Saturday, June 16, 2018

History of the global warming scare 1980-2010

Guest blog by Prof Emeritus Cha-am Jamal Munshi, Thailand

LM: I found this itemized list rather impressive even though it's in no way complete. Whether we live in Thailand or Europe, we have been exposed to a very large amount of fearmongering and failed predictions. The explosion of these news in 2005-2010 is easily seen in the lists below. After 2010, the growth arguably stopped or reversed so this contribution may be considered the work by a historian. There's a clean mobile version of this page.

Parts of this page:
  1. Chapter 1 1980-1985
  2. Chapter 2 1985-1990
  3. Chapter 3 1990-1995
  4. Chapter 4 1995-2000
  5. Chapter 5 2000-2005
  6. Chapter 6 2005-2010 (separate text)

History of the global warming scare Chapter 1: 1980-1985

1980, GLOBAL WARMING TREND IS HINTED: A comparison of the period 1974-1978 to the period 1930-1934 shows that (a) there is less packed ice fringing Antarctica and that (b) the average surface temperature in the zone of northern melting snows is 0.9 C warmer. These data are evidence of a warming trend. Antarctica is melting due to a global warming trend.

1980, CARBON DIOXIDE COULD CHANGE WEATHER: Since 1850 and the Industrial Revolution we have doubled atmospheric CO2 and if we continue to burn fossil fuels it could double again in the next fifty years (2030) because fossil fuels produce carbon dioxide faster than plants can absorb them. Warming could cause the West Antarctic Ice Sheet to crack and slide into the ocean to raise sea levels by 16 feet and submerge Florida. There are too many uncertainties to asses the economic impact.

1981, AIR POLLUTANTS COMPLICATE GLOBAL WARMING PROBLEM: Chlorofluorocarbons, like carbon dioxide, also trap heat and cause global warming that can lead to melting polar ice caps and rising sea levels. The combination of CFC and CO2 emitted by human activity in the 1980s will raise temperature by 0.2 to 0.3 C rising above the level of the 1930s, the warmest period of this century. The mean surface temperature along the spring and summer line of melting snow in the Northern Hemisphere has gone up. These measurements were taken where the climate models had predicted they would be. The decline in fall and winter temperatures in the 1970s was an exception to the general rule. In addition, CFCs also threaten the protective ozone shield against harmful solar radiation.

1981, ICE CAP MELTING FORECAST: Institute for Space Studies, NYC: Rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere could bring a global warming of unprecedented magnitude melting the polar icecaps and flooding lowlands in the next century. The temperature rise could be 4.5 to 8 F depending on the growth in fossil fuel consumption. A doubling of CO2 will cause a temperature rise of 6 F. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet is vulnerable to rapid disintegration and melting. A global mean temperature rise of 3.6 F could cause a rise of 9 F at Antarctica melting the Ice Sheet and raising sea levels by 15 to 20 feet and flooding 25% of Florida and Louisiana within a span of 100 years or less.

1982, GOVERNMENTS IGNORING GLOBAL WARMING TREND: The use of fossil fuels will cause atmospheric carbon dioxide to double in the next 40 to 100 years raising temperatures by an average of 5 F by virtue of the greenhouse effect because carbon dioxide traps heat. The warming will cause polar ice to melt. In high northern latitudes spring will come earlier and earlier and winter later and later causing a decline in soil moisture. Warmer temperatures and less rainfall will devastate agriculture in much of the United States and the Soviet Union but a more regular monsoon pattern in India will increase rice production. Glaciers will melt and raise sea levels. But the government is not taking these forecasts seriously because scientists have not been able to communicate useful information to them and because some scientists have disputed these forecasts saying that warming can be self-correcting because it causes the formation of more clouds that reflect sunlight. Because there will be winners and losers from global warming, scientists cannot tell policymakers whether the net effect will be positive or negative. There is not a clear message for policymakers. The US government has cut research funds for the study of global warming from $14 million to $9 million eliminating the study of the social and political impact of global warming. Global warming is not a catastrophe because rich nations have the resources to deal with it and most of the developing countries will actually be better off.

1982, GLOBAL MEAN SEA LEVEL AN INDICATION OF CLIMATE CHANGE, Two NOAA scientists published a paper in Science to say that in the period 1940-1980 50,000 cubic km of polar ice has melted by global warming and the sea level has risen by thermal expansion as well as the added water from the ice melt. Global warming is “due in some degree presumably to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide” is self-canceling because melting ice absorbs latent heat and cools the ocean. As polar ice melts, the resultant re-distribution of the earth’s mass slows down its rotational speed. In the 40-year period studied, earth’s rotational speed was thus slowed by 0.00000004%.

1983, EPA GIVES GLOOMY PREDICTIONS ON GREENHOUSE EFFECT: The world is powerless to prevent a greenhouse effect that will dramatically alter food production and living patterns. Instead of fighting the inevitable world leaders should be planning how to cope with its catastrophic impact. Coastal cities without sea-walls will be flooded. The climate of NYC will be like the climate now found in Florida. The US wheat belt will move northward. All because of global warming caused by a buildup of carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels. By the year 2100 these changes will produce catastrophic results. We should respond to this challenge with a sense of urgency. The warming process now set in place is irreversible and the dire predictions of global warming can only be delayed by a few years even with Draconian restrictions on fossil fuels. By the year 2000 the temperature could be 1.1 degrees higher, 3.6 degrees higher by 2040, and 9 degrees higher by 2100. The temperature rise in the poles will be three times higher melting the polar ice caps and causing sea levels to rise 3.5 inches by 2000, one foot by 2025, and five feet by 2100. More research is needed for better planning to cope with the changes. Some scientists expressed reservations about the report saying that the temperature and sea level rise predictions were probably exaggerated and that the alarmist tone of the report is unrealistic.

1983, EXPERTS DISAGREE ON GREENHOUSE EFFECT: EPA predicts that the increase in average global temperature will become noticeable in 1990 and melting polar ice caps will cause sea levels to rise inundating low-lying areas. Some scientists disagree saying that these changes will come much later possibly in 2050. They compare the global warming alarm to ozone depletion which turned out to be less harmful than predicted. The dire prediction of an impending ice age was also overblown. The global warming calamity is exaggerated because the planet’s self-correcting mechanisms are ignored. They also suggested seaweed farming as a way of mitigating carbon dioxide emissions.

1984, CLIMATE SCIENTISTS NOT SURE THAT GLOBAL WARMING WILL CAUSE SEA LEVELS TO RISE. Melting of polar ice caps by global warming will cause sea levels to rise by 4 to 7 feet by the year 2100. Or perhaps it would rise by only 2 feet by 2100 with further rapid rise possible after 2100 if the West Antarctic Ice Sheet begins to disintegrate. Or perhaps, warming will cause increased snowfall in the interior of Antarctica where the snow does not melt. That would cause sea levels to fall. In the last interglacial period, the North Atlantic was much warmer but the southern hemisphere was not.

