(…as it relates to its climatic changes)

Politicos from around the world continue to misconstrue the reality of our planet’s history… as it relates to its climatic changes.

Their upcoming plans to meet in December to see what they can come up with to “fight” global warming and the climate changes deriving from it, is a case of pathetic ignorance… or deliberate misdirection. We humans cannot “fight” global warming or avoid the climatic changes deriving from it. We can only try to devise better ways to adapt ourselves to the impacts of that process.

Global warming is…a fact. So is global cooling. Both are part of a cyclical process that’s governed our planet’s climatic conditions ever since it first emerged as one…some four billion odd years ago. It has cycled through much greater extremes of both warming and cooling than we can conceive of today, and long before we humanoids ever began having any impacts on our environments.

As we’ve mentioned before, we’ve gone through four such cycles in just the last million years alone. In much of all that time we humans were barely a blip on the environment. A million years ago there were barely forty thousand “humans” on the entire planet. Today, we’re numbering some seven billion…and counting. If anything is contributing to the spike in the volume of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere…it is the emissions from our numbers more than our dependence on and use of carbonized fossil fuels for our energy needs. Those claiming therefore that, because of that, we humans are the only cause of the rate at which global warming is happening are misdirecting our focus on what really should be done about it.

Our world began its current warming cycle some fifty thousand years ago, when the previous cooling cycle began reversing. But such cyclic events occur on geologic time metrics. These creep forward, sometimes at a more rapid rate, sometimes at a slower one, but as that geologic time progresses, the warming trend does accelerate, perhaps peaking before reversing itself again…back into a cooling cycle…with more or less the same pattern of initially slow then more rapid development. To what extent our human contribution to that cyclic process has any effect…is an open question.

So to expound upon how we need to “fight” against it is simply nonsensical. Certainly we can, and should, figure out ways to reduce our “contributions” to the increase in carbon emissions. That might slow things down a bit but not by much, and while that might make us feel better about the issue, it won’t stop that warming process. That will continue, even if we were able to stop all such emissions tomorrow (which we can’t).

Our real focus instead should be on how to apply our technological capabilities to adapt and cope with the impacts this current warming cycle of our planet will have upon us. Rising ocean levels, shifts in where the temperate zones will be, to support agriculture, and how to best cope with the resulting migration and concentration of humans, animals, and even plant species, to those zones, are where the focus of our efforts should be, not just on the single aspect of how our energy production methods and sources ought to be.

Based upon the time pattern of previous warming cycles, we may in fact face another fifty thousand years or more of this current warming cycle…before things reverse and start cooling again.

So our political leaders do us all a great disservice when they don’t help us understand the realities involved with these matters, and instead misdirect our attention to only the single issue aspects of a highly complex inter-action of many elements, rather than considering ways and means to effectively adapt to the inevitable climatic changes coming our way.