My view: Ignored warnings about global warming produce droughts and coming food shortages


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  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    July 30, 2012 9:45 p.m.

    Warmer weather, (longer growing seasons) along with more carbon dioxide in the air (plants turn carbon dioxide into solid plant material) should make it so crop yields are higher, not lower.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 30, 2012 7:45 p.m.


    Again, I am not concerned with what Forbes and US News have to say about science.

    I understand that Dr. Spencer (the former NASA scientist cited) is anti-climate warming. He says the model is unbalanced. He is also an evangelical conservative who appears to have a larger agenda. But let's let that go.

    Reference the model problems. Have the other climate scientists not been informed? Have they missed this key point? What could possibly explain how you and I know about this but not the climate science world?

    Get my point? You and I are not scientists. But somehow this essential fact is being ignored by the climate scientists. Not very likely.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 30, 2012 4:11 p.m.

    To "Twin Lights" what about Forbes, Science Daily, and the US News that all cast doubt? The Forbes article included NASA, you know that government funded space agency, data that shows that the GW alarmists have bad models.

    How about I quote one of the leading alarmists and show you that they don't have a good model. From the East Anglia Emails we learn that Kevin Trenberth, one of the lead alarmist climate modelers delcared that in an email from October 2007 "How come you do not agree with a statement that says we are no where close to knowing where energy is going or whether clouds are changing to make the planet brighter. We are not close to balancing the energy budget. The fact that we can not account for what is happening in the climate system makes any consideration of geoengineering quite hopeless as we will never be able to tell if it is successful or not! It is a travesty!"

    If the experts say their model is unbalanced, what good does a consensus do to say it is accurate? Why trust a model that has bad inputs?

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 30, 2012 3:24 p.m.


    The science is still "unsettled" and there remains a "debate" for the same reason that the science was "unsettled" and there was still an open "debate" about cigarettes in the 1960s. Huge moneyed interests that don't like the answer scientists keep coming up with. I recall that "debate". The results were deadly in my own family.

    Articles from Forbes and the WSJ (and possibly the Daily Mail) are going to have a clear point of view unfavorable to the concept of climate change. But none of these are science publications to begin with. Business publications don't do science much better than science publications do business.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 30, 2012 2:27 p.m.

    To "Blue" but the science isn't settled. The simple fact that is that we have yet to get a model out of the climate scientists that is accurate. Typically before a scientific study can be published it must meet what is called the 95% Confidence Interval. This means that 95% of the time the outcomes are predictable. One of the few fields where they have more relaxed standards is climate study. Why would you want looser standards for publication unless there was no other way to get your papers published? Even the IPCC acknowledged that they do not meet the 95% confidence interval.

    Also, if the science is settled, why is there still a debate.

    Also if it is settled, explain the following articles:

    "New NASA Data Blow Gaping Hole In Global Warming Alarmism" Forbes

    "Earth's Polar Ice Melting Less Than Thought" US News

    "Climate Science In Denial" WSJ

    "Earth's Atmosphere May Be More Efficient at Releasing Energy to Space Than Climate Models Indicate, Satellite Data Suggest" ScienceDaily

    "Greenhouse effect is a myth, say scientists" UK Daily Mail

    There are many more articles and scientific journal papers that disprove the GW Alarmists point of view.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    July 30, 2012 2:09 p.m.

    The climate change models predicted in 1997, at the time of the Kyoto Protocol, that unchecked increases in CO2 emissions would cause a steep increase in global temperature. But in the 15 years since then, the global temperatures have been basically flat. The models did NOT predict this. Therefore, the theories on which the models are based do not correspond to reality, and theories that do not match experiment must be rejected. that is the scientific method. It is NOT scientific to insist that your theory is right even though the one prediction it makes is WRONG, 15 years in a row.

    The fact is that to actually stop the growth of CO2 in the atmosphere, we would have to shut down our economy. There is not enough alternate source of energy to take up the slack. Converting over completely to a non-carbon economy could take a full century. Indeed, the most severe programs actually proposed would have NO NET BENEFIT in decreasing globeal temperatures for 50 years.

    We can sdave the lives of millions more people by much smaller investments of our collective wealth ini other projects, like fighting malaria and AIDS in Afgrica.

  • coltakashi Richland, WA
    July 30, 2012 1:59 p.m.

