Reply To: Global warming lies and climate change hysteria

Martin W

Really, many a global warming "skeptic" should be more laughable than treated as if serious people. Retired Canadian professor Timothy Ball makes a strong bid for being among the more comical denialists.

Heck, I have a thread here suggesting Comical Ali has been recruited to say global warming isn't real, but a few minutes reading about Timothy Ball and find he almost outdoes Comical Ali.

I just noticed Timothy Ball's name in news item on National Geographic; this includes:

Timothy Ball chairs the Scientific Advisory Committee for the Natural Resources Stewardship Project, a federally incorporated nonprofit in Canada. He says his skepticism is based on assumptions about global warming that have never been confirmed. "In this case it is assumed carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that will trap heat in the atmosphere, that the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide will increase because of human industrial activity and specifically the burning of fossil fuels, and that atmospheric carbon dioxide will double," he said. Ball said that this hypothesis became fact before the research had begun, "because it fit a political agenda and the views of the environmentalists."

Global Warming Inaction More Costly Than Solutions?

Reading this, looked like some Ballocks in these quotes; including the very strange "it is assumed that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that will trap heat in the atmosphere".

Note to ex-Prof Ball – and Nat Geo news team: carbon dioxide is a known greenhouse gas that traps heat in the atmosphere. See, for instance: NCDC:Greenhouse Gases from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Interesting, too, that Ball alleges the greenhouse effect hypothesis had political origins. Yet, read a little and soon find Ball is associated with groups etc funded by oil industry money. One of them dubbed Friends of Science – a name George Orwell could have loved, as questions science change, does not disclose funding sources yet perhaps gets money from oil industry etc. Friends of Science – Wikipedia entry

There's strong article by Charles Montgomery, which first appeared in the Globe and Mail, centred on Timothy Ball. Includes:

Leaders throughout Europe have accepted the IPCC position on climate change, and have been looking for ways to take collective action, primarily via the Kyoto Accord. Yet North Americans have lagged behind, hamstrung by a lingering debate in the media and among politicians about climate science. … who are the donors? No one will say. "[The money's] not exclusively from the oil and gas industry," says Prof. Cooper. "It's also from foundations and individuals. I can't tell you the names of those companies, or the foundations for that matter, or the individuals."

When pushed in another interview, however, Prof. Cooper admits, "There were some oil companies." [PR Company boss James Hoggan, who has couple of people investigating skeptics' funding]: 'I don't think that the people who are involved in this should be able to get away with it. My goal is to find out as much as we can about these people and make it public. Who are they? Who is paying them? What motivates them? How is it they can sleep at night?" '

Mr. Cool Nurturing doubt about climate change is big business

See also brief Bio of Ball, w some of his Ballocks, on DeSmogBlog. Dr. Tim Ball: The Lie that Just Won't Die

From here and other info, soon find he can't even get basic facts about himself right, let alone re warming: has claimed to have been a professor for 32 year – true figure, 8 years; and to have the first PhD in climatology, when others had such PhDs before him: and his PhD in science/geography.

Plus, maybe only four papers published in peer reviewed journals; none dealing with human impacts on climate; none since he retired in 1996. Hardly seems the right guy, then, to make assertions like "The majority of the scientists who are on the Kyoto and global warming bandwagon know nothing about the science…"

Err, Doc Ball – do you happen to have a mirror handy? – look in it and you might recognise yourself here.

Update, 21 January 2011: ex-Prof Ball has been peddling more twaddle, in Canada Free Press – which seems a bastion of denialism, yet has clearly found Ball proved too outlandish even for this stance:

On January 10, 2011, Canada Free Press began publishing on this website an article by Dr. Tim Ball entitled “Corruption of Climate Change Has Created 30 Lost Years” which contained untrue and disparaging statements about Dr. Andrew Weaver, who is a professor in the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria, British Columbia.

Contrary to what was stated in Dr. Ball’s article, Dr. Weaver: (1) never announced he will not participate in the next IPCC; (2) never said that the IPCC chairman should resign; (3) never called for the IPCC’s approach to science to be overhauled; and (4) did not begin withdrawing from the IPCC in January 2010. 

As a result of a nomination process that began in January, 2010, Dr. Weaver became a Lead Author for Chapter 12: “Long-term Climate Change: Projections, Commitments and Irreversibility” of the Working Group I contribution to the Fifth Assessment Report of the IPCC.”  That work began in May, 2010.  Dr. Ball’s article failed to mention these facts although they are publicly-available.

Dr. Tim Ball also wrongly suggested that Dr. Weaver tried to interfere with his presentation at the University of Victoria by having his students deter people from attending and heckling him during the talk.  CFP accepts without reservation there is no basis for such allegations. 

CFP also wishes to dissociate itself from any suggestion that Dr. Weaver “knows very little about climate science.”  We entirely accept that he has a well-deserved international reputation as a climate scientist and that Dr. Ball’s attack on his credentials is unjustified.

CFP sincerely apologizes to Dr. Weaver and expresses regret for the embarrassment and distress caused by the unfounded allegations in the article by Dr. Ball.

Apology to Dr. Andrew Weaver

Yikes! I haven't seen original article, but seems only thing Ball got right in his piece was Dr Weaver's name!