Global Warming?

Posted By Elgin Hushbeck

There were couple of interesting letters to the editor in the Wall Street Journal commenting on a editorial by John McCain concerning Global Warming and a U.N. –IPCC science panel report. The first was from S. Fred Singer Professor emeritus of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia, adjunct scholar at the National Center for policy Analysis, and former director of the U.S. Weather Satellite Service. He was comment was that the UN report was flawed for three reasons

1) The claim that the climate is warming is based solely on surface thermometer data. But this is contradict by data from other sources such as weather satellites, which give “superior observations,” and from proxy data such as tree rings, ice cores, etc.

2) The claim that he 20th century was the warmest in the past 1000 years has been shown to be flawed and based on a misuse of data. A detail audit of the research reveal “a shocking set of errors.”

Even if the first two were true this still would not show a human cause. The link to a human cause is obtained by computer simulations.

3) Computer simulations are questionable. While models have been constructed that are able to show a link, this is only in the most general sense. When data is examined by latitude and altitude, the agreement falls apart.

The other letter raised a question about one of the claim in McCain editorial. McCain wrote “According to a UN study, every ton of greenhouse gas emitted into our atmosphere costs each American up to $160 per year – and we are currently emitting billions of tons each year.”

As Gordon Slack points out “So, apparently, if I take the low end of “billions” as two billion tons, greenhouse gas emissions are going to cost me $160 times two billion or $320 billion a year… I have a wife and three children who don’t earn anything, so I need to cover them as well. My household is on the line for $1.6 trillion!”

Nov 10th, 2003

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