Tuesday, January 30, 2007


And Now, For Something Completely Different ...

They are holding other hearings in DC that may be more relevant to science and its potential contributions to the nation, than the "Oversight" Committee grandstanding about LANL "security lapses." Let's let reality intrude on our local angst. Read on, and think about how LANL, SNL, and LLNL might do something more relevant to mankind's future. (As goes man, so goes dog ...)



Waxman: White House misled public on global warming

By Johanna Neuman And Richard Simon, Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times
1:20 PM PST, January 30, 2007

WASHINGTON -- The new Democratic chairman of a House panel charged today that the Bush administration tried to mislead the public about climate change "by injecting doubt into the science of global warming and minimizing the potential dangers."

Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said at the start of a hearing on global warming that he and the committee's ranking Republican, Rep. Tom Davis of Virginia, had repeatedly asked the White House last year for documents to show that senior officials were suppressing scientific reports within the administration about the severity of the problem.

The congressmen were trying to investigate an allegation that Phil Cooney, chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality and a former lobbyist for the American petroleum industry, was quashing scientific reports that offered views on global warming that differed from those of the White House.

"The committee isn't trying to obtain state secrets or documents that could affect our immediate national security," Waxman said today. "We are simply seeking answers to whether the White House's political staff is inappropriately censoring impartial government scientists."

In testimony before the committee, the Union of Concerned Scientists, an independent advocacy group, found in a survey of government scientists that 150 of them had experienced political interference over the past five years.

"Our investigations found high-quality science struggling to get out," said the group's senior scientist Francesca Grifo. "Nearly half of all respondents perceived or personally experienced pressure to eliminate the words 'climate change,' 'global warming' or other similar terms from a variety of communications," Grifo said.

Rick Piltz, a former U.S. government scientist, who said he resigned in 2005 after pressure to soften his words on global warming, wrote in prepared testimony that Cooney personally cast doubt on the consequences of climate change.

On the other side of Capitol Hill, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) chaired a hearing at which several presidential candidates — Sens. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.), Barak Obama (D-Ill.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) embraced new measures on global warming. Afterward, she hailed the "consensus" that Congress act soon.



I'll bite. So, how much of this kind of work goes on at Sandia, Livermore and LANL?
Our own Lab Fellow, Petr Chylek, has done some very important work in this area. Last year he presented a series of seminars on multi-spectral satelite remote sensing for the detection of climate change.

What's the largest contributor to greenhouse effect? Water Vapor. CO2 is in the ppm range and the models are relatively insensitive to either a doubling or halving of the total atmospheric CO2. Unfortunately, this is not the current secular religion and he gets shouted down.

See: http://www.heartland.org/pdf/2329bo.pdf
and other papers by Petr Chylek.
Well, Petr, the paper you cite is from 2002. Much more has been done in climate modeling since then, and I wonder if you still think that CO2 levels and temperature are not correlated over the last 400,000 years? Scientific consensus is forged by criticism from others, but also by self-criticism; there is no room in scientific debate for religion, secular or not. Consequently, as a scientist, I am forced to be skeptical of skeptics, too. (Even if they are Lab Fellows.)

-Brad Lee Holian
What is the approximate funding level for research in this area in the US? The World? Who are the key customers? How much LANL (and other labs') LDRD funding is spent in this area?

The article talks about 150 scientists stating they were pressured. Are they all doing global warming work, or were some working in other areas?
Geez, thanks to the Global Warming hearings and the Negroponte appointment hearings, LANL hearings never made it on to C-SPAN today.

Whew! That was close. I'm tired of explaining to family and friends why LANL is always in the news for bad things.
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