Open Letter to: Dr. Lonnie G.
(followed by reply from )
Distinguished University Professor of
Ohio State University
RE: 2005 Tuzo Wilson Lecture
Dear Professor Thompson,
I was in the audience on Monday night in Toronto, and witnessed a very
disturbing lecture. I admit I went into the lecture with a great
deal of scepticism because I had a premonition that your talk was a GW
bandwagon talk. I was prepared to listen, however, to suspend my
bias as much as necessary to accept your presentation and let it
stand. I came away very disturbed that I had witnessed my worst
nightmare realized. I saw the very real work of a well
intentioned man corrupted to an immeasurable degree by pressures of big
science. You have fallen in love with your own
hypothesis. There is a crying need in science to present a
balanced view. There are other opinions and there are other conclusions
in the current literature that needed to be presented and discussed.
That balance was completely lacking. Some other data must be
looked at dispassionately. For
instance, while you were up on the glacier, the Mann 'hockey stick' was
shown to be an artefact of incorrect methodology. Your comparison
using isotopes on totally different scales was meaningless.
...But your audience believed it.
You presented very powerful photographs of the earth's Alpine glaciers
and indeed they are wasting. I know. I've seen the evidence
in Haines Triangle in BC of rapidly melting Alpine glaciers. It is
emotionally disturbing to view them and extrapolate. However, in
perspective, these and the glaciers you've shown are small Alpine
glaciers and not the vast storehouse of the
global water supply that you infer. The analogy is defective,
calling them "the earth's water towers". You have glossed over it
with your additional analogy to the canary in a coal mine, Alpine
glaciers are a small part of the earth's water budget. Clearly,
from the geomorphology of the Canadian Rockies they were far more
extensive millennia ago. Erosion by Alpine glaciers is the
principle reason the Rockies diminish in size from Colorado to Alaska;
the Canadian Rockies have experienced increasing differential erosion
from south to north. The human race has prospered while they
The pictures, however, are very dramatic and serve you well to show to
a prepared audience in Toronto or to the US Congress. It is easy
to suggest that the US congress would not understand the isotopic
evidence, and that a picture is worth a thousand words, but highly
improper to use your position as a university man to take advantage of
them - such arrogant deceit! You are using your elevated
reputation to pull the wool over their eyes. That's fraud in my
There is, to my way of thinking, no scientific evidence for
anthropogenic global warming that you proselytise. There is
little doubt that the planet is warming, or cooling or doing both
simultaneously. Over the longer term, the planet has
fluctuated and warmed up a few degrees since the heart of the
Pleistocene. That's pretty obvious. The Sahara was once
Southern Mexico supported cyprus. But, conversely, during the
Cainozoic, the Canadian Arctic supported stands of pine and hardwood
and beaver were as big as hippos. The global climate fluctuates
widely and in geological time - quite rapidly.
Oh by the way - You and the other players on the bandwagon have
actually not presented any evidence for GHGs; another misleading
analogy. A greenhouse has a glass ceiling, it is not a complex
mixture of many gasses and many different particles.
The reference several times to CO2 as a greenhouse gas was quite
disturbing. Geological evidence suggests a weak correlation with
CO2 as a trailing indicator to temperature. Perhaps warming of
seawater causes CO2 to evolve. Inverse solubility of CO2 suggests
that might be the process, not the other way around. The CO2
absorption band, though, has long since passed it's peak
effectiveness. Why not look to water vapour? I think I can
answer that question for you. Water vapour and other atmospheric
gasses like methane might be implicated, but they do not have the
political rectitude of CO2, Kyoto, and bashing the hydrocarbon
industry. To hear you blithely suggest alternative energy
for the USA, Canada and the world from windmills
and solar panels is practically preposterous and economically
incompetent. To make that sort of off-hand suggestion to a very
receptive and influential audience is morally bankrupt.
I don't care any more what science may be shown from the isotopic proxy
for temperature as you called it. All I feel sure about is that I
have a headache because the use of fluid inclusions from ice core seems
dubious methodology. I've seen many unreliable secondary
inclusions in sphalerite using cathodolumonescence. Calcite is
even more notoriously useless for inclusion studies. What allows
you to use data from ice, which must constitute a very open system
indeed as a proxy for temperature? The compressed stratigraphy
with depth of ice core must certainly indicate that creep has destroyed
and mixed the phases to a serious degree. I suggest lighter
isotopes are more mobile and have differentially left your system,
particularly for the top few metres of core where your hockey stick
occurs. Your graphs probably show an artefact of differential
consolidation, compaction and creep.
If I were you, I would modify that lecture little by little, step by
step, to include the possibility that global warming, which seems
inexorably real like a pathological liar, is not significantly
influenced by human intervention. Global warming is going to be a
good thing, better than the alternative. It will be slow and
fluctuate and allow crops to be planted where they've never
been planted before, and people will adjust. Just as our
ancestors around the globe adjusted by moving from the continental
shelves onto the continent as the ice sheet melted - over, and over,
and over again. Global warming may allow us to rely less on fuel
to heat our homes. Sea level may rise, but ever so slowly, little by
little. The Dutch will teach us all how to survive the 10 mm rise
over the next century. If only New Orleans had the vision of the
Dutch to prepare, traditional jazz music would have been preserved
My advice is return to science. As an exploration geologist, I
admire your perseverance to lift drilling equipment to thousands of
metres into totally deadly environments at the top of the world's
glaciers and to recover ice core that has priceless history that is
melting away as we watch. The study has great drama. Don't
let that beguile you. It's more heroic to find a little answer
somewhere that lets our children sleep more comfortably. In my
opinion, there is global warming. it is not the result of a
self-destructive human race. As I read the literature, 95% of our
improvement in climate is extraterrestrial from solar activity.
Fran Manns Artesian Geological Research
artesian1 (at sign) sympatico.ca
----- Original Message -----
From: "Matt Nolan" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Saturday, December 03, 2005 4:07 AM
Subject: Re: [CRYOLIST]: attachments
> I deleted it as well, but I'm glad it made it into text.
Though I got a
> great kick out of your reply (I guess I'm just part of the global
> scientific conspiracy or brainwash), I'm afraid you're not the
> to (re?)educate Fran. I searched on his name and company,
> several prior attempts which apparently also failed, so I think
> really on us...
> They're a nice diversion, but only if you like broken records.
> At 11:07 PM 12/2/2005 -0500, CORNELIS VANDERVEEN wrote:
> >I must admit I deleted your email immediately - sending around
> >with no text in the mail is, to me, shall we say, a tad
> >since Bruce shared your views with all of us, I guess I feel
> >I have no idea who you are or what your area of expertise is,
but let me
> >offer you two suggestions:
> >(1) if you have doubts about the methodology followed by
Lonnie and many
> >other ice-core folks, I suggest you write these up and submit
> >peer-reviewed journal. If you can prove the
oxygen-isotope method is
> >essentially useless to reconstruct past temperatures, I'm sure
> >immortalize yourself in the pages of Science or Nature - hey,
> >you might even make it into Rolling Stone or Time Magazine as
> >scientist who opened our eyes.
> >(2) even if you disagree with what Lonnie said in his
> >generally not a good idea to stoop down to the level of
> >integrity and motivations. Terms like "arrogant
> >"morally bankrupt" don't do much to bolster your side of the
> >argument. "My advice is return to science" - geez, girl,
how much more
> >condescending can you get? You're talking to a member of
the NAS who
> >actually spends most of his time doing science!! These
> >completely out of line and, in my opinion, require a public
> >you. So, you attended a one-hour lecture by Lonnie
(clearly, I was not
> >there, but from your comments I gather it was similar to the
talk he gave
> >at Byrd a few weeks ago). I have known Lonnie for
20-some years (we work
> >in the same place) and I can assure you that he is one of the
> >know whose opinions and insights I truly value - someone who
> >political agenda o ther than to try to change the ills of our
> >he sees them, a scientist with great integrity. Yes,
over the course of
> >his long career, Lonnie (and many others like him) has become
> >that global warming and man's impact on climate is a serious
> >should deal with. In your last paragraph you talk about
> >children sleep more comfortably." Well, your optimistic
> >your kids may become sleep-deprived, as they search for food,
> >what not (I'll come back to that below).
> >I am getting oh-so tired of rebutting these types of
"arguments" - not in
> >the least because it does no good whatsoever. Once
> >of sound reasoning will make you change your mind. So be
> >Fran, I couldn't care less what you think.
> >But, since this "crap" (quoting Lev) has made it to the list,
> >out a few glaring idiotic statements.
> >"these and the glaciers you've shown are small Alpine glaciers
> >storehouse of the global water supply that you infer. The
> >defective, calling them "the earth's water towers"."
> >I must admit, the few times I visited Toronto I did not see
> >towers, but I'm sure the smaller towns around you must have
them. If you
> >get a chance, drive out to one and check it out.
Admittedly, I'm not
> >how much water these towers hold, but probably not much
compared to water
> >consumption. It's elementary, my dear. A water
tower is not the same as
> >a water storage facility - ya see, in the good old days, the
> >supplied the pressure to force the water to your faucet.
In other words,
> >the water tower is not so much the storage tank as well as the
> >of water supply. This is exactly how glacier work.
