Many climate change questions, few answers

Every time the weather exhibits some anomaly, every time there’s a significant or serious weather event, climate change fear mongers are all over it.

Anything and everything is seen as a harbinger of climate change Armageddon.

Here are some headlines from a recent newspaper.

According to this story, written by Chris Mooney of the Washington Post, it is no longer safe for inhabitants of a tiny, isolated town in Alaska to hunt whales because the ice has become too thin.

Even worse, without the protection of ice, the island town is in danger from powerful waves, and many say it needs to be relocated.

This is a commentary by Stephen Hume of the Vancouver Sun. Hume argues that the brutal drought occurring in California is also trending in British Columbia. Less snow pack in the mountains means the Prairies are doomed.

California certainly has a water crisis and there seems to be strong evidence that glaciers are rapidly retreating in the Rockies. It’s important to monitor and measure and design policies accordingly.

However, weather anomalies are not new. Mankind has always faced droughts, floods, epic winters and searing heat waves. The difference is that every weather event is now being linked to climate change.

Climate patterns are always changing. Here on the Prairies, entire decades can be notably dry or notably wet.

However, if the world’s climate is rapidly changing, as alarmists would have us believe, wouldn’t worldwide food supply be in obvious jeopardy?

Instead, global production of the major grains and oilseeds has managed to keep up with the growth in world population.

Production varies by region according to weather patterns, but that’s nothing new. Overall, world production shows a steady growth curve. Yes, some of this is because of improved crop varieties and production practices, but you can’t increase yields if the weather is against you.

Farmers are urged to adapt to climate change, but what change should we expect? Flooding and too much water has been the major limiting factor to crop production on the Prairies over the past decade.

Is that the new norm? Can climatologists guarantee that we won’t have a precipitation shortage this year?

When pressed, some climate change theorists say we’re going to have a lot more variability. That’s a convenient hypothesis, but it has little value for agriculture. Has any of the climate change theory helped you be a better farmer?

Scientists predict with seeming certainty what world temperatures will be in 10 or 20 years but are unable to predict the weather next month or next year.

Will it eventually rain in California or is agriculture there doomed? Will the wet years on the Canadian Prairies continue? Will our growing season continue to lengthen? What areas of the world will see production declines and what areas are likely to see increases?

Go ahead. Label me a climate change denier. That conveniently marginalizes anyone who asks questions. But without answers, all the climate change work has little value.

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