No, Dr. Will Happer is not a celebrity. He is merely a physicist of considerable renown who happens to agree with many of the world’s other leading scientists that the current panic over climate change is a lot of “hysterics about carbon footprints.” Dr. Happer, the Cyrus Fogg Bracket Professor of Physics at Princeton University, testified before the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on February 25. He told them:
Many people don’t realize that over geological time, we’re really in a CO2 famine now. Almost never has CO2 levels been as low as it has been in the Holocene (geologic epoch) — 280 (parts per million - ppm) — that’s unheard of. Most of the time [CO2 levels] have been at least 1,000 (ppm) and it’s been quite higher than that,” Happer told the Senate Committee.
“Earth was just fine in those times,” Prof. Happer noted. “The oceans were fine, plants grew, animals grew fine. So it’s baffling to me that we’re so frightened of getting nowhere close to where we started,” Happer explained. Happer also noted that “the number of [skeptical scientists] with the courage to speak out is growing” and he warned “children should not be force-fed propaganda, masquerading as science.”
Global-warming alarmists are pushing for incredibly wasteful and expensive “carbon sequestration” and carbon “cap and trade” schemes that will have virtually no impact on global CO2 levels or global temperatures. But rising CO2 levels shouldn’t be worrying us anyway.
“I believe that the increase of CO2 is not a cause for alarm and will be good for mankind,” Happer told the committee. He cited the well-known evidence from other researchers that increasing CO2 levels will greatly benefit crop yields, meaning more food for the world’s people and animals. Dr. Sherwood Idso and other scientists have published extensively on the numerous benefits to be derived from increasing CO2 levels: more robust forest and vegetation growth, greater plant resistance to stress, greater drought resistance, reclaiming of deserts and barren lands.
“What about the frightening consequences of increasing levels of CO2 that we keep hearing about?” Dr. Happer asked rhetorically. “In a word, they are wildly exaggerated, just as the purported benefits of prohibition were wildly exaggerated,” he answered. “At least 90% of greenhouse warming is due to water vapor and clouds. Carbon dioxide is a bit player,” he explained. “But the climate is warming and CO2 is increasing. Doesn’t this prove that CO2 is causing global warming through the greenhouse effect? No, the current warming period began about 1800 at the end of the little ice age, long before there was an appreciable increase of CO2. There have been similar and even larger warmings several times in the 10,000 years since the end of the last ice age. These earlier warmings clearly had nothing to do with the combustion of fossil fuels. The current warming also seems to be due mostly to natural causes, not to increasing levels of carbon dioxide. Over the past ten years there has been no global warming, and in fact a slight cooling. This is not at all what was predicted by the IPCC models."
Professor Happer is a former director of Energy Research at the Department of Energy. He has published over 200 scientific papers, and is a fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the National Academy of Sciences. Prof. Happer has joined the more than 650 distinguished scientists from around the globe who have provided statements challenging the alleged “scientific consensus” frequently sited in support of human-caused, or anthropogenic global warming. Those statements are available in a 231-page report from the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
These scientists represent more than 12 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media-hyped Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2007 report for policymakers. But the AGW “scientific consensus” fraud becomes even more ludicrous when the results of the Global Warming Petition Project are factored in, since more than 31,000 American scientists have signed onto the document urging “the United States government to reject the global warming agreement that was written in Kyoto, Japan in December 1997, and any other similar proposals. The proposed limits on greenhouse gases would harm the environment, hinder the advance of science and technology, and damage the health and welfare of mankind.”
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