When “models” and fudge factors are touted as evidence

Doomsday scenarios are taken to be evidence!!

Dr. Nepstad is at it again but he has a great deal of money to protect.

The same actors, the same advocacy and the same techniques to forecast DOOM.

Only this time drought, land use, illegal logging and climate change  are taken together to provide the necessary forcings to provide the catastrophe. It is called a “study” and implies some objectivity but the models use a variety of fudge factors to decide on the impact of the various variables. It might be more accurate to call it The Doomsday Scenarios since the “study” is no more than the generation of scenarios to come to a pre-determined conclusion. The conclusion is of course that we must immediately reduce greenhouse gas emissions drastically!

The Daily Telegraph reports today that

Rainforest loss may have been overstated, scientists

Climate change and illegal logging could wipe out rainforest wildlife by 2100

Daniel Nepstad, an ecologist at the Woods Hole Research Center in Massachusetts, said only a cut in greenhouse gases can save the world’s wildlife.

“This study is the strongest evidence yet that the world’s natural ecosystems will undergo profound changes — including severe alterations in their species composition — through the combined influence of climate change and land use,” he said.

Unfortunately Dr. Nepstad is already rather tainted. He works for the Woods Hole Research Centre which is associated in Brazil with the Instituto de Pesquiza Ambiental da Amazonia (IPAM).  IPAM is a Brazilian advocacy group. He appears to have a vested interest in magnifying the value of carbon contained within the Rain Forests.

He is entitled to advocate for his point of view of course and to advocate for getting even more funding but his advocacy is not science.

Booker had this to say about 3 weeks ago:

This curious episode may also point to another reason why WWF and Woods Hole have been so active in recent years to promote concern over the danger of global warming for the Amazon rainforest. As I revealed here on March 20, they have been closely allied in support of a scheme known as REDD (Reduction in Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation of Tropical Forests). Its aim is to turn the CO2 in forest trees into “carbon credits”, saleable on the world market to allow firms to continue emitting CO2. Backed by $80 million from the World Bank, WWF, Woods Hole and IPAM are partners in a consortium, supported by the Brazilian government, to protect and manage a vast area of forest in the Tumucumaque region, in return for which they would have the right to sell its carbon credits. In 2007 Dr Nepstad published a formula which would allow the carbon contained in the entire forest to be valued at $60 billion.

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