Richard Lindzen is the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at MIT. MIT’s web site suggests his scientific eminence:
Professor Lindzen is a dynamical meteorologist with interests in the broad topics of climate, planetary waves, monsoon meteorology, planetary atmospheres, and hydrodynamic instability. His research involves studies of the role of the tropics in mid-latitude weather and global heat transport, the moisture budget and its role in global change, the origins of ice ages, seasonal effects in atmospheric transport, stratospheric waves, and the observational determination of climate sensitivity. He has made major contributions to the development of the current theory for the Hadley Circulation, which dominates the atmospheric transport of heat and momentum from the tropics to higher latitudes, and has advanced the understanding of the role of small scale gravity waves in producing the reversal of global temperature gradients at the mesopause, and provided accepted explanations for atmospheric tides and the quasi-biennial oscillation of the tropical stratosphere. He pioneered the study of how ozone photochemistry, radiative transfer and dynamics interact with each other. He is currently studying what determines the pole to equator temperature difference, the nonlinear equilibration of baroclinic instability and the contribution of such instabilities to global heat transport. He has also been developing a new approach to air-sea interaction in the tropics, and is actively involved in parameterizing the role of cumulus convection in heating and drying the atmosphere and in generating upper level cirrus clouds. He has developed models for the Earth’s climate with specific concern for the stability of the ice caps, the sensitivity to increases in CO2, the origin of the 100,000 year cycle in glaciation, and the maintenance of regional variations in climate.
Prof. Lindzen is a recipient of the AMS’s Meisinger and Charney Awards, the AGU’s Macelwane Medal, and the Leo Huss Walin Prize. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society. He is a corresponding member of the NAS Committee on Human Rights, and has been a member of the NRC Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate and the Council of the AMS. He has also been a consultant to the Global Modeling and Simulation Group at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, and a Distinguished Visiting Scientist at California Institute of Technology’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (Ph.D., ’64, S.M., ’61, A.B., ’60, Harvard University)
Professor Lindzen recently wrote a letter to President Donald Trump explaining, briefly and cogently, why he and many other scientists are skeptical of the catastrophic anthropogenic global warming theory–which, despite tens of billions of dollars in government subsidies, has failed to generate significant empirical support. The letter was reproduced by the Science and Environmental Policy Project. It has the virtue of being easily read and understood:
For far too long, one body of men, establishment climate scientists, has been permitted to be judges and parties on what the “risks to the Earth system associated with increasing levels of carbon dioxide” really are.
Let me explain in somewhat greater detail why we call for withdrawal from the UNFCCC [United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change].
The UNFCCC was established twenty-five years ago, to find scientific support for dangers from increasing carbon dioxide. While this has led to generous and rapidly increased support for the field, the purported dangers remain hypothetical, model-based projections. By contrast, the benefits of increasing CO2 and modest warming are clearer than ever, and they are supported by dramatic satellite images of a greening Earth.
• The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) no longer claims a greater likelihood of significant as opposed to negligible future warming,
• It has long been acknowledged by the IPCC that climate change prior to the 1960’s could not have been due to anthropogenic greenhouse gases. Yet, pre-1960 instrumentally observed temperatures show many warming episodes, similar to the one since 1960, for example, from 1915 to 1950, and from 1850 to 1890. None of these could have been caused by an increase in atmospheric CO2,
• Model projections of warming during recent decades have greatly exceeded what has been observed,
• The modelling community has openly acknowledged that the ability of existing models to simulate past climates is due to numerous arbitrary tuning adjustments,
• Observations show no statistically valid trends in flooding or drought, and no meaningful acceleration whatsoever of pre-existing long term sea level rise (about 6 inches per century) worldwide,
• Current carbon dioxide levels, around 400 parts per million are still very small compared to the averages over geological history, when thousands of parts per million prevailed, and when life flourished on land and in the oceans.
Calls to limit carbon dioxide emissions are even less persuasive today than 25 years ago. Future research should focus on dispassionate, high-quality climate science, not on efforts to prop up an increasingly frayed narrative of “carbon pollution.” Until scientific research is unfettered from the constraints of the policy-driven UNFCCC, the research community will fail in its obligation to the public that pays the bills.
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