I’d like to hear more from those concerned a lot about how Global Warming will harm humanity regarding their calculations. Kyoto is now recognized by anybody who understands the issues as failed and misguided. Ethanol’s bizarre rise to fame was a great example of how “good intentions” often combine with opportunism, profit, and politics to make a dumb idea even dumber (ethanol in early forms actually increases GW, though newer techniques do not. However it’s still a questionable use of corn and innovation, fueled by farm belt political and profit agendas that conflict with common sense).
It seems to me there are – broadly – three camps in the debate:
1. Extreme Skeptics. “No global warming is going on”. These folks are basically in denial about the large body of evidence such as …. thermometer and satellite ane ice core records …. that make it clear we are experiencing some warming. These folks also insist wrongly that the evidence the warming is “human caused” is bogus or lies or a science conspiracy. Although there are legitimate concerns about some of the science surrounding global warming there is NO DOUBT we have warming and little doubt that “most” of that warming is human caused. HOWEVER I do not think the warming carries the hazards often claimed.
3. Alarmists. This group seems to have flunked math class…. many times…. they generally argue on general ground that we need to reduce emissions without bothering to calculate the costs of doing so and measuring those costs against the alternatives (feeding people who are starving NOW, getting water to people who need water NOW, educating people who need it NOW). There are environmental catastrophes of biblical proportion and slowing development to meet our CO2 agenda appears to conflict with getting standards of living to rise. It is bordering on nonsense to fear catastrophe from global warming even on long time frames. Humans adapt daily to temperature changes and we can adapt centurially to a rise of 2-4 degrees if in fact it does materialize as projected.
2. Common sense. Moderate mitigation, much more focus on current emergency and infrastructure improvements.