Thursday, February 14, 2008

Paradise Has Its Worries

We all know the pleasures of living in the Florida Keys: great climate, fishing, history, lifestyle, acceptance, and inspiration.

But there is plenty to be concerned about with Key West and the Florida Keys lately, including:
  • Big budget shortfalls at the state and local level that will likely mean significant cutbacks to services.

  • Cruise ships could abandon Key West should Federal rules currently under review change as some have suggested. Cruise ships account for 12% of Key West's budget. Many local businesses are dependent on cruise ships for survival. If cruise ships abandon Key West, the city would be in dire financial straits. (Changing the cruise ship rules may actually be a good thing for Key West and the US, but that is a subject for a future post)

  • The Monroe County Commission is a bad joke - with three commissioners apparrently so devoted to developers that they appalingly let them write recent development agreements. Shame on you Dixie Spehar, Mario Di Genarro, and Mayor Charles McCoy. Their combined fiscal mismanagement is nothing short of sheer lunacy. Voters are very aware of the fiasco and should vote the two who are up for re-election out of office. And also worrisome - Key West's mayor, Morgan McPhearson (McFearsome?) is "best friends" with Digenarro, who's behavior on the County Commission more often resembles a thug than an elected representive.

  • Florida, for the most part, doesn't recognize evolution in its public schools. Egad. Do I really live in Florida? That's why I think Key West isn't in Florida - it really is different here. Applause to Monroe County for taking the lead - but it is embarassing that 80% of schools in Florida don't include evolution as part of the science curriculum.

  • The real estate market is overbuilt, overpriced, and collapsing. Affordable housing is nearly non-existant, and employees are moving away in droves. The community, for the most part, is dwindling.
But the biggest worry of all is rarely mentioned - global warming and its effect on the low-lying Florida Keys which could be profound. Key West's highest point is 16 feet above sea level. The rest of the Florida Keys rise only a few feet above the water.

According to a new study released by the University of Buffalo, "...the sea level rise estimated during this century could be twice as high as what they (United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) are currently projecting." The IPCC is currently estimating a 17-23 inch rise in sea levels over the next century. But if Greenland, whose massive ice fields are on land, melts significantly, sea levels could rise 20 feet (this is not currently projected for this century, but the data keeps moving and evolving).

Tuvalu, a tiny island in the South Pacific, spoke at the United Nations this week - appealing for help in the face of rising sea levels due to global warming.
According to the country's deputy prime minister, ""I only need to highlight the fact that our highest point above sea level is only four meters (a little over 13 feet) to emphasize our vulnerability to the impacts of climate change, especially sea level rise"

Today, Tuvalu is feeling the effects of rising sea levels. In a few decades, the islands could disappear.

One must consider if the Florida Keys are in real danger of disappearing under rising sea levels. In the long geologic history of the islands, it wouldn't be the first time.
Like this post? Let us know:


Anonymous said...

G.O.D. said...

Anonymous said...

go to church and stop listening to al gore ya freak!!!!

Cayo Dave said...

go to church and stop listening to al gore ya freak!!!!
Normally I would not publish this type of useless comment. But since it packs so much stupidity in such a short sentence, it deserves some recogintion.

Anonymous said...

go to church and stop listening to al gore ya freak!!!!
wouldn't god not want you to judge your fellow man, and love him inspite of your differences?....interesting

Anonymous said...

So the lies about global warming have reached you. I honestly gave you some credit but now I see you just go along with the mass media and the hype that so called global warming exists. Tell that to most of the scientific community who realize it is a joke but can't be heard through our biased media or the head of the Weather Channel who knows it is a lot of bull crap. And tell it to the Canadians who are living through the worst winter in 50 years. Yeah, global warming. Bet you believe in the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny too. Don't follow the other lemmings into the sea. And quit writing your blog while in an alcoholic stupor - it's embarrassing to see your stupidity running rampant.

Anonymous said...

The global warming scam
Asia Times ^ | 02.25.05 | Derek Kelly, PhD

The global warming scam
By Derek Kelly, PhD

Scam, noun: a swindle, a fraudulent arrangement.

A chronology of climate change
During most of the last billion years the Earth did not have permanent ice sheets. Nevertheless, at times large areas of the globe were covered with vast sheets of ice. Such times are known as glaciations. In the past 2 million to 3 million years, the temperature of the Earth has changed (warmed or cooled) at least 17 times, some say 33, with glaciations that last about 100,000 years interrupted by warm periods that last about 10,000 years.

