The senior U.S. senator from Oklahoma, James Inhofe, warned the world years ago about the scam of global warming.
Now, his book, “The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future,” is more important than ever as President Obama and other world leaders plot to impose new regulations in the name of fighting “climate change.”
That political agenda is being pursued even though, as Inhofe predicted, the scientific consensus behind “global warming” is already collapsing, and the reality that “climate change” is simply an excuse to fuel the growth of government and the erosion of American sovereignty is now becoming increasingly clear.
Americans are over-regulated and over-taxed, he charges. When regulation escalates, the result is an increase in regulators. In other words, bigger government is required to enforce the greater degree of regulation. Bigger government means bigger budgets and higher taxes. More simply doesn’t mean better, he said.
A perfect example is the entire global warming, climate-change issue, which is an effort to dramatically and hugely increase regulation of each of our lives and business and to raise our cost of living and taxes. In “The Greatest Hoax,” Inhofe reveals the reasons behind those perpetuating the hoax of global warming, who is benefiting from the general acceptance of the hoax and why the premise statements are blatantly and categorically false.
In this exclusive reveal from the book, Inhofe details “Climategate,” the largest scientific scandal in history. Climate scientists showed their willingness to fake data in order to support the narrative of climate change.
But after their secret emails were exposed, the evidence for fraud was so overwhelming even the shills in the mainstream media and progressive activists were running for cover.
CLIMATEGATE = VINDICATION
THE COLLAPSE OF THE SCIENCE
By James Inhofe
When I said I’ve been called every name in the book, I wasn’t kidding. In stark contrast to Rachel Maddow’s depiction of me as a “mountain of indignation,” Dana Milbank wrote October 28, 2009, in The Washington Post column, “It must be very lonely being the last flat-earther.” It was probably the last time a reporter could get away with singling me out as the only one who wasn’t buying into the flawed science behind the global warming campaign. Milbank continued making his case:
“Eleven academies in industrialized countries say that climate change is real; humans have caused most of the recent warming,” admitted Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.). “If fire chiefs of the same reputation told me my house was about to burn down, I’d buy some fire insurance.” An oil-state senator, David Vitter (R-La), said that he, too, wants to “get us beyond high-carbon fuels” and “focus on conservation, nuclear, natural gas and new technologies like electric cars.” And an industrial-state senator, George Voinovich (R-Ohio), acknowledged that climate change “is a serious and complex issue that deserves our full attention.” Then there was poor Inhofe.
Just a few weeks after that column appeared, it was all over: Climategate, the greatest scientific scandal of our time, broke. So I said Milbank didn’t have to feel too sorry for me. What I had been saying about the IPCC all along was confirmed. I was vindicated.
On November 18, 2009, just two days before Climategate, I went back down to the Senate floor to speak about how the “consensus” was already shattered and Copenhagen would fail. I said that 2009 would go down in history as the “Year of the Skeptic.” I had a few allies in this assertion: the Telegraph, a UK newspaper, was predicting Copenhagen would be a disaster on November 15, 2009: “The worst kept secret in the world is finally out—the climate change summit in Copenhagen is going to be little more than a photo opportunity for world leaders.” I said I would be there to tell them the truth:
And I will be travelling to Copenhagen, leading what I call the “Truth Squad” to say exactly what I said six years ago in Milan, Italy: The United States will not support a global warming treaty that will significantly damage the American economy, cost American jobs, and impose the largest tax increase in American history. Further, as I stated in 2003, unless developing nations are part of the binding agreement, the U.S. will not go along. Given the unemployment rate of 10 percent, and given all of the out of control spending in Washington, the last thing we need is another thousand-page bill that increases costs and ships jobs overseas, all with no impact on climate change.
I also said in Milan that the science is not settled. That was an unpopular view back then. But today, since Al Gore’s science fiction movie, more and more scientists, reporters, and politicians are questioning global warming alarmism. I proudly declare 2009 as the “Year of the Skeptic” – the year in which scientists who question the so-called global warming consensus are being heard.
So Copenhagen was already well on its way to failure. When Climategate hit, it only added superfluous nails to a coffin that was already tightly nailed shut.
