Merchants of ‘smear’ movie slanders eminent Physicist Dr. Fred Singer – Singer Fires Back!

Climate Depot Exclusive

Also Sent by Registered Mail to Robert Kenner Films,

134 So. Norton St, Suite A, Los Angeles, CA 90004

Dear Mr. Kenner,                                                                                                                       March 6, 2015

I am writing this letter on the advice of my attorneys, who suggested that a friendly letter from me to you might avoid having to take legal action.

I’ve been informed that your new documentary “Merchants of Doubt” refers to me as “Liar for Hire”.  If correct, that is a very serious accusation which of course cannot be backed up in any way.

The word “Liar” implies not only telling something that is not true, but telling an untruth knowingly.  So even people who disagree with me on climate-change science (and such people do exist) would have to prove that I don’t really believe what I say – that I am saying it in order to mislead.

The word “hire” implies that I am being paid directly, i.e., that I am on salary by some entity such as an oil company — or that I am taking money from a source that is supported predominately by such money and that I am aware of it.  We would judge that hire is also very difficult to demonstrate.

I have some experience with libel suits; thanks to Kirkland & Ellis, we prevailed against an environmental lawyer, a groupie of then-Senator Al Gore.  It took a lot of my time and was costly.  I would prefer to avoid having to go to court; but if we do, we are confident that we will prevail.

My good friend, the late J. Gordon Edwards, professor of entomology at San Jose State University, sued the New York Times for libel and prevailed in a jury trial.  The NYT had referred to him as someone who is being paid to lie.  We think there will be no problem to demonstrate “malice.”  (That is, “knowledge that [the libelous statement] was false or [made] with reckless disregard of whether it was false or not.”)

Mind you, I am not now accusing you personally of malice, but it is rather too bad that you got mixed up with Naomi Oreskes.  She claims to be a historian of science; unfortunately, she has only demonstrated that she’s a great polemicist with a rather well-defined bias.  Her book “Merchants of Doubt” contains a number of serious scientific errors; also, it is not in accordance with the kind of scholarship expected from an academic historian.  Instead of primary sources, she relies on secondary and even tertiary sources who have obvious, demonstrated agenda.

In her book, she attacks four physicists, three of whom were quite distinguished and are now deceased.  I have felt it my obligation to defend their reputations posthumously.

I hope that you will respond positively to this letter and suggest ways in which the situation raised by your documentary can be rectified.  Your reputation based on your past work is excellent and we should do everything possible to maintain it that way.

Sincerely yours,

  1. Fred Singer


End Letter


Dr. Fred Singer’s Original Critique of Naomi Oreskes book: 

Merchants of Smear: Oreskes and Conway

SFS/ 6/16/2011

Professor Naomi Oreskes, of the University of California in San Diego, claims to be a science historian.  One can readily demonstrate that she is neither a credible scientist nor a credible historian; the best evidence is right there in her recent book, “Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming,” coauthored with Eric Conway.  Her science is faulty; her historical procedures are thoroughly unprofessional.  She is, however, an accomplished polemicist, who has found time for world lecture tours, promoting her book and her ideological views, while being paid by the citizens of California.  Her book tries to smear four senior physicists – of whom I am the only surviving one.  I view it as my obligation to defend the reputations of my late colleagues and good friends against her libelous charges.

Oreskes is well known from her 2004 article in Science that claimed a complete scientific consensus about manmade global warming; it launched her career as a polemicist.  Her claim was based on examining the abstracts of some 900 published papers.  Unfortunately, she missed more than 11,000 papers through an incorrect Internet search.  She published a discreet “Correction”; yet she has never retracted her ideologically based claim about ‘consensus.’  Al Gore still quotes her result, which has been contradicted by several, more competent studies [by Peiser, Schulte, Bray and von Storch; Lemonick in SciAm, etc].

Turning first to her science, her book discusses acidification, as measured by the pH coefficient.  She states that a pH of 6.0 denotes neutrality [page 67, MoD].  Let’s be charitable and chalk this off to sloppy proofreading.

Elsewhere in the book [page 29], she claims that beryllium is a “heavy metal” and tries to back this up with references.  I wonder if she knows that the atomic weight of beryllium is only 9, compared to, say, uranium, which is mostly 238.  A comparison of these two numbers should tell anyone which one is the heavy metal.

Her understanding of the Greenhouse Effect is plain comical; she posits that CO2 is “trapped” in the troposphere — and that’s why the stratosphere is cooling.  Equally wrong is her understanding of what climate models are capable of; she actually believes that they can predict forest fires in Russia, floods in Pakistan and China – nothing but calamities everywhere — and tells climate scientists in a recent lecture: I If the predictions of climate models have come true, then why don’t people believe them?  [see]  Perhaps because people are not gullible.

But the most amazing science blunder in her book is her hypothesis about how cigarette smoking causes cancer [page 28].  She blames it on oxygen-15, a radioactive isotope of the common oxygen-16.  I wonder if she knows that the half-life of O-15 is only 122 seconds.  Of course, she does not spell out how O-15 gets into cigarette smoke, whether it is in the paper or in the tobacco itself.  If the latter, does she believe that the O-15 is created by the burning of tobacco?  If so, this would be a fantastic discovery, worthy of an alchemist.  Perhaps someone should make her aware of the difference between radio-active and ‘reactive’ oxygen; the two words do sound similar.

I am sure one would find more examples of scientific ignorance in a careful reading of the rest of the book.  But why bother?

