Alabama’s State Climatologist John Christy Debunks This Month’s Climate Hysterics

WRITTEN BY JEREMY BEAMAN

There is one particular word that Dr. John Christy turns to frequently for describing climate science: murky.

Dr. John Christy at his office at the University of Alabama, Huntsville.

It’s a point of view foundational to his own research, and a message underpinning each of his twenty appearances before various congressional committees.

“It’s encouraging because they wouldn’t invite you back unless your message was compelling and not only compelling but accurate,” Christy, Alabama’s state climatologist, told Yellowhammer News in an interview.

Christy, whose day job involves doing research and teaching as the Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), has gained notoriety over the years for dissenting from mainstream climate scientists and policymakers who argue that climate change is anthropogenic, or man-made, and that something must be done to stop it.

A “working-stiff” scientist

Dissent has gained for Christy the characterization as a “climate change skeptic” or “denier,” as critics refer to him, but he himself rejects those terms.

“I’m a working-stiff atmospheric scientist,” he said, “as opposed to those who support modeling efforts, those who use datasets that other people create and analyze them, but they don’t build them themselves.”

According to Christy, the result of fewer “working-stiff” scientists contributing to the prevailing climate debate is more frequent misuses of data.

“They’re not aware of what goes into it,” Christy said, referring to the data.

“Here we have a science that’s so dominated by personalities that claim the science is settled, yet when you walk up to them and say prove it, they can’t,” he said.

Christy spoke at length about what can be proven and what cannot in his self-described “murky” field, referring often to principles of the scientific method.

“You cannot prove extra greenhouse gases have done anything to the weather,” he said, responding to claims made by many scientists that more greenhouse gases have caused extreme weather patterns to intensify.

“We do not have an experiment that we can repeat and do,” he said.

Christy outlined another problem with attempts to implicate greenhouse gases: a failure to account for things countering trapping effects.

“We know that the extra greenhouse gases should warm the planet,” he said. “The weak part of that theory though is that when you add more greenhouse gases that trap heat, things happen that let it escape as well, and so not as much is trapped as climate models show.”

Economics of climate policy

Though his scientific arguments are primary, Christy also frequently discusses in interviews and testimonies the economic consequences of proposed climate change mitigation policy via carbon reduction.

“Every single person uses energy, carbon energy, and relies on carbon-based energy,” Christy said. “None of our medical advances, none of our technological advances, none of our progress would have happened in the last hundred years without energy derived from carbon.”

Christy contrasts that reality within the modern, developed world with the world he saw working as a missionary teacher in impoverished Africa during the 1970s.

“The energy source was wood chopped from the forest, the energy transmission system was the backs of women and girls hauling wood an average of three miles each day, the energy use system was burning the wood in an open fire indoors for heat and light,” Christy told members of the House Committee on Energy in 2006.

Broad availability to affordable energy enriches countries, Christy said, praising carbon.

“It is not evil. It is the stuff of life. It is plant food,” he said.

What about the fires and heat waves?

According to the National Interagency Fire Center, fires were burning in fifteen states as of Tuesday, August 14.

Alaska reported seventeen fires, Arizona reported eleven, both Oregon and Colorado reported ten, and California reported nine.

Much of the news media’s discussion about these fires over the past few weeks has established a correlation between the many fires and anthropogenic climate change, a correlation that Dr. Christy rejects.

Christy argues that exacerbating fires out west, particularly in California, results from human mismanagement. Such states have enacted strict management practices that disallow low-level fires from burning, he said.

“If you don’t let the low-intensity fires burn, that fuel builds up year after year,” Christy said. “Now once a fire gets going and it gets going enough, it has so much fuel that we can’t put it out.”

“In that sense, you could say that fires today are more intense, but it’s because of human management practices, not because mother nature has done something,” Christy said.

Data from the Fire Center indicates that the number of wildfires has been decreasing since the 1970s overall, though acreage burned has increased significantly.

As for the heat, Christy said there’s nothing abnormal going on in the United States.

