October 26, 2007
Vincent Gray has begun a second career as a climate-change activist. His motivation springs from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body that combats global warming by advocating the reduction of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Dr. Gray has worked relentlessly for the IPCC as an expert reviewer since the early 1990s.
But Dr. Gray isn’t an activist in the cause of enforcing the Kyoto Protocol and realizing the other goals of the worldwide IPCC process. To the contrary, Dr. Gray’s mission, in his new role as cofounder of The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition, is to stop the IPCC from spreading climate-change propaganda that undermines the integrity of science.
“The whole process is a swindle,” he states, in large part because the IPCC has a blinkered mandate that excludes natural causes of global warming.
” The Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) 1992 defined ‘climate change’ as changes in climate caused by human interference with atmospheric composition,” he explains. “The task of the IPCC, therefore, has been to accumulate evidence to support this belief that all changes in the climate are caused by human interference with the atmosphere. Studies of natural climate change have largely been used to claim that these are negligible compared with ‘climate change.’ ”
Dr. Gray is one of the 2,000 to 2,500 top scientists from around the world whom the IPCC often cites as forming the basis of its findings. No one has been a more faithful reviewer than Dr. Gray over the years — he has been an IPCC expert almost from the start, and perhaps its most prolific contributor, logging almost 1,900 comments on the IPCC’s final draft of its most recent report alone.
But Dr. Gray, who knows as much about the IPCC’s review processes as anyone, has been troubled by what he sees as an appalling absence of scientific rigour in the IPCC’s review process.
“Right from the beginning, I have had difficulty with this procedure. Penetrating questions often ended without any answer. Comments on the IPCC drafts were rejected without explanation, and attempts to pursue the matter were frustrated indefinitely.
“Over the years, as I have learned more about the data and procedures of the IPCC, I have found increasing opposition by them to providing explanations, until I have been forced to the conclusion that for significant parts of the work of the IPCC, the data collection and scientific methods employed are unsound. Resistance to all efforts to try and discuss or rectify these problems has convinced me that normal scientific procedures are not only rejected by the IPCC, but that this practice is endemic, and was part of the organization from the very beginning.”
Dr. Gray has detailed extensively the areas in which global warming science falls down. One example that this New Zealander provides comes from his region of the globe: “We are told that the sea level is rising and will soon swamp all of our cities. Everybody knows that the Pacific island of Tuvalu is sinking. Al Gore told us that the inhabitants are invading New Zealand because of it.
“Around 1990 it became obvious that the local tide-gauge did not agree — there was no evidence of ‘sinking.’ So scientists at Flinders University, Adelaide, were asked to check whether this was true. They set up new, modern, tide-gauges in 12 Pacific islands, including Tuvalu, confident that they would show that all of them are sinking.
“Recently, the whole project was abandoned as there was no sign of a change in sea level at any of the 12 islands for the past 16 years. In 2006, Tuvalu even rose.”
Other expert reviewers at the IPCC, and scientists elsewhere around the globe, share Dr. Gray’s alarm at the conduct of the IPCC. An effort by academics is now underway to reform this UN organization, and have it follow established scientific norms. Dr. Gray was asked to endorse this reform effort, but he refused, saying: “The IPCC is fundamentally corrupt. The only ‘reform’ I could envisage would be its abolition.”
— – Lawrence Solomon is executive director of Energy Probe and the Urban Renaissance Institute.
CV OF A DENIER:
Vincent Gray is a graduate of the University of Cambridge, with a PhD in physical chemistry. He has published more than 100 scientific papers and authored the book, The Greenhouse Delusion: A Critique of ‘Climate Change 2001.’
Dr. Gray has participated in all of the science reviews of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and in 2006 was a visiting scholar at the Beijing Climate Center.
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