Levin cited “global cooling” study to dismiss efforts to “control carbon dioxide” emissions, ignoring warning by study's co-author not to do so
On his radio show, Mark Levin cited a recent study predicting that an ice age will occur in the next 10,000 to 100,000 years as purported evidence that humans should not “try and control carbon dioxide” emissions that contribute to global climate change. But Levin did not mention that the study's co-author reportedly warned against using the study to argue that “we should stop fighting warming” and stated: “There's no excuse for saying 'we've got to keep pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.' ”
During the November 13 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Mark Levin cited a recent study (subscription required) predicting that an ice age will occur in the next 10,000 to 100,000 years as purported evidence that humans should not “try and control carbon dioxide” emissions that contribute to global climate change. But Levin did not mention that the study's co-author reportedly warned against using the study to argue that “we should stop fighting warming” and stated: “There's no excuse for saying 'we've got to keep pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.' ”
During the segment, Levin read portions of a November 13 London Daily Mail article about the study, which appeared in the weekly journal Nature. In particular, Levin read the following sentence from the Daily Mail article: “Lead author Thomas Crowley from the University of Edinburgh and Canadian colleague William Hyde say that currently vilified greenhouse gases -- such as carbon dioxide -- could actually be the key to averting the chill.” Levin then stated: “So, according to these two scientists, we're heading into a global chill, maybe an age of an ice age, and we're gonna try and control carbon dioxide, which is the answer to global cooling. Why the hell don't we just try and leave it alone?” Earlier, after reading the portion of the Daily Mail article that reported “the experts blame the global change on falling -- rather than climbing -- levels of greenhouse gases,” Levin asserted: “Well, ladies and gentlemen, without carbon dioxide, we croak. There can be no plant life, and if there's no plant life, there's no oxygen. ... On top of that, without greenhouse gases, the Earth freezes. We should be on our knees every day praying to God, 'Thank you for carbon dioxide.' ”
However, Levin did not read the following portions of the Daily Mail article in which study co-author Professor Thomas Crowley explicitly warned against using his study to dismiss the threat posed by global warming:
Professor Crowley said the stark findings do not mean we should stop fighting warming.
But he urged: “Don't push the panic button.”
“There's no excuse for saying 'we've got to keep pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere,' ” he told Reuters.
“Geologically it's tomorrow, but we have lots of time to argue about the appropriate level of greenhouse gases.”
Indeed, several other media outlets have also reported that Crowley cautioned against using the study to argue against taking action to stop global climate change. For example, a November 12 post on the Wired Science blog reported that Crowley said that by continuing to emit greenhouse gases at the current levels, "[w]e're creating a situation at least as dangerous, only going in the opposite direction":
However, Crowley's model, published today in Nature, is not likely to come true. Along came humanity and, to be more precise, the Industrial Age. Our greenhouse gas emissions, he said, are more than enough to alter the Earth's once-frigid destiny.
What's so bad about that?
We're putting so much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, said Crowley, that the planet's climate isn't simply veering from a curve: it's departing at right angles.
Flooding coastal regions and risking drought across much of Earth's surface “does not seem like the normal thing a society would do for self-preservation,” he said. “We're creating a situation at least as dangerous, only going in the opposite direction.”
A November 12 Agence France-Presse article on the study also reported:
Crowley cautioned those who would seize on the new study to say " 'carbon dioxide is now good, it prevents us from walking the plank into this deep glaciation'."
“We don't want to give people that impression,” he said."(...) You can't use this argument to justify [man-made] global warming" [ellipsis in original].
And a November 12 article for National Geographic News reported:
Though this extreme ice age would be unusual, so is the climate that people are creating by emitting huge amounts of greenhouse gases, Crowley said.
“It's hard to say what's going to happen,” Crowley said. “The very fact that you have this nonglacial [warming] atmosphere with polar ice caps [still present], presents a bizarre scenario.”
Media Matters for America has previously documented other instances of conservative media figures using scientific studies to draw or advance conclusions about global climate change that contradict the conclusions of the researchers who conducted the studies. For instance:
- During the August 21, 2007, edition of Fox News' Special Report, host Brit Hume cited “new research by University of Washington mathematicians [that] shows a correlation between high solar activity and periods of global warming,” and asserted that "[global warming] skeptics are increasingly certain that the scare is vastly overblown." But an August 9, 2007, New Scientist article (subscription required) on the mathematicians' research warned that "[c]limate-change skeptics may seize on the findings as evidence that the sun's variability can explain global warming -- but [the report's co-author] mathematician Ka-Kit Tung says quite the contrary is true." According to the article, Tung, who is a University of Washington professor of applied mathematics and an adjunct professor in atmospheric science, says his finding, in New Scientist's words, “adds to the evidence that mainstream climate models are right about the likely extent of future human-generated warming.”
