Walk against Warming

Thurtinkle with some Cockatoos

I'm hanging out with the cockatoos in Freo

I went down to Fremantle the other day to listen to all the speakers at the ‘Walk against Warming’ 2010 event. There was an election looming in Australia, and as an endangered species, one of the last gnomes left, I wanted to hear all the different policies of the ALP, LNC and Green parties.

It was a lovely day and loads of people had turned up on the Esplanade. Once again the lovely Rebecca carried me on her shoulders and I had a chat with some people. I do hope that the humans stop using so much energy from non-renewables and get their act together in time.


18 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. rogerthesurf
    Aug 27, 2010 @ 11:24:31

    ” I do hope that the humans stop using so much energy from non-renewables and get their act together in time.”

    I think you are mixing two different issues.

    Yes we should conserve fossil fuels sensibly because they are a finite resource. (We may only have a few thousand years worth of coal left for instance)

    Does burning fossil fuels cause global warming? Another seperate issue.

    Check out my blog on that one.


    Feel welcome to leave a comment.



    • Thurtinkle
      Aug 27, 2010 @ 19:24:13

      Hiya Roger from New Zealand, and thanks for the comment.

      I had a look at your blog and I had to laugh so hard that Ribena squirted out of my nose!

      It’s a very funny blog that seems to imply that a) the earth has warmed up before so therefore we don’t need to be concerned, and b) the whole thing is a global conspiracy by world leaders who have hypnotised scientists into believing something that isn’t true to make money!

      We’ve dug up millions of years worth of sequestered carbon and since the industrial revolution burned most of it into the air. Of course the earth has warmed and cooled before, but the ages of the earth are defined by regular mass extinction events, and all the data points to the fact that we are causing another one by rapid climate change and the acidification of the oceans.

      The science behind humans causing climate change has been around for decades, and the data now confirms that it is happening, it is real and humans are causing it.

      People have to reduce their reliance on energy generated by fossil fuels. They must stop digging it up and burning it.

      The Australian Government ( http://www.climatechange.gov.au/en/climate-change/myths/science.aspx ) says
      “There remains some misleading information in the media about climate change and global action to address it. Some commentators claim that international action on climate change is a ‘pretext’ for a central ‘World Government’.” – I think they may be referring to you here Roger

      All the best

      Thurtinkle :D)

  2. rogerthesurf
    Aug 29, 2010 @ 09:07:39


    You obviously did not read my blog very closely.

    Of the many warmings (and coolings) that our planet has had in its history, at least three of those are within historical times, and each time it has been warmer than the present. If you look on my site and it’s links you will see a number about the Medieval Warm Period, but also mentioned are the Roman Warming and the Holocene Maximum.
    Now if there are any actual facts in the Global Warming debate, these facts (which are recorded in written history, archaelogical evidence and modern proxies), must stand out some distance.
    So apart from saying ” Of course the earth has warmed and cooled before, but the ages of the earth are defined by regular mass extinction events” by which I suppose you mean ice ages, which I am not refering to at all, you are absolutely correct. If the earth warms regularly, this disproves the hypothesis “Anthropogenic CO2 causes global warming”, and if you can find any empirical facts that actually support the above hypothesis, I think you should put aside your somewhat foolish ridicule and try and find some actual evidence to share with me.

    As for the reason for this mass hysteria, which is nothing new by the way as we had similar in the 1920’s and 70’s, I also have an open mind, but one must follow the money which is going to flow from people like you and me and see where it is likely to end up.

    And do try and understand that sustainability of fossil fuels is a different issue from the unproven “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming” hypothesis.




  3. Thurtinkle
    Aug 29, 2010 @ 20:10:38

    Hello Roger,

    I’m chortling and chuckling at your amusing assertions. They are both rib tickling in their mistaken-ness.

