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Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 02/20/2009

Weather Channel Founder Talks Climate 'Scam'

By Andrew Freedman

* Wind-Chilled Friday, Weekend Flakes? Our Full Forecast *

GOOD Magazine has an illuminating interview with San Diego TV weatherman and Weather Channel founder John Coleman, who is an outspoken critic of mainstream climate science. Coleman doubts that humans are altering the climate system, and even disputes that the climate has warmed at all (though it's not clear what time period Coleman is referring to).

Coleman has written numerous pieces on his KUSI-TV blog contending that global warming is a "scam."

The interview with GOOD writer David Puner sheds light on Coleman's lengthy career path in TV weathercasting -- after being ousted from the Weather Channel he had stints in cities including New York and Chicago before arriving in California -- and also his scientific research into climate change.

Keep reading for more on Coleman's take on climate change...

"... I've been studying it," Coleman said of global warming, "reading stuff, and looking at it, and can't figure out what the heck they're talking about."

Coleman said the media hype surrounding climate change is all aimed at scaring people and drumming up ratings, and has no scientific basis. "Have temperatures gone up? No. Is global warming sweeping the planet? No. Is the ice melting at the poles? No," Coleman said.

Needless to say, Coleman didn't have very nice things to say about the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Al Gore, whom he has proposed suing for fraud. (See our past coverage of that attention-grabbing idea.)

"I have a friend who calls the Nobel Peace Prize the Liberal of the Year Award," Coleman told Puner.

MIT atmospheric scientist Kerry Emmanuel offered this rebuttal in the magazine article: "I would not take anything that John Coleman says too seriously."

How seriously do you think Coleman should be taken? Feel free to comment below.

By Andrew Freedman  | February 20, 2009; 10:45 AM ET
Categories:  Climate Change, Media, News & Notes  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Forecast: A Wind-Chilled Friday; Weekend Flakes?
Next: Artificial or Not, China Has Snow and D.C. Doesn't

Comments

Did you request an interview from Mr. Coleman? Or did you choose to write about him without asking for his side of the story?

How seriously should you take Roger Pielke Sr.?

Quoting Roger Pielke Sr. -

"... the selection of his statements to highlight in prominent news articles, without presenting counter perspectives by other climate scientists, is a clear example of media bias."

...

"Since mid-2003, there has been no upper ocean global average warming; an observation which is not consistent with the GISS model predictions over this time period.

The recent and current tropospheric temperature data (e.g. see Figure 7 in this RSS MSU data), also show that the global lower tropospheric temperatures today are no warmer than they were in 2002.

The recent global warming is less than the IPCC models predict, and, even more so, in disagreement with the news articles.

Since papers and weblogs have documented that the warming is being over-estimated in recent years, and, thus, these sources of information are readily available to the reporters, there is, therefore, no other alternative than these reporters are deliberately selecting a biased perspective to promote a particular viewpoint on climate. The reporting of this news without presenting counter viewpoints is clearly an example of yellow journalism;"

Source of the above quote -
http://climatesci.org/2009/02/15/an-egregious-example-of-biased-news-reporting/

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Coleman may have a point as climate tends to run in cycles. We may be in the "warming" phase of a long-term cycle. As for the past two winters, they have been "La Nina" winters: cold, but rather dry.

Today, windy again and cold, scattered Cu humilis, no imminent threat of flurries.

Upper-air flow has been zonal at nearly all layers this winter & this seems to be inhibiting coastal storm development; thus little snow around here. Dewpoints have also been very low this winter, drying up promising snow ops. When the dewpoint does rise on rare occasions all we get is that miserable raw "boring-forties" rain.

Posted by: Bombo47jea | February 20, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

How about the opinion of a UN IPCC scientist? He calls it a "scandal". Or the opinions of one NASA scientist and one NOAA scientist?

Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly….As a scientist I remain skeptical...The main basis of the claim that man’s release of greenhouse gases is the cause of the warming is based almost entirely upon climate models. We all know the frailty of models concerning the air-surface system.” - Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology, and formerly of NASA, who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called “among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years.”

Warming fears are the “worst scientific scandal in the history…When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists.” - UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist.

It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don’t buy into anthropogenic global warming.” - U.S Government Atmospheric Scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA.

Source of the quotes is here.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

"Being a TV weatherman in San Diego is an outrageous scam."

      - John Coleman 

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 20, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

He was pointing out that his job was not really necessary.

Yesterday's weather in San Diego - warm and sunny
Today's weather in San Diego - warm and sunny
Tomorrow's weather in San Diego - warm and sunny
Next week's weather in San Diego - warm and sunny
Next month's weather in San Diego - warm and sunny
etc.. etc... etc...

You really have to admire the honesty of a person who admits that the job that he is performing, on which he depends for his livelihood, is completely unnecessary.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

among her 190 published papers, has dr. simpson published any papers arguing (i.e., demonstrating) climate change is a hoax?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Prior to her retirement from NASA, she was afraid to even admit that she was a skeptic!! And you are asking if she has published a paper arguing/demonstrating that global warming is a hoax??? I rather doubt it.

