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Alarmist Scientists Are Trying To Hide The Good News That The Planet Is Getting Greener

October 20, 2016

By Paul Homewood




Dellers writes for Breitbart:


Alarmist scientists are trying to cover up the good news that rising CO2 levels are making the planet turn greener. And that even includes one of the scientists who made the discovery in the first place.

The discovery was first announced in 2012 in a lecture by Professor Ryanga Myneni of the University of Boston.

Rising CO2 levels are causing the planet to get greener, Myneni revealed. In the last 30 years, he estimated, the planet’s greenery has increased by 14 per cent. About half of this, he calculated, was a direct result of increased carbon dioxide levels, rather than of other factors like warmth, irrigation or fertilisers. And the area covered is vast:  as Myneni’s co-author Zaichun Zhu, of Beijing University, puts it, it’s equivalent to adding a green continent twice the size of mainland USA. 





What’s more, Myneni showed, this greening is taking place across the board, in all manner of vegetation: tropical rain forests, subarctic taiga, grasslands, semi-deserts, farmland, the lot.




We have reported on this greening before at Breitbart here and here – and, of course, it’s very good news. But it hasn’t been widely circulated in much of the media for reasons which will soon become clear.

The first person to break the good news was science author and journalist Matt Ridley, who wrote it up in the Wall Street Journal in a piece titled How Fossil Fuels Have Greened The Planet.

He began:

Did you know that the Earth is getting greener, quite literally? Satellites are now confirming that the amount of green vegetation on the planet has been increasing for three decades. This will be news to those accustomed to alarming tales about deforestation, overdevelopment and ecosystem destruction.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the notion that CO2 could be beneficial was not something the greenies wanted to hear. And that included the co-author of the study Ryanga Myneni, who did everything he could to discredit Ridley’s (entirely accurate) account of his study.

Ridley described what happened next in his recent Global Warming Policy Foundation lecture at the Royal Society in London.

At the end of 2015, when his paper had been under peer review for eight months so he knew these results were coming, Dr Myneni, criticized me specifically, saying on a green blog that “[Ridley] falsely claims that CO2 fertilisation is responsible for the greening of the earth”. Yet a few months later he himself published evidence that “CO2 fertilisation explains 70% of the greening trend”.

In the press release accompanying the article in April 2016 he once again referred to me by name:

[“The beneficial aspect of CO2 fertilization in promoting plant growth has been used by contrarians, notably Lord Ridley…to argue against cuts in carbon emissions to mitigate climate change…”]

As Richard Tol commented: “The new paper vindicates what Matt Ridley and others have been saying all along — yet they apparently deserve to be kicked nonetheless.”

I wrote to Dr Myneni politely asking him to justify his criticism of me with specific examples. He was unable to do so. “There are no ‘up-sides’ to having too much CO2 in the air,” was all he said.

Even now, Myneni is determinedly trying poo poo the significance of his own study. In response to Ridley’s lecture he has issued an official statement at the University of Boston website, again pouring scorn on Ridley.

Q: Is Greening not a good thing?
A: We do not fully understand the CO2 fertilization effect. Experiments do indicate a fertilization effect and higher water use efficiency. The same experiments also indicate diminishing effects over time. Moreover, we do not know how much of what we observe in experiments translates in to the real world. Much of this has to do with how nutrient limitations would play out when CO2 becomes abundant. In short, there is no evidence to count on CO2 fertilization benefit. Personally, I would not buy the fertilization benefit for the price of global warming (and all the impacts that this warming implies).

Q: Are Climate Change (Global Warming) and attendant impacts real?
A: Lord Ridley discounts global warming and impacts. Yet, he is all for the fertilization benefit. He starts his talk with the statement “I am a passionate champion of Science” and goes on to ignore 30+ years of IPCC assessments! What is worse, he assumes that the people behind the science have malevolent motives (suppressing publication of our work … etc). How sensible is it to argue that thousands and thousands of scientists are somehow in cahoots to push the global warming hoax on innocent people of the world …

Careful readers – and you really don’t need a PhD to see through this: indeed it’s probably a disadvantage – will note that at no stage do Myneni’s disclaimers actually contradict the facts of his study, as faithfully and accurately reported by Ridley. His answer to the second question is just a succession of rhetorical fallacies: ad hominem, straw man, appeal to authority; his answer to the first, effectively admits that Ridley’s interpretation is correct – “experiments do indicate a fertilization effect and higher water use efficiency” – but then tries to fudge his way out with a few airy denials.

The other key accusation Ridley makes is that Myneni and his colleagues may deliberately have sought to delay publication of their report, lest skeptics take too much pleasure in it.

Myneni’s results, however, remained unpublished. I was puzzled by this. Then I realized that one of the IPCC’s periodic assessment reports was in preparation, and that probably Dr Myneni and colleagues might delay the publication of their results until after that report was published, lest “the skeptics have a field day” with it.

That last phrase, by the way, is from one of the Climategate emails, the one on 22 September 1999 in which Dr Michael Mann approves the deletion of inconvenient data.

Sure enough, Myneni’s results were eventually published three years later in April 2016 in a paper in Nature Climate Change, with 32 authors from 24 institutions in eight countries – when the IPCC report was safely in the public domain and the great Paris climate jamboree was over.

Myneni makes his lengthy excuse at the Boston website, which I wouldn’t bother reading unless you’re feeling very patient. My translation: “A very enormous dog ate my homework.”

The Alarmist media, it goes without saying, are taking Myneni’s side in this. The BBC’s house eco-loon Roger Harrabin had this to say on Twitter:




So this is where we’re at in the climate debate. And an extraordinary place it is too. Scientists on the global warming gravy train, it seems, are so desperate to prop up the alarmist narrative – and the generous grant-funding that goes with it – even to the point of denying the significance of their own research.

  1. October 20, 2016 1:07 pm

    I just posted this ridiculous piece of tripe on my Facebook page with the following: “I think it is high time to quit using the term “scientists” for this bunch and just recognize them as deranged, anti-capitalist establishment hacks in search of government funding.”

    They wring their hands when there is vegetation retreat for whatever reason and then wring their hands when there is vegetation increase for whatever reason. Is the island of Elba being used now? What a lovely place to put this cadre of beauties. If it was good enough for Napoleon…….

    • John Palmer permalink
      October 20, 2016 1:31 pm

      No… if it was good enough for the little French guy, it’s way too good for this shower!
      How about Alcatraz, then we could all go over and look at them in their cells.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        October 21, 2016 12:52 pm

        What about Antarctica? According to them and their models it is lovely and warm down there. What could possibly go wrong?

  2. dangeroosdave permalink
    October 20, 2016 1:52 pm

    Russian hackers are stealing the data.

  3. October 20, 2016 4:43 pm

    Reblogged this on co2gasoflife.

  4. manicbeancounter permalink
    October 20, 2016 6:59 pm

    The climate alarmists show they are truly anti-science, in terms of science at a basic level being empirically-based statements that are verifiable. Higher CO2 levels can be demonstrated in the lab to enhance plant growth. Low and behold at the level of the planet it happens as well.
    Catastrophic global warming requires something to happen that is well beyond any established empirical data. CAGW is contingent on three factors. First a rapid change in temperatures caused a high average temperature sensitivity to rising GHG levels. Second, and consequent on the first, for the earths’ climate to be thrown into chaos. Third, for human beings to be unable to conquer the worsening conditions, so large numbers of lives and massive economic damage will ensue. Yet there is no evidence of accelerating average temperature rises, nor of anything unprecedented happening to climate systems, such as more extreme weather in terms of heatwaves, storms, or extremes of drought. There is certainly no evidence of increasing deaths from extreme weather, or famine as a result of drought.
    The expert scientists try to disregard the real world evidence that goes against their beliefs, and continue to support apocalyptic visions despite the signposts of those prophesies failing to materialize.

  5. October 20, 2016 7:40 pm

    Reblogged this on Climatism and commented:
    How ironic that the “Greening of the planet”, thanks to extract CO2 (plant food), happens to be a very unwelcome messsge to the “Green” lobby and climate activists.

    More proof that “Global Warming”, aka “Climate Change” has nothing to do with science or the environment, rather; power, money, ideology and virtue-signalling.

  6. Andy DC permalink
    October 20, 2016 10:32 pm

    The beneficial effects of CO2 may be manifesting itself with repeated bumper crops in the US Corn Belt. Also, if CO2 does produce moderate warming, it might serve as an insurance policy against the catastrophic prospect of another Ice Age.

  7. Peter R Blower permalink
    October 21, 2016 9:41 am

    I learnt my ‘Principles of Biology’ as an undergraduate in the late 1960s. At that time there was a serious concern about how the world would manage to feed the rapidly increasing population. One of our ‘required reading’ books was NW Pirie’s ‘Food Resources Conventional and Novel’, Penguin Books, 1969. There was concern, in those days, about how plant growth (and therefore food crop production) was limited by low carbon dioxide levels. This was in an era when carbon dioxide was perceived as the benevolent food/life promoting gas ( and oxygen as the dangerous gas that could exert tissue toxicity via free radical production). Your readers may be interested in this quote from Dr Pirie’s book (p116-117):

    ……….”it is not likely that there will be much improvement on 4% (efficiency) in any crop that depends, as all field crops must, on atmospheric carbon dioxide.
    In bright sunshine at midday, the light falling on a square yard in an hour is equivalent to 800 kcal. If that amount of energy were used with 4% efficiency by a crop it would yield 8g of dry plant matter of average composition, and necessitate the absorption of 11g of carbon dioxide. Air contains 0.046% of carbon dioxide by weight (this was written in 1968), and a cubic yard of air weighs about 1Kg. So 24 cubic yards of air would be needed to supply the 11g of carbon dioxide; in practice the rate of photosynthesis decreases as carbon dioxide is used up. An efficiency of 4% will not be maintained unless the air surrounding a crop is being renewed at such a rate that only about a quarter of its carbon dioxide is being abstracted. Each square yard of crop must therefore be thoroughly penetrated by 100 cubic yards of air during an hour; and it must be new air – not air that has already had its carbon dioxide depleted by a neighbouring square yard of crop.
    A good farmer in Britain uses sunlight with about 0.5% efficiency, so that it is only shortage of carbon dioxide during the one or two weeks of peak growth that restricts growth.”

  8. songhees permalink
    October 21, 2016 2:26 pm

    I would like to tell you of my latest book, “Human Caused Global Warming”.
    The Biggest Deception in History.
    Available on ‘’ and ‘Indigo/Chapters’.
    Trial date for Dr Michael Mann vs Dr Tim Ball, February 20th, 2017.

  9. Richard permalink
    October 21, 2016 5:47 pm

    “The discovery was first announced in 2012 in a lecture by Professor Ryanga Myneni of the University of Boston’

    It was known about back in 2003-

    “Global Garden Gets Greener”

  10. November 19, 2016 5:35 am

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.

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