Richard Lindzen

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Richard S. Lindzen
Born 8 February 1940 (1940-02-08) (age 69)
Webster, Massachusetts
Fields Atmospheric Physics
Institutions Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Alma mater Harvard University
Doctoral advisor Richard M. Goody
Notable students Siu-shung Hong, John Boyd, Edwin K. Schneider, Jeffrey M. Forbes, Ka-Kit Tung, Christopher Snyder, Gerard Roe
Known for Dynamic Meteorology, Atmospheric tides, Ozone photochemistry, quasi-biennial oscillation, Iris hypothesis
Notable awards NCAR Outstanding Publication Award, Member of the NAS, AMS Meisinger Award, AMS Charney Award, AGU Macelwane Award, Leo Prize of the Wallin Foundation
Religious stance Jewish

Richard Siegmund Lindzen (born February 8, 1940, Webster, Massachusetts) is a Harvard trained atmospheric physicist and Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Lindzen is known for his work in the dynamics of the middle atmosphere, atmospheric tides and ozone photochemistry. He has published more than 200 books and scientific papers.[1] He was the lead author of Chapter 7, 'Physical Climate Processes and Feedbacks,' of the IPCC Third Assessment Report on climate change. He has been a critic of some anthropogenic global warming theories and the alleged political pressures on climate scientists. He is author (in 2001) of the "Iris hypothesis", which suggested increased sea surface temperature in the tropics would result in reduced cirrus clouds and thus more infrared radiation leakage from Earth's atmosphere.[2] This suggested infrared radiation leakage was hypothesized to be a negative feedback which would have an overall cooling effect. The consensus view is that increased sea surface temperature would result in increased cirrus clouds which would have the effect of warming the sea surface further and thus there would be positive feedback.[verification needed]


[edit] Career

Lindzen has published papers on Hadley circulation, monsoon meteorology, planetary atmospheres, hydrodynamic instability, mid-latitude weather, global heat transport, the water cycle, and their roles in climate change, ice ages, seasonal atmospheric effects.[3] He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the Science, Health, and Economic Advisory Council at the Annapolis Center for Science-Based Public Policy. Educated at Harvard University (Ph.D., '64, S.M., '61, A.B., '60), he moved to MIT in 1983, prior to which he held positions at the University of Washington (1964-1965), Institute for Theoretical Meteorology, University of Oslo (1965-1966), National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) (1966-1967), University of Chicago (1968–1972) and Harvard University (1972–1983). He also briefly held a position of Visiting Lecturer at UCLA in 1967.[4] He is known for pioneering the study of ozone photochemistry,[5] and advised several student theses on the subject.[6]

[edit] Awards and Honors

Lindzen is a recipient of the American Meteorological Society's Meisinger and Charney Awards, American Geophysical Union's Macelwane Medal, and the Leo Prize from the Wallin Foundation in Goteborg, Sweden. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), and the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, and was named Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Meteorological Society. He is a corresponding member of the NAS Committee on Human Rights, and a member of the United States National Research Council Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate. He was a consultant to the Global Modeling and Simulation Group at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, and a Distinguished Visiting Scientist at California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

[edit] Global Warming

[edit] Climate change science

In 2001 Lindzen served on an 11-member panel organized by the National Academy of Sciences.[7] The panel's report, entitled Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions,[8] has been widely cited. Lindzen subsequently publicly criticized the report summary for leaving out doubts about the weight that could be placed on 20 years of temperature records.[9]

[edit] IPCC activities

Lindzen worked on Chapter 7 of 2001 IPCC Working Group 1, which considers the physical processes that are active in real world climate. He had previously been a contributor to Chapter 4 of the 1995 "IPCC Second Assessment." He described the full 2001 IPCC report as "an admirable description of research activities in climate science"[10] although he criticized the Summary for Policymakers. Lindzen stated in May 2001 that it did not truly summarize the IPCC report[11] but had been amended to state more definite conclusions.[12] He also emphasized the fact that the summary had not been written by scientists alone. However, the NAS panel on which Lindzen served (see above) disagreed, saying that the summary was the result of dialogue between scientists and policymakers.[13][14]

