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Fear-mongering over forest fires


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God, our media sucks so much ass. They love scaring people and doomsaying. And this summer has been great for that, with the major media wallowing in pictures nad stories of forest fires and predicting the whole country will soon be burned to a crisp unless we stop using plastic straws and pay more for carbon taxes. But climate doesn't change much from year to year. The reason there are so many more fires in Canada this year than last is not climate change. It's more likely the effect of El Nino. Forest fires have actually been declining across the world over the past decade. But clickwhore media breathlessly informs us that every fire, every flood, every storm is due to climate change. And that allows dummies like Trudeau to gather in the low intellect crowd's votes to support his insane, two trillion dollar net zero programs.

 

https://nationalpost.com/opinion/fear-mongering-over-forest-fires-and-climate-change-isnt-rooted-in-reality

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I agree in part.  Lomborg makes a point of bringing up the UN "Global Boiling" comment.  The biggest reason so many are climate change deniers is because we are constantly being told what is going to happen, and then it doesn't. 

But are you of the opinion that the media should not report on upsetting things? 

How do you think the media should report on forest fires?  Should they mention evacuations?  Property damage?  Deaths?  Just stop when it comes to whether or not climate change contributed to the conditions that made them possible?  I think responsible reporting of all weather related events should include all of the above.  I wouldn't mind less sensationalism, but not at the expense of the truth.

 

As for the article, Bjorn Lomborg approaches climate change with all the zeal of Extinction Rebellion, but from a different perspective.  Instead of saying "we're all going to die", he says "we're all going to be poor".

He also uses spurious arguments to make his points:

Heatwaves are clearly made worse by global warming. But the non-stop media coverage of high temperatures in the summertime fails to tell the bigger story: temperature-driven deaths are overwhelmingly caused by cold.

Notwithstanding the fact that climate change can result in conditions that would cause both temperature driven deaths, he fails to mention the long term effects of the air pollution that comes with forest fires, and the deaths that come from increasingly extreme weather events.  At least, the study he cites does.  It seems to be limited to temperature related deaths only, which does not tell the whole story.

He is guilty of only quoting data that supports his position while ignoring contrary data.

From Wiki:

Several of Lomborg's articles, in newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal and The Daily Telegraph, have been checked by Climate Feedback, a worldwide network of scientists who assess the credibility of influential climate change media coverage. The Climate Feedback reviewers assessed that the scientific credibility of the articles ranged between "low" and "very low". The Climate Feedback reviewers came to the conclusion that in one case, Lomborg "practices cherry picking";[6] in a second case, he "had reached his conclusions through cherry-picking from a small subset of the evidence, misrepresenting the results of existing studies, and relying on flawed reasoning";[65] in a third case, "[his] article [is in] blatant disagreement with available scientific evidence, while the author does not offer adequate evidence to support his statements";[66] and in a fourth case, "The author, Bjorn Lomborg, cherry-picks this specific piece of research and uses it in support of a broad argument against the value of climate policy. He also misrepresents the Paris Agreement to downplay its potential to curb future climate change."[67]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bjørn_Lomborg

In referring to the fires in Hawaii he seems to quote a twitter article in support of his argument that actually proves the opposite.  His issue seems to be that Hawaii doesn't burn every time it is dry.

He references his own article when he talks about the costs of global warming mitigation versus the benefits of adaptation, and while I could not find a critique of the article (in a cursory search.  I'm more than happy to read a critique of it if someone finds one) I did find this critique of his book False Alarm, which came out at the same time and makes the same arguments.

https://www.lse.ac.uk/granthaminstitute/news/a-closer-examination-of-the-fantastical-numbers-in-bjorn-lomborgs-new-book/

When Lomborg talks of floods he says

The experts emphasize that neither river nor coastal floods are currently statistically detectable from the background noise of natural climate variability. Indeed, the United Nations panel finds that such floods won’t be statistically detectable by the end of the century, even under an extreme scenario.

But he references an article that is limited to Central and South America and states, in part, things like

Climate change is projected to convert existing risks in the region into severe key risks (medium confidence). Key risks are assessed as follows: 1. Risk of food insecurity due to droughts; 2. Risk to people and infrastructure due to floods and landslides;

Extreme precipitation events, which result in floods, landslides and droughts, are projected to intensify in magnitude and frequency due to climate change (medium confidence). Floods and landslides pose a risk to life and infrastructure; a 1.5°C increase would result in an increase of 100–200% in the population affected by floods in Colombia, Brazil and Argentina, 300% in Ecuador and 400% in Peru (medium confidence).