Having demonstrated her scientific ‘expertise,’ let’s turn to her historical expertise.  Any careful historian would use primary sources and would at least try to interview the scientists she proceeds to smear.  There is no trace of that in Oreskes’ book.  She has never taken the trouble to interview Dr. Robert Jastrow, founder of the NASA-Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and later Director of the Mt. Wilson Astronomical Observatory and founding president of the renowned George C Marshall Institute in Washington, DC.  I can find no evidence that she ever interviewed Dr. William Nierenberg, director of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, who actually lived in San Diego and was readily accessible.  And I doubt if she ever even met Dr. Frederick Seitz, the main target of her venom.

Seitz was the most distinguished of the group of physicists that are attacked in the book.  He had served as President of the US National Academy of Sciences and of the American Physical Society, and later as President of Rockefeller University.  He had been awarded numerous honorary degrees from universities here and abroad, as well as the prestigious National Medal of Science from the White House.

Instead of seeking first-hand information — in the tradition of historical research — Oreskes relies on secondary or tertiary sources, quoting people who agree with her ideology.  A good example of this is her discussion of Acid Rain and of the White House panel (under Reagan, in 1982) chaired by Bill Nierenberg, on which I also served.  Here she relies on what she was told by Dr. Gene Likens, whose research funding depends on portraying acid rain as a very serious environmental problem.  It most definitely is not – and indeed, it disappeared from view as soon as Congress passed legislation designed to reduce the effect.

An amazing discovery: I found that Oreskes gives me credit (or blames me) for inventing ‘cap-and-trade,’ the trading of emission rights under a fixed cap of total emissions [see pp. 91-93].  I had never claimed such a priority because I honestly don’t know if this idea had been published anywhere.  It seemed like the natural thing to suggest — in order to reduce total cost, once an emission cap had been set.  My example involved smelters that emit SO2 copiously versus electric utilities that burn coal containing some sulfur.  I even constructed what amounts to a ‘supply curve’ in which the bulk of the emission control is borne initially by the lowest-cost units.

Of course, Likens and some others on the panel, antagonistic to coal-burning electric utilities, objected to having my discussion included in the panel report.  Nierenberg solved the problem neatly by putting my contribution into a signed Appendix, thereby satisfying some panel members who did not want be responsible for a proposal that might let some electric utilities off the hook.

We have established so far that Oreskes is neither a scientist of any sort nor a careful professional historian.  She is, however, a “pop-psychologist.”  It seems she has figured out what motivates the four senior physicists she libels in her book; it is “anti-communism.”  Really!  This is not only stated explicitly but she also identifies them throughout as “Cold Warriors.”

Well, now we know at least where Oreskes stands in the political spectrum.


Atmospheric physicist S. Fred Singer pioneered upper-atmosphere ozone measurements with rockets and later devised the satellite instrument used to monitor ozone.  He is Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia and founding director of the US Weather Satellite Service (now NESDIS-NOAA).  He is a Fellow of the Heartland Institute and the Independent Institute.  His book “Unstoppable Global Warming – Every 1500 Years” (Rowman & Littlefield, 2007) presents the evidence for natural climate cycles of warming and cooling and became a NY Times best-seller.  He is the organizer of NIPCC (Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change, editor of its 2008 report “Nature – Not Human Activity – Rules the Climate” <>, and coauthor of “Climate Change Reconsidered,” published in 2009, with conclusions contrary to those of the IPCC <>.  As a reviewer of IPCC reports, he presumably shares the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore and 2000 others.


127 Responses

  1. Namor Oreskes has been lying, with a voice that can only charitably be called “fingernails on a blackboard,” for several decades from the home of this fiasco, Scripps Institute, where Roger Revelle and Charles David Keeling created and promoted the lie as I document in my book, “Vapor Tiger” on sale at

    Google “Two Minute Conservative” for clarity.

  2. Dr. Songer is one of the Bright Lights in science – illuminating the world in a sometimes forlorn attempt to bring others out of darkness!!!

  3. The woman is extremely significantly worse than Australia’s Tim Flannery and his book “The Weather Makers” (exposed in detail in Dr DW Allen’s “The Weather Makers Re-Examined”). Orestes appears to be seeking notoriety at the expense of truth and honesty. She’s succeeding in making herself look like a pathetic amateur.

  4. It is symptomatic of anthropogenic climate change having become a doctrinal issue that receiving funding from oil companies, which are _presumed_ to be opposed to the entire _concept_ of ACC, automatically makes any results of your research worthless, with the assumption that you have been paid to produce results denying the existence of ACC, while having received funding from the government, whose top official has repeatedly stated that he doesn’t want any “climate change deniers” in his administration carries no similar assumption that the funding was predicated on your research returning results supportive of the administration’s position that ACC is both real and a dire threat to humanity.

    1. On the contrary, it is not a waste of time for skeptics to be
      “challenging the science”, rather, they raise valid points and have
      actually contributed much to the sciences, so much so that no less than
      nine of them have been elected as members of the National Academy of
      Sciences, (not to mention the National Academy of Engineering) “for
      outstanding contributions to research”. Skeptics have published on the
      topic of climate change in Nature, Science, Proceedings of the National
      Academy of Sciences, Reviews of Geophysics, Earth-Science Reviews,
      Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, Geophysical Research
      Letters, and the Journal of Geophysical Research.

      The article you
      link to is written by someone with no credentials in regards to climate
      whatsoever (a degree in English, Professor of History, etc.) It cites
      the flawed Cook et al. 2013 study which has been rebutted multiple times
      in the peer-reviewed literature
      and attempts to marginalize the valid challenges to their position (“We
      will leave the sceptics and deniers to waste their time challenging the
      science.”), such as ones coming from this peer-reviewed paper:
      And about those calls to action to avoid a two degree rise by reducing
      emissions? A peer-reviewed study here
      ( found that even
      keeping CO2 emissions at the rate of the past 25 years, (from 2002,
      when the article was published) we would likely only get 1.9 degrees
      Celsius of warming in the 21st century.