    Utah had a pretty severe drought in 1976. However, that clearly was not due to global warming, because the average temperatures had been dropping since 1935, so the global average temperature in 1976 was about as low as it ever was in the 20th Century. That simple fact destroys the correlation between higher average global temperature and drought. In fact, the temperature trend downward was causing some climate scientists to warn that the earth was entering a new Ice Age.

    The second lack of correlation is that global temperatures have been basically flat for the last 15 years, but the correlation between that flat temperature and drought is basically zero. There is NO evidence that an incremental temperature increase causes a specific increase in draught, or tornadoes, or hurricanes. Remember how Al Gore put a picturte on the cover of his DVD, "An Inconvenient Truth", that showed smoke from a factory spinning into the clouds of Hurricane Katrina? But after 2005, the number and intensity of hurricanes hitting the US has gone DOWN. Again, no correlation between temperature and adverse weather.

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 29, 2012 10:56 p.m.

    Another interesting thing people like this may criticize fossil fuels. However it is those fuels that keep the tractors and combines running that give us the food we need in abundance. Anyone think of that?

  • higv Dietrich, ID
    July 29, 2012 10:52 p.m.

    Most of the things animals eat cannot be eaten by humans. They also graze on corn stalks and potatoe leaves and fertilize the field we can't eat. What they don't use fertilizes our fields. As for it takes a lot to feed them. They eat on land not suitable for farming and eat food not edible for humans. Even the grain we do feed them it is all used. Just another way of someone to use something we have no control over to control us with things we can't really control. There is food in this country. Famine is caused by war and lack of production not droughts that we have no control over. We can't control the climate why are people using it to control us?

  • Bomar Roberts, ID
    July 29, 2012 4:14 p.m.

    regarding freedomingood:
    Explain to me how your solar panels paid for themselves in six years. If my house was as heavily subsidized as your solar panels it would pay for itself in five years.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    July 29, 2012 12:43 p.m.

    procuradorfiscal, get the tatoo.

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    July 29, 2012 7:07 a.m.

    "I have challenged conservatives to provide market-based, freedom affirming solutions to the issue of CO2 emissions and climate change."

    They have done that. Under George HW Bush, they proposed a system that was designed to bring free market forces into the equation.

    The system that the right developed was referred to as "Emission Trading". Today it is referred to as Cap-and-trade.

    Another conservative developed idea that they now cant stand.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    July 29, 2012 4:39 a.m.

    Seems to me if conservatives were waiting on a consensus the best they should be saying is that they are not sure if climate change is cause by people pumping billions of tons of CO2 into the air. But you are convinced abosolutly it's not having any effect.

    If you are so reasonable about facts why are you so sure of something that YOU do not have a scientific concencus of?

    I've got what 99% of scientists telling me that in fact changing the atmosphere with greenhouse gasses indeed changes weather. The only scientists that don't seem to agree are geolgists. Why would you ask a geologist about the weather?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 29, 2012 12:31 a.m.

    Re: ". . . some malevolent force keeps them all in line (in hundreds of countries and cultures) . . . ."

    Yeah -- it's called Big Academe.

    And, its rigidly-enforced orthodoxy is among the most dangerous and malevolent forces of nature.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    July 28, 2012 10:09 p.m.

    recently a scientific journal released an article that shows over the last 2000 years the earths tempature was on a overall decline. They showed how the tree rings proved this point. I love scientific evidence.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    July 28, 2012 3:24 p.m.

    If there is no science to support global climate change (as some here claim) then why are all those scientists in pretty strong agreement?

    Oh, I know. It's the "C" word - Conspiracy.

    The problem with conspiracy is that secrets are so hard to actually keep. Hundreds of scientists should be defecting and blowing the whistle. But it't not happening.

    Why? It COULD be because of some malevolent force keeps them all in line (in hundreds of countries and cultures) or it could be that the science leads pretty strongly to the conclusion that global climate change is (at least partially) man made.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 28, 2012 12:30 p.m.

    Re: "My hybrid is 12 years old . . . . My solar panels are silently cranking out energy . . . ."

    And, just to be clear, you're actions have never made the slightest iota of difference to any ". . . occupants of malasian [sic] islands . . ." or to any that might ". . . die of drought and other disasters . . . ."

