Photo courtesy ABC News: Hundreds of students defied school warnings to attend a rally at Peregian Beach on the Sunshine Coast. (ABC News: Megan Kinninment)
By Spencer D Gear PhD
Study shows school children influence parents on climate change:
There were 50 rallies planned across Australia for students to protest against what they see as the destruction of their future.
My ears pricked when I read and heard the news that school students left their classrooms for the streets and beaches to protest climate change on 15 March 2019. That’s when I began writing this article.
Who is driving the climate change agenda around the nation? Are teachers in the classroom advocates for this position or are children and youth motivated by their parents and peers? Or, is the Australian Labor Party and the Greens’ agenda so powerful that it’s influencing people, right down to children and youth?
It was estimated that 20,000 people in Melbourne rallied outside parliament house.
What is the natural breakdown of gases in the earth’s atmosphere?
(image courtesy The Engineering ToolBox)
So, the majority of our dry atmosphere is made up of two main gases: Nitrogen (79%) and Oxygen (21%) with a very small percentage of other gases (ca 1%).
1. What is climate change or global warming?
‘Climate change’ and ‘global warming’ are used in this article as synonyms.
This is the Australian Government (Department of the Environment and Energy’s) explanation:
1.1 Understanding climate change
Our climate is changing. Observed changes over the 20th century include increases in global average air and ocean temperature, rising global sea levels, long-term sustained widespread reduction of snow and ice cover, and changes in atmospheric and ocean circulation and regional weather patterns, which influence seasonal rainfall conditions.?
These changes are caused by extra heat in the climate system due to the addition of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. The additional greenhouse gases are primarily input by human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas), agriculture, and land clearing. These activities increase the amount of heat-trapping greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The pattern of observed changes in the climate system is consistent with an increased greenhouse effect. Other climatic influences like volcanoes, the sun and natural variability cannot alone explain the timing and extent of the observed changes.
The science behind climate change is supported by extensive scientific research performed and reported across the world. Past and present climate information is collected from observations and measurements of our environment, including trapped air in ice from thousands of years ago. Climate models are used to understand the causes of climate change and to project changes into the future.
Many of the impacts of climate change pose risks to human and natural systems, in the form of more frequent and severe heat waves, coastal inundation due to sea level rise, disruptions to rainfall patterns and other effects. Analyses of a range of climate scenarios indicate the most severe risks of climate change can largely be mitigated if carbon dioxide emissions are reduced to the point where carbon dioxide is no longer accumulating in the atmosphere.
It is signed, sealed and delivered according to the Australian government.
Is it true that ‘the science behind climate change is supported by extensive scientific research performed and reported across the world’?
The CSIRO in Australia claims:
The international scientific community accepts that increases in greenhouse gases due to human activity have been the dominant cause of observed global warming since the mid-20th century. Continued emissions of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and changes in all components of the climate system.
This sounds reasonable and plausible. Are there any substantive objections to this analysis?
Shock jock and prominent radio commentator, Alan Jones, formerly of radio 2GB Sydney told a small group in 2012 in Melbourne,
“The notion of global warming is a hoax,” Jones told a group of about 150 people on the steps of the Victorian Parliament. ”This is witchcraft. Commonsense will tell you it’s rubbish; 97 per cent of all carbon dioxide occurs naturally . . . 3 per cent around the world is created by human beings.”
He now works as a commentator for Sky News. Campbell Newman told Jones:
Debate over climate policy is heating up ahead of the COP26 Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, with pressure building on Australia to commit to a net-zero by 2050 target.
“People are hell-bent on doing this,” Mr Newman said.
“What will we see? We’ll see the rural sector in Australia decimated … we’ll also see importantly the coal and the fossil fuel producing parts of our economy and our regions decimated.
“They absolutely do not know the extent of the economic carnage they’ll create.”
This target will decimate coal mining and gas mining industries and communities.
(sulphur hexafluoride molecule, courtesy Wikipedia)
2. Is it true or fake as demonstrated by science?
NASA Global Climate Change: Vital Signs of the Planet provided this graph to demonstrate the warming of the planet from 1880-2018:
In interpreting this data, NASA makes what seems to be a reasonable assessment:
Multiple studies published in peer-reviewed scientific journals show that 97 percent or more of actively publishing climate scientists agree: Climate-warming trends over the past century are extremely likely due to human activities. In addition, most of the leading scientific organizations worldwide have issued public statements endorsing this position. The following is a partial list of these organizations, along with links to their published statements and a selection of related resources.
