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Utah Assembly Passes Resolution Denying Climate Change 787

Posted by kdawson
from the still-snowing-here dept.
cowtamer writes "The Utah State Assembly has passed a resolution decrying climate change alarmists and urging '...the United States Environmental Protection Agency to immediately halt its carbon dioxide reduction policies and programs and withdraw its "Endangerment Finding" and related regulations until a full and independent investigation of climate data and global warming science can be substantiated.' Here is the full text of H.J.R 12." The resolution has no force of law. The Guardian article includes juicy tidbits from its original, far more colorful, version.
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Utah Assembly Passes Resolution Denying Climate Change

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  • by Davemania (580154) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:21AM (#31167908) Journal
    I am assuming you're referring to Phil Jones statement and obviously, you did not bother to actually understand the context of what he was trying to say http://www.skepticalscience.com/news.php?n=141 [skepticalscience.com]
  • Re:Uh...what? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Pojut (1027544) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:35AM (#31168044) Homepage

    See, that's the part that confuses me...sure, there are a ton of coal miners and whatnot that rely on those places being up and running...but if that power plant gets shut down and disassembled and/or if a new power plant gets built that utilizes a different type of energy, workers will be needed to do both of those jobs.

    Who better than the coal miners? They already work in an extremely hazerdous environment, switching them from miners to construction workers is just a few weeks worth of training away.

  • by Moryath (553296) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:47AM (#31168168)

    So in other words, they accuse the climate change scientists of of acting in their own financial interests by being alarmists

    Being alarmist gets you book sales. Being alarmist gets you photo ops. And yes, being alarmist gets you a re-up on your grants.

    They claim that scientists toe the climate change line to get grants, and yet can you imagine how much definitive proof against man-made climate change would be worth to businesses?

    Any business offering such a grant would be massively targeted with protests, ads, etc by the left-wing lunatic fringe. Actively sponsoring such research would instantly, since most of the "scientists" are on government dole, mean that honest scientists who came up with the opposite conclusion would be kept out of publishing due to collusion (actually has happened if you read the CRU emails yourself).

    The problem with this debate is that one side has to prove their claims, while the other side just needs to create doubt by using unsubstantiated and even sometimes completely discredited claims

    No, the problem with this debate is that one side constantly insists the debate is already over and engages in propaganda tactics, while the other side that wants to see competent research that actually follows the scientific method, are derided and mocked and attacked.

    In this case, claiming that the other side is on the "gravy train" isn't supported by any evidence at all, and yet there is no way to disprove it either. In all the leaked emails regarding this, where was the shred of evidence that anybody was trying to rort taxpayers money?

    Admittedly this is cherry-picked, but in their own words [sweetness-light.com]. Pretty fucking damning.
    "Kevin and I will keep them out somehow - even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is ! " - Direct words of Phil Jones!

    As for the money? Phil Jones wasted £13 Million of Brit taxpayers' money. The phrase "gravy train" actually comes from Prof. Ross McKitrick [telegraph.co.uk], University of Buckingham, who said the following:

    "Climate sceptics are always accused of taking money from industry but it is now clear the money is on the other side.

    "There is a huge amount of money on the global warming side. Institutions like the CRU have a very large budget but that would disappear if global warming ceased to exist.

    "Scientists are enjoying a funding gravy train; there is so much money in climate research. Lots of areas of science are short of money but not climate change."

  • by oiron (697563) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:56AM (#31168268) Homepage
    Looking for reason in all the wrong places, apparently...

