Original Post by Illinois Review:

by Jay Lehr, Ph.D., Science Director of The Heartland Institute

1- Carbon Dioxide is not a pollutant.  On the contrary it makes crops and forests grow faster.  Mapping by satellite shows that the earth has become about 6% greener overall in the past two decades, with forests expanding into arid regions.  The Amazon rain forest was the biggest gainer, with two tons of additional biomass per acre per year.  Certainly climate change does not help every region equally, but careful studies predict overall benefit, fewer storms, more rain, better crop yields, longer growing seasons, milder winters and decreasing heating costs in colder climates.  The news is certainly not bad and on balance may be rather good.

2- Someday the world will wake up and laugh when they finally understand that the entire pursuit of economic ruin in the name of saving the planet from increasing carbon dioxide is in fact a terrible joke.  You see it is an unarguable fact that the portion of the Earth’s greenhouse gas envelope contributed by man is barely one tenth of one per cent of the total.  Do the numbers your self.  CO2 is no more than 4% of the total (with water vapor being over 90% followed by methane and sulpher and nitrous oxides).  Of that 4% man contributes only a little over 3%.  Elementary school arithmetic says that 3% of 4% is .12% and for that we are sentencing the planet to a wealth of damaging economic impacts.

3- The effect of additional CO2 in the atmosphere is limited because it only absorbs certain wave lengths of radiant energy.  As the radiation in the particular wave length band  is used up, the amount left for absorption by more of the gas is reduced.  A simple analogy is to consider drawing a curtain across a window – a large part of the light will be shut out but some will still get through.  Add a second curtain to the first and most of the remaining light will be excluded.  A point will quickly be reached where adding more curtains has a negligible effect, because there is no light left to stop.  This is the case with the absorption of energy as more carbon dioxide is added to the atmosphere.

4- If greenhouse gases were responsible for increases in global temperature of recent decades then atmospheric physics shows that higher levels of our atmosphere would show greater warming than lower levels.  This was not found to be true during the 1978 to 1998 period of .3 degrees centigrade warming.

5- 900,000 years of ice core temperature records and carbon dioxide content records show that CO2 increases follow rather than lead increases in Earth temperature which is logical because the oceans are the primary source of CO2 and they hold more CO2 when cool than when warm, so warming causes the oceans to release more CO2.

6- While temperatures have fluctuated over the past 5000 years, today’s earth temperature is below average for the past 5000 years.

7- A modest amount of global warming, should it occur would be beneficial to the natural world.  The warmest period in recorded history was the Medieval Warm Period roughly 800 to 1200 AD when temperatures were 7 to 9 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than today allowing great prosperity for mankind, and Greenland was actually green.

8- Temperature fluctuations during the current 300 year recovery from the Little Ice Age which ended around 1700AD, following the Medieval Warming Period , correlate almost perfectly with fluctuations in solar activity.  This correlation long predates human use of significant amounts of fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas.

9- The National Aeronautic and Space Agency (NASA) has determined that during the time the Earth was warming so was Mars, Pluto, Jupiter and the largest moon of Neptune.

10- We know that 200 million years ago when the dinosaurs walked the Earth, average Carbon Dioxide concentration in the atmosphere was 1800 ppm, five times higher than today.

11- All four major global temperature tracking outlets (Hadley UK, NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, University of Alabama Huntsville, and Remote Sensing Systems Santa Rosa) have released updated information showing that in 2007, global cooling ranged from 0.65C to .75C. a value large enough to erase nearly all the global warming recorded over the past 100 years. All in one years time.

12- NASA satellites measuring Earth atmosphere temperature found 2008 to be the coldest year since 2000 and the 14th coldest of the past 30 years.  US climate Monitoring Stations  on the surface show greater warmth, but  pictures of most of the 1,221 US temperature stations show 90% to be located near human sources of heat (exhaust fans, air conditioning units, hot roof tops, asphalt parking lots and so forth).  the conclusion is inescapable: The US land based temperature record is unreliable.

13- While we hear much about one or another melting glaciers, a recent study of 246 glaciers around the world between 1946 and 1995 indicated a balance between those that are losing ice, gaining ice and remaining in equilibrium.  There is no global trend in any direction.

14- On May 1, 2007 National Geographic magazine reported that the snows on Mt. Kilimanjaro were shrinking as a result of lower precipitation rather than a warming trend.

