Global Warming – Who Do We Blame?

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In my mind, there is little doubt the planet is warming up.

How is global warning affecting us?

Global Warming is happening. The only question is – who is to blame, the Democrats or the Republicans?

There are many, many sites on the internet devoted to Global Warming. A quick google search turned up 25,500,000 sites with information about the issue. I guess that number now is 25,500,001. You won’t find a lot of information about Global Warming in this article, just a few thoughts.

My father always said we shouldn’t discuss politics or religion at the dinner table, and I try to adhere to his wishes. But this one is driving me nuts. There is little disputing that our planet is getting warmer. The debate is about how much of an impact we, as humans, are having. I have many friends who have very strong convictions that the problem is anthropogenic (human induced). These friends accept the Al Gore movie as the gospel truth about Global Warming. These friends tend to be democrats. I also have a number of friends who believe cow flatulence and natural cycles are as much to blame for Global Warming as anything else. They drive SUVs just to make a statement. These friends tend to be republicans. And in that, lies the problem.

My republican friends discount any evidence that global warming is our fault as democratic scare tactics. My democrat friends think republicans are in denial and are out to protect big business.

The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a group made up of some pretty impressive scientists. Their most recent report (November 17, 2007) states:
“Most of the observed increase in globally-averaged temperatures since the mid-20th century is very likely
due to the observed increase in anthropogenic GHG concentrations.”
Yet there are many who call this entire report garbage, a global attempt to stymie growth in the American Economy. Michael Crichton’s book “State of Fear” debunks many of the Global Warming “myths.” His book was immediately criticized as being right-wing propaganda with websites emerging devoted to debunking his debunking.

So, who do you believe? I think Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” is a movie, nothing more. I think Michael Crichton’s “State of Fear” is a book, nothing more. Everything stated as fact in the movie and everything stated as fact in the book should be taken with a shaker of salt. A little bit of science interspersed with a lot of science fiction. The IPCC has an impressive collection of data and scientists. I just need someone to convince me there’s no politics somehow mixed in with that group too. I just want pure facts. Facts not filtered by anybody. What is really happening? I still don’t know.

Ultimately, this wonderful planet on which we live is the only planet on which we can live. Regardless of who or what is to blame for the warming of the Earth, we need to do whatever we can to ensure it remains habitable by our children and their children. I believe the skeptics and their arguments have some validity. But I also believe it would be foolish of us to ignore what so many very smart people say is “very likely.” Let’s steer toward saving the planet while science continues to study the problem. If we find out someday that the IPCC and Al Gore were wrong, then we’ll still have a cleaner, more pleasant planet. If we find out they were right all along – and we didn’t act, all that’s left to do is pray our children forgive us. All of us. Republicans and Democrats.