Lv 7
Trevor asked in EnvironmentGlobal Warming · 9 years ago

Which of the climate change skeptic’s arguments have not been debunked?

Just been talking to a friend about why some people are skeptical of the theory of manmade climate change. Whilst we were able to recall many arguments that have been presented by the skeptics, there were only three we could think of that had any real validity to them.

• Which of the skeptics arguments are genuinely valid? Not what you think are valid, not what you wish were valid, but those that have not been reliably debunked and therefore merit serious consideration.

Feel free to list as many arguments as you wish but be sure to explain them, in context, and with suitable citations, sources, links etc.

9 Answers

  • Pindar
    Lv 7
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I wasn't aware that any common sense statements about the baloney of man made climate change had been 'debunked' , i'm afraid that what you still have is a wild and unproven theory which plays on weak minds.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    Personally Trevor I find NASA's website has the best page for uncertainities (i.e. skeptical arguments that could be put forth). However as the NASA site comments "there's a great deal that we don't know about the future of Earth's climate and how climate change will affect humans" ... therefore the best skeptical argument for manmade climate change is the UNKNOWN.

    That is to skeptical argue manmade climate change I would argue that there is information that we don't know about Earth's climate (and the universe), therefore you could conclude that there is some unknown variable that is changing the climate (even could stretch as far as that it is a natural cycle that we are unaware of).

    However this doesn't dismiss the theory of manmade climate change. One of those unknowns would have to be discovered to be causing the change to dismiss the theory.

  • 9 years ago

    Okay, things that are/might be problematical, that I can think of, off the top of my head:

    Ocean heat contents and transfer speeds are large unknowns for the deeper layers of water. It's not so much there is a missing heat problem; we think we dropped it into the water. What we don't know at all accurately enough, I believe, although we're learning, is what part of the heat is "falling to the bottom" so to speak, and what part has been bounced back out of the system [to space.]

    Arctic Ocean heat transfer under significantly ice-free conditions might allow significant heat to escape to space from open waters during the northern hemisphere winter, as the ice cover insulates the heat in the ocean from escaping, as well as reflects light in sunshine. This could act as a cooling mechanism.

    The uptake of CO2 by plants under conditions of notably higher CO2 is not well established under a wide range of actual field conditions, so it's possible CO2 levels could stabilize, and stop rising at some point in the near future.

    Clouds are problematical; we don't have a good handle on them. It appears that clouds present a slight warming feedback, but my understanding is that cloud models are not very advanced, and no one has a good idea of what will happen. Cloud cover could provide a cooling effect in the future, as weather continues changing.

    ... This has been sitting here for a while, but I'm losing the ability to type - more later...

  • john m
    Lv 4
    9 years ago

    Hi Trev you know were I stand on man made climate change/global warming After posting and answering Q's with as many links possible that point out how this process works I've been told by the people here that It is not responsible for what we are seeing and not one person has given me a link to a site that debunks my or any others claims that radio frequencies from ground based and satellite com's and detecting are heating up the atmosphere Some links are provided here;_ylt=Al...

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  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    All the climate change skeptic's arguments have been debunked. They may as well do the same as the rest of us now. Accept the inevitable change in climate, and plant food as if their lives depend on it; because they do.

  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    The majority of skeptic arguments are either non-sequiters or uncertainties. Other than arguments which are outright lies, such as "It's cooling,", "Volcanoes emit more CO2 than humans," "All planets are warming," and "Global warming violates the laws of thermodynamics," while in fact the 1st Law of Thermodynamics requires warming when CO2 absorbs infrared, most skeptic arguments have some validity. However, most are irrelevant, such as "CO2 is plant food," and "CO2 lagged temperatures in the past," (usually incorrectly stated in present tense by denialists) which do not in anyways imply that CO2 does not absorb infrared. Other arguments are uncertainties, such as questions about climate models and about which side to believe. The thing about uncertainty is that it cuts both ways. Global warming may not be as bad as scientists say, but it could also be worse.

