Oscar time for Al Gore's movie

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:10 PM GMT on February 26, 2007

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If you haven't seen Al Gore's global warming movie, "An Inconvenient Truth", it's time you watched this important film. The movie took home the Oscar award for best documentary feature of 2006 at last night's Academy Awards, and also won an Oscar for best original song, singer Melissa Etheridge's "I Need to Wake Up." As I wrote in a movie review last year, Gore does a good job educating the non-scientist about the science of climate change and the dangers it poses. The only major flaw scientifically in the movie is the unwarranted connections he makes between climate change and severe weather events such as Hurricane Katrina and the record number of tornadoes in 2004. I gave his science a "B" overall. I thought the movie was a bit too long and was excessively political, but definitely worth seeing (2.5 stars out of four). It is difficult to make a scientifically accurate movie about climate change that will also be interesting enough to do well at the theaters; an "An Inconvenient Truth", while admittedly imperfect, does a respectable job educating us about climate change and the challenges and dangers it poses.

Should "An Inconvenient Truth" be shown in schools?
According to a recent blog posted at realclimate.org, "An Inconvenient Truth" has a become a required part of the science curriculum in some countries. One of the producers of the film, Laurie David, recently offered 50,000 free copies of the $19.99 DVD to National Science Teachers' Association (NSTA) for use in U.S. classrooms. The NSTA turned down the offer on the grounds that the NSTA has a 2001 policy against "product endorsement", and a fear that distributing the film would place "unnecessary risk upon the [NSTA] capital campaign, especially certain targeted supporters." Realclimate.org points out that one of these targeted supporters is oil giant ExxonMobil, and questions whether concern about losing funding from ExxonMobil influenced the decision not to take the free movies. I don't have a problem with the NSTA rejecting the free movies on the grounds that Al Gore's presentation is politicized. However, as pointed out in the realclimate.org post, NSTA does not offer much content on climate change in their list of recommended materials. One of the recommended books, "Global Warming: Understanding the Debate", has no business being on their recommended reading list. This book is written by Kenneth Green, a fellow of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). This fossil-fuel funded think tank recently offered $10,000 to scientists willing to criticize the recent landmark 2007 Summary of Policy Makers climate change report issued by the United Nations-sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). AEI offered to award the money to scientists who would "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs", as explained in an article in the UK Guardian. Given the lack of quality climate change education material it offers to teachers, NSTA needs to seriously rethink their recommended offerings on this important subject. If they are going to continue to recommend a book written by the fossil fuel industry-funded American Enterprise Institute, they should recommend Al Gore's movie as well. The two best books for teaching about climate change are missing from the NSTA's recommendations: Robert Henson's excellent Rough Guide to Climate Change (high school level) and The North Pole Was Here (grades 6-9), by New York Times climate change writer Andrew Revkin.

I'll be back Wednesday with a look at the weather of January 2007--the warmest January on record, globally.

Jeff Masters

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109. tworiversnj
1:12 AM GMT on February 27, 2007
Lost in the hype over Gore is a really good documentary on climate change that appeared on PBS narrated by Alanis Morissette. Global Warming- the Signs and Science was worth showing in science class.
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108. Patrap
7:02 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
107. LowerCal
4:58 PM PST on February 26, 2007
The debate really isn't Al Gore and when someone uses an unrelated bogus attack on the messenger as their argument against the message you have to suspect they can't come up with anything better.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9158
106. Patrap
6:51 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Earth cares not what WE think.She was here long before us.Eons ago..and she will be here Long after we gone..By Large Impacting Rock..asphxyiation..Or Thermonuclear Poof!..either way what we say here is moot in another million years.A mere paragraph in the earths long trek around Sol.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
105. Patrap
6:55 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Its like Binding arbitration or Mediation work..or denial. Some people,..if they dont wanna know,You cant tell um.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
104. weatherguy03
7:50 PM EST on February 26, 2007
The movie has done its part. People are talking about GW, whether you believe it or not.
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103. watch
12:51 AM GMT on February 27, 2007
that "hockey-stick" graph is dubious at best. Read Here:

Link


graph comparison
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102. LowerCal
4:34 PM PST on February 26, 2007
Posted By: Bgoney at 3:53 PM PST on February 26, 2007.
Political winds are blowing strong,creating the internet and supporting the internet are two different things.


This is from one links I posted (and no I won't tell you which one)

If President Eisenhower had said in the mid-1960s that he, while President, "created" the Interstate Highway System ... Everyone would have understood that Ike meant he was a driving force behind the legislation that created the highway system ...