        1. I am not sure why you chose to focus on that part of my argument, but since you apparently would like evidence to that point, here is a quote from Dr. Tol’s first paper: “Reported results are inconsistent and biased.” Here is a quote from Legates et al. 2013: “However, inspection of a claim by Cook et al. (EnvironRes Lett 8:024024,2013) of 97.1 % consensus, heavily relied upon by Bedford and Cook, shows just 0.3 % endorsement of the standard definition of consensus: that most warming since 1950 is anthropogenic.” There are numerous non-peer-reviewed sources that also, at least partially, refute the findings of Cook et al. 2013, some of which can be found here:

          1. And don’t forget that “flawed” study is just one of several per-reviewed journal published papers all pointing to a similar conclusion. Consilience of papers showing the consilience of findings. Anthropogenic forcing – through our profligate burning of fossil fuels – causing climate change.

            And Tol essentially agrees with the findings,…..

            1. Tol agrees with this: “the literature on climate change over-whelmingly supports the hypothesis that climate change is caused by humans. I have very little reason to doubt that the consensus is indeed correct.” and I agree with him. He disputes other parts of Cook et al. 2013, though, as I have pointed out.

              As for Oreskes 2004, Doran and Zimmerman 2009, and Anderegg et al. 2010, they all have been refuted in the peer-reviewed literature as well. See here for the list:

              I do agree with you that anthropogenic forcing is causing climate change. But, as Dr. Roger A. Pielke Sr. reminds us here, ( emissions of greenhouse gasses are not the only human factor influencing climate change. It is my opinion that once renewable energy becomes economically viable, (meaning there could be a gradual transition to green energy with little or no side effects) the world should gladly accept it. But until then, we should pursue new technologies (such as hydrogen fuel cells) and wait, for a sudden transition away now would have serious consequences (see here:

              1. For your popteck link, add ‘claim ‘ to the refuted. You are linking to parts of the discussion.

                Also, show us how your sources are cited in further lit.

                You claim is similar to the hockey stick’s history. Much bluster directed toward Mann, et al wo noting the multiple studies since all replicating the same result.

                Results dictated by basic physics.

                1. I am not sure what you mean by “claim to the refuted”.

                  Here is what the rebuttals are cited by:

                  Scientific Consensus on Climate Change?’s citations are here:,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en

                  The Letter Science Magazine Rejected’s citation is here:,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en

                  I believe that the only citations for the comments on “Examining the scientific consensus on climate change” is from Doran and Zimmerman’s reply to the comments on their original article.

                  I cannot find the articles refuting Anderegg et al. 2010 on Google Scholar and thus do not know what they are cited by.

                  The citations for Climate Consensus and ‘Misinformation’: A Rejoinder to Agnotology, Scientific Consensus, and the Teaching and Learning of Climate Change are here:,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en.

                  The citations for Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the literature: A re-analysis are here,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en.

                  The citations for Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the literature: Rejoinder are here,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en.

                  The citation for Comment on ‘Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the scientific literature’ is here:,50&sciodt=0,50&hl=en.

                  I will not attempt to take on all the supposed “hockey stick” studies that supposedly show nearly the same data, (believe me though, they are noted) but I do know that PopTech has a nice list of peer-reviewed papers finding fault with at least MBH 1998, 1999, and Mann et al. 2008 (possibly more hockey-stick studies).

              2. Seems you are saying your issue is economics, yet you are spending much time arguing against the science….

                “Page not found”

                    1. Because it was a blog post. Just because it wasn’t submitted to a journal does not mean it is invalid.

                    2. You can blog, I can blog.
                      Doesn’t make the content valid.

                      If your eminent scientist has published and didn’t publish this, it makes one wonder why…..

                      You’ve tried science through cherypicking and citing sources that can’t pass the sniff test. Perhaps it is time to sit down with the IPCC’S SPM and work your way through. Don’t forget every statement is backed up and references the WG1 chapter by chapter.

                    3. “You can blog, I can blog.
                      Doesn’t make the content valid.”
                      It doesn’t make it invalid either. My point was to at least consider the positions in his post, especially because he cited his own paper on that topic ( ) that was published in the peer-lit.

                      He has published numerous times in the peer-lit supporting skeptic arguments on climate change, see here: and search “Pielke” using Control-F.

                      I don’t know what the “sniff test” is, and I have not cherry-picked (if I have done so in your opinion please show me how). I have already shown how the IPCC has ignored papers that arrive at a substantially different conclusion than the ones they may cite in the WG1 and provided a link to even more.

                    4. “I don’t know what the “sniff test” is..”

                      A bit of a play on the acronym for research evaluation:CRAAP test. Think of the sniff test as a cursory first run. Some stuff just stinks enough that you don’t want to poke it .

                      Your sources generally come to mind.

                    5. Show me my sources that don’t pass it, then tell my why they don’t pass it. Be objective, not subjective. PopTech is not as bad as you think. Actually read what they say, then discuss it with me or them if you have issues with it, so I can try to help you with your problems with it.

                    6. Have you ever set down and thought about why no one has taken the papers on poptek’s list and done the same level of scrutiny, analysis, and synthesis that goes into a section of the ipcc report?

                      If they aren’t already in there, why?
                      How much would they change the findings in SPM?

                      Why hasn’t a comprehensive review, on the level of ipcc reports, been done? Or maybe the back of the envelope show all you’ve got is …….
                      Talking points. Not science.
                      Ask yourself.

