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Readers are closely split on climate change issue

By a narrow margin, respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll say they do not think climate change is a serious global problem that needs to be addressed now.

Representatives from nearly 200 countries are in Copenhagen, Denmark, for a United Nations conference on climate change. Delegates will work to reach agreement on details of a global climate accord.

Conference organizers say there is overwhelming scientific evidence climate change caused by human activity “will threaten economic growth and long-term prosperity, as well as the very survival of the (world’s) most vulnerable populations.” Others have challenged that evidence and say the global threat is exaggerated.

Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defended climate research this week after e-mails stolen from a British university were described by skeptics as evidence that scientists conspired to suppress evidence that does not fit their theories.

Forty-two percent of Snap Poll respondents said economic growth should be the priority, compared with 12 percent who said environmental protection needs to be foremost. The rest—42 percent—said the issues should be given equal priority.

Some 860 readers participated in this week’s poll, which was conducted Dec. 7 and 8.

Do you agree that climate change is a serious global problem that must be addressed now?
No: 51%
Yes: 49%

In general, which should be the higher priority: economic growth or environmental protection?
Economic growth: 46%
Equal priority: 42%
Environmental protection: 12%

Here are some readers’ comments:

Am I the only person who actually Googled the IPCC report and read it? Am I the only one who saw that the so-called scientists were selected by governments, not the scientific community? Am I the only one who heard that these scientists included a gynecologist and a guy who reads tea leaves? If so, I’m ready to toss out my standard of living and join the unquestioning lemmings on our trip to the highest cliff. After all, “every scientist agrees about global warming, or so I’m told. P.T. Barnum is laughing in his grave, but I don’t want to be laughing in mine.
—Bill Lanigan, Chamberlin Rubber

Seeing is believing. When scientists can show melting glaciers and dwindling animal species, numbers don’t lie. Emotion can be a powerful positive or negative. It’s better to be safe and explore the what-ifs than to ignore and be sorry. How good can economic growth be without a place to experience it?
—Rob Johnson, FlavorStream Buffet

Although global warming and climate change are very important (and are contributed to by human activity), they should not be a priority over the economic health of our country. We should have a twofold plan to stimulate the economy and get our debt under control and protect our environment from further decay. I believe both can be achieved and it does not need to be a “one or the other” proposition. Those who deny the human contribution to global warming have their heads in the sand. It’s not all mother nature. BUT, even if we really DO believe that man has made no contribution, what difference does it make? IT’S HERE. For proof, just look at the Alaskan glaciers. I’ve been there and seen them for myself. They’re not what they were just 25 years ago. In truth, who cares what’s causing it? We should be doing all we can to mitigate the condition. Of course, if we’re bankrupt and getting surplus food from China it may be a moot point, at least for us. Focus on the economy first with the environment an integral part of the mix.
—Rick Bradley

Climate change is man-made. Some men sat in their offices and made it up on their computer so they could get grant money, just as they did in the ’70s when they predicted global freezing.
—Loren Meale

Air, water and land pollution are concerns for all of us. We should do all we reasonably can to reduce environmental pollution. To make the progress we need to reuse, repair, recycle and repurpose, we need financial prosperity and economic growth. The most abundant greenhouse gas is water vapor. What can we do about the Earth’s water vapor crisis? Can we tax the seas? The latest version of the "Cap and Tax" legislation will be more tax than cap. Green jobs are either government jobs or government subsidized jobs. Free Market solutions with appropriate government regulation are the best way to go. If government takes over the environmental movement, we’ll get programs like Medicaid, which is bankrupting the States, Medicare, which is bankrupting the Feds, and Cash for Clunkers, where the Feds had my grandchildren help pay for my car. I didn’t even have to send them a "Thank You."
—Clifford Jacobson, WebHomeUSA.com

As a geologist, it is easy to point back into “recent” geological time and show very warm and very cold periods in Earth’s history. The blip of humanity sees but a small section of the very long cyclic nature of the Earth.
—Greg Gartland

Since we now know that the global warming scientists were fudging their data, we should not be spending trillions of dollars to fix a problem that may not exist. Hint: Follow the money. Most of these scientists are getting their money from the government. The politicians are justifying the money based on the “crisis” of global warming. (“A crisis is a terrible thing to waste.”) Because there is a crisis, they want to gain control over most of our industry and increase tax receipts by redefining carbon dioxide as a pollutant. This stupidity would be hilarious, if the results weren’t so devastating to our economy.
—Dennis Ditch, Delta Square Inc.

