New junk science movie: “Not evil, just wrong”


I warned you about it earlierCrank science sites across the internet feature news of another cheap hit on Rachel Carson and science in movie form.

“Not Evil, Just Wrong” is slated for release on October 18. This is the film that tried to intrude on the Rachel Carson film earlier this year, but managed to to get booked only at an elementary school in Seattle, Washington — Rachel Carson Elementary, a green school where the kids showed more sense than the film makers by voting to name the school after the famous scientist-author.

The film is both evil and wrong.

Errors just in the trailer:

  1. Claims that Al Gore said sea levels will rise catastrophically, “in the very near future.”  Not in his movie, not in his writings or speeches.  Not true.  That’s a simple misstatement of what Gore said, and Gore had the science right.
  2. ” . . . [I]t wouldn’t be a bad thing for this Earth to warm up.  In fact, ice is the enemy of life.”  “Bad” in this case is a value judgment — global warming isn’t bad if you’re a weed, a zebra mussel, one of the malaria parasites, a pine bark beetle, any other tropical disease, or a sadist.  But significant warming as climatologists, physicists and others project, would be disastrous to agriculture, major cities in many parts of the world, sea coasts, and most people who don’t live in the Taklamakan or Sahara, and much of the life in the ocean.  Annual weather cycles within long-established ranges, is required for life much as we know it.  “No ice” is also an enemy of life.
  3. “They want to raise our taxes.”  No, that’s pure, uncomposted bovine excrement.
  4. “They want to close our factories.”  That’s more effluent from the anus of male bovines.
  5. The trailer notes the usual claim made by Gore opponents that industry cannot exist if it is clean, that industry requires that we poison the planet.  Were that true, we’d have a need to halt industry now, lest we become like the yeast in the beer vat, or the champagne bottle, manufacturing alcohol until the alcohol kills the yeast.  Our experience with Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, the Clean Air Acts and the Clean Water Act is that cleaning the environment produces economic growth, not the other way around.  A city choked in pollution dies.  Los Angeles didn’t suffer when the air got cleaner.  Pittsburgh’s clean air became a way to attract new industries to the city, before the steel industry there collapsed.  Cleaning Lake Erie didn’t hurt industry.  The claim made by the film is fatuous, alarmist, and morally corrupt.

    When the human health, human welfare, and environmental effects which could be expressed in dollar terms were added up for the entire 20-year period, the total benefits of Clean Air Act programs were estimated to range from about $6 trillion to about $50 trillion, with a mean estimate of about $22 trillion. These estimated benefits represent the estimated value Americans place on avoiding the dire air quality conditions and dramatic increases in illness and premature death which would have prevailed without the 1970 and 1977 Clean Air Act and its associated state and local programs. By comparison, the actual costs of achieving the pollution reductions observed over the 20 year period were $523 billion, a small fraction of the estimated monetary benefits.

  6. “Some of the environmental activists have not come to accept that the human is also part of the environment.”  Fatuous claim.  Environmentalists note that humans uniquely possess the ability to change climate on a global scale, intentionally, for the good or bad; environmentalists choose to advocate for actions that reduce diseases like malaria, cholera and asthma.  We don’t have to sacrifice a million people a year to malaria, in order to be industrial and productive.  We don’t have to kill 700,000 kids with malaria every year just to keep cars.
  7. “They want to go back to the Dark Ages and the Black Plague.”  No, that would be the film makers.  Environmentalists advocate reducing filth and ignorance both.  Ignorance and lack of ability to read, coupled with religious fanaticism, caused the strife known as “the Dark Ages.”  It’s not environmentalists who advocate an end to cheap public schools.
  8. The trailer shows a kid playing in the surf on a beach.  Of course, without the Clean Water Act and other attempts to keep the oceans clean, such play would be impossible.  That we can play again on American beaches is a tribute to the environmental movement, and reason enough to grant credence to claims of smart people like Al Gore and the scientists whose work he promotes.
  9. “I cannot believe that Al Gore has great regard for people, real people.”  So, this is a film promoting the views of crabby, misanthropic anal orifices who don’t know Al Gore at all?  Shame on them.  And, why should anyone want to see such a film?  If I want to see senseless acts of stupidity, I can rent a film by Quentin Tarantino and get some art with the stupidity.  [Update, November 23, 2009: This may be one of the most egregiously false charges of the film.  Gore, you recall, is the guy who put his political career and presidential ambitions on hold indefinitely when his son was seriously injured in an auto-pedestrian accident; Gore was willing to sacrifice all his political capital in order to get his son healed.  My first dealings directly with Gore came on the Organ Transplant bill.  Gore didn’t need a transplant, didn’t have need for one in his family, and had absolutely nothing to gain from advocacy for the life-saving procedure.  It was opposed by the chairman of his committee, by a majority of members of his own party in both Houses of Congress, by many in the medical establishment, by many in the pharmaceutical industry, and by President Reagan, who didn’t drop his threat to veto the bill until he signed it, as I recall.   Gore is a man of deep, human-centered principles.  Saying “I can’t believe Al Gore has great regard for real people” only demonstrates the vast ignorance and perhaps crippling animus of the speaker.]

