the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Another Brick

Posted by Jeff Id on December 23, 2009

Roger Pielke Sr. with a very interesting post on glacier melt in the Himalayas.

Global Warming And Glacier Melt-Down Debate: A Tempest In A Teapot?” – A Guest Weblog By Madhav L Khandekar

It reminds me of Dr. Morner’s opinion of sea level rise. He happens to mention Kilimanjaro.

A glacier like Kilimanjaro, which is important, on the Equator, is only melting because of deforestation. At the foot of the Kilimanjaro, there was a rain forest; from the rain forest camemoisture, from that came snow, and snow became ice. Now, they have cut down the rain forest, and instead of moisture, there comes heat; heat melts the ice, and there’s no more snow to generate the ice. So it’s a simple thing, but has nothing to do with temperature. It’s the misbehavior of the people around the mountain. So again, it’s like Tuvalu: We should say this is deforestation, that’s the thing. But instead they say, “No, no, it’s global warming!”

This song really fits my mood after Climategate.

14 Responses to “Another Brick”

  1. Maxt said

    Jeff, have you read this?

  2. Jeff Id said

    #1, I’ve read the news stories but have no access to the paper. If someone has the paper, my email is at the right.

  3. EH said


    Check your email…

  4. Viv Evans said

    Deforestation is indeed important – and the disregard of the ‘climatologists’ to present and past physical environments was one of the reasons I was a sceptic (of increasing ‘strength’) from the start.
    It makes excellent sense to me that loss of humidity due to deforestation would influence growth or decline of glaciers.

    In regard to Kilimanjaro: I recall a TV programme (BBC, forgotten the title and the time of the broadcast, couple of years ago, perhaps) about Africa. It showed how there were times of both in- and decrease of the area of the rainforests around the equator.
    That was before the BBC succumbed to AGW – but iirc, glaciers were not mentioned in that programme.

    Just like climate generally – the physical environment changes, has changed, will change. Of course we ought to do the best we can in regard to protecting it, but the link between that, and ‘preventing climate change’ is spurious.

    Having made this spurious link is one reason for the success of the AGW propaganda.

  5. twawki said

    Lets hope 2010 is less global warming hype and more facts. Thanks to you Jeff and others the alarmists are being held to account. Well done in 2009 look forward to an ever better 2010 for you all!

  6. Frank K. said

    Viv Evans said
    December 23, 2009 at 2:46 am

    “Deforestation is indeed important – and the disregard of the ‘climatologists’ to present and past physical environments was one of the reasons I was a sceptic (of increasing ’strength’) from the start. It makes excellent sense to me that loss of humidity due to deforestation would influence growth or decline of glaciers.”

    Viv has touched on something that I have felt for a while – namely, that I despise the whole global warming mania (and it is a “mania” in the classic sense) because we could be spending our time, energy, and money on much more important problems which plague this planet of ours: poverty, disease, real pollution, deforestation, war, etc. The mind-boggling amounts of time and money that are literally ** wasted ** on the whole global warming enterprise (not to mention the stroking of the enormous egos of people like Mann, Jones, Wigley, Hansen and Schmidt) is just sickening to me. I gladdens me that the whole global warming edifice is now crashing to the ground. Hopefully world opinion will turn on the ring leaders of the mania, and we can then get on to solving the important problems of the world.

  7. alf said

    How reliable is Dr. Morner’s research. His reputation would seem to be tarnished by his belief in dowsing. Or did Wikipedia misrepresent the facts? From Wki:’Mörner has written a number of works claiming to provide theoretical support for dowsing. [2] He was elected “Deceiver of the year” by Föreningen Vetenskap och Folkbildning in 1995 for “organizing university courses about dowsing…”[2]. In 1997 James Randi asked him to claim The One Million Dollar Paranormal Challenge, making a controlled experiment to prove that dowsing works.[13] Mörner declined the offer”

  8. Jeff Id said

    #7, I’m not sure how fooling ones self in the case of divining rods has much meaning. I would say don’t accept anyones views on science, but use them as a foundation for your own conclusions. People believe in all kinds of strange things, Mann, Schmidt and most of climate science just endorsed an unelected world government with the power to tax and redistribute your money to communist nations while literally throttling our economy to death. Talk about ignorant people.

