Friday, November 14, 2008

I just don't believe in global warming

A few months ago, I read a Michal Crichton book called "State of Fear." What I like about Crichton is that he does a lot of real world research, then builds a fictional story around his research. The idea in "State of Fear" is that the powers that be have created the myth of global warming in order to keep the masses in a state of fear (thus the title), which makes them easier to manipulate.

Not long after reading that, I heard a vegan on the radio screaming about the act of eating meat being the "number one cause" of global warming. I never really believed in global warming, so I scoffed at him immediately. Then I started thinking, I've heard "____ is the number one cause of global warming" many, many times, about many different things. So I decided that one day, I would google "number one cause of global warming" and see what turns up. And today is that day.

Mostly what turns up are blogs, I saw few actual news articles or science journals. I didn't look through every single result, though, I am not that dedicated a researcher.

There were many results which agreed with that vegan that eating meat is the number one cause. Most of these were either vegans or animal rights activists. They all cited the UN as their source for this information, but the links they provided did not work. There is even a petition started which asks for "all meat packages to be labeled with a clear warning that meat is the number one cause of global warming."

Another number one cause is greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of fossil fuels.

Some people who seem a bit more logical to me say the number one cause is the sun, and the number two cause is geothermal activity. They put greenhouse gases at the 98th - 100th cause of global warming. The did not share causes three through 97, though. This was on Yahoo! Answers.

One girl says that "we" are the number one cause. By "we" I assume she means humans, but she doesn't specify. Her list goes like this:
-Cars/any type of engine
-Cows, pigs, sheep- fart out methane
-Cutting down trees- lets out Co2
Doesn't sound very scientific to me, but it was also on Yahoo! Answers, so you can't take it too seriously.

One which did turn out to be a news article said, "the number one cause of global warming isn't cars, but buildings." [from CBS news]  

I searched for "UN meat global warming" to find the real article that people were trying to cite. What it actually says is, "Rearing cattle produces more greenhouse gases than driving cars," and "Livestock are one of the most significant contributors to today’s most serious environmental problems." I can find no mention in their article, on, that claims that meat is the number one cause of global warming.

Googling "global warming myth" turned up a lot more news articles and scientific looking results. Again, I'm not a truly dedicated researcher, so I didn't actually read most of them. The one I did read was on ABC's 20/20 website. I found it quite interesting. Even though it was written more than 18 months ago, it was the first hit I got on that search.

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