If it wasn’t for global warming, this area would still be under glaciers.
—Gerry Van Strydonck

When unemployment is at such a high level right now, people are out of work, small to medium businesses are struggling to keep afloat, much less hire more people, all the government thinks about is global warming, climate change and trying to keep us all green! Centuries past have shown global warming, then global cooling, then global warming again. Doesn’t this show that the Earth cycles naturally one way and then the other? Let’s recycle and try to keep the Earth clean, but not go to the extremes that this summit in Copenhagen will probably have us go to. Where’s the common sense here?
—Ruth Ditch

The first thing I would like to say is that I don’t believe carbon dioxide is a pollutant. There are volcanoes that have been spewing all manner of gases into the atmosphere for centuries, and no one is talking about that. The second thing I would like to say is that this country is in the throes of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, yet we spend our valuable time in Copenhagen. I think our president should get his priorities in order. We are facing major economic challenges in this country, the least of which is how much CO2 there is in the atmosphere.
—Phil Turturici, Absolute Consulting

The climate has changed countless times over the last several hundreds of years. I feel that this is a normal part of living in our solar system. I do not believe that the addition of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere has anything to do with global warming. I feel that this is a man-made phenomenon.
—F.J. Muto

There seems to be disagreement within the scientific community about climate change (man-made vs. Mother Nature). I am not a scientist, but it is logical to me based on what I have read that climate change could be natural. However, the human race would be better served if scientists within the EPA and related global agencies would deal with facts rather than personal agendas. The analysis should not be politicized.
—Mike Kaser, CFO, PICS Telecom International

The earth has been in existence for billions of years. Who are we to determine in such a miniscule time period of say, 100 years, to think that we humans can have such a significant effect on our planet? The sample of data needs to be generations long. The liberal agenda is to increase taxation through scare tactics–worldwide. There is as much evidence in both directions to support and oppose the debate.
—Don Eaton, Reagan Cos., Fairport

I think the biggest global threat is letting governments run rampant creating more rules and taxes. This is an unmitigated power grab. If this is truly a scenario to "make the planet a better place", gauge the stress put on China to conform. It is another reason to be taxed and forced to comply with new rules. I predict it will give third world countries a status and sympathy (our money) that hasn’t been earned.
—Lou Romano

The next large area of economic growth will be related to the environment. They are not mutually exclusive. We are already falling behind China in new jobs, innovation and market share in this growing technology. Unless one has the credentials as a scientist to respond, polls such as these encourage ignorance. The fact some people do not believe in the laws of gravity does not change reality.
—Jim Bertolone, Rochester AFL-CIO

Global warming has been happening since the end of the last ice age and is a natural occurrence that has happened before and will happen again. Even if man did not exist, the earth would still warm and we have little control over the eventual outcome of global warming. This latest effort is simply a wealth exchange.
—Mike Pell

I find it difficult to believe that some still characterize this serious issue as a "debate." Human activity has and continues to impact our environment and climate. If we’re smart, this can be an opportunity for economic growth.
—Dave Meyer, Pathfinder Engineers and Architects

The earth may indeed be warming up, there’s not nearly enough data to say that it’s solely because of human activity. Events in the natural world tend to run in cycles—some short, some long. Sometimes really long. Anyway, that being said, we should of course take all steps possible to reduce or eliminate pollution, both on an individual as well as global scale.
—Rich Thompson, Northrop Grumman

Nothing will be worse for the economy than the effects of rapid climate change (storm damage, drought, depressed agriculture, etc.) or the cost of securing fossil fuel supplies. For example, the U.S. Dept. of Defense Central Command budget for the Middle East—excluding direct costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—already amounts to a hidden tax of more than $25 per barrel of OPEC oil that we import. (U.S. EIA 2008 statistic—we import 5,964,000 barrels per day from OPEC alone.)
—Martin Nott, O’Keeffe & Co.

Economic growth and environment—you can have both. After we pretty much neglected it for about 30 years green technology has great potential to boost our (local) economy, creating many jobs —speak fuel cell, wind, geo, bio, solar, recycling. Becoming sensitive to our use of energy (saves your money) along with the use of green technology is the way to liberate us from our dependency on (foreign) oil – and helping the environment at the same time. It’s not either or—it’s win-win and never forget: It is our air, soil and water and that our children will live in—we all have a responsibility to protect it while benefiting economically now!
—Hans von Gehlen, president, MindSetter LLC

With major populations along coastal areas in the world, rising sea levels is a serious problem. The U.S., No. 2 in "green technology," currently holds just 12% of the world patents in green technology. Japan, who is No. 1, holds over 40% of the world patents. We have some catching up to do!
—Ralph Carter, Xerox

