The new paper is said to “update” the excellent Science article by Dr. Naomi Oreskes who reviewed 928 randomly selected papers on global warming, and found that none questioned the consensus view that human-activity, through the burning of fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas, is a major contributor the climate change we are now experiencing.
This study has been a sore point for the climate denial industry for a long time. But it seems that a new effort is underway to discredit Oreskes's seminal piece. The latest attack appears to come in collusion among an endocrinologist, a British Lord and a Republican, oil industry-friendly think tank operating in Washington, DC.
The endocrinologist is Mr. Klaus Martin-Shulte, who has prepared the paper that presumes to refute Dr. Oreskes's original findings. A consultant in endocrine surgery at King's College Hospital in the UK, Mr. Shulte seems to have spent his professional life comfortably under the radar.
That is, until an article appeared on a site called Dailytech about a soon-to-be published paper by Shulte finding that “less than half of all published scientists endorse global warming theory.”
Here's where the British Lord and the DC think tank come into play. The British Lord goes by the title of The Third Viscount Lord Monckton of Brenchley (inset), a well-know player in the attack on conventional climate science. Here's some more background on Brenchley.
Brenchley has another role as “Chief Policy Advisor” for a DC-based “think” tank called the Science and Public Policy Institute. In fact, in July of this year Brenchley published a paper in his role with the Science and Public Policy Institute panning Oreskes and her 2004 paper on the scientific consensus on the causes of climate change. A major focal point of Brenchley's argument is the yet-to-be-published article by Mr. Shulte.
So here's the time-line so far: Brenchley and the Science and Public Policy Institute release a report dated July, 2007, containing research findings from a paper that has not yet been published.
Now on the Science and Public Policy Institute's website you can also find “open letters” written by Shulte regarding his research. Seems like the Science and Public Policy Institute has a direct pipeline (no pun intended) to Martin-Shulte.
All starts to seem a little too cozy, doesn't it?
And once you start to look into the background of the Science and Public Policy Institute, the term cozy appears to be too much an understatement.
The Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI) was founded by a long-time Republican staffer named Robert Ferguson. According to the SPPI website, Ferguson “has 26 years of Capitol Hill experience, having worked in both the House and Senate. He served in the House Republican Study Committee, the Senate Republican Policy Committee; as Chief of Staff to Congressman Jack Fields (R-TX) from 1981-1997, Chief of Staff to Congressman John E. Peterson (R-PA) from 1997-2002 and Chief of Staff to Congressman Rick Renzi (R-AZ) in 2002.”
Until recently, Ferguson worked for an oil-industry funded think tank called Frontiers of Freedom. The Frontiers of Freedom are one of the most active groups in the attack on climate science and have received over $1 million in grants from oil giant ExxonMobil.
Ferguson ran the “Center for Science and Public Policy.”
According to ExxonSecrets, “Ferguson set up the Center for Science and Public Policy in early 2003, after receiving a $100,000 grant from ExxonMobil in 2002. Exxon has continued to fund the Center each year since then, to the tune of at least $50,000 a year.”
So what is the relationship between Ferguson, the Science and Public Policy Institute and this new yet-to-be-published study by Mr. Shulte? Who paid for Shulte's research? Anybody?