Global Warming Delusions

Global Warming Delusionsby Kerby Anderson

            Awhile back Daniel Botkin wrote a column in the Wall Street Journal that really challenged those who believe that global warming is a major catastrophe. I was surprised to see it because Professor Botkin used to be my advisor when I was in graduate school at Yale University. He has been an environmental professor at Yale and later at the University of California at Santa Barbara. If there was anyone I would expect to tout the idea that climate change is a catastrophe, it would be him.
            He believes that "contrary to the latest news, the evidence that global warming will have serious effects on life is thin. Most evidence suggests the contrary." For example, he disputes this year's United Nations report on climate change that says a large percentage of plant and animal species will go extinct due to climate change. He points to the fact that there have been major changes in climate in the past that did not generate such high numbers of extinctions.
            He also disputes the idea that tropical diseases are going to spread. He points to papers that show that temperature changes do not correlate well with changes in the distribution and frequency of these diseases.
            He acknowledges that some of his colleagues share some of his doubts but believe that you need to frighten people in order to get society to change. He doesn't believe we should dismiss global warming, but he does believe we should make a realistic assessment. He says we should approach the problem the way we decide whether to buy insurance and take precautions against other catastrophes such as wildfires, hurricanes, or earthquakes. And he believes we should move away from fossil fuels to alternative solar and wind energy.
            But in the end, Professor Botkin feels that we may be moving away from an irrational lack of concern about climate change to an equally irrational panic about it. I agree.
            I'm Kerby Anderson, and that's my point of view.

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