Global warming: Been there, done that. Forward-looking folks are adjusting their fretting machinery now to something called Cycle 25. Button up your overcoats. Ice is on the way.
Global warming, which was mostly a scam invented by researchers looking for government grants, is over. The great warming phenomenon, which was supposed to have sent polar bears to vacation in Miami Beach by now, ended in 1997.
Britain’s Met Office, which tracks weather and makes forecasts, and the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit, the source of much global warming research (some of it faked, some of it not), agree, according to the London Daily Mail, that Planet Earth could even be heading for an icy patch “to rival the 70-year temperature drop that saw frost fairs held on the [frozen-over] Thames in the 17th century.” They call this Cycle 25.
The report of the findings in Old Blighty follows an op-ed essay in the Wall Street Journal, signed by 16 eminent scientists, including both physicists and other climate researchers, that the panic promoted over global warming is not now, and never has been, shared by “large numbers of scientists, many very prominent.”
The number of these “heretics” is growing, and “the reason is a collection of stubborn scientific facts.” The chief among these “stubborn scientific facts” is that the global warming scare was bunk from the beginning, promoted by high priests of the great god Science, not actual scientists in pursuit of secular knowledge. (Think Al Gore.)
“Why is there so much passion about global warming,” these 16 eminent scientists asked, “and why has the issue become so vexing that the American Physical Society … refused the seemingly reasonable request by so many of its members to remove the word ‘incontrovertible’ from its description of a scientific issue? There are several reasons, but a good place to start is the old question of ‘cui bono?’ Or the modern update, ‘follow the money.’ “
The rising temperatures which led some researchers to panic, like frightened teenage girls fretting over prom dates, actually began to subside when sunspot activity began to subside. According to this new research, sunspot numbers are less than half of those recorded during the cycle peaks when scientific hysteria was at its wildest at the end of the 20th century. The sun is moving now toward a “grand minimum” of sunspot activity, which would threaten cooler summers, colder winters and shorter growing seasons. It’s all part of the natural cycle of something the rest of us call “nature.”
Sunspots appear to be the villains. Since the sun is beyond the control of scientists, this makes their hair hurt and teeth itch. Scientists at the Met Office, which concedes that global warming has subsided, nevertheless argue still that the impact of the sun on climate is far less than man-made carbon dioxide (or cow-made, since bovine flatulence has been cited as contributing to climate change). “Our findings,” says the Met Office, “suggest [that] a reduction of solar activity to levels not seen in hundreds of years would be insufficient to offset the dominant influence of greenhouse gases.”
This frustrates cooler heads in the Church of Science. Says Henrik Svensmark, director of Denmark’s sun-climate research: “It will take a long battle to convince some climate scientists that the sun is important. It may well be that the sun is going to demonstrate this on its own, without the need for their help.”
The Met Office, like most of the global-warmist strongholds, relies on computer models for emanations of the penumbras of doom. These models did not foresee the pause in global warming, but the Met insists the models are still valid. Judith Curry of Georgia Tech, regarded as one of the most eminent American climate scholars, finds the prediction of a “negligible” impact of sunspot activity on climate difficult to understand.
“The responsible thing to do would be to accept the fact that the models may have severe shortcomings when it comes to the influence of the sun,” she told the Mail. She thinks it more likely that the rising and falling of the temperature of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans have more influence on climate than man-made carbon dioxide.
“If we don’t see convincing evidence of global warming by 2015,” says Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, “it will start to become clear that the models are bunk.” Heavy-breathing humans and flatulent cows will be off the hook, and a lot of scam artists will be pushed away from the public trough and on the street looking for work.
• Wesley Pruden is editor emeritus of The Washington Times.