Global warming poll presents challenge to GOP candidates

Seventy-one percent said they thought the planet was warming because humans were dumping too much CO2 into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels.
REUTERS/Euzivaldo Queiroz
Seventy-one percent said they thought the planet was warming because humans were dumping too much CO2 into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels.

Last week I wrote about a new study showing self-described Tea Party members the least likely of all American voters to believe the science that says our planet is warming and humans are causing it.

I interviewed a noted Tea Party official, Randy Liebo, who said that he thought the science had been sufficiently questioned and was so new that public policy shouldn’t be based on it. I told him that some of his objections had been examined independently and found to be without merit. He said he’d like to see it in print, so I sent him investigative summaries and reports. I’ve tried to contact him for his reaction, but I’ve been unsuccessful.

At the risk of turning into a poll reporter, I thought you might like to hear about the newest one. In fact, I would imagine the Republican candidates for president would like to see the findings. Maybe even Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and former governor Tim Pawlenty would be surprised.

Last week’s poll revealed only 34 percent of Tea Party members said they believed the science or were concerned about global warming. But 53 percent of Republicans said they thought it was happening and registered concern. Democrats were the highest rated at 78 percent.

Now, this new poll by Reuters/Ipso shows something even more shocking. Despite Republican presidential candidates’ denial of the science, Reuters/Ipso finds that 83 percent of Americans believe the planet is warming, up from 75 percent in its last survey. That number takes into account the 72 percent of Republican respondents who said the planet is warming.

Of all the people asked in the poll, 71 percent said they thought the planet was warming because humans were dumping too much CO2 into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels. Twenty-seven percent of the respondents thought the planet was warming, but that it was being caused by natural cycles.

That’s the position of our former governor, Tim Pawlenty. There is little, it seems, that can change that kind of opinion. There is currently no peer-reviewed science of any kind that says the warming we have been seeing is part of Earth’s natural heating and cooling cycle.

Change in concern
One of the reasons that this most recent poll is so striking, and so instructive, is an earlier Gallup poll showed Americans actually cared less about global warming in 2010 than just three years earlier.

Candidates using that older poll to map strategies for debate would have been right to play to voters by saying global warming is not proved, nor a big deal. I would love to be in the war rooms of the candidates this week as they try to reshape a message to fit the Tea Party and the growing number of Americans concerned about global warming. Is the planet warming? “It all depends on what your definition of ‘is’ is.”

Based on the belief that fewer Americans cared about global warming or its causes, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney backed away from his firm statements in support of global warming science last week and now says he’s not sure what’s causing it to warm up.

Gov. Rick Perry
REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Gov. Rick Perry

Rick Perry says the whole thing is hogwash and scientists have been manipulating data to prove human-caused climate change. The Reuters/Ipso poll must be giving the candidates indigestion. If the poll is correct, 72 percent of the Republican base is concerned about global warming.

Don’t expect to see candidates doing an immediate about-face on the science. It would seem too political to change a fervently held belief just because the polls change. Plus, there is a straw in the poll at which the candidates may try to grasp. Among the findings by Reuters/Ipso, those people who staunchly deny the science of global warming and the climate change it causes have hardened their positions of denial. They no longer simply deny the 97 percent of the published science, but they deny it more urgently than ever.

That group is in the minority, but they represent voters. It will be interesting to see which candidates stand on their anti-science records and which ones chase the changing opinions of the American voters.

Where the blame falls
The campaigns will likely look at the poll and ask, “How did this happen?” The answer may be found in the Republican campaign strategy book.

The poll seems to show that the recent campaign appearances and debates staged by the field of Republican candidates has focused Americans on the concern about global warming. The more the candidates talk about the “unsettled” nature of the science, the more the public has become interested in trying to figure out what the science actually says. Playing down global warming, the poll indicates, has had the opposite effect on voters. The law of unintended consequences has turned on the candidates who deny the science, and bitten them on the backsides.

There is another reason why this poll seems so radically different from the Gallup survey. Weather. Usually atmospheric and climate scientists don’t like to link a weather event to overall warming. One really can’t make informed decisions on climate by looking out of the window on a single day. But Texas has been looking out the window on the worst drought in its history for a long time. The huge storms and flooding across the globe and the amount of rainfall from a Category I storm, Irene, has apparently begun to work on the minds of the respondents.

It is actually true that we have never seen weather like this before. It is also true that scientists have been predicting changing weather patterns with the heating of the planet. The evidence is pushing Americans from “Hoax” to “Probably not” to “Maybe.” The “Maybe” voters appear to be in ascendance. It will be great fun watching the candidates of all parties chasing that growing body of the population.

Warning: Be circumspect of candidates who change their minds on global warming. Ask yourself: Are they doing it because they’ve studied the science or because they have studied the polls?

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Comments (47)

  1. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/20/2011 - 08:29 am.

    Where’s the poll? Why no link?

    I suspect this issue may play out a lot like the gay “marriage” debate. According to “polls” touted by Big Gay & their leftist enablers, *everyone* loves teh gay; but when given the chance to put it to a vote, not so much.

    People tell people what they think they want to hear, then vote according to their own conclusions.

  2. Submitted by Jeff Michaels on 09/20/2011 - 09:04 am.


    If you believe the 2012 election will be decided based on the validity of global warming, you certainly have moved into the “lunatic left” category.

    Despite your great concern regarding “global warming,” President Obama’s failure to solve the unemployment problem will leave liberal candidates “out in the cold.”

  3. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 09/20/2011 - 09:06 am.

    The fact remains that you can only get to where we are today, with respect the rapidity of rise in global temperature, by accounting for the influence of human industrial activity. That’s also the most important point about human induced climate change: Yes, earth’s climate has changed considerably over geological time scales, however, in this case we’re changing earth’s climate on human time scales. It’s a subtle point I fear isn’t understood by enough people.

  4. Submitted by Richard Schulze on 09/20/2011 - 09:14 am.

    Tom, here is link to a poll from Yale which does a much better job than the poll by /Reuters/Ipso/.

  5. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 09/20/2011 - 09:28 am.

    (#1)”Big Gay”?!?!?!?

    What a strange world you live in.

    All fired up about “big gay” (where is the economic incentive for “big gay”?) but no concern at all about the very real “big corporate” funding of global climate change deniers (big money in play there).

  6. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/20/2011 - 09:49 am.


    You are doing great investigative work on Global Warming, but you don’t need to just concentrate on that fact that the science involved is almost completely in agreement.

    Hardiness zones are moving northward as absolute minimum winter temperatures moderate. Compare the 1990 USDA hardiness zones with the current ones. There is a very interesting northward movement of about half a zone, which corresponds to a 5 degree increase in expected minimum winter temperatures.

    This translates into northward movement of weeds, plant diseases, different productive types of crops and ornamentals and longer growing seasons, all of which are available to even casual observation.

    Farmers are planting earlier, using longer season crop seed, and facing additional management problems. That is not just the risk takers; with seed corn running over $200 per 80,000 kernels or enough to plant just over 3 acres there is big money involved just for seed, especially considering that the farms now frequently run over 1000 acres
    Winter shelter need for livestock has also moderated making the confinement type of meat production very economically viable, requiring less heat to maintain.

    Landscaping has come to include now dependable ornamentals that used to be gambles. All one needs to do in fact is drive around south Minneapolis in mid to late April to see the massive magnolia bloom we now have.

    Here in the heat sink in south Minneapolis, I can now depend on many zone 5 garden plants, shrubs and trees to survive that as recently as 20 years ago were not dependable.

    FWIW I have been following the USDA hardiness zones for decades and over that period of time they were stable until recently. They are now showing dramatic moderation in minimum temperatures which are the hardiness killing point, a moderation that is directly connected to the planets decreasing ability to radiate heat on the night side which points directly to CO2 insulating properties. Note especially that being transparent CO2 does not inhibit daytime temperature accumulations either.

    Keep up the good work.

  7. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/20/2011 - 10:04 am.


    Swift is a heckler, and is simply trying to misdirect the discussion.