Wouldn't a better question be, "Why was she afraid to speak out until after her retirement?"

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of lying media:
Where There's a Will . . . No Way

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 20, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Sorry guy but regardless of the reason for global warming, I have flown over Greenland and the POLES ARE MELTING! A chunk of Antarctica the size of RHODE ISLAND broke off and floated towards New Zealand. So yes, the poles are melting and as it isnt likely to be spontaneous ice shedding on the part of the poles themselves, we can attribute it to the rising world temperatures. We can also be fairly certain that the temperature rise correlates to carbon emmissions - these things DIDNT happen when we didnt emit so many carbons and petroleum. Not definitive proof but dang close to.

Posted by: tunatofu | February 20, 2009 1:54 PM | Report abuse

tunatofu wrote, "We can also be fairly certain that the temperature rise correlates to carbon emmissions - these things DIDNT happen when we didnt emit so many carbons and petroleum."

First, as I am sure you are aware, correlation does not equal causation.

Second, no really knows what the poles were doing hundreds or thousands of years ago. So you can't definitively say that those "things DIDNT happen". Maybe they did, maybe they didn't. We simply don't know.

Lastly, ice core analysis has revealed that CO2 rise LAGS temperature rise by something like 800 years. In the interest of clarity, allow me to rephrase that - the ice core analysis clearly shows that first the temperature rose, THEN approximately 800 years later, the CO2 levels rose. Even the good folks at real climate have acknowledged that. There is no ice core proof that CO2 drives temperature. The correlation is exactly the opposite.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

the fact that historically CO2 concentrations have risen after warming only makes our situation WORSE. it is a feedback loop. historically, rising temps raised CO2, which raised temps, which raised CO2 etc... this is the first time (we know of) where WE started the cycle by raising CO2. this means in addition to all the CO2 we are emitting, we can expect future "natural" emmissions.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

now that dr. simpson is free to speak her mind, i'm sure those "global warming is a hoax" (or at least bad science) papers will be coming out soon.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Coleman's comments are not scientific. They are political. In that context, his comments are totally valid, IMO, and quite logical.

I would go beyond what Coleman says and ask these questions:

Regarding climate models:
-- Why have we never heard the climate model outcomes that do not support AGW?
-- It it because this is only what the media is told and is thus only what they can tell us?
-- Is it because the media doesn't care to investigate the subject in any greater depth?
-- Is it because scientists are paid only to deliver research supporting the AGW hypothesis?
-- Given wide acknowledgemnt of the limitations of climate models, why is it that these models always form the basis for "calls to action" to curb use of fossil fuels?
-- Why do many scientists, governments, and environmental groups seemingly want for mankind (not Mother Nature) to be causing global warming?
-- Why are they so quick to silence contrarian ideas on the subject?
-- Why is it that other hypothesized causes of global warming receive no governmental funding for research?

Considering the seriousness of the matter, considering the high cost for switching to alternative energy sources, and considering the effect these costs will have on our way of life:
-- Why hasn't our government formulated and published a step-by-step plan for reaching the final goal?
-- Exactly what is the final goal?

It seems we are just adopting knee jerk reactions to the problem such as: diluting gasoline with corn-based ethanol, switching to LED light bulbs, cap and trade schemes to penalize consumers for buying products not manufactured using some form of as-yet-to-be-invented energy, and development of windmill farms and rooftop solar cells.
-- Where are we going with all of this?
-- Is it only to push society "in the right direction"?
-- Is it only to buy more time to invent a better energy source?
-- Or is this all part of some master plan to take down the road to an undisclosed destination?

Posted by: jeffreypmorton | February 20, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "historically, rising temps raised CO2, which raised temps, which raised CO2 etc..."

You have no proof of that. None at all. You have a hypothesis that states that, but you lack actual proof.

Actually, simple logic can demonstrate that your assertion is incorrect. As you lay it out above, it would be a cascading, run away warming cycle. But that hasn't happened. We know CO2 concentrations have been greater in the past. So what stopped the warming?

We know that the temperature went down in the past. Under your theory that wouldn't be possible. Under your theory, the warming would cascade and run away. If your assertion was true, we would have baked to a crisp long ago.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

So, personally I'm OK with a healthy dose of skepticism... however I don't subscribe to a few of the tenets of the dominant skeptic here.

1. That any reaction to the possibility of global warming is knee jerk.

2. That so called "media bias" represents a concentrated effort to obscure the truth. Or that a larger conspiracy must exist.

3. That theories or projections need to be proved beyond a shadow of a doubt in order to be taken seriously.

To explain. Any reaction to the potential of global warming should take in to account the level of risk. I think that it is safe to assume that global warming presents a fairly large (global) risk and whether it is due to human or natural mechanisms should be considered quite carefully. Additionally, it is hard to see a negative impact of said "knee jerk" reactions as LED lighting, or lower emission / higher efficiency vehicles. Longer lasting LEDs have the potential to save not just carbon costs, but money... and the less we produce the less we trash. Beyond the 'warming' crisis you are so skeptical of, mining / drilling practices weak ecological and societal havoc across the planet. If the reasons are wrong, the methods still seem acceptable. And what is the great risk of taking preventative steps absent of absolute undeniable proof?

