The 16 scientists who signed the Wall Street Journal editorial are a minority, but they're not outliers. They're not "flat earthers." They're not "scared of science." They are, quite simply, distinguished scientists with a dissenting opinion.
And their opinion deserves our respect.
Following are the scientists and engineers who signed the WSJ editorial.
Claude Allegre, former director of the Institute for the Study of the Earth, University of Paris
J. Scott Armstrong, co-founder of the Journal of Forecasting and the International Journal of Forecasting
Jan Breslow, head of the Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics and Metabolism, Rockefeller University
Roger Cohen, fellow, American Physical Society
Edward David, member, National Academy of Engineering and National Academy of Sciences
William Happer, professor of physics, Princeton University
Michael Kelly, professor of technology, University of Cambridge
William Kininmonth, former head of climate research at the Australian Bureau of Meterology
Richard Lindzen, professor of atmospheric sciences, MIT
James McGrath, professor of chemistry, Virginia Tech University
Rodney Nichols, former president and CEO of the New York Academy of Sciences
Burt Rutan, designer of Voyager and SpaceShipOne
Harrison H. Schmitt, Apollo 17 astronaut and former US Senator
Nir Shaviv, professor of astrophysics, Hebrew University, Jerusalem
Henk Tennekes, former director, Royal Dutch Meteorological Service
Antonio Zichichi, president of the World Federation of Scientists, Geneva
eb1225, your focus on risk reduction is typical of progressives. Aside from the question of how accurate and useful are the climatologists projections, we must question how cost effective the risk reduction measures may be. Risk reduction is fine until it runs into unintended consequences and the law of diminishing returns. The low hanging fruit of risk reduction tends to be effective. As the risk becomes incrementally smaller, the cost of risk reduction rises. As the risk approaches zero, the cost approaches infinity. Unfortunately the cost/benefit ratio is seldom discussed. In the case of global warming the arguments have been largely emotional with little believable quantification of benefits or costs.
But the truth is that I simply do NOT want to live in a cave and eat rocks. I suppose that I am being quite selfish in that attitude, but then, I don't want anybody else to live in a cave and eat rocks either.
Everyone has a right to believe what they want - it's just that I'm not too interested in hearing about arguments based on belief. As an electronics engineer and scientist whose specialities do not include climate science I can't take a position regarding the core research. So, of the 54 pages of comments you have on this topic shall we try applying this filter ?
Having said this, I have read the scientific parts of the new IPCC5 ( home page: http://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar5/wg1/ ) in particular, the Evaluation of Climate Models ( http://www.climatechange2013.org/images/report/WG1AR5_Chapter09_FINAL.pdf ) and the Final Technical Summary ( http://www.climatechange2013.org/images/report/WG1AR5_TS_FINAL.pdf ). Perhaps this is the minimum knowledge base that is needed to take part in a scientific discussion of climate change, so, let's consider again filtering the respondents in your 54 pages to only those who have read this - an attempt to have a scientific discussion without having read the original articles or at least the "informed" summary is useless.
As a provocative footnote - it is interesting, once you look in depth at these documents (see, in particular the key uncertainties section on p114 of the Technical Summary), how unsure the climate scientists are of most of their facts and how wide their error bands are.
The EROI for oil is fast approaching 1 or less. We are using all tertiary methods of extraction. No one thought we would be stupid enough to sacrifice our water and environment. all the easy oil is gone. Now we are into shale oil and coal to liquids, while we still pay big bucks to bury our wastes instead of converting them to fuels. http://8020vision.com/2011/10/17/energy-return-on-investment-eroi-for-u-s-oil-and-gas-discovery-and-production/
We have dumped 400 times all the volcanoes GHG into the air and raised CO2 levels to the highest in 15 million years. We now regularly have sick building events caused by high CO2 levels. Warming has not slowed, land temperature raise has. The temperature of a mixed water ice system does not go up as you add heat until the ice is gone, and the volume of ice has been shrinking, while the oceans are heating up.
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/pip/2012GL051106.shtml Heat content. World heat content is up. Tracking CO2 and GHG since 1960.
Climate change is real.
Not to mention the mercury, heavy metals pollution from fossils fuels.