                    7. Probably because not that many people have heard of their list, and because it would be longer to analyze every single paper on the list. Many, many blogs have attempted to discredit it, but all have been rebutted. “If they aren’t already in there, why?” Possibly because the IPCC didn’t like their conclusions and so chose to ignore them, after all, the IPCC has been criticized in the peer-lit multiple times: .

                      “How much would they change the findings in SPM?”
                      Drastically, because if most of the warming over the past century was natural, the IPCC’s key finding would be invalidated.

                    8. So, just your opinions.
                      Got it.

                      Seems we’re done. No science, just denialist talking points.
                      Thanks for not going full conspiracy – though “..IPCC didn’t like their conclusions and so chose to ignore them..” – points there…..

                    9. I like to think of myself as not a conspiracy theorist.
                      “So, just your opinions.
                      Got it.”
                      Not exactly. The four papers I highlighted all provide scientific explanations other than AGW as to the temperature rise over the past century. That is not my opinion. That is the scientific conclusions of the author(s).
                      “Seems we’re done. No science, just denialist talking points.”
                      Now you are the one denying something. You are denying all the scientific peer-reviewed articles I linked to.

                    10. “Change “provide scientific” to offers excuses,…”? How much longer will you deny the existence of valid scientific challenges to your position?

                    11. Again, which ones aren’t already in the IPCC’S analysis? Then apply your cherrypicked choices with the same analysis.

                      Report your findings.

                    12. I already told you a few that weren’t in the IPCC’s AR5 WG1 analysis, but here are a few more:

                      Can increasing carbon dioxide cause climate change? (PDF)

                      (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Volume 94, Number 16, pp. 8335-8342, August 1997)
                      – Richard S. Lindzen

                      CO2-induced global warming: a skeptic’s view of potential climate change (PDF)

                      (Climate Research, Volume 10, Number 1, pp. 69-82, April 1998)
                      – Sherwood B. Idso

                      The M&M Critique of the MBH98 Northern Hemisphere Climate Index: Update and Implications (PDF)

                      (Energy & Environment, Volume 16, Number 1, pp. 69-100, January 2005)
                      – Stephen McIntyre, Ross McKitrick

                      Cosmoclimatology: a new theory emerges (PDF)

                      (Astronomy & Geophysics, Volume 48, Issue 1, pp. 1.18-1.24, February 2007)
                      – Henrik Svensmark

                      On the recovery from the Little Ice Age (PDF)

                      (Natural Science, Volume 2, Number 7, pp. 1211-1224, November 2010)
                      – Syun-Ichi Akasofu

                      Lack of Consistency Between Modeled and Observed Temperature Trends (PDF)

                      (Energy & Environment, Volume 22, Number 4, pp. 375-406, June 2011)
                      – S. Fred Singer

                      And that is just a small sample.

                    13. EDIT: I did already.

                      I thought I already responded to this comment a while ago…I guess it didn’t go through.

                      I am not sure what you mean. Clarification would be appreciated.

                    14. He is a very credentialed scientist, being an Emeritus Professor of Atmospheric Science at CSU, a Senior Research Scientist at UCol-Boulder, a fellow of the AMS and the AGU, the former Chief Editor of Monthly Weather Review, etc.

                    15. Appeal to authority, I suspect. I meant to show that just because his blog post was not peer-reviewed did not mean that it was invalid. I apologize if I fell into that trap.

                    16. If it were valid, then it could be published. And god knows, the denialists need every bItty talking point they can muster.

                    17. Yes, the same topic.
                      From the blog post:
                      “The 2010 answer to the question by Andy Revkin

                      “Is most of the observed warming over the last 50
                      years likely to have been due to the increase in greenhouse gas

                      remains NO.

                      The added greenhouse gases from human activity clearly have a
                      role in increasing the heat content of the climate system from what it
                      otherwise would be. However, there are other equally or even more
                      important significant human climate forcings, as I summarized in my 2005
                      post and in the 2009 article

                      Pielke Sr., R., K. Beven, G. Brasseur, J. Calvert,
                      M. Chahine, R. Dickerson, D. Entekhabi, E. Foufoula-Georgiou, H. Gupta,
                      V. Gupta, W. Krajewski, E. Philip Krider, W. K.M. Lau, J. McDonnell, W.
                      Rossow, J. Schaake, J. Smith, S. Sorooshian, and E. Wood, 2009: Climate change: The need to consider human forcings besides greenhouse gases. Eos, Vol. 90, No. 45, 10 November 2009, 413. Copyright (2009) American Geophysical Union.”

                      From the scientific paper:

                      “This paper presents several issues related to the greenhouse gas
                      global warming hypothesis which should be satisfactorily addressed
                      before costly control requirements are imposed on society. The questions
                      which need to be answered include the importance of other anthropogenic
                      influences such as landscape changes and enhanced atmospheric aerosol
                      loading. Controls such as conservation and improved energy efficiency,
                      of course, which are benefits to society should be implemented
                      regardless of global climate change.”

                      And that Eos paper I’m fairly sure is peer-reviewed and is definitely on the topic of other human factors than GHGs.

                    18. Thank you for showing us that :
                      A) non-consilience papers get ppublished.
                      B) that denialit’s will use that 1 or 4 papers ‘prove’ everything else is wrong.

                      Again, if it isn’t in ipcc, how much does it change the result? Easy enough to show its/their significance: just show us figure 5 spm as it would be then.
                      Then, come up with a valid reason for why it wasn’t included.

                      You do realize all this talk is solely due to your position being based on an unsupported opinion and your efforts to find the meanest scrap of evidence, right?

