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Wineke: A word about climate change

Published On: Dec 31 2013 04:49:04 PM CST
Bill Wineke

You’d think this might be front-page news but, since it doesn’t involve the Packers or ObamaCare, no one in the press seems to have noticed.

Some climate scientists now believe global warming is advancing far more rapidly than they had previously feared.

An article in “Nature” magazine suggests that the average global temperature in 2100 will be 7.2 degrees warmer than it is today.

Given the temperatures we have experienced here for the past few days, you can be forgiven if you conclude that an extra 7.2 degrees might be a good thing.

Such a change would not be a good thing. In fact, global warming might be one of the reasons we are as cold as we are. The polar ice caps have been losing ice and that – I have no idea why, I’m just reporting what I read in the article – leads to a southerly dip in the Jet Stream, bringing arctic air into places like Wisconsin.

Or not. We’ve had cold winters in the past. This one seems so bitter because we have become somewhat accustomed to warmer winters. Or so I guess.

The real danger posed by climate warming comes a bit down the road. Glaciers melt. Sea levels rise, in part because water expands as it warms. Life becomes almost untenable in warm regions of the earth. Droughts threaten the existence of desert cities like Las Vegas. Florida sinks beneath the waves.

It is really hard for me to believe that any of this is good for civilization as we know it.

The thing is, the year 2100 isn’t that far off. I won’t be around to see it – but my grandchildren just might. My great grandchildren almost surely will be around to suffer.

So, you might think we would take the warning seriously, but we aren’t and our grandchildren will pay the price.

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