- On the January 21, 2006, edition of Fox News' The Journal Editorial Report, Wall Street Journal editorial page editor Paul A. Gigot falsely claimed that a study by researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, which found that live plants produce 10 to 30 percent of atmospheric methane, “is turning conventional wisdom about global warming on its head.” Editorial page deputy editor Daniel Henninger then claimed that “this is causing big problems for the tree-huggers,” telling viewers that methane “is a greenhouse gas, the sort of stuff the Kyoto Treaty is meant to suppress." In fact, in a press release published three days before the Editorial Report aired, the study's authors pointed out that human-caused emissions -- not natural emissions -- “are responsible for the well-documented increasing atmospheric concentrations of methane since pre-industrial times.” The authors added that plant emissions do not contribute to “the recent temperature increase known as 'global warming.' ”
- On the September 21, 2005, broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Rush Limbaugh selectively read from a year-old article to falsely suggest that a 2004 study by the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research found that an increase in solar brightness is the sole cause of global warming. In fact, the article, which appeared in the London Telegraph on July 18, 2004, specifically noted that the study's lead author did not believe increased solar brightness was responsible for the dramatic rise in global temperatures over the past 20 years. According to the parent organization of the group that conducted the study, solar brightness “plays only a minor role in the current global warming.”
From the November 13 broadcast of ABC Radio Networks' The Mark Levin Show:
LEVIN: All right, let me hit another issue here. I was talking about global warming, right? Well, there's global cooling now. This from The Daily Mail. All this will be on MarkLevinShow.com, all of these stories. “It has plagued scientists and politicians for decades, but scientists now say global warming is not the problem. We are actually heading for the next Ice Age, they claim. British and Canadian experts warned the big freeze could bury the east of Berlin [sic: Britain] to 6,000 feet of ice. And what's more, the experts blame global change on falling -- rather than climbing -- levels of greenhouse gases.”
Please listen to this. This is important. “Lead authors Thomas Crowley from the University of Edinburgh and Canadian colleague William Hyde say that currently vilified greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide.” Remember that idiot legislator from Westchester County? What the hell was that fool's name? “Oh, carbon di- --.” He doesn't know what it is, but he knows we have to control it. Well, ladies and gentlemen, without carbon dioxide, we croak. There can be no plant life, and if there's no plant life, there's no oxygen. On top of that -- yeah, Thomas Abinanti. Thomas is an idiot. On top of that, without greenhouse gases, the Earth freezes. We should be on our knees every day praying to God, “Thank you for carbon dioxide.”
But I digress. “And what's more, the experts blame the global change on falling -- rather than climbing -- levels of greenhouse gases,” such as carbon dioxide, “the currently vilified greenhouse gases -- such as carbon dioxide -- could actually be the key to averting the chill.”
So, according to these two scientists, we're heading into a global chill, maybe an age of an ice age, and we're gonna try and control carbon dioxide, which is the answer to global cooling. Why the hell don't we just try and leave it alone? What do you think of that -- no, they're not going to do that. It doesn't matter. Remember that idiot who called the first hour, those of you who were listening?
The libs don't care. They don't care about science, they don't care about evidence, they don't care about truth. They are pushing this global warming thing. They're gonna push this global warming thing all the way. They don't care how much damage they do to American industry. Look at them now -- they don't care. They don't care how much damage they'll do to the environment, as a matter of fact.
“The Earth has seen dramatic climate fluctuations -- veering between cold and warm extremes -- over the past 3 million years, the researchers say. And char- -- changes in the Earth's orbit and slowly falling levels of carbon dioxide are the cause.” These scientists are saying, rather than increases in carbon dioxide, we are losing carbon dioxide. And I tried to explain before -- I tried to explain before that man has minimal impact on all of this, if any.
“The team says we are approaching a turning point, in the next 10,000 to 100,000 years, which will lead to the new ice sheets smothering much of Europe, Asia and South America.” Well, we won't be here for that. But, I'm just pointing out how massive this is and how absurd it is to destroy our economy, to lose our liberties and private property, because Obama is going to, by executive fiat, order the EPA to define carbon dioxide as a pollutant. As a pollutant to be controlled. And I've said it before. Carbon dioxide is a minuscule amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. It's critical amount, but it's minuscule.
The vast majority of greenhouse gases is water vapor. Water vapor. Problem is they can't regulate water vapor. There's no way to regulate water vapor. Because you can't really regulate plants; you can't really regulate condensation. And so they go after carbon dioxide, which is crucial to our survival on the face of the Earth. We'll be right back.