                    19. “B) that denialit’s will use that 1 or 4 papers ‘prove’ everything else is wrong.”
                      Another strawman. I never claimed that everything else was wrong and I LINKED YOU TO HUNDREDS MORE PAPERS SUPPORTING SKEPTIC ARGUMENTS.

                      All right, thanks for clarifying what you wanted.
                      Here is the current figure 5 from the SPM:

                      Now, if the total anthropogenic RF relative from 1750 is 2.29 W/m-2, and 0.05 of the radiative forcing was from the sun’s irradience, then the total forcing since 1750 (as of 2011) would be 2.34 W/-2. Now, if 60% or more was of natural origin, the anthropogenic total would be at most 40%, which is 0.936 W/m-2. That leaves no room for any other causes, which undoubtedly there are. Therefore, Fig 5 of the SPM would tell a significantly different story.

                      “You do realize all this talk is solely due to your position being
                      based on an unsupported opinion and your efforts to find the meanest
                      scrap of evidence, right?”

                      That is completely false. My position is supported by the likes of

                      -Dr. Ján Veizer, an Emeritus Distinguished University Professor of Earth Sciences at the University of Ottawa.

                      -Dr. Tim Patterson, a paleoclimatologist and professor of geology at Carleton University in Canada.

                      -Dr. Tad S. Murty, an oceanographer and adjunct professor of in the departments of Civil Engineering and Earth Sciences at the University of Ottawa and a co-editor of the journal Natural Hazards.

                      -Dr. Khabibullo Abdussamatov, an astrophysicist and the supervisor of the Astrometria project of the Russian section of the International Space Station and the head of Space research laboratory at the Saint Petersburg-based Pulkovo Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

                      -Dr. Ole Humlum, a Danish professor of physical geography at the University of Oslo, Department of Geosciences and adjunct professor of physical geography at the University Centre in Svalbard. He holds six university degrees, including a Ph.D. in glacial geomorphology.

                      -Dr. Reid A. Bryson, an American atmospheric scientist, geologist and meteorologist. He was a professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin–Madison of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

                      -Dr. Robert Jastrow, an American astronomer, physicist and cosmologist. He was the founding director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and was a Professor of Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College.

                      All of the above scientists have published on climate change in the peer-reviewed literature and have impeccable credentials. I am not as much of a fool as you made lead yourself into believing.

                    20. Now you are using logical fallacies.

                      Before you were citing stuff that doesn’t pass the sniff test.

                      Before you were checking in with cherrypicking.

                      The denialists can’t bring science.
                      The denialists can’t bring in economics

                      Must hurt to hold a position advocated by the fossil fuel oligarchy.

                    21. List what was not passing the “sniff test”. List what I “was checking in with cherrypicking”.
                      OF COURSE the “denialists” can bring in science, nine of them are or were members of the National Academy of Science, they have published in Nature, Science, PNAS, and other prestigious journals on the topic of climate change; they have published in the peer-lit on economics as well: .

                      Exxon disagrees with the “denialists'” position: .

      1. As the Guardian points out, from reading studies; poor quality, a vanishingly small amount and with poor citation /impact.”
        All the denialists have done is slow down adaptation and mitigation. Thanks a lot.

        Also see: S. Lovejoy, Climate Closure

        “Skeptics have published on the
        topic of climate change in Nature, Science, Proceedin….”

        1. The Guardian is not peer-reviewed nor a reliable source for information. If someone had a problem with any of the above studies, they should take it up in the peer-reviewed literature. “Denialists” is not a correct term for describing skeptics, no matter how many people use it. Adaptation is not something skeptics are opposed to, and as far as I know, no prominent skeptic has slowed down adaptation. Mitigation is a different matter because of the consequences of such moves. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how many people cite a work, it only matters if the conclusions are correct or not. I am not sure what you mean by “Skeptics have published on the topic of climate change in Nature, Science, Proceedin….”, but I will link to the studies I speak of. Here is one of the ones for Nature: Here is one of the ones for Science: Here is one of the ones for PNAS:

          Regarding the Eos article you linked to, (which you appear to have thoroughly enjoyed) I am disappointed. Making claims like “the scientific debate is now over” and calling dissenters “denialists” makes me want to ignore the article completely, but that would be premature. I note that the author did not even mention cosmic rays, or the voluminous literature supporting hypotheses that the sun has caused a significant portion of climate change over the past century (see here:, About the “Pause”, Ben Santer of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory said that 17 years of tropospheric temperature records were necessary to identify human effects on climate change. An insightful article on that topic is here: The “Pause” is now 18 years and 8 months long. I may be interpreting his paper wrong, but I believe that this may mean a somewhat lowered effect of humans on temperature. Also, the troposphere was supposed to have warm faster (according to the IPCC: surface, but the exact opposite has happened.

          I thank you for having engaged in this conversation with me, which I hope will eventually produce some positive result.

            1. You link me to the same article which I just spoke of with you regarding the errors in his assessment. The Oxford English Dictionary, as far as I can tell, doesn’t have a definition for “denialist”; if you could link me to where it does I would be appreciative.


                Syllabification: de·ni·al·ist
                Pronunciation: /dəˈnīələst/
                Definition of denialist in English:

                A person who does not acknowledge the truth of a concept or proposition that is supported by the majority of scientific or historical evidence; a denier:
                the small minority of very vocal climate change denialists
                [AS MODIFIER]: the denialist view

                Pronunciation: /dəˈnīəlizm/

                1. Thank you, I was unfortunately unable to find it on their official OED website.
                  The reason climate change denialists is a poor phrase to describe such people is that none of them deny climate change, and most of the scientists in our camp do not reject the idea of man-made climate change.

