Taking on critics over climate change column

September 5, 2017

I was going to write about something different this month but the climate change brigade continued their broadsides against my article about the Paris Climate Accord and a response is in order.

In his July column Don Flood said, "Foertsch's main points, it seemed, were to dismiss both warnings of climate change and also the possibility that wind and solar power could play a meaningful role in meeting our energy needs."

That's not exactly correct. I don't dismiss climate change. It happens every day. I oppose the exaggerated scare tactics and the money grab. Wind and solar have undeniable challenges of meeting the immense demand for electricity now and in the future; not to mention the noise, dead birds, solar panel land blight and huge subsidies.

Mr. Flood's August column advances his criticism to include personal attacks on two of the 10 sources that I cited. He vilifies accredited meteorologist Anthony Watts as just a "TV weatherman" to smear him for pointing out that to, "manufacture warming during the hiatus (warming pause) NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration) adjusted pre-hiatus data downward...It's the same old story... the adjustments go towards cooling the past and thus increasing the slope of temperature rise."

Mr. Flood doesn't defend NOAA but claims that, "we can safely declare the 'pause' officially over." But, even if true the question remains; is it human-caused warming or from natural climate variability?

Dr. Judith Curry, climatologist and PhD geophysical sciences, has challenged climate orthodoxy and thinks there's a whole lot more we don't know about the climate than we do know. She thinks there's too much attention on CO2 rather than "natural climate variability" and believes climate models run too hot. For that she's been called a heretic by the climate "consensus" crowd.

The other attack was on Bjorn Lomborg, author and climate change "believer," that Mr. Flood apparently doesn't know since he called him one of the "big names in climate denial." Mr. Lomborg, however, is not blinded by ideology when seeing problems with the Paris Accord. He wrote that, "my peer reviewed research...found that it would have reduced temperature rises by a trivial .023 (F); the global price tag ...would reach $1 trillion to $2 trillion every year from 2030; (and) would have reduced U.S. GDP by more than $150 billion each year...through the century."

A local critic, Arthur E. Sowers, self-described retired scientist and professor, wrote two critical letters and said that my comments were, "a pile of unhelpful smoke." He said that, he "thought (my) critics all had valid points. Mr. Jim Henry's comments against Mr. Foertsch were probably the most comprehensive in terms of disaster outcomes."

Mr. Henry gave me the official title, "agent of doubt's disinformation" and summarized an article from New York magazine titled, "The Uninhabitable Earth" from which he itemized seven examples of climate doom. Here's one: "Heat stress in NYC if temperatures match current trends would exceed that of present day Bahrain...where the temperature "would induce hyperthermia in sleeping humans." Pretty scary.

So, in looking for the article, I came across a review of it from none other than the famous climatologist Michael Mann, one of their comrades. Here's what he said:

"The article argues that climate change will render the Earth uninhabitable by the end of this century. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. The article fails to produce it...The article paints an overly bleak picture by overstating some of the science...Also, I was struck by erroneous statements like this one referencing "satellite data showing the globe warming, since 1998, more than twice as fast as scientists had thought." That's just not true...(Mann says) that very same new, corrected, satellite dataset... shows that past climate model simulations slightly **over-predicted** (sic) the actual warming during the first decade of the 21st century."

And, they say I'm the agent of disinformation and smoke?

Finally, Mr. Flood highlights China and the European Union saying that they, "accept the challenge (Paris Accord) and even see an economic opportunity."

Here's one example of the opportunity in China's eye from a May 2, 2017 Reuter's report.

China is fueling coal-fired electricity production around the world. The country is part of a joint venture with Pakistan "to spend around $15 billion over the next 15 years to build close to a dozen coal power plants of varying sizes around the country." Why not wind and solar?

It seems that only zealots can ignore the defects in the Paris Climate Accord. Don Flood and my critics certainly qualify.

Geary Foertsch lives in Rehoboth and writes from a libertarian perspective to promote economic liberty, non-cronyism free markets, small government and a non-intervention foreign policy. He can be contacted at

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