    WHEREAS, the United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) "Endangerment Finding" and proposed action to regulate CO2 under the Clean Air Act is based on questionable climate data and would place significant regulatory and financial burdens on all sectors of the nation's economy at a time when the nation's unemployment rate exceeds 10%

    And WHEREAS the questionability of the said data has been questioned (and debunked thoroughly) and

    WHEREAS, global temperatures have been level and declining in some areas over the past 12 years;

    WHEREAS using 12 years of data is a flaw in itself, especially given that 1998 was an El-Nino year, and WHEREAS the last decade was the hottest on record in any case and

    WHEREAS, the "hockey stick" global warming assertion has been discredited and climate alarmists' carbon dioxide-related global warming hypothesis is unable to account for the current downturn in global temperatures;

    WHEREAS that old-wives' tale was debunked recently and

    WHEREAS, there is a statistically more direct correlation between twentieth century temperature rise and Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) in the atmosphere than CO2;

    WHEREAS that was one study that actually used flawed data and didn't even bother to speculate on the physics of how CFCs could affect temperatures in the first place and

    WHEREAS, outlawed and largely phased out by 1978, in the year 2000 CFC's began to decline at approximately the same time as global temperatures began to decline;

    WHEREAS said decline in temperatures was addressed above and

    WHEREAS, emails and other communications between climate researchers around the globe, referred to as "Climategate," indicate a well organized and ongoing effort to manipulate global temperature data in order to produce a global warming outcome;

    WHEREAS a committee appointed for that purpose found no evidence against one researcher, none of the charges against the other researchers was ever proven, and effort involved in faking such a massive amount of data would make it impossible in any case and

    WHEREAS, there has been a concerted effort by climate change alarmists to marginalize those in the scientific community who are skeptical of global warming by manipulating or pressuring peer-reviewed publications to keep contrary or competing scientific viewpoints and findings on global warming from being reviewed and published;

    WHEREAS the paper under consideration was published by lowering the standards of a peer reviewed journal so that it would get in and several editors resigned from that journal for that reason and

    WHEREAS, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a blend of government officials and scientists, does no independent climate research but relies on global climate researchers;

    WHEREAS this clause only lays down the fact which is unquestioned and was the original purpose of IPCC and

    WHEREAS, Earth's climate is constantly changing with recent warming potentially an indication of a return to more normal temperatures following a prolonged cooling period from 1250 to 1860 called the "Little Ice Age";

    WHEREAS the rate of change is what matters in the first place, and the existence of a "Little Ice Age" has yet to be proven globally and

    WHEREAS, more than $7 billion annually in federal government grants, may have influenced the climate research focus and findings that have produced a "scientific consensus" at research institutions and universities;

    WHEREAS that one is simply a strawman argument and

    WHEREAS, the recently completed C

  • by Cryophallion (1129715) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @09:59AM (#31168302)

    It would also have to be a very far sighted researcher to created biased data back in the 50s. There would have to be an incredibly massive conspiracy to skew the data decades before the theories were postulated.

    Or, you could change the data retroactively:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/05/02/a_tale_of_two_thermometers/ [theregister.co.uk]

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/06/05/goddard_nasa_thermometer/ [theregister.co.uk]

  • by Shivetya (243324) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:00AM (#31168312) Homepage Journal

    and nature pumps out 600+ how much can we affect it by modifying the US production?

    So whats the rush to regulate it? Oh, thats right money. Money to the people who will game the system and then contribute to the "right" people. Money to special interest groups who will fund 529s and such to support the "right" people. So we will see all these non producers buy and sell green credits inflating their wallets at the expense of the middle class. Wall Street wins again because this is where the real push comes from. Why should people not involved in the production of CO2 get to buy and sell credits for it?

    Follow the money or worse, follow the egos. The egos of political appointees who are convinced they are right and would not care if any fact to the contrary existed. People who think that now that they "are in charge" they can fix those stupid people.

    Yeah, sorry, the reason not to rush is because the science isn't settled and way too much money and politics are involved to let science have a clear chance. Big business signed onto the global warming/climate change once they figured out how to make large amounts of money on it. GE and similar aren't there because they want to feel good, they want to make a buck. If getting the government to regulate your competitors is what it takes then so be it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:03AM (#31168342)

    This says it all:

    In the heat of the debate, the representative Mike Noel said environmentalists were part of a vast conspiracy to destroy the American way of life and control world population through forced sterilisation and abortion.

