Why Climate Change Can't Be Stopped
Date: Wednesday, October 03, 2007 @ 23:38:19 GMT
Topic: Testimonials


By Paul J. Saunders, Vaughan Turekian

Environmental advocates have finally managed to put the issue of global warming at the top of the world’s agenda. But the scientific, economic, and political realities may mean that their efforts are too little, too late.

As the world’s leaders gather in New York this week to discuss climate change, you’re going to hear a lot of well-intentioned talk about how to stop global warming. From the United Nations, Bill Clinton, and even the Bush administration, you’ll hear about how certain mechanisms—cap-and-trade systems for greenhouse gas emissions, carbon taxes, and research and development plans for new energy technologies—can fit into some sort of global emissions reduction agreement to stop climate change. Many of these ideas will be innovative and necessary; some of them will be poorly thought out. But one thing binds them together: They all come much too late.


For understandable reasons, environmental advocates don’t like to concede this point. Eager to force deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, many of them hype the consequences of climate change—in some cases, well beyond what is supported by the facts—to build political support. Their expensive policy preferences are attractive if they are able to convince voters that if they make economic sacrifices for the environment, they have a reasonable chance of halting, or at least considerably slowing, climate change. But this case is becoming harder, if not impossible, to make.

To be sure, scientific studies and news reports make it clear that climate change is already happening, with greenhouse gas emissions as a significant driver of this change. Arctic ice has now melted sufficiently to open up the fabled Northwest Passage, provoking public jockeying between Russian and Canadian officials over potential oil and gas deposits. At the same time, the U.S. Department of Interior is considering placing polar bears on the endangered species list as a result of global warming. Extreme weather events have become more common, such as flooding in Africa and forest fires in the western United States...

Full story: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=3980







This article comes from ZPEnergy.com
http://www.zpenergy.com

The URL for this story is:
http://www.zpenergy.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=2580