Starting on 31 October 2021 there is an important event for the climate change promoters:
The 2021 UN Climate Change Conference, to be held in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12 this year, is a talk-fest designed to pressure countries like Australia to close down the fossil-fuel industries that provide most of the country’s electricity, oil and gas to stop “climate change”.
Within the broad conference is a more specialised meeting, the 26th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP26) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The longer name has been abbreviated to COP26, in the shorthand beloved by bureaucrats the world over.
This article highlights:
The price of electricity and gas . . . has risen dramatically with the closure of coal-fired power stations in each state.
2.1 Climate change for novices
I admit I’m a novice at trying to understand this science. For those of us who are not climatologists or scientists, this topic may be daunting and confusing. My exposure to the mass media and policies of political parties shows that climate change is pushed regularly. It seems to be a Greens’ Party mantra. These are only a few pro-climate change articles but there are many more:
‘Bill Shorten treads gently with careful climate change plan’ (The Canberra Times, 1 April 2019).
‘”Serious concerns”: New study reveals how heatwave hit Shark Bay dolphins hard’ (The Sydney Morning Herald, 2 April 2019)
‘The Coalition has painted itself into a fiscal corner, just like it has on climate change’ (ABC News, Brisbane Qld, 6 April 2019).
‘What are major parties’ climate change policies?’ (news.com.au, 2 April 2019)
These three major news’ sources (The Canberra Times and The Sydney Morning Herald are part of the Fairfax organisation) report as if climate change is an accepted fact.
Is it so or not?
‘What happened to the climate change election?’
‘Australian election could have global climate change impact’
‘Election 2019: What happened to the climate change vote we heard about?’
2.2 Policies of Australian political parties
As I wrote this (23 April 2019), we were in the midst of campaigning for a federal election to be held on Saturday, 18 May 2019. Climate change or global warming is the mantra for the Labor Party and the Greens’ Party. These are their policies:
2.2.1 The Labor Party
Part of its policy is:
Consistent with our obligations under Paris of keeping global warming to well-below two degrees above pre-industrial levels, and informed by independent Climate Change Authority advice, Labor is committed to reducing Australia’s pollution by 45 percent on 2005 levels by 2030, and to reach net zero pollution by 2050. . . .
Making Australia a Renewable Energy Superpower by ensuring that 50 per cent of the nation’s electricity is sourced from renewable energy by 2030, and empowering households and businesses to take advantage of cheap, clean renewable energy and storage.
There are many more details in this policy, but that sample gives a peep into Labor’s support of global warming and that is obvious in its 2019 marketing for the election.
2.2.2 The Greens
Part of its vision is:
Our future is too important to leave up to the fossil fuel lobby and the major party politicians they’ve bought. The Greens have a plan, based on the science, to rapidly transition our economy to renewable energy and end political donations from mining companies. Without the big polluters holding us back, we can create the infrastructure and jobs needed to drive a cleaner, modern economy.
The Labor and Liberal parties will try to convince you that we can only have cheaper energy bills or renewable power. Don’t believe them: we can have both.
It’s obvious The Greens see the only way to address climate change is to get rid of fossil fuel and invest in renewable energy sources.
2.2.3 The Liberal Party
On the LP website was this video by Professor Ivar Giaever, 1973 Nobel Laureate in physics, who said that “Global warming is pseudoscience.” He ‘trashes the global warming/climate change/extreme weather pseudoscientific clap-trap and tells Obama he is “Dead Wrong”’. Hear what he said here.
“Global warming expert Don Easterbrook, a professor of geology at Western Washington University, says that the planet is actually getting cooler. Easterbrook recently spoke in Chicago at the 4th International Conference on Climate Change.”
2.2.4 The National Party
The policy of the federal National Party regarding global warming is:
Meeting the challenges of climate change
We need to meet the challenges of a changing climate in a sensible way that protects our natural environment and sustainability but doesn’t throw out our way of life, local jobs and industries.
