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Climate Alarm: Failed Prognostications


“If the current pace of the buildup of these gases continues, the effect is likely to be a warming of 3 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit [between now and] the year 2025 to 2050…. The rise in global temperature is predicted to … caus[e] sea levels to rise by one to four feet by the middle of the next century.”—Philip Shabecoff, “Global Warming Has Begun.” New York Times, June 24, 1988.

It has been 30 years since the alarm bell was sounded for manmade global warming caused by modern industrial society. And predictions made on that day—and ever since—continue to be falsified in the real world.

The predictions made by climate scientist James Hansen and Michael Oppenheimer back in 1988—and reported as model projected by journalist Philip Shabecoff—constitute yet another exaggerated Malthusian scare, joining those of the population bomb (Paul Ehrlich), resource exhaustion (Club of Rome), Peak Oil (M. King Hubbert), and global cooling (John Holdren).

Erroneous Predictive Scares

Consider the opening global warming salvo (quoted above). Dire predictions of global warming and sea-level rise are well on their way to being falsified—and by a lot, not a little. Meanwhile, a CO2-led global greening has occurred, and climate-related deaths have plummeted as industrialization and prosperity have overcome statism in many areas of the world.

Take the mid-point of the above’s predicted warming, six degrees. At the thirty-year mark, how is it looking? The increase is about one degree—and largely holding (the much-discussed “pause” or “warming hiatus”). And remember, the world has naturally warmed since the end of the Little Ice Age to the present, a good thing if climate economists are to be believed.

Turning to sea-level rise, the exaggeration appears greater. Both before and after the 1980s, decadal sea-level rise has been a few inches. And it has not been appreciably accelerating. “The rate of sea level rise during the period ~1925‚Äì1960 is as large as the rate of sea level rise the past few decades, noted climate scientist Judith Curry. “Human emissions of CO2 mostly grew after 1950; so, humans don’t seem to be to blame for the early 20th century sea level rise, nor for the sea level rise in the 19th and late 18th centuries.”

The sky-is-falling pitch went from bad to worse when scientist James Hansen was joined by politician Al Gore. Sea levels could rise twenty feet, claimed Gore in his 2006 documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, a prediction that has brought rebuke even from those sympathetic to the climate cause.

Now-or-Never Exaggerations

In the same book/movie, Al Gore prophesied that unless the world dramatically reduced greenhouse gasses, we would hit a “point of no return.” In his book review of Gore’s effort, James Hansen unequivocally stated: “We have at most ten years—not ten years to decide upon action, but ten years to alter fundamentally the trajectory of global greenhouse emissions.”

Time is up on Gore’s “point of no return” and Hansen’s “critical tipping point.” But neither has owned up to their exaggeration or made new predictions—as if they will suddenly be proven right.

Another scare-and-hide prediction came from Rajendra Pachauri. While head of a United Nations climate panel, he pleaded that without drastic action before 2012, it would be too late to save the planet. In the same year, Peter Wadhams, professor of ocean physics at the University of Cambridge, predicted “global disaster” from the demise of Arctic sea ice in four years. He too, has gone quiet.

Nothing new, back in the late 1980s, the UN claimed that if global warming were not checked by 2000, rising sea levels would wash entire countries away

There is some levity in the charade. In 2009, then-British Prime Minister Gordon Brown predicted that the world had only 50 days to save the planet from global warming. But fifty days, six months, and eight years later, the earth seems fine.

Climate Hysteria hits Trump

The Democratic Party Platform heading into the 2016 election compared the fight against global warming to World War II. “World War III is well and truly underway,” declared Bill McKibben in the New Republic. “And we are losing.” Those opposed to a new “war effort” were compared to everything from Nazis to Holocaust deniers.

Heading into the 2016 election, Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson warned that “a vote for Trump is a vote for climate catastrophe.” In Mother Jones, professor Michael Klare similarly argued that “electing green-minded leaders, stopping climate deniers (or ignorers) from capturing high office, and opposing fossil fueled ultranationalism is the only realistic path to a habitable planet.”

