Ball Busted By UVic Students

Richard Littlemore over at DeSmog Blog reports on an interesting encounter Tim Ball, Canadian climate-change denier extraordinaire, had at the University of Victoria. Ball, in a lecture put on by the University of Victoria Young Conservatives Club, presumably thought he was speaking before an audience comprised of friendly, credulous Harper fans.

But UVic is where Dr Andrew Weaver teaches. He’s the Canada Research Chair in Climate Modelling and Analysis. And what Tim Ball actually encountered was a room full of up-and-coming climatologists.

Here’s how Littlemore describes the scene:

The conversation … went on for two-and-a-half painful hours, with Ball dismissing all climate science as a fiction promulgated by a small group of ideologues and the students – laptops in hand – challenging and dismissing his arguments on the basis of ready information.

And here’s an example of one of the exchanges:

Ball: “You look at the list of forcings [the IPCC has]; it’s only those forcings caused by human activity.”

Student: “You’re saying that volcanoes are caused by humans?”

Ball: “Well exactly. The volcanoes is one and look at the thing I showed you with Milankovich.”

Student: “Yeah, but the IPCC accounts for volcanic activity AND Milankovich cycles.”

Ball: “They identify them, but they do not consider them in their models ….”

Student: “They certainly do ….”

Ball: “No they don’t ….”

Student: “Yes they do. I run models….”

Tim Ball, by the way, is pretty much the gold standard for climate deniers. Well, maybe “gold” is overstating things. “Decent quality but slightly tarnished silver” is probably closer to the mark. Regardless, as a former climatologist out of the University of Winnipeg, he’s one of the first “experts” invited onto talk shows when climate science is to be discussed and his arguments are widely cited within the denialist community.

In other words, this is about the best the climate deniers can do. And as it turns out, as soon as they’re confronted with real climate science, all their tired old canards wither and die.

Anyway, I highly recommend reading the rest of Littlemore’s post. Hopefully, DeSmog Blog will soon have a recording of the entire lecture available for download.

Author: Paul Dechene

Paul Dechene is 5’10” tall and he was born in a place. He’s not there now. He’s sitting in front of his computer writing his bio for this blog. He has a song stuck in his head. It’s “Girl From Ipanema”, thanks for asking.

You can follow Paul on Twitter at @pauldechene and get live updates during city council meetings and other city events at @PDcityhall.