“Heat waves have always happened,” he said. “Our most serious heatwaves were in the 1930’s. We have not matched those at all.”

Christy continued, “It is only a perception that is being built by the media that these are dramatic worst-ever heat wave kind of things but when we look at the numbers, and all science is numbers, we find that there were periods that were hotter, hotter for longer periods in the past, so it’s very hard to say that this was influenced by human effects when you go back before there could have been human effects and there’s the same or worse kind of events.”

Though Christy didn’t deny that the last three years have been the hottest ever recorded globally, he doesn’t concede that the changes are attributable to anything other than the climate’s usual and historical erraticism.

h/t to Climate Change Dispatch Read more at Yellow Hammer

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113 thoughts on “Alabama’s State Climatologist John Christy Debunks This Month’s Climate Hysterics

  1. Cogent observations from one of the Heroes of Climatology. Christy has his eye on reality as opposed to his hand in the public grant trough!

    • There are a few facts that are very inconvenient for the CAGW narrative. For example:
      The Medieval (and Roman and Minoan etc.) Warm Period

      It was warmer then and the climate didn’t exhibit any tipping points that drove it into uncontrolled warming.

      The 1930s

      “Heat waves have always happened,” he (Christy) said. “Our most serious heatwaves were in the 1930’s. We have not matched those at all.”

      The UAH satellite record

      … Spencer … and Christy developed a global temperature data set from microwave data observed from satellites beginning in 1979.

      Note Dr. Christy’s name in two of the three above. He has made a great contribution to the truth.

  2. Sometimes the most appropriate thing is to say “I don’t know”, and Christy is honest enough to say so.

    • As a corollary to that, sometimes you have to declare that the data you have is not fit for the purpose you are trying to put it to, and there is nothing you can do about it.

      I’ve had a number of climate activists admit that the temperature data is poor at best, and it gets worse rapidly as you go back in time.
      They declare that since this bad data is all they have, it’s what they have to use and why the invent ever more fanciful techniques to “fix” the bad data.

      The proper, scientific, thing to do when you have bad data, is to get good data.

      • … or, until you have better data, the proper thing to do is have wide error bars to draw attention to the resulting uncertainty.

        If there are uncertainties due to changes over the data set interval, the open and honest thing to do is leave the data where it lies, and indicate the uncertainties caused by changes using extended error bars in the affected periods.

        But extending historic data error bars would broaden the possible range of historic data and this weakens the case to suggest today’s data is outwith the bounds of natural variation.

        Instead, the data is “fixed” (as you put it) and the shouting begins.

    • I was about to say something along those lines.
      Christy and others (Soon, Curry etc.) that are real scientist won’t claim a certainty or “robustness” they don’t actually see.
      The Mannequins, on the other hand, practice the “science” of sound bites. They are always certain of what they claim today and hope you forget what they claimed yesterday.

  3. ““Here we have a science that’s so dominated by personalities that claim the science is settled, yet when you walk up to them and say prove it, they can’t,” he said.”

    Which is why they are desperate to flip the null hypothesis around, to force skeptics to show current warming is not significantly anthropogenic in origin.

  4. “Though Christy didn’t deny that the last three years have been the hottest ever recorded globally”

    In a world which, on a 10KYear level is overall warming from the last ice age, and on a 100Year level warming from the “little ice age” of the early 19th century, it would follow that the world has warmed from the time of the first accurate thermometers. Other than that, not much can be said.

    • One must also consider that the “Hottest Recorded”, with any reasonable amount of accuracy (or Thomas Karl wouldn’t need to molest the data) is the satellite era, since the nadir of the 70’s cooling period.

    • “Hottest ever”, yes but by how much? The earth has been warming since the Little Ice Age, that’s not denied. The question is, what is the main reason for the increase, the vast majority being natural. I heard a figure of .2 degrees C being the human contribution in the last 60 years. Utterly negligible.

  5. “Though Christy didn’t deny that the last three years have been the hottest ever recorded globally, …….”

