Although I am a left-wing environmental type, I do not believe there is any good in trying to stop natural climate change and believe that the sun and oceans dictate millennial shifts in climate.
Clive... Clive... Clive... I am so surprised!
I know there's lots of different world opinions on climate change, but in Europe we now take it as FACT that global warming is happening, that CO2 has increased, and that we are each to blame. I also think this is the right view, judging by the mounting evidence, though it doesn't mean we can now magically fix things either. I'm quite a realisitic person, and also a very-well educated person, even if I say so myself, and can look at things objectively and with piles of scientific and geographic knowledge, just as you can. There's a lot left for humans to discover about the world and how we might affect it, but it's all very easy to write off global warming as 'natural' and say we can't curb it someday.
It's not as if organisms can't affect the environment, in fact organisms make the environment; life is responisble for oxygen even existing on earth, it exists nowhere else in the solar system in any quantity. Humans, in fact, are adept at changing the environment, usually ruining it, and have already induced the fastest extinction rate seen on earth. That's a fact geologist lecturers love to tell you.
We were perfectly capable of pumping out so many CFC's as to damage the ozone layer, and we are equally capable of doing a very different damage to the atmosphere with CO2 emissions, i.e so as to cause climate change. It's on graphs everywhere, each one drawn up by great scientists, not greenpeace potheads. We already have changed the atmosphere. It cannot be 'coincidence' that CO2 started going up as soon as the industrial revolution occured and so continued until the present day. I'm also perfectly aware of things like the carbon-cycle and the waxing and waning of CO2 in the atmosphere due to leafless winters, summers and ocean rocks locking CO2 away. Even with those factored into the graphs, CO2 is going up and up and up in a tight zig-zag line. Carl Sagan and co. spelt all that out ten years ago. He'd be ashamed of the USA today.
If CO2 goes up, so will global temperature, which in turn means more water vapour, which then raises global temperature more; Venus-style, though that's very extreme.
And we're not talking milleniums here, or even lifetimes. The UK used to be cold when october came, but now it hasn't had a bad winter in 15-20 years; there's green leaves on the trees in my garden and it is December - that never ever used to happen, never. Ecologists all over the UK have recorded changes in weather and species not seen since records began. Which might not be long on a geological scale, but I'm still worried.
Scientists recently, and to their surprise, found that the Gulf Stream has slowed by 20% which is a sure sign that fresh water from glaciers is 'polluting' the salty sea around the UK and preventing sinkage of water. So, then we limeys would be in for a cold snap alright!
I could go on, but I know I won't change your opinion.
I don't have time for the argument of global warming being a myth, or not our fault. It's as much our fault as deforestation and pollution. I do not know the answer either, but deforestation is easy to stop compared to global warming and if we can't even stop the former we'll not stop the latter either anytime soon. I agree with you there, at least.