That’s my American shrink talking me down from one of my outbursts about the disturbing way that our ‘number one newschannel’ is covering the weather, which has become the number one topic, night after night. They never make the connection between the weather and climate change. Even when a viewer asks Bob MacDonald, the CBC’s expert on all things Science to explain why we’re having one of the craziest, coldest winters in living memory when we’re supposed to be in the midst of ‘global warming’. I happened to see this clip and found myself thinking that finally, a person of Bob’s stature would clear up the fog that never seems to lift from this question and others like it. He would explain to the confused public that there is an intimate connection and how it works. Great.
I couldn’t believe it when, instead of doing that, Bob launched into an explanation of how weather is generally about the short term and how climate charts the long term trends. Duh. How dumb does he think we are? And then, nothing. Not a word about how Climate Change (let’s not call it Global Warming; it just confuses everyone!) influences and has serious consequences for the weather. That the ever rising levels of CO2 are warming the atmosphere, the oceans and the soil, and causing once stable weather patterns to behave in unpredictable and destructive ways. Even a slight variation in temperature can cause havoc. Historical records of the ‘LIttle Ice Age’, which saw global temperatures drop by an average 1.5C between 1600 and into the 1700’s, caused incredible extremes in weather patterns, destroying crops and causing famines that lead to bloody conflicts. A third of the global population died. All this from a change of 1.5C!
The LIttle Ice Age was not man made, and finally stopped. But our climate crisis is man made, and since nothing is being done to stop emissions, we can look forward to a new normal of extreme weather that is not good for humans. Some Scientists have even given this wonderful new age a fitting new name: the
Anthropocene. Meaning a climate that is largely influenced by human, ‘Anthropus’ activity. The Holocene, the benign climate of the last 10,000 years, is over and done with and already, actuaries and insurance companies are wondering how we’re going to pay for the more robust infrastructure we need to survive this nasty new climate. The old, familiar infrastructure designed for the Holocene is crumbling all around us. Bob said none of these things. He stayed on the safe ground of traditional, dumbed down Science for dumb Canadians, who thanks to him and his ilk, will stay that way forever.
It’s just pure luck that I have an American psychiatrist who used to treat American environmentalists. He said they all battled depression, and now I’ve joined their ranks. LIke most people who care about what’s happening to our climate, our planet, our forests and wildlife, I live in a state of anxiety and suffer from feelings of helplessness. Especially since even Dr. Suzuki has gone on record to say that ‘environmentalism is a failure’. You can only go to so many protests and write so many words before you get discouraged. If our ‘number one news channel’ has a science reporter who does such a lousy job of explaining the most urgent issue of this century, how are we ever going to get mainstream Canadians educated, mobilized and engaged?
That’s the question, dear Bob. I’m watching you. How about upping your game and explaining the relationship between weather and Climate Change? You’re supposed to be an expert, you have a platform, you’re getting paid for it. So man up. Do your job, tackle the complexities and challenges of Climate Change. Or shut up altogether.