    I wasn’t born in Medieval times, but the warming period that you are referring to was localised to Europe (if it happened at all) and there is little to no evidence that it was a world wide climactic event of any importance. Certainly not one of any impact that caused mass extinctions like the one that is impending as I type. As for world wide temperature trend evidence since the year 200 from ice cores and tree rings, you can look here

    As for evidence, look around you. The data is there. There is a direct proportional link between the evidence of rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere and rising temperatures and energy levels. Humans have increased the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere by about a third.

    I like this link in particular.

    The United Nations (you know, that organisation that all the countries of the world are signed up to and support) reported in 2007 that “Evidence is now ‘unequivocal’ that humans are causing global warming” and here is the link

    Thanks for making me smile and I love the stories that you tell on your blog. However they are dangerous stories, as they may encourage people to go on using energy at too high a rate and stop conserving valuable resources while seeking renewable solutions.

    Finally, here’s an amusing video


  4. rogerthesurf
    Aug 30, 2010 @ 05:48:46


    I suggest you refrain from your ridicule and try facing some facts and using your brain to interpret what you read and are being told.

    First of all your resorting to ridicule does not encourage anyone reading this to believe that you are secure in your beliefs. It simply shows that you are reluctant to face any uncomfortable facts which cannot be disproved and therefore you attack the person.

    Now you do not think I would come out with such statements unless I had given the matters serious thought and looked at neutral scientificate evidence etc?

    “I wasn’t born in Medieval times, but the warming period that you are referring to was localised to Europe (if it happened at all) and there is little to no evidence that it was a world wide climactic event of any importance”

    Well science, history and archaeology disagree with you there. Written history tells us it was warmer than today, archaeology tells us it was warmer than today, science tells us it was warmer than today and the fact that it was world wide shows up in proxies from Greenland, Russia, New Zealand, Antarctica and the Pacific Warm Pool.
    There are links to scientific papers supporting these assertions on my blog under “Links to illustrate the Globalness of the Medieval Warm Period and other Warmings”
    In fact the only agency that tries to disprove these facts is the IPCC although they did not disprove it in their 1990 report Fig 7.1 c.

    “As for evidence, look around you. The data is there. There is a direct proportional link between the evidence of rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere and rising temperatures and energy levels”

    I don’t know if you have ever studies statistics, but in my first year at university and on my very first statistics class we were warned never to forget that correlation is never a proof. If you believe your statment above, you are obviously ignorant of that fact. In otherwords instead of using your own brain, you are allowing other people to take advantage of you.

    I am familiar with the skeptical science link you quote. It is well written and on the surface convincing, but contains no empirical evidence of the CAUSATION of the current warming. All it really does is restate the correlation you mention above and then point to “scientific” models that also support that correlation. Unfortunately as these models incorporate the “anthropogenic CO2 causes global warming” hypothesis as the basic assumption, in actual fact proof wise we are no further ahead.

    I suggest that you be very critical of the UN and the IPCC. They are not scientific organisations but are political organisations. Considering that the huge resources put into their “research” the number of basic blunders are indeed worrying. There are far more scientists who oppose their views than there are who support them.

    Worse still if you read my blog once again at http://rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com/porky-no-3-ipcc-attempts-to-change-history/ you will see the IPCC is actually trying to change history by making the Medieval Warm Period disappear. Now why would they do that do you think? Well have a scan of the “Climate Gate” emails that are included in that page. Dont you think thats a little worrying?

    ” I love the stories that you tell on your blog. However they are dangerous stories…”

    Well try using that brain of yours a little more.

    What do you think it will be like living in a world where the cost of energy has doubled or tripled? If this happens most western style economies will simply die. Use your brain to think what that means to you and your family.
    So if we are contemplating doing this to ourselves, is it not reasonable to seek absolute proof of the “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming Hypothesis” before we embark?

    Finally, you have shown that you are unable to seperate the issues of conservation of fossil energy and global warming. All I can suggest is check out my links and keep/start thinking FOR YOURSELF!




    • Alan Gill
      Aug 30, 2010 @ 13:56:43

      “So if we are contemplating doing this to ourselves, is it not reasonable to seek absolute proof of the “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming Hypothesis” before we embark?”

      I don’t know what you did at university, though if it were a science degree you would recall that you cannot prove a hypothesis – all you can do is provide evidence to support it. Mathematics is the only realm in which you will find “proof”.

      So if you’re hanging out for “absolute proof”, you’ll never get it. For anything aside from mathematics.

      The evidence that you provide for the counter argument (i.e. that anthropogenic CO2 is not changing our climate) does not refute the evidence provided in favour of the hypothesis that anthropogenic CO2 IS causing our climate to change. Instead, it supports it’s own argument, providing two competing theories. The greater community (scientific and non-scientific) can examine the evidence in support of each, evaluate them critically and draw their own conclusions. For the scientific community, this survey (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/01/090119210532.htm) in 2009 indicates that the vast majority of scientists back the hypothesis that “human activity [has] been a significant factor in changing mean global temperatures”.

      Go on – attack that survey, it’s questions and it’s neutrality. I know you will. 🙂

      The reason I say you will is because of your comment:

      “There are far more scientists who oppose their views than there are who support them.”

      I would like to see a source backing up your claim, please.

      As I have noted from your blog that you are somewhat critical of people’s qualifications, I will state mine: I am a student in Science Communication and Environmental Geoscience at the University of Western Australia, and am in my final year of studies.

      I am also a proponent of the scientific method and promoting an understanding of it amongst the general public, so I am disappointed that you are calling for “absolute proof” when anyone with an understanding of science will know that it is a fruitless pursuit.

      While I could go on and on about evidence in favour of anthropogenic climate change (the accepted view by the scientific community) I want to finish my comment by backing up Thurtinkle.

      Your comments, while quite entertaining, ARE dangerous. Many of the facts you are presenting are misleading as they are out of context. You need to understand that there are people out there who believe everything they read on the internet without thinking critically, so if you are going to act as a science communicator (for you are communicating scientific endeavours) you need to do so in an unbiased way. In failing to do that, you are putting the integrity of science at risk and encouraging people to turn a blind eye when real action needs to be taken. Perhaps you should preface your blog with that warning?

      Alan Gill

  5. Abby
    Aug 30, 2010 @ 16:23:13

    I don’t like to give the impression that we are all ganging up on Roger. But I suppose if you have a pop at a 278 year old gnome, you are sort of asking for it.

    Thurtinkle and Allan have made great points about anthropogenic climate change, so I won’t go over old ground. But there is one thing I want to wave in front of Roger.

    “What do you think it will be like living in a world where the cost of energy has doubled or tripled? If this happens most western style economies will simply die. Use your brain to think what that means to you and your family.
    So if we are contemplating doing this to ourselves, is it not reasonable to seek absolute proof of the “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming Hypothesis” before we embark?”

    Can someone please clarify this for me, because it has me stumped. The first section I get (even if it is written with undertones of nasty suppressed anger; Roger should do something about that, he’ll give himself an ulcer). We do need to contemplate life where the energy costs soar. Our economies will collapse and ironically it will be nations in the economically developing world that will survive it while the consumerist world will collapse. This will happen because we have run out of coal to fuel our power stations, oil to make plastic and petrol to fuel our cars.

    So I think, wow, we finally agree on something. Then Roger goes onto to say the increase in the cost of living is why we should put a hold on doing anything until we have absolute proof.

    The only explanation I can possibly think of is that Roger thinks that the cost of living is going to increase, not because the of the cost of maintaining our current unsustainable lifestyles but because of measures to curb CO2 emissions and the unsustainable use of our finite resources.

    We haven’t separated the two issues of climate change and resource use because they are two sides of the same coin. The solution for one is 99% the solution for the other. Stop consuming stuff we do not need.

    I think I’ll go out today and appreciate the last of the summer air and walk amongst the trees while I can. Because if people like Roger have their way, our world with all the human comforts it has isn’t going to be about for much longer.

    I will leave you all with this cartoon.

