Today we know that this claim should have been a very easy-to-detect gross blunder.
The skeptic website klimamanifest-von-heiligenroth.de/ last week posted a freshly produced video (in German) that puts the spotlight on the director of the ultra-alarmist Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Hans-Joachim Schellnhuber.
Klimamanifest video, Part 1 of 10. In 2009 Schellnhuber claimed that the Himalayan melt by 2035 was “very easy to calculate”.
Schellnhuber is also the Chairman of the WBGU advisory council to the German government, which is pushing for a “Great Transformation” of global society to one that is “sustainable” and not based on fossil fuels.
The creator of the above video, Rainer Hoffmann, had spent three months researching past statements made by Schellnhuber. The result is a 10-part series called: The 10 Inconvenient Truths of Climate Pope Hans Schellnhuber. It exposes a number of troubling, contradictory statements made by the Potsdam Institute director over the past years.
According to the klimamanifest site, the above video was inspired by comments Schellnhuber had made on German public television on May 27, 2013, where he once again warned of a planet warming by 4°C by the end of the century.
Part 1, above, was released last Monday and the remaining 9 parts will follow each Monday for the next 9 weeks. NoTricksZone will report on each episode as they are released.
Part I: Schellnhuber claimed the Himalayas melt of 2035 was “very easy to calculate”
At the 0:50 mark Schellnhuber is shown in an exclusive interview on ZDF German public television on October 30, 2009, explaining the risks of the globe’s “third ice cap“: the Tibetan Plateau, whose summertime melt water feeds a number major Asian rivers that help support 2.5 billion people in the region. Schellnhuber at the 2:06 mark:
If now, and one can calculate this very easily, in the next 30, 40 years, with 2°C of warming this will with certainty happen, um, when these large glaciers disappear for the most part, these rivers will dry up in the summertime. And in winter, this is the other side of the story, the precipitation will fall as rain in the valley; that means the floods will be far more dramatic, no?”
Clearly we see that in 2009, two years after the 4AR had been issued in 2007, Schellnhuber was preaching the Himalayan 2035 glacier meltdown, even claiming he could “calculate the melt very easily” and that major rivers like the Yangtze, Ganges, Mekong´, etc. would dry up. But just over 2 months later, the media found out that what had been “very easy to calculate” was a huge whopping error. The above video shows two clips: one on 19 January 2010 and one on 11 February 2010 that say the 2035 Himalayan ice melt was a huge blunder. Moreover, the 3SAT report at the 4:20 mark of the above video points out yet another whopping error made by the 2007 IPCC report:
It should have been clear to experts that the scenario was pure nonsense, and not because so much ice in this region could ever melt in just 25 years, but also because the Himalayan glacier area given in the IPCC report was completely false. It is only 33,000 square kilometers and not a grotesque 500,000.”
Suddenly 93% of “the Earth’s the third pole” disappears.
At the 4.47 mark Ottmar Edenhofer, deputy director of the PIK, forgets about what his boss had said was “very easy to calculate“, and shifts the blame for the Himalayan blunder on the IPCC overall peer-review process:
This is in now way excusable, and naturally we have to make sure that we make the peer-review of the text much more efficient.”
A remarkable piece of advice when one considers that Edenhofer’s boss, Schellnhuber, had claimed earlier that the Himalayan glacier melt by 2035 was “certainty”.
At the 5:40 mark, BR television on 3 June 2012 asks how the gross Himalaya error found its way into the IPCC report. The answer is delivered by Professor Hans von Storch at the 6:05 mark:
I think one of the reasons why it was there is because of they worked sloppily. Perhaps it had something to do with, so to say, the desire for the right result.”
Yet, no journalists ever bothered to follow up and ask Schellnhuber why he had peddled such an absurd prognosis back in 2009. In an interview with Spiegel on October 6, 2010, Schellnhuber acts like he had never made the ridiculous Himalayan 2035 melting prediction. In the Spiegel interview (7:10 mark) he is quoted (highlighted in yellow):
There were just a few bad mistakes, but they were very troublesome. The IPCC is in the public spotlight and there is so much at play and errors of this magnitude mustn’t happen. The IPCC has to do its homework in order to overcome the current credibility crisis.”
Clearly Schellnhuber wants us to believe that he had never peddled the “easy to calculate” 2035 Himalayan ice melt scenario. Journalist Karsten Schwanke, who had done the interview with Schellnhuber on ZDF television back in 2009, wrote in an e-mail on February 1, 2010 (see 8:00 min mark):
It is of course huge crap that such errors go through the entire IPCC. I thought they all worked to check everything a thousand times. Personally I was always skeptical about this melt warning. Ice at 7000 or 8000 meters elevation, why would it melt? It’s way too cold. At most it could sublimate if it stopped snowing. But the India monsoons bring new snow every summer. I just don’t understand it.”
In summary what turned out to be one of climate science’s most embarrassing blunders, was also one Schellnhuber’s most “certain” and “very easy to calculate” scenarios.
Finally at the 8:40 mark of the video, Schellnhuber is taped in an interview saying:
I believe that there has never been a socially relevant area examined by science that has been more meticulously checked for errors than climate science.”
I don’t see how any expert could have been more misleading.