The first is the Court of Appeals hearing on the EPA endangerment finding, Eli did a series on that but the long and the short is that the Supreme Court said that EPA had to treat CO2 as a pollutant, and it is going to be REAL hard to get past that. Brad Johnson sets the stage and it looks like the judges are not happy campers with denial (from Greenwire, paywall)
Patrick Day of the Coalition for Responsible Regulation argued that the finding “erroneously decided to completely divorce” the risk assessment from the agency’s regulatory decisions. EPA’s inadequate endangerment finding, he said, authorizes “ineffective and perhaps even fruitless regulations.”
Judge David Tatel, who was particularly aggressive in questioning both sides, sharply dismissed Day’s logic.
“I do not understand your argument,” he said. “Why don’t you try again?”UPDATE: From Reuters
Tatel and Sentelle both seemed concerned that the petitioners were asking the court to overturn the scientific basis for EPA’s endangerment finding or the Supreme Court’s decision in Massachusetts. Both judges indicated that was not their job.
U.S. Circuit Judge David Tatel pointing out the agency had found the science certain enough. "To win here, you have to make an argument that EPA's decision is actually arbitrary and capricious," Tatel said.and from the Environmental Defense Fund
Against this backdrop, today’s Petitioners forwarded non-scientific reasons that they claimed would permit EPA to avoid finding that greenhouse gases are harmful to human health. That line of reasoning prompted Chief Judge Sentelle to note that:The second is a bit of serious merriment, as the folks at the Canadian Committee for the Advancement of Scientific Skepticism (CASS) fisk Tom Harris' version of a climate change course. Tom, a public relations guy, took over a Carleton University course from Tim Patterson, a noted rock head and denialist there. Evidently lectures at CU are (partially) available as videos to those taking the class and to staff, so a staff member asked for and got access. The Ottawa Skeptics had a field day and dug out 142 issues for the bunnies delectation. Eli, being a backwards bunny will start at the back. Others (one, two, three, ) have taken the lead
Sometimes in reading Petitioners’ briefs, I got the feeling that Massachusetts hadn’t been decided.Among these non-scientific factors: Petitioners urged that EPA must consider humans’ ability to adapt to a changing climate in determining whether greenhouse gases endanger human health. In a hypothetical, Judge Tatel probed the flawed implications of that argument – he asked whether Petitioners’ position meant that EPA could determine that a cancer-causing pollutant did not pose a danger to public health on the grounds that society may, at some future point, develop a cure for cancer.
T. Harris Claim 142. ‚Climate science is changing quickly.‛CASS makes the excellent point that climate science is undergoing refinement reinforcing basic ideas rather than rebuilding from scratch but Eli asks why not, we bunnies are changing the climate at lightening (for geology) speed, which is the problem. One of the principles of engineering is if you want to understand how a system works, give it a kick and observe. Unfortunately, if you are in the box, this can be annoying.
T. Harris Claim 141. ‚Prepare for global cooling.‛Often referred to as the Year 10K problem. Eli would suggest that it would be a good thing to hang around for.
Oh hell, its the usual spinach. Go read the CASS report, Skeptical Science or Coby Beck and the other blogs.
Eli admires how CASS anticipates the spittle headed its way. The CU faculty find that academic freedom depends on academic responsibility
Academic freedom carries with it the duty to use that freedom in a manner consistent with the scholarly obligation to base research and teaching on an honest search for truth.They show in their report, that in Harris' class
There was no free exchange of ideas, but the one-sided presentation of a biased viewpoint that contradicts much established research. Indeed, not only were alternative views not given time, but students were actively encouraged to ridicule those individuals who espoused views considered "alarmist" by the instructor (see our comment concerning "blooper of the week" above). Finally, as we demonstrate extensively in our analysis, the material presented was not an adequate representation of the current state of the field of climate science. The teaching of critical thinking and skepticism is healthy in a university setting where students are expected to move beyond the confines of rote learning.but, dear parents of pre-college bunnies who wonder what they will expose the young'uns to, there is a far more serious issue here. The major responsibility of the faculty at any university or college is to evaluate itself. In the strongest form this occurs in hiring and the granting of tenure, where the department faculty plays a decisive role in figuring out if the applicants have half a clue about the field they will teach and do research in.
Not so well known is that the faculty also evaluates adjuncts, instructors, whatever you call em. There is no way that the Carleton University Department of Earth Sciences met its responsibilities in this case. Harris is simply not qualified to teach a course on climate change.
Something else will turn up