    It's obvious that people who are climate-change deniers are paranoid schizophrenics who should be placed in a mental institution for their own protection.

  • by PhilHibbs (4537) <snarks@gmail.com> on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:03AM (#31168364) Homepage Journal

    Climate change (and I mean that in the broadest sense, be it global warming or the onset of an ice age) is never a simple "everywhere gets a little bit warmer" or "everywhere gets a little bit dryer". Some places change in one way, some in another. The UK had the coldest January in 25 years, but the global average temperature in January was the highest since records began. Some places will have droughts, some places will have more snow, but it's still impossible to predict with any accuracy what will happen in any one place at any one time. That doesn't mean we should throw in the towel and say "it's impossible to be certain, so lets give up".

  • by thijsh (910751) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:19AM (#31168580) Journal
    I'd say you need to go back to right around 1990 to find the correct data... as is insinuated by graphs like this: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/b/b0/AverageTvsNumberofStations.jpg [wikimedia.org].

    Incidentallty since around that time global warming really became a political issue and a lot of money was thrown at the problem. It's not that hard to imagine that some people will cherry-pick or fudge some data to get a better grant after that...
    My rule with dubious science is: 'Follow the money', if anyone has a lot of financial gain with one outcome and their results just happen to be that outcome I call bullshit... Al Gore has financial gains, Al Gore is talking bullshit about global warming... there is no simpeler way of putting it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:26AM (#31168656)

    If you look at all the data not just that that proves global warming, temps have been going down since the 70's even though green house gasses have increased dramatically, the ice-masses have shifted not shrunk, the pole has shifted, the ice masses moved with it, sea levels have remained basically unchanged, sure some beaches erode, while others are built up, but none of the tale tell signs are actually happening.

  • by wilkinc (1247844) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @10:54AM (#31169094)
    First google hit for 'global temperature january 2010' gives these pages:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/02/january-2010-uah-global-temperature-update-0-72-deg-c/ [drroyspencer.com]

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures/ [drroyspencer.com]

    It's a personal page, but seems to be using NASA temperature readings.

  • by Maintenance Goof (1487053) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @11:23AM (#31169582)
    Sweet! Finally a State has volunteered to take the hit and prove that Texas is not the most stupid in the Union! Go Utah! Go!
  • by srjh (1316705) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @11:33AM (#31169774)

    Anything floating in water will only displace a volume of water equivalent in mass to the object itself. If ice was less dense, it would expand, but it would still displace the same amount of water since more of it will be above the surface. Therefore floating ice doesn't contribute significantly to the sea level.

    The sea level rise due to warming is from thermal expansion of the oceans (above 4 C water starts expanding again), and the melting of ice on continental shelves (such as Antarctica and Greenland).

  • by Xest (935314) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @11:36AM (#31169850)
    Ah a couple of articles from The Register, also known as the IT World's official climate denier news site.

    The Register has zero credibility when it comes to climate science because it has spent the last few years creating countless articles, many of which are full of not just inaccuracies, but sometimes outright lies. I'm sure they have the odd good point in there, but it's impossible to tell the agenda based propaganda from the valid arguments, which is actually quite ironic when that's their argument against professional climate research.

    Really, you might as well have just linked to the pope's official blog in a discussion about whether god exists as evidence that he does. If The Register is the best source you can find, then you simply do not have a real source. I'm not exactly pro-AGW theory- I'm somewhat undecided, becoming more skeptical, but any counter evidence has to be a bit more solid than something coming from The Register or the likes of Climate Audit which those articles use as their sources.
  • by BZ (40346) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @12:10PM (#31170436)

    > can there be any good argument against greater energy efficiency?

    Quite possibly, yes, locally.

