Monday, January 12, 2015

A Strange Rant

I first met Dr. Peter Ray when I was a student at the University of Oklahoma. He is a believer in catastrophic global warming. Today's USA Today has an odd piece by Dr. Ray that takes global warming pessimism and takes it to an entirely new level:

What will happen to the average global temperature? It will get warmer.
We will also run short of potable water; we will run out of energy; we will have hundreds of times more mouths to feed, drug resistant bacteria will kill us, and we will have insufficient water to drink or to use on crops, even though we have run out of room to plant them.
The problems we face are far bigger than just burning oil. What we do or don't do in all areas: climate, population growth, alternative energy sources, conservation of water, etc., will dictate the outcome of climate change and more importantly the quality of life if not life itself...
By then, the real problems, the ones that are hard to push off to the future, the ones that will truly divide us, the ones that REALLY matter will be in our face. The reality is: people will dream of protesting a rather small rise in sea-water level. They will because the earth is crowded. The population doubles every 40 years. In 100 years there will be 100 times as may people living on the earth. All will suffer the lack of food and water. Many will die and wars will be over resources.
Aside from a math problem (there is no way there will be 300 billion people on earth in 2115), his population projections are far, far out of sync with every other I have read. For example, the United Nations' most likely numbers are 4.3 to 8.1 billion -- a long, long long way from 300 billion.
Even if their "worst case" scenario is correct, it is 1/30th of Dr. Ray's.

Humans are amazingly adaptable. If we tackle poverty, allow technology to flourish, and promote freedom and free enterprise, the people of earth will do just fine.

I am generally not a fan of Think Progress but I agree with their take on the state-of-the-world."
I'll also add that major storms have been decreasing in recent years.

Dr. Ray has made significant contributions to atmospheric science. However, I believe he -- like so many others -- has gotten caught up in global warming pessimism.

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