That’s a whopper about every 15 seconds in the trailer — the film itself may make heads spin if it comes close to that pace of error.

Where have we seen this before?  Producers of the film claim as “contributors” some of the people they try to lampoon — people like Ed Begley, Jr., and NASA’s James E. Hansen, people who don’t agree in any way with the hysterical claims of the film, and people who, I wager, would be surprised to be listed as “contributors.”

It’s easy to suppose these producers used the same ambush-the-scientist technique used earlier by the producers of the anti-science, anti-Darwin film “Expelled!

Here, see the hysteria, error and alarmism for yourself:

Ann McElhinney is one of the film’s producers.  Her past work includes other films against protecting environment and films for mining companies.  She appears to be affiliated with junk science purveyors at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, an astro-turf organization in Washington, D.C., for whom she flacked earlier this year (video from Desmogblog):

Remember, too, that this film is already known to have gross inaccuracies about Rachel Carson and DDT, stuff that high school kids could get right easily.

Anyone have details on McElhinney and her colleague, Phelim McAlee?

More:

Related posts, at Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub:

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522 Responses to New junk science movie: “Not evil, just wrong”

  1. Ed Darrell says:

    I asked earlier:

    Ed said: “All UN documents are open; most of the stuff since 1970 is on the web. What document are you referring to?”

    No document. I’d thought Hexmate probably imagined it. Certainly we don’t have enough information to corroborate his claim, here:

    According to newly revealed documents authored two years ago, the United Nations believes environmentalism should be regarded on the same level with religion “as the only compelling, value-based narrative available to humanity.”

    I’m in Missouri on this one. Show me.

    Like

  2. […] Curse of “Not Evil, Just Wrong” — still evil and wrong At the first post on this material, the thread got a little long — not loading well in some browsers, I […]

    Like

  3. Ed Darrell says:

    Comments in this thread are closed. There is a new thread with the old post, here, where you may freely comment.

    500 comments is too long to load well on many computers. Please join the conversation, if you can find conversation, at the new post. If you don’t find good conversation, please start it.

    Like

  4. Hexmate says:

    You know Ed when I was in Vietnam sometimes the situation would get so hairy when we we’d be flying into a hot LZ (Landing Zone)the seat cushion on the Huey would get sucked up your behind – we called that the pucker factor Ed. The more hairy the situation the further that seat cushion would get sucked up. Sounds like the same thing that is happening to you Ed only in your case it is your cranium.

    Like

  5. Hexmate says:

    Where’d you go Ed? Are you busy at the UN website or are you bent over pulling on your ears? Tug real hard Ed sometimes it helps if you pucker up and push too!

    Like

  6. Hexmate says:

    Don’t look now Ed but your pants are down around your ankles again! What are you some kind of exhibitionist or something? Why is there a neck sticking out of your rectum?

    Like

  7. Hexmate says:

    Hey Ed even your boy Al Gore said: “This is not a political issue, or a scientific issue or a psychological issue – it’s a moral issue. If anything it’s actually a spiritual issue.” There you have it. If you don’t agree with the unscientific ‘consensus’ than you’re a really stupid, bad and immoral person. The left has spoken and the media agrees. Case closed.

    Like

  8. Hexmate says:

    Another nail in the GW coffin:
    On Thursday, more evidence of climate chicanery came to light – but was again ignored by the media. Gerd Leipold, the outgoing leader of Greenpeace, admitted that his organization’s recent claim that the Arctic Ice will disappear by 2030 was “a mistake.” Oops.

    Like

  9. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “All UN documents are open; most of the stuff since 1970 is on the web. What document are you referring to?”

    Ed your credibility is in the toilet so please don’t forget to flush – we’d all appreciate it because when you leave it in there it stinks up the whole place.

    Like

  10. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “All of the multitude of other causes have been considered. You missed the meeting. There was no correlation.”

    Ed you must have stepped off of the world a long time ago and missed the fact that this hoax you are trying to perpetrate on everyone ain’t working for you, but you keep on trying Ed because you have dedicated your life to being a fraud. You wouldn’t want to disappoint yourself by stopping now since you have made a commitment to tell everyone the sky is falling. Ah Ed, you have some feathers sticking out of your butt. Makes it look like you have a head dress on.