    What he misses is that a large portion of the far right support has already adjusted to increasing and recently accelerating climate change. All it takes is for increasing numbers of those folks to realize that they are being fed other bogus positions from the big mouths on the far right, and the rest of the far right house of cards comes under much more careful examination. Climate change may be the clay foot that actually brings down the rest. They are all vulnerable to a decent amount of common sense at their cores.

    In regard to climate change the American people are starting to show that common sense is reestablishing itself in opposition to that demagoguery.

  8. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/20/2011 - 10:27 am.

    Thank you for the link Richard, but I’d still like to see the crosstabs from the ones being touted by MinnPost’s Warmer Precision Propaganda Team.

    Neal, although it’s true that in politics *someone* is always making money, not every issue is driven by cash.

    I think the analogy is valid not only in how it’s playing out, but in that both climate change proponents and homosexual rights activists rely on psuedoscience to confound common sense.

    Alinsky at work.

  9. Submitted by Carole Bender-Resnick on 09/20/2011 - 11:16 am.

    I,for one, am grateful to Don for writing articles with regard to climate change. I was told, by a scientist, in the 80’s what will happen due to climate change, and the predictions are accurate. Drought & more drought to the extent that eventually Americans will be moving north & pushing into Canada. Ranchers in Texas are currently selling off their cattle as they cannot afford the feed, etc.

    In the future wars will be fought over water; Nafta states that if the US runs out of water, Canada has to provide it. Don’t think the Canadians will like any of it. Due to the melting of the glaciers, US, Russia & Canada are working to determine what belongs to who.

    The Himalayn glacier provides water to China/India & they are melting at a rapid pace.

    It no longer matters who believes what. It is of vital importance to start taking care of this massive problem called Climate Change.

  10. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 09/20/2011 - 11:40 am.

    Nice series of articles Don, much appreciated.

  11. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 09/20/2011 - 12:18 pm.

    Great article, although one important point needs to be remembered. We are still relatively early in the election cycle. Picking the candidate, or defining the pandering candidates will have to do, is not a matter of majority opinion. No, it’s a matter of firing up the base; in other words, listening to those who shriek the loudest and the most. Facts don’t matter, as long as we can demonize someone (usually, by putting “Big” in front of their descriptions). Majority opinion doesn’t matter, as long as voters can be distracted by cultural wedge issues, or folksy images of candidates walking through cow pastures.

    Facts are facts, but campaign speech is rhetoric, in the purest sense of the word (speech to induce action). Truth is not important, as long as we can be “truthy.” Reality just isn’t in the equation.

  12. Submitted by Jim Roth on 09/20/2011 - 12:48 pm.

    Since when are deniers influenced by science (or any other facts for that matter)?

  13. Submitted by david granneman on 09/20/2011 - 12:59 pm.

    one more example of the SCIENCE OF GLOBAL WARMING

  14. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/20/2011 - 03:47 pm.

    David (#13): Thanks for the link. It shows warm mongering on a truly epic scale; exaggerations up to 50X!

    I’ve provide an excerpt below from the link in comment #13:

    “We believe that the figure of a 15 percent decrease in permanent ice cover since the publication of the previous atlas 12 years (ago) is both incorrect and misleading,” said Poul Christoffersen, glaciologist at the Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI) at the University of Cambridge.

    “We concluded that a sizable portion of the area mapped as ice-free in the Atlas is clearly still ice-covered.”

    Other scientists agreed.

    “These new maps are ridiculously off base, way exaggerated relative to the reality of rapid change in Greenland,” said Jeffrey S. Kargel, senior research scientist at the University of Arizona.

    The Times Atlas suggested the Greenland ice sheet has lost 300,000 square kilometers in the past 12 years, at a rate of 1.5 percent per year.

    However, measurements suggest this rate is at least 10 times faster than in reality, added J. Graham Cogley, Professor of Geography at Trent University, Ontario, Canada.

    “It could easily be 20 times too fast and might well be 50 times too fast,” he added.

    Last year, a U.N. committee of climate scientists came under fire for bungling a forecast of when Himalayan glaciers would thaw.

    The panel’s 2007 report, the main guide for governments in fighting climate change, included an incorrect projection that all Himalayan glaciers could vanish by 2035, hundreds of years earlier than scientists’ projections.

