Global Warming Today and Yesterday

The Arctic is melting, and therefore we have to curb our carbon dioxide emissions. This message is repeated over and over again by environmentalists and climate alarmists. Here is a typical scare story:

The Arctic Ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot, according to a report to the Commerce Department yesterday from Consulafft, at Bergen, Norway

Reports from fishermen, seal hunters, and explorers all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the Arctic zone. Exploration expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes.

Soundings to a depth of 3,100 meters showed the gulf stream still very warm. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, the report continued, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared.

Very few seals and no white fish are found in the eastern Arctic, while vast shoals of herring and smelts which have never before ventured so far north, are being encountered in the old seal fishing grounds. Within a few years it is predicted that due to the ice melt the sea will rise and make most coastal cities uninhabitable.

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? There is only one problem with the story: It was published in The Washington Post in November 2, 1922.[1]

If this report was accurate when it was made, we have had Arctic melting for over 90 years, and most, if not all, coastal cities are still inhabitable. But the report may of course be inaccurate and based on selective data. But climate alarmism was not yet born in 1922, and the politicians of the time did not see the potential of using such reports to enhance their own powers. And neither was modern environmentalism born. It would be many years before Norwegian philosopher Arne Næss was to propose that the human population should be reduced to 100 million in order to prevent… well, such things as the Arctic melting and making coastal cities uninhabitable.

Let’s move on to 1974. At that time there was serious concern that we are entering a new ice age. See this link[2], from which I quote:

Weather satellites sweeping across the Northern Hemisphere have come up with a surprise: The permanent snow and ice cap has increased sharply.

The finding is cited as one more indication of what some climatologists believe to be a basic change in the world’s climate, a cooling trend.

The trend could affect weather and rainfall patterns, perhaps impairing the world’s ability to produce enough food for the expanding population, according to a number of authorities. […]

In the United States, the leading proponent of the changing climate theory is Reid A. Bryson, director of the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin.

“The evidence is now abundantly clear”, Bryson has said, “that the climate of the Earth is changing, and is changing in a direction that is not promising in terms of our ability to feed the world.”

I have looked up Reid Bryson, and he seems to have been a serious scientist who was also honest enough to later admit that his prediction was wrong. Later on he maintained that the earth is indeed slowly warming but that the carbon dioxide emission had nothing to do with it; he thought that we are in a natural warming cycle and are still coming out of the “little ice age”.

Today, climatologists seem to agree that there a slight warming trend but are very much divided on the question of its extent and, above all, on what causes it.[3] But climatology has been politicized – this is why we hear all the time that there a broad consensus that global warming is anthropogenic and that the issue is settled and no further discussion necessary. Politicians simply love their own power and their ability to meddle with our lives, and the demise of industrial civilization is a price they are willing pay – or rather, make the rest of us pay.

Meanwhile, 100 million followers of Arne Næss want to see the rest of us – approximately 6.9 billion human beings – dead.


[1]) Thanks to my FB friends Frank Schulwolf and Stuart Hayashi for drawing my attention to this report.

[2]) I found it on a Facebook group called Climate Change Lies.

[3]) Logically, I can see four different alternatives (with many gradations in between):

1. There is no global warming.

2. There is global warming, but carbon dioxide emission have nothing to do with it; they are part of natural, non-anthropogenic fluctuations.

3. Carbon dioxide emissions have some effect, but it is negligible compared to natural fluctuations.

4. No, on the contrary, carbon dioxide emissions are responsible for most of the global warming, and the natural fluctuations are negligible in comparison.

I don’t believe in alternative (1), and alternative (4) is simply absurd. Yet, this is the alternative we are told to accept by the climate alarmists and the politicians.

(I have discussed this in a Swedish blog post on the subject.)