[edit] Media appearances

In an article for the Wall Street Journal (June 11, 2001), Lindzen stated that "there is no consensus, unanimous or otherwise, about long-term climate trends and what causes them" and "I cannot stress this enough -- we are not in a position to confidently attribute past climate change to carbon dioxide or to forecast what the climate will be in the future. That is to say, contrary to media impressions, agreement with the three basic statements tells us almost nothing relevant to policy discussions."[15]

In September 2003 Lindzen wrote an open letter to the mayor of his home town, Newton, Massachusetts,[16] his views on global warming and the Kyoto Accord, in which he stated, "... [T]he impact of CO2 on the Earth's heat budget is nonlinear. What this means is that although CO2 has only increased about 30% over its pre-industrial level, the impact on the heat budget of the Earth due to the increases in CO2 and other man influenced greenhouse substances has already reached about 75% of what one expects from a doubling of CO2, and that the temperature rise seen so far is much less (by a factor of 2-3) than models predict (assuming that all of the very irregular change in temperature over the past 120 years or so—about 1 degree F—is due to added greenhouse gases—a very implausible assumption)."

The November 10, 2004 online version of Reason magazine reported that Lindzen is "willing to take bets that global average temperatures in 20 years will in fact be lower than they are now."[17] James Annan, a scientist involved in climate prediction, contacted Lindzen to arrange a bet. Annan and Lindzen exchanged proposals for bets, but were unable to agree. Lindzen's final proposal was a bet that if the temperature change were less than 0.2 °C (0.36 °F), he would win. If the temperature change were between 0.2 °C and 0.4 °C the bet would be off, and if the temperature change were 0.4 °C or greater, Annan would win. He would take 2 to 1 odds.[18]

Of the Kyoto Accord, he claims there is no "controversy over the fact that the Kyoto Protocol, itself, will do almost nothing to stabilize CO2. Capping CO2 emissions per unit of electricity generated will have a negligible impact on CO2 levels."[19]

He frequently speaks out against the IPCC position that significant global warming is very likely caused by humans (see global warming) although he accepts that the warming has occurred, saying global mean temperature is about 0.6 degrees Celsius higher than it was a century ago.[10]

Lindzen was one of several scientists who appeared in The Great Global Warming Swindle, a documentary that aired in the UK in March, 2007 on Channel 4. The film was critical of the IPCC and many scientific opinions on climate change. The film has been criticized for misuse of data and out of date research, for using misleading arguments, and for misrepresenting the position of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.[20][21][22][23]

[edit] Industry links

According to Ross Gelbspan in a 1995 article in Harper's Magazine, Lindzen "... charges oil and coal interests $2,500 a day for his consulting services; his 1991 trip to testify before a Senate committee was paid for by Western Fuels and a speech he wrote, entitled Global Warming: the Origin and Nature of Alleged Scientific Consensus,[24] was underwritten by OPEC."[25][26] However, according to Alex Beam in a 2006 article in the The Boston Globe, Lindzen said that although he had accepted $10,000 in expenses and expert witness fees from "fossil-fuel types" in the 1990s, he had not received any money from these since.[27] Lindzen has elsewhere described the Gelbspan allegation as a "slander."[28]

Lindzen has been a member of several think tanks including the Cato Institute and the George C. Marshall Institute that have accepted money from companies such as ExxonMobil and Daimler Chrysler.[26]

[edit] Views on health risks of smoking

Lindzen has claimed that the risks of smoking, including passive smoking, may be overstated[29][30]. In 2001,[30] Newsweek journalist Fred Guterl reported, after an interview with Lindzen, "Lindzen clearly relishes the role of naysayer. He'll even expound on how weakly lung cancer is linked to cigarette smoking. He speaks in full, impeccably logical paragraphs, and he punctuates his measured cadences with thoughtful drags on a cigarette."[30]

