In response to Sally Schlichting ("Where's Alaska on climate change?" in Monday's Juneau Empire), it is amazing to believe that humans have a great deal to do with climate change. I guess it makes us feel more relevant. Nevertheless, there is a growing number of scientists who don't believe the hype (Claude Allegre of France being the latest).
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I do not buy it either.
It's pretty simple: There is a correlation between higher carbon dioxide levels and temperature. The question is, what causes what? After all, the period between 800 and 1200 was known as the Medieval Warm Period. There were fewer humans running around emitting gas back then.
A growing number of experts think that warming causes higher carbon dioxide levels. So, what is causing the warming? It could be the sun. The energy it releases is far from constant.
The western states Schlichting noted are just playing politics with the hype. We can all agree that it is a good idea to reduce air pollution. But if all Alaskans stopped burning fossil fuels by the end of the decade, I doubt it would have any more that a billionth of a degree difference by the year 2050. By then, China will be far and away the biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, and the Earth will probably be getting cooler due to the solar cycle.
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