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Introduction to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
30 Jan, 2007 04:06 pm
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will release this week (in Paris) an important report: "a comprehensive and rigorous picture of the global present state of knowledge on climate change".
In a short video, Michael MacCracken, Chief Scientist for Climate Change Programs with the Climate Institute in Washington DC, briefly introduce the IPCC. The video was shot in 2004 but is still relevant.
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It's interesting how much attention has been placed on whether or not humans are contributing to global warming and climate change (which are not exactly the same)... and how, at the same time, so little attention has been given to really examining the implications of such change.
If one only reads the popular press, the conclusion is that any change is going to be harmful. Quite likely, that is incorrect.
That's an amusing site. But the real question remains: what are the implications of climate change/global warming... and is the implicit assumption that the changes will be harmful a disaster in itself... especially when it will influence policy makers and potentially waste billions of dollars needlessly?
The short video above contained a section that predicted that northern tier states would have a climate similar to central tier states; central tier states would have a climate similar to southern tier states; and southern tier states would have a climate similar to more tropical areas.
Given the benefits of warmer climates in the area of increased agricultural options and longer growing seasons, plus the reduction of natural gas for heating (a CO2 issue for the IPCC), plus the expansion of habitable areas for many types of wildlife... why should the assumption be that any climate warming is a bad phenomenon to be avoided at all costs?
Humans are adaptable to almost any climate conditions, so changes that benefit plants and other animals would seem to be changes we should welcome.