Wednesday, August 28, 2013
We Don't Have A Planetary Emergency - Yet
Global Warming never was a planetary emergency, and then it became natural climate change (“natural” was omitted – it’s an inconvenient truth). Then it became severe weather, except that a modicum of weather history research shows current weather not nearly as severe as previous. Through it all the word “unprecedented” has been liberally sprinkled, without adding the caveats that the warming was only unprecedented if you only look back a century, or almost a millennium at most. How moderate warming can be considered an emergency, given the greater good it provides, and the economic and societal progress burning fossil fuels provides can be considered dangerous, is ludicrous. The alternative, global cooling leading into another glacial period, can be easily demonstrated to be a magnitude greater in terms of human catastrophes than warming could ever. For the past million years, 100,000-year glacial periods have alternated with 10,000-year interglacials. It’s no accident that humanity made more progress in the 10,000 years since the end of the last Ice Age than in the 100,000 years that preceded it. It won’t be long (in geological terms) before Chicago is back under a mile-thick ice sheet, and San Franciscans have to travel west 26 miles to get to the cruise ship berths. Dante was wise when he made ice the inner circle of Hell. A “Slushball” Earth is a planetary emergency to truly fear.