IN the Australian Senate the vote of one senator, Steve Fielding, may be important for the passage of the government’s cap and trade legislation, also known as the emission trading scheme.
On Monday Senator Fielding had a meeting with the Minister for Climate Change, Penny Wong, and asked the following questions so he can make an informed decision on whether or not an emissions trading scheme is the best course of action for Australia to take to deal with climate change and global warming.
Is it the case that CO2 increased by 5% since 1998 whilst global temperature cooled over the same period (see Fig. 1)?
If so, why did the temperature not increase; and how can human emissions be to blame for dangerous levels of warming?
Is it the case that the rate and magnitude of warming between 1979 and 1998 (the late 20th century phase of global warming) was not unusual in either rate or magnitude as compared with warmings that have occurred earlier in the Earth’s history (Fig. 2a, 2b)?
If the warming was not unusual, why is it perceived to have been caused by human CO2 emissions; and, in any event, why is warming a problem if the Earth has experienced similar warmings in the past?
Is it the case that all GCM computer models projected a steady increase in temperature for the period 1990-2008, whereas in fact there were only 8 years of warming were followed by 10 years of stasis and cooling. (Fig. 3)?
If so, why is it assumed that long-term climate projections by the same models are suitable as a basis for public policy making?
The figures can be viewed here: http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/what_steve_asked_penny/