Global warming is a hoax. We should worry about pollution. We should always be working towards less waste. The global warming is about money. Follow Al Gore’s money trail. That is where you will find answers.
—Ken Williamson

Climate is always changing. There are many explanations, none of which are manmade.
—Bob Brinkman

Economic growth and environmental stewardship are not mutually exclusive. Wise and forward-thinking businesses recognize the need for stable, healthy, and renewable resources. Rampant regulatory sprawl devouring commerce will stifle and suffocate the engine of our economy. As our economy goes, so goes our way of life, our ability to lead and inspire, and our ability to fulfill the American dream. Ceding our own fate to any global governance via climate change, international social justice, or any other external control is dangerous, financially unsustainable, and BEYOND inconvenient for Americans.
—Steve Beyer

As far as the environment goes, we ought to be focusing on conservation of fresh water and recycling efforts—and not the silly notion of global warming.
—Eric Bourgeois

This is not a choice between economic growth and environmental protection; it’s a choice between economic stability and rolling the dice on whether or not the existing data is accurate. The second less talked about issue is; if the data is accurate, will the solution have any effect? Sounds like the “science” as well as the risk/reward is far from settled.
—Patrick Tobin 

A healthy environment can only be our first priority. Polluted air and water are beginning to have very costly effects on the health of humans. I’m not really sure what the point of economic growth is if we on this planet do not have clean air to breath and clean water to ingest. There is an abundance of information available for insuring the above, plus creating business opportunities. Check out <i>Good</I> magazine sometime for innovative ideas, creative thinking and technology are out there! We should not even have to pose this kind of either/or question anymore!
—Connie Ehindero, Sigma Marketing Group

We have only one earth. We should respect and protect it for future generations as we rebuild the economy for our immediate needs.
—Art Maurer

If we don’t save the earth, we won’t need the money to spend.
—David DeMallie

I believe "climate change" is a very serious issue because its very premise is accepted as scientific fact. There is so much conflicting data that has been removed, avoided and ignored it makes the discussion totally bogus. The real agenda behind this is to alter our entire free market economic system. If the people who are trying to ram these ideas through were intellectually honest, they would be stopped dead in their tracks.
—Todd Black, Black’s Hardware

The more important question is this: Can we do anything to stop the global environmental changes—no matter how much money we spend? The experts I have listened to seem think the answer is no.
—Jim Ryan

Any attempt at "addressing" global climate change inherently assumes that the climate can and will be measurably influenced by our actions. Could there be a more fruitless pursuit?
—David Schiffhauer

The need to address the issues of global warming by reducing emissions from gas, oil, and coal and by developing clean energy technologies (solar, wind) presents a unique opportunity for economic investment and growth. In Rochester, there is world-class expertise in many technologies related to clean energy and an investment in them would be both an economic and ecological boom. George Eastman essentially created a new industry in the late 1800s; we can do something similar in the 21st century.
—Bob Loeb, Robert Loeb Communications

Economic growth has always cured a lot of problems.
—Doug Lyon, Lyon Capital Management

It is a fallacy to think that economic growth and environmental protection are mutually exclusive. Why can’t economic growth be based upon new processes and energy sources that are more protective of the environment?
—Les Kernan

You missed the question; i.e. the CAUSE of global warming. Is it a long cycle event, man-made, or as I believe some mixture of both. Sure we should reduce emissions, if only to conserve resources, but we should not cripple our economy to do so.
—Sam Reeder, Ferronics, Inc.

The so-called "scientific evidence" is clearly political. Like if a scientist disagrees, no more grant money. Look at long-term (centuries and beyond) climate changes, and it is clear humans do not have the power to affect climate change.
—Jim Weisbeck, Bloomfield

The absurdity of being the first generation to believe it can change the weather by throwing money at it is one for the future history books. Maybe for "Believe it or Not," as well. What we are seeing here is funny money economic growth of a new industry, publicly funded, that produces no product and never goes out of business. Meanwhile, our economy will continue to be overrun by imports from countries who know how to prioritize effectively and who don’t buy-in to bread and circuses fairy tales.
—Diane Harris, president, Hypotenuse Enterprises, Inc.

