Is the road to [Green] Hell paved with good intentions?

Sometimes if you are wrong, even if you have the very best intentions, the results might be considered harmful. I and other sceptics of the CAGW delusion think that the worlds poor need direct help now, not ‘potential help’ later.

Sir John Houghton (June 2010 – slide 45) – Co Chair 2001 IPCC Ar3 – ‘Hockey Stick’ report

“Haven’t we first to tackle World
Poverty, then Climate Change?


because unless
we tackle Climate Change now,
the plight of many of the poorest
will be enormously worse”

Sir John Houghton, no doubt sincerely believes that tackling future ‘climate change’ (man-made) is more important than the issues and hardships facing the worlds poor now.

Sir John also considers (slide – pg 10) that  ‘climate change’ action is very urgent saying we have seven years grace (The 10:10 Campaign seems to think planetary doom is in 4 years, here, here)

“God is Creator
Science is God’s science”
“Pharoah & Joseph had
So have we


I heard him speak at my local church and asked a few questions in the Q and A session and afterwards. Links to the audio of his presentation entitled – God, Science and Global Warming  – and his slides where this quote come from, and the audio of the Q/A session are here:

Global Warming and Climate Change:
A Challenge to Scientists and Christians

On Thursday 17th June 2010
Professor Sir John Houghton FRS CBE
spoke to a full church at St. Mary’s, Wargrave

If he is wrong and climate sensitivity and feedbacks to CO2 are low or negative, then we are uneccesarily withholding from the worlds poorest, who are actually suffering now,  all the benefits the West has.

This belief in the CAGW delusion, was formed over 20 years ago when their was very little evidence, which was then followed by a warming period. The explantion of by the climate scientist, still depends on the thought, ‘we can’t explain it, it must be us (CO2), which as a scientist should recognise, given the large uncertainties in the young science that is ‘climate science’ (clouds being just one factor), is just an argument from ignorance. This should be the start of trying to prove this theory, not as evidence of it by elimination, where the science is unceratin and unknown.

This attitude would probably explain and produce a culture that would prevent anyone getting the funding  to look for other non AGW explanations.

BBC Interview – Roger Harrabin – Phil Jones CCRU – UEA

H – If you agree that there were similar periods of warming since 1850 to the current period, and that the MWP is under debate, what factors convince you that recent warming has been largely man-made?

J  “The fact that we can’t explain the warming from the 1950s by solar and volcanic forcing – see my answer to your question D.”

This apparent refusal to even contemplate that ‘climate science’ may be wrong, (ie might sensivity low/negative no harm done) and the apparent belief that it is just big oil/coal denying things, is harmful to the worlds poor if he is wrong and some would consider this as having an ‘evil result’. The ‘precautionary principle’ so often used to justify away the ‘climate uncertainties’ and take urgent action, surely equally applies to the consequences of reducing the worlds Co2 emmisions, if it is uneccesary?

Sir John Houghton also said to me that he had not read any of the climategate email, thus this is a position of ignorance of the problems in ‘climate science’ (through belief) or chooses to ignore them as it is all down to the big oil/coal denail pr machine. (Bob Watson – IPCC is on the record as not haven read the climategate emails either)

Would the IPCC listen to this paper reported here. (BBC Paul Hudson) – or is it ‘proof’ of ‘global climate disruption’ to the believers.

BBC – Record December cold – should we get used to it? – 20th December 2010

BBC: Are Severe Winters Here to Stay – (I wonder why the changed the link name to a different heading)

“In my blog ‘could the sun cast a shadow on global temperatures’ I wrote about how Australian scientist David Archibald was convinced that prolonged weak solar activity could mean much colder winters in future. He wrote his paper in February 2009.

Perhaps we all need to get used to colder winters across the UK in the next few years. “

Or this research, reported here by Paul Hudson  – BBC – Science and Technology  -main BBC website

 ‘Whatever Happened to Global Warming’ – 9th October 2009 (bbc link) (and blog version)

This headline may come as a bit of a surprise, so too might that fact that the warmest year recorded globally was not in 2008 or 2007, but in 1998.But it is true.

For the last 11 years we have not observed any increase in global temperatures.

And our climate models did not forecast it, even though man-made carbon dioxide, the gas thought to be responsible for warming our planet, has continued to rise.

So what on Earth is going on?

this BBC article may have even prompted the climategate leaker/whistleblower as Paul Hudson received some of the emails concerning himself, over a month, before the rest were leaked.

As the ‘team’ complained about the BBC and his article amongst themselves and Michael Mann was going to have a word with Richard Black (BBC) to see what was going on (seem to consider the BBC a cheerleader for AGW), possibly motivating the whistleblower?

Denying the developing world cheap energy is more harmful to the poor now.  Extreme weather events are often cited as being ‘more likely’ to occur due to ‘climate change’ (man made presumably?) or the new name for it ‘global climate disruption’.  Yet, research shows that the consequences of natural extreme weather events have always disproportionately effect the world’s poorest, because they lack the material benefits, of technology, health, cheap energy and infrastructure of the developed world.

