Wednesday, March 31, 2010

'We can't save the planet'

From the BBC news

Professor James Lovelock, the scientist who developed Gaia theory, has said it is too late to try and save the planet.

The man who achieved global fame for his theory that the whole earth is a single organism now believes that we can only hope that the earth will take care of itself in the face of completely unpredictable climate change.

Interviewed by Today presenter John Humphrys, videos of which you can see below, he said that while the earth's future was utterly uncertain, mankind was not aware it had "pulled the trigger" on global warming as it built its civilizations.

What is more, he predicts, the earth's climate will not conveniently comply with the models of modern climate scientists.

As the record winter cold testifies, he says, global temperatures move in "jerks and jumps", and we cannot confidently predict what the future holds.

Prof Lovelock does not pull his punches on the politicians and scientists who are set to gain from the idea that we can predict climate change and save the planet ourselves.

Scientists, he says, have moved from investigating nature as a vocation, to being caught in a career path where it makes sense to "fudge the data". And while renewable energy technology may make good business sense, he says, it is not based on "good practical engineering".

At the age of 90, Prof Lovelock is resigned to his own fate and the fate of the planet. Whether the planet saves itself or not, he argues, all we can do is to "enjoy life while you can".


There you go; it's too late to save the planet so James Lovelock has given you permission to, "enjoy life while you can".

While this planet cannot be saved by man, you can be saved from God's wrath on man.

One day, you will die and stand before a holy and righteous God who will demand an account of your life.

How will you fare?

Will you be innocent or guilty of breaking His law?

Click here for a full report of what will happen if you die in your sins.


ExPatMatt said...


I'm not sure that Lovelock was in any way giving 'permission' for people to just 'enjoy life while [they] can'. It's more that we have caused so much damage, for so long and in such lasting ways, that the idea that we can somehow undo all the harm we have caused by replacing our lightbulbs and car-pooling is ridiculous.

(though, as he says, that doesn't mean that we shouldn't try to improve our way of interacting with planetary systems)

His other point was that the impacts of humans on the climate are likely too unpredictable for even the most sophisticated climate models to accurately replicate, so we're essentially groping in the dark; the planet may give us an 'out' that we weren't expecting, or it may just collapse irrevocably, ending human civilization as we know it.

When people talk about 'saving the planet' what they really mean is 'maintaining the current status quo because it's convenient for human life'. The two are not the same.

Always interesting to hear the Prof's thoughts though, he usually right!


Joe A. said...

On a side note, the UK AP attempted to palliate Climate-gate here:

ExPatMatt said...


Because if they found no wrong-doing it must be a cover-up, right?

I mean, it couldn't just be that there was no wrong-doing in the first place, could it?

ClimateGate was a publicity stunt from start to finish and only got the traction it did because the skeptics don't have any real science to show.


Steve Martin said...

Global warming is the biggest scam ever perpetrated on humanity.

Joe A. said...

Well, the stonewalling didn't work. I don't think the whitewashing will either.

Did you read the article and actually find it convincing?

Your questions contain false assumptions about what I'm saying, but I'm used to what appears to be glib condescension from you.

Anyway, here's a pair of physicists reviewing the generalities of the issue:

"There are no common physical laws between the warming phenomenon in glass houses and the fictitious atmospheric greenhouse effect, which explains the relevant physical phenomena. The terms "greenhouse effect" and "greenhouse gases" are deliberate misnomers."

Although I merely skimmed through it for the most part, it's an interesting read. This doesn't mean that I think the case is closed because of two guys, but it's just meant to be something that goes against the mainstream of everything we hear about on the topic in the media.

As a side note, I recommend questioning anything so monstrously politicized as this subject.

ExPatMatt said...


Your use of the word 'palliate' seemed to indicate that you were implying some sort of cover-up; my apologies if that was not your intention but that's my understanding of what the word means in this context.

You've now changed the subject from the accusations leveled at the scientists involved in 'ClimateGate' to the more general principals of climate science.

The investigation was intended to ascertain if the scientists involved were guilty of any of the things they were accused of; they weren't and anyone who actually read the emails (and the associated peer-reviewed papers) would know this. The whole 'ClimateGate' scandal was a media circus, not a serious critique of scientific practices.

On to general climate change. I'm sure there are many scientists who are skeptical of the climate change proposition, in particular the significance of human activity in driving it. I am not wholly convinced of man-made global warming. However, the fact that politicians and the media have taken a scientific principal that is under observation, measurement and study and turned it into the hype that we see, should not detract from the science at the core of the issue.

The fact is that the majority of climatologists who are publishing peer-reviewed work are of the opinion that climate change is real, is happening and man's activities could potentially be having an impact on it.

Nobody should get their science information from the media.


Steve Martin said...

A good, short read on the scam and how scientist's computer models lie:

Steve Martin said...

'Nuther good report here on Arctic sea ice returning to 2001 'normal levels':

ExPatMatt said...

Should I invite Craig over here, or give these a look myself?!