Tuesday, November 18, 2008

KVMR News with Robert Balling Jr tonight

For anyone who listened, my apologies - I'd only been told that there'd be "a call-in on climate change"; I didn't know - until 5 seconds before he started speaking - that it'd be with Robert Balling.

I should have asked; I would have been better prepared.
Update: M3U of the discussion, from KVMR news page; i don't think it's a permalink, so grab it soon.

A bit of googling shows that Robert Balling was involved with ICE - the "Information Council on the Environment":
The Information Council on the Environment (ICE), was a U.S. organization created by the National Coal Association, the Western Fuels Association, and Edison Electrical Institute. ICE launched a $500,000 advertising and public relations campaign to, in ICE's words, "reposition global warming as theory (not fact)." Patrick Michaels, Robert Balling and Sherwood B. Idso all lent their names in 1991 to its scientific advisory panel.

Its publicity plan called for placing these three scientists, along with fellow greenhouse skeptic S. Fred Singer, in broadcast appearances, op-ed pages, and newspaper interviews. ...

ICE is featured in the Naomi Oreskes talk on the Western Fuels Association, in which she concludes:
"...[Polls show that] while most Americans now do accept global warming as a fact, they don't accept its origins in scientific consensus; they think that scientists are still arguing about it, and this may have played some role in the reluctance of our leaders to actually do something about it.
And it suggests that the resistance campaigns were effective in creating a lasting impression of scientific disagreement, discord, and dissent."

'nuff said.


Anna Haynes said...

KVMR News director Brian Bahouth has pointed out that anyone listening to KVMR during the 4+ hrs prior to news would have known more about his guest than I did:
"Tonight between 6:00 and 7:00 on the KVMR Evening News, we'll be taking your calls for a conversation about global warming with a climate scientist who disputes human caused climate change ... you can join the discussion this and every weeknight on the KVMR Evening News"

(not having listened, i missed it)

Russ said...

I once interviewed Robert Balling Jr.for a Capital Journal article, after I read one of his papers. During the interview he warned me that his credibility was under attack for his past association with ICE. However, I was looking for data on automotive CO2 emissions, and how they compared with natural sources. I had heard that cows, sheep and termites produced more CO2 that all the cars on the planet. He helped me understand the chemistry of CO2 and how it was measured, but he could not confirm the information I was considering for the article. He came across as dedicated scientist, not a tool of the coal industry as suggested by Anna. I listened to the interviews and he sounded like the scientist I interviewed, cautious and straight forward. I learned that he was one of the IPCC authors and recommended that people read the scientific sections of the IPCC reports, the press is not reporting the facts in the report.

Supervisor John Spencer has been reading the IPCC science reports and at a recent ERC Board meeting recommend that more people read these reports, because they were less certain about the reality of human caused global warming than is promoted by the media. That is Robert Ballings message as well. Having studied the IPCC reports, I second that recommendation. See for yourself, do lot listen to what the media filter has to say. They only read the political summaries and write misleading stories which mislead the public. A sorry state of affairs. And, now we have a soon to be President that has not read the scientific reports either, only the political summaries, or environmentalist talking papers written from the political summaries.

Anna Haynes said...

Russ, are you willing to meet me yet for an intellectually honest discussion about global warming?

I'm still offering to pay you, Russ; how much do you charge your clients?

Russ, and others - the Heartland Institute - which employs Dr Balling, if I'm not mistaken - is an ideologically driven public relations shop. When you choose your scientific beliefs (or your scientific experts) according to (nonscientific) ideology, you will not be well served.

And don't forget - it is difficult to convince a man of something, if his paycheck depends on his not understanding it...

Russ said...


At the time I interviewed Dr Balling, I was unaware of his passed associations. Regardless of Dr. Balling's associations, his message and mine is read the IPCC science reports written by the scientist, not the political hacks that wrote the summaries. Sorry, but I am not available for any face to face discussions.

Anna Haynes said...

Note to visitors: Russ Steele (ncwatch.typepad.com) is a retired engineer and our main local global warming denialist; he's unwilling to meet me for coffee and intellectually honest discussion about how and why we differ in our views on global warming science, even if I offer in exchange to donate money to a) charity or b) him.

I find this odd.

Anna Haynes said...

Just an FYI, Michael Tobis reports that a commenter on his blog behaves similarly.

Phil. said...

Russ said: " I had heard that cows, sheep and termites produced more CO2 that all the cars on the planet."

I'm surprised that your speaker couldn't put Russ straight, cattle and termites are major producers of methane.

Russ said...

Ah, Phil you are so right, I should have said greenhouse gases.

Anna Haynes said...

I annotated the transcript of the Balling presentation & Q&A, showing where he went wrong & linking to the accurate statements; it's here (link)