There is no scientific consensus on whether humans are causing global warming
Global warming is the fashionable international topic of the Naughties, and the 'Green movement' seems to be taken more and more seriously. We are increasingly led to fear the earth may explode in a raging ball of fire at any moment, and yet, although global warming clearly is occuring, there is no proof that we as humans are responsible.
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The Stern Report Authoritively Gives Evidence Against This
Following an important report from Sir Nicholas Stern in October 2006, commissioned for the British government, all doubt has been removed that global warming is caused by our actions, global warming has been placed high on the British Labour Party [and now even Conservative] agenda.
The Stern Report (2007) has shown us that failure to act now will lead to future environmental initiatives becoming drastically more expensive. We need to act not only on the local and national level, but most importantly, on the global level – international co-operation to prevent the onset of further global warming is necessary. The effects of greenhouse gases, energy consumption and industrial pollution do not stop at state borders – thus the biggest polluters are the most important targets for such international co-operation.
This ‘business as usual’ approach is what needs to be changed in order to prevent future catastrophes, rather than development itself, Sir Nicholas Stern (2007) argues: development and the reduction of global warming are not irreconcilable goals. The tensions between the two are no more than a failure of the market to take into account sustainability, the failures of the market are derived from issues with the market's ability to attach value to environmental resources and the failure to include the environmental cost resulting from consumption of that good or service.
Statistical facts point to how the world was always heating up, irrespective of our activities. As is evident from this graph, Temperatures peaked around 1980 and 1940 and fell, there was no continuous rise . [[http://theblake.us/blog/post_pics/warming.jpg]] and this graph[[http://geology.com/news/images/global-warming-graph.jpg]] also shows ups and downs, there's no 'exact' positive linear relation between how much we pollute and how hot the world is. There are a multitude of natural geological processes involving 'natural' combustion, calamities and events that we cannot control. The earth had been changing shape for a long time before industrialization. Lest we forget, science points to how, when the earth first cooled off; there was no landmass.
To claim we are responsible, is only an attempt at pretending we have control, when we may or may not. None of the evidence substantiates a causation. All we have is a correlation, which Al Gore did not deny in his movie 'an inconvenient truth'. He talked about smoking and lung cancer ,another statistical correlation, cancers are idiopathic mostly, they have no definitive cause, which is why, so much money is invested in cancer research.[[http://www.erj.ersjournals.com/cgi/content/abstract/17/6/1216]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Idiopathic]]Coincidentally, the majority of people with lung cancer have smoked passively at some point in time(who hasn't?).The statistical risk of lung cancer is greater for passive smokers than to active smokers.
Do the majority of the people who have smoked passively ,have lung cancer? No.
Can we establish that we are responsible for global warming when we know for a fact that the Earth was always changing, and the rate of change was ALWAYS accelerating? No.
Evidence Shows the Developed World Has Played a Large Part in Global Warming
Evidence has shown that the more developed countries are, the more likely they are to emit higher amounts of dangerous greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, which cause global warming. With the United States – housing just over 4% of the world’s population, accounting for industrial and polluting wastes in excess of any other state in the world, the rapid development of China and India – which together comprise 36% of the world’s population – under way, the speed in which global warming is occurring today will only likely increase if the world carries on polluting at the same rates. Development causes pollution and waste to some unavoidable extent – growth in industrial wastes has been allied to increased economic activity; and in industrialized countries (especially those in the former Socialist block), and preventative measures have failed to kept pace with their production.
Export-oriented growth necessarily leads to further industrialization which leads to environmentally costly energy consumption and pollution. Profit-maximization is the goal of business. Thus, when one way of doing something is more costly than another – even when it the cheaper option negatively affects the environment, without incentives to act otherwise, the business will generally choose the cheaper option. The encouragement to pursue growth through increasing international trade will inevitably lead to further transportation costs for the environment.
Yes, we know that the ozone layer is depleting, again we cannot concur on the cause? We can only say well we were doing 'a'(polluting) when b(ozone depletion) happened , but b was happening before we did a, then again b is worse than before, maybe a accelerated b or maybe it was just a coincidence.
Can/should we take the risk of not doing anything because it might just be a coincidence? no. In case we are responsible we should take all possible/plausible measures to fix things, given our very limited information.
But that does not mean we know that we are right.There is 'NO' scientific consensus on our role in global warming but we cannot and should not risk it.
Just as, it is best to avoid cigarette smoke even though, you will not necessarily get lung cancer.
