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COUNTERING THE MISINFORMATION OF AL GORE’S "24 HOURS OF REALITY: THE COST OF CARBON"

October 22, 2013: Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore’s 24 Hours of Reality: The Cost of Carbon runs from 2 pm EDT, Tuesday October 22, 2013 to 2 pm EDT, Wednesday, October 23, 2013.

Mr. Gore bases his activism on several key points, all of which are either wrong or unknown. The red text in the boxes below summarizes positions taken by Mr. Gore. The corrections of ICSC scientists follow each box.  

1 - Mr. Gore tells us that we face a global crisis of unprecedented proportions. "We’re dumping 90 million tons of heat trapping carbon pollution [sic] into the atmosphere every 24 hours and it’s altering our climate,” said Gore.

ICSC scientists respond:

Bob Carter, PhD, Former Head of the School of Earth Sciences at James Cook University, Queensland, Australia, ICSC Chief Science Advisor: “We do indeed [“face a global crisis of unprecedented proportions”], and that crisis is the misrepresentation of science by political activists like Mr. Al Gore. As a result, western nations are squandering money on ineffectual anti-carbon dioxide measures, and neglecting their duty to care for their citizens by not tackling the genuine hazards that accompany natural climate events and change.”

Madhav L. Khandekar, PhD, consultant meteorologist, (former) Research Scientist, Environment Canada, Editor "Climate Research” (03-05), Editorial Board Member "Natural Hazards, IPCC Expert Reviewer 2007, Unionville, Ontario, Canada: “We DO NOT face a global crisis! This is an exaggeration! Look at India and China, two countries have total population of over 2.5 billion, yet they are doing well, grain yields have increased and people [the] world-over are living longer and healthier today than they were, say, fifty years ago!“

Tim Ball, PhD, Environmental consultant and former climatology professor, University of Winnipeg (founded the Rupertsland Research Centre).  Now residing in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada: “90 million tons is a very crude estimate produced by the IPCC and within the error of the estimate of CO2 from at least two natural sources. The only place it is altering our climate is in the compute remodels of the IPCC. They are programmed so that an increase in CO2 causes a temperature increase. In every record for any time period, temperature increases before CO2 - the fundamental assumption to his claim is absolutely wrong.”

Ian D. Clark, PhD, Professor (isotope hydrogeology and paleoclimatology), Dept. of Earth Sciences, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada: “In fact, much of the rise in CO2 is attributed to increased respiration of the biosphere. Our carbon emissions are minor compared to this natural cycling of carbon. There is absolutely no empirical scientific evidence for the increase in CO2 having affected climate.”

Editor's note: The new report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (see here) provides the most complete rebuttal to Al Gore and the 24 Hours of Reality project. It is entitled "Climate Change Reconsidered-II" and may be seen here.


2 – Mr. Gore often talks about "dirty energy" causing "dirty weather" (he means extreme weather) which he says is a result of what he calls our "carbon pollution" emissions. 

ICSC scientists respond:

Professor Ian D. Clark: “Actually, our energy systems have never been cleaner, and continue to improve. The idea that we are responsible for extreme weather, let alone that we can change weather patterns is preposterous. Extreme weather is not new, it is natural. For any extreme event we have now, there is precedence in the recent past or distant past. The only difference between past events and now is our greatly expanded population and development of infrastructure that increases impact of extreme weather. The recent events Gore calls “dirty weather” come at a time when the planet has stopped warming. Only the rhetoric is increasing.”

Professor Bob Carter: “Dirty weather is part and parcel of living on planet Earth.”

Dr. Tim Ball: “By 'carbon pollution', Mr. Gore is talking about carbon dioxide (CO2), which is anything but pollution. He is using public relations jargon not scientific terminology. CO2 is a natural gas essential to plants and thereby to life on Earth. It is at the lowest atmospheric level in at least 300 million years and only causes "warming", "change" and "disruptions" in the manipulated computer models cited by the IPCC. A real "dirty energy" is biofuels, because it takes food right off poor people's plates and makes the cost of all their food more expensive.”

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “With clean air technology initiatives, we are able to use much cleaner energy today than say 25 years ago. We will need energy always so we must use cheap energy like oil, natural gas and clean coal!”


3 – Mr. Gore says that today's weather is unprecedented and different to what we would normally experience were humans not emitting carbon dioxide.

 ICSC scientists respond:

Dr. Tim Ball: “The weather changes all the time as anyone who studies weather history knows. It is not now more extreme and the changes are well within natural variability. It is perfectly normal. Mr. Gore's stance only serves to underscore his ignorance of climate and climate history. How does he explain all the previous climate variability and severe weather?"”

Professor Ian D. Clark: “Read any chronicles of past weather, from modern to biblical times. Floods, droughts, heat waves are not new.”

Professor Bob Carter: “The IPCC, NIPCC and scores of independent scientists have investigated whether there is anything unusual about today’s weather. None of the scientists involved has been able to show that the intensity or frequency of modern weather extremes exceeds that of the natural climate events that have occurred throughout geological history. Of course unusual, or damaging, weather events get mentioned in the news media, for reporting such hazards is one of their most important functions.”

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “Weather outside is NO more different than say fifty years ago! It is our perception that has changed. Fifty years ago, we had as many heat waves, floods, droughts as we have today, we just did NOT pay much attention then. In fact, heat waves were more common in the 1920s and 1930s in North America. There were many well-known meteorologists then like J. Bjerknes and Eric Palmen who knew that earth's climate can become warmer or colder, so why worry now? Weather today in south Asia, where 3/4 of humanity lives today has NOT changed much in last fifty years! Monsoon droughts/foods always occurred before and will occur in future!" ”

Editor's note: The NOAA National Climatic Data Center Website shows that virtually all state-wide records for the United States were set decades in the past. Other countries' data center Websites shows similar trends.


