The Downfall of Climate Change Denialism

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Apropos this, and this, we have this:

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In Search of Sungudogo by Greg Laden, now in Kindle or Paperback
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24 thoughts on “The Downfall of Climate Change Denialism

  1. Kyle, there are plenty of conservatives who continue to deny global warming itself. Hannah: I know, it had to happen!

  2. Conservatives switched from no GW to no AGW in the face of incontrovertible evidence of W. Soon they will switch to “so what, I’ve got mine and who cares about the future?”


    Barge traffic stalls along drought-parched Mississippi River

    Crews try to keep shipping channels open, but the Mississippi’s dangerously low water levels already are causing kinks in the supply chain.,0,3690741.story

  3. There are fallback denial positions:

    Bjorn Llomborgesque: Everyone will be so rich in the future it won’t matter.

    Huntsmanesque: We believe in climate change but we’re not going to do anything about it.

    Obamaesque: We believe in climate change and we’re going to do something about it, just not a lot and not right now.

  4. @bks: Isn’t that the essence of the scientific method? Doubt until presented with solid data/proof, then acceptance.

    A claimant hypothesizes: Human activity is causing average global temperature to increase.
    Skeptics/Opponents: show me
    Claimant: Look at these temperature charts
    Skeptics/Opponents: Good job! Now what about the CO2 or human connection?

    I’ve looked hard and the closest to proof I can find for CO2’s contribution is: “Our models just don’t work out any other way. We don’t know what else it could be. It must be CO2.” That’s a good example of the logical fallacy argument from ignorance.

    On the Mississippi thing: One river in the US, one year, is not long-term global warming. This quote from Dr. Mark Crislip is just as true here as for medicine: “The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data”.

  5. Jeff: Wrong on all counts. No one has ever said what you’ve claimed to be the basis of the current science on climate change. We know what the link is, how it works, and it is well measured and widely observed. You are either way uninformed or making shit up to avoid the truth.

    Regarding the river, actually, there is quite a bit more going on than mentioned in the post to which you refer. We only briefly mention the two closures because it is handily within the focal year. The river has been having problems like this for a while now and it is getting worse, and some of the problems are not directly related to the topic at hand but to other uses. Our mention of it is appropriate and correct, and this is not an isolated anecdote.

  6. I am still scratching my head trying to figure out what exactly it is that skeptics are in denial of. They believe the earth has been warming, so it can’t be that. They believe CO2 is a greenhouse gas, so it can’t be that. They believe man-made CO2 causes a little warming, so it can’t be that. What, then?

  7. Greg
    Reading your comments suggests you have blind faith rather than knowledge. AGW which appears to have stopped the past few years may well be CO2related but there is no direct link yet found. Remember the second half of the Eemian Interglacial saw the temperature dropping whilst CO2 remained at 285ppm
    So ongoing research is vital but we do not know the answers yet. The acetist keeps am open mind

  8. Im not that other Jeff who posted that idiotic crap above, so please note that. Henceforth, I will post as Jeffrey to distinguish us.

  9. Ted – they are in denial of reality, that’s the problem. Deniers will never accept the ultimate reality of AGW or what it means, because that would destroy their world view. That’s why you see so many ‘buts…’ in what they say. They never make the final leap, so you end up with a wide spectrum from total denial of GW to the Lomborg ‘it’s happening but we will have miracle machines because we will be so rich’ line of thought. They can always take comfort in something, sad though that is.

    The video clip is sheer genius, and I’m wondering how someone first thought of putting the film to to the thoughts of Marc Mareno…

    A thought just occurred to me – think how much the cries of technology will save us sound like the Nazi boasts of super weapons. Did it work then? Not so much..

  10. Graeme, sorry ,but you’ve got that wrong. Certain well sampled parts of the global climate system were cooler during the Eemian other warmer than if that CO2 rate was as today. In fact, the more important anomoly there is warmer conditions than expected thus the higher sea level sands. I’ve discussed that here.

    Nice try.

  11. Jeffrey, yes you are; this comment saying you are not was held in moderation as was the comment you refer to, and the secret numbers only I can see are the same.

  12. Jeffrey, sorry, you’re correct; You are NOT the “Jeff” noted above. I stand corrected (by myself)

    There are too many people named Jeff. Good idea to use “Jeffrey” for now.

  13. Agreed. Thank you for proclaiming my innocence. I appreciate that. This reminds me of the play A Comedy of Errors. Pax Vobiscum

  14. bks, these are quotes taken over a couple of decades as a commemoration. Click through to the first indicated links at the top of the post.

  15. @Graeme: “AGW which appears to have stopped the past few years…”
    Are you saying global warming has ceased, or merely its human-caused component? Only by carefully selecting the beginning of “the past few years” does warming appear to have ceased, but such a period is too short to be significant considering how much noise surrounds the global temperature signal. This has been discussed many times (for example, here.

  16. Yes, the idiotic crap Jeff. Insults tend to provoke further insults. I am not eloquent and still trying to learn. I believe that polite discourse is the way forward. Regardless of any expressions of Godwin’s Law here or elsewhere, I will remain polite.

    Why do you say “Wrong on all counts” ? It is the essence of the scientific method to expect good data / proof, and accept it when presented with it. We do not believe what someone says based solely on their credentials. And it is a proper response to change one’s position when faced with good data. They deserve mocking when they don’t accept the data, not when they do.

    There certainly is much more data behind Mississippi river levels. Very direct human activities beyond last Summer’s drought. Those quotes and the link are anecdotes.

    I’m still looking for data/reports/papers explaining the magnitude of the CO2 link. I have seen people claim exactly what I said.

  17. Oh come on Jeff, you know it’s not that simple. Arrhenius laboriously worked out the straightforward CO2 physics of climate – by hand, in pen and ink – 110+ years ago. Plass designed ‘heat-seeking’ missiles in the 50s based on the well-known physics.

    The crude computers of the late 70s early 80s started on the path of more detailed modelling than Arrhenius’s simplistic approach. And now we have massive computers and massive data sets all confirming what’s been known for over a century.

    The truly remarkable thing is that the overall picture has changed so little. Increase CO2 by any given amount and expect a defined increase in temperature.

    The big advantage we have over such projections and analysis in the past is that we can now distinguish the small but steady temperature increase signal from the very large seasonal and ENSO variations which obscure it a bit.

  18. You must think the earth’s climate system is simple. It’s just a minor detail that “every” model run by those massive computers has over-predicted the future expected warming. While CO2 levels continue to rise – temperatures have not followed suit for the past 18+ years. Hmm. Must not be so simple. What were the CO2 levels when Greenland was “green”? How about other periods in earth’s history that were much warmer than now? Since climate is always changing (on which everyone agrees) – which year’s climate is the one we should strive to keep as the “perfect” “natural” climate? 1935? 1974? Who should decide this? The UN? WMO? People in northern Canada? in the tropics?

  19. Matt,

    First, great job on the Dr. Who, you were one of the best!

    Meanwhile, I note that you picked this post, with the focus of levity rather than data or modeling, to make your comment. Why did you not pick this post, which gives lie to your statement about no warming for 18 years?

    Or this post, which discusses how actual climate models by actual scientists have been pretty darn good, while the anti-science denier models have sucked?


  20. temperatures have not followed suit for the past 18+ years

    Getting statistically significant warming out of the noisy satellite record in any period of 18 years is like getting blood out of a stone.

    See how many 18 year periods in the satellite record had statistically significant warming:

    You usually need to start with an unusual cooling event like Pinatubo.

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