Climate Change: the facts 2014


IPA has just published Climate Change: the Facts 2014, which I edited and wrote a chapter, Costing climate change, one of 22.  The following is my introduction:

 Prompted by successive reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the issue of human induced climate change has become a dominant theme of world politics. This is especially so in Australia where it was famously called the greatest moral challenge of our time by Kevin Rudd. The issue was pivotal to Mr Rudd’s replacement in 2010 as prime minister by Julia Gillard, his subsequent restoration to that position and his loss to Tony Abbott in the election of 2013.

The book is divided into three parts. Part one examines the science of climate change.

Ian Plimer examines the politics behind the pseudo-science. He notes that many Western governments have a politically popular ideol­ogy involving human emission increases in carbon dioxide (CO2) bring­ing warming, possible catastrophic ‘tipping points’ and a need to phase out fossil fuels as the only means of stopping this. He dismisses the possibility of the catastrophic consequences, drawing from geological history and points to the adverse economic outcomes of attempts to drastically reduce fossil fuel based energy usage.

Patrick Michaels examines the contrast between the predictions of the IPCC and outcomes. And he details and demolishes the manifold excuses for this put forward by Obama adviser, formerly a Club of Rome alarmist, John Holdren, and other IPCC faithful.

Richard Lindzen demonstrates that the climate is relatively insensi­tive to increases in greenhouse gases, and that in any event a warmer world would have a similar variability in weather to that we have always seen.

Part two develops these themes and the chapters explore the poli­tics and economics of climate change.

Nigel Lawson notes that UK Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey and Prince Charles were among those who vilify their opponents with the ‘denier’ label (and recently the UK prime minister sacked cli­mate change sceptic Owen Paterson as secretary for the environment). Lawson explores the dire economic implications of trying to cease the use of fossil fuels. He also demonstrates the trivial effects of the warming that is predicted and discounts their claimed negative effects, noting that sci­entific developments mean we are far less hostage to climate shifts than in previous eras.

My own chapter (Alan Moran) sets the context of the debate by examining the costs of taking action (which are considerable and massively understated by the IPCC) and any benefits of doing so (which are slender and overstated by the IPCC). And the chapter notes that any gains rely on the unlikely event of a comprehensive international agreement.

James Delingpole notes how the climate believers so often accuse sceptics of lack of credentials. He delves into the qualifications of the major promoters of the climate scare in the UK and Australia and finds wall-to-wall English Literature graduates. When confronted by genuine scientists who dissent from their own view, they invariably suggest the dissenting opinions are dictated by bribes from Big Oil. And yet it is so often vested interests, like Munich Re, that promote the notion of dan­gerous climate change. The BBC’s denial of platforms to sceptical scientists and the hounding of the eminent Professor Bengtsson from Lord Lawson’s Global Warming Foundation illustrate the lengths the establishment will go to close down debate.

Garth Paltridge recaps the issues confronting meteorologists in 1970 when they first contemplated climate forecasting: clouds, solar balance, oceanic behaviour. He notes we have hardly advanced but that the IPCC tables inaccurate reports which receive little questioning from scientists even though scepticism is supposedly central to science raising any objections. And, as Climategate showed, some sci­entists have crossed the boundary into ‘post modern science’. He sees considerable backlash on the credibility of all scientists should global warming fail to eventuate.

Jo Nova points out that, globally, renewables investment reached $359 billion annually while the EU says it will allocate twenty per cent of its budget to climate related spending. All this is based on a naive modelling of the atmosphere that employs amplifications of water vapour’s influence by enhanced levels of carbon dioxide. She estimates money dedicated to promoting the global warming scare is maybe one hundred fold the funding to sceptics.  She shows how the purveyors of human-induced global warming use their funding to denigrate opponents and to hide contrary evidence.

Kesten Green and Scott Armstrong test the predictive validity of the global warming hypothesis and find it wanting. They point out that many other alarms have been raised over the past 200 years, none of which have proved to have substance. Most of the alarms that led governments into taking ac­tions actually created harm and none provided benefits.

Part three explores the climate change movement, and the devel­opment of the international institutional framework and the growing disconnect from science and scientific observation that characterises the public debate.

Rupert Darwall reviews the farce of the 2009 Copenhagen confer­ence and the subsequent mini-conferences. He notes the veto imposed on costly actions by the increasingly important third world nations, con­trasting this with the revolutionary outcome that the IPCC operatives are planning to emerge from Paris in 2015.

