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VOICE: The Glenn Beck program presents Spotlight on Science.
PRESIDENT OBAMA: We'll restore science to its rightful place.
VOICE: A series dedicated to President Obama's passion for everything science.
GLENN: Yes, that's right. We're restoring science into her rightful place. Dr. Bob Carter, he's a pail I don't climatologist, marine geologist studying climate back, you know, 65 million years or so. But he only has 40 years of experience out of 65 million years of data. So what do you know? Dr. Bob Carter, welcome back to the program. How are you, sir?
CARTER: Hello, Glenn, it's great to be with you again. And he's Australian to boot. So what would you know indeed?
GLENN: I know. You are living on the other side of the Earth. You are standing upside down all day, blood rushing to your head.
CARTER: That's right, head in the sand and all the rest of them.
GLENN: So Dr. Carter, you are in New York now because they are having the big global warming convention that's happening again and boy, oh, boy, I don't know what it's like. I think heat rises. I'm not sure, but we may have the whole world upside down because it's cold on this side of the planet.
CARTER: Well, that's true, but it's not cold at the conference center and there's about 700 people here, which is almost twice as many as last year.
CARTER: And the conference is full steam ahead. It's very successful, and it's astonishing the number of papers which are presenting sensible what we call empirical factorially or experimentally-based science which flies in the face of this hysterical global warming scare that we're surrounded by. So what this conference is about is providing public statements about the simple factual science which shows that we don't actually have a human-caused global warming crisis at the moment.
GLENN: I don't understand how people don't get the fact that -- I mean, has anyone asked about how hot it used to be and then how cold it used to be? How do they even respond to that, that they pretend like the Earth has always been a constant temperature.
CARTER: Well, your mentioning 65 million years is a case on point. The intergovernmental panel on climate change, the United Nations body that deals with this, it largely deals with temperature measurements, and we only have those for the last 150 years. Now, that's a trivial period of time over which to look at climate change. So they say rightly that at the moment, or rather back in 1998, because at the moment we're actually cooling. But back in 1998 we reached the peak of a temperature warming that had lasted for almost 20 years. Now, that point that was the warmest in the recorded 150 year-long record of thermometers. But that's just a tiny point in time. And if you go back and look at those earlier geological records that you indicated, going back indeed ultimately to 65 million years and beyond, you find that time and again the planet has been warmer by at least several degrees in the day. And even more to the point,
20,000 years ago it was about 6 to 7 degrees colder and we had a kilometer of ice over New York when we had the last great ice age. So natural climate change happens. Make no doubt about it. It's also dangerous, as you learned in 2005 with Hurricane Katrina, and Australia has just learned with bush fires in the southern part of the continent and at the very same time last month in February, floods over 62% of the state of Queensland was declared a disaster area. Now, these are natural climactic disasters. We certainly need a policy to deal with them. But human-caused warming in contrast with those real weather events, human-caused warming is a hypothetical thing that we still haven't been able to measure or identify despite spending now over $50 billion, 20 years and thousands of talented scientists trying to document it. We can't find it.
GLENN: Okay. Let me go back to Australia here for a second because you say we need policies to deal with things. We've got to be careful on that because if I'm not mistaken, I mean, I've seen it in California where, you know, you can't -- you know, the little lost hamster, you know, from the second grade, we can't do anything to harm the environment because there was a hamster that escaped from the second grade class and so we can't touch any of the national habitat now in California. And that leads to fires --
GLENN: -- and underbrush. Did you not have a guy who was pilloried in the press over in Australia, paid a gigantic fine because he clearcut all of the wood, the forest around his house and the environmentalists said you are a killer and everything else, but he's the only house that survived this last fire?
CARTER: Correct. Only too true, Glenn. But both in California and Australia what you're dealing with is policy, but it's bad policy. And the fact that that is bad policy does not remove the necessity to have better and indeed best policy. Now, the IPCC's Plan A has always been to stop climate change, which is a ridiculous idea in the first place, but to stop climate change because they say it's being driven by carbon dioxide emissions and if we reduce emissions, we will stop the warming. Well, that patently, Plan A, has not worked. We've had the Kyoto protocol. It hasn't made a blind bit of difference to global warming. You can introduce a tax and trade bill which you're thinking of doing in the U.S. congress because Hurricane Katrina was a real natural climactic event which killed people. In Australia, 200 people --
GLENN: Here's your Plan B. You understand that climate happens.
CALLER: That's correct.
GLENN: Climate changes.
GLENN: And you build levees that stand. Or call me crazy; you don't live below sea level. There's another crazy idea.
CARTER: Correct. You plan much better for the future and you adapt to the climate changes that happen because they are going to happen. The idea you can stop climate change is the silliest policy idea to ever appear on the planet.
GLENN: You wrote an e-mail to the show to one of my producers. You were in San Francisco.
CARTER: Lovely city. I was indeed.
GLENN: It is a lovely city. But you obviously didn't leave your hotel -- you didn't talk to anybody?
GLENN: Well, then you have the right impression. It is a lovely city. So you were there and you said you've been watching the show for the last few days, the TV show.
GLENN: And you think the premise that I have on the WE Surround Them is the answer also for the global warming debate. Why is that?
CARTER: I think it's the answer for a lot of things, Glenn. I think the politicians reinforcing the spin they produce and the media that supports that are often completely out of touch with what the real public opinion is. Now, my numbers were slightly different to yours, but I estimate that if you look at the global warming scare, about 5% of people deny it altogether. They say climate change isn't an issue, don't need any policy and so on. They wouldn't even be bothered about Hurricane Katrina. So that's not a problem. On the other hand there's about 20% of persons who are genuinely convinced that global warming heralds disaster and it's our fault. Now, 20 plus 5 on the two extremes is 25, and that leaves 75% in the middle of most people who -- and this is also true of scientists, I believe, as well as the general public who actually say a plague on both the extreme houses, they're both wrong. What we need is some sensible, politically acceptable policy which will actually solve the problem. What is the problem? The problem is natural climate change. We have to be able to cope better with things like Katrina and the great Australian fires and floods we've just had. It's an imperative on any politician. And what are the politicians doing in the state? They are sitting around trading within industry and other special interests trying to introduce tax and trade legislation that is going to crucify economies which around the world are already reeling from the financial crisis.
GLENN: Well, that just makes too much sense. Dr. Bob Carter, let me just -- because I've only got about 30 seconds. Is it true that there are more scientists now starting to walk away from global warming science and saying, you know what, I believed in it but now there's some more evidence. It seems that the tide has turned.
CARTER: It is. And the heartland conference I'm at is helping. But it's swinging dramatically. President Václav Klaus of the general public released a new poll a couple of days ago released a new poll that shows that only 11% of the people in the Czech Republic thinks humans have anything to do with global warming.
GLENN: But they're Czechoslovakian. It's like why listen to you. The blood is in your head all the time. You come over here once in a while so you don't have a headache. Dr. Bob Carter, I've got to run but thank you very much, sir, we'll talk to you again.
GLENN: Thanks, Glenn. Bye.