Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A one sided debate

As a perfect example of how the "climate change" debate has become so one sided, CO2 Science references a report which is every bit as important to the debate as The Stern Report - but which has gone virtually unnoticed. It's not been noticed because it does not fit the political consensus of anthropogenic climate change.

Khilyuk and Chilingar looked into the major factors of climate change and came to the conclusion that those were ........

(1) solar radiation as a dominant external energy supplier to the Earth, (2) outgassing as a major supplier of gases to the World Ocean and the atmosphere, and, possibly, (3) microbial activities generating and consuming atmospheric gases at the interface of lithosphere and atmosphere."

After providing quantitative estimates of the scope and extent of these major forces on earth's climate - not only here but in two earlier studies as well (Khilyuk and Chilingar (2003, 2004) - the two researchers from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles (USA) conclude that "the theory of currently observed global atmospheric warming as a result of increasing anthropogenic carbon dioxide emission is a myth," and that it has "proved to be an enduring one."

So much for the "scientific consensus" that climate change is caused by man.

The take-home message of Khilyuk and Chilingar's analysis, as they describe it, is that "any attempts to mitigate undesirable climatic changes using restrictive regulations are condemned to failure, because the global natural forces are at least 4-5 orders of magnitude greater than available human controls." What is more, they indicate that "application of these controls will lead to catastrophic economic consequences," noting that "since its inception in February 2005, the Kyoto Protocol has cost about $50 billion supposedly averting about 0.0005°C of warming by the year 2050," and that "the Kyoto Protocol is a good example of how to achieve the minimum results with the maximum efforts (and sacrifices)." This being the case, they conclude that "attempts to alter the occurring global climatic changes have to be abandoned as meaningless and harmful," and that in their place the "moral and professional obligation of all responsible scientists and politicians is to minimize potential human misery resulting from oncoming global climatic change," hopefully by more immediate, rational and cost-effective means.

Stern's report was supposed to be the economist's view of the science - but it was a view from the wrong perspective. This is the scientists view of the economy and is much more on the mark.

Receiving far more attention today is James Lovelock's prediction that the world will become virtually uninhabitable - but at least the UK will be OK. I don't go along with Lovelock's doom laden pessimism, but his belief does reinforce my view that we should be doing more to prepare for rather than to stop something that can't be stopped. I don't think Lovelock is completely correct, but I do believe that he is right in assuming that the British Isles will become increasingly attractive to non-Britons - and that is why we need to be ready.

We will need to be able to feed ourselves. This will mean self sufficiency in food supply and distribution.

We will need to be able to provide power for ourselves. This will mean finding sources of power which we can rely on regardless of external influences. It also means keeping the supply and distribution of that power in British hands.

We will need to be able to defend ourselves. Nothing is going to happen overnight. The change will be slow and gradual. We will need to be able to defend ourselves from aggressors who will see Britain's food and fuel reserves as an attractive proposition - and a land that is rich in scarce resources but weak in defence is ripe for invasion.

3 comments:

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Steve Bloom said...

FYI, Khilyuk and Chilingar are petroleum engineers who have no qualifications as either climate scientists or economists. Note that your quote from the CO2Science site delicately danced around this point by referring to them as "researchers." By that standard I'm a researcher too, and my research shows that there is little reason to accept as credible anything these guys have to say on the subject of climate. I would refer readers to www.realclimate.org, a site run by climate scientists.

Anonymous said...

Khilyuk and Chilingar has been largely discredited by a peer reviewed response to their paper, see here:

http://schwinger.harvard.edu/~motl/usc-rebuttal.html

In fact it's pretty easy to discredit if all you understand is the difference between processes occuring at 200 year timescales and 4.6 billion year timescales.

I'm afraid the tide of scientific opinion is not with you on this debate.

Paulbod