Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Clive James on Scepticism: Golf Ball Crisps and Global Warming

A Point of View: Scepticism (mp3, 11mins)

ht: Matthew Mason


  1. In the end, this is not an academic debate, because we and our children are part of the experiment. The consensus among scientists (yes, with a few exceptions, as is always the case in science) is that we should decarbonise our economy as a matter of urgency.

    Let's take a bookie's eye view of the matter.

    Say we decarbonise our economy, and it turns out (unlikely as that may be) that IPCC view is wrong? Well, we will have created hundreds of thousands of jobs in insulation and renewable energy manufacturing and taken thousands out of fuel poverty. Not bad, but that's not all. We will also have reduced the shock of Peak Oil and Peak Gas, and reduced the acidification of the oceans. And addressed our energy security problems. And increased prosperity in hot countries. Not bad, not bad at all.

    Say on the other hand, we go the way of the denialists/skeptics, and it turns out, as per all reasonable expectations, that they are wrong? We will have problems with energy security, Peak Oil, Peak Gas, acidified oceans, acid rain, fuel poverty, unemployment, poverty, civil unrest and finally, massive, catastrophic climate disruption from droughts, floods, crop failures, disease, and war. With massive migration caused by environmental collapse. Not good.

    Any sensible punters would have to put their money on decarbonising the global economy.
    .See the video here

  2. Plenty of reasons to not be so carbon dependent... whether global warming is one of them might not be so clear cut.