15- Never mind that the overall polar bear population has increased from about 5000 in the 1960s to 25,000 today, and that the only two populations in decline come from areas where it has actually been getting colder over the past 50 years.  Also ignore the fact that polar bears were around 100,000 years ago, long before at least one important interglacial period when it was much warmer than the present.  Clearly they survived long periods of time when the climate of the Arctic was much warmer than today.  Yet they are not expected to survive this present warming without help from government regulators.  They must be kidding.

16- No computer model ever used to compute climate change has been able to calculate our recent past earth temperature though all measured data inputs were known and available.

17- The inability of current computer hardware to cope with a realistic climate model projection was put in perspective by Dr. Willie Soon of the Harvard Smithsonian Institute who calculated that to run a 40 year projection using all variables across all spatial scales would require 10 to the power 34 years of supercomputer time.  This is 10 to the power 24 times longer than the age of the Universe.

18- Nobody believes a weather prediction 7 days ahead but now we are asked to reorder our economy based on climate predictions 100 years hence which are no longer supported by current evidence.


1- While the most extreme environmental zealots may be relatively few in number, they have managed to gain undue influence by exploiting the gullibility of many ordinary and scientifically illiterate people, who are only too willing to believe that the planet needs saving from man’s excesses.  Perhaps it is a psychological throwback to those earlier civilizations that offered human sacrifices to the gods, to assuage their sins and spare them from punishment in the form of drought, flood, famine or disease.  There are certainly many parallels between modern environmentalism and religion.

2- By focusing our priorities on future generations we focus less on improving the lives of people who are alive today.  These future generations bear no closer relationship to us than those now living in developing countries whose lives we disdain to save.  Why are we not feeding people in the world who are hungry? Why are we not giving clean water to the almost one billion people who don’t have clean water? The greatest source of environmental degradation is poverty.  Why aren’t we helping eliminate poverty?  One answer is that perhaps it is a lot easier worrying about future generations than trying to fix present day problems.

3- Global warming is a major industry today.  Between 1992 and 2008 the US Government spent $30 billion on climate change research and now contributes $6 billion a year.  This finances jobs, grants, conferences, international travel and academic journals.  It not only keeps a huge army of people in comfortable employment, but also fills them with self righteousness and moral superiority regardless of the fact that real science did not support it.


  1. Every one of these points is either false, or misleading. I’ll address a few of them:

    1. According to the EPA “air pollution occurs when the air contains gases, dust, fumes or odour in harmful amounts. That is, amounts which could be harmful to the health or comfort of humans and animals or which could cause damage to plants and materials.”

    Now, here’s what we know about CO2: 1. A property of CO2 is heat retention. 2. CO2 is known to be increasing in our atmosphere at a steady rate. 3. More CO2 in the atmosphere means more heat retention. This is basic physics. And the effect of this increased heat retention is known to have negative long term effects on human and animal populations.

    So a statement that CO2 is not a pollutant because plants do better at higher concentrations, completely ignores the real reason why CO2 is considered a pollutant at higher concentrations. Jay Lehr should be ashamed of himself for trying to pass off this type of drivel.

    2. Here’s a thought experiment you can do yourself to see the fallacious reasoning with this argument: imagine a bathtub that is half full, with water running in and out at exactly the same rate. If you increase the input, no matter how small the amount, without increasing the output, you will offset the balance, and the tub will eventually fill up and overflow.

    Now consider the following: Humans contribute about 29 gigatons of CO2 to the environment each year, and about 771 gigatons occurs naturally. Combined, That’s 800 gigatons. The amount of CO2 the Earth absorbs each year is about 788 gigatons. Do like the Heartland Institute asked you to do and do the numbers yourself. The human contribution of CO2 has offset the balance by about 12 gigatons per year, and that alone explains why CO2 is on the rise. And from the thought experiment above it should be obvious that the amount we contribute is irrelevant, as long as that amount creates more input into the system, than the system can take back out. Again, Jay Lehr should be ashamed of himself at trying to pass off this type of drivel.

    3. I think what Jay is saying here is that at some point you simply have more CO2 available to absorb energy, than there is energy available to be absorbed. I thought the first two points were insulting to my intelligence, but this one takes the cake.

