This summer there are two new books and an older one newly relevant today with the same title: False Alarm.
Though physician Dr. Marc Siegal wrote False Alarm: The Truth about the Epidemic of Fear back in 2008, right now Amazon Kindle has the book in heavy promotion. Kindle boasts, “More relevant than ever as the Coronavirus COVID 19 pandemic sweeps the globe, False Alarm reminds readers to look closely at the facts as the media covers the pandemic news and spread of the virus, as well as reinforces the notion that we must arm ourselves against fear tactics….”
The two new books, however, address fear generated by politicians and doomsayers over “manmade global warming” for which carbon dioxide (and the burning of fossil fuels that releases it into the atmosphere) is cast as the chief culprit.
Due out on July 14th is “skeptical environmentalist” Bjorn Lomborg’s False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet. [We plan to review this book very soon.]
This review, however, focuses on Rex J. Fleming’s False Alarm: The Rise and Fall of the Carbon Dioxide Theory of Climate Change. Fleming, who holds a Ph.D. in atmospheric science from the University of Michigan, promises that his tome (replete with mathematical formulae) will present “in layman’s terms” the proof that the United Nations’ claim that carbon dioxide is the primary cause of climate change is a dangerous myth.
In this book, Fleming dissects the case against CO2 and shows how cosmic rays emitted by the Sun are the real cause of both beneficent warming and devastating cooling to the planet. He also cautions that all signs point to a new wave of cold weather ahead.
The book contains a concise history of the highly politicized effort to tag increasing atmospheric CO2 (and thus fossil fuels) as a villain that must be vanquished. The lure of big money, research grants, and favorable media coverage has led “scientists” to blame just about every human ailment on “manmade global warming” and curiously (given that humans are carbon based) to demand a carbon-free society in the near future.
Fleming lauds the work of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, which has countered the politicized Summaries for Policymakers (and increasingly the interior content) of the reports from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
He castigates Al Gore and others who have profited from fear mongering on the alleged climate crisis, and expresses hope that society might realize that real climate change may soon arrive with the beginning of a new ice age (thanks to a weakening of the Sun’s magnetic field).
Fleming offers three proofs that CO2 is not a culprit but rather a vital weapon against a colder, drier planet. First, CO2 levels have had no correlation to climate change during prior ice ages or intervening warm periods – including the 35-year cooling in the 20th Century.
Second, every single computer-generated climate model has predicted much more warming than has occurred. Third, Fleming offers proof that CO2 does not contribute any net heating to the atmospheric column despite the fact that both CO2 and water vapor do contribute to a thermal blanket at the Earth’s surface.
In his chapter on “Creation of the Universe,” Fleming explains that supernovas generated by dying O-type stars are a major source of cosmic rays and thus a key source of climate change. On the other hand, CO2 concentrations have ranged from 370 parts per million (ppm) to 40,000 ppm during different ice ages.
Fleming then notes that renowned scientist Svante Arrhenius postulated in 1896 that a doubling of CO2 resulting from industrial emissions would lead to dramatic increases in global temperature over a period of 3,000 years, a time frame chosen largely because he surmised the oceans would absorb most of the extra CO2.
A few years later Knut Angstrom proposed that adding CO2 does not produce more heat because the wavelengths of infrared absorption for CO2 were already saturated and strong enough to absorb all of the radiation at those wavelengths. Angstrom, however, had not discovered all of the relevant wavelengths, and thus both scientists saw only parts of the larger story.
About the same time Max Planck discovered the relationship between the energy intensity and frequency (or wavelength) of radiation. His hypothesis that the energy emitted by a resonator could only take on discrete values, or quanta, was a first step towards a new quantum theory. The Planck function, which expresses the intensity of radiation, is the key to showing why CO2 has NO ROLE in climate change.
But these facts did not matter to the emerging enviro-politicians and their fawning media, who have run with the long-disproven claim that increasing CO2 will melt the glaciers, cause massive flooding, and bring about the end of all life (while in reality using this ruse to seek huge profits and globalist praise). Never mind that the cooling between 1940 and 1975 cannot fit into the CO2 theory. The only real point of correlation is that the last ice age ended about the same time the Industrial Revolution (and thus the increased use of fossil fuels) began.
But proving a negative [that CO2 was not the cause] was insufficient to explain why the Earth had been warming since about 1850. Svensmark’s theory provides that explanation. He builds on the fact that a strong solar magnetic field provides a barrier that keeps cosmic rays from entering the Earth’s atmosphere, whereas a weak solar magnetic field allows the penetration of cosmic rays that greatly increase cloud cover that cools the planet.
The solar magnetic field, he explains, is generated by the solar dynamo in part due to the angular momentum of the Sun’s differential rotation. This accounts for sunspot variability. Longer term, the Sun’s travel about the solar system barycenter adds to orbital angular momentum so that both contribute to the variability of the Sun’s magnetic field intensity.
Fleming provides a multitude of mathematical formulae and other documentation that will be of interest mostly to scientists and mathematicians. But he also closes with a stark warning that the Modern Warming may soon come to an end.
Humanity, he pleads, should be preparing for a very long, very cold era that could have already begun. A colder Earth grows fewer crops, has far less available fresh water, and forces relocation or massive efforts to protect people from freezing. Addressing those concerns should be one of our highest priorities today and into the future.
But will we be ready?