The Belief That CO2 Can Regulate Climate Is “Sheer Absurdity” Says Prominent German Meteorologist

Physicist and meteorologist Klaus-Eckart Puls was interviewed by Bettina Hahne-Waldscheck of the Swiss magazine “factum“.I’ve translated and summarized the interview, paraphrasing for brevity.

factum: You’ve been criticising the theory of man-made global warming for years. How did you become skeptical?

Puls: Ten years ago I simply parroted what the IPCC told us. One day I started checking the facts and data – first I started with a sense of doubt but then I became outraged when I discovered that much of what the IPCC and the media were telling us was sheer nonsense and was not even supported by any scientific facts and measurements. To this day I still feel shame that as a scientist I made presentations of their science without first checking it. The CO2-climate hysteria in Germany is propagated by people who are in it for lots of money, attention and power.

factum: Is there really climate change?

Puls: Climate change is normal. There have always been phases of climate warming, many that even far exceeded the extent we see today. But there hasn’t been any warming since 1998. In fact the IPCC suppliers of data even show a slight cooling.

factum: The IPCC is projecting 0.2°C warming per decade, i.e. 2 to 4°C by the year 2100. What’s your view?

Puls: These are speculative model projections, so-called scenarios – and not prognoses. Because of climate’s high complexity, reliable prognoses just aren’t possible. Nature does what it wants, and not what the models present as prophesy. The entire CO2-debate is nonsense. Even if CO2 were doubled, the temperature would rise only 1°C. The remainder of the IPCC’s assumed warming is based purely on speculative amplification mechanisms. Even though CO2 has risen, there has been no warming in 13 years.

factum: How does sea level rise look?

Puls: Sea level rise has slowed down. Moreover, it has dropped a half centimeter over the last 2 years. It’s important to remember that mean sea level is a calculated magnitude, and not a measured one.  There are a great number of factors that influence sea level, e.g. tectonic processes, continental shifting, wind currents, passats, volcanoes. Climate change is only one of ten factors.

factum: What have we measured at the North Sea?

Puls: In the last 400 years, sea level at the North Sea coast has risen about 1.40 meters. That’s about 35 centimeters per century. In the last 100 years, the North Sea has risen only 25 centimeters.

factum: Does the sea level rise have anything to do with the melting North Pole?

Puls: That’s a misleading conclusion. Even if the entire North Pole melted, there would be no sea level rise because of the principles of buoyancy.

factum: Is the melting of the glaciers in the Alps caused by global warming?

Puls: There are many factors at play. As one climbs a mountain, the temperature drops about 0.65°C per 100 meters. Over the last 100 years it has gotten about 0.75°C warmer and so the temperature boundary has shifted up about 100 meters. But observations tell us that also ice 1000 meters up and higher has melted. Clearly there are other reasons for this, namely soot and dust. But soot and dust do not only have anthropogenic origins; they are also caused by nature via volcanoes, dust storms and wildfires. Advancing and retreating of glaciers have always taken place throughout the Earth’s history. Glaciology studies clearly show that glaciers over the last 10,0000 years were smaller on average than today.

factum: In your view, melting Antarctic sea ice and the fracture of a huge iceberg 3 years ago are nothing to worry about?

Puls: To the contrary, the Antarctic ice cap has grown both in area and volume over the last 30 years, and temperature has declined. This 30-year trend is clear to see. The Amundsen Scott Station of the USA shows that temperature has been declining there since 1957. 90% of the Earth’s ice is stored in Antarctica, which is one and half times larger than Europe.

factum: Then why do we always read it is getting warmer down there?

Puls: Here they are only talking about the West Antarctic peninsula, which is where the big chunk of ice broke off in 2008 – from the Wilkins-Shelf. This area is hardly 1% of the entire area of Antarctica, but it is exposed to Southern Hemisphere west wind drift and some of the strongest storms on the planet.

factum: What causes such massive chunks of ice to break off?

Puls: There are lots of factors, among them the intensity of the west wind fluctuations. These west winds have intensified over the last 20 years as part of natural ocean and atmospheric cycles, and so it has gotten warmer on the west coast of the Antarctic peninsula. A second factor are the larger waves associated with the stronger storms. The waves are more powerful and so they break off more ice. All these causes are meteorological and physical, and have nothing to do with a climate catastrophe.

factum: Then such ice breaks had to have occurred in the past too?

Puls: This has been going on for thousands of years, also in the 1970s, back when all the talk was about “global cooling”. Back then there were breaks with ice chunks hundreds of square kilometres in area. People were even discussing the possibilities of towing these huge ice chunks to dry countries like South Africa or Namibia in order to use them as a drinking water supply.

factum: What about all the media photos of polar bears losing their ice?

