Archive for May 2011
Excerpts from the press release about Heartland Institute’s latest laugh-fest:
“The Heartland Institute will host its sixth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-6) on June 30 and July 1 in Washington, DC. Heartland will be joined in Washington by dozens of think tank cosponsors and hundreds of scientists in an effort to restore the scientific method to its rightful place in the debate over the causes, consequences, and implications of climate change.”
“The theme of the conference, Restoring the Scientific Method, acknowledges the fact that claims of scientific certainty and predictions of climate catastrophes are based on post-normal science, which substitutes claims of consensus for the scientific method. This choice has had terrible consequences for science and society.”
“The scientists speaking at this conference, and the hundreds more who are expected to attend, are committed to restoring the scientific method. This means abandoning the failed hypothesis of man-made climate change, and using real science and sound economics to improve our understanding of the planet’s ever-changing climate.”
I teach MET295 – Global Climate Change to first and second year community college students. MET295 is a three credit lecture course that serves as a science elective for the general student population. Basic high school algebra is the only prerequisite. (See the course outline.)
I used John Cook’s SkepticalScience.com as the student resource for this semester’s research papers. As you will see from the four example papers highlighted on this blog, information found at SkepticalScience.com is accessible to the typical college student and likely to the general public.
Recently I have been publicly presenting a talk regarding the impacts of climate change on nature and humans titled: Climate Change is Not Being Nice to Mother Nature. In this talk I describe the impact of climate change on oceans, Arctic mammals, birds, fish, frogs, trees, lakes and ponds, and humans. Human impacts include, among others, sea level rise, stronger hurricanes, extreme heat, increased risks to health, higher costs for recreational activities, and serious geopolitical implications including war.
However, the slides that get the most reaction are those about the northward expansion of the Brown Recluse spider.
Update (July 18, 2011): Monckton told he’s not member of House of Lords. Clerk of parliaments publishes letter on Lords’ site saying peer is not and has ‘never been a member of the House of Lords’.
The Climate Science Rapid Response Team is a match-making service to connect climate scientists with lawmakers and the media. The group is committed to providing rapid, high-quality information to media and government officials. To use the service, requesters use the inquiry form to identify themselves, pose their question and provide a deadline for the response. That information is then immediately sent to Dr. John Abraham, Dr. Ray Weymann, and me. One of these three “matchmakers” then immediately forwards the inquiry to those scientists with the most appropriate expertise. An authoritative response from one of the Climate Science Rapid Response Team scientists will be returned to the inquirer either directly or via one of the three matchmakers. For more information about the Team and to read about a typical day when I am “on call” see Lisa Palmer’s story over at the Yale Forum on Climate Change & the Media.
John, Ray, and I occasionally receive “crank inquiries” from the Climate Science Rapid Response Team web site. These emails are normally deleted. On Friday April 29, 2011 we received an inquiry from Dr. Abu Ali-Hussain of the Doric Foundation, an organization claiming to be academic advisors to a group of Gulf States’ sovereign wealth funds. A quick search revealed no such organization and the inquiry came from the UK. The inquiry is strikingly like something that would have originated from the 3rd Viscount Christopher Monckton of Brenchley. Instead of deleting the request, John, Ray, and I replied with the message below. (The initial inquiry from Dr. Abu Ali-Hussain appears below our response.)