Wednesday, December 30, 2009
The Climate Science Emails Debate and the Real Debate
The thing that people are forgetting here is that Life alters the environment - the Gaia Principle. Most carbon dioxide output is due to volcanoes, and most warming is due to solar irradiation, but left to itself, the plant life will consume that anaerobic gas and excrete oxygen, and Life itself will try to maintain a favorable environment for itself, or at least adapt, if the environment becomes unfavorable. If Man comes along and chops down all the trees and burns them, then carbon dioxide levels will rise and the Earth's poles get warmer. Less ice means more sunlight gets absorbed rather than reflected back into space and you get a positive feedback warming loop. If Mankind were not in the loop, how would things be different? We are a perturbation on the natural system that currently exists whether we wish to admit it or not, even if we are a small input. However, in nonlinear systems, small perturbations can have enormous unintended effects. That is what is being debated.
Disclosing one side's emails without disclosing the critics' emails is not democratic, fair, or balanced. It's a cheap trick to discredit the scientists by showing that they are human beings. Science being a human affair is messy and political just like all human affairs are. What makes Science different from most other human affairs is that facts trump opinion and belief. This is the only way knowledge and wisdom progress. If you don't believe me, then compare any physical science to economics. How many scientists are generally right most of the time? The answer will be quite a lot. Compare that to economics where the majority got blindsided by the Great Financial Crisis. Ninety-nine out of 100 economists didn't see the crisis coming despite warnings from 2005 and 2006. The economists who predicted the meltdown were derided or ridiculed by their peers only to be proven right, but there were very few of them.
Climate science is a physical science, it is not economics. There is a preponderance of facts backing up the case for manmade climate change. The evidence does not depend upon belief or opinion for its validity. It is a body of physical concrete facts. The debate is over what are we going to do as a collective group to dampen the effects 9 billion humans are or will have on the planet. It is just one part of a larger debate we should be having about Man's place in the natural world and what should we preserve and what should we destroy. After all, it is far easier to destroy than it is to create. What kind of world will our descendants inherit when all the wild tigers and their forests are gone, all the cod and salmon are fished from the oceans, all the arable lands turned to desert? it took 4.5 billion years to make a tiger, a panda, a shark, or a fish. It'll take us less than my generation to finish them all off. When they are extinct, is Humanity far behind?
These climate change laws involve many political compromises - such as promoting brown coal power stations in the hope that carbon capture technology will work.
The party political debate continues with scientists being drafted to support each parties policies.
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