    To understand why argument number 3 is so incredibly wrong, is to first understand that CO2 does not directly absorb the light coming in from the sun. That energy is at a wavelength that passes directly through a greenhouse gas like CO2. What gets absorbed is the infrared heat that rises back from the surface of the planet, which is at a different wavelength. This heat isn’t just absorbed by one molecule of CO2 and then released back into space, it is re-absorbed by other molecules over and over again, meaning the more molecules of CO2, the longer the heat will remain in the environment. An accurate analogy for this is to imagine adding more and more insulation to your house while also adding the same heat. What happens is things get warmer because the heat takes longer to escape. Very simple concept, one which you’d think the Science Director of the Heartland Institute would understand.

    4. Jay has this one exactly backwards. Higher levels of CO2 retain heat, and when heat is prevented from moving into the upper atmosphere because it has been absorbed by CO2 at lower levels, then the upper levels actually cool. This is what has been observed. Jay is either very ignorant, or very much lying.

    5. Wow, Jay got one correct. Yes, historically CO2 increases have lagged temperature increases. But what Jay doesn’t tell you is that the warming over those periods was amplified by the increased CO2, and that 90% of the warming followed the CO2 increase. This is a good example of Jay cherry picking the evidence, and leaving out inconvenient facts.

    6. This may in fact be true, but says nothing about whether the Earth is warming, or what is causing that warming. Jay seems to be running out of steam, he can’t even put together a good lie at this point.

    7. This argument is just plain silly when it’s included in an article called Significant Evidence that Mankind Has an Insignificant Impact on the Climate. All this argument is saying is that more warmth will make places with ice on them turn from white to green. Well duh!

    8. Funny how Jay ignores the last 30 years, probably because solar activity from the sun has actually been decreasing during that time, while temperatures have steadily increased, which is why scientists have ruled out the sun as the cause of our current heating trend.

    9. It’s funny when so called skeptics claim we don’t have enough evidence of warming here on Earth to take any action, but will leap on a claim that other planets are warming without questioning it. But then with Jay, I guess any attempt to obfuscate the issue is fair game.

    10. When exactly does Jay start providing significant evidence that mankind has an insignificant impact on the climate of planet Earth? And how does a climate that was significantly different than today’s, cast doubt on what is occurring today? The answer is that it doesn’t, it’s just another non sequitur in a long list of many.

    11. This one had me laughing out loud, since the link simply takes you to a google map for the location of the Goddard Institute, which isn’t very helpful when trying to verify the point being made. But then, that’s to be expected from a list whose purpose is obfuscation, rather than education, and only uses the names of Science institutions as plastic props in an attempt to give the reader a false impression of legitimacy.

    For actual temperature data and analysis from the Goddard Institute, try here:

    And notice that Jay’s attempt at lying is laid bare.

    12. This point ignores the fact that temperature readings come from many sources including weather balloons, satellites, and ocean measurements, all of which produce a similar story of warming. It also ignores the fact that temperature stations in more rural areas show the same trend as those Jay is referring to in urban areas. Amazing how all of that additional information gets mysteriously left out of Jay’s point, but if it was included, Jay wouldn’t have a point, now would he?

    13. The World Glacier Monitoring Service begs to differ with Jay on this false claim. See here:

    14. Another point that invokes laughter. Ask yourself, how does a reduction in precipitation in one part of the world cast doubt on whether the earth on average is warming? It doesn’t, and it shouldn’t. Yet another non sequitur.

    Let’s move on to Jay’s conclusions, I’ve become bored with all of Jay’s falsehoods:

    It’s very ironic in the conclusions that Jay mentions “exploiting the gullibility of many ordinary and scientifically illiterate people” since that’s exactly what he’s trying to do, which should be obvious to anyone willing to look at the evidence. You won’t find any of that evidence in Jay’s talking points though, you’re much better off looking at places that present real science, honestly, like NASA:

    And RealClimate:

    And Skeptical Science:

    The sources I provided are the best sources for climate change information on the web. The Heartland Institute appears to be a place that provides nothing but misinformation. The fact that your site posts information from an institute that lies so blatantly doesn’t reflect very well on your site’s credibility.

    1. Why did no one supporting the idea of climate change/global warming attend this conference? – they were invited. Why have some scientist/researchers been caught falsifying data? I have just as many links denying everything you have stated as you have supporting it. It was WARMER in the Middle ages than it is now, so man-made seems out of line. The non-believers are ready to meet at anytime and debate the opposite side, but all attempts have failed. BILLIONS if not TRILLIONS of dollars have been spent, or wasted, and no measurable changes have occurred. Weathermen can’t tell you the temperature for later today and computer models are only as good as the data put in, much of it has been disproved. Did you hear remains of trees have been found in melting glaciers? How do you explain that?