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^
  2. ^ Lindzen, R.S., M.-D. Chou, and A.Y. Hou (2001). "Does the Earth have an adaptive infrared iris?". Bull. Amer. Met. Soc. 82: 417-432. doi:10.1175/1520-0477(2001)082<0417:DTEHAA>2.3.CO;2. 
  3. ^ "Publications". Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  4. ^ "Curriculum Vitae, Richard Siegmund Lindzen". June 1, 2008. Retrieved on 2009-03-18. 
  5. ^ "Lindzen, Richard S.". Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  6. ^ "Theses advised by Prof. Richard S. Lindzen" (PDF). Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  7. ^ "Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions: Committee on the Science of Climate Change". National Academies Press. 2001. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  8. ^ "Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions". National Academies Press. 2001. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  9. ^ Lindzen, Richard S. (June 11, 2001). "Scientists' Report Doesn't Support the Kyoto Treaty" (PDF). The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  10. ^ a b Lindzen, Richard S. (February 23,2004). "Canadian Reactions To Sir David King". The Hill Times. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  11. ^ Lindzen, Richard S. (May 1, 2001). "Testimony of Richard S. Lindzen before the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee" (PDF). Lavoisier Group. Retrieved on 18th March, 2009. 
  12. ^ Solomon, Lawrence (December 22,2006). "The Deniers -- Part V: The original denier: into the cold". National Post. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  13. ^ The NAS panel said on the matter that "The committee finds that the full IPCC Working Group I (WGI) report is an admirable summary of research activities in climate science, and the full report is adequately summarized in the Technical Summary. The full WGI report and its Technical Summary are not specifically directed at policy. The Summary for Policymakers reflects less emphasis on communicating the basis for uncertainty and a stronger emphasis on areas of major concern associated with human-induced climate change. This change in emphasis appears to be the result of a summary process in which scientists work with policy makers on the document. Written responses from U.S. coordinating and lead scientific authors to the committee indicate, however, that (a) no changes were made without the consent of the convening lead authors (this group represents a fraction of the lead and contributing authors) and (b) most changes that did occur lacked significant impact."
  14. ^ "Climate Change Science: An Analysis of Some Key Questions: Summary". National Academies Press. 2001. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  15. ^ Lindzen, Richard S. (June 11, 2001). "Scientists' Report Doesn't Support the Kyoto Treaty" (PDF). The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  16. ^ TCS Daily : Technology - Commerce - Society
  17. ^ Bailey, Ronald (November 10, 2005). "Two Sides to Global Warming". Reason Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  18. ^ Bailey, Ronald (June 8, 2005). "Betting on Climate Change". Reason Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-04-05. 
  19. ^ Lindzen, Dr. Richard (09/17/2003). "A Mayor Mistake". TCS (Tech Central Station). Retrieved on 03-15-09. 
  20. ^ Houghton, John. "The Great Global Warming Swindle: Critique by John Houghton" (PDF). The John Ray Initiative. Retrieved on 2007-12-20. 
  21. ^
  22. ^ "The Great Global Warming Swindle: open letter to Martin Durkin". Climate of Denial. 2007-04-24. Retrieved on 2007-04-28. 
  23. ^ BAS Statement about Channel 4 programme on Global Warming
  24. ^ Lindzen, R.S.. "Global warming: the origin and nature of the alleged scientific consensus". Regulation, Spring 1992 issue: pp. 87-98. 
  25. ^ Ross Gelbspan (December, 1995). "The Heat is On: The warming of the world's climate sparks a blaze of denial". Harper's Magazine. 
  26. ^ a b Oriana Zill de Granados. "The Doubters of Global Warming". PBS. Retrieved on 2007-11-24. 
  27. ^ Alex Beam (30 August 2006). "MIT's inconvenient scientist". The Boston Globe. Retrieved on 17 March 2009. 
  28. ^ Lindzen, R.S. (2009). Climate Science: Is it currently designed to answer questions?. arXiv.  See page 14.
  29. ^ Brook, Barry (2007-07-12). "Don't be swindled". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved on 2009-04-15. 
  30. ^ a b c Fred Guterl (2001-07-23). "The Truth About Global Warming; The forecasts of doom are mostly guesswork, Richard Lindzen argues--and he has Bush's ear". Newsweek. 

[edit] External links

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