment as they claim, they wouldn’t be filling every bit of open green space with poor low quality but high retail boxes they call homes. We are losing habitats and species is because of this rampant housebuilding.

    And to add insult to injury import the rest of the world world to fill them.

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