Liar, Liar – Pants on Fire ~~~


If you have not heard, read or seen the news – it seems that Carbon Dioxide AKA Carbon Pollution is suffocating our planet. We human beings are responsible. The Earth is warming up because of all the carbon pollution in the atmosphere, and if we do not pay a Carbon Tax, our planet will suffer severe damage, possibly even unto death. YUP I guess that is the long and short of the argument.

How do I know all this? What makes me so darn clever?

Well I am not all that clever, but I do read, I watch television, even listen to the radio when driving around in the car when we can afford the petrol. So I guess I just take it all in and believe it because both the IPCC and the Prime Ministers of Australia tell me so.

And to top it all off readers, this coming Sunday July 10, 2011 we have been advised that the Government of Australia will come out and tell us how this new Carbon Tax will work. How it will affect each and every one of us, and I expect they will also include a statement on just how, by paying this new tax, we Aussies will save planet Earth.

I do hope they tell us, because it has been worrying me terribly since I read various reports stating categorically – that means without a doubt, that this Carbon Pollution, rises into the atmosphere and causes global warming – which in turn does the most dastardly things to the planet, including:

Causing the oceans to rise, causing the Great Barrier Reef to bleach.

Causing the ice caps to melt, causing the extinction of those cute Polar Bears.

Causing the Earth’s Temperature to warm up – and that of course causes severe weather patterns to emerge. We will have droughts, floods, famines, plagues, species extinctions etc etc etc. Yes nightmare stuff! I could go on and on with listing foreseeable disasters, but I expect you get the gist?

Even yesterday in the media we were told that because the Asian Countries are still burning fossil fuels in their big dirty smoke stacks – the planet was still in danger.

I expect you get the visual? Dirty smoke stacks spewing loads and loads of pollution into the atmosphere, where carbon dioxide accumulates and causes planetary warming to occur. And now we Australian’s can save the day as it were. Planet Earth will live again, without fear of carbon pollution killing us off. That must be why they want to levy this tax. There could not be any other reason? And we will all live happily ever after – right! 

Marriagecoach wrote to me recently and told me:
Here is something that you have not heard before.  It is scientifically impossible for CO2 to cause global warming.  This is because the specific gravity is 1.52 which means that it is literally 152% heavier than air and sinks to the ground when released.  According to the computer model of the IPCC it will rise into the atmosphere and stay there for a 100 years thus becoming cumulative and causing warming.  Not unless we repeal the Law of Gravity.

I thought he must be pulling my arthritic leg! I mean for years the IPCC (United Nations) has been telling us that Carbon was our death sentence….. Carbon pollution causes global warming. We must reduce Carbon Emissions, to stop the Planet from warming up. This is why the Australian Government is forcing the new Carbon Tax onto us.

And now I discover that Carbon Dioxide does not rise into the atmosphere at all, but sinks to the ground. Have I any credible proof of this you may well ask me.

How about these few quotes with links: 

 “Because CO2 is heavier than air, it doesn’t readily rise into the atmosphere and, instead, tends to pool in low areas.  

 “Carbon dioxide is denser than air, so it hugged the ground and flowed down the stream valley that leads away from the lake. Unfortunately many homes and at least one town are also along this valley and the inhabitants were caught by this cloud of ground-hugging gas.
 
 “
Zhang said, ‘Carbon dioxide is denser than air, so it settled down and flowed along the river valley, choking people and animals to death.’ 

 “The carbon dioxide settles as a layer at the floor of the space.”

 Carbon dioxide is heavier than air and so it sinks into the tank and stays there.

I went looking for proof that we humans are causing atmospheric Carbon Dioxide to rise, and found this statement from here:  What the science says…   Direct observations find that CO2 is rising sharply due to human activity. This gives a line of empirical evidence that human CO2 emissions are causing global warming.

Gee I am not a scientist, just someone looking for simple rational clearly defined thought – statements that can show without any doubt that we are causing this so called catastrophe we are about to be taxed for. And I find lots and lots of so called scientific rational that the atmospheric Carbon Dioxide has risen, the oceans are warming, the temperatures are warmer, let’s find someone to blame – OK blame people and industry so we can tax them.

(Ok if I mention here that Earths surface temperatured did not rise over a ten year period?)

If I turn away from the Government paid scientific lackeys who have a tendency to speak in a strange language (scientific mumbo jumbo) and find a different source, will that help me understand all of this? Perhaps! I have brought the following up to date with the current players mentioned. (source)

Here’s a way to understand Mr. Brown’s and Ms. Gillard’s Carbon Tax

Imagine 1 kilometre of atmosphere that we want to rid of human carbon pollution.  We’ll have a walk along it.

The first 770 metres are Nitrogen.

The next 210 metres are Oxygen.

That’s 980 metres of the 1 kilometre.  20 metres to go.

The next 10 metres are water vapour.  10 metres left.

9 metres are argon.  Just 1 more metre.

A few gases make up the first bit of that last metre.

The last 38 centimetres of the kilometre – that’s carbon dioxide.

A bit over one foot.

97% of that is produced by Mother Nature.  It’s natural. 

Out of our journey of one kilometre, there are just 12 millimetres left.  About half an inch.  Just over a centimetre.

That’s the amount of carbon dioxide that global human activity puts into the atmosphere.

And of those 12 millimetres Australia puts in .18 of a millimetre.

Less than the thickness of a hair.  Out of a kilometre.

As a hair is to a kilometre – so is Australia’s contribution to what Mr. Brown and Ms. Gillard calls Carbon Pollution. 

Imagine Brisbane’s new Gateway Bridge, ready to be officially opened by the Prime Minister’s.  It’s been polished, painted and scrubbed by an army of workers till its 1 kilometre length is surgically clean.  Except that the Prime Minister’s say we have a huge problem, the bridge is polluted – there’s a human hair on the roadway.  We’d laugh ourselves silly.

There are plenty of real pollution problems to worry about.  It’s hard to imagine that Australia’s contribution to carbon dioxide in the world’s atmosphere is one of the more pressing ones.  And I can’t believe that a new tax on everything is the only way to blow that pesky hair away.

So there we have it people. We are about to be taxed for a problem that does not really exist, because carbon per se does not really rise into the atmosphere, it has as stated above, a tendency to find the lower ground where it will dissipate of its own free will. Therefore the carbon becomes part of the grass and the trees and the soil around us – which is all part of the cycle of nature.

What is this carbon tax really about? Greg Sheridan (The Australian) tells us: The Gillard government is taking us down a European road. The carbon tax is a part of that, both in substance and in the style of its politics.

We know from Jill Duggan, who managed Britain’s initial emissions trading scheme (ETS) that there are 30 countries in Europe that have had a carbon price … since the beginning of 2005.”

Ms Duggan not only headed Britain’s work on international emissions trading and linking but has advised other governments on the European experience. She pointed to some design flaws in Europe’s initial emissions scheme.

I’ll betcha she spent considerable time with members of the Government expounding her ideas, and assisting in the background to setting up an Emissions Trading Scheme for Australia. You do remember I hope that we have been assured by Mr. Brown and Ms. Gillard that as soon as it is possible, the Carbon Tax will be rolled over into an emissions trading scheme (ETS)?

Is Australia going to follow in the EU’s footsteps? Is this the model for our ETS?

The Gillard government has been consistently tricky, in a very European way, in the politics of the carbon tax. It ruled out a carbon tax before the election last year. Then it decided to introduce one three years before the voters could pass a judgment on it.

Meanwhile, it has spent a vast fortune of taxpayers’ money on a series of government bodies, headed by Garnaut, Tim Flannery and other long-term friends of the Labor Party, to conduct an incessant campaign of indoctrination in favour of government policy.

What advice did Minister Combet receive and implement after speaking with Ms. Duggan one wonders?

When you read statements such as: Yet just as the Gillard government is moving decisively down the European road, the European model itself is in catastrophic collapse. The model can no longer sustain itself – YOU MUST ASK YOURSELF why we would be so blatantly idiotic as to mimic the EU system in Australia.

Who will benefit? Who will profit? It certainly will not be you or I or Planet Earth. This has nothing to do with Carbon and much to do with Big Government and centralised control.

You can still say NO to a Carbon Tax…… get off your bottom and make your feelings known.

 

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About JustMEinT Musings

I like writing, reading and expressing my opinions. I prefer natural health and healing to pharmaceutical drugs. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Saviour.
This entry was posted in Anthropological Global Warming, Carbon Tax, Carbon Tax, CO2, GENERAL MUSINGS, IPCC, Sea Level Rise, The Green's, United nations and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to Liar, Liar – Pants on Fire ~~~

  1. Dikran Marsupial says:

    The argument that CO2 is heavier than air, and hence cannot rise into the atmosphere was refuted in comments on an earlier article https://justmeint.wordpress.com/2011/06/29/are-we-polluting-our-childrens-minds/#comment-352 so it is rather dissapointing to see it repeated here without the counter-argument being addressed.