1984, GLOBAL WARMING REDUCIBLE: Global warming can be reduced by increasing the efficiency of fossil fueled power plants and by speeding up conversion to nuclear, solar, and wind power. Nuclear can be significantly cheaper than coal. Significant warming is inevitable but it can be mitigated if the effort is global and immediate.

1984, RESEARCHER DOUBTS GLOBAL WARMING: The global warming predictions are based on land temperature measurements only. When you add in air temperatures taken by ships, there is no warming trend from 1949 to 1972 even though carbon dioxide produced by advanced economies spread throughout the world within one year. It is now widely believed that the greenhouse effect of carbon dioxide will melt polar ice caps and raise sea levels.

1984, GLOBAL WARMING CURB POSSIBLE: The global warming trend is due to the greenhouse effect. Mankind can forestall this trend by speeding up the development of nuclear power and other alternatives to fossil fuels and thereby reducing atmospheric emissions of carbon dioxide.

1984, DAILY SHOWER MAY BE LUXURY IN WATER-SHORT FUTURE: Global warming caused by carbon dioxide pollution will cause noticeable warming by 2000 and increase the evaporation rate of water causing the level of the Great Lakes to drop 30% by 2050. These changes will cause a prolonged severe drought that will turn the American prairies into a dust bowl in the next few decades.

The history of the global warming scare Chapter 2: 1985-1990

1985, GLOBAL WARMING COULD CAUSE FUTURE PROBLEMS, Roger Barry, Univ of Colorado data center for glaciology. Atmospheric CO2 will double by the end of the century due to burning fossil fuels. CO2 induced warming will be evident in the 1990s particularly in the melting of glaciers and polar ice caps. Glacial melting in the last century is explained primarily by global warming. There is a possibility of a seasonally open Arctic (after the summer melt) in the next century brought about by a doubling of atmospheric CO2 but it is unlikely because Arctic ice “is more stable than we thought”. The future is pretty scary all the same.

1985, WILL MOTHER NATURE’S SCREEN SAVE OUR CLIMATE? CO2 induced global warming is self correcting because warming increases cloud formation and clouds reflect sunlight back into space. Richard Somerville, Scripps Institute of Oceanography, UC San Diego.

1985, SAGAN WARNS, STOP GREENHOUSE EFFECT NOW, Carl Sagan testimony in Senate hearing. Global warming will flood coastal cities and turn Midwest farmlands into a dust bowl. The greenhouse effect makes life possible but too much or too little will kill it off.Use of fossil fuels is pushing earth into too much. The answer is to reduce fossil fuel consumption by switching to nuclear and solar. If we do nothing we condemn our children and grandchildren to the effects of global warming. The greenhouse effect of fossil fuels is the most dangerous threat to mankind we have ever faced.

1985, RISING SEA LEVEL, The Polar Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences says that the sea level will rise 4-6 cm by 2000 and 12-27 cm by 2030 because global warming from the greenhouse effect will warm the oceans and melt glaciers and polar ice caps including Greenland.

1986, SCIENTISTS PREDICT CATASTROPHE IN GROWING GLOBAL HEAT WAVE, Scientists at Senate subcommittee hearing. The greenhouse effect will cause th earth to be warmer in he next decade than at any other time in the last 100,000 years and cause shoreline erosion, droughts, and other catastrophic changes just as the depletion of the ozone layer is doing.

1986, WARMING PANIC PREMATURE, presentation by NASA scientists to a Senate committee. The warnings of “greenhouse effect” catastrophe by 2030 are overblown because the computer models used are not good enough to make those predictions. Northern hemisphere temperatures have declined in the last 50 years (since 1935). The National Research Council’s report of 1983 shows two warm years at the end of the record but that is not enough imply a warming trend. The Diaz and Quayle 1981 article in Monthly Weather Review shows a cooling trend from 1949 to 1979. The northern hemisphere temperature history detailed in the February 1986 issue of the Journal of Climate and Applied Meteorology does not show a warming trend. Although global warming is being promoted as “inescapable” and “undeniable” the caveat in the National Research Council’s 1983 paper says “we do not believe the overall pattern yet confirms temperature changes attributable to CO2”. The DOE’s 1985 report also makes similar caveats such as “the findings constitute insufficient evidence that the climate models are correctly projecting the effects of CO2 on climate”. Northern hemisphere ocean temperatures have not gone up since WW2. Since rising CO2 is not causing warming of the northern hemisphere there must be other more potent variables at work that are not in the model. An increase of 4% to 7% the formation of certain types of clouds could offset the heat effect of doubling CO2 (Bretherton and Coakley 1985). Yet, cirrus clouds are an unknown and not in the computer models. Most of the computer models contain major limitations in oceanic heat transfer and changes in regional rainfall. The southern hemisphere is behaving differently and appears to be warming so perhaps the same will occur in the north eventually.

1988, GLOBAL WARMING HAS BEGUN, EXPERTS TELL SENATE: James Hansen of NASA tells the US Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee that “the earth has been warmer in the first five months of this year than in any comparable period since measurements began 130 years ago” and therefore that the effects of greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels are now palpable. The nightmare has arrived, “the greenhouse effect is here” with the NYT reporting that “humans, by burning fossil fuels , have altered the global climate in a manner that will affect life on earth for centuries to come”. Southeast and Midwest states in the USA will experience “frequent episodes of very high temperatures and drought in the next decade and beyond”.

1988, CLIMATE CHANGE ALREADY HAPPENING, A buildup of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels emitted by human activities into is causing the earth’s surface to warm by trapping infrared radiation from the sun and turning the entire earth into a kind of greenhouse – just as mathematical models had predicted. Sometime between 2025 to 2050 the earth will be 3F to 9F warmer with higher latitudes 20F warmer. mathematical models had predicted. Melting glaciers and polar ice and thermal expansion of the oceans will cause the sea level to rise by one to four feet by 2050.

1988, WARMEST YEAR EXPECTED, The hottest years on record occurred in the 1980s with the first 5 months of this year very hot. Just as the models had predicted, the rise in temperature is greater in high latitudes than in low, is greater over continents than oceans, and there is cooling in the upper atmosphere as the lower atmosphere warms up. Clearly, global warming by greenhouse gas emissions as predicted by these computer models has begun. “We can ascribe with a high degree of confidence a cause and effect relationship between the greenhouse effect and observed warming.” The snow is melting earlier each year and the rain belt is moving northwards.