Climategate revealed leaked emails from the world’s top climate scientists at the University East Anglia’s Climactic Research Unit, many of whom had been lead authors of the IPCC reports and were intimately involved in writing and editing the IPCC’s science assessments. My Senate report showed that many of these scientists may be obstructing the release of information that was contrary to their “consensus” claims; may be manipulating data using flawed climate models to reach preconceived conclusions; may be pressuring journal editors not to publish work questioning the “consensus”; and assuming activist roles to influence the political process.
The implications of this were huge considering that the “consensus” claim was based on the foundation of the IPCC science. Noted science historian Naomi Oreskes wrote, the “scientific consensus” of climate change “is clearly expressed in the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.” One top Obama administration official said that the IPCC’s assessments were the “gold standard” on climate science “because of the rigorous way in which they are prepared, reviewed, and approved.”
Each of the IPCC’s four assessment reports made the scientific case – more definitely over time – that anthropogenic gases were causing global warming. The IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report’s Summary for Policymakers in 2007 claimed that “warming of the climate system is unequivocal” and that “[m]ost of the observed increase in globally averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic (human) greenhouse gas concentrations.”
Climategate finally destroyed what was left of the façade of the “consensus.” Contrary to their repeated public assertions that the “science is settled,” the emails show climate scientists were arguing over critical issues, questioning key methods and statistical techniques, expressing concerns about historical periods (such as whether the Medieval Warming Period [MWP] was global in extent) and doubting whether there is “consensus” on the causes and the extent of climate change.
The press reaction in the wake of the scandal was remarkable considering how just a few years before they had nothing but praise for the IPCC. George Monbiot, a British writer, known for his environmental and political activism, wrote in his weekly column in the Guardian: “Pretending that this isn’t a real crisis isn’t going to make it go away. Nor is an attempt to justify the emails with technicalities. We’ll be able to get past this only by grasping reality, apologizing where appropriate, and demonstrating that it cannot happen again.” The Daily Telegraph said that “this scandal could well be the greatest in modern science.” Clive Crook of the Atlantic magazine wrote, “The closed-mindedness of these supposed men of science, their
willingness to go to any lengths to defend a preconceived message, is surprising even to me. The stink of intellectual corruption is overpowering.”
But comedian Jon Stewart was the best – he said, “Poor Al Gore: global warming completely debunked via the very Internet you invented. Oh the irony!” He went on:
STEWART: Value added data? What is that, numbers fortified with art? Truth plus, now with lemon? It doesn’t look good. Now does it disprove global warming? No, of course not. But it does put a fresh set of energizers in the Senate’s resident denier bunny.
SENATOR JAMES INHOFE, (R-OKLA.): The fact that this whole idea on the global warming. I’m glad that’s over, gone, done. We won.
STEWART: Alright. We knew Inhofe was going to say that. That guy thinks global warming is debunked every time he drinks a Slushee and gets a brain freeze. “If global warming is real, why does my head hurt?”
But by the way, that quote was from BEFORE he found out about the leaked email story. But that’s the point. If you care about an issue, and want it to be your life’s work, don’t cut corners.
It was one of the first times someone called me out for being a “denier” while also giving me credit for predicting how it would all end.
REWIND TO 2005
In 2005, I stood on the Senate floor to discuss the flaws in the IPCC process that had been manifesting themselves for years, and said it was time to face up to the “systematic and documented abuse of the scientific process by which an international body that claims it provides the most complete and objective science assessment in the world on the subject of climate change, the United Nations IPCC.”
At the time of my speech, the IPCC’s fourth assessment, which was meant to be the ‘smoking gun’ report – attempting to prove there was an “unequivocal” link between humans and catastrophic global warming – was set to come out in 2007. I said that if the IPCC and its fourth assessment were to have any credibility, fundamental changes to the IPCC scientific process would need to be made. Most importantly, I said that the IPCC must adopt procedures that ensure that impartial scientific reviewers formally approve both the chapters and the Summary for Policymakers – the latter of which was the only document that members of the press and members of Congress ever read. When compared with the actual report, it was clear the Summary for Policymakers was being co-opted by activists with an agenda to shape the conclusions to show that man-made emissions were causing catastrophic global warming. To safeguard against the manipulation of the message, objective scientists, not government delegates should be a part of the approval process. I also said that the IPCC must ensure that any uncertainties in the state of knowledge be clearly expressed in the Summary for Policymakers.
But of course, the IPCC remained committed to its path and, as Climategate eventually revealed, it was unsustainable and it was only a matter of time before it collapsed.
