Twitter Begins Censorship of Climate Science Dissent. Will Elon Musk End It?

Twitter’s decision to ban advertisements that “contradict the scientific consensus” around human-caused climate change is both bad and sad. Twitter says such ads are now prohibited by its “inappropriate content policy”. Ads that cast doubt on a scientific hypothesis that doesn’t have a single credible paper to conclusively prove it’s correct are now to be placed on a list that includes the promotion of paedophilia. Ads that question almost forecasts about increases in global temperatures by multiple degrees centigrade based on always-wrong climate models are now to be lumped in with vile abuse based on a person’s skin colour.

The move was announced on Earth Day but was largely a virtue-signalling act since few if any ads will be affected. It is mainly woke companies that signal their virtue in their advertising on a range of cultural and political issues. More practically-minded companies maximise their attempts to provide a service and turn a profit rather than indulging in ideologically-charged advertising.

There are fears, however, that the move, banning in effect non-existent ads, could presage wider restriction of the overall freedom to debate climate change science on social media. It remains to be seen whether the just announced purchase by Elon Musk changes any of the cancelling culture at the San Francisco operation. Twitter said that “misleading information” about climate change “can undermine efforts to protect the planet”. It added: “In the coming months, we’ll have more to share on our work to add reliable, authoritative context to the climate conversations happening on Twitter.” It noted that it was “always thinking about other ways” to “serve” climate conversations.

On Twitter, the company’s global sustainability manager Casey Junod later retweeted a post that noted: “Climate change denial is propaganda that needs to be countered with concrete action and progressive policies.” Junod also retweeted Barak Obama’s response calling the banning move “a good example of progress”, and warning “companies need to be more careful about the content they promote, especially in ads”. Junod said the former American President’s comments were a “proud moment for Twitter”.

The Twitter move is sad because it is yet another shift away from traditional notions of empirical science into an era of ‘settled’, or what is sometimes known as post normal science. In 2003, the author Michael Crichton captured the essence of traditional science when he said:

In science, consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is the reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If its science, it isn’t consensus. Period.

In Twitter’s view, “climate denialism should not be monetised” and this approach is “informed” by supposedly authoritative sources like the IPCC Assessment Reports. These reports, written with a considerable input from politically-motivated social scientists, are now seen as infallible guides to back the command-and-control Net Zero agenda. Twitter relays the IPCC ex cathedra instruction that immediate and deep cuts in carbon dioxide emissions “are necessary to turn the tide on global warming”.

While we are still allowed, let us turn our attention to that last pronouncement. One excellent way to turn the tide on global warming would be for the controllers of the world’s major temperature datasets to stop adjusting them upwards. Last week the Daily Sceptic published a number of articles showing how an inconvenient pause in global warming between 1998-2012 was erased from the record by two adjustments to the Met Office’s HadCRUT temperature database. Here is the pause as seen before the first change in 2013.

The pause and suggestion of a slight drop in temperature is clearly visible. From this database it looks as if warming from around 1850 was around 0.8°C. It might convincingly be argued that this warming would be expected, since it is a small bounce back from the previous three centuries of considerable cooling. Note also the fall from the 1940s to the late 1970s.

Two revisions later and the graph is showing over 1°C of warming and a more activist-friendly hockey stick. The awkward pause has been consigned to history. Last Monday we revealed that 14% had been added to the recent global temperature record by the move to HadCRUT5 in 2020. In addition, temperatures had been cooled in the past which accentuated the hockey stick effect. If we add the rise from HadCRUT3 to 4, the boost is as much as 30%. In other words, nearly a third of recent global warming is human caused – humans adjusting the surface temperature record.

Similar changes have been seen in other datasets. In his recent State of the Climate report, Emeritus Professor Ole Humlum of the University of Oslo looked at adjustments by NASA to its GISS record and concluded that “half of the apparent global temperature increase from January 1910 to January 2000 is due to administrative adjustments to the original data since May 2008”.

Just how much, if any, global warming has there been since the late 1990s is a reasonable scientific question. The Daily Sceptic regularly publishes the accurate satellite record of global temperature going back to 1979, as compiled by Dr. Roy Spencer of the University of Alabama. The past pause lives on in this record along with a current standstill now measuring over seven years.

As we have also reported, Google recently “demonetised” Dr. Spencer’s web page publishing this data by kicking it off AdSense.

Chris Morrison is the Daily Sceptic’s Environment Editor.

Stop Press: Some of Twitter’s left-wing staffers have branded Musk’s takeover “dangerous” and several prominent liberal media personalities have announced they’re leaving the platform, according to MailOnline.

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November 2022
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