Right Opinion

The Wonder of It All

Joe Bastardi · Jun. 24, 2015

I was thinking about the events in the wonderful world of climate over the past week, which as usual is more about what someone said rather than anything that happened. I am trying to make sense of it. For example, why is the hockey stick-like connection between life expectancy, population and per capita income not credited to increased CO2 brought on by the fossil fuel era? It is not by magic that humans have it better off now than we did before fossil fuels came onto the scene.

Yet somehow temperatures, in spite of the record below, are showing that, whatever effect CO2 has, it has to be rendered so small that one would be hard-pressed to find any significant linkage.

That’s not to say CO2, which comprises 4 percent of the greenhouse gasses and .04 percent of the atmosphere, has nothing to do with the wonderful 33 degrees Celsius of warming that GHGs supply. It is to say it is so small against all the major forces that affect climate that it’s difficult, if not impossible, to see the effect in the factual history of CO2 vs. temperature. So why is it suddenly now doing all it’s purported to do when it has been much higher in colder times and lower in warmer times?

Not to wade in too much, but why is 2 percent of the pope’s encyclical attracting either the backing or attacking of it while the other 98 percent is not even referenced? I wonder what a lot of the backers would think of some of the other issues in the encyclical, since most of what is in there contradicts a lot of their world view. That is the wonder of it all. A world obsessed with a thermal hockey stick ignores other hockey sticks that are more indicative of the human condition. But here’s the biggest wonder of it all for me: How did something I have loved for over 55 years get twisted into what it is today?

Which leaves me with one more question:

Will wonders never cease?

Joe Bastardi is chief forecaster at WeatherBELL Analytics, a meteorological consulting firm.

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