Environmental Predictions and the Goracle
Well, Central Illinois is experiencing its worst blizzard in many a year, and I am snowbound at home, dictating bankruptcy petitions and working on my taxes. We are keeping warm and toasty at stately McClarey Manor by occasionally tossing a copy of Al Gore’s tome, Earth in the Balance, into the fireplace. This exercise in heating through book burning was caused by Gore’s latest statement that the blizzards are caused by global warming. I do have to hand it to Mr. Gore: as he claims that any extreme weather event is caused by global warming, it becomes rather hard to refute a theory that purports to cause everything weather related. However, while shoveling the rather large snow drifts that clogged my driveway, courtesy of global warming no doubt, I became rather curious about predictions in regard to environmental matters made by Mr. Gore in the past. Here is what I have found.
1. Sea Levels: Mr. Gore predicted in An Inconvenient Truth that sea levels would rise by 20 feet by 2100. Well, if that is going to happen, the sea level better get on with it. The sea level rise over the last 18 years is 1.8 inches. In the 20th century the total increase in sea level was 8 inches. Over the past 10,000 years, the average increase in sea level per century has been 4 feet as glaciers from the last ice age have melted.
2. Ice Free Arctic Ocean: In 2009 Mr. Gore claimed that there was a 75% chance that the Arctic Ocean would be ice free by 2014. He cited climatologist Dr. Wieslav Maslowski as his source. Dr. Maslowski promptly rejected this, stating he had no idea how Gore had arrived at his prediction.
3. Bye Bye Polar Bears: Mr. Gore claimed in An Inconvenient Truth that polar bears would become endangered due to melting glaciers and ice bergs in the Arctic. Even the Obama administration was recently forced to admit that polar bears aren’t endangered. Reports on the ground in Alaska and Canada indicate an increase in polar bear populations.
4. Melting glaciers-Gore claimed in An Inconvenient Truth that glaciers were melting as a result of global warming. Unfortunately for Mr. Gore, many studies indicate that many glaciers are growing not shrinking, The UN last year had to admit that the prediction of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2007 that the Himalayan glaciers would melt by 2035 due to global warming was not based on scientific research as claimed, but based upon speculation contained in a non-peer reviewed magazine article from 1999.
I could go on like this at some length, but the bankruptcy petitions and my taxes are calling my name, and the warm glow from Earth in the Balance won’t last forever. Perhaps I can have the kids scrounge up a copy or two of An Inconvenient Truth.