April 24, 2012


Six years ago, James Lovelock, "the maverick scientist who became a guru to the environmental movement with his 'Gaia' theory of the Earth as a single organism" had some somewhat dark predictions:

He previously painted some of the direst visions of the effects of climate change. In 2006, in an article in the U.K.'s Independent newspaper, he wrote that "before this century is over billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable."

In my best Mr. Mackey voice, I'd say "That's bad, mmkay?"

But a big man can admit when he is wrong, and Lovelock has a new book coming out called "Nevermind." (Actually, that is my suggestion, it is not clear from the article if a title has been chosen.)

The new book, due to be published next year, will be the third in a trilogy, following his earlier works, "Revenge of Gaia: Why the Earth Is Fighting Back -- and How We Can Still Save Humanity," and "The Vanishing Face of Gaia: A Final Warning: Enjoy It While You Can."

Turns out, it was climate's old tricks. Who would have thought that a scientist of Lovelock's stature would fall for those?
"The problem is we donít know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books -- mine included -- because it looked clear-cut, but it hasn't happened," Lovelock said.

"The climate is doing its usual tricks. There's nothing much really happening yet. We were supposed to be halfway toward a frying world now," he said.

Come to think of it, if "Bull's-eye Jim" is not worried now, I am starting to be concerned...

UPDATE: I meant to do this as a segue. Bjorn Lomborg has a WSJ Editorial the same day on the importance of using economic data to steer environmental policy.

But in tackling humanity's biggest challenges--climate change, malaria, natural disasters, education--we need more economic science, not less. Cost-benefit analysis, in particular, is a far more effective and moral approach than basing decisions on the media's roving gaze or the loudness of competing interest groups.

Deleterious Anthropogenic Warming of the Globe Posted by John Kranz at April 24, 2012 11:15 AM

Mea freaking culpa!

Posted by: johngalt at April 24, 2012 11:51 AM | What do you think? [1]