Friday, December 21, 2007

Climate Consensus Busted? - Dot Earth - Climate Change and Sustainability - New York Times Blog

Climate Consensus Busted? - Dot Earth - Climate Change and Sustainability - New York Times Blog: "The perennial tug of war over what average people should think and do about human-caused global warming has just experienced another big yank, this time from those saying actions to cut greenhouse gases are a costly waste of time."

A Reasonable Assumption

A decade and a half ago, I unscientifically began to reason that since the Industrial Revolution, when the churning of industry and the transportation of billions from fossil-fuels, the cutting down of billions of trees, the paving of billions of miles of asphalt roads, and the billowing billions of tons of industrial waste into the air, there would be consequences. It seemed a reasonable assumption that this assault upon our planet’s delicate balance of Nature, where clean air and clean water are critical to our existence, should be investigated thoroughly, with the thought that if there were even the possibility that mankind could affect something so profound as climate change, finding a conservative point along the continuum of action and scientific validity should be paramount.

Given the chaotic nature of our planetary weather system and our inability to rapidly change our collective behavior, I thought it would be prudent for an intelligent species to actively rule out the possibility of anthropogenic climate change. In my unsophisticated mind, just this hypothesis alone should have sent our species scurrying to investigate and find the appropriate level in which to act. Even primitive man would have run before the lion pounced.

However, the politicizing of this issue and the fears from powerful corporations that the status quo would be disrupted by this yet unproven concern has seriously affected our species ability to assess and act on this sensible concern. By the time anthropogenic climate change has been proven to the satisfaction of every myopic, monomaniacal ideologue we shall be hurled headlong towards climate collapse.

So now, after fifteen years and a consensus by the majority of scientist around the world, we have enough information to act. Scientists know that more global warming gases in the atmosphere warms things up and the public understands how difficult it will be to make positive changes in something as unwieldy as our climate.

But, the naysayers have not given up and the mainstream media fails to understand the preeminence of a healthy environment. Their slavish devotion to their misunderstanding of Objectivity, where every kook gets his chance to muddy the waters, rules. Every action towards sustainability seems thwarted by the few and the furious. Have we come to the point in human history where the angels of our better judgment have become bereft of intelligent action? For, it seems in the United State that the rich and powerful are fixated on their view of reality and that they intend on imposing upon the rest of us a world, regardless of its merit, without fairness or a chance for sustainability.

Ultimately, I hope that the world since Bali has decided to act on Global Warming. Even so, we must fight for life, like the shark hampered by the parasitic lamprey, while our energies are relentlessly sucked from us.

Frank J. Regan

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