Accepting his share of the Nobel Peace prize this week, Al Gore said that “. . . we have begun to wage war on the Earth itself. It is time to make peace with the planet.”
A new study published this week, however, provides more evidence that Mr. Gore is, in fact, at war with reality and that he would do well to make peace with the science.
Climate scientists reported in the December issue of the International Journal of Climatology, published by Britain's Royal Meteorological Society, that observed temperature changes measured over the last 30 years don't match well with temperatures predicted by the mathematical climate models relied on by the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The global-warming hypothesis is based on climate models that suppose that temperature trends in the troposphere, the lowest part of the atmosphere, should be 2-3 times greater than trends in surface temperatures.
As noted in 2000 by the National Academy of Sciences, however, this notion conflicts with real-life observations indicating that the Earth's surface is warming more quickly than the middle and upper parts of the troposphere, defined as between 1 to 6 miles in altitude.
The new study — authored by David Douglass (University of Rochester), John Christy (University of Alabama-Huntsville), Benjamin Pearson (also University of Rochester) and S. Fred Singer (University of Virginia) — compared all 10 available observational data sets with the major models used by the IPCC.
Douglass et al. report in the new study that observational data are in drastic disagreement with the climate models.
The models predict significantly warmer atmospheric temperatures than have actually occurred, despite that “the last 25 years constitute a period of more complete and accurate observations and more realistic modeling efforts.”
“We suggest, therefore, that projections of future climate based on these models be viewed with much caution,” they concluded.
Caution, unfortunately, is the last thing on the minds of Al Gore and co-Nobelist IPCC, who rely on their suspect climate models to predict that average global temperature will rise anywhere from 2 degrees Fahrenheit to 12 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century, depending on the level of global greenhouse-gas emissions.
But it's tough to take such predictions seriously when the global-warming hypothesis and the models that rely on it are flatly contradicted by 30 years of reality.
Another entity that needs to come to grips with what constitutes yet another fatal flaw in the global-warming hypothesis is the U.S. Congress.
Just last week the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted 11-8, largely along party lines, to send the so-called “Lieberman-Warner bill” for consideration by the full Senate.
The goal of Lieberman-Warner is to slash U.S .greenhouse gas emissions by 70 percent by 2050. It would attempt to achieve this goal through a so-called cap-and-trade mechanism that would place increasingly stringent limits on industrial emissions of greenhouse gases.
Lieberman-Warner is a recipe for social and economic disaster, according to testimony offered in November by Dr. Margo Thorning, chief economist for the American Council on Capital Formation.
While population and economic growth are projected to result in a 30 percent increase in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, Lieberman-Warner would require that the emissions level be 55 percent lower than the 2030 projection.
“Sharp cutbacks in energy use would be necessary to close the 55 percent gap,” Thorning testified.
Thorning pointed out to the Senate that during 1990-2000, per capita U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell by 0.8 percent and are projected to decline by 0.6 percent during 2000-2012, thanks primarily to increased a long-term trend in energy efficiency.
But Lieberman-Warner would require per capita emissions to fall by 50 percent during 2000-2030.
“The technologies simply do not exist to reduce emissions over the next 17 years by the amounts mandated in [Lieberman-Warner] without severely reducing the growth in the U.S. economy and in employment,” said Thorning.
Other Senate testimony by the consulting firm CRA International projected that Lieberman-Warner would eventually cause an annual economic loss of $1 trillion. To provide context, current annual Social security outlays are about $600 billion.
The bill was also projected to result in a net loss of 1.5 million to 3.4 million jobs by 2020, throttling the fantasy that “going Green” will create more jobs.
The Congressional Budget Office and economists such as former Federal Reserve Board chairman Alan Greenspan, supply-sider Arthur Laffer and Harvard's Greg Mankiw have all condemned cap-and-trade as dangerous to the economy — yet like Al Gore, Lieberman-Warner marches on, oblivious to reality.
One co-author of the new study, John Christy, said in a media release that, “We have good reason [based on our study] to believe that the current climate models greatly overestimate the effects of greenhouse gases.”
Co-author Fred Singer added, “Our research demonstrates that the ongoing rise of atmospheric carbon dioxide has only a minor influence on climate change. We must conclude, therefore, that attempts to control carbon dioxide emissions are ineffective and pointless — but very costly.”
As the science continues to roll in against greenhouse-gas panic, Al Gore just keeps getting shriller in hopes of pushing the Green-whipped, Democrat-controlled Congress toward economy-killing regulation.
Though it's hard to see how Gore will ever bring himself to make peace with the real inconvenient truth, we must nevertheless demand a reality check from our elected representatives.