The great is-it-or-isn’t-it climate change debate has been raging on, and gathering momentum, for the better part of a decade with increasing media exposure. And while I would name this a purely scientific debate (as it is in reference to climatology, meteorology, statistics, and the like) it seems that when it comes to people’s “belief” in climate change or otherwise, the debate gets split along ideological lines. In the end reduces us down to a kind of “hippies vs. squares” dialogue which, as anyone who’s ever tried to argue with an evangelical of the opposite persuasion to themselves will tell you, gets us nowhere helpful.
As any environmentalist will tell you, time is of the essence when it comes to “saving the world” or “righting climate change”. So the current circular argument based on ideologies in a scientific context is not only frustrating to all parties involved; it delays dealing with the issue and (if climate change is indeed a problem) leaves us in a very sticky situation.
So, my suggestion? Scrap the whole debate. It’s argued on very tricky semantics (e.g. climate change has righted itself in the past; a few points of a degree warmer could be attributed to the relative positions of the earth and sun; etc.) Instead, let’s focus our energies on looking at the depleting availability of natural resources.
It is a far more widely accepted fact that fossil fuel sources are decreasing, and the remainders are much harder to mine. This is more easily accepted because it cannot really be argued effectively on semantics (unlike the climate change debate) as it is far easier to point to an oil well and say “look its empty” than to argue that the last few summers have had appalling weather (embittered Brit here, does it show?) and that that is indicative of a much wider problem.
So, what shall we do to match consumption with production of finite resources, and cover our arses for when they run out? Recycle and switch to (or invest in the development of) renewable energies! Ta-dah! In this way we can save ourselves from the apocalyptic nightmare of running out of oil and having nothing to replace it with, whilst tacking environmental problems (if they do exist – let’s not polarise the audience here). With the added bonus of being able to easily point the finger at objectors and remind them of the short-term profit motive they so diligently serve.