Through investing in technology, world leading management practices, renewable energy and practical action we are working to tackle climate change and help our natural environment to safely coexist with industries such as agriculture and resources.
Looking after the environment starts locally, and we want to empower communities to take practical action to protect our natural environment.
We want our agricultural sector to continue to grow and build resilience and sustainability in a changing environment. Making sure water resources are strengthened and preserved through innovation and infrastructure and supporting sustainable and clean, green practices.
I find this to be a weak statement as it avoids the specifics of whether it supports the coal and gas industries in regional Australia. At least the Liberals raised persons who questioned the pseudoscience of global warming.
3. ‘Global warming is a hoax’.
One layperson called it ‘the concocted global warming hoax’. Shock jock Alan Jones of radio 2GB, Sydney, Australia is adamant, ‘The notion of global warming is a hoax’. This is close to the statements made by Professor Ivar Giaever and Professor Don Easterbrook (see above).
3.1 The fake news of climate change
This is exposed in the article by Tom Harris and Timothy Ball:
Canadian Environment Minister Catherine McKenna is arguably the most misinformed of the lot, saying in a recent interview that “polluters should pay.” She too either does not know that CO2 is not a pollutant, or she is deliberately misleading people.
Like many of her political peers, McKenna dismisses credentialed PhD scientists who disagree with her approach, labelling them “deniers.” She does not seem to understand that questioning scientific hypotheses, even scientific theories, is what all scientists should do, if true science is to advance….
Mistakes such as those made by McKenna are not surprising, considering that from the outset the entire claim of anthropogenic global warming (AGW) was built on falsehoods and spread with fake news. 
Harris and Ball explained:
An increasing number of climate scientists (including Dr. Ball) now conclude that there is no empirical evidence of human-caused global warming. There are only computer model speculations that humans are causing it, and every forecast made using these models since 1990 has been wrong – with actual temperatures getting further from predictions with every passing year.
President Trump must now end America’s participation in the fake science and fake news of manmade global warming. To do this, he must withdraw the U.S. from further involvement with all U.N. global warming programs, especially the IPCC, as well as the agency that now directs it – the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
They describe how the fake news of human-caused climate change was promoted as far back as 1988 when the World Meteorological Organization and United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) created the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
Hamilton Spectator (Hamilton, ON, Canada) investigative reporter, Elaine Dewar, concluded that the all-embracing purpose of the IPCC was political and not scientific. Dewar wrote that Maurice Strong, the first executive director of UNEP, ‘was using the U.N. as a platform to sell a global environment crisis and the global governance agenda’.
3.2 Global warming is true.
Democratic Senator in the US, Timothy Wirth, organised for a leading scientist, Jim Hansen, head of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, to the hearings in 1988. Wirth stated at that time ‘we had introduced a major piece of legislation. Amazingly enough, it was an 18-part climate change bill’. After his address, Hansen received the reputation of being ‘the father of global warming’.
Hansen recalls some of what he said:
it was time to stop waffling so much, and say that the evidence is pretty strong that the greenhouse effect is here and is affecting our climate….
I said that I was 99 percent confident that the world really was getting warmer and that there was a high degree of probability that it was due to human-made greenhouse gases. I think it was the “99 percent probability” statement which got a lot of attention, because that was a fairly strong statement….
we don’t have a lot of time to begin to change the technologies and the energy infrastructure so that we can avoid what [are] really dangerous climate changes….
Scientifically, it’s just very clear that if we don’t make changes within the next few years that we’re going to be past a point where we can prevent large, dangerous changes….
There are just some very fundamental facts which are not understood by the public and, frankly, not understood by many policymakers. For example, more than a quarter of the carbon dioxide that we put into the atmosphere will stay there … more than 500 years, and that means we cannot burn all of the fossil fuels without producing a different planet. If a scientist doesn’t say that, I don’t think the public’s going to know that.
3.2.1 NASA exposed Hansen’s global warming ideology
In Harris & Ball’s view, the events of 1988 ‘created an unholy alliance between a bureaucrat and a politician, which was bolstered by the U.N. and the popular press – leading to the hoax being accepted in governments, industry boardrooms, schools and churches all across the world’.
How did NASA respond to Hansen’s promotion of climate change in 1988?
