September 20, 2007
There is both global warming and global cooling on the planet Earth. There always has been and there always will be, because temperature change is cyclical, says Pete du Pont, former governor of Delaware and chairman of the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA).
For instance, according to the NCPA's new Global Warming Primer:
- Over the past 400,000 years, the Earth's temperature has consistently risen and fallen hundreds of years prior to increases and declines in CO2 levels.
- About half of the global warming increases since the mid-1800s occurred before greenhouse gas emissions began their significant increases after the 1950s, and then temperatures declined well into the 1970s when CO2 levels were increasing.
- During the 20th century the earth warmed by one degree Fahrenheit, and today the world is about 0.05 degrees warmer than it was in 2001.
Further, rising temperatures are not as dangerous as they are made out to be, says du Pont.
- Al Gore says the 35,000 deaths from the August 2003 European heat wave were an example of what "will become much more common if global warming is not addressed."
- Although 2,000 people died in the United Kingdom in that heat wave, last year the BBC reported that deaths caused by cold weather in England and Wales were about 25,000 each winter, and 47,000 a year, in the winters of 1998 to 2000.
- Similarly, in Helsinki, Finland, 55 people die each year from heat and 1,655 from cold.
- In Athens, Greece, a much warmer place, the deaths from excess heat are 1,376 each year and the deaths from cold 7,852.
- All told, Danish scholar Bjorn Lomborg calculates that about 200,000 people die in Europe each year from excessive heat, and 1.5 million from excessive cold.
Source: Pete du Pont, "Chill Pill," OpinionJournal.com, September 20, 2007.
Browse more articles on Environment Issues