Reminiscent of the “Guns Don’t Kill People, People Kill People” argument, the SF Judge Alsup presiding over CA vs. Big Oil Lawsuit asked a very interesting, and potentially, very damaging question for either the plaintiff or society at large. In the document titled: Case 3:17-cv-06012-WHA Document 161 Filed 03/27/18, the judge asks:
If plaintiffs’ theory is correct, why wouldn’t everyone involved in supplying carbonbased fuels (or in otherwise increasing carbon dioxide, e.g., deforestation) be liable upon a showing that they questioned the science of global warming or sponsored research intending to question it?
The way this question is answered possibly puts everyone on the face of the globe at risk. Oil companies don’t produce CO2, they produce oil and gasoline. Those products can be used for many purposes other than internal combustion. I’ve used gasoline to kill grass and as a solvent, and I’ve used oil to lubricate chains. Using the product of Big Oil for those purposes didn’t generate CO2. Only when I decided to burn the gasoline in an internal combustion engine was CO2 created. CO2 was created not by the production of gasoline, but by my decision to burn the gasoline. If I buy a gun and shoot someone, we don’t prosecute the gun company, we prosecute the person that pulled the trigger. People like Arnold Schwartzineger and Al Gore, who publically acknowledge the dangers of CO2, and then fly off in their private jets to homes that consume the energy of a small village, are potentially the most at risk. They acknowledge the harm CO2 does, and then turn around and produce astronomical quantities of it. That is the political equivalent of a pro-life candidate having an abortion.
CO2 also isn’t the only cause of warming. The Urban Heat Island Effect is universally accepted and easily documented. No one, skeptic or alarmist, denies that the Urban Heat Island Effect exists. If warming is the problem, shouldn’t all major causes of warming then be prosecuted? The concrete and asphalt in LA, SF, and Oakland is the warming equivalent of billions of tons of CO2. That fact is easily documented by simply looking at the temperature trends in major cities vs untouched wooded areas nearby.
Lastly, by controlling for the Urban Heat Island Effect and H2O to isolate the impact of CO2 on temperature, it is discovered that CO2 does not impact temperatures in the lower atmosphere where all ground-based temperature measurements and most glaciers are located. If you test the hypothesis “Man-made CO2 does not impact global temperatures” on ice-core data, the hypothesis is not rejected. There is nothing statistically abnormal about the variability of the temperatures over the past 150 years when compared to the entire Holocene period.
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