Dr. John S. Theon, Hansen’s former supervisor at NASA, wrote to the Senate Minority Office at the Environment and Public Works Committee on January 15, 2009. “Hansen was never muzzled, even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress.”
Dr Theon continued:
the US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works reports that James Hansen’s former supervisor, retired senior NASA atmospheric scientist Dr. John S. Theon, former Chief of the Climate Processes Research Programme at NASA who was responsible for all weather and climate research in the agency from1982 to 1994, has said he thinks man-made global warming theory is anti-scientific bunk:
‘I appreciate the opportunity to add my name to those who disagree that global warming is man-made,’ Theon wrote to the Minority Office at the Environment and Public Works Committee on January 15, 2009. ‘I was, in effect, Hansen’s supervisor because I had to justify his funding, allocate his resources, and evaluate his results. I did not have the authority to give him his annual performance evaluation….
Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress….
Theon declared ‘climate models are useless.’ ‘My own belief concerning anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system because there are many very important sub-grid scale processes that the models either replicate poorly or completely omit,’ Theon explained. ‘Furthermore, some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results. In doing so, they neither explain what they have modified in the observations, nor explain how they did it. They have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists. This is clearly contrary to how science should be done. Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy,’ he added.
So, a leading NASA weather scientist concluded in 2009:
‘man-made global warming theory is anti-scientific bunk’;
‘anthropogenic climate change is that the models do not realistically simulate the climate system’;
‘Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988’;
‘climate models are useless’;
‘some scientists have manipulated the observed data to justify their model results’;
They [some scientists] have resisted making their work transparent so that it can be replicated independently by other scientists’;
‘This is clearly contrary to how science should be done’;
‘Thus there is no rational justification for using climate model forecasts to determine public policy’.
See: There’s an interesting article being discussed in On Line Opinion, Why do scientists disagree about climate change?
4. Renewable energy
(photo of wind farm courtesy Wikipedia)
4.1 Who encouraged these strikes by youth?
These students are part of a global movement ‘inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg’. Some of Greta’s story can be read in the interview with her, Greta Thunberg, schoolgirl climate change warrior: ‘Some people can let things go. I can’t’ (The Guardian, 11 March 2019).
ABC News reported:
Federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said he would meet with the climate strikers to discuss their concerns outside of school hours, while Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the protests should have been held on a weekend.
“Students leaving school during school hours to protest is not something that we should encourage,” Mr Tehan said….
“Especially when they are being encouraged to do so by green political activists“.
There was union support for the strike by school-aged youth:
This year’s event is [was] already being supported by a growing number of unions including the National Union of Workers, National Tertiary Education Union, United Firefighters Union, Hospo Voice, the Victorian Allied Health Professionals Association and the National Union of Students.
Fifty rallies were planned on 15 March across Australia as these students claimed their futures are being destroyed.
5. Australia’s 2019 ‘climate change’ election
See, ‘What happened to the climate change election?’
‘Australian election could have global climate change impact’
‘Election 2019: What happened to the climate change vote we heard about?’
The Liberal Party, which seems to be the Party rejecting climate change and having videos by scientists claiming climate change is pseudoscience, won the election. Its Coalition partner, The National Party, seems to advocate a fence-sitting position.
As for me, I consider climate change has more to do with advertising hype than scientific substance. Therefore, I’m not convinced by the ravings of Labor and the Greens. No international conference will convince me there is a need to eliminate coal and gas-fired power stations that will devastate communities, especially in light of what happens naturally in our environment.
(Photo: Students gathered on the steps of South Australia’s Parliament House. (ABC News: Gabriella Marchant)
 ABC News, Brisbane, Qld 2019. Climate change strikes across Australia see student protesters defy calls to stay in school (online). Available at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-15/students-walk-out-of-class-to-protest-climate-change/10901978 (Accessed 5 April 2019).
 See: https://www.popsci.com/kids-change-parents-minds-climate
 Available at: http://www.environment.gov.au/climate-change/climate-science-data/climate-science/understanding-climate-change (Accessed 5 April 2019).
 CSIRO n.d. Climate change information for Australia (online). Available at: https://www.csiro.au/en/Research/OandA/Areas/Oceans-and-climate/Climate-change-information (Accessed 5 April 2019).