1988, 35-NATION CONFERENCE ADDRESSES GLOBAL WARMING, A global warming meeting in Geneva will examine the scientific evidence. “The effort could lead to an international treaty to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide and other gases in the atmosphere that trap heat from the earth in a ”greenhouse effect” and to “justify actions by governments to limit and cope with climate change” . To mitigate global warming we must reduce the use of fossil fuels that produce carbon dioxide and also agree to further reductions in chlorofluorocarbons beyond the 50% reduction mandated in the Montreal Protocol. The global warming problem is real because ”We know that greenhouse gases are accumulating and in principle, they should lead to a global warming”.

1989, DEFORESTATION SPEEDS UP GLOBAL WARMING, Destruction of forests will speed up global warming because the drying forests will release carbon dioxide. We need a sharp reduction in the use of fossil fuels that produce carbon dioxide, and end to deforestation, and a program of reforestation. The re-development of nuclear power could also slow global warming. The world must immediately ratify a treaty to reduce the use of chlorofluorocarbons because they destroy ozone and contribute to global warming.

1989, GLOBAL WARMING STIRS STORM, “Despite Hansen’s assertions, there is widespread scientific disagreement over global warming trends. Some experts say there is no evidence that the climate has experienced any significant change over the past several decades.”

1989, FORECAST DISSENT ON GLOBAL WARMING, Skeptics are challenging dire greenhouse views” (NYT). Skeptics contend that forecasts of global warming are flawed and overstated and that the future might even hold no significant warming at all and that if the warming is modest, as they believe likely, it could bring benefits like longer growing seasons in temperate zones, more rain in dry areas and an enrichment of crops and plant life”. “It would be a mistake to take drastic and costly steps to limit emissions of carbon dioxide”. Much of the dissenters’ criticism is aimed at computerized mathematical models of the world’s climate on which forecasts of global warming are largely based. The critics also cite data on past climatic trends, and they say the theory of greenhouse warming has not yet been fully explored. “”We have an incomplete theory with a lot of bad science being done”. ” Current forecasts of global warming ”are so inaccurate and fraught with uncertainty as to be useless to policy-makers,” Richard S. Lindze.

1989, RACE TO ASSESS GLOBAL WARMING, Scientists are using powerful computers and advanced mathematical models to simulate the world’s climate. The computer models predict that the greenhouse effect will make the earth warmer. The resulting climate change will have “important consequences for life on earth”. One problem is that the models don’t agree on what areas will suffer drought and where there will be increased precipitation. The dilemma faced by policymakers is that they don’t have information that is precise enough to make policy but if they wait for more precise information it may be too late to take effective action.

History of the Global Warming Movement: Chapter 3: 1990-1995

  1. 1990, SCIENTIFIC CONSENSUS CONFIRMS GLOBAL WARMING (NYT) Global warming will cause serious environmental damage starting early in the next century long before the maximum predicted temperature is reached. We must set limits beyond which the global temperature and sea level should not be permitted to rise to avoid serious and ever increasing risks posed by the continued flow of heat trapping gases into the atmosphere at present rates. The IPCC report serves as a prelude to the Second World Climate Conference in Geneva later this year.
  2. 1990, BUSH ADMINISTRATION COOL ON GLOBAL WARMING. (NYT)The Bush administration’s global warming policy is tepid because of conflicting views within the White House where some are skeptical of the computer models on which forecasts of global climate warming are based because these models have a history of past failures. These models are not good enough to form the basis for policy, they say, but that is only an excuse for inaction. Even though the computer models may not be precise, their forecasts are so grim that we must take corrective action immediately as we do not have to luxury of waiting until all the bugs are worked out. These actions should include preserving tropical forests, banning greenhouse chemicals, and increasing energy efficiency.

  3. 1990, EXPERTS WARN ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING COSTS. A UN panel of international climate experts came out to strongly support the global warming theory saying that the buildup of CO2 from fossil fuel consumption lead to rising temperatures worldwide, altered weather patterns, lower food production, and rising sea levels. In the long run the cost of inaction exceeds the cost of mitigation. The panel put political pressure on President Bush who is not inclined to take costly measures against CO2 as long as there are credible scientists who oppose the global warming theory and as long as there is no “scientific consensus” on the issue.

  4. 1991, PROMPT ACTION TO CURB GLOBAL WARMING THREAT, The National Academy of Sciences says US should act quickly to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by developing new generation nuclear power plants and by implementing reforestation, mass transit, and higher fuel efficiency standards for cars. The plan represents a compromise between the more extreme positions of the EPA and the Bush administration. Despite great uncertainties,global warming poses a threat sufficient to merit a prompt response.

  5. 1991, COST OF REVERSING GREENHOUSE EFFECT WILL BE HIGH. There is division in the scientific community as to the existence and the extent of the greenhouse effect. Environmentalists say that a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions from the industrialized countries is needed. An energy saving program could reduce CO2 emissions by 35% over the next 25 years but it will be costly and it assumes technological breakthroughs.

  6. 1991, COOLING IMPACT DISCLOSED. Burning fossil fuels produces aerosols that reflect sunlight and cool the earth. The resulting rise in temperature could more than offset the cooling achieved by reduction in CO2 emissions in the next 10 to 30 years according to an article in Nature by Prof Wigley, a climatologist at the University of East Anglia in England. The aerosol effect is a sleeping giant because it is something that has been missed and its effect is not trivial. It implies that reducing fossil fuel consumption will cause acceleration in global warming for 10 to 30 years before the gains from CO2 emission reduction kick in.

  7. 1991, PANEL SAYS THE U.S. CAN ADAPT TO GLOBAL WARMING. (NYT), The National Academy of Sciences says that the cost of inaction is not high because the US can easily adapt to the effects of global warming due to the greenhouse effect of pollutants in the atmosphere. It is more costly to control the climate change than to adapt to it. Human adaptability has been grossly underestimated. A dissenting committee member said that indirect costs of global warming have not been adequately considered. The report said it might be harder for developing countries to adapt to global warming. It encouraged “efforts to advance regional mobility of people, capital and goods,” better preparations for disaster and famine relief and expansion of free-market economies, so that changing prices can serve as market signals that would encourage people to adapt to global warming.

  8. 1992, TREATY TO CURB GLOBAL WARMING. Sixty nations sign an agreement at the Earth Summit in which they promise to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels. The agreement is not binding and there is no time table.

  9. 1992, WHITE HOUSE VOWS ACTION TO CUT GLOBAL WARMING GASES. The concentration of greenhouse gases is growing because of human activity and that could lead to catastrophic warming of the earth in the next century. On the eve of the Earth Summit in Rio, the US is seen as uncooperative by the Europeans who insist on a year 2000 deadline for stabilizing CO2 emissions. The US supports increasing energy efficiency and a budget of $75 million in aid to developing countries to do likewise although it does not target CO2 stabilization. Global warming advocates say that this move is positive and shows that the US has abandoned the flat earth society of global warming deniers.

  10. 1992, GLOBAL WARMING ANOMALY. Critics of global warming point out that their computer models predict a temperature rise of 1C for the last 100 years whereas the actual rise has been 0.5C; and that most of the warming in the last 100 years occurred prior to 1940 whereas most of the CO2 was added after that.

  11. 1992, GLOBAL SNUB ON GLOBAL WARMING. To control rising temperatures due to the greenhouse effect of CO2, the Europeans want industrialized countries to put a cap on CO2 emission but the Bush administration is wary. The USA is seen as a laggard and an impediment to global action to ward off the potentially dangerous effects of global warming. A cost effective way to check global warming is for the USA to give foreign aid to developing countries like China to implement clean burning coal technologies. The impasse is that the USA is opposed to imposed CO2 emission caps. As it is, there are countries endorsing emission caps but not implementing programs to achieve them. The real cost of emission caps could be sky high.

  12. 1993, CLINTON ADMINISTRATION: “CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION PLAN”. Emissions of CO2, CH4, NO, and CFC have caused temperatures to rise by 0.5C in the last 100 years, and unchecked, global warming could cause melting glaciers and polar ice caps, rising sea level, flooded coastal areas,droughts, damaged ecosystems, and reduced agricultural production. The Clinton administration’s Action Plan proposes 44 action steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2000 mainly by voluntary participation of business and industry. The plan is consistent with international efforts outlined by the Earth Summit in 1992.

  13. 1993, SCIENTISTS CONFRONT RENEWED BACKLASH AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING. Conservatives and industry groups attacked the Clinton Administration’s climate change action plan and the global warming scenario characterizing it as hysteria and a plan by socialists to control the economy. Two books, one by the Cato Institute and another by Dixy Lee Ray attacked the greenhouse effect hypothesis. The Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal published articles debunking global warming. A column by Jeffrey Salmon of the George C. Marshall Institute said that there was no scientific evidence that the earth is warming because of man-made greenhouse gases. Richard Lindzen of the MIT wrote that the heat trapping amplification through water vapor assumed by the global warming computer model is flawed and therefore that even a doubling of CO2 will have little effect on temperature. Other critics point out that the computer models can’t be right because they give incorrect and inconsistent results for known historical data. Although scientists disagree on global warming the political debate is more extreme than the scientific debate.

  14. 1993, THE NEW YORK TIMES DEFENDS GLOBAL WARMING. There are two undisputed facts about global warming – carbon dioxide produced by burning fossil fuels has been accumulating in the atmosphere for a hundred years, and carbon dioxide traps heat reflected from the earth’s surface that would otherwise radiate out to space. It only remains to compute exactly how much the earth will heat up after an amount of CO2 is injected into the atmosphere. Since a real world experiment is not possible it must be carried out in mathematical models on supercomputers that simulate the earth’s climate although these models are far from perfect. Scientists have examined the results from the best computer models and advised the UN that CO2 will double by 2100 and cause a temperature rise of somewhere between 3C and 5C. These findings are supported by leading experts in the field at the UN and the National Academy of Sciences. Although the amount of heat trapped by the minute amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is small, it snowballs because it causes water to evaporate and water vapor is also a heat trapping gas. The ability of computer models to predict temperature will be greatly improved once the aerosol effect of fossil fuels is incorporated.

  15. 1993, PRESIDENT CLINTON’S PLAN TO HALT GLOBAL WARMING. Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in millions of tons annually: energy efficiency in home and appliance design = 16.3, non-industrial private forest management = 9.5, private sector investment in efficient electrical motors =8.8, increased efficiency of public transit and transportation = 6.6, better regulation of chemical industry = 5.0, recycling and pollution prevention =4.2, methane recovery from landfills = 4.2, natural gas star program to reduce methane emission = 3.0, promote natural gas = 2.2, promote hydroelectricity = 2.0. Greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxides and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

  16. 1993, RISING SEAS A PRECISE MEASURE OF GLOBAL WARMING. Using the most accurate system ever devised for measuring global sea levels,scientists have found a steady rise of 3 mm per year for the past two years. These data now establish beyond any doubt that the greenhouse effect is causing global warming. If this trend continues for another few years it will be solid evidence of a warming trend related to increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide. Doubts about the reliability of older and less precise temperature data may now be put aside as the very accurate sea level data clearly establishes the scientific basis of global warming. The sea level measurement satellite of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory takes 500,000 sea level measurements per day.

  17. 1994, GLOBAL WARMING MAY HELP U.S. AGRICULTURE,(NYT). Civilization is playing a high stakes game with mother nature by emitting heat trapping greenhouse gases that could forever alter our fragile ecosystem in catastrophic ways. The planet is going to get hotter with radically altered weather and rainfall patterns. Yet, a new study appears to show that its effect on American agriculture will not be the dust bowl catastrophe that was once predicted. In fact, global warming is now expected to benefit American agriculture by greatly increasing crop yields. It will be a lot harder in the wake of this study to motivate the American will to fight global warming. It was once predicted that although Canadian and Russian farmers would gain from longer growing seasons, American farmers would lose more than $20 billion per year with “corn blistering on the stalk”. These studies were based on the inability of U.S. farmers to adapt to changes. If farmers change the crops they grow as the climate changes, they will not lose but in fact may gain in the net.

  18. 1994, HOT AIR ON GLOBAL WARMING. The Clinton Plan of Action against global warming is “so much hot air” because it is too vague and not practical. It is typically Clintonian window dressing to give the appearance of doing something.
  19. The major events of this period:
1.The Bush administration’s recalcitrance
2.The Clinton administration’s Action Plan
3.The Earth Summit in Rio
4.The global warming conference in Geneva
5.Continued ambivalence on the effect of GW on agriculture
6.Continued ambivalence on the countervailing effect of aerosol

History of the Global Warming Scare Chapter 4: 1995-2000


    After a three year hiatus and a bitter winter in 1993-1994, the warming trend has returned with a warmer than usual winter in 1994-1995. Global warming is not gone, it was just temporarily interrupted by the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo. Aerosols in the upper atmosphere from the eruption reflected sunlight and cooled the earth. In 1994, temperatures rebounded to the levels of the 1980s – the warmest decade on record –reaching the record high of 60C reached in 1990. Global temperatures from March to December were the warmest since 1951. The mainstream view among researchers on climatic change is that atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases could double by the end of the next century and that this could produce a global warming of 1.5C to 4.5C. By comparison, the earth is 3C to 5C warmer now than in the last ice age, which ended about 10,000 years ago. A 2C warming,could cause ice at the poles to melt, rising sea levels, shifting climatic zones, and more extreme floods, droughts, storms, and cold and heat waves. Violent and frequent weather extremes have become more common since 1980.