The last glaciation began 70,000 years ago and ended about 10,000 years ago. The Earth was a lot colder than it is now; snow and ice had accumulated on a lot of the land, glaciers existed on large areas and the sea levels were lower.

15,000 years ago: The last glaciation reaches a peak, with continental glaciers that cover a lot of the sub-polar and polar areas of the land areas of Earth. In North America, all of New England and all of the Great Lakes area, most of Ohio, Indiana, Minnesota and the North Dakotas, lie under ice sheets hundreds of meters thick. More than 37 million cubic kilometers of ice was tied up in these global sheets of ice. The average temperature on the surface of the Earth is estimated to have been cooler by approximately 6 degrees Celsius than currently. The sea level was more than 90 meters lower than currently.

15,000 years ago to 6,000 years ago: Global warming begins. The sheets of ice melt, and sea levels rise. Some heat source causes approximately 37 million cubic kilometers of ice to melt in approximately 9,000 years. Around 9,500 years ago, the last of the Northern European sheets of ice leave Scandinavia. Around 7,500 years ago, the last of the American sheets of ice leave Canada. This warming is neither stable nor the same everywhere. There are periods when mountain glaciers advance, and periods when they withdraw. These climatic changes vary extensively from place to place, with some areas affected while others are not. The tendency of warming is global and obvious, but very uneven. The causes of this period of warming are unknown.

8,000 years ago to 4,000 years ago: About 6,000 years ago, temperatures on the surface of Earth are about 3 degrees warmer than currently. The Arctic Ocean is ice-free, and mountain glaciers have disappeared from the mountains of Norway and the Alps in Europe, and from the Rocky Mountains of the United States and Canada. The ocean of the world is some three meters higher than currently. A lot of the present desert of the Sahara has a more humid, savannah-like climate, with giraffes and savannah fauna species.

4,000 years ago to AD 900: Global cooling begins. The Arctic Ocean freezes over, mountain glaciers form once more in the Rocky Mountains, in Norway and in the Alps. The Black Sea freezes over several times, and ice forms on the Nile in Egypt. Northern Europe gets a lot wetter, and the marshes develop again in previously dry areas. The sea level drops to approximately its present level. The temperatures on the surface of the Earth are about 0.5-1 degree cooler than at present. The causes of this period of cooling are unknown.

AD 1000 to 1500: This period has quick, but uneven, warming of the climate of the Northern Hemisphere. The North Atlantic becomes ice-free and Norse exploration as far as North America takes place. The Norse colonies in Greenland even export crop surpluses to Scandinavia. Wine grapes grow in southern Britain. The temperatures are from 3-8 degrees warmer than currently. The period lasts only a brief 500 years. By the year 1500, it has vanished. The Earth experiences as much warming between the 11th and the 13th century as is now predicted by global-warming scientists for the next century. The causes of this period of warming are unknown.

1430 to 1880: This is a period of the fast but uneven cooling of Northern Hemisphere climates. Norwegian glaciers advance to their most distant extension in post-glacial times. The northern forests disappear, to be replaced with tundra. Severe winters characterize a lot of Europe and North America. The channels and rivers get colder, the snows get heavy, and the summers cool and short. The temperatures on the surface of the world are about 0.5-1.5 degrees cooler than present. In the United States, 1816 is known as the "year with no summer". Snow falls in New England in June. The widespread failure of crops and deaths due to hypothermia are common. The causes of this period of cooling are unknown.

1880 to 1940: A period of warming. The mountain glaciers recede and the ice in the Arctic Ocean begins to melt again. The causes of this period of warming are unknown.

1940 to 1977: Cooling period. The temperatures are cooler than currently. Mountain glaciers recede, and some begin to advance. The tabloids inform us of widespread catastrophes due to the "New Glaciation". The causes of this period of cooling are unknown.

1977 to present: Warming period. The summer of 2003 is said to be the warmest one since the Middle Ages. The tabloids notify us of widespread catastrophes due to "global warming". The causes of warming are discovered - humanity and its carbon-dioxide-generating fossil-fuel use and deforestation.

Anyone else find something fishy about the final sentence?

