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Lorne Gunter: Despite UN’s Best Guess, Earth Has Not Been Flooded

A great deal of wind has gone out of the climate-change sails since the revelations a year-and-a-half ago of major data manipulation by many of the world’s leading climate scientists.

Late last month, a report by two sea-level experts — James Houston, director emeritus of engineer research and development for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Robert Dean, professor emeritus of civil and coastal engineering at the University of Florida — examined historic data from tidal monitors around the United States, and determined that sea levels rose very little in the 20th century and that, to the extent they rose at all, their rate of rise has begun to fall.

Sea levels have not exactly begun to fall yet, but the rate at which they are rising has slowed considerably and this deceleration has likely been occurring for the past 80 years.

This finding, the researchers added, is consistent with what they and others have found from checking tidal gauges worldwide, too. What little sea-level rise there was in the last century was insignificant. Moreover, the rate at which the seas are rising has decelerated appreciably in the last few decades, contrary to the predictions by computer climate models that show the sea rising quickly and catastrophically as global warming melts glaciers and polar ice caps.

According to Messrs. Houston and Dean, were the 20th-century trend to continue, the world’s oceans would only rise about 15 cms between now and 2100. That’s about ankle depth, far from the one to three metres predicted by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and way below the 20 to 30 metres forecast by Pope Al Gore of the Gaian Church of Environmental Harridans.

Why, the authors wonder in the Journal of Coastal Research, has “worldwide-temperature increase not produced acceleration of global sea level over the past 100 years.” And “indeed why [has] global sea level possibly decelerated for at least the last 80 years,” despite what many scientists insist have been unnatural and dangerous global temperature rises over the same period?

Good questions.

Another good question would be: “Why do Western politicians continue to propose economically crippling solutions to man-made climate change when there is increasing evidence that such climate change is not occurring, or at least not occurring at a threatening or alarming rate?”

In Canada’s current federal election campaign, the Liberals have proposed a cap-and-trade regime that would add tens of billions of dollars to the cost of manufacturing, energy supply and transportation, and raise the cost of consumer goods, food and gasoline. Meanwhile, the New Democrats have promised to restrict development in the oil sands in the name of saving the planet without offering any concrete examples of how they will replace the national income, jobs or energy their moves would affect.

There have in the past few months been major studies projecting that hurricanes will not become more numerous or more severe, and concluding that ocean cycles — Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), El Niño/La Niña-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) — best explain climate fluctuations, not man-made carbon dioxide emissions.

There was even a prediction last fall from William Livingston and Matthew Penn of the U.S. National Solar Observatory, that sunspots could all but disappear beginning in 2015 (their number has already been greatly reduced over the past 18 months). And since the sun has a great deal more impact on Earth’s climate than do idling SUVs and oil sands mining, we might be headed for another Little Ice Age, such as the one that dominated Northern Hemisphere weather from 500 years from the 14th through the 19th centuries.

Even the UN was forced to make an embarrassing admission last week that it was wrong six years ago — spectacularly wrong — when it issued a dire warning that by now 50 million people would have been forced to become environmental refugees by the onset of global warming.

A great deal of wind has gone out of the climate-change sails since the revelations a year-and-a-half ago of major data manipulation by many of the world’s leading climate scientists. Still the “green” desire to micro-manage individual lives and regulate whole cultures still exists, so environmentalism remains a movement that needs to be kept in check.

National Post, 20 April 2011