  15. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 09/20/2011 - 04:22 pm.

    13 and 14: You have proved n nothing, except that cartographers (not climate scientists) misinterpreted data. This does not prove that the ice fields in Greenland are not shrinking, or that the shrinkage is anthropogenic.

    What is upsetting to many scientists I have read is that this incident gives fodder to the denialist forces out there. it is a non-controversy controversy. The whole thing means nothing in the realm of the debate on the science. It’s just a distraction and will be used to divert attention fromt he very real problem. Think of it as honking a horn when there is nothing in your way.

    Incidentally, if you want to discuss climate-change zealotry, let’s ask why a certain former Governor of Minnesota decided the science was all wrong, even after he gave loud publicity to his own interest in global warming a few years back. Suddenly, it was a bad idea for him to take that position (maybe he read an article in the Journal of Geoclimatic Studies).

  16. Submitted by John Edwards on 09/20/2011 - 05:43 pm.

    The widely respected Rasmussen Reports had a much different outcome in its June 2011 poll.

    This poll found that 42 percent of the respondents believe that planetary trends are responsible for global warming, compared to 40 percent who attribute it to human activity. This differs considerably from Reuters 71-27 margin. Don latched on to a poll that reinforces his existing views. Sadly, it is a common practice among ardent left-wing reporters.

  17. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/20/2011 - 06:43 pm.

    RB (#15):

    It is just another example of overstating the issue on a grand scale. Show me one example when it went the other way; when the global warming case was understated by a factor of 20 or 50, even 10. Don’t bother checking the UN.

    These gross exaggerations don’t matter because they support the agenda. You see, the ends justify the means. Just keep repeating that the Himalayan glaciers will be reduced to an ice cube in the next 20 years. If Yale or Reuters did a poll on that question, 80% of Americans would say they believe it. Does that make it any less a lie?

    BTW, what is the location and context of that photo above, that appears repeatedly on MinnPost with these AGW columns?

  18. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/20/2011 - 07:12 pm.

    News such as David has shared, on the heels of this: “Nobel physicist quits American Physical Society over climate stance” might get some warmers’ daubers down…but MinnPost has assembled a very stalwart crew.

    Probably, even this won’t cause the slightest perturbation in the ranks:

    “Last year another climate change skeptic, University of California professor Hal Lewis, left the group, claiming global warming was a “scam” and a “pseudoscientific fraud.”

    Warmers need stout hearts and well clouded minds indeed, these days.

  19. Submitted by Chuck Leveroos on 09/20/2011 - 08:37 pm.

    One will never convince the Swifties of anything that conflicts with their paradigm.

    a. If man-made global warming is true, we will need some sort of regulation to mitigate the effects.
    b. Big government/regulation is bad
    c. Man-made global warming must be a hoax.

    The deniers deny not because they think that climatologists are involved in a vast left-wing conspiracy, but because they can’t accept where the conclusions lead.
    Amazing how they can fool themselves.
    If they had any intellectual honesty at all, they would be arguing about what kind/how much regulation is needed, and not totally rejecting the science.

  20. Submitted by Brian Nelson on 09/20/2011 - 08:38 pm.

    (sigh) Mr. Quick is at it again.

    How is it that two scientists (and Mr. Lewis is a physicist, not a climatologist, and a physicist who has not even studied the date) out of thousands matter most?

    Does this make for a “theory” in Mr. Quick’s world?

    Again, you still have yet on this site to debunk the bulk of the climate data? Where is the pseudo-science?

    You talk and talk and you provide your meaningless little blurbs of anecdotal evidence amounting to nothing.

    I’m surprised you have the time for meaningless commentary on science (or anything) of any sort seeing first post reveals you are clearly committed to praying the Big Gay away. That must be a full-time obsession…I mean job.

  21. Submitted by Alec Timmerman on 09/20/2011 - 09:31 pm.

    None of the aforementioned are climatologists. Climatologists are 97% in agreement. I challenge all the anti-science folks to trot out some climatologists who disagree.

    The fact that lawyers, physicists, and meteorologists are the only folks they can produce says volumes.

    50 years ago, our great country vowed to create the greatest generation of scientists the world had ever seen. We did it.

