.

"Moontides, and Other Changes"

 These are from my book, "Moontides, and Other Changes"  with current update
(every other verse) to first piece.
Please take time to read the attached articles.  No matter what your
nationality, politics or religious beliefs we should all be very concerned
about Mother Earth and our own future.  We just can't go on pretending there
isn't anything to worry about, no matter what big business and gov't tells
us.  I, for one, believe Global Warming IS real!!
Abe


ENDANGERED SPECIES
Verses in (   ) are new and added

(I wrote this in the early 80s
And thought I’d add some more, today
As we still destroy our Planet
In the same, old, greedy, selfish way)

We talk about what we can do
To save what we don't kill
But I think we all know
That we never, ever will.

(Some inroads were slowly made
To save some endangered species
But all in all we all seem doomed
From the human being’s worst disease.)

We discuss all the things
That could and should be done
But it usually ends right there
Before they are begun.

(We talk and procrastinate
And I think it’s kinda strange
We know we should but never do
Those things we need to change.)

We won't waste our precious time
In our greedy haste
We will wait until it's gone
And cannot be replaced.

(We’re too busy with ourselves
And wait for someone else to lead
To change our ways of living
We’ll need to do to succeed.)

Then we'll bitch about it
Let another take the blame
And the worst part about it --
Next time we'll do the same.

(Some say we still have the time
To stop our self-destruction
And the release of greenhouse gas
Or at the least, some reduction.)

Some day we will realize
Though it will be too late
We're the endangered species
And have sealed our own fate.

(There are still some people
Some we may think are smart
Who say there is no problem
Can they believe that, in their heart?)

The world will be better off
Without the human being 'round
Without our intelligence(?)
Maybe sanity will abound.

(We seem keep ourselves at War
To control the flow of carbon fuel
And will never know righteous Peace
As long as the corporations rule.)

Maybe peace and tranquility
Will spread around the earth
Once we realize how little
We are really worth.

(Maybe when we go extinct
Nature will find a better way
To evolve a smarter, caring being
Who won’t be hell-bent on its doomsday.)

Let us hope we leave enough
To start some life anew --
That, we don't kill it all
'Fore we bid this world adieu.

Began in the early Eighties
Updated after some twenty pass
Will there be a time to write of changes
I doubt it, the way it looks, alas.

Del “Abe” Jones
1980s and 01.08.07




A FISH STORY?

It's another world
One that few have seen
At times wild and brutal
At times so serene.

A place where life abounds
Every shape and size
Where miracles seem to happen
Right before your eyes.

A garden paradise
With flowers that can walk
There's even some creatures
That know how to talk.

There are some animals
Not seen by the eye
And there are fish found here
That have learned to fly.

It has its own mountains
And rivers down below
Still hiding some secrets
That we may  never know.

For millions of years
It's cared for its own
And would for millions more
If it were left alone.

But man pollutes its waters
He dumps his garbage there
Spills oil on the surface --
He doesn't seem to care.

So he destroys its life
All because of greed
I guess we think the sea's
Something we don't need.

But someday fish stories
Told from shore to shore
Will be nothing more than
Part of our folklore.

Del “Abe” Jones
80s


Climate Change Denial
"Wacky Weather" is Deadly Global Heating

Earth Meanders by Dr. Glen Barry
http://earthmeanders.blogspot.com/


January 7, 2007

As of 2007 the Earth System has already undergone profound
global change of which global heating is the most immediately
evident profound impact. It is getting hot, and it is happening
fast. Many leading scientists tell us we have 10 years at most
given current trends before climate change becomes irreversible
and dangerous, beyond the generally accepted rise of 2 degrees
Celsius considered adaptable (we are about 1/3 the way there).

Yet the chortling television weather people tell us the
unprecedented wave of global mild weather - really a lack of
winter in many parts - is not climate change. We are encouraged
to take advantage of our good fortune and get out there and play
golf. At what point will abrupt climate change and deterioration
of the Earth System's life giving biosphere be recognized as a
global ecological emergency, and responded to as such? And will
it then be too late to limit damages, or even to survive?

