‘Sceptics’, Unite for Your Children’s Freedom From Tyranny!

IT’S NOT THE END OF THE WORLD!

Johnny Ball disagrees with the climate change doom-mongers Monday December 21,2009

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JOHNNY BALL, the man who made science accessible to generations of youngsters, on why he disagrees with the climate doom-mongers.

Ever since writing my TV shows in the Eighties I have been talking to students, teachers and the general public and enthusing about the amazing possibilities for science and technology in the future.

But over 30 years I have seen a terrible change in science education. Role models such as Dalton, Faraday and Curie are hardly ever mentioned and much basic science has disappeared.

Kids are introduced to science as something that is life threatening and deprived of exploration through health and safety. They are being brainwashed into believing that science and technology is crippling the Earth and our future when exactly the opposite is true.

Science education has been turned upside down by worry merchants and it is already costing usdearly in a widespread lack of understanding – it is ignorance that breeds fear and we are raising a generation of scared and scientifically unschooled future adults. This is utter lunacy.

This ignorance goes right to the top and the politics of climate change at Copenhagen had lost all sense of rationality. At the end of the Copenhagen fiasco I heard a spokesman for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) say that a Copenhagen commitment of $100billion might restrain the global temperature rise by the end of the century by 1.5C but wouldn’t keep it down by 2C.

That statement on behalf of the IPCC is so devoid of scientific thought that these people must surely be on another planet. I so wish they were.

LAST Tuesday at the Bloomsbury Theatre in London I was slow handclapped by a section of the audience. I had brought it on myself by staying on too long. They had initially taken well my thoughts on climate change but when I repeated the fact that “the University of East Anglia has been caught cooking the books (scientifically not financially),” the reaction started. The plain truth can be upsetting to those who have one set opinion.

My claim that climate change is not being caused by man-made atmospheric carbon dioxide is not based on one scientific fact but a whole raft of them. Let me explain a couple. John Dalton’s 1803 Atomic Theory forms the basis of all chemistry. It is explained with just three elements – hydrogen, oxygen and carbon.

If we burn methane (carbon and hydrogen) with oxygen, the methane breaks up. The carbon joins oxygen to make carbon dioxide.

The hydrogen joins more oxygen to form water. Nothing is lost or gained but energy is released – that is the Atomic Theory.

Human energy comes from our food, carbohydrate (hydrocarbon and water) and the oxygen we breathe. As we burn energy, we break up the hydrocarbons and release water and carbon dioxide in the same way.

ALL burning, rotting or fermenting produces carbon dioxide and water. So how can we say that one form is bad and ignore the others?

In normal air, water is 60 times more present than CO2 but in rain storm or monsoon climates the ratio is far greater. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere accounts for one particle in 2,500. But man-made CO2 is at most four per cent of that, or one particle in every 62,500.

The first IPCC computer models which claimed that not just CO2, but man-made CO2, was causing global warming, did not allow for water at all and were scientificallyindefensible. Far from carrying a consensus many scientists resigned from the IPCC. But we all know that water affects climate. On a summer day, with cloud it is mild; no cloud andit is hot. On a winter night with cloud, temperatures stay mild; with no cloud the heat escapes upwards and we have morning frost. This is not rocket science – it’s as plain as the nose on your face and it cannot be ignored.

But the IPCC ignored it and all the scientists who disagreed with their flawed computer models.

It is estimated that the atmosphere contains 2,750 billion tons of CO2, which is an enormous amount to frighten people with. But that is still less than 0.04 per cent of the whole atmosphere.

ALSO, CO2 is half as heavy again as air and falls back to Earth or is washed out of the atmosphere by rain, all the time. So atmospheric CO2 “has to be replaced”, to keep a balance – this is part of the essential carbon cycle.

Volcanoes, on land and especially beneath the oceans where they are pushing the continents apart at about the rate your finger nailsgrow, produce by far the greatest amounts of CO2. On a smaller scale, soil releases CO2.