          1. Theres a reason…. Fig 5 SPM

            “I note that the author did not even mention cosmic rays, or the voluminous literature supporting hypotheses that the sun has caused a significant portion of climate change over the past century “

            1. Figure 5 of the SPM states that solar changes only likely accounted for 0.05 W M-2 of the radiative forcing changes since 1750 and place a medium confidence In their assertion. Just because the IPCC has ruled out solar forcing as a major contributing factor does not mean Mr. Lovejoy should. The IPCC’s conclusions are directly at odds with the conclusions of numerous peer-reviewed articles (;jsessionid=DC57CFAF858A2AFE54C6A276CE207EBE.ip-10-40-2-121,, that find that astronomical changes can account for 71, 60, or 66% of the observed temperature trends recently. Mr. Lovejoy did not mention these articles at all in his article, which, if he truly wanted to disprove “natural forcings”, should have done.

              1. Ipcc reports is looking at a large body of research, and may even include your cite. One paper or a few selected ones being cited is cherrypicking

                Not cience…

                1. I never said the IPCC did not include a large body of research in their work, which I might add, is very valuable to the scientific community. I wasn’t trying to cherry-pick, but was trying to show you that there are some important peer-reviewed papers arriving at very different conclusions than that of the IPCC. If you would like a greater number of these such papers, they can be found here, so I won’t be accused of cherry-picking:,

                  I also didn’t claim I was attempting to do science, I was just trying to rebut your last comment.

                  According to this page, (, for the WG1 report of AR5) the IPCC cites none of the above papers, in fact, they don’t cite any of the above others (except for Salie Baliunas, who they cite twice.)

                    1. They are. Did I not show that? If 60% or greater of the warming (over the past century) is natural, then the IPCC’s key finding (95% confidence that more than half of post-1950 warming is man-made) is invalidated!

                    2. Needs refersnce. Prove the “if”
                      ” If 60% or greater of the warming (over the past century) is natural…”

                    3. I linked you to the papers showing that. I cannot be any clear than this:
                      (from the first paper) “The simulation implies that the solar part of the forcing alone would
                      account for 71% of the global mean temperature variance, compared to 51%
                      for the greenhouse gases’ part alone. It also suggests a solar total
                      irradiance variation of 0.5% during the interval 1880-1993. Such an
                      amplitude of solar total irradiance change is consistent with
                      astrophysical limits of brightness changes on timescales of decades to
                      centuries independently derived from observations of solar-type stars
                      (including the Sun).”
                      (from the second paper) “It is found that at least 60% of the global warming observed since 1970 has been induced by the combined effect of the above natural climate oscillations.”
                      (from the third paper) “We find that at least 66% of the variance in the paleotemperature trend could be attributed to CRF variations likely due to solar system passages through the spiral arms of the galaxy. Assuming that the entire residual variance in temperature is due solely to the CO2 greenhouse effect, we propose a tentative upper limit to the long-term “equilibrium” warming effect of CO2, one which is potentially lower than that based on general circulation models.”

                      Read the papers for yourself and see the evidence.

                    4. You are still doing the same thing; taking at someone’s word that a single paper is proof of yor position while at the same time poo -pooing the bulk of the body of literature.

                      Again; when you stack your single paper, or your single quote as prof against the body of work, you are cherrypicking for your desired outcome. A predetermined outcome.

                    5. It was not a single paper, it was four, and I gave you links to many more. I never poo-poohed “the bulk of the body of literature” I simply was trying to demonstrate that there are many reasons to disagree with the IPCC’s conclusions, many that the IPCC themselves ignored. I was selecting papers that arrived at a different conclusion than that of the IPCC’s of course, because I was attempting to demonstrate that their position is at odds with much of the peer-reviewed literature. You have not cited any peer-reviewed research other than Climate Closure (which I am not sure is peer-reviewed, since it came in the “opinion section”, and on which Dr. Judith Curry has an excellent article here:

                    6. Yup. A paper.

                      A paper.

                      Now, explain why you want it reviewed by itself? Not as how it fits to the body of research.

                    7. I want it reviewed by itself because its conclusions are substantially different than that of the IPCC’s which is widely regarded as the authoritative source for information of climate change. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how many papers in the “body of research” support the alarmist position if they are wrong.

                    8. And why do you thint that single paper is more right?

                      Seems it is because it points to a conclusion that you like.

                    9. It was not just one paper, I linked to FOUR. I never said they were right, only that they were at odds with the conclusion of the IPCC and were not even included in the IPCC’s report.

                    10. Not all of those papers support the conclusion of the IPCC. And I linked you to hundreds more papers, in fact, the working list ( ) counts:
                      -11 papers supporting skeptic arguments about the 1500-year climate cycle
                      -117 papers supporting skeptic arguments about cosmic rays
                      -255 papers supporting skeptic arguments about solar activity (not included in cosmic ray section or vice versa)
                      -51 papers supporting skeptic arguments about lunar activity
                      -22 papers supporting skeptic arguments about the IPCC
                      -20 papers with a generally lower climate sensitivity than that of the IPCC
                      -9 papers claiming a lag between CO2 and temperatures.
                      The working list adds up to 1439 papers.

                    11. “Not all of those papers support the conclusion of the IPCC. ”
                      Yes, because they do point to papers that increase levels of uncertainty in areas where more research is indicated. So, of course they cite those.

            1. I do not have time now to provide most of the examples I would like to regarding the ways The Guardian violates the principles of that link, but here is one:
              -In your original link to the Guardian article, the author has no credentials relating to his topic and links to someone who has about the same amount as him (Bill McKibben).