    Global warming will bring altered crop growing seasons, more severe storms, more tropical diseases, and the inundation of low lying areas by rising seas. As to the cause, the scientific debate about whether the warming is a natural variation or caused by man has now been settled. A scientific consensus due to advances in computer modeling has emerged that the cause of the warming is the greenhouse effect of carbon dioxide emitted by man’s fossil fuel consumption. This finding is issued in a new report of the UN-IPCC panel of scientists and is based on the best data and science available. These findings are now beyond question. The debate as to the cause of the warming in the last 100 years is now over. The job now is to implement worldwide emission reduction plans to reverse this trend. If no action is taken global temperatures will rise 1.5C to 4.5C in the next 100 years. It is a very significant rise if you consider that 3C can make the difference between an ice age and an interglacial. Emission reduction starting right now could limit the warming to 0.5C to 2C. The warming cannot be stopped because the CO2 that is already in the air will continue to trap heat. Although it is impossible to know for sure to what extent global warming is caused by man, it only makes sense, in light of the new scientific consensus, to work with other nations to curb greenhouse gas emissions.


    UN-IPCC scientists issued a report in Dec 1995 saying that the warming of the earth by 0.5C in the last 100 years is the biggest since the last ice age and is not within the range of natural variability. Therefore it must represent a man made influence on global climate.Periods of cooling during the overall warming period can be explained in terms of global warming.


    Just four days after scientists announced on Jan 3 1996 that global temperatures had crept to a record high in 1995, the Northeast US was hit by record cold and snowfall but scientists say that the blizzard of 1996 as well as the bitter cold in Europe were actually caused by global warming because warming increases evaporation that in turn increases precipitation. Besides, the effects of global warming are small compared with seasonal variations and so severe winters are not necessarily incompatible with global warming. The bitter winter this year represents a southward bulge of the Arctic air mass and not a cooling trend.


    (NYT) According to UN scientists, there are serious threats to public health if actions to reduce global warming come too slowly. The earth’s climate will change rapidly in the coming century as greenhouse gases trap solar radiation. Thousands could die in major cities in heat waves and tens of millions will face malaria epidemics in areas where the disease does not now occur. Last July a heat wave killed 465 people in Chicago alone. This is an issue that must be taken seriously. Climate negotiators are warned against taking a wait and see attitude because the consequences of inaction are dire. We must act quickly even as industry backed lobbyists call for a go slow approach fearing harm to economic growth.The voluntary approach in the USA is not working as emissions have continued to rise since the 1992 treaty at the Earth Summit. Carbon dioxide emissions rose 12% from 1990 to 1995. Immediate action is needed to reverse this trend. Because adverse public health is likely to result from climate change, we do not have the luxury of seeking definitive empirical evidence before acting.

  6. 1996, UN IPCC REPORT

    Ahead of Geneva, the second follow up meeting on global warming after the Earth Summit in Rio, the UN IPCC has issued a report that says that humans are influencing global climate. Excerpts from the report issued in June 1996 say that Earth’s temperature will rise by 2C in the next 100 years with serious negative effects. Extreme temperatures will become normal. Habitats will change. Many plants and animals will become extinct. Some regions will suffer water shortages. Polar ice will melt. The sea level will rise. Emissions of greenhouse gases that trap solar energy will double by the year 2010. A 50% reduction in emissions over the next 50 years is needed to reverse the warming trend. We are currently not on track to meet emission reduction guidelines set in the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio. Yet the Rio commitments are not enough to halt global warming.


    As an endorsement of the IPCC report the Clinton administration is urging 150 nations meeting in Geneva to agree to binding cuts on greenhouse gas emissions to control global warming as long as the targets are moderate and achievable; although many feel that Clinton is playing politics with global warming in an effort to garner the green vote. Ratification of binding reductions in the Republican controlled Congress is unlikely.


    Twenty years of hard data from meteorological stations and nature show a clear warming trend. Growth rings in Mongolian and Canadian trees are getting wider. Butterflies in California are moving to higher ground once too cold for butterflies. Stalactites in Britain are growing faster. The growing season for crops in Australia is getting longer. Permafrost in Siberia and Canada is melting. The evidence is there anywhere you look. A warming rate is one 1C per century is enough to wreak havoc. The cause is the greenhouse effect of CO2 emissions from fossil fuels as well as CFCs and HCFCs that trap heat. The effect is being compounded as deforestation simultaneously removes trees that absorb CO2. Some scientists are skeptical but the majority view is that the greenhouse effect is real and it requires urgent action. This conclusion rests on the results from sophisticated computer simulation models that give the best possible information on this topic even though they are not perfect. These models are giving us scary accounts of the future and we should be paying attention. The IPCC tell us that melting ice and thermal expansion of oceans will cause the sea level to rise one meter by 2037 and inundate low lying areas and island nations. Extreme weather events will become common. El Nino and La Nina cycles will become more extreme. There will be millions of climate refugees driven from their home by global warming. Some regions of the world will become hotter, others colder, some wetter, others drier. Entire weather systems will be dramatically altered. The Gulf Stream will switch off making Europe colder. Tropical diseases such as malaria will ravage the world as vectors migrate to higher latitudes and altitudes. Some wheat farmers may be able to grow more wheat but the net effect of global warming is overwhelmingly negative.

  9. 1997, THE ROAD TO KYOTO

    In the Earth Summit of 1992 developed nations promised to hold their year 2000 greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels but they have not acted because of the perceived economic impact of cutting emissions. Forecasts show that CO2 emissions in 2000 will be 14% above 1990 levels. Research in the USA and Australia show that reduced emissions will mean reduced living standards while those in Europe indicate emission reduction will actually have a positive effect on the economy. The industrial lobby is stronger in the USA and it is opposed to emission reduction. The Earth Summit agreement has no teeth because it cannot be enforced. The upcoming meeting in Kyoto in December is expected to address these deficiencies with legally binding cuts in greenhouse gas on a timetable.


    (LA Times) The USA is out of sync with the rest of the world in the crucial ecological issue of global warming. President Clinton’s statement was met with disdain in Bonn where 150 nations are meeting to control global warming. The U.S. is seen as an environmental pariah in this meeting.


    Entire nations among the Pacific islands vanish beneath the waves, coastal communities in the USA from North Carolina to the Texas Gulf wash out to sea, wild swings in precipitation first bring drought and then torrential rains and floods, coastal mudslides in California become routine, and maple trees of the North die out as dengue fever and mosquito borne encephalitis move in. In December delegates from 167 nations will go to Kyoto to write a binding treaty among nations to fight against carbon dioxide emissions and save the planet. There are serious implications for humanity if actions to curb global warming come too slowly.


