Acton Institute Powerblog

New Global Warming Blog

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I’m contributing to a new blog at National Review Online, called Planet Gore, which focuses on the Global Warming controversy. Check it out.

Jay Richards


  • JEH

    Just a quick comment. It is clear to me as a geologist/geophysicist that the warming is real. However, it will be interesting to see if future efforts to reduce the effect are of any real consequence. The reason… sea level and average global temp are both very near the lowest levels ever encountered. If you look at the well documented sea level curves which are well known to geologists, sea level swings between long periods during which sea level is several hundred meters higher (600-700 ft higher) and somewhat shorter intervals, commonly related to widespread glaciation, in which sea level falls to a level close that the of the present. Over the last few million years, sea levels have varied drastically, rising and falling multiple times very rapidly. Even so, the range of these variations stays near the lowest levels ever.
    The same thing goes for the average global temperature. Even though we are warmer than the recent ice ages, the temp still is quite near its minimum. So even if humans were to suddenly able to remove all of the excess greenhouse gases from the atmosphere, the overall natural warming trend may still dominate markedly.
    Not that we should pollute with impunity, but I just thought it is worth consideration if our efforts come up short.

  • drog

    I would like to agree with JEH’s assertions. Perhaps it also my background in the geosciences that contributes to my tendency toward the long view on this issue. Although I can’t say I’ve read exhaustively on climate change, I still tend to think on a time scale that dwarfs that of humankind. JEH is absolutely right in that our planet is really in a cool time right now relative to some of the extremes it has seen. The recent interest the media has shown to the issue of climate change has, in my opinion, created a zeitgeist of climate alarmism and doomsday prediction. Yet this planet has seen sea levels hundred of feet higher and lower than we see today. The Gulf of Mexico sedimentary record contains unequivocal evidence of river deltas in areas that are now under hundreds of feet of water, and of course everyone is familiar with the marine deposits of the American west from the Cretaceous when sea level was much higher than it is now. All of this tells me that the planet is able continue turning and churning out new life under the most extreme of conditions, compared to which our conditions seem positively temperate. Perhaps mankind is worried about mankind, which is a perfectly legitimite enterprise. But we shouldn’t worry about the planet; it will be thriving and teeming with life long after the last human being has gone the way of the dodo. There’s really only one certainty and that is that the climate will change. Will it be good or bad for humankind? Only time will tell. But Earth will be just fine, with or without us.

  • Not all greens are red, but it’s not just the color-blind that have trouble seeing the difference. No doubt there is global warming, but a)we can’t do anything about it, b) it might not be all bad, and especially c) the scaremongers are using they hype to achieve political objectives that are more important to them than whether or not science is really on their side. Check out the website:

  • Hi Everyone:

    Great discussion.

    What really is ASTONISHING to me is that nobody seems to be talking about the biggest contributors to greenhouse cases, and thus global warming:

    Cattle emissions contribute more to greenhouse gases and global warming than all the transportation in the world combined!

    I used to work with Ralph Nader and he always said the most important stories are under reported. He is still right!

  • Pedrolito

    Obvioulsy we are experiencing more a weather change than a global warming.

    Now a fundamental duality appears, what are the reasons for these dramatic changes.

    Two theories are currently opposing : human induced VS nature induced.

    I have finally found an article that states the *coexistence of those two factors and that also assess the gravity of the situation*.

    Have a look at it [url=]here[/url].

  • Finally, some intelligent life! I am also a geologist and appreciate the lessons learned from studying the long history of the Earth and it’s constantly changing climate as recorded in the sedimentary record and in many other ways.

    To say I am a skeptic about man-caused global warming is an understatement. I’m very concerned because I think it is all a hoax that takes advantage of people’s ignorance and fear. For that reason I’ve created a blog to share information I hope will help clear the air (pun intended). Visit and have your say please:

  • Marcel Jacques

    Very interesting discussion.

    I am not sure that the human are the only responsible for that. Nature as volcano plays a great role.

    That reminds me an interesting article that i read few days ago about that.

    Il is a must read.