Puls: That is one of the worst myths used for generating climate hysteria. Polar bears don’t eat ice, they eat seals. Polar bears go hungry if we shoot their food supply of seals. The polar bear population has increased with moderately rising temperatures, from 5000 50 years ago to 25,000 today.

factum: But it is true that unlike Antarctica, the Arctic is melting?

Puls: It has been melting for 30 years. That also happened twice already in the last 150 years. The low point was reached in 2007 and the ice has since begun to recover. There have always been phases of Arctic melting. Between 900 and 1300 Greenland was green on the edges and the Vikings settled there.

factum: And what do you say about the alleged expanding deserts?

Puls: That doesn”t exist. For example the Sahara is shrinking and has lost in the north an area as large as Germany over the last 20 years. The same is true in the South Sahara. The famine that struck Somalia, Kenya and Ethiopia was mainly caused by the leasing of large swaths of land to large international corporations so that they could grow crops for biofuels for Europe, and by war. But it is much easier for prosperous Europe to blame the world’s political failures on a fictional climate catastrophe instead.

factum: So we don’t need to do anything against climate change?

Puls: There’s nothing we can do to stop it. Scientifically it is sheer absurdity to think we can get a nice climate by turning a CO2 adjustment knob. Many confuse environmental protection with climate protection. it’s impossible to protect the climate, but we can protect the environment and our drinking water. On the debate concerning alternative energies, which is sensible, it is often driven by the irrational climate debate. One has nothing to do with the other.

 

45 responses to “The Belief That CO2 Can Regulate Climate Is “Sheer Absurdity” Says Prominent German Meteorologist”

  1. kwik

    Well said, Klaus-Eckart !

    But then again, since you are a Physicist and meteorologist, you must have based your life on logic and the real sciences, not on feelings and soft sciences.

    So, therefore, your conclusions are to be expected.

  2. David Appell
    1. DirkH

      What made you crawl out from under your rock? Go away, or I’ll get the Soft Cushion!

    2. Robert of Ottawa

      And why did the Pacific go cold La Ninha? Where is the hot El Ninho predicted by your bum-boy Hansen?

      1. Paul in Perth

        You inhabitants of the 51st state of America seem to have a close affinity with ‘bum-boys’, … just sayin’ …

    3. Jimbo

      David Appell,
      Sea level has been rising since the end of the last ice age and according to the IPCC there is NO evidence of acceleration. So what’s your point?

    4. Paul Homewood

      The satellite record starts in 1993 , after 3 years of sea level fall and Pinatubo cooling.

      As Church and White point out

      However, the reconstruction indicates there was little net change in sea level from 1990 to 1993, most likely as a result of the volcanic eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991.

      http://sealevel.colorado.edu/content/sea-level-rise-late-19th-early-21st-century

      Comparing low points in a cycle with high points is disingenuous.

  3. Jerrymat

    Interesting material. The author of this might have used a spell checker or even a dictionary.

  4. Ed Caryl

    David,
    Use the correct URL:
    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/
    Sea level rise has stopped.

    1. David Appell

      CU is one of four groups measuring global sea level, and they now show it on the rise again. The others show it recovering too — AVISO now shows it above the trend.

      No climate scientist expects sea level has stopped rising. Check again in a year and, barring a third La Nina, you’ll see it right back on track.

      1. Ed Caryl
      2. aaron

        So sea level rise has accelerated to… normal.

        Kill your children so they won’t suffer.

  5. M.R. Viets

    The simple thought that man had power of climate, was shear absurdity.

  6. kim2ooo

    Good Read! Thank you

  7. Arno Arrak

    Speaking of Arctic warming, he has the basic timing almost correct. We now know that it started at the turn of the twentieth century, not quite that 150 years he has. Prior to that there was nothing but two thousand years of slow, linear cooling. This came out when Kaufman et al. made a study of Arctic history based on sub-arctic lake sediments. The period from 900 to 1300 was the Medieval warm period but it does not show up in their study. The big surprise was that Arctic warming had a sudden start at the turn of the twentieth century, paused in mid-century for thirty years, then resumed, and is still going strong. There was no corresponding sudden increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide which rules out the greenhouse effect as a cause. But the authors (among whom are Bradley, Briffa, and Overpeck) nevertheless cling irrationally to greenhouse warming. The most likely cause of the warming is a rearrangement of the North Atlantic current system at the turn of the century that began to carry warm Gulf Stream water north. The warming pause in mid-century probably corresponds to a temporary return of the previous flow pattern. It is easy to see that currents can shift but it is impossible to turn greenhouse warming on and off like that. Two years later Spielhagen et al. took a cruise into the Arctic and reported that the water temperature of currents reaching the Arctic exceeded anything that the Arctic has experienced within the last two thousand years. They also took a foraminiferal core near Svalbard to determine Arctic temperature history and found an essentially similar pattern to Kaufman et al. Arctic warming has been used to claim the reality of anthropogenic global warming but what we have learned of it now denies this reality. For more info, download this article:
    http://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/arno-arrak.pdf

