This article is Bellamy’s reply to Monbiot in a debate regarding global warming. For the entire debate, visit http://www.zmag.org/MonbiotBellamyDebate.htm . For more debates, visit http://www.zmag.org/znet_debates.htm
14th August 2004.
As usual, an elegant article from George Monbiot, the first two-thirds of which I agree with (Goodbye, kind world, August 10). In the third section I find some problems. My argument in the Daily Mail was based on the past record of natural climatic change and questioned how a rise in the tiny amount of carbon dioxide that is in the atmosphere could have such a drastic effect when water vapour makes up some 96% of all the greenhouse gases.
Yes, we should stop burning fossil fuels. Yes, we should stop draining peat bogs, destroying soil and natural and semi-natural vegetation. Yes, we should stop overfishing and overgrazing the planet. That is why I am still working an 18-hour day helping groups which are trying to reverse this trend, as I have been doing for the past 40 years. In my defence, may I ask George a single question? Why are the so-called greens backing a cartel of multinational companies which are hell bent on covering some of the best of our countryside with so-called wind farms, which can neither provide us with a sustainable source of future energy nor have any measurable effect reducing the amount of carbon dioxide pouring into the atmosphere?
If he can disprove the latter â€“ which is the mathematical truth â€“ I will fall into line over global warming, even if, like Galileo, I have to say â€œbut it movedâ€.
David Bellamy The Conservation Foundation