Trump won the election, and the shrill got shriller. “Donald Trump’s climate policies would create dozens of failed states south of the U.S. border and around the world,” opined Joe Romm at Think Progress. “It would be a world where everyone eventually becomes a veteran, a refugee, or a casualty of war.”

At Vox, Brad Plumer joined in:

Donald Trump is going to be president of the United States…. We’re at risk of departing from the stable climatic conditions that sustained civilization for thousands of years and lurching into the unknown. The world’s poorest countries, in particular, are ill-equipped to handle this disruption.

Renewable energy researcher John Abraham contended that Trump’s election means we’ve “missed our last off-ramp on the road to catastrophic climate change.” Not to be outdone, academic Noam Chomsky argued that Trump is aiding “the destruction of organized human life.”

Falsified Alarms, Compromised Science

If science is prediction, the Malthusian science of sustainability is pseudo-science. But worse, by not fessing up, by doubling down on doom, the scientific program has been compromised.

“In their efforts to promote their ‘cause,’” Judith Curry told Congress, “the scientific establishment behind the global warming issue has been drawn into the trap of seriously understating the uncertainties associated with the climate problem.” She continued:

This behavior risks destroying science’s reputation for honesty. It is this objectivity and honesty which gives science a privileged seat at the table. Without this objectivity and honesty, scientists become regarded as another lobbyist group.

Even DC-establishment environmentalists have worried about a backfire. In 2007, two mainstream climate scientists warned against the “Hollywoodization” of their discipline. They complained about “a lot of inaccuracies in the statements we are seeing, and we have to temper that with real data.” To which Al Gore (the guilty party) responded: “I am trying to communicate the essence [of global warming] in the lay language that I understand.”

“There has to be a lot of shrillness taken out of our language,” remarked Environmental Defense Fund’s Fred Krupp in 2011. “In the environmental community, we have to be more humble. We can’t take the attitude that we have all the answers.”

Most recently, Elizabeth Arnold, longtime climate reporter for National Public Radio, warned that too much “fear and gloom,” leading to “apocalypse fatigue,” should be replaced by a message of “hope” and “solutions” lest the public disengage. But taxes and statism don’t sound good either.


If the climate problem is exaggerated, that issue should be demoted. Enter an unstated agenda of deindustrialization and a quest for money and power that otherwise might be beyond reach of the climate campaigners. It all gets back to what Tim Wirth, then US Senator from Colorado, stated at the beginning of the climate alarm:

We have got to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic policy and environmental policy.

“Right thing” in terms of economic and environmental policy? That’s a fallacy to explode on another day.


45 Comments on "Climate Alarm: Failed Prognostications"

  1. Shortend on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 1:06 pm 

    Look at where this story is post from…Canada Free Press

    the distortions never end

    PS Dr Hansen wishes he was wrong!

  2. Wm-scott on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 1:08 pm 

    Some people don’t seem to read much or watch the news.

    Arctic sea ice extent is diminishing.
    Ocean heat content is increasing.
    Air temperature over ocean is increasing.
    Sea surface temperature is increasing.
    Global sea level is rising.
    Humidity is increasing (causing more warming).
    Temperature of the lower atmosphere is increasing.
    Air temperature over land is increasing.
    Snow cover is reduced, and snow is melting earlier.
    Glaciers are melting.

  3. Estamos Jodidos on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 1:21 pm 

    All you have to do is step outside now and again. 92 today, not normal at all. No measurable rain since last September; our cattle are coming off of the mountain three and a half months early because of lack of feed. Our fire danger is extreme, just a lightening strike away, that is, if it ever rains again. Not good, and folks who write the above drivel, have their heads very far up their behinds. Estamos Jodidos

  4. GregT on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 1:39 pm 

    We had temperatures here of 95F in April. Last year it was snowing in April. We had 1mm of precipitation in May, when the ‘average’ is 65mm. Last Monday morning it was 5C, and snowing 500 metres in elevation above our property. This Monday it was 35C.

