The Instigator
abard124
Pro (for)
Tied
15 Points
The Contender
jonpistone2
Con (against)
Tied
15 Points

The American government should take an active role in stopping climate change

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Post Voting Period
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after 5 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/14/2010 Category: Politics
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,335 times Debate No: 11744
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (22)
Votes (5)

 

abard124

Pro

Of all contemporary political issues, there is one clear issue that stands out from all of the rest. It stands out because, unlike all other issues, it affects every single person in the world, and every single person who ever will live on this planet. Climate change is a huge problem which could potentially kill us if we don't do something to stop it [1]. Scientists are certain that climate change, at least very significantly, caused by humans [2]. As I always say when I debate religion, you can believe whatever you want, but it's ridiculous to say that the scientific consensus is wrong when you have little to no evidence.

Now, since we know that global warming is caused by humans, we will clearly need to change as a society. If you look at the graph of countries in source [3], you will see that the US and China are really close in terms of emissions, but are clearly ahead of other countries. However, China has 4.3 times as many people as the US. So, the average American will emit about 4 times as much carbon as the average Chinese person. That is disgusting. While the entire world needs to reduce their carbon emissions, the US needs to change the most. Unfortunately, it is rather difficult to get 3 million people to change the way they live their lives. That is why the government needs to do something.

Now, even though the debate is whether or not the government should do something, it wouldn't do the debate any justice to neglect to talk about what the government could do.

First of all, the government could instill a major tax on paper and plastic shopping bags. Paper bags kill countless trees and require huge amounts of energy to produce. Plastic bags obviously are made from oil and they don't biodegrade, so they get in our waterways and do bad things, as you've no doubt seen. Both paper and plastic bags are bad [4]. There is already a movement among environmentally conscious people in which they shop using reusable canvas bags. Those are much more sustainable for the environment, and if paper and plastic bags weren't free anymore, people would be much more inclined to bring their own, or at the very least reuse their old bags.

Also, the government could tax big businesses which do not take initiative in protecting the environment. This is a straightforward and easy way to force businesses to care.

Lastly (or at least the last one I will mention in this argument), the government could do simple things, such as not allowing offshore drilling. Yes, offshore drilling will reduce our dependence on foreign oil. But our dependence on foreign oil would also be reduced if we simply educed our dependence on oil. It is absolutely ridiculous how much oil we use in the US. We are only home to about 4.5% of the world's population, yet we consume almost a quarter of the oil [5]. That is absolutely ridiculous. We may slam China for being inconsiderate of the environment, so much so that we forget that we are as bad as they are, or way worse per capita.

The US is absolutely horrible in terms of environmental protection, and 3 million people won't change spontaneously, at least, not before it's too late. That is why we need the government to get involved now. We don't want it to be too late.

I am looking forward to your response!

1. No, I am not just playing in to media hype. Here is an excellent website spelling out exactly how it will kill us, brought to you by our very own EPA: http://www.epa.gov...
2. http://www.epa.gov... "Scientists know with virtual certainty that:..."
3. http://www.epa.gov...
4. http://www.reusablebags.com...
5. http://www.nationmaster.com...
jonpistone2

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for starting this wonderful debate topic. I know it is an issue he and I are both very passionate about, though on opposing sides and I look forward to a wonderful debate with lots of information over the next three rounds.

Before I get into my opening statement I need to already correct a statement made by my opponent. He claims "[1]. Scientists are certain that climate change, at least very significantly, caused by humans [2]. As I always say when I debate religion, you can believe whatever you want, but it's ridiculous to say that the scientific consensus is wrong when you have little to no evidence."

This could not be further from the truth. In point of fact, there is little to no evidence that global warming is caused by humans. A random statement, such as, "Pigs on mars are blue" cannot be stated and then give the burden of proof to the opposing side and request that they are the ones who provide proof that you are wrong. This is exactly what has happened with global warming. People made statements that humans are to blame and then when questioned about such things they comment that the other side has no proof that it isn't true.

So before we begin talking about regulations we must understand 1) there is no clear proof that global warming has started or continues due to humans and 2) the burden of proof is with the accuser and has yet to be shown beyond a reasonable doubt.

My opponent continues by saying "Now, since we know that global warming is caused by humans..." and once again, I need to comment and request that we not use such false statements as fact until clearly proven, which is not the case currently. For starters, in 2009, NASA has proven that we had the fastest growth of ice production in the Arctic (http://www.treehugger.com...). A main claim by global warming supporters is that this ice is melting due to global warming, so if it is now freezing, has global warming ended?!

I find it to be important to be clear on this point, global warming caused by humans has not yet been proven. Until that point is more proven, we cannot advice to regulations on an unproven fact. I will continue with other points brought up by my opponent as he talks about regulation of "3 million people". My guess is that he is talking about American People and also that he meant to type a number closer to 305 million. If that is the case then yes I agree it would be hard to have 305 million people all change the way they live for something which they don't know to be a reality, but I do not agree that government regulation on their private lives is acceptable.

I understand that my opponent thinks taxes will fix the problem. While taxes on shopping bags and businesses could limit the way they they practice, it is by no means a guarantee. Couldn't these people simply pay the extra fee and continue their way of life as they currently are? Absolutely. So if extra taxes are not the correct answer, what is? Should the government have the right to enter everyone's home and remove items they feel are not environmentally friendly? Or should they continue to increase taxes higher and higher on those who don't comply until they finally submit?

When something so unproven and unclear is being discussed, I find it quite naive to already discuss regulations on the American public without proof of a problem. Arctic Ice has actually increased about 43% from 1980 to 2009 (http://nsidc.org...) and I am strongly against regulating the American public on a fallacy. In addition to this, while it is argued that Americans are causing more of this problem than most, it is agreed that they are still a small percentage in relation to the rest of the whole world. So why should America be punished if the rest of the globe is not?

I cannot stress strongly enough, without clear proof from the opposition, American citizens not be singled out and punished any more than they already are. And I would also request my opponent to cease with his scare tactics such as "how it (global warming) will kill us". I don't find this to be the place for such tactics, surely not for something so unproven, but maybe that's just me.
Debate Round No. 1
abard124

Pro

Thank you for your response!

"Before I get into my opening statement I need to already correct a statement made by my opponent."
I certainly hope that you read my source #2 (relisted here for your convenience as source [1]). That very clearly spelled out what scientists know. The burden of proof therefore lies upon you to disprove those facts laid out by the EPA.

"This is exactly what has happened with global warming. People made statements that humans are to blame and then when questioned about such things they comment that the other side has no proof that it isn't true."
I bring you, again, to the EPA site that I sourced.

"So before we begin talking about regulations we must understand 1) there is no clear proof that global warming has started or continues due to humans and 2) the burden of proof is with the accuser and has yet to be shown beyond a reasonable doubt."
I have addressed both these claims.

"I need to comment and request that we not use such false statements as fact until clearly proven, which is not the case currently."
I totally agree. Luckily I proved it.

"For starters, in 2009, NASA has proven that we had the fastest growth of ice production in the Arctic"
Check your link. I find it completely unnecessary to address this argument, but I will just for fun. August of 2008, as of when this article was written, was the month that saw the fastest loss of Arctic ice in recorded history [2].

"Until that point is more proven, we cannot advice to regulations on an unproven fact."
That is an argument that I've never understood. If there is any speculation at all that humans are a major cause of global warming, shouldn't we stay on the safe side? If it turns out it wasn't caused by humans, we won't really be affected (other than maybe being a little smarter, healthier and happier), and if it is caused by humans, well, we would have saved the planet. On the other hand, if you choose not to protect the environment, if you're right then nothing will happen, but if you're wrong then you will have allowed something horrible to happen that was largely or completely preventable. We only have one planet, so we should respect it.

"I will continue with other points brought up by my opponent as he talks about regulation of "3 million people". My guess is that he is talking about American People and also that he meant to type a number closer to 305 million."
I apologize. That was part typo and part stupid mistake. I often argue this for Oregon, which does have approximately 3 million people. In any case, I meant to say 300 million, and that only makes my point stronger.

"If that is the case then yes I agree it would be hard to have 305 million people all change the way they live for something which they don't know to be a reality, but I do not agree that government regulation on their private lives is acceptable."
Time out. I never said the government should regulate their private life. The government can't do that. The reforms which I proposed were all corporate and governmental. Through availability and convenience, the people will naturally change what they do.

