10 Questions For Climate Change Deniers

Lord Monckton, leading climate change denier

Lord Monckton, leading climate change denier

Debating climate change deniers is generally about as useful as debating young-Earth creationists. They have no evidence on their side, but that doesn’t seem to worry them in the slightest. Given that these people managed to go through school without picking up even a modicum of scientific theory, it seems pointless trying to lecture them.

So instead, this is an invitation to climate change deniers to make their case right here. Here are 10 questions for deniers to answer in the comments section of this blog. Feel free to answer any or all of the questions below. The best answers (assuming there are any) will be published in a follow-up post, fully credited and fairly presented.

Please note that comments should not be added in crayon.

  1. Picture question: Look at the picture of Lord Monckton above. Would you buy a used car from this man?
  2. If there is a “scientific debate” why do only 24 out of 13,950 peer-reviewed papers (that’s 0.17%) dispute man-made climate change?
  3. If there is “science on both sides”, why do billionaires secretly have to throw hundreds of millions of dollars into denialist propaganda?
  4. Why are there no climate scientists as spokesmen for the denial side? (Name one to prove this assertion wrong).
  5. Why does leading “denialist” spokesman Lord Monckton have to tell lies if the facts are on his side?
  6. Why do you not believe climate scientists about present warming, but believe them when they say the climate changed in the past?
  7. Who knows most about the climate? a) Climate scientists, b) Economists, c) Oil companies, d) Michele Bachmann?
  8. The greenhouse effect, caused by carbon dioxide, is explained by basic Physics and can be easily demonstrated in the lab. Do you still deny this even after watching the short, simple video? a) No, I admit defeat b) What’s a lab?
  9. Carbon dioxide has increased by 40% since the start of the Industrial Revolution. Is this a) A lot, b) Not a lot?
  10. Look at yourself in a mirror. Does that look like a person who can grasp scientific concepts? a) Yes, b) No, c) I can’t read – I’ve no idea how I got this far through the post.

33 thoughts on “10 Questions For Climate Change Deniers

  1. Listen, climate change ain’t in the constitution. Not in the constitution, not happening. Get it? The constitution of the USA defines reality, but GOD defines the constitution. Do you think GOD would allow his earthly creations to effect his grand plan by the same gas emitted when we all breathe? No. Besides, They’re CARS idiot..I can’t even get the heater to work INSIDE during winter for like 10 minutes, so how can it heat the world? Not very smart logicity bud. If I’m wrong, I will drink a cup of z grade coffee brewed through the gusset of Michelle Bachmann’s hosiery.

    Sorry …I tried to duplicate a right wing argument but even the above requires too much thought to be applicable.

  2. I’m not sure it’s particularly useful to bring Monkton’s looks into this. He is clearly suffering from either hyperthyroidism or thyroid eye disease. There is so much valuable data to counter his nonesense I think we should refrain from ad-homenim

    • Consider that his medical condition may also be responsible for his mental condition. He is a strange duck in many realms. I think it’s mostly delusions of grandeur, with all that fake Lord stuff. He wants to seem important so he’s grabbed climate change as a contrarian topic that he can yell about, regardless of true substance.

      • Given that his medical condition has got absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with his thought processes it is, as I said, irrelevant and distracting.

        I agree with you about his attention-whoring however and he certainly provides much to be critical about.

  3. Re#4: Fred Singer is an “atmospheric physicist.” I think that counts as a climate scientist. He’s also a contrarian twat and a dingus who denies lots of things besides anthropogenic climate change (such as the health risks of second-hand smoke). The good news is he is approaching 90 years old, so his expertise — such as it is– is less and less sought out by reputable news outlets, since they have to edit out his non sequitir exclamations like “Damn kids, get off of my lawn.”

    • So are
      Tim Ball, Gordon Fulks, George Taylor, John Christy, David Deming, Ivar Giaever, The Idsos, David Legates, Bob Carter, Willie Soon, Ole Humlum, Chris de Freitas, Judith Curry, Freeman Dyson, Steve Koonin, Denis Rancourt, William Happer, Bill Kininmonth, Don Easterbrook, Garth Paltridge, Ian Plimer, Murry Salby, Nir Shaviv, Fred Singer, Nils-Axel Morner, Richard Lindzen and another 31,000 or so.

  4. Pingback: Ten Questions For Climate Change Deniers | MoronWatch | kakoluri.com

  5. I think question #6 sums up denier cherry-picking tactics more than anything. They don’t challenge the method of science UNTIL their own agenda is challenged, then suddenly scientists are either clueless or part of a conspiracy extending way back to whenever they see fit.

