Back in April, we gave you a heads-up about a pal-reviewed, poorly sourced and largely ignored white paper from a bunch of deniers that seeks to undercut the Endangerment finding. Well try and contain your excitement, because they wrote another (pdf warning).
Just like last time, Koch operative Michael Bastasch of the dodgy Daily Caller falsely describes the now weeks-old report as a peer-reviewed study in his “exclusive” story published Wednesday. For the record, the word “study” doesn’t appear anywhere in the white paper--it appears that even its authors don’t consider their work to be a study.
Despite Bastasch’s lack of journalistic ethics, integrity or basic competence (or, you know, because of it), links to the inaccurate story appeared on Drudge and got top billing on Climate Depot. This is an indication that deniers are going to be flogging this particular paper hard in their campaign to pressure the Trump administration to take on the quixotic quest to undo the endangerment finding.
But this paper is not likely to sway anyone who isn’t already steeped in the delusions of climate denial. The central argument--that adjustments to the temperature record are suspect, and without them there’s no warming--is an all-too-familiar one that gets debunked basically every year. The authors frame the report by asserting that, because the temperature record isn’t robust, the endangerment finding is invalid. (Another dead giveaway that this isn’t a real study, but instead a piece of political propaganda.)
Overturning the finding that carbon pollution is a threat to public health and therefore should be regulated is, of course, the endgame here. In his Daily Caller piece, Bastasch quotes one of his fellow Koch operatives at CEI who’s leading the petition to get the EPA to reconsider the endangerment finding as saying the study adds “adds a very strong new element” to the case.
But if this study is so strong, why isn’t it actually peer-reviewed in a real journal? Oh right, because it’s a bunch of nonsense.
Speaking of nonsense, CEI is also starting to pressure the Trump administration to go after California’s right to set stricter auto standards than the federal government. Like the endangerment finding, that’s going to be a tough fight, to put it mildly.
It’s also a fight that, even if they win, might not mean much given recent news that Volvo is abandoning the internal combustion engine and that France is joining Norway and the Netherlands in phasing out gas cars all together.
What’s that we hear? The muffler’d screams of exhausted oil and gas peddlers, drowning their sorrows engine and tonic? Ahh, that’s music to our gears.
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