    For example, my water heater (not that old, not that new) is about 85% efficient. It's expected to have a useful life of another 10 years or so. I could get that up to 90% or so by getting a brand-new high-efficiency one. My net energy savings would be on the order of $50 a year at most, which works out to $500 over those ten years. A new water heater costs more than $500.

    So the right thing to do in this case is to keep using the old heater for those 10 years. Note that this also avoids the energy use of _producing_ an extra water heater, so it's less of a loss to others than it would appear at first glance. It's clearly a win for me personally.

    Now obviously this calculation depends on the price of energy, the price of water heaters, and the efficiency gains to be had. The last of these starts hitting diminishing returns quickly once what you have is anything resembling non-crappy; for example it's hard to reduce your energy usage by 2x if you're already 60% efficient.... Much easier to do if you're 10% efficient, of course.

  • by Asic Eng (193332) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @12:18PM (#31170564)
    We are not going to get any more scientific consensus than what we already have.

    Here is the list of scientific organizations (national academies of sciences etc) which agree with the theory of global warming: list [wikipedia.org] (Global warming in the sense of: predominantly caused by humans and transforming the environmental conditions on Earth.)

    On the other hand, here is the list of scientific organizations which disagree list [wikipedia.org]

    Yeah, the latter list is empty. There are a just five organizations which don't make a clear statement [wikipedia.org] supporting all aspects of global warming, but don't oppose it either. There will never be more scientific agreement on any issue. That doesn't prove it's correct - just because it's the overwhelming consensus opinion of the scientific community doesn't mean it's necessarily right, but it's as clear an indication of the scientific opinion as it can possibly be.

    If you can't make a decision based on that, you'll not make a decision based on more research.

  • by Maintenance Goof (1487053) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @12:20PM (#31170590)
    It takes a great State like Utah to stand out amidst such gleaming examples. I must admit that South Carolina was looking pretty impressive, with the registry of subversives, but if the registration comes with a frame-able certificate, it might be a moneymaker! http://rawstory.com/2010/02/south-carolinas-subversive-activities-registration-act-force/ [rawstory.com] Texas can hold it's own though. Since the Texas Pledge of Allegiance does not say much more than that Texas is indivisible, it is a spectacular example. Considering that Texas is the only State that actually is divisible.
  • by hey! (33014) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @12:30PM (#31170766) Homepage Journal

    That's because you need more than 15 years to get statistically significant figures.

    I think you said that poorly.

    There is no sharp cut-off as to the interval size you need to be able to achieve significance. Furthermore, the *meaning* of significance is confusing when we talk about a single interval's importance in falsifying a hypothesis about the distribution of a random variable (global average temperatures)

    Imagine we play a game of coin toss with a coin I provide. I take heads, you take tails. We play four rounds, and heads comes up every time. You, naturally, suspect I'm cheating. Then our friend Dr. Jones points out that four sequential heads does not meet the 95% standard for statistical significance. You need no more greater probability for an event than p(1/20), but we only have a p(1/16) event here.

    What the deniers are doing with Dr. Jones remarks is like saying, "Four heads in a row is not a statistically significant result, which PROVES the coin is fair."

    In any case, *random sampling* is integral to the very notion of statistical significance. In a sequence of trials of a random variable, you can *always* choose an interval that makes the point you want to make: increase/no change/decrease. And technically, your interval *will* be significantly increasing or decreasing as you like.

    So basically significance or non-significance of any single sample of a random sequence doesn't prove or disprove anything, if the sample is small and the chooser gets to pick the size of the interval.

  • by hort_wort (1401963) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @12:33PM (#31170812)

    I will be convinced global warming is false when charts like these show the global temperature *drop*:
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/ [nasa.gov]

    Any questions?

  • by chris mazuc (8017) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @01:04PM (#31171486)

    No, some of us just remember the same crap in the 70s about how the world would be in a new ice age by now.

    Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Aerosols: Effects of Large Increases on Global Climate [sciencemag.org] is the only peer reviewed paper I am aware of that said anything about an ice age. So that makes 1 paper for GC and thousands of papers for GW. Are you aware of any other peer reviewed papers supporting GC? I don't have access to the articles that cite this one to see if they make the same kind of claims, however the abstracts do not.

    We also remember very good science being ripped up because the data was falsefied or poorly collected.

    Extraordinary statements require extraordinary proof. I am curious as to what you are attempting to reference.

    When you're a sheep, I don't respect your opinion.

    Insulting your readers is truly the sign of a towering intellect.

    Skeptics I have time for. Convince a skeptic, and you'll have won an actual battle.

    Consider me skeptical.

  • by baxissimo (135512) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @01:21PM (#31171854)
    I was too young in the 70's to remember the ice age predictions. But I do consider the fact that I don't remember anything about it from the 80's as a good indication that it was a much feebler and uncertain prediction than the current predictions of warming. Steven Schneider in his book mentions that he was one of the people who published in a paper in the 70's stating that human activities might trigger an ice age. But there was absolutely no certainty behind the statement. This was back when they first discovered that aerosols like sulfates could have a cooling effect, but they still had very little data about the magnitude of that cooling, and it wasn't clear then if it was greater or less than the warming caused by greenhouse gasses. So his statement was more like IF the aerosol cooling turns out to be big, THEN we may be headed for another ice age.

    I think by the 80's they were pretty certain that the cooling effect wasn't sufficient to overwhelm the warming, and since then, for the past four decades, we've had increasing certainty in warming.

    And here's another rebuttal [skepticalscience.com].

  • by Snarky McButtface (1542357) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @01:23PM (#31171890)

    I did find an interesting study of the papers written by climate scientists between 1965 and 1979. Seven articles written in that time frame predicted global cooling, forty four predicted global warming and twenty were neutral. It seems the media at the time, not the scientists, were predicting a new ice age.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/03/the-global-cooling-mole/ [realclimate.org]

  • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@NOsPAM.gmail.com> on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @02:47PM (#31173514) Journal

    Sorry I can't find a link, but I know of which he speaks. In the late 70s Time, and IIRC Newsweek and several other of the big magazines of the day were running this story about how we were headed into another ice age. There were several scientists at the time just beginning to study ice cores and were claiming we appeared to be headed straight into another major cooling period, hence another ice age.

    IIRC these guys got lots of grants, did more ice core drillings, and then quietly dropped off the radar. look up "Time 70s ice age prediction" and maybe you'll have better luck, as my Google Fu doth suckth. Correction, it was Newsweek and here [denisdutton.com] is a PDF of the 1975 issue. Hey, maybe my Google Fu is getting better!

  • by Xest (935314) on Wednesday February 17, 2010 @04:09PM (#31174938)

    But that's just it, this is part the problem with the whole anti-Global Warming crowd. They keep repeating this line, until people like you repeat it too:

    "Give us the programs and data so any high school science student can run the programs and get your results, then let "real" programmers look over the code for stupid mistakes, and real scientists check the data for stupid errors, then we might be on the way to science. All we have right now is "The dog ate my homework"."

    Yet the data is available, and always has been, here:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/data-sources/ [realclimate.org]

    Sure the CRU's model isn't available but so what?- I believe others are available. The data is there for you to come up with your own conclusions, how many people would even understand the CRU's modelling system that aren't climate scientists themselves and hence part of the so-called conspiracy anyway?

    The data is there, I'm just waiting for someone to do an objective study on it to show something contrary to the professional climatologists conclusion from it, yet all we get is this repeating of the myth that the data isn't available. Some data isn't, but most of it is- enough to be able to do peer review and conduct your own counter-studies.

    If there was anything coming out of the denier crowd that was useful then great, they might have a stronger case, but right now? They are for the most part just making shit up and using half-stories that ignore the all important context.

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