Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Global Warming

January 9, 2015

Physicist Richard Muller became a hero to the climate denial community a few years ago, after saying some pretty harsh things about climate science, and scientists.
He started the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project to double check estimates of global warming and, in his mind, answer the criticisms of existing temperature reconstructions.  Not surprisingly to the mainstream community, he came up with the same answer as all other groups over the last 40 years. The planet is warming, and the only plausible explanation is increased greenhouse gases.

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My friend Collin Maessen, author of the blog Real Skeptic, invited Dr. Muller to an interview at last month’s American Geophysical Union meeting, and I sat in.
Below, my piece explaining the kerfuffle.

In 2013, I also interviewed one of Muller’s primary researchers, Robert Rohde.

 

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29 Responses to “Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Global Warming”


  1. […] Earth. Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Global Warming. January 9, 2015 Physicist Richard Muller became a hero to the climate denial community a few years […]

  2. mspelto Says:

    Amazing how stunned he was at discovering what had already been well understood for a decade, that temperature changed matched the CO2 record not the solar record. It appeared to be a new discovery

  3. mspelto Says:

    The paper by Meehl et al (2004) could not have been clearer on the point.

    http://www.igsoc.org:8080/journal/36/122/igs_journal_vol36_issue122_pg82-88.pdf

  4. Mike Roddy Says:

    I have friends at Berkeley who know Muller (better known as Louie Alvarez’ lap dog) well.

    He knew it all along. The temperature station project was a way to give his daughter a job, so they could pocket a half million from the Koch Brothers for confirming data that was already obvious to every climate scientist in the country.

    Berkeley, once a shining city on a hill, was corrupted a while ago. The oil companies made a 9 figure grant to the science and environmental center. Self censorship followed.


  5. None of this discussion is meaningful. The increase in population of the planet outstrips any decrease in per capita usage. The ‘Western world’ is already in a negative per capita usage. Take the West back even to the per capita CO2 output levels during the US Civil War and you don’t touch the problem.

    The eradication of measles & influenza, the increase in food production, sewer lines and potable water – make yourself a graph with these and you find the same thing as CO2. More people, more CO2.

    So lets get down to business. How are we going to kill all these people? OK so we kill THEM. Good. Now how are we going to do it? Nukes or disease? OK. Now that we have them killed how do we prevent it from happening again.

    There’s your problem. All this silliness of lowering CO2 is the easy part.

    • Gingerbaker Says:

      “None of this discussion is meaningful. The increase in population of the planet outstrips any decrease in per capita usage. The ‘Western world’ is already in a negative per capita usage. Take the West back even to the per capita CO2 output levels during the US Civil War and you don’t touch the problem. ”

      If only they could come up with a way to make electricity without oxidizing carbon! Nah, that’s physically impossible. We all need to die.


  6. Without the CO2 and warming, would we be in a secular Ice Age? We are already in a geologic Ice Age since the poles are frozen.

    • greenman3610 Says:

      I think the consensus is that, all things being equal, without human influence, it would have been at least 20,000 years before another glaciation.

      • dumboldguy Says:

        I will again push everyone to read “Deep Future” by Curt Stager. He thinks that if GHG emissions stay on the lower side of BAU we will postpone for millennia the onset of the next ice age, and that if we we go into the “high emissions” IPCC scenario, we will eliminate it entirely (and maybe even the one that should arrive some 100K years after that one). That second case would produce catastrophic climate change.

        Sager basically sidesteps the question that Peter Swinson asks—-“Now that we have them killed how do we prevent it from happening again”. Sager doesn’t say it this bluntly but his message seems to be that surviving humans (the numbers will be greatly reduced) will hang on and may even be faced with the need to burn fossil fuels to increase GHG in order to ward off the ice age that will finally occur when “natural balance” is finally restored.

        We are so concerned with AGW that we shouldn’t forget that ice ages are the recent norm on Earth, and the holocene-anthropocene is not.


      • And without ANY CO2, it has been shown that the Earth’s Average Global Temperature (AGT) would be Zero Degrees Fahrenheit (“F”), rather than the current AGT of about 58 Degrees “F”.

        As 1976 Nobel Physics Laureate Burton Richter asked the Deniers: “Why do you believe that adding MORE of what has made the Earth warm, will NOT make it warmer?”

        I have yet to see anyone answer Dr. Richter’s question.

  7. Quora Says:

    Which of the world’s brightest minds are opposed to fossil fuel use?

    I don not know whom you consider to be “the world’s brightest minds,” but I have listed a few below that would oppose fossil fuel use because of the effects of CO2 emissions on the Earth’s atmosphere and the Climate Change that results from increas…


  8. Before we waterboard you Herrr Mueller, what do you think of global warming now ?


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