Environmental Stewardship News Round-Up
Acton Institute Powerblog

Environmental Stewardship News Round-Up

The following items appear in the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation Newsletter, October 24, 2007:

Cornwall’s Beisner and Care of Creation’s Brown Speak at Proclamation PCA

The Cornwall Alliance’s Dr. E. Calvin Beisner and Care of Creation’s Rev. Ed Brown spoke as a panel on creation stewardship at Proclamation Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, Sunday evening, October 14. Rev. Brown focused on theological foundations for creation stewardship. Dr. Beisner expressed wide agreement with those and then focused on the scientific and economic evidence that recent and foreseeable global warming are largely natural, cyclical, and not catastrophic, and that it is better stewardship to prepare to adapt to future warming or cooling than to try to prevent future warming. Audio recordings of the talks may be heard at http://www.proclamation.org/audio/ by clicking on the links to the three creation panel presentations.

FEATURED: Al Gore Wins Nobel Peace Prize

1. Gore and U.N. Panel Share Peace Prize by Dan Balz and Juliet Eilperin Washington Post, October 13, 2007 http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/12/AR2007101200364.html

Former vice president Al Gore, who wrapped up a remarkable year of honors yesterday by sharing the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with a U.N. scientific panel, said he will use the award to heighten awareness of “a true planetary emergency” from global warming and press the world’s nations to combat its threats.

For Gore, the award was a measure of vindication for his passionate commitment to the issue of climate change in the face of occasional ridicule and pointed political criticism dating back two decades. Coming seven years after a bitter defeat in his bid to win the White House, it also rekindled speculation about a possible 2008 presidential run, which his aides quickly sought to squelch.

In a statement issued shortly after the award was announced in Norway, Gore said he was deeply honored to be cited for his work and to share the prize with the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a Geneva-based committee of scientists established in 1988. “The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity,” Gore said. “It is also our greatest opportunity to lift global consciousness to a higher level.”

Read the whole article at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/12/AR2007101200364.html.

Related Items:

Gore Wins Thanks to Media’s Fever Pitch on Global Warming by Dan Gainor and Jeff Poor Business & Media Institute, October 12, 2007 http://www.businessandmedia.org/articles/2007/20071012003125.aspx

Al Gore’s Nobel Propaganza Prize by Brent Bozell III Townhall, October 17, 2007 http://www.townhall.com/columnists/BrentBozellIII/2007/10/17/al_gores_nobel_propaganda_prize?page=full&comments=true

Gore Wins, Facts Lose by Tony Blankley Townhall, October 17, 2007 http://www.townhall.com/columnists/TonyBlankley/2007/10/17/gore_wins,_facts_lose?page=full&comments=true

Gore and Peace by Dr. Henry I. Miller Technology Commerce Society, October 15, 2007 http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=101507D

Gore Gets a Cold Shoulder by Steve Lyttle The Sydney Morning Herald, October 14, 2007 http://www.smh.com.au/news/environment/gore-gets-a-cold-shoulder/2007/10/13/1191696238792.html

Please, Sir: Gore’s Got Warming Wrong by Jonathan Leake (Environment Editor) The Sunday Times, October 14, 2007 http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/education/article2652851.ece

2. Not Nobel Winners The Wall Street Journal, October 13, 2007 http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB119223307015357948-lMyQjAxMDE3OTEyNTIxMzUzWj.html

In Olso yesterday, the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize was not awarded to the Burmese monks whose defiance against, and brutalization at the hands of, the country’s military junta in recent weeks captured the attention of the Free World.

The prize was also not awarded to Morgan Tsvangirai, Arthur Mutambara and other Zimbabwe opposition leaders who were arrested and in some cases beaten by police earlier this year while protesting peacefully against dictator Robert Mugabe.

Or to Father Nguyen Van Ly, a Catholic priest in Vietnam arrested this year and sentenced to eight years in prison for helping the pro-democracy group Block 8406.

Or to Wajeha al-Huwaider and Fawzia al-Uyyouni, co-founders of the League of Demanders of Women’s Right to Drive Cars in Saudi Arabia, who are waging a modest struggle with grand ambitions to secure basic rights for women in that Muslim country.

Or to Colombian President =C1lvaro Uribe, who has fought tirelessly to end the violence wrought by left-wing terrorists and drug lords in his country.

Or to Garry Kasparov and the several hundred Russians who were arrested in April, and are continually harassed, for resisting President Vladimir Putin’s slide toward authoritarian rule.

Or to the people of Iraq, who bravely work to rebuild and reunite their country amid constant threats to themselves and their families from terrorists who deliberately target civilians.

Or to Presidents Viktor Yushchenko and Mikheil Saakashvili who, despite the efforts of the Kremlin to undermine their young states, stayed true to the spirit of the peaceful “color” revolutions they led in Ukraine and Georgia and showed that democracy can put down deep roots in Russia’s backyard.

Or to Britain’s Tony Blair, Ireland’s Bertie Ahern and the voters of Northern Ireland, who in March were able to set aside decades of hatred to establish joint Catholic-Protestant rule in Northern Ireland.

Or to thousands of Chinese bloggers who run the risk of arrest by trying to bring uncensored information to their countrymen.

Or to scholar and activist Saad Eddin Ibrahim, jailed presidential candidate Ayman Nour and other democracy campaigners in Egypt.

Or, posthumously, to lawmakers Walid Eido, Pierre Gemayel, Antoine Ghanem, Rafik Hariri, George Hawi and Gibran Tueni; journalist Samir Kassir; and other Lebanese citizens who’ve been assassinated since 2005 for their efforts to free their country from Syrian control.

