Climate Common Sense

 

What are the facts about climate change? Well, that depends on whom you ask. Meteorologists are not in total agreement about next week’s weather, much less the 50-year forecast. Similarly, scientists were not in universal agreement on how to respond to the COVID pandemic. Remember how Drs. Anthony Fauci and Frances Collins vehemently disputed the Great Barrington Declaration?

Since scientists don’t agree, one admittedly simplistic option would be to consider your own personal common sense observations about the climate. In my personal 60-year experience, the southwest U.S. does seem warmer and drier than in my youth.

But has global warming made a change in the way you live your life? Maybe you run the air conditioner more in the summer. But has it changed your life? Does a warming planet feel like an existential threat to life on earth? What have we been told?

In 1989, the Associated Press reported that “A senior U.N. environmental official says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000.”

In January 2019, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) said, “the world is going to end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.”

In a 2019 video, the science guy, engineer Bill Nye, takes a blow torch to ignite a globe and said, “…the planet is on f***ing fire.”

When addressing the UN in September 2019, 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg said, “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. And yet I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!”

New research reveals that 71% of children aged 7-12 are afraid of climate change. I asked my 10-year-old grandson if his fifth-grade teacher talks about climate change. He responded, “Yes, all the time.” Fortunately, he is not guided by hysteria. Though rising temperatures are a valid concern, we can’t let the climate alarmists control the debate, nor can we let them dictate energy policy.

I’m not convinced that a two-degree temperature increase over the past 125 years is a direct cause of extreme weather. I don’t accept the claim that the Texas freeze of 2021, the December 2022 arctic blast that covered much of the Central and Eastern US, bringing the coldest Christmas Eve on record, and the January storms in California were caused by global warming.

Why did climate alarmists change their talking points from global warming to climate change?

According to the climate industrial complex, climate change encompasses global warming, but refers to the broader range of changes, including rising sea levels; shrinking mountain glaciers; and shifts in flower/plant blooming times. From their perch upon the moral high ground, they claim that every extreme weather event is the result of higher CO2 levels. It gives them license to garner the attention, money, and power they crave. But do higher CO2 levels and a warming planet result in more hurricanes, floods, and forest fires?

According to Steve Koonin, former Undersecretary for Science in the Obama Administration, and author of Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, and Why It Matters, hurricane activity is no different than it was a century ago. He further states that floods have not increased across the globe over more than 70 years.

But aren’t forest fires now more prevalent and damaging? You’d think so, but have you heard about the Great Fire of 1910, otherwise known as the Big Burn? That year fire conditions became severe due to an extremely dry winter and spring in the Northwest US. A series of fires broke out in Idaho, Montana, and Washington due to careless campers, loggers, and homesteaders, cinders from coal-fired locomotives, and dry lightning. Hurricane-force winds exacerbated the inferno, and by August 21, more than 3 million acres of private and federal land and 7.5 billion board feet of timber had been destroyed. The fire claimed 86 lives, mostly firefighters. Rain and snow began falling on August 23, ending the threat.

If the earth is warming, we should be able to deal with that in a rational way without hysterical alarmism, without unduly frightening our school children, without threatening our ability to heat and cool our homes, and without spending vast sums of money on unproven political solutions.

Are wind and solar farms the answer considering their intermittent ability to produce electricity? In addition, they have an enormous environmental footprint and wreak havoc on birds, bats, insects, and land and sea animals. Not insignificantly, the minerals needed to build wind turbines and solar panels are mined in China, Africa, and South America, where minimal environmental protections exist.

Do you believe that massive government grants and income tax credits to finance plants for building electric cars and charging stations will save the planet? Do you think giving the affluent a $7,500 tax credit for buying expensive electric cars is a common sense use of taxpayer money when according to the US Energy Administration, fossil fuels are by far the largest source of energy for electricity generation?

To solve our energy and environmental problems, we don’t need climate hysteria. We need better technological solutions, better political solutions, and common sense.

Published in Environment
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  1. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Welcome to Ricochet, Scott!  Nicely done!

    • #1
  2. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    • #2
  3. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Scott Helfinstine:

    Are wind and solar farms the answer considering their intermittent ability to produce electricity?  In addition, they have an enormous environmental footprints and wreak havoc on birds, bats, insects, and land and sea animals.  Not insignificantly, the minerals needed to build wind turbines and solar panels are mined in China, Africa and South America where minimal environmental protections exist. 