There is little question that humans are having an effect on the makeup of our biosphere: CO2 levels have risen outside of the range in which they’ve stayed for 35 million years, changes in animal populations and migration patterns have been recorded, and established weather patterns are changing. The question, then, is whether the Earth can recover from or accommodate our influence. While this is still open for debate, erring on the cautious side is the sane thing to do. When we consider that climate change is not an isolated issue, but a result of our burning hydrocarbons at an astounding rate and that one day we will run out, it only makes sense to begin moving to sustainability both in our lifestyles, in our means of production, and in our numbers. Economic growth has always come through the need to achieve a goal, and environmental protection coupled with the eventual end of oil is a worthy cause on which to focus. The need for growth itself is also a problem: it is a perpetual motion machine driven by continual population growth and a consumerist society with a disposability bent. Changing from a culture working to accumulate wealth to one focused on having time for family and friends, and making the most of what we already have, offers the opportunity to work less. This leaves work to be filled by those presently out-of-work, helping to rectify the present imbalance we face. Through our own choice to downsize our lives, we can help reduce human environment impact <i>and</i> move society toward economic balance without the need for growth.
—Perette Barella, Devious Fish

I am in favor of environmental protection, but climate change is a giant hoax perpetuated by "scientists" who ignore data that doesn’t fit their agenda and their willing allies in the mainstream media. What a bunch of hypocrites in Copenhagen—they used 1,200 limousines, not to mention lots of private jets—to get to and around Copenhagen.
—Karen Zilora, Creative Scanning Solutions, Inc.

Here’s a thought for those who do not believe climate change is related to human activity: Does it do any harm to mitigate pollution, to plan for when oil reserve depletion is even more evident, to engineer vehicles with better gas mileage and to use renewable energy, and so on? We need to do all this and more, so just get out of the way, OK? I think most climate change deniers have never studied any of the facts or data they disagree with. They just listen to their conservative buddies or talk radio. Thank goodness they are a real, but pesky, minority.
—Margie Campaigne, Project HOUSE/Green Irene

Climate change is a problem. The source of change has not yet been scientifically determined. Regulation now, prior to cause determination, is a waste of money.
—Bill Mrkvicka

The current "Global Warming" controversy is another centralized government ploy for redistribution of wealth. This is part of the all fronts attack by the leftist and socialists and communists on the wealth sustaining capability that only the capitalism system can provide. This has been proven many times over and is being tested again. China’s recent economic model of growth recognizes private capitalism. How did Al Gore become a millionaire by capitalizing on the lies (selling fiction for truth) of "Global Warming"? Did anyone see him donate (redistribute) his ill-gotten gains to the "poor" or to third world governments, or subsidize the deficit of our government? NOT! But he is in the forefront of the lies and politicizing science. Global warming and cooling cycles are long term natural phenomena over millions of years. Short-term influences are yet to be demonstrated. Suppression of scientific debate is now being revealed. Sampling unreliable data and applying unjustifiable corrections to rationalize and support beliefs IS BAD SCIENCE. It’s time to let free market economics provide the corrections to consumption without the impact of "World Government" intrusion to redistribute wealth, which is the real motive behind all this fanfare. The Copenhagen conference is another “world Government sponsored global event” to destroy capitalism. If this fails, and I pray it does, be forewarned these “do gooders” will find other ways to destroy free will. One can rightly point to the abuses of capitalism (imperfect but still the best wealth creation system we have) but where is the equally and more justified critique of government waste and abuse of power? Fascism or Socialism or Communism are all focused on the government making decisions for the people because they "Know Better"? These mega government remedies are all designed to hurt economic and private sector growth, job creation, and creation of wealth. How can you deny that at the root of the current world economic crisis is government interference to redistribute wealth? Those of you who are ambivalent, and are participating in the markets 401(k), 403B, etc. with the goal of investment growth know that these world government efforts are designed to stifle your dreams and your children’s dreams of future growth. Vote every incumbent out.
—Dennis Kiriazides, Xerox Corp., retired

We need to understand climate change and work with it, like any problem. Either join in as we can’t fight it, so work with it. There can be a lot of economic growth with working to understand and work with climate change.
—Ted Marks, Atwater Estate Vineyards

Regardless of the factual basis of claims for climate change, we certainly need to begin the process of reducing our "carbon footprint" to zero. Whether or not the temperature is rising, it cannot hurt to stop pushing more and more carbon into the atmosphere, for the sake of the future of the planet. As to whether the environmental protection should have priority over economic growth, it really doesn’t matter. We have got to do both. Paying attention to the shorter term issue and creating jobs, to create consumers, to restore the economy need not detract from efforts to protect the environment. In fact, shrewdness can create a new economy based on environmental protections, including reduced emissions from automobiles and greener means of producing energy. Let’s fix ’em both, but get jobs going more quickly!
—Hutch Hutchison, In T’Hutch Ltd.

