A new report in Science magazine has truly extended the frontiers of our knowledge. The estimable weekly has discovered that the planet we live on has become significantly greener over the past two decades. Thanks to global warming, vegetation has more heat, light, water and carbon dioxide and has responded by increasing its total bulk by 6 percent. Only scientists could discover what even brown thumbs have always known — water, light, heat and food make plants grow.
The news was good for much of the planet, especially in those parts that need more agricultural activity. The Amazon forest experienced 40 percent of the plant growth while nations like India and Canada also registered strong increases. According to lead author Ramakrishna Nemani, changes in cloud cover and not carbon dioxide seem to be responsible.
Of course, only to scientists locked into the dogma of the environmentalist movement could such a report be news. Skeptics of the traditional cant have long predicted that global warming — whether man-made, natural or some combination of the two — would expand growing seasons and prompt agricultural activity in areas not currently suitable for it. That’s not a bad thing considering we’re still a few decades away from the point where our population will stop growing and begin declining.
Science‘s report reveals an uncomfortable truth about global warming that the media and environmentalists are loath to admit. Much of the science they rely on to promote ideas like the Kyoto Protocol and man’s alleged effect on the planet have been under fire for decades. Scientists such as Fred Singer and Frederick Seitz have demolished much of the science supporting the traditional line on global warming.
And they aren’t alone. Although the public largely doesn’t know it, a majority of scientists aren’t convinced that humanity is contributing in any substantial way to global warming. Over 17,100 scientists — including 2,660 physicists, geophysicists, climatologists, meteorologists, oceanographers, and environmental scientists and 5,017 scientists who specialize in chemistry, biochemistry, biology, and other life sciences — have signed a petition opposing the Kyoto Protocol and the accepted orthodoxy regarding global warming.
While we can all agree that carbon dioxide levels have been rising since the wheel of the Industrial Revolution began turning, there is little other science that supports environmentalists. While it is true that temperatures have risen slightly, scientists point out that this is part of a warming trend that stretches back 300 years after the Earth went through what is called the “Little Ice Age.” In fact, the data supports that our average temperatures are still lower than they were 3,000 years ago. Just before the Little Ice Age, the planet was warm enough to support the colonization of Greenland, colonies abandoned after temperatures cooled.
Nemani’s contention that carbon dioxide may not be responsible for recent rising temperatures is also old news. As data from several studies have shown, during the 20 years with the highest carbon dioxide levels, atmospheric temperatures have decreased. Ironically, a 1990 Nature paper reported that recent increases in carbon dioxide have shown a tendency to follow a rise in global temperatures and not lead them — something many scientists attribute to oceans giving off the gas as part of the three-century-old warming trend.
If the argument over the science of global warming proves anything it’s that it is foolish to take steps to provide a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist. As commentator Alan Caruba pointed out earlier this year, “the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change literally offers forty different scenarios to support its specious claim in the hope that one of them might actually prove correct. That’s not science. That’s science fiction.” Unfortunately that science fiction led to Canada’s acceptance of the Kyoto Protocol, a treaty which will limit our ability to take advantage of the warming trend.
Plank by plank the dogma of the environmentalist movement and its enablers in the science community are being pulled up. Thousands of scientists are exposing the truth about global warming and it’s time that the media, government and the rest of us begin listening. There are real issues that need addressing and handicapping ourselves by dealing with a non-issue only diverts our attention. Perhaps Science should next begin calling for papers exploring whether cats and dogs really do dislike each other, a better use of its time.