Or to the Reverend Phillip Buck; Pastor Chun Ki Won and his organization, Durihana; Tim Peters and his Helping Hands Korea; and Liberty in North Korea, who help North Korean refugees escape to safety in free nations.

These men and women put their own lives and livelihoods at risk by working to rid the world of violence and oppression. Let us hope they survive the coming year so that the Nobel Prize Committee might consider them for the 2008 award.

3. An Inconvenient Peace Prize by Bjorn Lomborg The Boston Globe, October 13, 2007 http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2007/10/13/an_inconvenient_peace_prize/

THIS YEAR’S Nobel Peace Prize justly rewards the thousands of scientists of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. . . .

. . . The other award winner, former US vice president Al Gore, has spent much more time telling us what to fear.. . .

. . . Gore told the world in his Academy Award-winning movie to expect 20-foot sea-level rises over this century. He ignores the findings of his Nobel co-winners, who conclude that sea levels will rise between only a half-foot and two feet over this century, with their best expectation being about one foot. That’s similar to what the world experienced over the past 150 years.

Likewise, Gore agonizes over the accelerated melting of ice in Greenland and what it means for the planet, but overlooks the IPCC’s conclusion that, if sustained, the current rate of melting would add just 3 inches to the sea-level rise by the end of the century. Gore also takes no notice of research showing that Greenland’s temperatures were higher in 1941 than they are today.

The politician-turned-moviemaker loses sleep over a predicted rise in heat-related deaths. There’s another side of the story that’s inconvenient to mention: rising temperatures will reduce the number of cold spells, which are a much bigger killer than heat. The best study shows that by 2050, heat will claim 400,000 more lives, but 1.8 million fewer will die because of cold. Indeed, according to the first complete survey of the economic effects of climate change for the world, global warming will actually save lives.

Gore has helped the world to worry. Unfortunately, our attention is diverted from where it matters. Climate change is not the only problem facing the globe.

Gore concentrates on his call for world leaders to cut CO2 emissions, yet there are other policies that would do much more for the planet. Over the coming century, developing nations will be increasingly dependent on food imports from developed countries. This is not primarily a result of global warming, but a consequence of more people and less arable land in the developing world.

The number of hungry people depends much less on climate than on demographics and income. Extremely expensive cuts in carbon emissions could mean more malnourished people. If our goal is to fight malnutrition, policies like getting nutrients to those who need them are 5,000 times more effective at saving lives than spending billions of dollars cutting carbon emissions.

Likewise, global warming will probably slightly increase malaria, but CO2 reductions will be far less effective at fighting this disease than mosquito nets and medication, which can cheaply save 850,000 lives every year. By contrast, the expensive Kyoto Protocol will prevent just 1,400 deaths from malaria each year.

While we worry about the far-off effects of climate change, we do nothing to deal with issues facing the planet today. This year, malnutrition will kill almost 4 million people. About 3 million lives will be lost to HIV/AIDS, and 2 1/2 million people will die because of indoor and outdoor air pollution. A lack of micronutrients and clean drinking water will claim 2 million lives each.

With attention and money in scarce supply, we should first tackle the problems with the best solutions, doing the most good throughout the century. If we focus on solving today’s problems, we will leave communities strengthened, economies more vibrant, and infrastructures more robust. This will enable these societies to deal much better with future problems – including global warming. Committing to massive cuts in carbon emissions will leave future generations poorer and less able to adapt to challenges.

[Editor’s note: The Cornwall Alliance holds a less favorable view of the work of the IPCC than does Lomborg, viewing the process as badly biased and given to exaggerations, especially but not solely in its Summary for Policymakers. Nonetheless, the thrust of Lomborg’s position is all the more powerful precisely because he assumes that the IPCC largely gets it right. Even if climate change is as the IPCC says it is, Lomborg says, its potential harm to humanity is dwarfed by the harms of things like malnutrition, communicable diseases, indoor and outdoor air pollution, and contaminated drinking water. Those problems have ready, cost-effective solutions. Climate change doesn’t. It therefore makes sense to focus on them, not on it.–ECB.]

Read the whole article at http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2007/10/13/an_inconvenient_peace_prize/.

4. Nobel Peace Prize Committee Leans Far Left by David A. Ridenour Townhall, October 17, 2007 http://www.townhall.com/columnists/DavidARidenour/2007/10/17/things_the_nobel_committee_doesn%e2%80%99t_want_you_to_know?page=full&comments=true

One wonders if the Nobel Committee is made up of comedians.

It’s not, but that’s not far off the mark. The Committee is made up entirely of politicians.

The Nobel Committee consists of five people appointed by the Norwegian parliament, or Storting, who serve for six-year terms. Its membership is supposed to reflect the relative strengths of Norway’s political parties. This has meant the Norwegian Labor Party has had enormous influence over the Committee for decades, as it has been dominant since World War II.

To ensure the committee has at least a thin veneer of independence, no active member of government is permitted to serve on the committee.

This hasn’t always been the case. The Storting banned government officials from serving on the Committee in 1936 after controversy erupted over its selection of Carl von Ossietzky, a German-Jew peace activist languishing in a German concentration camp, as the 1935 Nobel laureate. The choice didn’t sit very well with Adolph Hitler, who viewed the selection as a statement of Norwegian foreign policy.

The Norwegian government didn’t flinch, of course. It exhibited unwavering courage and pretended it no longer had anything to do with the Nobel Prize.

