Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Unscientific "Concerned Scientists"

Wilting heat, deadly storms, flash floods, coastal erosion, more days with unhealthy air - those are just some of the effects of rising temperatures on the Northeast, a group of scientists reported Wednesday.

Oddly enough, although the article was written as if reporting events that have occurred, I found not one of these disasters was documented as having already happened. Each was still just a prediction of future calamity, with no details or observations supporting their apocalyptic prognostication.

We still have no evidence that it is, or will be, any hotter in the next hundred years than it was during the Medieval Warm Period of just 1,000 years ago.

We already know that most of the temperature increase in the past century occurred in the first half of the 1900’s, before CO2 increased dramatically, and that there was a cooling period from 1940 to 1975 while CO2 increased rapidly.

It doesn’t seem that the pattern of climate change during the past century conforms with the pattern of increasing CO2.

In terms of deadly storms, there were worse during the Little Ice Age than in recent years, and more and stronger hurricanes during the first half of the 1900’s.

Don’t the “Concerned Scientists” have Google capabilities? Don’t they know that warming reduces the temperature differentials across latitudes and reduces the energy potential that fuels powerful storms?

Obviously they think that sea levels rising is a recent phenomena, and don’t realize that sea levels rose seven inches the past century, averaged rising about that amount during each of the past eighty centuries, and are expected to continue to rise. After all, sea levels have risen over 400 feet since ice began melting at the end of the last Ice Age, although at a much slower rate during the past 8,000 years.

Coastal erosion is a fact of coastal life. Even if sea levels weren’t rising (which they are), we would still be having coastal erosion, because that is what happens when waves crash on shores.

Here on the Northern California coast we estimate bluff erosion at about an average of three inches a year from a combination of rain, wind, and wave action. That has been the experience through cooler and warmer periods, and if atmospheric levels of CO2 could be magically reduced to pre-industrial levels, we would still expect the same amount of coastal erosion.

We have ample evidence that the sea levels were once much higher than today. We have ledges hundreds of feet above current sea level that used to be shores when the ice caps of the Earth had completely melted.

And we know the ocean now rolls over former shores created during the last Ice Age when sea level was over 400 feet lower.

More days of unhealthy air? We have far fewer such days in the United States than we did fifty years ago.

Improved technology, coupled with greater prosperity, solves environmental problems, while environmental alarmists only misdirect attention and resources from effectively adapting to never-ending climate change.

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