Continuing environmental protection will provide new opportunities for economic growth. Einstein said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Our civilization must regain its sanity. It’s time to morph the energy as well as many other cultural paradigms.
—Greg Reynolds

No intelligent discussion or evaluation of so-called climate change is possible without full exploration of the issue. Even before the U.N. e-mail debacle was exposed, scientists who challenge global warming claims have been silenced. Man-made climate change is just a tool to advance political agendas—let’s not forget that the earth has been around for billions of years, and its climate is constantly changing. Are we so arrogant to believe that 100 years of industrialization is really enough to destroy the earth?
—R. Canley

Eventually our economic growth as well as the global economy will come around and start to improve, however, if we don’t do something to save our environment NOW, we may miss our only opportunity to insure a safe, breathable world in the future.
—Jody Hellman, Towers Airport Business Park

In my life, I have seen a lot of these discussions. In the end, the requirements of environmental protection forced the businesses to thoroughly examine their activities, led to significant improvements in their productivity and saved a lot of money. An example is Kodak, which went through this many years ago and came out, at that time, to be a better company (at that time). Thus, the businesses in the world that embrace the environmental improvements will be the future leaders in quality and efficiency. Our country will continue to fall behind in the world with huge losses for our children, if it continues to refuse to do what will be for the benefits of all Americans and the betterment of the country. The short-sighted whining about these short-term expenses misses the point by a thousand miles. Suck it up and do what is right, and our country will be the better for it.
—Ingo H. Leubner, Crystallization Consulting

While I agree with those that say there will a loss of jobs with more restrictive environmental protections, there will also be many new jobs, with progressive technology, created to implement the protections efficiently. We have seen this over and over again throughout history. It is those with vested interest in the present technology that attempt to impede progress, and, in this case, endanger future generations, to maintain their own economic position.
—Jim Sutter

For too many years we have put off doing anything of any worth to stop the level of carbon emissions. At what point do we stop putting off the inevitable? I view the issue of the economy as a very short term concern. In three years we will talk about it like we now talk about the Great Depression. Climate change is a permanent lifestyle change. Our grandchildren, when they are our age, will look back to how our generation was the one that finally made the sacrifices necessary to ensure a stable environment. We must make the difference now, or generations to come will suffer.
—M. Houston

More than climate change, this problem that needs to be addressed is carbon emissions that is responsible for global warming.
—Sergio Ruffolo, JR Language Translation Services, Inc.

Protecting our environment locally and globally is definitely a priority, as is real economic development and especially job creation. My concern is that government should not be granted carte blanche to apply fanatical controls to industry that make domestic companies even less competitive by unreasonably increasing costs. The key things to bear in mind are that we all have a role to play in environmental protection and conservation, and that an ounce of prevention (protection) is worth a pound of cure (remediation). Let’s all make smart choices as individuals and companies, and that will have a more-effective and digestible impact on truly protecting the environment.
—Christopher Burns

Efforts to prevent climate change such as developing alternative sources of energy to reduce carbon emissions and promoting energy efficiency can support economic growth as well; they shouldn’t be pitted against each other as a choice of one or the other.
—Jessica Murray

Depending on what report you read, we are warming at alarming rates or beginning the slip into another ice age. As with most spins, this spin depends on the author of the report you are reading. I would say that our minimal time spent on this earth makes it somewhat perilous to address broad climaticalogic changes with any degree (no pun intended) of certainty. Should we reduce man-made pollutants…absolutely? Should we push all SUVs into the ocean to make coral reefs—most likely no.
—Rob Bick

With proper economic incentives, we can give environmental protection and economic growth the highest of priorities and not be forced into the false choices of one more or even equal to the other. Our policies must reflect the urgent nature of both priorities, otherwise our growth will not be sustainable or our protection will not be cost effective. We must make it financially attractive to implement policies which protect our planet and provide economic growth.
—Michael Harf, EMCO Commercial Flooring, Inc.

