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« Green no deal | Main | Von Storch on the pause »
Saturday
Jun222013

Lilley in HuffPo

Kudos to the Huffington Post for giving Peter Lilley space to put forward a dissenting view on climate change (see here). His thoughts will be unremarkable for BH regulars, but might come as a surprise to many HuffPo readers.

What most clearly distinguishes the Catastrophic Global Warming cult from science is that it is not refutable by facts. As Parliament enacted the Climate Change Bill, on the presumption that the world was getting warmer, it snowed in London in October - the first time in 74 years. Supporters explained "extreme cold is a symptom of global warming"!

The Met Office - whose climate model is the cult's crystal ball to forecast centuries ahead - has made a series of spectacularly unreliable short term forecasts: "Our children will not experience snow" (that was 2000, before the recent run of cold winters), a barbecue summer (before the dismal 2011 summer), the drought will continue (last spring before the wettest summer on record). Now they say that rain and floods are the new normal. But - hot or cold, wet or dry - global warming is always to blame.

I'm amused by some of the comments, with the outraged HuffPuffers apparently unsure how to deal with him. Lilley's observation that he accepts the existence of the greenhouse effect has been met with angry denunciations and claims that he is arguing with 97% of scientists. His noting that he studied Physics at Cambridge is met with accusations that he is unqualified to comment.

What fun!

[Please note that comments about radiative physics will be snipped]

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Reader Comments (163)

Typical cult behaviour then?

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:25 AM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

Love this unadulterated ad hom on Huffpo
" It's quite extraordinary that unqualified people like Lilley can be allowed to rubbish a view that commands the support of 97 per cent of the scientific world. Does he think all those experts are sharing in a worldwide conspiracy? Or does he want to protect his financial interests? I suppose it's what one might expect from a second-rate failed politician turned oil magnate. What a shower!"

I suppose this moron is unaware that the Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Rajendra Kumar Pachauri, is "unqualified".

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:33 AM | Unregistered CommenterDon Keiller

"The ten warmest years on record have occurred since 1997" - Met Office

"They wave this inconvenient truth away with the non-sequitur that this decade is the hottest since records began, so the world is still warming. If you climb a hill and reach a flat plateau you are higher than before - but the plateau is flat, not rising." - Lilley


I wonder if someone will bring this to the attention of Julia Slingo and if, in turn, she will inform the Met Office about it?

Dr Betts?

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:35 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

I forget where I read this but I just posted this at huffpo

Environmentalism, in the form of Climate Change Alarmism, is a religion.

Note the structural and behavioral similarities:

Monk = Scientist - They provide the articles of the faith

Priest = Journalist - They spread the faith and convert the faithful

Sin = Carbon Emissions - How an individual's acts hurt the community

Salvation = Energy Reduction - How an individual can redeem oneself

Indulgences = Carbon Credits - Buying forgiveness

Church = IPCC - Organisation in charge of the faith

Bible = IPCC Reports - the official guidebook to the faith

Evangelists = Activists - aggressive promoters of the faith

God = Gaia - the "superhuman" who will "judge" us

Lovelock = Judas - the betrayer of the faith, the apostate

Hell = 2 degree temperature rise - hot/cold/dry/wet whatever is bad will be worse

Signs from God = Any Storm or Drought

Tithes = Carbon Taxes - every religion needs money

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterAnoneumouse

Don how can you say that, Pachauri writes novels, he must be qualified.

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterMartyn

@anonemouse

Spot on!

Some additions:

Garden of Eden : pre-industrial world

The Serpent : Fossil fuel companies

The Apple : Burning Things

Rituals: Erecting Wind Farms. 'Burning' deniers, 'stoning' apostates.

Warming : God ...invisible, undetectable, unknowable but somehow universal

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:39 AM Anoneumouse

Unbelievers = Deniers - to be detested and cast into darkness

The Devil = Big Oil - the embodiment of Evil

Demons = Sceptics, in the pay of Big Oil, vital to cast them out.

Evil Spirit = Greenhouse Gas - it cannot be seen nor touched, but its effects can be felt, even physically.

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Lilley said: 'The Met Office - whose climate model is the cult's crystal ball to forecast centuries ahead - has made a series of spectacularly unreliable short term forecasts: "Our children will not experience snow" (that was 2000, before the recent run of cold winters),'

Is he referring to David Viner's comment? Not the Met Office.