    • rogerthesurf
      Aug 31, 2010 @ 05:17:41


      Just a comment on your cartoon.

      “Energy Independence”
      “Preserve Rain Forests”
      “Green Jobs”
      “Livable Cities”
      “Clean Water, Air”
      “Healthy Children”

      Only one question, please explain how chasing after the life giving gas CO2, breaking our economies in the process and putting the well being of us, our families and children in distinct danger, give us all these things?



  6. rogerthesurf
    Aug 31, 2010 @ 05:07:59

    “you cannot prove a hypothesis – all you can do is provide evidence to support it”

    I disagree with you there. Although “absolute” is a strong word, “beyond reasonable doubt” would be sufficient for me.
    Yes you can prove a hypothesis beyond reasonable doubt. The hypothesis “the force of gravity will pull you to the ground” is easily proven empirically by jumping off a cliff. At least by the third time you will begin to disprove the counter hypothesis that the fall was simply coincidental. As a scientist you will know that “empirical” means “proven by our senses” or similar words.
    In the absence of empirical evidence, proof becomes more difficult. However one can start by disproving alternative hypothesis that also explain the effects your current hypothesis explains. You can also look for factors that disprove your hypothesis. Now because you are a scientist already, I need not elaborate except to say that the Medieval Warm period is one of those disproving factors of the “Anthropogenic CO2 causes Global Warming” hypothesis, especially as we know that any anthropogenic CO2 was caused by itinerant sword sharpening of a minority.
    And as I have mentioned above, correlation is simply not proof in any shape or form of any causation.

    Scientists supporting/opposing AGW

    If it is numbers you want, check out these links which are on my blog under “Petitions on Anthropogenic Global Warming”. All links are listed on the column on the right.

    Finally, I am not encouraging people to turn a blind eye on the tribulations of our planet, but I am deeply concerned that a fruitless pursuit of CO2 in the name of global warming will divert resources from the real issues of our society and true sustinance of our world.

    I encourage YOU to think and read critically. Including my writing of course. However everything I assert is supported by some scientific, historical or archaelogical research.

    And as you graduate from your university and become an undergraduate of the university of life, you will find you have barely started on your journey of education and understanding.




  7. dnapuppetry
    Sep 01, 2010 @ 08:50:14

    You know Roger, as old as I am, I, like Alan, have barely started on my road to education and understanding. However, I have experienced many people like you before in my time, from the people who refused to believe that the world was round to the people who denied any direct link between tobacco smoking and ill health.

    I am the first to admit that we can dispute the evidence about whether the fact that we are using up the earths resources at a tremendous rate has any effect on the environment until the cows come home.

    However, the consequences of NOT taking action now and acting to reduce our impact on the environment are potentially far more hazardous than the consequences of taking action. You seem to disagree on this point. If I see a large heavy rock falling from the sky and heading towards me, I’m not going to debate with you whether my eyes are good enough to see if it really is a rock, or if the wind is strong enough to make it miss me. I’m going to work as hard as I can to jump out of the way. If you are trying to persuade me that we can’t jeopardise the corporate profits of the profligate first world to reduce the impact of climate change on the poor and needy of the rest, I must disagree.

    Finally, here is a complete rebuttal of your claim that scientists disgree with the assertion that human activity is contributing to our changing climate. You will find the source (with the graphs) here

    A survey of 3146 earth scientists asked the question “Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?” (Doran 2009). More than 90% of participants had Ph.D.s, and 7% had master’s degrees. Overall, 82% of the scientists answered yes. However, what are most interesting are responses compared to the level of expertise in climate science. Of scientists who were non-climatologists and didn’t publish research, 77% answered yes. In contrast, 97.5% of climatologists who actively publish research on climate change responded yes. As the level of active research and specialization in climate science increases, so does agreement that humans are significantly changing global temperatures.

