The phrase has become political shorthand for the theorized worst case effects of the increasing atmospheric CO2 and other Greenhouse Gas (GHG) levels during the Industrial Age, believed to be caused primarily from the use of fossil fuels to provide the energy for the industrialized world. These GHG concentrations in our atmosphere (other than the strong naturally occurring GHG provided by water vapor) will always be at trace gas levels, though much less than at previous times of our planet. The theorized worst case effects are predicted by un-validated climate simulation models whose alarming projections have not been supported by the actual data observed so far.
We, a group of retired and highly experienced engineers and scientists from the Apollo, Skylab, Space Shuttle and International Space Station eras, have volunteered our time and effort conducting an objective, independent assessment of the AGW alarm and reality of the actual threat. We have reviewed hundreds of reports and technical papers relevant to the subject matter, and discussed key issues with experts on both sides of this controversy.
During our pioneering years in the US manned space program, scientific controversy over complex technical issues was commonplace at numerous times when NASA needed to make critical spacecraft design and operational decisions affecting safety of astronauts. We have unique skills and experience in problem identification, specification, root cause analysis and rational decision-making applicable to public policy decisions related to the AGW concern.
To aid in monitoring the AGW concern, we have developed our own simple, but rigorous, earth surface temperature model using Conservation of Energy principles, similar to the way we analyze surface and internal temperature of spacecraft. We have validated the model with 165 years of atmospheric GHG data and data on earth surface temperature variations. We have used this model to forecast what we believe will be the maximum, but small and non-harmful effects on earth surface temperature, from continued un-restricted use of fossil fuels, until they become too scarce and costly to meet the growing energy demand of our planet.
We expect a world-wide, market-driven transition to alternate sources of energy generation will be completed by 2150, leaving less than 600 ppm of CO2 in the atmosphere, 50 percent more than current levels. Highest levels of CO2 in our atmosphere have exceeded 7000 ppm from greater volcanic activity more than 400 million years ago. Naturally occurring planetary processes reduced atmospheric CO2 levels to a low of about 180 ppm experienced at the last Ice Age glacial maximum about 21,000 years ago. This was dangerously close to the critical 150 ppm limit required for green plants to grow.
We have produced reports which, in our judgment, provide a more realistic projection of the maximum expected earth surface temperature rise over the next 150 years from rising atmospheric GHG levels. We believe that these more realistic projections do not justify the extent to which the UN and others propose to manipulate and likely devastate the various major economies of the world through mandating drastic reductions in the use of fossil fuels.
The links to the left are to our periodic reports and their summaries written as our four-year independent assessment of the AGW issue progressed.
Our experience during the early days of manned spaceflight proved the importance of this motto:
“In God we trust, all others bring data”
These were not only words that guided us during Apollo, but more importantly, words that defined how we did our work. This is what made us proud to be called “Astronauts,” and “Rocket Scientists.” Our study team will continue to adhere to these attitudes in order to achieve the goals of this study.
E-mail comments to me by the contact form, please.
(NASA retired aerospace engineer, USAF R & D, Apollo, Sky Lab, & Space Shuttle)
The Right Climate Stuff.com
The phrase "Climate Change", currently used by politicians and popular media, has been a politically driven evolutionary change from the more specific scientific phrase "Anthropogenic (Human-Caused) Global Warming" (AGW).