The wonderful planet Earth, complete with thermostat. Or is it out of control without human intervention?
Climate Change is again making the news. During the February 13 broadcast of CBS This Morning, host Charlie Rose and his guest turned to the topic of this year’s harsh winter, calling the extreme cold an example of global warming.
Guest Michio Kaku, a physics professor from New York City College–not a climatologist, but a physicist– specializing in paranormal phenomena like ‘telepathy, telekinesis and mind reading’ claimed that the “wacky weather” could get “even wackier” and it’s all because of global warming. “What we’re seeing is that the jet stream and the polar vortex are becoming unstable. Instability of historic proportions. We think it’s because of the gradual heating up of the North Pole. The North Pole is melting,” professor Kaku said.
“That excess heat generated by all this warm water is destabilizing this gigantic bucket of cold air… So that’s the irony, that heating could cause gigantic storms of historic proportions,” the prof. explained.
This was all because of global warming, Rose insisted….
CBS Host Norah O’Donnell also took the occasion of the discussion to claim that 2014 will be the hottest summer ever.
Yesterday, Feb. 13. John Paul Holdren, the senior advisor to President Barack Obama on science and technology issues through his roles as Assistant to the President for Science and Technology, Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Co-Chair of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology spoke to reporters about President Obama’s one billion (with a “b) dollar Climate Resilience Plan and made the following statement: Without any doubt, the severe drought plaguing California and a number of other states across the country is tied to climate change.
Among his other ramblings he came up with this priceless gem:
Weather practically everywhere is being caused by climate change.
This is Holdren’s Law of Climate Causation, all you need to know about droughts and such … weather practically everywhere is being caused by climate change.
These are the people advising Obama on science. So, in his State of the Union message Obama made the following statement regarding the environment:
“Taken together, our energy policy is creating jobs and leading to a cleaner, safer planet. Over the past eight years, the United States has reduced our total carbon pollution more than any other nation on Earth. But we have to act with more urgency – because a changing climate is already harming western communities struggling with drought, and coastal cities dealing with floods. That’s why I directed my administration to work with states, utilities, and others to set new standards on the amount of carbon pollution our power plants are allowed to dump into the air. The shift to a cleaner energy economy won’t happen overnight, and it will require tough choices along the way. But the debate is settled. Climate change is a fact. And when our children’s children look us in the eye and ask if we did all we could to leave them a safer, more stable world, with new sources of energy, I want us to be able to say yes, we did.”
Of all the claims and statements Obama made during his hour long speech, this was the paragraph
that received the largest difference in an audience tested poll between Democrats and Republicans. Democrats reacted more than 70% favorable, Republicans not so much, the approval was less than 10%.
Why is that? What is it in our respective world views that make such a difference?
Let us take a look at how most Democrats view the world and climate and contrast that with how most Republicans see it:
(Full disclosure: I am a Christian and take the God given call to be stewards of this earth very seriously, and I too want to leave this world a better place than I entered it.)
Climate Change is real. The scientific debate is over. Anyone disagreeing with this is still part of the flat earth society. (Obama, Al Gore, John Kerry, et. al. ) Kerry also calls Climate Change our most terrifying weapon of mass destruction (Indonesia, Feb. 17, 2014)
CO2 is a pollutant, and this pollution has been given a new name, “Carbon Pollution” The “environmentalists” have successfully convinced the U.S. Supreme Court that it is, and can thus be regulated. (D1)
The earth is heating up rapidly due to increased amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere. If we do nothing the earth will be between 3 and 7 degrees Fahrenheit warmer by the year 2100. (D2).
The earth is overpopulated with over 7 billion people. A sustainable level would be somewhere between 700 million and 2.5 billion, and UN’s Agenda 21 will lead the way to reduce the world’s population. To this effect birth control, abortion on demand, euthanasia, and education on the evils of “excessive” procreation must be enforced. Alternate lifestyles such as LGBT must be given social preference. The conventional family unit is the greatest hindrance to achieving these goals. (D3)
Increased CO2 levels may cause the earth to reach a tipping point with the Greenland and Antarctic ice caps melting off, causing catastrophic sea level rise (300 feet or so) (D4)
Storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts floods and all kinds of extreme weather is increasing.
The coming temperature rise will render large areas of the globe uninhabitable.
