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Betting on Climate with George Monbiot and Myron Ebell

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James Annan

May 19, 2005, 7:20:32 AM5/19/05
The second in a series of indefinite length...for the first, see:

I'm pleased to report that my idea is spreading.

This morning, on BBC Radio 4 (Today programme), George Monbiot and Myron
Ebell took part in a debate on climate change. Monbiot writes in The
Guardian and elsewhere on environmental stuff: you will probably have
seen his recent demolition of David Bellamy's latest nonsense concerning
glacier retreat. Myron Ebell is part of the right-wing think-tank
"Competitive Enterprise Institute".

George Monbiot kicks off the debate by challenging Ebell to a bet on
whether temperatures will rise over the coming decade: Ebell declines
the challenge and agrees that yes, in fact warming is likely:

I'm still hoping to find a consensus-busting forecaster to bet against.
But it seems that the consensus really is a very strong one.


Roger Coppock

May 19, 2005, 5:18:12 PM5/19/05
Monbiot won a point with his attempted bet.
Quite possibly Ebell doesn't believe his own
PR spin. Exxon may have given CEI 1.3
million dollars, but Ebell share isn't enough
to buy his soul, hence he won't personally
bet against a continuing rise in the global
mean temperatures. You are really going to
have to find a total fossil fool to take any
bets, James. Try betting with Steve Schuln
or James.

Ebell told one and possibly two lies in the
recorded interview at your URL:

--- USHCN data clearly show that the continental
US has, on average, warmed.

--- I am not sure, but the rate of see level
rise may have increased since 1850. The
uncertainly starts when the satellite and tide
gauge data are harmonized.

May 20, 2005, 4:33:11 AM5/20/05
Roger Coppock <> wrote:
>--- I am not sure, but the rate of see level
>rise may have increased since 1850. The
>uncertainly starts when the satellite and tide
>gauge data are harmonized.

Not sure either. The IPCC says:

There is no evidence for any acceleration of sea level rise in data
from the 20th century data alone

but that doesn't go back to 1850. There is a sort-of increase because
satellite altimetry shows a higher rate than tide gauges, and of course
the sat stuff comes in recently. A bit more at:

But going back to 1850 the no-acc claim might be more dubious: see:

but I can't see any text about it.


William M Connolley | |
Climate Modeller, British Antarctic Survey | Disclaimer: I speak for myself
I'm a .signature virus! copy me into your .signature file & help me spread!

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