A Reasonable Pro-GW Commentary

Dana Milbank of The Washington Post has a reasonable column today regarding ‘global warming.’

You may have heard all the nonsense (unfortunately repeated here in GW = greater moisture = more snow … which isn’t true) about all of the recent snow “proving” ‘global warming.’ Milbank says,

Still, there’s some rough justice in the conservatives’ cheap shots. In Washington’s blizzards, the greens were hoist by their own petard.

For years, climate-change activists have argued by anecdote to make their case. Gore, in his famous slide shows, ties human-caused global warming to increasing hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, drought and the spread of mosquitoes, pine beetles and disease. It’s not that Gore is wrong about these things. The problem is that his storm stories have conditioned people to expect an endless worldwide heat wave, when in fact the changes so far are subtle.

Other environmentalists have undermined the cause with claims bordering on the outlandish; they’ve blamed global warming for shrinking sheep in Scotland, more shark and cougar attacks, genetic changes in squirrels, an increase in kidney stones and even the crash of Air France Flight 447. When climate activists make the dubious claim, as a Canadian environmental group did, that global warming is to blame for the lack of snow at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, then they invite similarly specious conclusions about Washington’s snow.

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3 thoughts on “A Reasonable Pro-GW Commentary

  1. Very good post. Thank you for sharing.

    One thing I like to remind people of is that the typical range of temperature increases that have been predicted by the IPCC (regardless of what you think of them) are on the order less than 5C. The temperature changes by more than that on most days…or between Summer and Winter. The changes really are subtle, gradual and, cannot be discerned on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. Scientists who predict cataclysmic and everlasting heat waves as a result of a warming climate are, simply put, wrong. It is imperative that scientists point that out in order to prevent their message from being drowned out. It is important that people, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater. Just because people on the fringe are making outlandish claims, it doesn't mean that the underlying message isn't true.

  2. Patrick,

    Agree with your comment except for one thing, the IPCC said the Himalayan glaciers could disappear by 2035 — an extreme outlandish claim that they have since retracted and have admitted came from a World Wildlife Federation pamphlet rather than peer-reviewed science. So, it is not just "fringe" GW advocates making these claims, some have come from the IPCC and its scientists.


  3. I will admit that I haven't paid much attention to the specific projected impacts from the IPCC reports – and this is for a myriad of reasons. Do I think the world's glaciers would be in jeopardy if the temperatures rise as predicted? You bet. Do I think we have any kind of skill in predicting when this might occur? Absolutely not.

    Do I agree with the specific timeline of specific impacts? Of course not. Does that mean the projected impact isn't a valid concern on *some* timeline? Of course not.

    In my opinion, the IPCC is too large for it's own good. It should be much smaller, agile organization which would hopefully reduce some of this kind of things from getting in.