I had a chance to take a peak in the national post on the weekend, and I saw something that annoyed me. In a topical editorial on Gore winning the Nobel Peace Prize, they were attempting to disprove the precepts of his film.
In many ways I'm not a big fan of Al Gore. I dislike when good concepts get attached to a single individual through the cult of personality. However, I dislike more when people try to disprove ideas with shoddy logic.
The thing that I distinctly remember (I don't have the article in front of me) was in reference to the effect of melting the glaciers of Greenland. (Paraphrasing painfully) Gore said that the melting ice caps would raise water levels around the world and flood low lying areas, and the National Post countered with saying that the ice caps aren't going to melt as fast as Gore said. Hmmm. First, that's like me saying "I have an apple" and you replying "Fruits are high in sugar". Second, it counters the opinions of one scientist with the opinions of another. People need to realize that science is a community of disputes.
In the end, reducing our production of pollutants that lead to climate change is a win-win situation, and one of the few in this world. If I insulate my house, I produce less pollution heating my house, AND I SAVE MONEY. Yes, that's right, it benefits me. I also inhale less pollutants and suffer less effects, but I save money. If my car gets better mileage, I pollute less and I SAVE MONEY. The scary thing is that all of these arguements ignore the basic fact that if we improve our efficiency we save money. Even if global warming is a hoax, my home insulation kit cost me $20. It cut so much off my gas bills that they gave me 2 months of free natural gas to balance out the bill, and the subsequent bills are about $30/month lower. If it's a hoax that puts money in my pocket at no harm to anyone, hoax on me baby, hoax on me.
And since pollution harms our health, we're healthier, richer people. Wow, that doesn't sound so bad. Now if it isn't a hoax, we're healthier richer people who still have dry land to stand on. I like the sounds of that as well.
Win-win. The only way to lose is to get so caught up in argueing that you forget to see the truth of the matter.