Saturday, February 09, 2013

The Slow Pace Of Change

Why we shouldn't panic over climate change:
Scholars Chip Knappenberger and Patrick Michaels at the libertarian Cato Institute have produced an exhaustive analysis of the government's slipshod report, "Climate Change Impacts in the United States," which the EPA used to claim that carbon dioxide endangers civilization. That claim was the basis for the 2009 U.S. Supreme Court decision clearing the way for the government to regulate greenhouse gases, effectively giving carte blanche to regulate nearly everything. The Cato analysis is based on peer-reviewed scientific literature, peer-screened professional presentations and publicly available climate data.
Knappenberger and Michaels, working for Cato's Center for the Study of Public Science, found "important science that is missing from" the government's climate change document. Readers can decide whether the government accidentally left out the facts at http://bit.ly/WiOCeh. But, remember, the government document was designed to justify regulation.
Among Cato's findings is that the period of warming before and after greenhouse gas emissions began rising dramatically in the past century "are statistically indistinguishable in magnitude." Since 1895, the "Impacts of observed climate change have little national significance."
"The slow nature of climate progression results in de facto adaptation, as can be seen with sea level changes on the East Coast," they wrote. In other words, whatever changes may occur happen so slowly that adapting to them is easy – and doesn't cost a dime in carbon taxes or renewable energy subsidies.
But they're politically popular; actual science isn't.

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