Climate of Confusion – Part I

If manmade warming poses an existential threat, why isn’t secular warming existential?
Climate of Confusion – Part I
Introduction – Anthropological vs. Secular Warming
By: George Noga – October 20, 2019

        Welcome to Climate of Confusion, our most ambitious effort ever. Our first posting in 2007 was about global warming and we have written about climate change more than any other subject. Despite harboring strong opinions, we tried hard to present an objective, fact-based, principled and logical analysis. We ask readers similarly to suspend their opinions and to consider climate change on a de novo basis as they read this series, presented in 7 consecutive parts over the next 20 days.

Part I        Introduction and Anthropological vs. Secular Warming

Part II       Case for Manmade Warming – 97% Scientific Consensus

Part III      Remainder of the Case for Manmade Warming

Part IV      Scientific and Logical Case Against Manmade Warming

Part V       Economic, Political, Religious Case Against Manmade Warming

Part VI      Global Scope, Green New Deal, Green Energy, Adaptation

Part VII     It’s Not About Climate; It Never Was

        We titled our series Climate of Confusion because many people are confused. Climate change is complex, involving science, economics, politics and religion with existential overtones. Manmade warming proponents rely heavily on the existence of a scientific consensus, UN-IPCC pronouncements and media reports. They also cite temperature data, extreme weather, shrinking ice caps and receding glaciers.

      Manmade warming opponents cite the failure of myriad climate scares to materialize and the computer model debacle. In 30 years of apocalyptic predictions, nothing dire has occurred and all scares proved exaggerated and unfounded. Opponents cite different data, which conflict with those of proponents, whose data they assert are politicized, biased and even fraudulent. They argue that spending trillions now for uncertain and infinitesimal benefits in the distant future makes no sense.

        Let’s establish a few basic truths. Yes – climate is changing, but it always is changing; climate change is a fatuous tautology intended by proponents to transform every weather event into a proof. Yes – global warming is real and has been occurring for nearly 200 years. Yes – mankind can affect climate, such as in urban heat islands. Yes – carbon dioxide is increasing and can affect temperature, although current research shows a much smaller effect than earlier believed. Yes – warming may be caused in part by man; it is impossible to prove a negative. And yes – a moderately warmer climate with more CO2 is a net benefit to life on Earth.

Anthropological or Secular Warming: What’s the Difference?

        We begin by posing a profound question we never have seen asked. Believers in manmade warming argue it is an existential threat justifying unlimited spending and regulation at the expense of all other human and environmental needs even if it entails sacrificing our lifestyle. The most ardent believers state we have only a few years remaining to avert Armageddon. In a gross misapplication of the precautionary principle, they demand we act immediately even without certainty about causation.

      This begs the obvious question: if warming is the greatest calamity in human history, does it matter whether its cause is secular, anthropological or a combination? Won’t the harm be just as existential? Shouldn’t we combat warming  just as vigorously regardless of cause? If humans can mitigate manmade warming by reducing CO2, shouldn’t we also be able to mitigate secular warming? If warming truly is a threat to life on Earth, why not focus on it instead of debating its causation?

        Yet, manmade warming proponents never argue warming per se is the problem. They oppose only manmade warming, even while acknowledging warming is, at least in part, attributable to solar activity. Could it be that it really isn’t about climate?

Look for Part II of Climate of Confusion in just a few days – on October 23. 
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