Climate change predictions are based on bad science. The effect of mankind on the global environment is impossible to measure and contrast against the constant changes that occur naturally over time. But the damage that will be done to this country economically if CAP and Trade is enacted can be measured. It may turn the US back into a third world country, to the delight of our competitors and enemies. Shame on those foisting this HOAX upon us.
—George Thomas, Ogden

Everyone agrees that reducing/eliminating harmful pollutants is a good thing. Not everyone agrees that Carbon Dioxide is a harmful pollutant. The unwillingness of the "Climate Change" ideologues to debate the issue feeds the skepticism of many Americans like myself. Has everyone forgotten that only three decades ago, scientists were calling for the next ice age? "Climate Change" continues to move further away from the realm of science and closer toward a political agenda with an end goal of worldwide redistribution of wealth.
—Todd VanHouten

Solving environmental concerns offers U.S. companies significant new business opportunities for economic growth. Let’s take advantage of this opportunity to provide the world with an environmental friendly way of doing business. If we don’t, someone else will.
—Doug Flood, president, Lean Enterprise Development

The question asked is as ambiguous as the issue of AGW. The issue of climate change has been going on for 4 billion years (the age of the Earth). But, it is recognized as an artifact of the discussion. That is, when AGW could not be proven, the tagging of the issue changed conveniently to "Climate Change". We all know the climate is changing. The only constant in the universe is change itself. The entire scientific process being employed to prove global warming (if that is in fact what you are asking about here in this poll) is based on false premise and flawed scientific methodology. That is, (1) the devices used to acquire the data are in question, (2) the data being acquired is in question, (3) the assumptions/combinations of various data sources is in question, (4) the model that converts the data to "predicted behavior" is fundamentally flawed in that it does not represent the basic physics and first principles of thermodynamics, (5) the modeling results are being massaged (manipulated) to look like there is an increase when a significant amount of credible scientific evidence exists showing an expected "decrease" as opposed to the proposed increase due to inordinate CO2 in the atmosphere. Astute scientists and engineers understand the criminal level of deception being used here to justify one-world governance and steal money to build that government. This is a conspiracy of the highest order and a scam of the worst kind. Al Gore must be put to task and held accountable for these crimes against humanity. This is all about power and redistributing wealth from a country that is built on principle and hard work. It is tantamount to treason for anyone involved in this travesty. America will not be led down a false path and will protect our sovereignty and constitution at all costs. After all, these are the two primary reasons why we are so successful and happy as a free and independent nation. I will be glad to debate anyone, anywhere on the issue of AGW. I have actually asked Fox News to host a debate between Al Gore and I, and with Obama and I unscripted on these issues. (These opinions and assertions do not reflect in any way the opinions or positions of ITT.)
—Darrell Story, staff scientist, ITT Space Systems Division

Even if climate change isn’t as bad as the vast majority of scientists say it is, there is no down side to treating it as though it is the greatest threat we’ve ever faced. Economically, embracing new energy technology, building new electric transmission infrastructure and clean power generation on a national level will grow jobs and expand our economy. A new national energy strategy that shrinks our negative balance of trade to an unstable middle east must start now. Focusing investment on new nuclear, wind and solar generation, while updating and expanding our transmission grid will create vast new jobs in every sector and make us far more competitive in the future. By focusing on energy independence, we attack two major problems, climate change and economic stagnation. This is a no-brainer!
—Frank Orienter

I am not a supporter of any cause that does not take into account the ramifications of negative effects on other needs. We need moderation in most every effort.
—Greg Clyde

This is such a scam. I wish the main stream media would put half of the reporters covering the Tiger Woods fiasco on the leaking of the climate change emails.
—Mike Gooding, president, Good Vibrations Inc. 

The current debate over global warming is out of control. The data collected covers a very short period in the earth’s history. All the statistics really show is that carbon dioxide levels and temperatures have been increasing at the same time. They don’t necessarily prove that one causes the other. The recent Climategate scandal casts serious doubt on the conclusions reached by many in the scientific community. Before committing billions of dollars to fixing this “problem” we should make sure that we truly understand the problem, if there is one at all. If one year represents the age of the earth then man has been around for less than half an hour. It’s rather arrogant of us to think that we comprehend fully what has been going on the rest of the year.
—Jeff Luellen

Global climate change is speeding up because there so many people in the world and we are using increased amounts of carbon based fossil fuels. As long as fossil fuels are cheaper than other forms of energy, economic growth will harm the environment. We must develop and use clean renewable energy and change the economic equation, so that these become the cheaper sources of energy. In the long run, economic growth will not be viable, if it comes at the expense of the environment.
—Kate Bennett, Rochester Museum & Science Center

The global warming issue has been politicized by the radical environmentalists over many years. It has snowballed into insanity! Some 12,000 to 15,000 years ago, a glacier covered much of Upstate New York. The glacier melted without the influence of humans. The surface temperature on the planet Mars has increased significantly over the past decade without any influence by man. Carbon dioxide is the life blood of green plant life on earth through photosynthesis. I’m not a scientist, but I remember from junior high earth science a byproduct of photosynthesis is oxygen. Now that the fraudulent science of global warming has been outed in England, let’s rise up against this nonsense before Congress and administration bankrupt our great nation.
—John Rynne, president, Rynne, Murphy & Associates, Inc.