    Do you believe that massive government grants and income tax credits to finance plants for building electric cars and charging stations will save the planet?  Do you think giving the affluent a $7,500 tax credit for buying expensive electric cars is a common sense use of taxpayer money when according to the U.S. Energy Administration, fossil fuels are by far the largest source of energy for electricity generation?

    To solve our energy and environment problems, we don’t need climate hysteria.  We need better technological solutions, better political solutions, and common sense. 

    Most of the sources you have quoted or cited who assert climate change is an existential threat are not scientists but are either government bureaucrats or industrialists with a financial or political control outcome hinging on selling this story. The globalist movement depends on this movement. Public education has been co-opted by government and academia and much of the scientific community has been bought with grant money.

    Common sense is not carrying the day. Good post.

    • #3
  4. Modus Ponens Member
    Modus Ponens
    @ModusPonens

    The completely unscientific nature of this debate has destroyed any speck of good faith I may have harbored in the past, and that speck was microscopic to begin with. After being fed (and secretly purging) the “Go Green” propaganda in High School, including strongly implied recommendations for vegetarian diets and reduced living space, both of which have become major talking points since, I reflexively suspect anything “green” of being a smoke screen for marxism or an outright fraudulent enterprise like Solyndra.

    Human beings were given dominion over creation. Being responsible groundskeepers of the earth is a genuine good, with the understanding that Human flourishing is the ultimate goal. Without that, western countries have twisted common-sense conservationism into a perverse Gaia-cult and legitimate scientific inquiry into a quasi-religious Scientism.

    • #4
  5. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    Scott Helfinstine: Do you think giving the affluent a $7,500 tax credit for buying expensive electric cars is a common sense use of taxpayer money when according to the U.S. Energy Administration, fossil fuels are by far the largest source of energy for electricity generation?

    No, but especially not when car manufacturers quickly increased the price of their cars by $8,000.

    • #5
  6. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Modus Ponens (View Comment):

    The completely unscientific nature of this debate has destroyed any speck of good faith I may have harbored in the past, and that speck was microscopic to begin with. After being fed (and secretly purging) the “Go Green” propaganda in High School, including strongly implied recommendations for vegetarian diets and reduced living space, both of which have become major talking points since, I reflexively suspect anything “green” of being a smoke screen for marxism or an outright fraudulent enterprise like Solyndra.

    Human beings were given dominion over creation. Being responsible groundskeepers of the earth is a genuine good, with the understanding that Human flourishing is the ultimate goal. Without that, western countries have twisted common-sense conservationism into a perverse Gaia-cult and legitimate scientific inquiry into a quasi-religious Scientism.

    Seems like some people just can’t stop constructing golden idols.

    • #6
  7. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Scott Helfinstine: Remember how Drs. Anthony Fauci and Frances Collins vehemently disputed the Great Barrington Declaration?

    By trying to utterly destroy the people who wrote it? I suppose that counts as “vehemently disputed.”

    • #7
  8. Ekosj Member
    Ekosj
    @Ekosj

    Contrary to popular opinion, we actually seem to be in a 50 million year cooling trend.

    • #8
  9. namlliT noD Member
    namlliT noD
    @DonTillman

    Scott Helfinstine: According to the climate industrial complex, climate change encompasses global warming, but refers to the broader range of changes including rising sea levels; shrinking mountain glaciers; and shifts in flower/plant blooming times.

    Sea levels are interesting because we have at least a century of data on them.   Why?  Commerce.  Shipping.  Tides.

    I find the NOAA Seal Level Trends fascinating.  They compile sea level readings from all over.

    For instance, I live in Silicon Valley, close to San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean.  What are the sea levels like here?  Check’m out:

    That’s remarkably flat.  A rise of less than 3-1/2 inches over a century… in the face of regular 6ft tides.

    On the east coast, here’s Long Island, where I grew up:

    Okay, that’s more substantial.  9 inches per century.  With 7 foot tides.

    But it’s a straight line.  If there were man-made effects from industrialization, you would see it curve up.  There’s no curve up.