An increase in the frequency of climate-related disasters has been reported (high confidence) (Huggel et al., 2015a; Stäubli et al., 2018) (WGI AR6 Chapter 12) (Ranasinghe et al., 2021). Scale studies indicate an increase of flood risk during the 21st century, consistent withmore frequent floods, with the risk being worse in higher emission scenarios (high confidence)

It's a 128 page article and I didn't go through it in detail, and yes, those quotes above do support my position, but I did search for the words "statistically" and "detectable" and could not find any data that supports his position.  I searched for the word "variability" and found 57 matches, but couldn't tie any of them to his claims.  I searched for the word "flood" and it's in there 200 times.  If anyone wants to go through them and look for data that supports his claim please let me know if you find it.

To Lomborg's credit, he acknowledges Climate Change is real, and human caused.  He says it's not the end of the world.  Well, it isn't. 

13 years ago he advocated for a

"$7-a-tonne tax on carbon emissions, which he says would raise $250bn a year. Of this, $100bn could be spent on clean-tech R&D, about $1bn on climate engineering, $50bn on adapting to changes (building sea defences, for example), and the remaining $99bn or so on "getting virtually everybody on the planet healthcare, basic education, clean drinking water, and so on."

I think his costs for getting everyone on the planet healthcare, education, drinking water and so on are a little on the optimistic side, but at least he likes carbon taxes. 

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2010/aug/30/bjorn-lomborg-climate-change-profile

 

Edited by bcsapper
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14 hours ago, bcsapper said:

I agree in part.  Lomborg makes a point of bringing up the UN "Global Boiling" comment.  The biggest reason so many are climate change deniers is because we are constantly being told what is going to happen, and then it doesn't. 

But are you of the opinion that the media should not report on upsetting things? 

How do you think the media should report on forest fires?  Should they mention evacuations?  Property damage?  Deaths?  Just stop when it comes to whether or not climate change contributed to the conditions that made them possible?  I think responsible reporting of all weather related events should include all of the above.  I wouldn't mind less sensationalism, but not at the expense of the truth.

I'm of the opinion that reporters shouldn't link every single weather event to climate change. Climate change is happening but climate doesn't change from year to year. It follows a long-term trend. We don't have a lot of fires this year as opposed to last year due to climate change. What's more, these scaremongering articles and baseless predictions are designed to frighten people into supporting climate change initiatives that quite frankly, are all but useless. They have also managed to frighten increasing numbers of people, notably younger ones, into believing the world is going to end during their lifetimes and that everyone is either going to die in massive floods or burn to death in the tremendous blast-furnace heat. Greta isn't the only young person driven halfway loony by these beliefs.

Yet the IPCC doesn't predict any such thing. In fact, for northern hemisphere countries there'll be only minor disruptions, and by and large they (we) have the economic, organizational, and technological abilities to adapt to those disruptions, be it with stronger building codes, flood control, and irrigation systems. Unless, of course, we're driven into poverty by moronic policies like Trudeau's net zero - which the Royal bank says will cost Canada $2 trillion.

And I'm not surprised climate activists disagree with Lomborg and will use any means, fair or foul to discredit him. I don't believe everything he says but at this point I believe almost nothing these people have to say. And they're the ones doing the 'fact checking'. And seriously, did you think the Guardian was going to provide an unbiased profile for this guy?

 

Edited by I am Groot
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1 minute ago, I am Groot said:

I'm of the opinion that reporters shouldn't link every single weather event to climate change. Climate change is happening but climate doesn't change from year to year. It follows a long-term trend. We don't have a lot of fires this year as opposed to last year due to climate change. What's more, these scaremongering articles and baseless predictions are designed to frighten people into supporting climate change initiatives that quite frankly, are all but useless. They have also managed to frighten increasing numbers of people, notably younger ones, into believing the world is going to end during their lifetimes and that everyone is either going to die in massive floods or burn to death in the tremendous blast-furnace heat. Greta isn't the only young person driven halfway loony by these beliefs.

Yet the IPCC doesn't predict any such thing. In fact, for northern hemisphere countries there'll be only minor disruptions, and by and large they (we) have the economic, organizational, and technological abilities to adapt to those disruptions, be it with stronger building codes, flood control, and irrigation systems. Unless, of course, we're driven into poverty by moronic policies like Trudeau's net zero - which the Royal bank says will cost Canada $2 trillion.