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterCharlie Flindt

@charlie flndt

'Is he referring to David Viner's comment? Not the Met Office'

Even worse. The 'Climate Research Unit' at UEA. What a fine body that is!

Dripping with talent, integrity and leading edge science. See Climategate (esp Harry_Read_Me) for details.

PS: Record keeping not their speciality...so don't ask for anything in case you find something wrong with it.

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

Re: Charlie Flindt

He might be referring to this:

David Parker, at the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in Berkshire, says ultimately, British children could have only virtual experience of snow. Via the internet, they might wonder at polar scenes - or eventually "feel" virtual cold.

This was in the same article as the David Viner comment.

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:11 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

The response of AGW believers at HuffPo is eerily similar to that of outraged creationists hearing about evolution.

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:29 AM | Unregistered Commenterlurker, passing through laughing

I think the main link between Cagw and religion is that both use the same blackmail - terrible things arr going to happen to you in the distant future unless you do what I say now.

Minor correction - barby summer was 2009.

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:31 AM | Registered CommenterPaul Matthews

While I mostly agree, it probably wont add weight to his point that he is associated with Tethys Petroleum.

http://www.tethyspetroleum.com/tethys/aboutmgntcontent.action?managementType=BOD

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM | Unregistered Commenterpax

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:35 AM | Martin A

Martin I think Richard was seen to say that he believes that a statement such as 'the 10 warmest years have all occurred in the last 13 years' or some such, has scientific merit. I think it was on a thread over at myclimateandme.

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:56 AM | Unregistered CommenternoTrohpywins

@Anoneumouse Tony Aardvark attrubuted those comments to naidruag in the Guardian..(naidruag's comment on Environmentalism is not a religion.)
- Yet when you check his profile you can see all his comments have been DISAPPEARED "naidruag hasn't yet commented on the Guardian."..although it shows 108 times people replied to his various comments in the 1 week he was allowed to post.
commentIsFree. - Are there any other opinions ? "No only ours, ours, ours"

Jun 22, 2013 at 11:56 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Tethys Petroleum value down to £151.24 m from the £220m that it was 2 years ago
.. is that BIG OIL ?.. it's quite a bit smaller than some of the multi-national eco-charities

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:10 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

un 22, 2013 at 10:35 AM | Martin A

Martin I think Richard was seen to say that he believes that a statement such as 'the 10 warmest years have all occurred in the last 13 years' or some such, has scientific merit. I think it was on a thread over at myclimateandme.
Jun 22, 2013 at 11:56 AM noTrohpywins

That's what I remember too.

Richard Betts has a difficult job at the MO's "Outreach Representative". He is not allowed to say that his employer has got it wrong, nor his colleagues. But he does not tell lies either.

I imagined when he said that that statement "has scientific merit" he simply meant that it was not untrue and nothing more than that. Although I imagine he hoped that the reply would lead you to think it meant something more profound. His senior colleague obviously uses it to convince everyone that global warming is still in full swing.

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:23 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

The total WWF Network income grew significantly, rising EUR 81 million to EUR 525 million - an increase of more than 18%. This was largely driven by an increase in investment income.

WWF could buy Tethys three times over every year.

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS


Is he referring to David Viner's comment? Not the Met Office.
Jun 22, 2013 at 10:53 AM Charlie Flindt

The 'Climate Research Unit' at UEA. What a fine body that is!

Dripping with talent, integrity and leading edge science. See Climategate (esp Harry_Read_Me) for details.

PS: Record keeping not their speciality...so don't ask for anything in case you find something wrong with it.
Jun 22, 2013 at 11:07 AM Latimer Alder

There is a widespread misconception that the CRU is part of the Met Office. Eg Proessor Murry Salby refers to "The Met Office's Climate Research Unit" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ROw_cDKwc0

The Met Office obviously plays an important part in financing it so Lilley's mistake not entirely wide of the mark.

