By Bob Halstead
Enough is enough. The environmental doomsayers are way out of control. The last time I dived the Great Barrier Reef, October 2006, the water was freezing. Frankly, I could have done with a bit of Global Warming.
Then, through a serious error of judgement, I went to see Al Gore’s movie. It is really boring but I amused myself by seeing how low he could pitch his voice before it cracked. I think there was one joke put there to show he is human, but it was not funny so I am still not sure. Then there was all this garbage about the climate changing, glaciers melting, even a cartoon of a lonely Polar bear about to drown for lack of ice flows. Emotive certainly, but I felt like I was being told not to snigger when I see the Emperor has no clothes. Excuse me.
These environmental band-waggonists are nuts. According to them the Earth’s temperature is rising and we are to blame. Silly me – I thought it was the Sun! They just love guilt, and want us all to go back to living as we did before electricity and cars were invented, just like they do in Tasmania – but not too far back. They conveniently forget to mention that in the middle ages from about 900 AD to 1300 AD the Earth was MUCH warmer than it is now, glaciers shrunk, and the Vikings grew crops in Greenland. I expect there may have been a bit of coral bleaching around. Then we had a mini ice age.
Over the past 160 years predictions have periodically switched between global warming and another Ice age. Now we are in a Global Warming phase and, largely because of modern communications and the “Millenium Bug Syndrome”, hysteria is winning the day. Well, not with me.
A report to the United Nations in November 2006 states that rearing cattle produces more greenhouse gases than driving cars. Much more. We should not be worrying about hybrid cars so much as breeding hybrid cattle that produce less CO2, less nitrous oxide (which has 296 times the Global Warming Potential of CO2), less methane (23 times GWP) and less ammonia (which produces acid rain). If we can breed such cows it would be nice if they were edible.
Another (real) scientific report concludes that rising temperatures and CO2 levels will benefit many plants which will thrive and extend their ranges. Another one states that extra CO2 in the atmosphere is BECAUSE of Global Warming not the other way around. The extra CO2 comes from dissolved gas expelled from our oceans because of rising temperatures.
I have to remind you of two inconvenient truths here.
1. No one has ever successfully predicted long term changes in the weather. That is why the mumbo-jumbo is called Meteorology and not Meteoronomy – it allies with Astrology rather than the science of Astronomy……
2. The Earth has suffered huge changes in climate over its history, especially BEFORE people existed. Sea levels have risen and fallen dozens of metres, and surprise, surprise, coral reefs have survived for 500 million years. Longer than the dinosaurs and even longer than the Al Gore soap opera – though I admit it does not seem like it.
In the 1940s, when man-made emissions of CO2 rose sharply, the Earth’s temperature started to FALL. It turns out that no one has actually separated out what affect humanity is having on climate change as opposed to what affect nature is having on climate change. Well, I know what I think – IT’S NATURE, FOLKS. Nevertheless the guilt police are out telling us all to get rid of our greenhouses, and change our light bulbs. I agree with the latter. Get bigger brighter bulbs so you can read this properly, and avert Global Fawning.
Can people have a local effect on nature – of course, which is why the GBR off Cairns is such a dreadful mess. But it is not because of Global Warming, Coral Bleaching or Crown of Thorns Sea Stars, it is because we have polluted the local water. You cannot expect to build cities on the sea-shore and not affect the water quality. I feel sorry for the Crown of Thorns, if they come to Cairns there will be nothing for them to eat. The poor blighters will starve to death. Fortunately further north along the Ribbon Reefs and away from polluted runoff, the reefs are in quite good condition. I recently dived Challenger Reef and the corals were just fabulous.
We have done terrible things to our environment. Over-population is probably the worst. We could learn from history here too. When populations exploded in the South Pacific cannibalism became the rage. It could be the rage again – it is only a question of education. We could do what they do in Japan and serve whale meat sandwiches for school lunch. Except it would not be whale meat of course.
We have dumped rubbish and sewage in the ocean, overfished our sharks and established water-guzzling rice and cotton farms on the upper reaches of our rivers. The Leader of the Opposition was allowed to make another political speech, wasting enough energy to light up a major city for a week, and supermarkets now sell more cat food than any other product. That is not true, I just made that up because I think we in Australia should have quolls as pets rather than cats. Cats really do bugger our Australian and New Zealand environments, and the RSPCA do not give a damn. They love cats. But to blame us humans for causing climate change, that is pure conceit.
No doubt the big drought will be blamed on our coal-fired power stations. But, you know, I am very happy we have them. I enjoy my stereo and air conditioner and feel no guilt. I prefer a beaut bright bulb, and not a candle, to read by. I am also anxious to see us move into the Nuclear age. On the hate side, put the “Wind Farms” that are blighting our landscape. We are not talking about Dutch windmills; beauty never graced these functional monstrosities, typically situated on our most lovely hilltops. I dream of seeing people rise up and pull them down, as they did that statue of Saddam Hussein.
Some very bright people have proposed Australia as an ideal nuclear waste dumping ground. I agree, and Parliament House would be perfect (Ha Ha!). I am confused by negative comments on this idea because obviously God decided to dump a heap of nuclear stuff here which is why Australia has the biggest Uranium deposits in the world. So when some environmentally concerned miners go to dig the stuff up and “clean up” our outback I do not understand what all the Greenies complain about. They complain if we dig it up, and they complain if we put it back. Hell, maybe they just like complaining. Let us dig more of it up, flog it overseas and make a packet, then rebury it in condensed “used” form back in the empty uranium mines and make even more money.
We will all be rolling in so much money that taxes will be a thing of the past. Just like Global Warming.