A report at Reuters, which somehow has not reached the BBC as far as I can tell.
World temperatures did not rise from 1998 to 2008, while manmade emissions of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuel grew by nearly a third, various data show.
The researchers from Boston and Harvard Universities and Finland’s University of Turku said pollution, and specifically sulphur emissions, from coal-fueled growth in Asia was responsible for the cooling effect.
Is this right? That in the last ten years there was no global warming?
Yet here in the UK we have had night after night of “news” reports, running as if they were news, telling us in alarming terms that the world was doomed, showing pictures of melting ice-floes (in summer!) It subsided quite a bit after the scandal of forged data at the University of East Anglia. The guilty men were found innocent by their peers — funny that — but the mud stuck. There was no getting around the fact that they concealed the data, and that it took a hacker to reveal that they did so intentionally and in words capable of the worst interpretation. But the idea of warming still lingers.
Now I don’t have a view on the technical issues. And doubtless readers of this blog have various views on the political platforms that depend on pro- and anti-global warming stuff. This is not a blog about climate change or global warming, and I don’t propose to address that.
What concerns me is the information access issue. The real issue for me here, if the report is true, is the honesty issue, the poisoning of the public with a lie whose consequences — lightbulbs, ‘green’ taxes — affect everyone directly. Whatever our opinions, we all need accurate data, honestly reported.
But if this report is true — and I have no means of knowing — then we have all been subjected to a deliberate campaign of lies and evasions that would make Goebbels gasp with admiration.
For how could people NOT know that the world was not getting warmer? I wouldn’t know; but there are people whose job it is to know. The money exacted from me in taxes goes to pay their salaries.
This is deeply troubling on so many levels. We rely on a more or less free system of mass communication. To watch it be corrupted in this way raises the obvious question: what else are we not being told? What else is being distorted.
If the answer is “a lot”, then what do we do? We don’t want to become the sort of lunatic obsessed with conspiracies.
Perhaps the answer is to read widely. Watch Russia Today. Watch al-Jazeera. And so on?