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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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Climate Misinformer: Richard Lindzen

Richard Lindzen is an American atmospheric physicist and Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Quotes Articles Arguments Blogs Links Search 

Quotes by Richard Lindzen

Climate Myth What the Science Says
""We’ve already seen almost the equivalent of a doubling of CO2 (in radiative forcing) and that has produced very little warming""
25 July 2012 (Source)
This argument ignores the cooling effect of aerosols and the planet's thermal inertia.
"If I’m wrong, we’ll know it in 50 years and can do something."
30 April 2012 (Source)

A large amount of warming is delayed, and if we don’t act now we could pass tipping points.

"Only with positive feedbacks from water vapor and clouds does one get the large warmings that are associated with alarm. What the satellite data seems to show is that these positive feedbacks are model artifacts."
22 February 2012 (Source)
Evidence is building that net cloud feedback is likely positive and unlikely to be strongly negative.
"...one can see no warming since 1997."
22 February 2012 (Source)

Global temperature is still rising and 2010 was the hottest recorded.

"As Phil Jones acknowledged, there has been no statistically significant warming in 15 years."
22 February 2012 (Source)
Phil Jones was misquoted.
"You have to remember, this is an issue where what most scientists agree on has nothing to do with the alarm. I think the real problem is so many scientists have gone along with it without pointing out that what has been established reasonably well has nothing to do with the urgency that’s being promoted, which is largely a political matter."
6 April 2011 (Source)

A large amount of warming is delayed, and if we don’t act now we could pass tipping points.

"In the North Pole, you don’t have a [ice] cap, you have sea ice; it’s very variable. And as far as Greenland and Antarctica go, there’s no evidence of any significant change. I mean, you know, again your measurements aren’t that great, but any reports you hear are again focusing on tiny changes that would have no implication."
6 April 2011 (Source)

Arctic sea ice has shrunk by an area equal to Western Australia, and summer or multi-year sea ice might be all gone within a decade.

"The crucial thing is sensitivity: you know, what do you expect a doubling of CO2 to do? If it's only a degree, then you could go through at least two doublings and probably exhaust much of your fossil fuel before you would do anything that would bother anyone."
6 April 2011 (Source)
Net positive feedback is confirmed by many different lines of evidence.
"[Emissions cuts] would be a moral disaster, because it would mean that much of the world would preclude development and so they'd be more vulnerable to the disasters that occur regardless of man [...] Your vulnerability increases as your wealth decreases."
6 April 2011 (Source)

Those who contribute the least greenhouse gases will be most impacted by climate change.

"The evidence is pretty good that even if everyone [cut emissions] in the whole world it wouldn't make a lot of difference."
6 April 2011 (Source)

If every nation agrees to limit CO2 emissions, we can achieve significant cuts on a global scale.

"It's a heavy cost for no benefit, and it's no benefit for you, no benefit for your children, no benefit for your grandchildren, no benefit for your great-great-great-great-grandchildren. I mean, what's the point of that?"
6 April 2011 (Source)

The benefits of a price on carbon outweigh the costs several times over.

"For Australia to act now is, you know, a bit bizarre, and certainly cannot be justified by any impact it would have on Australia or anyone."
6 April 2011 (Source)

A large amount of warming is delayed, and if we don’t act now we could pass tipping points.

"I think even Flannery acknowledged that Australia doing this [a carbon tax] would have no discernible impact for virtually a millennium, even if Australia's output during that millennium was increasing exponentially."
6 April 2011 (Source)
CO2 limits won't cool the planet, but they can make the difference between continued accelerating global warming to catastrophic levels vs. slowing and eventually stopping the warming at hopefully safe levels
"If we doubled CO2, it's well accepted that you should get about 1 degree warming if nothing else happened. [...] But 1 degree is reckoned as not very significant. The question then is: is what we've seen so far suggesting that you have more than that, and the answer is no."
6 April 2011 (Source)
Net positive feedback is confirmed by many different lines of evidence.
"If we doubled CO2, it's well accepted that you should get about 1 degree warming if nothing else happened."
6 April 2011 (Source)
Net positive feedback is confirmed by many different lines of evidence.
"The models do say you should have seen 2-5 times more than you've already seen, you know, you have to then accept, if you believe the models, that you actually should have gotten far more warming than you've seen, but some mysterious process has cancelled part of it."
6 April 2011 (Source)
This argument ignores the cooling effect of aerosols and the planet's thermal inertia.
"If nothing else changed, adding the amount of CO2 that we've added thus far should account for maybe a quarter of what we've seen."
6 April 2011 (Source)
Theory, models and direct measurement confirm CO2 is currently the main driver of climate change.
"There's not too much disagreement that there has been a very small increase in temperature [...] This is pretty tiny; it's a fraction of a degree."
6 April 2011 (Source)
A few degrees of global warming has a huge impact on ice sheets, sea levels and other aspects of climate.
"If it's greenhouse warming, you get more warming in the middle of the troposphere, the first 10, 12 kilometres of the atmosphere than you do at the surface. There are good theoretical reasons for that, having to do with how the greenhouse works."
12 December 2010 (Source)
We see a clear "short-term hot spot" - there's various evidence for a "long-term hot spot".
"CO2 for different people has different attractions. After all, what is it? – it’s not a pollutant, it’s a product of every living creature’s breathing, it’s the product of all plant respiration, it is essential for plant life and photosynthesis, it’s a product of all industrial burning, it’s a product of driving..."
26 November 2008 (Source)

