Why Settled Science?

There is such a thing as preponderance of evidence. The climate change deniers want to use the time frame required for research as a weakness, it is not a weakness; it is the correct and right process. When a doctor tells us our cholesterol is high, we act on the fact that, someday, we may suffer from stroke or heart attack. No one says, “sorry, doc, I’m going to wait until I have that stroke in order to substantiate your conclusions – I want the science to be settled before I take my meds.” But this is exactly what the energy industry PR pushed dialogue is wanting, wait until devastation and irreversible damage occurs, then you will be substantiated, until that time – sometime in the future, we are not going to change our ways. Why do (mostly conservatives) buy into that illogical premise? Where in your life do you wait until damage happens before acting? Especially when those who have dedicated their lives to become experts in a field of study warn you otherwise?

Do you heed the warning of your auto-mechanic that your power steering fluid is leaking and needs to be repaired, or do you wait until you lose control on the highway?

Do you take the suggestion of your handyman that your dry rot situation could make your floor collapse, or do you wait until you fall through the floor?

Do you ignore the new virus on your computer and hope it goes away, or do you call IT immediately and get the situation resolved?

Do you heed the warnings of physicists, chemists, biologists, climatologists and geologists that we are adversely affecting our atmosphere, its chemistry and the heat retention rates of our oceans… or are you content with hoping (praying) they might be wrong? And, to what end?

Instead, the deniers quibble over charts, rates, sea ice formation, and all evidence presented, and this is all the deniers seem to focus on. The denier media experts cherry pick data, omit counter conclusions, spin information, and use high-powered PR firms to create doubt. In reality they have nothing to counter the science, because no independent (non-energy industry paid) scientists are researching, gathering data and submitting peer reviewed data to counteract the claims of thousands of scientists, advocates, governments all sounding the alarm. I’ve been in the news business for 25 years, it’s a commonly known thing in my industry, that you can buy any opposing viewpoint, it creates doubt in the mind of the public, and then mission accomplished. And going back to my continued analogies, it’s the same as lying in a hospital bed, debating with your doctor about WHY you are having a heart attack, and if he’s really in it just for the money… all because an “expert” you just saw on Fox News said don’t trust your heart doctor.

We are adversely changing the chemistry of our atmosphere, our oceans and the biology of our planetary biosphere – and we are doing this through the dumping of toxic wastes, pollution, and the massive release of CO2 and methane that this planet has not seen – perhaps ever. Even the casual observer can see the change, feel the change, and know that something is wrong. Our scientists, educators and researches – know something is wrong, have the evidence to support the premise, see the trend, and have empirical evidence as to what our planet will become if we do not change course. I choose to trust their evidence, support them through research, and I stand with the professionals who have dedicated their lives to becoming the experts in their field, not those interested in contempt prior to investigation, or worse, contempt based on personal uneducated belief and absolutely nothing else. I realize this is human nature, that some of us just flat out refuse to change perspective or belief until it’s too late. For the rest of us, we will act.

And best of all, the solution is simple. End the era of fossil fuels, and find new sources to power our world. That’s all we are talking about here, change our power sources, reduce emissions and find balance again. Somehow wanting environmental balance is a threat, it is not, it’s our responsibility.

We are driving 80 mph toward a brick wall, and the driving instructor in the passenger seat is telling us to take our foot off the gas and hit the break…. Do you heed the warning, or wait and see if the impact is real? Death is the ultimate settled science.