Monday, April 09, 2007

Why So Gloomy?

Richard Lindzen wrote in Newsweek Judging from the media in recent months, the debate over global warming is now over. There has been a net warming of the earth over the last century and a half, and our greenhouse gas emissions are contributing at some level. Both of these statements are almost certainly true. What of it?

Things change, and those who think they can predict the future are usually wrong.
Recently many people have said that the earth is facing a crisis requiring urgent action. This statement has nothing to do with science.
No, it is the new religion of the left.
There is no compelling evidence that the warming trend we've seen will amount to anything close to catastrophe.... The current alarm rests on the false assumption not only that we live in a perfect world, temperaturewise, but also that our warming forecasts for the year 2040 are somehow more reliable than the weatherman's forecast for next week.
And if they can't predict what will happen next week, why should we believe them about what will happen in the next century.
A warmer climate could prove to be more beneficial than the one we have now.
Precisely, because it will increase the growing season for crops.
... Modelers claim to have simulated the warming and cooling that occurred before 1976 by choosing among various guesses as to what effect poorly observed volcanoes and unmeasured output from the sun have had. These factors, they claim, don't explain the warming of about 0.4 degrees C between 1976 and 1998.
Which just proves that their guesses are wrong. So why should we believe those guesses can predict the future.
Climate modelers assume the cause must be greenhouse-gas emissions because they have no other explanation.
At least no other explanation that would let them justify the changes they would like to see in society, where the advanced Western cultures were forced to destroy their economies so that the undeveloped world could generate even more greenhouse gasses than the west cuts back.
... Ten years ago climate modelers also couldn't account for the warming that occurred from about 1050 to 1300. They tried to expunge the medieval warm period
Which was much warmer than it is now; they grew crops in Greenland.
from the observational record—an effort that is now generally discredited.... India has warmed during the second half of the 20th century, and agricultural output has increased greatly. Infectious diseases like malaria are a matter not so much of temperature as poverty and public-health policies (like eliminating DDT). Exposure to cold is generally found to be both more dangerous and less comfortable.

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