Any student can tell you that until the earth was proved to be round prevailing wisdom was that the earth is flat. Now, there were scientists and philosophers who deduced using logical methods (what you might call models) the true nature of the earth. But until someone managed to circumnavigate the earth (a word without meaning beforehand) people said, well you can't 'prove' that the earth is round to me.

Which proves what? Well, that earthlings tend to be group thinkers and they don't always know what they are talking about.

Does that mean there was a conspiracy to make the earth flat, to keep it flat? Were there economic motivations?

A lot of scientists think that global warming may be a by product of human behavior. Some don't.

What is the risk of taking steps to improve our carbon profile? What is the risk of taking better care of the planet? In the end it's our only home. What is the risk of waiting for absolute 'hand in the wound' proof of impending calamity?

Now, I ask you. Why should we give the benefit of the doubt to an energy industry bent on satisfying it's own needs at any human expense?

Were it not for the media and PR the global energy consortium wouldn't bat an eye at poisoning your water and leaving your backyard a toxic wasteland. We don't need models to prove that. We've seen those events first hand.

I for one am more inclined to give the benefit of the doubt to the scientists and let the pendulum swing back a bit away from economic interests.

I remain a skeptic. I doubt anything we could do would harm the earth, but I do think we could kill ourselves off if we aren't careful.

If global warming is our reason to be careful, so be it.

Posted by: gconrads | February 20, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

CO2 vs. temp:
#11

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 20, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

gconrads wrote, "So, personally I'm OK with a healthy dose of skepticism... however I don't subscribe to a few of the tenets of the dominant skeptic here."

I am assuming that you are directing your comments to me. Please correct me if that is wrong.

gconrads wrote, "1. That any reaction to the possibility of global warming is knee jerk."

That isn't correct. If you go back and look at my past comments, I have conceded that I think it is possible that CO2 can affect temperature. I just don't believe it will be as severe as the current hype. And if you really want to know even more about me, I believe that land use is more likely to affect climate than any CO2 input. But that is a separate issue.

gconrads wrote, "2. That so called "media bias" represents a concentrated effort to obscure the truth. Or that a larger conspiracy must exist."

Huh??? Where did you get that. I said this site has a definite bias. I never said anything about a "larger conspiracy" or anything like that.

Mr. Freedman definitely has an undeniable bias. Ask him to identify (from his 58 columns on "climate change") the columns were he sought out the other side of the debate. Just ask him.

Ask Mr. Freedman what future employment he plans on seeking. Ask him if wishes to seek employment in some sort of "climate change policy" capacity. Ask him how likely such employment is if the public as a whole doesn't buy into the global warming theory.

gconrads wrote, "3. That theories or projections need to be proved beyond a shadow of a doubt in order to be taken seriously."

No, I have stated that I am all in favor of playing it safe and phasing out existing coal fired power plants with nuclear power plants. I have been met with strong criticism for that suggestion.

Here's a question for you - If they aren't going to limit CO2 output by using nuclear power, just precisely how does the government plan on reducing our CO2 output?

You don't have to take my word for any of this. Search the record for yourself.

Go to Google. In the search field enter -
"Mr. Q" +nuclear site:washingtonpost.com/capitalweathergang/

To verify my other statements, simply remove the "+nuclear" and put in whatever you think is necessary to substantiate my claims. If you need any assistance, I will provide the links.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 20, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

thank you capitalclimate. my comment about CO2 lag making the situation WORSE began with Mr.Q's assertion that CO2 rise preceded temperature rises. now, obviously there are many other factors (actually, mostly milankovich cycles) that override atmospheric gases' effects on climate. the fact is, though, that based on milankovic cycles, we should not be experiencing the current warming.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 11:38 PM | Report abuse

btw, this is fun, and the perfect format for this discussion - i.e., outside the regular update threads on daily weather.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 11:44 PM | Report abuse

"What is the risk of taking steps to improve our carbon profile? What is the risk of taking better care of the planet? In the end it's our only home. What is the risk of waiting for absolute 'hand in the wound' proof of impending calamity?

Now, I ask you. Why should we give the benefit of the doubt to an energy industry bent on satisfying it's own needs at any human expense?"

Well said.

