And James Lovelock, the environmental guru who advanced the theory of earth being one organism, thinks that Al Gore is an alarmist too.
“The problem is we don’t know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books – mine included – because it looked clear-cut, but it hasn’t happened,” Lovelock said.
“The climate is doing its usual tricks. There’s nothing much really happening yet. We were supposed to be halfway toward a frying world now,” he said.
“The world has not warmed up very much since the millennium. Twelve years is a reasonable time… it (the temperature) has stayed almost constant, whereas it should have been rising — carbon dioxide is rising, no question about that,” he added.
He pointed to Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” and Tim Flannery’s “The Weather Makers” as other examples of “alarmist” forecasts of the future.
Asked if he was now a climate skeptic, Lovelock told msnbc.com: “It depends what you mean by a skeptic. I’m not a denier.”
He said human-caused carbon dioxide emissions were driving an increase in the global temperature, but added that the effect of the oceans was not well enough understood and could have a key role.
“It (the sea) could make all the difference between a hot age and an ice age,” he said.
He said he still thought that climate change was happening, but that its effects would be felt farther in the future than he previously thought.
“We will have global warming, but it’s been deferred a bit,” Lovelock said.
First, it’s important to note that Lovelock believes that global warming is occurring, but not as quickly or as catastrophically as he once believed. This is actually closer to the beliefs of many skeptics, although obviously not all — many of whom reject warming theory in its totality.
Secondly, Lovelock’s adjustment of his conclusions will not alter the advocacy of the rest of the warmist community, including governments.
The 92-year old Lovelock was first to advance a rather elegant theory of the earth actually being one organism with interdependent systems that guaranteed the continuation of life. Initially ridiculed, the theory has been seriously studied in many scientific disciplines.
Lovelock’s alteration of his beliefs is not a “game changer” nor is it the “death of global warming.” But if it slows the momentum of the warmists in seeking to radically transform the economies of nation states while impoverishing western industrialized countries with emission schemes, then the maverick scientist would have performed a valuable service.