THE ‘GOLD STANDARD’
Phil Jones, the head of the Climatic Research Unit, put it mildly when he admitted that the Climategate emails “do not read well.”
The emails themselves raised the important question: what, if any, are the boundaries between science and activism? Perhaps the statement that best exemplifies the unusual political tendency among the scientists in the CRU controversy came from Dr. Keith Briffa, the deputy director of the CRU, and lead author of the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report, who wrote in one of the CRU emails, “I tried hard to balance the needs of the science and the IPCC, which were not always the same.” The most famous example comes from an email from Phil Jones, which reads, “I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (i.e. from 1980 onwards) and from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.” Of course, he means hide the decline in temperatures, which caused another scientist, Kevin Trenberth, to write: “The fact is we can’t account for the lack of warming, and it’s a travesty that we can’t.”
Climategate is significant in that it confirmed in the minds of many what we strongly suspected all the time. It is imperative that you read Appendix C, excerpts from our report on the CRU controversy which was published in February 2010. It clearly documents the specific participants and statements in Climategate.
HOCKEY STICK ANNIHILATED
If the hockey stick was already broken all the way back in 2003, after the Climategate revelations, in 2009, it is more accurate to say that it was shattered, as revealed in the following excerpts of my staff report on Climategate emails.
Possibly the most egregious example of scientists trying to silence skeptic voices was the reaction to a paper published in the journal Climate Research in 2003, which posed a serious challenge to the “hockey stick” graph constructed by Professors Michael Mann, Raymond Bradley, and Malcolm Hughes. Of course, the hockey stick, which was featured prominently in the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report in 2001, supported the conclusion that the 1990s, and 1998, were likely the warmest decade, and the warmest year, respectively, in at least a millennium.
Dr. Sallie Baliunas and Dr. Willie Soon, researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, contested the hockey stick conclusion; they reviewed more than two hundred climate studies and “determined that the 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years.” Their study “confirmed that the Medieval Warm Period of 800 to 1300 A.D. and the Little Ice Age of 1300 to 1900 A.D., were worldwide phenomena not limited to the European and North American continents. While 20th century temperatures are much higher than in the Little Ice Age period, many parts of the world show the medieval warmth to be greater than that of the 20th century.”
As the leaked emails show, Michael Mann, the author of the hockey stick, and Phil Jones, a climatologist at the University of East Anglia, were not too happy about this. In an email on March 11, 2003, titled “Soon and Baliunas,” Jones writes that he and his colleagues “should do something” about the Soon-Baliunas study, the quality of which he found “appalling”: “I think the skeptics will use this paper to their own ends and it will set paleo [climatology] back a number of years if it goes unchallenged.” Jones then went a step further, threatening to shun Climate Research until “they rid themselves of this troublesome editor.”
That same day, Mann responded, complaining that the skeptics had “staged a bit of a coup” at Climate Research, implying that scientists who disagree with him could never get published in peer-reviewed literature solely on the merits of their work. Mann echoed Jones’ suggestion to punish Climate Research by encouraging “our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers in, this journal:”
This was the danger of always criticising the skeptics for not publishing in the “peer-reviewed literature.” Obviously, they found a solution to that – take over a journal! So what do we do about this? I think we have to stop considering “Climate Research” as a legitimate peer-reviewed journal. Perhaps we should encourage our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers in, this journal. We would also need to consider what we tell or request of our more reasonable colleagues who currently sit on the editorial board.
In April 2003, Timothy Carter with the Finnish Environment Institute suggested changes to the editorial process at Climate Research in an email to Tom Wigley, a scientist formerly with the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR). Noting communications with “Mike” (Michael Mann) the previous morning, Carter wondered how to remove “suspect editors,” presumably those who approve research by skeptics. In reply, Wigley described a campaign to discredit Climate Research through a letter signed by more than fifty scientists. He also mentioned Mann’s approach to “get editorial board members to resign”:
One approach is to go direct to the publishers and point out the fact that their journal is perceived as being a medium for disseminating misinformation under the guise of refereed work. I use the word “perceived” here, since whether it is true or not is not what the publishers care about – it is how the journal is seen by the community that counts. I think we could get a large group of highly credentialed scientists to sign such a letter – 50+ people. Note that I am copying this view only to Mike Hulme and Phil Jones. Mike’s idea to get editorial board members to resign will probably not work – must get rid of von Storch too, otherwise holes will eventually fill up with people like Legates, Balling, Lindzen, Michaels, Singer, etc. I have heard that the publishers are not happy with von Storch, so the above approach might remove that hurdle too.
