The Truth ABout Global Warming

SRD Reviews The Truth About Global Warming

It seems like there has been altogether too much talk about climate change for Regional Director Gerald Whaley. In particular, his colleague from Cortes Island keeps insisting the Strathcona Regional District (SRD) prepare for the negative impacts. On January 15, 2020, Director Anderson talked about local implications of climate change and planetary overshoot. Whalley responded by presenting a Fox news clip called ‘The Truth About Global Warming.’

Video: The Truth About Global Warming

This late addition was added to the agenda but, according to a Campbell River informant, there was a slip up. Instead of a video about climate change, the assembled directors were shown an appeal to vote for Donald Trump. So, the minutes state, “At Director Whalley’s request, his presentation was deferred to the next meeting.”

The video was finally shown at the January 29, 2020, SRD Board meeting. While the arguments presented in ‘The Truth About Global Warming‘ may sound convincing to people with no scientific background, most scientists do not agree with its’ conclusions.

According to NASA, “The vast majority of actively publishing climate scientists – 97 percent – agree that humans are causing global warming and climate change. Most of the leading science organizations around the world have issued public statements expressing this, including international and U.S. science academies, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and a whole host of reputable scientific bodies around the world.” 

Most scientists are concerned about the negative effects climate change is already having on our planet, what we can do to reduce its future impact and what will happen if no steps are taken to reduce those impacts. 

In the video above, Dr. Patrick Michaels, director of the Center for the Study of Science at the Cato Institute, says the scientific community is wrong. The earth’s temperature is not rising as fast as they predicted and there are other explanations for the extreme weather events we have witnessed in recent years.

Dr. Patrick Michaels says the earth is not warming at the rate anticipated by most of the world’s scientific community (red line). – from The Truth About Global Warming

What Does God Say?

“There’s opinions from scientists on both sides of the debate and for us, who do not have all the technical background, we might be in a technical quandary. We don’t know what’s right, or what’s wrong. There is just one thing I want to conclude with, there is one absolute expert whose opinion is absolutely pure [truth?],” said Whalley.

“When Noah stepped off of the ark, God made a covenant. He made two promises. These promises are unconditional and are everlasting. The first promise God made is that ‘I will not destroy the earth again with a flood.’ The second promise God made is that he will control the climate. He said in Genesis 8:22, while the earth remains seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night shall not cease. So if you believe what God said, it is a cut and dried thing. The earth has gone through many cycles of warm and cold.”

(According to a 2015 survey by PEW research, “Evangelicals are the religious group least likely to believe the earth is warming due to human activity: 28%, compared to 50% of all U.S. adults.” However, some of those Christians believe they have a religious duty to care for, and protect, God’s creation. You can find numerous examples of Christians taking action against climate change on the web and many also cite Scriptural arguments.)

Our Current Trajectory

Slide from the SRD Debate about the
Side from DIrector Anderson’s presentation showing that, unless we take action, the rise of global temperatures is expected to reach 4.1% -4.8% or beyond.

According to Climate Action Tracker, our planet is currently heading towards a 4.1C to 4.8C rise in average global temperatures by 2100. If all the nations of earth carry out their current policies, this could drop to 3.1C – 3.7C. Even if all the pledges made at COP 21 (Paris) were kept, temperatures are still expected to rise 2.6C – 3.2C over pre-industrial levels (1850-1900).

This was known at the conclusion of the Paris climate talks, when Christiana Figueres, executive director of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, said:

“These national climate action plans represent a clear and determined down-payment on a new era of climate ambition from the global community of nations. Governments from all corners of the earth have signalled through their INDCs (Intended nationally determined contributions) that they are determined to play their part according to their national circumstances and capabilities.”

“The INDCs have the capability of limiting the forecast temperature rise to around 2.7C by 2100, by no means enough but a lot lower than the estimated four, five, or more degrees of warming projected by many prior to the INDCs.”