The Norwegians’ cowering did them precious little good. Hitler’s fleet and paratroopers paid Norway a visit in 1940 anyway.

Today, the Nobel Committee’s membership includes one representative each from the Christian Democrats, the Socialist Left Party, the Labor Party, the Conservative Party and the Progress Party.

All but one member is a former Norwegian parliamentarian and all five have held elective office. To suggest that the Nobel Committee is anything other than a reflection of the Norwegian government’s opinion (albeit a delayed one, due to staggered terms) is as absurd as suggesting that Al Gore’s work is what Alfred Nobel meant by the contribution of “greatest benefit to mankind.”

At first glance, the Nobel Committee’s present composition appears favorable to rational decisions. Three of five members come from what are – for Norway – center-to-right parties.

But, as Paul Harvey says, here’s the rest of the story.

Norway’s Christian Democrats are more green than even Norway’s Labor Party.

In 2000, Kjell Magne Bondevik, a Christian Democrat, allowed his three-party minority government to fall over its opposition to construction of new gas-fired power plants in Norway. Bondevik argued that construction should be delayed until new technology could be developed to remove 90% of carbon emissions – effectively delaying construction indefinitely.

The Labor Party joined Conservatives in supporting the power plants to meet the country’s growing energy needs, defeating Bondevik and sending his government to the bench.

Bondevik had a second chance to form a coalition government in 2001. He opted to form a minority three-party coalition government rather than a majority three-party one by including the left-leaning and environmentally-activist Liberal Party instead of the free-market oriented Progress Party. The Liberal Party had won just 2 seats in parliament while the Progress Party had won 26. That’s a statement.

With three votes essentially locked in for the radical environmentalism, it’s not surprising that Al Gore received the Nobel Committee’s endorsement.

Read the whole article at http://www.townhall.com/columnists/DavidARidenour/2007/10/17/things_the_nobel_committee_doesn%e2%80%99t_want_you_to_know?page=full&comments=true.


5. When Ecology Replaces Theology by Albert Mohler AlbertMohler.com, October 3, 2007


Is saving the earth what remains when liberal churches are no longer concerned for the salvation of souls? Have these churches replaced theology with ecology?

Frank Furedi is a British sociologist who teaches at the University of Kent. He is also a controversialist and a public intellectual. In a recent article published at Spike, Furedi suggests that some religious institutions are “busy reinventing themselves by promoting ecological virtues and preaching against the eco-sins of polluters.” He offers a most interesting argument.

Furedi contends that a crisis of authority has shaken many churches, and that modern societies the have largely given up on saving traditional morality. In his words:

“Sometime back in the 1980s, Western societies gave up on the project of rescuing ‘traditional values’ and morality. >From time to time, conservative politicians and moral entrepreneurs have attempted to launch back-to-basics crusades promoting ‘family values’. However, their lack of popular appeal has only exposed society’s estrangement from these traditions. Indeed by the Eighties, even religious institutions found it difficult to uphold their own authority with conviction. Instead of influencing society many churches began to internalize the attitudes associated with the lifestyles of their increasingly individualized consumerist flock. The last quarter century has seen a steady diminishing of religious authority in Western societies. Debates about the role of women priests, homosexuality and marriage indicated that religious institutions have become confused about their own relationship to traditional values.”

Furedi suggests that these churches are now seeking to find a new platform in order to assert a new claim to authority within the culture. This new platform appears to be ecology and the goal of saving the earth.

His argument is compelling:

“In recent years, some in the church have sought to gain the public’s ear through the greening of traditional doctrines, and Christ the Saviour is fast becoming Christ the environmental activist. Western society is continually in search of rituals and symbols through which moral probity can be affirmed. It appears that, for many church leaders, the project of saving the planet offers more opportunities for reconstituting rituals and symbols than the saving of souls.

“It is not just the odd priest offering absolution through the ritual of eco-confession. Church leaders have embraced the rituals of eco-morality to demonstrate their commitment to a higher good. Absolution through carbon offsets appears to be the way forward.” . . .

. . . Christians do bear a responsibility to be good stewards of the earth. This is not an easy responsibility to bear in the confusing context of modern ecological debates. But the church of Jesus Christ bears the responsibility to be the steward of the Gospel above all other concerns. The temptation to turn to this-worldly concerns at the expense of spiritual concerns is very strong. Beyond this, human beings will worship either the Creator or the creation. When the authority of the Bible is undermined and confidence that we can know the Creator is compromised, the creation itself looms larger and larger as a central passion.

When a passion for seeing sinners converted to faith in Christ declines, a passion for converting people into environmentalists can appear as a replacement purpose and a culturally-attractive mission.

We should take note when a sociologist like Frank Furedi sees the picture so clearly. Why does he see what so many others miss? When a church forfeits its God-given mission, no other mission matters.

Read the whole article at http://albertmohler.com/blog_read.php?id=1018.