"Couldn't these people simply pay the extra fee and continue their way of life as they currently are?"
Obviously they won't completely go away, I'm not an idealist. But I can guarantee you that their use will diminish very substantially. If you have to pay for every single bag you get from the grocery store, obviously people will be much more inclined to reduce and reuse. I don't think anybody could truthfully deny that.

"So if extra taxes are not the correct answer, what is? Should the government have the right to enter everyone's home and remove items they feel are not environmentally friendly?"
Taxes are the right answer. Even if they weren't, it would probably increase recycling substantially if all states had deposits on their bottled and canned beverages (I have gotten quite a bit of money returning cans and bottles). But taxing would work. And your "idea," well, see the 4th amendment of the US Constitution.

"When something so unproven and unclear is being discussed, I find it quite naive to already discuss regulations on the American public without proof of a problem."
See my argument about taking initiative.

"Arctic Ice has actually increased about 43% from 1980 to 2009 (http://nsidc.org......) and I am strongly against regulating the American public on a fallacy."
First of all, that link shows Antarctic ice. Arctic ice has decreased. Also, I really don't know what to say to those statistics, other than the fact that 2009 was an El Nino year, which affects different parts of the world differently. In the case of Antarctica, it actually cools it down a bit. Now, here is where your logical fallacy comes into place. El Nino events are caused by the heating of the East Pacific. We have seen more El Nino years than ever recently, and the only explanation for that is climate change (and that is exactly why I don't call it global warming, even though the mean temperature had steadily increased [3]). The fact is, you have very little evidence rejecting climate change, yet there is as plethora of evidence supporting it [Every single source I posted]. If you don't believe me, ask Mohammed Nasheed, the president of the Maldives, who has to handle a very unique situation. See, the country that he leads is very literally in danger of disappearing to rising sea levels [5].

"In addition to this, while it is argued that Americans are causing more of this problem than most, it is agreed that they are still a small percentage in relation to the rest of the whole world."
Not per capita. Yes, the whole world needs to change, but America is grossly overstepping its bounds, so it is high time that we lead the rest of the world in changing what we do.

"So why should America be punished if the rest of the globe is not?"
You seem very set in the idea that we're being "punished." It is not in any way a punishment to lead our country in doing the right thing.

"And I would also request my opponent to cease with his scare tactics such as "how it (global warming) will kill us"."
You may call them scare tactics, but, as Mohammed Nasheed or any Maldivian will tell you, unless people realize the full scope and potential of the issue, people will die. There will be very real devastating effects of climate change. You may write them off as scare tactics, but I am simply stating very blunt facts in a very blunt way, and I feel that that is warranted. I could mention that warmer oceans make more (and stronger) hurricanes and other extreme weather events [6], but I'm not going to because those are "scare tactics."

I am eagerly awaiting your response!

1. http://www.epa.gov...
2. http://www.treehugger.com... (look familiar?)
3. http://www.stormfax.com...
4. http://www.newscientist.com...
5. http://news.bbc.co.uk...
6. http://www.epa.gov...
jonpistone2

Con

Yes I did read your link (http://www.epa.gov...). I read the way the EPA stated "As with any field of scientific study, there are uncertainties associated with the science of climate change." I then further read under the category of "What's Not Certain" the EPA states it is not certain about "Determining the relative contribution to climate change of human activities and natural causes."

I surely do not want to go back and forth on this point, but the EPA article that you continue referring to specifically states that it is unknown what contributions the human activity has to climate change. Furthermore, the EPA's research is under suspicion anyway. There are two EPA workers who are highly critical of the EPA's memo on carbon gas. The are critical of both the substances of and the process behind the agency's proposed findings. (http://www.washingtontimes.com...)

Additionally, in November of 2009, over 1,000 emails and more than 2,000 documents from the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia were posted on the internet. The emails show how scientists have been altering climate date and hiding information which proves global warming caused by man to be false. These emails included some from American Scientist John Holdren, a top adviser to the president and he wrote that scientists who opposed the theories of climate change were "amateurs." He referred to using a "trick" that could be used to "hide and decline" temperature figures. Yet another mentioned how he was bothered to release date that could challenge climate change. (http://climategateemail.com...) (http://www.eastangliaemails.com...)