    Todays generation of Swifty’s want us to move back to the dark ages, stifle science, and set our world back. We don’t need another anti science dark age.

  22. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/21/2011 - 07:02 am.

    Could the warm mongers provide a source for the oft made 97% claim?

    The photo above looks like the lake bottom of Lake Delton in 2008, a couple months after the water exited. Was that caused by global warming? Perhaps Dr. Don or MinnPost could source the photo or stop using it.

  23. Submitted by Alec Timmerman on 09/21/2011 - 07:13 am.

    Here is a link to the oft quoted 97%.

    I am sure it won’t sway you. It is well proven that in the face of facts, folks like you cling to your myths even harder.

  24. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/21/2011 - 08:28 am.

    Oh, look!

    “31,000 scientists reject ‘global warming’ agenda”

    “More than 31,000 scientists across the U.S. – including more than 9,000 Ph.D.s in fields such as atmospheric science, climatology, Earth science, environment and dozens of other specialties – have signed a petition rejecting “global warming,” the assumption that the human production of greenhouse gases is damaging Earth’s climate.”

    “The late Professor Frederick Seitz, the past president of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and winner of the National Medal of Science, wrote in a letter promoting the petition…”

    “This treaty is, in our opinion, based upon flawed ideas. Research data on climate change do not show that human use of hydrocarbons is harmful. To the contrary, there is good evidence that increased atmospheric carbon dioxide is environmentally helpful,” he wrote.

    Check it again, warmers: “Frederick Seitz, THE PAST PRESIDENT OF THE U.S. NATIONAL ACADAMY OF SCIENCES says you’re perpetuating a PSUEDOSCIENTIFIC SCAM.

    Why are you doing that?

  25. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/21/2011 - 08:47 am.


    Thanks for the link; I checked it out. The 97% number is based on 79 individuals who list climate science as their area of expertise and who have published >50% of recent peer reviewed papers on the subject. Seems like a small sample of rabid warmers, who are writing all of the sensationalist papers that get relayed by the media to the general public.

    My myth? My myth is that there is something to discuss, that disagreement does not equal dishonesty.

    So, who knows where that picture at the top of this column came from?

  26. Submitted by david granneman on 09/21/2011 - 10:42 am.

    here is some more non-science from NASA debunking global warming

  27. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 09/21/2011 - 10:43 am.

    Steve, there isn’t a “debate;” at least, there is no debate about the science. What it always comes down to is which person overstated or exaggerated, who said impolitic things in an e-mail, how many people signed which petition, or where did the inflammatory picture come from. Let’s hear your disagreements with the actual science, not with the reporting of it. ost disagreement, as you put it, is driven by ideology–I would like to hear your scientific reasons for doubting global warming.

    PS “The 97% number is based on 79 individuals who list climate science as their area of expertise and who have published >50% of recent peer reviewed papers on the subject. Seems like a small sample of rabid warmers, who are writing all of the sensationalist papers that get relayed by the media to the general public.” Can you give me your rough estimate of the number of climate scientists who are publishing peer-reviewed papaers on the subject? It’s not like there are thousands of them who have their voices silenced (TV weathermen are not climate scientists).

  28. Submitted by Robert Hoppe on 09/21/2011 - 11:29 am.


    What should the Earth’s temperature be? What is the correct number? Also 380 ppm of CO2 is too high, but 350 ppm is acceptable? The Earth’s temperature is estimated to have increased less than one degree in the last 100 years, why is this unacceptable?

    Also the experts agree that there has been no significant warming in the last ten years, yet the levels of CO2 have continued to rise.

    The truth is that this issue of catastrophic man-made global warming is not settled.

  29. Submitted by Brian Nelson on 09/21/2011 - 12:43 pm.

    Mr. Quick’s getting conspiratorial and comical! WorldNetDaily? Can yo provide something other than newz from a conservative rag? These guys spent a lot of time on the Birther “issue.” This is not credible. Try again.

    Again, where is the science to back up your claims?

    We’re still waiting. Debunk the science.