    Nor has Al Gore or any other "green" charlatan.

    So, don't wrench your shoulder patting yourself on the back. Given the state of emerging world economies today, there is literally NOTHING you or I can EVER do to change the weather.

    Tattoo or no tattoo.

  • timpClimber Provo, UT
    July 28, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    Of course global warming is occurring, we are living in an interglacial period of our earth's history. But having been part of Bernie Patton's original ecological modeling group in the early 70s and created a number of them on my own I can tell you that one small error can greatly skew a model. And we still have so little comprehensive data over even 100 years that most models are just scientific guesses. The more important motivation/belief system is to encourage every human enterprise to think in cycles. Recycling everything we produce and use should be part of our life styles.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    July 28, 2012 10:18 a.m.

    Somebody's "scientific method" is showing when they are so quick to tell us that this year's drought was man-made. What happened during the "dust bowl" (1930s)? Sure, poor farming practices were in use, but just how much CO2 did America produce eighty years ago compared to today? What did man do to cause the drought in the 1950s and another drought in the 1960s? We had a short drought in the 1970s, another in the 1980s and another one in 1993. In 2002 we had a drought.

    Of course, today's drought is different. Scientists say so, so it must be true. Last year they couldn't use global warming, so they substituted "global change".

    If we've learned anything, scientifically, we've learned that some scientists would sell their souls for another research grant.

  • Corn Dog New York, NY
    July 28, 2012 9:35 a.m.

    Probably a bigger threat than global warming to our food supply is global warming policy.

    Misplaced ideological visions of renewable fuels from agriculture (biofuels) have already stressed the world's food supplies. Currently 40% of America's corn crop, due to federal mandates, is going to fuel-ethanol production, raising the price of this staple for the poor worldwide. Similar biofuel mandates in other countries affect the price of other staples like sugar and soybeans. In drought years like we are now experiencing those mandates don't go away but put a greater stress on our food supply, further raising prices for the food insecure.

  • freedomingood provo, Utah
    July 28, 2012 7:12 a.m.

    Pretty much any decision you can make is really a risk benefit analysis even for people that have no idea what that is.

    Global warming denial is simply not passing any risk benefit analysis. You are simply betting that you and your leader politicians are correct and not the thousands of scientists that study the atmoshpere and climate.

    This could simply be the singularity event that decideds weather or not a species deserves to survive by darwinian standards.

    I've had a long standing challenge that if you don't believe Man is causing climate change that you make sure your kids and granchildren know. Get a tatoo. It's only fair they know who to slap later.

    My hybrid is 12 years old and runs like a top. My solar panels are silently cranking out energy and have almost completly paid for themselves after only 6 years. That my daughter knows I care about her future - priceless. That I can look my ultimate judge in the eyes and say I cared that the occupants of malasian islands don't loose thier home, that many more would die of drought and other disasters - eternaly compelling.

    But refuse to change a light bulb...

  • Baron Scarpia Logan, UT
    July 28, 2012 6:32 a.m.

    What's interesting is that the solution to climate change -- development of more renewable energy over burning fossil fuels -- will largely benefit RED states. From Utah, Nevada, and Arizona's solar potential to the winds of the Great Plains -- all RED states -- these regions of the country will benefit from the transition from fossil fuels to renewable, price-stable clean energy.

    Iowa already gets 20 percent of its electricity from wind energy. With cheap Chinese solar panels, solar is booming across the country. In fact, renewable energy has grown far faster over the last decade than expert predictions, and as costs continue to fall (and costs for fossil fuels continue to grow), the growth of wind and solar is expected to continue.

    The electric vehicle is the key to get off foreign oil to domestic electricity.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    July 28, 2012 6:32 a.m.

    Re: "For those who believe in the scientific method, the last few years have been discouraging."

    You got that right, Doc!

    Summer heat brings out every uninformed crank with some new "smoking-gun" theory on how today's heat "proves" his man-made global warming delusion.

    That's not science.

    Nor is it science to cook the books, ignore inconsistent data, construct oversimplified computer models, or to demand that we give up hard-won freedoms and expend untold sums of national treasure on unproven scams whose sole benefit to date is the enrichment of "green" political charlatans.

    When you have verifiable, replicable, untainted data showing that ranching is destroying Utah's weather, come on back and we'll take a look at it.

