Welcome to The Inconvenient Skeptic

Where should I start for my first post?  I have had many ideas and discarded them all. The best thing I can do is to introduce myself,  this blog and the book I have written which is titled The Inconvenient Skeptic.  I didn’t start out planning to write a book. I didn’t start out planning on becoming a  Skeptic.  I just wanted to understand what was going on with climate change and know why the issue was so contentious.

Like many things in life, it took on a life of its own.  Each item I learned took me deeper into the science and I understood both sides of the debate more clearly.  Each side has a reason for why they believe they are right, or at least why the other side is wrong.

On one side the warmists see the trend in the average global temperature and feel the need to associate the temperature rise of the last 30 years to the activities of mankind. The historical basis for this goes back to the Nobel Prize winning Chemist Arrhenius.  He noticed in the early 1900’s that CO2 absorbed infra-red (heat) energy and hypothesized that CO2 was the cause of the previous ice ages.  He also thought that CO2 would be capable of preventing the Earth from entering another ice age, which he thought would be good for humanity.

The skeptics (and many, many scientists are skeptics) look at the science and the history of the Earth and find no evidence that mankind has caused any of the warming.  They view the warming as basically trivial and statistically insignificant.  There are many scientific reasons that they consider CO2 to be a very limited player in the Earth’s climate.  Mostly they point to CO2 as being important to plants and otherwise unimportant.

Then something unusual happened with the scientific debate. Environmentally minded politicians got involved. Regardless of the scientific debate they wanted to reduce the burning of fossil fuels (which is not generally a bad idea) and used the theory proposed by Arrhenius as the basis to predict catastrophic consequences if CO2 was not reduced.

Al Gore was the most prominent and successful of the politicians to get both the public and many scientists motivated about CO2.  He very successfully ran a political smear campaign against those that disagreed with him.  The scientists that disagreed understood scientific debate, but had no idea how to counter the smear campaign that was so successfully run against them.

This is where my story begins. I am an engineer.  Engineers are different than scientists, but similar. We can speak the same language, but engineers apply science.  Scientists, well they don’t apply it, that is what engineers are for.  I was challenged to understand global warming, so that is what I did.  I get it, I understand the science.

If someone asked me as an engineer how to prevent an ice age from happening.  The one thing I would not recommend is trying to use CO2 as a way to keep the Earth warm.  It simply won’t work.  It can’t work.  How do I know this?  For that you have to read the book.  🙂

Posted in The Book by inconvenientskeptic on May 21st, 2010 at 1:59 am.


This post has 2 comments

  1. William Sep 23rd 2010

    I have done some basic reading on global warming prior to reading your book. In that study, both sides of the argument made sense (Greenhouse cases can increase temperature; Earth does have a history of warming and cooling, etc.). Because of my lack of understanding of the entire system coming to any concrete conclusion was quite difficult. As a result of my “surface layer” study, I came to the conclusion that CO2 will effect the climate some, but not in a catastrophic way as described by AGW (I like the term “Al Gore Warming” that the book used a couple of times because I always forget the acronym). Your book is really a good source for understanding the ENTIRE picture; something that before was before unachievable without doing more research than I had the motivation to do (but something that is very interesting to me because of it’s political and environmental consequences). All-in-all a very informative book that I would HIGHLY recommend it to anybody remotely curious about the subject and I believe it should be a prerequisite for any policy makers who are making CO2 “toxic” to our future.

  2. Lenard Oct 4th 2010

    The GREATEST topic that I read all month!!


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