Along with these discussions about removing journal editors who held contrary views on climate science, the emails show that the scientists tried to prevent publication of papers they disagreed with. On July 8, 2004, Jones suggested that he and a colleague could keep the work of skeptics from appearing in the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment report: “I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”
The conclusion is obvious: Mann and his colleagues were not disinterested scientists. They acted more like a priestly caste, viewing substantive challenges to their work as heresy. And rather than welcoming criticism and debate as essential to scientific progress, they launched a campaign of petty invective against scientists who dared to question their findings
‘HIDE THE DECLINE’
The following is more from my Environment and Public Works Com-
Mittee’s minority staff report on Climategate:
“I am not sure that this unusual warming is so clear in the summer responsive data. I believe that the recent warmth was probably matched about 1,000 years ago.” Keith Briffa, Deputy Director, CRU, September 22, 1999.
I asked what Dr. Mann was trying to hide in a speech on the Senate floor on April 13, 2005, and Climategate emails provided the answer: he was arguably hiding the decline in temperatures. One of the most famous emails is written by CRU’s Jones in 1999: “I’ve just completed Mike [Mann]’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (i.e. from 1981 onwards) and from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”
Jones’ “trick” arose because of disagreement over Dr. Mann’s “hockey stick” temperature graph. Of course, the hockey stick showed a relatively straight shaft extending from 1000 AD to 1900, when a blade turns sharply upward, suggesting that warming in the 20th century was unprecedented, and caused by anthropogenic sources. Remember, the hockey stick was featured prominently on page one of the IPCC’s Summary for Policymakers in its Third Assessment Report.
In defending himself, Jones said, “The word ‘trick’ was used here colloquially as in a clever thing to do. It is ludicrous to suggest that it refers to anything untoward.” Similarly, echoing Jones, Dr. John Holdren, President Obama’s science adviser, asserted that “trick” merely means a clever way to tackle a problem. Both Holdren and Jones’ explanation of “trick” used in this context has evidentiary support. Unfortunately, neither Jones nor Holdren addressed the “problem” that confronted Jones and his colleagues. The problem in this case is the so called “divergence problem.” The divergence problem is the fact that after 1960, tree ring reconstructions show a marked decline in temperatures, while the land-based, instrumental temperature record shows just the opposite.
For some scientists, the divergence of data was a cause of great concern, but not necessarily for scientific reasons. For instance, IPCC author Chris Folland warned in an email that such evidence “dilutes the message rather significantly” that warming in the late 20th century relative to the last 1,000 years is “unprecedented.”
Specifically, Jones et al. expressed concern about a temperature reconstruction authored by Keith Briffa, a senior researcher with CRU. Because reliable thermometer data go back only to the 1850s, scientists use proxy data such as tree rings to reconstruct annual temperatures over long periods (e.g., 1,000 years) (it must be noted that proxy reconstructions are rife with uncertainties).
Unfortunately for those in the email chain, Briffa’s reconstruction relied on tree ring proxies that produced a sharp and steady decline in temperature after 1960. This conflicted with the instrumental temperature readings that showed a steep rise. Briffa’s graph was, according to Dr. Michael Mann, a “problem”:
Keith’s series…differs in large part in exactly the opposite direction that Phil’s does from ours. This is the problem we all picked up on (everyone in the room at IPCC was in agreement that this was a problem and a potential distraction/detraction from the reasonably consensus viewpoint we’d like to show w/ the Jones et al and Mann et al series.
Briffa later addressed the “pressure to present a nice tidy story” about the “unprecedented” warming in the late 20th century. In his view, “the recent warmth was matched about 1,000 years ago.” Here is the email from Briffa in full:
I know there is pressure to present a nice tidy story as regards ‘apparent unprecedented warming in a thousand years or more in the proxy data but in reality the situation is not quite so simple. We don’t have a lot of proxies that come right up to date and those that do (at least a significant number of tree proxies) some unexpected changes in response that do not match the recent warming. I do not think it wise that this issue be ignored in the chapter. For the record, I do believe that the proxy data do show unusually warm conditions in recent decades. I am not sure that this unusual warming is so clear in the summer responsive data. I believe that the recent warmth was probably matched about 1,000 years ago. I do not believe that global mean annual temperatures have simply cooled progressively over thousands of years as Mike appears to and I contend that there is strong evidence for major changes in climate over the Holocene (not Milankovich) that require explanation and that could represent part of the current or future background variability of our climate.