The above chronology of recent (geologically speaking) climate changes should place global-warming catastrophists (such as those who developed the Kyoto treaty) in an awkward position. Their fundamental assumption is that Earth's climate was stable and was doing just fine before the Industrial Revolution started interfering with climate's "natural" state. It is the Industrial Revolution, and in particular the use of fossil-fuel-burning machines, that has led us to the brink of environmental catastrophe due to global warming caused by increasing amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere.

But it is plain to see that both warming and cooling occurred numerous times before the Industrial Revolution. Similarly, all the dire predictions of global-warming consequences - sea-level rise, for example - have happened in the past. In fact, the greatest warming period was when dinosaurs walked the land (about 70 million to 130 million years ago). There was then five to 10 times as much CO2 in the atmosphere as there is today, and the average temperature was 4-11 degrees Celsius warmer. Those conditions should have been very helpful to life, since they permitted those immense creatures to find an abundance of food and they survived.

The Cretaceous was an intense "greenhouse world" with high surface temperatures. These high temperatures were due to the much higher level of CO2 in the atmosphere at the time - four to 10 times as much as is in our air today. The biota was a mixture of the exotic and familiar - luxuriant green forests of now-extinct trees flourished within the Arctic Circle and dinosaurs roamed. The global sea level was at its highest ever during this period, peaking during the Late Cretaceous around 86 million years ago. It is certain that the global sea level was well over 200 meters higher during this time than it is today. The Earth was immensely hotter, the CO2 vastly more plentiful, and the sea levels much higher than they are today.

The Earth has also been immensely colder, the CO2 much less plentiful, and the sea levels much lower than today. Fifteen thousand years ago, the sea level was at least 90 meters lower than it is today. The land looked bare because it was too cold for beech and oak trees to grow. There were a few fir trees here and there. No grass grew, however, just shrubs, bushes and moss grass. In the northern parts of North America, Europe and Asia there was still tundra. The animals were different from today too. Back then there were woolly mammoth, woolly rhinos, cave bears (the former three now extinct), bison, wolves, horses, and herds of reindeer like modern-day reindeer.

The major "sin" for the global warmists is CO2. The Kyoto treaty is meant to reduce the amount of this gas so as, they say, to reduce the degree of warming and eventually return us to some stable climate system. If we look at the historical situation, however, this is cause for alarm. For one thing, there has never been a stable climate system. For another, the level of CO2 in our atmosphere is near its historic low. In the long run, the greatest danger is too little rather than too much CO2. There has been a long-term reduction of CO2 throughout the 4.5-billion-year history of the Earth. If this tendency continues, eventually our planet may become as lifeless as Mars.

Glaciation has prevailed for 90% of the last several million years. Extreme cold. Biting cold. Cold too intense for bikinis and swimming trunks. No matter what scary scenarios global-warming enthusiasts dream up, they pale in comparison with the conditions another ice age would deliver. Look to our past climate. Fifteen thousand years ago, an ice sheet a kilometer and a half thick covered all of North America north of a line stretching from somewhere around Seattle to Cleveland and New York City.

Instead of reducing CO2, we should, perhaps, be increasing it. We should pay the smokestack industries hard dollars for every kilogram of soot they pump into the atmosphere. Instead of urging Chinese to stop using coal and turn instead to nuclear-generated electricity, we should beg them to continue using coal. Rather than bringing us to the edge of global-warming catastrophe, anthropogenic climate change may have spared us descent into what would be the most serious and far-reaching challenge facing humankind in the 21st century - dealing with a rapidly deteriorating climate that wants to plunge us into an ice age. Let's hope Antarctica and Greenland melt. Let's hope the sea levels rise. All life glorifies warmth. Only death prefers the icy fingers of endless winter.

What do you think? The science behind the global warming theory is really weak. It's all based on inadequately research assumptions that are used by elaborate computer models which crank out essentially meaningless forecasts. The forecasts are meaningless because they are based on soft, unproven assumptions. One factor the forecasters always seem to forget is that the rate of any chemical reaction increases with concentration of the reactants. Therefore, the more CO2 we add to he atmopshere, the faster plants consume CO2 in photosynthesis reactions and the faster the CO2 reacts with compounds in the soil.

Anonymous said...

Global Warming? Can you say SCAM!

