An account of the Watts event in Perth
Posted on 2 July 2010 by Anne Young
Guest post by Annie Young
The Watts climate tour appeared in Perth on Tuesday evening. They garnered a turnout in the vicinity of 110 people. The majority were middle-aged and elderly. Three of us stood outside offering 'The Scientific Guide to the Skeptics' Handbook', an excellent booklet addressing the grievous scientific misunderstandings in Jo Nova's 'Skeptics' Handbook'. Almost everyone accepted one, however a couple returned theirs when they realised they had been duped with the real science.
Upon her arrival, Jo Nova asked to see the booklet. She muttered something about the lunacy of measuring temperature with wind shear. A fellow booklet distributor mentioned three recent articles which explained the notion but instead of discussing the contents of these papers in a spirit of scientific curiosity, she diverted from the real issue by challenging him to name the authors.
When questioned about further reading she may have done on other topics, she reverted to stating the authors of one paper she had read. It is thus hard to take her seriously when she says she is looking for evidence. "Show me the science," was also her refrain six months ago at another climate science event. This seems to indicate that she has no interest, or perhaps no ability, to do her own research. The suggestion that it is her responsibility to keep up with the science, not ours to ensure that she does, appeared to make no impression on her. Her response to several enquiries during our discussion about whether she understands the science, was silence.
She accused those of us following evidence-based science of wanting 'our money'. Apparently, in her mind, those who pay attention to the science are aligned against the denialists to fleece the world of money for their nefarious activities dealing with climate change for the benefit of current and future generations.
Bob Carter also came out to have a word. He disparaged the scientists who were acknowledged for their comments on the 'Scientific Guide' dismissing them as "not even climate scientists." Those whom he dismissed include seven professors, associate professors and a Fellow of the Royal Society, some of whom have published in Science and Nature, and all of whom are acknowledged experts in their fields which include statistical modelling of weather and climate data, paleoclimatology and the effects of ocean acidification on coral reefs.
Although I didn't venture inside, a preliminary report from someone who did, bemoaned the fact that he had lost 45 minutes of his life watching Watts' slide show of thermometers which give the same data as his so-called well-positioned thermometers and the satellites.
In this age of open and swift global communication, it is easy to examine technology and strategies in place around the world to reduce carbon emissions whilst building the economy and providing jobs. As was shown the preceding evening, when the real science was presented, Germany is a case in point. With far fewer sunlight hours and less coastline than us, they have used a variety of renewable energy sources including solar and wave to reduce carbon emissions by 28% whilst increasing GDP by 32% in real terms and creating more than 300,000 clean-energy jobs. Australia is extraordinarily well positioned to follow suit.
One has to wonder why Nova, Carter, Watts and their ilk oppose such action, especially as it also addresses other pollution about which they claim to be concerned.