Saturday, March 24, 2007

One Blogger's Opinion on Global Warming

A friend and frequent visitor to this blog, Kathy, has asked me to succinctly state my position on the global warming debate.

1. Almost all evidence points to 1 degree of warming at ground level over the past 100 years. More than half of this warming occurred during 1900-1940, followed by cooling from 1940-1980. Another warming trend started in the '80's. While there have been substantial changes in the way we monitor these ground level temperatures, and today's technology and number of monitoring stations is substantially greater than those of 100 years ago, my personal belief is that we are in a warm period.

2. Almost all evidence points to a very minor increase in atmospheric warming. Again, we are better at doing this now. However, models based on CO2-as-culprit theory would suggest that atmospheric warming should be greater than ground warming. My personal belief is that we are in a warm period, but not caused by CO2.

3. Ice core studies strongly show that we have been warmer than this in the past without significant negative and some positive impact on ecosystems. My personal belief is that we can get 2-3 degrees warmer without too many problems and potentially some great benefits.

4. There are very credible models based on cyclical sun patterns that would suggest that our current warming is caused by solar activity, and that CO2 concentrations increase a few years after this kind of solar activity. I personally believe that this model has the most credibility. These models show a coming global cooling starting around 2010.

5. The amount of CO2 created by humans is dwarfed by such things as volcanoes, cow-produced and termite produced gases, and the release of CO2 from natural sinks. While humans do produce CO2, it seems unlikely that the amount comes close to having the impact suggested by the CO2 model theorists. I personally think we should modify our CO2 footprint for a lot of reasons.

6. I believe that there are mountains of evidence that the earth is self-healing, which is also an extremely strong argument for the existence of God. This self-healing effect has been working for either 10,000 years (young earth) or millions of years. It might stop working during this generation or next, but such an argument seems over-the-top crazy to me. One example is the very carbon sinks mentioned above. Organisms on the ocean surface grow like crazy when there is more CO2, they ingest and hold on to the CO2, thereby reducing atmospheric CO2. When the CO2 gets to a low level, these organisms begin to die off, thus releasing stored CO2 into the atmosphere and there is less being ingested and stored by these creatures.

7. Bottom line. Humans should work hard to reduce pollution of all kinds for many and varied reasons which are obvious. Humans should be seeking to develop energy resources that are not dependent upon potentially limited resources. I have covered this in detail here. We should not be risking our economies or the developing economies of the poorest countries based on the questionable science of Al Gore or the UN.

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