The Delinquent Teenager Book Review

My First Book Review

Over the years, I have had many interesting conversations with people who have contrasting opinions to mine in regard to climate change, how humanity affects climate and our responsibility to our future.  

A couple of decades ago, contrasting opinions regarded climate change as a hoax – there is no problem with the world’s climate, so why worry or do anything to improve our relationship with our Earth and all the life that exists here???  Obviously, these opinions baffled me because I could not understand how someone would not feel some kind of understanding to realize that the building of our global civilization was harming ecosystems - animal and plant life… and human life!  I can remember going on a Grade 8 class trip to Canada’s Wonderland in Toronto and while we were there, it began to rain.  It poured!!!  Everyone got soaked and then our eyes began to burn and turn red.  That was my introduction to acid rain!  At this young age, I was unaware of concepts such as climate change, yet I was becoming aware that factory and car pollution was harming our air and water.  

Two decades later, contrasting opinions had evolved, slightly.  People had become aware that our climates were changing – it’s pretty hard to ignore the increase in wild fires in California and British Columbia, flooding in Europe and wild temperature fluctuations around the world.  We’ve witnessed devasting weather in Haiti and the world looked on in horror as the tsunami destroyed much of Japan!  So, people were becoming convinced that climate change is a real threat to our future, yet they were clinging on to the belief that our actions had nothing to do with, “a naturally occurring event.  The world’s climate is always changing, as it always has.”

It’s been interesting witnessing the change in attitudes and beliefs concerning climate change, over the years… and then, along came Donna Laframboise and her ‘book’ entitled ‘The Delinquent Teenager’.  It is a rather recent publication, coming out in 2011, so I was rather taken aback by her perceptions of reality and I was filled with sorrow, realizing that her book would be influencing many people… leading them backwards in their thinking instead of contributing towards the evolution of the global consciousness!

Her book is designed to show that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is not to be trusted and because of this we need not concern ourselves with man-made climate change, because it doesn’t exist! 

Whew!  Good thing for me that my global perspective was born without any knowledge of the IPCC, as I’m sure it was for many of you!  So, in a weird way, Donna’s book has back-fired on her.  Now, I’m more interested than ever to look into the latest IPCC report… now that I am aware of its existence!! 

I’ll begin by stating that Donna’s book does do one thing – and that’s express that the body of people who are the IPCC need to do a better job of representing themselves!  A very valid point to be making!!  But rather moot when we realize that there are problems of integrity facing every government, many large business corporations and social institutions around the world.  That’s the way of life – finding problems and trying to fix them… only to find more!  I can’t imagine that anyone believes that the IPCC is perfect, and that’s fine… to be expected.  Donna would have you believe that every person involved is scandalous and underqualified, their actions are inspired for the sole purpose of continued funding and their goal is to misdirect government funding that should be used to address real problems.

In my monthly Trees and Forestry Advisory Committee meetings at London’s City Hall, we always begin our meeting with ‘disclosures of any pecuniary interests’ which I’ve always understood as a conflict of interest between members of our group and their ties to personal business interests that may be directly related to the matters discussed within TFAC meetings.

Donna’s book speaks about the quality of control within the IPCC and how ‘conflicts of interest’ are being ignored.  She mentions collaborations between the IPCC and groups such as Greenpeace.  These collaborations do cause one to wonder about the supposed ‘unbiased’ nature that IPCC should represent, but she fails to share the ‘rules of conduct’ that both parties are supposed to adhere to.  Maybe in these rules it is stated that certain collaborations are acceptable, certain ‘outreach’ within these ‘communities’ of groups are acceptable, etc.  We just are not sure what rules govern the IPCC and other ‘bodies’ such as Greenpeace, so this lack of disclosure of these facts makes me suspect of her attempts to simply say that collaborations of any sort are out of line. 

Throughout this book, Donna repeats this manner of expression, furthering to mislead readers with her statements that are lacking in full disclosure of relevant information.

This was an overview.

Now let’s take a closer look, starting with Chapter 1…

To make my first point, I’m actually going right to the back of the book in Donna’s ‘About The Author’ section…

“People who want me to believe there’s a planetary emergency need to persuade me.  I’m not going to take their word for it.  If they attempt to browbeat me rather than explaining their position in a calm, rational, and professional manner, I’m not likely to be won over.”

In Chapter 1 – that’s only 2 pages long - Donna has failed to follow her own advice.  Calm, rational and professional manners are not used!  She used derogatory and insulting phrases and put-down metaphors in at least 3 instances. “Obnoxious adolescent” “Even when he (meaning the IPCC) torments small animals” “this organization is so arrogant” “slovenly teenager”.