    And in some places, like Alaska and Scandinavia, the sea level is dropping.  Sometimes a lot.  Here is a little ways out from Anchorage:

    (I find myself weirdly fascinated by this.)

    • #9
  10. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    namlliT noD (View Comment):
    And in some places, like Alaska and Scandinavia, the sea level is dropping.

    Hide the decline!

    • #10
  11. OwnedByDogs Lincoln
    OwnedByDogs
    @JuliaBlaschke

    Like most things espoused by the left, climate change is just a tool to lead us to Marxism. 

    “It is a system defined by colonialism, imperialism, oppression and genocide by the so-called global North to accumulate wealth that still shapes our current world order.” ~ Greta Thunberg

    • #11
  12. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    OwnedByDogs (View Comment):

    Like most things espoused by the left, climate change is just a tool to lead us to Marxism.

    “It is a system defined by colonialism, imperialism, oppression and genocide by the so-called global North to accumulate wealth that still shapes our current world order.” ~ Greta Thunberg

    It’s even easier to ignore her if you remember that, in her own land, her name is pronounced something like toon-berry.

    • #12
  13. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    My electric bill has remained remarkably stable over the last decade. If there’s a hotter than usual summer, there’s a cooler winter month to offset it.

    The only thing I’ve really noticed is that the seasons are shifting. There’s the same number of cool and hot months, they just start and end in different spots on the calendar. Hurricane season, too. Hurricanes are occurring later in the season.

    Climate does change. There’s evidence of that in the fossil record. I just don’t believe humans have as big an impact on that as the climate change alarmists want us to believe. And our planet has some remarkable self-healing processes that we don’t fully understand… like shellfish breaking down oil or trees absorbing co2 or the earth’s filtration systems for clean water.

    • #13
  14. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    I’d like to zero in on one piece of this and that is the part where we pay teachers to scare the [redacted] out of our children. 

    This has to stop – we really need to shut down the fearmongering and indoctrination disguised as education. These are not their kids, they are our kids and even if the world is ending due to climate, it is not the government’s/education establishment’s place to terrorize defenseless and clueless children. 

    • #14
  15. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    TBA (View Comment):

    I’d like to zero in on one piece of this and that is the part where we pay teachers to scare the [redacted] out of our children.

    This has to stop – we really need to shut down the fearmongering and indoctrination disguised as education. These are not their kids, they are our kids and even if the world is ending due to climate, it is not the government’s/education establishment’s place to terrorize defenseless and clueless children.

    Teachers, like journalists, are trained to see themselves as activists first and educators fifth, tenth, ninety-ninth or somewhere way down the list.

    Which is why we need to take back the universities.

    Or we could just hire teachers based on skill, not having the proper licensing and approved degree.

    • #15
  16. Mad Gerald Coolidge
    Mad Gerald
    @Jose

    Scott Helfinstine: I don’t accept the claim that the Texas freeze of 2021, the December 2022 arctic blast that covered much of the Central and Eastern US, bringing the coldest Christmas Eve on record, and the January storms in California were caused by global warming. 

    Cold weather happens, even in 1899.

    In the map below, the bold dotted line across the southern US represents 0 degrees. Everything north of that is in the negative numbers.

    • #16
  17. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Ekosj (View Comment):

    Contrary to popular opinion, we actually seem to be in a 50 million year cooling trend.

    Good.  Because I sweat a lot.

    • #17
  18. Hartmann von Aue Member
    Hartmann von Aue
    @HartmannvonAue

    German resident here. The Ökofascisten as the rightly deserve to be called have led the way in hysteria and fear-mongering in the last 55 years or so, and they are one of the parties in the “Ampelkoalition” right now. Their policies have led to the current energy crisis in Germany, with their short-sighted and materially dangerous, indeed life-threatening in the real sense, insistence on wind and solar as the only allowable sources of electricity for the future. Right now the most obvious result of their eco-fanatical stupidity is that our energy costs have essentially doubled, which fact has substantially contributed to our ongoing financial struggles as missionaries. Now take that same fact and apply it to every family in Germany earning less than 40,000 € per year. These people hate the poor and the middle class and want to reduce them to serfs. Welcome back to 1400.

