John Locke Foundation: Echoes of Climate Change Denial

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EnvironmentNC, the John Locke Foundation’s environmental front group, has discovered another sterling source for discredited science: it’s called ICECAP, a group that put its “reputation” on the line yesterday by guessing that 2007 may not rank as the warmest year on record in the Northern Hemisphere.

One might reasonably ask: so what? The issue of our times is global warming, not hemispheric anomalies. Yet, the agenda-driven ICECAP gets all breathless because this year’s abnormality seems to be roughly in keeping with the trend.

Looking at recent temperature records, EnvironmentNC went a step further to “note the distinct lack of overall warming since 1998.” Here’s a wonderful example of the quality of the John Locke Foundation analysis: when dealing with a long term trend – a global climate that in the past has taken many millennia to shift half the distance that our climate has changed this century – the JLF picks out a nine-year span and presents it as evidence that climate change has stopped.

We’re to assume, perhaps, that the Tooth Fairy put a halt to it as a favor to George Bush’s kids – certainly EnvironmentNC has offered no other working theory.

It’s also worth having a closer look at ICECAP, and especially at their list of “experts” – Fred Singer, Pat Michaels, Sallie Balliunis, Robert Balling, these “usual suspects” among climate change deniers. Check any name from the ICECAP list against the DeSmogBlog Denier Database and you’re likely to find a clapped out academic career and, in the worst cases (Singer, Michaels) direct links to the coal and oil industries. Singer, especially, seemed to take up the climate cause only after the “scientific” defence of second-hand smoke became so offensive that even Philip Morris stopped paying him to argue their case. Of course, the John Locke Foundation is also linked through to Philip Morris: birds of a feather …

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