Climate Change- Misinformation Overload

http://www.abc.net.au/mediawatch/transcripts/s3169309.htm

It seems to be becoming a bit religious this climate change debate, with satan setting the stage in dark black soot “Carbon” and god booming down his ten commandments in the form of these so called “renewables”. In fact if you look hard there are quite a few similarities between religion in general and the new Climate Change trend -just like if you don’t worship your god you might go to hell; and if you don’t spite evil satan (carbon) the world will end in an apocalypse of storms and increasingly frequent natural disasters. The scary similarity is that in both religion and climate change- a vast range of those who support the arguments know little of the science and a lot of the hype.

Everynow and then I’ll hear things from people who have no background in meteorology, geology, or oceanography say things like: “awww seen all these storms lately? They say its only gonna get worse with all this climate change happening…” They? Who? Who says it’s going to get worse?! Can you quote the peer reviewed scientific paper out there that says storms will get more frequent and that natural disasters are on the rise?! I’m not a climate change sceptic it just so happens but it seems so me that all the hype around this climate change debate has been having things passed as general consensus just because the “they” media say it is. When really, much of the information delivered to the public is concocted by journalists who skew facts, and cherry pick information to make things look a hell of a lot more dramatic than they actually are. The fact is that our world is a complexly dynamic system and most people will never understand even the basic science behind it but will trust as they always have; in hearsay and media.

This makes it difficult for those who do know the science and are trying to convey the knowledge in a truthful and scientific manner. It’s happening at both ends however; there are the climate change supporters who dramatise everything and make the public think the world is going to end and there are the climate change sceptics who’ll boast anything that supports their argument true or not. At the top theres a link from abc’s media watch on a handful of Australian radio presenters who are climate sceptics and are getting their facts wrong.

After watching the show you’ll have soon caught on that the climate sceptic presenters are quite fond of Ian Plimer. They seem to think that because he is a geologist he knows more than these other Climate Scientists, I mean what would they know? Well I am a geologist and I do believe that carbon dioxide from humans is having an advanced effect on our environment, to the point where it will be detrimental to human existence on Earth, however I don’t think it will have a detrimental effect to the Earth and that whatever negative effects towards our environment will be reversible by adaptation and evolution with humans or without… I studied at the University of Adelaide under Ian Plimer and I’ll say nothing bad of his teaching techniques in fact he was perhaps the best lecturer I’ve ever had. However, his views on carbon dioxide and climate are not scientifically justified in his book Heaven and Earth.

In the Media Watch program Alan Jones from 2GB pumped out a figure that humans only produce only .001% of the carbon dioxide in the air. This figure for anyone who has studied science past year 11 would be a phenomenally incorrect one! However, I had to wonder where he got this figure from. Recently, I have read Ian Plimer’s book Heaven and Earth and on the second page of the introduction I found the mysterious .001% figure that I am reasonably sure Alan Jones obtained:

Despite well documented linkages between climate and solar activity, the Sun tends to be brushed aside as the driver of climate on Earth in place of a trace gas (carbon dioxide-CO2), most of which derives from natural processes. The CO2 in the atmosphere is only 0.001% of the total held in the oceans, surface rocks, air, soils and life.”

This perplexing and unreferenced statement made by Plimer is even wrong in itself; what does he mean by air? Even if the statement is true, which I can’t be sure unless I’ve actually read a scientific article that proves it which Plimer so unhelpfully did not provide, it amounts to nothing. A scientist will look at the statement and think “so what?” The statement is worded in a misleading way, downplaying the effect of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and could be similar to saying: “the uranium in Australia is only .000000000000000001% of the total held in the WHOLE UNIVERSE…” It might be true, but it’s completely irrelevant because Australia has a lot of uranium compared with other countries. Plimer’s statement is irrelevant to the argument at hand, which is that there is a significant amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from human emissions and it is having a detrimental effect on our environment. Anyone who takes the time to read Ian Plimer’s book will find there are numerous misleading comments similar to this one, along with various unreferenced tables, graphs and statements. It’s ironic the books motto is “Global Warming: The Missing Science”…indeed. If anyone wants a rundown of this poorly referenced and opinion based book they can find it at http://www.bravenewclimate.com

The above link is the recent Carbon Tax ad campaign with Australian actors taken apart by an unknown anti-carbon tax party… It’s an outstanding example of the complete bullshit being spat out from both sides of the climate debate, from celebrities to government to anti-carbon tax activists and to the media in general. They smear the arguments and overdramatise with misleading statements.

So there you have it, rather than relying on misinformed radio talk show hosts and celebrities like Cate Blanchett- lets rely on the professionals folks… The scientists.

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4 Responses to Climate Change- Misinformation Overload

  1. Can you quote the peer reviewed scientific paper out there that says storms will get more frequent and that natural disasters are on the rise?

    have a read
    http://www.climate.org/topics/extreme-weather/index.html

    • I’ll just point out that I wasn’t saying that carbon emissions aren’t causing more frequent storms and unstable weather. On the contrary I think that is the case. My point was merely that people believe anything and everything they hear through the media without question, and in a world so dependent on media it’s a very dangerous thing.

  2. It is very difficult to control the media when there is freedom of the press but would have to audit them to see how to inform and not misinform because that’s what’s going on “lack of control.”

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