    CO2 was known to be a heat-trapping gas in the 1800s (per Fourier, Tyndall & Arrhenius). Were those guys colluding with James Hansen via unknown time machines? Either you accept that science mostly gets it right or you don’t. You can’t frame them as bumblers who simultaneously manage to pull of elaborate secret conspiracies in plain sight. It makes no sense.

    AGW denial is blatantly political and nobody but the deniers is being fooled into thinking otherwise. Remember when they were telling us that a CFC phase-out would ruin the economy? Same mindset, different decade, equally wrong.

  6. I notice nobody is actually answering the poster’s 10 questions, just changing the subject.

    Sleazy GOP debate tactics generally involve: A) changing the subject, B) omitting critical context, C) cherry-picking minutia, D) baldfaced lies, or all of the above.

  7. Pingback: Just For The Climate Change Pom Pom Cheerleaders - Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, Conservatives, Liberals, Third Parties, Left-Wing, Right-Wing, Congress, President - Page 14 - City-Data Forum

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  9. Your 10 questions are a little too simplistic as the AGW debate has evolved into something more nuanced. The Deniers have become “Lukewarmers” meaning they concede GW or AGW, but they argue the warming will be at a slow pace; that it is far too costly for society to get off of fossil fuels; that, hey, warming is good; that, hey, people – always clever – will adapt, move North move inland etc.. So the Deniers concede some points. BTW scientist anti-AGW Fred Singer does give lectures, one is at YouTube recorded at Google Europe.

    • Re Heubel’s comment is disingenuous. I have known many “lukewarmers” since 2007 and I have evidence to show for it. Does that make their argument any stronger? Or are lukewarmers to be classified as “deniers” anyway?

      Until we agree on what we are talking about, the questions will remain the only moronic thing around.

  10. 1. Picture question: Look at the picture of Lord Monckton above. Would you buy a used car from this man?
    Follow the evidence wherever it leads: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UliVkgc5s4

    2. If there is a “scientific debate” why do only 24 out of 13,950 peer-reviewed papers (that’s 0.17%) dispute man-made climate change?
    Garbage in, gospel out.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/09/23/its-time-to-stop-the-climate-scare-stories/

    Besides, globally there has been little or no warming for almost two decades. The models did not predict that. The UN’s climate panel, on our advice, has recently all but halved its central estimate of near-term warming.

    In 1906 the forecasts depended on 28 unknowns. By 2007 scientists from the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology were using 73. So insisting that just one variable – CO2 concentration – will drive future monsoons is unscientific.
    Professor Nandakumar Sarma, vice-chancellor of Manipur University, recently confirmed that “even supercomputers cannot predict what will happen due to climate change within 10-20 years, since there are millions of variable parameters.”
    My most effective weapon when talking to closed-minded CAGW acolytes is to tell them that trees are growing 30% faster now than they were 50 years ago.
    Admittedly, this is a generalization and may be at the lower end of actual growing trends, but it’s something they can understand. And I tell them increased CO2 is the reason.
    That’s a lot of additional wood for building homes and other structures.
    Most people think plants only need water, sun, and soil, but they also need air–it’s CO2–the gas fertilizer–from which they derive the vast majority of their carbon.
    Almost every person to whom I tell this tree-growth statistic stops and thinks. And they almost always say they’ve never heard that before, which isn’t surprising since the benefits of CO2 are never mentioned.

    3. If there is “science on both sides”, why do billionaires secretly have to throwhundreds of millions of dollars into denialist propaganda?
    The primary cause of climate change is mother nature not humans. Even if humans eliminated all co2 emissions there would not be an identifiable impact. Nature emits over 99.7% of green house emissions and earths natural emissions fluctuate more than man emits. Humans have far less impact than the scare tactics are leading people to believe. It is not morally right for politicians to use people’s compassion against them. I don’t stand behind the hoax, it is a travesty for all.

    The objective is the money and new international committees. There is over $750 billion a year that can be taxed out of America’s economy. America has cut emissions over 56% since 1990 and the clean air act. America has the cleanest manufacturing in the world. Al Gore said we must also pay for China’s inaction. if it really was an environmental crisis the logical solution is to tax China’s goods with tariffs and dismantle NAFTA. That is the logical solution. Instead their solution of taxing America and doing nothing about China makes the situation worse. Furthermore temperature hasn’t gone up in 18 years, yet the alarm bells ringing louder as the temperature rise rate goes down to a near stall that has been coined as the global warming hiatus. Al Gore is heavily invested in green credit companies and stands to profit billions alone. Now tell me how a billion in Al Gore’s pocket helps the “so called” environmental crisis.