    It should be noted that this is so ONLY after the data was adjusted. I read :”FAKED.” If we can not trust the original data, how can we trust the adjustment? If the data is in error, something must be wrong with the collection techniques, and that is provably so. But unfortunately for the DENIAL ACCUSERS, virtually all of the faults lead to higher, not lower temperature readings.

      • @Tom Abbot at August 16, 2018 5:43 pm …because Christy acknowledges error. He has said more than once, all this grandstanding about “hottest year evah!!!” is just so much theater. Since the differences between the top 3 (or even 5, maybe 10) years on a hottest descending ranking all fall within the margin of error of the readings, no one can say with certainty that any of those years is hotter than the other. Any of them is just as likely.

  6. For climastrologists, the murkier the better. That way, they can contradict themselves, move goalpoasts and lines, and fudge to their little heart’s desires without consequence, because they have “models” and numerous “lines of evidence”. It’s all so much pea-moving, smoke-blowing and hocus-pocus.

  7. To have the greenhouse effect you need a greenhouse. Take the roof off the greenhouse and the greenhouse effect disappears. Is that what he’s saying?

    • No, he’s saying CO2 only restricts heat flow with high density warm air like at the earth’s surface.

      In the Troposphere we have low density cold air. There CO2 accelerates cooling. That is accepted physics and in the models.

      There was a recent paper that said the Antarctic, with its cold surface air, is slightly cooled by CO2. That is a controversial statement, and not in the models.

  8. “Christy argues that exacerbating fires out west, particularly in California, results from human mismanagement.”

    The mismanagement is a two-fer…..
    What kind of idiot knows they will have fires….and doesn’t buy enough water bomber planes to not only cover it….but the ability to put any fire out in 30 mins?…a California idiot
    Just what the insurance pays after one fire…would buy and maintain and entire fleet of planes…

    ..but they are all idiots

    https://www.macleans.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/MAC30_ANNOTATEDPLANE_POST02.jpg

    ..and to add insult to injury…they never seem to call the planes they do have until after it’s been burning for a while and out of control….call the damn planes first

    • They need to modify C5 transport planes to land on Water and drop like the image above. If a 747 can be modified to drop a line of Fire Retardant 2 miles long, How much longer would the line from a C5 be?
      A 747 tanker can carry 19,600 gallons or 2620 CU FT of retardant.
      the C5 can has a capacity for 36,871 CU FT or 275,814 gallons of Retardant or Water, easily enough to cover around 30 miles of fire line…and can fly slower than a 747

        • The mixed fire retardants, or “mud” as the fire crews and tanker pilots call it, is quite a bit heavier than water, typically around 9 to 9.5 lbs/gal. That would put Bryan’s mythical C5 load at around 2.5 million pounds, or about equal to 4 fully loaded real C5’s which have a gross takeoff weight of 649,680 lb.

          • A C-5 has taken off with at least 1,000,000 lbs cargo, at least once. I don’t recall when, but I was told before 1981, I don’t recall where, and I don’t recall that we were even told what the air temperature and pressure were. So, that gross takeoff weight should be adjusted for all of the above. Another point, if it’s only making a trip to the fire and back to the base, it needs to carry less fuel, that increases your payload. BUT, I will agree with your point that it probably can’t take off, from anywhere, at 2.5 million pounds. And you can’t just pop open the hatch on top of the C-5 and start filling, the tank will take up both space and mass, so decrease it even more. But the real constraint is, where will the money come from? You mentioned insurance company pay-outs, but have you convinced any insurance company to “invest” in said water bomber boon-doggle? Given the way the government runs, even if those planes do get purchased and configured, once they became operational, that region would never see a large acreage fire again!!!

      • You’re obviously not an aerospace engineer. A C-5 sea plane?!
        It would be far easier to rebuild the Spruce Goose. The Russians had some large aquatic cargo planes, but they didn’t have any altitude capability as they worked in ground effect.

