Commentary

CO2 Increase Hysteria: Scare Tactic or Science?

Vijay Jayaraj
By Vijay Jayaraj | November 2, 2017 | 12:07 PM EDT

An ultra-high-resolution NASA computer model has given scientists a stunning new look at how carbon dioxide in the atmosphere travels around the globe. (NASA Goddard YouTube Screenshot)

Despite major political developments in Washington and Barcelona, something else managed to grab global headlines this week—a declaration of emergency because of the increase in carbon dioxide gas in the earth’s atmosphere.

Mainstream media had it on their first pages. “CO2 levels in the atmosphere hit a record high in 2016,” one news website said, sourcing data from a report by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) that came out last week.

The news articles’ primary focus was around anthropogenic climate change, and they went on to state that this increase in CO2 level would worsen the climate. Therefore, it was more urgent than ever to reduce emissions from human activity.

In response to the report, WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas said: "Without rapid cuts in CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions, we will be heading for dangerous temperature increases by the end of this century, well above the target set by the Paris climate change agreement."

Prior to that, International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde, speaking in the Middle East last week, warned: “we will be toasted, roasted and grilled if the world fails to take critical decisions on climate change.”

They both cannot be farther from the truth. Their claims are not only blatantly false but also contrary to the string of undeniable evidence acknowledged by their own counterparts.

With advanced temperature measurement systems and more widespread data collection points, twenty-first-century climatologists estimate global temperature levels more accurately than ever before.

Temperature measurement from these thermometers, air-balloons, and satellites (three of the most dependable methods) indicated that temperatures did not rise significantly during the last 17 years, contradicting the more popular theme we hear in the news media.

More importantly, the temperature patterns did not correspond to the CO2 level in the atmosphere.

There was a steady increase in the CO2 levels during the same period when temperatures plateaued.  This categorically proved that temperature levels are not predominantly dependent on CO2 levels, but rather on a combination of factors including solar activity and the natural climate cycle.

This was not just for the past 20 years. Historic data from ice-cores and tree-rings indicate that the increase in global temperature levels preceded the increase in CO2 levels and not vice versa.

Unlike the ridiculous claims of climate-apocalypse, historical data shows us that our present temperature levels are not unusual and 400 scientific papers in this year alone have refuted the claims of man-made global warming.

Ever since the earth began recovering from the mini ice age in the 1700s, CO2 levels in the atmosphere have risen steadily, enabling more plant growth and providing sustenance to the exponentially growing population of the world.

The rise in CO2 is only beneficial to humanity, not a curse.

But climate alarmists continue to make unscientific claims and create unwarranted fear. In fact, this has been the very methodology used by the proponents of climate alarmism to advance their agenda—manipulating data and instilling fear among people.  

The climate change hysteria, marketed and propelled by a wide network of organized scientists and bureaucrats, is the reason why we encounter ridiculously biased and low-standard journalism on the front pages of our newspapers.

It is fair to say that Halloween is an everyday festival for the climate alarmists who have chosen hysteria over science.

Vijay Jayaraj (M.Sc., Environmental Science, University of East Anglia, England), Research Associate for Developing Countries for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, lives in New Delhi, India.

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