Global Warming Falsehoods

SUVs are the whipping boy for a natural environmental cycle.

BY: Andrew Greely


BBCAmerica, as it calls itself, offered a feature on global warming the other night. It blamed the United States for causing global warming, especially the American SUVs. It suggested that the United States might be hauled before some international court and forced to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions. The program was a characteristic blend of radical environmentalist ideology and hatred of America that obsesses the European Union these days. I yield to no one in my dislike of the SUVs, trucks masquerading as family cars. Yet blaming them for global warning is fraud.

There are two scientific phenomena that are routinely mixed into one by sloppy media reporting--global warming and the expansion of "greenhouse gasses." The world is getting warmer, we are told, and the reason is all the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Rarely is it said that the first phenomenon is a fact and the second is an unproven and perhaps unprovable theory. The world has been warming for two centuries, for reasons no one seems to understand fully.

Spiritually Unfit Vehicles?

"Perhaps many buyers and owners do not understand that the case against SUVs isn't just a matter of taste, it is a matter of harm to the public."--Gregg Easterbrook

It has been warmer before. Thus when my ancient ancestors settled on the northern shores of County Mayo (they didn't know it was Mayo, poor folk) 5,500 years ago, the world temperature was two degrees centigrade warmer than it is now. The settlers in the Ceade (pronounced Caju) fields were able to harvest two crops a year and live together peacefully, as the Irish always prefer to live.

It has been colder before, most notably in the so-called "little ice age" from the late middle ages to about 1750. The paintings we see of Dutch kids skiing on the canals are from that era, as well as photos of baseball games on the Lincoln Park Lagoon while the world was warming up again. No one knows why these cycles occur. There are lots of theories (volcano eruptions and cycles in the sun for example) but nothing solidly established. However, the world has been warming for the last 200 years more or less (with some intermittent cooling, especially during the 1930s and '40s). Most of the warming occurred before the use of fossil fuel and hence cannot be attributed to carbon dioxide.

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