Ross McKitrick addresses the trials he and Steve McIntyre went through in puncturing the newly coined late twentieth century myth that temperatures are now higher than at any time in the past millen­nium. Having been pilloried for bucking the establishment and under­mining the IPCC poster-child ‘hockey stick’ graph, the accuracy of their analysis has finally prevailed.

Donna Laframboise notes the scandalous attribution of Nobel Prize status to all involved in the IPCC. She traces qualifications of senior and lead authors and finds them often to be activists with no significant credentials.

Mark Steyn’s essay ‘Ship of Fools’ demonstrates how environmen­tal activist, Professor Chris Turney inadvertently parodied Douglas Mawson’s Antarctic expedition. Turney had expected to see a path to the Pole cleared for his ship by global warming. After all, Al Gore had predicted an ice free Arctic by now. Instead, Turney’s Guardian backed expedition had to be rescued from expanding ice. A genuine scientist, as Turney claims to be, should have realised that Antarctic ice is expanding not increasing.

Christopher Essex points to the complexity of the scientific analysis of the climate, which has led to exaggerated claims by pseudo-experts. He suggests a need to whittle down the numbers and listen only to those with demonstrable qualifications but does not underestimate the difficulties of determining who these are.

Bernie Lewin traces the antecedentaries of the current IPCC and how scientists, many of them genuinely seeking to uncover man’s impact on climate, were hijacked by developing country interests and activists into becoming frontmen for a politicised UN agency.

Drawing heavily upon Karl Popper’s theories that scientific mate­rial should be subject to constant examination and should be falsifiable, Stewart Franks points to the many phenomena of climate change that the increase in greenhouse gases both failed to predict and fail to explain.

Anthony Watts illustrates the trivial level of temperature rise that has occurred over the past century (with no increase in the past eighteen years). He notes the change in language by alarmists from ‘warming’ to ‘climate change’ in an attempt to substitute extreme climate events for the now non-existent warming trend. His examination of these extreme events— snow, storms, rainfall—shows an absence of evidence to indicate marked change over recent decades.

Andrew Bolt disinters the graveyards of failed forecasts by climate doomers. These include the spectacular forecasts by Tim Flannery that Australian cities would run out of fresh water, by Professor Hough- Guldberg that the Barrier Reef would die, by Professor Karoly that the Murray Darling would see increasing drought, by the UK Met Office that warming would resume, and by Ross Garnaut and Al Gore that hur­ricanes would increase. He considers the warmistas’ monumental failures are finally denting the faith in them by the commentariat and politicians.

The Chapters all make great reading.

The book can be obtained from here

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33 Responses to Climate Change: the facts 2014

  1. Token

    Good timing for this post. I note 2 Australian academics have broken out of the leftist lock step to state the obvious:

    An Open Letter to Environmentalists:

    As conservation scientists concerned with global depletion of biodiversity and the degradation of the human life-support system this entails, we, the co-signed, support the broad conclusions drawn in the article Key role for nuclear energy in global biodiversity conservation published in Conservation Biology (Brook & Bradshaw 2014).

    Brook and Bradshaw argue that the full gamut of electricity-generation sources—including nuclear power—must be deployed to replace the burning of fossil fuels, if we are to have any chance of mitigating severe climate change. They provide strong evidence for the need to accept a substantial role for advanced nuclear power systems with complete fuel recycling—as part of a range of sustainable energy technologies that also includes appropriate use of renewables, energy storage and energy efficiency. This multi-pronged strategy for sustainable energy could also be more cost-effective and spare more land for biodiversity, as well as reduce non-carbon pollution (aerosols, heavy metals).

  2. Token

    Sorry, 70 academics from across the globe signed off on the statement.

  3. Tel

    Why not call it “Global Warming” ?

  4. AP

    People who push nuclear power are basing their argument on the false premise that CO2 is responsible for catastrophic global warming. They are therefore subscribers to the leftist wealth redistribution scam.

  5. Sounds like a good read. But I would prefer an ebook, are there any plans to release one?

  6. stackja

    ALP wreckers strike again.

  7. JMH

    Already have my copy in my hot little hands!

  8. Interested observer

    People who push nuclear power are basing their argument on the false premise that CO2 is responsible for catastrophic global warming. They are therefore subscribers to the leftist wealth redistribution scam.

    Troll alert!

