Climate Forecast vs. Energy Forecast: A Reason for Hope

by Vijay Jayaraj

Can the conventional energy sector redeem us from the doom and gloom of global warming?

The controversy surrounding climate change has been used to spread widespread hysteria about the future of our world. The alarmist perspective of climate change has largely revolved around the singular dimension of how temperature affects the environment around us.

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It is true that economies depend highly on various environmental factors such as availability of water, land-use, and climatic conditions.

Scientific data suggests that most of the policies prescribed by climate alarmism enthusiasts are based on falsifiable temperature forecasts from faulty computer climate models.

The huge discrepancies between model forecasts and actual measured temperature levels were well documented in hundreds of scientific publications in the past two years. Prominent climate scientists testified this before the U.S. Congress, and the scientists who created those faulty models eventually acknowledged it.

Even if the exaggerated climate forecasts were true, this century will not be the first time modern civilization has experienced such warmth.

Both the Roman Warm Period and Medieval Warm Period were equally warm as today’s modern warm period. During both these previous cases, the impact on civilization was positive. The mini ice ages affected humanity adversely, but not the warm periods.

Not only are the climate forecasts wrong, the temperatures they predict are also not dangerous or unprecedented as popularly believed to be.

This renders much of the current climate change policies ineffective and practically irrelevant, as they call for an unnecessary reduction of global carbon dioxide emissions from conventional energy sources.

The mainstream media seldom address how climate alarmist policies have concealed the immense benefits that humanity is continuing to extract from the conventional energy sector.

A revamp of global climate change policy—one that frees economies from their carbon-dioxide-restrictive energy policies, is necessary if our economies are to advance.

Coal energy is the highest source of electricity globally—contributing a whopping 39 percent (2014) of all electricity produced.

The international energy agency (IEA) forecasts that electricity generated from coal will increase dramatically across the globe, with South East Asia accounting for most of it.

Unlike some old coal power plants in developing countries that emit highly polluted exhaust, the new coal-fired plants use high-efficiency supercritical or ultra-supercritical technologies that are clean.

Developing countries, whose energy sectors are yet to grow to their full capacity, are at an advantage because they can transition to these new technologies faster than currently developed nations did. That means fewer years of exposure to severe air pollution.

This should give us a reason to hope. A hope for stronger economies, better livelihoods and cleaner environments in developing countries that currently suffer from energy shortage that starves their power-hungry industries.

The climate change campaign pegs its hope on baseless theories that have been found wanting. Neither is there a need to rescue us from temperatures nor a reason to cut down on carbon dioxide emissions.

In contrast to the alarmist narrative, conventional energy sources like coal are the actual reason to hope for a better future.

Vijay Jayaraj (M.Sc., Environmental Science, University of East Anglia, England), Research Associate for Developing Countries for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, lives in New Delhi, India.

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