Eight Reasons Why ‘Global Warming’ Is a Scam

Author: Joseph L. Bast
Published by: The Heartland Institute
Published in: Heartlander
Publication date: February 2003

When Al Gore lost his bid to become the country’s first “Environment President,” many of us thought the “global warming” scare would finally come to a well-deserved end. That hasn’t happened, despite eight good reasons this scam should finally be put to rest.

It’s B-a-a-ck!

Similar scares orchestrated by radical environmentalists in the past--such as Alar, global cooling, the “population bomb,” and electromagnetic fields--were eventually debunked by scientists and no longer appear in the speeches or platforms of public officials. The New York Times recently endorsed more widespread use of DDT to combat malaria, proving Rachel Carson’s anti-pesticide gospel is no longer sacrosanct even with the liberal elite.

The scientific case against catastrophic global warming is at least as strong as the case for DDT, but the global warming scare hasn’t gone away. President Bush is waffling on the issue, rightly opposing the Kyoto Protocol and focusing on research and voluntary projects, but wrongly allowing his administration to support calls for creating “transferrable emission credits” for greenhouse gas reductions. Such credits would build political and economic support for a Kyoto-like cap on greenhouse gas emissions.

At the state level, some 23 states have already adopted caps on greenhouse gas emissions or goals for replacing fossil fuels with alternative energy sources. These efforts are doomed to be costly failures, as a new Heartland Policy Study by Dr. Jay Lehr and James Taylor documents. Instead of concentrating on balancing state budgets, some legislators will be working to pass their own “mini-Kyotos.”

Eight Reasons to End the Scam

Concern over “global warming” is overblown and misdirected. What follows are eight reasons why we should pull the plug on this scam before it destroys billions of dollars of wealth and millions of jobs.

1. Most scientists do not believe human activities threaten to disrupt the Earth’s climate. More than 17,000 scientists have signed a petition circulated by the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine saying, in part, “there is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.” (Go to for the complete petition and names of signers.) Surveys of climatologists show similar skepticism.

2. Our most reliable sources of temperature data show no global warming trend. Satellite readings of temperatures in the lower troposphere (an area scientists predict would immediately reflect any global warming) show no warming since readings began 23 years ago. These readings are accurate to within 0.01ÂșC, and are consistent with data from weather balloons. Only land-based temperature stations show a warming trend, and these stations do not cover the entire globe, are often contaminated by heat generated by nearby urban development, and are subject to human error.

3. Global climate computer models are too crude to predict future climate changes. All predictions of global warming are based on computer models, not historical data. In order to get their models to produce predictions that are close to their designers’ expectations, modelers resort to “flux adjustments” that can be 25 times larger than the effect of doubling carbon dioxide concentrations, the supposed trigger for global warming. Richard A. Kerr, a writer for Science, says “climate modelers have been ‘cheating’ for so long it’s almost become respectable.”

4. The IPCC did not prove that human activities are causing global warming. Alarmists frequently quote the executive summaries of reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a United Nations organization, to support their predictions. But here is what the IPCC’s latest report, Climate Change 2001, actually says about predicting the future climate: “The Earth’s atmosphere-ocean dynamics is chaotic: its evolution is sensitive to small perturbations in initial conditions. This sensitivity limits our ability to predict the detailed evolution of weather; inevitable errors and uncertainties in the starting conditions of a weather forecast amplify through the forecast. As well as uncertainty in initial conditions, such predictions are also degraded by errors and uncertainties in our ability to represent accurately the significant climate processes.”

5. A modest amount of global warming, should it occur, would be beneficial to the natural world and to human civilization. Temperatures during the Medieval Warm Period (roughly 800 to 1200 AD), which allowed the Vikings to settle presently inhospitable Greenland, were higher than even the worst-case scenario reported by the IPCC. The period from about 5000-3000 BC, known as the “climatic optimum,” was even warmer and marked “a time when mankind began to build its first civilizations,” observe James Plummer and Frances B. Smith in a study for Consumer Alert. “There is good reason to believe that a warmer climate would have a similar effect on the health and welfare of our own far more advanced and adaptable civilization today.”