When you intentionally misinterpret something in an attempt to make someone look stupid ... well, it's a double edged sword.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9158
101. Bgoney
7:14 PM EST on February 26, 2007
You're right,Gore is a hook,only because the movie was such an exageration. The main point of the show was that sea levels would rise over 20 feet by 2100. Even the IPCC forecast had the ocean rise at between 8 and 17 inches for the same period. These over-the-top forecasts are what makes it so hard to believe.
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100. Patrap
6:27 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Nobody's fault but mine
Nobody's fault but mine
If I don't read, my soul get lost
Nobody's fault but mine

My mama she taught me how to read
My mama she taught me how to read
If I don't read, my soul be lost
Ain't nobody's fault but mine

My sister she taught me how to read
My sister she taught me how to read
If I don't read, my soul be lost
Ain't nobody's fault but mine

Nobody's fault but mine
Nobody's fault but mine
If I don't read, my soul be lost
Ain't nobody's fault but mine

Nobody's fault but mine
Nobody's fault but mine
If I don't read, my soul get lost
Nobody's fault but mine
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
99. Patrap
6:09 PM CST on February 26, 2007
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98. Patrap
6:07 PM CST on February 26, 2007
..were outta the Blue ..and into the Black..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
97. Patrap
5:59 PM CST on February 26, 2007
The discussion Dr.M wanted by the Al Gore hook is working great here.I feel as though the Man..although a Politician, has brought the Subject to a New Dawn.Nothing wrong with that...everything to Gain.I know..from My Post -Trauma here that the Numbers and stuff over Katrina are hard to seperate from the politics of it.Co2 and Fossil fuels burning 24 /7 365 is not natural to the Eco-system of 3rd rock out.Its Like asbestos in a Boilmakers lung in a way.Short term..it wont kill you..but over time ..the "effect" ,,"causes" Changes in the Lung..leading to symptoms..then sickness then death.Your fine in your 20s..but gasping in the end.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
96. Skyepony (Mod)
12:02 AM GMT on February 27, 2007
GetReal I don't believe the media I spend my time reading those dry research papers:)...& even though Wikipedia~ anyone can alter & not a normal read of mine...

from 27's link & GetReal you reposted part of that where they are growing grapes more north now then then..



it is hotter now... It states as well that wasn't an overal big global warming event, it was more local, unlike now.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 161 Comments: 37360
95. watch
12:03 AM GMT on February 27, 2007
How strong of a greenhouse gas is C02? And how much are we actually contributing? According to this, not even 1% - it is actually .28 of 1%:



Link
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94. watch
11:59 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Some more info. to read:

Link
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93. Patrap
5:58 PM CST on February 26, 2007
never ..Thus the concern and all the excitement.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
92. Skyepony (Mod)
11:51 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Getreal nowhere in the past natural cycle has greenhouse gases suddenly come to the total they are now. We are around a peak in the natural cycle but realize at the same moment we threw an extra near twice as much CO2 that would be there in the natural cycle. Notice the red line on the right~ where in the history of that cycle has it ever gone straight up like that????
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 161 Comments: 37360
91. GetReal
11:53 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
In[edit] North Atlantic and North American regions
During the MWP wine grapes were grown in Europe as far north as southern Britain[5][6][7] although less extensively than they are today[8] (however, factors other than climate strongly influence the commercial success of vineyards and the time of greatest extent of medieval vineyards falls outside the MWP). The Vikings took advantage of ice-free seas to colonize Greenland and other outlying lands of the far north. The MWP was followed by the Little Ice Age, a period of cooling that lasted until the 19th century when the current period of global warming began.

In Chesapeake Bay, Maryland, researchers found large temperature excursions during the Medieval Warm Period (about 8001300) and the Little Ice Age (about 14001850), possibly related to changes in the strength of North Atlantic thermohaline circulation.[9] Sediments in Piermont Marsh of the lower Hudson Valley show a dry Medieval Warm period from AD 8001300.[10]

Prolonged droughts affected many parts of the western United States and especially eastern California and the western Great Basin.[4] Alaska experienced three time intervals of comparable warmth: 1300, 8501200, and post-1800 AD. [11]

A radiocarbon-dated box core in the Sargasso Sea shows that the sea surface temperature was approximately 1C cooler than today approximately 400 years ago (the Little Ice Age) and 1700 years ago, and approximately 1C warmer than today 1000 years ago (the Medieval Warm Period).[1

The above information was found in the Wikipedia Encyclopedia!!!
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90. Bgoney
6:40 PM EST on February 26, 2007
Political winds are blowing strong,creating the internet and supporting the internet are two different things.
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89. Patrap
5:51 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Trouble is..pollution on a Global scale..has no borders.What burns in Africa..and Japan..contributes as much as cars in Europe or America.The cause is fossil fuels and coal fired emissions.The effects are locally made, burned and dispensed..but cumlativly..Global
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88. pottery
7:41 PM AST on February 26, 2007
Good link, Windows.
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87. Skyepony (Mod)
11:41 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Well said Patrap...Nothing like a dry peer reviewed article written by an actual scientist, tested & retested by other scientists & unaltered by people who aren't scientists.

