It depends on which “debate” you’re talking about. What if there were an honest debate about all aspects of climate change? It wouldn’t be a faux debate about whether the world will end before the next Mardi Gras or during Lent, … or before the next most-important election in history! The discussion could include the causes, the extent, the effects, and the solutions. We could have a panel! The participants would be people who actually know something about the science and the economics (Some do say the world’s standard of living counts. Perhaps the average UN bureaucrat’s can take a hit but there are others who aren’t so fortunate.)
These people are out
I would exclude those who are “all-in”, others who are irrational, and especially those who are both. Thus, the following:
- CEOs of coal and oil and gas companies (all-in),
- your Democratic presidential hopefuls (It’s not really about energy),
- office seekers generally (all-in, subject to change depending on wind direction),
- the New York Times,
- movie people,
- environmentalist extremists (too fringy and numerous to name),
- Al Gore,
- Greta Thunburg,
- POTUS, who, lets face it, shouldn’t be counted among the helpful, and
- I’m sure you have your exclusions.
These people are in
I would include
- Bjorn Lomborg to discuss solutions (smarter ways than spending billions to return the world to pre-industrial poverty),
- opinion writers at Forbes, for example George Kell (the technologies needed to meet the Paris climate goals are available and the economic case for accelerating decarbonization of energy systems is compelling), and
- Roger Pielke, (“climate porn” is assumptions such as “RCP 8.5”, relied upon by the IPCC, that transforms what is more really the worst-case scenario into the sole “business as usual” scenario that is a centerpiece of climate policy discussions);
- Dr. Roy Spencer; (explaining perhaps why reality doesn’t follow the models),
- the Environmental Defense Fund (committed but rational),
- the Foundation for Economic Freedom (claims there will be “staggering” environmental costs of renewable energy);
- Copernicus, (for some fun and a little history about settled science),
- Kathleen Hartnett White, (current climate change solutions will be hard on the impoverished, of which there are fewer now than ever in history because of fossil fuels),
- the United Nations Development Programme (one third of the global population are poor or near poor and they face persistent threats to their livelihoods from climate change).
- The polar bears can’t decide. I propose one for catastrophe and one for “chill, like me”, and
- I’m sure you have your inclusions.
Why should we even bother?
Because, for example:
- A major report from the Journal Nature that was withdrawn because of flawed data.
- Some contributing to the frenzy aren’t very good with calendars.
- Predictions of the end of the world as we know that don’t come true
- Boz Scaggs wants to know.
- So does Delbert McClinton.
- And U2.