Morocco and the Gambia are currently the only nations on track to fulfil their Paris commitments. Climate Action Tracker lists Canada among the nations whose policies are heading us into a 3˚C world; China, the United States and Russia are allegedly on a trajectory for 4˚C or more.

Promo for IPCC report

Local  Implications Of Climate Change 

Director Anderson’s presentation drew upon an Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) report utilizing comments from 489 expert reviewers*, as well as materials from a recent talk Cortes author Rex Weyler made on Overshoot and from Climate Hope. 

“The IPCC report uses a consensus based model, so it is the most conservative, most watered down, diluted version of what we need to do. We are already far beyond our ability to rein in the most catastrophic effects of climate change,” she explained. 

Over the course of the next thirty years, large segments of Campbell River, Zeballos, Sayward, and Tahsis will most likely experience flooding because of sea level rise.

“Beyond the direct impacts that we are going to experience, in terms of fires and flooding, our globalized interconnected finance market is going to be much more vulnerable. As these climate impacts wreak havoc on places around the globe, our sources of goods will be impacted.” 

Overshoot

In addition to climate change, humankind, as a species, appears to be in planetary overshoot.

“We are using all of our resources far faster than their ability to replace themselves and have lost touch with our right relationship with the earth.”

SRD Debates The Truth About Global Warming
Sideshow from Rex Weyler’s Presentation “Reality 101” at Folk U on Cortes Island

Local Resilience

Director Anderson does not believe the Regional District system is going to be nimble enough to respond to the impending crises.

“Time is of the absolute essence. My request of the district is that we look at how to support local resilience.”

She emphasized the need for communities within the SRD to make preparations themselves: “community led; community directed; community centred resilience.”

The SRD Board’s Response

Aside from a question about how much the sea is expected to rise, Director Anderson’s presentation was greeted by silence.  There was also no response to the video Director Whalley introduced. The Board accepted both presentations and moved on to other matters.

Top photo credit: front page of Director Anderson’s slide show.

*correction: I originally wrote “2,000 scientists” worked on the IPCC Report, this is the number that registered, according to the subsequent IPCC news release the report incorporates comments from 489 of them.

6 thoughts on “SRD Reviews The Truth About Global Warming”

  1. Its true nobody really knows if global warming will really happen but when we receive direct and obvious proof it probably will be too late.
    Do we wait and see. Sounds dangerous to me.

    1. Global warming is happening.

      Will it be as bad as so many scientists are saying? Given that most of the ‘unknowns’ (coral reefs, the number species extinctions ect) have been worse than anticipated, I suspect the full impact of Climate Change will be worse too. What does that mean in terms of our grandchildren’s lives? – I do not know.

      One big unknown, regarding fires on Cortes, just turned out in our favour. Some o f us have been worrying about a wildfire sweeping Cortes. The SRD released data showing that, as far back as we have records, there has never been an island wide fire. They have all been in pockets. The largest was in 1924 and there has not been a fire larger than 10 hectares in extent during the era we have better records (since 1950). https://cortescurrents.ca/tiber-bay-outside-the-protected-zone/

      What does that have to do with climate change? Nothing – it is just nice to see an ‘unknown’ work in our favour.

      If we start seriously addressing climate issues, rather than delaying, I suspect we will find more ‘unknowns’ will work out in our favour.

      At the moment I think our situation is comparable to someone who has been in an accident and just lies there waiting to see what will go wrong next. Complaining is of limited value. Left untreated, injuries can get worse. If you just stay there, eventually you could starve to death. However if you can either get help, or help yourself, a whole new range of possibilities open up.

      1. I like to take a personal Pecautionary Approach, since I dont claim to understand the science behind climate change all that well. This is basically to try to avoid doing things which add to the problem until you understand for sure one way or the other, that this is really happening (obviously there are indications already that it is). Many leaders take the opposite approach, which to say, business as usual until they know for sure, or they are forced to, take things seriously.

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