    Like

  11. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Actually, that’s relatively easy: No volcanic eruption correlates, hence no correlation; no evidence of solar radiation correlating to the heat fluctuations, no case; wobbling of the orbit is already taken into account, and the warming is significantly higher than wobbling can account for.”

    Where is your data Ed? You don’t have any do you? You are a liar Ed! Clear and simple.

    Like

  12. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “I gotta wonder: Do you at least blush when you tell whoppers like that? Where did the UN say that? Resolution of the General Assembly? Security Council Resolution? An obscure press release? You found it on a napkin near the UN building?”

    Ed it is becoming quite obvious that you are more of a simpleton than I first suspected. Eddie you can’t make this stuff up! The ambitious paper, entitled “The UNEP That We Want,” is the product of a select group of 20 top environmental bureaucrats and thinkers, including UNEP’s current No. 2 official, Angela Cropper. The document was later delivered to UNEP.

    Like

  13. Ed Darrell says:

    Hexmate said:

    According to newly revealed documents authored two years ago, the United Nations believes environmentalism should be regarded on the same level with religion “as the only compelling, value-based narrative available to humanity.”

    I gotta wonder: Do you at least blush when you tell whoppers like that? Where did the UN say that? Resolution of the General Assembly? Security Council Resolution? An obscure press release? You found it on a napkin near the UN building?

    All UN documents are open; most of the stuff since 1970 is on the web. What document are you referring to?

    Like

  14. Ed Darrell says:

    No mention was made as to how anyone can prove these effects are caused by man and not some other means, such as volcanic activity, solar radiation, a slight wobbling of the earth’s orbit, or any of a multitude of other possible causes.

    Actually, that’s relatively easy: No volcanic eruption correlates, hence no correlation; no evidence of solar radiation correlating to the heat fluctuations, no case; wobbling of the orbit is already taken into account, and the warming is significantly higher than wobbling can account for.

    All of the multitude of other causes have been considered. You missed the meeting. There was no correlation.

    Like

  15. M@ says:

    Media Hype on ‘Melting’ Antarctic Ignores Record Ice Growth

    The media is once again hyping an allegedly dire consequence of man-made global warming. This time the media is promoting the ice loss of one tiny fraction of the giant ice-covered continent and completely ignoring the current record ice growth on Antarctica. Contrary to media hype, the vast majority of Antarctica has cooled over the past 50 years and ice coverage has grown to record levels since satellite monitoring began in the 1979, according to peer-reviewed studies and scientists who study the area. (LINK)

    Former Weather Channel Meteorologist Joe D’Aleo rejected the hype surrounding the recent Wilkins Ice Shelf collapse in Western Antarctica. “The shattered part of the Wilkins ice sheet was 160 square miles in area, which is just 0.01% of the total current Antarctic ice cover, like an icicle falling from a snow and ice covered roof,” D’Aleo wrote on March 25. (LINK) “We are very likely going to exceed last year’s record [for Southern Hemisphere ice extent]. Yet the world is left with the false impression Antarctica’s ice sheet is also starting to disappear,” D’Aleo added.

    Climate scientist Dr. Ben Herman, past director of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics and former Head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona, stated, “It is interesting that all of the AGW (anthropogenic global warming) stories concerning Antarctica are always about what’s happening around the [western] peninsula, which seems to be the only place on Antarctica that has shown warming. How about the net ‘no change’ or ‘cooling’ over the rest of the continent, which is probably about 95% of the land mass, not to mention the record sea ice coverage recently.”

    Former Colorado State Climatologist Dr. Roger Pielke, Sr., presently senior scientist at the University of Colorado in Boulder, chastised the media’s Antarctic reporting as “typical of the bias that many journalists have.” Pielke wrote on March 25, “The media has ignored in their reporting the increase in Antarctic sea ice cover in recent years, with, at present, a coverage that is well one million square kilometers above average.” Pielke added, “Unfortunately, it appears that most journalists just parrot the perspective of the first news release on these climate issues, without doing any further investigation. If this is inadvertent, they need to be educated in climate science. If deliberate bias, they are clearly advocates and the reporters should be clearly and publically identified as having such a bias. In either case, the public is being misinformed!” (LINK)

    But the news media sadly tossed out objectivity and balance when it came to this new Antarctic story. Media headlines blared: Bye-bye, Antarctica? (Salon Magazine 3-26-08); Massive ice shelf collapsing off Antarctica (C/Net News 3- 26-08); Slab of Antarctic ice shelf collapses amid warming (Reuters 3-26-08); Ice shelf ‘hangs by a thread’ (Sydney Morning Herald 2-26-08).