    See also:  https://salvomag.com/post/dueling-protests-dueling-worldviews

     

     

     

    • #18
  19. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Hartmann von Aue (View Comment):

    German resident here. The Ökofascisten as the rightly deserve to be called have led the way in hysteria and fear-mongering in the last 55 years or so, and they are one of the parties in the “Ampelkoalition” right now. Their policies have led to the current energy crisis in Germany, with their short-sighted and materially dangerous, indeed life-threatening in the real sense, insistence on wind and solar as the only allowable sources of electricity for the future. Right now the most obvious result of their eco-fanatical stupidity is that our energy costs have essentially doubled, which fact has substantially contributed to our ongoing financial struggles as missionaries. Now take that same fact and apply it to every family in Germany earning less than 40,000 € per year. These people hate the poor and the middle class and want to reduce them to serfs. Welcome back to 1400.

    See also: https://salvomag.com/post/dueling-protests-dueling-worldviews

     

     

     

    Reminds me of this, from a recent Memes thread:

     

    • #19
  20. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    My first question to climate alarmists is, “What is the perfect temperature?” My second is, “How can we be certain that our measurements are accurate?”

    3) Has the Earth ever been warmer in any time of the past than it is now?

    4)When the Earth was mainly frozen glaciers north of the equator, what was man’s condition? What was the condition of mammals in general?

    5)Isn’t the Sun, by far, the most influential entity in our climate? How can we control that?

    Before we drive civilization into extreme hardship and reverse so many of our gains from the previous several thousands of years causing pain and death for millions, I would like to have answers to the above questions. My final question might be, “Why do we hate ourselves so much?”

    • #20
  21. DrewInWisconsin, Oik Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oik
    @DrewInWisconsin

    cdor (View Comment):
    5)Isn’t the Sun, by far, the most influential entity in our climate? How can we control that?

    They’re workin’ on that.

    A startup says it’s begun releasing particles into the atmosphere, in an effort to tweak the climate

    • #21
  22. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    cdor (View Comment):

    Before we drive civilization into extreme hardship and reverse so many of our gains from the previous several thousands of years causing pain and death for millions, I would like to have answers to the above questions. My final question might be, “Why do we hate ourselves so much?”

    I think it is very clear that the teaching of these falsehoods starts in public elementary schools and takes the form of fear mongering. Similar techniques have been in place in academia and all of higher education for over three decades, at least, and now being waged in racist, sexist, climate change and any other opportune areas.   And now as much as half of our political movement population has joined this propaganda train not to mention the folks pushing the new world order.

    Big restoration job ahead and we better get with it.

     

    • #22
  23. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    DrewInWisconsin, Oik (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):
    5)Isn’t the Sun, by far, the most influential entity in our climate? How can we control that?

    They’re workin’ on that.

    A startup says it’s begun releasing particles into the atmosphere, in an effort to tweak the climate

    I thought man made climate change was bad.

    • #23
  24. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    Ekosj (View Comment):

    Contrary to popular opinion, we actually seem to be in a 50 million year cooling trend.

    That’s absolutely right!  That’s why Global Warming scientists love to quote history only as far back as 600,000 years ago, when the ice age was at it’s height.   Everything seems like Global Warming in comparison to that.  The general public never bothers to calculate that 600,000 years is just 1/10,000th of Earth’s history.  It is just a blink, a hiccup.  The entirety of human civilization arose during about a ten-thousand year warming period in-between ice ages.  The colder periods would not have allowed that.

    • #24
  25. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    cdor (View Comment):

    My first question to climate alarmists is, “What is the perfect temperature?” My second is, “How can we be certain that our measurements are accurate?”

    Perfect temperature would  be warmer than it is now.  At the moment, something like 1/4th of the Earth’s surface is uninhabitable because of cold.   The ground-based measurements are clumsy and subject to wide error bars.  That’s why all the Global Warming nuts rely on their imprecise measurements instead of the NASA satellites which are much more accurate and cover enormously more of the Earth’s surface than the measuring stations on the ground.  Believe it or not, the satellite’s latest reading has us at .05 degrees Celcius warmer than the baseline.  That’s not 5/10ths of a degree warmer, that’s 5/100ths of a degree warmer.  Statistically about zero.

    https://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures/

    3) Has the Earth ever been warmer in any time of the past than it is now?

    Aside from a couple of short anomalies, it’s always been warmer than now.  We’re currently living in one of the coldest periods in Earth’s 5 billion-year history.  Not to mention one of the most CO2 starved periods.

