Decertifying Global Warming Skeptics

Weather Channel Climate Expert Calls for Decertifying Global Warming Skeptics

"The Weather Channel’s (TWC) Heidi Cullen, who hosts the weekly global warming program "The Climate Code," is advocating that the American Meteorological Society (AMS) revoke their "Seal of Approval" for any television weatherman who expresses skepticism that human activity is creating a climate catastrophe. "
http://epw.senate.gov/public/index....ecord_id=32abc0b0-802a-23ad-440a-88824bb8e528

Everyone has their opinion on this case but to try to say that your opinion is the definitive answer and everyone else is wrong doesn't set well with me. Especially when there are good arguments on both sides. Kind of reminds me of the evolution/creationism argument (don't start on that one).
 
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"The Weather Channel’s (TWC) Heidi Cullen, who hosts the weekly global warming program "The Climate Code," is advocating that the American Meteorological Society (AMS) revoke their "Seal of Approval" for any television weatherman who expresses skepticism that human activity is creating a climate catastrophe.
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I am not one to publicly bash the Weather Channel..I won't start now, but will say firmly that I flat out disagree with Heidi Cullen on the chief cause of global warming. I heard a rather fascinating show on the radio a couple of weeks back on this issue. For a change, it was based on the defense that it is NOT chiefly caused by man.. frankly, I think we are WAY down the list on the reasons for our climate change. Out of the top ten reasons I heard, Man was number 9...

In a nutshell, it's the sun, first and foremost, solar cycles. Its been proven that solar output can vary over a long period of time, hence the biggest reasons... then there is oceanic currents. I think what impact man is having on the environment is by cutting down precious forests in places like the Amazon. But to put us as the main cause is rubbish...Scientists have confirmed that the ice cap on Mars has been shrinking as well...
Maybe Heidi thinks we are responsible for that too!

I will say this... climate change is real, its happening faster than expected, and I believe by the end of this decade, it will be blatant and in our faces that its happening and we must ADAPT to it. While instituting the Kyoto Treaty will help some with the clean air issue, it certainly won't reverse our climate change. We must take a good balanced look at this and find common ground, and learn how to adapt and work together rather than point fingers and blame others.
 
Bill:

Thanks for posting this article. You beat me by nine minutes and one phone call.....lol. Can you believe that Dr. Cullen has the gall to insist that you either agree with her assessment on Global Warming / Climate Change or you are not officially recognized by the AMS??? Just incredible!!!

Tom in Ft. Worth
 
In a nutshell, it's the sun, first and foremost, solar cycles. Its been proven that solar output can vary over a long period of time, hence the biggest reasons... then there is oceanic currents. I think what impact man is having on the environment is by cutting down precious forests in places like the Amazon. But to put us as the main cause is rubbish...Scientists have confirmed that the ice cap on Mars has been shrinking as well...
Maybe Heidi thinks we are responsible for that too!


Rocky,

There are quite a few very smart meteorologists that will disagree with your statements. Sun intensity may be increasing across the earth, but, from what I've heard, it's not doing so to an extent enough to justify the entire increase in mean global temperature rise. I don't want to get into the global climate change debate, but the vast majority of models I've seen (yes, yes, I know, "models") have required human activities in order to cause the rise in temperature that we've seen. Many arguments against anthroprogenic forcing (i.e. the impact humans have had on global climate change) seem to be no more "concrete" than the arguments for a significant anthro. forcing presence... In fact, the most common "evidence" (almost always purely anecdotal) that humans are not impacting climate change seems to be the idea that "humans are just too small to have an impact on global climate", which doesn't address any of the science (atmospheric chemistry, radiation budgets, etc) that may indicate otherwise. Now, I'm certainly not saying humans are having a large impact on climate change (though I do think there is a significant impact), but I don't think the arguments against it are any more scientifically sound than those for it.

All this said.... I agree that the idea of removing AMS Seal of Approvals for those mets that openly support a significant anthropogenic forcing contribution to global climate change is ridiculous.
 
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I think science in the absence of healthy scepticism ceases to be science. It has more in common with religious dogma. (By dogma I mean proclamation without room for discussion or dissent. No attack on religion itself intended here.) How many dicoveries would still lie dormant without any challenge to conventional broad acceptance?

Regardless of one's position on global warming and its causes, there is and should be room for discussion and dissenting views. I realize broadcast meteorologists have a responsibility to the public in separating myth from proper understanding, but this debate is far from decided.

It's probably not worth the two pennies it gets credit for, but take it or leave it...my opinion.
 