Related Item:

Are Churches Replacing Theology with Ecology? by Michelle Vu The Christian Post, October 4, 2007 http://www.christianpost.com/article/20071004/29578_Are_Churches_Replacing_Theology_with_Ecology%3F.htm

[Editor’s note:One important inaccuracy in this otherwise excellent article needs correction. The article states that in March “the NAE board sided with Cizik and even adopted an official stance on climate change.” In fact, the NAE has never endorsed any statement on climate change; on the contrary, the NAE’s most recent statement on environmental stewardship, For the Health of the Nation: An Evangelical Call to Civic Responsibility (2004), which is sometimes cited as the basis for Richard Cizik’s advocacy on “creation care,” never even mentions climate change. (See pages 11-12, online at http://www.nae.net/images/civic_responsibility2.pdf.)That omission is significant. The NAE board has long recognized that, while the mandate for environmental stewardship is biblical, the issue of climate change is immensely controversial among evangelicals. Aletter from the NAE President dated January 25, 2006 said, “”the NAE Executive Committee . . . directs the NAE staff to stand by and not exceed in any fashion our approved and adopted statements concerning theenvironment contained within the Evangelical Call to Civic Responsibility,” which said nothing of climate change. No official statement and no vote of the board or the executive committee since then has reversed that stance. According to board members who were present and voted in March, the board did no more than unanimously reaffirm the Call to Civic Responsibility.–ECB]

6. Climate Change Can’t Be Stopped; Focus Should Be on Preparing to Adapt to It by Paul J. Saunders and Vaughan Turekian Foreign Policy, September, 2007 http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3980

Environmental advocates have finally managed to put the issue of global warming at the top of the world’s agenda. But the scientific, economic, and political realities may mean that their efforts are too little, too late. . . .

. . . Unfortunately, given the scale and complexity of modern economies and the time required for new technologies to displace older ones, only a stunning technological breakthrough will allow for reductions in emissions that are sufficiently deep to stop climate change. According to Britain’s Stern report, stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at 550 parts per million-twice pre-industrial levels, a level at which most believe there is already a higher probability of major climate disruptions-would require stopping the global growth in emissions by 2020 and reducing emissions by 2.5 percent per year after that. The longer it takes to stop the growth in emissions, the deeper the eventual cuts need to be. . . .

. . . International lenders like the World Bank have only begun to invest in projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions; they need to give greater emphasis to projects that limit developing countries’ vulnerabilities to climate change. The scientific community will need to do a much better job of predicting climate impacts at a regional and local scale. Governments will need to support this process, to collect and assess the information that results, and develop their own plans. Riding out the consequences of a warming world will be difficult, and we need to prepare now.

Read the whole article at http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3980.

[Editor’s note: The Cornwall Alliance does not agree that climate change is either greatly man-made or catastrophic, and therefore does not believe we should attempt to stop it by reducing carbon emissions. However, this article does make a very good point: Even if one does believe that global warming is man-made and catastrophic we still could not stop it. Whether or not global warming is or is not a great threat it would be far less expensive and far more effective to prepare the world to adapt to any climate change.–ECB]

Related Item:

Carbon Trading Isn’t Working by Jeremy Lovell Reuters, September 24, 2007http://www.reuters.com/article/reutersEdge/idUSL2361952520070924

7. Environmentalism Is Not the Solution to Global Warming by Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger The New Republic, September 17, 2007 https://ssl.tnr.com/p/docsub.mhtml?i=20070924&s=nordhaus092407

Increasing energy use is the primary cause of global warming, but it is also a primary cause of rising prosperity, longer life spans, better medical treatment, and greater personal and political freedom. Environmentalists can rail against consumption and counsel sacrifice all they want, but neither poor countries like China nor rich countries like the United States are going to dramatically reduce their emissions if doing so slows economic growth.

Read the whole article at https://ssl.tnr.com/p/docsub.mhtml?i=20070924&s=nordhaus092407.

8. Solar Wind Warming Up Earth? by Yury Zaitsev Russian News & Information Agency, September 28, 2007 http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20070928/81541029.html

Paleoclimate research shows that the chillier periods of the Earth’s history have always given way to warmer times, and vice versa.

But it is not quite clear what causes this change. This is what makes predicting climate change so difficult. Although everyone agrees that the climate is changing very fast, hardly anyone can say whether it will be warmer or colder in the next 100 years. At the moment it is getting warmer. The majority attribute this change to human impact on the environment. But are they right?

Lev Zeleny, director of the Institute of Space Research at the Russian Academy of Sciences and an Academy corresponding member, believes that before making Kyoto Protocol-like decisions, we should thoroughly study the influence of all factors and receive more or less unequivocal results. In order to treat an illness, we must diagnose it first, he insists.

Read the whole article at http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20070928/81541029.html.

Fred Singer’s Reply:

I agree with my Russian colleagues that solar activity is more important in affecting terrestrial climate than the current increase in greenhouse gases. Therefore, heroic attempts to limit CO2 emissions and other mitigation schemes (like carbon sequestration) are not only costly but essentially useless. Natural climate change is unstoppable.

9. Sun Still Appears to Be Main Forcing Agent of Climate Change by Henrik Svensmarky and Eigil Friis-Christensen Danish National Space Center, Copenhagen, Denmark http://www.spacecenter.dk/publications/scientific-report-series/Scient_No._3.pdf/view

In a recent paper Mike Lockwood and Claus Fr=F6hlich have argued that recent trends in solar climate forcing have been in the wrong direction to account for “the observed rapid rise in global mean temperatures”. These authors accept that “there is considerable evidence for solar influence on Earth’s pre-industrial climate and the Sun may well have been a factor in post-industrial climate change in the first half of the last century.” But they argue that this historical link between the Sun and climate came to an end about 20 years ago. Here we rebut their argument comprehensively.

Read the whole article at http://www.spacecenter.dk/publications/scientific-report-series/Scient_No._3.pdf/view.

10. Hurricane and Global Warming Link Further Weakened World Climate Report, October 2, 2007 http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2007/10/02/hurricaneglobal-warming-link-weakened/

“Given this state of affairs, projections of changes in [tropical cyclone] intensity due to future global warming must be approached cautiously.”