Through its impacts on the climate, CO2 presents a danger to public health and welfare, and thus qualifies as an air pollutant

"There has been no warming since 1997 and no statistically significant warming since 1995."
11 March 2008 (Source)
Statistical significance requires sufficient timescales but many lines of evidence indicate global warming is still happening.
"the main greenhouse gas is water vapor which is both natural in origin and highly variable in its distribution. In the absence of good records of water vapor we aren't even in a position to say how much total greenhouse gases have increased."
10 June 1997 (Source)

Rising CO2 increases atmospheric water vapor, which makes global warming much worse.

"On the planet the most wonderful constituent is water with its remarkable thermodynamic properties. It's the obvious candidate for the thermostat of our system, and yet in most of these models, all water-related feedbacks are positive. I don't think we would have existed if that were true"
27 September 1989 (Source)
Net positive feedback is confirmed by many different lines of evidence.
"In the current models, for reasons that puzzle almost everyone, the cloud feedbacks are positive rather than negative"
27 September 1989 (Source)
Evidence is building that net cloud feedback is likely positive and unlikely to be strongly negative.
"Water vapor is far and away the most important greenhouse gas, except for one form which isn't a greenhouse gas: clouds. Clouds themselves as liquid water are as important to the infrared budget as water vapor. Both swamp by orders of magnitude all the others. With CO2 one is talking about three watts per square meter at most, compared to a hundred or more watts per square meter for water"
27 September 1989 (Source)

Rising CO2 increases atmospheric water vapor, which makes global warming much worse.

"in 1983 a panel of the National Academy of Sciences recommended a technique to validate climate models known as "fingerprinting"--efforts to find at least regional effects in modeling that are correct. This has turned out to be a disaster in methodology, because all the models differ even in their signs [directions] of predicted change, and they don't even agree on these features for the present climate"
27 September 1989 (Source)
Models successfully reproduce temperatures since 1900 globally, by land, in the air and the ocean.
"It is interesting that before this last appearance of 'greenhouse warming' (1970 to present), there were actually quite a log of books on the coming ice age. Now a new set of books on the coming warming are hitting the stands"
27 September 1989 (Source)
The vast majority of climate papers in the 1970s predicted warming.
"the models showing that warming will occur with increasing CO2 predict after-the-fact (post-predict) that since the 19th century we should have seen between about one and two degrees of warming"
27 September 1989 (Source)
This argument ignores the cooling effect of aerosols and the planet's thermal inertia.
"What we have is data that says that maybe [warming] occurs, but it's within the noise....The point we have to keep in mind is that without any of this at all our climate would wander--at least within limits"
27 September 1989 (Source)

Internal variability can only account for small amounts of warming and cooling over periods of decades, and scientific studies have consistently shown that it cannot account for the global warming over the past century.

"The trouble is that the earlier data suggest that one is starting at what probably was an anomalous minimum near 1880. The entire record would more likely be saying that the rise is 0.1 degree plus or minus 0.3 degree...I would say, and I don't think I'm going out on a very big limb, that the data as we have it does not support a warming"
27 September 1989 (Source)
The warming trend is the same in rural and urban areas, measured by thermometers and satellites.
"Urbanization also creates problems in interpreting the temperature record. There is the problem of making corrections for the greater inherent warming over cities--in moving weather stations from a city to an outlying airport, for example"
27 September 1989 (Source)
The warming trend is the same in rural and urban areas, measured by thermometers and satellites.
"I personally feel that the likelihood over the next century of greenhouse warming reaching magnitudes comparable to natural variability seems small"
27 September 1989 (Source)
Multiple sets of independent observations find a human fingerprint on climate change.

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