There have been climate changes since the world began, long before man began exhaling CO2. 14,000 years ago, climate change produced a glacier four times as high as the Empire State Building. As it slid down from Canada it dug huge holes in the groound.10,000 years ago another change in climate melted the glacier and filled up its excavations with water, thereby giving North America the Great Lakes, with 20 percent of the world’s fresh water, and the Finger Lakes, which is the mainstay of our tourist industry. Very few carbon-producing people were around to claim responsibility for these examples of extreme climate change. Of course, elsewhere, in Central America the story may have been different. Didn’t the Mayans placate their gods and fend off natural disasters by throwing friends and neighbors into volcanoes? I guess deniers like me are lucky there aren’t any volcanoes nearby.
—Don Kneeland

Reading the East Anglican e-mails shows that we have been victims of the greatest scientific malfeasance of all time. Arrogant scientists have suppressed and ridiculed alternative views and explanations. They have also suppressed data. I have read that mankind’s contribution to global carbon dioxide is 6 percent, compared to nature’s 94 percent. If we spend trillions of dollars to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, it will still be close to 6%. The benefits of a major effort to reduce CO2 are nil, and the costs are astronomical. The earth may be warming, but the causes are mainly natural. Greenland used to be much more temperate during the time of the Vikings. This was not due to an earlier manmade event? How about during the time of the dinosaurs when the whole earth was tropical?
—George Dounce

I believe that Kevin Williams’ article in the 10/16/08 Daily Record, page 5, sums it all up: "Many of our politicians will take delight in telling us they are all for reducing our so-called ‘carbon footprint,’ reducing our already shrinking economy through exorbitant taxation." There is no global warming, and the climate is changing as it has for eons.
—Daniel Mossien

(c) 2009 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail rbj@rbj.net.

Readers are closely split on climate change issue

By a narrow margin, respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll say they do not think climate change is a serious global problem that needs to be addressed now

Representatives from nearly 200 countries are in Copenhagen for a United Nations conference on climate change. Delegates will work to reach agreement on details of a global climate accord.

Conference organizers say there is overwhelming scientific evidence that climate change caused by human activity “will threaten economic growth and long-term prosperity, as well as the very survival of the (world’s) most vulnerable populations.” Others have challenged that evidence and say the global threat is exaggerated.

Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defended climate research this week after e-mails stolen from a British university were described by skeptics as evidence that scientists conspired to suppress evidence that does not fit their theories.

Forty-two percent of Snap Poll respondents say economic growth should be the priority, compared with 12 percent who say environmental protection needs to be foremost. The rest—42 percent—say the issues should be given equal priority.

Some 860 readers participated in this week’s poll, which was conducted Dec. 7 and 8.

Do you agree that climate change is a serious global problem that must be addressed now?
No: 51%
Yes: 49%

In general, which should be the higher priority: economic growth or environmental protection?
Economic growth: 46%
Equal priority: 42%
Environmental protection: 12%

Here are some readers’ comments:

Am I the only person who actually Googled the IPCC report and read it? Am I the only one who saw that the so-called scientists were selected by governments, not the scientific community? Am I the only one who heard that these scientists included a gynecologist and a guy who reads tea leaves? If so, I’m ready to toss out my standard of living and join the unquestioning lemmings on our trip to the highest cliff. After all, “every scientist agrees about global warming, or so I’m told. P.T. Barnum is laughing in his grave, but I don’t want to be laughing in mine.
—Bill Lanigan, Chamberlin Rubber

Seeing is believing. When scientists can show melting glaciers and dwindling animal species, numbers don’t lie. Emotion can be a powerful positive or negative. It’s better to be safe and explore the what-ifs than to ignore and be sorry. How good can economic growth be without a place to experience it?
—Rob Johnson, FlavorStream Buffet

Although global warming and climate change are very important (and are contributed to by human activity), they should not be a priority over the economic health of our country. We should have a twofold plan to stimulate the economy and get our debt under control and protect our environment from further decay. I believe both can be achieved and it does not need to be a “one or the other” proposition. Those who deny the human contribution to global warming have their heads in the sand.
—Rick Bradley

Climate change is man-made. Some men sat in their offices and made it up on their computer so they could get grant money, just as they did in the ’70s when they predicted global freezing.
—Loren Meale