    The winter before last we had a total of 203 cm of snow. This past winter we had less than 10 cm. We live in a rainforest, with no rain. The cedar trees are dying all over. I now count 15 trees on my property alone. These trees average 70 years in age.

    There is nothing even remotely normal about the weather here anymore.

  5. onlooker on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 2:10 pm 

    By the way for those who don’t speak Spanish,
    Estamos Jodidos means we are screwed, especially when denier articles still keep coming out about climate and the many other ways we are screwed. Estamos Jodidos if can ask where are you? , sounds pretty bad.

  6. tahoe1780 on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 3:17 pm 

    But you’ll never convince them.

  7. Fred Magyar on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:01 pm 

    Highly doubtful that it will change anyone’s mind who has already decided a priori that Dr. Hansen’s work and his scenarios haven’t proven accurate, but what the heck. Here’s a link to a post over at .

    Yep, from that devious site where actual, super wealthy climate scientists, funded by US taxpayers, and who publish in peer reviewed scientific journals discuss such things… What do they know, right?

    BTW, spoiler alert the data shows that Dr. Hansen was on the money! (pun intended)

  8. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:12 pm 

    Lead was recently blamed for Trump’s election.
    Who says capitalism isn’t functional?

  9. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:14 pm 

    Fred, I read that also—
    Amazingly accurate (95% on most issues).
    Hansen was a frontrunner.

  10. Davy on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:32 pm 

    I agree Hansen is on target with the climate science but he has been in fantasy land with some proposed solutions. I remember one proposal where he thought we should pay 70% of people to stay home and do nothing. Crunch the numbers on that proposal.

  11. John borg on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:39 pm 

    It’s all a scam.

  12. onlooker on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:40 pm 

    Fred, Hanson was eminent scientist even back then when he testified. The world chose to ignore him. Too bad for our species

  13. deadly on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:55 pm 

    Roger Revelle was the brains behind the study of CO2, human-caused rise of CO2 gas in the atmosphere due to fossil fuel burning.

    Roger Revelle

    By way of conclusion, Revelle remarked that “Human beings are now carrying out a large scale geophysical experiment of a kind that could not have happened in the past nor be reproduced in the future.” When he wrote this sentence, which has since been quoted more than any other statement in the history of global warming, he was not warning against future perils. He did feel some concern about potential harm over the long run, and had begun to point to the problem in public. But the word “experiment” sounded benign and progressive to Revelle as to most scientists, and in this paper he only meant to point out a fascinating opportunity for the study of geophysical processes. People’s attitude toward the rise of CO2, he would write in 1966, “should probably contain more curiosity than apprehension.”

    beer zeit

  14. Duncan Idaho on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 4:59 pm 

    Well our denier friends—-

    kakistocracy (plural kakistocracies)

    Government under the control of a nation’s worst or least-qualified citizens.

  15. onlooker on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 5:36 pm 

    That Revelle, is quite a scambag
    Grand experiment, more curiosity than apprehension—–
    Maybe he needs to take a time machine back 250 million years back to the time of the GREAT DYING

  16. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 5:43 pm 

    The wall street urinal ran this hit piece yesterday on Dr Hansen’s work..There is no end to the fake news from right wing media..People on the right are fucking morons..who don’t question anything..If they did they wouldn’t be religious people..

  17. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 5:44 pm 

    I hope who ever wrote this story is around when BAU goes down..They deserve to suffer..

  18. Energy investor on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 5:59 pm 

    So, the “science is settled”?

    I thought this was a fair article.

    Obviously no-one here has bothered to Google “grand solar minimum” or wonder why the raw satellite data shows a 0.5 degree drop in global atmospheric temperature since 2016.

    But also try checking NASA’s report on the ice gain in Antarctica, or the satellite views of the gain in Arctic ice.

    Clearly you were unaware of record snow fall in the Arctic?

    I suppose if you live in the Northern hemisphere you slept through winter and spring?

    It is too early to write off AGW because we are polluting in ever greater quantities.

    Just ask yourselves why 90% of the world’s population live in countries that have plans to continue fossil fuel use?

    India plans to increase by up to 200% by 2030 and China by up to 100%.

    Paris 2015 was a sham. That except for the emerging economies who have their hands out for a share of the USD100 billion they were promised for keeping their mouths shut.

    According to the solar scientists, they estimate that 2030 is when solar cycle 26 reaches its coldest point in the Eddy Grand Solar Minimum.

    Nothing is certain, only that the western media thinks the science is settled.

    Wake up and smell the coffee and try checking how much of the stuff you rely on is bogus. And why that is?

    I cannot imagine why you have not reviewed the scientific information that Trump based his policies on?

    I suppose that makes me a denier and you simply ignorant.

  19. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 6:04 pm 

    UN says Trump separation of migrant children with parents ‘may amount to torture’, in damning condemnation

    Trump and Republicans were torturing children and babies even..They are on the same level as child molesters..You are seeing the fall of America..In real time..

  20. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 6:05 pm 

    “Pro-Life Religious Right” Remained Silent & Let the Babies Suffer. We Won’t Ever Forget.–Pro-Life-Religious-Right-Remained-Silent-Let-the-Babies-Suffer-We-Won-t-Ever-Forget

  21. drwater on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 6:39 pm 

    Hansen’s Scenario B was pretty close to the mark. Climate sensitivity has been better estimated since then. If it happens, a grand solar minimum will slow the warming rate down, but coming out of that the warming rate would be much increased.

  22. Makati1 on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 7:00 pm 

    “Government under the control of a nation’s worst or least-qualified citizens.”

    Perfect description of the Us’ government, Duncan. They gave up scraping the bottom of the barrel with Regan and went under the barrel for Clinton, Bush 2, Obama and now Trump. No better way to destroy a country than from the top. Hitler, Mussolini, Netanyahu, Merkel, Trump, etc…

  23. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 7:05 pm 


    Trent Reznor: ‘You’re seeing the fall of America in real time’

    I love that line..You are seeing the fall in real time..

  24. Makati1 on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 7:25 pm 

    Well MM, we agree on that one. The collapse is happening as we type. But it is only beginning to gain speed. The real bumps and cliffs are ahead. Buckle up!

  25. DerHundistLos on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 7:51 pm 

    Yep, Energy Investor, it makes you a denier. If you prefer a more clinical diagnosis, you suffer from Dunning-Kruger syndrome. The effect is a cognitive bias in which denialists, who are not climate scientists, believe themselves to possess above-average abilities (i.e. a mis-calibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self). It’s why denialists are so certain they are right despite evidence and facts to the contrary. For example, according to NOAA, 2017 was the second hottest year on record with 2016 the hottest, followed by 2015, then 2014, etc. Through the end of April, 2018 the global temperature was the fifth warmest on record (volcanic eruptions and La Nina allowed for a slight moderation). The hottest global decade on record occurred post 2000.

    I agree with MM. When the SHTF, let’s make sure a record is maintained of those denialists who prevented society from taking action when it could have made a difference. Plenty of lamp posts to go around….

  26. DerHundistLos on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 7:54 pm 

    Climate denier bots and puppets activated.

  27. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 8:03 pm 

    Fascism rising, trade wars, police brutality..This is exactly what happened during the great depression..Too bad they didn’t have fake news back then- – to convince the public that the economy was doing great..


  28. MASTERMIND on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 8:09 pm 


    And we have had 400 months in a row of above average temperatures..That record started before I was even born..