6. Efforts to quickly reduce human greenhouse gas emissions would be costly and would not stop Earth’s climate from changing. Reducing U.S. carbon dioxide emissions to 7 percent below 1990’s levels by the year 2012--the target set by the Kyoto Protocol--would require higher energy taxes and regulations causing the nation to lose 2.4 million jobs and $300 billion in annual economic output. Average household income nationwide would fall by $2,700, and state tax revenues would decline by $93.1 billion due to less taxable earned income and sales, and lower property values. Full implementation of the Kyoto Protocol by all participating nations would reduce global temperature in the year 2100 by a mere 0.14 degrees Celsius.

7. Efforts by state governments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are even more expensive and threaten to bust state budgets. After raising their spending with reckless abandon during the 1990s, states now face a cumulative projected deficit of more than $90 billion. Incredibly, most states nevertheless persist in backing unnecessary and expensive greenhouse gas reduction programs. New Jersey, for example, collects $358 million a year in utility taxes to fund greenhouse gas reduction programs. Such programs will have no impact on global greenhouse gas emissions. All they do is destroy jobs and waste money.

8. The best strategy to pursue is “no regrets.” The alternative to demands for immediate action to “stop global warming” is not to do nothing. The best strategy is to invest in atmospheric research now and in reducing emissions sometime in the future if the science becomes more compelling. In the meantime, investments should be made to reduce emissions only when such investments make economic sense in their own right.

This strategy is called “no regrets,” and it is roughly what the Bush administration has been doing. The U.S. spends more on global warming research each year than the entire rest of the world combined, and American businesses are leading the way in demonstrating new technologies for reducing and sequestering greenhouse gas emissions.

Time for Common Sense

The global warming scare has enabled environmental advocacy groups to raise billions of dollars in contributions and government grants. It has given politicians (from Al Gore down) opportunities to pose as prophets of doom and slayers of evil corporations. And it has given bureaucrats at all levels of government, from the United Nations to city councils, powers that threaten our jobs and individual liberty.

It is time for common sense to return to the debate over protecting the environment. An excellent first step would be to end the “global warming” scam.

Cayo Dave said...

WOW! Great contributions!
The point of my post was not that HUMANS were causing global warming (though I don't dismiss the idea), but that global warming, whatever the cause, will render the Florida Keys and much of South Florida under water.
Can it be stopped? Unlikely, especially given the normal cyclicality of historical planet temperatures.
But as residents of these low lying islands, we should recognize that we are at serious risk to higher sea levels.

Oh come now.... said...

The "Heartland Institute" is a bogus front for the poluting industries who will be hurt if they can't convince people that GOOD SCIENCE is a scam. They put together all kinds of pro-biz propaganda such as a denial of the ill effects of second-hand smoke. Not the greatest place to look for advice on global warming (unless you don't CARE about it and just want to be a cranky curmudgeon).

"Derek Kelly, PhD" isn't a scientist, his studies were in Religion.

I think that I'll pay more attention to the overwhelming number of real scientists who know that global warming is something serious that we all need to pay attention to....

Conchscooter said...

Goodness people do get worked up about global warming. Bummer if its real, nice if it isn't but either way I don't see any harm in trying to live sustainably. You'd think God would approve, if she even exists.

Anonymous said...

I was waiting to see what sort of response you got to this, as you were careful in not claiming any human activity relationship to the global warming. Wise decision.

The respected and properly vetted scientific community acknowledges that global temperature change is occuring - just as it has since the beginning of the Earth as we know it.

Amazing what a cyclical heat source (the Sun) can do, isn't it?

Wishfull as I might be about buying a retirement home on KW, looks like my timing might suck.

-Anon #2-

Anonymous said...

Anon #2 don't let the so called global warming hoax prevent you from coming to Key West and live (and I might add it is one of the best hoaxes in history - amazing what the ignorant masses will believe!). Your insights and your intelligence are just what the island needs. And it is a great time to buy in Key West - home prices are dropping every day.

You are correct sir! said...

> " is one of the best hoaxes in
> history - amazing what the ignorant
> masses will believe!"

You are very correct about that. It's amazing how many ignorant people accept the "there is no such thing as global warming" hoax being pushed so hard by the people who's profits will be impacted when they're forced to stop raping the earth...

Anonymous said...

Weather Channel Founder Blasts Network; Claims It Is 'Telling Us What to Think'
TWC founder and global warming skeptic advocates suing Al Gore to expose 'the fraud of global warming.'

