Peter Sinclair covers several of the recent climate denialist headlines, which almost always get things exactly wrong or backwards.
Greenhouse Effect and Global Warming Were Known About in the Late 50’s
In his latest Climate Denial Crock of the Week Peter Sinclair points out that we’ve known about the effects of CO2 and the Greenhouse effect since the 1950’s. The debate has never really been over whether CO2 can effect the world’s temperature, it’s always been about figuring out how much and how soon. I’ve known about this since the 80’s, and it was one of the factors that convinced me to become an advocate for nuclear energy – I was reading debates by some of my favorite authors about the various dooms posed by the Club of Rome and others, and nuclear energy seemed to address most if not all of those best. It was clean, and it could be cheap – with nuclear we could beat four of the horsemen: hunger, water shortages, global warming, and population.
During the past three years I’ve considered that the others were more important, and still do to this day. I published quite a few articles posing challenges to some of the more alarmist of the global warming claims thinking we had plenty of time to get there and that other matters were more important. That focus has changed, since the data keeps stacking up and getting more alarming, it’s time we start addressing global warming because waiting until the second half of the century will be too late. Something I had thought we could procrastinate on has come due.
I still do not think cap and trade and the other schemes are sufficient, and I don’t like them because they are coercive. Those type of plans usually fail. Instead I prefer that our country become the prime provider of clean, cheap, nuclear energy for a needy world — besides that clean energy is a bull market and blue sky – we need to stay ahead of that market for the future prosperity of our nation. Instead of billions in money flowing to other countries in a mad shell game we should instead just help build reactors. You can see some of the other factors that we need to consider and why nuclear is so important if we are to keep it real in this article where I roundly slam Al Gore.
UPDATE: Here’s one of the early modern articles from 1956 on CO2 and its effects, it wasn’t the slightest bit controversial when it appeared.