For the sake of argument, should CAGW be real, and shown to increase extreme weather events by say 5%, 10 %?, reducing CO2 emmission alone will have no benefit to the world’s poor from deaths caused by the other 90% ‘natural’ extreme weather events.

I tracked this IPPR referenced factsheet down and this is presumably where the definite 150,000 ‘climate change’ deaths ‘fact’ come from often reported in the media and by environment groups.

(1)World Health Organisation: Climate and Health – 2005 factsheet

Measurement of health effects from climate change can only be very approximate. Nevertheless, a WHO quantitative assessment, taking into account only a subset of the possible health impacts, concluded that the effects of the climate change that has occurred since the mid-1970s may have caused over 150,000 deaths in 2000. It also concluded that these impacts are likely to increase in the future.

The WHO factsheet also says 600,000 deaths annually due to natural extreme weather related events – of which 95% in poor countries. Thus the biggest killer is being poor, not ‘climate change’, yet the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change have even defined ‘climate change’ to only mean man made, excluding ALL natural climate forcings…

Such is the belief in man made global warming , even to consider the possibilty of a cooling period, over the next 20 years or the possibility or another ‘little ice age’ is to be shouted down as a ‘climate change denier’. Thus stiffling any possibility of a scientific debate of  a possible potentialy very hazardous period of ‘climate cooling’ (even a short term 20 years cooling) which history has shown can be the most devasting to the poorest in the world. 

So the answer Sir John Houghton’s question:

“Haven’t we first to tackle World
Poverty, then Climate Change?

My answer would be Yes

or at the very least do both, as the benefits to the worlds poor now would also mitigate against any future possible AGW or naturally derived ‘extreme weather’ events.

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8 Responses to Is the road to [Green] Hell paved with good intentions?

  1. LabMunkey says:

    Interesting piece- few editing/typing issues though.

    The thrust of the argument is one that I have subscribed to for a long time myself; the poor need direct help now, not ‘potential help’ later.
    The focus with this debate seems to be on preventing/mitigating deaths/issues in the future. I can (and have) been accused of short-sightedness for my stance on this, but I think we should be helping the poorest nations NOW rather than later- and the reason is two fold:
    1- It’s the right thing to do. There are untold atrocities going unchecked at present in the world. Failed states, regular genocide, massively destructive civil wars, huge displacement issues, starvation, preventable disease, preventable child deaths etc etc. Focusing on preventing a potential issue when there are real, immediate problems worldwide is frankly, unforgivable.
    However, people argue that unless we act on climate change/warming/disruption now, things will only get worse. This, as if you didn’t know already, is a fallacious argument. For example, consider my next point…

    2- If we help the poorest nations now, repair their economies, help them support themselves, help them develop, help them protect their citizens, their children (it is traditional to invoke saving the children in EVERY climate debate) then they will be infinitely better placed to mitigate any climate related issues that occur in the future, rather than relying on our hand-outs.
    Think about it; which will be more effective, sending aid/money in the event of an issue or helping to build a country up to a level where it can sort the problem itself? It’s a no-brainer (or at least one would think so).

    One option see’s immediate benefits and saves lives straight away, the other ‘potentially’ saves lives in the future. The fact that this is the basis for action on cAGW speaks volumes.

  2. Pingback: Green Hell | All Is Green

  3. RockyRoad says:

    “Climate Change” has come to mean just about anything and everything. It is as if they deny there ever were weather events–many of them catastrophic. They must think reducing man’s contribution to the CO2 levels can make a difference, but I’d like them to prove it before spending $Trillions or even $Billions. Their attempts to “own” the status quo and try to defy mother nature are laughable.

    (I laud LabMunkey for his valid points above–there’s much to do NOW that will better prepare us for tomorrow rather than apply ambiguous “fixes” to the climate that have no promise of improving anything; nay, such “fixes” may have severe unintended consequences!)

  4. Big Bob says:

    Once again, the only real answer to “Global Warming” is more airconditioners.
    IF the world is really warming, regardless of the cause, there is really nothing we can do about it except to deal with the effects. More airconditioners, more dams, more electricity etc, etc. It will do no good to run the developed nations broke trying to solve the politically unsolveable.

  5. JAKE says:

    Barry: You use the acronym CAGW to truncate Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming. I’ve coined the term Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alterations and use its sooooo appropriate acronym all the time.

  6. MangoChutney says:


    The poorest people in the world die more from a lack of clean water and sanitation then they do from a warming world. Nearly 2.5b people do not have access to safe water. Over 3.5m people die each year from water related decease and yet solving this appalling loss of life would be relatively cheap and a small fraction of the money spent on trying to solve “climate change”

    A good start that we as individuals can make is to switch to One water:

    Perhaps you should mention this to Sir John

    All the best for the New Year


  7. MangoChutney says:

    The other thing I meant to mention is, whilst I think ones religious views don’t necessarily impact on ones scientific findings, I think we need to remind AGWer’s that Sir John is very much passionate about religion when they bring up Spencers religious beliefs


  8. Dyspeptic Curmudgeon says:

    In answer to the title of this post, it is the grandest desire of the warmists that not only is the road to Hell paved, it is paved with money and power. And only warmists get to ride on it. All others must trudge in the ditch.

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