                1. I will follow up on what I said.
                  In this article there are a number of violations:
                  -Nuticelli uses strong language, saying that Roy believes in a conspiracy.
                  -Nuticelli omits many peer-reviewed articles disproving or helping to refute some of his claims, such as claiming that he and his co-authors’ “97% consensus” study’s findings are valid.
                  -There is an obvious bias in his article; it is apparent when he attempts to smear Christy and Spencer because they are supposedly “linked to conservative fossil-fuel funded think tanks” and when he attempts to smear them by claiming they have quite a bit in common with those who tried to dispute the links between smoking and cancer.
                  -Nuticelli claims that Christy and Spencer are outside of the “97%” consensus, when in fact, both Spencer and Christy agree that humans are causing global warming (,
                  Spencer has written a post about his article here:

                  1. You can’t make a claim wo evidence.
                    “-Nuticelli omits many peer-reviewed articles disproving or helping to refute some of his claims, such as claiming that he and his co-authors’ “97% consensus” study’s findings are valid.”

                    1. …..
                      You do realize what you’ve done is basically show us how you are assuming popteck is telling you the whole story….

                    2. They provided links to peer-reviewed papers refuting or taking issue with the findings of the “97%” consensus studies! What more could they tell you?

                    3. Go back to the CRAAP test……..

                      Some person, with no expertise, has cherrypicked papers fitting to results you like.

                      NOT a survey of the body of literature.

                      Now, think of why you picked the sub 3% position. Think about your level of expertise, think about how the research has been reaching higher and higher levels of consilience since that rather famous paper of 1896.

                    4. They provided links to papers REFUTING THE “97%” CONSENSUS STUDIES. Of course they aren’t including the replies (if any) to those papers because they are showing papers that REFUTE the claim! The surveys of the body of literature is WHAT THEY ARE REFUTING! The “3%” claim you make is from any one of the latter three studies, which have all been refuted by peer-review.
                      Svante Arrhenius revised his conclusions in a 1906 paper, an English translation of which can be found here:,%20final.pdf. He also thought the increase in CO2 was a good thing, and believed that we should continue on the course we are on now.

                    5. Sorry, but we’ve gotten study after study over the years showing a narrow range of high consensus. If they are all wrong, then each is wrong for a different reason, and that doesn’t make a bit of logical sense.

                    6. And all of these studies have been refuted in the peer-reviewed literature. Read the rebuttals I linked to yourself to see the reasons why the “97%” consensus study of choice’s conclusions are in dispute.

                    7. No. Not “refuted”. Responded to, yes. Convincingly? Not so much. Unless someone is seeking justification for an increasingly obviously wrong view of the science.

                    8. Yes, refuted. Did you even read the papers? If a refutation is published after being reviewed, it must have at least some value. My point I have consistently been trying to make is that though there have been four main studies all reaching the same “97%” conclusion, they all have been refuted in the peer-reviewed literature.

                      Convincingly is a subjective term, not an objective one. “Increasingly wrong view of the science.” Seeing as how more skeptic papers are published each year that help to refute alarmist claims, I wouldn’t say that the skeptic position becomes more untenable as time goes by.

                    9. Far more than 4 papers on concensus….

                      Read the full body of literature, not the blogs making claims.

                    10. Show me then. (By the way, I said 4 MAJOR papers; the ones that are most well-known, I didn’t say all of them. Do not use strawmans against me.

                    11. I thought I had already shown you those papers before, and thus that you could recall them. I am sorry for any confusion.

          2. “The Guardian is not peer-reviewed nor a reliable source for information…”

            What an odd thing to say… major newspaper, well researched, broad general and political coverage…..

            What you really are wanting is exactly opposite of their position. You want to continue debate. The Guardian says the science is inequivocabile.

            That is stronger than IPCC ‘s attribution statement, but well in line with the range of policy/position statements of virtually every scientific organization in the world.

            The vanishingly small amount of contrarian research shows just how insane a ‘let’s not do anything until we have 100% ‘ position is.

            We have science, we have research showing delay only benefits a few shareholders of old tech, we have research showing the human cost of delay.

            And then we have your position….

            1. It is not a reliable source of information, as I demonstrated by using the CRAAP test. “Well researched” is debatable. If it truly was well researched, they would find that there are plenty of valid reasons as to why the skeptical scientists say what they do. I do agree that there is broad general and political coverage.

              Indeed, I do want them to change their position, but if it was the exact opposite, it would come near the likes of Oliver Manuel, Principia Scientific, or the Sky Dragon Slayers. Of course we should continue debate into the nature and causes of climate change! Science cannot proceed without such debate. “The Guardian says the science is inequivocabile.” As regards to what?

              “virtually every scientific organization”. Not quite. The Russian Academy of Sciences disagrees, ( as does the Japan Society of Energy and Resources, ( The American Association of Petroleum Geologists. (, and a more ambiguous and revised one, here:

              “The vanishingly small amount of contrarian research shows just how
              insane a ‘let’s not do anything until we have 100% ‘ position is.” Define vanishingly small. Here are 1350 papers supporting skeptic arguments, many published by well-known skeptics (here is a working list of more: I don’t know of any skeptic who holds that “nothing until 100%” position, most want us to adapt to future climates.

              “We have science, we have research showing delay only benefits a few
              shareholders of old tech, we have research showing the human cost of
              delay.” Show me the research then. I showed you research to the contrary in my Poptech link.

              My position is supported by such papers.

                1. If you cannot have a serious debate, just let me know first so I don’t have to waste my time.
                  “denialist eyeglasses”? Is that a civil way to continue our conversation.

