Saturday, June 27, 2009

Environmental Protection Agency Supresses Risk Analysis

A review of the scientific evidence supporting the claims concerning anthropomorphic global warming has been undertaken by two senior policy members of the Environmental Protection Agency in the US, both concerned that the agency faces negligence charges for the willful refusal to look critically at the science. Despite their review, completed as part of the risk assessment for the agency, their work has been suppressed.

Here are their key conclusions:
  • The earth has been cooling since 1997-8, with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation going negative in September 2007 and the Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation in January 2009. This despite continued CO2 emissions.
  • Atlantic hurricane behaviour is not seen, according to the current consensus view of hurricane specialists, to be linked to CO2 emissions but rather to patterns of hurricane behaviour seen over long periods of time and independent of increases in CO2 emissions – cyclones will be little different from the patterns seen in the past.
  • The idea that the ice in Greenland will rapidly shed its ice has now been largely dismissed by scientists who study this particular ice shield.
  • The recession, which has significantly reduced a range of economic activities and subsequently led to a reduction in the rate of growth of CO2 emissions, has not been factored into the analysis of climate change.
  • A study which compares the proposal emanating from climate change models and actual data which focuses on the IPCC claim of a strongly positive feedback role for water vapour in the atmosphere is not supported by the actual data, which actually shows that the feedback role of water vapour is negative.
  • The IPCC, according to several studies (but one meta-analysis in particular), uses faulty and incomplete solar data which in turn leads the IPCC to underestimate the impact of solar variability on global temperatures. The new research suggests that solar variability could account for more than 65% of the increases in the earth’s temperature prior to the current cooling period.

Their conclusions are twofold. The first is that there are no compelling reasons for the EPA to “rush” to regulate CO2 emissions. The second is that if the EPA does regulate emissions, as they now plan to do, the resultant legal challenges will open up the science and create risk for the organization which has insufficiently reviewed the science and has too readily accepted the IPCC AR4 report as “gospel” – even though it is already three years out of date. As specialists in risk assessment, they urge caution.

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