    The fact that mowing down rainforest may affect moisture in Kilimanjaro seems possible, but I’m not sure.

  9. curious said

    Re: role of forest’s – this from V.G. Gorshkov and A.M. Makarieva’s site made sense to me but I’ve not gone back and looked closely at all their material:

    The article referred to by the fourth auto gen. link above is also worth a read:

  10. DeWitt Payne said

    Isaac Newton believed in all sorts of crazy stuff (alchemy, e.g.) too. So what.

  11. TGSG said

    First time replier. Love your site Jeff. Keep up the good fight.

    One comment to make though re: “dowsing”. I’ve always been the kind of person that looks askance at astrology, numerology and that sort of voodoo style thinking. I am in the construction industry. Years ago, while plotting out a home-site, there was a fellow there with a stick in his hand trying to find the best place to drill a well. In my not so suble way I let him know what I thought about his practice. He smiled at me, handed me the stick, and showed me how to work with it. He pointed me in a general direction,to walk and work,”somewhere over there” and lo and behold the bark was almost torn off the stick in it’s desire to point.

    A couple of minutes later he showed me where he had located the best place to drill. It was about 10′ to my left and obscured by brush. We drilled there and hit water easily at a small depth. Never again will I doubt that branch of the “weird science”.

  12. Mark T said

    Unfortunately for practitioners of dowsing, the proof is in the pudding, and to date, I have seen no legitimate pudding regarding the effectiveness (or why it should be) of the “art” other than anecdote. If they could generate some demonstrable, falsifiable, theory as to why it should work, then test it and report the findings, they’d be much less likely to get heckled by other scientific sorts. Refusal to test your theory is scientifically the same as the very refusals we protest here and other places in the blogosphere.


  13. Mark T said

    I should add, as long as Morner’s work on sea level is testable, i.e., falsifiable, it should stand on its own, irrespective of his other interests.


  14. michel said

    On Dowsing.

    Classic case this. I have no idea whether the guy believes it works. But notice the form of the argument.

    The problem this movement has is that it is based on alleged facts about the material world. In this case, one of the articles of faith is that sea levels are rising. They are actually rising, and are rising at a faster rate than they have in the past. If it turns out that sea levels have done nothing remarkable for the last 50 years and still are not, the movement is wrong. One of the main articles of faith will have been falsified. This would be real bad.

    Here we have someone who has done detailed work over many years, and says that the evidence is that levels are doing nothing remarkable. So someone writes in, says nothing about the argument or his evidence, and suggests that Wikipedia, which in matters of climate is about as independent of the movement as Pravda used to be of the Party leadership, says that he believes in dowsing.

    Never mind that Wikipedia is edited by the egregious Connnelly. Never mind that no evidence is cited as to whether he does or does not believe. No, focus on the form of the argument. It is that we do not have to think about the evidence ourselves. Its a matter of accepting authorities. And an authority is only reliable if he believes nothing untoward.

    Now, human nature being diverse and perverse, we can almost always find something about some public figure to dislike, ridicule or disapprove of. It might be his religious adherence, his sexual preferences, his politics, his view on anything from logging to health care or taxation policy. However it will all be totally irrelevant. The question is, whether sea levels are rising. Not about Tennyson. One can be right about some things and wrong about others, most of us are, most of the time.

    Similarly, Spencer is right or wrong about clouds and feedback independently of his views on Intelligent Design. Similarly, the miracle of the loaves and fishes either happened or it did not, independently of whether our source was in the pay of the Roman Governor at the time. The manuscripts have dates, independent of the other views of those who dated them.

    This tactic, of the general personality based irrelevant smear, is the classic tactic of the political or religious extremist. It contains two key ingredients you find everywhere. One is the assumption that we cannot think for ourselves about the issues, so the only thing that matters is picking an authority to accept. The other is the tactic of personal attacks and denigrations.

    In a way one is pleased to see it. The presence of these two ingredients is an infallible marker of a failed theory, one whose predictions and statements about the world are simply not born out by the way things are. Thank goodness for that, because I for one do not want to be flooded out!

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