The media and the partisan politics are our most dysfunctional friends in relaying information.

Never before has it been stated so eloquently by the reigning Weather Weenie. Bravo! :p I'm just speculating here, since I've never known anyone thusly crowned, but I couldn't agree more. You can have my .02, Chris and make it -$4.98.
 
I am going to love it if 2008-2010 end up being the coldest years on record.
 
Awesome points, Rocky!

There's no doubt that global warming isn't happening - it's the cause that's in question. I personally believe that a warm up happens after every ice age, but hey - what do I know? ;-)

Dan - I see you left out 2007... I suppose you want to get a good chase season in before the record cold? LOL
 
There's no doubt that global warming isn't happening - it's the cause that's in question.


Is that the "politically correct" way to word that? lol I hope some get that(you meant to say "IS" happening didn't you).
 
I am going to love it if 2008-2010 end up being the coldest years on record.

Why are you going to "love it"? If it is because you think that will disprove global warming/climate change then you are mistaken. The rapid melting of fresh water from areas near the poles (such as Greenland) could disrupt the "conveyor belt" of ocean currents (fresh water is a different density than salt water). It is those ocean currents that help keep temperatures in a moderate range. Thus a change (or interruption) in those ocean currents could remove the temperature moderation leading to more extreme swings in summer and winter temperature. One concern is an "abrupt climate change". If the next four winters were indeed "the coldest years on record" it might indicate that such an abrupt swing is already beginning.

In short, although it is counter-intuitive for those without a scientific background, global warming could lead to a mini-ice age. Some scientists believe we could be on the brink: http://www.whoi.edu/institutes/occi/viewArticle.do?id=10046
http://www.whoi.edu/institutes/occi/viewTopic.do?o=read&id=501

Most people who get their information on the subject from the media tend to think that science is divided on this issue. The issue is about as divided as whether smoking is harmful to humans. Big tobacco essentially had scientists on the payroll to express doubts about the "real" science on the subject. In an effort to be "fair and balanced" the journalistic media will give voice to "the other side" (as they should). They successfully kept the majority of the public "in doubt" for decades. However, don't let the fact that you hear "both sides" in the media confuse you from what the real science shows. There is far less disagreement among the scientists on this issue than you are led to believe.

http://www.whoi.edu/institutes/occi/viewTopic.do?o=read&id=521
 
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Is that the "politically correct" way to word that? lol I hope some get that(you meant to say "IS" happening didn't you).


Yeah yeah yeah... take it to the "Rapidly declining quality" thread LOL!

Anyway, to further what Dan said - I think he was speaking in regards to the fact that EVERYTHING that happens now days is a result of Global Warming. In 2005, the hurricane season was the fault of Global Warming - however, 2006 was one of the most inactive seasons ever. Of course, Global Warming caused that too... Record heat in 2006? Global Warming... Too many ice storms in 2007? Global Warming... The party store being robbed 3 times in 2 months just down the road from me? Global Warming.
 
If it is because you think that will disprove global warming/climate change then you are mistaken.

I guess that is one of the main things that bothers me about the whole issue. The 'conclusion' has been made and nothing will change the minds of global warming believers, even colder weather. It's a catch-22. If it's a warm year, it's global warming. If it's a cold year, it's still global warming.

For the record, I am not taking sides on global warming yet. I think it is way too soon to jump to conclusions either way.
 
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Warning: Stay away from political discussion! Some of these posts are dabbling in the political arena. There is some inherent political connection, but please try to keep this discussion out of the political realm.
 
I think the issue (which has professional implications to many on ST) is on what bases the AMS grants -- and revokes -- their "Seal of Approval".

Many moons ago I was an officer of a local AMS chapter. A major issue at the time arose when a local TV weatherman was not given the Seal because the university faculty grading his test didn't like his answers some way or other. He'd studied his butt off. Failure to get the AMS blessing was a critical blow to his career and he is probably bitter about it to this day.

It makes me really queasy to think of revoking the Seal of someone because they come down on the "wrong" side of a very nuanced current scientific discussion. It's not like they're denying the Law of Gravity, Boyle's Law, or the Holocaust....
 
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certified.jpg
 
The 'conclusion' has been made and nothing will change the minds of global warming believers, even colder weather. It's a catch-22. If it's a warm year, it's global warming. If it's a cold year, it's still global warming.

