By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley
Amid all the fabricated panic about an imagined “climate emergency” caused by global warming, one fact will be found almost nowhere but here. As the totalitarians tighten their fell grip on all the news and internet media, any truth inconvenient enough to run counter to the ruthlessly-enforced Party Line is suppressed. Here, however, you will find the still, small voice of calm. Here is the truth. There has been no global warming – none at all – for 7 years 7 months. Yet, during that time, a significant fraction of the influence of humanity’s energetic industries and enterprises on the climate has occurred, without so much as a flicker of response from global mean surface temperature.
The revisionists are, of course, maintaining that long Pauses are exactly what one would expect even with an underlying warming trend. But they can only get away with that by saying that each Pause begins with a prominent el Niño Southern Oscillation warming in the tropical eastern Pacific, such as those which occurred in 2016 and, to a somewhat lesser extent, in 2020.
That, however, is an admission that, at least on the decadal scale, the natural variability of the climate is sufficient to mask the long-run trend. But it can only do that because the long-run warming trend is so very small. Here it is: just over half a Celsius degree per century:
“Aha!” they say, “But just look at the steepening of the trend from 1976 onward.” Well, yes, but did the CO2 concentration surge in the 1970s compared with previous decades? No: it continued to increase at much the same rate as before. It was another natural event – this time the Great Pacific Shift of 1976 – that coincided with, and inferentially had no small influence upon the more rapid increase in temperature over the 20 years to the late 1990s, when the trend leveled off to zero for almost 19 years, only to resume in the run-up to the Great El Niño of 2016, since when there has been no global warming at all.
As Willis Eschenbach has recently pointed out in one of his distinguished columns analysing the data, it is quite hard to detect any particular signal, whether natural or anthropogenic, once one describes that signal either as an absolute temperature (in which event the entire warming since 1850 amounts to an increase of less than 0.2% in global mean surface temperature) or as a trend plotted against the annual variability in regional temperature (in which event the trend is barely distinguishable from the noise). Willis rightly concludes that in a rational world this sort of common-sense perspective would apply.
My favorite example of a regional temperature record is the Central England record, which in fact encompasses almost all the English landmass, and has been kept since 1659. Here is that record since 1945:
Sure enough, the entire 1.1 C° warming trend since 1945 is not even a tenth of the annual variability. Global warming, then, is proving to be a non-event. There is simply not enough of it to justify the childish panic that has gripped those scientifically-illiterate politicians who, through craven fear of the unpersoning to which all of us who have dared to question the climate-Communist Party Line have been subjected, have failed to ask the rational questions that would at once expose the scam for the nonsense it is: immensely profitable to Messrs. Putin and Xi, whose agents of influence captured the environmental movement some decades ago, and just as immensely costly to the rest of us.
Now, one cannot expect anyone as cognitively challenged or as temperamentally totalitarian as Mr Biden, or anyone as scientifically challenged or as temperamentally totalitarian as Mr Johnson, to understand just what pseudo-scientific nonsense the climate-Communist case is. However, the White House has an army of advisors, and so – these days – does 10 Downing Street. When I was a policy wonk there in the Golden Age of Thatcher and Reagan and Pope John Paul II, there were just six of us in the Prime Minister’s policy unit. Now there are 43. Surely at least one of these effete drones can do an elementary macroeconomic analysis. Surely one of them can count how many beans make five. Hint: The answer is five.
Margaret Thatcher was sharp as a tack (but she was the exception). One method I used when explaining to the thicker sort of Minister (for he was the rule) what his proposed moonbeams-to-cucumbers policy would cost was to show how much an average family of four would have to pay for it.
So let us hold our noses and pretend that global warming will actually occur at the officially predicted midrange rate of 3 C° per century or per CO2 doubling (the two are about the same). Of course it won’t be anything like that much, but let us humor these nitwits.
IPeCaC’s current estimate is that every 4 units of radiative forcing will cause 3 degrees of eventual or equilibrium global warming. So each unit abated will abate three-quarters of a degree of warming that would otherwise have occurred. In the last three decades, between us we have all added just 1 unit of forcing in total, in more or less a straight line at one-thirtieth of a unit per year.
In the next 30 years, then, we should add another unit on business as usual. Therefore, if the whole world went from here to net-zero emissions by 2050 we should abate about half of that unit, and thus three-eighths of a degree of warming. With me so far, Minister? Here are some nice pretty counters, so that you can follow right along. If you pay attention, the Private Secretary will bring you some nice chocolate with your milk at teatime.
