Scientific consensus on man-made climate change... well that depends on what you mean by consensus.
How many times a day do we read or hear from the “un-biased” media that the case for man-made global warming (caused by our SUV’s and factories spewing CO2 into the atmosphere) is closed. As our very own US Senator Dole says in a letter to NCCO2Debate there is a “scientific consensus” on the issue and no further debate or study needs to be done, but that it is time to begin spending millions of our NC tax dollars regulating CO2. This post is to provide another resource to North Carolinian’s that will expose this environmentalist propaganda talking point turned climate change urban legend.
Not surprisingly based off of the actual number of scientists involved with the IPCC, the “scientific consensus” term was NOT even coined by a scientist. The phrase was actually quoted from a science historian in 2004. Like most of you when I hear the phrase scientific consensus I envision 1000’s of peer-reviewed papers, published in reputable scientific journals, by hundred’s of different scientists, at least a hundred pages each, with enough charts and graphs to make your eyes cross, that all come to the same conclusions, independently, using repeatable experimental data. This post, taken from a report by Christopher Walter with the Science and Public Policy Institute, clearly demonstrates that instead, sadly, "consensus" was reached from a one page essay by science historian Naomi Oreskes.
In 2004 Oreskes ran a key word search in the ISI Science Web database (a tool used by scientists to research previously published data in varying scientific fields of study) using “climate change”, or at least that is what her essay stated she did. The results of her key word search were:
“928 abstracts, published in refereed scientific journals between 1993 and 2003,
and listed in the ISI database with the keywords ‘climate change’.”
In her analysis of the 928 abstracts she concluded that, 75% of the 928 abstracts either explicitly or implicitly accepted the “consensus” view that climate change is indeed man-made….AND that the remaining 25% took NO position, being concerned with palaeoclimate rather than today’s climate.
That’s math even I can do.
If 75% of ALL the scientific literature that existed from 1993 to 2003 held a view that climate change is indeed man-made, or caused by man, and the remaining 25% contained not one dissenting opinion, then yes, one would be foolish not to support immediate, drastic counter measures to reduce CO2 emissions! And indeed Oreskes leads us to believe in her essay that none of the 928 abstracts contain any dissenting opinions. She states:
“Remarkably, none of the papers disagreed with the consensus position. … This
analysis shows that scientists publishing in the peer-reviewed literature agree
with IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, and the public statements of their
professional societies. Politicians, economists, journalists, and others may have
the impression of confusion, disagreement, or discord among climate scientists,
but that impression is incorrect. … Our grandchildren will surely blame us if they find that we understood the reality of anthropogenic climate change and failed to do anything about it. … There is a consensus on the reality of anthropogenic climate change.”
AND thus the “scientific consensus” of man made climate change environmentalist/liberal talking point is born! As the Big Foot urban legend started off with two guys, a camera, and a monkey suit, this urban legend started with a computer, a historian, and a one page essay in a scientific journal.
You would be tempted to assume that Oreske’s one-page essay was peer-reviewed before it could possibly be published in such a prestigious scientific journal as Science. But, as usual, when it comes to man made climate change alarmist claims, to make that assumption would be a very expensive mistake for North Carolina, America, and the World. Why…. because Oreske lied!
Christopher Walter, with the Science and Public Policy Institute states,
“It is not clear whether Oreskes’ analysis was peer-reviewed, since it was presented as an essay and not as a scientific paper. However, there were numerous serious errors, effectively negating her conclusion, which suggest that the essay was either not reviewed at all or reviewed with undue indulgence by scientists who agreed with Oreskes’ declared prejudice – shared by the editors of Science - in favour of the alarmist position.”
Dr. Benny Peiser conducting true science by attempting to duplicate Oreskes’ “experiment” searched the ISI Science Web database using “climate change” for the same time frame and he simply could not duplicate Oreskes’ results. Walter states,
“Dr.Benny Peiser, of Liverpool John Moores University in the UK, conducted a search of the peer-reviewed literature on the ISI Web of Science database between 1993 and 2003. He found not 928 but more than 12,000 papers mentioning the phrase “climate change". When he pointed this out, the editors of Science were compelled to publish anerratum to the effect that the search term which Oreskes had used was not, as stated in her essay, “climate change” but rather “global climate change”. Accordingly, Oreskes’ essay had covered not the entire corpus of scientific papers on climate change over the stateddecade but fewer than one-thirteenth of them."
When Dr. Peiser ran the search “global climate change” which is actually the same search that Oreskes used, he found 1117 documents not 928. But what is more important, when he reviewed the 1117 only 13 draw hard conclusions that climate change is man-made, and/or catastrophic in nature.
That is 1%!
Webster’s online defines consensus as:
“general agreement or the judgment arrived at by most of those concerned.”
The only consensus I see in the scientific literature is that man made climate change does not exist.
Please visit http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/ and read this article “Consensus”? What “Consensus”? Among Climate Scientists, the Debate Is Not Over". I strongly encourage all of my fellow North Carolinian’s to forward it on to your elected officials and inform them that there is a 1% consensus that they will be re-elected if they continue to remain silent about this hoax. Also, tell them you want to see this issue debated publicly, with scientists from both points of view, presenting and defending the evidence for man-made climate change before one dollar of our taxes is spent regulating CO2 in our great state.