Posted by: bradysbeau | February 20, 2009 11:54 PM | Report abuse

@capitalclimate (and mr.q)
that graph on "#11" shows a remarkable correlation between temp and CO2. now, it's possible that's all just a coincidence...but...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 20, 2009 11:57 PM | Report abuse

"Chickens do not lay eggs, because they have been observed to hatch from them."
-Deltoid

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 21, 2009 12:37 AM | Report abuse

@capitalclimate, mr.q, bradysbeau, gconrads, jefferypmorton, tunatofu:

i'm "just" an architect and a snow-lover, who loves the rigor of science. so you can take my comments with whatever level of authority you like. i am wondering, if you don't mind divulging it, what your jobs are? specifically, are they something "scientific"? are you "just" weather "buffs"? college students? teachers? lawyers? what?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 21, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Q continues to suggest that graduate-level training in climate science and policy makes me a biased reporter, rather than a better and more knowledgeable reporter. My career to date has been as a journalist, covering both science and policy. My future career after graduate school is not yet known, and irrelevant to my coverage here. The notion that anthropogenic climate change has to be disastrous in order for someone with my skillset to have a career is simply false.

Even if the climate is not changing due to human activities (that's a big IF), there is a demand for reporters who understand the climate system, as well as policymakers who can help nations better manage their climate-sensitive activities.

Posted by: Andrew-CapitalWeatherGang | February 21, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

walter,
See here

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 21, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

capitalclimate:
so that's YOUR website, huh? it's pretty great. i've been there before, but never made the connection. i went to the bottom to find your "profile" and it looks like your aol page has disappeared...(the link from the word "trip"). i gather you went to yale? maybe graduated in '68? what was your major? judging from all the technical stuff on the page, can i assume you're a "scientist"? or are you a scientifically knowledgeable journalist? i gather that you were one of the writers for capitalweather last year when they were just plain old capitalweather.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 21, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

btw, i love that "chicken do not lay eggs line".

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 21, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

walter,
Thanx for catching the missing file. I don't recall being notified that AOL was abandoning file hosting, but it should be fixed now. After having been a part of Team AOL that originally trounced WaPo in the online arena, it's especially frustrating to see them both race to the bottom.

Yes, I built PM Update from 2005-2008, but I split off on my own in order to continue pursuing the same type of material without clueless corporate media interference.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 21, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

capitalclimate
wow...i saw you curriculum vitae...i would definitely say you are qualified to comment intelligently on climate issues.

any others? mr.q, bradysbeau, gconrads, jeffreypmorton, tunatofu? what do you guys do professionally?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 21, 2009 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Freedman wrote, "Mr. Q continues to suggest that graduate-level training in climate science and policy makes me a biased reporter, rather than a better and more knowledgeable reporter."

Of course it makes you biased! You would have to be other than human to be in your situation and not be biased.

Here is just one of the ways in which it makes you biased (and I can give other examples if you like) -

How many people do you personally know that would say the following, "I just spent XX THOUSANDS of dollars and X YEARS of my life on something that turned out to be totally BOGUS! I am sooooooooooooo HAPPY!"

What kind of person thinks that way? Of course you want to believe in what you are doing with your life! You would have to be unbalanced not to. Who in their right mind would be happy knowing they wasted years of the life?

Shall I provide more examples?

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

correct me if i'm wrong, but i don't think andrew studied "global warming" per se, he studied climate. whether there's global warming or not, we're always going to have climate, so his $/years weren't wasted. now, it's true he may have been exposed to lots of data and evidence supporting AGW, but that doesn't mean he would uncritically evaluate it. i mean, one would hope the skeptics have studied the same data and evidence, but have arrived at different interpretations. forgive me, again, if i'm wrong, and maybe i'm being romantic, but i don't think scientists have a follow-the-crowd mentality. they LOVE proving each other wrong. it's why they submit papers and have peer review. hopefully, they evaluate, always being skeptical of hypotheses and theories - until data and evidence lead to cohesive interpretations. and, hopefully, these "opinions" are held with only the degree of certainty that the evidence allows. if new contradictory evidence arises, it must be factored in.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 10:58 AM | Report abuse

"A former D.C. resident, Andrew currently resides in Boston where is he is attending the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University as part of a dual master's degree program in climate change policy with Columbia University."

Source is here.

He didn't study "climate", he studied "climate change POLICY". His education isn't in science, it is in POLICY. You could have, and should have, looked that up yourself.

If man is not affecting climate, is there a need for "climate change POLICY"? Were his thousands of dollars and years well spent? Will there be very many jobs related to "climate change policy" if the current catastrophic man made global warming hypothesis turns out to be wrong?

Have you read the New York Time's company policy on disclosure of conflict of interest (whether real or perceived)? Go to page number 33, Chapter 11.

Now I realize this is the Washington Post and not the New York Times, but the Time's policy is fairly standard, in the regard of disclosure of conflict of interest, and I was unable to find the Washington Time's policy on line.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

In my previous comment I wrote, "... and I was unable to find the Washington Time's policy on line."

Obviously, that should have been, "... and I was unable to find the Washington Post's policy on line."

