I have never thought that global warming was all that much of a catastrophe in progress. The likelihood of continued warming was slim to none in my opinion for what it’s worth which isn’t much. As it turns out the latest news on the Earth’s fever is encouraging if you had been fearful of global warming. In the past year alone, it is estimated, an abrupt drop in temperature has nearly reversed 100 years of warming. That is significant! Here is but one of 4 charts that I have seen in the past week or so:
UK’s Hadley Climate Research Unit Temperature anomaly (HadCRUT) Dr. Phil Jones:
If you think that a drop like this is going to stop as abruptly as it started, you belong in the stock market. All you have to do is look at the Sun to see that it has taken a bit of a snooze. This site gives you all the information you need to see what is happening with the sun. Sunspot numbers have been in the 150 range over the past few years until recently, when it began to go low. What this means is we are in a solar minimum. Solar cycle 23, which gave us the warming of the 90’s, is winding down but is not over. The first reverse polarity high latitude sunspot that would be indicative of solar cycle 24, occurred Jan. 4th 2008. But that is not a beginning. That probably won’t happen until the summer. And it may not happen until next summer in 2009. In either case, we are due for some chilly weather. Much colder than now. The only question I have is how cold and for how long. So, what are the consequences?
The most obvious problem the world will face is that it will be cold. Duh? Sorry about that, but cold is the most significant issue involved. Heat waves may kill some of the weaker of us but extreme cold can kill the strongest as well. Cold will require more fuel to heat our homes and other buildings. We barely have enough now and there is a reluctance to find more, at least in the USA. I am mainly talking about oil, but the same goes for nuclear energy, natural gas and coal. Drilling off shore may be possible but if there is too much ice in Alaska, ANWR may soon be inaccessible. The world needs a reliable source of cheap energy and it needs it now. CO2 will not be a consideration. Any warming from fossil fuel burning will be a benefit. It is incumbent on the world’s governments to make immediate plans to harvest all the energy supplies available. But will that be enough?
A primary result of global warming was supposed to be increased storm intensity. From what I have read that was never the case. Unfortunately, it is true for a cooler world. Storm intensity should increase dramatically. Fortunately we are better prepared to accommodate such intense weather.
As for the other GW result, increasing sea level, that should reverse in that the melting glaciers won’t be melting anytime soon. There is , however, a related consequence to that effect. There is likely to be a shortage of water due to extensive ice formation. Desertification will begin in those same places that were deserts during the last ice age. There may actually be more land available for human habitation except for those areas that are taken by glacial activity.
As far as food is concerned, that will be a huge problem Growing seasons will be shortened in most parts of the planet. Many areas currently being farmed may be entirely unsuitable. And that nasty CO2, it will get sucked up by the oceans. There will be little available for plant food that is responsible for our current lush vegetation. To enhance our food supply we may have to build huge expanses of greenhouses and supply them with CO2. Aquaculture may become more common if we can solve the mercury pollution problem that is not being helped by the use of Compact fluorescent light bulbs that contain 5 mgs per bulb. Now there is an environmental disaster just waiting. Food production will be a major problem.
Is this alarmist? You bet. Is it more likely than the fanciful tales of the AGW crowd? You bet. Can we do anything about it. You bet. You say”Have you gone crazy Kirt?” No, not yet. We can adapt to the changes. We can use our ingenuity. We can make use of our resources. We can build an infrastructure that is energy efficient. Not to stop CO2. Forget that! We need to make the most efficient use of what we have to last for the 20, 50, 100, or even 100,000 years before the Sun decides to warm our planet.
Maybe we can sprinkle carbon pixie dust on the ice caps to melt them. But the first thing we have to do is stop spending money on global warming. And I mean right now!!!!!