Sunday, July 02, 2006

Global Warming

My friend Scott Carson comments on the recent global warming warmings:

So it's worth keeping an eye on these reports--in some cases they may actually come close to the truth, but if the history of science teaches us anything at all, it teaches us that science itself is just a long sequence of theories and explanations being proved false. Why should any of these theories about the climate be exceptions to that long and invariable history?

An Examined Life

I think he is right. Modern science is the most exciting intellectual adventure of humanity (one I failed at because, at 16 years old, I never could see the point in Calculus. Why would I want to know the trajectory of a curve at X point? Actually, I think I do see the point nowadays - perhaps I should repeat the two years of Calc I actually took and passed). But scientists have no sense of history. They change their views, and after 5-10 years seem to forget anyone held a different view. [A few years ago they had the embarrassment of finding some stars which were older than the Universe!].

But, Scott (and other rich oil executives :) ) something is going on with the climate. Since I grew up in Manchester, England and now live in Florida, I am not personally in a good position to judge. [I dislike the redneckness, but love January and February, when you still do not need to wear anything more than a T-Shirt.] Nevertheless, from family and newspaper reports it is getting warmer.

Now this might be a good thing. If the Hudson Bay become a major oceanic destination, Canada may take over the world, which can only be a good think, since Canada is the perfect society (apart from Ann Murray and Celine Dion).

But then, if the Artic Ocean becomes ice-free, evil nations like Norway (think Whales) and Russia (think really boring movies) might take over the world. Perhaps this is the time to invest in land on Baffin Island.

At all events, coastal property in Florida or the Grand banks of North Caroline do seem bad investments. Fire Island Pines is problematic also.

3 comments:

Steve Muhlberger said...

Since the northern blueberries are out in unbelievable profusion, Canada may be close to perfect at the moment, but recent demonstrations of the dangers of hubris, I'd be reluctant to say more than "doing all right at the moment."

james r said...

There is no doubt that global warming is occurring. My doubt is that Man has anything to do with it. Rather, this appears to merely be another of the normal cycle of warming and cooling that has gone on throughout history. In the 1890s, when coal-based pollution was much worse than it is now, Europe was in the grip of "the Little Ice Age" with record snowfalls. (And this, BTW, was blamed upon Man's soot blocking the sun!) And around 1100, Greenland was warm enough to support a thriving Viking farm community (hence the name, "Greenland".) All that was lacking was some medieval Al Gore bemoaning campfires as "Global Warming"!

Paul Halsall said...

James,

I am no scientist, but we are causing this. I don't mind that much, but taxes should not be used to pay for all those houses that will be swept away at Ponte Vedra Beach.