This is the concluding sentence of a just-published article by University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s Kyle Swanson in which he carefully examined the historical relationship between sea surface temperatures and tropical cyclone intensity in the Atlantic and western Pacific ocean. . . .

. . . It certainly is beginning to seem that the more and more people look, the less and less they can find any clear relationship between risingSSTs [sea surface temperatures]and increased activity and intensity levels of tropical cyclones. Further, the lack of a clear understanding of the past and present relationships serves to cloud our ability to see into the future when many aspects of the tropical environment are projected to change, not simply sea surface temperatures.

Read the whole article at http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2007/10/02/hurricaneglobal-warming-link-weakened/.

11. Carbon Dioxide Did Not End the Last Ice Age by Terah DeJong University of Southern California, September 27, 2007 http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-09/uosc-cdd092507.php

Deep-sea temperatures rose 1,300 years before atmospheric CO2, ruling out the greenhouse gas as driver of meltdown, says study in Science.

Carbon dioxide did not cause the end of the last ice age, a new study in Science suggests, contrary to past inferences from ice core records.

“There has been this continual reference to the correspondence between CO2 and climate change as reflected in ice core records as justification for the role of CO2 in climate change,” said USC geologist Lowell Stott, lead author of the study, slated for advance online publication Sept. 27 in Science Express.

“You can no longer argue that CO2 alone caused the end of the ice ages.”

Deep-sea temperatures warmed about 1,300 years before the tropical surface ocean and well before the rise in atmospheric CO2, the study found. The finding suggests the rise in greenhouse gas was likely a result of warming and may have accelerated the meltdown – but was not its main cause.

Read the whole article at http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-09/uosc-cdd092507.php.

12. The World Is Getting Better, Though No One Likes to Hear It by Stephen Moore The Wall Street Journal, October 5, 2007 http://www.opinionjournal.com/taste/?id=110010695&mod=RSS_Opinion_Journal&ojrss=frontpage

A new United Nations report called “State of the Future” concludes: “People around the world are becoming healthier, wealthier, better educated, more peaceful, more connected, and they are living longer.” . . .

. . . I take special pleasure in reciting all of this global betterment because my first professional job was working with the “doom-slaying” economist Julian Simon. Starting 30 years ago, Simon (who died in 1998) told anyone who would listen–which wasn’t many people–that the faddish declinism of that era was bunk. He called the “Global 2000” report “globaloney.” Armed with an arsenal of factual missiles, he showed that life on Earth was getting better, and that the combination of free markets and human ingenuity was the recipe for solving environmental and economic problems. Mr. Ehrlich, in response, said Simon proved that the one thing the world isn’t running out of “is lunatics.”

Read the whole article at http://www.opinionjournal.com/taste/?id=110010695&mod=RSS_Opinion_Journal&ojrss=frontpage.

13. Climate Change Prediction: A Robust or Flawed Process? Institute of Physics, September, 2007 http://www.iop.org/activity/policy/Events/Seminars/file_25825.pdf

One of the major concerns today is the rise in global temperatures, which are generally thought to be caused by the release of anthropogenic greenhouse gases. As a result, a growing proportion of the political agenda is occupied by the challenge of implementing policies and strategies in time to mitigate the possible consequences of global warming.

A key element in assessing climate change is the powerful computer simulations used to demonstrate how complex, interacting forcing agents influence the evolution of the climate system. Although the models are built around a long-accumulated understanding of the underlying physical processes and dynamics – and are compared with historical and contemporary observations – there are still many aspects that are less well understood. There is, therefore, a range of views about the reliability of using these models to make credible projections of our future climate.

Read the whole article at http://www.iop.org/activity/policy/Events/Seminars/file_25825.pdf.


14. A Whole New World? Climate Change Debate Could Be Changing by Ben Lieberman National Review Online, September 28, 2007 http://energy.nationalreview.com/post/?q=NjA4NTJkN2JkY2JlMjIxZmNmYzRmOTdmNTM1YzE4NmE

Global warming is a complex issue to figure out, but one thing about it is actually quite simple – discerning which side dominates the debate right now. For the past year, those who view global warming as a crisis justifying a major federal response have had just about everything going in their favor. . . .

. . . Of course, the driving force behind all of this is the steady stream of gloomy claims about global warming. Most recently, the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report received widespread coverage as the smoking-gun evidence that mankind is warming the planet to dangerously high levels. Al Gore’s Academy Award-winning movie and accompanying bestseller, An Inconvenient Truth, has also done much to hammer home the message. . . .

. . . Taking all of this into account, there’s no question that global-warming activists currently have the momentum. But momentum can change, and on this issue there are reasons to believe it soon will.

The article goes on to address four specific reasons why the momentum of the climate change debate could be changing: “China’s Great Leap Forward on Emissions,” “The Failing Kyoto Protocol,” “The High Costs to Cool The Planet,” and “Bursting the Climate Fear Bubble.”

Read the whole article at http://energy.nationalreview.com/post/?q=NjA4NTJkN2JkY2JlMjIxZmNmYzRmOTdmNTM1YzE4NmE.

15. Gore Dodges Repeated Calls to Debate Global Warming by Bonner R. Cohen Technology Commerce Society, September 28, 2007 http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=092707B

As over 150 heads of state and government gather at UN headquarters in New York to discuss climate change, former Vice President Al Gore, the most prominent proponent of the theory of the human-induced, catastrophic global warming, continues to refuse repeated challenges to debate the issue.

