What Would Nostradamus Drive?_Sal Rosken-Buckle Up and Hold On for Dear Life.
Global warming is causing the end of civilization as we know it. The polar ice caps, once pristine and frozen in their majesty, are melting with an alarming rapidity. The rapacious oceans are rising daily; and within one hundred years major coastal cities around the world will sink ignominiously beneath the waves. Typhoons, Hurricanes, Monsoons and Tornadoes, whipped to a Coriolisian frenzy by the warmer atmosphere, will ravage the land; while drought will increasingly decimate the crops we depend upon, causing famine and widespread starvation. Forest fires will burn uncontrollably throughout the parched land, destroying millions of acres of primitive woodland. Jungles and rain forests, the repositories of the pharmaceutical secrets of the world, will disappear with a stunning alacrity. Thousands of animal species in all zoological phyla, ranging from polar bears to the tiniest exotic finches, will die off due to the loss of their natural habitats, and become extinct. Mankind, left alone in a blasted landscape, will be reduced to a brutish Darwinian existence before he succumbs finally to the diseases that will spread uncontrollably through a diminished and wretched population.
And all of this will occur, most assuredly, because you drive a Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV).
At least, that is the apocalyptic prophecy being served up by the Fire and Brimstone Environmental Lobbyists and their Media lackeys, who are now experimenting with Religion (What Would Jesus Drive) and Geopolitics (SUVs support Terrorism) in their bid to save us from ourselves by eradicating first SUVs, then the internal combustion engine, and ultimately all industrial expansion.
As is the case with all fundamentalist believers and soothsayers there is not an inkling of doubt among the faithful in the Environmentalist’s ranks. Their cause is just. Only belief and faith are necessary. It is an article of faith, not of science, that global climate change resulting from human industrial activity will be the cause of the impending doom. Verifiable and replicative, scientific proof, the sort which most of the same environmental activists require pharmaceutical and agricultural companies to provide to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before marketing medicines and genetically modified foods, does not seem to enter into the environmentalist’s calculus when proscribing human activities which have been adjudged, by their prescient minds, as contributing to global warming.
Most scientific studies and measurements do suggest something is happening with the climate, but if the environmental lobbyists, before launching anti greenhouse gas and anti SUV marketing campaigns, were held to the same standard of proof determining causality that the FDA requires of corporations marketing drugs, there would be little of the hysteria now pervading the media.
The real issue that needs examination and debate is not whether global warming is or is not occurring; it may very well be. We simply do not know, and it cannot be determined with certainty, given the state of our current scientific knowledge and measurement techniques.
The truly salient issue that begs to be exposed is the overwhelming hubris exhibited by the environmental lobbyists in believing humans can actually influence and control the global climate. This, combined with the habitual use of some very flawed science, by politically motivated amateurs determined to "prove" global warming is the direct result of human industrial activity, has so dominated and cozened the popular Media, that any rational discussion of scientific fact has become virtually impossible.
Consider an article by Alex Kirby entitled "Cosmic Rays linked to Clouds
" which appeared in the BBC On Line News last October; and which received virtually no notice in the Environmentalist biased US media.
" the BBC reported, "have found a significant piece of evidence linking cosmic rays to climate change. They have detected charged particle clusters in the lower atmosphere that were probably caused by the space radiation. They say the clusters can lead to the condensed nuclei which form into dense clouds.
The scientific study, performed under the auspices of the Max Planck Institute of Nuclear Physics in Heidelberg, makes the case, as reported by the BBC, that Solar generated cosmic rays produce particle clusters in the atmosphere, which then form dense clouds. These clouds then act to cool and warm the atmosphere by absorbing and reflecting infrared, solar and terrestrial radiation. An increase or decrease in Solar activity, such as the recently noted increase in Sun Spots and Solar Flares, would therefore have a much more direct effect on the warming or cooling of the atmosphere than previously thought.
" the BBC article reports, "play a major, but as yet not fully understood, role in the dynamics of the climate, with some types acting to cool the planet and others warming it up. The amount of cosmic rays reaching Earth is largely controlled by the Sun, and many solar scientists believe the star's indirect influence on Earth's global climate has been underestimated. Some think a significant part of the global warming recorded in [the] 20th Century may in fact have its origin in changes in solar activity - not just in the increase in fossil-fuel-produced greenhouse gases.
You would think that this would have been considered big news. Hey, you might conclude, there is a possibility, an outside chance at least, that it’s not all those capitalists driving those sinister SUVs, but the irascible old Sun causing this whole mess. First, interference with radio signals, then skin cancer, and now global warming. The Sun is warming the Earth. Who would have thought?
But the article received scant notice, nary a mention in the US media. It would be asking too much of those, so invested in blaming greenhouse gases, to admit that perhaps they weren’t right after all. And the popular media needs a protagonist (the crusading environmentalists) and an antagonist (the profiteering industrialists), locked in a death struggle (conflict), to make a compelling human-interest story of good versus evil. And let’s not even mention the Geopolitical impact this inopportune information may have on the sacrosanct Kyoto Treaty.
"Depending on whether and how cloud cover changes,
" the BBC article continues, "the cloud feedback could almost halve or almost double the warming. Many scientists agree that the Earth's surface appears to be warming, while low atmosphere temperatures remain unchanged. Research published last August suggested the rays might cause changes in cloud cover, which could explain the temperature conundrum. The discrepancy in temperatures has led some scientists to argue that the case for human-induced climate change is weak, because our influence should presumably show a uniform temperature rise from the surface up through the atmosphere.
In short, if greenhouse gases produced by human industrial activity were causing temperature increases consistent with global warming, the scientific evidence gathered thus far would be much different.
This scientific study however is not the only evidence
pointing to an overzealous, politically motivated attribution of global warming to human industrial activity. Other scientists have noted that most of the scientific equipment used to measure temperatures in the studies claiming to prove the existence of global warming have been located near large cities and are only measuring local increases in temperatures at the earth’s surface resulting from industrial expansion within those cities. This is a far cry, and a huge difference, from proving scientifically that the global atmosphere is warming.
Other scientists have noted that the variables and dynamics involved in global climate changes are so complex and diverse that the ability to model them is far beyond the capability of even the fastest supercomputers; in fact, these same scientists point out, the computer models that are being used to argue the case for global warming are filled with so many assumptions and conjectures, which are necessitated by the enormous lack of scientific knowledge on just how global climate really works, that any of the models’ results are suspect at best, and meaningless at worst.
That increases in temperatures at certain points on the surface of the Earth are occurring is not in much doubt, what is in great doubt, however, are the actual causes of this warming and whether this constitutes a global warming which will result in the apocalyptic visions being called up by the environmental lobbyists to scare us back into a Ludditian and Agrarian existence dependent on Pre-Industrial Revolution Cottage Industries producing goods affordable by only the rich.
The Environmental Groups and Media types who champion their cause have taken it as an article of faith, not science, that human industrial activity is the cause of a potentially disastrous climate change. But if one holds that human activity in the form of industrial expansion is the cause of this most recent spate of global warming, one then has an obligation and duty to explain scientifically what caused the expansion of the glaciers during the last Ice Age and their subsequent retreat during the last global warming. There were no greenhouse gases then, no industrial expansion then, and most certainly no SUVs being driven by capitalist industrialists advocating globalization.
Can it be possible that, just maybe, mankind is not actually in control, and is simply along for the ride?