They store water
> >it rains or snows in the winter months, and slowly release
> >during the spring and summer. Take away the glaciers and
> >and snow will drain immediately. Who cares? The
farmers do..... most
> >crops grow in the spring so that's when they need the wa ter -
not in the
> >middle of winter.
> >"You have glossed over it with your additional analogy to the
canary in a
> >coal mine."
> >It is well-established in the glaciological community that
> >glaciers are sensitive indicators of changing climate
> >"There is little doubt that the planet is warming, or cooling
> >both simultaneously. "
> >Oh, now, come on - read what you write before sending out.
> >"Oh by the way - You and the other players on the bandwagon
> >not presented any evidence for GHGs; another misleading
> >greenhouse has a glass ceiling, it is not a complex mixture of
> >and many different particles."
> >You are correct in pointing out that the "greenhouse" analogy
> >although judging by what you wrote, I'm not sure you
understand why. So,
> >let me explain briefly: a greenhouse warms up because the
> >turbulent mixing of the warm air in the greenhouse with the
> >outside. Greenhouse gases absorb outgoing longwave
> >transparent to incoming sshort-wave solar radiation. The
effect of the
> >glass greenhouse, and GHG in the atmosphere is the same:
warming of the
> >surface. If you want to take issue with this, go to
France - Mariotte,
> >deSausure, Fourier, etc. are the ones to blame for this
> >"To hear you blithely suggest alternative energy for the USA,
> >the world
> >from windmills and solar panels is practically preposterous and
> >economically incompetent. To make that sort of off-hand
suggestion to a
> >very receptive and influential audience is morally bankrupt."
> >Well, well. Hey, when you have a chance, go visit Bruce
Power up north
> >from you - the Canadians are actually developing these
> >resources. Any idea how much oil and gas is left?
> >climate warming, and pumping CO2 in the atmosphere, we have to
> >other energy resources, simply because in the very near future
> >already) production of oil and gas cannot keep up with
> >denial is "morally bankrupt" and responsible for your kids to
> >death in the coming cold Toronto winters.
> >"I've seen many unreliable secondary inclusions in
> >sphalerite using cathodolumonescence. Calcite is even more
> >useless for inclusion studies. What allows you to use data
> >must constitute a very open system indeed as a proxy for
> >Yoohoo..... living up north from here, I'm sure you have
> >before. Let me suggest a little experiment you can
> >yourself. Freeze some water in an open container.
Now, place the
> >container with the ice on your driveway or sidewalk.
Pick a sunny day
> >that is not too cold and pour some water on the ice and on the
> >sidewalk and take note of what happens to the water.
See, there's a few
> >differences between rocks and ice.
> >"Global warming is going to be a good thing, better than the
> >alternative. It will be slow and fluctuate and allow crops to
> >where they've never been planted before, and people will
adjust. Just as
> >our ancestors around the globe adjusted by moving from the
> >shelves onto the continent as the ice sheet melted - over, and
> >over again. Global warming may allow us to rely less on fuel
to heat our
> >homes. Sea level may rise, but ever so slowly, little by
> >Dutch will teach us all how to survive the 10 mm rise over the
> >century. If only New Orleans had the vision of the Dutch to
> >traditional jazz music would have been preserved forever."
> >At this point, I'm not sure whether I should cry or
laugh.... What the
> >hell are you thinking? Get rid of these Rosy-colored
> >you vision. Yup, we may need less fuel to heat our
homes, but what about
> >the warmer summers? Right, more AC - or we die, like a
few years back in
> >France. I am glad that you have such confidence in my
> >to protect the world against sea-level rise. Apart from
the fact that
> >it's lilely to be significantly more than 10 mm over the next
> >question is "who's gonna pay for this?" Oh, sure,
Canada, the US,
> >Europe, are rich enough to build protective dikes and what not
> >aside, a sea level rise of 10 or 50 cm does not mean it is
> >heighten the dikes by that amount - in shallow coastal seas,
> >of high water levels during storm surges increases rapidly as
> >depth increases, so the dikes will have to be heightened much
> >the SLR). But how about them island nations in the
Pacific, or the
> >millions in southeast Asia living in coastal areas that are
> >sea level? Are you going to pay for coastal protection
> >Desh? Probably not, since you're denying that humans
> >developed industrial nations) are responsible for these
> >enough. Then let's resort to the adaptations humans made
in the past to
> >cope with changing climates. Move elsewhere. How
> >refugees" will Canada accept? Right.
> >Oh well, another evening wasted.
> >"Ignorance is bliss"
> >"Ignorance of the law is no excuse"
> >Kees van der Veen
Back to Coolwire Index
Back to WarwickHughes.com