May 10th 2014

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Articles from this issue:

CHILD CARE INQUIRY: Should parents or paid strangers raise children?

ECONOMIC AGENDA: Sorting out the confusion over Australia's agricultural exports

EDITORIAL: Is the Coalition government losing its way?

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Joe Hockey's two-phase plan to cut budget deficit

EDUCATION: How contemporary schooling devalues great literature

ENVIRONMENT: PM's top business adviser rejects climate alarmism

HEALTH: Kirby Institute report silent on incidence of AIDS

TRANSPORT: Finding a better solution to our traffic problems

FOREIGN AFFAIRS: Russia ups the ante, but faces backlash in Ukraine

LIFE ISSUES: What really happens outside the abortion clinic?

UNITED KINGDOM: Christian arrested in Britain for quoting Bible, wins damages

PAKISTAN: Council of Islamic Ideology 'anti-women': Sindh assembly


CULTURE: Remembering the quality of mercy

BOOK REVIEW: The Tragedy of Liberation, by Frank Dikotter

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PM's top business adviser rejects climate alarmism

by Peter Westmore

News Weekly, May 10, 2014

Maurice Newman, the chairman of the Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Council, told the ABC television’s Lateline program on April 22 that that there is little correlation between rising CO2 levels and the warming of the planet.

Maurice Newman.

During the course of an interview, Lateline presenter Emma Alberici put it to him: “It’s no secret that you don’t agree that man-made CO2 is causing global warming. Given there is now consensus among 97 per cent or so of climate scientists across the world that the view that human activity is responsible for climate change, what would it take to convince you?”

Mr Newman, a former Chairman of the ABC, replied: “We know first of all that the survey which came out with the 97 per cent number was flawed in the first place. So we don’t pay any attention to that.… We know that there are a whole host of scientists out there who have a different point of view, who are highly respected, reputable scientists.

“So the 97 per cent doesn’t mean anything, in any event, because science is not a consensus issue.

“Science is whatever the science is, and the fact remains there is no empirical evidence to show that man-made CO2 … emissions are adding to the temperature on earth. We haven’t had any measurable increase in temperature on earth for the last 17.5 years.

“If you look back over history, there’s no evidence that CO2 has driven the climate either. So I know that this is a view which is peddled consistently, but I think that the edifice which is the climate change establishment is now starting to look rather shaky because mother nature is not complying.”

Ms Alberici was not prepared to leave it there. She said: “I just want to take you up on that because it would appear that there is strong consensus, at least among — certainly when it comes to the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change], that is a group that has brought together under the auspices of the United Nations, the science around the world, it doesn’t actually do science itself, it just collates all the science and puts it forward.

“Now 195 countries contribute to that. Nineteen academies of science across the world, including I have to say the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, the CSIRO, NASA, the American Academy of Sciences, the British equivalent, the Canadian equivalent, some really reputable bodies around the world are now agreeing that it’s human activity that’s causing climate change.

“So I’m wondering, who is it that’s influencing you so, that is so convincing you otherwise?”

Mr Newman responded, “I just look at the evidence. There is no evidence. If people can show there is a correlation between increasing CO2 and global temperature, well then of course that’s something which we would pay attention to.

“But when you look at the last 17.5 years where we’ve had a multitude of climate models, and this was the basis on which this whole so-called science rests, it’s on models, computer models. And those models have been shown to be 98 per cent inaccurate.”

Alberici inquired, “By?”

Newman replied, “By Roy Spencer, who’s carried out a thorough review of all of the models and the empirical data which has both land-based and satellite-based measuring. And they were found to be wrong.”

Alberici explained for the benefit of Lateline viewers that Roy Spencer was a climate scientist, working for NASA, then added, “His colleagues at NASA disagree with him.”

Newman replied, “If you want a correlation between global climate, don’t look to CO2, look to the sun’s activity, there will you find a very close correlation.”

Alberici asked, “What do you mean?”

He responded, “Well … if you go back in history, and you look at when the sun has been active and when the sun has been inactive, will you find the climate on earth responds accordingly. So we had the Maunder Minimum [which ABC’s Lateline mis-transcribed on its website as “the more to minimum”]; we go back to Medieval Warm Period. You will find they correspond very closely to what happens with the sun. There’s very little correlation with CO2.”

Ms Alberici then challenged Mr Newman, arguing that “people with great reputations around the world, including our own Chief Scientist [Professor Ian Chubb AC]; Greg Hunt, the Environment Minister; [and] Tony Abbott, the Prime Minister. I mean, around the world, there seems to be consensus that it is a man-made phenomena.”

Newman replied, “But it isn’t a question of consensus. It’s a question of science. And I’m asking the question: where is the empirical evidence to show that increases in CO2 impact temperatures?

“And as I said, we look at the climate models, 98 per cent of them were wrong.

“In my old business, if I had financial advisers who were 98 per cent wrong, I’d fire them. It’s not a consensus thing. It’s a question of what has the climate done? And we’ve had, since 1996, 17.5 years where the temperature has shown no measurable increase.

“In fact, it can be argued since 2003, it has cooled off somewhat. And yet CO2 has been going up about six or seven per cent. So what do we make of that? What do we make about the pause?”

Alberici said: “That it’s a pause. I guess that’s what scientists say. It’s a pause. They look back 800,000 years, as I understand it; so 17 years in the scheme of things isn’t an enormous amount of time.”



“No evidence that man has caused warming”, Maurice Newman interviewed by Emma Alberici on ABC Television’s Lateline program, April 22, 2014.


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