Global warming is not a slow, gentle, pleasant rise in
temperatures to be savored. It is an abrupt fundamental break
down in the Earth System's climate sub-system that threatens the
Earth's, humanity's and your family's ability to live. It is not
enough to blame the weather on El Nino, which itself can be and
is exacerbated by climate change. As climate change continues
unabated by systematic policy responses, and "wacky weather"
more prevalent, we can expect immediately budding trees to die
from later frosts, agriculture to struggle to define growing
seasons, pest insects to multiply, and ecosystems to deteriorate
and die.

The ability of individuals, communities and nations to deny the
obvious is amazing. People do not like hearing that their
consumptive, wasteful lifestyle is destroying God's creation.
For most our addiction to lethargic comfort is so great, our
ignorance of ecology and our total dependence upon a healthy
biosphere so complete, and our psychological inability to grasp
that humanity has overrun the biosphere becoming the dominant
force in nature so absolute that we do nothing as the greatest
avertable disaster to ever face civilizations looms -
increasingly recognized but not nearly sufficiently addressed.

Humanity is deeply within the Anthropocene era whereby our
presence is the greatest force shaping the biosphere. We are
witnessing the jarring collapse of the Earth's most recent
climate equilibrium, and depending upon how much climate forcing
occurs from continued emissions, there are no guarantees what
the next climate will look like or even be regularized within a
decent time period. And the longer term results will be
calamitous - extreme weather including super storms, floods and
droughts, massive crop failures, vegetation die-back over whole
regions, a proliferation of tropical diseases, rising seas
destroying cities, a massive refugee crisis and a general
breakdown of anything resembling dependable climatic patterns.

Don't believe me? Walk outside right now - see or feel anything
different? Are the trees blooming in the middle of winter like
in Washington D.C. and New York? Is there a lack of snow as in
Minnesota and Europe, while other areas like Colorado get dumped
upon? Are the rains failing as with Australia's "Big Dry"? So
much of the global ecological system's processes and patterns
which provide the life-giving context for human civilization
have been lost and changed, and it continues to intensify.
Essentially no natural processes are assured as a very different
Planet emerges - climate patterns, water supplies, ocean
fisheries, soil fertility, terrestrial ecosystem energy and
nutrient cycling are all in doubt.

Many rightly do what they can individually, but are discouraged
by the fact that many necessary changes like widespread public
transportation, caps on emissions, and universal adoption of a
low carbon energy economy requires societal changes beyond an
individual's immediate grasp. Goddamn it, snap out of it! I want
to shake every climate denier and ambivalent Earth slayer,
slapping them in the face to awake them from their slumberous
death march. We are witnessing a human caused disintegration of
ancient climatic cycles, with anthropogenic emissions forcing
the global climate beyond what has always been a high level of
variability.

We must get past the ingrained illusion that humanity has not
become a planetary ecological force. And that the changes we are
witnessing in a single lifetime are good. As the ecologically
ignorant chortle, pleased to be outside in winter in short
sleeves, perhaps they should consider how global heating will
impact their water, food and shelter requirements for life - to
say nothing of the economy and their prospects for employment.

How deeply and sadly we are in denial regarding the consequences
of the abrupt climate changes we are witnessing. The life giving
biosphere is in tatters and near collapse because of you and me
and everyone. We are witnessing the logical conclusion of
deforesting 80% of the world's natural ecosystems while working
on the rest, breeding and increasing in numbers recklessly,
using fossil fuel energy wastefully, and believing our
lifestyles and consumption are independent of the Earth.

Massively reducing emissions must become this next greatest
generation's central call to duty. Dramatically and rapidly
reducing greenhouse gas emissions must become the central
organizing principle of governments, business and individuals.
Contracting rich nations' carbon emissions, while allowing
materially poor nations to converge with the rich's level of
emissions, is the only way forward that is both equitable and
likely to be successful. We need contests, and publicity for
best practices, and technology sharing, and a rejection of coal,
and emission caps, and global carbon trading, population
control, huge renewable energy subsidies and so much more.