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:28 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

By sorting Huff Po comments by popularity
"All you arguments are invalid cos of financial interest" I paraphrase

- as someone points out Hansen gets more money (NTM Gore)
...and what about the directors & fundraisers for the the multi-national eco-charities ?
- even Bill Mckibben for JUST 1 of his jobs 10 hours/week work for an enviro trust board he gets $500 per week

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:31 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Don Keller tells us of this comment

"a view that commands the support of 97 per cent of the scientific world"

The usual morphing - 97% of climate scientists from a crass "survey" beomes 97% of the scientific world!

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterConfusedPhoton

The Met Office obviously plays an important part in financing it so Lilley's mistake not entirely wide of the mark.
Jun 22, 2013 at 12:28 PM Martin A

CORRECTION - In view of the posting above, Lilley DID NOT make a mistake about who spoke about children not knowing what snow was in the future.

Jun 22, 2013 at 12:45 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

But Lilley's dreadfully wrong to condemn Climate Alchemy. After all, there has been Global Warming as a result of man's presence. It's just that it was from Asian aerosols, not CO2, and it has saturated......:o)

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlecM

anonemouse

You're a brave man making unfavourable biblical comparisons to Americans - you'll be struck down!

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:40 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

IMO it's time to acknowledge that AGW is a totally failed "theory". It has predicted nothing correctly, it was not constructed with pass/fail falsification criteria and it remains nothing more than an untested hypothesis.

Coming at it from this angle will sort the wheat from the chaff - instead of taking the view all is rosy with its theoretical basis and allowing if forever to come good, taking the view that every element is wrong, and testing it accordingly, will establish what to retain and what to revise.

Perhaps I'm wrong - if anybody has any examples of specific successes for this "science" please share them. Otherwise I'm of the opinion it is simply A Big Myth that has grown out of control which will need a sustained and specific effort to lay it to rest.

I also encourage Peter Lilley to take care with his support for a no feedback climate sensitivity value as quoted at HuffPo. AFAICT this has also become part of The Big Myth without a single source, unambigous reference derivation and justification. If this does exist, once again, I'd be grateful for the reference.

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:42 PM | Unregistered Commenternot banned yet

"I also encourage Peter Lilley to take care with his support for a no
feedback climate sensitivity value as quoted at HuffPo. AFAICT
this has also become part of The Big Myth without a single source,
unambigous reference derivation and justification. If this does
exist, once again, I'd be grateful for the reference."

I agree, where does the magic 1.2 degrees or whatever come from. The only basic way to get there I believe is my using a terrible model for how the atmosphere behaves.

I do also see good reasons why someone such as Lilly may concede that point though, as unimportant to the main argument.

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterRob Burton

Global Warming as a 21st Century Religion that is technically wrong.

The Story of Clark Kent and Marlon Brandon as his Father Jorrell the Chief Scientice who predicts the destruction of his planet Kryton but to save his son has to abandon him ,who then becomes the Great Messiah else where who gets his powers from god.

Superman is the Story of .Moses rewritten for a modern age.

Helen of Troy .Zuess Jason and the Argonaunts, Arabian Nights,King Arthur Star Trek, Star Wars XBox Halo Game of Thrones it all mythology ageless entertaining stories.

I have only ever seen the Film Cleopatra with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton only once.But i have seen Carry On Cleo with Sid James and Kenneth Williams many times.The most memorable scene in both films is where they get the Oracle the Wise Man to look into the flames and predict the future.

Thats how Micheal Mann and the rest of the Climate Scientists would like to see themselves. They think they are great modern Wise Oracles of Knowledge.Climate Change is the mythical narrative they have created for themselves.And Climate Scientists are not preachers either.That is just too easy to mock and dismiss

Climate Skepticism is still a Cinderella Issue.Arguing over dots on a graph does not get many headlines but impending Climate Change Disasters followed Climate Change Mitigation Hypocrisy and Incriminating Hacked Email Scandals do.

Just got to remember Politics is Showbiz for Ugly People ,Science is simply Showbiz for Clever Kids.
Climate Change is not a 21 Century Religion its 21 Century Mythology.

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

Thanks Rob - I must differ though re: conceding untested and unsupported points. IMO that is the way Myths evolve.

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:59 PM | Unregistered Commenternot banned yet

Can we not kill the '97% of scientists' rubbish somehow, once and for all..?
This lie is so big, and repeated so often, that it has become the truth (to paraphrase Goebbels)...