  30. Submitted by Fritz Dahmus on 09/21/2011 - 01:16 pm.

    The Medival warm Period (700-1400??) was about 7 degrees warmer than the Mini-Ice Age (1400-1850??). We are now 2 degrees warmer than the Mini-Ice Age.

    Scientists, as they do, have a variety of theories as to why this is/was. One of them involves man-made contributions as a contributing factor. Especially, obviously, for the period after the Mini-Ice age (1850-pres).

    None of these scientists would oppose non-fossil fuel electricity generation….or constructive regulation of fossil fuel burning, production, or proliferation.

    Venture capitalists, University R&D, DARPA, etc… would all love to be the one to find the next great thing (i.e. non-fossil fuel energy). Wouldn’t you? This is not being hindered by politicians who are “deniers”. “Deniers” are more about an obsession with the “balancing act” of government regulation and the free market economy we supposedly live in.

  31. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/21/2011 - 01:44 pm.


    I have stated my disagreement with the science on MinnPost. There have been numerous opportunities, due to a barrage of columns on the AGW issue from both Dr. Don and Dr. Shawn. It seems that they are promoting a new book. However, I will repeat my disagreement for you.

    The earth has warmed about 0.8 degrees over the past 150 years. It has been less than 100 years that we have even had reasonable instruments and access to isolated places to use them. What do we expect? Is there a correct answer? Is it 0.001 degree? Would that be considered stable?

    For a planetary time reference, I will again offer a summary of the toilet paper timeline history of the earth.

    In round numbers, the earth is 5 billion years old, ocean life originated 3.4 billion years ago, dinosaurs died out 65 million years ago, and recorded human history dates back about 10,000 years.

    On a long hallway, unroll a 400 square (length per square = 11 cm) toilet paper roll. Each square is equivalent to 12.5 million years. If the beginning of square 1 represents the origin of the planet, the dinosaurs became extinct on square 394. Human history begins at the end of square 400, 0.01 cm (100 microns) from the very end of the roll. For reference, a human hair is about 75 microns in diameter.

    Our 150 years of measurement data resides on a splinter of the last wood fiber of the end of the TP roll. But, our we ever proud of that data! Using it, we can extrapolate to INCONTROVERTIBLE conclusions.

  32. Submitted by Alec Timmerman on 09/21/2011 - 02:08 pm.

    Swifty, thank you again, for providing the exact kind of anti science response we have come to expect.

    Seitz was disassociated from the National Academy of Sciences in 1998. The very group from you derive his authority, effectively disowned the charlatan.

    Seitz is the same guy who fought hard to prove cigarettes are safe and do not cause cancer. Notice a pattern Swifty?

    Seitz also was a key investor in coal plants.

    Anyway, the NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES says he, and you, are full of it.

    Quote from National Academy of Sciences

    “The petition was so misleading that the National Academy issued a news release stating that:

    The petition project was a deliberate attempt to mislead scientists and to rally them in an attempt to undermine support for the Kyoto Protocol. The petition was not based on a review of the science of global climate change, nor were its signers experts in the field of climate science.”

    Again, you have yet to produce evidence of disbelief from climatologists. The list you provided is of physicists, dentists, economists, and lawyers. Actual, practicing climatologists comprise .5% of your list.

  33. Submitted by david granneman on 09/21/2011 - 02:42 pm.

    more global warming science – we where told the melting of the polar ice would cause the oceans to rise – this article shows ocean levels are dropping

  34. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 09/21/2011 - 02:43 pm.

    “Anyway, the NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES says he, and you, are full of it.”

    And yet they elected Seitz President…

    So Alec, was the NAS a pack of dolts before they elected Seitz; after, or still?

    And what of the other 31,000 signatories? Are they “disowned” too? Notice a pattern?

  35. Submitted by Brian Nelson on 09/21/2011 - 03:26 pm.

    Dave. Did you actually read what you are posting? A two year decline does not constitute a long term trend. It’s a blip.

    According to NOAA there was a drop in 2010 and they attribute it to La Nina.

    Either way this does nothing to dispel the fact that global temps have been rising.

    Mr. Quick, where is the peer-reviewed science produced by any of these 31,000 scientists?