    CO2 measurements are made in maritime locations (so they are not contaminated by local sources of CO2, such as heavy industry) and at alltitude (i.e. on the top of a mountain, such as Mauna Loa). If it was true that CO2 was heavier than air and “hugs the ground”, then any CO2 at the top of the mountain would rapidly flow down the sides of the mountain. So if John’s theory is right, he needs to be able to explain why there is 380ppm of CO2 on the top of a mountain, where his theory suggests there should be very little. Where does it come from?

  2. Dikran Marsupial says:

    BTW, atmospheric CO2 is also measured by satelite (NASA’s AIRS programme), weather balloons and by aircraft. They all confirm the measurements made by surface stations such as Siple and Mauna Loa (there is a global network of CO2 monitoring sites).

  3. Dikran Marsupial says:

    Also the IPCC do not claim that CO2 stays in the air for 100 years. They say the residence time (the time an individual molecule of CO2 stays in the atmosphere before being taken up by the oceans or terrestrial biosphere) is about four years. The adjustment time (the time taken for an excess of CO2 above the natural pre-industrial equilibrium to be absorbed) is of the order of 50-200 years. These two times are not the same thing, and it requires a good grasp of the carbon cycle to understand why the two are not the same. David Archer has written a good primer called “the global carbon cycle”, published by Princeton University Press, which I strongly reccommend to anyone interested in the science of atmospheric carbon dioxide.

  4. Dikran it is kind of you to keep the conversation on track. I mentioned at another place about airplane emissions at high altitudes – and that I had lost the link….. suprise!!! Here it is. http://ocii.com/~dpwozney/carbondioxide.htm

    …… now I do not know if you have read it, seen it etc, so am simply posting it here for yourself and anyone else who might be interested in reading through it. Once an author gets into numbers and scientific calculations I get lost, that is why I would think a high percentage of ordinary non mathmatical people look for plain english explanations.

    I am still not convinced that human carbon emissions are causing global warming, in fact I am not convinced the planet is warming. I am convinced there is some underlying reason involving $$$$ which is the driving force behind all of this.

    • Dikran Marsupial says:

      The link you gave appears to be almost 100% nonsense from a scientific point of view, and I haven’t the time or energy to address them all individually. However, I’d be happy to discuss those points from that page that you think are of particular interest.

      As to whether CO2 in the upper atmosphere is caused by air travel, the 380ppmv of CO2 in the atmopshere equates to about 750Gt, i.e. 750,000,000,000 tons of carbon. There simply has not been anything like enough air travel so far to explain that much carbon, even if it all stayed in the atmosphere permanently. If there had been 750 million flights to date, then each flight would have produced 1,000 tons of carbon each. As the maximum takeoff weight of a 747 is only about 330 tons (and empty weigh about 162 tons), that seems rather unlikely!

      There is also the fact that CO2 measurements at Mauna Loa started in 1958, at about 315ppm and has risen over the next fifty years to only about 390ppmv. The volume of ari travel has inreased hugely since the late sixties, but trophospheric CO2 has only risen about 70ppmv in that time. Where was the air travel prior to 1958 that was responsible for the other 315ppmv?

      The argument that trophosperic CO2 is due to air travel simply doesn’t stand up to even a cursory examination, and certainly doesn’t survive first contact with the data.

      Sadly, most of the plain english explanations you will find on the internet will be wrong, because they will mostly be from people who don’t understand the science and are propagating misunderstandings from other sites on the internet written by people who don’t understand it either. This does enormous damage to the skeptic side of the argument; if you want to lobby politicians not to raise carbon taxes, but you base the argument on scientific views that are easily demonstrated to be incorrect, your views will be (quite rightly) dismissed as ill-informed. If the skeptics want to make progress, they need to get the science right, and drop all of these carnards that marginalise them from the debate. I’m sorry to say that your blog is damaging the cause you seem to seek to promote by doing exactly that.

      It is a shame that you denigrated skepticalscience.com, there are people there that do understand the science and are more than happy to try and explain it in plain English (many of the posts there have basic, intermediate and advanced versions to cater for as many readers as possible). I am happy to discuss things with you here or there.

