Why Climate Alarmists Have Missed the Big PictureAlan Carlin | December 30, 2016
Climate alarmists are primarily concerned that man’s activities will result in Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW). They appear to have missed the big picture.
Global atmospheric temperatures as well as atmospheric CO2 have been gradually and erratically falling for significant portions of Earth’s history, but not in unison. Successive ice ages are gradually and unevenly becoming ever colder. There is evidence that very minor changes in the incidence of sunlight on Earth can and have resulted in plunging Earth and all its living cargo into new ice ages. Earth is currently in an interglacial period, and based on previous ice ages and the changes in global temperatures during this interglacial period, we are now near the end of it.
The Major Risk
In other words, the major climatic risk is that Earth will plunge into a new ice age, with global temperatures ultimately reaching perhaps 6 to 8oC below current temperatures. The results of such a new ice age would be catastrophic to humans and other life on Earth, including the southward advance of huge ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere. Global levels of CO2 during the depths of the last ice age resulted in severe starvation for plants. Plants that die of CO2 starvation cannot provide food for animals, including humans.
Climate alarmists have laid out a technical basis that CAGW could occur if all their climate model assumptions were correct. Far, far more likely is that global temperatures will fall, just as they did during the Little Ice Age ending in the 19th Century. There is even some risk that eventually such a fall in temperatures could lead to a new ice age. Now that would be serious. If we are going to worry about climate, this possibility is the one we should worry about. What would humans do under these circumstances? How many would there be on Earth at the end of it 100,000 years from now?
In order to be concerned about global warming one has to assume that the increasingly cold trend on Earth has somehow been reversed by the arrival of man and his use of fossil fuels, which put minor amounts of CO2 in the atmosphere compared to other sources. More likely, Earth’s continuing decline in atmospheric temperatures will resume after the current minor rising blip is over, just as the Sun, our source of heat and light, is signaling and consistent with the continuing cooling of Earth through a significant portion of its long history. And if humans have delayed that by burning a little fossil fuel, so much the better. We and other living things on Earth are likely to need all the warmth we can get in the next 100,000 years, when hopefully there will be another interglacial period. This current interglacial period allowed the emergence of human civilization. Will it survive until the next one?