Alaska firestorm: Leading GOP Senate candidate Joe Miller says “We havent heard theres man-made global warming.”

The leading Republican candidate for Senate from the state that’s Ground Zero for climate change is a flat-out denier of human-caused global warming. He apparently thinks the term “greenhouse gases” is just a figure of speech (see “10 indicators of a human fingerprint on climate change”). Hard to believe that anti-EPA Lisa “dirty air” Murkowski is too liberal, too “green” for Alaska. No worries though — if they keep electing people who oppose action on climate, there won’t be much greenery left between the bark beetles and forest fires.Think Progress has the story of yet another right-wing flat-Earther, fiery Joe Miller:Following last night’s GOP Senate primary in Alaska, the race is “too close to call” between incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R) and challenger Joe Miller. As of this writing, with “98 percent of precincts counted, Murkowski trailed political newcomer Joe Miller by 1,960 votes out of more than 91,000 counted.”

Earlier this week, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner interviewed Miller, probing him on a variety of issues. On global warming, Miller didn’t deny the existence of climate change, but that human activity was not responsible for it. He told the newspaper that “temperature change is a part of the process of our existence,” and that we “haven’t heard there’s man-made global warming”:

Miller doesn’t doubt that the climate changing, only to what extent humans are causing climate change. “I think it’s undeniable, that anyone who has looked at the natural record of the Earth can see significant cyclical changes well before the industrial age, so we know the temperature change is part of the process of our existence, and frankly, you’re probably aware in the ’70s there were real concerns about global cooling,” he said. […]

“We haven’t heard there’s man-made global warming,” he said. “Second, even if we proved that, we have not proven we have a solution that works. And third, even if we’ve proven that, we haven’t done a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether the solutions like cap-and-trade that Sen. Murkowski has proposed are actually worth the cost to people.”

If Miller is unconvinced of the existence of “man-made” global warming, all he has to do is pay attention to the overwhelming consensus of the scientific community. In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a UN group “made up of hundreds of scientists from 113 countries” determined that “human-generated greenhouse gases account for most of the global rise in temperatures over the past half-century.” A 2009 study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States found that “97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets” of the IPCC’s conclusion that man-made greenhouse gases are responsible for the planet warming.


Skeptical Science, using data from several government agencies that monitor the global climate, created this graph demonstrating how the rise in carbon dioxide has closely tracked a rise in global temperature over time:

— This is a TP cross post.

JR UPDATE: How much disinformation does fire-starter Joe Miller push. Here’s his campaign website:

The science supporting manmade climate change is inconclusive. Nothing typifies that more than the metamorphosis in terminology being used. A few years ago, the dire warnings coming from Al Gore and others all spoke of “Global Warming.” The term “Greenhouse Gas” itself conjures up images of the unnatural heat found in a manmade environment. However, since the trend in more recent years has been towards cooler temperatures, those (like Senator Murkowski and others) pushing for cap and trade and other carbon emission reducing legislation have had to change their terminology to “Climate Change.” Should we take drastic measures to combat something that may not even exist, burdening our already struggling economy with billions in new taxes and regulations?

Aside from the fact that the trend toward warming on the land and ocean continues apace — see Yes, global warming has continued since 1998 — it was GOP strategist and wordmeister Frank Luntz who counseled in a confidential 2003 memo that the Administration and conservatives should stop using the term “global warming” because it was too frightening:

It’s time for us to start talking about “climate change” instead of global warming and “conservation” instead of preservation.1) “Climate change” is less frightening than “global warming”. As one focus group participant noted, climate change “sounds like you’re going from Pittsburgh to Fort Lauderdale.” While global warming has catastrophic connotations attached to it, climate change suggests a more controllable and less emotional challenge.

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every GOP Senate candidate in NH is a global warming denier