Czech President Vaclav Klaus, who addressed the General Assembly on climate change September 24, is but the latest global warming skeptic to receive the cold shoulder from Gore. In ads appearing in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and Washington Times, Klaus has called on Gore to face him in a one-on-one debate on the proposition: “Global Warming Is Not a Crisis.” Earlier in the year, similar challenges to Gore were issued by Dennis Avery, director of the Center for Global Food Issues and senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, and Lord Monckton of Brenchley, a former adviser to British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. All calls on the former vice president to face his critics have fallen on deaf ears. . . .

. . . Gore’s reluctance to go toe-to-toe with global warming skeptics may have something to do with the – from the standpoint of climate change alarmists – unfortunate outcome of a global warming debate in New York last March. In the debate, a team of global warming skeptics composed of MIT scientist Richard Lindzen, University of London emeritus professor of biogeology Philip Stott, and physician-turned novelist/filmmaker Michael Crichton handily defeated a team of climate alarmists headed by NASA scientist Gavin Schmidt. Before the start of the nearly two-hour debate, the audience of several thousand polled 57.3 percent to 29.9 percent in favor of the proposition that global warming is a “crisis.” At the end of the debate, the numbers had changed dramatically, with 46.2 percent favoring the skeptical point of view and 42.2 percent siding with the alarmists.

Read the whole article at http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=092707B.

16. Malaria Atonement and Forgiveness by Paul Driessen Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow, September 21, 2007 http://www.cfact.org/site/view_article.asp?idarticle=1306&idcategory=9

In this politicized age, many people have their own lists of folks who “ought to be seeking forgiveness.” I’m on several – including Greenpeace’s roster of “climate criminals” (for not believing that people are causing a climate Armageddon).

At the top of my own list are the radical environmentalists – and foundations and others who give them the money and political clout to perpetrate mischief worldwide.

Back when I helped organize the very first Earth Day on my college campus, the nascent environmental movement offered hope for a cleaner, better future. Indeed, thanks to the awareness we helped generate, the river I grew up on was revitalized, air pollution was reduced, and our overall quality of life improved.

But over the years, the movement became a huge, multinational, multi-billion-dollar crisis creation and perpetuation industry. Using junk science, over-hyped fears and unrelenting campaigns against companies, technology and development, Greenpeace, Rainforest Action, Environmental Defense, Sierra Club, Natural Resource Defense Council and other groups thwart progress and help prolong poverty, misery and premature death.

Its leaders and government, corporate and foundation mother lodes have much to atone for, if they are to escape harsh judgment in the eyes of God and history.

By opposing fossil-fuel, hydroelectric and nuclear power, radical greens help keep a third of the world reliant on wood and animal dung – or if they’re lucky, little solar panels on their huts. Deprived of energy for lights, refrigeration, hospitals, schools, offices, factories and safe water, they remain impoverished, plagued by disease and despondent about their future.

Intense environmentalist opposition to biotechnology prevents Third World farmers from planting crops that resist disease and drought, require fewer pesticides, and yield bumper harvests that would reduce malnutrition and put cash in the pockets of destitute families.

The worst cabal of pressure groups remains virulently opposed to spraying tiny amounts of DDT on walls to keep mosquitoes out of houses, and using other insecticides to kill blood-sucking insects that carry malaria, dengue and yellow fever, and a host of other killer diseases.

Read the whole article at http://www.cfact.org/site/view_article.asp?idarticle=1306&idcategory=9.

17. A Pardoner’s Tale by Iain Murray The American Spectator, September 25, 2007 http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=12059

Are you a carbon-using Christian? Feeling guilty about all that carbon dioxide (CO2) you pump into the atmosphere by such awful things as breathing, heating and cooling your home, lighting your work or study space, or driving to church? Now, like traditional sinners whose only mistake was breaking the Ten Commandments, you can atone for your carbon sins by buying carbon offsets from the Evangelical Climate Initiative — though I thought it was pre-Reformation Roman Catholicism, not Protestant evangelicalism, that endorsed indulgences.

The ECI now offers to help you expiate your carbon sins quickly and easily, online. (But wait; to go online, you must use your computer, which uses electricity, which probably is generated by burning coal or oil, which puts more carbon into the air. Might it be better to stay off the Web and pray instead?)

Read the whole article at http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=12059.

18. Science Is the Pursuit of Truth, Not Consensus by John Kay Financial Times, October 9, 2007 http://www.ft.com/cms/s/c49c8472-767b-11dc-ad83-0000779fd2ac,Authorised=false.html?_i_location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ft.com%2Fcms%2Fs%2F0%2Fc49c8472-767b-11dc-ad83-0000779fd2ac.html%3Fnclick_check%3D1&nclick_check=1

Michael Schrage’s comment on politics and science (September 26) struck a raw nerve: and provoked an extended response from the president of the UK’s Royal Society. Lord Rees advocates that we should base policy on something called “the scientific consensus”, while acknowledging that such consensus may be provisional.

But this proposal blurs the distinction between politics and science that Lord Rees wants to emphasize. Novelist Michael Crichton may have exaggerated when he wrote that “if it’s consensus, it’s not science, if it’s science, it’s not consensus”, but only a bit. Consensus is a political concept, not a scientific one.

Read the whole article at http://www.ft.com/cms/s/c49c8472-767b-11dc-ad83-0000779fd2ac,Authorised=false.html?_i_location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ft.com%2Fcms%2Fs%2F0%2Fc49c8472-767b-11dc-ad83-0000779fd2ac.html%3Fnclick_check%3D1&nclick_check=1.

