Debunking climate change doesn't mean the climate isn't changing

After the release of all those emails from the Climate Research Unit of East Anglia University, the Al Gore cheerleaders rushed to the barricades to defend what appears to be flawed science being used in the service of money - and power - grabbing politicians and Bernie Madoff-type carbon credit investment schemes.

Those who have been skeptics of the "Inconvenient Truth" scenario that had been so carefully crafted by Al Gore, Dr. Phil Jones, Dr. Michael Mann, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and its chairman, Dr. R.K. Pachauri have been elated by the release of these emails since, for many of them, it signals an end to the anthropogenic global warming hysteria.

I would submit that both sides are wrong.

The climate of the Earth is changing. It's been changing for billions of years. And saying that it won't happen next Tuesday is not even close to agreeing that it has somehow stopped changing. It will change. But the exaggerations of the environmental movement have done nothing but earn the scientific community a level of trust normally reserved for politicians. Of course, Al Gore, already being a politician, never noticed the erosion.

What is needed is a new start for climate study. It is important to be aware of potential changes in the climate. Protecting the property values of condo owners along Miami Beach or in Malibu doesn't really matter, but agricultural production, and its impact on the rest of us, most assuredly does.

We need to establish an international body whose sole job is the collection and dissemination of untainted climate data from around the planet. That should be their sole job. No study of the data, no analysis or predictions, no angling for grants, or tenure. Just accumulate and tabulate the data for distribution. The data should be provided, at a nominal fee to cover costs, to anyone who wants to see it. I mean, it just tells us all how hot it is! Is there any reason for it to be Top Secret? Let scientists do the analysis, but if the raw, unchanged, un-massaged data was available to any and all scientists, then science would begin to work again as it has historically. It would again be disputation and debate, with all sides using the same facts and evidence.

Such an organization would need a fair amount of seed money, for offices, reasonably sizable computer power, staff and so on. The ongoing maintenance costs would be relatively modest. At least it would be modest when compared to other governmental ideas, such as Cap and Trade legislation. Because of the IPCC's track record, it would probably be advisable to create this organization outside the framework of the United Nations. Perhaps a coalition of the less gullible would work. Russia, China, India, the United States and most of the remaining nations of the world could work out the details in fairly short order.

The larger nations could provide the seed money and maintenance finances. Smaller and poorer nations would only be responsible for those temperature sensing units within their territories and for recording and transmitting that data to the collection center. There should be little nationalistic disagreement with such a plan. Everyone getting the same global climate data is hardly to any nation's political advantage or disadvantage.

The only "science" to be done by this organization could be done by consulting scientists to determine where the temperature recorders should be located to avoid the need for data manipulation in the future. Avoiding urban areas, parking lots, and so on would be a great way to start, as would making sure that large areas of the planet are not ignored.

When that happens, science really will resume its proper place. It will look for facts, not flights of fancy while changing evidence to support a narrative. And the rest of us will be a lot more supportive when a dozen scientists who do not have a vested, financial interest in the results speak of a "consensus." Consensus is a word that should only be used to describe an agreement of opinions, not of facts.