I'm no scientist so you wont hear any scientific theories here. I've never offered an opinion on climate change and this will be my first and last. But you might find the following perspective interesting. Read the following description of the ice age from wikipedia:

"The current ice age, the Pliocene-Quaternary glaciation, started about 2.58 million years ago during the late Pliocene, when the spread of ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere began. Since then, the world has seen cycles of glaciation with ice sheets advancing and retreating on 40,000- and 100,000-year time scales called glacial periods, glacials or glacial advances, and interglacial periods, interglacials or glacial retreats. The earth is currently in an interglacial, and the last glacial period ended about 10,000 years ago. All that remains of the continental ice sheets are the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets and smaller glaciers such as on Baffin Island.

Ice ages can be further divided by location and time; for example, the names Riss (180,000–130,000 years bp) and Würm (70,000–10,000 years bp) refer specifically to glaciation in the Alpine region."

In researching this subject, I'm left with a few distinct impressions. First, there has been five ice ages, the first happening over two billion years ago. They can last for hundreds of thousands of years, or millions of years. And we are just ending the fifth ice age. We are experiencing an interglacial period -- a period of global warming to more normal levels. The sheets of ice continue to melt as witness the rising ocean levels in some areas.

How long we will see global warming or whether we will embark on a new ice age is unknown. But what is obvious, or should be obvious to all, is that climate change has been going on since the beginning of the earth's formation and the swings in climate take hundreds, thousands, if not million's of years.

I don't think it is a radical statement to say that there is little chance humans can change the direction of nature whether the direction is toward global warming or toward a new ice age. But human's are durable. Eskimo's live comfortably in the Antarctic. And the Native American's survived nicely in the deserts of the South West in up to 125 degree weather.

I think it's worth remembering that up until the 1940's, there was no air conditioning. And heaters as we know them today were non existent. Refrigeration was not available to transport food until recently. And refrigerators to families came much later than that. And yet, human's through all kinds of weather and environments, have survived for over 200,000 years.

One of the main reason they have, is human intelligence. We as a people have progressed over the years and learned to control our environment. We have air conditioned homes and cars, produce natural resources and even harnessed nuclear power to cope with the environment. But never have we changed nature. We may influence it from time to time but nature pretty much does what it wants.

There are still earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, and summer, winter, fall, and spring. And there is global ice ages that rule the earth, and global warming. I do not know of one example, however, where government has changed any of these things.

So as the world continues to argue the point, I suggest that the answer in the future will not be passing a law. Or getting together and agreeing on a plan to save the earth, but on individuals doing what they have always done: invent new ways of coping with climate change.

It is in the "coping" that man's future hangs in the balance. It is man's mind, his innovations, and his constant striving to improve the human condition that the real progress will be made against the ravages of nature. I suspect that our present ventures into space will eventually produce new techniques of dealing with hostile environments. It's our nature to do so.

And that's all I have to say on that subject.

 

Paul Nathan