19. Some Inconvenient Truths by Kimberley Strassel The Wall Street Journal, October 6, 2007 http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB119162838307050834-lMyQjAxMDE3OTAxNjYwMjY4Wj.html

Democrats took over Congress vowing to make global warming a top priority, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi planned to notch a quick victory with a bill that was long on political symbolism and cost, if short on actual emissions reductions.

Standing in her way has been Mr. Dingell. Much to the speaker’s consternation, the powerful chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee is insisting that any bill should actually accomplish something. . . .

. . . His position arguably makes Mr. Dingell the lone honest broker in the global warming debate. But it also makes him a headache for all his Democratic friends, who’d prefer he just play political nice. For his part, the 81-year-old Dean of the House — as feisty and courtly and colorful a congressman as you’ll ever find — is unrepentant.

“I wasn’t sent down here to destitute [my district]. And I wasn’t sent down here to destitute anyone else…I’ve got a responsibility to legislate, but I’ve got a responsibility to legislate well. I’m going to be honest with the American people about this and say ‘look here, fellas, this is what we’re going to have to do to you to fix global warming. You tell us whether you like it or not.'”

For the record, Big John doesn’t think Americans will like it, but he finds that a poor excuse for not telling them the facts.

Read the whole article at http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB119162838307050834-lMyQjAxMDE3OTAxNjYwMjY4Wj.html.

20. Europe’s CO2 Emissions Rising Faster and Higher Than U.S. Emissions by Chris Horner GlobalWarming.org, September 26, 2007 http://www.globalwarming.org/node/1092

Today’s Washington Post story was replete with pompous and absurd proclamations – the pompous being the Danish Environment Minister claiming that she and her ilk “are getting a bit impatient, not on our own behalf but on behalf of the planet.” The condemnations of the US included “unusually blunt language” about how the rest of the world are waiting for the US to act, and that it is the US resistance to adopting a particular approach to addressing emissions that jeopardizes the climate. Not China, India, Mexico and 155 countries representing the vast majority of emissions seeing theirs skyrocket; certainly not the EU.

Although that specific assertion begs the question, no mention was made of actual emissions given that the European Environment Agency may play rhetorical games but it makes no secret of the fact that Europe is not lowering but increasing their emissions, which are up since Kyoto was agreed not down. . . .

. . . yesterday’s vulgar display prompted me to tally the comparative, real emission increases in US and EU, given I have heard the counter “well, in percentage terms, but…” when I point out that EU emissions are increasing faster than the US’s under any modern baseline (that is, since Kyoto was agreed and the EU commenced its breast-beating). . . .

. . . It turns out that a quick review indicates that real EU-25 CO2 emissions have increased more than the US since, say, 2000, by a third as much (133.1%) in fact. . . .

. . . So there is no need to rely on the “in percentage terms” qualifier when noting that Europe’s emissions have risen faster than the US’s (as Kyoto defines Europe). Instead, it appears that Europe’s emissions have not only increased much faster than the US’s but also that the EU has increased CO2 emissions much more than the US.

Read the whole article at http://www.globalwarming.org/node/1092.

21. Trust America on Climate Change by Boyden Gray Financial Times, September 26, 2007 http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/3333d6c2-6c2e-11dc-a0cf-0000779fd2ac.html?nclick_check=1

There is some skepticism about the US plan, especially in Europe, where there is suspicion that the US is trying to undermine the UN climate change process generally, and its Bali conference in December in particular.

The response to this view is that the sclerotic UN process is being hobbled by an unwieldy number of participant countries (nearly 200), most of which are not big emitters but which populate each event with a cast of thousands. The UN process also involves an endless series of inter-national conferences that now occur on a near-monthly basis and consist of little more than repetitive set speeches that produce no discussion or new facts.

A similar pattern of paralysis characterized the Montreal protocol process for eliminating ozone-depleting chloro-fluorocarbons in the mid-1980s.

Then the US pulled aside a dozen or so big economies in an effort to inject some focus and prioritization into an unwieldy process involving more than 150 countries. The effort worked and ultimately culminated in what Kofi Annan, the former UN secretary-general, has said is the most successful international environmental agreement ever negotiated – signed 20 years ago this month.

The Montreal example should be remembered – not least because it has already produced more than 10 times the greenhouse gas reduction of Kyoto and should, since the protocol agreed last week to accelerate reductions by 10 years, produce further reductions equivalent to at least twice the Kyoto reductions. Also relevant is the point that the US has, perhaps contrary to current popular opinion, periodically played a crucial leadership role on environmental issues of international importance – lead phase-out, clean fuels and emissions trading for sulfur dioxide being other prominent examples; and the fact that today the US boasts what is probably the cleanest air in the world.

Read the whole article at http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/3333d6c2-6c2e-11dc-a0cf-0000779fd2ac.html?nclick_check=1.

22. Conference on Integrity in Science Focuses on IPCC by Jennifer Marohasy Politics & Environment Blog, September 16, 2007 http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/002299.html

A claimed “first world conference on research integrity” opens in Lisbon, Portugal, today. The conference media release explains: “The controversies surrounding the recent assessment report of the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) demonstrates how research integrity is a critical issue not only for the science community, but for politicians and the society as a whole as well. In August 2007 the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) had to withdraw previous published historical climate data.”

The incident came after a British mathematician discovered that the sources used by the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) have disregarded the positions of weather stations, plus intentionally using outdated data on China from 1991 and ignoring revised data on the country from 1997.

