Another Perspective

A Summer Chill

The weather refuses to cooperate with the falling sky alarmists.

By 8.27.07

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Have you noticed the silence about this year's hurricanes from Al Gore, Pontiff of The Holy Order of the Sky Is Falling? As last year's hurricane season began, the pontiff and his acolytes cheerfully predicted a series of devastating hurricanes. None came. So far this year it's been Dean, which put the east coast of Mexico awash, but without huge losses. Silence from THOOTSIF. No wonder.

Global warming measured over the last century ranges from one to two degrees Fahrenheit. Mr. Gore routinely preaches that it will get ever warmer and calamity will ensue. Since he contends that human beings are the cause of this, his remedy is to crank down industrial society. Alas, the weather is not cooperating with his theory.

On July 9, two days after THOOTSIF's much ballyhooed worldwide series of rock concerts, it snowed in Buenos Aires for the first time since 1918. July, remember, is winter in Argentina, but the season's temperatures are usually akin to those of California or Florida.

In Sacramento, California, where 100-plus temperature in the summer are common, on August 4 it went down from 104 to 74 the next day. It happened again on August 6, setting the lowest high temperature for that day in 101 years.

We have Lloyd Billingsley of the Pacific Research Institute to thank for both pieces of news, inasmuch as the news media (other than the hometown ones in B.A. and Sacramento) seem not to have noticed it. That's not surprising since most of them have long since bought into THOOTSIF's mantra, to wit, that catastrophic future global warming is "settled science." It's not.

The predictions of calamity rest on computer models that are no better than their design. An article by British researchers in the journal Science this month makes the point that "A common criticism of global climate models, particularly for predicting the coming decade, has been that they only include facts such as solar radiation, atmospheric aerosol and greenhouses, which are affected by changes from outside the climate system, [but ignore] climate variability that arises from natural changes within the system, such as El Nino, fluctuations in ocean circulation and anomalies in ocean heat content."

Theoretical physicist Freeman Dyson casts more doubt on the use of land temperatures to build predictive computer models. About average land temperature, he says, "there's no way you can measure it."

If climate modeling is as inexact as these scientists say, shouldn't Congress take their views into account before trying to pass draconian laws that would increase the cost of energy and hurt our economy?

The global warming alarmists had been pointing to 1998 as evidence that the warming trend is current. It was, they claimed, the hottest year on record, buttressing their contention that the warming trend is a result of the large increase in worldwide industrial production since World War II. Alas, NASA has just rained on their parade. It says 1934 -- in the midst of the Great Depression -- was the hottest year and that 1921, 1931 and 1938 were also among the Top Ten.

Despite all this bad news for the alarmists they manage to keep the "mainstream" media in a state of agitation. Typical of their stories, these August 8 headlines: Washington Post, "Across the Globe, Extremes of Heat and Rain"; the New York Times, "Warming Threatens Farms in India, U.N. Official Says."

It turns out these are nothing new. A researcher at the Library of Congress recently came across this Page 2 story in the Washington Post of November 2, 1922: "Arctic Ocean Getting Warm; Seals Vanish and Icebergs Melt." Sound familiar? The Business & Media Institute recently completed a study in which it said that the media "have warned about impending climate doom four different times in the past 100 years."

Bad news all around for The Holy Order of the Sky is Falling. I tried to call Pontiff Al for an opinion, but was told he was traveling. So, I spoke to THOOTSIF's recording secretary, Ms. Henny Penny. She was in a sour mood. Her one-word comment was, "Cluck."

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About the Author
Peter Hannaford was closely associated with the late President Reagan for a number of years. He is a member of the board of the Committee on the Present Danger. His latest book is “Presidential Retreats.”