Christopher Monckton refuted by the scientist John Abraham and others

HERE is a devastating refutation of the pseudo-scientific disinformation propagated by the climate contrarian / denier / faux-skeptic Christopher Monckton. The presentation, by Prof. John Abraham (cover pictured) has audio as well as slides. Details are below.

Monckton is just one of the climate contrarians. For more information on climate contrarians, click HERE; a detailed essay with references is HERE. See also the Skeptical Science website for Monckton Myths.

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WHO is Christopher Monckton?

Monckton: Zero scientific credentials

Monckton has zero scientific degrees (his degrees are in classics and journalism)

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Monckton's Pseudoscience

A great compendium on Monckton called "Lord Monckton's Rap Sheet" is on the site Anti-Climate Change Extremism in Utah run by Prof. Barry Bickmore. HERE is his "Church of Monckton", listing who the politicians, media personalities, foundations, and scientists are, who have treated Monckton as if he were a credible source of information about climate science.

RealClimate.org, the site run by professional climatologists, has THIS to say about Monckton's manipulation of data, ending with, "Monckton ... entitled his letter “Deliberate Misrepresentation” – and this is possibly the only true statement in it". Another RealClimate article on Monckton is HERE. Prof. Bickmore recently wrote a RealClimate column on Monckton HERE: "...why has he become so influential among climate change contrarians? After examining a number of his claims, I have concluded that he is influential because he delivers “silver bullets,” i.e., clear, concise, and persuasive arguments. The trouble is his compelling arguments are often constructed using fabricated facts..."

Recently a reply was given HERE by 21 climate scientists to Monckton's testimony in May 2010 to a US House of Representatives committee; a summary in the UK Guardian is HERE. Monckton was invited by Republicans. The scientists variously conclude that Monckton's assertions are "very misleading", "profoundly wrong", "simply false", "chemical nonsense", and "cannot be supported by climate physics".

HERE is the analysis by Arthur Smith giving a point-by-point refutation of Monckton's article in the APS Forum on Physics and Society Newsletter, July 2008. Although this Forum explicitly says the articles are not peer-reviewed, Monckton claimed his article was reviewed.

Since Monckton says he was "Special Advisor" to Margaret Thatcher, it is interesting to watch Margaret Thatcher saying: "The danger of global warming is as yet unseen, but real enough for us to make changes and sacrifices, so that we do not live at the expense of future generations" - click HERE (at 8:44). 

The BBC reported that, at a Heartland Institute Conference, Monckton said American "political masters are surrendering to the global socialist tyranny of global warming".

Monckton has officially complained about some reporting critical of him, but the complaint was not upheld.

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Monckton: Incredible Medical Claims

Monckton claims (click HERE) to have invented a drug with ... "positive results treating HIV and multiple sclerosis. ''It also has been used to cure cases of colds, flu,'' he said."

You can WATCH Mockton make this claim in the Climate Crock video HERE. Here is the pic:

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Monckton Falsely Claims Membership in the House of Lords

It is definitely interesting to note that Wikipedia's biography of Monckton says that he has asserted that he is a member of the House of Lords, but the House of Lords has stated that "Christopher Monckton is not and has never been a Member of the House of Lords".

Indeed, in July 2011 House of Lords has taken the unprecedented step of publishing a "cease and desist" letter on its website demanding that Lord Christopher Monckton, a prominent climate sceptic and the UK Independence party's head of research, should stop claiming to be a member of the upper house.

And this, straight from the House of Lords:

From: House Of Lords Information Office Date: August 5, 2010 5:07:52 AM MDT
To: Friends of Gin & Tonic Subject: RE: inquiry

Dear Derek,
 
Many thanks for your emails.
 
Viscount Monckton of Brenchley is not and has never been a member of the House of Lords. However, allegations that he has claimed to be a member, and that he has used an emblem resembling the parliamentary emblem, have been drawn to our attention.
 
The House is currently taking steps with a view to ensuring that Lord Monckton does not in future either claim to be a member of the House or use the parliamentary emblem or any variant thereof.
 