Mann was apparently nervous that “skeptics” would have a “field day” if Briffa’s decline was featured in the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report. He said “he’d hate to be the one” to give them “fodder.”
On September 22, 1999, Mann wrote:
We would need to put in a few words in this regard. Otherwise, the skeptics have a field day casting doubt on our ability to understand the factors that influence these estimates and, thus, can undermine faith in the paleoestimates. The best approach here is for us to circulate a paper addressing all the above points. I’ll do this as soon as possible. I don’t think that doubt is scientifically justified, and I’d hate to be the one to have to give it fodder!
As UK’s Daily Mail reported, “All [Jones] had to do was cut off Briffa’s inconvenient data at the point where the decline started, in 1961, and replace it with actual temperature readings, which showed an increase.”
So it seems that, rather than employing a “clever way” – or “trick” – to solve the post-1960 decline, Jones allegedly manipulated data to reach a preconceived conclusion. His method has been criticized by fellow scientists. Philip Stott, emeritus professor of biogeography at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies said, “Any scientist ought to know that you just can’t mix and match proxy and actual data. They’re apples and oranges. Yet that’s exactly what [Jones] did.”
What they couldn’t achieve through Kyoto they tried to achieve through
cap and trade legislation. And what they couldn’t achieve through legislation, they are currently trying to achieve through regulation.
In the midst of the cap and trade debate, as support for the bill was dwindling, the Obama EPA was working behind the scenes to finalize a “finding” that greenhouse gases harm public health and welfare, known as the “endangerment finding.” During a key case, Massachusetts v. EPA, the Supreme Court ruled that if EPA determined that greenhouse gases endanger human health, then they must regulate them under the Clean Air Act. The key word here is “if.” Proponents of the endangerment finding claim that the court forced the EPA to move forward with this finding, but this is not the case. The courts were clear that the EPA Administrator first had to determine if greenhouse gases endanger the public, and that determination would require a scientific investigation. They had a choice, and they made the wrong choice. They chose to make an endangerment finding based on the flawed scientific conclusions of the IPCC.
As the cap and trade battle waged on, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and President Obama said repeatedly that passing the bill was preferable because EPA regulations would be much more costly and complicated. As one astute April 2009 editorial in the Wall Street Journal put it, the Administration essentially played Russian roulette with regulations:
President Obama’s global warming agenda has been losing support in Congress, but why let an irritant like democratic consent interfere with saving the world? So last Friday the Environmental Protection Agency decided to put a gun to the head of Congress and play cap and trade roulette with the U.S. economy.
The pistol comes in the form of a ruling that carbon dioxide is a dangerous pollutant that threatens the public and therefore must be regulated under the 1970 Clean Air Act. This so-called “endangerment finding” sets the clock ticking on a vast array of taxes and regulation that EPA will have the power to impose across the economy, and all with little or no political debate.
They were determined to have cap and trade no matter what.
Part of the reason EPA regulation of greenhouse gases would be more complicated is that the Clean Air Act thresholds are only meant to regulate real, localized pollutants such as SO2, NOX, and Mercury.
Numerous legal experts, including Democrat Representative John Dingell, who wrote the Clean Air Act amendments, have said that the Clean Air Act was never designed to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. That’s because emissions of greenhouse gases are far greater than conventional pollutants, if EPA regulated them at the thresholds required by the Clean Air Act, the Agency would have to regulate almost everything including schools, hospitals, nursing homes, commercial buildings, churches, restaurants, hotels, malls, colleges and universities, food processing facilities, farms, sports arenas, soda manufacturers, bakers, brewers, wineries, and even some private homes. The results of that would be absurd, so EPA tailored the Clean Air Act to create much higher thresholds for greenhouse gases – but this tailoring will not likely hold up in the courts because it directly contradicts the law. And if the courts throw the “tailoring rule” out, it will be as Representative John Dingell put it, “a glorious mess.”
