Greenhouse Gas Emmisions and Climate Change

(Letter to the South Wales Evening Post)

C E V Gardener (Have Your Say, Monday 6 August) seeks to turn climate science on it’s head by claiming that reductions in carbon emissions have lead to the recent changes in our weather patterns when in fact the opposite is probably true.

Even a cursory glance at the statistics shows that current levels of “greenhouse gas” emissions are significantly greater than they were in the 1980s and remain historically high.

In their latest annual report on the UK Carbon Footprint (8 March 2012) The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) concludes that whilst our footprint fell by 9 per cent between 2008 and 2009, “this follows a steady rise of 35 per cent between 1995 and 2005, leaving the footprint in 2009 some 20 per cent higher than it was in 1990”.

Despite all the government rhetoric, available evidence shows that the trend will continue upwards until at least 2050 on current plans.  If this pattern is reflected world wide it could lead to a potential increase in global temperatures in excess of 1 degree C in just 30 years, and a projected rise of up to 4 degrees in this century.

The impact of greenhouse gas emissions on global weather patterns is extremely complex and difficult to predict with any accuracy.

However, if the recent changes in the UK weather are related to carbon emissions and rising global temperatures, then this must have resulted from increases rather than reductions.

That being so, C E V Gardener’s plea to “bring back fossil fuels” looks like a recipe for adding fuel to the fire.


Keith M Ross, Swansea Green Party



One response to this post.

  1. Heavily edited version of the letter in today’s Evening Post.


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