Thursday, August 30, 2007

Apocalypse? What Apocalypse?

Veddy IN-ter-rrest-eeng! Ok, Heidi, what do you have to say about this?

In 2004, history professor Naomi Oreskes performed a survey of research papers on climate change. Examining peer-reviewed papers published on the ISI Web of Science database from 1993 to 2003, she found a majority supported the "consensus view," defined as humans were having at least some effect on global climate change. Oreskes' work has been repeatedly cited, but as some of its data is now nearly 15 years old, its conclusions are becoming somewhat dated.

Medical researcher Dr. Klaus-Martin Schulte recently updated this research. Using the same database and search terms as Oreskes, he examined all papers published from 2004 to February 2007. The results have been submitted to the journal Energy and Environment, of which DailyTech has obtained a pre-publication copy. The figures are surprising.

Of 528 total papers on climate change, only 38 (7%) gave an explicit endorsement of the consensus. If one considers "implicit" endorsement (accepting the consensus without explicit statement), the figure rises to 45%. However, while only 32 papers (6%) reject the consensus outright, the largest category (48%) are neutral papers, refusing to either accept or reject the hypothesis. This is no "consensus."

The figures are even more shocking when one remembers the watered-down definition of consensus here. Not only does it not require supporting that man is the "primary" cause of warming, but it doesn't require any belief or support for "catastrophic" global warming. In fact of all papers published in this period (2004 to February 2007), only a single one makes any reference to climate change leading to catastrophic results.

Dang. So why do all these apocalyptic pronouncements about catastrophic climate change seem to appear every hour, on the hour, on The Weather Channel? It’s been especially bad the last two days, what with yesterday being the second anniversary of Katrina and all. Inquiring minds most certainly want to know.

Oh, Hell. Let’s not be coy. I already know why the BS is there; I just want to see what sort of tap-dance the “climate expert” is gonna come up with to discredit this latest bit of news. Probably something about revoking their credentials. Frickin' apostates. They never think about the polar bears!

Today’s Pic: No coffee and cigars on the verandah today. It rained for at least four hours straight this morning…a good, steady, soaking sort of rain. And that’s somewhat unusual for this part of the world, in that our rain usually arrives in fast-moving cloudbursts that deposit buckets of rain on semi-parched ground. But not today. Today we get a soaker. And I think that’s good (assuming Jenny’s husband got the hay cut).


  1. The older I get, the more impressed I am that the brain cells you use to get the "right" answer (answer that complies with what someone in a position of authority, .e.g. Dr. Cullen, expected you to do) are oppositional to the brain cells you use to get the "right" answer (thing you do that creates a chain reaction culminating in the result you desired).

    By oppositional, I mean it seems to be an impossibility to use both these clumps of cells at the same time. That, and people who are inculcated to following instructions, are irrationally dedicated to forcing everyone else to do the same thing. But I've opined far more than my fair share about that already...

    Anyway. It's good to see the world isn't coming to an end. Er, I mean, apart from that one paper that said it still is. Who wrote up that one? Dr. Cullen herself?

  2. We didn't get any rain out here, yet. But I went to town and got to drive thru the puddles along 1st and 2nd streets today. Always fun.

    Hubby managed to cut and bale 50 acres. Decided to wait a couple more weeks on the rest (mainly because the swather had to go to the mechanic in Muleshoe). Even so, timing worked out good for us.

  3. Glad to hear that you got a decent soaker and to hear that it missed Jenny's haying. We just got two big splats out here, the ones which take the ground away with them and don't soak in much.

    Good view of your rolling stock. I am inclined to say bring the RV out here. I see the well sitters go by in them from time to time. After a BIG cluster they just pulled on us, the patch seems more inclined to fix and grade our road at least. Timing will be everything. Plus you have to watch out for displaced polar bears around here lately - at least they are easier to see at night than black cattle.

  4. Buck,

    Regarding your first item here, here is your equal and opposite reaction.

    The whole thing looks less and less like a scientifikable debate all the time, doesn't it?

  5. Jenny: I think it's oh-so-interesting that we live just 11 miles (or so) apart and I got drenched while you got bupkis. It really did rain for four hours straight yesterday morning, I swear! But you already know that, coz of the width and breadth of P-Ville's "puddles." (Nice term for our minor, semi-controlled flooding...) ;-)

    Morgan: Nice piece on the NASA background checks. Which, if memory serves, used to be SOP for just about any gub'mint job, period. I'm not fully caffeinated yet, but if memory serves (again) there's a former senior NASA weather-type (if it's not that Hansen guy quoted in your linked article, it's some other "scientist") who's been making the pundit rounds of late claiming he was "suppressed" by the Bush Admin. I think he's also flogging a book, too. And I'll bet the same guy has his hand in this...

    Lin: You've never mentioned it, but are the oil/gas field guys in your neck of the woods there for the long-haul... as in years, vs. months? I was thinking it's a very "good thing" for you and your neighbors (sparse as they are!) that the oil guys maintain your roads. What happens if and when they leave? Does your road have "county" status? Or is it private?

  6. Buck, the patch is here for the long haul, at least another 50 plus years and they seem to keep finding more reserves.
    Some roads seem to be county, some state, sometimes the feds seem to get involved - we still haven't quite figured out who does what. The patch normally does a better job of maintenance than the counties but have been ignoring some major developing problems lately. But you are right, without them, I just can't see these various govts taking up the slack. I can't imagine what it was like 80 years ago to travel these trails.


Just be polite... that's all I ask.