    And, again, you dodge Alec’s main point:

    “Quote from National Academy of Sciences

    ‘The petition was so misleading that the National Academy issued a news release stating that:

    The petition project was a deliberate attempt to mislead scientists and to rally them in an attempt to undermine support for the Kyoto Protocol. The petition was not based on a review of the science of global climate change, nor were its signers experts in the field of climate science.'”

    This is just too easy.

  36. Submitted by david granneman on 09/21/2011 - 04:08 pm.

    here is another BLIP in the global warming science presented in the TELEGRAPH

    The research, published with little fanfare this week in the prestigious journal Nature, comes from über-prestigious CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, one of the world’s largest centres for scientific research involving 60 countries and 8,000 scientists at more than 600 universities and national laboratories. CERN is the organization that invented the World Wide Web, that built the multi-billion dollar Large Hadron Collider, and that has now built a pristinely clean stainless steel chamber that precisely recreated the Earth’s atmosphere.

    This is exactly what has happened with the latest revelations from CERN over its landmark CLOUD experiment, whose significance Lawrence Solomon explains here:

    In this chamber, 63 CERN scientists from 17 European and American institutes have done what global warming doomsayers said could never be done — demonstrate that cosmic rays promote the formation of molecules that in Earth’s atmosphere can grow and seed clouds, the cloudier and thus cooler it will be. Because the sun’s magnetic field controls how many cosmic rays reach Earth’s atmosphere (the stronger the sun’s magnetic field, the more it shields Earth from incoming cosmic rays from space), the sun determines the temperature on Earth.

  37. Submitted by david granneman on 09/21/2011 - 04:43 pm.

    Brian – how can you look in the mirror knowing that you are burning gas to drive your car to work and burning coal to provide electricity to heat and cool your house and power your computer and burning natural gas to cook your food and this is DESTROYING THE PLANET

  38. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/21/2011 - 05:03 pm.


    Is it easy? No one has accepted my challenge to identify the location and context of the photo at the top of this column. Was this scene caused by global warming, or is this further demonstration of a fast and loose play with the facts, to paint an AGW picture? Who is being dishonest?

    Interesting article from Tuesday’s Guardian,”Obama’s envoy for climate change casts doubt on Kyoto protocol”


  39. Submitted by Robert Hoppe on 09/22/2011 - 03:55 pm.


    “This is just too easy”.

    Seems a bit arrogant and condescending.

    “The science is settled” and “The earth’s core is millions and millions degrees hot”. Al Gore

    Just because someone says it does not make it so.

  40. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/23/2011 - 06:59 am.

    The deniers around here keep asking for proofs. They are way to late. The science is established and mature. The burden is theirs to provide disproof.

    It isn’t just science either shows the warming. The USDA hardiness zones which form a basis for an extremely valuable and reliable measure and which were stable going back into at least the 60’s and which are scheduled to be updated every 10 years have in the past decade been updated showing about a 5 degree warming trend.

    That means that the Twin Cities formerly in a much harder zone 4a are now in 5a. That is about a 10 degree moderation which though in part might be from urban heat island effects (which itself is definitively anthropogenic!). The average across the country is about 5 degrees warmer in average winter maximum cold.

    The new map was commissioned from the National Arbor Day Foundation and had its publication delayed by the Bush administration, because it supported recent dramatic increases in global warming. Eventually the Bush administration relented, when the nursery industry began to use the Arbor Day hardiness map anyway. Farmers all across the north country are planting frost tender crops like corn and soybeans earlier and using longer season, higher yielding seed to do so.

    It isn’t just science that says the planet is warming. The industries that make their living in the soil and the climate it is found in are using that same factor to their benefit around here, although that isn’t a universal blessing, which the top picture shows. The stronger storms resulting from increased energy in the warmer atmosphere across the country are pulling Caribbean moisture farther north and east which is why the picture is so common across central and west Texas.

    It would also pay for the deniers to have a good long look at how small a portion of possible temperatures all humans live in, and how intensely the regional adaptations of our various agricultural pursuits are adapted to the tiny portion of that locally available.

    None of this will convince any of the hard core deniers or their shills; they are not in this debate to debate in the first place, only to confuse the issue. Hopefully though it will get some of the more reasonable ones actually to dig out valid data on their own for a change.