  2. “Why did no one supporting the idea of climate change/global warming attend this conference? – they were invited.”

    I have no idea what conference you are referring to. Maybe you can explain how attending or not attending a conference effects what the data says about global warming.

    “Why have some scientist/researchers been caught falsifying data?”

    What is your evidence for this assertion?

    “I have just as many links denying everything you have stated as you have supporting it.”

    Your links are only as good as the data supporting them. If you’d care to refute anything I’ve stated, please do so by supplying links to actual scientific studies, otherwise you’re wasting my time. Likewise, if you’d like to see any of my assertions backed up through the scientific literature, I’ll be happy to supply links to the journals.

    “It was WARMER in the Middle ages than it is now, so man-made seems out of line.”

    No, sorry, it wasn’t warmer in the middle ages than it is now, at least not according to the science. The most recent IPCC report, published in 2007, had this to say about the warmth in the middle ages:

    “the warmest period prior to the 20th century occurred between 950 and 1100, but temperatures were probably between 0.1 C and 0.2 C below the 1961 to 1990 mean and significantly below the level shown by instrumental data after 1980.”

    The IPCC report, in case you weren’t aware, is a compilation of all the available science, and it is freely available online here:

    “The non-believers are ready to meet at anytime and debate the opposite side, but all attempts have failed.”

    Science isn’t decided through public debates. It’s decided through a process called the scientific method where data trumps personalities. Climate deniers with no expertise in climate science have no business whatsoever partaking in that process.

    “BILLIONS if not TRILLIONS of dollars have been spent, or wasted, and no measurable changes have occurred.”

    The “it’s not getting warmer” argument is getting more and more difficult to make, as evidenced by the fact that less and less people are making it. Mainly because the evidence has become so overwhelming obvious that changes are in fact occurring. That’s why many deniers have moved away from it and are now making the argument that warming isn’t a bad thing, which is a concession that it’s happening, and that they don’t want to look ridiculous denying the obvious. Maybe you didn’t get the memo?

    “Weathermen can’t tell you the temperature for later today and computer models are only as good as the data put in, much of it has been disproved.”

    Weathermen can tell you the temperature later today, in fact they can predict it out to about a week or more with surprising accuracy. Get out much?

    And climate is not the same as weather. Climate is the study of long term averages, which believe it or not, are much easier to predict than weather.

    “Did you hear remains of trees have been found in melting glaciers? How do you explain that?”

    Yes, I’m aware that ancient trees have been uncovered by receding glaciers, which is explained by the fact that trees once grew where the glaciers currently are over 10,000 years ago when the climate was much warmer than it is today. What you should wonder is why those glaciers are now melting, especially after claiming that no measurable changes are occurring. Obviously, they are.

  3. Here is some food for thought:

    1. Following the accusations that scientists had falsified data, no less than 6 independent inquiries were conducted, and in each case, the scientists were cleared of all charges. Here are the results of those inquiries:'s-Request-to-OIG-to-Examine-Issues-Related-to-Internet-Posting-of-Email-Exchanges-Taken-from-.aspx

    With this being the case, you should ask yourself why you still believe scientists were “caught” falsifying data, when it simply isn’t true, especially when the results of these inquiries have been part of the public record for over a year now. Could it be that those places you rely on for information aren’t being entirely honest with you?

    2. Over 97% of publishing climate researchers agree that humans are contributing to global warming. With that in mind, ask yourself what makes more sense; that tens of thousands of climate experts worldwide have come to a similar conclusion because of the evidence, or tens of thousands of climate experts worldwide are involved in a vast conspiracy, even though no evidence of a vast conspiracy has ever surfaced.

    3. Next time you’re reading a website promoting denial, ask yourself why the science claims are never supported by linking directly to the peer reviewed literature, but instead refer to studies vaguely, and simply link to other denial sites. If you look at the sites I’ve linked to for climate information, the thing you’ll notice is that they don’t just refer to the scientific literature, they link to it so you can look for yourself. That’s what separates credible vs non-credible sources, credible ones aren’t afraid to let you see the evidence.

      1. “Since you like wikipedia – try this:”

        That article confirms what I’ve already stated, which is that the vast majority of climate experts (over 97%) agree that humans are causing global warming. An article that actually puts names to some of the 3%, doesn’t change that fact.

        “Since the falsified data started in England:”

        This is an article about scientific misconduct in medicine. We’re talking about climate science.

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