Climate Change with Mr. Kingston

Part 3

Do you think the fires in California are a result of climate change?

No. Because people tell me, global warming has nothing to do with weather. They say it’s dry, it’s always dry in California and they have periods like this all the time. I think what’s changed is the management of the land, and the management of the land has gone to just letting things be nature! You let nature go, this is what you get, you get big fires. And plus, we live around nature, so we’re losing homes left and right. I mean you’re thinking about the last 30 years, the intrusion on nature from rich people buying into those hills in California. In areas they used to be “Oh it’s just wild lands we will let it  put itself out” it’s now… neighborhoods. You gotta manage the land. Now, think about this, after this fire’s come along, there won’t be another major fire in California for years. Why? Because all the vegetation is burned away! They manage the lands in Montana out West for DECADES, you know Smokey Bear and all that, forest fires, they would put it out, and I wanted to do this in college, I wanted to be a fire spotter, but right about the late 80’s early 90’s they did away with those because they realized what they were doing, they were putting the fires out too quickly, and then vegetation would stay, and the next time there’s a really good fire and we can’t put it out we can’t because all that fuel. So I think what’s happening in California is they’ve allowed- they’ve not managed the land properly and then… they’re living in the area and BAM you have a bad fire and you get this loss of lives and properties.  

What should we be doing?

Learn to live with climate change. I mean, adapt to it, isn’t it cheaper than- I mean, what’s the perfect climate? I don’t know what the perfect climate is. What’s perfect for us might not be perfect for Latin America, right? Because Earth is always trying to balance itself out. So, I mean, why don’t we just learn to adapt with it? I mean- “Sea’s going  to rise” the seas have been rising anyways! What are you talking about seas are going to rise. They go up! Look around the world, where are they building, where are really smart people still building? Right by the ocean. Well if the sea is going to rise to the levels we have been warned about, why build that? They build them there because the models are wrong. If half of Florida was going to be underwater by 2040 or so why build in Miami? The business owners do not believe the models. And you know, they told us it was going to be global cooling back in the seventies. I was a kid and I said “Oh the ice is going to come down?” It’s called the doomsday myth, human beings are always into doom. So, “oil will be gone by 1999” that’s what they told us in the early eighties. How they pick 1999? One, it’s a cool year, two it’s far enough away to fathom, it’s too far away to remember. They told us we’d be out of oil, no we’re not, we got tons of oil. You know, the arctic will be free of ice by 2015, that’s what they told us back in 2006, 2007. It’s not free of ice. It’s not even getting there! It’s had some periods of warmth and growth. It’s had some melting and I think that’s a positive. I mean, i think change is good! They always say that change is good, why can’t the climate change? There was a northwest passage at one point, right? Now they can never find it? And one, for global warming, how did the vikings get here? Periods of warming, periods of cooling. If you think about it, the last mini ice age, that was about the 1600’s, millions died! You can’t grow crops in the cold. I don’t understand why the climate we had, when, ten years ago? Fifteen years ago? When was it perfect? If you research this, you go back to the 1920’s they predicted global warming, global cooling, I mean… it’s a cottage industry of doom! We human beings love to blame ourselves for things. Don’t get me wrong, I’m totally against pollution, if you were to throw a cigarette butt down I’d give you grief. Because those things never decay, or you know, the company that dumps things into the river, I can’t stand them, and environmental problems that we, you know, we’re really causing but, okay if we’re using fossil fuels  and it’s keeping humans alive, we’re going to have warmth. I don’t know why that’s such a horrible thing. I mean too much warmth would be a problem and so would too much cooling… but I don’t see it. All the models that they’re projecting this on. That’s my problem, there’s all this doom and gloom and they’re based on models that you know, they’re not accurate. The last international panel they warned us “if we don’t do anything it’s going to be too late” well it’s too late! We didn’t do anything. But nope, we just got a new one out this year, “oh we’ve got ten more years to make a change!” You told us that ten years ago. We get another ten years. If the models were right then there would be people like “oh my god let’s go” but the models aren’t right! That’s why they’re trying to shut down debate on this issue. They call people who want to question things, they call them deniers. They say the science is settled. What is wrong with questioning things?

Kingston offered these thoughts and many more, and proved to have some valid criticisms. Next time, I will interview science teacher Matthew McQueen for a scientific perspective on climate change.