  41. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/23/2011 - 08:04 am.


    Like a true denialist, you start out by denying that there is a discussion: “They are way to [sic] late. The science is established and mature.”

    Five degrees warming in ten years? That is a whopper.

  42. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/24/2011 - 02:51 am.

    Tell that to the USDA and the National Arbor Day Foundation. Not my figures. All you gotta do is look up the 1990 map and the current one.

  43. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/24/2011 - 06:27 pm.


    First of all, 1990 was a score ago, not a decade ago. Nonetheless, I did compare the maps.

    The average minimum temperatures are shown graphically on a map of the United States in 5 degree increments, -35 to -40, -40 to -45, etc. 5 degree is the resolution of the map.

    Each year, the map changes. What I see comparing the 2011 to the 1990 is that some geographic areas moved up a notch (+5 degrees), while other areas moved down a notch (-5 degrees). By your logic, I am left to conclude that some areas are cooling, and they are surely on course to the next ice age.

  44. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/27/2011 - 06:14 pm.


    You had better go back and reread about the hardiness maps. They are not updated every year. The USDA attempted to approximate that in 2002 by contracting with the American Horticultural Society who reverted to an undivided zone charter which is what most of them were prior to the Elder Bush administrations publication of the 1990 map, which did show some cooling off in some places, but has been under strong criticism from the beginning for using widely varying data sets. Even the leader of the mapping team could not seem to be quite sure even which years were used.

    The USDA refused to accept the map produced by AHS in 2003. It has never updated the 1990 map.

    In 2006 the National Arbor Day Society did extensive surveys and updated their map to show much warmer temperature zones, pretty much in agreement with the 2003 AHS one. They have also published a comparison of theirs and the 1990 USDA one. That shows no area cooler and nearly everyone much warmer.


    The Economist published a couple of charts that should be easy for you to read and next to impossible for you to take out of context”

    I repeat this is not my argument and the millions of bits of research data involved are not my data. Go agrue with them.

    Or you can wait just a bit for the new USDA hardiness zone map that is supposed to be published very soon.

    First info out is that it pretty much validates the AHS and Arbor Day Society efforts. Then you can also argue with the USDA as well as all the other informed sources you ignore.

    I am done with your ignorance and your arrogance.

  45. Submitted by Dale Hoogeveen on 09/28/2011 - 06:35 am.

    Randy Liebo has provided any response yet either has he?

  46. Submitted by Steve Rose on 09/28/2011 - 08:27 am.

    Mr. Hoogeveen:

    I looked for a source I thought you’d like, so I will provide a quote from the EPA website: “The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) State of the Climate Report and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) Surface Temperature Analysis indicate the average temperature of the Earth’s surface has increased by about 1.2 to 1.4ºF since 1900.

    That is for the past 111 years, and in Fahrenheit degrees. However, this is science, and in science we use Celsius degrees, unless we need smaller degrees to help us exaggerate. In Celsius, the temperature warming range is 0.67 to 0.79 degrees.

    It seems you’ll have to go argue with the EPA, NOAA, and NASA, if you want to cling to your claim of five degrees warming in a decade, your hardiness zones, and your colored maps.

    And, actually, you are not done until you have refuted the sources of my warming numbers that you requested.

    Charges of “your ignorance and your arrogance” are not elements of an effective science argument; they are boorish and trollish behavior. Indeed, I struck a dissonant chord during a chorus by your AGW consensus choir; a heretical challenge of your INCONTROVERTIBLE climate doctrine.

  47. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 10/08/2011 - 03:44 pm.

    Great discussion: One obvious point overlooked:

    Would the world be a better place to go the path of Junk Environmental Science and find out 50-100 years from now “oops we were wrong” Global disaster, and no chance to recover.
    Let’s play our cards to the conservative side and 50-100 years from now say oops we were wrong, and there really is not global impact? All the time you need to proceed froward intelligibility.

    The point being: (Mr. Swift and gang) If we error in one direction we gamble with global disaster, if we error in the other direction our worst problem is no change!

    Feel free to challenge the logic!

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