4 – Mr. Gore and his associates tell us that "The burning of dirty energy is raising our planet’s temperatures" (from the video on “The Cost of Carbon” here mounted on http://climaterealityproject.org/ by The Climate Reality Project).

ICSC scientists respond:

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “The earth's climate has NOT warmed in 17 years per UK Met Office! We may not see warming of the climate by more than 0.5C in next 50 to 100 years. What is being ignored by climate science community is the FACT that cold weather extremes have increased world wide and this seems completely at odds with Al Gore's claim that we are adding heat trapping gas into the atmosphere! NO one has an answer why cold weather extrems have incerased in recent years!"

While opposing the dangerous CO2-driven global warming theory, Dr. Tim Ball also points out: "warm is better than cold and the weather has been more damaging and threatening to people in the past [when it was cold].

Editor's note: ALL global temperature measurements based on ALL measurements, ground-based and satellite, show this 17 year pause in warming, a plateau that is expected to last until at least 2018, according to the UK Met Office. For the latest in such temperature calculations see http://www.climate4you.com.


5 – Mr. Gore often tells the public that sea levels are rising dangerously at a rate that has accelerated with increasing human carbon dioxide emissions, thereby threatening small islands and coastal communities.

 

ICSC scientists respond:

Nils-Axel Mörner, PhD (Sea Level Changes and climate), Emeritus Professor of Paleogeophysics & Geodynamics, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden explains that this is nonsense. See his write-up about this topic here.

ICSC Executive Director Tom Harris discussed the recent claim that Kiribati is sinking here.


6 – Mr. Gore presents alternative energy such as wind and solar power as the "solution" to our supposed climate woes.

 

 

ICSC scientists respond:

Professor Ian D. Clark: “The call for “clean” energy inadvertently promotes some of the more polluting schemes [e.g. biofuels]. Even wind, for example, the only significant renewable with any shade of green to it, is burdened with the need for thermal (coal) backup power and it too creates sound and visual pollution such that no one wants them nearby.”

Dr. Tim Ball: “Alternate energies are not sustainable and only exist with government subsidies. Countries, like most European countries have tried and are abandoning alternate energies.” 

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “With lots of natural gas in U.S. we can use cleaner energy over next 25 to 50 years. Wind energy is too expensive and NOT reliable. Solar energy can be improved to become cheaper & reliable, but it may take a long time.”

Editor's note: Wind power causes high levels of bird and bat mortality, and other ecological problems. Rural landowners and conservation organizations across the world are increasingly opposing wind farm development. Large solar plant construction results in endangered species habitat loss, desert ecosystem disruption and change in local weather patterns. There is a serious loss of biodiversity where monoculture biofuel plantations are built.


7 - Mr. Gore has said that the climate crisis will provide "opportunity as well as danger.”

 

  

ICSC scientists respond:

Professor Bob Carter: “Yes. And the opportunity is to discontinue futile wastage of money on policies like the Kyoto anti-carbon dioxide protocol, and to introduce a cost-effective policy of preparation for, and adaptation to, all dangerous climate-related events. The money saved will run into hundreds of billions of dollars, and can be used to provide sanitation, clean drinking water and food to underprivileged persons and nations.”

Dr. Tim Ball: “What opportunity? To falsify the record to make false claims and then use the material for political and financial gain. It appears nobody has made more money from exploiting carbon credits than Al Gore.  He fits Mencken's comment that. "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."”

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “Yes, we have opportunities to develop clean technology, like clean coal, provide good housing for all people, provide good education so they will face future extreme weather more effectively. [There is] NO need to reduce atmospheric CO2! It will do NOTHING!”


8 - Mr. Gore often speaks about misinformation coming from those he labels "deniers". Mr. Gore said, "The misinformation includes messaging that it’s not happening, that we can’t solve it, that we can’t afford to act. However, together, with your help and the full force of our 21st century technology and media, we can stop the misinformation...” (ref. 2012 24 Hours of Reality)

ICSC scientists respond:

Professor Ian D. Clark: “This term [denier], which alludes to the Holocaust deniers, is a great insult to many alive today. It is contrary to science to defame researchers with opposing evidence. Science is advanced by the discourse between differing views. Consensus science is an oxymoron.”

Professor Bob Carter: “The best way to fight the climate deniers would be to close down the IPCC, for it is IPCC scientists who remain in denial as to the natural cause of modern climate events. The real misinformation is coming from persons such as David Suzuki, Al Gore and other IPCC supporters. The solution lies with the mainstream media, who should cease to report the ceaseless propaganda that emanates from these people about global warming.”

Dr. Tim Ball: “Use of the term "denier" is deliberate and part of the public relations campaign Gore uses all the time. It brings with it the Holocaust connotation. It's ironic and wrong because, although it omits the word "Change", it is the opposite of what is happening. Those called climate change deniers have careers spent trying to educate people of the extent the climate changes naturally - they are anything but deniers. The real deniers are people like Gore as the commentary and arguments made by him above prove. The crisis that has to be understood and stopped is the false crisis Gore perpetuates fro his own profit, both political and economic.”

Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar: “Once again, I see NO CLIMATE CRISIS! This is an exaggerated view of climate alarmists! Humans can live happily by becoming more technologically prepared, making good use of available fossil and other energy sources and be prepared to cope with future climate impacts, which will be NO different than what we witnessed 50 or 100 years ago! There are many scientists today who are questioning the IPCC science! Climate has changed due to natural climate variability NOT due to human-added CO2! “