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 11:31 AM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch, I wrote, "You could have, and should have, looked that up yourself." I didn't need to write that. That was stupid. I apologize for that sentence.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

mr.q: point taken about "POLICY". there is difference between science and the policy it should generate.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

well, thanks for the apology. accepted. i admit was a little taken aback by that line, but was willing to move on, but, thanks.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

having acknowledged the difference between policy and the science behind it, i imagine andrew's "policy" education was informed by mainstream interpretations of the science. that's the best we have to go on.

many (in fact, most) times in history "mainstream" science has been wrong. data came in that "overturned" the mainstream view that the earth, then the sun, were at the center of the universe. it is concievable that data could come in that would overturn the current mainstream views on global warming, but in the meantime, policy should be based on mainstream views.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "well, thanks for the apology. accepted. i admit was a little taken aback by that line, but was willing to move on, but, thanks."

I was taken aback by myself! Thank you for accepting my apology.

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "many (in fact, most) times in history "mainstream" science has been wrong. data came in that "overturned" the mainstream view that the earth, then the sun, were at the center of the universe. it is concievable that data could come in that would overturn the current mainstream views on global warming, but in the meantime, policy should be based on mainstream views."

Well said. Very well said.

I personally would love to see an open and honest discussion about -
1. the precise level of our knowledge (and known voids in knowledge)
2. the different theories
3. the recommended policies/procedures to avoid any potential or perceived threat

The problem is that we aren't getting an honest on open discussion on 1 or 2. And 3 is NEVER discussed!

I think if people were to discuss number 3 first, they would want to apply a much higher standard to the level of proof. And they would definitely demand that all theories be given a fair and public hearing/debate.

Are you curious why you NEVER hear anyone discuss what actual measures should be implemented to reduce our CO2 output? You have to be a little curious. Personally, I'm curious why so many people are not curious about that. People seem to literally not care in the slightest. If they do care, you won't find them at this web site discussing it.

Do you find it odd that someone who is pursuing a degree in "climate change policy" refuses to openly discuss or recommend any climate change policies? You ever ask yourself why that is?

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch, I think you might enjoy this article and video.

Got to run.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

yes, an interesting article which brings up many issues (lobbying and election reform come to mind). all our politicians are bought and paid for by corporate entities who usually don't have the nation's best interests in mind.

as to why no one even broaches the subject of how to clean up this climatological sewer we call our atmosphere, the reason is because the answers are unpleasant (or, as someone who shall go nameless said, "inconvenient"). who would vote for a politician who said "we're going to work on technological solutions (wind, water, nuclear (including fusion), solar, geothermal, improved batteries etc...), but in the meantime you have to LOWER YOUR QUALITY OF LIFE. people won't vote for that! people still mock jimmy carter for wearing that sweater during his gloom-and-doom energy crisis speech. i think he was right. personally, i feel like the last 30 years have been largely wasted in terms of energy production/consumption. i remember writing high-school papers about solar collectors in outer space, wind farms and all that. i remember predictions like, "by the year 2000 we'll all have solar-powered cars" and so on. the price of oil came down and big cars etc...came back and here we are - still imagining, instead of living in, a future with "clean" energy sources.

so, what do you do for a living?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

one more thing: it seems to me like "getting off oil" should be a "patriotic" issue. it is a diabolical irony that we send billions of $ to saudi arabia etc...so they can fund jihadists who want to kill us. (the long-term answer is not "drill baby drill.")

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 22, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote "... climatological sewer we call our atmosphere, ..."

That seems a little over the top to me. The air out here in Oregon is absolutely fantastic. Not sure what it is like where you live, but dang, a sewer?

As far as your other items, Carter, Palin, what I do a for a living, etc... I really don't want to discuss that stuff. I would like to limit my debate here solely to the science and the facts, and this site's reporting of those facts, regarding the hypothesis of man made global warming.

Thanks,
Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 22, 2009 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Even the Examiner calls Coleman over the top.

BTW, why does CWG bash Hansen for attempting to tell the public the truth, while George F. Will continues his serial lying on the same subject? Oh yeah, Slick Willy works for the WaPo.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 23, 2009 12:32 AM | Report abuse

@walter - nice set a contributions. Per your question, I'm a scientist with a background in computers, stats and logic having worked 20 odd years in both the public and private sector. My interest in weather has been mostly at the amateur level although a number of projects over the course of my career had me interacting with weather professionals at various levels. Your inquiries regarding other contributors background was as expected - not answered - that's par for the course.

Posted by: John-Burke | February 23, 2009 1:23 AM | Report abuse

I post fact after fact after fact after fact. I provide links to those facts. I normally quote them directly.

What I do for a living will not change those facts.

If I were a school teacher, would it change the facts?

If I were a fireman, would it change the facts?

If I were a civil servant, would it change the facts?

If I were a janitor, would it change the facts?

Answer, of course not!

What I do for a living is irrelevant. It won't change a single fact that I have quoted. The truth is the truth. The truth won't change because of what I do for a living.