Only massive public and political pressure - now - can save the
Earth and all her species. The recent vote in the U.S. was a
repudiation of oil industry governance. Now it is up to
Democrats to stop pandering on gas prices and propose a
progressive, workable carbon tax; ratify Kyoto and meaningfully
rejoin international climate talks; launch an "Apollo project"
supporting renewable energy, and generally for the U.S. to get
on the ball and rejoin the league of civilized nations that are
working on climate solutions.

I exhort all that read this to break the denial that the current
"wacky weather" is natural; it is more, much more; the start of
systematic collapse of being as we know it. And I ask that you
help other non-ecologically attuned people grasp what their way
of life is doing to creation - risking ridicule as an acolyte of
ecological truth. Take responsibility personally, and become
involved in the great climate change/ecological sustainability
movements that are set to rock this world - bringing forth the
necessary societal changes. Time is short, but solutions exist.
Save the climate, save the Earth, save yourself and your
posterity. Get active, organize, agitate, protest and above all
else reduce your carbon emissions!


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Earth Prophecy
And the way out

Earth Meanders December 23, 2006

Imagine the panic as Americans and others in the world that are
ecologically ignorant and isolated realize food does not come
from grocery stores but from healthy agro-ecosystems with
dependable climatic patterns and rich soil. That water does not
come from the tap, but from aquifers and rivers. That weather
need not follow reliable cycles, that natural resources are
finite, and that social order depends upon all the above. I
prophesize that within my lifetime environmental destruction and
unsustainable living will lead to widespread global ecological
collapse and social disintegration; leading eventually to
extinction for most life forms including humans and Gaia - the
Earth system itself. This is the Earth Prophecy.

None of what follows need happen, and I close this essay by
repeating the policies that offer the way out. We have all the
tools and knowledge on hand to prevent global ecological and
social collapse. Yet the hour is late, widespread political and
personal will essentially absent, and the momentum behind Earth
destroying trends so pernicious and constant that barring major
social change unprecedented in scale and ambition, the Earth and
her inhabitants are going to die a hard and brutal death.
Globally as the climate becomes wildly unpredictable, droughts
and floods prevalent, and the land and oceans lifeless;
starvation and disease will become rampant, economies will fail,
and social cohesion will break down leading to unprecedented
violence and death as the truth of existence is revealed to a
formerly air-conditioned, consumer society fighting to survive.

Firstly, what do I mean when I say the Earth is dying? The
prevailing sentiment is whatever the fate of humanity; the
Earth’s biota shall sufficiently persist to maintain other life
forms. Evolution will be set back by a sixth major extinction
event, but over geological time life will bounce back. I am not
convinced this is the case. Given the magnitude and speed of the
assault upon every aspect of Gaia’s biosphere and ecosystems -
toxins interacting, oceans dead and empty, failed water
ecosystems, a dysfunctional atmosphere, and the virtual
annihilation of native terrestrial habitats - it is not
inconceivable that the planet could essentially become lifeless.
Maybe entirely, or possibly some bacteria, dandelions and rats
hold on - in either case the Earth is dead.

It is prophesized that advanced, complex life including humans
and the Earth as a living system are imminently threatened with
extinction. Humanity’s manner of existing threatens advanced
life for a very long time if not forever. The coming eco-
collapse is going to be brutal and violent. And it could all be
averted, or at least some semblance of humanity and ecosystems
achieved post-collapse, given people power and political will
now.

Eco-collapse

When will ecological collapse start? I would say it has already
as polar bears drown, bears refuse to hibernate and penguins die
off. What has become of winter? Falling water tables, eroded
soils, desertification, extreme weather, melting ice caps, it is
all happening now. Climate change is but one of many aspects of
our alienation from the Earth; as soils, water, oceans, forests
are all failing along with the atmosphere. Global ecological
apocalypse is upon us and the day is late. Only pampered,
isolated modern humans could refuse to acknowledge we have a
problem. Malthus was right and we are as a species and planet
fully feeling the ramifications of believing there are no
limitations upon resources and that exponential growth of many
types including population, economic growth and resource use can
be sustained. Technology puts off limits to growth, it does not
supersede them.

The ecological foundation of being is failing. And as a result
here is just a sampling of what we can expect. The effects of
human consumption and fossil fuel use are going to spawn
tremendous climate feedbacks. The Amazon, Congo and Asia/Pacific
rainforests (those that remain) will largely die releasing their
carbon. Melting permafrost and ocean methane hydrates, along
with heat absorbing open Arctic waters, will further consolidate
and ensure run-away climate change of such magnitude that
adaptation is futile.

China is going to implode under the weight of its own runaway
economy, followed closely by India, the U.S. and Europe. The
collapse of these over-developed regions will destabilize the
entire world, leading to military adventurism to access
resources including water, energy and fertile land. Rising seas,
extreme weather, degraded soils, desertification, dead oceans,
scarce water - and the resultant militarization to maintain
over-consumption - are going to make billions of refugees. And
as these human beings lack places to run too; they will die from
disease and starvation, and from violence including murder, rape
and slavery by those in technologically rich, well stocked
compounds seeking to protect what they have.

As energy supplies are disrupted and run out the whole
industrial, agricultural, transport and production system will
grind to a halt. Those that have access to land and seeds - from
small farms to suburban lawns - will be called upon to raise
their own food, while fighting off marauders and with shortages
of seeds and tools of self-sufficiency. Two approaches will
emerge to combat the gravest threat ever to civilization. One
will strive to return to, and restore the Earth. The other will
try to engineer a way out of a crisis caused by over-engineering
with such things as fertilizing the oceans with iron, installing
space mirrors, and releasing sulphur pollution. The latter can
only fail as the biosphere is too complex to be engineered, and
unknown effects guaranteed.

The way out

Clearly there is much individuals can do to reduce consumption
and lead an eco-conscious lifestyle. And by all means we should
eat less or no meat, drive little, consume only quality items we
need but disavow conspicuous needless consumption, and a hundred
other things. But the uptake of such beliefs is spotty, human
numbers too great by at least four times to sustain anything
approximating our present lifestyles, and thus personal action
alone is unlikely to in itself nullify the Earth Prophecy. In
addition to taking personal action, we need to organize and work
for a movement that envisions and implements societal changes
truly adequate to avoid ecological and societal collapse.

On other occasions I have written in depth regarding what is
necessary in terms of Earth policy if humanity is to have a
future. There are two critical variables that influence the
Earth Prophecies likelihood, and whether the coming ecosystem
collapse kills the Earth system and its inhabitants, or whether
it is weathered and after much death and suffering a new,
simpler yet fuller ways of ecologically restorative living
embraced. The first is how quickly humanity embraces reduction
of industrial greenhouse gas emissions as a central organizing
principle of global community and responsibility. We should have
started in earnest in the booming 90s, but barring that we need
to have started and made real progress in decarbonizing our
economies within the decade, and continue until emissions are
reduced to the extent that global heating can be managed.
Further keys to address climate change include renewable energy
subsidies, energy efficiency and conservation, and leaving our
coal in the ground.

Ecological Internet's "Sustainability Solutions Initiative" runs
through the whole gamut of the top ten governance policy
initiatives necessary to avert the coming ecological apocalypse.
A more full accounting of this new project meant to identify
sufficient policies to save the Earth can be found at
http://www.ecoearth.info/ssi/ . Let me paraphrase here. We need
to go far beyond better light bulbs and hybrid cars and
fundamentally reorganize human existence. In addition to the
adequate climate policy above, major initiatives are needed in
the realm of population control and reduction; terrestrial,
aquatic and hydrological ecosystem protection and restoration
including no more logging or other industrial development in
ancient forests; the pursuit of sustainable economies requires a
rethinking of both agriculture and economics, and the embrace of
appropriate green technologies. And finally the world can not be
saved and the prophecy averted without strengthened global
governance, global demilitarization and a reallocation of these
funds to the programs above and urgent efforts to tackle
terrible inequitable poverty which plagues the world.

Maybe world environmental leaders like Al Gore, Leonardo
DiCaprio and Laurie David will embrace this ambitious yet
sufficient agenda. Or maybe they will continue talking, hawking
light bulbs and virtually marching. But as all hell starts
breaking loose, and society and individuals refuse to make the
types of changes listed above, there is another option I have
considered academically in depth - and that is an Earth
Revolution to topple the whole rotten, polluting, inequitable
and Earth killing economic system (see
http://earthmeanders.blogspot.com/2006/06/earth-treatise-living-
for-earth.html ) .

If all else fails, a band of Earth insurgents must rise to
eliminate Earth destroyer’s property, principles and economic
system. A vast, well financed network of Earth rebels will
develop to make a last ditch effort to save salvation.
Simultaneously such a movement would promote practitioners of
truly sustainable agrarian, relocalized and democratic living to
step in to provide the solutions to reconstitute humanity and
the Planet post collapse and revolution. We must be prepared
with seeds, workable permaculture methods, and ways to help
people reconnect to the Earth to feed and house themselves while
nurturing a sick global patient - Gaia, the Earth system.

Let us all recommit ourselves this year to organizing,
advocating and protesting to stop and reverse Earth destruction;
at the personal, campaign and global policy level. And let us
prepare for the final battle to avert global ecological
Armageddon, by living as sustainably as possible given social
constraints and preparing the knowledge, seeds, tools and
methods to fight for a future for Homo sapiens, the millions of
species with which we share existence, and the Earth's being. I
love the Earth so much and my heart is breaking, yet the above
is a truthful examination based upon decades of learning and
action. It is my gift to you this solstice season. Let us
together find the way out from this horrific Earth Prophecy.

by Dr. Glen Barry
http://earthmeanders.blogspot.com/

 
Below is an article from Imprimis: the news letter for Hillsdale College.   Hillsdale College is an independent, co-educational, nonsectarian, liberal arts college located on the north side of the city of Hillsdale in central-southern Michigan, United States.     Although "nonsectarian," the College has long been distinctly Christian.

The following is adapted from a lecture delivered by S. Fred Singer on the Hillsdale College campus on June 30, 2007, during a seminar entitled “Economics and the Environment,” sponsored by the Charles R. and Kathleen K. Hoogland Center for Teacher Excellence.

S. Fred Singer is professor emeritus of environmental sciences at the University of Virginia, a distinguished research professor at George Mason University, and president of the Science and Environmental Policy Project. He performed his undergraduate studies at Ohio State University and earned his Ph.D. in Physics from Princeton University. He was the founding dean of the School of Environmental and Planetary Sciences at the University of Miami, the founding director of the U.S. National Weather Satellite Service, and served for five years as vice chairman of the U.S. National Advisory Committee on Oceans and Atmosphere. Dr. Singer has written or edited over a dozen books and mono-graphs, including, most recently, Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1,500 Years.


Global Warming - Man-Made Or Natural ?
 
IN THE PAST few years there has been increasing concern about global climate change on the part of the media, politicians, and the public. It has been stimulated by the idea that human activities may influence global climate adversely and that therefore corrective action is required on the part of governments. Recent evidence suggests that this concern is misplaced. Human activities are not influencing the global climate in a perceptible way. Climate will continue to change, as it always has in the past, warming and cooling on different time scales and for different reasons, regardless of human action. I would also argue that—should it occur—a modest warming would be on the whole beneficial.
 
This is not to say that we don’t face a serious problem. But the problem is political. Because of the mistaken idea that governments can and must do something about climate, pressures are building that have the potential of distorting energy policies in a way that will severely damage national economies, decrease standards of living, and increase poverty. This misdirection of resources will adversely affect human health and welfare in industrialized nations, and even more in developing nations. Thus it could well lead to increased social tensions within nations and conflict between them.
 
