Re: The myth of carbon emissions and global warming.
I don't know about political motives, or sensational media, but judging from the long term ice core evidence, it seems clear that the recent warming trend started long before we came along, and it's happened many times before. And every single time it happened before, it reached a certain level, and then crashed back down again.
Judging from the short term evidence, it seems clear that our industrial activities are probably exacerbating the long term trend. But to what degree is unclear. Adding a bucket of water to Naigra Falls also increases it's flow, but in the scheme of things...
I'm all in favor of cleaning up the environment as much as possible without derailing economies. "Leave only footprints, and take only pictures" is probably the best target to shoot for while still allowing ourselves to walk through the park, so to speak.
But regardless of whether our contributions to greenhouse gas are a drop in the bucket, or a torrent the result is probably inevitible; a collapse back into another period of glaciation. Based on previous climate behavior, it seems clear that hotter it gets, the sooner something is triggered which causes a strong return to glaciation.
If we had never been here the temp would probably rise slowly for 1000 years and then drop sharply for the next 50000 years.
If we pollute like crazy then temps might get to the trigger point in 500 years intead of 1000. Who knows. But either way, it's gonna hit the top, and it's gonna crash. It's just my gut feel, but I doubt any amount of greenhouse gas we can add to the atmosphere is going to overcome whetever event triggers a return to glaciation.
I think we should stop polluting as much as possible for a whole bunch of reasons. But I think no matter what we do, we're gonna have to learn to control the climate on this planet, or endure glaciations. Because right now, the way the continents are configured, the planet seems prone to glaciation more than the relative warmth we're accustomed to.
I have another thread
related to this. I wanted the other thread to avoid the political arguments and focus on the data, which it seems to be doing pretty well with currently. This thread teases the political strings a bit more.