    True to form, Associated Press reporter Seth Borenstein could not allow himself to include any scientists or peer-reviewed studies countering alarm over the allegedly “melting” Antarctic. Borenstein instead hyped alarm by writing on March 27, “Scientists said they are not concerned about a rise in sea level from the latest event, but say it’s a sign of worsening global warming.” [Note: Borenstein has a long history of incomplete reporting on global warming. See here and here. Also see related links section below for examples of the media’s shoddy environmental reporting. In addition, ABC World News Sunday anchor Dan Harris this week produced a low brow smear segment on atmospheric physicist Dr. Fred Singer, a prominent dissenter of man-made climate fears. ABC News violated basic journalistic standards by citing “anonymous” scientists to attack Dr. Singer. See: here, here, here and here. ]

    Yet, if only the media would spend a moment to get beyond the hype and alarmism, they would discover that scientists are already thoroughly debunking the media characterization of the “melting” Antarctic. [Note: 2007 and now 2008 are overwhelmingly turning into the “tipping points” for climate alarmism as new peer-reviewed studies continue to debunk rising CO2 fears, a U.S. Senate minority report reveals over 400 scientists dissented from man-made climate fears, and more and more scientists continue in 2008 to declare themselves skeptical of a man-made climate “crisis.” The Earth’s failure to continue warming has also confounded promoters of man-made climate fear. Here is a sampling of inconvenient developments for climate alarmists in 2008 alone: 1) Oceans Cooling! Scientists puzzled by “mystery of global warming’s missing heat”- LINK 2) New Data from NASA’s Aqua satellite is showing “greatly reduced future warming projected as a consequence of carbon dioxide.”- LINK 3) Former NASA Climatologist Dr. Roy Spencer found not one peer-reviewed paper has ‘ruled out a natural cause for most of our recent warmth’ – LINK 4) UN IPCC in ‘Panic Mode’ as Earth Fails to Warm, Scientist says – LINK 5) UN IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri “to look into the apparent temperature plateau so far this century.”- LINK 6) New scientific analysis shows Sun “could account for as much as 69% of the increase in Earth’s average temperature” – LINK & LINK. 7) An International team of scientists released a March 2008 report to counter UN IPCC, declaring: “Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate” – LINK 8) MIT Climate Scientist Dr. Richard Lindzen’s new analysis finds the Earth has had “No statistically significant warming since 1995.”- LINK ]

    Below are a few samples of what scientists have said in the past few days since the Antarctic “melting” stories have hit the media:

    1) Climate Scientist Dr. Ben Herman, past director of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics and former Head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona, is a member of both the Institute for the Study of Planet Earth’s Executive Committee and the Committee on Global Change. Herman commented on March 25:

    “That ice [the media is hyping] is just a tiny fraction of the Antarctic ice and probably the increase each winter more than compensates. The ice loss does not show up, at least not yet on the Illinois site, http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere, which still shows increasing sea ice heading into [Southern Hemisphere’s] winter. It is interesting that all of the AGW (anthropogenic global warming) stories concerning Antarctica are always about what’s happening around the (Western) peninsula, which seems to be the only place on Antarctica that has shown warming. How about the net ‘no change’ or ‘cooling’ over the rest of the continent, which is probably about 95% of the land mass, not to mention the record sea ice coverage recently,” Herman wrote on March 25.

    2) Meteorologist Joseph D’Aleo served as the first Director of Meteorology at The Weather Channel, was the Chief Meteorologist at Weather Services International Corporation and served as chairman of the American Meteorological Society’s (AMS) Committee on Weather Analysis and Forecasting. D’Aleo commented on his website Icecap.us on March 25:

    “The shattered part of the Wilkins ice sheet was 160 square miles in area, which is just 0.01% of the total current Antarctic ice cover (just 0.003% of the extent last September), like an icicle falling from a snow and ice covered roof. And this winter is coming on quickly. The latest satellite images and reports suggest the ice has already refrozen around the broken pieces. In fact the ice is returning so fast, it is running an amazing 60% ahead (4.0 vs 2.5 million square km extent) of last year when it set a new record. The total ice extent is already approaching the second highest level for extent since the measurements began by satellite in 1979 and just a few days into the Southern Hemisphere fall season and 6 months ahead of the peak. We are very likely going to exceed last year’s record [for Southern Hemisphere ice extent]. Yet the world is left with the false impression Antarctica’s ice sheet is also starting to disappear,” D’Aleo wrote on march 25. (LINK)

    Other scientists and peer-reviewed studies have recently debunked the notion of a “melting” Antarctic as well.

    read more here…

    http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=f1f2f75f-802a-23ad-4701-a92b4ebbccbf

    .

    Like

  16. Hexmate says:

    See Ed I told you that you don’t have any data.