    NW Jack

    <The present lag between ocean temperature anomalies and the rate of change in atmospheric CO2 is currently 8 months, and obvious.>

    These are seasonal variations, which are unrelated to the combustion of fossil fuels for to long term trends.

    The sinusoidal component of the data shows increasing CO2 during Northern hemisphere winter and decreasing CO2 during Northern hemisphere summer. CO2 concentrations rise during Northern hemisphere winter because the vegetation is dormant in much of the Northern Hemisphere.This seasonal variation of photosynthesis can not cause long term changes in atmospheric CO2 because if the biosphere were to absorb CO2 at the rate which humans add CO2 to the atmosphere, it would have used up all of the CO2 in a few decades during the pre-industrial era.

    <<<These are seasonal variations>>

    <Then, why is the pattern so obvious on the 12 month moving averages graph I linked to?>

    Already answered.

  • 9 years ago

    The certainty of attribution of climate change due to human CO2 emissions has been overstated, specifically the attribution statement by the IPCC in the SPM for AR4.

    The certainty of climate model projections for future climate has also been overstated to a point where it is not necessarily a beneficial idea to put restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions and for governments to act as venture capitalists in renewable energy.

    To sum it up, I am skeptical of the actual level of alarm that has been presented on climate change and the urgency described to "address" it. This is based on the above two arguments.

    Judy Curry has a comprehensive set of posts regarding the uncertainty of the IPCC assessments:

    Roger Pielke Sr. has a comprehensive set of posts about climate models plus a few peer-reviewed papers:

    Those are obviously not the only sources out there but they are two which have a fairly good concentration regarding uncertainty in climate science.

    Edit: Actually, Judy Curry has a study out about IPCC uncertainty here:

    Of course, SkepticalScience has seen to "debunking" it here probably the day after the preprint was made available. I guess the flock there get worried when their beliefs are challenged. If you call this a "debunking", then we have different concepts of what that implies:

  • 9 years ago

    As usual, Ottawa Mike provides an excellent answer, but I am not sure that the "skepticalScience" Warmist site devoted to debunking Skeptic arguments would be considered the panacea that some would hope for in debunking Skeptic objections to the Warmist premise, since it often sets up straw man arguments and entirely misses the point to debunk.

    Thus, while I enjoy reading articles on that site, and it does have some good ones,

    it does a better job of preaching to the quior than actually converting Skeptics.

    Perhaps the most serious argument that Skeptics constantly level that is never seriously addresses on that site is that no matter how much Warmists like to talk about science, their movement has gone political,

    and has little to do with recycling or solar energy. Virtually all of the political action has been a bait and switch where the vast majority of the effort has been to go nuclear,

    produce biofuels,

    run farmers off their land,

    and move industry from the US, Canada, and Europe to China, India, Brazil, and a few other places.

    Despite the horrors we already experience as a direct result of Warmist policy,

    Warmists still think they can get people to believe that things will be even worse if we do not do things their way. Rational Warmists realize that something is wrong with this, and are actually talking about it.

    When science goes political, it gets shoddy. Government created science monopolies are about politics, not science.

    Edit @Jyushchy:

    <<"CO2 lagged temperatures in the past," (usually incorrectly stated in present tense by denialists)>>

    The present lag between ocean temperature anomalies and the rate of change in atmospheric CO2 is currently 8 months, and obvious.

    It is relevant in that it provides empirical evidence that atmospheric CO2 concentrations respond significantly to ocean surface temperatures, and not just the 7% of CO2 going into the atmosphere each year that humans produce.

    Edit2 @Jyushchy:

    <<These are seasonal variations>>

    Then, why is the pattern so obvious on the 12 month moving averages graph I linked to?

    Edit3 @Jyushchy:

    12 month moving averages eliminate all seasonal variations since exactly one entire year is averaged into each data point. The graph shows only nonseasonal variations. Notice the lack of any "sinusoidal component of the data" in the graph.

  • 9 years ago

    I thought we had finally cured your nonsensical conflating of liar and skeptic. Apparently not. The question is unanswerable in its present mangled form. Try again, please, I do think important issues worth addressing lie beneath your denial of denial.

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