I have a piece in the Spectator, an extract of which is below.
Starting as a scientific backwater, climate change has come to dominate the scientific community and politics in general. Within the former “think tank”, the Tasman Institute, in the early 1990s my colleagues and I wrote a string of books and papers that examined the economics of the issue recognising then the crippling costs that would result from forcing a reduction of emissions.
We were joined by scientists, including Arizona State’s Professor of Climatology, Robert Balling who worked in cooperation with Warwick Hughes to demonstrate that long-established Australian weather stations remote from an urbanisation effect had recorded no increase in temperatures.
In 1992 Balling quipped that we should not knock climate alarmism. He noted it was providing him consultancy work that doubled his professorial salary and the satellite data, first established in 1979, in a dozen years would prove the furore to be a hoax and by then he’d be about ready to retire!
He was right about the data, which has failed to substantiate the warming forecast by climate models, as the graphic below demonstrates.
But Professor Balling was sadly wide of the mark in understanding the deceit that scientists, radical leftists and businessmen could muster to extract government funding out of consumers and taxpayers.
Indeed, the lack of corroboration of the forecast global temperature increase has simply spawned other supposed markers of the catastrophian agenda, like regional temperatures increases, drought, floods, hurricanes, sea-level rise, polar bear demise and so on. Each of these has also proven to be unfounded but a leftist media, academia and political class remains unmoved.
Alan Kohler has called for a Royal Commission on climate change. He is not the first to do so – the late Professor Bob Carter also wanted one. But as cynics have said, “you don’t call a Royal Commission unless you’re certain about its findings”.
Kohler would see a Royal Commission headed by alarmists and ideally with current Treasury Secretary Steven Kennedy, the author of the hysterical Garnaut Report, heading up the Secretariat.
Bob Carter might have picked former BoM head of research Bill Kininmonth, former Professor of Physics at JCU Peter Ridd, and Professor Ian Plimer, and perhaps the world’s most distinguished climate scientist, Richard Lindzen.
There is no middle ground in this debate and one certain outcome is that a Royal Commission report would be rejected by its authors’ opponents. Positions and interests are entrenched.
Eventually, the inferior economics of renewable energy and realisation that the world climate is in its normal permanent change must bring a collapse of the climate crisis malignancy. Countries showing scant regard for emission suppressing policies – China, India and most developing countries as well as the US – will experience much faster growth forcing others to abandon their own ambitions. But Robert Balling’s dozen years is already 25 years and unless the substitution of high-cost renewables brings an (unlikely) collapse of the energy system, Australia’s continued excessive energy prices and economic underperformance will persist for many more years.