We should pity David Suzuki. In a recent interview, he made a comment that is worth noting:
TckTckTck: Like so many of us, you express huge frustrations that we are not where we need to be to save this planet from dangerous climate change. Yet you have this indomitable spirit and refuse to get lost in cynicism or despair.
Dr. David Suzuki: I do despair. My wife and I huddle at night and weep for our helplessness. We are losing big-time and I’m enough of a scientist to see we are heading right down the tube. Judging by the past twenty years, we are going backward.
Despair? Huddling at night and weeping?
I see no reason to believe that Suzuki is lying. This means that he really does despair for our planet, literally weeping with his wife at night. Poor guy.
I personally see no scientific basis for such intense concern for the planet’s future. If we didn’t have thermometers I doubt anyone would have noticed the .8c increase over the past century. What is this intense fear based on? I’m really unsure. Could Suzuki be so foolish as to base his despair on computer modeling?
Climate skeptics seem to be far more optimistic about our planet’s future than environmentalists. I can’t speak for all of them. For me, it’s not just a scientific argument (or a complete lack of evidence for drastic claims), it is also an economic argument. An increase in global prosperity allows nations to afford economic conservation (a luxury good), and as long as governments don’t hinder the economy too much, the world will continue to become richer. Europe and the United States are protecting their environments far more than in the past, not less.
Suzuki is 75 years old. He is absolutely certain to not see any significant impacts of climate change. I’m sure that he weeps for his descendants, and for the planet in general. As a member of the younger generation (and a parent as well), I do appreciate his candor and genuine concern for the world which I, and my children, are to live in. Thanks Dave.
But here’s my message to you. You’ve overestimated the dangers which lie before us, and you’ve underestimated our capabilities. Please, don’t assume you are one of the enlightened few that could have saved me and my generation if only your peers would have listened. You’ve been at this fight for over 20 years and haven’t yet garnered support for any significant action. You can choose to view this as a failure, and weep bitterly at night for the lost window of opportunity which could have saved humanity. Or, you can assume there is a valid reason why your ideas didn’t gain traction, and have faith that future generations can take care of themselves.
Dave, go to bed, hug your wife, and stop crying. We’re fine. Really.