Year 3, Month 3, Day 12: And In Related News…

This letter was prompted by the comments on this article in the (upstate NY) TImes-Herald-Record:

A new report by an environmental advocacy group shows our region has been particularly vulnerable to extreme weather events — driven by what it believes is climate change.

The report, compiled by Environment New York Research and Policy Center, shows our nook of the Northeast has had a high number of federal disaster declarations since 2006.

Numbers from the Federal Emergency Management Agency show Ulster County has had six weather-related federal disaster declarations in the last five years, while Orange County has had five and Sullivan County, four.
Related Stories

“Catskill, Hudson Valley, and Mohawk River Valley residents have endured extreme weather beyond the usual cold winters during the last five years,” David VanLuven, director of the Center, said in a statement.

Our region stands out for the amount of federal disaster declarations in the past five years.

I figured I’d write a guide for wanna-be “skeptics.” Sent March 6:

Here’s how to simulate a climate-change denialist’s response to the report linking New York state’s increasingly extreme weather to global warming.

First, assert that the climate has always changed over time, so why worry? Second, note that since the report was sponsored by an environmental group its contents are necessarily suspect. Third, point out that scientists predicted global cooling in the 1970s, so why should their opinions be trusted now? Fourth, claim that the hacked emails from the University of East Anglia show climatologists can’t be trusted. Fifth, raise the specter of a socialist New World Order apparently operated for the enrichment of dastardly tree-huggers. And last but not least, make fun of Al Gore.

Leaving aside the last two absurdities, each of these arguments is simply rebutted. Multiple inquiries absolved the “climategate” scientists from any wrongdoing while confirming their results; a substantial majority of climatologists were in fact predicting global warming in the 1970s; most reports on the environment come from environmental groups (surprise!). Finally, nobody suggests Earth’s climate has never changed — just that if climatic shifts that historically lasted a hundred thousand years are now taking a hundred, that’s not a good sign.

It’s easy.

Warren Senders

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *