Japanese scientists cool on theories March 13, 2009Posted by honestclimate in Discussions.
Tags: climate change, global warming
Japanese scientists cool on theories
H/T Tom Nelson Blog
Peter Alford, Tokyo correspondent | March 14, 2009
Article from: The Australian
THREE senior Japanese scientists separately engaged in climate-change research have strongly questioned the validity of the man-made global-warming model that underpins the drive by the UN and most developed-nation governments to curb greenhouse gas emissions.
“I believe the anthropogenic (man-made) effect for climate change is still only one of the hypotheses to explain the variability of climate,” Kanya Kusano told The Weekend Australian.
It could take 10 to 20 years more research to prove or disprove the theory of anthropogenic climate change, said Dr Kusano, a research group leader with the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science’s Earth Simulator project.
“Before anyone noticed, this hypothesis has been substituted for truth,” writes Shunichi Akasofu, founding director of the University of Alaska’s International Arctic Research Centre.
Dr Kusano, Dr Akasofu and Tokyo Institute of Technology geology professor Shigenori Maruyama are highly critical of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s acceptance that hazardous global warming results mainly from man-made gas emissions.
On the scientific evidence so far, according to Dr Kusano, the IPCC assertion that atmospheric temperatures are likely to increase continuously and steadily “should be perceived as an unprovable hypothesis”.
Dr Maruyama said yesterday there was widespread scepticism among his colleagues about the IPCC’s fourth and latest assessment report that most of the observed global temperature increase since the mid-20th century “is very likely due to the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations”.
When this question was raised at a Japan Geoscience Union symposium last year, he said, “the result showed 90 per cent of the participants do not believe the IPCC report”.
Dr Maruyama studies the geological evidence of prehistoric climate change, and he thinks the large influences on global climate over time may be global cosmic rays and solar activity.
Like Dr Akasofu, Dr Maruyama believes the earth has moved into a cooling period, and while Japan is spending hundreds of millions of dollars on carbon credits to hedge against global warming, the country’s greatest looming problem is energy shortage, particularly oil.
“Our nation must pay huge amounts of money to buy carbon discharge rights,” he said. “This is not reasonable, but meaningless if global cooling will come soon — scientists will lose trust.”
Dr Maruyama said he was uncomfortable, given the scientific uncertainty of man-made climate-change theory, that Japan had taken a leading position in the crusade for global greenhouse emission targets.
The scientists and two others — Seita Emori, of the National Institute of Environmental Studies, and Kiminori Ito, of Yokahama National University — contributed to a paper titled “The scientific truth of global warming” that was published in January by the Japan Society of Energy and Resources.
Professor Emori is a firm supporter of man-made climate-change theory and Dr Ito is generally for it, although with reservations about the scientific rigour of the IPCC approach.
The doubters, particularly Dr Kusano and Dr Akasofu, are being widely cited by greenhouse-sceptic websites, after their sections of the paper were translated by The Register, a London-based online publisher.
However, the paper’s co-ordinator said the JSER’s position on anthropogenic global warming was neutral.
“This paper represents the views of the individuals and not of the society,” said Hideo Yoshida, of Kyoto University. “The purpose is to stimulate debate among scholars and readers, and let them form their own judgment.”
The Japan Society of Energy and Resources is an academic group that promotes co-operation between industry, academic research and government.
Dr Maruyama said many scientists were doubtful about man-made climate-change theory, but did not want to risk their funding from the government or bad publicity from the mass media, which he said was leading society in the wrong direction.