    (Chicago Tribune, climate denier?) The Union of Concerned Scientists, President Clinton, and VP Gore have repeatedly stated that “the threat of global warming is real and it is already here”. Yet, the IPCC has admitted that none of their computer models of climate has been validated by the record. Man made emissions of carbon dioxide are so small compared to natural emissions that they could not possibly cause climate change.


    A global warming summit of 150 nations opened in Kyoto Monday. Its agenda is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that are causing potentially catastrophic increase of carbon dioxide in the earth’s atmosphere. The summit is dogged by contentious economic, political, and scientific questions. “People are still very cautious about acting on climate change because they count the economic costs but not the benefits”.


    (CNN) Climate delegates in Kyoto are working overtime to forge a treaty to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Greenhouse gas emission reduction targets of 6%-8% below 1990 levels by 2008 have been set for 34 industrialized nations. None has been set for developing countries. Contentious issues remain. They include the twin American proposals to allow the industrialized nations to achieve their reduction target by buying carbon credits and offsets from developing countries; and the imposition of binding emission cuts on four non-industrialized countries, namely, China, India, Brazil, and Mexico to prevent these emerging economies from gaining from unfair competition. U.S. ratification is not likely without these provisions.


    “Without reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, scientists warn that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could double in the next century, warming the atmosphere and triggering an environmental chain reaction that could raise sea levels, change ocean currents and intensify damage from storms, droughts and the spread of tropical diseases” (CNN).


    Last year was the hottest year on record and this decade has already produced 9 of the 11 hottest years of the century. The data show that man made greenhouse gases are causing a potentially disastrous warming of the earth. These data should help Pres. Clinton as he seeks Senate approval for the Kyoto Treaty. That there is a human component in the rising temperature is becoming clearer with each year’s measurements and the likelihood that the rising temperature is a natural phenomenon is becoming increasingly remote. For the last three years the data have pointed in the direction of man made global warming.


    Delegates in Kyoto hammered out a treaty that sets 2000 as the deadline for creating a a global mechanism to police emissions reductions of greenhouse gases that cause global warming and to hold failing nations accountable. The treaty allows industrialized nations to meet emission reduction targets by trading emission credits or funding clean air projects in poor nations. In the USA there is stiff opposition from Senate opponents who demand similar emission reduction by developing countries.


    The debate on global warming started with the scientific question about whether the problem was real and evolved into an economic and political debate between developed and developing countries on who should act to reduce emissions. At the global warming conference in Buenos Aires this weekend the USA signed on to the Kyoto Accord but there is stiff opposition to ratification in the Senate without an equal commitment by developing nations.


    Satellite measurements of temperatures of the lower troposphere show a cooling trend from 1979 to 1995 contradicting the warming trend in ground based temperatures. However, this discrepancy can be offset by revising the satellite measurements with the “falling satellite effect”. As the satellite slows and drops the instrument perceives the same temperature as cooler. The amount of this revision is in dispute. It could be insignificant or it could be enough to make the apparent cooling trend into a warming trend again. NASA scientist James Hansen says that the perceived cooling is just an artifact of the falling satellite phenomenon and not real but John Christy of the University of Alabama Huntsville says that the corrected satellite data do not show warming.


    Climate scientists in the Hadley Center on Climate Change have issued a report on global warming timed to coincide with the meeting in Buenos Aires where delegates from 180 nations are meeting to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The findings of the report based on a computer model for the case with no emission reductions are as follows: 1998 will be UK’s hottest year since 1106, “the warmest year of the millennium”; sometime between 2041 and 2070 we will see a sharp rise in sick, hungry, and thirsty people; by 2048 the world’s forests will become so degraded that they will change from net CO2 sinks to net CO2 producers further accelerating global warming; human greenhouse gas emissions have contributed substantially to global warming over the past half century; the climate model is validated by its ability to reconstruct the last 150 years of climate conditions; the 1997-1998 ElNino is the most extreme on record; in the next 100 years global temperatures will rise by 6C – the most extreme in the last 10,000 years. The Amazon forest will die out and rot releasing carbon dioxide. Tropical grasslands will be transformed into deserts. For the first half of the 21st century, vegetation will absorb CO2 at a rate of about 2-3 GtC per year while human emissions of CO2 are about 7GtC a year. From 2050 onwards, vegetation dying under the impact of climate change will itself add about 2GtC a year to greenhouse emissions, further intensifying global warming. Global warming will accelerat due to “positive feedback” – a way by which the global warming we have caused will itself cause further global warming. More than 170 million people will suffer from water shortage. Crop yields will increase in areas like Canada and Europe, but nearer the equator they will shrink. Some 18% more of Africa’s people will be at risk of hunger simply because of climate change. Sea levels will rise by 21 cm inundating 20 million people. Malaria infection will increase, and spread to areas where it is not currently seen. The overwhelming consensus of scientific opinion is that climate change is real, and that we are playing the chief part in causing it. The report confirms previous findings of the panel of scientists at the IPCC, “the world’s most authoritative group of climatologists”.


    The first half of 1998 was the warmest six months ever recorded on earth. The month of July, 1998 will also set a record. A heat wave in the Southwest has caused dozens of deaths with the hottest weather to hit the state since 1980. Tuesday was the 9th straight day that the temperature there has broken 100F. The heat wave is accompanied by drought that will drain $4.6 billion from the Texas economy in the next few months. Oklahoma had 6 deaths and Louisiana 20 deaths from the heat wave. According to NOAA data the near surface temperature for June 1998 over both land and water were at an all time high. There is no time in data history that we have seen this sequence of record setting for six consecutive months. It is compelling evidence that global temperatures are on a long term warming track. These are evidence of long term warming of the planet by man’s greenhouse gas emissions. How much more proof do we need that global warming is real? Congress must not block efforts by the White House to reduce heat trapping greenhouse gases.


    Sea ice in the Arctic Basin is shrinking by 14000 square miles per year “probably” because of global warming caused by human activity according to a new international study that used 46 years of data and sophisticated computer simulation models to tackle the specific question of whether the loss of Arctic ice is a natural variation or caused by global warming. The computer model says that the probability that these changes were caused by natural variation is 1% but when global warming was added to the model the ice melt was a perfect fit. Therefore the ice melt is caused by human activities that emit greenhouse gases.


