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William Happer Interview: Focused Civil Dialogue on Global Warming

December 1, 2016

This is a reprint of an absolutely remarkable interview, conducted by TheBestSchools.org, with physicist William Happer, Ph.D., one of the most prestigious climate scientists in the world.

William Happer, Ph.D.

The interview was conducted in December 2016. TheBestSchools.org is “an independent organization comprised of a dedicated group of educators, editors, authors, and web professionals who—like you—believe learning transforms lives for the better and should remain a lifelong pursuit.” TBS posted the interview online here.

Dr. Happer notes in response to one question:

Government actions to combat the non-existent problem have blighted the landscape with windmills and solar farms. They have driven up the price of electricity, which has disproportionately harmed the poorest segments of society. Government actions have corrupted science, which has been flooded by money to produce politically correct results. It is time for governments to finally admit the truth about global warming. Warming is not the problem. Government action is the problem. (p. 15)

Dr. Happer is the Cyrus Fogg Brackett Professor of Physics (emeritus) at Princeton University, former director of the Office of Energy Research, former director of research at the U.S. Department of Energy, and co-founder of Magnetic Imaging Technologies. He is also cofounder and chairman of the CO2 Coalition, the website of which is co2coalition.org.

He summarizes the interview this way:

Strongest arguments against consensus view:

  • Climate models have predicted far more warming than has been observed, as shown in Fig. 6. This is strong evidence that the equilibrium temperature increases from doubling CO2 levels is not 3° C to 3.5° C, as assumed in most climate models, but much less, probably close to 1° C.
  • The consensus has largely ignored the huge positive effects of more CO2, as illustrated in Fig. 18.
  • The large temperature changes of the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age occurred before the widespread use of fossil fuels after the industrial revolution, as shown in Fig. 11.
  • There is a strong correlation of temperature with solar activity as shown in Fig. 12, 14, and 15.
  • Frenzied, ad hominem attacks on credible opponents show that consensus supporters have a very weak scientific case. You don’t need potentially counterproductive ad hominem attacks if you have strong scientific arguments.

Weakest arguments for consensus view:

  • Ninety-seven percent of scientists agree with the consensus.
  • Temperature has increased for the past century and CO2 levels have increased. Therefore the temperature increase was caused by CO2.
  • Increasing CO2
  • Government funded, consensus-supporting researchers have no conflict of interest.
  • Scientific opponents of the consensus are prostitutes of the evil fossil fuel industry.
Author
Professor Emeritus in the Department of Physics at Princeton University