Thursday, May 25, 2006

"to claim that fossil fuel emissions don't cause global warming is like saying cigarettes don't cause cancer."

Another skeptic on climate change has come over to see the science and evidence as too compelling to dismiss. Long-time BBC broadcaster and naturalist David Attenborough joins the list of converts, speaking with The Independent about an upcoming climate change series. Attenborough said he was cautious abour crying wolf.
But I'm no longer sceptical. Now I do not have any doubt at all. I think climate change is the major challenge facing the world. I have waited until the proof was conclusive that it was humanity changing the climate. The thing that really convinced me was the graphs connecting the increase of carbon dioxide in the environment and the rise in temperature, with the growth of human population and industrialisation. The coincidence of the curves made it perfectly clear we have left the period of natural climatic oscillation behind and have begun on a steep curve, in terms of temperature rise, beyond anything in terms of increases that we have seen over many thousands of years.
Unlike this troglodyte Jesus-will-save-us, bring-on-Armageddon Administration and business-as-usual come hell or high water coal and oil industry apologists at the Competitive Enterprise Institute ("we call carbon dioxide life"), Attenborough is capable of understanding a basic scientific fact. CO2 rises when humans burn coal and oil. And average temperatures begin to rise, slowly but inexorably.

And speaking of those CEI ads, a scientist whose study of Antarctic glaciers was cited by the CEI denounces the advertisments as deceptive, and says he has absolutely no doubt that human-induced climate change is underway.

A good analogy from David Doniger (Natural Resources Defence Council) about the weak scientific position of climate change skeptics: "It's the same as with tobacco. To claim that fossil fuel emissions don't cause global warming is like saying cigarettes don't cause cancer."