After clinging to his every word for years, they are now pretending that they never believed him.
Lovelock on Global Warming
James Lovelock is a ‘big idea’ type, most successful with his Gaia extrapolation (1976), although it certainly is not universally accepted by all top scientists. He is not a hard scientist. His specialty is medicine, and chemistry, where he has contributed significantly. He understands very little about geophysicalfluiddynamics.
I read his book in the ‘70s and found it entertaining but very vague. That’s the way one wants to be with prognostic hypotheses, to allow room to incorporate the certain-to-occur deviations in observations. His forte is as a “science popularizer” alltho he lacks the scientific credentials to be as successful as Carl Sagan for instance (both worked on exploration of Mars, mainly to find evidence of life.)
Most knowledgable climate scientists cringed at his prognoses for ‘severe & soon’ Global Warming in his 2nd book . He forgot to be vague. He took a far-out gamble on a model possibility, and the past decade hasn’t met his predictions. His recent confession that he was wrong in predicting severe Global Warming soon is naturally taken (in a classic “hasty generalization”) as “proof” that GW scientists are all wrong. At least one was (so far). As he has said; “I would be a little more cautious — but then that would have spoilt the book.”
The usual attempt to rewrite history. Three years ago the same author was worshiping at the alter of Gaia.
Listening to Lovelock on NPR:
He did an imaginative theory (the Gaia hypothesis) some 30-years ago. It was basically an extension of the theory of evolution, beyond biology to geology and geophysics. It has stood the test of time. But I have some reservations about his quotes, with my comments in italics:
“I didn’t worry about Global Warming until about 2004.”
I didn’t worry so much until then either. Then effects that were predicted for 2050 were happening now. I agree with him that we waited too long for it not to have a big influence on our lives.