United States lawmakers are considering a bill whose purpose is “to make energy more expensive, so people use less of it and to create a penalty for carbon-based fuels.”1 Its intent is to reduce the emission of the greenhouse gases that are supposedly fueling global warming. If passed, the bill would set up a complicated system called “cap and trade” whereby fossil fuel distribution would be regulated by the government.
Critics believe the bill will give the U.S. government socialist-like authority over the American people, which could deal a severe and lasting blow to the U.S. economy. Does the science behind man-made carbon dioxide-caused climate change justify such sweeping legislation?
The Center for Energy Economics in Texas performed a study that showed that such measures will “reduce state economic output by 1.6 percent, or $25 billion, in 2030.” The study was presented by Texas Comptroller Susan Combs to national lawmakers in an effort to “at least tell them what the worst-case scenario is.”1
Texas state geologist Scott Tinker participated in the study. He told The Dallas Morning News that carbon dioxide “is only one component of a very complicated, nonlinear set of time variant, natural and manmade drivers of climate change.”1 He hesitated to link perceived climate change issues directly and exclusively to man-made carbon dioxide emissions, a stance that seems to coincide with the views of 31,478 American scientists who have signed the “Global Warming Petition Project” asking the U.S. government to reject the Kyoto global warming agreement. The petition states in part:
There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate.2
On the contrary, the most convincing scientific evidence points to an active sun as the main cause of global warming. Danish physicist Henrik Svensmark accurately correlated solar activity with global temperature.3 ICR climatologist Larry Vardiman has also pointed out that carbon dioxide levels increase after temperature rises, not before—showing that carbon dioxide is more of a result than a cause of global warming—and that the globe has actually been cooling in recent years in response to unusual solar inactivity.4, 5
The fossil record shows clear evidence of massive volcanism in earth’s past that must have been accompanied by the ejection of many times more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, including carbon dioxide, than the total produced by humans in recorded history.6 If the current dire predictions that are driving extreme global warming policies were true, the earth’s climate would surely have been destroyed long before mankind had a chance to mess it up.
Scripture states that God created the world, and in His wisdom He made earth’s atmosphere a robust, life-sustaining environment—as evidenced, for instance, in microbial carbon dioxide balance-maintaining systems.7 If the above scientific observations are accurate, then the potential sacrifice of jobs, economic stability, and political freedoms that the current cap and trade energy bill would incur will have been worse than pointless in the long run since it will have made no significant impact on global warming.
- Michelle Foss, head of the Center for Energy Economics, quoted in Michaels, D. Texas officials, business groups fight cap and trade bill as vote nears. The Dallas Morning News. Posted on dallasnews.com June 25, 2009, accessed June 29, 2009.
- The Global Warming Petition Project. Posted on petitionproject.org, accessed online June 29, 2009.
- Svensmark, H. et al. 2007. Experimental evidence for the role of ions in particle nucleation under atmospheric conditions. Proceedings of the Royal Society A. 463 (2078): 385-396.
- Vardiman, L. 2008. Does Carbon Dioxide Drive Global Warming? Acts & Facts. 37 (10): 10-13.
- Vardiman, L. 2009. Will Solar Inactivity Lead to Global Cooling? Acts & Facts. 38 (7): 12-13.
- Jerram, D. A. and M. Widdowson. 2005. The anatomy of Continental Flood Basalt Provinces: Geological constraints on the processes and products of flood volcanism. Lithos. 79 (3-4): 385-405.
- Thomas, B. Does the Earth Balance Carbon Dioxide Levels Automatically? ICR News. Posted on icr.org January 12, 2009, accessed June 29, 2009.
* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.
Article posted on July 7, 2009.