By Jeff Poor
Business & Media Institute
3/3/2008 6:11:04 PM

The Weather Channel has lost its way, according to John Coleman, who founded the channel in 1982.

Coleman told an audience at the 2008 International Conference on Climate Change on March 3 in New York that he is highly critical of global warming alarmism.

“The Weather Channel had great promise, and that’s all gone now because they’ve made every mistake in the book on what they’ve done and how they’ve done it and it’s very sad,” Coleman said. “It’s now for sale and there’s a new owner of The Weather Channel will be announced – several billion dollars having changed hands in the near future. Let’s hope the new owners can recapture the vision and stop reporting the traffic, telling us what to think and start giving us useful weather information.”

The Weather Channel has been an outlet for global warming alarmism. In December 2006, The Weather Channel’s Heidi Cullen argued on her blog that weathercasters who had doubts about human influence on global warming should be punished with decertification by the American Meteorological Society.

Coleman also told the audience his strategy for exposing what he called “the fraud of global warming.” He advocated suing those who sell carbon credits, which would force global warming alarmists to give a more honest account of the policies they propose.

“[I] have a feeling this is the opening,” Coleman said. “If the lawyers will take the case – sue the people who sell carbon credits. That includes Al Gore. That lawsuit would get so much publicity, so much media attention. And as the experts went to the media stand to testify, I feel like that could become the vehicle to finally put some light on the fraud of global warming.”

Earlier at the conference Lord Christopher Monckton, a policy adviser to former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, told an audience that the science will eventually prevail and the “scare” of global warming will go away. He also said the courts were a good avenue to show the science.

Anonymous said...

The 2008 International Conference on Climate Change
Sponsored by The Heartland Institute

March 2 - March 4, 2008
Marriott New York Marquis Times Square Hotel
1535 Broadway
New York City, NY U.S.A.

Joseph L. Bast
Conference Host
President, The Heartland Institute

Opening Remarks delivered Sunday, March 2, 2008

Welcome to the 2008 International Conference on Climate Change.

This is a truly historic event, the first international conference devoted to answering questions overlooked by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. We’re asking questions such as:

how reliable are the data used to document the recent warming trend?

how much of the modern warming is natural, and how much is likely the result of human activities?

how reliable are the computer models used to forecast future climate conditions? and

is reducing emissions the best or only response to possible climate change?

Obviously, these are important questions. Yet the IPCC pays little attention to them or hides the large amount of doubt and uncertainty surrounding them.

Are the scientists and economists who ask these questions just a fringe group, outside the scientific mainstream? Not at all. A 2003 survey of 530 climate scientists in 27 countries, conducted by Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch at the GKSS Institute of Coastal Research in Germany, found

82 percent said global warming is happening, but only

56 percent said it’s mostly the result of human causes, and only

35 percent said models can accurately predict future climate conditions.

Only 27 percent believed “the current state of scientific knowledge is able to provide reasonable predictions of climate variability on time scales of 100 years.”

That’s a long ways from “consensus.” It’s actually pretty close to what the American public told pollsters for the Pew Trust in 2006:

70 percent thought global warming is happening,

only 41 percent thought it was due to human causes,

and only 19 percent thought it was a high-priority issue.

The alarmists think it’s a “paradox” that the more people learn about climate change, the less likely they are to consider it a serious problem. But as John Tierney with The New York Times points out in a blog posted just a day ago, maybe, just maybe, it’s because people are smart rather than stupid.

And incidentally, 70 percent of the public oppose raising gasoline prices by $1 to fight global warming, and 80 percent oppose a $2/gallon tax increase, according to a 2007 poll by The New York Times and CBS News.

I’ve got news for them: Reducing emissions by 60 to 80 percent, which is what the alarmists claim is necessary to “stop global warming,” would cost a lot more than $1 a gallon.

Al Gore, the United Nations, environmental groups, and too often the reporters who cover the climate change debate are the ones who are out of step with the real “consensus.” They claim to be certain that global warming is occurring, convinced it is due to human causes, and 100 percent confident we can predict future climates.

Who’s on the fringe of scientific consensus? The alarmists, or the skeptics?

These questions go to the heart of the issue: Is global warming a crisis, as we are so often told by media, politicians, and environmental activists? Or is it moderate, mostly natural, and unstoppable, as we are told by many distinguished scientists?