And the entire foundation of this bureaucratic nightmare is flawed science: EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson admitted to me publicly that EPA based its action on the IPCC science, saying that the proposal, the agency relied in large part on the assessment reports developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
At an Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on December 2, 2009, I challenged Administrator Jackson on that matter, saying that given what has come to light in the Climategate scandal, EPA should halt this agenda. She replied, “While I would absolutely agree that these emails show a lack of interpersonal skills, as I would say to my kids, be careful who you write, and maybe more, I have not heard anything that causes me to believe that that overwhelming consensus that climate change is happening and that man-made emissions are contributing to it, have changed.” At an Environment and Public Works Committee hearing in February 2010, Administrator Jackson told me that EPA accepted the findings of the IPCC without any serious, independent analysis.
Directly in line with Administrator Jackson’s points, the endangerment finding states, “it is EPA’s view that the scientific assessments” of the IPCC “represent the best reference materials for determining the general state of knowledge of the scientific and technical issues before the agency in making an endangerment decision.” In the finding’s Technical Support Document (TSD), in the section on “attribution,” EPA claims that climate changes are the result of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and not natural forces. In this section EPA has 67 citations, 47 of which refer to IPCC.
If there are any objective readers of this book who still give credibility to the IPCC science on which the entire hoax is based and the basis of the endangerment finding, then reading Appendix C is a must.
DR. ALAN CARLIN
Rewind for a moment to March 9, 2009, when Dr. Alan Carlin, a PhD economist in EPA’s Office of Policy, Economics, and Innovation released a key report that called into question the scientific process underlying the agency’s proposed endangerment finding. According to Carlin, a thirty-eight-year veteran of EPA, and a fellow agency employee:
We have become increasingly concerned that EPA and many other agencies and countries have paid too little attention to the science of global warming. EPA and others have tended to accept the findings reached by outside groups, particularly the IPCC and the CCSP, as being correct without a careful and critical examination of their conclusion and documentation…We believe our concerns and reservations are sufficiently important to warrant a serious review of the science by EPA before any attempt is made to reach conclusions on the subject.
But Carlin’s request was denied. In a series of emails, Al McGartland, Carlin’s boss, forbade him from having “any direct communication” with anyone outside of his office concerning his study. On March 16, Carlin tried again, but McGartland made clear what his superiors thought of the report: “The time for such discussion of fundamental issues has passed for this round. The administrator and the [Obama] administration have decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision… I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office.” But that wasn’t all. McGartland also wrote to Carlin: “With the endangerment finding nearly final, you need to move on to other issues and subjects. I don’t want you to spend any additional EPA time on climate change. No papers, no research etc., at least until we see what EPA is going to do with Climate.” So much for transparency.
The endangerment finding was finalized December 7, 2009, just in time for the Copenhagen climate conference. Cap and trade had failed, but President Obama could still face world leaders armed with his back-up plan. The cost of “doing something” for the conference was high: the endangerment finding, like cap and trade would cost American consumers around $300 to $400 billion a year, significantly raise energy prices, and destroy hundreds of thousands of jobs.
CRISIS OF CONFIDENCE IN THE IPCC
After Climategate there was an interesting reversal in the mainstream media: all those outlets that had praised Al Gore and the IPCC to the heights just a few years prior were suddenly tearing apart the IPCC’s assessments – and more and more and more flaws came to light. When ABC News, the Economist, Time, Newsweek, and the Financial Times – among many others – reported that the IPCC’s research contains embarrassing flaws, and that the IPCC chairman and scientists knew of the flaws, but published them anyway – well, you have the makings of a major scientific scandal. In the end, well over a hundred different errors in the IPCC science were revealed in the wake of the Climategate email scandal.
One of the most publicized errors was, of course, IPCC’s claim that the Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035. It’s simply false, yet it was put into the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment report. Here’s what we know:
- According to the Telegraph, “the IPCC [has] since admitted it was based on a report written in a science journal and even the scientist who was the subject of the original story admits it was not based on facts.
- “When finally published,” the Telegraph wrote, “the IPCC report did give its source as the WWF study but went further, suggesting the likelihood of the glaciers melting was ‘very high’.” (The IPCC, by the way, defines this as having a probability of greater than 90 percent.)
Time magazine, the very publication that once told us to be afraid – very afraid of global warming, said that “Glaciergate,” was a “black eye for the IPCC and for the climate-science community as a whole.”
There was more. According to the Telegraph, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, the head of the IPCC, “was informed that claims about melting Himalayan glaciers were false before the Copenhagen summit.”