    An article in the Journal Science says that the melting of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet is a natural event not related to global warming contrary to claims by climate scientists. The WAIS is indeed melting quite rapidly receding at the rate of 400 feet per year but it has been doing so for thousands of years long before human activity and greenhouse gas emissions, having receded 800 miles since the last ice age. If the process continues unchecked it will melt completely in another 7000 years. Therefore it seems unlikely that the event is linked to human activity or that the time frame of a collapse of the ice shelf could fall within 100 years.


    A sophisticated computer simulation model shows that increasing the temperature or snowfall on the Arctic tundra can triple its CO2 emissions from the soil of the tundra. The Arctic contains 1/3 of the earth’s soil stored carbon dioxide. The computer model shows a positive feedback look that can cause global warming to snowball because warming in itself can increase carbon dioxide in the air and accelerate the rate of warming. It is a frightening scenario that could cause global warming catastrophe to occur sooner than previously thought.

  25. Note: This period is marked by 1.The Kyoto Protocol and the warm-up meetings in Geneva and Bonn, 2.Differences between the USA and Europe in Kyoto, 3.The differences between land based and satellite based temperature measurements, 4.A sharp rise in scientific rhetoric to rally policy makers to their cause in Kyoto, 5.The bitter northern winter of 1995-1996 and its explanation in terms of global warming. 6. The 1998 climate conference in Buenos Aires, 7.The Clinton administration’s apparent endorsement of the global warming agenda, 8.New controversy about the West Antarctic Ice Shelf

History of the Global Warming Scare Chapter 5: 2000-2005


    Rapidly warming seas caused by global warming has turned coral reefs into endangered ecosystems. According to coral reef scientists meeting in Bali, 25% of the world’s coral reefs are already gone. Without urgent and immediate CO2 emission reductions coral reefs will be completely gone from the planet in 30 to 50 years.


    According to John Christy, satellite data show temperature of the upper atmosphere has been cooling by 0.3C per year since 1979. Climate scientists point out that warming of the surface and cooling of the upper atmosphere are not necessarily inconsistent if you take into account things like the Mt Pinatubo volcanic eruption and ozone depletion. It is possible for the upper atmosphere to cool while the earth’s surface is warming because volcanic debris in the stratosphere occludes sunlight and ozone depletion lowers the amount of heat being absorbed in the upper atmosphere.


    According to an IPCC panel of scientists, human activities that release greenhouse gases like CO2 into the atmosphere are at least partially responsible for global warming because greenhouse gases trap heat reflected from the surface of the earth. The consequent global warming will raise surface temperature by between 1C and 3.5C by the year 2100. The warming will cause melting ice and thermal expansion of the oceans and raise sea levels by between one and three feet and flood coastal areas. There will be an increase in the intensity and frequency of extreme weather such as storms,droughts, and floods. Tropical diseases will spread into a pandemic. Plants and animals that fail to adapt to these changes will die off in waves of extinctions and loss of biodiversity.


    The Kyoto Protocol will cause the economies of industrialized nations to suffer and give developing countries an unfair advantage in global trade. China, with a booming, coal-based economy, is projected to zoom past the United States in greenhouse emissions by 2025.


    A blue-ribbon panel of climate scientists from the National Academy of Sciences has issued a report saying that “global warming is undoubtedly real” and it is under way with dire consequences to follow. Global temperatures have risen more sharply in the last 20 years than at any time this century. The contradictory evidence from satellite data showing cooling of the upper atmosphere are irrelevant. There is no mention in the report of a link between global warming and human activity.


    The UN climate meeting in the Hague has collapsed in disarray over disagreements between the EU and the USA on how to curb greenhouse gas emissions. At issue is the use of “sinks” in the emission accounting with the USA saying that it should be able to use existing forests and agriculture as carbon sinks. Nations have been arguing over contentious positions on how they can do as little as possible to technically reach Kyoto targets. Under the Kyoto Protocol,worldwide emissions of heat-trapping gases must decline to 5.2 percent below 1990 levels by 2012.


    A 500-member IPCC led by Sir John Houghton issued the most authoritative report on global warming so far. It contains the following alarming findings: so much CO2 has already been injected into the air that global warming is “already unstoppable”; the world is warming at an accelerating rate; tens of millions of people around the world will be driven from their homes in the coming decades to become climate change refugees; governments must take urgent action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions; climate change is now so rapid that it is not possible for us to adapt to these changes; human ecosystems and biodiversity will all be affected and it will affect the world economy; the temperature rise in the next 100 years will be between 1.4C and 5.8C, significantly higher than previously thought; “there is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming observed over the past 50 years is attributable to human activities; human influences will continue to change atmospheric composition throughout the 21st century; global warming will persist for many centuries by virtue of the CO2 we have already put into the air; change caused by humans is far greater than the changes due to nature; global warming is caused by carbon dioxide trapping heat.


    (Time) A study of global warming by the National Academy of Sciences ordered by President Bush has concluded, to the President’s chagrin, that, despite the uncertainties about global warming, it is real and that it is not natural but caused by human activities that produce greenhouse gases. The Bush team was surprised and “shocked” by the report which went counter to their stance on global warming which saw the issue as a left wing conspiracy to take control of energy policy. The report comes just in time for a trip by the President to Europe where leaders are furious with the US for not joining the Kyoto Protocol. Having rejected Kyoto out of hand W, now having to cede some ground to the Europeans, admitted that global warming was a problem.


    Researchers say that Mars, too, may be a victim of global warming. The planet’s solid carbon-dioxide polar caps seem to have receded over the past Martian year (687 days). The more they evaporate, the more the atmosphere warms.


    A report by the National Research Council (USA) says that global warming may trigger climate changes so abrupt that ecosystems will not be able to adapt. Look for local or short term cooling, floods, droughts, and other unexpected changes. A growing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere due to the use of fossil fuels is to blame. Some regional climates have changed by as much as 10C in 10 years. Antarctica’s largest glaciers are rapidly thinning, and in the last 10 years have lost up to 150 feet of thickness in some places, enough to raise global sea levels by 0.4 mm. Global warming is a real problem and it is getting worse.

  11. 2001, IPCC REPORT

    Carbon dioxide from unhindered burning of fossil fuels will raise earth’s temperature 5.8C by 2100. The work of the panel over the last 10 years has now effectively ended the debate about man made global warming It is time for governments to get serious about reducing emissions.No country can afford to ignore the coming transformation of its natural and human environment. The poor and vulnerable are at greatest risk.


    Japan, the 4th largest CO2 emitter in the world ratified the Kyoto Protocol to reduce emissions and urged other industrialized nations to follow suit.


    A piece of ice the size of Rhode island broke off the Larsen ice shelf in Antarctica and within a month it dissipated sending a huge flotsam of ice into the sea. At about the same time an iceberg the size of Delaware broke off the Thwaites Glacier. A few months ago parts of the Ross ice shelf had broken off in a similar way. These events serve as a dramatic reminders that global warming is real and its effects are potentially catastrophic and underscores the urgent need for a binding international agreement to cut greenhouse gas emissions.


