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Viscount Monckton gives a presentation during the 2007 Conference on Climate Change
"Considerable presence" of skeptics


Updated 7/17/2008

After publication of this story, the APS responded with a  statement that its Physics and Society Forum is merely one unit within the APS, and its views do not reflect those of the Society at large. 


The American Physical Society, an organization representing nearly 50,000 physicists, has reversed its stance on climate change and is now proclaiming that many of its members disbelieve in human-induced global warming.  The APS is also sponsoring public debate on the validity of global warming science.  The leadership of the society had previously called the evidence for global warming "incontrovertible."

In a posting to the APS forum, editor Jeffrey Marque explains,"There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution."

The APS is opening its debate with the publication of a paper by Lord Monckton of Brenchley, which concludes that climate sensitivity -- the rate of temperature change a given amount of greenhouse gas will cause -- has been grossly overstated by IPCC modeling.   A low sensitivity implies additional atmospheric CO2 will have little effect on global climate.

Larry Gould, Professor of Physics at the University of Hartford and Chairman of the New England Section of the APS, called Monckton's paper an "expose of the IPCC that details numerous exaggerations and "extensive errors"

In an email to DailyTech, Monckton says, "I was dismayed to discover that the IPCC's 2001 and 2007 reports did not devote chapters to the central 'climate sensitivity' question, and did not explain in proper, systematic detail the methods by which they evaluated it. When I began to investigate, it seemed that the IPCC was deliberately concealing and obscuring its method." 

According to Monckton, there is substantial support for his results, "in the peer-reviewed literature, most articles on climate sensitivity conclude, as I have done, that climate sensitivity must be harmlessly low."

Monckton, who was the science advisor to Britain's Thatcher administration, says natural variability is the cause of most of the Earth's recent warming.   "In the past 70 years the Sun was more active than at almost any other time in the past 11,400 years ... Mars, Jupiter, Neptune’s largest moon, and Pluto warmed at the same time as Earth."



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RE: Wrong again ...
By Arctucas on 7/18/2008 6:03:23 PM , Rating: 2
I was asking a question, and you answer with another question.

So, let us continue in that vein shall we?

In your obviously well-informed opinion, is the Global Warming man-made or not?

There are two answers to choose from:

1) Yes, I believe Global Warming is caused by mankind.

2) No, I do not believe Global Warming is caused by mankind.


RE: Wrong again ...
By The Night Owl on 7/18/2008 6:27:25 PM , Rating: 2
Your list of options posed scientifically...

1. Yes, I believe that global warming is probably caused by human activities.

2. No, I believe that global warming is probably not caused by human activities.


RE: Wrong again ...
By Rosaline on 7/18/2008 9:01:33 PM , Rating: 2
And then there is the irony in all of this, which even the editorial piece in question seems to agree with, of "does it even matter?"

Ultimately, it doesn't matter one bit. There is more to all the concerns here than just what is causing climate, environmental and resource changes. It helps no-one to simply question what causes these in a manner which promotes doing nothing about them, and that is the real problem with much of the coverage, even that which is well-written and scientifically sound.


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