Scientists Slam Link Between Hurricanes and Global Warming

Experts say it's more hype than science.

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As Hurricane Irene whimpers off to Canada, earlier suggestions that it and predictions of a harsh 2011 hurricane season can be linked to global warming are being slammed in a new report from skeptical scientists.

Just like the hyped predictions of disaster to the East Coast from Irene over the weekend, the new report says that models used by global warming scientists "over-estimate" the the warming trends of the globe to back up their warnings of future droughts, killer storms, and famine. [See a slide show of 10 reasons Americans aren't talking about climate change.]

While "Climate Change Reconsidered"  from the Heartland Institute, does agree that man has hurt his environment, causing events like flooding, it's not because of pollution or other greenhouse gasses cited by proponents of global warming like former Vice President Al Gore. In the case of flooding, the report argues, it's mostly because mankind is bad at construction. "Climate change ranks well below other contributors, such as dikes and levee construction, to increased flooding," it says.

As for hurricanes, like Irene, the skeptical scientists report that storm frequency does not track with global temperature fluctuations and they add that historical trends show that storms were worse during the Medieval period of about 950–1250 AD.

The scientists who headed the project are well-known in their field and are led by global warming critic Fred Singer, professor emeritus of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia.

Their report, provided to Whispers today, comes as the war over global warming is getting hot. Gore, for example, last week called skeptics this generation's racists, and Democrats and Republicans are still fighting over President Obama's cap-and-trade proposal and new anti-pollution regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency. Also, global warming is making a debut on the presidential stage with GOP candidates like Texas Gov. Rick Perry questioning it.  [See political cartoons about the 2012 GOP presidential field.]

Like those who say science proves the existence of man-made global warming, the skeptics also are armed with historical trends and science that suggest that current global warming is just part of an up and down trend over centuries.

What's unusual about the report is that it says temporary global warming has a human benefit in curbing weather-related deaths. "Global warming is more likely to improve rather than harm human health because rising temperatures lead to a greater reduction in winter deaths than the increase they cause in summer deaths," concludes the report.

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