    4. Why are there no climate scientists as spokesmen for the denial side? (Name one to prove this assertion wrong).
    http://www.cfact.org/2014/10/31/watch-apollo-astronaut-walt-cunningham-blast-global-warming/?utm_source=CFACT+Updates&utm_campaign=d4936fdf60-Walt_Cunningham_blasts_global_warming10_31_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_a28eaedb56-d4936fdf60-270063337
    In some fields the science is indeed “settled.” For example, plate tectonics, once highly controversial, is now so well-established that we rarely see papers on the subject at all. But the science of global climate change is still in its infancy, with many thousands of papers published every year. In a 2003 poll conducted by German environmental researchers Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch, two-thirds of more than 530 climate scientists from 27 countries surveyed did not believe that “the current state of scientific knowledge is developed well enough to allow for a reasonable assessment of the effects of greenhouse gases.” About half of those polled stated that the science of climate change was not sufficiently settled to pass the issue over to policymakers at all.
    Solar scientists predict that, by 2020, the sun will be starting into its weakest Schwabe solar cycle of the past two centuries, likely leading to unusually cool conditions on Earth. Beginning to plan for adaptation to such a cool period, one which may continue well beyond one 11-year cycle, as did the Little Ice Age, should be a priority for governments. It is global cooling, not warming, that is the major climate threat to the world, especially Canada. As a country at the northern limit to agriculture in the world, it would take very little cooling to destroy much of our food crops, while a warming would only require that we adopt farming techniques practiced to the south of us.
    Meantime, we need to continue research into this, the most complex field of science ever tackled, and immediately halt wasted expenditures on the King Canute-like task of “stopping climate change.”

    R. Timothy Patterson is professor and director of the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre, Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University.

    http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=597d0677-2a05-47b4-b34f-b84068db11f4&p=1
    I am not a climate scientist. But my common sense tells me making a computer model that will predict average temperatures for the entire earth is a monumental task. So many factors . . . Historic geological swings, solar fluctuations, ocean currents, volcanic activity, plus man’s contributions to name just a few. I am not surprised that the models are not accurate predictors. I am surprised that scientists keep using these same failed models to try to persuade me to DRASTICALLY change world behavior regarding our energy resources.
    When these models start making accurate predictions, say for ten years running, come back and talk to me again.

    5. Why does leading “denialist” spokesman Lord Monckton have to tell lies if the facts are on his side?
    Climate computer modeling has failed climate science.

    Share the facts at CFACT’s Climate Depot: http://www.climatedepot.com/

    ‘A rising chorus of literature in the world’s best scientific journals and most prestigious opinion pages has argued the climate change math is flawed. Like a freight train that has left the station, questions about an 18-year “hiatus” in global average surface temperatures and the location of “missing” heat from the climate system are building a head of steam.

    For climate scientists, irritating questions from “sceptics” about the “pause” have now become peer-reviewed papers that suggest the Earth’s climate may be much less sensitive to higher levels of carbon dioxide than predicted.’

    ‘Graham Lloyd’s article reveals an inconvenient truth. Earth’s temperature remains constant while carbon dioxide levels are rising. By reiterating this fact, I would automatically be branded as a denier.

    However, logic requires that science be consistent and that science demonstrates repeatable proofs. One notes a common practice of climate scientists to justify arguments by quoting ranges of data to support their arguments.

    For example, the temperature range over the past 70 years as quoted by the IPCC is from 1C to 2.5C and that there is “a substantial discrepancy between recent observation-based estimates of climate sensitivity and estimates from climate models”.

    The quoted range varies from a statistical variation to a dangerous level. It is this sort of inconsistency that brands climate science as unproven and illustrates a tendency on the part of some advocates to manipulate the data to support their own previously held opinions.’

    ‘Whatever the cause of this pause, existing computer models do not explain it. How can we then still use them to reliably predict the future temperature?’

    6. Why do you not believe climate scientists about present warming, but believe them when they say the climate changed in the past?
    The primary cause of climate change is mother nature not humans. Even if humans eliminated all co2 emissions there would not be an identifiable impact. Nature emits over 99.7% of green house emissions and earths natural emissions fluctuate more than man emits. Humans have far less impact than the scare tactics are leading people to believe. It is not morally right for politicians to use people’s compassion against them. I don’t stand behind the hoax, it is a travesty for all.

