Climate change ‘not difficult to explain’

From The Telegraph – Scientist and broadcaster Lord Robert Winston accuses the BBC of dumbing down its science programming. Interviewed for the Times Educational Supplement, Prof Winston said BBC managers were reluctant to commission programmes on complicated issues like climate change despite the fact they are “not difficult to explain.” Video:


He said:

“The trouble with climate change is it’s an extraordinarily diverse and complex issue, but for example if the BBC would let me make some of the programmes I’d like to make on climate change, I bet you there would be a change of emphasis.”

And they’d be worth watching because he might actually treat the viewer as intelligent in the way he usually does.

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7 Responses to Climate change ‘not difficult to explain’

  1. omanuel says:

    A Halloween Message of Climategate Fear-Mongers versus Reality

  2. Doug Proctor says:

    Climate change may be difficult and complex, but the climate change dispute is neither difficult nor complex. You need only a few graphs to make “normal” people wonder why we aren’t suspicious of the Hansen (the US dominates the story) historical profiles. You need only one graph to wonder why the scariest of the IPCC scenarios is considered still in the cards. You only need one table with IPCC model predictions of pre-catastrophy indications vis-a-vis sea-level rises, mid-tropospheric warm spot, extreme weather incidence and iceberg-release trends of Greenland (and/or meltwater discharge trends from Greenland) to wonder where the “observations” are that CAGW is happening.

    Raising doubt about certainty in those prepared to consider doubt is not difficult. What is difficult is getting the committed to step back to see if their committment is warranted.

    • Verity Jones says:

      Good comment, in fact that last paragraph is worth a ‘quote of the week’.

      Having listened to the whole interview it is clear that Winston is persuaded by the climate science he has encountered. He cites the passion of two students explaining to him that their results show ‘unprecedented rates’ of warming. At least any programme he is likely to make would probably present the science in detail, treat the reader as intelligent and able to form informed opinions, rather than providing a catalogue of science cameos in an avalanche of appeal to authority “how can you doubt what the experts are telling you?”.

  3. Doug Cotton says:

    Now that the leaked IPCC Draft Report for 2013 indicates something of a backdown, you may be interested in my climate analysis and projections as in Appendix 1 of my paper published March 2012. You will need to open it to see the graphics and supporting links, but the text reads …

    Q.1 How do you explain the fact that the Earth has been warming?

    Technically the Earth is currently in an interglacial period and the last few glacial periods have occurred at roughly 100,000 year intervals. This indicates the possibility of there being natural cycles, short and long, which appear to be related to astronomical orbital events. For example, the planet Jupiter has an effect on the eccentricity of the Earth’s orbit in such a way that the difference in the distances between the Sun and the Earth at the aphelion and perihelion can vary (over many thousands of years) from just over 0% when its orbit is nearly a true circle, up to about 5% when it is elliptical. Such variations affect the mean distance and that will then affect the mean radiative flux over the course of a year.

    Many scientists also believe there is clear evidence of a 60-year cycle which may be related to the alignment of the planets Jupiter and Saturn every 59.6 years. This cycle appears to have been the main cause of the observed temperature increases which raised alarm in the 30 years or so leading up to the maximum in 1998. However, there is also a longer cycle which appears to be very approximately 1,000 years. The underlying trend in the rate of ncrease can be detected when a trend line is added to the plot below (from this site) which shows 30 year trend gradients.

    It appears that the mean rate of increase per decade has decreased from about 0.06oC early in the 20th century to about 0.05oC per decade in recent times, as you can see from the green trend line. Perhaps the 1,000 year trend will reach a maximum in the next 100 to 200 years and be 0.5 to 1.0oC warmer than at present. So natural trends can and do explain the historic climate record, right up to the current slight decline which is probably due to the 60 year cycle declining, but being mostly countered by the underlying upward trend of the 1,000 year cycle.

    You will find an explanation in my new paper linked here.

  4. Doug Cotton says:

    John O’Sullivan picks apart the contradictions in the leaked IPCC report which can be downloaded at the end of this article.

  5. Doug Cotton says:

    The IPCC is in chaos because their “concept” of the physics of planetary atmospheres is seriously flawed. For example, they cannot possibly use their “School of Thought” to explain Venus surface temperatures, where the surface receives less than 10% of the insolation reaching Earth’s surface.

    The small amount of solar energy absorbed by the Venus surface would very easily exit the surface the next night by conduction (diffusion) and radiation. Then, when this small amount of energy is back in the atmosphere there is plenty of carbon dioxide to radiate it away. There is absolutely no possible way by which such energy would be trapped in the surface and somehow add hundreds of degrees. The problem is, if you follow the “First School of Thought” (the IPCC bluff) then you are at a complete loss to explain Venus temperatures, because, if you think like the IPCC it is because you have been subjected to Ignorant Promulgation of Chaotic Consensus.” You need a paradigm shift to the “Second School of Thinking” in my paper.

    Please respond to this comment on another thread..

    Doug Cotton

    [Reply – you have already promoted your paper on this thread and there is no merit in doing so further. Furthermore please don’t show up here with the explicit intention of making a marginally relevent comment steered to promote your own interests and then inviting people to reply on another thread. This kind of blatant behaviour is impolite and is not welcome here. Verity]

  6. Doug Cotton says:

    All should read the breaking news here, from which I quote:

    ” This story is huge. America’s prestigious National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and related government bodies found no greenhouse effect in Earth’s atmosphere. Evidence shows the U.S. government held the smoking gun all along – a fresh examination of an overlooked science report proves America’s brightest and best had shown the White House that the greenhouse gas effect was not real and of no scientific significance since 1979 or earlier.”

    Have a Happy Christmas everyone!

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