As someone who believes in the Second Coming, I don’t dismiss out of hand those who claim divine powers. Yes, usually they are cranks but still, what if? It’s possible, isn’t it, that Christ too will at first appear crazy when he comes again?
It’s in that spirit that I approached an article in The Times entitled 20 Things You Can Do Right Now to Stop Climate Change. And what do you know, its author, Lucy Siegle, not only claims divine powers over heaven and earth, but she also outdoes God by putting a specific timeframe on her miracles.
This particular miracle can be worked not at some time in the future, nor even at the end of the millennium, but right now. And like Christ conferring healing powers on his disciples, Lucy empowers us all to act as her conduits. Not only can she herself save Our Planet, but she can also teach us how to do so in 20 simple steps.
In addition to boasting a more precise chronology than God, Lucy can also do something God couldn’t, or wouldn’t, do: stop climate dead in its tracks. And there he was, thinking this was one area beyond the earthlings’ meagre capacities. For when God created this planet, he decreed that climate would be in a constant flux, blowing hot or cold at regular intervals.
Periods of global warming have always alternated with the odd Ice Age. The former last longer because, when all is said and done, earthlings survive much better in warm weather. Neither they nor their crops freeze to death, food is plentiful, life is prosperous.
Possibly because the deity is a loving God, the Earth’s temperature has been warmer than it is now for 85 per cent of its lifetime. Still, he started a cold period some two million years ago, just to keep the earthlings on their toes. But even there glacial periods alternate with interglacial ones, such as the one we have at the moment.
By far the greatest factor of climate change is the highly variable solar activity. That swings within a wide range both inside the Sun and in proportion to the Earth’s position relative to it. The Earth’s orbit changes every few thousand years, as does its axis, with each change affecting climate one way or the other.
When solar heat reaches the Earth, it’s mostly accumulated in the oceans, not in the atmosphere. Hence both ocean currents and the drift of continents also cause climate change.
There are many other scientifically proven factors, such as supernova explosions, bacterial activity, volcanic eruptions. Don’t know about you, but I’m buoyed by Lucy’s promise of teaching me how to acquire dominion over the Sun, the Earth, oceans, continents, bacteria, exploding stars and volcanoes.
Or rather that’s what I hoped her promise would be. Alas, like most of my hopes, that one turned out to be forlorn. My soul screamed an unspoken question: “Please, Lord Lucy, tell me where to begin!” The answer didn’t just take the wind out of my sails but snapped every mast in half: “Swap your loo roll for starters.”
You, see, Lucy is one of the dominant group of fanatical malcontents who feel the need to camouflage their hatred of our civilisation, along with its every technological, scientific and economic advance, with nauseatingly cloying pretensions of environmental virtue.
No such advance would have been possible without man’s mining of natural resources, mainly hydrocarbons, to produce energy. The use of coal, oil and gas results in CO2 emissions, which the fanatics have singled out as the main, if not the sole, reason for climate change.
Since only three per cent of all CO2 emissions are anthropogenic, the fanatics have to claim that global warming is triggered by these three per cent, rather than by the remaining 97 that come from natural causes. Moreover, CO2 is a trace gas, accounting for only one in 85,000 molecules of the atmosphere.
So the premise from which Lucy and her ilk proceed is that a tiny trace of an infinitesimally minuscule trace is producing a crisis threatening life on Earth. Not only is there not a scintilla of evidence for this, but the very effect of CO2 on climate is very much in doubt.
For example, anthropogenic CO2 emissions have increased 10 per cent in the past 25 years, largely due to China’s push for global domination. Yet during the same period the increase in world temperature has been statistically indistinguishable from zero.
What’s not in doubt is that carbon is the greatest building block of organic matter, while CO2 is an animating force of agriculture and therefore human life. Singling carbon out as the culprit in the mythical man-made climate crisis can only serve political ends and no other.
It’s to such ends that the left-wing malcontents who hate ‘capitalism’ while enjoying its products are trying to destroy modern economies, negate the great technological progress of the past centuries and lower our standard of living to pre-industrial levels. Such will be the consequences of “zero carbon emissions” inscribed on the altar to which the fanatics genuflect – such is the price they want us all to pay for their delusions.
Hence Lucy’s frankly idiotic 20 things we must do, such as sourcing loo rolls made of recycled paper. She particularly recommends a brand elegantly called Who Gives a Crap, warning that, alas, it only comes in 48-roll packs. I wouldn’t buy such a product for reasons of aesthetics and decency – as I wouldn’t buy, say, condoms called Who Gives a Toss.
But decency goes the way of sanity, intelligence and literacy when a pernicious ideology rears its head. For make no mistake about it: Greta’s fanatical flock is shepherded by ideologically inspired hatred.
That’s why they use the language of political propaganda, not sensible debate. Those who refuse to accept the half-baked musings of these hard-boiled zealots are called ‘deniers’, in a not-so-subtle parallel with Holocaust deniers.
Yet if what we are discussing is climate science, or any other science, there can be no deniers or asserters. There can be only facts that either prove or disprove a hypothesis. And there are no facts proving the hypothesis of global warming. There are hundreds disproving them.
The zealots conscript to their cause scientists wielding computer models with the dexterity of a chap playing three-card monte at a street corner. Somehow we are expected to believe that the same models that can’t accurately predict next week’s weather can tell us exactly what the climate will be like centuries from now.
Yet there are enough scientists who swear by their computer-generated ‘hockey sticks’ for the zealots to claim that a scientific consensus exists. They don’t give a puck for the truth.
And the truth is that whole regiments of scientists mock their claims. Thus a couple of years ago 30,000 American scientists, experts in all the relevant disciplines, wrote an open letter describing the orgy of scaremongering about climate as so much bilge (not in those exact words). However, the letter was ignored in the mainstream papers – they needed all their space to run the zealots’ hysterical rodomontades.
This is the behaviour of totalitarian ideologues, not of honest people trying to arrive at truth. It’s also the behaviour of cowards scared of confronting a newly hatched orthodoxy.
The less substance there is to a theory, the louder the shrieks of its exponents. Such as St Lucy Siegle of the Bog Roll.