      • A fully loaded C5 Galaxy can require up to a 3 mile run way to take off. There is no reasonable way to retro-fit/modify it for a water landing or take off.
        Dropping fire retardant which is pumped/loaded on board while stationary is completely different situation than loading a floating plane.

      • There are many older 747 aircraft available for modification into aerial fire fighters. The single 747 that has been converted to date has validated its effectiveness in wildfire suppression support. The conversion was effected by an private company (Evergreen Super Tanker) that risked its capital to create the unique capabilities of the 747 ‘water bomber’, secure FAA approvals, and brought it to the firefighting market. Capitalism, through private enterprise, created this awesome asset. The US Forrest Service refused to use it in 2017, even though it had already been demonstrated effective fighting fires in South America and Israel.
        https://www.cbsnews.com/news/worlds-largest-firefighting-aircraft-grounded-by-u-s-govt/

        All of the US C5 Galaxy aircraft are committed and needed for our national defense purposes.

        • “All of the US C5 Galaxy aircraft are committed and needed for our national defense purposes.”
          ============
          Anything else you want to tell the Russians 🙂

        • Just make sure that maintenance and inspections are up to date on those older planes.
          In the US, we lost several crews about 20 years ago when the wings came off of the bombers mid run.

      • The trick is to fit 1 million tonnes of water into an aircraft with a max takeoff weight of around 400 tonnes.

        • rob319

          The trick is to fit 1 million tonnes of water into an aircraft with a max takeoff weight of around 400 tonnes.

          Well, fully fueled for liftoff, the Saturn V weighed 2.8 million kilograms (6.2 million pounds). Trick will be burning enough fuel to launch the Saturn 5’s from vandenburg so it all burns up (which turns the fuel into water vapor!) before impacting the water (load), rocket, and remaining structure land “dramatically” on top of the fire.

          • Factoid:
            The fuel consumption of the first stage was a staggering 15 Tons / sec of Kerosene. The fuel pumps that fed the engines alone consumed 100s of MW of power, enough to light an entire city.

          • Well of course that much was consumed per second. That’s the beauty of using a Saturn 5 to carry water up from Vandenburg over to the fire: Much of that kerosene in the low stages was burned into water vapor – which is immediately available – though admittedly slightly hotter than desired – right above CA’s other desert areas. The very act of putting out a wildfire in one spot reduces the chances of a wild fire in the area. (unless the Saturn fails early. Don’t let that happen.) Then, all of the H2 in the upper stage burns into water vapor – even closer to the fire. Then the target tanks can be broken up to spray a very wide area before landing (er, crashing) into the fire itself.

            No problemo, right?

      • Christy in the head post said “all science is numbers”

        So be a bit more careful when you start throwing numbers around. For example, don’t confuse the cubic capacity of an aircraft with its load carrying ability. Even when fully loaded with “stuff”, it’s still mostly empty space in there.

      • Over the years I have seen video of more than one firefighting aircraft whose wings separated from the fuselage during a drop. C-130, Martin Marauder, among them. These are tough aircraft. I suspect it’s because of negative G’s during the drop, something that they were not designed for. You can’t just make any aircraft into a firefighter.

        • Even fighters need to be inspected on a regular basis as stress builds up over time.

          PS: During a drop it would be positive G’s.

          • Pss: Nobody but a test pilot, knowingly pushes a plane towards the edges of the flight envelope.
            Flying through the air around fires, might be worse than a thunderstorm, as far as the up/down drafts go, and they go in heavy.

    • Catch-22.
      What is the refreshment rate of the undergrowth ?, let it burn, then start a real plan to avoid the same conditions.
      Yep, it might take some real planning, clearing tinder or forming some fire lines.
      Who’s got time for that, when you can’t even find enough water to fill your pool.

      • Read Christy’s quotes in the article… with adequate management of the fuel-load, either controlled burns, or remove it with a Bobcat by the truckload if there are too many residents that would get too nervous over a controlled burn, you can then let a fire burn when you get one, even if it wasn’t intended as a controlled burn, and you don’t need the super-firefighting equipment, and nobody gets hurt.

