The NY Times warns that “across the globe climate change is happening faster than scientists predicted,” but the UN tells us the earth is warming at one half the rate previously thought. Time Magazine tells us, “Be worried, be very worried,”, while the granddaddy of environmental movements, Greenpeace, reverses itself and again finds itself in court for purveying false information. So, what or who to believe?
Millions have fallen victim to the climate hype as a 2019 poll reveals that nearly half the world’s population believes that climate change will end the human race, while four in ten Americans believe global warming will lead to mankind’s extinction. Even more disturbing, 70% of American kids under 16, tell us what they learn at school and see on TV and in the movies are central to forming their views on climate change.
There are better ways than our present approach to address global warming, but the rhetoric surrounding the topic of climate has become so unmoored from science & reality we can no longer see the forest through the trees.
Yes, the earth is warming, but the earth has warmed and cooled in cycles for the last billion years or so. And while man has influenced climate change, scientists do not know much climate change can be attributed to man’s actions nor do they understand the natural forces beyond man’s control (like sunspots or the solar wind) that contribute to it.
Meanwhile, because of the hysteria and scare tactics, we are failing to redress other challenges from pandemics to food shortages, and instead subsume other important issues under the banner of climate change.
~ What to do? ~
To address climate change intelligently we must first stop exaggerating the claims and frightening young people by telling them it’s now or never. We need to stop the nonsense that climate is all that matters. It benefits no one when so many climate activists take this issue farther than the science supports while justifying their exaggerations because “the cause” is so important – (in their opinion!)
And of all the exaggerations currently in vogue, the notion that we have only until 2030 to solve the problem of climate change is prima facie the most dangerous. 2030 isn’t what science tells us, it’s what the politicians tells us.
~ The Empirical Climate Story ~
The scientific community was asked what it will take to keep the earth’s temperature from increasing more than 1.5* Celsius, which is an arbitrary number to begin with and a number most scientists believe is nearly impossible to achieve. Nonetheless, that was the question posed and the scientific community responded that even getting close to that goal would require profound changes to every aspect of society. But the media (not the scientists) grabbed on to that number and the world went along with the canard.
~ An analogy ~
But suppose the subject had been traffic deaths. Forty-thousand people are killed each year on American highways, so, what if the politicians asked the experts at the Department of Transportation how they could reduce the number of traffic fatalities to zero. After the laughter subsided one possible answer might be to create a strictly enforced national speed limit of 3-mph, and then nobody would die. Society would then have to decide if a 3-mph speed-limit and zero deaths was worth the incalculable problems our society would face because of such a policy. So, allow me to ask, would you trade a strictly enforced 3-mph speed limit in exchange for zero traffic fatalities? If you’re honest with yourself, you know such a proposition is absurd on its face.
Nonetheless, these are the types of ridiculous decisions that are being made for us by the elites, because under the current hysteria whenever forest fires rage in California, it’s due to climate change! A hurricane barrels down on the Gulf Coast, again, climate change! Tornadoes in Kansas, further evidence of climate change! People starving in Bangladesh, what else could it be but climate change! The alarmists have done a masterful job of brainwashing western civilization that climate change is the greatest existential threat to mankind since the Nazis marched through Europe. But is this really the best way to redress this matter?
If the virtue signalers really wanted to help the people in floodplains lower their risk of flooding, why not incorporate policies such as better water management, taller dikes, stronger regulations, i.e., policies that are cheaper and far more effective than limiting access of fossil fuels!
So, allow me to ask rhetorically, is it better to limit the third world’s access to cheap and reliable energy from fossil fuels or to provide these nations with better crops, more fertilizer, increased market access and other opportunities to get them out of poverty?
Many of the movement’s most vocal proponents knowingly conflate climate change with global income inequality yet are blind to the fact that the costs of the policies they demand will be borne disproportionately by the poor. And that’s the tragic irony of the climate debate.
Apparently, these fools don’t understand when energy becomes more expensive everyone pays more to heat their home; but it’s the poor who spend a far greater proportion of their incomes on the basics, such as energy and are therefore affected the most. At the same time, the financial benefits from climate policies like subsidies for erecting solar panels or buying a Tesla, overwhelmingly go the richest—and how fair is that?
So, what is the way forward? Actually, it’s quite clear, after eliminating the scare tactics we need to evaluate climate policies in the same way that we evaluate every other economic policy, i.e., in terms of costs & benefits to the masses, not just the elite. It’s not that complicated
Today’s word to the wise – “Always drink upstream from the herd.”