If not for this economic and political damage, one might consider the present concern about climate change nothing more than just another environmentalist fad, like the Alar apple scare or the global cooling fears of the 1970s. Given that so much is at stake, however, it is essential that people better understand the issue.
 
Man-Made Warming?

The most fundamental question is scientific: Is the observed warming of the past 30 years due to natural causes or are human activities a main or even a contributing factor?
 
At first glance, it is quite plausible that humans could be responsible for warming the climate. After all, the burning of fossil fuels to generate energy releases large quantities of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. The CO2 level has been increasing steadily since the beginning of the industrial revolution and is now 35 percent higher than it was 200 years ago. Also, we know from direct measurements that CO2 is a “greenhouse gas” which strongly absorbs infrared (heat) radiation. So the idea that burning fossil fuels causes an enhanced “greenhouse effect” needs to be taken seriously.
 
But in seeking to understand recent warming, we also have to consider the natural factors that have regularly warmed the climate prior to the industrial revolution and, indeed, prior to any human presence on the earth. After all, the geological record shows a persistent 1,500-year cycle of warming and cooling extending back at least one million years.
 
In identifying the burning of fossil fuels as the chief cause of warming today, many politicians and environmental activists simply appeal to a so-called “scientific consensus.” There are two things wrong with this. First, there is no such consensus: An increasing number of climate scientists are raising serious questions about the political rush to judgment on this issue. For example, the widely touted “consensus” of 2,500 scientists on the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is an illusion: Most of the panelists have no scientific qualifications, and many of the others object to some part of the IPCC’s report. The Associated Press reported recently that only 52 climate scientists contributed to the report’s “Summary for Policymakers.”
 
Likewise, only about a dozen members of the governing board voted on the “consensus statement” on climate change by the American Meteorological Society (AMS). Rank and file AMS scientists never had a say, which is why so many of them are now openly rebelling. Estimates of skepticism within the AMS regarding man-made global warming are well over 50 percent.
 
The second reason not to rely on a “scientific consensus” in these matters is that this is not how science works. After all, scientific advances customarily come from a minority of scientists who challenge the majority view—or even just a single person (think of Galileo or Einstein). Science proceeds by the scientific method and draws conclusions based on evidence, not on a show of hands.
 
But aren’t glaciers melting? Isn’t sea ice shrinking? Yes, but that’s not proof for human-caused warming. Any kind of warming, whether natural or human-caused, will melt ice. To assert that melting glaciers prove human causation is just bad logic.
 
What about the fact that carbon dioxide levels are increasing at the same time temperatures are rising? That’s an interesting correlation; but as every scientist knows, correlation is not causation. During much of the last century the climate was cooling while CO2 levels were rising. And we should note that the climate has not warmed in the past eight years, even though greenhouse gas levels have increased rapidly.
 
What about the fact—as cited by, among others, those who produced the IPCC report—that every major greenhouse computer model (there are two dozen or so) shows a large temperature increase due to human burning of fossil fuels? Fortunately, there is a scientific way of testing these models to see whether current warming is due to a man-made greenhouse effect. It involves comparing the actual or observed pattern of warming with the warming pattern predicted by or calculated from the models. Essentially, we try to see if the “fingerprints” match—“fingerprints” meaning the rates of warming at different latitudes and altitudes.
 
For instance, theoretically, greenhouse warming in the tropics should register at increasingly high rates as one moves from the surface of the earth up into the atmosphere, peaking at about six miles above the earth’s surface. At that point, the level should be greater than at the surface by about a factor of three and quite pronounced, according to all the computer models. In reality, however, there is no increase at all. In fact, the data from balloon-borne radiosondes show the very opposite: a slight decrease in warming over the equator.
 