97% of active Climate Scientists agree global warming/climate change is caused by human activities. (D7)
Increased CO2 levels causes ocean acidification threatening coral reefs and all marine life. (D8)
We must develop alternate energy sources like solar, wind and geothermal, but not nuclear. And indeed we have. Under Obama Solar has gone from 0.02% to 0.2% at a cost of more than three times conventional source development, Wind power has increased and is now approaching 5% , but depends heavily on subsidies. Geothermal is small and we have not completed a new nuclear plant since the Three Mile Island debacle.(D9)
We must invest heavily in alternate fuels like ethanol and biofuel. Not only that, its use should be heavily subsidized by the taxpayer. (D10)
Do not approve the Keystone XL pipeline! It will enable Canada to exploit the tar sands economically. The tar sands are one of the dirtiest crude oils ever discovered. It is an environmental hazard to transport it anywhere. (D11)
Don’t frack! It poisons the underground water supply. But if you do, do it only for natural gas, not oil, and don’t touch Federal land! (D12)
Keep your hands off ANWR! Areas set aside for wildlife refuges must remain undeveloped forever! (D13)
Energy independence is a pipe dream, but it should be pursued anyway by regulating energy use, discontinue incandescent light bulbs, make smaller, lighter cars, making a smart grid that can tell you when to use air conditioning or the clothes dryer, etc. (D14)
Recycle, Recycle, Recycle! (D15)
Regulate, Regulate, Federal Regulate! (D16)
Climate change is real, has been and always will be. The question is: Is it getting warmer or colder, and is that good or bad? The so called consensus is anything but.
CO2 is not a pollutant; it is no more a pollutant than Oxygen and both are necessary for life. Carbon pollution is real and is called soot and comes from smokestacks in China, which by now burn 45% of the world’s coal. (R1)
The temperature of the earth is cyclical. There have been ice ages and warm periods in the past. It was warmer in the Roman and Medieval warm period than it is now. It was colder in the little ice age, then warmer till 1950, then cooling, then warming in the 80’s and 90’s. In the last 18 years global temperatures have been more or less constant and we are now entering a 40+ year cooling period. Though CO2 causes warming its effect is minor and mostly beneficial. There have been ice ages in the past where the concentration of CO2 was ten times higher than it is now. (R2)
The best way to stabilize the world’s population is by encouraging energy production, which is closely tied to quality of living. With stable and secure futures people naturally limit the size of their families. A well informed but free family unit is best suited to achieve this. (R3)
Increased CO2 levels lead to a greener environment. We can now feed 2 billion more people without starvation thanks to the increase in CO2 levels. Photosynthesis works more efficiently and uses less water in the process, so it becomes less sensitive to seasonal droughts, reduces erosion and helps stabilize the climate through evapotranspiration where there was only dry land before. The earth is getting greener. (R4)
With increased CO2 levels, storms, hurricanes, tornadoes and droughts are becoming less severe. The jury is still out on floods, they may increase. Extreme weather will decrease. (R5)
The tropics has found its temperature. The temperature was more or less the same as it is now during the ice age or medieval warming period. All temperature rise will occur in the temperate regions. The poles will warm the most making temperature differences less pronounced leading to less storms and violent weather. If the Greenland Ice temperature goes from -28 degrees to minus 24 degrees, who cares? It is still freezing. The Antarctic ice cap has been setting new yearly maxima the last two years, so there is no warming for now. There may be an increase in desert regions where there is very low humidity, but those regions are already unfit for inhabitation. (R6)
The 97% consensus among active Climate experts is an old myth. The survey is from a 2000 or so M.Sc. thesis where 10256 questionnaires was sent out and 3146 responded. There was the following qualification “Of all your peer reviewed papers in the last five years, was more than 50% about climate science”. 77 qualified, of which 75 responded positively that climate change is anthropogenic in origin. For most hat was the condition on which they had gotten the grant to produce the paper in the first place. On the other hand, more than 30000 engineers and scientists have signed a document stating that climate science is by no means settled. (R7)
Ocean acidification is mostly due to water pollution from acid rivers and acid rain. Sulfuric acid is more than 100000 times more acid than dissolved CO2. There is plenty of acid rain coming from China that burn 45% of all coal (mostly high sulfur lignite) and developing countries contribute as well. Underwater volcanoes do their part too. (R8)
We must develop alternate energy resources, like nuclear, and wind wherever profitable, continue solar research but refrain from mass production until profitability can be proven. My preference is for Thorium based nuclear power. (R9)
Alternate fuels like ethanol and biodiesel are terrible ideas. (R10)
Approve the Keystone XL pipeline today! (R11)
Fracking is our best way to become energy independent this decade. It is safe and economical and will finally get us out of this jobs recession. (R12)
Approve 400 acres for oil exploration in ANWR! It is Alaska’s oil anyway and by the Alaskan Constitution oil profits belong to the people, and is none of the Federal Government’s business. (R13)
We can be energy independent in less than 10 years if we go full out on fracking, approve ANWR and develop thorium based nuclear power. This will free us from dependence on Mideast, Nigerian, Nicaraguan oil, all countries that are unstable, have a terrible environmental record, and they hate us anyway. (R14)
Recycle whenever economically defensible (R15)
Regulation should be local whenever possible. (R16)
These are some of the differences between Democrat and Republican world views when it comes to energy. There are many more, and I have tried to be as fair as possible. After analyzing the facts I know where I stand, issue by issue. Do you, or do you only listen to and read from only one side of the spectrum prejudicing yourself?
