According to an Associated Press Science writer,
When Bill Clinton took office in 1993, global warming was a slow-moving environmental problem that was easy to ignore. Now it is a ticking time bomb that President-elect Barack Obama can't avoid.
Since Clinton's inauguration, summer Arctic sea ice has lost the equivalent of Alaska, California and Texas. The 10 hottest years on record have occurred since Clinton's second inauguration. Global warming is accelerating. Time is close to running out, and Obama knows it.
"The time for delay is over; the time for denial is over," [President Elect Obama] said . . .[on 14 December] after meeting with former Vice President Al Gore, who won a Nobel Peace Prize for his work on global warming. "We all believe what the scientists have been telling us for years now that this is a matter of urgency and national security and it has to be dealt with in a serious way."
I reject the notion, conceivably implicit in the article, that it is all former President Clinton's fault. His carbon dioxide and methane emissions were, on a global scale, minuscule. The Post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy leads only to muddled analysis; indeed, nothing former President Clinton may have done in the Oval Office could have contributed even slightly to the present horrific Global Warming mess. We must all share the blame, and behave accordingly. If no action is taken promptly, not only the Earth is damned; even innocent Mars may be seriously at risk; so may be all of the other planets in our solar system; yea, perhaps even the entire Universe. Issue must be taken, respectfully, with President Elect Obama's assertion that
Because the truth is that promoting science isn't just about providing resources — it's about protecting free and open inquiry. It's about ensuring that facts and evidence are never twisted or obscured by politics or ideology.
While doubtless well meaning, MMGW (Man Made Global Warming, not the far less threatening Murdering Muddler George W.) is too important for reflection and delay. Fortunately, President Elect Obama's new science advisers are on the ball.
Colleagues say the post is well-suited for Holdren, who at Harvard went from battling the spread of nuclear weapons to tackling the threat of global warming. He's an award-laden scientist comfortable in many different fields.
We can only hope that Mr. Holden is as successful in combating the threat of MMGW as has been the case in combating the threat of nuclear proliferation; MMGW is far more threatening.