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Climate - we all need to think harder and emote less

Read time: 5 minutes.
Digging deeper

He’s got the whole world in his hands!

The science

'Global warming is a problem that we should tackle... smartly. But climate change will not mark the end of the world. The UN’s best estimate of the costs of unmitigated global warming by the end of the century is about 4% of global GDP [ie 4% spread over 70 yrs]. This is a problem, not an emergency. In our eagerness to enact climate policies, we could easily end up making the world worse off -- even if we tackle climate smartly, the policies could end up costing as much as 16% of global GDP or more. …. Crucially, for most of the world's 7.5 billion people, climate change comes far down the list of priorities when faced with infant mortality from easily curable diseases and malnutrition, suffering from poor education and low energy access.' Centre for Independent Studies


'For example, both the research literature and government reports that summarize and assess the state of climate science say clearly that heat waves in the U.S. are now no more common than they were in 1900, and that the warmest temperatures in the U.S. have not risen in the past 50 years. When I tell people this, most are incredulous. Some gasp. And some get downright hostile.' Steven Koonin  ‘Unsettled’ 2021

Another acknowledged expert, Michael Shellenberger, was invited to report to the US Congress on energy policy. His view was that gas & nuclear were the best way forward for energy, not renewables. This was met with personal attacks on his credibility and assertions that renewables were as cheap as other sources - 'why do they need subsidies then?'  Contrary to appearances there are massive vested interests in the renewables industry that directly and indirectly have impact on political and energy security. Shellenberger is author of Apocalypse Never.

Dr John Christie another long-term climate scientist covers the whole range of issues from measurements to models to political/economic machinations. Many will benefit from a little more carbon being put back into the atmosphere as the biosphere is greening. Warming is actually much less, and much less problematic than we're being told by those with vested interests to promote the 'green' industry and political authoritarianism.




The philosophy

David Attenborough has said that human beings have a duty to remember that we are “intruders” and “latecomers” to the planet when considering our environmental impact and that “the natural world, by-and-large, would do much better if we weren’t there at all”.  BBC Interview Apr 21 (see also No Humans)

'The poverty and famine that is coming is not the result of some random force of nature that will be afflicting pain upon the world: it is the careful and strategic disrupting and dismantling of our current systems as those systems are replaced by enviro-communo-fascism.' Michael O'Fallon - @SovMichael


But there are limits to resources on our Earth. A 1972 report by The Club of Rome Limits to Growth bought this to everyone's attention. Will the population explode 'exponentially'? When will oil run out, or water, or food, or energy? It was a simple analysis and arguably a commonsense one, but no one seemed to be addressing it. However technology has advanced to husband resources better, desalinate seawater, grow more food, world population is stabilising. But these issues are never without manipulation either for profit or ego. Both these are dangerous and in their own ways secretive - companies hide costs and intentions to build financial empires, ego motivated activists hide real facts and motivations to build their virtue empires, and politicians collude with both!

humanity is enemy
posted by @alextaunton

In a 1991 follow-up to the Limits to Growth report 'The First Global Revolution', a key well-known section seeks to save the world from itself by having a small group decide what is best for us, and while we all want to solve supra-national issues,  we don't want to do it at the expense of wider human wellbeing. Besides, in these large issues, who says the 'experts' are right - don't they have vested interests - not least in maintaining power and control?  We've seen this in the way Covid was mishandled with lies about its source (re Lancet), compounded by damaging lockdowns and misassertions on vaccines (BMJ) - all supposedly managed by our finest scientists and politicians.

Climate is just another component of this, but the whole world needs to be considered together in a transparent way if we are to flourish. An example is the push from animal fat to carbohydrates in the 1970s. Animal fat will not make you fat but carbs will as they turn to sugar and the lack of animal fat leads to health damage. This has benefitted 'Big Food' and 'Big Pharma' but not little us.

There are many ways we can more effectively manage the negative changes in climate (as well as take advantage of the positive). These reflect the way people have always overcome obstacles - by taking achievable practical steps.

Doing the right thing

Whichever way we look at it, this is a vexed topic as it is a massive scientific challenge on its own. We can only predict our weather a few days in advance so to make detailed sense of the whole world's climate, and its impact on world economics, food production etc, over many years is not feasible. The expensive models that have been made have not been very accurate. Added to that are the effects of the changes, whether they are good or bad, and to what extent they are created by human activity and ongoing natural changes.  On top of that, the majority of the world's population does not find this to be the most pressing problem - even in the West.

Perhaps it is all this that makes some 'fanatics' willing to exaggerate the science we do have, which in turn creates more 'skeptics'. In fact the sceptics are not denying good science, but are challenging the benefit of using limited science to enact programmes that have limited usefulness at great cost.

The programmes do however have political payoffs in creating supporter votes from some people and enforcing alignment from others through centralising control over food, energy, water, travel. All this could be more easily accepted if Government leaders aligned their own actions with their words.

From a Christian perspective we have a responsibility to husband the creation - not for its own sake - but for the benefit of those God chose to bear his image. For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. Rom 8:19.

'Nature is mortal; we shall outlive her. When all the suns and nebulae have passed away, each one of you will still be alive. Nature is only the image, the symbol; but it is the symbol Scripture invites me to use. We are summoned to pass in through Nature, beyond her into that splendour which she fitfully reflects.' CS Lewis, The Weight of Glory

So we are encouraged to have a sense of wonder in creation 'The heaven declares the glory of God..' and to do our best to steward it. But we have to be aware of the various issues and challenge the way this is weaponised for other ends.

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