World-renowned sea level expert, Nils-Axel Mörner has come out to trash latest alarmist media claims that Bangladesh is facing serious flood risks due to man-made global warming. In particular, Dr. Mörner has denounced environmentalist, Bill McKibben who speaks of “30 million refugees” and Canada’s Sunday edition of the star.com for publishing a misleading article, ‘Bangladesh faces mass migration, loss of land from climate change.’
The story claims villages in much of rural southwest Bangladesh are suffering the ravages of climate change. The author of the piece, Raveena Aulakh, relies heavily on the junk science of Atiq Rahman, of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report. Rahman blames Bangladesh’s woes on human emissions of carbon dioxide and insists raising taxes will stem the rising tides. “All this could happen faster because of lack of reduction of greenhouse gases,” says Rahman. “And even if we stopped now, it would take a lot of time for things to get better.”
But Dr. Mörner, famed for his scientific rebuttals of such claims is having none of it. He has issued a press statement (February 10, 2013) to denounce as bogus the article’s shabby “climate change” link to Cyclone Aila that wrought devastation on the subcontinent in 2009.
Mörner retorted that Cyclone Aila “had nothing to do with any sea level rise. It was just the destruction of one of those events hitting this coast so badly. Unfortunately, this is normal for this part of the world, and has always been so.” The real concern, says the sea level expert, should be the incessant chopping down of mangrove trees to clear space for shrimp farms which fuels soil erosion and increases the risk of flooding. As Mörner pointed out during the ‘Sealevelgate’ scandal in 2001, politicized and cherry picked science “leads to confusion over cases such as Bangladesh, whose plight is the exact opposite of the one claimed by environmental lobbyists and the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change].”
Nonetheless, star.com writer, Raveena Aulakh sticks rigidly to the IPCC’s doomsaying narrative and cynically promotes the usual tired old claims about melting ice sheets, diminishing glaciers and man-made global warming.
If only Aulakh and other sensationalist publications would introduce a little more of the Mörner balance in their articles for he has already exposed the fraud and misunderstand about the subcontinent in a key article from 2011 in the Spectator. ‘Rising credulity,’ describes how Mörner visited and studied the Sundarban delta area in Bangladesh (pictured) and was able to observe clear evidence of coastal erosion, not sea level rises.
The truth about sea levels are that they have always been fluctuating and always will no matter what governments think they might do to control them. Indeed, there are well-documented and huge variations in sea levels, by as much as two meters, because, as is the way with Nature, they stubbornly refuse to maintain a constant level. Dr. Mörner describes the world’s oceans and seas as more akin to an “agitated bath where the water is slopping back and forth. This is a dynamic process.”
By contrast, independent scientists know full well that Bangladesh is cursed because of rain over the Himalayas, which is unconnected with the sea. “It is also cursed because of the cyclones which push water inland. Again, this has nothing to do with the sea, adds Mörner.
Sensationalist authors such as Atiq Rahman should, says Mörner, first check their facts with the world’s true experts on sea level. They can be found at the INQUA (International Union for Quaternary Research) commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution (of which Mörner is a former president), not with the discredited IPCC.
This and other great science stories can be found at Principia Scientific International.