Just read some of the comments Al Gore made recently in Aspen about the debate on global warming or what is now called climate change to cover more bases. It is a rare thing indeed to see a man who claims to be arguing science reduced to sputtering rage at the thought that anyone could have a contrary view.
Somewhere along the line, we have lost sight of the idea of scientific discourse. The climate change debate is the only scientific debate where advocates demand that we end the debate and act on their claims right now.
Any time I hear someone in “authority” telling me we must start acting and stop thinking or questioning, I think of the boy telling a semi-drunk girl she must have sex with him right now, ostensibly before she sobers up and realizes what a mistake it would be.
Never have I heard a scientist demand that the debate is over. Science is the search for truth. The debate is never over. Piltdown Man was acknowledged as a hoax after much debate and the discussion is over, not because someone demanded it but because the evidence is overwhelming. The same cannot be said of the debate over climate change. There are a lot of questions yet to be answered.
Al Gore claims that anybody who disagrees with him is a pseudo scientist with an undisclosed agenda. This is ironic as Mr Gore is an investor in companies set up to trade in carbon credits and stands to profit enormously from cap and trade legislation. Somehow, I am not inclined to view a person who stands to benefit financially as impartial. Perhaps I am just jaded.
My first concern is that the simulations that we hear about have not been tested to see if they reflect reality. If they were accurate, one could feed in the data for, lets say 1970, and see if the simulation moves forward 40 years to accurately reflect 2010 conditions. To do this, the simulation would have to have all the things that can affect climate in its programming. I suspect there are hundreds, if not thousands, of variables we know nothing about or that we do not understand.
Saying man is the driver of climate change is absurd considering that the climate has changed thousands of times in the four billion year history of the planet. We cannot possibly believe that, all of a sudden, the earth has reached a state of stasis and any changes from now on are caused by man.