  9. handjive

    @Interested observer
    #1541670, posted on December 16, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    IO, here is a quote from the letter to environmentalists.

    “Brook and Bradshaw argue that the full gamut of electricity-generation sources—including nuclear power—must be deployed to replace the burning of fossil fuels, if we are to have any chance of mitigating severe climate change.”

    They are indeed 97%UN-IPCC wealth re-distributors attempting to re-define goal-posts & position themselves away from their earlier squeals of global climate catastrophe.

    It is too late to recant.
    Make their lives hell just as they wished a diminished life on you.

  10. Jim


    I’m grad the IPA has put this book out. Whether or not you agree with the findings of the researchers that contributed to the book, the important thing is that the science is being debated. That is always healthy.

    However, I’m a but confused….

    Christopher Essex points to the complexity of the scientific analysis of the climate, which has led to exaggerated claims by pseudo-experts.

    But then on the cover, it looks like there are contributed chapters from the likes of Andrew Bolt. To my knowledge Mr Bolt is an arts dropout that turned to journalism, and is now a columnist (according to wikipedia). Nothing wrong with that apart from he is just another pseudo-expert that Christopher Esssex is presumably criticising.Only the direction of the exaggeration changes.

    The decision to have contributed papers from obvious non-experts will simply be seen as an own goal for the IPA’s and the book’s credibility. This is a shame, because many of the other contributors probably have very valid scientific research to communicate.

  11. Aussiemondo


    Assuming Alan Moran’s summary is accurate, Andrew Bolt’s chapter simply reviews the failed forecasts of doomsayers like Tim Flannery, Hough- Guldberg, Karoly, the UK Met Office, Ross Garnaut and Al Gore.

    No Ph.D. in climate science needed; no complex analysis of (doctored) data sets required. Just a comparison of forecast and outcomes. Simple. Something anyone with an opinion on CAGW can and should be doing.

  12. Mique

    My copy just walked in the door.

  13. I am the Walrus, Koo Koo K'choo

    Great work Alan.

  14. Up The Workers!

    But…but…but…I thought that the scientology was settled – or at least, in the absence of any scientifically credible, demonstrable facts, I was counselled to have almost faith that it was settled… sort of.

    Now, where do I get my taxpayer-funded 747 tickets to the resort hosting the next champagne-and-caviar eco-gabfest?

    I do hope that the souvenir hotel bath robe and slippers this year are GENUINE mink, and not that fake trash again.

  15. hammy

    Just looking through the names in the illustration makes me laugh out loud! A list of ignorant far right polemicists. No one with any real knowledge of climate at all.

  16. pete m

    Just looking at you Hammy, and your posts, likewise makes me laugh out loud.

    by the way, climate is just weather, and everyone knows weather.

  17. johninoxley

    Get your hand off it gareth, it’ll make you go blind. Too late. If your name was up there then we would have something to worry about.

  18. MemoryVault

    Hammy, I have a degree but nothing more than the science I learned in junior high school is needed to refute the so-called CAGW “theory”, plus all its alter-egos, spinoffs and nom de plumes.

  19. john constantine

    Shorten the carniverous aardvark doesn’t believe in ‘the science is settled’ but he does believe in taking every last cent of peoples money in the name of crony socialism.

    Watch the aardvark worry away at the panic bunnies, and tax their little belief structures until they squeak.

  20. .

    #1541552, posted on December 16, 2014 at 12:54 pm
    People who push nuclear power are basing their argument on the false premise that CO2 is responsible for catastrophic global warming. They are therefore subscribers to the leftist wealth redistribution scam.

    No, get out of the way, let the market decide.

    Nuke may be better for baseload or network power because of energy density.

    We may enter the nuclear age and still run our cars on petroleum fuel, from wells or synthetic, with nuclear electricity as an input.

    Let the market decide.

  21. Rabz

    Well done to Alan and all the contributors.

    My copy turned up in the mail today – bonus!

  22. egg_

    No one with any real knowledge of climate at all.

    Oz Mediterranean climes become (sub)tropical climes?
    What’s wrong with that?
    Bananas in Adelaide, anyone?

  23. MsDolittle

    Hidden my copies under the bed as one is a Christmas present for Doc, doubt he will be impressed by his name in print on the back cover, he’s far less ostentatious than me.