Now 350 concerned scientists, scientific managers and magazine editors from around the world are scheduled to attend the event in Lisbon, initiated and organized by the European Science Foundation (ESF) and the US Office for Research Integrity (ORI). It marks a milestone for the science community as it will link all those concerned parties in a global effort to tackle the issue head on.

Read the whole article at http://www.jennifermarohasy.com/blog/archives/002299.html.

23. Czech President Challenges IPCC ‘Monopoly’ at the U.N. Prague Daily Monitor, September 25, 2007 http://www.praguemonitor.com/en/177/czech_national_news/12570/

“The increase in global temperatures has been in the last years, decades and centuries very small in historical comparisons and practically negligible in its actual impact upon human beings and their activities,” Czech President Vaclav Klaus said at the world politicians’ meeting on global warming today. . . .

. . . Klaus said “the hypothetical threat connected with future global warming depends exclusively upon very speculative forecasts, not upon undeniable past experience and upon its trends and tendencies. These forecasts are based on relatively short-time series of relevant variables and on forecasting models that have not been proved very reliable when attempting to explain past developments.”

No scientific consensus exists, “contrary to many self-assured and self-serving proclamations” about the causes of the ongoing climate changes, Klaus said.

The arguments of both parties in dispute – i.e. those believing in “man’s dominant role in recent climate changes” and those who support the hypothesis about “its mostly natural origin” – are so strong that they must be listened to carefully, Klaus continued. . . .

. . . “Different levels of development, income and wealth in different places of the world make worldwide, overall and universal solutions costly, unfair and to a great extent discriminatory. The already-developed countries do not have the right to impose any additional burden on the less developed countries. Dictating ambitious and for them entirely inappropriate environmental standards is wrong and should be excluded from the menu of recommended policy measures.”

He proposed that the U.N. organize two parallel inter-government discussion panels and issue two competing reports on climate changes.

“To get rid of a one-sided monopoly is a condition sine qua non for an efficient and rational debate. Providing the same or comparable financial backing to both groups of scientists is a necessary starting point,” Klaus said. . . .

. . . “As a responsible politician, as an economist, as an author of a book on the economic of climate changes, with all available data and arguments in mind, I have to conclude that the risk is too small, the costs of eliminating it too big and the application of a fundamentally-interpreted precautionary principle a wrong strategy,” Klaus stated. . . .

. . . Speaking afterward to reporters, Klaus said it would most help the debate on climate change if the current monopoly and one-sidedness were eliminated. He re-iterated his proposal that the UN organize parallel inter-governmental panels to discuss climate changes and publish two competing reports, saying it is a political question.

“Let us look for a real solution,” he said.

“However, this would require the side that behaves as if it has a monopoly on the truth showed the willingness for a dialogue and a public discussion,” he added. “I am prepared for such a debate any minute.”

Read the text of President Klaus’s UN speech at http://www.klaus.cz/klaus2/asp/clanek.asp?id=pnHwpGc13sXM.

See Newsletter Item #15, Gore Dodges Repeated Calls to Debate Global Warming, for more information on President Klaus’s involvement in the debate on climate change.

Read the whole article at http://www.praguemonitor.com/en/177/czech_national_news/12570/.


24. The Great Global Warming Swindle NiceneCouncil.com http://store.nicenecouncil.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=427

“An absolutely phenomenal documentary.” Glenn Beck, Syndicated talk show host

Everything you’ve ever been told about Global Warming is probably untrue. From Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth to news reports from the popular media outlets and even public classrooms which, in chicken little fashion, are screaming – the sky is falling. But is it really?

Read the whole article at and order a copy at http://store.nicenecouncil.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=427.

25. EcoFreako Is Launched by Roy Spencer National Review Online, October 10, 2007 http://planetgore.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MzUxNTI0NjAzMjRmNGYwNDNlODg3NDhmMjhmYjI0ZTY

Inspired by Al Gore’s Live Earth concerts, my twin brother “Butch” Spencer and some aging hippie-rockers have formed a band called EcoFreako. Their first two songs, dedicated to Mr. Gore, are posted at the band’s new website, below.

According to Butch, “Man, these young global warming punks don’t know nothin’ about planetary emergencies. Back in the day, man, we hippies OWNED planetary destruction…after all, who can forget Zager and Evan’s ‘In the Year 2525′? And what about “Eve of Destruction’? So, now we’re gonna help raise awareness about the ozone holes, drowning polar bears, and all the rest.”

Butch says they have about a dozen songs in the works. No karaoke tracks, I’m told; these are 6 real rockin’ guys who care…and their brains are only partially fried. I suggest you download the songs before Butch figures out how to sell them for $0.99 each.

EcoFreako’s Website: http://www.ecofreakomusic.com/


Christians Differ About Climate http://yord.nl/article/597771

Climate Didn’t Kill the Cavemen http://www.nature.com/news/2007/070910/full/news070910-7.html http://blogs.usatoday.com/weather/2007/09/climate-didnt-k.html http://news.mongabay.com/2007/0430-neanderthals.html

Mars, Like Earth, Has Cyclical Cold and Warm Ages, Study Says http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/09/070913-mars-iceage.html

Indian Government Official Rejects Stern Review http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Cost_of_dealing_with_climate_change_2_of_GDP_/articleshow/2373069.cms

Something Rotten in Denmark http://www.globalwarming.org/node/1115

Split Over Global Warming Widens Among Evangelicals http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB119094053528242085-lMyQjAxMDE3OTIwODkyNDgwWj.html