    • Latitude

      “call the damn planes first”

      That would be anti green. Destruction must reign before fossil fuels are allowed to save the day.

      Which is a bit flippant considering the lives lost in these fires, so my apologies and sympathies are with the families.

      • “considering the lives lost in these fires”…exactly

        You would think since every Calif fire ends up being out of control….destroys property…and actually kills people…..someone would wise up and hit it with everything they’ve got first and stop it while it’s small
        ..and if they don’t have the equipment to do that…for God’s sake get it

        This is no one’s fault but the Calif government….there’s no excuse, in this day and age, for any fire to get out of control…especially when they have them every year and refuse to prepare for them…..but every year it’s the same story…..over and over

        • Latitude

          Snowflake bureaucrats. Never seen an angry man but are happy to tell everyone how to deal with one.

          Never seen a fire beyond Guy Fawkes night, but that qualifies them to deal with a forest fire.

          I don’t think you have Guy Fawkes night in the US, so metaphor probably meaningless.

          • I’ve heard of it…but forgot what it was……looked it up!!
            Keep in mind, this is the same Calif gov that goes apeshitcrazy about sprinklers in buildings…no difference

            Not being prepared for a forest fire, when they have them every year….is the governments fault…
            ..and not hitting a fire with everything they’ve got right at the beginning is also their fault

            For weeks they will let firefighters battle a fire….then when it’s totally out of control and too late…even firefighters have been hurt and killed….call in the planes

          • @Latitude,
            If people hadn’t put all that infrastructure in harms way, it would just burn off every 10-20 years as the undergrowth built up.
            Point being, until the undergrowth is cleared you’re gonna have fires(.)

          • point is…if you’re not going to burn the undergrowth…and you’re going to develop infrastructure…..buy more friggin fire trucks/planes
            ..it’s their governments fault

            This is what they don’t tell you when they push more immigration…more people require more infrastructure (fire planes) to support them

      • California doesn’t have them because they are too busy building windmills to “blow” the fires out.
        It feels good to “go green” even after there’s no green left.

          • On a calm day with light winds and minimal convection on flat terrain, maybe. In the mountains with strong up-slope winds, convection and turbulence and extreme fire behavior — not a chance. Been there, done that, had several friends killed trying it and I threw away the T-shirt.

          • As I recall, that particular crash was down to wing main spar failure, a very old C-130 which had not been properly inspected. A significant number of older C-130s were retired after that.

          • “maybe.”…well then get 50 planes…100 planes

            it would still be a lot cheaper than the way they are doing it

      • RE: Why doesn’t Calif have a dozen of them?

        For one thing there were only 7 ever built, and that was 70 years ago for the US navy. For another those engines (R-3350) went out of production over 50 years ago. For a third, that plane works well in the parts of Canada where it has been used for many years where there are many lakes to scoop from, but would not do well in CA trying to scoop from lake Shasta or the scattered few lakes there.

    • RE: they never seem to call the planes they do have until after it’s been burning for a while and out of control….call the damn planes first

      Unless things have changed a heck of a lot since I was in that business, they do call the planes first much of the time, according to a huge book of SOP for that particular district or forest. And they have been doing that for decades. That’s one reason why the wildlands are so overgrown and flammable today.
      A personal anecdote that illustrates exactly how aggressive fire managers were, and probably still are. In 1984 I was working as the copilot of a B-17 air tanker flying out of Redding, CA. A band of mostly dry thunderstorms passed through the area one day, starting many small fires. Several light recon planes were launched to spot them and several tankers were launched to drop on them. Our B-17 was equipped with 4 “doors” or tanks of about 460 gallons each. We dropped on 3 smoldering lightening struck trees and were down to our last tank when we were vectored to the location of a recon plane that had spotted a thin wisp of smoke coming up through the heavy tree canopy and he ordered us to drop on it. The entire area was under a “Red Flag” fire warning which meant no camp fires by the public. We made our run in at about 100 feet over the trees and my captain triggered the load with exactly the right lead for our ground speed. I leaned against the right side window where I could see almost directly straight down and as we passed the wisp of smoke I saw through the trees a tent, a small camp fire and a man holding a frying pan over the fire and looking up at us with horror as 2 tons of fire mud was about to splatter his neat little camp. The recon plane circling at 2000 feet had not seen the camp through the trees and assumed the smoke was a lightening strike. I’m willing to bet that particular camper never again violated a Red Flag warning.

