As the Establishment rushes to board the sinking global warming ship, the British medical flagship journal The Lancet says climate change is killing us all, or will be, or might, or something. It even puts out the apparently now obligatory Eurekalert press release to show that their research is PR in disguise and link up with their journalist-activist buddies. And the CBC obliged with “What Canadians need to know about how climate change is affecting their health” followed by “Lancet report on health and climate highlights extreme heat, wildfire and food insecurity as key challenges”. Now look here. We trust doctors on the question of whether being burned up is unhealthy. But we think they know about as much about trends in wildfires as a firefighter does trends in diabetes. Or, based on this study, somewhat less.
On the plus side, they seem to know a lot about kitchen sinks. The report critiques various nations’ COVID recovery plans as “not compatible with the Paris Agreement” and if you’re wondering what that’s doing in your doctor’s office, these plans “will therefore have long-term health implications.” And boo hiss to the powerful because “65 out of the 84 countries analysed by Lancet Countdown researchers had net-negative carbon prices equivalent to an overall subsidising of fossil fuels.” Where’s that in the diagnostic and statistical manual? Perhaps under delusions of grandeur? Or in the crystal ball no MD should be without, since “Climate change and its drivers are creating ideal conditions for infectious disease transmission, potentially undoing decades of progress to control diseases such as dengue fever, chikungunya, Zika, malaria, and cholera.” Potentially.
Meanwhile workers of the world unite, because “The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the need for increased international co-operation in the face of global crises…. As countries commit trillions of dollars to restart their economies in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the report urges political leaders and policy makers to use this public spending to reduce inequities.”
The CBC rants on tiresomely, “Climate change is hurting us, and a global report released today warns the impact on people’s health — especially the elderly, the young, and the vulnerable — will get far worse if leaders fail to commit to more ambitious targets at COP26, the upcoming United Nations conference on climate.” So now the doctors are economists as well? Actually the Lancet is just lending its white coat and stethoscope to the cool kids: “the Lancet Countdown represents the consensus of leading researchers from 43 academic institutions and UN agencies.” Would you let that gang treat your broken leg?
The CBC apparently would. Its story continues “The world is already 1.2 C warmer than it was between 1850 and 1900, the pre-industrial period, and the latest report by the Lancet medical journal measures how that change is affecting people’s health around the world.” To which the proper we-did-our-homework answer is, it’s not. It’s a tiny change, even if it really happened. The world is not warmer today than it was when Julius Caesar got it, and it wasn’t climate that killed him.
Mysteriously, to hear Canada’s state media outlet tell it, “The authors found the health impacts of climate change are getting worse across every factor measured, including the physical and mental toll of extreme heat, the spread of infectious diseases, and decreasing crop yields and food insecurity. A total of 93 authors, including climate scientists, economists, public health experts and political scientists, contributed to the analysis.” Wait a minute. Which makes it worse, since the fool who said the world faced decreasing crop yields as nation after nation records record harvests wasn’t some doctor out of his field but an economist out in left field. (Mind you the Lancet also ran a piece by some actual medical researchers who forgot what “statistically significant” means claiming fully 7.4% of the increase in hospital admissions in Brazil between 2000 and 2015 were caused by increased heat, which they would since the piece started “Climate change is increasing the risks of injuries, diseases, and deaths globally.” Verdict first, trial afterward.)
The CBC also found some guy to contradict even the IPCC, which worries about what might be going to happen, by declaring that the world is secretly on fire now: “‘When people are ... thinking about climate change off there in a far away, distant land, in a far distant future, these reports shatter that myth,’ said Ian Mauro, the executive director of the Prairie Climate Centre at the University of Winnipeg. Mauro was not involved in the Lancet report. ‘They show that it is happening now, that it is real, and that the consequences at this relatively early stage in the climate game are tragic now. Just imagine decades into the future.’ It’s a reality more Canadians have experienced this year — from drought to wildfire to deadly heat waves.”
This idea that in fact the apocalypse arrived and we were too dumb to notice is surprisingly widespread; Paul Homewood recently took aim at a spectacular version in the Guardian. And the Lancet report is on the same page: The press release includes “‘Climate change is here and we’re already seeing it damaging human health across the world,’ said Prof Anthony Costello, Executive Director of the Lancet Countdown.” But the claim used to be that if we got to 1.5°C something terrible would happen not that it already had, didn’t it? Or to 2°C, with half a degree separating Eden from Hell. Or are we suffering double vision that juxtaposes the future and the present, as well as from headaches and irritability?
The CBC adds a Canadian angle, namely that the report pokes us in the eye, lumping us in with those awful Americans: “‘At the average pace of decarbonization observed between 2015 and 2019, it would take Canada over 188 more years to fully decarbonize its energy system,’ stated a policy brief provided by the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change. ‘Canada and the U.S. are the only G7 countries that have increased emissions since signing the Paris Agreement — and Canada’s have grown the fastest, primarily due to oil and gas production.’”
So what’s the title on this excitable addition to the Book of Revelation complete with half a billion potential climate refugees “living less than five metres above current sea levels, who could face rising risks of increased flooding, more intense storms, and soil and water salinification”? Why, “Code Red for a Healthy Future”. Oh that’s original. And it supposedly “highlights this time as a fork in the road, a point at which leaders can either choose to lock the world into increased emissions and catastrophic global warming, or to focus on meeting the goals set out in the Paris Agreement.” Regrettably the authors seem unaware that according to the alarmists’ computer models, if everyone met their Paris goals it would change global temperature 80 years hence by about a tenth of a degree. And here we are already parched, on fire and whatever.
You know what follows. A chart of heat-related deaths but none of cold-related deaths. A “world ends, women and minorities hardest hit” section.
As H. Sterling Burnett noted irritably over at Climate Realism, the Lancet itself has published previous work showing that since 2000 there has been a trivial, possibly statistically insignificant increase in heat-related deaths but a measurable drop in cold-related ones, and since we are a tropical species that suffers 10 times as many cold- as heat-related deaths in a year, the result has been improved health not the reverse. He also punctures the rubbish claims about food production, and the media for repeating this nonsense.