Or more properly Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW). With the name apparently being shifted a few years back, from a clear expression of the issue of concern, to one which is confused with the naturally changing climate. Brilliant smoke and mirrors marketing to confuse the masses.
So I’m sitting on the AGW fence, having read and tried to make sense of arguments on both sides, which is hard amongst all the emotional rhetoric and propaganda. The topic is beset by quasi religious, vociferous political correctness and activism, together with name calling nastiness against anybody who challenges the ‘consensus’. Harping on about consensus really turns me off. Real science has or should have nothing to do with consensus. If it did, we’d probably all still be living on a flat earth or blood letting as a cure all.
Whilst it is a clear fact that the climate is changing, and has done so forever. So far I remain unconvinced that there is dangerous global warming attributable to humans.
The entire ‘catastrophic AGW’ issue seems to boil down to the sensitivity of the climate to changes in greenhouse gas composition, of which CO2 is the major proponent. CO2 makes up 0.04% of the earths atmosphere (4 parts in 10,000), with humans responsible for an estimated 32% of that currently (around 1.3 parts in 10,000). ‘Climate Emergency’ advocates, the IPCC etc, claim that the climate is so extremely sensitive to such small changes in atmospheric composition (largely due to positive feedback mechanisms) that we’re all doomed.
Whilst a highly sensitive climate is feasible, there is now too much vested political capital at stake, financial investment and reputational investment ensuring that this ‘right answer’ prevails. The fudged figures of ‘Climategate’ and key computer models that the IPCC says are ‘projections’ rather than ‘predictions’, don’t help.
There’s also data now that indicates a stronger correlation between changes in ocean temperatures and changes in the earth’s magnetic dipole than there is between ocean temperature changes and increases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations.
Nevertheless it would seem prudent to be moving to less atmosphere polluting energy production methods over the next few decades,
for example fast breeder nuclear particularly nuclear fusion generation (limitless low cost energy). Whilst also trying to ensure that nations don’t wipe out large swathes of green stuff that converts CO2 to O2.
With ubiquitous social media, the church of ‘Climate Emergency’, which plays on the fears of the ordinary person has taken hold quickly, even amongst politicians, including those in Canada and here in New Zealand.
What’s very clear is that there is no realistic point in such a very small country as New Zealand shooting itself in the economic foot to reduce the minute amount of CO2 (and Methane) that the country is producing.
A useless, virtual signalling gesture for the current Labour/Greens NZ Government to wipe out at least 30 billion dollars worth of future income and associated jobs by effectively terminating oil exploration here. If the planet really is warming (or what would be more worrying, cooling) then this country should be trying to manoeuvre itself into the strongest economic position to best be able to cope with adverse effects of a changing climate, whatever the cause.
Cringeworthy is when people here talk in terms of ‘stopping climate change’, as though walking to the shops instead of using the car, or ‘recycling’ domestic rubbish could have an impact. More worrying is the apparent war on farmers, the great evil breeders of methane generating beasts (those animals also being critical to NZ’s economy). Yet if this country were to ban all CO2 and Methane emissions tomorrow it would have zero impact on stopping the changing climate but would stop the country stone age dead.
We’re in sore need of a pragmatic Government prepared to act in the best interests of this tiny nation first, rather than acting out a grand ideological delusion to save the planet.
Scott Morrison in Australia says it right:
“I’m not here to try to impress people overseas.
I’m here to do the right job for Australians and put them first, and that means putting the environment in which we live at the top of the agenda, along with the economy in which people live at the top of the agenda.”