    According to newly revealed documents authored two years ago, the United Nations believes environmentalism should be regarded on the same level with religion “as the only compelling, value-based narrative available to humanity.”
    This global body is urging the world to take the ‘crisis’ of global warming on faith. Father Earth, Al Gore concurs.
    There you have it. The world should regard the environment as a religion and take on faith the fact that billions of dollars are needed to fix this so-called man-made crisis.
    It looks like the world has no choice in the matter. The scientists at the University of East Anglia have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based. Oops. So the scientific data on which the premise of global warming is based are no longer available for peer-review. Sorry. Just take their word that its scientific.

    Like

  17. Hexmate says:

    Oh oh Ed, better hang on to your pants again – they are falling down again.

    People are hoping for “robust political agreement” out of Copenhagen. Some wonder if they’re going to be assuaged by Obama’s EPA ruling that carbon dioxide is a dangerous pollutant threatening the planet? This was the best Obama could do, since Cap and Trade is officially a “dead parrot.”

    One of the expected outcomes is a commitment to transfer money from the richer to the poorer nations of the world to help them transition to cleaner energy technologies and combat the effects of global warming. No mention was made as to how anyone can prove these effects are caused by man and not some other means, such as volcanic activity, solar radiation, a slight wobbling of the earth’s orbit, or any of a multitude of other possible causes. Nobody has questioned the reasoning behind the transfer of wealth from the richer to the poorer nations, either. I guess if you accept the premise that mankind is to blame for the warming of the planet, then it somehow naturally follows that American taxpayers are going to get screwed. Bigtime.

    The real, actual motivating force behind Copenhagen – Wealth redistribution from the productive democracies to the poorer non-productive thugocracies. If you really want to understand climate change, just follow the money. The representatives of some of the most corrupt and brutal regimes in the world get to decide how much to steal from the single most powerful economy the world has ever known. What could possibly go wrong?

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  18. M@ says:

    I made an error with my statement on Antarctica. But it is still growing in size.

    8) Dr. Duncan Wingham, Professor of Climate Physics at University College London and Director of the Centre for Polar Observation and Modeling, has presented evidence that Antarctic ice is growing. According to a December 15, 2006, article in Canada’s National Post, “Early last year at a European Union Space Conference in Brussels, for example, Dr. Wingham revealed that data from a European Space Agency satellite showed Antarctic thinning was no more common than thickening, and concluded that the spectacular collapse of the ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula was much more likely to have followed natural current fluctuations than global warming.” “One cannot be certain, because packets of heat in the atmosphere do not come conveniently labeled ‘the contribution of anthropogenic warming,’ ” Wingham said, noting that the evidence is not “favorable to the notion we are seeing the results of global warming.” Wingham and his colleagues found that 72% of the ice sheet covering the entire land mass of Antarctica is growing at the rate of 5 millimeters per year. “That makes Antarctica a sink, not a source, of ocean water. According to their best estimates, Antarctica will ‘lower global sea levels by 0.08 mm’ per year” the National Post article reported. (LINK)

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  19. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “The report came out as scheduled. I note the timing — once again the scientists delivered as they had promised.

    Got any counter evidence?

    No, of course you don’t.

    Shakespeare described the denialist position: Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

    No Ed the report didn’t come on time so that is a lie. It was due at the end of the year. Of course liars figure and figures lie don’t they Ed?

    Ed you don’t have any data so quit blowing all that smoke out of your rectum or is that just the friction associated with your rectal cranial inversion as your head spins around.

    Excellent description of yourself using Shakespeare Ed congratulations!

    Like

  20. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Where is the error in the report yesterday from the World Meteorological Organization? Show us.”

    Ed there is no data! They created some numbers to try and head off the collateral damage from climategate. Geez Ed I knew you were gulliable, but I didn’t know you were stupid too! Who made up their data Ed? Let’s give it to an impartial source and let them audit the data. Why do you think NASA is withholding their data from the Freedom of Information Act requests? LOL!

    Like

  21. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “As the science shows, neither the planet, the atmosphere, the oceans, the daily weather nor the average climate, listen to polls. Understanding of climate change is down because of clanging cymbals and braying jackasses who don’t understand the science, who make astounding statements accusing the clouds of conspiring with Al Gore, and who appear never to have read Mark Twain, but are still burro enough to claim Twain didn’t write what Twain wrote.”

    Yeah sure Ed. Make up some crap as a retort. Ed have you checked out your ears lately? Between your ears and that tail sticking out or your butt we all recognize you as a jackass – you better see if you can find out why you are carrying around that pack on your back too.

