The Consequences of Climate-Change Denial

What Happens if CC is Real and We Deny It?

airplane flying into sunset
Image by Johannes Kirchherr from Pixabay

The major problem I have with with climate change denial, besides being unable to show any actual evidence in support – all the objections I can find are actually either about weather, not climate, or are personal, that is, anecdotal rather than scientifically documented evidence is the consequences.

The Royal Navy has centuries of air and water temperature data from around the world.

But ignoring that or the 99.9% of expert opinion (as opposed to spokespersons for oil and gas companies or extreme conservative think tanks) or even whether possible climate change is human-caused or not, my objection to climate change denial is a simple one of the old problem of pot odds, that is, what if climate change deniers are wrong and what if the experts are wrong.

Consequences of Climate Change Denial

flood water climate change. Photo by John McCormick.
Flood water. Photo by John McCormick.

Suppose 99.9% of actual climate experts are wrong but we still follow their advice and change from a petrochemical-based society to a civilization based on renewables.

In that case, the world will have changed to a more sustainable way of life with less pollution, with far less in the way of carcinogens and microplastics which are now found even human blood, all the while saving a limited supply of petrochemicals for critical uses such as producing fertilizer and medicines, emergency transportation, even directly turning it into food and future as yet unrealized uses.

We would also end up with better insulated houses, cars with much better mileage even if they are oil powered which is essential in rural areas (my suv gets 35 mpg and being diesel could run on corn oil), less poverty, and so forth ALL at the cost of 60 thousand coal jobs here in the US (good honest hard workers but awful jobs, I’ve worked in a coal mine) and devaluing oil and gas income for warlike dictators, countries in the mid-east where people fear democracy and who support radicals and terrorists.

(I can see they have grievances, but not how that gives them the right to rape, pillage, and behead babies and other innocents.)

Countries such as the US and Australia can transition easily with little economic or even social impact. The same skills needed by heavy equipment operators in mines and operating oil and gas drilling are in big demand in construction and in rebuilding infrastructure.

On a very personal level it is easy to build cars which last a million miles and get 40 mpg. Automobile costs are a major cause of poverty in developed countries. Interest is such that by the time a car is paid off it is valueless and nearly junk Why do you think companies must use sex to sell cars? They don’t do that to sell groceries.

(I am still trying to find any serious downsides to conservation outside the wallets of people invested in oil and gas production. Even they will be better off in the long run as lower consumption will inevitably lead to higher prices.)

What if Deniers are Wrong?

sun activity
images of sunspots WikiImages via Pixabay

On the other side of the arguments:

If anti-climate activists are wrong and we don’t quickly move to a sustainable economy producing less methane and carbon dioxide, then upwards of a billion people will soon starve or drown causing vast forced migration and small or large wars.

We will continue to work most of our lives to pay for energy we waste incidentally making some very few very rich people.

Part of the surge in immigrants on the Southern U.S. border is already indirectly due to droughts in South America.

In the worst case scenario we could have the case of Venus and since the human race has never been particularly good looking at long term consequences even when they are obvious, we will wait far too long, and perhaps we already have.

Tipping Points

According to experts in the field, we are approaching some so-called tipping points, that is, when circumstances get to a point where just a little further change causes a cascade of bad results.

Think of a tipping point as something like this.

Water is heated and heated until it is just a few degrees from boiling, but when that next degree or two of heat is added we have boiling water. You can see this another way by heating water in a microwave to near boiling then dropping in a metal tea ball which will lower the boiling point and cause the water to almost explode.

That was a tipping point.


When you carefully fill a glass you can see that the surface tension actually allows water to bulge just a bit above the rim but adding just one drop more and the water overflows.

The same thing can happen with other physical conditions.

Just a simple example can show how this can get extremely complicated.

As ice melts and glaciers flow into the ocean they no longer reflect heat because instead of a white surface solar radiation strikes the ocean and is absorbed.

The water warms just a bit, and warmer water evaporates faster.

More water vapor in the atmosphere traps more heat, melting more ice.

Climate – But is Water Vapor Increasing?

Governments have brought disbelief on themselves. Only about one in ten high school students have any science education. On top of that all governments lie to their people nearly all the time so it is easy to understand why so many people are ready to believe in conspiracy theories. In fact it is surprising that only about twenty percent of them do.

If you disbelieve in your government then that makes you sensible. But Science isn’t government. Based on proof and evidence science is as far from government as you can get.

On the other hand if you simply disbelieve in science then you should go to a witch doctor, throw out your computer and cell phone, ride horses (although iron shoes are science), and otherwise follow an Amish way of life because virtually everything you see, touch, or do every day is based on science.

A recent paper based on decades of study shows what can happen and what may have happened on other planets.

“The Earth is a wonderful blue and green dot covered with oceans and life, while Venus is a yellowish sterile sphere that is not only inhospitable but also sterile. However, the difference between these two planet depends on only a few degrees difference in temperature. [scientists ] has achieved a world’s first by managing to simulate the entirety of the runaway greenhouse process which can transform the climate of a planet from idyllic and perfect for life, to a place more than harsh and hostile. The scientists have also demonstrated that from initial stages of the process, the atmospheric structure and cloud coverage undergo significant changes, leading to an almost-unstoppable and very complicated to reverse runaway greenhouse effect. On Earth, a global average temperature rise of just a few tens of degrees, subsequent to a slight rise of the Sun’s luminosity, would be sufficient to initiate this phenomenon and to make our planet inhabitable. These results are published in Astronomy & Astrophysics.”

That may be wildly wrong, but, so far, every extreme scientific climate prediction has proven to be too conservative.

A few decades ago, I had a mechanic whom I trusted. One day, I asked him about gasoline prices. He told me that we would never run out of oil because GOD would make more as needed otherwise he would not be able to work as a mechanic.

I paid my bill and got out of there as fast as I could, never went back, and cautioned everyone I knew that the mechanic would do anything at all that occurred to him as far as cheating or faking repairs even to brakes because he was certain GOD favored him and anything he did was therefore OK.

Last I heard he had his 13- and 15- year-old kids servicing customer cars which were limited to those owned by other members of his small church.

John McCormick

“Preparing for Climate Change: Coastal flooding will cost the U.S. billions of dollars within two decades. Learn how to prepare.” paperback second edition

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Could Global Warming Actually be GOOD??: Will global warming fight the next ice age? An ice age is coming, says The Milankovitch Theory – Ed. 2 with additional … (Collected Works: John McCormick Book 4) Kindle Edition

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