Patrick Henningsen Correspondent in Copenhagen
December 17, 2009

Andrei Illarionov, the president of the Institute of Economic Analysis, Moscow, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, Washington.

On the eve of the summit in Copenhagen it is useful to clarify once again that more or less accurately known about the climate of our planet and its changes.

Free market organization CFact makes its opinion known about Greenpeace. Obviously, a brief article can not substitute for a detailed study of professionals in a variety of scientific disciplines – climatology, atmospheric physics, chemistry, geology, astronomy, economics. However, the article can offer some basic theses about the main trends in the evolution of climate projections and effects of its changes.

1. The climate of the Earth is constantly changing. He changed in the past, changes in the present, obviously, will change the future – as long as there is a planet.

2. Climatic changes are largely cyclical in nature. Time horizons of climatic cycles are different – from all the usual annual cycle to cycle length 65-70 years, 1300 years, 100 thousand years (Milankovitch cycles).

3. Fundamental disagreement about the very fact of climate change among scientists, the public, government is not known about it there is a broad consensus – the earth’s climate changes occur constantly. Creating supporters climate alarmism myth, though their opponents denied that climate change is unfair propaganda.

4. Differences between climatologists, economists, public figures do not exist for themselves about climate change and other issues. In particular, differences exist regarding:

- Comparative level of modern temperatures (relative to the historically observed),

- Direction of climate change,
- The extent of climate change,
- Speed of climate change,
- Causes of climate change,
- Projections of climate change,
- Effects of climate change,
- The optimal strategy for responding to climate change humanity.
5. An unbiased answers to many of these issues is critically dependent on an elected time horizon – 10 years 30 years 70 years, 1000 years old, 10 thousand years, hundreds of thousands or millions of years. Depending on the time horizon, the answers to these questions may be different, including the opposite.

6. The current level of global temperature in the historical perspective is not unique. The average temperature of the planet Earth is now estimated at about 14.5 degrees Celsius. Her stories have been few periods when the Earth’s temperature was lower than the current – in the early Permian period, in the Oligocene, during periodic glaciations of the Pleistocene. During most of the time of the last half billion years, the air temperature at Earth’s surface greatly exceeds the current, and for about half of this period was approximately 10-12 ° C higher than the current (ie within 25-27 ° C). During regular glaciations of the Pleistocene cold periods lasted for approximately 90 thousand years, with a peak temperature of 10 ° C below present, alternated with brief (at 4-6 thousand years), warm interglacial periods with temperatures of 2-4 ° C higher than present . Approximately 10 thousand years ago began the next significant increase in temperature (approximately 10 ° C), through which melted a huge glacier, occupied a considerable part of Eurasia. Climate warming has played a key role in learning the secrets of human agriculture and civilization of mankind to the transition stage of its development. Over the past 10 thousand years mentioned at least 5 warm periods – the so-called “Climatic optima”, for each of them for 150-300 years, the temperature of the planet was at 1-3 ° C higher than present.

7. The focus of climate change depends critically on the choice of time horizon. In the past 11 years (1998-2009.) Global temperature has decreased by about 0,2 ° C. In the preceding 20 years (1978-1998 gg.), It increased by about 0,4 ° C. During the preceding 30 years (1946-1976 gg.) Temperature fell by about 0,1 ° C. In the preceding two centuries (1740-ies. – 1940-e gg.) Trend in global temperature as a whole was neutral – with periodic warmings, followed by cooling, and after them – regular warming. Over the past three centuries (from the turn of 17-18 centuries), the temperature in the northern hemisphere has increased by approximately 1,3 ° C, and the so-called “Little Ice Age” (MLP), account for 1500-1740 gg., Followed by modern climatic optimum (RMS), which started in 1980. During the three centuries preceding the MLP, the temperature in the northern hemisphere was reduced compared to the level it reached during the Medieval climatic optimum (BCSS) in the 8 th – 13 th centuries. Depending on the chosen time frame long-term temperature trend gets a different angle. For the period of last 2 thousand years, the last 4 thousand years, the last 8 thousand years, it is negative. For periods of the past 1300 years, the last 5 thousand years, the last 9 thousand years. it becomes positive.

8. The scale of contemporary climate change much more modest scale climatic changes observed earlier in the history of the planet. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) describes the growth of global temperature of 0,76 ° C over the last century (1906-2005 gg.) Extraordinary. There is reason to believe this value is somewhat overstated. But the main thing is that the last increase in temperature was greater than in the modern era. Comparable data demonstrate that increases in temperature, for example, in central England in the 18 century (at 0,97 ° C) was more significant than in the 20-m (at 0,90 ° C). The change in temperature in central Greenland, shows that over the past 50 thousand years was at least a dozen periods during which the regional temperature was increased to 10-13 ° C. Given the existing correlation between temperature changes at high latitudes and changes in temperature throughout the planet conservative estimate of a rise in global temperature of 4-6 ° C yields during each period that is 5-7 times more than the actual (and besides, perhaps, somewhat exaggerated) temperature increase in the 20 th century.

9. Speed of current climate change (the speed of modern warming) by historical standards is not unique. According to the IPCC rate of temperature increase over the past 50 years was 0,13 ° C per decade. It is comparable to data obtained with the help of instrumental measurements, a higher rate of temperature increase per decade over half a century, there was at least three times: in the late 17 th century – early 18 th century, in the second half of the 18 century, in the late 19 th century – early 20 century. The rate of warming per century, which was observed in the 20 century, gives as the rate of warming that is fixed in the 18 century with the help of instrumental measurements and the rate of warming for at least 13 cases over the past 50 thousand years, as defined by the methods paleoclimatology.

