7 Dec 2009

E-mails Schme-mails










The glee of climate change sceptics over the last couple of weeks has been depressing.

Despite the fact that the email scandal at the University of East Anglia concerned just a couple of people, sceptics across the world have jumped on the event as proof that man made climate change, and the necessity of acting on it, is just a massive conspiracy.

For many many years, Gordon Brown did absolutely nothing about climate change, seeming to ignore the growing evidence that it seemed very likely we were contributing to it and that it would be sensible for us to urgently reduce our emissions to reduce the likelihood of us causing more damage.

Even Brown now has come round to the idea that action is necessary (though he still hasn't done much about it). And he has dismissed the latest howlings of sceptics as the voice of the 'flat earth' brigade.

Today sees a poll by the BBC showing that 60% of people in the UK, and two thirds around the world, now consider climate change to be "very serious". Even more interestingly, 61% support state spending on the problem, "even if it damages the economy".

Of course, Stern pointed out that the economic cost would be a lot worse if we do nothing and the effects of climate change turns out to be as bad as predicted. And many of the changes that we need to make would benefit the economy - from 'green' jobs in energy efficiency and renewable power, to increased energy security and protection from rising oil prices.

The sceptics will still say the science is not proven. They're right, it isn't. But isn't it better to be prudent? If we take action that proves to be unnecessary, we will have just done things that are largely beneficial anyway.

If the sceptics are wrong, but we believe them and do nothing, we've had it.

PS There's a great debunking of the email "climategate" on youtube here


2 comments:

Graham said...

I love the illustration-is it ok if I use it or is it copyright?
Graham

Simon Grover said...

I understand it is free to use, from Creative Commons.