Thu, May 22, 2008 - Page 8 News List

LETTERS

Global warming just guff

On May 14 the Taipei Times reported on the Energy Efficiency and Green Environment Forum, where Michael Nobel, great grandnephew of Nobel prize founder Alfred Nobel, was the featured speaker. In effect, he and other forum attendants echoed the global warming mantra that our planet is in imminent danger of catastrophic disaster despite much scientific evidence to the contrary.

Nobel cited last year’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report. The IPCC has issued several reports on global climate change (in 1990, 1995, 2001 and 2007). However, each of these reports contains false claims and exaggerations while conveniently disregarding sound environmental research. Unfortunately, many of the IPCC’s unproven hypotheses have been passed off as facts.

In response, over the past few years, more than 19,000 US scientists have signed a petition coauthored by Dr Frederick Seitz, former president of the US National Academy of Sciences, urging political leaders to reject the Kyoto Protocol. Also, from March 2 to March 4 of this year, renowned scientists from around the world met in New York for a conference on climate change and issued a report on their extensive research. In the report’s forward, Dr Seitz wrote that the IPCC “is pre-programmed to produce reports to support the hypotheses of anthropogenic warming.”

He further pointed out that the 1990 IPCC report “completely ignored satellite data, since they showed no warming. The 1995 report was notorious for the significant alterations made to the text ... in order to convey the impression of a human influence. The latest IPCC report [2007] completely devaluates the climate contributions from changes in solar activities, which are likely to dominate any human influence.”

A vast majority of scientists have acknowledged that our solar system is so complex that they’ve barely begun to understand its effects on our climate. The data show that cooling and warming cycles lasting five to 35 years or longer are the norm. Not coincidentally, some of the same doomsayers who 30 years ago warned of a global ice age are now warning of catastrophic global warming.

But shouldn’t we believe such environmental “authorities” as Nobel prize winning former US vice president Al Gore? After all, last year Gore won an Oscar for his documentary An Inconvenient Truth. A look at his living style, however, reveals just how “green” he is. In February last year, the Tennessee Center for Policy Research reported that Gore’s 20-room mansion consumes more electricity per month than the average US household uses per year. Yet in his documentary, Gore has the audacity to lecture his fellow Americans and global citizens on reducing their energy consumption at home and drastically slashing carbon dioxide emissions. Apparently, doing so himself would cramp his style.

Many scientists concur that adopting the Kyoto Protocol would have a miniscule impact on the environment. Yet, implementing it would cost a fortune and do tremendous damage to our weakened global economy.

No wonder Michael Nobel encouraged us to embrace Gore’s vision. After all, Gore also received a Nobel Prize for his documentary.

Wayne T. Schams

Pingtung

A funeral for Taiwan?

We are at a crossroads again in Taiwan. We are either witnessing a smooth transition of power from one leader to another, as has happened in the US 43 times since 1789, or we are witnessing the death of Taiwan. Perhaps we will not know for some time.

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