Dan, Im a "believer" based on a preponderence of evidence ive seen, and i disagree with your assessment. Presumably you're aware of the distinction between "global warming" , climate change, and anthropogenic forcing. Don't assume that us "believers" don't get it as well. They're very seperate issues. I frankly have no idea where Darren and others get the idea (from the media??) that 99.9% of scientists are firmly convinced in anthropogenic influence as the chief cause of global warming. From what i've seen in academia and the professional meteorology world over the last decade, there's a ton of skepticism among serious scientists over the whole idea. But, we are at least careful to keep the issues clear, not muddle them as your statements seem to imply. There is little debate over the idea that the earth is warming, much more over how big an influence human activity is, and even more on what effects the activity will have in the future.
 
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LOL! I don't know about "reigning" though.

Oh yeah, that's Tim. I knew that. I just read your sig and thought....

As for the catch 22, I think it's more of a media and communication issue. Remember back in the late 80's and into the 90's when everything was El Nino's fault? then La Nina? These cyclic patterns, though broadly accepted, got blamed for everything from legitimate weather anomalies to the Super Bowl winner. Sensationalism sells. Anyone on this board who has ever submitted material or offered an interview to television programming can attest to this. Much of the media just isn't interested in responsible journalism. Not to dismiss her credentials, but Heidi Cullen seems to have more in common with the media's sensationalism than any productive scientific discussion.

I know this topic touches the realm of the political, so I'll just mention this in passing for anyone interested. I found it amusing: Heidi's rant was actually discussed on Neal Bortz's radio show.
 
I've put together a few questions of my own for Heidi on my own page:

  1. If skeptics should be denied certification, what about their on-air presence? Should that too be quashed?
  2. Do you have any co-workers who don’t toe the line on anthropogenic global warming? Should they be fired?
  3. Before being granted a degree in climatology or meteorology (another version of “certification”), should some sort of oath be taken regarding global warming?
  4. Why no discussion of other influences on the earth’s climate that may be responsible for warming: termites, solar variability, cattle emissions, volcanic activity, etc…?
  5. Is peer review, healthy skepticism, and other forms of critique utilized by meteorologists and climatologists the world over not a cornerstone of science?
 
I frankly have no idea where Darren and others get the idea (from the media??) that 99.9% of scientists are firmly convinced in anthropogenic influence as the chief cause of global warming. From what i've seen in academia and the professional meteorology world over the last decade, there's a ton of skepticism among serious scientists over the whole idea.

First of all, nowhere did I state a figure like 99.9%. I see no need to distort my message to make your point. On the other hand you say there is "a ton of skepticism among serious scientists" (quite a quantifiable, scientific, and impressive amount!)

First of all, all good scientists are skeptical. Confirmation Bias is a big problem (in humans in general) and Good Science takes care to eliminate it from the process of scientific inquiry. That does not mean that scientific inquiry leads only to indecision and uncertainty. Evidence accumulates and conclusions (at first tentative, then stronger, and finally undeniable) are generally arrived at over time.

Where there is "a ton of skepticism" is among the general public, who are generally more uninformed. This is understandable, but willful ignorance is inexcusable. I would expect that stormchasers would more closely model the scientific community than the general public on that score, but I may be off-base.

Stan makes some good points regarding the differences between "global warming", "climate change" and "anthropogenic influence" however "global warming" and "climate change" are often used interchangably, even in science. And I don't think you are going to hear the term "anthropogenic influence" a whole lot in mainstream media. Climate change probably is cyclical, but human impact on this planet has never been anything like what it has been in the last two hundred years (since the industrial revolution). People understand that you can't sit in a garage with the door closed and the car engine running forever. Eventually the concentrations of carbon monoxide will grow to the point that there are dire consequences. (Most) people understand that you can't just continue to pump industrial waste into Lake Erie before it becomes literally flammable. Yet somehow people can't extend their grasp of that concept to the atmosphere, thinking that man-made CO2 can be absorbed by it forever, with no ill effects. But enough of "common sense" in the common man. Let's get back to the scientists:

Good Science is peer-reviewed before being published. An article published in Science magazine took a look at all of the papers in the ISI database with the keywords "climate change" between 1993 and 2003. There were 928 (peer-reviewed/published) papers:

The 928 papers were divided into six categories: explicit endorsement of the consensus position, evaluation of impacts, mitigation proposals, methods, paleoclimate analysis, and rejection of the consensus position. Of all the papers, 75% fell into the first three categories, either explicitly or implicitly accepting the consensus view; 25% dealt with methods or paleoclimate, taking no position on current anthropogenic climate change. Remarkably, none of the papers disagreed with the consensus position.