Air, water and land pollution are concerns for all of us. We should do all we reasonably can to reduce environmental pollution. To make the progress we need to reuse, repair, recycle and repurpose, we need financial prosperity and economic growth. The most abundant greenhouse gas is water vapor. What can we do about the Earth’s water vapor crisis? Can we tax the seas?
—Clifford Jacobson, WebHomeUSA.com

As a geologist, it is easy to point back into “recent” geological time and show very warm and very cold periods in Earth’s history. The blip of humanity sees but a small section of the very long cyclic nature of the Earth.
—Greg Gartland

Since we now know that the global warming scientists were fudging their data, we should not be spending trillions of dollars to fix a problem that may not exist. Hint: Follow the money. Most of these scientists are getting their money from the government. The politicians are justifying the money based on the “crisis” of global warming. (“A crisis is a terrible thing to waste.”) Because there is a crisis, they want to gain control over most of our industry and increase tax receipts by redefining carbon dioxide as a pollutant. This stupidity would be hilarious, if the results weren’t so devastating to our economy.
—Dennis Ditch, Delta Square Inc.

If it wasn’t for global warming, this area would still be under glaciers.
—Gerry Van Strydonck

When unemployment is at such a high level right now, people are out of work, small to medium businesses are struggling to keep afloat, much less hire more people, all the government thinks about is global warming, climate change and trying to keep us all green! Centuries past have shown global warming, then global cooling, then global warming again. Doesn’t this show that the Earth cycles naturally one way and then the other? Let’s recycle and try to keep the Earth clean, but not go to the extremes that this summit in Copenhagen will probably have us go to. Where’s the common sense here?
—Ruth Ditch

The first thing I would like to say is that I don’t believe carbon dioxide is a pollutant. There are volcanoes that have been spewing all manner of gases into the atmosphere for centuries, and no one is talking about that. The second thing I would like to say is that this country is in the throes of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, yet we spend our valuable time in Copenhagen. I think our president should get his priorities in order. We are facing major economic challenges in this country, the least of which is how much CO2 there is in the atmosphere.
—Phil Turturici, Absolute Consulting
 

12/11/09 (c) 2009 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail rbj@rbj.net.

Readers are closely split on climate change issue

By a narrow margin, respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll say they do not think climate change is a serious global problem that needs to be addressed now

Representatives from nearly 200 countries are in Copenhagen for a United Nations conference on climate change. Delegates will work to reach agreement on details of a global climate accord.

Conference organizers say there is overwhelming scientific evidence that climate change caused by human activity "will threaten economic growth and long-term prosperity, as well as the very survival of the (world’s) most vulnerable populations." Others have challenged that evidence and say the global threat is exaggerated.

Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defended climate research this week after e-mails stolen from a British university were described by skeptics as evidence that scientists conspired to suppress evidence that does not fit their theories.

Forty-two percent of Snap Poll respondents say economic growth should be the priority, compared with 12 percent who say environmental protection needs to be foremost. The rest-42 percent-say the issues should be given equal priority.

Some 860 readers participated in this week’s poll, which was conducted Dec. 7 and 8.

Do you agree that climate change is a serious
global problem that must be addressed now?
   Yes:                No:
49%    51%

In general, which should be the higher priority:
economic growth or environmental protection?
Economic growth:     Equal priority:      Environmental protection:
  46%         42%         12%

 

Readers are closely split on climate change issue

By a narrow margin, respondents to this week’s RBJ Daily Report Snap Poll say they do not think climate change is a serious global problem that needs to be addressed now

Representatives from nearly 200 countries are in Copenhagen for a United Nations conference on climate change. Delegates will work to reach agreement on details of a global climate accord.

Conference organizers say there is overwhelming scientific evidence that climate change caused by human activity "will threaten economic growth and long-term prosperity, as well as the very survival of the (world’s) most vulnerable populations." Others have challenged that evidence and say the global threat is exaggerated.

Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change defended climate research this week after e-mails stolen from a British university were described by skeptics as evidence that scientists conspired to suppress evidence that does not fit their theories.

Forty-two percent of Snap Poll respondents say economic growth should be the priority, compared with 12 percent who say environmental protection needs to be foremost. The rest-42 percent-say the issues should be given equal priority.

Some 860 readers participated in this week’s poll, which was conducted Dec. 7 and 8.

Do you agree that climate change is a serious
global problem that must be addressed now?
   Yes:                No:
49%    51%

In general, which should be the higher priority:
economic growth or environmental protection?
Economic growth:     Equal priority:      Environmental protection:
  46%         42%         12%

12/11/09 (c) 2009 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail rbj@rbj.net.

 

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