      • A couple of thoughts:
        1. I haven’t found a good scientific comment on CO2 level vs Altitude, but the relationship does seem to be more constant than the heavier-than-air theory suggests. It may be that the air is mixed with water vapour making the density difference much less. Air currents may also explain mixing, again overiding molecular density difference effects.
        2. This measure of tonnes of CO2 intrigues me. Conservationists often talk about this and finish up with several tonnes weight of CO2 from burning 1 tonne of wood. This does not make sense in conservation of energy/mass terms. The talk of “equivalent” something or other, again not making sense. Perhaps Dikran, you may be able to assist here.
        3. Bottom line for me is that I agree with JustMeinT that whatever the science in computing/modelling the CO2 – Global temperature relationships, the measured results are far from conclusive that atmospheric CO2 and GT are directly related. Certainly it is not good-enough science on which to base world changing financial controls.

      • Dikran Marsupial says:

        Hi Ken, Water vapour has a specific gravity of 0.622 (e.g. http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/specific-gravities-gases-d_334.html) which is less than that of “normal” air, so if anything a mixture of air and water vapour would make the sensity difference slightly greater. If gasses in the atmosphere did stratify in the way John suggests, it would rapidly rise and there wouldn’t be enough water vapour in the lower atmosphere to form stable low cloud, but we know that doesn’t happen!

        The reason you get more CO2 by weight than the carbon available in the source material is because of the oxygen, which comes from the atmosphere. Scientists use two measurements GtC which is giga-tons of carbon (without considering the O2) and GtCO2, which is gigatons of carbon dioxide (inclusing the O2). This often causes confusion! The 750 figure I gave earlier is GtC, so it only relates to the weight of carbon atoms in the atmosphere.

        The science of the greenhouse effect is a slightly more complicated issue, it is important to deal with the issues to do with why atmospheric CO2 is rising first as this is a more basic issue, and one where skeptic loose a lot of their credibility contesting. As it happens, the science of the greenhouse effect has been well understood since the 1960s (see the work of Gilbert Plass) and the predicted effects on outbound IR radiation can be directly observed from space. As such there is no real grounds to doubt the greenhouse effect either. The area where there is some genuine uncertainty is in climate sensitivity (how the various feedback mechansims in the climate will either amplify the greenhouse affect or attenuate it).

        At the end of the day, science should affect politics. Whatever policy decisions are taken they need to be based on the best science avaiable. However, politics has no impact on whether the science is correct, and one should be wary discussions of climate science that are not clearly separated from discussions of the politics.

  5. Thanks Dikran, the mass details help a lot. No argument about the so-called greenhouse effect, just the degree of the CO2 contribution.
    We agree regarding the politics needing to be guided by the science. However the science needs to be sound and conclusive, not just the ‘best available’, if used as a reason for financially restructuring the world.
    It is not clear that the science is that conclusive.
    There is strong evidence that the carbon control issue is being driven by world politics, distinct from the soundness of the science, and the carbon issue is being used as an excuse. If so, definitely the wrong procedure.

  6. Dikran Marsupial says:

    The degree of CO2 contribution to the greenhouse effect is well understood and confirmed by satelite measurements of the spectum of out-bound IR. The change has been just what theory (going back to Plass) predicted. It is the response to that effect that is uncertain.

    Policy should be based on a cost/benefit analysis, and even in the absence of sound and conclusive evidence it can still be rational to take action to mitigate against the effects of global warming. Say the probability of global warming causing difficulties is 1/100, but it will cost you $1 million but we can halve that cost by spending $100 to mitigate against it. In that case, if we do nothing, then there is 1% chance we will loose $1 million and a 99% chance we will loose nothing, which is an expected loss of $10,000. If we choose to mitigate against global warming, we spend $100 no matter what happens, but there is then a 1% chance of loosing $500,000 and a 99% chance of no further loss. This gives an expected loss of $100 + 0.01 X $500,000 = $5100. Clearly in that example there is a rational case for mitigation, even though there is no certainty that there will be problems die to global warming.

    This is essentially what we are doing whenever we take out an insurance policy or banks hedge against possible future loss. We have no certainty on whether for instance we will be the cause of in a car accident (in fact most of us would hope that would be unlikely ;o) but we take out insurance because we could not bear the financial costs of our liability that would result should it happen.

    A rational person acts on the best information available. Waiting until the science is certain, when there is a possible hazard that can be mitigated against is irrational – very human, but still irrational. For a start, the only way science is ever absolutely certain is in hindsight – so how do you decide the threshold of uncertainty where you are willing to consider action?

  7. paul says:

    great blog , i really loved the sweet but caustic sarcasm at the start 😉 keep up the great work

  8. “The degree of CO2 contribution to the greenhouse effect is well understood”, not sure about this. It seems to be the key arguing point, mainly because of the over-riding effect of water vapour. It is not for me to expound on such details, just to say that you have serious opposition from a lot of scientists on this issue.
    You do accede the possibility of some uncertainty. I read into the situation a great deal of uncertainty. I doubt we will get any further here than agreeing to disagree.
    Key point is that we wait and see, because only time will tell.
    It is only reasonable that we support our own beliefs. It will be an extremely interesting situation if it turns out that I am right. The scientists that I support will be happy. But basically a ‘mighty crash’ for you guys.
    As I said, time will tell.
    Regards, Ken

    • Dikran Marsupial says:

      Very few scientists disagree about the “over-riding effect of water vapour”. They do disagree with water vapour and especially cloud feedback, it sin’t the same thing. There are only a handful of scientists that claim climate sensitivity is significantly below the low end estimates from the IPCC. They are a very vocal handfull, but that is all there are.

      As to uncertainty, if you read the IPCC report, it is full of caveats clearly stating the known uncertainties. That is how real scientists talk.

      It is not reasonable to support ones own beliefs. The rational thing to do is to select ones beliefs according to the support. If you can’t refute the counter arguments presented from the opposition, you should question your beliefs. The inability to counter opposing arguments is generally a good indication that you are wrong. If we get no further than agreeing to disagree it won’t be from lack of patience on my part or an unwillingness to discuss the science.

      “But a mighty crash for you guys” is an indicator of completely the wrong attitude; there is nothing that I would like more for the skeptics to be right, and the partisan tribalism that has infected the debate is irrational and counter-productive.

      • “It is not reasonable to support ones own beliefs. The rational thing to do is to select ones beliefs according to the support. ”
        Ok, my comment was badly put. What I was trying to say was ‘supporting one’s belief in the science, or being convinced that the version of the science is valid’.
        Selecting one’s beliefs from the support given to a version of the science would be trusting other people being right, when the science itself is what counts. Trusting the IPCC, in my opinion, would not be a good basis for choosing the most-likely-correct science.
        If there are uncertainties of any note, drastic, expensive, livelihood changes are not justified.
        I concede I have an attitude. Its because I believe strongly in the evidence countering the AGW science and the evidence proving its political agenda. It’s because I truly believe that the whole world is being conned into financial control systems that overide the rights of people. Its because I see no effective pollution controls being proposed or implemented. (Unless one includes de-population as solving the problem).
        I apologise for my emotive comments. If the debate took place within the scientific community on a level playing field, us bloggers wouldn’t have to try and do the job for them. It shoudn’t be up to the public to drive scientific debate. As you say, often irrational and counter-productive. When have the scientists been given an opportunity to a forum to attempt a consensus? Or the lack of one (consensus) to dampen the irrational carbon control schemes.
        I am thinking that you believe that all the scientists who disagree with the IPCC, are in error and do not deserve backing from others who also do not trust the IPCC conclusions.

      • Dikran Marsupial says:

        “Selecting one’s beliefs from the support given to a version of the science would be trusting other people being right, when the science itself is what counts. ”

        No, by selecting ones beliefs from the support, I meant the support given by the science, not the scientists. Science isn’t a popularity contest, it is about dispassionate assessment of what the data and theory tell you.

        “Trusting the IPCC, in my opinion, would not be a good basis for choosing the most-likely-correct science.”

        One should not trust any argument based on the source, but the content. I could point out that many skeptic scientists are funded by the oil industry, does that mean I should trust them (as it happens it makes no difference to my view of their arguments)? Who then should we trust? Listen to all scientific evidence, regardless of the source and keep an open mind regarding any argument you cannot refute based on its content.

        “If there are uncertainties of any note, drastic, expensive, livelihood changes are not justified.”

        I have already pointed out why that line of reasoning is irrational. The whole purpose of insurance is to hedge against uncertainty. I we knew we could not cause a car crash, we would not need insurance. If we were certain that we would, the insurance companies would not sell it to us. Efforts to restrict carbon emissions are a form of insurance policy. Whether they are justified is a cost/benefit analysis, where the uncertainty is taken into account, not ignored.

