'Baby, it's cold outside'
Cat reports that for the second year in a row it is snowing in Portland, a city which has long enjoyed a mild maritime climate. This is not proof that the Earth is not heating up. But Philip Foster does have proof that global warming is overstated.
With degrees in Natural Science and Theology, both from Cambridge, Philip Foster takes the long view. Named Author of the Year in 2009 by the Birmingham Telegraph, he has written a book called Creation, Cosmology and Climate Change. It has an introduction from Professor David Bellamy OBE and a recommendation from the President of the Czech Republic, Vaclav Klaus. Philip has kindly allowed us to reproduce the graph and excerpt below.
Once upon a time a little boy was walking with his mother across Hampstead Heath in a gale. The wind kept blowing his cap off and, as he looked at the bending trees, he turned to his mother and exclaimed, 'Mummy, if the trees didn't wave it wouldn't wind!'
We are amused at this childish misunderstanding of the relationship between cause and effect. However if an adult were to put forward such fancies as factual we would not be so amused and indeed might become very alarmed if they then announced that all the trees on Hampstead Heath must be cut down to prevent the gales.
If I told you that many politicians, NGOs and scientists are making a very similar mistake today, you might not believe me, but it's true. All the current worry about climate change centres round just one idea: that rising levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) are causing the temperature to rise and, as we use lots of fossil fuel, it must be our fault.
When the Greenland ice cores were first analysed for temperature and CO2 levels, it did look as if CO2 and temperature went up or down in lock step. This was the whole basis for Al Gore's Hollywood movie, An Inconvenient Truth. However, more detailed analysis blew this idea right out of the water: rises in CO2 followed rises in temperature (caused by other factors), lagging by several hundred years. The reason is simple: oceans warm much more slowly than the land, so it is only gradually, over a few hundred years, that warmth pushes CO2 out of the oceans.
Most of the recent rise in CO2 is likely to be from the Medieval Warm Period, c. AD 900-1350. A time of unprecedented prosperity, it was when the great cathedrals of Europe were built. Similar developments were occurring in other parts of the globe; India, China and South America. CO2 is purely beneficial: it is what makes our crops grow. It is not a pollutant.
There are pollutants, such as sulphur dioxide, which do need to be cut, particularly in the growing economies of India and China, but they are already starting to do this.
The idea that CO2 drives the climate is simply wrong, as wrong as that little boy's idea about the wind. Governments, the EU and the UN (through the IPCC) have spent more than $60 billion (and counting) on 'climate research'. That's a great deal of money and a large number of jobs. At this stage to turn round and say, 'we've made a mistake' will clearly be difûcult. But at a time when most of us are cutting household expenses, to admit this mistake would save us all not only money but worry. Much more so for the Third World, which is currently suffering the most from misguided 'green' policies.
Above is a graph of temperature variations over the last 17,000 years (since the end of the last big ice age). As you can see the current alarm is quite irrational. . .
-Philip Foster, Creation, Cosmology and Climate Change
You can buy Philip's book at Amazon. The section on Climate Change includes Chapter 10, Whom should we trust? The IPCC, the Hadley Centre, NASA, the facts of climate change. Chapter 11 features Alarums, excursions and baseless fears. Chapter 12 focuses on the Consequences of present policies and the precautionary principle. Philip also addresses the great question, what are the real causes of climate change? And takes us back to the creation of the universe.
Philip is a lucid writer.