Best wishes,
 
 
Information Office
House of Lords
London SW1A 0PW
020 7219 3107
www.parliament.uk/lords

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House of Lords Objects to Monckton's Emblem (looks like the Queen's)

As a follow up, you might like to read this Guardian article, especially regarding Monckton's emblem referred to in the House of Lords email:

Lords distance themselves from climate sceptic Christopher Monckton

A House of Lords spokeswoman said: "The emblem is property of the Queen, and Parliament has a Royal Licence granted for its use. Any misuse of the emblem by either members or non-members breaches this licence, and if a person refuses to stop using it the matter is drawn to the attention of the Lord Chamberlain, who is an Officer of the Royal Household..."

Monckton claims that his emblem is different from the Queen's emblem. Here they are, side by side. Anybody know which is which?  The answer is in the Guardian article.

 

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Monckton's extremist attacks on a climate treaty

.... Christopher Monckton said that the intention of a proposed United Nations climate treaty was to "impose a communist world government", and stated that UKIP was the only option for those who disbelieve in climate change as "all the major parties have decided to sign up to the eco-fascist agenda" (Ref: Wikipedia).

n.b. The UKIP is the right-wing UK Independence Party. Recently UKIP chief Nigel Farage sacked Scottish party leader Lord Christopher Monckton; see HERE.

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VIDEOS about Mockton

Here are videos by Peter Sinclair's Climate Denial Crock of the Week on Monckton, Part 1 and Part 2:

Part 1:

Part 2:

 

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HERE is a "Crock" video starring Monckton pushing the "CO2 is Plant Food" fallacy. Yes 6th graders know plants need CO2, but severe increases in droughts, floods, fires, and insect damage made worse by global warming can devastate crops, overwhelming any theoretical marginal advantage to plants from extra CO2. Crop yields are observed to drop significantly at temperatures above around 30 degrees C, see HERE. And ocean plankton, at the base of the food chain, has already dropped sharply. Watch this video:

 

 

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HERE is an instructive video on uncertainty in future projections by scenarios from the IPCC, and how Monckton completely misrepresents what the IPCC actually says, in Monckton's testimony before Congress. The video is on the "Fool Me Once" website.

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And HERE is a video of a bizarre TV interview with Monckton who attacks the process of scientific peer review and attacks Prof. John Abraham, plus footage of Monckton giving a presentation making accusations involving a Nazi swastika.

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Scientist John Abraham Replies to Monckton

Monckton made an online reply to Abraham's presentation, see also HERE (where Monckton says that Abraham "looks like an overcooked prawn"). John Abraham chose to reply to Monckton's reply, in turn, which is printed below. Abraham's response was also posted HERE on the popular website skepticalscience.com and also HERE on Climate Denial Crock of the Week.

In further developments, SkepticalScience reports HERE that Monckton is trying to censor John Abraham by pressure on the University of St. Thomas to remove Abraham's presentation. Another website "Hot Topic" is gathering support HERE to defend Abraham. And HERE is a Facebook page "PrawngateSupport John Abraham against Monckton's bullying".

See HERE for a press article giving further details, and this AP News Report.  

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A courageous meteorology professor Scott Mandia, who supported Abraham, was also attacked by Monckton - see HERE.

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Abraham reply to Monckton
 
Dear Mr. Monckton,
Thank you for taking the time to comment on my presentation. I encourage people to view both of our arguments and make their own conclusions. I stand by my work and welcome judgment by the public and the scientific community.  My intention as a professional scientist is to help provide a public disclosure of your scientific methods. I continue to believe that your work seriously misrepresents the science upon which you rely.   
 
I would like to briefly address some matters which you raised.  First, I will address your comments about my credentials. To begin, let me identify some of the subjects which are critical to understanding our world’s climate. Climate processes involve radiation, convection, and conduction heat transfer. In addition, fluid mechanics governs the flow of the atmosphere and the oceans. Chemistry is critical to understanding chemical reactions which take place in both the oceans and the atmosphere. Quantum mechanics deals with the interaction of airborne molecules and photons (radiation). Geology and its related subjects are important for many reasons, including the study of past climate (paleoclimatology). Skills in numerical simulation are essential for the creation and operation of models which allow scientists to predict climate change. There are other subspecialties which are also important; this is only a partial list.
 
I am a tenured professor at the University of St. Thomas, a private, Catholic university in Minnesota. I have taught courses in heat transfer, fluid mechanics, numerical simulation, and thermodynamics. Topics in my courses include radiation, convection, and conduction, the same physical processes which govern energy flows in the climate. My PhD thesis dealt with combined convection and radiation heat transfer. My thesis is held in the library at the University of Minnesota, it is available to the public.
 
