Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Renowned Water Witch Tells Maldives' President: Don't Worry About Global Warming


You might have seen the clip above on the news over the past couple of days. It shows the President of the Maldives and his cabinet holding a special session 20 feet under the Indian Ocean. They are attempting to highlight the threat of global warming, and the resultant increase in sea levels, to this low-lying island nation:

PRESIDENT MOHAMED NASHEED: If world temperatures rise over 1.5 degrees, we won’t be around.

Well, in response, the Financial Post has wheeled out no less a personage than Nils-Axel Mörner to assuage President Nasheed's worries:

Let us, for Heaven’s sake, lift the terrible psychological burden that you and your predecessor have placed upon the shoulders of all people in the Maldives, who are now living with the imagined threat that flooding will soon drive them from their homes, a wholly false notion that is nothing but an armchair fiction artificially constructed by mere computer modeling constantly proven wrong by meticulous real-world observations.

The thing with Mr. Mörner is--he's a kook. According to professional magician and paranormal debunker James "the amazing" Randi, Mörner, in addition to being a [retired] geophysicist, is a "dowsing expert"" or a "water witch". And what is "dowsing" or "water witching"? These terms refer to:

...practices said to enable one to detect hidden water, metals, gemstones or other objects, usually obstructed by land or sometimes located on a map. Most commonly, detection is made through the movement or vibrations of an apparatus, such as a Y-shaped twig, an L-shaped rod, or a pendulum. Some practitioners claim to need no apparatus at all.

To top it off, Mörner has in the past teamed up amateur archaeoastronomist Bob Lind to prove that

"Greek boats came here [Ravlunda, Sweden] to get amber. This was sort of the Hong Kong of the Greeks."

Needless to say, nobody takes these claims seriously. Unfortunately, Mörner and Lind's excavations at this iron age cemetary caused a good deal of damage, and back in 2007 they were reprimanded by local archaelogists for, basically, trashing the place.

FP sure knows how to pick 'em.

21 comments:

Ti-Guy said...

What's always the worst thing about these types of articles is the wingnut bukkake that takes place in the comments section. Wingnut after wingnut discharging his load onto some target, variously, Al Gore, the 'Left,' or in one instance here, the hapless Republic of the Maldives itself.

*bleah*

Paul S said...

I watched the clip and you have the audacity to call Morner the kook BCL?

Considering sea level rise is currently less then 2mm per year by tidal gauge data and shows no sign whatsover of acceleration, residents of Maldive can likely rest easy.

FrankD said...

The Maldivians are getting their oar in the water, so to speak, for some of the $100 billion/year that Brit warmer, and soon to be X-PM, Gordon Brown wants the worlds "rich" countries to pony up for the lesser rich countries (like China)to help them prepare for the coming apocalypse.

This was a clever stunt and certainly got the media attention, until bubble boy took over.

Paul S said...

And speaking of Gordon Brown, we now have only 47 days left to save the world from global warming. Oh dear.

Ti-Guy said...

Oh dear is right. You might be completely out of spunk by then, eh Paul Sunstrum?

Paul S said...

Ti, you can call me Mr. Paul Sunstrum too if you like. Just please tell me you aren't beginning to cyberstalk me.

lenny said...

"Considering sea level rise is currently less then 2mm per year by tidal gauge data and shows no sign whatsover of acceleration,"

Stop lying Paul Sunstrum. The rate of sea level rise since the early 90s is almost double the 20th century rate.

Ti-Guy said...

Just please tell me you aren't beginning to cyberstalk me.

I doubt "Paul Sunstrum" is even your real name.

Fred said...

Tens of thousands of tourists can now cancel their vacations to the Maldives this sparing the massive CO2 that would spew from the thousands of planes that would have been employed to fly them there.

That should stop the planet from warming and the oceans from rising.

Unless Obamasiah does it first

Ti-Guy said...

I already saw the splooge you left over at the FP, Fred. No need to dribble some more of it over here.

Paul S said...

The rate of sea level rise since the early 90s is almost double the 20th century rate. - Lenny

It ain't so Lenny. That is a misrepresentation warmers have been pushing on the public for awhile now.

