04 December 2009

Strange bedfellows

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There seem to be some unexpected eddies and whirls emerging in this changing climate tide.
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James "not the Muppett guy" Hansen of NASA's Goddard Institute fame and Albert "Muppet model" Gore Jnr, Acadamy Award and Nobel Peace Prize winner, who are the two Arch High Priests of AGW Alarmism, both seem to be backing off promotion of the imminent Copenhagen conference, as our last chance to save the planet. Taken together with Bob Brown and the Australian Greens voting against Rudd's CPRS in the Australian Senate, it seems that the ETS or Cap n'Trade route to solving the World's climate woes, is facing concerted resistance from the the two principle opposing camps in the debate: climate sceptics and AGW true believers.
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What that suggests, to me anyway, is that it is only those who take this global climate issue as seriously as it deserves, who are resisting the economically destructive but environmentally useless prescriptions that the world's current crop of politicians are trying to achieve at Copenhagen.

If Hansen and Gore et al are right and most of us are going to fry or drown by the end of the century, then drastic environmental action is indeed called for. But if the expected changes in the foreseeable future are within reasonable limits that we might be able to anticipate from past changes in climate, then we humans can adapt, as we have done in the past. Then the kind of drastic economic reallocations being argued over in Copenhagen would be pointlessly damaging to human prosperity.

It seems to me, as a mild sceptic of the AGW science (but happy to be disabused of my scepticism by convincing replicatable and fully scrutinised data) and a denier of the environmental efficacy of the current prescribed ETS (or Cap and Trade) solutions, that, if indeed the AGW believers are right, then a carbon tax is a much simpler and more effective way to reduce global carbon emissions than a politically compromised synthetic market created by concocting an artificial scarcity in a super abundant resource, carbon.


It seems that those who take this issue seriously believe either that we are all going to get cooked with our bacon because we eat too much of it, or that in trying to stop the bacon cooking we will lose our nourishment. Those who believe that neither bacon nor cooking, are truly serious things, think this conundrum can be solved by having us all eat half cooked bacon. It's a very Danish approach, but we'll all get sick and the stove will still be burning.
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