    Like

  22. M@ says:

    Here’s the Article pointing out the media hype but please check out the site and do you own research.

    http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Minority.Blogs&ContentRecord_id=f1f2f75f-802a-23ad-4701-a92b4ebbccbf

    Media Hype on ‘Melting’ Antarctic Ignores Record Ice Growth

    The media is once again hyping an allegedly dire consequence of man-made global warming. This time the media is promoting the ice loss of one tiny fraction of the giant ice-covered continent and completely ignoring the current record ice growth on Antarctica. Contrary to media hype, the vast majority of Antarctica has cooled over the past 50 years and ice coverage has grown to record levels since satellite monitoring began in the 1979, according to peer-reviewed studies and scientists who study the area. (LINK)

    Former Weather Channel Meteorologist Joe D’Aleo rejected the hype surrounding the recent Wilkins Ice Shelf collapse in Western Antarctica. “The shattered part of the Wilkins ice sheet was 160 square miles in area, which is just 0.01% of the total current Antarctic ice cover, like an icicle falling from a snow and ice covered roof,” D’Aleo wrote on March 25. (LINK) “We are very likely going to exceed last year’s record [for Southern Hemisphere ice extent]. Yet the world is left with the false impression Antarctica’s ice sheet is also starting to disappear,” D’Aleo added.

    Climate scientist Dr. Ben Herman, past director of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics and former Head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona, stated, “It is interesting that all of the AGW (anthropogenic global warming) stories concerning Antarctica are always about what’s happening around the [western] peninsula, which seems to be the only place on Antarctica that has shown warming. How about the net ‘no change’ or ‘cooling’ over the rest of the continent, which is probably about 95% of the land mass, not to mention the record sea ice coverage recently.”

    Former Colorado State Climatologist Dr. Roger Pielke, Sr., presently senior scientist at the University of Colorado in Boulder, chastised the media’s Antarctic reporting as “typical of the bias that many journalists have.” Pielke wrote on March 25, “The media has ignored in their reporting the increase in Antarctic sea ice cover in recent years, with, at present, a coverage that is well one million square kilometers above average.” Pielke added, “Unfortunately, it appears that most journalists just parrot the perspective of the first news release on these climate issues, without doing any further investigation. If this is inadvertent, they need to be educated in climate science. If deliberate bias, they are clearly advocates and the reporters should be clearly and publically identified as having such a bias. In either case, the public is being misinformed!” (LINK)

    But the news media sadly tossed out objectivity and balance when it came to this new Antarctic story. Media headlines blared: Bye-bye, Antarctica? (Salon Magazine 3-26-08); Massive ice shelf collapsing off Antarctica (C/Net News 3- 26-08); Slab of Antarctic ice shelf collapses amid warming (Reuters 3-26-08); Ice shelf ‘hangs by a thread’ (Sydney Morning Herald 2-26-08).

    True to form, Associated Press reporter Seth Borenstein could not allow himself to include any scientists or peer-reviewed studies countering alarm over the allegedly “melting” Antarctic. Borenstein instead hyped alarm by writing on March 27, “Scientists said they are not concerned about a rise in sea level from the latest event, but say it’s a sign of worsening global warming.” [Note: Borenstein has a long history of incomplete reporting on global warming. See here and here. Also see related links section below for examples of the media’s shoddy environmental reporting. In addition, ABC World News Sunday anchor Dan Harris this week produced a low brow smear segment on atmospheric physicist Dr. Fred Singer, a prominent dissenter of man-made climate fears. ABC News violated basic journalistic standards by citing “anonymous” scientists to attack Dr. Singer. See: here, here, here and here. ]

    Yet, if only the media would spend a moment to get beyond the hype and alarmism, they would discover that scientists are already thoroughly debunking the media characterization of the “melting” Antarctic. [Note: 2007 and now 2008 are overwhelmingly turning into the “tipping points” for climate alarmism as new peer-reviewed studies continue to debunk rising CO2 fears, a U.S. Senate minority report reveals over 400 scientists dissented from man-made climate fears, and more and more scientists continue in 2008 to declare themselves skeptical of a man-made climate “crisis.” The Earth’s failure to continue warming has also confounded promoters of man-made climate fear. Here is a sampling of inconvenient developments for climate alarmists in 2008 alone: 1) Oceans Cooling! Scientists puzzled by “mystery of global warming’s missing heat”- LINK 2) New Data from NASA’s Aqua satellite is showing “greatly reduced future warming projected as a consequence of carbon dioxide.”- LINK 3) Former NASA Climatologist Dr. Roy Spencer found not one peer-reviewed paper has ‘ruled out a natural cause for most of our recent warmth’ – LINK 4) UN IPCC in ‘Panic Mode’ as Earth Fails to Warm, Scientist says – LINK 5) UN IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri “to look into the apparent temperature plateau so far this century.”- LINK 6) New scientific analysis shows Sun “could account for as much as 69% of the increase in Earth’s average temperature” – LINK & LINK. 7) An International team of scientists released a March 2008 report to counter UN IPCC, declaring: “Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate” – LINK 8) MIT Climate Scientist Dr. Richard Lindzen’s new analysis finds the Earth has had “No statistically significant warming since 1995.”- LINK ]