My published works span many topics including convective heat transfer, radiative heat transfer, fluid mechanics, and numerical simulation. My work on numerical simulation is at the very forefront of computational fluid dynamic (cfd) modeling. I am an expert in non-linear fluid simulations. My background does not span the entire range of topics related to climate change (no one is able to claim this), it does cover many of the essential subtopics. 
 
In addition to academic research, I am an active consultant in industry. I have designed wind turbines, built and tested geothermal cooling systems, studied the potential of biofuels to replace petroleum, and designed and created solar-radiation shields for buildings in desert climates. Taken together, I believe that I have the background required to discuss the issues of energy and the environment.
 
Next, your written reply to my work focused on a small number of my original points; I will discuss just a few of them here.  Throughout this discussion, it must be recognized that you have not addressed the many series scientific lapses which were present in your presentation.
 
a.     You correctly pointed out that in your presentation, you stated that you were “boring” whereas I stated you were “bored”. I apologize for misquoting you. In this regard, the point you were trying to make is that there is no consensus on global warming. You cited three search words and a range of years (2004-2007). Since the purpose of my presentation was to show that audience members have the capacity to investigate claims for themselves, I used a publically available academic search engine (GOOGLE SCHOLAR). I showed that there are many papers that can be found dealing with the dangers of climate change, using your search parameters. I invite readers to reproduce my search results and read the abstracts of those papers and come to their own conclusion. Your assertion that these papers existed, but that they did not provide “evidence for catastrophe” was, in my mind, unconvincing. 
b.     You suggested that your temperature graphs referencing your own organization were properly cited. I disagree. It is the obligation of a scientist to show the original source of data, your work did not meet this standard. Citing your own organization is, in my view, improper, particularly since your organization was not involved in obtaining the data.
c.     I showed a number of slides which had no attribution.  I note that among the totality of unattributed slides, you agree with me on all but one. You correctly point out that one had the letters “UAH” listed. I can assure you that I understand UAH refers to University of Alabama Huntsville. I continue to believe that a proper citation would include a journal in which this data was published with a volume number and pages. 
 
I would like to disclose some new information that I have unearthed. On your 13th slide (another slide with no attribution), you present a graph showing that the Beaufort Sea Ice is growing. Your slide gives the impression that since ice in the Beaufort Sea is growing, there is no concern about global warming. Despite the lack of a citation, I have been able to learn about its origin. The following citation should be useful in this regard for your records.

 

H. Melling, D. Riedel, and Ze’ev Gedalof, Trends in Thickness and Extent of Seasonal Pack Ice, Canadian Beaufort Sea, Geophysical Research Letters, 24, 1-5, 2005. 
 
I have written to the lead author and he replied….

 

“You are correct in your assessment that statements in the paper were nuanced…. The change in atmospheric circulation is attributable to… no one really knows but human influence on the atmosphere emissions either of chloro-fluorocarbons or carbon dioxide is the primary candidate. However, with so much multi-year ice gone, it is easy to understand why we have much more open water in September.”
 
Finally, I would like to point out the reason for the delay between your October, 2009 presentation until my reply, it was caused by my desire to present a thoughtful, thorough reply.  You have dealt with a small number of very periphery issues. There remain very severe errors with your presentation that are yet unanswered. If you have corrected the many errors which I have disclosed, please accept my apologies.   
 
Regards,
 
Dr. John Abraham
Associate Professor
University of St. Thomas
School of Engineering
 

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BOTTOM LINE: POTTY PEER, LOONY LORD, or BARKING MAD?

Monckton has complained about being treated as if he was a "potty peer" by the BBC.

Environmental philanthropist Jeremy Grantham (in this Guardian article) says climate sceptics are being led by a "little army of non-scientific, persuasive loony lords" (a barely disguised reference to the former Conservative chancellor Lord Lawson and Ukip's Lord Monckton).

Monckton, in his video on his medical claims above, says that it sounds "barking mad".

So which is it? Potty Peer? Loony Lord? Barking mad? Answer - none of these.

This man is not a clown. He is very dangerous as an extremist and propagandist who is leading the charge against risk management of climate change. History will treat him very harshly.

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Glossary

Citation

(2013). Christopher Monckton refuted by the scientist John Abraham and others. Retrieved from http://climate.uu-uno.org/view/article/147446