The fact that the observed and predicted patterns of warming don’t match indicates that the man-made greenhouse contribution to current temperature change is insignificant. This fact emerges from data and graphs collected in the Climate Change Science Program Report 1.1, published by the federal government in April 2006 (see www.climatescience.gov/Library/sap/sap1-1/finalreport/default.htm). It is remarkable and puzzling that few have noticed this disparity between observed and predicted patterns of warming and drawn the obvious scientific conclusion.
 
What explains why greenhouse computer models predict temperature trends that are so much larger than those observed? The answer lies in the proper evaluation of feedback within the models. Remember that in addition to carbon dioxide, the real atmosphere contains water vapor, the most powerful greenhouse gas. Every one of the climate models calculates a significant positive feedback from water vapor—i.e., a feedback that amplifies the warming effect of the CO2 increase by an average factor of two or three. But it is quite possible that the water vapor feedback is negative rather than positive and thereby reduces the effect of increased CO2.
 
There are several ways this might occur. For example, when increased CO2 produces a warming of the ocean, a higher rate of evaporation might lead to more humidity and cloudiness (provided the atmosphere contains a sufficient number of cloud condensation nuclei). These low clouds reflect incoming solar radiation back into space and thereby cool the earth. Climate researchers have discovered other possible feedbacks and are busy evaluating which ones enhance and which diminish the effect of increasing CO2.
Natural Causes of Warming
A quite different question, but scientifically interesting, has to do with the natural factors influencing climate. This is a big topic about which much has been written. Natural factors include continental drift and mountain-building, changes in the Earth’s orbit, volcanic eruptions, and solar variability. Different factors operate on different time scales. But on a time scale important for human experience—a scale of decades, let’s say—solar variability may be the most important.
 
Solar influence can manifest itself in different ways: fluctuations of solar irradiance (total energy), which has been measured in satellites and related to the sunspot cycle; variability of the ultraviolet portion of the solar spectrum, which in turn affects the amount of ozone in the stratosphere; and variations in the solar wind that modulate the intensity of cosmic rays (which, upon impact into the earth’s atmosphere, produce cloud condensation nuclei, affecting cloudiness and thus climate).
 
Scientists have been able to trace the impact of the sun on past climate using proxy data (since thermometers are relatively modern). A conventional proxy for temperature is the ratio of the heavy isotope of oxygen, Oxygen-18, to the most common form, Oxygen-16.
 
A paper published in Nature in 2001 describes the Oxygen-18 data (reflecting temperature) from a stalagmite in a cave in Oman, covering a period of over 3,000 years. It also shows corresponding Carbon-14 data, which are directly related to the intensity of cosmic rays striking the earth’s atmosphere. One sees there a remarkably detailed correlation, almost on a year-by-year basis. While such research cannot establish the detailed mechanism of climate change, the causal connection is quite clear: Since the stalagmite temperature cannot affect the sun, it is the sun that affects climate.
 
Policy Consequences

 If this line of reasoning is correct, human-caused increases in the CO2 level are quite insignificant to climate change. Natural causes of climate change, for their part, cannot be controlled by man. They are unstoppable. Several policy consequences would follow from this simple fact:

> Regulation of CO2 emissions is pointless and even counterproductive, in that no matter what kind of mitigation scheme is used, such regulation is hugely expensive.
> The development of non-fossil fuel energy sources, like ethanol and hydrogen, might be counterproductive, given that they have to be manufactured, often with the investment of great amounts of ordinary energy. Nor do they offer much reduction in oil imports.
> Wind power and solar power become less attractive, being uneconomic and requiring huge subsidies. 
> Substituting natural gas for coal in electricity generation makes less sense for the same reasons. 
 
None of this is intended to argue against energy conservation. On the contrary, conserving energy reduces waste, saves money, and lowers energy prices—irrespective of what one may believe about global warming.
 
Science vs. Hysteria
 
You will note that this has been a rational discussion. We asked the important question of whether there is appreciable man-made warming today. We presented evidence that indicates there is not, thereby suggesting that attempts by governments to control greenhouse-gas emissions are pointless and unwise. Nevertheless, we have state governors calling for CO2 emissions limits on cars; we have city mayors calling for mandatory CO2 controls; we have the Supreme Court declaring CO2 a pollutant that may have to be regulated; we have every industrialized nation (with the exception of the U.S. and Australia) signed on to the Kyoto Protocol; and we have ongoing international demands for even more stringent controls when Kyoto expires in 2012. What’s going on here?
 