And I'm not surprised climate activists disagree with Lomborg and will use any means, fair or foul to discredit him. I don't believe everything he says but at this point I believe almost nothing these people have to say. And they're the ones doing the 'fact checking'. 

 

I suppose if you don't believe fact checkers then you have to do your own research.  But at what point do you just start believing what you want to believe?  I made a point of looking at Lomborg's claims because I didn't want to do just that.

As we are going to be just fine, I would much rather see the two trillion dollars spent on making sure that young people in areas of the world where the likelihood is greater that they will suffer as a result of climate change are also just fine.

 

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1 minute ago, bcsapper said:

I suppose if you don't believe fact checkers then you have to do your own research. 

I have done so frequently on this topic. Which is why I know what we're doing now is a waste of time. The climate is a giant beast of a thing, and like a fully loaded supertanker it doesn't change course quickly or easily. Generally, it takes forty years for most of what we do to show up as any significant change (volcanos and nuclear wars excepted). So it'll be forty years AFTER we start reducing CO2 emissions before anything improves. But we're not going to reduce emissions anytime soon. The Chinese and Indians aren't even trying. And hundreds of coal plants are going up around the world. So let's be generous and say maybe we can start reducing emissions in maybe thirty years. Maybe. That would mean nothing noticeable with the climate till 2100. 

Do you really think the technology of that time is going to resemble ours in any way? I'm fairly sure we'll have fusion power, for example, within the next thirty years or so. That will be a game changer for fossil fuel use as an energy source. Technology and not taxes will take care of this.

1 minute ago, bcsapper said:

As we are going to be just fine, I would much rather see the two trillion dollars spent on making sure that young people in areas of the world where the likelihood is greater that they will suffer as a result of climate change are also just fine.

So you want us to beggar ourselves helping the young people in places like India and China and Indonesia while their governments continue to frantically put up coal plants? Not me.

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Just now, I am Groot said:

I have done so frequently on this topic. Which is why I know what we're doing now is a waste of time. The climate is a giant beast of a thing, and like a fully loaded supertanker it doesn't change course quickly or easily. Generally, it takes forty years for most of what we do to show up as any significant change (volcanos and nuclear wars excepted). So it'll be forty years AFTER we start reducing CO2 emissions before anything improves. But we're not going to reduce emissions anytime soon. The Chinese and Indians aren't even trying. And hundreds of coal plants are going up around the world. So let's be generous and say maybe we can start reducing emissions in maybe thirty years. Maybe. That would mean nothing noticeable with the climate till 2100. 

Do you really think the technology of that time is going to resemble ours in any way? I'm fairly sure we'll have fusion power, for example, within the next thirty years or so. That will be a game changer for fossil fuel use as an energy source. Technology and not taxes will take care of this.

So you want us to beggar ourselves helping the young people in places like India and China and Indonesia while their governments continue to frantically put up coal plants? Not me.

I agree with your first two paragraphs, with the possible exception of your timeline for fusion.  It seems like it's always just out of reach.

As for your last paragraph, you sound like Extinction Rebellion.  It doesn't have to be a choice between doing nothing and the poorhouse.  I would be happy to suffer a little so others didn't have to suffer a lot, though.

Also, you seem to think that they should have to live with their governments' choices while we should not?

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4 minutes ago, bcsapper said:

As for your last paragraph, you sound like Extinction Rebellion.  It doesn't have to be a choice between doing nothing and the poorhouse.  I would be happy to suffer a little so others didn't have to suffer a lot, though.

The Conference Board of Canada puts the cost of Trudeau's net zero at $1.7 trillion. The Royal Bank puts it at $2 trillion. If we as a society have to devote that much money to something that is basically useless to us, the economy or anyone else, that is most definitely going to reduce our standard of living and our ability to pay for things like remediation projects, not to mention healthcare.

I would also like to paraphrase a column I read somewhere talking about the view of some that Canada should act all noble and go it alone despite the fact those responsible for the vast majority of CO2 emissions are continuing to increase theirs without regard to global warming. "Canada invaded Europe in concert with our allies on D-Day. But what the climate activists are suggesting is even though our allies refuse we should invade Normandy alone. And even though such a move is doomed to failure we'll serve as a noble inspiration to prod others into action."

I'm not willing to see us suffer to possibly provide 'inspiration'.

