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“No Regrets” is the Best Policy


Manhattan Conference on Global Warming Indicates that “No Regrets” is the Best Policy.

The Carbon Sense Coalition based in Australia, says that the science and empirical evidence on Global warming is now clearly indicating that a “No Regrets” policy is the best course for the world to follow.

The Carbon Sense Coalition was one of the 52 organisations from 20 different countries which co-sponsored the recent International Conference on Climate Change in New York. Al Gore was invited to address the conference (he was even promised his $200,000 fee) but he declined to appear. Jim Hansen of NASA, another prominent alarmist, was also invited, but declined. (Contrast this with the Bali conference when a delegation of prominent sceptical scientists sought to present their petition to the UN. They were denied admission and refused an audience.)

The Chairman of “Carbon Sense” Mr Viv Forbes, who attended the conference along with about 20 other Australian and New Zealand speakers and observers, said that with over 500 delegates attending over 100 sessions presented and discussed by scientists, economists, politicians and policy analysts (many of world standing) there was no aspect of global warming science and policy that was not examined in the light of current knowledge and evidence.

For more information on the conference see:

www.heartland.org/Article.cfm?artId=22875 and www.americanthinker.com/2008/03/ny_climate_conference_journey.html

Forbes claimed that a number of clear conclusions arose from the conference:

  1. There is no doubt that the earth is in a warming phase, and has been in this phase for some 300 years. Warming started after the frigid years of the Little Ice Age, and has continued, in waves, ever since.
  2. There is no doubt that the short warm eras in earth’s history have proved very beneficial for life on earth as evidenced by the rising population, increased prosperity, increased life span, increased food production and the flourishing of art and architecture that has accompanied every one of the recent warm eras. Ice Ages, not Warm Ages, are the big threats to life on earth.
  3. There is considerable uncertainty about the future trends in earth’s temperature. However, there is close correlation between past temperature trends and variations in solar output and planetary cycles, and these indicate that the current warming is likely to end, no matter what man does, maybe within decades. The cooling may have already started.
  4. It is very clear that carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere have risen, but close study of the correlations between CO2 and temperature shows that it is far more likely that temperature changes trigger changes in CO2 levels. Past records also show that current levels of CO2 in the atmosphere are neither unusual nor concerning.
  5. There are no credible claims or evidence from any quarter that current or projected levels of CO2 in the atmosphere pose any other threat to human, animal or plant life on earth. CO2 is not a contributor to air pollution; in fact it is a precious plant food on which all life on earth depends.
  6. Man’s activities contribute less than 5% of total emissions into the atmosphere, and this addition has had only minor effect (probably undetectable) on the rising temperature trend.
  7. There is good evidence that oceans, volcanoes and other natural sources expel large but variable quantities of CO2 into the atmosphere. Oceans expel CO2 as they warm and absorb it as they cool.
  8. It is agreed in all quarters that the computerised General Circulation Models utilised heavily by the IPCC to produce their warming alarms have no proven ability to forecast climate even one year in advance, let alone the 50 or more years that some people have quoted.
  9. It is a fact that CO2 and the other atmospheric gases provide an insulating blanket to the earth, keeping surface temperature higher than it would otherwise be. However, science is agreed that CO2’s warming potential is almost exhausted, and even if current levels of CO2 doubled, it would not on its own cause alarming global warming. There is nothing to fear from CO2 induced warming.
  10. The large positive warming feedbacks assumed by the IPCC are quite likely to be much smaller or even negative. Recent work is showing that the earth has a huge capacity to distribute and dissipate heat via winds, ocean currents, evaporation, precipitation and radiation to space. There is a large degree of self regulation in the natural global temperature controllers.

“In summary, man is not as important or as smart as some people believe he is. He is nowhere near to understanding the complex interactions between the big climate players – the sun, planetary cycles, atmospheric circulation, volcanoes and the dominating role of water in clouds, in the atmosphere, in the oceans, and in snow and ice. Moreover, his tiny contribution to an extremely minor atmospheric gas such as CO2 is highly unlikely to be the main driver of world climate.

“The inevitable conclusion to be drawn from the above observations is that man is unlikely to achieve any positive climate benefits from a very costly and disruptive policy of forcible decarbonisation of all human activities. The earth will largely ignore him.

“This indicates that the huge sums of money contributed by consumers, taxpayers and businesses to this futile war on carbon will be largely wasted, and future generations will have great regrets that their parents were so profligate with their inheritance.

Forbes claimed that the nations of the world should follow a “No Regrets Policy” which yields dividends no matter what the future climate holds.

“We should abandon all policies that assume either warming or cooling, because there is no clear evidence on what the future holds.

“We should be strengthening our ability to adapt our lifestyle and our economy to whatever climate the future holds for us. We can be certain that climate will change, perhaps dramatically, but no one is yet competent to predict it, and man is powerless to have significant effect on it.

“A “No Regrets” policy means exposing all people to the full cost of their actions, and allowing the climate and the market to deter silly practices and encourage sensible ones.

“Specifically, all governments should assist their communities to adapt to whatever changes are surely in store for us by ceasing to mandate market shares for any particular energy source, and abolishing all discriminatory energy taxes and subsidies and all limits, caps and taxes on harmless emissions of CO2. They should also abandon all plans to mandate the Emissions Trading Game – leave that to the gamblers who choose to play. It will be more fun than Monopoly with a similar outcome – a few big winners and all the rest losers.

“No one has the right to gamble the seed corn of the community on preparing for last year’s climate crisis. Governments are currently planning to spend huge and growing amounts of money on the very dubious assumption that global warming is a clear and present danger. This money would be far better spent on infrastructure to insulate us from future shortages of water, energy or food, procuring emergency equipment that can cope with ANY natural disaster, tackling real air or water pollution problems or designing policies that ensure that rising prices are left free to discourage the waste of scarce resources.

“Useful equipment and facilities and sound stable policies will serve us well in drought, flood, fire, tempest, tidal wave, global warming or global cooling.

This indeed would be a policy of “No Regrets”.

“Man believes he is a heavy hitter, confident in his ability to dominate and manipulate the climate. But he needs to remember, “Nature bats last”.

Viv Forbes

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