On Thursday, The New York Times published an essay by “youth climate activists” led by Greta Thunberg that lectured adults about climate change, pompously charging, “Young people like us have been sounding this alarm for years. You just haven’t listened.” They add, “We are the ones who will have to clean up the mess you adults have made.”
The youth activists were responding to the publication of a United Nations scientific report that triggered the UN Secretary General, António Guterres, to issue an apocalyptic statement saying, “Today’s IPCC Working Group 1 report is a code red for humanity.”
“Today, millions of children and young people have united in a movement with one voice, demanding that decision makers do the work necessary to save our planet from the unprecedented heat waves, massive floods and vast wildfires we are increasingly witnessing. Our protest will not end until the inaction does,” the youth activists threaten.
Then they segue into a direct attack on adults: “For children and young people, climate change is the single greatest threat to our futures. We are the ones who will have to clean up the mess you adults have made, and we are the ones who are more likely to suffer now.”
They cite the “Children’s Climate Risk Index,” which is a product of the United Nations, saying, “It finds that virtually every child on the planet is exposed to at least one climate or environmental hazard right now. … This is the world being left to us. But there is still time to change our climate future. Around the world, our movement of young activists continues to grow.”
“The fundamental goal of the adults in any society is to protect their young and do everything they can to leave a better world than the one they inherited. The current generation of adults, and those that came before, are failing at a global scale,” they lecture.
They conclude, “We are in a crisis of crises. A pollution crisis. A climate crisis. A children’s rights crisis. We will not allow the world to look away.”
In September 2019, the same day Thunberg railed at the United Nations that there was a climate emergency, a group of 500 prominent scientists and professionals wrote an open letter to the United Nations Secretary-General. It included a European Climate Declaration that read:
There is no climate emergency
A global network of 500 scientists and professionals has prepared this urgent message. Climate science should be less political, while climate policies should be more scientific. Scientists should openly address the uncertainties and exaggerations in their predictions of global warming, while politicians should dispassionately count the real benefits as well as the imagined costs of adaptation to global warming, and the real costs as well as the imagined benefits of mitigation.
Natural as well as anthropogenic factors cause warming
The geological archive reveals that Earth’s climate has varied as long as the planet has existed, with natural cold and warm phases. The Little Ice Age ended as recently as 1850. Therefore, it is no surprise that we now are experiencing a period of warming.
Warming is far slower than predicted
The world has warmed at less than half the originally-predicted rate, and at less than half the rate to be expected on the basis of net anthropogenic forcing and radiative imbalance. It tells us that we are far from understanding climate change.
Climate policy relies on inadequate models
Climate models have many shortcomings and are not remotely plausible as policy tools. Moreover, they most likely exaggerate the effect of greenhouse gases such as C. In addition, they ignore the fact that enriching the atmosphere with COis beneficial.
COis plant food, the basis of all life on Earth
COis not a pollutant. It is essential to all life on Earth. Photosynthesis is a blessing. More COis beneficial for nature, greening the Earth: additional COin the air has promoted growth in global plant biomass. It is also good for agriculture, increasing the yields of crops worldwide.
Global warming has not increased natural disasters
There is no statistical evidence that global warming is intensifying hurricanes, floods, droughts and suchlike natural disasters, or making them more frequent. However, CO-mitigation measures are as damaging as they are costly. For instance, wind turbines kill birds and bats, and palm-oil plantations destroy the biodiversity of the rainforests.
Climate policy must respect scientific and economic realities
There is no climate emergency. Therefore, there is no cause for panic and alarm. We strongly oppose the harmful and unrealistic net-zero COpolicy proposed for 2050. If better approaches emerge, we will have ample time to reflect and adapt. The aim of international policy should be to provide reliable and affordable energy at all times, and throughout the world.