Now that another Earth Day has come and gone, let's look at some environmentalists' predictions they would prefer we forget.
the first Earth Day celebration, in 1969, environmentalist Nigel Calder
warned, "The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear
war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind." C.C.
Wallen of the World Meteorological Organization said, "The cooling
since 1940 has been large enough and consistent enough that it will not
soon be reversed."
In 1968, Professor Paul Ehrlich, former
Vice President Al Gore's hero and mentor, predicted a major food
shortage in the U.S. and "in the 1970s... hundreds of millions of
people are going to starve to death." Mr. Ehrlich forecast 65 million
Americans would die of starvation between 1980 and 1989, and by 1999
the U.S. population would have declined to 22.6 million. Mr. Ehrlich's
predictions about England were gloomier: "If I were a gambler, I would
take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000."
1972, a report for the Club of Rome warned the world would run out of
gold by 1981, mercury and silver by 1985, tin by 1987 and petroleum,
copper, lead and natural gas by 1992.
Gordon Taylor, in his
1970 book "The Doomsday Book," said Americans were using 50 percent of
the world's resources and "by 2000 they [Americans] will, if permitted,
be using all of them."
In 1975, the Environmental Fund took
out full-page ads warning, "The World as we know it will likely be
ruined by the year 2000."
Harvard University biologist George
Wald in 1970 warned, "civilization will end within 15 or 30 years
unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind." That
was the same year Sen. Gaylord Nelson warned, in Look Magazine, that by
1995 "somewhere between 75 and 85 percent of all the species of living
animals will be extinct."
It's not just latter-day doomsayers
who have been wrong; doomsayers have always been wrong. In 1885, the
U.S. Geological Survey announced there was "little or no chance" of oil
being discovered in California, and a few years later they said the
same about Kansas and Texas. In 1939, the U.S. Interior Department said
American oil supplies would last only another 13 years. In 1949, the
interior secretary said the end of U.S. oil supplies was in sight.
Having learned nothing from its earlier erroneous claims, in 1974
the U.S. Geological Survey advised us that the U.S. had only a 10-year
supply of natural gas. In fact,, according to the American Gas
Association, there's a 1,000- to 2,500-year supply.
my questions: In 1970, when environmentalists were making predictions
of manmade global cooling and the threat of an ice age and millions of
Americans starving to death, what kind of government policy should we
have undertaken to prevent such a calamity?
When Mr. Ehrlich
predicted England would not exist in the year 2000, what steps should
the British Parliament have taken in 1970 to prevent such a dire
outcome? In 1939, when the Interior Department warned we only had oil
supplies for another 13 years, what actions should President Roosevelt
have taken? Finally, what makes us think environmental alarmism is any
more correct now the tune has been switched to manmade global warming?
are a few facts: More than 95 percent of the greenhouse effect is the
result of water vapor in Earth's atmosphere. Without the greenhouse
effect, Earth's average temperature would be zero degrees Fahrenheit.
Most climate change is due to the orbital eccentricities of Earth and
variations in the sun's output. On top of that, natural wetlands
produce more greenhouse gas contributions annually than all human