Climate Change and Creation

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The following is a Summary and Notes by Ian Taylor on the Creation Research DVD Climate Change and Creation

Fishy Story: Why are fish harder to catch today? Because natural selection has produced smarter fish thus proving evolution is still at work. Of course, it could also be that fishermen are becoming less smart so it doesn’t prove anything! Paul wrote that as Christians we should “prove all things” (1 Thessalonians 5:2). Here is an example of a media report by Liam Houlihan that appeared in the Australian Sydney Sun Herald newspaper, for March 11, 2007: “A leading Muslim cleric has blamed the [Australian] drought, climate change and pollution on Australian’s lack of faith in Allah. Radical sheik Mohammed Omran told followers at his Brunswick mosque that out-of-control secular scientific values had caused environmental disaster.” How could we prove this? Using NASA satellite images superimposed upon geopolitical maps it becomes obvious that the arid areas of the world exactly coincide with the Muslim countries, even to the fine division between Israel and Jordan/Syria.

Anyone having read or listened to news reports for the past 20 or 30 years may recall how the media message has changed. For example, the lead article in Newsweek for April 25, 1975 was concerned with “The Cooling World!” while the lead article in National Geographic for November 1976 (p.576) was titled: “What’s happening to our Climate?” The article claimed there are ominous signs that the world’s temperature has fallen. The US National Science Board are quoted: “During the last 20-30 years, world temperature has fallen, irregularly at first but more sharply over the last decade.” We might be reminded that three decades later the world’s media and every political party are pre-occupied with “Global Warming”. Facts that do not support this latter-day belief are rarely reported. For example, if Chicago received a foot of snow in August would the rest of the world hear about it? Possibly not because the Melbourne area of Australia received a foot of snow in the middle of their Summer in December 2006 and North America heard virtually nothing about it!

A newspaper issued in Melbourne, Australia, titled The Age ran a headline that read “Research Casts Doubt on Global Warming Theory” in its April 7, 2003 edition. The article began by pointing out that claims that man-made pollution has caused unprecedented global warming have been undermined by historical research that shows the Earth was actually warmer in the Middle Ages (AD 800-1300) than it is today. Then, from 1300 to 1900, there followed a “little Ice Age”. Acknowledgement for the source of this information was attributed to The Review, the publication of a research team at Harvard University. Their research shows: “that the world had a medieval warm period between the 9th and 14th centuries with world temperatures significantly higher than today’s”. Some examples from this report:

Iceland: First settled by Christians from Ireland in the 9th century then joined in the following century by settlers from Norway. At that time, hay was the usual crop and used for flocks and herds for subsistence while rye and other grains were grown in favoured locations. By the 13th century ice was beginning to remain year-round as the world entered the “Little Ice Age”. Between 1695 and 1709 the Icelandic glaciers were advancing dramatically, destroying farms.

England: When the Romans invaded England in the 4th century AD, grapes grew as far north as York; taxes were often paid with grapes. By the 13th century grapes no longer grew anywhere in England and the Romans returned to warmer Italy.

London, UK: The River Thames froze over completely every winter for over 300 years, beginning about 1600 until 1900; it has never been frozen since. An oil painting done in 1677 shows the annual Frost Fair held on the frozen River while there is another done in 1814 by Luke Clenell titled The Frost Fair - this was one of the last Fairs, nevertheless, the ice was thick enough to support hundreds of people.

Norway: From 1710 to 1735 some glaciers were reported to be advancing at 100 metres per year and had been doing so throughout the 25 years.

Switzerland: In 1595 it was reported that the Gietroz glacier had advanced and dammed the Dranse River and flooded Bagne; there were 70 deaths.

Eastern Alps: Between 1670 and 1680 there was a maximum advance by the glaciers accompanied by a decline in the associated human population and a corresponding increase in population in nearby unaffected areas.

France: From 1600 to 1610 there were significant advances of the Chamonix glacier causing massive floods; three villages were destroyed and a fourth severely damaged.

This article in The Age concluded by pointing out: “the records used by modern climate scientists date from when the Earth was relatively cold, (i.e. the “Little Ice Age” from 1300 – 1900) thereby exaggerating the significance of today’s temperature rise”. The fact is there have been warm periods and cool periods in Earth’s history and these are evident from the fossil record.

The Fossil Record

Evidences that Earth’s climate has been significantly warmer in the past include the following: Red soil in the Antarctic indication that there was once a hot, wet climate in this area; fossil palm trees in Washington State; giant fossil reeds in the UK; the fossil forests of meta sequoia trees on Axel Heiberg Island – the nearest land to the North Pole – indicating a climate here comparable to that of Florida today. In the past, trees and plants were much larger than those of today indicating hot, moist climates and a higher carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere. In Australia fossil kangaroos five metres tall have been discovered! The first conclusion we may draw from this data is that the Earth’s climate changes. Both colder and hotter, wetter and drier periods have been recorded in reliable secular human records over the past 2,500 years. But in 2007 it is evident that it is only politically acceptable to speak of “global warming”. Nevertheless, the data shows that Earth’s climate cycles from cool and dry to warm and wet and, after several centuries of a “Little Ice Age”, it is currently entering a warm phase once more.

Organized Reaction to Global Warming Fears

In the November 3, 2007 issue of The Sunday Telegraph (UK), an article by Tom Harper claimed: “Scientists who questioned mankind’s impact on climate change have received death threats and claimed to have been shunned by the scientific community. They say the debate on global warming has been “hijacked” by a powerful alliance of politicians (Al Gore), scientists and environmentalists who have stifled all questioning about the true environmental impact of carbon-dioxide emissions.” Harper took this quote from Timothy Ball, a former climatology professor at the University of Winnipeg, Canada, who has received 5 death threats by email. Professor Ball appeared in “The Great Global Warming Swindle” a Channel 4 (UK) documentary in which several scientists claimed the theory of man-made global warming had become, “a religion, forcing alternative explanations to be ignored”.