  24. Shauno

    I helped pay for this well done guys getting it out in time for Christmas. Ill have to buy one for Sarah Hanson Young and maybe buy a couple of hundred and stick them school Libraries

  25. siltstone

    Donate a copy to your child’s school library. And then check to see if the staff actually follow through on putting it in the stacks.

  26. john constantine

    sbs is using tax dollars to play an obambi tonguebath.

    “don’t you want to go off on these people like a roman candle” begs the swampie of the worlds dreamiest kenyan.

    97 scientists say the science is settled for every 3 that don’t.

    taxfunded message for the kiddies.

  27. Anne

    Just got my copy yesterday. Thanks Alan!

    Now if I only had time to read it and the other ten books on the night table.

  28. Sirocco

    Astonishing. I ordered my copy on line around 4.00pm yesterday, and it was delivered at 8.00pm last night. Now that is service!

  29. cohenite

    Good book; some of the best scientists in the world; and the bravest.

  30. RobbertBobbert GDQ

    You note that after reading some of the ‘unqualified in Science’ names within the recently published book you responded by laughing out loud. Well the following may have you ROFLOL for hours. I shall call it “is that her real job or did somebody mistake the work experience kid for a grownup”

    Ms Ellen Sandell is the new member for the seat of Richmond gaining victory at the recent Victorian state election for the The Greens.

    Ms Sandell notes that she is a scientist but does not elaborate that her science is Genetics and was taken at the same time as an Arts degree in Spanish and Linguistics.She has a Wikipedia entry that notes she obtained both Bachelors in 2008. She states, at her LinkedIn entry and at her Greens webpage:
    “I trained as a scientist, and have been working for social justice all my adult life. I know how important it is to take action on climate change, which is why I worked in the Department of Premier and Cabinet DEVELOPING the former state Labor government’s climate plan and more recently was the CEO of a national climate change non-profit organisation.”

    Her LinkedIn entry further informs that from 2007 to 2009 Ms Sandell was employed in the Premier and Cabinet Office after a 12 month stint as Environmental Officer at Melbourne Student Union and 4 months prior to that as a Genetics Plant Researcher at CSIRO.

    Therefore we know that when Ms Sandell was, in her entries words, developing a Climate Plan, as appointed by the government of the day, she did not have any qualifications in Climate, Weather or Meteorology. She was 23 years old.

    No mention is made of any finance, accountancy or economics qualifications. None are listed or claimed but may have been handy given the financial impact such policies would have on the approximately 5.5 million Victorians within an economy measured in the hundreds of billions and all the businesses and employees affected.There is also no mention of a wealth of experience in Government or private enterprise in similar roles.

    Again Ellen was 23 and lists her work experience as CSIRO Researcher and Student Union Officer for a total of 16 months.

    Those with uni experience will help me out here as I am not sure what to call a person who has yet to receive her dual bachelors in 2007. I assume that means she had no qualifications at all,yet, according to her Linkedin Entry, she was tasked with ‘Policy Advisor developing whole-of-government climate policy including Green Paper/White Paper process’.

    Try those qualifications the next time you apply to a private enterprise position involving the development of a major company business plan involving gargantuan sums of money and massive company losses if you got it wrong
    Is this factual or are these entries at Linkedin and Wikipedia vanity pieces and hot air and was Ms Sandell actually an upmarket work experience kid.

    Let us look on the bright side of 4 years of doom and gloom announcements from Ellen on ABC Media and lots and lots of agitation to deindustrialise and dejob those villians of the Coal and Mining Industry and eulogizing those gobsmackingly expensive and inefficient failures of solar and bird chomping windmills.

    I am sure That Ms Sandell has got plenty of experence aand expertise doing that as a Climate Change and Social Justice Warrior at University.

    As for her qualifications regarding developing a Climate Plan for the State could somebody do a Miss Hansen and Please Explain.

  31. Farmer

    Can’t wait for the peer reviews, who have you asked ?

  32. Supot

    pete m…by the way, climate is just weather, and everyone knows weather.
    What? Your ignorance just makes my day! If your comment goes outside of this website, people will laugh out loud! HAHA!

    About nuclear energy, if the book says climate change is not real or caused by human burning fossil fuels, we don’t need nuclear energy as someone puts it
    “People who push nuclear power are basing their argument on the false premise that CO2 is responsible for catastrophic global warming. They are therefore subscribers to the leftist wealth redistribution scam.”

    So, you guys should settle this among yourselves first, before coming out to avoid being seen naked again and again!

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