                  Don’t use strawmans against me. I never claimed PopTech wasn’t biased; of course they are. Every person and group has their own biases in their own way. PopTech is biased, I would say, toward the skeptic position, but, in my opinion they do provide a more balanced perspective (though they don’t always tell the whole story.)

                    1. You are welcome. I had problems with the links because my close parentheses was included in the link, which it should not have been.

              1. Your links on the academies do not work. The Russian Academy of Science and the Japan Academy of Science both signed this: Joint science academies’ statement:
                Global response to climate change

                As for the Japan Society of Resources:

                As for the American “Petroleum” Geologists” they have amended their position in 2007:

                1. Ahh, I found the problem. Here are the links: and . That was one person who signed the document from the Russian Academy of Sciences and Japan Academy of Science. You link me to a blog, not a scientific paper which uses the strawman argument that this wasn’t a peer-reviewed report.

                  I included the amended statement in my comment. Here is the link: .

                  1. One guy said there had been an argument, but at any rate the Russian Academy of Science was dissolved in 2013 under Putin and is now controlled by him. So, it has no real credibility. Using it as a source for denialist is like using Putin.

                    1. That would be similar to saying that NOAA and NASA and the EPA have no credibility because the executive office is controlled by Obama. That of course is false, but though Putin is a dictator, not all the Russian Academy of Sciences’ statements well be invalidated because they have “no real credibility”. Those statements were made before 2013, by the way.

                    2. Not saying Russian scientist have not done some darn fine work, just saying it is not credible any which way one looks at it, to try to use the Russian Academy of Sciences as denying man made climate change today. And they did sign the other statement.

                    3. One member of the RAS did sign the statement. I never denied that. But that is not representative of the other members’ views. “it is not credible any which way one looks at it, to try to use the
                      Russian Academy of Sciences as denying man made climate change today.” I never attempted to deny man-made climate change (and just because the Academy is headed by Putin’s government, and Putin disagrees with the consensus does not mean that the Academy will hold his views), in fact I bashed Tim Ball, an actual “denier” of the greenhouse effect and man-made climate change, and it is my opinion, as is the opinion of virtually all true climate scientists, that man is altering the climate in significant ways and that these changes require further research.

            2. “Anyone who claims that the debate
              is over and the conclusions are firm has a fundamentally
              unscientific approach to one of the most momentous issues
              of our time.” – Solar physicist
              Dr. Pål Brekke, senior advisor to the Norwegian
              Space Centre in Oslo. Brekke has published more than
              40 peer-reviewed scientific articles on the sun and
              solar interaction with the Earth.

              1. Yup. More research is good. Narrows down the error bands, tightens up consilience. And shows that the range of excuses shown on skepticalscience are just efforts to slow down effective action.


                      Since fossil fuels make up 67.2% of the energy consumption of the United States, a sudden change to renewables would raise energy rates considerably. In fact, under the EPA’s renewables plan, the following energy rate raise would occur:
                      Average annual household gas and power bills would increase by $680 ($293) or 35% (15%)from 2012 to 2020. (Source: )

                    2. They cite government statistics and the rest is common sense. You don’t need the CRAAP test for everything.

                    3. You are now citing SourceWatch? Don’t expect me to read their biased page since the IER uses statistics from the government, at least the ones I cited.

                      SourceWatch can be edited by anyone. How could anyone consider it a reliable source of information.

                    4. I could argue that you are not doing science either, just alarmist talking points. Just alarmists smears, just alarmist propaganda ( sites.

                      Tell me the logical fallacy.

                      I just meant to show you that my claims were based upon government statistics and common sense, thereby refuting the implied claim that somehow the IER’s supposed bias would be affecting my conclusion.

  5. A Google search on “climate change deniers” or “climate change denial” will get you about 150,000 hits. Many of the hits are to websites set up to ‘out’ those who deny man-made climate change, that is, intimidate them into shutting up via ridicule, threat of ostracization, loss of job and, in some cases, criminal punishment.

    Small wonder that reports say ‘99%’ of scientists agree on climate change. Many scientists may be afraid to say in public what they say, or think, in private. It’s sort of like Copernicus, who didn’t dare publish his heliocentric theory of the solar system/universe before his death. Galileo tried it and faced an inquisition.

    Scientific theories, unlike mathematical theorems, are NEVER actually proven. They become generally accepted but are ALWAYS subject to question. Before the Renaissance, medieval scholars were actually a lot smarter than most people believe. They knew the earth was round long before Columbus. But, they also ‘knew’ that the universe was geocentric. They never bothered to check what they ‘knew’ to be true. It wasn’t allowed.

    The term ‘denier’ (of climate change or other things) is an accusatory/derogatory term and its mere use in this context is dangerous to modern scientific thinking, especially as the term is appearing in mainstream publications and being uttered by a former VP. In fact, use of the term ‘climate science denial’ is downright anti-science and represents a return to medieval scholasticism, i.e., DOGMA. Mr. Gore should go back to the Middle Ages where he and anti-science buddies belong. There, Gore can have fun burning real scientists like Giordano Bruno.

    I do not know whether man-made climate change theory is valid or not. But I have seen NASA photos of polar regions that show a 60% increase in glacial ice from August 2012 to August 2013. That doesn’t disprove global warming but it does call it into question. I’d like to see objective evidence before governments use force on people as they did in Iraq over all those WMD’s Iraq had. That goes the same for forcing people to cough up more money when they use fossil fuels to keep themselves comfortable or transport themselves around.

  6. Merchants of Doubt is a great book which makes some pretty damning accusations against Singer among many others.

    It is a measure of how meticulously referenced the book is that despite considerable bluster not a single one of its subjects has been able to lay a finger on Oreskes or Conway.

    Highly recommended if you want to have your eyes opened about these people.

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