Prediction by John Mackay: Governments will not solve global warming but will find ways to tax it, and by the politics of fear, increase their power. For example, Billions are being spent on Bikeways in cities, and what of deflatulent pills for cows?

(Source Note: Professor Arthur Robinson, the president of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, announced a petition before the National Press Club on May 19, 2008. It had the signatures of over 31,000 scientists, including over 9,000 PhDs, who stand against the idea that global warming is man-made.)

What does God’s Word say about global warming?

The Bible is not a book of science, nevertheless, it is the words of our Creator who was there in the beginning, is in charge of history and knows the destiny of this world. In fact, God seems to live outside of time because when Moses asked Him His name He replied it was “I AM”, that is, eternally existing in the present (Exodus 3:3-14). The first three chapters of Genesis tell us a number of things about the world’s climate prior to the Fall of Man. In the first place, God declared that everything He had made was very good (Gen 1:31) so when we read that Adam and Eve were both naked (Genesis 2:25) we can reasonably assume the climate was very good – warm with no harsh ultra-violet radiation. Moreover, there was no rain but rather a mist went up from the earth to water it (Genesis 2:5-6). The first mention of rain is over sixteen centuries later during God’s promise to Noah regarding the Flood (Genesis 7:4); following this id did rain for 40 days and 40 nights.

The first recorded global wind occurs to dry the Earth just after the Flood in Genesis 8:1. This is followed by the first mention of seasons given in God’s post-Flood promise to man: “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease” (Genesis 8:22). In contrast to the empty promises made by political man, this is surely a comforting promise from our Creator who does not lie. The Bible is not a thesis but is rather a record from which we can draw inferences. In the absence of rain and winds prior to the Flood we may infer that at that time there were no hurricanes, floods or tsunamis. The first mention of ice, snow and hail is in Job 6:16 and 38:22-30 while Job also speaks of “drought and heat” (Job 24:19). Job lived about approximately 2000BC, long after the time of Noah.

Throughout Scripture we see that God is sovereignly in charge so that our perception of history is really the outworking of His plan while the Earth is the stage upon which the preconceived action takes place. God gave Man a set of rules by which to live and these rules were for our own good. However, we are also tested by these rules or laws and there are a number of passages that warn of the land being “defiled” as a consequence of disobedience. For example, Leviticus chapter 18 lists a number of sexual sins and in verse 25 God warns the Israelites that by these things, “the land is defiled, therefore I visit the punishment of its iniquity upon it, and the land vomits out its inhabitants.” There are nine other references to Man’s sin causing the land to be “defiled”. The consequence of defiling the land is famine and Scripture has over ninety referenc3es to famine including the famine that sent the Israelites into Egypt for 400 years. Famine with sufficient severity, always leads to communicable diseases. This causes even the good people to leave or be “vomited out” of the land. The story of Naomi and Ruth, both virtuous women, will be recalled. The consequences of disobedience to God’s instructions were, and still are, climate changes that produce drought, famine, pestilence and finally eviction.

Polar Bears and Climate Change

Any issue that appeals to the emotions rather than the hard facts of science should be immediately suspect. The pending extinction of the polar bears recently claimed by David Attenborough on British TV is a recent example. The publicity picture of a polar bear standing on a very small piece of floating ice – as though it was the lone survivor – has since been well etched into the public mind. In his message Attenborough emphasised that it had taken millions of years for the polar bear to adapt to the harsh environment of the Arctic. He warned that the polar bear’s survival depended directly upon responsible action taken now by humanity while should the inevitable extinction happen, the bear could never be recovered. Attenborough repeated the text-book explanation for the polar bear’s white hair claiming that this is a camouflage that has evolved to protect the bear against predators.

The truth is the polar bear has no predators except rifle-toting man, while the bear’s white hair is not the result of evolution but rather the loss of genetic information i.e. the black or brown pigment is no longer produced and the hairs are now hollow and scatter light. For similar reasons human hair goes white with age. David Attenborough is a biologist and should also know that polar bears, brown bears and even grizzly bears are all part of the bear family and simply have different species names. Work at zoos show that all these bears can interbreed and do have fertile offspring thus by definition are the same species, however, they have been given different species names for convenience of classification. By Biblical classification they would be called the same “kind”. In exactly the same way the Caucasian, Negro and Asiatic peoples are demonstrably of the same kind.

This means that as long as there are brown bears and grizzly bears the polar bear population could easily be retrieved should there be the need to do so. As Charles Darwin showed with his pigeon breeding experiments it only takes a few generations, not millions of years, to produce these changes.

Background material added by Ian Taylor

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a scientific body tasked to evaluate the risk of climate change caused by human activity. The panel was established in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), two organisations of the United Nations. The IPCC shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with former Vice President of the United States Al Gore. The IPCC does not carry out research nor does it monitor climate related phenomena. The IPCC bases its assessment mainly on peer reviewed and published scientific literature.

In June of 2008 the US Fish and Wildlife Service proposed listing the polar bear as a threatened species but voices from the anti global warming forum together with actual counts of polar bears delayed this decision. The published figures show that Canada has an estimated 15,000 polar bears, two-thirds of the global population. Disappearing summer ice is causing a decline in numbers in some areas but other regions are stable and in some the population is rising.)

Climate Change and Creation DVD can be ordered from Creation Research webshop.