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One Reporter's Opinion: Global Warming – Is It All Hot Air?

Friday, 03 May 2002 12:00 AM

It is this reporter's opinion that just about everyone else has had a crack at the argument that ensues when one mentions global warming.

In January 1975 the National Academy of Sciences issued a report entitled "Understanding Climatic Change: A Program for Action." It said there was a finite possibility that a serious worldwide cooling could befall the earth within the next 100 years.

This brought forth a fascinating study by my friend Lowell Ponte in his book "The Cooling," in which he asked, "Has the next ice age already begun? Can we survive it?" He made numerous appearances on my television reports expounding "The Cooling" - referred to by several scientists as the most important and prophetic science book of the 1970s.

At that point, there were several articles about an increase in the number and size of icebergs that had broken off from Antarctica, and the "pro-Warming" crowd said, "Ah-ha! There it is! The 'Warming' is upon us!"

Scientists admit there was a slight warming between 1880 and 1940 – that it is a bit warmer now than 100 years ago. The question is how long does it take for an iceberg to break off? The melting has been going on for thousands of years. The ice sheet might even disappear in 7,000 years.

But enough of this! Let's talk about the climate treaty of 1997 in which the "pro-Warming" crowd gathered in Kyoto and called for industrial nations to cut emissions of greenhouse gases in order to deal with global warming.

Let's face it, the Kyoto proposal – even if fully implemented – won't accomplish anything as far as climate is concerned. It certainly won't stop the Antarctic ice sheet from melting. The only thing that will stop that is another ice age, as predicted by my friend Lowell Ponte.

That brings us to the economy and industry on which advanced nations have thrived. The "Warming" group wants us to cut back on industrial activity, predicting it would reduce the world's temperature during the next century by .05 degrees. Unfortunately, we haven't found anyone who can measure that. But the "Warming" group says it is an important first step.

But, again, let's face it – all of this hogwash is more political than scientific. The Kyoto protocol, if implemented, would reduce emissions by a mere 5 percent, but it would be among industrial nations only – and it would have a devastating effect on the economy of our nation.

The U.S. is the world's largest emitter of CO2; mandatory caps would hurt us the most. And eventually the world economy would suffer tremendous collateral damage. The proposed treaty requires the world's most industrialized countries to make 1990 the baseline for cutting their emission levels. If manufacturers must decrease their output, the prices for the products we purchase would go up and trade would decline.

All of this is part of the anti-technology, anti-energy, anti-growth philosophy of those who label themselves "The Greens." If they got their way, we'd all be riding bicycles!

But the heat is on. They've gone as far as to alert people in my home state of Minnesota to the danger of warmer winters. I say to them, "Thank Gawd!" As one who grew up in a state where the temperature drops as low as 40 below in the winter - what a blessing this would be!

Thank goodness, President George W. has turned a deaf ear to the alarmists trying to shove the theory of global warming down our throats. The president stands firm and refuses to support U.S. ratification of the Kyoto fiasco. He wisely states that too little is known about global warming to justify the proposed costs to the American economy.

And it is interesting to note how the scientists who produced the initial report on the subject quietly made drastic changes. Only 80 out of 1,000 scientists who worked on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report approved the final report and only a handful adhered to it.

So, dear friends, my fellow Americans – don't panic! Whether it's warming or cooling, cooling or warming, take a deep breath. It's for free! And don't forget, man among all the species is the survivor. So let's relax.

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It is this reporter's opinion that just about everyone else has had a crack at the argument that ensues when one mentions global warming. In January 1975 the National Academy of Sciences issued a report entitled Understanding Climatic Change: A Program for Action. It...
Friday, 03 May 2002 12:00 AM
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