4 minutes ago, bcsapper said:

Also, you seem to think that they should have to live with their governments' choices while we should not?

Better them than us.

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6 minutes ago, I am Groot said:

The Conference Board of Canada puts the cost of Trudeau's net zero at $1.7 trillion. The Royal Bank puts it at $2 trillion. If we as a society have to devote that much money to something that is basically useless to us, the economy or anyone else, that is most definitely going to reduce our standard of living and our ability to pay for things like remediation projects, not to mention healthcare.

I would also like to paraphrase a column I read somewhere talking about the view of some that Canada should act all noble and go it alone despite the fact those responsible for the vast majority of CO2 emissions are continuing to increase theirs without regard to global warming. "Canada invaded Europe in concert with our allies on D-Day. But what the climate activists are suggesting is even though our allies refuse we should invade Normandy alone. And even though such a move is doomed to failure we'll serve as a noble inspiration to prod others into action."

I'm not willing to see us suffer to possibly provide 'inspiration'.

Better them than us.

Right.  When I said we didn't have to end up in the poorhouse I was suggesting that perhaps not the whole two trillion should be used.  Save enough for a rainy day.

As to your last comment, again with the Extiction Rebellion.  Why does it have to be one or the other?

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3 hours ago, bcsapper said:

Right.  When I said we didn't have to end up in the poorhouse I was suggesting that perhaps not the whole two trillion should be used.  Save enough for a rainy day.

As to your last comment, again with the Extiction Rebellion.  Why does it have to be one or the other?

Let's say my instinctive sense of tribalism and my conservative sense of responsibility tells me they're making their own bed and should be responsible for pulling themselves out of it. Not that there's anything we can do about it anyway. There's one climate and they're busily making it worse. Nothing I can do about that. 

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2 minutes ago, I am Groot said:

Let's say my instinctive sense of tribalism and my conservative sense of responsibility tells me they're making their own bed and should be responsible for pulling themselves out of it. Not that there's anything we can do about it anyway. There's one climate and they're busily making it worse. Nothing I can do about that. 

How come you still pay carbon taxes then?  I mean, if one has control over one's own bed, wouldn't you have sorted that out by now?

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Just now, I am Groot said:

Do I have a personal choice over any of this?

Of course not.  That's my point.  Neither do the people I would  like to help.  When it comes to government incompetence, none of us are actually making our own bed.

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1 minute ago, bcsapper said:

Of course not.  That's my point.  Neither do the people I would  like to help.  When it comes to government incompetence, none of us are actually making our own bed.

I understand that. If you want to help them go ahead. Just don't ask me to contribute. I have people closer to home I'm helping.

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Just now, I am Groot said:

I understand that. If you want to help them go ahead. Just don't ask me to contribute. I have people closer to home I'm helping.

Okay, that'll work.  Let's send them... 1.5 trillion, say.  Nice round number.

Then you can help the people closer to home with some of the other 0.5 trillion.

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On 8/25/2023 at 10:03 AM, I am Groot said:

But clickwhore media breathlessly informs us that every fire, every flood, every storm is due to climate change

No it doesn't. It's saying that climate change is simply making forest fires worse.

Reality is certainly making climate change deniers worse.

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On 8/25/2023 at 1:03 PM, I am Groot said:

God, our media sucks so much ass.

It sucks so much ass, that it could put out the forest fires with the fecal matter it has amassed in its mouth. 

On 8/26/2023 at 12:36 PM, I am Groot said:

I'm of the opinion that reporters shouldn't link every single weather event to climate change.

A lot more convincing that crack is bad, if you see a crackhead having a violent episode and stripping themselves naked while screaming and dancing.

A lot easier to convince people that speeding is bad, when you show a car with mangled bodies inside that cannot be recognized.

Sensationalism gets clicks. News no longer is about informing.

