Newspapers of 2000: No Such Thing as Snow by 2010

A few newspapers in the United Kingdom ten years ago ran a story that snow would be a thing of the past by the year 2010.  As the US and UK both contend with a massive nationwide snowstorm that slowed down traffic and ultimately grabbed the Midwest, many are wondering why the claim made it into print.

It’s a lesson learned by prognosticators year after year, “Never make a claim you don’t absolutely believe about the future within your own lifetime.”  Those who follow social trends and internet rumors often know how these predictions get swept under the rug after something predicted to come to pass doesn’t take place.  It’s with that in mind that this lesson of climate claims comes to us once again.  It’s also an interesting time to take note of other predictions that were made ten years ago, since climate predictions are often made in increments.  To give the predictors credit, our course from ten years ago has changed somewhat.  Keep in mind that means course, not necessarily the speed.

It’s easy to get carried away and make claims that seem far enough away.  In 2000 we were in a very different world, and we’re all wiser than we were then.  9/11 had yet to happen, and the biggest scare thus far for years had been the Y2K bug and the looming oil crisis.  Cellular phones were massive objects that practically needed their own area code.  And our understanding of climate change was far different than what it is today.  A lot different.  At the time “climate change” as it’s called today was known as “global warming,” which was indicative of the previous ten years when temperatures rose on average.

Now with the Copenhagen summits ending without a satisfactory resolution for any parties, it’s clear this subject needs to be given a second look.  Not one of ridiculing skepticism or blind following, but of objective neutral observation of data collected.  Does it really seem so unreasonable to take a discriminating but open look at the whole subject in general?  What is the planet doing and why?  Is it happening elsewhere in our solar system?  Does the recent strange activity of the sun have anything to do with it?  It’s an emotional topic that most people will find difficult to remain neutral on, but we must not be led by aggressors in the news, in our classrooms, or in our own living rooms.

An objective individual looks only at the facts, and only at those facts that can be conclusively confirmed or denied.  Whether it’s real or not, the issue is an important one that is going to require an objective mind to solve.  The human race excels at trial and error.  It’s what we’ve always done, but when we’re creating policy based on information we’re given from newspapers that are blowing up the problem on both sides, no one wins.  If it truly is the fate of our planet that is at stake, then trial and error is not a method I would recommend.  Science has become political dogma before, and at great cost to a great many people.  Perhaps the problem is, that climate change has become the great monster that environmentalism must slay.  Is it something that can be trusted  to worldwide governments, or must we take the responsibility into our own hands?