To begin, perhaps even some of the advocates of these anti-warming policies are not so serious about them, as seen in a feature of the Kyoto Protocol called the Clean Development Mechanism, which allows a CO2 emitter—i.e., an energy user—to support a fanciful CO2 reduction scheme in developing nations in exchange for the right to keep on emitting CO2 unabated. “Emission trading” among those countries that have ratified Kyoto allows for the sale of certificates of unused emission quotas. In many cases, the initial quota was simply given away by governments to power companies and other entities, which in turn collect a windfall fee from consumers. All of this has become a huge financial racket that could someday make the UN’s “Oil for Food” scandal in Iraq seem minor by comparison. Even more fraudulent, these schemes do not reduce total CO2 emissions—not even in theory.
 
It is also worth noting that tens of thousands of interested persons benefit directly from the global warming scare—at the expense of the ordinary consumer. Environmental organizations globally, such as Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, and the Environmental Defense Fund, have raked in billions of dollars. Multi-billion-dollar government subsidies for useless mitigation schemes are large and growing. Emission trading programs will soon reach the $100 billion a year level, with large fees paid to brokers and those who operate the scams. In other words, many people have discovered they can benefit from climate scares and have formed an entrenched interest. Of course, there are also many sincere believers in an impending global warming catastrophe, spurred on in their fears by the growing number of one-sided books, movies, and media coverage.
 
The irony is that a slightly warmer climate with more carbon dioxide is in many ways beneficial rather than damaging. Economic studies have demonstrated that a modest warming and higher CO2 levels will increase GNP and raise standards of living, primarily by improving agriculture and forestry. It’s a well-known fact that CO2 is plant food and essential to the growth of crops and trees—and ultimately to the well-being of animals and humans.
 
You wouldn’t know it from Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, but there are many upsides to global warming: Northern homes could save on heating fuel. Canadian farmers could harvest bumper crops. Greenland may become awash in cod and oil riches. Shippers could count on an Arctic shortcut between the Atlantic and Pacific. Forests may expand.
Mongolia could become an economic superpower. This is all speculative, even a little facetious. But still, might there be a silver lining for the frigid regions of Canada and Russia? “It’s not that there won’t be bad things happening in those countries,” economics professor Robert O. Mendelsohn of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies says. “But the idea is that they will get such large gains, especially in agriculture, that they will be bigger than the losses.” Mendelsohn has looked at how gross domestic product around the world would be affected under different warming scenarios through 2100. Canada and Russia tend to come out as clear gainers, as does much of northern Europe and Mongolia, largely because of projected increases in agricultural production.
 
To repeat a point made at the beginning: Climate has been changing cyclically for at least a million years and has shown huge variations over geological time. Human beings have adapted well, and will continue to do so.
 
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 The nations of the world face many difficult problems. Many have societal problems like poverty, disease, lack of sanitation, and shortage of clean water. There are grave security problems arising from global terrorism and the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Any of these problems are vastly more important than the imaginary problem of man-made global warming. It is a great shame that so many of our resources are being diverted from real problems to this non-problem. Perhaps in ten or 20 years this will become apparent to everyone, particularly if the climate should stop warming (as it has for eight years now) or even begin to cool.
 
We can only trust that reason will prevail in the face of an onslaught of propaganda like Al Gore’s movie and despite the incessant misinformation generated by the media. Today, the imposed costs are still modest, and mostly hidden in taxes and in charges for electricity and motor fuels. If the scaremongers have their way, these costs will become enormous. But I believe that sound science and good sense will prevail in the face of irrational and scientifically baseless climate fears.
 
Data Source:  http://www.hillsdale.edu/news/imprimis.asp   (09/04/2007)
 
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