Try debating the facts and don't worry about what I do for a living.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 2:15 AM | Report abuse

mr.q:
when i said "sewer," i kind of being dramatic, but also seriously commenting on how we treat the earth. we treat it like a sewer by imagining that our waste products will just somehow magically go away. (btw, i bet the air is nice in oregon.)

i only brought up politics/carter/oil because you began talking about what policies we would need to address global warming. and like it our not, policies involve politics.

i agree that, IN THEORY, one's job is not relevant to the CONTENT of one's comments. but you commented on andrew's job/education causing him to be biased. i would say that if you were an exxon exec, it would reveal at least an ulterior motive. if you were a scientist employed by the american petroleum institute, your comments would have to be viewed through that filter. now, an api scientist may have valid scientific issues to report, but the bias/conflict-of-interest is still a factor.

if you're a "layman," like me, you can still educate yourself as best as possible on the issues, but unless you are a scientist working in the field it is very unlikely that you would go to (or even have access to or be able to understand) the original data reports and be able to draw your own conclusions. a layman like me is stuck with relying on what the "experts" say. we can all quote our favorite experts, but....probably don't actually understand the minutia of the technical reports that generate their "opinions." i'm stuck with believing what the majority of experts say, and was just wondering if you had special (technical) insight into why you think they're wrong. (obviously, from one of my previous comments, i acknowledge that there's a chance the majority opinion is wrong.)

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 7:45 AM | Report abuse

i just wrote a reply to capitalclimate re: george will, and got a message saying something like "thank you for the comment. your comment is being held for review by the blog owner." huh? what's up with that?!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 8:01 AM | Report abuse

CapitalClimate -- There's nothing and no one restricting CWG from challenging or criticizing the reports or columns by Washington Post staff. And indeed we have before -- Achenbach Off on Weather & Warming. So any lack of commentary regarding George Will has everything to do with us either not having the time to address it or choosing to write on a different topic instead, and nothing to do with any sort of censorship.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | February 23, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

"any sort of censorship"
Will you withdraw that false statement, or should I start posting the emails in which I was prevented from writing on certain subjects following the sellout to WaPo?

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 23, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "i agree that, IN THEORY, one's job is not relevant to the CONTENT of one's comments. but you commented on andrew's job/education causing him to be biased."

Mr. Freedman refers to himself as a journalist. He is writing in that capacity here at the Washington Post. The public expects that their source for news will be unbiased. The public expect to get the truth, THE WHOLE TRUTH, and nothing but the truth from journalists and reporters in the news industry. If it is not possible to be completely unbiased, for whatever reason, then the public expects journalists to admit any conflict of interest that they may have.

I am not a journalist working for the Washington Post or any other news outlet. See the difference?

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "i'm stuck with believing what the majority of experts say, ..."

Do you sincerely mean that?

And what do the majority of experts say? Here is a list of 700+ experts who have gone on the public record disagreeing with the current hypothesis of AGW. Do you have a list of 700+ experts that have gone on the public record agreeing with the current hypothesis of AGW?

Here is a link to other lists of experts/scientists that agree with me. There are over 1,100 names on those lists.

If you can't produce a list that equals or exceeds the lists I provided (more than 1,100 scientists/experts), can I not reasonably argue that the majority of experts agree with me? Why do you get to claim that the majority agrees with you, but you don't have to prove it?

If you think the majority agrees with you, then start naming them by name. Show me that the majority agree with you.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

@capitalclimate

We're not withdrawing anything. We went through an initial transition period when we were trying to figure out the right mix of content and how to best time/schedule it while adapting to oversight from new management. You alone decided not to stick with it while we ironed out the bumps. The bumps are now ironed out.

Posted by: CapitalWeatherGang | February 23, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

mr.q:
again, i'm reminded of the "list of steves" (re:evolution) i mentioned earlier. i know you don't want to dilute our AGW conversation with other topics, but i think MODE is the same. if you gather up all the skeptics i'm sure you can come up with a big list (as you have). i think one could come up with a list of scientists named "steve" who "believe in" AGW that is longer than 1,100 people. i think most scientists don't want to be bothered with such a list. they probably think it's a childish endeavor, but apparently, they shouldn't. i think, my opinion, many skeptics have a kind of romantic don quixote notion of themselves, or maybe a better example is they see themselves as galileo - railing against the "recieved wisdom" of the establishment. mind you, distrusting the establishment IS a healthy attitude for scientists. i cannot provide a list of "pro-AGW" scientists out there, either because my google skills are not as refined as yours or maybe there just isn't one. but i do have a clear sense that AGW skeptics are in the minority among scientists. maybe i've just been brainwashed by the likes of andrew et. al. are you actually suggesting that the MAJORITY of scientists are AGW skeptics? i have used the phrase "i think" a lot in that paragraph, so keep in mind those are just my layman's opinions. if i'm wrong about that stuff, it means the "pro-AGW" PR team is MUCH better than the skeptic PR team.

can any of you scientists (capitalclimate, john-burke, others here?) help me out with this? is there some sort of list to counter the 1,100-member denialist list.

i know that practically every "scientific society" has issued a statement "in support" of AGW theory.

i presume you also think that most recent post by andrew about the MIT study is somehow fundamentally flawed.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

If there is anyone reading this who does not believe in the current AGW scare, and you are sitting on the sidelines for whatever reason, you need to get off the sidelines and speak up.