Deforestation is responsible for the emission of considerably more carbon dioxide gas into the atmosphere as the transport industry. The accelerating destruction of tropical rainforests that help prevent further global warming is a major cause of climate change. In fact, deforestation is the second biggest greenhouse gas emitter, after energy. Forests, on top of their role in preventing the emissions of carbon dioxide if they are felled, provide many important functions: they act to stabilize regional weather, stimulate rainfall, as well as storing and absorbing carbon [[Global Canopy Report 2006]]. Tropical forests also house 1.6 million of the world’s population who depend on its resources for sustenance, as well as containing more than 50% of life on Earth, over less than 7% of the world’s surface. This biodiversity should not be underestimated: one fourth of our medicines contain chemicals found in plants, and approximately 83% of the world’s plants remain unknown and unclassified by biologists.
Surprisingly, countries without a large heavy industry sector rank highly on the scale of greenhouse emissions. Unsurprisingly, the United States and China rank first and second, consecutively. What is confusing is why Indonesia and Brazil rank third and forth, consecutively; however, this mystery is solved when we discover that both countries share is a large-scale forestry industry. In Brazil, the exemption of taxation from most agricultural activities has provided strong incentives to individuals to acquire forest lands and then deforest them. They acquire this land often for free, as property rights to the forest are generally problematic, and often do not exist. If this deforestation continues, this will create huge environmental problems. However, the root of the problem is sometimes indirect: well-meaning exemption of taxes on agriculture, or the problem with property rights to Amazonian rainforest, meaning the logger can become the de facto owner of the land logged. Here is a case study of the rationale behind why people maximize their wealth, even if this leads to negative consequences for wider society:
The remaining forests contain approximately 1,000 billion tons of carbon – double what exists in the atmosphere today. This shows that, in order to halt global warming, there must be economic incentives for those states with important forests to keep them standing.
To find out more the impact of forestry on global warming, see: http://www.daveyandmaynard.com.au/Presentations/01.%20Mark%20Howden%20(CSIRO)%20PPT.pdf
When you breathe, nay when all the animals in the world breathe out they/we/you are emitting carbon dioxide naturally. Can you help it? No.
Have natural carbon emissions been occurring since there was life on earth(and before that)? Yes.
Therefore, we plant trees but plants emit carbon-dioxide at night. It is only during the day that they exhale oxygen and inhale carbon-dioxide. We can not put an end to carbon emissions , we can only reduce them. unless scientists build an invention that converts carbon-dioxide into oxygen and give it to every single living thing on the 'planet'. As a result/consequence the earth would become very flammable and more vulnerable than ever before.
When we don't know what to do, we do 'whatever' and spread the word, to get funding. The whole 'save the environment' thing is 'whatever'. And all the hype is to get funding.
Will there be a point to reducing pollution? Only time will tell.
Right now, the idea that man-made pollution causes ozone layer depletion or global warming is not Q.E.D
Emissions of carbon dioxide from transport are increasing rapidly – in the UK alone, emissions of carbon dioxide from transport have increased by 47% in 12 years (between 1990 and 2002), whereas levels of carbon dioxide emissions from non-transport industries has declined by 15% during the same period [[British Transport Report 2002]]. It is an important sector to target, as transport is increasingly responsible for more and more carbon dioxide emissions than many other sectors. Recommendations for the reduction of carbon emissions from this sector include automobile technology: to enhance vehicle efficiency by reducing the vehicle’s weight, improving the transmission efficiency, and decreasing the driving friction. At the same time, governments should switch low energy efficient transportation modes to higher energy efficient bus, tram and rail systems.
Where have you proved that the emissions are 'causing' global warming??
What about the UN?
The scientific consensus within the UN Climate Change Committee and associated scientific community is that global warming is a fact and that it caused by human behaviour. The Stern report refers to the scientific evidence, but that report is about the economic consequences of inaction and of global warming.
There are other scientists who are not convinced that global warming is happening, and there are scientists that say it is happening but as a result of other factors, not the build up of CO2.
So, in essence, there are a number of consesnuses among different groups of scientists. So if the statement is arguing that all scientists are required for a consensus then the statement is correct, there is no consensus of all scientists. But there is consensus amongst very many scientists, probably the majority of scientists working in the field, that global warming is happening and that it is being caused by human behavour.
By the way, I don't think anyone is arguing that the world will explode as a result of global warming. It migh explode a s a result of the wars that will be caused over access water and food in areas affected by global warming. However, that is a different argument.
Ah, the United Nations is an authority on science, now.
What do you think?