Monday, December 17, 2007

 

Scientists report: Because of Global Warming, we will have Climate

An article in today’s Washington Post on Global Warming has really got me thinking:

“Depending on where you are, this is going to be a hotter, wetter, drier, windier, calmer, dirtier, buggier or hungrier century than mankind has seen in a while. In some places, it may be deadlier, too.

“The effects of climate change are diverse [Ed. Note: I thought “diversity” was a ‘good’] and sometimes contradictory. In general, they favor instability and extreme events. On balance, they will tend to harm health rather than promote it.” As Temperatures Rise, Health Could Decline

But don’t go trying to make such predictions about climate change on your own; according to Post writer David Brown, this is the Majority view of scientists working on the problem (and since that prediction pretty much covers almost any possible happening over the next 93 years, you have to wonder what the minority view is.)

Anyway, I learned a lot from this well-documented piece. For instance, did you know that in case of hotter weather, “[p]eople who were old, very young, ill, immobile or poor were at highest risk”? Yep – that ought to cause civic planners to re-think all prior assumptions. I also learned that more places will be at risk for flooding but that we are also 18 years away from having a populace of 5 billion (about the size of today’s world population) at risk for water shortages. Now that simply could be because people move away from the potential floods or that, in the words of noted Muslim bigot and Norwegian imam, Mullah Krekar, people in the drier lands are “expanding like mosquitoes.”

The scientists, ably assisted by the unquestioning David Brown, outline just why it sucks to be poor. And, for the most part, the poor in question are from the poorer nations - in this case, notable for their lower per-capita emissions. In fact, reading all the dire news this subject engenders, I’m caught on one correlation: the more emissions per capita a nation produces, the more wealth and health that nation seems to have. Correspondingly, those nations also seem much better equipped to handle all the gloom and doom we are apparently all but sure to be facing in the foreseeable future.

I’ve read nothing that convinces me that willy-nilly cuts in energy usage will do anything but make us all collectively poorer. And, as the Reverend Ike used to say: “The best thing you can do for the poor is not be one of them.”

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