Jun 22, 2013 at 2:16 PM | Unregistered Commentersherlock1

@sherlock1

There's no way of killing it: the 97% claim is a marketing exercise. The paper published to support that marketing exercise appeared in a journal which includes that man of integrity Peter Gleick on its editorial board, so no chance whatsoever of any rebuttal appearing (as Richard Tol has now discovered).

Even if by some chance some paper was published to discredit the claim, the "97%" has appeared in enough headlines to have entered the consciousness (such as it is) of all the credulous environmental journalists who keep repeating it endlessly.

At least when the whole thing collapses, we'll have the satisfaction of being able to say "97% of you lot were wrong" (though I suspect when that day arrives, the only people who'll be speaking out in public will be claiming they were among the 3%!).

Jun 22, 2013 at 2:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterTurning Tide

"Big Oil, I don't have to listen lah, lah, lah" Ad Hominem fallacy
The "He would say that would say that wouldn't he ?" or vested interest fallacy
- There must be an easy way to shoot this "jump to conclusion" argument down
Person 1 is claiming Y.
Person 1 has a vested interest in Y being true.
Therefore, Y is false.
"Because this reasoning attacks the reasoner rather than the reasoning itself, it is a kind of Ad Hominem fallacy."

- I would say "yes we are right to be suspicious of someone ones motives, bias or vested interests means we should look out for fallacies in their arguments,
but IT DOES NOT INVALIDATE their arguments in itself "
- almost everyone has some vested interest in the Climate Change debate so on the Huff&Puff commenters logic that means we should exclude them all from debate

- Like us all, Oil industry people have a democratic right to participate in the debate
1. they too pay the taxes that pay for Climate Change policies
2. We all enjoy the benefits of their products.

Jun 22, 2013 at 2:50 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Jun 22, 2013 at 1:59 PM | not banned yet

I do agree you. The problem with quibbling about the 1.2 degree point is you can then be accused of 'denying basic physics'. As ha been asked multiple times by different people, where is the source and derivation for this often repeated point?

Jun 22, 2013 at 2:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterRob Burton

@sherlock1 we can build on it by saying
"97% of climate models are useless at predicting the future"
* technically it's 100%

Jun 22, 2013 at 2:53 PM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

"The ten warmest years on record ... " include 1934, 1921 and 1931 in the USA.

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterBruce

Rob - I guess the short response to such an accusation is:

"But without a reference, I have nothing to agree with!" :-)

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:12 PM | Unregistered Commenternot banned yet

Bruce - I had put this on unthreaded but I guess it is justified here seeing as Arctic meltdown has been an oft cited manifestation of AGW.

http://www.drroyspencer.com/2013/06/who-dares-to-deny-arctic-warming/

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:16 PM | Unregistered Commenternot banned yet

Around 97% of kids in the school down the road wear the same uniform. They are told to. If they don't, they will be thrown out in the street.


Lovelock on scientists

. If we had some really good scientists it wouldn't be a problem, but we've got so many dumbos who just can't say anything, or who are afraid to say anything. They're not free agents.


http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/blog/2010/mar/29/james-lovelock

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:20 PM | Unregistered CommentereSmiff

The tenor of the comments closely tracks the tenor of their until-now columns on this subject, many of them written by actors and actresses, people well-known for their expertise in this area.

Unfortunately, Huffpost provides plenty of comfort to the folks who believe that US Liberalism is populated for the most part by idiots.

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:22 PM | Registered Commenterjferguson

Re the comments: There is nothing like an event such as this to show us the extent to which people have been propagandized over the decades.

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoblesse Oblige

They'll puff, and they'll puff, and they'll blow their own house down. For it is built of cards.

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:32 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterAnoneumouse

You read it here:
http://hockeyschtick.blogspot.se/2012/06/environmentalist-says-calling.html

It originated from a comment at the Guardian as referenced:
Response to naidruag, 26 June 2012 4:11pm

The comment has now been cast into darkness:
http://discussion.guardian.co.uk/comment-permalink/16830463

Jun 22, 2013 at 3:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Silver

As far as understand it he is only temporary in the job. So he may only have a short time to get the message out that many people think that 'climate science' is just scaremongering and contains little science.

Jun 22, 2013 at 6:04 PM | Unregistered Commentertckev

I thought the article by Peter Lilley was very good and koodoes to the Huffington Post for posting it, radiative physics.

The comments were predictably bad but surprisingly illustrative of Lilley's thesis, radiative physics.

I enjoyed annoumouses (?speeling?) side by side comparison to religion, radiative physics.

* Please use the voice of Graham Chapman when reading the above, radiative physics.

Jun 22, 2013 at 6:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeff Norman

stewgreen on Jun 22, 2013 at 2:53 PM 'technically it's 100%'

Be gentler, even if they don't deserve it:

97% of climate models are useless at predicting the future.

The other 3% aren't much cop either!

Jun 22, 2013 at 6:54 PM | Registered CommenterRobert Christopher

Sorry to go OT

Question for Philip Bratby and Dellingpole.

Philip and James please check this link out

http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2012/natwest-renewables

Watching Columbo this afternoon there was advert for Nat West Bank.Renewable Energy Loans for Wind turbines for farmers.Seem that Tim Yeo has gone and Nat West Bank are hustling in on the Wind Turbine Action.

I have this advert on Pause on Sky Plus at the moment.Farming couple watching a Turbine being erected on their farm.Estimate from the height of the farm house and the guys installing say 6 foot tall each The Turbine stem is about 70 foot high .The blades say a third the length about 20 foot,
What interesting is the distance from the Farm house.I would say about less than 100 meters.Monstrous looking high thing.Worry about the Blades flying off in a hurricane.Something else to ask Nat West.

Interesting to find out exactly where this supposed farm is and how far the turbine is from their farm house and how much noise it makes.

Luckily from the Nat West Renewable Website i have their Phone Number 02074922222

And if they say its just a representation and a bit of CGI i also have the phone number for the Advertizing Standards Agency 08000929116.

If i was a farmer i would rather have a bigger VAT tax break on Diesel than a load of noisy Turbines.There are not many battery powered tractors.Farmers use bottled gas to heat Livestock Barns and Chicken Coups.Few phone calls for Monday morning me thinks.

Jun 22, 2013 at 7:49 PM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

>The response of AGW believers at HuffPo is eerily similar to that of outraged creationists hearing about evolution.

Most of the Gaiaists do seem to be economic creationists (Marx worshippers only an economic god can create complex economies).

Jun 22, 2013 at 8:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterAC1

Richard Betts has a difficult job at the MO's "Outreach Representative". He is not allowed to say that his employer has got it wrong, nor his colleagues. But he does not tell lies either

Depends on how you define a lie. He has not been honest with the truth that for sure. Committed totally to the veracity of climate models and that they are validated and verified. Now that could just be stupidity akin to the Jones incompetence or .......

I don't trust Betts any more than I do the rest of the UK Met Off people however I do believe that many of them find themselves in a very uncomfortable place with no means of escape except by leaving their employment. However, I don't believe that Betts is one of those either; I would like to see all of them standing by the scientific principles they would have been given at the outset of their higher education. It's that lack of willingness to stand and be counted that has lead to this costly debacle. As I once said to Betts, I am disgusted with them all for their willingness to sacrifice the poor, vulnerable people of the world to their funding needs.

Jun 22, 2013 at 8:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

Refreshing to see a member of the Energy and Climate Change Committee (Peter Lilley) challenging Stern economic models directly at the coal face with mainstream modeller Chris Hope, and even more to see civility on both sides. Depressing to regard such robust due diligence as so exceptional.

http://www.chrishopepolicy.com/2012/09/errors-in-peter-lilleys-critique-of-stern/

Jun 22, 2013 at 9:50 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

jamspid,

Scything whirlygig image of birdchopping avian nightmares.

I was, hmm was - a fairly happy bunny, cos the Lions won today albeit they were at sixes and sevens at times but on reading your post - what a way to deflate my sails. I'd be willing to bet that, the farmer [maybe he's an actor] will be appearing on global warming telly [beeb] soon enough - on Countryfile maybe?

Jun 22, 2013 at 10:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Lilley's article read like a political speech, full of emotional triggers and short on information. I presume it was aimed at the lowest common denomenator, people without the education or the wit to see through such manipulative bullshit.

Jun 23, 2013 at 12:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic Man

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