  9. Nice to hear somebody talking sensibly. He is correct when he says that a controlled experiment to support or refute anthropogenic climate change is impossible.

  10. Current models predict much more warming than measured data. Without changing anything else, if one were to apply a feedback to current models that would bring them into compliance with measurements… what would that come to? Wouldn’t this represent the amount of error or unaccounted feedback one was seeking? Let’s assume all adjustments have been legitimate for this exercise.

    • ”… what would that come to? “

      Without the alarmist model outputs we’d see a collapse of climate science alarmism and the grant money that sustains an army of university and government scientists.

      Their careers, paying their mortgages, sending their kids to school, and their retirement plans all depend on the hustle.

    • Oh, my. You posted that on LinkedIn and haven’t been banned? Based on the stories they promote, I estimate they’re at least as CAGW promoting as Herr Mann himself!

  11. Here we have a science that’s so dominated by personalities that claim the science is settled, yet when you walk up to them and say prove it, they can’t

    That nails perfectly the 97%-pure polemical posturing that is starkly emblematic of “climate science.”

      • @RyanS at August 17, 2018 5:39 am I’m glad to see no one else took the bait this time (but I will, just so you know the last sentence), because you do this every time… doesn’t really matter what the topic is, as soon as someone states a fact that runs counter to your CAGW religion, you jump in with your typical “What’s your data?” and if anyone provides such data you engage in several rounds of does-not-does-too-does-not… until forced into a corner, whereupon you finally counter with your own lame link that does nothing to support your point, it’s just another talking head somewhere, I guess, I have never followed your clickbait because others (who I trust) have and have then excoriated you for failing the proof test. Do some research. Read the papers, then read the comments to see what errors they have made, then see which papers are left standing, THEN form your own opinion about this Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Scam. Then you can join the discussion. But since you have demonstrated you won’t, this is the end. You have become quite tiresome and I for one have had enough of you, and will read no more of your comments. Ever.

        [Note to Mods: do keep us updated on his next persona/handle, it would be quite a waste of everyone’s time to have to keep re-identifying him.]

  12. Good on him. So few have the guts to speak out against the media hype as consistently as John. We need more like him.

  13. “It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.” Richard Feynman

    If you cannot run an experiment, you cannot validate the theory. Ergo “anthropological climate change” is a falsity.

  14. “We know that the extra greenhouse gases should warm the planet,” he said. “The weak part of that theory though is that when you add more greenhouse gases that trap heat, things happen that let it escape as well, and so not as much is trapped as climate models show.”

    IOW, the greenhouse effect is bogus to begin with.

  15. Iv’e always liked Mr Christy, his calmness, and his honesty, it cannot be easy standing against the Marxist’s, they are vindictive baskets.

    That vindictiveness of going after people lives and jobs, came marching out of the skeptical foras, Randi’s bad astronomer uk skeptical society etc etc,… as they under went their transformations from critical thought to correct thought back in the late 90s early 2 0s.

    The Phil Class model, for you younger fellas, Alynski-ism.

  16. “Murky” and “uncertainty” are terms used by an honest scientist in a soft science field of study. The general lack of its use in climate science, economics, and psychology is detrimental to those fields and to public and media discourse. Also, Alabama has the best State Climatologist in the country.

  17. Who are you to believe, the cautious and rational practicing scientist, or the Mannic personalities and carnival barkers in the climate alarm camp?