(D1) CO2 is a pollutant.
(R1) CO2 is not a pollutant
(D2): The earth is heating up rapidly
IPCC Report AR5 summary for policymakers. http://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar5/wg1/docs/WGIAR5_SPM_brochure_
(R2): The temperature of the earth is cyclical. My best take on real climate science looking at what is really happening:
(R3) The best way to stabilize the world’s population is by encouraging energy production, which is closely tied to quality of living.
(D4) Increased CO2 levels may cause the earth to reach a tipping point
(R4) Increased CO2 levels lead to a greener environment
(D5) Storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts floods and all kinds of extreme weather is increasing. The president’s statement, no scientific backup, only an assertion.
(R5) With increased CO2 levels, storms, hurricanes, tornadoes and droughts are becoming less severe.
(D6) The coming temperature rise will render large areas of the globe uninhabitable.
(R6) The tropics has found its temperature.
(D7) 97% of active Climate Scientists agree global warming/climate change is caused by human activities. http://www.skepticalscience.com/debunking-climate-consensus-denial.html
(R7) The 97% consensus among active Climate experts is an old myth. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/07/18/what-else-did-the-97-of-scientists-say/
(D8) Increase in CO2 leads to ocean acidification.
(R8) Ocean acidification is mostly due to water pollution from acid rivers and acid rain.
(D9) We must develop alternate energy sources like solar, wind and geothermal, but not nuclear.
(R9) We must develop alternate energy resources, like nuclear
(D10) We must invest heavily in alternate fuels like ethanol and biofuel.
(R10) Alternate fuels like ethanol and biodiesel are terrible ideas
(D11) Do not approve the Keystone XL pipeline!It’s the kind of scene we’d like to think we’d put behind us.
How would you like to look outside and see masked radicals with torches on your front lawn?
That’s what greeted Mark Maki and his family.
Maki was targeted for this shameful act of intimidation because he is a member of the board of Enbridge Energy Management which works with oil pipelines.
The masked perpetrators refused to identify themselves, or their group, claiming only that they represent “the people.”
(R11) Approve the Keystone XL pipeline today!
(D12) Don’t frack!
(R12) Fracking is our best way to become energy independent
(D13) Keep your hands off ANWR!
(R13) Approve 400 acres for oil exploration in ANWR!
(D14) Energy independence is a pipe dream,
(R14) We can be energy independent in less than 10 years
(D15) Recycle, Recycle, Recycle!
(R15) Recycle whenever economically defensible.
(D16) Regulate, Regulate, Federal Regulate!
(R16) Regulation should be local whenever possible.
These are assorted observations on the earth’s recent climate.
Obama also made the following comments about his energy policy
“It’s not just oil and natural gas production that’s booming; we’re becoming a global leader in solar, too. Every four minutes, another American home or business goes solar; every panel pounded into place by a worker whose job can’t be outsourced. Let’s continue that progress with a smarter tax policy that stops giving $4 billion a year to fossil fuel industries that don’t need it, so that we can invest more in fuels of the future that do.
And even as we’ve increased energy production, we’ve partnered with businesses, builders, and local communities to reduce the energy we consume. When we rescued our automakers, for example, we worked with them to set higher fuel efficiency standards for our cars. In the coming months, I’ll build on that success by setting new standards for our trucks, so we can keep driving down oil imports and what we pay at the pump.”
But I guess commenting on this will have to wait for another time.
I welcome comments that tell me where I am going wrong. The research is ongoing, and I am really trying to understand how we shall best live so we can leave this earth a better place than we found it.