Hard News by Russell Brown


No Friends of Science

Is Augie Auer the most oafish lobby group spokesman in the country? Lately, he makes Garth McVicar look like Steven Price. For Tuesday's Herald online story on the IPCC predictions for Australia and New Zealand, he had yet another feeble potshot at NIWA's Jim Salinger:

"Jim Salinger has come out and said in drier places, it will get drier.

"In wetter places, it will get wetter.

"Well that's a real no brainer, isn't it?"

Whatever you say, Augie.

The story also quotes him describing the involvement of MetService as "questionable". I'm sure it's very disappointing, given his recent attempt to reframe the entire climate debate in terms of the MetService-NIWA cold war, but they're not that stupid at MetService. Here's the new MetService statement on likely impact of climate change in the Pacific, which predicts sea-level rises, fisheries depletion, water shortages and increased intensity of tropical cyclones.

What a bummer for Augie. The Climate Science Coalition's other media man, Brian Leyland, seems better placed to offer comment, given that he publishes fairly regularly as an energy consultant, but Jeanette Fitzsimons still had him for dinner on Campbell Live this week. His folksy analogies about Gallileo and continental drift weren't convincing.

Still, someone's convinced, judging by the Herald's Your Views section on climate change:

Once again the Government spin Doctors are doing what they are paid to do with a lot of unsubstantiated garbage about climate change. When are the people going to wake up and see that this scare mongering is for the benefit of the politicians that put them in the job in the 1st place. I would rather listen to the experts that are not paid by Government Agencies, as they seem to know what they are talking about. Once again Political Correctness Gone Mad.
Lets concentrate on how we can make NZ a better place, we were in the small numbers years ago as one of the best places to live now all we talk about is the Government, climate change, what the Maoris want, smacking kids. See what I mean in that last sentence we talk and focus on non-relevant subjects. Come on NZ lets work together and put our country back in the top ten!
Of course there is Global Warming or if you want to be politically correct Climate Change - it has been around since the earth was created. The best phrase for it is 'Nature Taking its Course' and no amount of posturing by Scientists and Politicians will have any effect on it.
The astonishing leap from carbon emissions to global warming is alarming. And if the dramatic effects of Carbon emissions have this effect on NZ why aren't countries with populations many many times that of NZ not underwater already?
I find it funny that not one expert has mentioned or raised the thought that land masses are moving. Some areas are getting warmer and some are getting colder. What ever happened to common sense? I guess chicken little will always be with us. (the sky is falling!) and chicken

little is good ole Al Gore.
Persons who believe that the objectors to the climate hysteria have got no science behind them need to search Google for videos under "global warming catastrophe cancelled". It is an eyeopener regarding the warming propaganda, and the $multibillion "warming" industry.

Actually, that one warrants a response. The Catastrophe Cancelled video is the work of Friends of Science, a Canadian group that nicely anonymises its oil-industry funding via an unauthorised cabal at Calgary University that had to be ordered to stop using the university's coat of arms on the video.

The voluminous Sourcewatch article has more, including the latest from Calgary University authorities approached for comment on a claim by the foundation that collects the cash for Friends of Science that it merely passes the money raised on to the university to spend:

"The University of Calgary does not provide funding for Friends of Science. There is no University of Calgary trust fund for Friends of Science. We do not endorse its work or its findings ... The University of Calgary does not have a position on climate change, nor would it. As an independent, non-partisan research institution, the U of C insists on maintaining its neutrality.

"The fundamental principle is academic freedom ... In this case, a group of scientists holds a particular viewpoint and have advanced it publicly, with funding support from the external community. The fact that one of the scientists [i.e. political science professor Barry Cooper] is a faculty member here cannot be taken to conclude that the U of C supports that individual's research. The University of Calgary does not dictate to its professors the kind of research they will or will not do."

So, basically, Friends of Science is whoring the University of Calgary's good name via a political science professor? You may also recall that Friends of Science roadshow star Dr Tim Ball had similar issues with the University of Winnipeg. If this sort of thing passes the sniff test for you, you should try a decongestant.

The Canadian experience was admirably backgrounded late last year by Charles Montgomery in the Toronto Globe and Mail. The story is well worth reading. The Climate Science Coalition would be more like Friends of Science if they had a few more social skills and retired oilmen were thicker on the ground. One play the Climate Science Coalition has taken from Friends of Science is to attack the public climate science agencies: Environment Canada, in their case.

But the irony, as No Right Turn points out, is that we're reaching something very like political consensus on the issue in New Zealand, with National nagging Labour for dragging its heels on policy.

Read NRT for policy stuff: I'm just here to call more obvious examples of bullshit. Yes, there are scientists who reject anthropogenic global warming: there are relatively few of them, and among the smaller number who are genuinely qualified, it's generally the geologists who take issue.

Bear in mind that our only two expert meterological organisations are both participating in the IPCC process and taking its conclusions very seriously, as are the science academies of the G8 nations, and the prospect of walking the plank with groups who have no such stature -- and whose allegations of vested interests and political motives look like a projection --- seems palpably reckless.

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