    “The global temperature standstill shows that climate models are diverging from observations,” says David Whitehouse of the Global Warming Policy Foundation.
    “If we have not passed it already, we are on the threshold of global observations becoming incompatible with the consensus theory of climate change,” he says.

    http://m.theaustralian.com.au/news/features/twenty-year-hiatus-in-rising-temperatures-has-climate-scientists-puzzled/story-e6frg6z6-1226609140980

    7. Who knows most about the climate? a) Climate scientists, b) Economists, c) Oil companies, d) Michele Bachmann?
    It’s essential that scientists continue their research into the area of climate change, global warming, and anything else that could drastically affect our way of life in the next century. The problem isn’t the science or the data, but rather the frantic stretches from many in the field that attempt to link global warming with this political policy or that bit of corporate irresponsibility. This is where we leave the cozy confines of science and enter the cutthroat world of politics. Unfortunately, far too many mainstream news stories fail to make a distinction between the two. – See more at:http://www.fixthisnation.com/conservative-breaking-news/scientist-makes-excuses-for-15-year-global-warming-hiatus/#sthash.uHu5eZFT.dpuf

    8. The greenhouse effect, caused by carbon dioxide, is explained by basic Physics and can be easily demonstrated in the lab. Do you still deny this even after watching the short, simple video? a) No, I admit defeat b) What’s a lab?
    When discussing climate change it is easy to read newspaper reports and ignore the paper. Alarmist ecotards should try sticking to the facts and to the science and ditch the emotional, hysterical, alarmist arguments, lose the doom and gloom, ditch the anger and be happy that the hiatus is real and we can forget the 5 degree predictions they keep trotting out!

    The fact is that because the science has abandon the alarmists cause it is now extremely easy to use their own reports against them. Take the latest IPCC synthesis report, feel free to quote what the IPCC actually said.

    * Warming over the past 15 years (1998–2012; 0.05 [–0.05 to 0.15] °C per decade)

    * Confidence in precipitation change averaged over global land areas since 1901 is low prior to 1951 Northern Hemisphere, precipitation has likely increased since 1901for other latitudes area-averaged long-term positive or negative trends have low confidence

    * There is low confidence that anthropogenic climate change has affected the frequency and magnitude of fluvial floods on a global scale.

    * There is low confidence in observed global-scale trends in droughts, due to lack of direct observations, dependencies of inferred trends on the choice of the definition for drought, and due to geographical inconsistencies in drought trends.

    * There is low confidence that long-term changes in tropical cyclone activity are robust and there is low confidence in the attribution of global changes to any particular cause.

    * Global warming isn’t global – For Antarctica, large observational uncertainties result in low confidence that anthropogenic forcings have contributed to the observed warming averaged over available stations.

    * our models are wrong. For the period from 1998 to 2012, 111 of the 114 available climate – model simulations show a surface warming trend larger than the observations this difference between models and observations is to model inadequacies and, in some models, from an overestimate of the response to increasing greenhouse gas and other anthropogenic forcing.

    * No matter what we do global climate change will continue! Many aspects of climate change and its impacts will continue for centuries, even if anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases are stopped. Warming will continue beyond 2100 under all likely RCP scenarios.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1384643735160823&set=gm.360840777417421&type=1&theater5

    In some fields the science is indeed “settled.” For example, plate tectonics, once highly controversial, is now so well-established that we rarely see papers on the subject at all. But the science of global climate change is still in its infancy, with many thousands of papers published every year. In a 2003 poll conducted by German environmental researchers Dennis Bray and Hans von Storch, two-thirds of more than 530 climate scientists from 27 countries surveyed did not believe that “the current state of scientific knowledge is developed well enough to allow for a reasonable assessment of the effects of greenhouse gases.” About half of those polled stated that the science of climate change was not sufficiently settled to pass the issue over to policymakers at all.
    Solar scientists predict that, by 2020, the sun will be starting into its weakest Schwabe solar cycle of the past two centuries, likely leading to unusually cool conditions on Earth. Beginning to plan for adaptation to such a cool period, one which may continue well beyond one 11-year cycle, as did the Little Ice Age, should be a priority for governments. It is global cooling, not warming, that is the major climate threat to the world, especially Canada. As a country at the northern limit to agriculture in the world, it would take very little cooling to destroy much of our food crops, while a warming would only require that we adopt farming techniques practiced to the south of us.
    Meantime, we need to continue research into this, the most complex field of science ever tackled, and immediately halt wasted expenditures on the King Canute-like task of “stopping climate change.”