Former Vice President Al Gore has said repeatedly that there is a “consensus” in favor of his alarmist views on global warming. And of course, he’s not alone.

Two weeks ago, Jim Martin, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, when told of our conference, said, “You could have a convention of all the scientists who dispute climate change in a relatively small phone booth.” (Denver Post, February 12, 2008). predicted that no real scientists would show up at this conference.

Well ...

We have with us, tonight and tomorrow, more than 200 scientists and other experts on climate change, from Australia, Canada, England, France, Hungary, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, Sweden, and of course the United States.

They come from the University of Alabama, Arizona State, Carleton, Central Queensland, Delaware, Durham, and Florida State University.

From George Mason, Harvard, The Institute Pasteur in Paris, James Cook, John Moores, Johns Hopkins, and the London School of Economics.

From The University of Mississippi, Monash, Nottingham, Ohio State, Oregon State, Oslo, Ottawa, Rochester, Rockefeller, and the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.

And from the Russian Academy of Sciences, Suffolk University, the University of Virginia, Westminster School of Business (in London), and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

And I apologize if I left anyone out.

These scientists and economists have been published thousands of times in the world’s leading scientific journals and have written hundreds of books. If you call this the fringe, where’s the center?

Hey Jim Martin, does this look like a phone booth to you?

Hey RealClimate, can you hear us now?

These scientists and economists deserve to be heard. They have stood up to political correctness and defended the scientific method at a time when doing so threatens their research grants, tenure, and ability to get published. Some of them have even faced death threats for daring to speak out against what can only be called the mass delusion of our time.

And they must be heard, because the stakes are enormous.

George Will, in an October Newsweek column commenting on Al Gore’s Nobel Peace Prize, wrote that if nations impose the reductions in energy use that Al Gore and the folks at RealClimate call for, they will cause “more preventable death and suffering than was caused in the last century by Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot combined.”

It takes more than four Norwegian socialists to win a Pulitzer Prize, so I’ll put George Will’s Pulitzer Prize and his recent Bradley Prize up against Gore’s Nobel any day.

You’ve probably read some of the attacks that have appeared in the blogosphere and in print directed against this conference, and against The Heartland Institute. Let me repeat for the record here tonight what appears prominently on our Web site:

No corporate dollars were used to help finance this conference.

The Heartland Institute has 2,700 donors, and gets about 16 percent of its income from corporations.

Heartland gets less than 5 percent of its income from all energy-producing companies combined. We are 95 percent carbon free.

And let me further add to the record:

The honoraria paid to all of the speakers appearing at this conference add up to less than the honorarium Al Gore gets paid for making a single speech, and less than what his company makes selling fake carbon “off-sets” in a week.

It is no crime for a think tank or advocacy group to accept corporate funding. In fact, corporations that fail to step forward and assure that sensible voices are heard in this debate are doing their shareholders, and their countries, a grave disservice.

We’re not doing this for the money, obviously. The Heartland Institute is in the “skeptics” camp because we know alarmism is a tool that has been used by opponents of individual freedom and free enterprise since as early as 1798, when Thomas Malthus predicted that food supply would fail to keep up with population growth.

We opposed global warming alarmism before we received any contributions from energy corporations and we’ll continue to address it after many of them have found ways to make a fast buck off the public hysteria.

We know which organizations are raking in millions of dollars a year in government and foundation grants to spread fear and false information about climate change. It’s not The Heartland Institute, and it’s not any of the 50-plus cosponsoring organizations that helped make this conference possible.

The alarmists in the global warming debate have had their say--over and over again, in every newspaper in the country practically every day and in countless news reports and documentary films. They have dominated the media’s coverage of this issue. They have swayed the views of many people. Some of them have even grown very rich in the process, and others still hope to.

But they have lost the debate.

Winners don’t exaggerate. Winners don’t lie. Winners don’t appeal to fear or resort to ad hominem attacks.

As George Will also wrote, “people only insist that a debate stop when they are afraid of what might be learned if it continues.”

We invited Al Gore to speak to us tonight, and even agreed to pay his $200,000 honorarium. He refused. We invited some of the well-known scientists associated with the alarmist camp, and they refused.

All we got are a few professional hecklers registered from Lyndon LaRouche, DeSmogBlog, and some other left-wing conspiracy groups. If you run into them over the course of the next two days, please be kind to them ... and call security if they aren’t kind to you.

