Letter: Greenhouse gases do not contribute to global warming


Dear Editor,

The Green River Star editorial titled “Our View: Gordon is on the wrong side of climate debate” does not reflect an objective view of the scientific facts.

Over 30,000 scientists (more than 9,000 of whom are PhDs, many working in the fields of meteorology and physics studying the global warming issue) have signed a petition stating: “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon natural plants and animal environments of the Earth.”

Consider the following statement taken from the US National Climate Assessment on drought in 2018. “… there is as yet no detectable change in long-term U.S. drought statistics.”

Recent studies indicate that drought in the 2000s is less severe than the drought from 1909 to 1917, the drought from 1931 to 1938 or the drought from 1952 to 1956. Studies also indicate that over the past several hundred years the western US has suffered far worse droughts than anything in the 20th or 21st centuries. Periodic droughts are and always have been part of the western US landscape. There is nothing remarkable or out of the ordinary in the present drought.

Let’s look at wildfires. Since the year 2000 wildfires have actually decreased. This assessment comes from data on active fires collected daily by NASA.

Short term analyses can be deceiving. Three million acres were burnt in the 1980s. That compares to 7 million acres in the past decade. That may sound alarming at first glance but consider that there were 39 million acres burnt in the 1930s. Evidence suggests that it was even much higher than that in the period before statistics were kept.

Fossil fuels are still far more reliable and far cheaper than wind and solar. Wind and solar require back-up power when the wind doesn’t blow, or the sun doesn’t shine. They require expensive batteries to store unused energy for times when it is needed. They also have their own environmental costs. Incidentally the recent alarming rise in inflation is caused in no small measure by President Biden’s suppression of fossil fuel development.

The governor is on the right track when it comes to energy policy. The world, the US, and Wyoming are all better off if we continue to use and develop cheap and reliable fossil fuels to meet our crucial energy needs. Without this we will not be able to compete with our friends or enemies in the world economy.

Terrell and Orson Johnson

Green River


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