By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Letter: The long and short of earths climate change
Placeholder Image

“Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.”

Well, things are different now. Today, everybody talks about the CLIMATE, and lots of people think they know what to do about it.

They don’t have a clue.

One problem is that climate is a long-term set of mass transfers (like oceans, etc.) and energy transfers (like sunshine, etc.), whereas people are short-term operators. Climates come and go over periods of hundreds or even thousands of years, whereas people come and go in mere decades.

I recommend taking some advice from Treebeard, of “Lord of the Rings” fame. You recall that Treebeard cautioned the hobbit Meriadoc Brandybuck, saying very slowly, “Now, don’t be hasty, master Merry.” Merry responded pretty much like modern-day global warming alarmists by crying out, “We’re running out of time!”

Well, we are not “running out of time,” if you believe history. For example, about a thousand years ago, some Vikings were farming Greenland. They certainly are not doing that these days, are they? What happened is that they enjoyed a warm season. Later came a cool season, when those Greenland farms froze over and have not yet returned. Man-made carbon dioxide had nothing to do with either the warming or the cooling. The cause was likely something to do with solar cycles.

That cool season (maybe 1450 to 1850) is what we now call the Little Ice Age (LIA), wherein glaciers advanced in Switzerland, the Andes and the Himalayas. Wine grapes stopped growing in England; all France rejoiced.

We are now living in the recovery from that LIA, just like over the past 10,000(!) years, we have been recovering from the peak of the last real ice age 18,000 years ago, when glaciers covered Canada and a fair amount of the USA.

Scary letters about carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, like the recent letter from Ms. Nancy Greear, miss the point, which is that carbon dioxide is good for life on earth.

Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has in the past few decades risen from about 340 parts per million to about 400 ppm. Since carbon dioxide is fuel for green plants, we should not be surprised that satellite measurements show that the planet has gotten greener over the past few decades. Good for green plants and us (and many other species too).

All this twerping about a little up and down in weather distracts us from real problems. Maybe Dr. Ben Carson can help as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development? That could help more people than “carbon taxes,” which put many people out of work and make everything more expensive for ordinary people.

Besides, solar cycles seem likely to bring a cooling season in the next few years. Let’s work on some real problems.

W. T. (Ted) Hinds
Gainesville

Send a letter to the editor or email letters@gainesvilletimes.com 

Regional events