    Most striking is the divide between expert climate scientists (97.4%) and the general public (58%). The paper concludes:

    “It seems that the debate on the authenticity of global warming and the role played by human activity is largely nonexistent among those who understand the nuances and scientific basis of long-term climate processes. The challenge, rather, appears to be how to effectively communicate this fact to policy makers and to a public that continues to mistakenly perceive debate among scientists.”

    This overwhelming consensus among climate experts is confirmed by an independent study that surveys all climate scientists who have publicly signed declarations supporting or rejecting the consensus. They find between 97% to 98% of climate experts support the consensus (Anderegg 2010). Moreover, they examine the number of publications by each scientist as a measure of expertise in climate science. They find the average number of publications by unconvinced scientists (eg – skeptics) is around half the number by scientists convinced by the evidence. Not only is there a vast difference in the number of convinced versus unconvinced scientists, there is also a considerable gap in expertise between the two groups.

    Scientific organizations endorsing the consensus
    The following scientific organizations endorse the consensus position that “most of the global warming in recent decades can be attributed to human activities”:

    American Association for the Advancement of Science
    American Astronomical Society
    American Chemical Society
    American Geophysical Union
    American Institute of Physics
    American Meteorological Society
    American Physical Society
    Australian Coral Reef Society
    Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society
    Australian Bureau of Meteorology and the CSIRO
    British Antarctic Survey
    Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences
    Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society
    Environmental Protection Agency
    European Federation of Geologists
    European Geosciences Union
    European Physical Society
    Federation of American Scientists
    Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies
    Geological Society of America
    Geological Society of Australia
    International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA)
    International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics
    National Center for Atmospheric Research
    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
    Royal Meteorological Society
    Royal Society of the UK
    The Academies of Science from 19 different countries all endorse the consensus. 11 countries have signed a joint statement endorsing the consensus position:

    Academia Brasiliera de Ciencias (Brazil)
    Royal Society of Canada
    Chinese Academy of Sciences
    Academie des Sciences (France)
    Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina (Germany)
    Indian National Science Academy
    Accademia dei Lincei (Italy)
    Science Council of Japan
    Russian Academy of Sciences
    Royal Society (United Kingdom)
    National Academy of Sciences (USA) (12 Mar 2009 news release)
    A letter from 18 scientific organizations to US Congress states:

    “Observations throughout the world make it clear that climate change is occurring, and rigorous scientific research demonstrates that the greenhouse gases emitted by human activities are the primary driver. These conclusions are based on multiple independent lines of evidence, and contrary assertions are inconsistent with an objective assessment of the vast body of peer-reviewed science.”
    The consensus is also endorsed by a Joint statement by the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC), including the following bodies:

    African Academy of Sciences
    Cameroon Academy of Sciences
    Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences
    Kenya National Academy of Sciences
    Madagascar’s National Academy of Arts, Letters and Sciences
    Nigerian Academy of Sciences
    l’Académie des Sciences et Techniques du Sénégal
    Uganda National Academy of Sciences
    Academy of Science of South Africa
    Tanzania Academy of Sciences
    Zimbabwe Academy of Sciences
    Zambia Academy of Sciences
    Sudan Academy of Sciences
    Two other Academies of Sciences that endorse the consensus:

    Royal Society of New Zealand
    Polish Academy of Sciences
    A survey of peer-reviewed research
    Scientists need to back up their opinions with research and data that survive the peer-review process. A survey of all peer-reviewed abstracts on the subject ‘global climate change’ published between 1993 and 2003 shows that not a single paper rejected the consensus position that global warming is man caused (Oreskes 2004). 75% of the papers agreed with the consensus position while 25% made no comment either way (focused on methods or paleoclimate analysis).

    Klaus-Martin Schulte’s list of studies rejecting the consensus
    That is not to say there are no studies that reject the consensus position. Klaus-Martin Schulte surveyed peer-reviewed abstracts from 2004 to February 2007 and claims 32 studies (6%) reject the consensus position. In these cases, it’s instructive to read the studies to see whether they actually do refute the consensus and if so, what their arguments are.