Admittedly, authors evaluating impacts, developing methods, or studying paleoclimatic change might believe that current climate change is natural. However, none of these papers argued that point.

This analysis shows that scientists publishing in the peer-reviewed literature agree with IPCC, the National Academy of Sciences, and the public statements of their professional societies. Politicians, economists, journalists, and others may have the impression of confusion, disagreement, or discord among climate scientists, but that impression is incorrect.

So where is this "ton of skepticism among serious scientists"? Apparently not among those who study and publish on the subject of Climate Change.

Now let's look at another group: Weather Professionals. Not all weather professionals study climate change. But one would expect them to be "up on" the subject more than the general population. Here's a news story from yesterday: Global warming dissenters few at U.S. weather meeting ? A few quotes from that article:
Researchers who hold such contrary views do not appreciate being lumped together with flat-Earthers. They are legitimate scientists who question the mainstream, but they are a distinct minority. . . . "I think there is largely agreement on the fact that over the last 30 years, that much of that warming has been attributed to human activities, in other words, greenhouse gas emissions," said Tony Socci, a American Meteorological Society senior science fellow.

He said those who denied the connection were either "badly informed as to the scientific center or consensus, or in some cases perhaps (they are) just not wanting to be informed.

I think it is interesting that (again) the media does not call it News that the vast majority of scientists are in agreement. The news is the "distinct minority" who are not yet convinced. This is an example of how the reporting in the news contributes to the confirmation bias of the "non-believers". If they want to maintain their doubts they will give enough weight to the "distinct minority's" opinions so that (in their minds) it actually outweighs the "vast majority's" opinion. The capacity of the human mind to rationalize is indeed remarkable.

However, this brings up another reason why a particular meteorologist's viewpoint should have NO BEARING on whether they get get AMA Certification. It does not help the cause of Good Science. It allows skeptics to say (as was also expressed in the article):
D'Aleo said there was an element of peer pressure to toe the party line.

"A lot of them are not willing to speak up because it might endanger grants and jobs," he said.

The ill-advised proposal to tie AMA Certification to one's views on global warming plays right into this sort of accusation. An opponent of such a view might point out that there is a TON of money out there for any scientist whose research might prove the other side, or at least cast significant doubt. However, look as you may, you won't find much of it in the peer-reviewed/published world of Good Science.
 
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I think a distinction needs to be made on this thread between the global warming issue and the issue of whether humans or the earth's climate cycle is the cause.

It is pretty well established that 'global warming' is happening, that is, that earth's mean temperature is currently experiencing a rise. I don't think anyone is opposed to that statement. It is the assertion and resulting 'doomsday' hysteria that 1.) man is responsible for this, and 2.) the expected climate change will be catastrophic for earth, that are the 'sticking points' for me and many others. I do not see data that convincingly shows that man is responsible for global warming nor that the earth's resulting climate change, if any, will be disastrous. Again, I am not taking sides yet, but there needs to be more definitive proof of this before a consensus is made and any actions are taken at such great cost and scale.
 
I agree with you Dan. However, I think that distinction has been made in this thread. (for one thing, that is what the "anthropogenic forcing" is that Stan was referring to).

I think it is fair to say that the majority of scientists recognize that human causes are a factor. There is little debate on the effect of greenhouse gases (which is why they are CALLED greenhouse gases). There can be no debate on the fact that humans have led to an increase in the concentrations of those gases from what they were in 1750. The main thing that we do not yet know is, what percentage of global warming is cause by humans as opposed to other factors (whether natural, or other non-human). It may be some time before a concensus on that is reached, but it would appear to be a significant amount. ([FONT=Times New Roman, Times]Chlorofluorocarbons, for example are 100% human-caused).[/FONT]

What it is a no-brainer to say is that humans have no hope of affecting the part of global warming that may have natural causes. It is beyond mankind's capabilities to "dial down" the sun, for instance - if that is part of the cause. However, if the human factor is the "straw that breaks the camel's back" or something that could lead to a "tipping point" of no return, then it would behoove us to try to get a handle on the things we can control/reduce (regardless of what that exact percentage turns out to be).
 
I do not see data that convincingly shows that man is responsible for global warming nor that the earth's resulting climate change, if any, will be disastrous. Again, I am not taking sides yet, but there needs to be more definitive proof of this before a consensus is made and any actions are taken at such great cost and scale.

You don't believe the 262,974 hour GFS?:mad:
LOL!
 
LOL, now THAT's responsible journalism. Take the truth from the Onion every day! :p
 
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