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More CO2 and methane won't hurt the planet?

1 November 2018

I subscribe to a number of email-based newsletters that once interested me but which now simply serve to clutter my inbox.

One such newsletter arrived the other day and I figured I'd give it a cursory glance before deleting it -- and just as well I did.

I'm talking about the NZCPR (NZ Centre for Political Research) weekly newsletter.

What is the NZCPR? you might ask?

It's a decidedly right-wing organisation founded and directed by Dr Muriel Newman, a name that should ring bells if you've been interested in NZ politics for any length of time.

So what was it about this week's newsletter that caught my eye... and should be compulsory reading for those interested in the climate-change debate?

Well why not read the article and see for yourself.

It was all pretty boring until I got to the bit where it claims that the effect of CO2 as a greenhouse gas is logarithmic (I think they meant inversely logarithmic) and as the concentration increases, the warming effect decreases at a logarithmic rate.

This means that the first 10% increase in atmospheric CO2 levels has far more effect than a subsequent 10% increase, or further increases beyond that.

In effect, CO2 is a greenhouse gas but we've already seen the worst of its effects because of the logarithmic decay associated with its increase.

Is this really true?

Have we been hoodwinked by all the pro-AGW zealots out there?

Another interesting claim is that methane isn't the bad actor that others claim it to be.

According to the article, "Not only is methane having very little effect on warming, but the financial burden of allowing for a massive warming effect based on defective science can’t be justified"

Hmmm... have we again been hoodwinked by those who claim that rising temperatures are about to set off a catastrophic chain reaction as huge reserves of methane are released as a result of thawing tundra and risking sea temperatures?

"So there we have it. Unless wisdom and common sense prevails, junk science will be used to force New Zealand into economic decline" -- or so the story goes on to claim.

Now, excluding the politics involved here and the obvious intentions of a right-wing organisation to discredit a left-leaning coalition government, how much of this is true and how much is just crap?

I know there are at least a small handful of Aardvark readers who have passionate views on the AGW debate so please, wade in with your opinions in the forums and enlighten the rest of us.

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