    4)When the Earth was mainly frozen glaciers north of the equator, what was man’s condition? What was the condition of mammals in general?

    Dismal.

    5)Isn’t the Sun, by far, the most influential entity in our climate?

    Yes, of course.  That’s why all Global  Warming scientists go out of their way to avoid talking about it.

    Before we drive civilization into extreme hardship and reverse so many of our gains from the previous several thousands of years causing pain and death for millions, I would like to have answers to the above questions. My final question might be, “Why do we hate ourselves so much?”

    Good question!

    • #25
  26. JoelB Member
    JoelB
    @JoelB

    Steven Seward (View Comment):
    That’s absolutely right!  That’s why Global Warming scientists love to quote history only as far back as 600,000 years ago, when the ice age was at it’s height.   Everything seems like Global Warming in comparison to that.  The general public never bothers to calculate that 600,000 years is just 1/10,000th of Earth’s history.  It is just a blink, a hiccup.  The entirety of human civilization arose during about a ten-thousand year warming period in-between ice ages.  The colder periods would not have allowed that.

    Last night, while doing some research on the Philistines for a Bible study, I came across this in the IVP Atlas of Bible History

    “…studies of European tree rings and level changes in peat-bogs and lakes suggest there was a crisis in the climate of Europe in c. 1200BC which would have triggered the migrations (of the people who became known as the Philistines, from Europe to Egypt and thence to the coast of Palestine.)

    This history-altering climate change occured long before the days of the internal combustion engine.

    • #26
  27. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Here’s a good article disclosing the faulty underlying planning  going on with our central planners and this is using the assumption that there is some validity in the climate change rationale. I can remember in the early years when cities like Los Angeles had what we called ‘smog’ caused in large part by vehicle emissions.  Work was done to mitigate that so they had to make up a problem that we would not be able to fix. Even what little success we have had so far with electric cars, solar panels, and windmills has all been subsidized by government with tax credits. These all need to stand on their own in our economic system.

    The Coming Future Of Electric Vehicles: Something Here Does Not Add Up

    • #27
  28. Buckpasser Member
    Buckpasser
    @Buckpasser

    Hottest year on record!  What was the temperature in January 1555?  Not sure?  I thought so.

    • #28
  29. kedavis Coolidge
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    cdor (View Comment):
    Before we drive civilization into extreme hardship and reverse so many of our gains from the previous several thousands of years causing pain and death for millions, I would like to have answers to the above questions. My final question might be, “Why do we hate ourselves so much?”

    What’s all this “we” stuff I keep hearing and reading?  It’s actually more like “Why do they hate themselves, and us, so much?”

    • #29
  30. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    Steven Seward (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    My first question to climate alarmists is, “What is the perfect temperature?” My second is, “How can we be certain that our measurements are accurate?”

    Perfect temperature would be warmer than it is now. At the moment, something like 1/4th of the Earth’s surface is uninhabitable because of cold. The ground-based measurements are clumsy and subject to wide error bars. That’s why all the Global Warming nuts rely on their imprecise measurements instead of the NASA satellites which are much more accurate and cover enormously more of the Earth’s surface than the measuring stations on the ground. Believe it or not, the satellite’s latest reading has us at .05 degrees Celcius warmer than the baseline. That’s not 5/10ths of a degree warmer, that’s 5/100ths of a degree warmer. Statistically about zero.

    https://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures/

    3) Has the Earth ever been warmer in any time of the past than it is now?

    Aside from a couple of short anomalies, it’s always been warmer than now. We’re currently living in one of the coldest periods in Earth’s 5 billion-year history. Not to mention one of the most CO2 starved periods.

    4)When the Earth was mainly frozen glaciers north of the equator, what was man’s condition? What was the condition of mammals in general?

    Dismal.

    5)Isn’t the Sun, by far, the most influential entity in our climate?

    Yes, of course. That’s why all Global Warming scientists go out of their way to avoid talking about it.

    Before we drive civilization into extreme hardship and reverse so many of our gains from the previous several thousands of years causing pain and death for millions, I would like to have answers to the above questions. My final question might be, “Why do we hate ourselves so much?”

    Good question!

    Good answers! Thanks.

    • #30
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