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Lovley’s day for a climate bunfight

Cross-posted from Daniel Cressey on The Great Beyond

duty_calls.pngThere’s nothing like a good climate change-denial article to get the internet all riled up, and boy has Erika Lovley done some riling.

She’s penned not one but two articles for the right-leaning Politico newspaper, which are being torn to shreds as we speak.

The one generating most ire is the frankly spectacular ‘Scientists urge caution on global warming’. This claims there is “a growing accumulation of global cooling science and other findings that could signal that the science behind global warming may still be too shaky to warrant cap-and-trade legislation”.

David Roberts on the Gristmill blog calls Lovley’s pieces, “two of the most jaw-droppingly moronic stories I’ve ever seen”. The version of his story on the Huffington Post website comes with the headline, “Politico Reporter Erika Lovley Embarrasses Politico, Self, Profession of Journalism, Humanity”.

You know this isn’t going to end well for her don’t you?

In by far the most sensible two lines of her first piece, Lovley writes:

The National Academy of Sciences and most major scientific bodies agree that global warming is caused by man-made carbon emissions. But a small, growing number of scientists, including [Weather Channel co-founder Joseph] D’Aleo, are questioning how quickly the warming is happening and whether humans are actually the leading cause.

More than 31,000 scientists across the world have signed the Global Warming Petition Project, a declaration started by a group of American scientists that states man’s impact on climate change can’t be reasonably proven.

Roberts notes, “The most notable feature of this “growing accumulation of global cooling science” is that Lovley doesn’t cite a single piece of it. Seriously. Not one.”

Now that’s a little unfair. Lovley does note that:

… D’Aleo reported in the 2009 Old Farmer’s Almanac that the U.S. annual mean temperature has fluctuated for decades and has only risen 0.21 degrees since 1930 — which he says is caused by fluctuating solar activity levels and ocean temperatures, not carbon emissions.

Over to Joseph Romm on the Climate Progress blog:

Here’s where the Politico jumps the shark into the territory best left to The Onion. The story actually builds its case around D’Aleo’s article in that well-known, highly credible, peer-reviewed scientific climate journal, The 2009 Old Farmer’s Almanac.

You can’t make this stuff up. Well, maybe you can’t, but deniers can. They can make stuff up, print it in places like the Almanac …

The second of Lovley’s pieces is so bizarre it really might be a spoof. In it she looks as ‘The Gore Effect’:

The so-called Gore Effect happens when a global warming-related event, or appearance by the former vice president and climate change crusader, Al Gore, is marked by exceedingly cold weather or unseasonably winter weather.

While there’s no scientific proof that The Gore Effect is anything more than a humorous coincidence, some climate skeptics say it may offer a snapshot of proof that the planet isn’t warming as quickly as some climate change advocates say.

Over to Steve Benen on the Washington Monthly blog:

The second piece — same publication, same writer, same topic — is even more insulting.

For crying out loud. A few global warming deniers think cold weather undermines climate change, and the Politico feels comfortable telling readers that snowstorms “may offer a snapshot of proof”? Seriously?

I actually feel sorry for Lovley now…

Daniel Cressey


“Scientists” and the media – The Way Things Break

Image: XKCD


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