More than 200 medical journals, including the New England Medical Journal, have run a hysterical and false editorial on climate. Here is my statement.
The editorial claims that no increase in temperature is ‘safe.’ This is, of course, falsified by the reality that since industrialization, human population has boomed from about 1 billion to 7.8 billion. Global population has grown 75% since NASA’s James Hansen started fretting global warming in 1980. COVID aside, the global population is living longer, and leading healthier and wealthier lives.
Part of the reason for this bounty is ever increasing global crop production. The editorial falsely claims that “Global heating is also contributing to the decline in global yield potential for major crops.” Year-to-year variation aside, global crop production is at record levels and increasing thanks to fossil-fuel based technology as well as slight warming and increased CO2.
It’s important to remember that the editorial’s discussion of the temperature target of 1.5C and “climate “tipping points” is without any basis in science. The 2009 Climategate email scandal revealed that temperature targets, like 2C and 1.5C, were “plucked out of thin air” and so are totally arbitrary. And there is no such thing as a climate “tipping point.”
Global climate is a dynamic system always searching for equilibrium. It is affected by human activity – not only emissions but the urban heat island effect and land use. It is also affected by natural variability, which is not well understood. To the extent that average global temperature has changed since industrialization, no one can scientifically apportion that change among all those factors.
Finally, the editorial fails to address the various economic and political motivations in the climate debate. Leftists hope to use climate to increase government control of the economy. U.S. geopolitical rivals and foes like Europe and Communist China hope climate regulations will harm the US economy. The wind, solar, electric vehicle and other green tech industries hope to profit from taxpayer subsidies. It is sad that medical journals are trying to exploit the junk science-fueled climate agenda corrupt purposes.
September 9, 2021