Saturday, 11 July 2009

Not Settled?

The Spectator has an interview with Professor Ian Plimer, author of a new book on Global Warming. The Professor takes the view that if the Earth is indeed warming, then this is a natural phenomenon - not one that we are driving.

As James Delingpole puts it;

Reading Plimer’s Heaven And Earth is at once an enlightening and terrifying experience. Enlightening because, after 500 pages of heavily annotated prose (the fruit of five years’ research), you are left in no doubt that man’s contribution to the thing they now call ‘climate change’ was, is and probably always will be negligible. Terrifying, because you cannot but be appalled by how much money has been wasted, how much unnecessary regulation drafted because of a ‘problem’ that doesn’t actually exist.
My pre-order is in place ... hopefully Amazon won't take too long to get hold of it.


  1. Maybe, but look at the amount of human activity on the surface of the planet day in, day out. I rely on the views of the experts and they do appear divided.

    Be wary of confusing two issues. The first is global warming, which we are not doing too much about in my opinion. The second issue is the depletion on nonrenewable energy sources. Politicians dress this up as the first issue to stop panic setting in. I am led to believe 85% of all energy currently used is derived from nonrenewable sources, namely coal, oil & gas. Coal and oil have now been calculated as being a finite reource, expirying in the next 20 - 50 years, albeit that as the cost rises, it will be worthwhile endeavouring to release reserves that are currently deemed not economical to extract.

    It is for this second issue, rather than global warming, that developing renewable energy resources is where effort at considerable cost is being directed. Providing mankind with a common cause does keep us occupied and prevent us fighting each other. It amazes me governments do not let themselves become unpopular with business or voters by saying turn off air conditioning. Still I won't get hot under the collar about it but perhaps the free market does not seem to work effectively in this respect as they want to be comfortable and attract customers.

    I am sure you do your bit by driving considerately, Patently. ;-)

  2. I do agree re not confusing the issues. I find it very irritating that the politicians tell us that the science is settled, but then prove that they are in no way qualified to state that by muddling some of the basic concepts.

    We have moved on from the 80s plea to avoid aerosols because by damaging the ozone layer they cause global warming, but more subtle errors of thinking are still apparent.

    To an extent, the ingenuity of the energy companies has harmed the case for renewables. I distinctly remember a geography lesson in which I was shown a graph of future oil stocks, in which they ran out completely within 25 years. That was almost 30 years ago...

    We do need - desperately - to sort out other forms of energy so that oil etc can be used in the sectors where it is especially suited - as a manufacturing feedstock, and for transport. Sadly, this is yet another area where we have been let down!