June 12th 2010

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Financing of terrorism in Australia

EDITORIAL: BP scandal spreads beyond Gulf of Mexico

OPINION: Super-profits tax creates climate of uncertainty

FOREIGN AFFAIRS: Beijing thwarts sanctions against North Korea

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Rudd Government planned showdown with miners

FOREIGN TRADE: China slowdown spells trouble for Australia

PAID PARENTAL LEAVE: Rudd and Abbott overlook stay-at-home mothers

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH: The chilling reality of late-term abortion

ILLICIT DRUGS: Labor and Greens defeat DLP bid to ban bongs

GLOBAL FINANCIAL CRISIS: Regulators crack down on speculation

OPINION: Time to reclaim Australian history

ENVIRONMENT: Al Gore's actions speak louder than words

GREAT BRITAIN: Who will rescue Britain from its present madness?

Economic illiteracy (letter)

Statistically insignificant (letter)

ALP branch-stacking (letter)

The truth and Kevin Rudd (letter)

AS THE WORLD TURNS: In praise of pessimism

BOOK REVIEW: THE WORLD TURNED UPSIDE DOWN: The Global Battle Over God, Truth, and Power, by Melanie Phillips

BOOK REVIEW: WHAT'S WRONG WITH ANZAC? The Militarisation of Australian History, by Marilyn Lake and Henry Reynolds

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Al Gore's actions speak louder than words

by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, June 12, 2010
In his 2006 film, An Inconvenient Truth, former US Vice-President Al Gore painted a nightmarish future of the earth and mankind as a result of human-induced global warming.

Among other claims, he predicted that if CO2 emissions continued, the world would be plunged into a series of catastrophic crises, including massive storms like Hurricane Katrina which made a direct hit on the city of New Orleans, destroying thousands of buildings in the state of Louisiana, killing nearly 2,000 people and drowning the city in floodwater.

He also predicted that global warming would melt the poles, causing dramatic increases in ocean levels, and inundating coastal communities throughout the world.

An Inconvenient Truth also predicted higher temperatures, increasingly severe droughts and more wildfires. The film won an Oscar and was glowingly endorsed by many members of the climate science community.

The fear of another Hurricane Katrina, rising sea-levels or more Californian wildfires has apparently not deterred the intrepid Mr Gore, who with his wife, Tipper, live in a mansion in Belle Meade, Tennessee. They recently purchased a $US9 million Mediterranean-style villa, overlooking the Pacific Ocean, in the exclusive area of Montecito, in southern California.

The location is interesting. Montecito lies in a region which is subject to wildfires. In fact, at the time when Katrina was cutting a swathe through Louisiana, wildfires were destroying properties in Montecito, an exclusive district about 3 km wide, which lies wedged between the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Ocean.

Mr Gore is also the high priest of sustainable living. In An Inconvenient Truth, Gore said, "Each and every one of us can make changes in the way we live our lives and become part of the solution [to climate change]."

His mansion in Tennessee is 10,000 square feet in floor area, and his new property in California, on the other side of the United States, is nearly 7,000 square feet. He presumably commutes between the two in his private jet. Is this how Al Gore has "made changes to the way we live our lives and become part of the solution"?

When asked about his purchase by the Los Angeles Times, Mr Gore was not available for comment.

No cause for alarm

Meanwhile, an international conference on climate change in Chicago last month heard not only that sea levels are not rising, but also opinions that that the world might be entering a cooling phase.

Dr Nils-Axel Morner is a world expert on sea levels and emeritus head of the department of paleogeophysics and geodynamics at Stockholm University in Sweden.

A former member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), he conducted a recent study of measurement data from 159 sites world-wide over the past 40 years, and found that sea levels are not rising, as predicted by the IPCC and climate alarmists.

Locations like Mumbai have "certainly been stable for the last 40 years", he said, and in Venice, a city built over a shallow lagoon, he said the water level is "slowly subsiding". He added, "Any increase would be easily picked up.... The sea level there has not risen for 40 years. There is no record sea level."

In some cases, such as Holland and Venice, claims of rising sea levels were actually the result of local land subsidence. It requires detailed technical study, based on extensive observation, to determine whether sea levels are rising or land is subsiding.

In earlier papers, Dr Morner had explained that he had been a technical reviewer to the IPCC's reports in 2000 and 2006, but had found that the IPCC report alleging rising sea levels was based on a deliberate falsification of the evidence, to make it conform with computer predictions.

As a field geologist, he also documented the fact that there has been no rising in sea levels on the low-lying Maldives Islands in the Indian Ocean, nor at Tuvalu in the Pacific.

He conducted field trips to Maldives where, he said, "I worked in the lagoon, I drilled in the sea, I drilled in lakes, I looked at the shore morphology [and found] always the same thing: in about 1970, the sea fell about 20 cm.... The new level, which has been stable, has not changed in the last 35 years."

In relation to Tuvalu, he found that the tide-gauge record showed no variation for the past 30 years. "So where do they get this rise in the Tuvalu Islands?" he asked.

"We know that there was a Japanese pineapple industry which subtracted too much fresh water from the inland, and those islands have very little fresh water available from precipitation, rain. So if you taken out too much, you destroy the water magazine [underground reservoir] and you bring sea water in."

Many other speakers at the conference, including Professor Richard Lindzen, Dr Patrick Michaels and Professor Fred Singer, confirmed that observed changes in the world's climate were within the normal variations which have occurred frequently throughout history.

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