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Joe Bastardi / March 14, 2014

I’ve Figured Out the AGW Strategy

I am starting to think the AGW/climate change/climate disruption/carbon pollution agenda is to simply make such outrageous comments that my side gets tired of having to deal with it. This hit me a couple of nights ago when I tried to watch five minutes of the “all nighter clim-a-thon” being staged by a select group of senators. After a couple of minutes – and I will not say what I heard or who said it to set me off – I decided it was enough, so I watched something with more substance – Dallas – on TNT. Oddly enough Bobby Ewing stopped his nephew JR Jr from fracking his part of Southfork by saying there was an endangered species on the property (the lean Prairie Chicken I think it was). Even Dallas has an energy-based debate going on. Interestingly enough Southfork, which in the show is a working cattle ranch, is also in the cross hairs of climate change since, after all, we all know cows cause increases in methane which is one of those dreaded greenhouse gasses that, if left unchecked, will take the Earth to Venetian temperatures (sarcasm).

I am starting to think the AGW/climate change/climate disruption/carbon pollution agenda is to simply make such outrageous comments that my side gets tired of having to deal with it. This hit me a couple of nights ago when I tried to watch five minutes of the “all-nighter clim-a-thon” being staged by a select group of senators. After a few minutes – and I will not say what I heard or who said it to set me off – I decided it was enough, so I watched something with more substance – “Dallas” – on TNT.

Oddly enough, Bobby Ewing stopped his nephew from fracking his part of Southfork by saying there was an endangered species on the property (the lean Prairie Chicken, I think it was). Even Dallas has an energy-based debate going on. Interestingly enough, Southfork, which in the show is a working cattle ranch, is also in the crosshairs of climate change since, after all, we all know cows cause increases in methane, which is one of those dreaded greenhouse gasses that, if left unchecked, will take Earth to Venetian temperatures (sarcasm).

And besides, eating meat is bad for you. I never have steak for dinner anymore – it’s usually breakfast, when I can afford it. (Which is getting rarer. Then again, that is how I like my steaks: rare.)

So when I was writing this week, I decided to have a little fun and pull out an outrageous example of how absurd this is getting. And I am not going to pick on the obvious – some of the leaders of our government pushing all this. Instead I want you to think about this headline:

>

Will climate change bring back SMALLPOX? Siberian corpses could ooze contagious virus if graveyards thaw out, claim scientists


• The disease, which causes a painful blistering rash and sometimes blindness and death, was wiped out in 1979
• Some experts fear defrosting bodies in Siberia could potentially begin a cycle of infection, if a person makes contact with remains
• Defrosting bodies are coming to light as a result of global warming, although so far scientists have not found any remains with a virus in them

This is fascinating for a couple of reasons. Just how long has Siberia been warm where all these corpses are thawing out? Well, over the last three years, it hasn’t been warmer than normal except near the Arctic Circle, where it’s so cold anyway that a one-degree rise isn’t that big a deal. Besides, who is buried in the Arctic Ocean? (Maybe that is where Jimmy Hoffa is…)

And if they were thawing before, they certainly aren’t this winter!

But this is not the real question. Again, think about the extremity of foolishness going on here. Climate Ambulance Chasers are so foolish that they don’t even stop to think: Just how did they bury the people in the first place if the ground wasn’t thawed out before? It had to be warm enough to dig deep enough to bury these people – or did they have some type of drill none of us know about during the time of small pox? The whole article supports the notion of natural climate variations, because if it warms enough to thaw out these graveyards, it is merely warming to where it had to be before. You can’t have it any other way.

But things like this are all too common in this argument. In all my years in weather and climate, which I use as a major piece in the foundation of my forecasts, I have never seen such nonsense and ignorance being spewed with no regard for the facts of what actually happened.

I am on everyone’s mailing list, so I get sent countless articles on this. I also get sent the scholarly articles both for and against human influence on the climate. I know and understand the reason this is actually a debatable point and have pointed out several times that two major indicators – stratospheric cooling and the outgoing radiation measurements – support the idea of a slowly warming troposphere. Whether that is natural or man-made is impossible to know, for the earth has warmed before (it had to if you could bury people in Siberia) and has also cooled. How one could possibly know this is CO2-driven given the history of CO2 and temperatures that show no correlation, yet alone causation, is beyond me.

But I guess one needs to keep a sense of humor about all this. I believe many of the people putting out things like what you see here are whistling past the graveyard in this sense:

In the meantime, just in case they are right, I have canceled plans for a tour of Siberian graveyards. It’s too cold anyway, given the actual weather.

Joe Bastardi is chief forecaster at WeatherBELL Analytics, a meteorological consulting firm.

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