Even the Fonz only got to jump the shark once. But every day is a happy day for the IPCC, seemingly intent on plumbing new depths of climate alarmist gimmickry with every passing report. Its ‘now or never’ latest offering comes in a long line of sci-fi fantasy episodes, guaranteed to run for many more seasons.
The Guardian reports that scientists have said it is a final climate warning for governments. According to the BBC, scientists say carbon dioxide must peak within three years, and even then we must invent machines to suck the gas out of the atmosphere. The IPCC says diets and lifestyles must change. Having the right policies in place will enable the changes in our lifestyles and behaviours to take place, co-chair of the latest report Priyadarshi Shukla told the BBC.
Mr. Shukla was an interesting choice to co-chair the report. Until August 2017, he was Professor at the Indian Institute of Management, specialising in energy and environment modelling. Amongst his published work is a contribution to Fair Weather? Equity concerns in climate change.
Sucking CO2 out of the atmosphere is typical fantastical IPCC. The technology is expensive, largely untried and uses huge amounts of energy. Maybe, with the face mask fetish still going strong in many parts of the world, humans could be persuaded to wear some kind of attached breathing receptacle to trap the three billion tonnes of CO2 they emit each year. Two figures always missing from IPCC reports are what temperature and CO2 level they consider most suitable for the Earth’s atmosphere.
At the heart of IPCC catastrophising is the prediction of a large rise in the global temperature. The BBC sums it up well: “First, the bad news – even if all the policies to cut carbon that governments had put in place by the end of 2020 were fully implemented, the world would still warm by 3.2°C this century.”
This improbable temperature leap arises from the notion that a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere will lead to a 6°C warming. There is no credible scientific proof for this guess, but it accounts for years of inaccurate ‘Garbage In, Gospel Out’ climate model forecasts. The detachment of forecasts from reality is clearly shown by the Remote Sensing Systems graph below.
The thick green line shows the actual global satellite temperature as measured at the University of Alabama. The forecasts started to soar upwards about 20 years ago, at a time when the science was declared ‘settled’, and green activists took complete control of the climate change agenda. As we have seen in previous articles, and is confirmed in the graph, global warming started to run out of steam a couple of decades ago, and has been at a standstill for the last 90 months. The suggestion that the green line will suddenly shoot up vertically is an invention of these activists. In order to accommodate the predicted now less-than-80-year rise, the graph would have to double in height.
Why is this IPCC stuff – deeply flawed at best, political propaganda in reality – being continuously produced? As we did with the last IPCC report, let’s look at the people who write it and see if we can spot any actual scientists. By scientists I mean physicists and chemists, people who analyse empirical data and spend their lives trying to prove and disprove scientific hypotheses. One of which, of course, is the still unproven hypothesis that humans cause all or most global warming.
This exacting definition of scientist must necessarily not include those who sign up to notions of post-normal science, where an extended community adds local knowledge and value judgements. As before, we will select a small representative group. There are 239 listed authors including 20 British contributors. We will look at the areas of expertise of the first 10 in that latter group.
Michael Grubb is Professor of Energy and Climate Change at UCL. At masters level he is said to teach a course on the economics and political economy of energy and climate mitigation policy. The home page of Professor Chukwumerije Okereke notes that he is “globally recognised leading scholar” on matters including climate governance and international development, with expertise in climate justice and busines climate strategies. Jason Lowe is Head of Climate Services at the Met Office. Robert Matthews leads the Forest Mensuration Modelling and Forecasting Science Group at Forest Research. Julia Steinberger is Professor of Societal Challenges of Climate Change at the University of Lausanne. Patrick Devine-Wright is a Professor of Human Geography at Exeter University. According to his home page he has been ranked in the world’s top 1% of social science by citation in 2019, 2020 and 2021. Frank Geels is Professor of Systems Innovation at Manchester University. Yacob Mulugetta is Professor of Energy and Development Policy at UCL. Nicholas Eyre is Professor of Energy and Climate Policy at Oxford University. On his LinkedIn page, Smail Khennas is described as a “senior energy expert Energy and Climate Change”.
All these people are no doubt expert in their fields. But it is surely reasonable to ask, where, in what is billed as a scientific report written by scientists, are the scientists?
Chris Morrison is the Daily Sceptic’s Environment Editor