    Below are a few samples of what scientists have said in the past few days since the Antarctic “melting” stories have hit the media:

    1) Climate Scientist Dr. Ben Herman, past director of the Institute of Atmospheric Physics and former Head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona, is a member of both the Institute for the Study of Planet Earth’s Executive Committee and the Committee on Global Change. Herman commented on March 25:

    “That ice [the media is hyping] is just a tiny fraction of the Antarctic ice and probably the increase each winter more than compensates. The ice loss does not show up, at least not yet on the Illinois site, http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere, which still shows increasing sea ice heading into [Southern Hemisphere’s] winter. It is interesting that all of the AGW (anthropogenic global warming) stories concerning Antarctica are always about what’s happening around the (Western) peninsula, which seems to be the only place on Antarctica that has shown warming. How about the net ‘no change’ or ‘cooling’ over the rest of the continent, which is probably about 95% of the land mass, not to mention the record sea ice coverage recently,” Herman wrote on March 25.

    2) Meteorologist Joseph D’Aleo served as the first Director of Meteorology at The Weather Channel, was the Chief Meteorologist at Weather Services International Corporation and served as chairman of the American Meteorological Society’s (AMS) Committee on Weather Analysis and Forecasting. D’Aleo commented on his website Icecap.us on March 25:

    “The shattered part of the Wilkins ice sheet was 160 square miles in area, which is just 0.01% of the total current Antarctic ice cover (just 0.003% of the extent last September), like an icicle falling from a snow and ice covered roof. And this winter is coming on quickly. The latest satellite images and reports suggest the ice has already refrozen around the broken pieces. In fact the ice is returning so fast, it is running an amazing 60% ahead (4.0 vs 2.5 million square km extent) of last year when it set a new record. The total ice extent is already approaching the second highest level for extent since the measurements began by satellite in 1979 and just a few days into the Southern Hemisphere fall season and 6 months ahead of the peak. We are very likely going to exceed last year’s record [for Southern Hemisphere ice extent]. Yet the world is left with the false impression Antarctica’s ice sheet is also starting to disappear,” D’Aleo wrote on march 25. (LINK)

    Other scientists and peer-reviewed studies have recently debunked the notion of a “melting” Antarctic as well.

    3) Former Virginia State Climatologist Dr. Patrick Michaels and Paul C. Knappenberger, a senior researcher with New Hope Environmental Services posted comments on Antarctica in February on their website WorldClimateReport.com. Michaels and Knappenberger wrote a February 27, 2008, article titled “Antarctica Ain’t Cooperating”: “Another major article on temperature trends in the Antarctic has appeared in a recent issue of the Journal of Geophysical Research by a team of scientists from Ohio State University, the University of Illinois, and the Goddard Space Flight Center; the research was funded by the National Science Foundation Office of Polar Programs Glaciology Program. […] That is correct – despite all you have heard elsewhere on the subject, the South Pole has been cooling over the past half century. The previous research team also reported that any warming in Antarctica has slowed and the cooling has accelerated in the more recent three decades. According to Monaghan et al., yet another team previously examined Antarctic temperatures and “noted that prior to 1965 the continent-wide annual trends (through 2002) are slightly positive, but after 1965 they are mainly negative (despite warming over the Antarctic Peninsula).” The truth from Antarctica is hard for the greenhouse crusade to accept, and in the long run, the truth from Antarctica might melt away the flimsy, well-publicized claims about global climate change—especially the concerns of a rapid sea level rise.”

    4) In addition, the media’s reporting on the alleged “melting” of Antarctica fails to take into account other factors. “Volcano, Not Global Warming Effects, May be Melting an Antarctic Glacier” read a headline in a January 21, 2008, article. The article read in part: Scientists have discovered a layer of volcanic ash and glass shards in Antarctica, evidence of an old eruption by a still active volcano that researchers believe may be contributing to the thinning of Antarctic glacial ice. Hugh F.J. Corr and David G. Vaughan, two scientists with the British Antarctic Survey, recently published their discovery of the volcanic layer in the journal Nature Geoscience. The discovery is unique, according to Dr. Vaughan. He said, “This is the first time we have seen a volcano beneath the ice sheet punch a hole through the ice sheet.” The volcano’s heat could possibly be melting and thinning the ice and raising the speed of the Pine Island Glacier in West Antarctica. (Other links on Antarctic Volcanoes: Map of volcanoes in Antarctica; and NASA Image of Antarctic Peninsula and pacific ring of fire groups of volcanoes. )

