Friday, March 23, 2012

Ask an expert, the right expert

Tim Blair noted the Sydney Morning Herald thought an alarmist piece by an activist volcanologist, and "evangelical advocate of drastic cuts in greenhouse gas emissions", was so good they ran it twice. ABC asked the same activist  to provide an expert opinion on links between recent earthquakes and global warming. Seems ABC can't tell their experts from a hole in the floor.

Here's my Letter to the Sydney Morning Herald outlining problems with McGuire's SMH article. They left this one on the cutting room floor.

Dear Editor,
Volcanologist Bill McGuire places undue emphasis on the effect our thin atmosphere has on our even  thinner crust and in the process makes the mistake of linking recent calamitous geological events with anthropogenic global warming (skating on a thin crust,22/3). The inescapable grind of the earth's plates,  the ultimate cause of earthquakes and volcanoes, is driven by large scale processes in the earth's 3000km thick mantle. Changes in the atmosphere play an important minor role.  To blame anthropogenic global warming for recent geological disasters, such as the Japanese tsunami and the eruption of unpronounceable volcanes in Iceland, is like blaming the bird landing on the bonnet of a car perched on a cliff edge for its topple, while ignoring the bulldozer pushing from behind.

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