February 11, 2014

Climate Change This Week: Faulty Accounting

Could the all the erroneous fear-mongering lead to a lingering distrust of science?

An audit by the Office of the Inspector General found that the State Department’s $75 million tab for climate change programs included $600,000 that couldn’t be accounted for. That may be seen as nothing more than a rounding error, but it was also a sign of burning cash and fudging data. The OIG pointed out the recipients in question “did not fully … ensure that the data used in reporting programmatic results were complete, accurate, consistent, and supportable.”

Buttressing this revelation about “fudging” the data, at a time when earlier climate models estimated we had been significantly warmer, the amount of ice and snow cover burying most of the nation signifies otherwise. Satellite reporting this week showed the Great Lakes had their greatest ice cover in two decades, with Lake Superior and Lake Erie being almost totally frozen.

Yet there are some in Congress who continue to use incomplete, inaccurate, inconsistent and unsupportable data to plod on with their tired tales of man-made climate change. After all, there’s a lot of government money to be redistributed and regulations to be handed down from on high. The Safe Climate Caucus (yes, that’s a real thing), chaired by retiring Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), can’t get the time of day in a GOP-controlled House, so the Caucus is enlisting the help of an all too willing Leftmedia. Regardless of the evidence mounting against man-made climate change, Waxman believes the American people will “wake up” and ask “how can you deny this?”

But the chances are greater that a new skepticism of science could arise, argues Australian climate scientist Garth Paltridge. He writes that “the average man in the street … is beginning to suspect that it is politics rather than science which is driving the issue,” fretting that this may put an end to the belief in the honesty of science for years to come. Having to dig out from another foot of snow may also be a sign of this challenge to conventional wisdom.

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