Friday, September 15, 2006

Gulled by the Bore? Bolt-burger #2 coming up

In Bolt's second gripe with "In Inconvenient Truth" he gets hoarier.

2: Gore says the man who first made him realise we were heating up the earth was his late professor, oceanographer Roger Revelle, who noticed carbon dioxide levels were increasing.

In fact, Revelle shortly before his death co-authored a paper warning that "the scientific basis for a greenhouse warming is too uncertain to justify drastic action at this time". And some warming might even be good, he added.

Professor Roger Revelle died in 1991, the godfather of global warming science. It's odd that he would pen those words Bolt directly ascribes to him. He didn't. The "other" author was Dr S. Fred Singer, who's secretary, Ms. Christa Beran, claimed in affidavit two years later that the entire paper was Singer's work only, "[...] Roger had been very reluctant to be involved in this enterprise. [...] I know it was not one of Roger's priorities. [...] I do not remember seeing any review by Roger of any text by Dr. Singer before a day in February 1991 when he came to Roger's office. [...] I am sure that Roger and I together never worked on the article [...] After a series of unsuccessful attempts to get Roger to work on this document, Dr. Singer must have decided that the only way he was going to get this thing done was to come in person."

Revelle's friend and colleague, J. Justin Lancaster, has very recently clarified exactly what happened, and blows the cobwebs of this myth: :::[The Cosmos Myth - The Real Truth About the Revelle-Gore Story]

The 1991 Cosmos paper, "What to do about Greenhouse Warming: Look Before You Leap", is not Revelle's article. That is a myth, perpetuated at first by a few participants and now being spread by the many people they have misled. Revelle did not write it.

The Truth

1. Revelle did not write the Cosmos article.

2. S. Fred Singer claimed sole authorship of the major statements of the article in his ES paper months before he put the finishing touches on his Cosmos Masterpiece.

3. If S. Fred Singer is sole author of this material, then Revelle cannot be an author.

4. If S. Fred Singer is not sole author of this material, then he has admitted in his deposition to ethical concern about one author publishing under his own sole authorship material that was co-authored.

5. Revelle appears not to have had full information --- not about the ES publication and not about the many energy-industry agents who were busy at work here.

This clarification is so recent, I don't imagine that the think-tank or lobby-group where Andrew must get this 'research' from, have had time to pull this off the talking points lists that they are circulating. Damn shame that. The other thing to note in Lancaster's diclosure, is just how ruthless the oil-lobby was to stymie the science, and the appreciation of it by the greater public. Underhand shenanigans seem to have been at play in getting Revelle's imprimatur to later become attack fodder for denial-mongering hacks like Bolt.

My understanding, from conversations with Roger in 1991 and Christa in 1992, was that Roger was pressed and worn down in a single multi-hour session on a single day in February of 1991. This was a time when Christa and I limited our own working sessions with Roger to 15-20 minutes because he would fatigue so quickly. Apparently the session with Singer was hours long. Shortly after publication of the Cosmos article, Roger showed it to me, saying, with clear embarrassment: "S. Fred is a rather persuasive fellow."

Is this tacky episode at the very end of a great man's life really what you want to use to make your case, Andrew? A chance to reconsider your wrong-headed stance on global warming might just be coming down the line to an editorial desk near you, given the happenings on the front page of your bosses London trashy tabloid, The Sun. Look - there's Al Gore, portrayed as a hero. As you know; the scientific debate is over, if Rupert Murdoch says the media 'debate' is over, Andrew, it's all over, green rover.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Our world is in crisis - great post - thanks for your insight - together we can save our planet so future generations can enjoy it too!

P. Lanet III
Concerned Earth Dweller

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