Plants and animals produce around 350 billion tons. Ocean life produces perhaps much more. An incredible 80 per cent of all plant life on Earth is in the oceans. However, it is difficultto measure activity in the 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface accounted for by the sea. So the figures produced are guesses. Against all that, industrial manmade CO2, though growing, is small by comparison; perhaps 24 billion tons or one-sixteenth of plant and animal CO2.

Of course we cannot ignore our impact on the planet and we should not rape the world of all its fossil fuels. But we have to get our impact into rational proportion and not apply alarmist man-made CO2 scare tactics.

The fact is that we are lessening our impact commendably. Power station generators in the past 15 years, by getting team to do more work, now get 64 per cent more energy out of coal, oil, gas or nuclear fuel. Has anyone told you that before?

Rolls-Royce, just three years ago, thought it could not further improve aircraft engines unless aircraft became little more than flying wings. But with American agreement it is producing an engine that spears an aircraft to seven miles high then switches to an economy mode for the rest of the journey.

The likely saving on fuel is 25 per cent. Modern cars have doubled fuel efficiency in recent years and are around 90 per cent recyclable and almost 100 per cent reclaimable.

I back new nuclear power not because it is carbon free, which incidentally it is, but because the new plant will be at least four times more effi cient than the old.

However, Third World poverty makes adoption of the latest technologies impossible in many parts of the globe. We even deprive developing nations of GM crops for idealistic reasons, completely forgetting that European soil will grow practically anything but Third World soil is often so delicate that our methods are totally unsuited for them. It is utter selfishness and scientific lunacy to deprive them of technological advance.

COPENHAGEN activists have been asking for CO2 reductions for the sake of the Third World. But their argument is wrong. The countries of the developing world do not need investment to cut energy use and CO2 production. They need money for more energy to give them a power base so that their hospitals canfunction and they can maintain an electrical grid.

Then multinational companies can invest and provide jobs and a financial base on which to build towards equality for poorer nations with our rich end of the world. If we scrapped completely the foolhardy and scientifically unsound chase to reduce carbon, while still aiming for greater efficiency in energy usage, we would have all the money needed to bring the Third World out of poverty, save millions of lives year on year and create a fairer and far more balanced world for our children. Now that would be a legacy for our generation to be proud of.

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2 Responses to “‘Sceptics’, Unite for Your Children’s Freedom From Tyranny!”

  1. Thanks for the thoughtful commentary. However, I do not see any facts in your article that refute the theory that anthropogenic CO2 can alter the radiative balance of the planet. The facts you have listed have to do with the basic chemistry of combustion, the levels of CO2 in the atmosphere, the fact that water vapor is also a greenhouse gas and then a bunch of facts about increases in energy efficiency followed by speculation on how to solve global poverty.

    None of your arguments address the claim that this small amount of CO2, 4% of the atmospheric total by your accounting, emitted over the past 150 years can affect climate. Nor does your argument address the the historical correlation between greenhouse gases and planetary climate. While I appreciate the sentiment behind your piece, the substance of your “raft of facts” leaves a great deal to be desired, and I suspect that anyone willing to venture out on this raft as it is currently built will find themselves all wet.

    • newsreelneil Says:

      It has been many, many times cooler throughout history when CO2 levels were far higher and many, many times warmer when CO2 levels were lower at times when anthropogenic warming was impossible. Furthermore, it has not been warming since 1998. That would suggest that there is no correlation between CO2 and warming due again to the huge industrial output from India and China, causing an increase in CO2, yet it has cooled. There cannot be a correlation or it could not be cooling.

      That simply comes down to common sense and the ability to think for myself. The same situation prevailed from 1940 onwards when there was huge industrial growth, plus WW II, yet it cooled. Again, common sense and thinking for myself.

      And lastly, the CRU has been caught, red handed, manipulating and falsifying data to give the ‘impression’, and that’s all it is, of global warming, which, as I pointed out above, has not occurred since 1998. The United Nations IPCC is as corrupt as the organisation that spawned it, the United Nations itself.

      WAKE UP!

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