10. Among the causes of climate change in pre-industrial era there was no anthropogenic factors – because of modest size as the number of mankind, and the extent of its business. The range of climatic fluctuations, their speed and peak values in the pre-industrial climate change exceeded the parameters set forth in the industrial era.

11. During the industrial age, the offensive has traditionally been the beginning of the 19 th century, climate change under the influence of factors, both natural and anthropogenic factors. On the strength (weakness) impact on climate by anthropogenic factors can be judged, in particular, the parameters of climate change in recent years in comparison with their values in previous periods. Since the values of these parameters in the industrial age noticeably smaller than in the pre-industrial, then the basis for assertions that anthropogenic factors on the force had already reached parity with natural factors and the more higher than them, there is currently no.

12. Factors of anthropogenic climate change are very diverse and not confined to carbon dioxide. Mankind has an impact on the local, regional and global climate through the construction of buildings and structures, heat housing, heating, industrial and public premises, engaged in industrial, logging and planting forests, plowing of arable land, dams, drainage and irrigation land leveling and paving of the territory issue aerosols, etc.

13. Concerning the role in climate change carbon dioxide consensus in the scientific community there. Some scientists believe that its role is very great, while others – that its role in comparison with other factors support. There are scientists who claim that carbon dioxide does not have significant impact on climate. There are also serious disagreements on the nature and direction of possible causal relationship between the concentration of carbon dioxide and temperature: some researchers believe the change in concentration of carbon dioxide cause temperature rise, others argue the opposite – that it is fluctuations in temperature cause long-term changes in carbon dioxide.

14. Unlike carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2) is harmless to humans, in contrast to the aerosol, harmful and dangerous substances carbon dioxide does not pollute the environment. It has no color, taste, smell. So popular photos and video showing the smoking factory chimneys and car exhausts as illustrations of the so-called “Appearance” of carbon dioxide, are the introduction of public confusion. It should also be borne in mind that the increased concentration of carbon dioxide in the air has a positive impact on increasing the productivity of plants, including many agricultural crops.

15. Relationship dynamics of the concentration of carbon dioxide to climate change remains a subject of lively debate. The fact is the increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere over the past two centuries, more than 100 units – from 280 parts per million air particles in the early 19 th century up to 387 particles in 2009, this growing concentration coincided with an increase in general for this period of global temperature by about 0,8 ° C. However, the dynamics of CO2 concentration is not always correlate with the expected temperature. Large, rapid increases in global temperature during the interglacial periods of the Pleistocene, during the climatic optima of the last millennium, in the 18 century is not preceded by periods of growth carbon dioxide concentration. In the industrial age, an increase in carbon dioxide concentration is not always accompanied by a rise in global temperature. In 1944-1976 gg. concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased by 24 units – from 308 to 332 particles, but the global temperature during this time fell to 0,36 ° C. In 1998-2009 gg. concentration of carbon dioxide has increased by 20 units – from 367 to 387 particles, but the global temperature during this period decreased by 0,2 ° C. In the first half of 1940’s the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has decreased by 3 units (as a result of the economic potential of the massive destruction caused by the Second World War). This did not prevent the global temperature rise over the same time to 0,24 ° C.

16. Global climate models has demonstrated limited usefulness. The complex nature of the climate system has prompted the creation of complex global climate models that try to take into account impacts on many different factors. According to projections developed on the basis of these models in the UK and the U.S. in late 1990 – early 2000’s, the global temperature by the end of the 21 st century should increase by 2,0-5,8 ° C, including during the first decade of this century – by 0,2-0,5 ° C. Indeed, the actual global temperature for this time is not increased, but decreased – on 0,2 ° C.

17. Predictions of global climate change, made at the beginning of this decade, Russia’s scientists (including the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute, Academy of Sciences, Main Geophysical Observatory. AIVoejkova), predicted a decrease in global temperature of 0,6-0,7 ° C by the year 2025-2030 compared with a local temperature peak reached at the turn of the 20 th and 21 th centuries. During the first decade of the 21 st century, the actual reduction in global temperatures occurred generally in line with the forecast made by Russia’s scientists a decade ago.

18. Implications of climate change for humans differ depending on their orientation, size, speed. Increasing temperature leads to a more warm, soft and moist climate, and its decline – to a cold, hard and dry. Terms of human life and conduct their business activities in warmer climates are more favorable than in the colder (reducing the cost of heating and space heating, reducing the volume of food required to sustain energy and heat in colder climates, the increase in the growing season of plants, higher yields crops, lengthening time navigation, etc.).

19. Climate dividend as a result of warming is very important. Especially significant is the effect of temperature increases in the countries and territories located in high latitudes. According to the Institute of Economic Analysis a higher average annual temperature in Russia in 1992-2005,. compared with the period 1970-80. Russia has provided economic subjects total cost savings of approximately 1% of GDP per year.

20. Suggested supporters of climate alarmism methods “to combat global warming by reducing carbon dioxide emissions are not only scientifically unfounded – in the absence of extraordinary characteristics of modern climate change, but also incredibly expensive in economic terms. Especially dangerous such measures, if adopted, are for the medium and low levels of economic development, effectively cut off their path to reduce the economic gap with more developed nations of the world.

21. The influence of anthropogenic origin on the climate is insignificant compared with the impact factors of natural character and above all the sun. Therefore, the most effective strategy for responding to different types of humanity from climate change is its adaptation (adaptation) to the changing environment. In this way people reacted to the larger-scale climatic changes in the previous period, as less prepared for them. At present, mankind has a greater than before, the resources for their adaptation to fluctuations in climate, it is better prepared for such changes as science, so technically and psychologically. The costs of adaptation to climate change to humanity incomparably less than in the implementation of imposed ideologies and practices of climate alarmism.