One of the problems with the current “universal consensus” among “climatologists” in re Global Warming, leaving aside the legitimate questions about the science involved and, beyond that, the political conclusion that the “science” is driving, is the track record of “settled science” from a previous generation of scientific chicken littles.
That’s right – the assembled brain trust of scientists from the original “Earth Day” (whose 34th or 35th go-around was last Tuesday), and the “settled science” of their predictions:
1. “Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind.” — Harvard biologist George Wald
15 or 30 or 60 or 120…heck, it’s gonna happen someday…
2. “We are in an environmental crisis which threatens the survival of this nation, and of the world as a suitable place of human habitation.” — Washington University biologist Barry Commoner
3. “Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from intolerable deterioration and possible extinction.” — New York Times editorial
Vague, general, unprovable…settled!
4. “Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supplies we make. The death rate will increase until at least 100-200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next ten years.” — Stanford University biologist Paul Ehrlich
Reading an Ehrlich article when I was probably 7-8 years old (in Readers Digest) scared the crap out of me; it gave me nightmares for weeks.
But one of the biggest problems facing the poor of India, Sub-Saharan Africa and China -today is obesity – which brings another meaning to “settled science”.
Oh, yeah – Ehrlich is one of the leading lights of the global warming movement.
5. “Most of the people who are going to die in the greatest cataclysm in the history of man have already been born… [By 1975] some experts feel that food shortages will have escalated the present level of world hunger and starvation into famines of unbelievable proportions. Other experts, more optimistic, think the ultimate food-population collision will not occur until the decade of the 1980s.” — Paul Ehrlich
The eighties was when KFC made it to India, if memory serves.
6. “It is already too late to avoid mass starvation,” — Denis Hayes, Chief organizer for Earth Day
But while we wait on that mass starvation, we’ll have to deal with a lot of overweight poor people. We humans are men and women of constant sorrow, aren’t we?
7. “Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: by 1975 widespread famines will begin in India; these will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and the Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions…. By the year 2000, thirty years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America, and Australia, will be in famine.” — North Texas State University professor Peter Gunter
Wonder if they ever proposed “Nuremberg Tribunals” for population bomb “denialists”?
8. “In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution… by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half.” — Life magazine
What would “Miami Vice” have been like if everything looked like Seattle?
9. “At the present rate of nitrogen buildup, it’s only a matter of time before light will be filtered out of the atmosphere and none of our land will be usable.” — Ecologist Kenneth Watt
To be fair to the esteemed Mr. Watt, it has been “a matter of time” since the creation of the universe.
10. “Air pollution…is certainly going to take hundreds of thousands of lives in the next few years alone.” — Paul Ehrlich
But only at Paul Ehrlich lectures.
11.“By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate… that there won’t be any more crude oil. You’ll drive up to the pump and say, ‘Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, ‘I am very sorry, there isn’t any.’” — Ecologist Kenneth Watt
One wonders why the esteemed Mr. Watt thought someone would be waiting around the pump, in that case…
12. “[One] theory assumes that the earth’s cloud cover will continue to thicken as more dust, fumes, and water vapor are belched into the atmosphere by industrial smokestacks and jet planes. Screened from the sun’s heat, the planet will cool, the water vapor will fall and freeze, and a new Ice Age will be born.” — Newsweek magazine
One wonders if the esteemed editors of Newsweek ever pondered that as the “water vapor fell and froze”, it would leave the atmosphere…?
13. “The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age.” — Kenneth Watt