That link makes a good point 27...it's warmer now than during the Medivial Warm period.
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86. GetReal
11:49 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Thanks for posting that link 27windows. I was aware of that information, but some others may want to read that weather history lesson.
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85. GetReal
11:27 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Skyponey there has always been Greenhouse & co2 gases present in the Earth's atmosphere since the beginning of time, when carbon based units started to populate the planet.

Ricderr is correct, the news media was in a similar hysteria about the coming ICE AGE during the late 60's because of, you guessed it, man polluting the Earth. Why should the same media and enviromentalist be given anymore credability today.

And again Skyponey, were Greenland and Antartica once land masses with green vegetation. The current warming is again a natural cycle, that we, man, happens to living through at this time. The current warming cycle may last another 100 years, who knows. But as a natural cycle man is powerless to change what is occurring, and is just along for the ride, like it, or not....
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84. ihave27windows
11:34 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Interesting Link
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83. Patrap
5:31 PM CST on February 26, 2007
I side with the DATA..and see the drastic abrupt changes, along with Satelitte and Other measureable parameters.But the data is overwhelming that the CO2 and other manmade fossil processed carbon burning ..is contributing to a very BAD spike in Global Effect.Its the cause and effect science that shows the Human Element ..slowly but cumulativley,influencing the very atmosphere...Stay away from the Politics in GW.Study the DATA..not the Political winds.They usually have agendas not based in science,..and usually not in the Overall public welfare.Here or Globally.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 421 Comments: 127570
82. GreatNorth
11:27 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
I think the current warming trend actually started early in the 20th century, not 15 years ago. See here
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81. Skyepony (Mod)
11:20 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
ricderr I read a good bit of that article a little while ago, still got to finish it. It's long, but excellent. As I was only going off what I remember of the '70's & I was pretty young then & what they were teaching in the public schools at the time. I must have missed the big myth as truth in the media because I wasn't exposed much to the media then. I remember being aware of it & understanding there was controversy with the majority saying it was only a short reprive in the overall warming.
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80. Skyepony (Mod)
11:13 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
GetReal ~ do you understand where the CO2 & other greenhouse gases are now in relationship to anywhere in the past natural cycle? Have you studied how greenhouse gases & temperature has varies together though the last 650000 years? Horse traders & stable hands got real worried & screamed economic disaster 100 years ago when the car came on the scene. The rest of the countries that aren't 3rd world now have excepted we are making way too much CO2 burning fossils, they are working on the technoligies of the future, we can be the leader of that or be left behind..
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79. GetReal
10:26 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Hey Snowboy hate to throw snow all over your response, but here it goes... Snowboy most of the nuclear bomb testing you referred to had been conducted at underground sites since the mid 60's, by the major nuke powers. The few above ground test in the 50's, when compared to volcanic eruptions, put a minuscle amount of dust into the upper atmosphere.

The planet has been going through these cycle changes since the beginning of time. May I remind you that at one point in time Antartica was full of lush vegetation, and was populated by dinosaurs.

The same was true for Greenland in the northern hemisphere. As late as the time of the Viking were sailing the northern Atlantic, Greenland was known as an island lush with green vegetation, from hence it obtained the name Greenland.

Again, I agree the planet has warmed over the last fifteen years slowly, corresponding with the increased solar flare output activity. I just do not swallow the propaganda of leftist environmentalist, like Al Gore, that wish to economically destroy the U.S., and lower the U.S. to a Third World status.
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78. LowerCal
2:27 PM PST on February 26, 2007
Posted By: LuvzLabz at 12:43 PM PST on February 26, 2007.
Al Gore has got to know what he's talking about. He's so smart. Remember? He invented the internet.


The words that Al Gore actually used in a March 1999 interview with Wolf Blitzer were, "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."

So what, if anything, did Gore actually do to create the modern Internet?

According to Vincent Cerf, a senior vice president with MCI Worldcom who's been called the Father of the Internet, "The Internet would not be where it is in the United States without the strong support given to it and related research areas by the Vice President in his current role and in his earlier role as Senator."

Joseph E. Traub, a computer science professor at Columbia University, claims that Gore "was perhaps the first political leader to grasp the importance of networking the country."


If you are interested in facts you'll find more in
Inventing the Internet. Did Al Gore Invent the Internet? and
Urban Legends Reference Pages: Internet of Lies

It's easy enough to drill down to the facts in this so-called "political debate". If you do it enough and find the real facts, the sources and their motives then you'll have a good basis for an opinion about who's trying to fool you and why.
Member Since: July 26, 2006 Posts: 58 Comments: 9158
77. pottery
5:39 PM AST on February 26, 2007
Good afternoon. This is an interesting discussion, that seems to hinge on Al Gore ( the messenger ) and not on the point that he ( and millions of other people ) have been making. Some folks are letting their political laundry hang out there in an attempt to discredit the entire point of the movie.

