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Global warming: when scientists disagree — 2 Comments

  1. “Let’s stop arguing over whether coal-fired power plants are making glaciers melt and find a way to make them obsolete. ”

    I have been an evironemntalist since the 1970’s and back then we said the same thing about nuclear power. We said ‘Let’s find a way to make them obsolete’ and we protested nuclear until it was halted in its tracks. What replaced nuclear? Coal fired power stations of course, we were so happy whenever a coal fired station was built because it wasn’t nuclear. Coal power flourished.

    Later we said that overfishing was causing fish stocks to disappear, so we protested again and said fish farms are the environemntally safe way to go. So fish farms flourished.

    Now todays environmentalist wants nuclear back because coal power is evil, and want ocean fishing to return because fish farms are evil.

    Older people remember all of this. It is any wonder why environmentalism today gets no repect?

  2. You and I must be about the same vintage. I remember working on behalf of a bottle bill when I lived in Iowa. Then when it passed, I didn’t like some of the immediate results–it became impossible to find bottles where you paid a deposit when you took it back to the store. Instead, everything became disposable.

    I am personally skeptical about nuclear power, because the issue of nuclear waste hasn’t been solved–or as near as I can tell, even addressed. The Fukishima disaster in Japan has produced a curious reaction. European countries are beginning to back away from nuclear and completely missed the point. The Fukishima reactor demonstrated that it was earthquake-proof. Everything worked exactly the same as it was supposed to–until the tsunami hit. The geniuses that designed it studied everything about how to make it earthquake proof and then neglected to notice that the site was so close to the ocean that it needed equal attention to protecting the site from any tsunamis that an earthquake might trigger. It passed the test they anticipated and sat helpless against the ones they didn’t.

    I’m also old enough to remember all the commercials with men in white lab coats and stethoscopes hawking the benefits of, say, hexachlorophene and various other products that have since been taken off the market. Advertisers maintain whatever credibility they might have by not leaning too much on the shifting state of science.

    Environmentalism has forfeited respect by its rigidity and self-righteousness. It is the nature of science to change its tune when new evidence questions old conclusions. Circling the wagons around an old conclusion, making it a dogma, and seeking to destroy anyone who dares to disagree is not scientific.

    Meanwhile, there are environmental issues that need serious attention at all levels of society. Maybe some of us older folks can try to remind society of its own history. Thanks for your valuable contribution.

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