I’ve never read a book that attempts to be taken seriously that has ever used such unprofessional word and phrase choices.  I can’t foresee any well read professionals in our universities, colleges, business circles or government keeping this book in their hands past this first chapter, simply for this reason.  She’s taken on quite the task with this book…. a worthy task – no doubt – to shed light on many of the problems facing the quality of the IPCC reports and authors who wrote these reports, but she loses more readers because of the arrogant and condescending style of her writing. 

As a professional writer, I love the challenge of expressing my opinions and sharing my facts in creative ways.  I love words and the power that they hold and the impressions that one can make with them, when used in interesting ways.  This next point, may seem irrelevant, but it is something that I noticed…an impression that I got….

In the third paragraph, Donna writes, “Nor does he have much hope of developing what, in this tale, is the most important….”  I didn’t pick up on this until much later in the book...after I had become frustrated with discovering more lies and false quotes and ambiguous writing that is very misleading and I had decided that I just couldn’t read anymore and I felt it was time to go back and do a little re-reading so I could share these opinions on this book with you.  When I reread ‘in this tale’ for the second time, I actually totally agreed with Donna…. that this is a tale.  She should have said “in this book” or “in this report” or “in this thesis” but she doesn’t.  She refers to her own writing as a tale.

The Oxford Dictionary defines ‘tale’ as: 1(usually fictitious) narrative or story. 2 allegation, often malicious or in breach of confidence.

She states that the Climate Bible (I also grew to understand that the use of this phrase is also just one more way that Donna writes in an unprofessional manner – using sarcasm and derogatory word phrasing), “is the reason carbon taxes are being introduced, heating bills are rising, and costly new regulations are being enacted.”  What she is stating as a fact is very misleading and not very factual at all.

As I’ve grown to understand the workings (only somewhat and in a very limited capacity) within London’s own City Hall, I can conclude that there has never been an instance where just one report of any nature, dealing with any one subject has ever had that much influence in any decision making or policy making process!  The world would be in chaos if we ever acted in such a manner.  So, for Donna to state that it is IPCC reports that are causing carbon taxes to be introduced, heating bills to rise or costly new regulations to be introduced, is completely misleading.  The IPCC reports are probably giving our policy makers points to think about, no doubt, but I’m probably not far off when I say that there are more reports, discussions, economic factors, policies (federally, provincially and municipally) and procedures that go into making decisions that trickle down to affect how we live our lives that are used in any decision making process than Donna would have us believe.

Just yesterday, I was at a sub-group meeting with a few other TFAC members where we were discussing the newly amended ‘Tree Protection By-law’ that will soon be moving forward into council chambers for further discussion and deliberation that will eventually create the new by-law.  I learned how in 2015 a new provincial standard was introduced that forced our municipal by-law to be amended.  I learned the reasons why this has taken 3 years for city staff to review, get public input, and redraft this by-law.  I also learned how this by-law will also be reviewed again by the end of 2019, after it has been passed in December of this year.

It’s a lot of work to do this kind of thing – redraft an existing by-law – and one can only conclude that when federal governments are moving more important procedures forward, that a lot more people from a variety of different departments are involved…. each department having been influenced by a great many reports by a great number of specialized investigative services, institutions and other organizations.

So, Donna’s facts and declarations in this short part of her short first chapter deserve another red flag! 

I found several other instances when Donna lays down words in this manner, simply stating that ‘this and that’ is happening solely because of IPCC reports and I find it hard to believe that people are ingesting these statements as facts!  Whenever I’ve read any book making serious allegations, they make their statements (as Donna has done), but then they further their writings by pinpointing each case they want to make with more information on these points.  Donna fails to do this in every instance where these misleading and false ‘overview statements’ are presented.

If she states that it is the IPCC reports that are causing, “heating bills to rise,” then she should be explaining exactly how this is happening.  She doesn’t!

Chapter 2

It’s fairly factual for Donna to state “To suggest that the climate has ever been within human control is surely a bit silly.”

To make this point, she demonstrates that the planet has been around for a while and that people have only been here a short while (which is true when thinking of Earth age) and since we have only been around for a short period it is inconceivable that we would have any ability to control our climate.  Again – I can’t disagree.  In fact, when I hear about some of the ideas that are being brought forward to save our climate (shooting our garbage into the sun, spraying certain chemicals throughout different layers of our atmosphere to deflect sun radiation, etc.)  I shake my head in wonder at the stupidity of it all.