Trouble is, the whole world is not going to go to net zero by 2050. For the most striking feature common to the plethora of international treaties and agreements, accords and concordats and protocols about global warming is that every single one of them is directed solely at the West, using the flimsy pretext that our past sins of emission constitute a “historic climate debt”. Everyone else is exempt.
No, Minister, I’m not going to go into the strategic reasons why the Western economies have been made the sole targets of the climate treaties: you should have read the daily intelligence digest and attended the weekly briefings, but, like Mr Johnson and Mr Biden, you haven’t bothered.
Let’s play “Let’s Pretend”, Minister. Let’s pretend that the West accounts for as much as a third of all emissions, and that the West will actually reach net zero by 2050. No, of course it doesn’t and it won’t, Minister, but let’s pretend.
In that event, the warming abated by 2050, compared with what would have occurred on business as usual, will be just one-eighth of a degree. Yes, Minister, that’s right! One-eighth of a degree is one-third of three-eighths of a degree. Aren’t fractions exciting?
Now, Minister, let’s take Britain as an example of how much all this is going to cost. Britain emits about 1% of the world’s emissions each year. So our contribution to the West’s abatement of global warming would be 1% of three-eighths of a degree, or less than 1/250 degree. No, it isn’t a lot, Minister.
After correcting climatology’s elementary error of physics (they forgot the Sun was shining, Minister, and they added together the feedback responses from the Sun’s warmth and from warming by greenhouse gases and blamed them both on the greenhouse gases alone), the abatement of global warming by British net zero emissions would be not much more than a thousandth of a degree.
How much would that minuscule abatement cost us? That’s the right question, Minister. The Government’s climate change committee says £1 trillion (if you will believe it is as little as that, you will believe anything, as the Duke of Wellington used to say). The national grid corporation says £3 trillion. McKinsey, a leading consultancy firm, says £4 trillion, at a profoundly conservative estimate.
Let’s go with McKinsey’s figure. In that event, applying the UK abatement cost globally, abating the 3 degrees’ warming that IPCC predicts will occur over the 21st century would cost 3 times 1000 times £4 trillion. That’s £12 quadrillion, Minister.
Global annual GDP is £85 trillion, or £8.5 quadrillion over a century. Of course, were it not for the economic devastation caused by global net-zero emissions policies, GDP might be expected to grow over the century. But, as it is, the whole of global GDP, and then some, will have to be spent on emissions abatement. So nobody will be able to eat or do anything else. That’s how silly all this net-zero nonsense is.
There are 8 billion people in the world, or about 2 billion families of four. So the cost of global-warming abatement this century will be $6 million in total, or £60,000 a year, per family of four. In dollars, that’s $75,000 per year for each household, which comfortably exceeds the global mean annual household income.
Of course, none of that spending is in any way necessary because, after correcting climatology’s silly error of physics, there will not be enough global warming to do net harm. It will be net-beneficial.
So why are we doing any of this global-warming abatement? That, too, is the right question, Minister. It would be well worth your while to attend the intelligence briefings from now on. Then you’ll find out the answer. Well, all right, I’ll give you a clue: where do you think Mr Putin got enough billions over the decades to rebuild the Soviet armed forces that are now bogged down in Ukraine in pursuit of his special military massacre?
That’s right, Minister: sales of Siberian gas in ever larger quantities and at ever higher prices to nations that Putin’s agents of influence have persuaded to close down the competition from coal-fired power stations that used to generate electricity at not much more than quarter of the cost of gas. Did you really think that Greenpeace and Extinction Rebellion were genuine environmental groups? Don’t be silly, Minister.
And why do you think Mr Xi has spent so much time and effort buying up and controlling very nearly all the global output of lithium carbonate for electric buggies?
Now you’ve got it, Minister. The two most brutal Communist regimes in the world have been profiteering from Western governments’ woeful, wilful ignorance of elementary science and economics, and from Ministers’ fear of being unpersoned. Xi and Putin have been laughing all the way to the Moscow Narodny Bank.
Ought we to stop them by scrapping all this climate-emergency nonsense that they have so sedulously peddled, and by getting rid of the net-zero-emissions policies on both sides of the Atlantic?