Forget pretty much any news reporting you see that attributes disastrous phenomena to global warming, because it’s all designed to create a fog surrounding the core issue: is climate change human-caused or not?
A most recent example is from Monday’s Washington Post, in which alarmist reporter Kari Lydersen (who has a long record of such journalism, in addition to work she does for leftist publications such as In These Times and the Progressive, on topics including “environmental racism“) told about how waterborne diseases are expected to multiply due to future climate devastation:
“Now, scientists say, it is a near-certainty that global warming will drive significant increases in waterborne diseases around the world.
“Rainfalls will be heavier, triggering sewage overflows, contaminating drinking water and endangering beachgoers. Higher lake and ocean temperatures will cause bacteria, parasites and algal blooms to flourish. Warmer weather and heavier rains also will mean more mosquitoes, which can carry the West Nile virus, malaria and dengue fever. Fresh produce and shellfish are more likely to become contaminated.”
The inevitable devastating consequences, as in so many environmentalist reporter articles, dominate the opening paragraphs of Lydersen’s piece. She follows by asserting that a trend of heavier rainfalls “will accelerate,” citing the 2007 report of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. I asked Lydersen where in the IPCC report it states with certainty that heavier rainfalls would rapidly increase, and she promised to get back to me on that — “That was paraphrasing, not a direct quote from the report,” she told me in an email. I’m sure.
Regardless, this kind of distractive reporting buttresses the lucrative industry that is global warming alarmism. “It’s going to cause sea levels to rise!” cry the coastal scientists and fisheries experts. “It will massively displace wildlife!” scream the biological scientists. “It will prolong droughts and intensify rainfalls,” warn the geologists and agricultural scientists. Their wailing fills up their applications for billions of dollars in grants from governments and sympathetic nonprofit foundations.
But these outcries miss the point, because they do not address the core issue of whether the temperature uptick (of one degree Celsius) over the last century is attributable chiefly to man’s influence and thus mitigable, or to natural fluctuations and that nothing can be done about it. In other words, the vast majority of research (80 percent? 90 percent? more?) tied to climate change has nothing to do with its cause.
Therefore we have a whole derivative economic sector constructed on the foundation of a single premise: that increasing greenhouse gas emissions are having a greater impact on global climate than are other phenomena such as solar activity, cloud cover, ocean temperatures, El Niño/La Niña, etc. If that single thesis is deemed false, then all these offshoot opportunities for researchers, government, universities, nonprofits, rent seekers, and media goes into a deep chill. Goodbye grants. Adios agency positions. Ciao, charitable contributions. So long, subsidies. And where hast thou gone, writing awards?
Just think — if it’s shown beyond the mainstream media’s reach that carbon dioxide and its gaseous sisters (methane and a few others) do not jack up the atmospheric temps, we would no longer have to live under the environoia of this collaborative claptrap.
So obviously it’s in each of the alarmists’ interests to dismiss their dissenters and undermine any evidence that global warming is not a threat to the planet or to mankind. Jim Martin, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, has said, “You could have a convention of all the scientists who dispute climate change in a relatively small phone booth.” There was the classic Newsweek smear job by Sharon Begley last August which labeled some differing-but-credible climate scientists as a fossil fuel industry-funded “denial machine.” Meanwhile the green-journalism Society of Environmental Journalists marginalizes the opposers as “skeptics and contrarians.” Discourteous folks call ’em “flat-earthers.”
But the difficulty of the alarmists’ protectionist task only grows. There has been no significant warming since 1995, and none at all since 1997. The numbers of detracting scientists were already sizable and are only continuing to grow (PDF). The oceans are cooling, Antarctic ice grows, current temperature measuring data are biased in favor of heat, and legitimate explanations for Arctic ice loss (by the way, not an unprecedented phenomenon) other than increased greenhouse gases are published.
When you think about it, the global warming industry is not dissimilar to the current mortgage-instigated mess the country now faces. We have a planetary heat crisis and an insufficient home ownership crisis. Government demands intervention to remedy both mistaken theories. Media joins in celebrating and promoting the new agenda. A bubbling system of artificial wealth is created. But because both foundations are shaky, they cannot hold up the continued weight placed upon them.
One has finally collapsed. When will the other?