Pure insanity doesn’t even come close to what some legislators are trying to do in North Carolina:
Some lawmakers will go to great lengths to deny the reality of climate change. But this week, North Carolina lawmakers reached new heights of denial, proposing a new law that would require estimates of sea level rise to be based only on historical data—not on all the evidence that demonstrates that the seas are rising much faster now thanks to global warming.
North Carolina legislators have decided that the way to make exponential increases in sea level rise – caused by those inconvenient feedback loops we keep hearing about from scientists – go away is to make it against the law to extrapolate exponential; we can only extrapolate along a line predicted by previous sea level rises.
Which, yes, is exactly like saying, do not predict tomorrow’s weather based on radar images of a hurricane swirling offshore, moving west towards us with 60-mph winds and ten inches of rain. Predict the weather based on the last two weeks of fair weather with gentle breezes towards the east. Don’t use radar and barometers; use the Farmer’s Almanac and what grandpa remembers…
No matter in North Carolina. We’ve got resorts to build and we don’t care what the rest of the ocean does – our sea isn’t going to rise by more than 15.6 inches. Because otherwise it’s against the law.
And if you happen to live in the US (or know of a good proxy server) then this video from Stephen Colbert is a must watch:
If your science gives you a result that you don’t like, pass a law that says that the result is illegal. Problem solved!
Now, the Coastal Resources Commission can consider accelerated rates of sea level rise, provided “such rates are from statistically significant, peer-reviewed data and are consistent with historic trends.”
The last bit about historical tends could still be problematic, however. It all depends what the senate means by ‘historical’. If they include the paleoclimate record, then there is no problem; if they only include recent history then the problem remains.
In the end I am still left wondering why such a law is even needed.