  8. Klaus-Eckart Puls: Belief that CO2 can regulate climate is “sheer absurdity” | The Drinking Water Advisor

    […] of the Swiss magazine “factum”.   Click here for the article (German) or  Click here for an English translation (P.Gosselin). Share […]

  9. Rhoda Ramirez

    Mr Appell, how much of that rise is due to measurement and how much to adjustments ?

  10. Ed Caryl

    Good question, Rhoda. They calibrate the satellite data to a few “selected” tide gauges.

  11. Sam Glasser

    The expectation that sea levels will revert to their original trend is irrelevant.
    All sea level data I’ve researched (as in “Sea Levels On Line”) show the same linear trend before and after the change in rate of CO2 concentrations. Where is there any signal for AGW?

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  14. kwik
  15. aaron

    Puls forgot to mention that increasing ice causes ice to break off.

    1. Bob K.

      … and also that the West Antarctic peninsula is surrounded by underwater volcanoes.

  16. Tim Curtin

    Serendipitously, my paper “Applying Econometrics to the Carbon Dioxide ‘Control Knob’”, has just been published by The Scientific World Journal, vol. 2012, Article ID 761473, 12 pages, 2012. doi:10.1100/2012/761473.

    You may access this article from the Table of Contents of Volume 2012, which is located at the following link:

    http://www.tswj.com/contents/

    Alternatively, you may directly access my article at the following location:

    http://www.tswj.com/2012/761473/

    or from my website http://www.timcurtin.com.

    It provides statistical support for Dr Puls’ very well argued position. However I should add there is a fairly minor error that’s been pointed out to me in my interpretation of Durbin-Watson tests.

    1. DirkH

      Thanks for the link! I’m always interested in statistical approaches!

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  18. CRISP

    How any PHYSICIST could believe in AGW is difficult to fathom. Did he miss the lectures on Thermodynamics?

    Unfortunately in this age of specialisation, many physicists have no knowledge of thermodynamics. Certainly, almost no non-physicist scientist doesn’t, including the so-called ‘climate scientists’.

    Thermodynamics is never discussed in the context of AGW, which is extraordinary as this is at the very heart of anything relating to temperature, heat, and energy. The reason it is not mentioned is because the 2nd Law invalidates the whole AGW argument and there is nothing left to really debate .

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  21. RC

    I’ve found the statement about the shrinking of the Sahara very interesting, but could not find any evidence / reference for that.
    Can anyone direct me to the study which this remark is based on?

    Many thanks,
    RC

    1. Ulrich Elkmann

      e.g.
      http://news.heartland.org/newspaper-article/2009/10/01/sahara-desert-greening-thanks-global-warming

      http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/07/090731-green-sahara.html

      (Abstract of a symposium at the Gustav-Stresemann-Institut on “Green Sahel”, Bonn, October 2010: see the footnotes)
      http://www.riesgoycambioclimatico.org/biblioteca/archivos/DC1117.pdf

      Seaquist, J. W., T. Hickler, L. Eklundh, J. Ardö, and B. W. Heumann (2009): Disentangling the effects of climate and people on
      Sahel vegetation dynamics, Biogeosciences, 6, 469-477, Göttingen, Germany
      http://www.biogeosciences.net/6/469/2009/bg-6-469-2009.html

    2. Ed Caryl

      This article has links to more. The Sahara has been shrinking, especially in the south, since the 1980’s.
      http://www.ar15.com/archive/topic.html?b=1&f=5&t=1101965

  22. Geekoid

    hooray for cherry picking small bits of data you want people to see.

    You’re ten year temperature isn’t rising has been thoroughly debunked.

    How about you keep to you’re own field?

    1. DirkH

      “has been thoroughly debunked.”

      Hey, cardboard cutout warmist troll, just because you say something doesn’t make it so. Ever heard of that geekish concept called a hyperlink?

      1. Ulrich Elkmann

        …and learn to use the spell checker. “Spell “as in “orthography,” not “expelliarmus”.

      2. Ed Caryl
    2. Ed Caryl
  23. David Appell

    A year later…. and let’s note that sea level has indeed kept rising, just as I said it would.
    http://sealevel.colorado.edu/

    In fact, lately it’s been *above* the long-term trend line.

    1. DirkH

      Well, it’s Jason, adjusted by the geniusses in Boulder, whatcha expect.

      1. David Appell