What Donna has failed to do, however, is show and demonstrate that humans do have the ability to affect and change our climate.  We can’t control it… but we are changing it.  I shared the example, earlier about acid rain.  Man made it! Realized it was harmful! Made policy changes to try to correct the situation!  In the Amazon Rainforest, one of the world’s largest cities is experiencing a drought that has last for more than 10 years.  This is directly related to the impact that humans have had to our climate, due to clearcutting!

She fails to explain how the future of our world will be a product of these kinds of actions.  If we stop polluting now, we may be able to lessen the effects of climate chaos.  Our role as activists for cleaner and more sustainable energy, farming practices, industry standards, etc etc will not stop the effects of climate change… but it will increase our ability to lessen the severity of climate change… and that’s the most important thing in the world!

So, Donna’s point about our ability to control our climate may be true… but she neglects to discuss the many facts that also conclude that humanity does have the ability to affect weather and climate and this is regretful!

As I mentioned above, Donna’s unprofessional writing style makes it rather easy for those of us who enjoy a mental challenge, to continue with her words.  I believe it was near the end of Chapter 2 where she creates the metaphor that the IPCC is like a vampire that will swoop down on the injured people of a car accident and suck their blood before help arrives!  No wonder it took the Southern Ontario library system almost two months to find a copy of her book for me.  There just aren’t that many on book store shelves or libraries and it’s probably because the lack of professional writing and poor debate tactics that make most readers dismiss her effort.

But, I was only 6 or 7 pages in… so I continued…

Chapter 3-6

Here Donna tries to show that the IPCC is negligent in how they recruit their authors and specialist.  A valid point… but very misleading in her narrative.

She talks about William Gray who was not chosen to participate, despite his 50 years in the hurricane study profession, because, “the IPCC doesn’t want his views expressed.”  This is conjecture and not fact.  What we never know, because Donna is focussed on proving her point – thus neglecting a full view appraisal - is what the criteria are for those involved in the IPCC.  Possibly, they had all the hurricane experts they needed.  We don’t know the number of hurricane experts enlisted and we don’t know what their qualifications are and we don’t know the views of those enlisted.  Misleading… thus another point concerning the validity of her tale arises!

The next expert that Donna brings into her narrative is Paul Reiter, who has 40 years of expertise in the field of understanding how diseases are spread by mosquitos.  Donna writes, “For example, the Climate Bible said malaria-transmitting mosquitos usually don’t survive in areas where winter temperatures drop below 16 degrees C.  Reiter says that’s nonsense…..” and at the end of that paragraph we find {note 3-2}… so I read it…

This note shares a quote from the IPCC report “Although anopheline mosquito species that transmit malaria do not usually survive where the mean winter temperature drops below 16-18 degrees C, some higher-latitude species are able to hibernate in sheltered sites.”  This IPCC statement exactly agrees with the statements by Reiter!  They agree!  Yet, Donna says that the IPCC report says, “mosquitos usually don’t survive in areas…”

Did Donna know that she was contradicting herself?  She gives us proof that the IPCC is aware that some higher- latitude species are able to hibernate!  Did Reiter only read the first part of the IPCC sentence before he said it’s nonsense.  This portion of the book is absolutely misleading!  She totally contradicts herself!

It's very sad that this book is written in such a manner.  Donna continuously tries to prove her points in only a paragraph or two.  Both scientists mentioned above fill less than two pages in her book!  The books that I entertain my mind with, usually take an entire chapter, filling many pages of the book, to prove just one small point.

Next, Donna brings up the validity of those selected to become authors for the IPCC reports.

A while ago, I had a landlord who did nothing but share stories about his brilliant grandson.  When his grandson was 19 years old, he was involved in research at UWO in the field of bacterial energy – biomass fuel.  Do you remember the news story – going back about 14 years – that shared how the very first plane to ever run on bio-fuel flew from Vancouver to Toronto?  It was my landlord’s grandson who had a break through discovery that led to that event!  Pretty cool! 
Note: I was trying to find the news story about this event and couldn't locate it... but I did find a lot of other interesting related links. 

He received lots of money in the form of acceptance into one of the world’s leading learning institutions in this field.

While he was continuing his studies, another university (I think it may have been in Boston) approached him with a problem completely unrelated to biomass fuel.  He was 22 at this point.  He took a short leave from his studies and went to Boston where he invented a piece of synthetic material that is now being used world wide in open heart surgery!  It was kinda like a ‘joiner’ valve that joins arteries together in the heart – or just outside the heart – or somewhere near the heart (I’m not a medical professional so I don’t want to mislead you…. But it had something to do with heart valves).  His invention was the simplest thing you could imagine!  Everyone was like “Wow!  That’s so simple!  Why didn’t anyone think of this before?”

I’m sure that by now, my landlord’s grandson has a Masters in something and probably a few Phd’s!

I had this in my mind as I read the chapter where Donna denounces IPCC authors solely on their age and the fact that many of them didn’t yet have their Masters or Phd’s!

Again, Donna never once shares a quote or a document that explains just what criteria the IPCC uses when enlisting their authors.  In this instance, Donna also fails to share any information about the qualifications these young minds do have and she fails to detail the qualifications of all the other people involved.  Hundreds and even thousands of people are involved in finalizing the IPCC reports but Donna would have you dismiss all this material because she is skeptical about the qualifications of a few.

This shows, again, that Donna is skirting facts, avoiding a closer look at credentials, all the while pointing at IPCC authors and shouting from her soap box that they are not qualified!

In my overview at the beginning of this, I speak about the next chapters that deal with collaborations between the IPCC and Greenpeace, the WWF etc. so I won’t share those words again…. I’m keeping this as short as possible!

So – at this point, I’m only 15 pages or so into the book and already it is quite clear that most of Donna’s points are tainted and misleading and in some cases outright lies!  It is now that I realize that I just cannot pain my mind any longer with this tale… so I start skipping around a bit….

I skip to page 100 where Donna shares “In the words of the UK’s Guardian newspaper:

Hotel guests should have their electricity monitored; hefty aviation taxes should be introduced to deter people from flying; and iced water in restaurants should be curtailed…Rajendra Pachauri… warned that western society must undergo a radical value shift….”

This just blew me away!  Donna outright and without trying to even make it look good – lied!  She has included ‘…’ before and after the name Rajendra Pachauri.  This gives the impression that it was RP who is warning us that western society must undergo a radical value shift….”  You just don’t put ‘…’ in a quote and create a misleading lie intent on making is seem that the words following the second ‘…’ were said by RP!

This time, I skip back to Chapter 7 on page 22

Here, Donna is debating just how fragile and delicate our climate systems are in reference to ppm’s – parts per million of carbon dioxide.  From what I’ve read from other sources, ‘they’ say that a concentration of around 350 ppm of CO2 will start to have negative effects.  That same book shared that scientist have calculated that we are already at around 380ppm.  Lots of speculation on this point…. And speculation is good.  Debate is good.  But lying in another quote is still a lie, as Donna demonstrates in {note 7-1} 

Near the end of this note it states…

“As Roy Spencer, a meteorologist with 40 years experience (who is also a recipient of NASA’s Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal) has written on this topic: an increase in a very small number ‘is still a very small number’.”

Donna would have you believe that RS actually said “an increase in a very small number is still a very small number” but he didn’t say that.  Donna lied!

According to her own note we can factually agree that RS did say ‘is still a very small number’ but in what context did he say this and why would Donna use such a small part of his quote to prove her point?  In reality RS could have been talking about any number of topics when he said, “is still a very small number”.  The fact that Donna manipulates data to squeeze it in misleading ways that fit into her narrative is really bad reporting, investigating and writing.  How can anyone agree with someone who has been proven to manipulate data and lie!

I know that no one is perfect and people make mistakes.  If I found just one or two mistakes in Donna’s tale, I just might have been inspired to read further.  Since, I’ve found so many in just a handful of pages, I can no longer pay her words any attention… and this is sad!  I would have loved to learn more but at the same time, I’m glad to be free of her righteous and condescending attitude, misleading tales, false speculations and lies!

It’s no wonder that her book is hard to locate within the London library system.  I guess greater minds than mine have also drawn the same conclusion about the value of her writing and that is why it is not an easy book to find.

Donna had a great opportunity to join in one the most important discussion of this century!  Too bad she blew it!

Jim Kogelheide
December 2018


  1. Do you know if Donna has some type of education that should allow her to write a book like this? Does she have a PHD in anything?

    1. She used to write for a Toronto newspaper (I think) many years ago!!! No - she has no formal education in any environmental study, political study or economic study! In the book she said that she was inspired to look into the IPCC because she was so sick of hearing so many doom and gloom stories that she figured that they were an exaggeration on reality. Thus, her book! Which does nothing but disappoint readers!!!