Climate Change skeptics? [ot]

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Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Mar 3, 2015 - 09:56am PT
Willie Soon is back in the news today, having released a statement declaring his victimhood. This statement was released through the political Heartland Institute, not through the scientific Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, where he is currently under investigation for having failed to disclose possible conflicts of interest (fossil-fuel industry support) for at least 11 research papers arguing the fossil fuel industry is blameless. Eight of these papers were published in journals that explicitly require such disclosure as part of their submissions policy.

Soon's statement attacks his critics and defends his honor in general terms, without specifically addressing those particular papers and journals. Gliding past the the prominent "Conflict of Interest" or "Sources of Funding" statements that come up before you can hit *send* to submit your paper (literally, the websites won't let you hit send until you fill this out), Soon writes about some other set of standards in his own mind:
In submitting my academic writings I have always complied with what I understood to be disclosure practices in my field generally, consistent with the level of disclosure made by many of my Smithsonian colleagues.

In an earlier post I noted that a greater scandal is the quality of his research, heavily promoted for its politics while negatively impressing scientists. Still, non-disclosure unlike low-quality science is a pretty clear-cut violation. His statement today declares that "many of my Smithsonian colleagues" do it too; I can't tell whether that's an effort to spread the blame or a veiled threat to take others down with him.

It does seem notable that the current scandal blew up after FOI documents were obtained by Greenpeace, instead of being noticed long ago by administrators who were cashing the checks and keeping the books at the Harvard Smithsonian Center. The Center's role in all this could eventually become a larger part of the story as well. Ideally that will emerge from their own internal investigation.
TLP

climber
Mar 3, 2015 - 10:28am PT
We conclude that human influences on the climate system are implicated in the current Syrian conflict.

Hanging your climate change creds on that 'fact' will get you laughed at. But have at it.

Only by those with no knowledge of ancient history. I remember reading, or hearing in history class, a full 50 years ago, thus long before the present awareness of climate change, that it was a major factor in some ancient-era wars. I'll post up a reference if I can readily find one.

The contribution of the drought to current events in Syria is undeniable, though it is not as simple as one cause and the effect. Another essential contributor was the government's unwillingness to do anything by way of relief in agricultural areas, causing a wave of migration of working age people to cities, which then reached critical mass and exploded. There's some good scholarship on the whole Syrian episode if one searches for it.
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 3, 2015 - 10:33am PT
EdwardT, how do you expect anybody to give a hard number on money spent contradicting AGW, considering a lot of the money spend on denying climate science is dark money. Please elaborate how you would go about researching this amount.

My issue with denier funding is opponents frequently talk about "the vast sums of money" being spent denying global warming.

When asked to support their claims, we're treated to disingenuous stories like Bruelle's claim of $900 million in funding, which is nothing more than a total of conservative groups' budgets, conveniently ignoring how much goes to "denier" efforts.

Or we get smoking gun reports, like the leaked Heartland documents, showing financial support of "deniers" to the tune of 400K/year. Heartland frequently gets labelled as a leading supporter of denial efforts. And they spend a whopping $400K/year on the cause. Not really that damning.

Or "Dark money", which comes across as another convenient excuse. The non-profits funding denier efforts may not have to disclose where the money comes from, but I think they have to report where it goes. Maybe I'm wrong.

When it comes to backing denier funding claims, we get fuzzy math, cherry-picked (read: minor) examples or the amorphous dark money.

On a side note, I wonder why the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has not been subjected to the same criticisms as Willie Soon.

* Edited 3/5/15. Changed 1 million dollar figure to a more accurate $400k.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Mar 3, 2015 - 10:37am PT
I wonder why the Harvard–Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has not been subjected to the same criticisms as Willie Soon.

criticism for what?
Chiloe

Trad climber
Lee, NH
Mar 3, 2015 - 10:37am PT
There's a long literature of historical studies noting the roles played by drought in many ancient civilizations including those of pre-Columbian America. Drought and crop failures are widely agreed to affect other calamities such as the fall of states, large-scale migration, and civil or interstate war.

Despite DMT's incredulity I don't see why that pattern should not hold today. So do modern droughts reflect greenhouse warming? That's what researchers are asking, and whatever evidence they've got is presented in their papers.
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 3, 2015 - 10:39am PT
criticism for what?



or

k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 3, 2015 - 11:48am PT
^^^^ Nice dodge.




Heartland frequently gets labelled as a leading supporter of denial efforts. And they spend a whopping 1 million dollars/year on the cause.