Skeptics are the winners of EVERY scientific debate, always, everywhere. Because skepticism, as T.H. Huxley said, is the highest calling of a true scientist.

No scientific theory is true because a majority of scientists say it to be true. Scientific theories are only provisionally true until they are falsified by data that can be better explained by a different theory. And it is by falsifying current theories that scientific knowledge advances, not by consensus.

The claim that global warming is a “crisis” is itself a theory. It can be falsified by scientific fact, just as the claim that there is a “consensus” that global warming is man-made and will be a catastrophe has been dis-proven by the fact that this conference is taking place.

Which reminds me ... the true believers at RealClimate are now praising an article posted on by Joseph Romm--a guy who sells solar panels for a living, by the way--saying “‘consensus’? We never claimed there was a ‘consensus’!”

And notorious alarmist John Holdren a couple weeks ago said “‘global warming’? We never meant ‘global warming.’ We meant “‘global climate disruption’!”

I’d say this was a sign of victory, but that would suggest their words and opinions matter. It’s too late to move the goal posts, guys. You’ve already lost.

It is my hope, and the reason The Heartland Institute organized this conference, that public policies that impose enormous costs on millions of people, in the U.S. and also around the world, will not be passed into law before the fake “consensus” on global warming collapses.

Once passed, taxes and regulations are often hard to repeal. Once lost, freedoms are often very difficult to retrieve.

Cayo Dave said...

I'll admit I don't know the cause of global warming (though human factors seem quite plausible).
What I do know is that rising sea levels would be a real threat to the Florida Keys (and much of South Florida).
The fact that 70% of climate scientists (as cited in the previous comment) believe global warming is happening, is enough reason to be concerned about the real possiblility that the Florida Keys could one day become submerged.
Global warming may not be a crisis for most communities. But for residents on an island chain with an elevation of only a few feet, the threat is very real.

Anonymous said...

When the founder of the Weather Channel admits the whole climate change / global warming issue is bunk, who ya gonna believe? Some Key West resident living life like Henny Penny, afraid the sky is a-fallin or a seasoned scientist with enough experience to put his info where his mouth is? Come on Cayo Dave - wise up already! Or do really just have no idea of which you speak but like to see your words in print? Babble on oh ye of little intelligence!

Cayo Dave said...

Are you denying that global warming is happening? And are you denying that the Florida Keys couldn't return to its submerged state?
You can debate whether global warming is man-made or due to natural cycles, but you cannot deny that the earth is warming and that the Florida Keys have been, numerous times, submerged. (the landmass of the Keys is former coral reef).
Lastly, refrain from the childish name calling.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Cayo Dave you are wrong. The Florida Keys aren't going back into the ocean now or at any time in the future. The global warming issue is just to put money in the pockets of those who want to keep the fraud perpetuating to the ignorant masses. The Florida Keys would have sunk thousands of years ago if any of this were true. Quit being an alamist and start learning the truth from the proper sources, not those with an axe to grind and a mission to promote. Follow the money.

Rock said...

Hey Dave,

Long time, no email.

Here's a brilliant rant by Denninger who takes on bottom callers in Real Estate, the stock market, and who are marching off the cliff with rosy optimism:

p.s. As soon as Spring Break is over, I'll be blogging again.

Rock said...

First response to this blog from Cayo Dave made me laugh out loud:

Sorry Cayo Dave you are wrong. The Florida Keys aren't going back into the ocean now or at any time in the future. The global warming issue is just to put money in the pockets of those who want to keep the fraud perpetuating to the ignorant masses. The Florida Keys would have sunk thousands of years ago if any of this were true. Quit being an alamist and start learning the truth from the proper sources, not those with an axe to grind and a mission to promote. Follow the money.

Obviously someone is not aware that sea levels are rising more quickly today than anytime in the past 500 years as records have been kept that long in Venice . . . where by the way, new dikes are being introduced to keep the City Square from being flooded a dozen times a year now days by just high tides.

Oh yeah, you might also want to do your history on the Florida Keys geology. All of the Keys were once under water. The Keys are going back home to Neptune, no doubt.

Cayo Dave said...

Welcome back to the blogophere!!!
Your presence was missed...I was beginning to get worried.
I look forward to your posts!