Prepare for Global Warming June 21, 2006Posted by federalist in Energy.
Maybe global warming is happening, maybe it isn’t. Maybe it’s caused by people, maybe not. Maybe it’s not too late to stop it, or maybe we’ve begun an irreversible, cataclysmic descent into planetary conditions unlike any human beings have ever known.
There’s a lot we don’t know, but one thing I believe we do know is that if change is coming we can adapt. Even the most extreme scenarios suggested by global warming alarmists seem to give us a generation or two to watch as oceans and temperatures rise, storms become more violent, and local climates shift. Well, buildings are typically depreciated over forty years. It’s a shame to have to eventually abandon existing cities, but it’s not economically devastating. If we believe the worst then new buildings should all be hurricane-rated and built on ground that will not be underwater when all the polar ice has melted. Humans can relocate en masse over the course of a generation, and though we will lose land mass overall, plenty of previously uninviting regions will become desirable. Just make sure your Miami condo is a lease, and if you’re looking for a long-term real estate investment (and you believe in global warming) then buy land in Greenland, or Antarctica. Agriculture has been adapted to almost every climate on earth (especially warm ones). Even if farming and building technologies did not continue to advance, it seems hard to imagine a global warming scenario that would truly devastate our civilization.
In the worst case scenario, humans will have to make a lot of changes. These chages require economic productivity, and economic productivity depends on cheap energy. Fossil fuel is the cheapest energy we have right now, so let’s dig in!