If am selling you a carbon tax, I would show glaciers collapsing, forest fires, piles of tires and landfils catching fire (devoid of context) to prove my point. It would be voted in, tomorrow.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Oooh, just had a real 'fear mongered' worrier here. She and her hubby were invited to stay here in the spring, took til the end of Aug. to show p and hung about for 15 days.
She spent half her time checking the phone for fire reports and fretting... there WAS one 30km away that might spring up again... oh my! new fire on a rez only 90km away... oh oh! Another 100 km south.. what to do what to do?
We also hve a sever bear problem, the fires have driven them closer and the drought means no berries so the damn thing have been raiding garbage cans in town all summer, My chichuahua was chasing them away several times a day. Bear bangers were going off nightly.
I make them go outside to smoke, there's a table in the carport I sit at when it's nice. She wouldn't go out without bringing the dog. He'd patrol the edges of the property, look up and down the street and go back inside thru the doggie door, you could almost see im shaking his head at her. The mutt goes ballistic if he hears a noise or smells one, sharp barks, rushes out to confront it... BUT she heard, saw, smelled the bear and heard bear bangers no one else did and the dog didn't even raise it's head. Paced endlessly and barely slept

So glad when they left. She reminded me of my bipolar ex, but the ex didn't have episodes that lasted fifteen bloody days.

Ohh! Ooh! There's a new fire 200km north... gotta go it could be here any second... auugggh!!! EEEE!!! gaakk!

Edited by herbie
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  • 6 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/6/2023 at 12:00 PM, SpankyMcFarland said:

I think a lot more fear should be mongered about forest fires in Canada. After what we’ve been through this year already, we shouldn’t need scientists to tell us something very serious is happening. 

Taxing us won't fix this.

The world is still highly fossil fuel dependent. Industries such as automotive, air, manufacturing, farming, are still emissions heavy globally.

Canada based on comparisons to similar G7 nations, are insanely clean.

Fear mongering makes absolutely no sense, as it doesn't look at the reality.

It would be like panicking in crossing an intersection on your light, because of the volume of people who get hit by cars, every year.

Panic would not be rational. 

This is no different.

The danger is there. However, panic literally ignores that this does absolutely nothing to resolve the issue at hand.

Paying high taxes, or being punished for "pollution", is ridiculous.

Investing in greener innovative alternatives to polluting means, maybe is a start.

Panic to me, is just someone not understanding how little influence they have in the state of the world right now, and is fueled by emotions and fear vs logic and pragmatic thinking.

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On 4/1/2024 at 9:14 PM, Perspektiv said:

Taxing us won't fix this.

The world is still highly fossil fuel dependent. Industries such as automotive, air, manufacturing, farming, are still emissions heavy globally.

Canada based on comparisons to similar G7 nations, are insanely clean.

Fear mongering makes absolutely no sense, as it doesn't look at the reality.

It would be like panicking in crossing an intersection on your light, because of the volume of people who get hit by cars, every year.

Panic would not be rational. 

This is no different.

The danger is there. However, panic literally ignores that this does absolutely nothing to resolve the issue at hand.

Paying high taxes, or being punished for "pollution", is ridiculous.

Investing in greener innovative alternatives to polluting means, maybe is a start.

Panic to me, is just someone not understanding how little influence they have in the state of the world right now, and is fueled by emotions and fear vs logic and pragmatic 

 

 

I don’t advocate panic but we need to be concerned enough to deal with the problem which we are not at the moment. Our fire season doesn’t stop now. I can see a day coming when the number one request from the US to Canada will be to stop our smoke choking their cities. 

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1 hour ago, SpankyMcFarland said:

I don’t advocate panic but we need to be concerned enough to deal with the problem which we are not at the moment.

How do we address a global issue, that we in terms of contributions as a country, are the equivalent of genuinely thinking us putting a watergun away will do a thing to global warming.

The world, however, is the equivalent of what flows over Niagara falls, hourly.

Us panicking defies logic, because even if Canada became net zero as a country, these global issues would continue to persist.

It makes absolutely no logical sense to panic the population into accepting to be taxed heavily to stop Forrest fires that will continue to occur.

This is the epitome of virtue signaling. It does absolutely nothing  but feels entitled to a pat on the back.

1 hour ago, SpankyMcFarland said:

I can see a day coming when the number one request from the US to Canada will be to stop our smoke choking their cities. 

I wouldn't be surprised. It however does nothing to remotely put a dent into the global problem.

Practical would be investing in charging stations. Battery technology innovation. 

Initiatives that would make EVs, far more practical and affordable, encouraging more in your population to move towards using it.

This has nothing to do with climate change. It has everything to do with wealth redistribution. Fear mongering, and getting lazy about pushing for buy in, by shaming.

Being solution based, looks at the problem. Its root cause, and at all of the options on the table to help reduce it, using incentives. Encouragement. Openness to ideas.

Dialogue.

When what you are doing is BS, it's easier to punish any dissenting voices.

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