Somebody once said we are all Americans, sometimes born in the wrong places.
I decided to join my new homeland.
I've come to appreciate the ideals that helped create this great country.
This is a pretty long piece but worth reading. Somebody in MSM is trying to figure out what the truth about global warming really is. She is asking "physicist and meteorologist Craig Bohren, distinguished professor emeritus at the Pennsylvania State University for sorting out problems, biases, and what objective answers that exist.
"Bohren has no horse in the climate change debate: As a retired professor, he is not worried about losing or gaining funding based on his opinions."
So this is what the prof thinks and I may just agree with most of it.
- The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has been steadily increasing since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. This increase is most likely a consequence of increased burning of fossil fuels.
- Carbon dioxide is an infrared-active gas (I hate the term "greenhouse gas"), and hence all else being equal (an important qualification) we expect more downward infrared radiation (and a heating effect) from the atmosphere with an increase in carbon dioxide. The detailed consequences of this, however, are unknown and possibly unknowable. By consequences I mean length of growing season, distribution and amount of rain, distribution and amount of sunshine, etc. And the economic and social consequences are even more uncertain. However the climate changes, it is likely that some regions of the planet will gain, others will lose.
- Climate has changed in the past, and there is no reason to believe that it will not change in the future. After all, the last Ice Age ended only about 10,000 years ago, and it is fair to say that another Ice Age would be equally or more catastrophic for Earth than global warming.
- How much of the present climate change is a direct consequence of human activity is difficult to say with certainty.
- A prudent society would reduce its dependence on fossil fuels, especially oil, as quickly as possible for many reasons, not just the possibility of global warming. A prudent society would also develop drought-resistant crops and make other long-term plans for inevitable climate change of any kind.
- At the present, there seems to be no alternative to central power generation than nuclear power. Fusion is pie-in-the-sky. We are not even close to fusion. Solar and wind and tidal power can help but are not panaceas. Conservation is desirable but probably not acceptable to many people. The advantages and disadvantages, costs and benefits of all schemes for power generation should be carefully assessed. A full and honest balance sheet is needed. No matter how power is generated, some people will die or be injured as a consequence. This is a fact of life. I worked on the construction of a large power plant (not nuclear) about 46 years ago in Pittsburg, California. It was taken as axiomatic that several workers would die in the construction of any power plant.
- Whatever the US and Europe do to mitigate consumption is likely to be negated by increased consumption in countries such as China, India, and Brazil.
- Those who advocate less consumption (in the US) should show the way by consuming less themselves.
- Because of the present large population of Earth and the existence of nation-states, mass migration of people is no longer a feasible response to climate change without wars on all scales.
- There is no simple solution to global warming given the disparate views of people of different religions, political views, and nationalities, as well of competition between different countries for resources.
- The concept of tradeoffs has to be firmly grasped by everyone, especially environmentalists, who whine about global warming and then hop in jet planes and fly 2000 miles to go skiing in the Rockies. The notion of "green" power generation is absurd. A network of wind turbines adequate to provide appreciable power would require staggering amounts of construction materials: steel, aluminum, concrete. The same is true for solar power and tidal powerÂand anything else.
And lastly, professor Bohren says:
Skeptics about global warming are often painted as hirelings of the oil and automotive industries. Such claims irritate me. I have never earned a nickel as a consequence of my skepticism. Indeed, I have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars by it. First, you have to understand how a large research university operates. The professors are expected to obtain research grants, and in the atmospheric sciences these grants come mostly from government agencies.
In the atmospheric sciences it is difficult to get grants unless you can somehow tie your work to global warming, that is to say, to scare science. Because of my reputation, I immodestly believe that I could have jumped onto the global warming bandwagon. But I refused to do so because I would have found this repugnant.
That pretty much sums up my objections to the alarmists' view that we have to do something and we have to do it now. It's all about money. It's funny when the lefties accuse us of being greedy. Really funny.