    R. Timothy Patterson is professor and director of the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre, Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University.

    http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=597d0677-2a05-47b4-b34f-b84068db11f4&p=1

    9. Carbon dioxide has increased by 40% since the start of the Industrial Revolution. Is this a) A lot, b) Not a lot?
    In 1906 the forecasts depended on 28 unknowns. By 2007 scientists from the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology were using 73. So insisting that just one variable – CO2 concentration – will drive future monsoons is unscientific.
    Professor Nandakumar Sarma, vice-chancellor of Manipur University, recently confirmed that “even supercomputers cannot predict what will happen due to climate change within 10-20 years, since there are millions of variable parameters.”
    Howard, as you say “the ignorance and uncertainties [over details of global warming] make both sides’ arguments largely vacuous”. I agree the exact (or even approximate) direction, causes and consequences of climate change are uncertain, despite massive spending on NASA GISS, the UK CRU, IPCC, and other government-funded climate research.

    Does it not bother you that the same set of US data was analyzed by GISS seven times, and each time they concluded their own previous efforts were wrong, and not by a little bit, but by half a degree C out of the century of warming they estimate may be three-quarters of a degree? Does it not appear the analysts were being pushed to make the more recent year appear warmer and the older year cooler, to validate theirvacuous theory of runaway warming? This cannot comport with your view of the ethics of the scientific method.

    Given the above ignorance, why are we even considering massive public spending and expensive government mandates that will wreck our economies to curb the use of fossil fuels? (Cap & Trade, etc.)

    As for your other points, I agree that population growth is alarming and will slow down only when the poorest have higher living standards, and that traditional energy resources are dwindling (oil and gas, but, at least in the US, not coal).

    However, I do not think even liberal democratic western governments, much less the emerging BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) and especially not the third world, will (or even can) do anything to even out the resources and living standards, even if I thought they should. You taught me much of what I know about evolution and natural selection. How did you miss the “survival of the fittest” lesson I absorbed?

    Ira Glickstein

    10. Look at yourself in a mirror. Does that look like a person who can grasp scientific concepts? a) Yes, b) No, c) I can’t read – I’ve no idea how I got this far through the post.

    I am not a climate scientist. But my common sense tells me making a computer model that will predict average temperatures for the entire earth is a monumental task. So many factors . . . Historic geological swings, solar fluctuations, ocean currents, volcanic activity, plus man’s contributions to name just a few. I am not surprised that the models are not accurate predictors. I am surprised that scientists keep using these same failed models to try to persuade me to DRASTICALLY change world behavior regarding our energy resources.
    When these models start making accurate predictions, say for ten years running, come back and talk to me again.

    What Leads, What Follows?
    What is normal? Maybe continuous change is the only thing that qualifies. There’s been warming over the past 150 years and even though it’s less than one degree, Celsius, something had to cause it. The usual suspect is the “greenhouse effect,” various atmospheric gases trapping solar energy, preventing it being reflected back into space.
    We ask Bryson what could be making the key difference:
    Q: Could you rank the things that have the most significant impact and where would you put carbon dioxide on the list?
    A: Well let me give you one fact first. In the first 30 feet of the atmosphere, on the average, outward radiation from the Earth, which is what CO2 is supposed to affect, how much [of the reflected energy] is absorbed by water vapor? In the first 30 feet, 80 percent, okay?
    Q: Eighty percent of the heat radiated back from the surface is absorbed in the first 30 feet by water vapor…
    A: And how much is absorbed by carbon dioxide? Eight hundredths of one percent. One one-thousandth as important as water vapor. You can go outside and spit and have the same effect as doubling carbon dioxide.
    This begs questions about the widely publicized mathematical models researchers run through supercomputers to generate climate scenarios 50 or 100 years in the future. Bryson says the data fed into the computers overemphasizes carbon dioxide and accounts poorly for the effects of clouds—water vapor. Asked to evaluate the models’ long-range predictive ability, he answers with another question: “Do you believe a five-day forecast?”
    Bryson says he looks in the opposite direction, at past climate conditions, for clues to future climate behavior. Trying that approach in the weeks following our interview, Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News soon found six separate papers about Antarctic ice core studies, published in peer-reviewed scientific journals between 1999 and 2006. The ice core data allowed researchers to examine multiple climate changes reaching back over the past 650,000 years. All six studies found atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations tracking closely with temperatures, but with CO2 lagging behind changes in temperature, rather than leading them. The time lag between temperatures moving up—or down—and carbon dioxide following ranged from a few hundred to a few thousand years.

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