  8. rogerthesurf
    Sep 01, 2010 @ 11:27:32

    ” If you are trying to persuade me that we can’t jeopardise the corporate profits of the profligate first world ”

    BTW I’m talking about whether we eat or not. Exactly how much are you personally prepared to pay?

  9. dnapuppetry
    Sep 01, 2010 @ 12:46:25

    I’m prepared to grow my own vegetables with collected rainwater. I’m prepared to go without a lot of things, if it helps to guarantee a future for our children.

    • rogerthesurf
      Sep 02, 2010 @ 06:06:02

      So you want to become a substistance farmer?

      Go for it, see how far you get without electricity, gasoline and diesel. (And Cash)



  10. dnapuppetry
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 11:58:26

    Now, Roger. Now we can speak freely and openly. Here we come to the crux of the matter. The climate of the earth is changing, and a growing awareness of the implications of climate change may cause us to be fearful.

    Often the front part of our brains explains or rationalises the more basic responses we feel, and how do we respond to fear? An adrenaline response, and a signal to ‘Fight or flight’

    Now, Roger, I never said I wanted to become a subsistence farmer, (though the majority of the worlds population still are and they probably add more to the world’s resources than they consume). I said I would do whatever it takes to ensure the future for the coming generations. I will live with less electricity, gasoline and diesel. Yes, and cash. This is my ‘fight’ response.

    You on the other hand, are rationalising your ‘flight’ response. You seek to deny that our use of resources is a cause of climate change. You seek to hang on to your savings, your cheap energy, your goods and services. You are fearful Roger and you cower. I am also fearful, yet I seek a reason to hope. I seek to believe that this crisis is also an opportunity. An opportunity to build a better and more sustainable life, not only for future generations, but also for all the subsistence farmers out there with very little fresh water, electricity gasoline, diesel or cash, who find themselves in the midst of a global crisis and can do nothing but watch as the climate changes around them and fight to survive, or flee to escape.

    I encourage people to consider their use of resources, to make do with less, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to pressure corporations and governments to concentrate on reducing the impact of climate change and global warming at the expense of profits and consumer society.

    You are right, Roger. It is likely that there will be economic consequences and breakdowns in society as a result of this. You are right to fear them, but I urge you to fight the good fight, don’t preserve the status quo. Go on, this old gnome has faith in the human race, and I hope that it’s not too late for us because it’s already too late for a vast majority of species unable to adapt quickly enough including gnomes.

  11. rogerthesurf
    Sep 02, 2010 @ 13:56:35

    “at the expense of profits and consumer society. ”

    Go on talking like that and you will have your country following the steps of China in 1950. Won’t need any global warming threat to make us poverty stricken.

    You are right, I do have a concern for the well being of mankind, and believe me the greater and more immediate threat is what will happen to our economies and the PEOPLE who depend on that economy, should we start wearing the cost of co2 emission reductions.

    Read my blog, there is no global warming/cooling “crisis”. We had at least one of each last century, you are too young to remember, but when you get older you start to recognise a “chicken little” when you see one. Check out the links on my blog under “A 1974 CIA report on Global Cooling ” and “Emergency! Incontrovertible observations showing the Arctic ice at an all time low and the sea at all time warmth”.

    So it pays to be rational for these things.
    As a matter of fact I have an open mind, but before I start joining in the race to ruin our societies and way of life chasing CO2 emissions, I need a reasonable standard of proof.

    So you find me a reasonable standard of proof and I will join you, but if I am going to assist in starving my family, you understand it needs to be very good proof.




  12. rogerthesurf
    Sep 03, 2010 @ 04:27:04

    Just to inform you that I am in the habit of recording these conversations on my other blog.
    This conversation is at http://globalwarmingsupporter.wordpress.com/39-2/thurtinkles-world-walk-against-warming/ for your benefit and that of my readers.

    My readers are particularly interested in your answer to my latest comment.



  13. Network Camera
    Sep 07, 2010 @ 00:37:43

    Undoubtedly, one of the best article l have come across on this precious topic. I quite agree with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your coming updates.

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