Friday, December 15, 2006
Global warming is a hypothesis, not fact. And even if temperatures are increasing, that does not necessarily mean it is a result of human activities, nor does it mean that the outcomes will necessarily be overwhelmingly detrimental..........The whole article is worth reading though relatively long. It is a very good summation of the case for scepticism.
Accurate scientific records are a recent arrival, relative to the time that has elapsed since the last ice age. From such evidence, however, it would seem that, some two millennia ago, parts of the UK were at least as warm as now. There are reports of the Romans growing grapes and of malaria being present in parts of the south-east of England.
The evidence, which is much more comprehensive than that intimated above, needs to be judged with caution. Most scientists working in this field will liberally use such terms as "may", "perhaps" and "appears" rather than "will", "definitely" and "shows" when discussing the significance of their findings, particularly when this applies to predictions about the future. On the other hand, some politicians, some journalists and some who have a vested interest seem intent on talking up the possible occurrence.....
The other aspect of these predictions is that such changes will inevitably be detrimental. Why? In the UK it has been suggested that we could expect a Mediterranean-type climate. It is then suggested that many people will die as a result of the stress of the raised temperatures. The people of the Mediterranean area seem to enjoy a long and happy life so why shouldn't we also? In any case, would not the people dying because of the raised temperatures, if any, be more than offset by the much larger numbers who currently die of the cold each winter?
He also takes a number of sideswips at other Luddite scare campaigns (Y2k, peak oil, protectionism, Club of Rome, DDT, ozone).
Well done Professor & well done the Herald for allowing both sides to be aired.