Monday, February 05, 2007

Fraser Institute Has No Credibility

I'm sure nobody is surprised that the Fraser Institute released their much published "independent" study today, and found the whole debate about global warming to be alarmist:
An independent review of the latest United Nations report on climate change shows that the scientific evidence about global warming remains uncertain and provides no basis for alarmism.

According to The Fraser Institute’s independent summary of the IPCC report:

• Data collected by weather satellites since 1979 continue to exhibit little evidence of atmospheric warming, with estimated trends ranging from nearly zero to the low end of past IPCC forecasts. There is no significant warming in the tropical troposphere (the lowest portion of the Earth’s atmosphere), which accounts for half the world’s atmosphere, despite model predictions that warming should be amplified there.

• Temperature data collected at the surface exhibits an upward trend from 1900 to 1940, and again from 1979 to the present. Trends in the Southern Hemisphere are small compared to those in the Northern Hemisphere.

There is no compelling evidence that dangerous or unprecedented changes are underway. Perceptions of increased extreme weather events are potentially due to increased reporting. There is too little data to reliably confirm these perceptions.

• There is no globally-consistent pattern in long-term precipitation trends, snow-covered area, or snow depth. Arctic sea ice thickness showed an abrupt loss prior to the 1990s, and the loss stopped shortly thereafter. There is insufficient data to conclude that there are any trends in Antarctic sea ice thickness.

• Current data suggest a global mean sea level rise of between two and three millimeters per year. Models project an increase of roughly 20 centimeters over the next 100 years, if accompanied by a warming of 2.0 to 4.5 degrees Celsius.

Natural climatic variability is now believed to be substantially larger than previously estimated, as is the uncertainty associated with historical temperature reconstructions.

Attributing an observed climate change to a specific cause like greenhouse gas emissions is not formally possible, and therefore relies on computer model simulations. These attribution studies do not take into account the basic uncertainty about climate models, or all potentially important influences like aerosols, solar activity, and land use changes.

• Computer models project a range of future forecasts, which are inherently uncertain for the coming century, especially at the regional level. It is not possible to say which, if any, of today’s climate models are reliable for climate prediction and forecasting.

People who are bewildered by the intense global warming alarmism of the past few years should read the Independent Summary for Policymakers to get a more accurate and balanced understanding of the real state of knowledge on this important subject.”

You could spend forever picking apart most of this nonsense, but why waste the energy. All this report does is confirm that the Fraser Institute is a right-wing propaganda machine, beholden to big oil, that is irrelevant to the discussion. The only problem, this study will be used by "deniers", the media will report it and it will generally distract from the real challenges. The only relevant part of this report, it gives us some insight into how Harper approaches the problem, despite the public opinion rhetoric. This report fits in quite nicely with the foot-dragging we have witnessed the past months.


Anonymous said...

In the end, if we happen to find out that scientists were "over-alarmed" so what - wouldn't it be nice to "clean-up" and move forward on a cleaner world.

To even listen to Limbaugh is scary.

wayward son said...

"Data collected by weather satellites since 1979 continue to exhibit little evidence of atmospheric warming, with estimated trends ranging from nearly zero to the low end of past IPCC forecasts."

That is as far as I made it. The satellite data which was not showing warming was from Christy and Spencer and has been corrected in 2005 to show warming in line with ground level findings. There had been several mathematical errors, which have been found and corrected. Spencer and Christy accept that. The scientific community recognizes that. If the Frazer can't get that basic fact right then they are definately trying to be deceitful.

Jeff said...

i looked at the credentials of some of their experts.

Steve V said...

That's an impressive bunch!

Monkey Loves to Fight said...

On the environment I would never trust the Fraser Institute. I don't despise like you do since they were way ahead of their time on issues such as balanced budgets, so I do support their economic views, but I feel they fail to combine them with strong social policies.

Ironically Brian Tobin is now working for them so it will be interesting to see what he says in his publications and how he gets along with the rest of the conservative ones.