Wouldn’t you think a US Representative would use good references on Climate Change from reputable scientific studies?
Okay well maybe not. Especially if the Congressman was a Climate Skeptic (Those who are ideologically prejudiced against admitting human activity is responsible for any environmental degradation), Here is a copy of one of our Representatives letter to me in response to my question on his position on climate change.
November 21, 2012
Dear Mr. xxxxx:
Thank you for contacting my office to express your concerns on Global Warming. I appreciate the opportunity to address this issue.
I want to assure you that I am very concerned, as all Americans are, about major ecological problems that the world faces and agree that the United States must actively take steps to protect our environment today, as well as for the children of tomorrow. With that in mind, it is indeed important to note that global warming has never been scientifically proven to exist.
Although global carbon dioxide(CO2) concentrations are increasing, it is difficult to quantify the effect of industrial, automotive and other emission sources in terms of global warming. There is considerable difference between observations taken over different periods of time, and there is even less certainty about the accuracy of computer models that project future changes based on extrapolation of these data.
I reject the notion that technology alone is the cause of global warming. The scientific community is not even sure if the earth is in a warming or cooling period. If global warming is indeed occurring, we are not certain if it is man-made or the result of natural occurrences. More than 83 percent of state climatologists recently repudiated any certain conclusion about global warming and its cause, and have emphatically stated that no accurate long-term projections can be made using today’s state-of-the-art equipment. In fact, they admit that 50 years of climatic data is a very short time in terms of rendering accurate global climate predictions. That is compounded by the fact that we have no record of measurements dating back thousands of years.
Therefore, it is clear that additional scientifically based research is needed before we take action that will have a profound effect on our culture, economy and environment.
I am also concerned that many are advancing a theory of global warming for political reasons. Therefore, we must not rush into binding international agreements which will restrict the sovereignty of the United States in addressing the controlling of the production of greenhouse gases. Additionally, I will not support Congressional action that will destroy America’s industrial base and throw millions of people out of work, based only on very limited scientific data.
Again, thank you for giving me the benefit of your views. Please continue to keep me informed about this and any other federal issues of concern to you.
Member of Congress
Left off Names to Protect the Uninformed
I don’t exactly know where he gets his information. But the Cato Institute funded by the Koch brothers or other global warming, Green House Gases, or Climate Change denialist institutions are in the minority today. NOAA, the AMS, and other mainstream governmental research institutions are of the opinion we are accelerating change faster than ever!
I have left the Congressmans name off the letter just because. It reflects the views of many members of Congress who are supported by the oil industry and various Conservative think tank institutes that feel that Climate change is not happening, and stopping or minimizing our burning of fossil fuels will hurt them and potentially us, by the loss of jobs those industries create. Fair enough that every side of an issue has their opinion, but have they investigated or considered the potential new industries that can be created to help turn the rise in CO2 around?
The Cost of doing Nothing is Worse!
But the costs of not trying to minimize carbon emissions is worse. Superstorm/Hurricane Sandy is a prime example of weather gone wild because of warming oceans and strengthening storms. Current estimates of damage losses both to infrastructure and business is approaching 100 Billion Dollars!
Short term benefits of not changing the way we manage our environment will never outweigh long term solutions.
I mentioned to this congressman the following…
The AMS issued a new Climate Change Policy in August of 2012
In their updated policy the 14,000 members of the prestigious American Meteorological Society made it clear that climate change was happening and that man made carbon dioxide was one of the main culprits. Here are a couple of quotes from their statement…
“Warming of the climate system now is unequivocal, according to many different kinds of evidence.”…
“It is clear from extensive scientific evidence that the dominant cause of the rapid change in climate of the past half century is human-induced increases in the amount of atmospheric greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide (CO2), chlorofluorocarbons, methane, and nitrous oxide. The most important of these over the long term is CO2, whose concentration in the atmosphere is rising principally as a result of fossil-fuel combustion and deforestation.”
The scariest statement made in this policy was as follows…
“Globally averaged sea level has risen by about 17 cm (7 inches) in the 20th century, with the rise accelerating since the early 1990s. Close to half of the sea level rise observed since the 1970s has been caused by water expansion due to increases in ocean temperatures. Sea level is also rising due to melting from continental glaciers and from ice sheets on both Greenland and Antarctica. Locally, sea level changes can depend also on other factors such as slowly rising or falling land, which results in some local sea level changes much larger or smaller than the global average. Even small rises in sea level in coastal zones are expected to lead to potentially severe impacts, especially in small island nations and in other regions that experience storm surges associated with vigorous weather systems.”
This policy was issued three months before Hurricane Sandy!
Go to the AMS link to read the full report.
A Historical Perspective of what we have Ignored
I recently read a post from Martin Lacks blog “Lack of Environment” (Paying the price of UNFCCC failure) when I came across a link to Presidents Lyndon Johnson’s Environmental Pollution Panel report from the Presidents Science Advisory Committee from Nov 1965 titled “Restoring the Quality of our Environment” (GPO 317 pps.) In this report it was identified that CO2, at the rate it was increasing from the burning of fossil fuels (In 1965), was going to increase in our atmosphere 25% by the year 2000!
CO2 was approximately 320 ppm in 1965 and was measured at 400 ppm in May of this year for the first time in 800,000 years.
Unfortunately 47 years ago the Presidential Science Advisory Committee gave us a pretty accurate estimate of what the future might bring. Maybe we should pay attention to it now!
So what do we do? Try this if you too have a concern about our future. Write your congressman and ask him what he thinks about Climate Change? If you don’t like the answer…let him know!