Climate change is not a matter of belief

Some people do not think that climate change is going to be a problem. One of these is Bjorn Lomberg, whose Sceptical Guide to Global Warming was reviewed today by Richard Girling in the Sunday Times Culture magazine. Girling does a good job of dissecting the flaws in Lomberg’s argument and exposing them and I commend his review. Of course Lomberg is an economist, not a scientist, so his views about a very large body of scientific work which supports the theory of global warming does not exactly have peer review status, and as Girling points out Lomberg’s good intentions are not enough.  

About seven years ago, when I had just set up Genersys, I had lunch with an american friend who lives in Florida. He is both a successful medical man and a very successful businessman – highly intelligent, lucid and someone who thinks for himself. We talked about the prospect of rising sea levels in very flat and swampy Florida. He did not think climate change would be a problem, because, as he put it, “we can always build a wall around Florida”.

Climate change is not a religion and we do not have to “believe” in it, any more than we have to believe in the theory of relativity or in Father Christmas, but we do have to recognise it as an event which has a high degree of probability of destroying all human life and therefore it is logical to protect against the possible destruction of our race and our environment. It is no more than the biggest “what if” scenario of all.