    Here’s the link:

  • Let me reiterate: In my opinion the real issue over global warming is whether we, mankind, are creating global warming with our “glutonnous” burning of fossil fuels and the consequent emmissions of carbon. They say what is most harming is simply carbon dioxide, CO2. I say it is all nonsense and hype.

    Now that people like Al Gore have everyone scared to death about all the dire consequences of global warming and extreme climate change, they want to tax the heck out of us, and put all kinds of restrictions on how we live. In effect they’re willing to spend billions to fix a problem we know little about.
    Visit my blog at
    I have lots of good, fun and interesting information there.

  • Max Anacker

    A Layman’s Review of the latest IPCC report (2007)

    Is global climate changing?

    Yes, undoubtedly. The only constant in climate is change. Average surface temperatures rose by around 0.6ଌ over the period from 1900 to 2000, possibly a few tenths of a degree less if we correct for the “urban heat island effect”. This warming trend already started around 1800, with 0.5-0.6ଌ warming over the period from 1800 to 1900, as well. Prior to 1800 the earth was in a global Little Ice Age, which started around 1300, with temperatures cooler than today.

    Have atmospheric CO2 levels risen?

    Yes. From around 290 to 375 ppm over the period from 1900 to 2000.

    Is this increase in atmospheric CO2 levels man-made?

    While man-made CO2 emissions are only a small percentage of the total carbon cycle, there is no doubt that man-made CO2 has contributed to at least a part of this increase.

    Is there a scientifically proven link between increased CO2 and higher temperatures?

    No. Just model scenarios that have been programmed in by the IPCC to demonstrate this link. Certainly the warming actually experienced from 1800 to 1900 and from 1900 to 1940 had little to do with man-made CO2 emissions.

    If it isn’t from higher CO2 levels, from where is the warming coming?

    We all know that the primary source of energy for Earth is the sun (not the exhaust gas from your automobile). Warming and cooling trends on Earth have always come from swings in solar activity, long before there were any automobiles or humans, for that matter. There are many scientific studies that show this link.

    Is the “warmth of the last half century unusual in at least the previous 1300 years”, as the IPCC report states?

    No. This is not true. It ignores the existence of the scientifically proven and historically well-documented global Medieval Warm Period, with temperatures higher than today.

    But the latest IPCC report (2007) states that it is very likely that man-made CO2 is causing the recent and projected future temperature rise and that this will lead to all sorts of problems: melting ice caps; rising sea levels and flooding; reduction of snow cover and thawing of permafrost; higher ocean salinity; increase in severe weather events including droughts, heavy precipitation, heat waves and the intensity of tropical cyclones; loss of habitat and possibly even extinction for many species; increase of tropical diseases; increased deaths from heat waves; etc.

    This all sounds pretty scary (as it is obviously intended to do by the writers).

    But is there any sound scientific basis for these dire predictions?

    Fortunately not.

    To put it in plain words, the IPCC 2007 report is largely based on “junk science” backed up by “garbage in / garbage out” computer models and leading to unfounded “disaster scenario projections”. Some examples:

    · uncorrected surface temperature records show more rapid warming than is actually occurring
    · claim (unsubstantiated) that urban heat island effect has a “negligible effect” of “less than 0.006ଌ per decade” has been proven by two separate studies to be untrue
    · more accurate, more comprehensive and more pertinent satellite temperature record of the troposphere (available since 1980) is ignored (this shows 0.3ଌ lower temperatures during last 10 years than the uncorrected surface record)
    · claim (unsubstantiated) that discrepancy between surface and satellite record has been reconciled is not true
    · models created to show that greenhouse effect from “anthropogenic CO2” is the primary driving force for climate change when there is no scientific evidence or proof for this supposition and a significant amount of paleoclimate evidence to show that CO2 does not drive climate change
    · greenhouse effect of naturally occurring water vapor is ignored – instead water vapor has been programmed into the models as a “positive feedback” to man-made CO2, more than doubling the calculated impact of CO2 alone on warming
    · impact of clouds is ignored
    · effect of variations in solar activity are relegated to a very minor role in driving climate despite fact that past records for millions of years show this is the major driver of climate on Earth
    · claims made that Greenland ice cap has melted from 1993 to 2003, causing an increase in sea levels of 0.21 mm per year while latest ESA study of essentially same period shows an increase in Greenland ice, equivalent to a lowering of sea levels by 0.27 mm per year
    · claims that reductions in the Antarctic ice sheet have contributed to a further 0.21 mm per year rise in sea levels over the period 1993 to 2003, when latest ESA studies show a net increase in Antarctic ice, corresponding to a lowering of sea levels by 0.08 mm per year
    · forecasts sea levels rising by up to 59 cm (23 inches) over next 100 years, when the international organization responsible for monitoring sea levels worldwide states that any prediction for the next 100 years exceeding a maximum of 20 cm (7.9 inches) is nonsense and 10 cm (4 inches) is more likely
    · claims that world-wide tropical cyclone activity has increased both in frequency and intensity due to global warming, when the record outside USA shows a net reduction in both frequency and intensity and the US record shows a reduction from 1940 to 1995 followed by an increase from 1996 to 2005 (including 2005 with Katrina and Rita), followed by a drop in 2006, with overall 1940-2006 record showing essentially no statistical increase in either intensity or frequency; also, theory says these are driven by the temperature gradient between tropics and poles, which will decrease with warming
    · claims that other extreme weather events, such as heat spells, extreme precipitation events, thunderstorms and tornados are increasing due to global warming when there are no comprehensive reports to show this and many local reports show there is no statistical change in extreme weather events
    · claims that tropical diseases have increased and will continue to do so as a result of anthropogenic warming have been refuted by world experts on these diseases
    · population checks on polar bears, for example, show these are stable or increasing slightly on average and have increased from around 5,000 in 1970 to 22,000 to 25,000 today despite the warming

    All in all, we should ignore most of what is in the IPCC 2007 summary report, just as we should ignore the sensationalist press reports on global warming and its dire consequences and the calls by politicians for immediate action to stop this “impending disaster”.

    It’s all hot air.

    But why do so many scientists and political leaders plus many in the media support the man-made global warming theory?

    “Cherchez l’argent.”

    It’s driven by an estimated 2.5 to 4 billion dollars per year in climate research grants, with the grants going selectively to those scientists who make the most disastrous predictions.

    The media also love disaster stories, since they sell better to the public than “it’s OK” reports, thus generating more profits for the media.

    The politicians and bureaucrats love the idea of “carbon taxes”, higher taxes on fossil fuels, “carbon footprint offset” schemes, etc., because it gives them more money to spread around (and more power).

    Not only that, but it’s also become “sexy” and “trendy”, with pop stars, Hollywood figures and many other “media darlings” jumping on the bandwagon.

    It’s truly a “win-win” situation for everyone, except for the people that will end up paying for this circus: you and I.

    We’d be much better off diverting our time and resources from this non-problem of “CO2 pollution” to address the true problems of today, such as poverty, hunger, genocide, slavery, disease, terrorism driven by religious fanaticism, illiteracy, lack of clean drinking water and electrical power for millions of people, world dependence on a dwindling supply of imported fossil fuels, killing off of the rain forests, real pollution of the environment, etc.

    Just think what we could do in these real problem areas with 2.5 to 4 billion additional dollars per year, not to mention the hundreds of billions it would take to truly implement the provisions of the Kyoto Protocol…

    Max Anacker 30 March 2007

  • Sana Justice

    I found it enlightening to watch this video on Global warming. It presents scientific evidence to expose the lack of credibility of man-made global warming.

  • Submit your slogan to help stop global warming pollution here : Globalwarming Awareness2007

    You know how dangerous the effects of global warming could be, and now it’s time to spread the word to others. We need a slogan for our campaign to get Representatives and Senators to co-sponsor the Safe Climate Act, the only comprehensive, science-based legislation that requires the pollution reductions needed to prevent the worst consequences of global warming. Can you help us by submitting your ideas for a campaign slogan? Slogans should be short and catchy. So get your creative juices flowing and submit a slogan to fight global warming!

    Find more information here :

  • Get the real science of Global Warming at

    I want to hear about the science of global warming. If you guys are like me, encourage Al Gore to debate the issue at

    I don’t know who is right, but debating the issue would be a great idea.

  • pete

    I agree, the most harmfull contributor to global warming (and bad guts)has to be cattle and the amount of methane (milk) that they produce (we consume).

    In fact the whole global warming thing is so complex and so lacking in hard concrete facts that it is an ideal vehicle for governments and more importantly huge corporations (and the scientists who ride the funding train) to use as a means of turning us all into slaves, or should i say consumers. Oh sorry its the same thing!

    Ive talked to a number of meteorologists and i get the same answer from all of them when i ask them if the weather we are experiencing now could be considered global warming. They all say global warming is happening although they dont know at what pace and if the ‘apparent’ rise in temperature we seem to be experiencing now is global warming or just a natural cycle.

    So that means to me that they have no ‘real’ idea whatsoever. It all seems to be conjecture.

    I agree that we cant keep on burning fossel fuels. Just because they are a finite resource is a good enough reason.
    Nuclear fuel is not the answer either, nuclear fisson is.

  • Hey, here’s a story about this guy who’s a big-time Global Warming denier; you should read it and post some comments for him to know what we think about his ideas.”

    The link: “Global Warming Is The Biggest Tale Ever Told to Humanity”

  • Anonymous

    Don’t be fooled by the elites: the sheep are being repeatedly told to believe their living standards need to be compromised to mitigate the effects of future GW…

    Business/governments of the west are scared witless with the consequences resulting from peaking oil to capitalism: negative growth (= endless recession).

    We are nearing the end of the industrial age; the four horsemen of the apocalypse are saddling their steeds and world readying to rid the human parasite.

    We live in a world of indifference and without empathy towards our fellow humans and so much needless and deliberate suffering and death (650,000+ Iraqi civilians, Somalia etc, etc!).

    Quick reduction of the 6.6 billion population is about to take place (decreasing fossil fuels = shrinking carrying capacity) thus making the effects of GW insignificant in comparison.

    Peak oil is being wrapped in GW clothing making it less of a bitter pill to swallow: disengage from the mainframe, spend some time and critically appraise information – look deeper… don’t believe what you are being told by the media.


  • marc

    You’re kind of a nut! But a fun nut. I like you. Nut.

  • Anonymous

    Re-read my last paragraph, it is very good advice Marc.

    Base your opinions on unbiased informed knowledge and don’t let emotions and preconceived notions muddy the water. Remember smoke and mirrors are everywhere.

    ‘In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act’ George Orwell.


  • marc

    That may be true, but I still think you’re a bit too paranoid for my tastes. So I’m just going to refer back to my previous comment.

  • Anonymous

    Re-read my latest last paragraph, it’s a very good quote Marc.


  • marc

    [i]I did[/i]. And it is a darn good quote. But unfortunately for you, the fact that you can quote Orwell doesn’t change my belief that you’ve presented a sort of paranoid, nutty, worst-case conspiracy scenario. And that’s where I’ll leave it.

  • Anonymous

    ‘Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness’ James Thurber.

    Best wishes,


  • I found this discussion forum really interesting & I am glad to see, people realising the agony of global warming. What still bothers me is that half od the people have already given up & are in no way willing to contribute to this environmental cause. I doubt if only our worried geologists, environmentalists & few environmental activits can bring about the desired change. Its more important to educate the common man on the nuances of global warming & the effective measures they can take at individual levels to fight the cause. I would like to see people actively particpating with us spreading the awareness on this social issue. Please visit us at *Infodoro* & drop in a line or more on:

  • Milo

    Dr. Sereno is correct. But it depends on how you want to use science. If you mean to reduce CO2 to reduce the effects of global warming, then you are using it incorrectly because science has not even gained a consensus let alone agreement that humans are causing the global warming. If you mean to use science (and dollars) to adjust to the warming of the earth, then that would be a great use of our resources. Put those resources to use adjusting to the warming, not to (in my opinion) futally attempt to reduce it.

  • Alice Emly

    Someone needs to do something about global warming, we went down to the Florida Keys last week and some of the hotels are closed because the ocean water is 4 inches deep in some of the hotel rooms.