  18. It is difficult to take any record seriously when none of the stations I have seen are remotely within the specification it should be especially with regard to tarmac and buildings inside the exclusion range to add to the intrinsic weakness of the test situation.
    I would still like to see a formal repeat of the engineers test showing the effect of the clean air legislation on temperature measurements because the Stevenson screen is not a perfect enclosure so the effect of incident radiation is quite significant.

  19. This phrase at the end “Christy didn’t deny that the last three years have been the hottest ever recorded globally” should have read “Christy didn’t deny that the last three years have been the warmest ever recorded globally”. A couple tenths of degree higher temperature is not hotter.

  20. Around the world, records for high temperatures are being broken, as temperatures approaching, or actually in, the 120s Fahrenheit are being recorded. The heat waves of recent years have been lethal mainly to the old, the sick, and the very young, but as temperatures continue to advance into the 120s, all human beings who have no refuge from the heat will be at risk.

    Adding to the dangerousness of modern heat waves is that fact that nights are remaining too warm to provide people with much respite from heat induced stress. And warm nights are a signature of man-made global warming; the Earth is becoming less efficient at shedding heat at night because of the increasing amount of atmospheric CO2.

    Of course, in the natural sciences we have to deal with probabilities rather than logically inescapable conclusions. This does not justify us in delaying action. Given the strong probability that the burning of fossils fuels is leading to dangerous global warming, and given the growing likelihood of serious consequences to thousands or millions of people from heat waves, we would be irresponsible — to say the least — not to take measures to curb emissions of CO2.

    • Jesse Fell

      This does not justify us in delaying action. Given the strong probability that the burning of fossils fuels is leading to dangerous global warming, and given the growing likelihood of serious consequences to thousands or millions of people from heat waves, we would be irresponsible — to say the least — not to take measures to curb emissions of CO2.

      Those fossil fuel are directly responsible for feeding, clothing, sheltering and protecting 5.5 billion innocent lives on this planet. You are calling for the deliberate death of several hindreds of millions, and the deliberate harm to all those billions on the “possibililty” that limited harm “might” come to some hundreds sometime in the far future – but only “if” the worst case extrapolated catastrophic scenarios actually play out.
      And, thus far, not only have those worst case scenarios NOT come true, the programs exaggerating their potential future impact in hundred years have failed miserably in only the their first 15 years! Your “insurance policy” says: “Your state “might” be hit by a tornado in 100 years, therefore we must destroy your house today in case that tornado might cause your family to break a window and damage the carpeting.”

      • We are in a jam, there’s no question. Fossil fuels are currently the basis of the world’s economy, if anything is. Weaning ourselves off of fossil fuels, without causing the harm you point to, is going to be one of the greatest challenges that mankind has ever faced.

        But we’ve got to get to work on it. The very worst case scenarios haven’t come true — quite so. But it doesn’t follow from that that all is well. The trend is in the wrong direction. Temperatures are rising worldwide. Nights are staying warmer. How anyone can be complacent about these trends is beyond me — but the continued existence of this web site suggests that plenty of people can.

        I would like to see something like a Manhattan project to find clean affordable sources of energy to replace fossil fuels. We also need to find ways to conserve energy. None of this need result in loss of jobs; it could create them. But we can’t continue drifting downstream as we have been, dismissing the sound of waterfall as it grows louder, because, after all, we haven’t gone over yet.

        • “We are in a jam, there’s no question.”

          You sound like a person virtually signalling spouting all the approved talking points, without the benefit of actual research.

          • I have read widely in the literature on both sides of the question, and compared the conclusions of each side with what we can feel and see already. As a result, I am unable to share in the complacency that is the staple of this web site. I do not expect to live long enough to see the worst effects of climate change on the human race, especially on its poor and therefore most vulnerable members. But it’s not hard to imagine what those effects will be. An ancient Roman, so it is said, planted trees for the benefit of future generations. Would that we in this generation were capable of accepting responsibility for the effect of our actions on the generations that follow us.

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