It always amazes me how many climate bloggers don’t know the scientific literature and don’t use Google to check key facts.
And so, in the annals of phony attacks on climate realists, such as International Energy Agency chief economist Fatih Birol (and me), we now have the most inane. Our bunny friend Eli Rabbet has a brilliant post nibbling on the know-nothings who foisted this inanity on the blogosphere (click here, reposted below).
But the story is so entertainingly informative (informatively entertaining?) as to how the blogosphere fabricates attacks on people that I’ll run through the key elements. On Friday, May 24, I published a piece headlined “IEA: Global CO2 Emissions Hit New Record In 2011, Keeping World On Track For ‘Devastating’ 11°F Warming.”
I have written literally dozens and dozens of posts explaining that this is what the IEA (and others) now says is possible by 2100. Here, for instance, is an M.I.T. figure I use a lot:
Humanity’s Choice (via M.I.T.): Inaction (“No Policy”) eliminates most of the uncertainty about whether or not future warming will be catastrophic. Aggressive emissions reductions dramatically improves humanity’s chances. Note that this is 2091-2100 surface warming compared to 1981-2000 — and the mean warming during that time is 5.17°C [See Table 4], which means from preindustrial times to 2100, the total warming would likely exceed 5.7°C.
I confess I thought this was so obvious that it slipped my mind to actually put in the phrase “by 2100.” But the original Reuters story (here) did have an obvious mistake:
“When I look at this data, the trend is perfectly in line with a temperature increase of 6 degrees Celsius (by 2050), which would have devastating consequences for the planet,” Fatih Birol, IEA’s chief economist told Reuters.
Again, I thought the mistake, “(by 2050),” was so obviously one the reporter foisted on Birol with the parenthetical comment that I simply omitted it in my post:
“When I look at this data, the trend is perfectly in line with a temperature increase of 6 degrees Celsius [11°F], which would have devastating consequences for the planet.”
I (too) cleverly took out the obviously incorrect parenthetical comment by the reporter and replaced it with Fahrenheit conversion. I had intended when I was writing the article to mention that Reuters made a mistake but it slipped my mind by the time I finished.
Note to self: Always do things when you think of them and don’t expect to remember them at some later time!
When a commenter went to the original Reuters piece and pointed out that 2050 “makes no sense,” I noted in the comments “I meant to post that 2050 is obviously a mistake by the reporter.”
What I didn’t know — because I have stopped reading the blogs of the disinformers and confusionists since their traffic and their impact hit a brick wall a long while ago — is that some easily and/or willfully confused bloggers spun up a phony attack on Birol (and me) because they assumed, nonsensically:
- That Birol made the mistake, not the reporter.
- That I agreed with the mistake — even though I had never posted it and in fact had obviously omitted it from my post!
Now what makes this exemplary of the kind of nonsense the disinformers and confusionists push on a regular basis is that anybody who actually had a moment’s doubt about the timeframe over which IEA believes the warming will occur could find out the answer in under 30 seconds on Google!
Just Google “IEA 6C Warming” and the second hit is this UK Guardian piece from April 24 of this year, “Governments failing to avert catastrophic climate change, IEA warns,” about IEA executive director Maria van der Hoeven:
On current form, she warns, the world is on track for warming of 6C by the end of the century – a level that would create catastrophe, wiping out agriculture in many areas and rendering swathes of the globe uninhabitable, as well as raising sea levels and causing mass migration, according to scientists.
And just in case there was any confusion, the article quotes her directly two paragraphs later:
“Energy-related CO2 emissions are at historic highs, and under current policies, we estimate that energy use and CO2 emissions would increase by a third by 2020, and almost double by 2050. This would be likely to send global temperatures at least 6C higher within this century.”
Talk about much ado about nothing. Or is that much ado from know nothings?
I should add that whether the 11F warming is from preindustrial levels or just the warming this century or it doesn’t happen until say 2125 is beyond irrelevant. The first 4C (7F) of warming is going to destroy a livable climate, possibly for centuries, and what comes after that is, well, beyond imagining. Still, the planet would almost certainly keep warming past 2100 if we were on the high emission scenario:
- Science stunner — On our current emissions path, CO2 levels in 2100 will hit levels last seen when the Earth was 29°F (16°C) hotter: Paleoclimate data suggests CO2 “may have at least twice the effect on global temperatures than currently projected by computer models”
Steve Easterbrook’s post “A first glimpse at model results for the next IPCC assessment” shows that for the scenario where there is (5°C) 9°F warming by 2100 (from preindustrial levels), you get another 7°F warming by 2300. Of course, folks that aren’t motivated to avoid the civilization-destroying 9°F by 2100 won’t be moved by whatever happens after that.
I’ll end my post with Birol’s great quote from late last year, World on Pace for 11°F Warming, “Even School Children Know This Will Have Catastrophic Implications for All of Us.” If only school children blogged more!
Finally, I’ll let our hopping mad friend Eli Rabett explain the full story.