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Dr. Ivar Giaever  (Source:
Dr. Ivar Giaever announced his resignation Tuesday, September 13

A well-known physicist has resigned from his position with the American Physical Society (APS) due to its recent policy stating that global warming is real.

Dr. Ivar Giaever, a 1973 Nobel Prize winner in physics and former professor with the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, announced his resignation from the APS on Tuesday, September 13, 2011.

The APS' official policy supports the theory that human actions have inexorably caused the warming of the Earth through heightened carbon dioxide emissions.

Giaever responded by refusing to pay his annual dues, and writing an email to Kate Kirby, executive officer of the physics society, saying that he disagreed with this policy.

The following is the email sent from Giaever to Kirby on September 13:

From: Ivar Giaever []

Sent: Tuesday, September 13, 2011 3:42 PM
Cc: Robert H. Austin; 'William Happer'; 'Larry Gould'; 'S. Fred Singer'; Roger Cohen
Subject: I resign from APS

Dear Ms. Kirby

Thank you for your letter inquiring about my membership. I did not renew it because I can not live with the statement below:


Emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are changing the atmosphere in ways that affect the Earth's climate. Greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide as well as methane, nitrous oxide and other gases. They are emitted from fossil fuel combustion and a range of industrial and agricultural processes.

The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring.
If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth's physical and ecological systems, social systems, security and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now.

In the APS it is ok to discuss whether the mass of the proton changes over time and how a multi-universe behaves, but the evidence of global warming is incontrovertible? The claim (how can you measure the average temperature of the whole earth for a whole year?) is that the temperature has changed from ~288.0 to ~288.8 degree Kelvin in about 150 years, which (if true) means to me is that the temperature has been amazingly stable, and both human health and happiness have definitely improved in this 'warming' period.


Best regards,


Ivar Giaever


Nobel Laureate 1973


PS. I included a copy to a few people in case they feel like using the information.

Ivar Giaever

According to the Wall Street Journal, Giaever announced he was an avid global warming skeptic in 2008, saying that global warming was "becoming a religion."

"I am Norwegian, should I really worry about a little bit of warming?," said Giaever in 2008. "I am unfortunately becoming an old man. We have heard many similar warnings about the acid rain 30 years ago and the ozone hole 10 years ago or deforestation but the humanity is still around. The ozone hole width has peaked in 1993. Moreover, global warming has become a new religion. We frequently hear about the number of scientists who support it. But the number is not important: only whether they are correct is important. We don't really know what the actual effect on the global temperature is. There are better ways to spend the money."

Giaever, who earned his Nobel Prize for his experimental discoveries with tunneling phenomena in superconductors, joined more than 100 signers of a letter to U.S. President Barack Obama criticizing his position on climate change in 2009.

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RE: are insurance policies bad?
By rikulus on 9/16/2011 10:39:03 AM , Rating: -1
A) Are climate changes negative? I think this one is pretty clear - how much money did flooding in the USA cost this year? Billions. Record floods of the Mississippi earlier this summer. Hurricane Irene causing record flooding in Vermont, eastern New York, Pennsylvania, and points south. One week later Tropical Storm Lee causes record and near-record flooding in central New York and Pennsylvania. Three separate 500-year floods in one summer. The Susquehanna River in New York had 500 year floods in 2006, and reached nearly the same level again from Lee. How much will the fires in Texas cost? How about crop failures in Ukraine and Kazakstan raising world food prices? Even the one "silver lining" - the theory that US crop output would actually benefit from increased CO2 and changes in climate has not actually occurred, output actually dipped slightly.

