SEARCH BLOG: GLOBAL WARMING
I appreciated James Killus' essay which was posted yesterday. While it explains his reasons for accepting the popular thinking about the relationship between CO2 and climate change, it didn't address, nor reasonably should it have been expected to address, the issue raised by Dr. Tim Patterson of Carleton University in Ottawa:
How can CO2 be the cause of global warming when the sequence, geologically, has always been an increase in temperature followed by an increase in CO2... with the lag about 800 years. Isn't the change in solar activity that has been correlated strongly with climate change a far more significant factor?Dr. Patterson's arguments and those of like-minded scientists are not enough to say that human caused CO2 increases can't affect climate, but they certainly are strong enough to merit more investigation into CO2's real role in the overall dynamics of climate change. Simply being a "greenhouse" gas with the potential to raise atmospheric temperature is not enough.
There are so many variables... and lesser understood interactions such as the effect of shifting ocean currents on CO2 absorption rates among others... that to accept James Killus' contention that we should act quickly because there is an apparent connection seems, at the least, premature and at the worst, panicky. He is concerned about the impact of change because it represents an unknown.
Regardless, humans have shown adaptability beyond any other species... having originated in the tropical jungles and now inhabiting the farthest northern reaches of Canada, the most southern reaches of South America, the highest altitudes of the Himalayas and the hottest, driest deserts of Africa. It is unlikely that a few degrees of average temperature change is going to threaten mankind... maybe alter some lifestyles, but not threaten mankind.
We always have and we always will be a species that can adapt as our world changes around us. We do not have to be rushing to control climate change. There are a lot of other more pressing problems of our own making we should be addressing.