on del.icio.us – Global Warming: The Cold, Hard Facts?

By , 6 February 2007 11:13

It is important to know where the opinions about climate change and global warming are coming from.

Trying to get the counter message to a social networking system like delicious is difficult when opinion / commenting options are limited. I think I had better outcome on StumbleUpon

Number of people saving this article on del.icio.us

Global Warming: The Cold, Hard Facts?

this url has been saved by 202 people.

Global Warming: The Cold, Hard Facts?

“….Tim Ball, a long-retired professor from the University of Winnipeg and a well-known climate-change denier who has not published a peer-reviewed scientific publication on climatology in more than a decade.” Read more:…

by UrbanWild to climatechange globalwarming media analysis canada 07feb 2007 oil company shill … 3 hours ago


And then there is the curious case of Tim Ball, a long-retired professor from the University of Winnipeg and a well-known climate-change denier who has not published a peer-reviewed scientific publication on climatology in more than a decade.

That’s not to say that Ball hasn’t been busy writing lately. Over the past five years, he has published no less than 39 opinion pieces and 32 letters to the editor in 24 Canadian newspapers. Fifty of these pieces ran in papers owned by CanWest MediaWorks. These efforts totalled an incredible 44,500 words.

This is even more surprising, given the monotony of his material. Virtually all of these articles were variations on a single theme: science does not support the idea that global warming is caused by humans. Invariably, the bylines of the opinion pieces characterized Ball as an expert on climatology. What is the public to think?

Among his unorthodox views, published as recently as last month in the Calgary Sun:

* Global temperatures have declined since 1998 in direct contradiction to computer models on which the Kyoto Accord is based (incorrect).

* Ice-core records show that temperature rises before CO2 rises, not because of it (misleading).

* Evidence is mounting that pre-industrial levels of CO2 may have been much higher than the 280 parts per million assumed by environmentalists to have existed at that time (again, misleading).

* New research shows that changes in the energy output of the sun account for most of the recent warming and cooling of our planet (wrong).

* The primary evidence of human influence on climate, the famous “hockey stick” temperature-trends graph of climatologist Michael Mann, has been debunked as manipulated and wrong (not so).

An essential component of journalism is fact-checking. Do these surprising assertions have any scientific basis?

When told of these claims, Richard Gammon, professor of oceanography and atmos­heric sciences at the University of Washington, somewhat exasperatedly refuted them as either scientifically baseless or misleading.

Lastly, there has been a twist to the Tim Ball story. In April of last year, one of his op-eds in the Calgary Herald slamming the science of climate change raised the ire of Dan Johnson, a professor of environmental science at the University of Lethbridge.

Johnson wrote a letter to the editor questioning Ball’s academic credentials and was quickly sued for defamation. Ball filed suit on September 1 against Johnson and four editors at the Herald for $325,000 for, among other things, “damages to his income earning capacity as a sought after speaker with respect to global warming”.

Ball sued the Herald for publishing a letter to the editor. Good move. Now the Herald lawyers have to discredit Dr. Ball in order to defend themselves. – Al

In the statement of defense filed by the Herald on December 7, the paper noted that Ball “is a member of the Friends of Science, a group dedicated to discrediting mainstream scientific beliefs and theories regarding the contribution of human sourced greenhouse gases to global warming”, and that “the Friends of Science and the plaintiff are, at least in part, supported and funded by members of the oil and gas industry who have a vested interest in limiting the impact of the Kyoto Accord on their business.”

The Herald also stated that Ball “has published few articles in academically recognized peer-reviewed scientific journals” and that he “has not conducted research regarding the relationship between climate and elements within the atmosphere”.

And here is how Herald editors characterized the man whose opinion pieces on climate change they had chosen to publish eight times in the past five years: “The plaintiff is viewed as a paid promoter of the agenda of the oil and gas industry rather than as a practicing scientist.”

Strange. This was not how he was identified in his bylines. In an op-ed in April of last year, the Herald cited him as “a Victoria-based environmental consultant. He was the first climatology PhD in Canada and worked as a professor of climatology at the University of Winnipeg for 28 years.”

Hmmm. I wonder if I will receive a “cease and desist” order for posting this.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Panorama Theme by Themocracy