        “Its because I believe strongly in the evidence countering the AGW science ”

        As I have pointed out on this thread, and the other, many of the lines of evidence that you are using do not bear up to even cursory examination. For example, while it may seem on the face of it plausible that CO2 in the upper atmosphere is due to air travel, if you try and account for the carbon in the atmosphere you find the numbers don’t add up, there simply hasn’t been enough flights to explain the observed CO2 (especially prior to 1958). There is also the point that there is CO2 in the stratosphere, above the level planes fly. There is also the point that if CO2 sinks because of its specific gravity, then the specific gravity of water vapour, being only about 0.6, should mean that all water vapour shoulr rise into the upper atmosphere, which would make it impossible to form stable low cloud (looking out of my window today, I can tell you it certainly exists). There is also the point that if you dig a deep pit in the ground, it doesn’t fill up with CO2 and other heavy gasses as your theory would suggest.

        It is unsurprising that skeptic views have little effect on policy while obviously incorrect arguments such as this are put forward. If you want to be an effective campaigner, you need to adopt some self-scepticism and believe evidence whichever way it points, whether it supports your position or not.

  9. @ Dikran. This is what I said about the CO2 heavier than air statement”
    ” I haven’t found a good scientific comment on CO2 level vs Altitude, but the relationship does seem to be more constant than the heavier-than-air theory suggests. It may be that the air is mixed with water vapour making the density difference much less. Air currents may also explain mixing, again overiding molecular density difference effects.”
    So I am not influenced by that “theory”. Your respective comment was wasted on me. (BTW, can you help with such a reference, ie. CO2 levels vs altitude?)
    I think the rest of our differences in assessment and conclusion-making are more a matter of semantics. We are both interested in the science, not the “messenger”. My mistrust of the “IPCC” was in relation to its science, such as it is, but admittedly also its contributors and organization. Please don’t misunderstand me. I treat evidence as I understand it, by whether it makes sense or not, to me. Obviously, having absorbed enough to convince me that AGW has more evidence against it than for it, I enjoy finding additional supporting evidence. But I still consider any evidence that might prove me wrong.
    I think your insurance analogy is a bit irrelevant. Creating cost penalties that will cripple the “unclean” industries and much of civilization on the pretext of preventing more than 2 degC global temperature increase is a far too great a cost for a method that might not be effective, and may not be necessary anyway. One would not pay a premium of the car’s value to insure it, or destitute oneself so the fuel could not be purchased to drive it. In Australia, it would be analagous to us insuring someone else’s car overseas and then not affording to drive our own. (All silly arguments really).

  10. Dikran Marsupial says:

    Yes, sorry Ken, I misattributed that argument to you, when you clearly did not present it. Mea maxima culpa!

    I suspect that CO2 is fairly well mixed regardless of altitude (the way the greenhouse actually works depends quite heavily on the concentration of greenhouse gasses in the upper atmosphere, which is very dry so there is little water vapor there, but there is still CO2). I’ll see if I can find something more definitive. The NASA AIRS satelite mission gives data for 8km in altitude (e.g. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/jpeg/PIA09269.jpg) and levels there seem to be pretty much what they are at Mauna Loa.

    If you want discussion of the science, then skepticalscience.com is a good place to go, as the comments policy there forbids ad-hominems, accusations of dishonesty and bias etc. so the discussion says better focussed on the science and more pleasant than most other climate blogs. The moderators (I am one) try not to be overly heavy handed, so there are still some objectionable comments make it through, but hopefully we strike a good balance.

    For the insurance analogy, yes it has its limits, but at the end of the day it is a cost-benefit analysis; the cost to industry now is just as relevant as the cost to future generations of having a world that is less able to support our population (the planet will be just fine, it is us that has the problem, especially in the third world where agriculture is marginal and they don’t have the resources we do to adapt). The cost benefit analysis needs to be on the basis of the best science/economics/politics available. I don’t have a predefined position on this, if the science says mitigation is a net benefit, then I am in support of mitigation, if it doesn’t, then I am not. However most of those suggesting that climate change is not a problem repeatedly raise scientific arguments that I know to be weak or incorrect (or a misrepresentation of what the IPCC actually say); hence at the moment it seems to me that limiting carbon emissions is sensible. It won’t happen, due to human nature, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t sensible.

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