  29. Dredd on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 8:26 pm 

    “2025 to 2050”

    neither 2025 nor 2050 is here yet … (7-32 years to go to reach the low 3 deg F. and the low 1 ft. of sea level rise) …

    Very doable …

  30. deadly on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 8:40 pm 

    We need climate alarmist statists to determine the fate of climate deniers.

    Lamp posts will do.

    Stupid freaking climate alarmist fascists exist in this godforsaken world too.

    Enough to drive an endangered orangutan to drink.

    Orangutans have more sense than a climate alarmist fascist.

    The climate alarmist jacobins need to use a guillotine, a bit messier, but lamp posts will be crowded.

  31. Carl on Sat, 23rd Jun 2018 11:43 pm 

    Human caused or not temps are rising, polar ice is melting. Seas are becoming less salty. Fresh water is becoming scarcer. Population is becoming larger. Resources are being depleted. No one is willing to change, no is cutting back. We will eventually reach the point where all tipping points will be reached and the whole thing cascades completely out of control. We will probably all be dead by then but there will be plenty left to watch it unfold.

  32. Reggie on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 12:11 am 

    Love the article. Finally, someone who gets it. Got to love these replies. Leave it to the liberals to totally ignore the facts.
    Fact #1: Other than computer generated predictions ( a friend wrote a program that predicted cotton candy will come out my butt), there is zero proof that man is causing global warming.
    Fact #2: Even at 3 percent CO2 levels (75 times the level currently being stated), the temperature in a controlled environment does not change ( experiment by JR).
    Fact #3: Even the climate alarmists themselves admit there are volcanoes on the ocean floor under the Antarctic ice that have been erupting (only discovered once the ice melted away) which could easily explain the ice melt.
    Point: anyone with a functioning brain and their head not stuffed up their butt could look at the facts and realize the planet is warming (not to the extent the alarmists claim) by natural means and that trying to alter the natural progression of the planet is the REAL climate hazard.

  33. DerHundistLos on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 12:44 am 


    The often overlooked catastrophe in the making is ocean acidification. Even the denialist bots and puppets can’t deny high school chemistry: H2O + CO2 ->-> H2CO3. The world’s coral reefs are dying due to a 30% rise in ocean acidification and higher temps. We are now able to view from space the death of the Great Barrier Reef.

    We’ll be sure to reserve a lamp post special for you, Dead. Thanks for the reminder. And if there are no vacancies, we’ll take you to the nearest body of water and hold your head under until the body stops thrashing. Same “deadly” effect.

  34. DerHundistLos on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 12:58 am 

    Something I have noticed in my travels is the AGW denialist minority is a uniquely US phenomenon. The rest of the world accepted this reality long ago. I spend a great deal of time in Colombia and I have yet to meet a single person who denies the reality of AGW. For the wise Colombians, I think this is due to their close connection with nature and the land. They are far more sensitized to changes in the environment.

    A smart Colombian explained why denialism exists in America. He said it’s not surprising there is a spoiled group of Americans fearful that their life of privilege, waste and over-consumption may be in jeopardy.

    Denialism is another form of insanity that is prevalent these days. Despite the best efforts of the denialist community to try and refute any claim that rapid climate change is actually in progress, deep down inside they acknowledge the truth. They are fully aware that a perfect storm is now forming, but the coping mechanism for these people is just to deny every piece of evidence that becomes manifest.

  35. GregT on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 1:14 am 

    The American way of life is not negotiable DerHund. Unfortunately, Mother nature doesn’t negotiate with humans, not even the most exceptional ones.

  36. GregT on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 1:25 am 

    “The often overlooked catastrophe in the making is ocean acidification.”

    50% of the oxygen on this planet is generated by phytoplankton. Human’s won’t fair too well without oxygen. It’s kind of important.

  37. Dredd on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 6:24 am 

    The doomsayers were right James Hansen’s 30-year-old climate warning rings true today

  38. deadly on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 7:11 am 

    Thanks for the warning, derhunt.

    I’ll keep a close watch, make sure you don’t do anything stupid.