So why was the Himalayan error included? We now know from the very IPCC scientist who edited the report’s section on Asia that it was done for political purposes – it was inserted to induce China, India, and other countries to “take action” on global warming. According to the UK’s SundayMail, Murari Lal, the scientist in charge of the IPCC’s chapter on Asia, said, “We thought that if we can highlight it, it will impact policymakers and politicians and encourage them to take some concrete action.” In other words, as the Sunday Mail wrote, Lal “admitted [the glacier alarmism] was included purely to put political pressure on world leaders.”
So what had the IPCC done to rectify this fiasco? I went into the IPCC report to see if a correction had been made: the 2035 claim was still there. Of course, there was a note attached and it said the following:
It has, however, recently come to our attention that a paragraph in the 938-page Working Group II contribution to the underlying assessment refers to poorly substantiated estimates of rate of recession and date for the disappearance of Himalayan glaciers. In drafting the paragraph in question, the clear and well-established standards of evidence, required by the IPCC procedures, were not applied properly.
It turns out that the IPCC’s fourth assessment also found observed reductions in mountain ice in the Andes, Alps, and Africa – all caused by, of course, global warming. In an article titled, “UN climate change panel based claims on student dissertation and magazine article,” the Telegraph reported:
. . . one of the sources quoted was a feature article published in a popular magazine for climbers which was based on anecdotal evidence from mountaineers about the changes they were witnessing on the mountainsides around them. The other was a dissertation written by a geography student, studying for the equivalent of a master’s degree, at the University of Berne in Switzerland that quoted interviews with mountain guides in the Alps.
On top of this, we found that the IPCC was exaggerating claims about the Amazon. The report said that 40 percent of the Amazon rainforest was endangered by global warming. But, again, as we’ve seen, this was taken from, yes, a study by the World Wildlife Federation, and one that had nothing to do with global warming. Even worse, it was written by a green activist.
In the wake of the scandal, even my good friend Barbara Boxer was careful about how she talked about the IPCC. As she said in a hearing on EPA’s Budget on February 23, 2010, “In my opening statement, I didn’t quote one international scientist or IPCC report…We are quoting the American scientific community here.”
This was the “gold standard” of climate research; it was the body that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. It obviously did not win a Nobel science award.
ONLY A MATTER OF TIME
This crisis of confidence in the IPCC translates to a crisis of confidence for EPA’s endangerment finding, which rests in large measure on the IPCC’s conclusions. The endangerment finding’s scientific foundation has already disintegrated and I believe it will only be a matter of time before the finding itself follows suit.
Once I had it confirmed from Lisa Jackson that the EPA had relied on the science of the IPCC to establish the endangerment finding, I asked the EPA Office of Inspector General (OIG) in April 2010 to investigate the process leading up to the endangerment finding to determine if EPA had come to that conclusion properly. In September 2011, the OIG completed its report and found that the EPA had not come to this conclusion properly – in fact, it found that the scientific assessment underpinning the Obama EPA’s endangerment finding for greenhouse gases was inadequate and in violation of the agency’s own peer review process. The report calls the scientific integrity of EPA’s decision-making process into question and undermines the credibility of the endangerment finding.
The Inspector General’s investigation uncovered that the EPA failed to engage in the required record-keeping process leading up to the endangerment finding decision, and it also did not follow its own peer review procedures to ensure that the science behind the decision was sound. Regardless of what one thinks of the UN science, the EPA is still required – by its own procedures – to conduct an independent review. Dr. Alan Carlin is now vindicated as his concerns that EPA was relying too much on the science of the IPCC, and that the Agency was not engaging in a rigorous scientific process, turned out to be valid.
I was reminded of Jon Stewart’s warning “don’t cut corners!” when the press began weighing in on the IG report. The headline from the AP was “U.S. watchdog: EPA Took Shortcut on Climate Finding.” EPA immediately responded saying, as it did during the Climategate scandal, that this still does not affect the validity of the science, but Stewart’s admonition of the scientists of Climategate applies to the EPA: if the agency is so sure the science is completely sound, why did they cut corners? Why can’t they be transparent if there is nothing to hide?
EPA’s process to determine the endangerment finding was rushed, biased, and appears to have been predetermined. Now that all of this has come to light, the only conclusion is that the endangerment finding should be thrown out, and if it is, it will be a tremendous victory for the American people.