Sea level has risen at 1.8mm per year for the last century using tidal gauge data and continues rising at that steady rate according to the most recent tidal gauge data.

Jason-1 satellite data from 1993 to present indicates a sea level rise of 2.8mm to 3.1mm per year but that is a completely different measurement system.

Jason-1 and tidal gauge do not reconcile at present but there is no solid evidence to indicate an acceleration in sea level rise in recent years.

lenny said...

Let us know when you get that paper published, Professor. Until then we'll have to stick with what the actual science says.
http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/?doi=10.1175%2F2009JCLI2985.1&request=get-abstract
http://ipcc-wg1.ucar.edu/wg1/Report/AR4WG1_Print_Ch05.pdf

Ti-Guy said...

The quickest way to shut Paul up is to ask him on what evidence he bases his claims (which, you'll notice, are never accompanied by a source).

He's admitted himself that he has no scientific background, so in all likelihood, they're the undigested regurgitations from the usual wingnut sources.

Paul S said...

I checked out your first link Lenny but all it is in an abstract without the actual article.

Referring to the IPCC report they state the following:

It is unknown whether the higher rate in 1993 to 2003 is due to decadal variability or an increase
in the longer-term trend.


As I stated previously, at present there is no solid evidence for an acceleration in sea level rise. Even the IPCC agrees with me.

Back to you Einstein. ;)

Ti-Guy said...

See what he does? You give him evidence and he parses it. Meanwhile, he never provides any himself.

Let's all review this post dedicated to our Paul.

lenny said...

"As I stated previously, at present there is no solid evidence for an acceleration in sea level rise. Even the IPCC agrees with me."

As anyone who can read can see, the IPCC directly contradicts what you're saying as does the Merrifield paper. Both conclude that sea level rise has accelerated from less than 2mm/yr to over 3.
I apologize for calling you a liar, I can see now that you're "special".

Paul S said...

See what he does? You give him evidence and he parses it. Meanwhile, he never provides any himself. - Ti

According to you warmies, the IPCC is more authoritative then God himself. I quoted directly from God, oops, I mean the IPCC.

As anyone who can read can see, the IPCC directly contradicts what you're saying as does the Merrifield paper. - lenny

Well, I highly doubt you've read the Merrifield paper, you picked it up from Google and pasted it here simply because you liked the title.

Concerning the IPCC, they use the words "It is unknown", regarding sea level rise acceleration.

That sounds pretty clear to me. What is it about the words "It is unknown" that is confusing to you?

John Cross said...

Paul S: well, the abstract of the Merrrifield article seems quite clear. The only thing that they don't say is what the cut off date is for their data, but since the paper is still in press, I would expect it to be within the last year or two.

Regards,
John

lenny said...

"Concerning the IPCC, they use the words "It is unknown", regarding sea level rise acceleration. "

Wrong. The IPCC documents an increase in the rate of sea level rise. Paul, do you know what the word is that describes an increase in rate?

Paul S said...

Did you read the rest of the document? The IPCC states that the variation could simply be due to decadal variation.

And if it is decadal variation, then there is no acceleration.

On the answer to this issue (decadal variation vs acceleration), the IPCC said "It is unknown".

lenny said...

"And if it is decadal variation, then there is no acceleration."

I'll try and go slowly for you, Paul.
Here is your original claim:

"Considering sea level rise is currently less then 2mm per year by tidal gauge data and shows no sign whatsover of acceleration..."

As we can see from the science I provided links to, this is completely false. Firstly, sea-level rise is currently approx 3mm per year, not less than 2mm. Secondly, this is a sharp increase from the 20th century average of approx. 1.7mm, which itself represents an increase from the relatively stable sea level in the preceeding 2000 to 3000 years. In common english parlance an increase in rate is known as an acceleration.
So, we can see that sea-level rise accelerated in the 20th century and further accelerated late in that same century.
Now, as you point out, the IPCC says it is unclear if the latter acceleration is due to "decadal variation" (the former is obviously not). So while sea level rise has accelerated, the question is, is that accelerated long term rate now 1.7 or 3? The IPCC data is now 6 years old, and as we can see the 3+mm/yr now extends to 17 years - which is in excess of any definiton of "decadal" that I'm aware of.