What good is trhat.

Come up with an alternative arguement, and put it here.!!!!!!!
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75. franck
9:21 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Yep..some people love the woods, like others love the city..and shopping.
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74. franck
9:06 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Don't mean to be a tree hugger, but the benefits of a grown, standing tree over newly planted seedlings are immense, ie. aeration, soil structure and moisture
absorption...flora/fauna habitat...shade from the radiant heat from a Sun shining through an ever thinner atmosphere!
The simple replanting of seedlings as an answer to clear cutting forests is no answer. Only select cutting sanctioned by foresters who love the woods and have legal authority over timber producers can protect forests.
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73. ricderr
9:12 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Global Cooling

Skye.....here's a decent place to start especially since it comes from the side of MMGW supporters....i know...all those that tell me i should read to educate myself on GW...believe me...i at some point will take that into consideration..don't know how i stumbled on this a few weeks ago....random mistake..LMAO...notice now...almost 40 years later...while admitting some scientist believed in a coming ice age..they say...that the press blew it out of proportion..and yet..today..that same press..is their friends..and many have already said it..and will continue to do so.."it doesn't matter if the media doesn't get all the facts straight....getting the message to the masses is the important part"...that's my complaint..give me facts..don't blow it out of proportion..give me credible evidence and discussion...
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72. Skyepony (Mod)
8:56 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Thanks saddle... More could be put out to help the masses that look for their info in the form of entertainment. The oil companies would hate that. I can imagine that one reason Gore was able to do this movie & get it to the masses is it would accustom people to shooting the messenger of this sort of info. Gore's an easy target to practice on. Look how many do it who haven't even seen it. I study up on it from the source of the horses mouth & believe there is a real problem, saw the movie & still make fun of it~ Which is a shame since we should be discussing the issue.

I'm gonna look for The North Pole was Here at the liberary. Great blog, must run for now.
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70. Skyepony (Mod)
8:51 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
& he'd pull these little narratives in his life in there & here's where people that didn't see it use a review to drag it overly political. But they'd be things that would inpire him to move on this cause or equate how this was related to the smoking industrys cover up for years. His family raised tobacco when he was a kid, they did the denial thing til his sister who's favorite thing to do was run through the feilds died really young of cancer.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 161 Comments: 37360
68. Skyepony (Mod)
8:48 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
I'm not a big movie goer either but this literly opened for the 1st 5 mins looking at a flowing river with Gore rambling on~ in what sounded like a voice so monotone & slow that it sounded nearly forced to sound like your 8th grade science teacher.
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67. Skyepony (Mod)
8:45 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
But the issue isn't Gore. Gore didn't research this. This movie could have been done 100 times better by alot of other people, but the fact Gore made it doen't change the amount of CO2 in the air & how that relates to tempurature in the last 650,000years
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65. Skyepony (Mod)
8:42 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
You'd be sadly disappointed if you watched it for entertainment value. That's where it loses alotta stars.
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64. LuvzLabz
2:39 PM CST on February 26, 2007
Al Gore has got to know what he's talking about. He's so smart. Remember? He invented the internet.

LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anybody who'd give this guy so much as an ounce of credit would have to be a complete bonehead.
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63. Skyepony (Mod)
8:37 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
I keep hearing this in the 70's people worried of ice age coming. I was there, don't remember this being the majority's thought. We were putting out so much pollution, arosols, nuclear & a few volcanos, many suspected it was only masking the warming. It was what the public schools were teaching at the time as well. Maybe that's why I'm so shocked by the oil influence being taught to the kids now.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 161 Comments: 37360
61. Skyepony (Mod)
8:25 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Great blog Dr Masters:) I'm suprised how no one has brought up that they're feeding the kids in school the oil think tank info. I find this appalling.

Saddlegait great point poeple & their scare tacktic this & that. Turn off the TV, put down that video & read some scientific peer approved research papers on it. & really if people'd seen Gore's movie they wouldn't be all ooohh the big scare tacktic approach. I watched it so I could comment on it, cause if ya don't & you state your opinion those that saw it are gonna think you sound like you have no idea what your talking about (& many of ya'll do). If that movie was so scarey why did I have to keep trying to stay awake? Your lucky not to fall asleeep in the 1st 5 mins.

Overall it was accurate, I don't see the 1/2 trueths. The stronger storms may not be wrong, agreed it's a little premature to be putting that in there but is 1 of 100s of facts that were on. NOAA & many other agencies of respect believe it won't be 100 years & storms will certainly be stronger with higher max wind speeds, due to higher SST.
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60. RobbieWM
8:31 PM GMT on February 26, 2007
Nice to meet you too Saddlegait.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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