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Follow the (Weather) Money

By: Joe D'Aleo icecap.us
By: Joe D'Aleo icecap.us

Proponents of Man-Made Climate Fears Enjoy Monumental Funding Advantage over Skeptics

Often when I or any other skeptic are quoted in a newspaper, do a TV interview that is carried on the station’s or network’s web site or get mentioned in an alarmist blog, the first knee jerk reactions of some commenters is to accuse us of being part of some far right wing conspiracy to preserve the status quo (many of us are independent or even left of center politically - it is not about politics but about science) and continue our polluting ways (CO2 is not a pollutant but a plant fertiilzer), or most commonly of being a shill for big oil, or dirty from coal, or bought and paid for by the fossil fuel industry. That is clearly not the case.

Compared to the proponents riding the big grant money gravy train we are the person on the corner with a tin cup. Marc Morano did a comparison of the funding received by the proponents in comparison to the smaller funding for objective scientists who take a more skeptical or open minded position (the way science used to be before the lure of money corrupted it). Marc did not include the funding the alarmists blogs get from folks like George Soros, Fenton Communications, convicted Canadian felons, environmental groups and activists which runs in the many millions of dollars.

Paleoclimate scientist Bob Carter, who has testified before the Senate Environment & Public Works committee, explained how much money has been spent researching and promoting climate fears and so-called solutions. “In one of the more expensive ironies of history, the expenditure of more than $US50 billion on research into global warming since 1990 has failed to demonstrate any human-caused climate trend, let alone a dangerous one,” Carter wrote on June 18, 2007.

The U.S. alone has spent $30 billion on federal programs directly or indirectly related to global warming in just the last six years, according to one estimate. ($5.79 billion in 2006 alone). Adding to this total is funding from the UN, foundations, universities, foreign governments, etc. Huge sums of money continue to flow toward addressing climate fears.

Even if you factor in former Vice President Al Gore’s unsubstantiated August 7, 2007 assertion that $10 million dollars a year from the fossil fuel industry flows into skeptical organizations, any funding comparison between skeptics and warming proponents utterly fails. Gore launched a $100 million a year multimedia global warming fear campaign. Gore alone will now be spending $90 million more per year than he alleges the entire fossil fuel industry spends, according to an August 26, 2007 article in Advertising Age.

Meteorologist Dr. Roy W. Spencer, formerly a senior scientist for climate studies at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center and currently principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, “Of course, the vast majority of mainstream climate researchers receive between $100,000 to $200,000 from the federal government [to conduct research in] support of manmade global warming,” Spencer wrote in an August 15, 2007 blog post.

James Spann, a meteorologist certified by the American Meteorological Society, suggests scientific objectively is being compromised by the massive money flow to proponents of man-made climate fears. "Billions of dollars of grant money is flowing into the pockets of those on the man-made global warming bandwagon. No man-made global warming, the money dries up. This is big money, make no mistake about it. Always follow the money trail and it tells a story,” Spann wrote on January 18, 2007. “Nothing wrong with making money at all, but when money becomes the motivation for a scientific conclusion, then we have a problem. For many, global warming is a big cash grab,” Spann added.

The well-heeled environmental lobbying groups have massive operating budgets compared to groups that express global warming skepticism. The Sierra Club Foundation 2004 budget was $91 million and the Natural Resources Defense Council had a $57 million budget for the same year. Compare that to the often media derided Competitive Enterprise Institute’s small $3.6 million annual budget.

In addition, if a climate skeptic receives any money from industry, the media immediately labels them and attempts to discredit their work. The same media completely ignore the money flow from the environmental lobby to climate alarmists like James Hansen and Michael Oppenheimer. (ie. Hansen received $250,000 from the Heinz Foundation and $500,000 from the David Foundation and Oppenheimer is a paid partisan of Environmental Defense Fund)

The most repeated accusation is that organizations skeptical of man-made climate fears have received $19 Million from an oil corporation (ExxonMobil) over the past two decades. To put this $19 Million over two decades into perspective, consider: One 2007 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) grant of $20 million to study how “farm odors” contribute to global warming exceeded all of the money that skeptics reportedly received from an oil giant in the past two decades. To repeat: One USDA grant to study the role of 'farm odors' in global warming exceeded ALL the money skeptics have been accused of receiving from an oil giant over the past two decades. (Excerpt from article: “The United States Department of Agriculture has released reports stating that when you smell cow manure, you’re also smelling greenhouse gas emissions.”

(see verifying links and more info at icecap.us)

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