    Well, that is a given, since you are intent on hanging people from lamp posts, your sanity is clearly in question.

    You’re just another fascist with no good intentions whatsoever. Your sadistic mind prefers to see people suffer. YOu’re sick in the head.

    See ya, wouldn’t wanna be ya.

    Also, fuck you.

  39. joe on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 8:49 am 

    We don’t need to have global disaster for ‘disaster’ to come. Just knock 20% of US food output due to CC and its toast for the world’s poor….

  40. veri wze on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 9:32 am 

    To energy investor, You are an example of the pathetic effort being made to denial global warming, 1st 2016 was an el ninio year, which I’m sure your aware of, and the climate scientists predicted slightly lower temperatures in the following years, (but still close to record highs).
    your statement that Antarctic and Arctic ice is at record highs is simply a blatant lie, since they are near record lows
    With less ice in the Arctic, it exposes more water to evaporation,

  41. Sissyfuss on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 9:43 am 

    The denialist trolls are alive and not well on here. The threat imposed on all life on this planet gains clarity with each rain bomb bequeathed. The Grand Solar Minimum is not so grand and definitely a minimum. I’ve read that its effect will be in the range of .25 % meaning it will have almost no effect against a CO2 level of 411 ppm (a record) and rising. The wealthier you are the more threatened you will be by a Limits to Growth scenario that is inescapable. President Bull in the China Shop must be incredibly threatened as one observes the most environmentally destroying agenda being enacted with verve and arrogance and entirely lacking in foresight. Our govt in the US has been co-opted and captured by the worst of the psychopaths available and whether the people can turn this machine of Death off does not seem likely before it’s too late.

  42. Duncan Idaho on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 10:27 am 

    “Our govt in the US has been co-opted and captured by the worst of the psychopaths available and whether the people can turn this machine of Death off does not seem likely before it’s too late.”

    kakistocracy (plural kakistocracies)

    Government under the control of a nation’s worst or least-qualified citizens.

  43. Jesse Fell on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 10:36 am 

    This article ignores vanishing glaciers, shrinking polar ice caps, heat waves, droughts, wildfires at high altitudes, you name it. Things that we can SEE with our own eyes. Who needs computer models?

  44. JOEL THOMAS on Sun, 24th Jun 2018 10:36 pm 

    “The sky is falling, the sky is falling!!!” Just how stupid do these “scaremongers” think we are???—and, just as a side thought——–hand over your wallet so we can “prove” that “the sky is falling”. Let’s put these jokers in the rubber room they escaped from——–and lose the keys.

  45. DMyers on Mon, 25th Jun 2018 7:18 pm 

    What the climate change issue lacks is perspective. We need to control for the background phenomena. This is merely basic science.

    To begin, we have about a .5 million year depiction of Earth’s climate change, as inferred from various ice core samples. These reveal that Earth is very cold for much longer periods than it is warm. This is a recurring cycle, amazingly consistent, and completely independent of human influence.

    We must begin with that and determine our position on the glacial cycle. We may then analyze whether current conditions are expected or unexpected.

    I have concluded in part that the apparent aversion to considering the cold threat is, in fact, a denial of that threat. The cores show about an 80 thousand year stretch of cold for each 10-20 thousand year stretch of warm, as a recurring phenomenon over vast spans of time. Who wants to face that dismal fact?

    We can’t fix the coming cold. We can’t prevent it. That is our true doom. And it is inevitable. We are at least 12 thousand years into warming, and some warming phases have lasted only about ten thousand years.

    However powerful and important you may believe humans to be, we will not alter the glacial cycle by more than a few years, if any. Ice will return to our inhabited planet, and agriculture will not fare well.

    Are we at the upper limit of the warming phase? If so, when will we plunge into a frigid world without surfing and golf courses?

    Our problem may not be Anthropomorphic global warming so much as Anthropomorphic Anthropomorphism, because “man is the measure of all things.”

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