Without subsidies breaks and protection, electricity prices would
be: rooftop solar Power: 3-6 cents/KWH Wind Power: 6-7 cents/kWh Nuclear Power: 11-20+ cents/kWh Coal Power: 9-32+ cents/kWh http://cleantechnica.com/2011/06/20/wind-power-subsidies-dont-compare-to-fossil-fuel-nuclear-subsidies/#ABfIXAl3UjBqeQOP.99 but who gets the giant gov breaks????? http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/the-real-deal-on-u.s.-subsidies-fossils-72b-renewable-energys-12b solar 2.3, wind 12B, ethanol 17B, 70B fossils. nukes 120B$
the linked articles do a better job of explaining where there numbers come from.
The total gov break per industry are far more important than the gov breaks per unit.
Seriously, climate change is a problem, it is at least partially man-made (e.g. albedo-raising soot on the surface of Greenland's ice sheet). The science is clear, even if the deniers who stick their heads in the sand happen to have impressive-sounding credentials (btw notice that many of them are "former" this or that; why are they no longer doing those jobs? Incompetence?)
But why do you keep featuring this stupid article over and over? Trying to generate traffic for your web site? Do us all a favor and just ditch your anti-environment pro-carbon agenda and find something productive to write about.
If we consider the mass of the earth, we find that it is quite large, and that it has a very large capacity to absorb heat energy enough for the temperature to increase a bit. An analogy would be to consider a large pot of water on a stove. It takes a long time for the water to heat, and then if we turn up the heat just a little bit, it takes a long time for the temperature to rise a bit more.
Now suppose that the heat output from the sun increased just a small amount, say 0.1%, a hundred years ago. Would anybody have noticed? and how long would it take for the earth's temperature to rise a degrree? Remember that Q=mS(delta T), and that can be solved fot (delta T)=Q/mS. Now m= the mass of the earth, and S= the specific heat of the earth, we can see that for a small change in Q, the energy from the sun, will produce a small change in the temperature of the earth, and we can also see that the change will take a while. My point is that while it may be true that the climate of the earth is warming a bit, it may well be due to an increase in solar energy output, which so far we are not able to affect. Not even president Bush could have had any effect on the solar energy output.
Now consider also that a previous warming trend around the 1500's led to a whole lot of improvements in the human condition, would it be too much to supose that there are cycles that we don't quite understand?
It would take a really towering ego to believe that one understandsexactly how the whole climate mechanism actually works. Some folks do have a few clues, but there is still a whole lot that is unknown, and the present models are a long way from complete. Only a total sophomore would believe that they know it all.
I have always doubted "Global Warming" was a man made problem. Look at the amount of CO2 belched out by the Volcano in Iceland in recent years. It dwarfs man made carbon for decades easily. Also look at JPL's data on the outer planets temp changes over the last 10 years. Temps are up but why? I'd like to know how we could have possibly caused that when we haven't dropped anything on them. Perhaps the warming pundits should look at solar activity records and compare it to their temp charts a bit.
I so happily agree with your point on recycling.
We are covering the planet with trash and it needs to stop. More and more places are closing the landfills with nowhere to go. Cities are shipping trash to other states already !!! This massively increases the cost of an already expensive operation.
The city I work in is taking trash from 2 states away into it's landfill, while this nets them free garbage disposal here, the landfill is filling decades sooner than it would on just local material.
I personally put out 5 times as much recycling as trash. And I have a hard time keeping family putting things into the recycling VS the trash. I think I need a compactor for the recycling bin so it doesn't fill so quickly.
If you look at places like South Korea, they know how to recycle. A standard day at recycling there shows over 90% of the material is recycled. This is possibly driven by low incomes and lack of space for landfill, but it proves it can be done.
You say the data set showing a correlation between CO2 and warming was wrong.... Hahhaha. It was also conveniently destroyed as well.... Hmmmm. Look, you seem to be fooling yourself here. One dataset does not make science. Also, you don't back up your contention with proof about this mysterious dataset. Sounds to me like you prefer conspiracy theories to science.
Next, nobody is demanding that we stop burning fossil fuels across the board. That's just a red herring in this argument. The cost of doing anything needs to be understood as best it can. Extracting and burning coal is inexpensive, but who pays for the people affected by the mercury poisoning downstream.
Lastly, what was green Greenland and not green is once again a phony example of supposed common sense run amok. Look, the science is pretty clear, the concept is quite simple, and the effects are complicated. The urination analogy is not credible. You can calculate the contribution of your urination to a river and it has an effect. You can say the amount of CO2 entering the atmospere is trivial, but the only scientists you find that will agree with that are not specialists in the field; and, they are always in the minority.
Good look with that one scientist that says the asteroid is going to miss us!
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