In 1992, the United Nation's International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published its report suggesting a future requiring international intervention to avoid catastrophic temperature increases. Most of the information we have been presented is in agreement that "man" has caused the increases in CO2 and, therefore mankind caused global warming. The story goes the continued usage of carbon based fuels is the main cause of global increases in carbon dioxide (CO2) which increases temperatures.
In terms of scientific facts and not a consensus of opinion, I suggest you consider the following information.
Our atmosphere - Our world's atmosphere is made up of a number of identifiable gases.
The highest percentage goes to nitrogen at 78 percent, oxygen 20.9 percent. argon 0.8 percent and CO2 0.38 percent. Note: plant life requires CO2 for photosynthesis and produces oxygen.
The Vostok Station- Antarctica - The USSR established this research station in 1958. Finally, in 1985, they successfully drilled through into to a point below the last glacial age. Analysis of the core showed gas bubbles trapped within the ice showed CO2 levels rose after long periods of rising temperatures. They also proposed shifts in the earth's axis (orbital shifts) was a casual factor.
Volcanic gases - Eruption of volcanoes produce high volumes of material and gasses including CO2. However, CO2 was measured from 1.44 to 48.9 percent of gasses but was determined to only contribute an annual average of 5 percent of the increase in CO2.
Our sun-solar cycles - A report by Larry Bell in August 2014 reported a NASA expert suggested sun solar flare cycles could well cause a 30-year cold spell. A former IPCC supporter, Dr. Firtz Vahrenhold, a former head of Germany's environmental movement and led the country's renewable energy program has recently authored a new book with Dr. Sebastian Luning titled "The Cold Sun"; or "Why the climate disaster won't happen." Dr. Vahrenhold expects the world to get cooler in the future for three reasons. One, we are in or soon will be on the downward flank of the sun's Gleissberg and Suess cycles. Two, solar activity during these cycles will be low. And three, the ocean cycles will be in cooling phases over the next decades as well.
Also a Swedish research team analyzed patterns of solar activity at the end of the last "Ice Age," about 20-10,000 years ago, as a majority cause. This lack of sun spot activity between 1645 and 1715 is referred to as the Maunder Minimum and coincided with the "little ice age" when northern Europe and other parts of the world were plunged into a long period of cool summers and long winters. Crop yields fell with the shorted growing periods. This quiet period of solar activity was closely followed by another called the Dalton Minimum from 1795- 1825. During this period, an eruption of the Tombora volcano in 1816 also contributed to the cooling cycle by blocking out the sun.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) and global warming - The published report from the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Warming by C D Idso and K E Idso states, "There is little doubt the air's CO2 concentration has risen since the industrial revolution and there are few who do not attribute the CO2 increase to the increase in humanity's use of fossil fuels. There is also little doubt the earth has warmed slightly over the same period; but there is no compelling reason to believe the rise in temperature was caused by the rise in CO2. Furthermore it is highly unlikely that the future increases in the atmospheres CO2 content will produce any global warming; for there are numerous problems with the hypnosis that links the two phenomena."
"In thus considering the seven greatest temperature transitions of the past half million years - three glacial terminations and four glacial inceptions - we note that increases and decreases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations not only did not precede the changes in temperature. They followed them, and by hundreds of thousands of years! There were also long periods of time when atmospheric CO2 remained unchanged while air temperature dropped, as well as times where the atmosphere's CO2 concentration dropped, while the air temperature was unchanged or actually rose. Hence the climate history of the past half million years provides absolutely no evidence to suggest that the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 concentration will lead to global warming."
And consider the warming oceans releasing additional CO2 would increase water vapor into the atmosphere would produce more and higher water laden clouds and would tend to cool the planet by reflecting more solar radiation back to space. It has been shown the warming predicted by the doubling of the air's CO2 concentration may be "totally" countered by a one percent increase in the reflectivity of the planet or a 10 percent in the amounts of low level clouds in the world.
Benefits of higher CO2 concentrations - CO2 is aerial fertilizer for all plants and trees. There is tree ring research showing increasing forest growth rates that closely paralleled the Industrial Revolution. This oscillatory "breath of the biosphere" - its inhalation of CO2, produced by spring and summer terrestrial plant growth, and its exhalation of CO2 produced by fall and winter biomass decomposition - has been documented to be growing greater and greater each year in response to the ever-increasing growth stimulation provided by the ongoing rise in the air's CO2 content.
"One thing is certain now, there is much more real world evidence for the encouraging scenario we paint here than for the doom-and-gloom predictions of apocalypse that are preached by those who blindly follow the manifestly less-than-adequate prognostications of imperfect models." Supporting references from this brief written in 1998 and factual statements of this position paper can be found at www.co2science.org.
Conclusion. Most all opinion articles in support of the theory that global warming or climate change was a danger to our future requiring massive costs to our economy to correct. Not true.
Tom Steele is a retired businessman.