The new administration is getting ready to wreak havoc on our economy.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123531391527642021.html

This is the proverbial "speak now or forever hold your peace" moment.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "i'm stuck with believing what the majority of experts say, ..."

I think I am on the side of the majority. Prove that I am not.

It is very simple. It couldn't get any more simple! Provide a list of names equal in number to the list of names that I have linked to.

Don't make any excuses. Just provide a list of names of scientists who have gone on the public record stating that they agree with the current AGW fear mongering.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

this is an excerpt from:
http://tigger.uic.edu/~pdoran/012009_Doran_final.pdf
this feels a bit like "family feud"...over 3000 scientists answered these questions:

1. When compared with pre-1800s
levels,
do you think that mean global temperatures
have generally risen, fallen, or
remained relatively constant?
2. Do you think human activity is a significant
contributing factor in changing
mean global temperatures?
With 3146 individuals completing the survey,
the participant response rate for the
survey was 30.7%. This is a typical response
rate for Web-based
surveys [Cook et al.,
2000; Kaplowitz et al., 2004]. Of our survey
participants, 90% were from U.S. institutions
and 6% were from Canadian institutions;
the remaining 4% were from institutions
in 21 other nations. More than 90%
of participants had Ph.D.s, and 7% had
master’s degrees. With survey participants
asked to select a single category, the most
common areas of expertise reported were
geochemistry (15.5%), geophysics (12%),
and oceanography (10.5%). General geology,
hydrology/hydrogeology, and paleontology
each accounted for 5–7% of the
total respondents. Approximately 5% of
the respondents were climate scientists,
and 8.5% of the respondents indicated that
more than 50% of their peer-reviewed
publications
in the past 5 years have been on the
subject of climate change. While respondents’
names are kept private, the authors
noted that the survey included participants
with well-documented
dissenting opinions
on global warming theory.
Results show that overall, 90% of participants
answered “risen” to question 1
and 82% answered yes to question 2. In
general, as the level of active research
and specialization in climate science
increases, so does agreement with the two
primary questions (Figure 1). In our survey,
the most specialized and knowledgeable
respondents (with regard to climate
change) are those who listed climate science
as their area of expertise and who
also have published more than 50% of
their recent peer-reviewed
papers on the
subject of climate change (79 individuals
in total). Of these specialists, 96.2%
(76 of 79) answered “risen” to question 1
and 97.4% (75 of 77) answered yes to question
2.

notice that this was based on 3146 responses, 82% of which responded "yes" to warming being "man made" - so that's 2579 scientists right there. and, notice that among the ones who study "climate science" the percentages go up. now, true, i don't have these people's names, but i think it clearly indicates that a majority of scientists - especially climate scientists - 1)believe there is warming, and 2)attribute it to humn activity.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, ".. and, notice that among the ones who study "climate science" the percentages go up."

So, the people who derive their livelihood studying climate, believe in man made global warming?!?! The people who take grant money to study man made global warming believe in global warming?!?! I am shocked!!

walter-in-fallschurch wrote, "... now, true, i don't have these people's names, but ..."

Stop right there.

Your survey is anonymous. They knew their names were not going to be disclosed. How do we know that under such circumstances, they didn't opt to answer "you bet it is true", just so that their grants don't start drying up?

If surveys started surfacing that the majority of scientists don't believe in the current AGW fear mongering, wouldn't their grant money be at risk?? Aren't those respondents naturally motivated to say, "yes"? Don't those respondents (the ones working in climate science) have a financial interest in the outcome of the survey?

It takes no courage to state you agree with the current AGW scare mongering. Especially if you get to be anonymous! And especially if your livelihood depends upon you (and the politicians making the grants) believing that!!!

I provided you a list of scientists/experts by name. They put their name down on the public record stating they disagree with catastrophic AGW. They put their reputations on the line. Your anonymous group did not.

I also quoted a NASA scientist who was afraid to speak out until after she retired. She isn't the only one like that. The intimidation runs entirely against the skeptics. Speaking out isn't easy for many of them.

I provided a by name list of scientists who have gone on the public record (and are therefor risking their reputations and willing to accept the risk that comes with dissent) who disagree with the current AGW scare mongering.

Please provide a by name list (not an anonymous survey) of scientists who have gone on the public record stating that they agree with the current AGW scare mongering hypothesis.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

mr.q."
did you notice it said:

"Approximately 5% of
the respondents were climate scientists,
and 8.5% of the respondents indicated that
more than 50% of their peer-reviewed
publications
in the past 5 years have been on the
subject of climate change."

