Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Climate Volatility equals Economic Instability

Global Warming is a false scapegoat for the casual observer.  When it's bitter cold out, we say "where is that global warming they talk about?".  When pundits talk of a warming trend, some indicate the benefits for agriculture and the reduced need for heating fuel.  They make it sound like global warming is not such a bad thing; in fact, that warming the earth could be a good thing.  Nothing could be further from the truth.

Besides rising seas and diminishing beach front property over the decades to come, there is a whole host of problems associated with Global Climate Change.  In fact, the terms "Global Warming" and "Global Climate Change" just don't do this concept justice.  I suggest a new term which more adequately connotes the seriousness of this problem.  It is not the gradual warming itself that we should be concerned about in the short and medium term, it is the volatility of the climate which may wreak more havoc in the decades leading up to rising sea levels.

Climate Volatility is not a hard concept to understand.  Just like Market Volatility, one can appreciate how radical spikes in weather patterns or prolonged periods of drought (hello Texas) can affect our daily lives. So should our respect for the forces of nature be factored into our decisions about how to prepare ourselves for a changing world as we continue burning fossil fuels.

Market Volatility is being discussed right now with respect to the oil commodities.  This market is being manipulated thanks to poorly-regulated trading of oil futures.  The results are very expensive for all of us.

Climate Volatility is not so quickly controlled by humans.  We can, however, take solid measures to mitigate the worst effects of climate volatility on our society.  We need to move beyond partisan politics and create positive opportunities for investments that favor reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.

Right now, republicans are gambling with our nation’s economic future by playing politics with the debt ceiling, AND playing politics with arbitrary program cuts that affect our country's social and economic fabric.  These political jabs by extremist republicans are also damaging private sector job growth and strategic planning for business investments.

We need to tell the GOP that we will not stand for their political gamesmanship when it comes to economic stability, or when it comes to acknowledging and ACTING on responsible public policy that addresses Climate Volatility.

1 comment:

  1. Finally. Every single time there is a cold day or a snowstorm in winter, conservative "news" commentators pull out the old "Global warming? Har-har" canard.

    I'm glad to finally see some responses pointing out that global warming means increases in the extremes and frequency of extreme weather rather than this idiotic right-wing picture of sipping mint julips on the porch in January.