Columns 7.8.2017 07:15 am

A warning from the dead on global warming

Stock image

Stock image

Oh, so you still don’t believe in climate change, eh?

Last Tuesday, on the Hohlaub glacier in Switzerland, climbers spotted a hand sticking out from the ice.

Rescue teams dug out the corpse and a DNA match confirmed the remains to be those of a German hiker who went missing 30 years ago.

He’d melted out.

Swiss glaciers are melting at an unprecedented rate: in the past year, they’ve lost 900 billion litres of water.

Two weeks before, the remains of a couple missing for 75 years emerged from the nearby Tsanfleuron glacier. Then another “melt body” was found on Mont Blanc, after being missing for 50 years.

Fittingly, last Tuesday a friend took me to a preview of the film An Inconvenient Sequel, the follow-up to Al Gore’s climate change documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, which was a surprise hit in 2006.

This update blew away a decade’s worth of cobwebs: freak storms, wildfires, collapsing ice shelves, droughts, floods, rain “bombs”, record temperatures, and sea creatures swimming down the streets of Miami.

Scariest of all was that Gore’s most derided prediction, flooding at the World Trade Centre site, happened in 2012, years before even he anticipated it.

Oh, but you don’t believe in climate change, do you? What we’re seeing is merely the natural ebb and flow of the world and global warming is just a great big conspiracy dreamt up by leftie liberals, who want to steal a man’s steak, ban his truck and put a wind farm atop the Drakensberg?

It’s always a bit of a surprise that the deniers are not also denouncing gravity, or worrying about ships sailing over the end of the flat earth, for theirs is a war against fact itself.

The science is solid. Disbelieving something does not make it a lie. Yes, perhaps 5% of scientists argue climate change is not worth worrying about – although none of them say it’s not happening at all – but it’s a pretty good bet that at least 5% of scientists are employed or funded by the fossil fuel industry.

So, while you’re standing there atop your pile of coal imagining yourself a renegade, bear in mind that the biggest funders of denial globally are the Koch brothers, whose multibillion-dollar Koch Industries is primarily involved in the production of petroleum. And remember, too, that dead people are emerging from glaciers, like a warning.

Jennie Ridyard

Jennie Ridyard

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