Wednesday, May 5, 2010

AGW vs Intelligent Design

We should look at the basic science of AGW. In February of 2010, Dr. Walter Oechel, a distinguished professor of biology and director of the Global Change Research Group at San Diego State University, wrote an op-ed piece for the San Diego Union Tribune titled Climate change is real; there is no debate. In this he said:

“The message from five decades of scientific research, the public-at-large and even most politicians is clear: Climate change is real and we must act now. Our future health, economic well-being and national security are at risk if we don’t.

But what about the debate?’ There really isn’t one. The following are facts:

Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that acts to warm the planet.

Carbon dioxide is being emitted from fossil fuels by human activity.

The amount of carbon dioxide emitted from fossil fuel use is increasing.

• The climate is getting warmer, more unstable, and the climate extremes are greater.

This can only be adequately explained by including human carbon dioxide emissions.”

I’m going to start with the last point, because if this isn’t true, the rest of his “facts” are irrelevant.

To understand this position we need to understand how scientist came up with AGW being the only factor that can “adequately” explain the warming we’ve seen.

In the 1980s and the 1990s the temperature was increasing at a healthy clip. Scientists took the climate models that they had and could not explain the totality of the increase in temperature (the models could account for about ½). They then look around, saw the first three points in Dr. Oechel’s article and declared it must be caused by greenhouse gas.

The flaw (and it’s a big one) is that the multiple models they used then and the updated versions they use now are not accurate. In fact they AREN’T EVEN CLOSE. So using inaccurate models they couldn’t account for the warming and decided that to attribute it to manmade CO2 (we used to call this the factor of restitution—your answer times this factor gave the correct answer). Their models didn’t accurately portray the known patterns that affect the climate such as the AMO, PDO, ENSO, etc.

Richard Lindzen PhD, the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently noted that this leap of faith “MAKES ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT OF INTELLIGENT DESIGN SOUND RIGOROUS BY COMPARISON.”

In other words, the warming we saw might easily be explain by other natural processes if we understood them better and could accurately model these processes. The models currently being used by the IPPC and the ones from which we keep hearing gloom and doom continue to be altered to explain the past, but don’t do a good job in predicting the future.

AGW is probably the most overstated, under proven, scientific theory in history.

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