    5) Another inconvenient fact that the media likes to avoid is Antarctica ice extent GREW to record levels in 2007. A September 11, 2007, article on IceCap.US explained: “While the news focus has been on the lowest ice extent since satellite monitoring began in 1979 for the Arctic, the Southern Hemisphere (Antarctica) has quietly set a new record for most ice extent since 1979. This can be seen on this graphic from this University of Illinois site, The Cryosphere Today, which updated snow and ice extent for both hemispheres daily. The Southern Hemispheric areal coverage is the highest in the satellite record, just beating out 1995, 2001, 2005 and 2006. Since 1979, the trend has been up for the total Antarctic ice extent.” (LINK)

    6) A January 12, 2008, peer-reviewed paper in AGU (American Geophysical Union) found “A doubling in snow accumulation in the western Antarctic Peninsula since 1850.” The abstract of the paper by Thomas, E. R., G. J. Marshall, and J. R. McConnell, states: We present results from a new medium depth (136 metres) ice core drilled in a high accumulation site (73.59°S, 70.36°W) on the south-western Antarctic Peninsula during 2007. The Gomez record reveals a doubling of accumulation since the 1850s, from a decadal average of 0.49 mweq y−1 in 1855–1864 to 1.10 mweq y−1 in 1997–2006, with acceleration in recent decades. Comparison with published accumulation records indicates that this rapid increase is the largest observed across the region. (LINK) & (LINK)

    7) A February 2007 study reveals Antarctica is not following predicted global warming models. Excerpt: “A new report on climate over the world’s southernmost continent shows that temperatures during the late 20th century did not climb as had been predicted by many global climate models.” The research was led by David Bromwich, professor of atmospheric sciences in the Department of Geography, and researcher with the Byrd Polar Research Center at Ohio State University. [See: Antarctic temperatures disagree with climate model predictions – (LINK) ]

    8) Dr. Duncan Wingham, Professor of Climate Physics at University College London and Director of the Centre for Polar Observation and Modeling, has presented evidence that Antarctic ice is growing. According to a December 15, 2006, article in Canada’s National Post, “Early last year at a European Union Space Conference in Brussels, for example, Dr. Wingham revealed that data from a European Space Agency satellite showed Antarctic thinning was no more common than thickening, and concluded that the spectacular collapse of the ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula was much more likely to have followed natural current fluctuations than global warming.” “One cannot be certain, because packets of heat in the atmosphere do not come conveniently labeled ‘the contribution of anthropogenic warming,’ ” Wingham said, noting that the evidence is not “favorable to the notion we are seeing the results of global warming.” Wingham and his colleagues found that 72% of the ice sheet covering the entire land mass of Antarctica is growing at the rate of 5 millimeters per year. “That makes Antarctica a sink, not a source, of ocean water. According to their best estimates, Antarctica will ‘lower global sea levels by 0.08 mm’ per year” the National Post article reported. (LINK)

    9) Statistician Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, author of The Skeptical Environmentalist and professor at the Copenhagen Business School, questioned former Vice President Al Gore’s claims about Antarctica in a January 21, 2007, Wall Street Journal op-ed. “[Gore] considers Antarctica the canary in the mine, but again doesn’t tell the full story. He presents pictures from the 2% of Antarctica that is dramatically warming and ignores the 98% that has largely cooled over the past 35 years. The U.N. panel estimates that Antarctica will actually increase its snow mass this century. Similarly, Mr. Gore points to shrinking sea ice in the Northern Hemisphere, but doesn’t mention that sea ice in the Southern Hemisphere is increasing. Shouldn’t we hear those facts?” Lomborg added. (LINK)

    10) UN scientist Dr. Madhav L. Khandekar, a retired Environment Canada scientist and an expert IPCC reviewer, noted in 2007 that the Southern Hemisphere is COOLING. Dr. Khandekar wrote on August 6, 2007: “In the Southern Hemisphere, the land-area mean temperature has slowly but surely declined in the last few years. The city of Buenos Aires in Argentina received several centimeters of snowfall in early July, and the last time it snowed in Buenos Aires was in 1918! Most of Australia experienced one of its coldest months of June this year. Several other locations in the Southern Hemisphere have experienced lower temperatures in the last few years. Further, the sea surface temperatures over world oceans are slowly declining since mid-1998, according to a recent world-wide analysis of ocean surface temperatures.” (LINK)

    11) Ivy League Geologist Dr. Robert Giegengack, the chair of Department of Earth and Environmental Science at the University of Pennsylvania, explained that the Earth has been warming for about 20,000 years, and humans have only been collecting data for about 200 years. “For most of earth’s history, the globe has been warmer than it has been for the last 200 years. It has only rarely been cooler,” Giegengack said according to a February 2007 article. (LINK) Giegengack further explained that extremely long geologic timescales reveal that “only about 5% of that time has been characterized by conditions on Earth that were so cold that the poles could support masses of permanent ice.”

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