(btw, how do you italicize text on here?)

so, even if we throw those guys out (which seems silly because they are the most qualified respondents) we still have WAY over 1,100 scientists - just in this one survey. also, it seems to me like an anonymous survey would let skeptics speak out without fear of reprisal.

since lists like this are always more important to the minority view, you've had your list already compiled for you.

here's (http://go.ucsusa.org/RSI_list/index.php?scientistsPage=474)
a list of 15,000 scientists who think bush was abusing/manipulating scientific findings and signed a petition which included this statement:

"For example, in support of the president’s decision to avoid regulating emissions that cause climate change, the administration has consistently misrepresented the findings of the National Academy of Sciences, government scientists, and the expert community at large. Thus in June 2003, the White House demanded extensive changes in the treatment of climate change in a major report by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). To avoid issuing a scientifically indefensible report, EPA officials eviscerated the discussion of climate change and its consequences."

this list has names. it included a broad range of scientific abuses by bush. will you grant that 10% (1,500) signed it for the global warming part?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

"list of names":
It's number 42.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 23, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

P.S. After #11 the other day, that leaves only 51 more to go.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 23, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

capitalclimate:
that's a great list and #42 would convince MOST people there's a scientific consensus, but we're dealing with mr.q here, so the standards are...um...different. he wants a list of 1,101 (or more) scientists who support global warming - then he'll be convinced, i guess (or we'll just move on to the next in the list of contrarian false arguments.) you and i know that there are mnay many many more than 1,101 such scientists out there, but do you know of a place where they are all listed together? it doesn't matter that there are 1000s of papers out there supporting AGW, he wants that stupid list of 1,101 scare mongerers. i don't think we can move on 'til we get that. i know it's got out there somewhere. can you access some kind of list of scientists who submitted those papers in the orestes study? that was back in 2004, so there must be enough new ones to put us over the critical 1,101 threshold. (btw, i love your line about how geologists don't write papers anymore where they explicitly endorse plate tectonics - that's funny, and apt.)

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

capitalclimate:
if #42 did provide link to a simple list, i just missed it.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

walter, You're giving it valiant try, but you're barking up the wrong tree. This list quest is at least as much of a red herring as Sen. McCarthy's infamous, "I have a list."

P.S. That skeptics argument list is not mine, so I can't take credit for the many clever lines that are there.

Posted by: CapitalClimate | February 23, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

wrote, "will you grant that 10% (1,500) signed it for the global warming part?"

I will grant you that, if you will grant that at least half of the 31,072 names on this list are valid.

http://www.petitionproject.org/

So, the tally will be -
1,500 agree with you
and
15,536 agree with me

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

no deal. that has got to be the worst "survey" ever. it includes doctors, engineers, basically anyone who went to college. i'm sure you're aware of the "problems" with that survey.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 23, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I am aware of some of the problems with it. But at least half of the names are valid. And it beats your anonymous survey by a country mile.

I am growing tired of this. Do you have a list of names of scientists who have stated unequivocally, for the public record, that they agree with the current AGW scare mongering hypothesis? No anonymous surveys. No trying to extrapolate a percentage from some other petition. A simple list of names of scientists who have stated unequivocally, for the public record, that they agree with the current AGW scare mongering hypothesis?

Do you have it? Yes or no.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 23, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

mr.q:
i cannot find a list of individual scientists who have signed something declaring their "belief" in AGW. so, i guess that means, in you mind, you win! congratulations.

do you really believe the majority of 1)scientists in general and 2)climate scientists (meant to exclude say, phyicists, astronomers etc...) do not "believe in" AWG? despite the statements from hundreds, maybe thousands, of national and international scientific organizations?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 24, 2009 9:16 AM | Report abuse

I originally sat down and started composing a long, detailed answer to your question (which runs against one of my basic rules - don't argue opinion/belief, argue facts), and then I smacked myself in the head and thought better of it. Have I not been perfectly civil with you? I made one remark which was unwarranted, and I immediately apologized for it. You, on the other hand, have made remarks like, "... but we're dealing with mr.q here, so the standards are...um...different. he wants a list of 1,101 (or more) scientists who support global warming - then he'll be convinced, i guess (or we'll just move on to the next in the list of contrarian false arguments.)..."

I gave it my best shot. I tried dialoguing with an AGW believer. But I only have so much free time. I have better things to do with that free time than debating someone who engages in snide, cheap, gratuitous insults.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | February 24, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

It never ceases to amaze me how many people have tried to engage in a dialog with the same results as you Walter. I had a feeling it would end basically the way it did.

Your quest to find "the list" was indeed valient.

Posted by: John-Burke | February 24, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

mr.q:
i did not mean to be (too) disrespectful. but you really got focused on that stupid list. there isn't one yet. i'm not a scientist, so i can't really go around asking my scientist friends to sign my petition. i would do it if i "ran in those circles"...

i was just shocked we even went that way. i assumed most "skeptics" knew (i wish i knew how to italicize) they were in the
minority. i think we started talking about something else, and the list just took over.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 24, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

Walter if you find some time on your hands I am looking for a list of scientists who believe the earth is round. I will get a list of those that believe that the world is flat. The one with the longer list owes the other a beer or other beverage of the winner's choice. Deal? :)

Posted by: John-Burke | February 24, 2009 8:36 PM | Report abuse

good idea, but i think flat-earthers at least realize they are in the minority.

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | February 24, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

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