Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Talk To us, Leighton Smith---I was sick today so I lent my ears to his take on Climate change.

I wrote a book, based on an imaginary talk back radio host and I guess that people like Leighton Smith and Danny Watson influenced my 'take.' The book is called, 'Talk To Me,' and it will be available again soon on Kindle and hard copy via myself, direct or through Amazon. (I do have some copies from the less than perfect first printing, so feel free to contact me via my website (www.authorneilcoleman.com).
I don't agree with some of what Leighton says and tend to feel more comfortable with Danny's show, but---Leighton does challenge my 'left of centre' stance (but increasingly merging with the 'centre' as I age!) and at times I have moved my position as a result, on some issues.
Leighton takes quite a strong view re Climate Change. Basically he is miffed with the majority view coming out of the scientific community. I could state figures of a 95% to 5% split in favour of the evidence for CC, but figures like that can be construed from many sources and show a wide degree of variance. Leighton tends to come from the camp that 'any' change in climate, come from natural cycles and that the great debate is more about politics than anything else. OK, he is correct I that, politics and 'moneyed' interest may play a part in the explanations for CC, but I would put a few pertinent points to counteract some of the arguments from that position.
It is as simple as this: Take a look at satellite pictures taken over the last 30 years of the ice caps. Something stands out. Anyone who can see---will notice  a gradual and possibly speeding up of the receding of the icecaps. Parts of Greenland, Canada, Alaska and Russia (this all can be observed in Antarctica too) are now ice free, far more than in any other time in 'recorded' history.
Those observations are indisputable; the causes, maybe not so readily explainable. How much shrinking of the icecaps and rising sea-levels can be explained alone by the activities of humans? That is where the debate should be centred and that is where Leighton takes the view from the point that, 'nature' is the culprit and that a natural cycle is simply acting out as it has for aeons.
I watched a programme the other night that gave me cause for concern. As a result of rising sea temperatures, there is a massive amount of green house gasses being released into our oceans and atmosphere, causing a rise in acidity that will in turn, lead to a mass extinction of many life forms, within the lifetime of humans being born today. What a frightening thought.
The great debate must centre on the 'actual affect' of human-kind and should be devoid of insults and concentrate on finding the answers. We must not have a 'scenario' of 'while Rome burnt the Emperor fiddled.'
Talkback radio can inform and entertain, but the latter must not drive the arguments around this very important issue, one that could, if our worst fears are realized, potentially end life on earth as we know it. In our distant past, that has indeed happened, driven by 'natural events. We have the capacity to answer these questions and therefore must find the will!