Where did that $1M number come from EdwardT? Sounds very low, considering this that I posted earlier:

Heartland receives money from approximately 5,000 individuals and organizations, and no single corporate entity donates more than 5% of the operating budget,[62] although the figure for individual donors can be much higher, with a single anonymous donor providing $4.6 million in 2008, and $979,000 in 2011, accounting for 20% of Heartland's overall budget, according to reports of a leaked fundraising plan.[63]

Admittedly, this doesn't identify the total they spend on their climate change position, which is difficult to guage when it comes to the private think tank.
monolith

climber
SF bay area
Mar 3, 2015 - 12:52pm PT
In all, 140 foundations funneled $558 million to almost 100 climate denial organizations from 2003 to 2010.
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2015/mar/02/fossil-fuel-industry-caught-taking-a-page-out-of-the-tobacco-playbook?CMP=share_btn_tw
Stevee B

Trad climber
Oakland, CA
Mar 3, 2015 - 12:57pm PT
What I want to know is, are there hats?
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 3, 2015 - 01:42pm PT
^^^^ Nice dodge.

Whoosh!


Heartland frequently gets labelled as a leading supporter of denial efforts. And they spend a whopping 1 million dollars/year on the cause.

Where did that $1M number come from EdwardT? Sounds very low, considering this that I posted earlier:

Heartland receives money from approximately 5,000 individuals and organizations, and no single corporate entity donates more than 5% of the operating budget,[62] although the figure for individual donors can be much higher, with a single anonymous donor providing $4.6 million in 2008, and $979,000 in 2011, accounting for 20% of Heartland's overall budget, according to reports of a leaked fundraising plan.[63]

Admittedly, this doesn't identify the total they spend on their climate change position, which is difficult to guage when it comes to the private think tank.

My $1M number was a ballpark estimate, based on the other figures you posted. You know... money Heartland distributed.

The numbers you posted above prove nothing.
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
Mar 3, 2015 - 06:39pm PT
http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/12918/20150223/solar-farm-set-hundreds-birds-ablaze.htm
apogee

climber
Technically expert, safe belayer, can lead if easy
Mar 3, 2015 - 07:00pm PT
^^^^
That does it!

I'm buying a Hummer.

Wait...from that same link...

"However, it's important to note that unlike the California and Nevada plants, earlier, smaller versions of these power towers tested in Europe did not regularly see these kinds of incidents. And when the Crescent Dunes plant ran a second test using less mirrors, no more birds burst into flames."


Back to your dialup modem, TGT...or check your email....
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 4, 2015 - 06:50am PT
monolith

Mar 3, 2015 - 12:52pm PT

In all, 140 foundations funneled $558 million to almost 100 climate denial organizations from 2003 to 2010.

$558 million to almost 100 climate denial organizations?

Let's see the top three recipients and the documentation supporting the funds they spent on denier efforts.

BTW I did my own research and found little. I think there's much about your claim that's unsupported conjecture.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 4, 2015 - 07:19am PT
I think there's much about your claim that's unsupported conjecture.

That is funny, coming from you Edward.


Especially considering that you just posted a figure that you pulled directly out of the aether:


My $1M number was a ballpark estimate, ...


But what does it matter anyway. We're talking about amounts that are unknown because there are no laws that require anybody to detail the amounts given to the groups that support denial efforts.
Bob D'A

Trad climber
Taos, NM
Mar 4, 2015 - 07:25am PT
EdwardT...http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/dark-money-funds-climate-change-denial-effort/
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 4, 2015 - 08:33am PT
That is funny, coming from you Edward.

Especially considering that you just posted a figure that you pulled directly out of the aether:

My $1M number was a ballpark estimate, ...

Why is that? I made it clear that my number was just a guess. And in your mind, this somehow prohibits me from questioning statements of fact???

But what does it matter anyway. We're talking about amounts that are unknown because there are no laws that require anybody to detail the amounts given to the groups that support denial efforts.

Yeah. Let's not worry about whether or not figures like Monolith's $550 million are complete BS. What matters is the impact of these stories.

Of course. Now that it's all "dark money", the myth of the denier boogieman can grow without being bogged down by pesky little facts.
Wade Icey

Trad climber
www.alohashirtrescue.com
Mar 4, 2015 - 09:03am PT
since when are you worried about complete BS?

or pesky little facts...
EdwardT

Trad climber
Retired
Mar 4, 2015 - 09:13am PT
Hey Wade -

How about some more snowy beach pictures.

Wade Icey

Trad climber
www.alohashirtrescue.com
Mar 4, 2015 - 11:08am PT
that's okay Sketch just do your usual google, cut and paste.
k-man

Gym climber
SCruz
Topic Author's Reply - Mar 4, 2015 - 01:02pm PT
Why is that? I made it clear that my number was just a guess. And in your mind, this somehow prohibits me from questioning statements of fact???

Was that a slip?


But my beef with your post, Edward, is that you ask for specific numbers, and when we post things such as leaked budgets from the Heartland Institute and articles from Scientific American, you respond by saying they are just conjecture (or even worse, "complete BS").

Then, almost on cue, you post a number you most certainly made up on the spot.


While I find it entertaining to trade banter with you here, I sometimes find it's like toying with a child who hasn't yet taken the class that teaches 2+2=4.
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