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Global Warming - Stick to the Science

These folks are scientists, right? : Post-Ed Notes

On the same day that Al Gore delivered one of the most “ridiculous” speeches of his career, The American Physical Society, an organization representing 50,000 physicists, reversed its stance on climate change and is now claiming that many of its members do not believe in human-induced global warming theory.

APS Physics - Editor's Comments

We kick off a debate concerning one of the main conclusions of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN body which, together with Al Gore, recently won the Nobel Prize for its work concerning climate change research. There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution. Since the correctness or fallacy of that conclusion has immense implications for public policy and for the future of the biosphere, we thought it appropriate to present a debate within the pages of P&S concerning that conclusion....

We, the editors of P&S, invite reasoned rebuttals from the authors as well as further contributions from the physics community. Please contact me (jjmarque@sbcglobal.net) if you wish to jump into this fray with comments or articles that are scientific in nature. However, we will not publish articles that are political or polemical in nature. Stick to the science!


"Stick to the science"

Wouldn't it be nice if all the politicians understood this concept.

It is important to note that the APS has NOT changed its current policy on Global Warming. It has had to issue an explanation about this on its web site. What has happened is that the editor of one of its forums has noted that there are contradictory views, and called for papers to be raised in the forum.

That's still quite a step forward - no scientific body round the world has yet called for open discussion on this subject - but it is not the same as the APS changing its policy.

I suspect this will be a damp squib. As far as I can tell there is no way of proving or disproving the Anthropic Global Warming hypothesis with our current knowledge of the climate system. The Global Warming proposal goes:

1) the Earth has warmed since the 1880s
2) human CO2 output has gone up
3) we know CO2 absorbs heat
4) so humans must have caused the warming.

No one disagrees that the temperature and CO2 have gone up, though there is a lot of argument about how much. The problem is how much is to do with human output and how much is natural variability. Since this just isn't known, you can claim that it's all our fault, or non of it is , or any position in between. You can make physics models, apply corrections, find fault with your opponents assumptions or maths, but none of this addresses the fundamental issues of how the climate works. The people claiming that humans are to blame have produced some amazing lies, and I don't believe them, but that doesn't PROVE that they are wrong.

So I don't think the APS having a debate will prove anything. Still, it should be fun...

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