Facing criticism; economics doesn’t want the ride to stop

So my previous post caused a little flutter in the tummy of an economist who in one breath argues that it doesn’t take a scientist to evaluate the athropogenic CO2 causes global warming (AGW) hypothesis and in another declares that Rajendra Kumar Pachauri is not an authority on AGW.

This has led to me to be placed on his special list of people that he dances around calling “Alarmists”, yet states that green politics will lead to the economic collapse of the western world and that we will see out children starve. On the same page he states that he has been labeled as a denialist, sceptic and unbeliever – terms (he states) better suited to centuries past or from the mouths of extremest, yet this is his page for labeling alarmists… Can you see where I’m going here? His double speak is astounding (oh yes, I know Orwell as well), although there are some ancient books better at hypocrisy, but he’s certainly giving it his all!

I am not a climate science, to be more accurate, I’m an ecologist and currently work on a project measuring eddy fluxes over a mallee environment in the Riverland region. My work and that of those around me largely concerns adaptive landscape science in a not always cooperative environment. That and some associates up on the reef have made me incredibly interested in the science of land management and ocean acidification, where, as a student I was largely focused on weed ecology and pest management; being an avid hiker and seeing the result of such issues in national parks, I couldn’t help but be passionate.

That said, my years of study, analysis and review, as well as various government appointments regarding eco-mapping, sustainable industry and environmental monitoring have been largely written off as a confused rant of AGW faith (note again the confused double speak I wrote about above).

Now, I don’t focus much on AGW; I’m interested in improved land practices to better suit our environment and thus allow my children to enjoy fresh food. I’m all too aware of my local situation and am over such meaningless debates over AGW by enthusiasts.

However, ecological common sense as I see it must seem to an economist to be sheer insanity as it would shift economies away from their old practices to places that an economist assumes will eventually lead to the death of children – as Monckton him fears will occur because of scientists apparently calling for a massive shift to biofuels.
I know that it might, for some, be a challenging idea, however, my arguments are about the non-renewable reliance on fossil fuels, the ridiculous amount of CO2 that we allow to sink into the ocean and the fact that farming of the twentieth century cannot take us far into the twenty-first century. It might be different on small island nations, but one hopes that they have highlands. That said, sure as economies shift, there will be changes; but there are likely to be many positive shifts; especially when energy supplies are no longer at the whim of oil prices.

I base my views on evidence and not faith and, unfortunately, I tend to listen to people like this solely because sometimes they offer you something new to think about – indeed this is what science training encourages. However, it is also a weakness when you get drawn into a conversation with a brick wall unable to offer a stimulating bouncing of ideas and is instead drawn to petty remarks and insults.

C’est la vie, I guess… The best option must be to take the high road and continue my work to improve the lives and techniques of the community around me and let such individuals grumble to themselves and others who also don’t trust the doctor’s diagnosis.


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