Thursday, December 8, 2011

Flatearthing IV - Lavoisier Group

I was sent a PDF signed by Philip R Wood of The Lavoisier Group, Australian climate change denialists. It contains the sentence

Hilarious! –World Leaders meet to discuss controlling the climate

Here are a few rebuttals:

"Author Clive Hamilton, in his book Scorcher, says that one can find the following arguments in the various papers promoted by the Lavoisier Group:

There is no evidence of global warming.

If there is evidence of global warming, then it is not due to human activity.

If global warming is occurring and it is due to human activity, then it is not going to be damaging.

If global warming is occurring and it is due to human activity, and it is going to be damaging, then the costs of avoiding it are too high, so we should do nothing."

"Climate change is about science, but not just about science. It's about business and politics and wielding influence. The men - there was just one woman present - were all climate change sceptics, members of an organisation called the Lavoisier Group that argues global warming is nothing to worry about. ... The only problem for the sceptics is that the vast majority of scientists think they are the ones that are deluded. "There's a better scientific consensus on this than on any issue I know - except maybe Newton's second law of dynamics", Dr James Baker, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration"

The Age, 2004

"Global warming scepticism is being manipulated by tactics reminiscient of an earlier campaign of denial, writes David McKnight.
When the tobacco industry was feeling the heat from scientists who showed smoking caused cancer, it took decisive action..."

"In May, the multibillion-dollar oil giant Exxon Mobil acknowledged it had been doing something similar. It said it would cease funding nine groups that had fuelled a global campaign to deny climate change.
Exxon's decision came after a shareholder revolt by members of the Rockefeller family and big superannuation funds to get the company to take climate change more seriously."

"In Australia, the main body trying to undermine the science of global warming is the Lavoisier Group. It maintains a website with links to the Competitive Enterprise Institute (more than $2 million from Exxon), the Science and Environmental Policy Project ($20,000) and the Centre for the Study of Carbon Dioxide (at least $100,000)."

The Sydney Morning Herald, August 2nd 2008

The "Hilarious" Lavoisier article mentioned above was sent to my colleague by Cliff Ollier. Here is a link to the only article I could find by him online, although I'm sure there are many more as he is credited with publishing hundreds. I'll allow you to draw your own conclusions as to the article's merit.

The good professor is listed among the 413 "prominent scientists" listed in 2008 by Senator James M. Inhofe as having "voiced significant objections to major aspects of the so-called 'consensus' on man-made global warming."

According to,

  • 84 have either taken money from, or are connected to, fossil fuel industries, or think tanks started by those industries.
  • 49 are retired
  • 44 are television weathermen
  • 20 are economists
  • 70 have no apparent expertise in climate science

Flat Earth cartoon with kind permission of

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