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Stable instability

26 Aug 2020 | OP ED Watch

One of our recurring themes at CDN is that a giveaway for a story that is self-evidently unreliable is its insistence that all effects of climate change are bad, that the Earth’s climate is unstable in one single direction namely a runaway greenhouse effect with extreme weather, everything bad getting worse and everything good getting bad. If this vision were accurate, life on Earth would never have survived and flourished this long. Yet in the alarmist world, from wildfires in Siberia to rain in Alaska, whatever happens is proof that things are out of control in a self-reinforcing rush to disaster. For instance Christopher Flavelle and Greta Moran warn in “Climate Fwd.” that “Hurricane Isaias, which had just plowed up the East Coast… wildfires in California and Nevada; the risk of ‘severe thunderstorms’ in the Central Plains; parts of Texas still waiting for damage assessments from Hurricane Hanna last weekend; and, of course, Covid-19… is what living with climate change will look like… a relentless grind of overlapping disasters, major and minor.” Including, a professor at Rutgers would have you believe, worse allergies and more autism. But if so, why didn’t the Earth get pushed into a hideous, almost uninhabitable wilderness long before now?

In the alarmist narrative, for instance, rain thaws permafrost. Fires thaw permafrost. If there’s a drought, it will thaw permafrost. If aliens come, or beavers, they will thaw permafrost. And thawing permafrost releases methane which means more rain, fires, drought, beavers and aliens and so it goes.

The great mystery here is, if the Earth’s climate is in a fragile balance fraught with tipping points beyond which these runaway processes occur, why have they not done so before? Why not in the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, or the Holocene Climatic Optimum, or the Eemian. And why, indeed, are the prophets of doom able conclusively to attribute, say, a Japanese heat wave to man-made climate change after it happens (“In 2019, scientists proved it would have been impossible without global warming”), but not foresee it even six months in advance?

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