Al Gore is in the forefront of the Climate Change debate. For many, including myself, the fact the earth is undergoing drastic climate change is beyond the debate stage. One only has to observe the temperature changes, rain events, drought, and seasonal changes to opine that there is a drastic shift underway; and to many who have studied and understood past changes on the earth, this is nothing unusual. The archeological records contain many such changes in our past, and some that came on very suddenly (in a matter of ten years in some cases).
As the Copenhagen Conference begins though, I feel there is much controversy as to the actual cause of global climate change. As an environmental scientist I could very easily want to subscribe to the notion that these events are man induced. It would mean that if man caused it, man could stop it. However, there are some really pesky facts getting in the way. I have attended three conferences related to this issue over the past three years and I have asked the same question at each conference and my question was either ignored or not answered. The question is: “If global warming is man induced by the release of CO2 into our atmosphere, why is the mean temperature on the moon, Mars, and Venus rising at the same rate that is rising on the Earth (NASA records verify that statement)?
Not one of the “experts” would even attempt a response. Why, I wonder? I believe the answer is an economic one. It is related to the “Have” and “Have Not” countries of the world and how developing a carbon tax worldwide or a carbon credits scheme would benefit some countries and utterly destroy other countries economically. Is CO2 building in our atmosphere. Empirically, the answer is yes. Can we relate that to man’s activities, again yes we can. But is that really the cause of global warming. I, personally believe that has yet been proven.
Why is that such an issue. Global warming is global warming. The ice melting and sea level rise, along with the climate changes are going to have catastrophic effects either way. However, to me, it is a matter of where we, as a world, are going to spend our resources in response to the effects of global warming that really matters. I have already been intimately involved in relocating Alaskan Natives from islands that are being inundated by the rising sea levels or from areas where the ice pack no longer forms during the winter, so subsistence hunting is no longer viable. I have worked in countries dealing with severe drought and crop failures, and I have responded to the storm events like Katrina and seen the effects first hand.
I guess in my first hand experiences in response to Katrina that these political questions first started to rise in my consciousness. I had the responsibility to conduct some of the first response assessments to the storm damage. As we began our aerial surveys, we flew over the delta and part of the shorelines of Louisiana. The number of animal and human carcasses was overwhelming. To this day I do not know how many humans, cattle and horses lost their lives during that 72 hour period, but it was in the tens of thousands. Yet, I have never seen one photo of these in any media reporting. Why?
In retrospect, and given the fact that most of the damaged areas still have not been responded to gives some clues as to the motives of the PTB. Resources are only going to be spent where revenue can be returned. As sickening as that sounds, I believe it to be true. Nearly 85% of the world’s population lives within ten miles of a coastline. That’s over 5 billion people! We should be spending our resources to deal with a say 1 meter rise in sea level, instead of figuring out how we are going to drive the world to a carbon based tax! But hey there is no revenue in that. I wonder, however, where there is any revenue in half the world’s population dying out. It just doesn’t make any sense to me at all.
There are other events going on as well, such as the recent whopping rise in seismic events worldwide. NOAA and the USGS seem to be playing with those numbers. Why is that and how are seismic events related to CO2 emissions? I suspect soon we are all going to be asked to make draconian efforts and pay stiff taxes for the right to emit carbon and ostensibly these revenues will be used to fight global warming. As I always admonish, really dig into to this for yourself before you so quickly vote for the government to reach into your wallet.
Here’s Uncle Willy’s Thought for the Day: