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Sat, 2009-12-05 14:47Richard Littlemore
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Canadian Environment Minister Dismisses Stolen Emails

“It does not change the position of Canada”

Canadian Environment Minister Jim Prentice told the National Post that the emails stolen from the University of East Anglia would not change the position that Canada is taking to the COP15 climate conference in Copenhagen this week.

“The science overall is relatively clear on all of this and as a conservationist and as a responsible environmental steward Canada wants to see carbon emissions reduced,” Prentice said.

Prentice and the Canadian government have been winning criticism lately for being neither preservationist nor environmentally responsible in the position that it brings to the climate conference. Canada has abrogated its Kyoto commitment, nominated an inadequate target for emission reductions and made no public plan to meet even that disappointing goal.

The minister also seems to show his hand in saying that the science behind climate change is only “relatively” clear - leaving the door ajar for those who continue to argue the contrary case.

But it has to be an optimistic sign that he would not choose, at this juncture, to use the emails as an excuse for Canada’s intransigence. You might even hope it presages a new and more responsible international position.

Fri, 2009-12-04 20:29Richard Littlemore
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IPCC Working Group 1 Responds on Stolen Emails

For the Record:

Working Group One of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has put out an official response to the East Anglia University email thefts:

In conclusion, IPCC WGI firmly stands behind its unique procedures and behind the scientific
community and their collective work which has been, and continues to be, the basis of unbiased,
open and transparent assessments of the current knowledge on the climate system and its changes.

The complete text is below and the document is attached.

Tue, 2009-11-24 12:14Richard Littlemore
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State of the Climate: Much Worse than Predicted

Given the dated nature of the last report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a panel of some of the world’s most respected climate scientists have put together an update called The Copenhagen Diagnosis.

The news is worse than predicted on every front.

  • Global carbon dioxide emissions are up 40 per cent from 1990.
  • The global warming trend has continued, despite a temporary decline in solar energy.
  • Both Greenland and Antarctic ice-sheets are losing mass at an accelerating rates, as are glaciers the world over.
  • Summer-time melting of Arctic sea-ice during 2007-2009 was about 40% greater than the average prediction from the IPCC’s last report.
  • Global average sea-level has risen at a rate 80% above past IPCC predictions over the past 15 years.
  • Several vulnerable elements in the climate system (e.g. continental ice-sheets. Amazon rainforest, West African monsoon and others) could pass irreversible tipping points if warming continues in a business-as-usual way throughout this century.

Wed, 2009-11-18 17:29Brendan DeMelle
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Fred Singer, lacking nobility, still claims the Prize

Climate skeptics are, not surprisingly, hitting the European speaking circuit in the weeks leading up to the U.N. climate summit in Copenhagen. But what is surprising is that notorious global warming denier S. Fred Singer was described at a skeptic conference today as a Nobel prize winner, a flat out lie.

According to a Belgian journalist who alerted DeSmog to Singer’s appearance today at a skeptic conference in the European Parliament building, Singer was described in event materials as:

“a reviewer of IPCC reports, he shares the 2007 Nobel peace prize with Al Gore and 2000 others.”


The idea that Fred Singer shares any part in the IPCC/Gore Nobel prize is laughable, of course.  Other than Mr. Gore, the Nobel committee recognized only the IPCC authors, and they all received framed Nobel certificates.  If Singer can produce a framed Nobel, I’ll produce my Olympic gold medal (Singer must eat cereal too, I sure enjoy the prizes inside, although I’ve never seen a Nobel peace prize before).

Mon, 2009-09-07 08:38Peter Sinclair
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Climate Denial Crock of the Week/1998 Revisited

One of the enduring myths of climate denialism is that global warming stopped sometime in the last decade. I see it in the blaring headlines of pseudoscience websites, in comments on my videos, even some of our most “distinguished” journalists have been taken in.

 

Mon, 2009-04-20 15:48Jim Hoggan
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New Fraser Institute video both patronizing and wrong

In an embarrassing - and failed - effort to speak the hip language of youth, the Fraser Institute has launched a YouTube video dismissing climate change as a matter of natural variability, saying:

“The climate changes naturally; always has; always will.”

Obviously aimed at high school students (sample voiceover: “all because you ride the bus to school every day”), this seems to steal from the tobacco maker’s playbook for selling cigarettes to children.

Sat, 2009-04-04 13:26Richard Littlemore
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The decline of Tim Ball: Denier champion reduced to railing at real scientists

Pity poor Tim Ball.

Despite having a short (eight years as a professor) and undistinguished (five peer-reviewed publications in his lifetime) career as a geography professor at the University of Winnipeg, Dr. Ball was able in the last 10 years to elevate himself to the level of self-appointed climate change expert. By working with energy industry lobby firms, he was able to insinuate himself as a would-be advisor to committees of the Canadian House of Commons and the the U.S. Senate. At one point, he presumed to send a letter directly to Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin, introducing himself as “one of the first climatology PhDs in the world,” - a claim so far from accurate as to be laughable.

By his activism, his constant and so-often ill-informed criticism of scientists who were actually working in the field of climate change, Ball had, by 2006, established himself as Canada’s pre-eminent global warming denier. The Globe and Mail called him “Mr. Cool,” although the accompanying feature was anything but complimentary.

Still, at least he was getting attention.

Tue, 2009-02-17 13:37Emily Murgatroyd
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Scientists losing war of words over climate change

In the conservative world of science, conclusions are couched in caveats and statements are chosen carefully to not seem overwrought. And in the world of climate science that’s no different. For example, in their 2007 report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a series of defined levels of certainty about their conclusions that looked like this:

• “Virtually certain” (considered more than 99% likely to be correct)

• “Very likely” (more than 90%)

• “Likely” (more than 66%)

• “More likely than not” (more than 50%)

• “Unlikely” (less than 33%)

• “Very unlikely” (less than 10%)

• “Exceptionally unlikely” (less than 5%)

So in the IPCC’s final report they made statements like, “Global climate change is “very likely” to have a human cause.”

Tue, 2009-02-17 09:46Jeremy Jacquot
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The Worse Is Yet to Come

Melting ice caps. Crippling droughts. Acidifying oceans. Even to the untrained eye, the trends are becoming starkly clear: Climate change is upon us, and it’s only getting worse.

That, in essence, was the grim takeaway from a speech given by Christopher Field, the founding director of the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Global Ecology at Stanford University and a co-author of the 2007 U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) last week.

Thu, 2008-10-23 08:42Ross Gelbspan
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Nature Puts IPCC in the Rearview Mirror

Climate change is happening much faster than the world's best scientists predicted and will wreak havoc unless action is taken on a global scale, a new report warns.

The report says that the 2007 report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) - a study of global warming by 4,000 scientists from more than 150 countries which alerted the world to the possible consequences of global warming - is now out of date.

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