 Ben Cubby 2012. Climate change a hoax, Jones tells tax protesters. The Sydney Morning Herald (online), 2 July. Available at: https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/climate-change-a-hoax-jones-tells-tax-protesters-20120701-21b3z.html (Accessed 5 April 2019).
 “COP” stands for “Conference of the Parties.”
 That’s “net-zero” carbon emissions and approx. 100% renewable energy by 2050/
 Alan Jones, Sky News, “People have ‘every right’ to question climate projections: Newman,” 5 October 2021, accessed 8 October 2021, https://www.skynews.com.au/opinion/alan-jones/people-have-every-right-to-question-climate-projections-newman/video/55de0f35e23415c4910325fa656d0d83.
 ‘Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) is an inorganic, colorless, odorless, non-flammable, non-toxic extremely potent greenhouse gas, and an excellent electrical insulator. SF6 has an octahedral geometry, consisting of six fluorine atoms attached to a central sulphur atom…. SF6 is used in the electrical industry as a gaseous dielectric medium for high-voltage circuit breakers, switchgear, and other electrical equipment, often replacing oil filled circuit breakers (OCBs) that can contain harmful PCBs…. SF6 is used as a contrast agent for ultrasound imaging.’ (Wikipedia 2019. s.v. Sulfur hexafluoride).
 NASA Global Climate Change 2019. Scientific consensus: Earth’s climate is warming (online), 19 April. Available at: https://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus/ (Accessed 23 April 2019).
 News Weekly, National Civic Council, “COP26 highlights high cost of Green insanity,” 6 October, accessed 8 October, https://ncc.org.au/newsweekly/cover-story/cop26-highlights-high-cost-of-green-insanity/.
 Labor’s Climate Change Action Plan n.d. Available at: https://www.alp.org.au/media/1692/labors_climate_change_action_plan.pdf (Accessed 23 April 2019).
 The Greens n.d. Our Vision: Renewable Energy & Climate Change (online). Available at: https://greens.org.au/platform/renewables (Accessed 23 April 2019).
 Nationals for Regional Australia, accessed 8 October 2021, https://nationals.org.au/policies/protecting-our-local-way-of-life-for-future-generations/.
 Mark Poynter 2019. Closing a renewable timber industry for carbon credits is far from ‘common sense’. On Line Opinion (online), 5 March. Comments: Posted by calwest, Friday, 5 April 2019 1:21:52 PM. Available at: http://forum.onlineopinion.com.au/thread.asp?article=20243 (Accessed 6 April 2019).
 Ben Cubby op. cit.
 ‘Dr. Timothy Ball is a renowned environmental consultant and former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada’ as stated in the following footnote.
 Tom Harris & Timothy Ball 2017. Global warming: Fake News From the Start. The Heartland Institute (online), 20 December. Available at: https://www.heartland.org/news-opinion/news/global-warming-fake-news-from-the-start (Accessed 6 April 2019).
 Co-author of this article.
 Harris & Ball op. cit.
 PBS Frontline 2007. Interviews Timothy Wirth (online), 24 April. Available at: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/hotpolitics/interviews/wirth.html (Accessed 6 April 2019).
 PBS Frontline 2007. Interviews James Hansen (online), 24 April. Available at: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/hotpolitics/interviews/hansen.html (Accessed 6 April 2019).
 Harris & Ball op. cit.
 Harris & Ball op. cit.
 Doug Bandow 2009. What NASA Thinks of James Hansen. Global Warming.org (online), 29 January. Available at: http://www.globalwarming.org/2009/01/29/what-nasa-thinks-of-james-hansen/ (Accessed 6 April 2019).
 Statements from ibid.
 ABC News, Brisbane, Qld. Climate change strikes across Australia see student protesters defy calls to stay in school (online), 15 March, emphasis added. Available at: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-03-15/students-walk-out-of-class-to-protest-climate-change/10901978 (Accessed 5 April 2019).
 Charis Chang 2019. news.com.au (online). Unions back next school strike in Australia ahead of 2019 federal election (online), 11 February. Available at: https://www.news.com.au/technology/environment/climate-change/unions-back-next-school-strike-in-australia-ahead-of-2019-federal-election/news-story/50dcdc9aae668636129232bdc0518841 (Accessed 5 April 2019).
Copyright © 2021 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at Date: 08 October 2021.