    Until then, there's no actual science to any of your extremist claims.

    Only sensationalism.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    July 27, 2012 5:30 p.m.

    We, at the utah armchair climatologists association, know we didn't cause it. So we don't have to fix it. And it would be a shame to clean up the place for nothing.

  • Allisdair Thornbury, Vic
    July 27, 2012 5:17 p.m.

    For those that list the Murdock's News Corp and Fox will be deceived by Murdock's denial. For those that are prepared to look at a wide range of facts that have come together over the last 100 years i.e the actual increase in temperature, the actual increase in Carbon Dioxide and other gases etc. @derecha the experiments are happening it is called the world and we are doing the experiment on our only planet.

    What are the Solutions, start by looking at the actions of the Walmart, 3M and many companies that are working to increase profit by reducing their energy consumption and pollutants. Look at the new Church buildings that are much more sustainable. The solution is not a hand to moth existence if we act now, however the longer we argue the more expensive the solutions become.

  • Jon W. Murray, UT
    July 27, 2012 2:28 p.m.

    The problem is not that we don't believe in the scientific method. The problem is that we don't believe that computer models have the evidentiary weight of actual experiments, and that we don't believe that scientists are all above corruption, and especially that we don't believe that politicians won't use whatever theories that possibly corrupted scientists come up with from their hypothesising and modelling (Note: not experimenting) for their (the politician's) own and their party's advantage.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    July 27, 2012 10:38 a.m.

    derecha -- The dust bowl was the direct result of farming practices that ignored environmental needs. Those practices stripped vegetation by overgrazing and plowing in such a manner that soil was exposed to wind.

    Today, global warming is the result of ignoring basic principles and ignoring the environment in which we all must live.

    Peanut -- You can chuckle and ignore all you want. But it's kind of like standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and trying to ignore the law of gravity. You're only one step away from a big surprise.

  • PeanutGallery Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2012 10:19 a.m.

    This is another of Dr. Moench's doomsday op-eds that we can chuckle about and safely ignore.

  • derecha Central, UT
    July 27, 2012 9:39 a.m.

    It is problematic to look at this one year's drought and say that it is a result of global warming. If that is the case, then what caused the Dust Bowl of the 1930's? That certainly couldn't have been global warming because we were hardly using fossil fuels yet, at least to the extent that we have since the latter half of the past century. What about the previous two years that were cooler and had an abundance of precipitation and our reservoirs were overflowing? The fact is that we are looking at a mere data point in the cyclical weather patterns and until we have a lot of data (100+ years of this same situation), we will not know if a true trend is occurring and is the result of man-made causes or it is just a natural course. Having said that, we certainly need to be good stewards of the planet and do our part to make sure we aren't a part of the problem.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2012 9:00 a.m.

    Conservatives claim to stand on the principles of small government, free markets, and personal freedom, yet they seem incapable of applying those principles to solving problems. Several times in this very forum I have challenged conservatives to provide market-based, freedom affirming solutions to the issue of CO2 emissions and climate change. Those few who responded could do no better than to say they would ban certain fuels, regulate emissions, or apply heavy taxes on fuels to discourage consumption-- in short, the very big government, regulatory mechanisms they claim to deplore. In the face of such bankruptcy of creative ideas consistent with their political philosophy, it's no wonder that they instead resort to simple denialism. There is no problem, therefore, problem solved.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    July 27, 2012 5:22 a.m.

    The central problem we face can be found in Dr. Moench's opening sentence, "For those who believe in the scientific method..."

    The fact is that it is currently fashionable among conservatives to _not_ believe in the scientific method. Today's conservatives don't believe in Global Warming, or Evolution, or the antiquity of the universe, because those scientific realities cause them philosophical discomfort. Rather than allowing objective reality to shape their beliefs, they'd rather defend their beliefs by denying scientific reality.

    There's no shortage of corporate money available to fuel their denial. The exact same "think tanks" that spent decades arguing "the science isn't settled" on the relationship between smoking and lung cancer are now telling us that "the science isn't settled" about the causes and significance of global warming.

    For those who don't want to accept reality, there's no shortage of cable news, blogs and talk radio to make them feel good about their refusal to accept scientific reality. The denial of reality is a thriving subculture, and this subculture is killing our future.