Paleo-climate studies show us unequivocally that a warmer world has always been a more liveable and more abundant world.
It’s not warmth we need to fear; it’s the ferocious cold of the next glacial period
I think it’s important to be careful of our terminology when it comes to describing climate. Otherwise there’s a danger of confusion.
In geological terms, during any time period when there’s a permanent (perennial) ice cap at either pole, Earth is said to be in an ice age. For maybe 85% of geological history, there were no permanent ice caps at the poles, so polar ice caps – and therefore ice ages – are unusual.
Around 34 million years ago, an ice-free Antarctica started to accumulate permanent ice, due to the breaking of the land bridge between Antarctica and South America, which allowed the establishment of the circumpolar ocean current. So, in correct geological terms, Earth has been in an ice age continuously since that time.
The Arctic also grew a semi-permanent ice cap about 2-3 million years ago, although it’s clearly thinner and much more prone to occasional melting. Having a permanent ice cap at BOTH poles at the same time is especially unusual and tells us our planet is currently much colder than normal.
So, we’ve been in the same ice age for 34 million years now. Only the severity of the cold varies, in a cyclical pattern, with full glacial conditions lasting some 90,000-100,000 years interrupted by milder interglacial periods of about 10,000 years in between.
Our current interglacial warm spell, called the Eocene, started around 10,000-11,000 years ago and all of the human history we know of has occurred during that time. But yes, time is running out and the Eocene isn’t going to last very much longer.
We’re going to need a means to keep warm for the next 90,000 years and windmills and solar panels won’t achieve that. We may have enough fossil fuels for the next couple of centuries and atomically fissile and fertile elements like uranium, plutonium, and thorium may give us another thousand years beyond that. But either successful fusion reactors or currently unknown energy sources will be needed for the rest of the imminent glacial period.
The fear of global warming is a contrived fear born of political motives.
Paleo-climate studies show us unequivocally that a warmer world has always been a more liveable and more abundant world. It’s not warmth we need to fear; it’s the ferocious cold of the next glacial period.
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January 29, 2021 at 06:13PM