Saturday, February 10, 2007

The Oz editorial - still wing-nut central

Rarely do I read the editorial of Australia's only national paper, the Murdoch-owned Australian. Since the arrival of editor Chris Mitchell it has moved so far to the right it makes John Howard look entirely reasonable. However, since yesterday's was about climate change I thought I'd check it out.

Unsurprisingly, the denialism of the Oz is stronger than ever. Reflecting reality is a problem for the Right and it's amply demonstrated in some of the points made in the editorial:

Humans don't necessarily play much of a role in recent warming:
  • It is possible to accept that the climate is changing without agreeing either on how much of that change is man-made or even what or how much to do about it.
Sea levels will rise by no more than 59cm by 2100 according to the IPCC summary:
  • Sea levels will rise somewhere between 0.18m and 0.59m over the coming century
Global warming ended last century.
  • temperatures have been pretty stable since 1998
Cutting CO2 emissions won't prevent warming, but this CO2 stuff does cause 'urban pollution' and other bad things:
  • While there are many good arguments for cutting carbon emissions - urban pollution, energy security and so on - it remains an open question as to whether this is the best way to deal with the issue of a warmer world.
The Oz does, however, show that it moves with the times and accepts the scientific consensus behind AGW.
  • ... human activity is making at least some contribution.
It's not a consensus I'd heard of before. I'm thought it was something to do with human activity making most of the contribution. Guess not, hey?