B) Scientists haven't "proven" a hypothesis? Scientists haven't "proven" how gravity works, does that mean we can't predict how fast things will fall when we drop them? We do know for sure that CO2 is a greenhouse gas (there is a "proven" hypothesis for you.) We theorize that increasing CO2 levels in the atmosphere will increase the earth's surface temperature. We can run small tests in a lab to see if that actually occurs on a small scale (which it does - another proven hypothesis.) We look for evidence that this theory is supported on large scale: has atmospheric CO2 increased (yes), has global surface temperature increased over the same timescale (yes), has anything else changed over the same timescale that could be an alternative explanation (none have matched so far.) So, science tells us that is a worthwhile working theory until a better theory comes along, and it is prudent to make predictions based on it and treat it as truth (which 98% of scientists do.)

C) CO2 is a greenhouse gas, more of it in the atmosphere increases it's affects, so yes - reducing the amount of CO2 emitted would reduce the changes to the climate.

Just because an ideal, solve all solution would cost a lot and put us in a "stone age standard of living" (which I don't agree is the case), doesn't mean we should do nothing. Yes, wind power is more expensive than coal power - but it's not outrageously more expensive - and the real costs of coal power (for health, for climate change) aren't included in those costs. And bottom line - any carbon emitting power source is a temporary power source, we need to develop energy sources that are sustainable. It is feasible to power our country on wind and solar (I didn't say it would be cheap, but it's feasible) and not have to import oil.

I can't help but think: how does the cost of a tomahawk missile compare to a large windmill? I'd rather we'd spent the last 10 years building windmills rather than blowing things up.

RE: are insurance policies bad?
By The Raven on 9/16/2011 12:31:22 PM , Rating: 3
I can't help but think: how does the cost of a tomahawk missile compare to a large windmill? I'd rather we'd spent the last 10 years building windmills rather than blowing things up.

Ok you are obviously trying to start a partisan debate. Don't believe everything the democratic party says. They are just as stupid as the republicans on a great many things IMHO.

It seems to me that for everything the reps get right that the dems get wrong, the opposite is true for other issues.

How about save the air and end the wars? Vote libertarian! (or cross the aisle to help get Ron Paul nominated during the rep primary ;-)

RE: are insurance policies bad?
By rikulus on 9/16/2011 2:45:32 PM , Rating: 2
Is "save the air" actually part of the Libertarian platform?

I heard Ron Paul talking about the environment on NPR a couple weeks ago. His idea that stricter personal property laws would solve those issues without the Government needing to get involved. But he did say that since water and air pollution travel from one property to another, that there would need to be government regulation of that... even though he had just finished saying he was going to get rid of government regulation. Aren't air and water the only things that really get regulated now anyways?

And stricter personal property laws to control pollution just sounds like more lawsuits and money for lawyers to me. And don't worry, I'm not naive enough to believe something a politician says. All I can do is know what I know, learn what I can, and watch out for guys that are saying the opposite.

RE: are insurance policies bad?
By The Raven on 9/26/2011 10:53:31 AM , Rating: 2
Do you have a link to that interview? They post them all but I don't know which one you are referring to.

Regardless of what he said I would just take it as meaning *at least* less federal regulation. (That is the one sure thing I would assume of his opinion. Then he would (want to) leave it to the States, the community, etc.)

So if you are for less federal gov't intervention then you should vote for Ron Paul. That is the one thing I can say for sure without listening to that interview.

Also he is the only non-interventionalist within the 2 parties who will work hard to bring our troops home and keep them there. IMO It will be nice to have a president that WE would have to talk into a war, instead of THEM trying to convince us (e.g. Bush, Obama, etc.)

RE: are insurance policies bad?
By 0ldman on 9/16/2011 3:06:35 PM , Rating: 3
Scientists haven't "proven" a hypothesis? Scientists haven't "proven" how gravity works, does that mean we can't predict how fast things will fall when we drop them?

They haven't figured out the process of how/why gravity works, however, it is a measurable force. It is consistent, proven. Man made global warming is a bunch of arrogant, money grubbing jacks looking for suckers.

I think they found them.

Even reproducing the climate in a computer model is so complex that there is no way they've gotten it right. They can't predict weather, hurricanes, etc, with a single simulation. They run dozens, if not more, and come up with an average. Those still have a huge margin for error.

"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone

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