David Archibald – denialism to the max

Anthony Watts loves having David Archibald as a guest poster. Why? Because he sounds so sciency it must be true. Nevermind that his predictions are so whacky you would have to have been living under a rock to take him seriously.

I’ve written about Archibald before here, here and here. The first of those addresses his whacky 4 degrees temperature drop prediction and the other two deal with some blatant dishonesty. For those, not familiar with David Archibald he is a “prominent” climate denier listed as a climate expert by the Heartland Institute and the equally dodgy Institute for World Politics. It is interesting to note that both of those sites mention his ties to the mining industry as “working in the field of oil exploration” but it goes much further than that. I am currently doing a bit of research on David Archibald and the way he does business in the mining industry. At the risk of digressing I’ll just mention that in 2003 he became managing director of a company called Oilex. He talked the company’s prospects up beforelisting it on the ASX. In lieu of his $150000 salary he opted (for one year) to be paid in shares, supposedly as a show of confidence in the company.  Well, the share price went up and then crashed leaving investors millions of dollars out-of-pocket. Archibald simply quit, cashed in his free shares and collected $150000 as part of his contract.  Now he has teamed up with a fellow crackpot, Ian Plimer, in another oil exploration deal that has an eery similarity to the Oilex fiasco. Archibald is opting to forego one year’s salary ($250000) while the company, Yeeda Oil is floated. Deja vu? It look like an easy way to make money by doing nothing. Is it a scam? I hope to let you know if I get time to pursue the matter.

But like I said, I digress. So, what has David Archibald mentioned over at Anthony’s? Well, basically the same crap he’s been peddling for years but this paragraph is most notable. Emphasis is mine. He says…

Insolation is already low enough to trigger glacial onset. For the last 8,000 years, the Earth has been cooling at 0.25°C per thousand years, so the oceans are losing heat. We just have to get to that trigger point at which snows linger through the northern summer. Solar Cycle 25 might be enough to set it off. By the end of this decade, we will be paying more attention to the Rutgers Global Snow Lab data.  

There is something seriously wrong with this guy. Let’s look first at solar insolation. This graph is from PNAS. doi:10.1073/pnas.0703873104

Next, the statement that the earth has been cooling for the past 8000 years at a rate of 0.25 degrees C per thousand years so the ocean is losing heat. Really? The trick here, by Archibald, is to give the impression that the trend of the last 8000 years is continuing and the fact is, up until the last 50 years or so, he actually correct, but to claim that he oceans are cooling now, which is the impression he is trying to give is a blatant distortion of the truth through omission. The fact is that in the last 40 years we have increased the temperature by more than triple the amount it decreased over the past 3000 years.  Ocean warming is currently immense.

Change in Earth’s Total Heat Content.

Next, Archibald mentions snow cover. I would suggest that “to get to that trigger point” there will have to be a massive turnaround in snow cover. Just so you know, I pulled this graph from WUWT.

Finally, what I do appreciate is Archibald giving us a timeframe for his ridiculous assertions. By the end of the decade, presumably we will start to see the effects of us slipping into an ice age. Well, he can be certain that many of us will be reminding him of his “predictions”. In order to make such statements you must crank your wilful ignorance and subsequent denialism to the max. A few vested interests in the oil industry certainly helps too.

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