No people on earth are more righteously Green than the Germans. They built the foundations and set the tone of the modern Green movement in, ahem, the 1930s. They invented the phrase Atomkraft Nein Danke. They were the first country to allow nasty, dangerous Sixties eco-radicals to reinvent themselves as respectable politicians. They were the first place to buy, wholesale, into the solar power con, which is why so many of their rooves – especially on churches – shimmer and glow like reflective-coated crusties at a mid-Nineties rave, while the German taxpayer is ruing the day his government ever chose to subsidise (Achtung Herr Cameron!) this fantastically pointless scheme… (Hat tip: Robert Groezinger, et al)
So when the Germans say “Auf Wiedersehn AGW” it really is time for the rest of the world to sit up and take notice. And that’s exactly what they just have said. See for yourself in this tear-inducing glorious feature in one of their leading newspapers.
Der Spiegel has done a number on AGW – one of the best and most comprehensive I’ve read in any newspaper anywhere – and it could hardly be more damning.
Truly, the experience is akin to having honey (really good stuff, heather probably) licked off one’s body by nubile blonde Nibelungen.
On the recently vindicated Prof Phil Jones:
“I am 100 percent confident that the climate has warmed,” Jones says imploringly. “I did not manipulate or fabricate any data.”
His problem is that the public doesn’t trust him anymore. Since unknown hackers secretly copied 1,073 private emails between members of his research team and published them on the Internet, his credibility has been destroyed — and so has that of an entire profession that had based much of its work on his research until now.
On the politicisation of science:
Reinhard Hüttl, head of the German Research Center for Geosciences in Potsdam near Berlin and the president of the German Academy of Science and Engineering, believes that basic values are now under threat. “Scientists should never be as wedded to their theories that they are no longer capable of refuting them in the light of new findings,” he says. Scientific research, Hüttl adds, is all about results, not beliefs. Unfortunately, he says, there are more and more scientists who want to be politicians.
On the Urban Heat Island Effect (complete with nice dig at the aforementioned “exonerated, give him his job back” Prof Jones)
Critics reproach Jones for not taking one factor, in particular, sufficiently into account: the growth of urban areas. Stations that used to be rural are now in cities. And because it is always warmer in cities than outside, the temperatures measured at these stations are bound to rise.
Environmental economist Ross McKitrick, one of McIntyre’s associates, examined all rapidly growing countries, in which this urban heat effect was to be expected, and found a correlation between economic growth and temperature rise. He submitted his study in time for the last IPCC report.
Jones did everything he could to suppress the publication, which was critical of him. It proved advantageous to him that he had been one of the two main authors of the temperature chapter. In one of the hacked emails, he openly admitted that he wanted to keep this interfering publication out of the IPCC report at all costs, “even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”
On the myth of monster storms:
The all-clear signal on the hurricane front is another setback for the IPCC. In keeping with lead author Kevin Trenberth’s predictions, the IPCC report warned that there would be more hurricanes in a greenhouse climate. One of the graphs in the IPCC report is particularly mysterious. Without specifying a source, the graph suggestively illustrates how damage caused by extreme weather increases with rising average temperatures.
When hurricane expert Roger Pielke, Jr. of the University of Colorado at Boulder saw the graph, he was appalled. “I would like to discover this sort of relationship myself,” he says, “but it simply isn’t supported by the facts at the moment.”
Pielke tried to find out where the graph had come from. He traced it to the chief scientist at a London firm that performs risk calculations for major insurance companies. The insurance scientist claims that the graph was never meant for publication. How the phantom graph found its way into the IPCC report is still a mystery.
Der Spiegel would never have got away with this article four years ago. But then, in 2006, according to a poll, 62 per cent of Germans surveyed answered “Yes” to the question “Are you personally afraid of climate change.” In 2010 that figure has dropped to 42 per cent, which for those of you who haven’t done the math means that the majority of Germans are now not personally afraid of climate change.
Way to go, Germans! Gott Mitt Uns and all that. Stimmt. Genau.