Monday, January 2, 2012

Canadian Senate Hearing on Global Warming

Here is testimony by Ross McKitrick on global warming. You should skip to 4:40 in the video to get to the start of his testimony and it ends by 16:00. This is well worth watching:

The various presenters:
  • Ross McKitrick, Department of Economics, University of Guelph

  • Ian Clark, Department of Earth Science, University of Ottawa

  • Jan Veizer, Department of Earth Science, University of Ottawa

  • Timothy Patterson, Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University
I find it amusing to see respected senior scientists in Canada giving testimony that the IPCC story of "global warming" is incomplete, misleading, and wrong. Unlike the fanatics who claim "the science is settled", these researchers make it very clear that the science is still very much open to debate and in need of serious research.

In the video at 1:24:00 a senator has laid out the extreme cases and asks the panel "what to do". Ross McKitrick very intelligently replies that under those extremes it is very hard to know what to do. But he does a very clever thing, an economic trick, to force everybody to pay attention to climate and do the right thing:
He proposes a carbon tax that will be moved up or down based on real measurements. That forces corporations and institutions and people who deal with long term planning to build in expectations to their plans. This is the "invisible hand" of economics being used to control people to do the right thing. It is very clever and it should be implemented everywhere.
I sure would like to see governments around the world adopt this kind of stabilizing, automatic economic guidance for "doing the right thing" with respect to climate change. The tax would go down if the data shows no temperature increase, and it would steeply go up if temperatures showed an alarming rate of rise. Perfect.

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