    In major U-turn by the USA, the EPA has acknowledged for the first time that greenhouse gas emissions from human activity cause global warming but stopped short of endorsing the Kyoto Protocol as all 15 EU nations have done choosing instead to follow a voluntary emission reduction program of its own design. The EPA report is contrary to the position of the White House. President Bush distanced himself from the report saying that it was “put out by the bureaucracy” and that the report itself had caveats with respect to the uncertainties inherent in global warming science.


    The 2002 EPA report endorses the global warming theory that underlies the Kyoto Protocol saying that “Greenhouse gases are accumulating in the Earth’s atmosphere as a result of human activities, causing global mean surface air temperatures and subsurface ocean temperatures to rise”. Other excerpts: US greenhouse gas emissions will rise 43% from 2000 to 2020; a few ecosystems, such as alpine meadows in the Rocky Mountains and some barrier islands, are likely to disappear

    entirely; changes observed over the last several decades are likely due tohuman activities. It concludes that global warming is a threat and that it can be mitigated by reducing carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels.


    Soot that lands on snow has caused ¼ of the warming since 1880 because dirty snow traps more solar heat than pristine snow and induces a strong warming effect, according to a new computer model by James Hansen of NASA. It explains why sea ice and glaciers are melting faster than they should. Reducing soot emissions is an effective tool to curb global warming. It is easier to cut soot emissions than it is to cut CO2 emissions but we still need to reduce CO2 emissions in order to stabilize the atmosphere.


    (UNEP report) Global warming will melt snow at lower altitudes forcing ski areas to move higher and higher up the mountain. Downhill skiing could disappear altogether in some resorts. A retreating snow line will cut off base villages from their ski runs by 2030. Climate change is happening now and we can measure it. Traditional low altitude ski resorts of Europe will have to either shut down or suffer higher costs of snow making. Global warming will push the altitude for ski resorts from 4265 feet to 4900-6000 feet. In Switzerland,several low-lying resorts are already having problems getting bank loans. Austria’s snow line is set to rise by 656 to 984 feet in the next 30-50 years leaving many ski resorts behind. Banks are now less willing to lend money to ski resorts. Temperatures are set to rise by 2C to 6C by 2100 unless dramatic action is taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to the IPCC, a body of 2000 scientists.


    Global warming has unleashed massive ecological changes that are already under way. These changes are ushering in a grim future including massive species extinctions, an elevation of sea levels by 3 feet, wholesale changes to the Arctic, and disruptions to the earth’s life support system. These changes should serve as a wake up call to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


    Observed impacts of global climate change in the US. Global warming is plain to see if you look at how it has affected wildlife. Half of the 150 species studied showed these effects. Global warming is changing life in your own back yard. Many species are going extinct in the southern edge of their range and doing better in the northern edge. Edith’s checkerspot butterfly is in sharp decline near the Mexico-California border where it has become too warm and dry, but their numbers are rising in British Columbia. The red fox is heading north and can now be found in the Arctic. In Florida and the Gulf coast people are seeing many many new species coming up from Mexico and the Caribbean. A previous worldwide study of 1500 species showed that this effect is global.


    An unprecedented 4-year study of the Arctic shows that polar bears, walruses, and some seals are becoming extinct. Arctic summer sea ice may disappear entirely. Combined with a rapidly melting Greenland ice sheet, it will raise the sea level 3 feet by 2100 inundating lowlands from Florida to Bangladesh. Average winter temperatures in Alaska and the rest of the Arctic are projected to rise an additional 7 to 13 degrees over the next 100 years because of increasing emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities. The area is warming twice as fast as anywhere else because of global air circulation patterns and natural feedback loops, such as less ice reflecting sunlight, leading to increased warming at ground level and more ice melt. Native peoples’ ways of life are threatened. Animal migration patterns have changed, and the thin sea ice and thawing tundra make it too dangerous for humans to hunt and travel.


    Eight states and the City of New York have sued five electric power public utilities for failing to cut greenhouse gas emissions and for causing global warming. They are demanding emission reductions of 3% per year for 10 years. Currently carbon dioxide is not recognized as a pollutant by the Clean Air Act and the federal govt is therefore accused of abdicating its responsibility in the matter.


    A meltdown of the massive ice sheet, which is more than 3km-thick would raise sea levels by an average seven meters, threatening countries such as Bangladesh, certain islands in the Pacific and some parts of Florida. Greenland’s huge ice sheet could melt within the next thousand years if emissions of carbon dioxide (CO

    2) and global warming are not reduced.


    The Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA) report says: increasing greenhouse gases from human activities is causing the Arctic to warm twice as fast as the rest of the planet; in Alaska, western Canada, and eastern Russia winter temperatures have risen by 2C to 4C in the last 50 years; the Arctic will warm by 4C to 7C by 2100. A portion of Greenland’s ice sheet will melt; global sea levels will rise; global warming will intensify. Greenland contains enough melting ice to raise sea levels by 7 meters; Bangkok, Manila, Dhaka, Florida, Louisiana, and New Jersey are at risk of inundation; thawing permafrost and rising seas threaten Arctic coastal regions; climate change will accelerate and bring about profound ecological and social changes; the Arctic is experiencing the most rapid and severe climate change on earth and it’s going to get a lot worse; Arctic summer sea ice will decline by 50% to 100%; polar bears will be driven towards extinction; this report is an urgent SOS for the Arctic; forest fires and insect infestations will increase in frequency and intensity; changing vegetation and rising sea levels will shrink the tundra to its lowest level in 21000 years; vanishing breeding areas for birds and grazing areas for animals will cause extinctions of many species; “if we limit emission of heat trapping carbon dioxide we can still help protect the Arctic and slow global warming”.


    Hollywood released a movie called “The day after tomorrow”, a dramatization of the horrors of global warming complete with superstorms, and a “climate shift”. There is death and destruction on a global scale Hollywood style. It is promoted by the global warming camp as “a teachable moment” and derided by skeptics as goofy. It helps to dramatically increase public support for global warming issues and for reduction of carbon dioxide emissions.


    The Arctic ice cap is shrinking at an unprecedented rate and will be gone by 2070. It has shrunk by 15%to 20% in the last 30 years. This process will accelerate with the Arctic warming twice as fast as the rest of the world due to a buildup of heat trapping greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.The findings support the broad scientific consensus that global warming is caused mainly by rising atmospheric greenhouse gases as a result of emissions from cars, factories and power plants.

History of the Global Warming Scare Chapter 6: 2005-2010

This chapter was moved to a separate blog post.

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