IN Geneva, two men are having a post-work drink. Chris is British and Pieter is German. The bar-restaurant is on the ground floor of a medium-rise building which houses the headquarters of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Chris: What’ve you been working on today, Pieter?
Pieter: Well, you know my field is ocean acidification, right? Trouble is since it’s not happening, it’s quite difficult to produce several thousand words and a number of baffling graphs to prove that it is, but I got lucky today. One of my contacts in Tonga has found a pocket of the Pacific around his islands’ shores where the pH has dropped from 8.2 to 8.05. Of course, this is still quite alkaline and since it’s such a small area and small change it won’t have been caused by CO2 in the atmosphere. Most likely it’s been caused by a minor undersea volcanic eruption. Never mind, it can go into my report as a fact, which it is if my correspondent is correct, and can be used as an implication of acidification. My friend’s sending me lots of historical data so I can show a trend. How about you?
Chris: Yeah, I’m dealing with the oceans, too, but my brief is on rising sea levels, another nonsense just like everything else, and also quite hard to develop into a scare story, especially as the Tuvalu Islands are actually increasing in size and other islands in the Pacific, if they are sinking, it’s always because of extraction of ground water, usually to support increased tourism. However, a chunk of cliff in Norfolk recently fell into the sea; it’s been happening for ages, of course, but it’s easy to attribute it to rising sea levels ‘cos it’s hard to argue against. I’ve also got a number of friends who all agree with me who’ll be doing the peer review, so that’s sorted. Anyway, none of us wants to lose our cushy jobs and fat salaries so we’ll all go on churning out the manmade global warming nonsense. We’ve still got five years to produce our bits of the 3,000-page report and they’ll be buried in the middle somewhere, and as nobody reads the report, least of all politicians, it doesn’t matter.
Incidentally, when Carrie Johnson left No 10 I was worried that the Net Zero drive might lose a bit of momentum but there are still plenty of cheerleaders in the government keeping it going, helped by the lobby groups and green idiots still shouting their heads off. So I reckon our organisation will be around for many more years.
Pieter: Changing the subject, what do you think of the new gourmet menu in the staff restaurant?
Chris: Great. I particularly like that Surf ‘n’ Turf dish of lobster and fillet steak, and the desserts trolley is to die for, and that half bottle of wine we get for lunch is a much better vintage. I’m worried I’ll start putting on weight, so it’s good that we can use the staff gym during office hours, and the personal trainer is very helpful.
Going back to the six-year report, I’ll be 55 next year so I’ll be retiring and off the payroll long before it comes out, but, hey, I already know that I’ll be hired back as a consultant, and my fees will be double my current salary, on top of my pension, of course. That’s one of the great things about working for the UN with its bottomless pit of money. My annual leave allowance also goes up from six to eight weeks and my business-class flights will become first-class. My office will be upgraded, too. New carpet, new furniture and desk, a new coffee machine on the sideboard and the very latest computer. Another beer, Pieter?
Pieter: Why not? Though it’ll have to be my last; I plan to be in the office a bit earlier tomorrow as it’s Friday and I want to get away at lunchtime for the weekend. Flexitime working is so handy, especially on Fridays and Mondays.
Chris: I’ll join you; this Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2015 is really nice.
Footnote: A new paper from the Global Warming Policy Foundation reveals how information in official climate reports is steadily distorted in moving from the original text (written by scientists), to the summary for policymakers (written by political hacks), to the press releases (written by public relations people), and to the media coverage (written by journalists).
The paper’s author, Dr Ralph Alexander, looks at two specific areas of the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report: reconstructions of global temperatures over the last two millennia, and the coverage of marine heatwaves. He explains: ‘Take the global temperature reconstructions. The political hacks introduced Michael Mann’s famous Hockey Stick graph into the Summary for Policymakers, even though this was not mentioned by the scientists in the report itself. This graph is then used by the press officers to claim that current temperatures are ‘unprecedented’, but the scientists who wrote the original report said nothing of the sort, and indeed reported data that would contradict such a claim.’