"The polar bears will be fine."

Obviously, there are differences of opinion on the impacts of global warming. A renowned scientist with an Obama bumper sticker on his car weighs in...

“The climate-studies people who work with models always tend to overestimate their models. They come to believe models are real and forget they are only models...The biologists have essentially been pushed aside. Al Gore’s just an opportunist. The person who is really responsible for this overestimate of global warming is Jim Hansen. He consistently exaggerates all the dangers.”

Freeman Dyson
World-renonwned scientist

"...Climate-change specialists often speak of global warming as a matter of moral conscience. Dyson says he thinks they sound presumptuous. As he warned that day four years ago at Boston University, the history of science is filled with those “who make confident predictions about the future and end up believing their predictions,” and he cites examples of things people anticipated to the point of terrified certainty that never actually occurred, ranging from hellfire, to Hitler’s atomic bomb, to the Y2K millennium bug. “It’s always possible Hansen could turn out to be right,” he says of the climate scientist. “If what he says were obviously wrong, he wouldn’t have achieved what he has. But Hansen has turned his science into ideology. He’s a very persuasive fellow and has the air of knowing everything. He has all the credentials. I have none. I don’t have a Ph.D. He’s published hundreds of papers on climate. I haven’t. By the public standard he’s qualified to talk and I’m not. But I do because I think I’m right. I think I have a broad view of the subject, which Hansen does not. I think it’s true my career doesn’t depend on it, whereas his does. I never claim to be an expert on climate. I think it’s more a matter of judgement than knowledge.”...

by Nicholas Dawidoff
The Civil Heretic
New York Times Magazine
March 29, 2009

“There are bigger fish to fry than Freeman Dyson, he doesn’t know what he’s talking about...if he is going to wander into something with major consequences for humanity and other life on the planet, then he should first do his homework — which he obviously has not done on global warming.”

James Hansen
Head of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies
An adviser to Gore’s film, “An Inconvenient Truth"

Dyson quotes:

“The costs of what Gore tells us to do would be extremely large. By restricting CO2 you make life more expensive and hurt the poor. I’m concerned about the Chinese...They’re also changing their standard of living the most, going from poor to middle class. To me that’s very precious.”

Al Gore talking about Hurricane Katrina: “How in God’s name could that happen here? Nature’s been going crazy.”

Dyson: “That is of course just nonsense. With Katrina, all the damage was due to the fact that nobody had taken the trouble to build adequate dikes. To point to Katrina and make any clear connection to global warming is very misleading.”

“Most of the time in history the Arctic has been free of ice. A year ago when we went to Greenland where warming is the strongest, the people loved it. They were so proud. They could grow their own cabbage.”

Dyson On Al Gore: “He certainly is a good preacher. Forty years ago it was fashionable to worry about the coming ice age. Better to attack the real problems like the extinction of species and overfishing. There are so many practical measures we could take.”

1 comment:

snjmom said...

I agree that the true effects of climate change aren't predictable but I also know that the law of thermodynamics requires that all of the engergy that has been converted from fossil fuels to heat will eventually have an effect on the exchange between the oceans and the atmosphere. Whether the changes benefit or harm mankind is the issue.

I'm still not against a technological fix, blowing up a few volcanos, pumping ozone into the atmosphere....