In Terms of the NASA link you posted, yes I agree they said there was record melting in 2008. This is a major point that needs to be discussed. We are talking about an average over a long period of time to determine warming. Everyone would agree that one hour or one day of higher than normal temperatures does not constitute as a long enough time to establish global warming. For some reason, global warming supporters find a year or two or three to be sufficient enough to produce a trend of warmth. The EPA report you continue to quote says that it is uncertain in "Projecting future greenhouse emissions and how the climate system will respond within a narrow range." If your coveted EPA cannot project future climate changes, how can you? They continue to explain they aren't certain about "Improving understanding of natural climatic variations, changes in the sun's energy, land-use changes, the warming or cooling effects of pollutant aerosols, and the impacts of changing humidity and cloud cover."

There are major scandals around covering up and hiding evidence that global warming does not exist. There are questions of the EPA suppressing evidence of their finding. The EPA even admits that it is unclear as to how the human race effects climate change. I must defer back to you yet again after you read all this compelling evidence and explain that the burden or proof is yours to prove and without it, American Only regulations cannot be expected.

I didn't expect to have to continue showing all this information on how global warming is yet to be proven and how your EPA records are more under question and uncertain than your statements represent. As we all know, the earth has been warming and cooling since its existence. There was an Ice Age about 22,000 years ago, then the earth warmed for a bit and started to cool again for the Little Ice Age which began warming again around 1680. There was no proof or even reason to believe the earth was cooling and heating for all those years due to carbon gases from humans. (http://canadafreepress.com...)

This is where the "Hockey Stick" graph makes its entrance, around 1998. For those who are not familiar with this, it is a climate graph which is one of the initial pieces of information to start the global warming hysteria. This graph mapped out a zero increase in temperature over the past 1,000 years with a sudden spike starting in the 20th century. The research which produced this used tree ring data for the first 1,000 years of its study and then added modern temperature date for the 20th century. These tree rings were hand picked and often discarded if they did not conform to the uniformity as the others did. A dendroclimatologist (one who studies climate using tree rings) told the US Congressional Committee that, "...this does not mean that one could not improve a chronology by reducing the number of series used if the purpose of removing samples is to enhance a desired signal. The ability to pick and choose which samples to use is an advantage unique to dendroclimatology." This 'hand picking' of evidence to prove climate stability and then a large spike in change raised many questions across the scientific community. (http://canadafreepress.com...)

The hockey stick was eventually unmasked by one of the most basic forms of scientific testing we know today; the reproducibility test. Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick attempted to reproduce this hockey stick and were unable to do so. They even requested date and formulas from Mann (the person who came up with the hockey stick in 1998) and he would not disclose the codes and formulas he used to achieve his results. This raised even more suspicion since the hockey stick was published work and the methods as to how the results were found were not being disclosed. (http://canadafreepress.com...)

The US National Academy of Sciences appointed a committee to investigate this matter between McIntyre/McKitrick and Mann. Ultimately, they found in favor of McIntyre and McKitrick. They explained that they tried to reproduce the date themselves and while they could not reproduce the hockey stick Mann has suggested, they were able to reproduce the findings of McIntyre and McKitrick. (http://canadafreepress.com...)

To date, Mann still refuses to disclose his formula and codes; very continent for someone who's data is the reason we have this global warming debate today.
Debate Round No. 2
abard124

Pro

"I then further read under the category of "What's Not Certain" the EPA states it is not certain about "Determining the relative contribution to climate change of human activities and natural causes.""
But in the section about what they do know, they say that they know that it's happening, and they know that it's caused by humans. They're just not certain about how much humans contribute, percentagewise.

"Furthermore, the EPA's research is under suspicion anyway. There are two EPA workers who are highly critical of the EPA's memo on carbon gas. The are critical of both the substances of and the process behind the agency's proposed findings"
The fact is, there is scientific evidence supporting climate change and the fact that it is caused at least significantly by humans. If you want to take a memo that may or may not have been slightly unsupportive towards the climate change plight and construe it so it looks like it is destroying years of scientific conjecture, well, I'm sorry, but that's not how it works. Do I wish that climate change wasn't happening, you bet I do. But unfortunately that's not the case.

"Additionally, in November of 2009, over 1,000 emails and more than 2,000 documents from the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia were posted on the internet."
Oy gevalt! You went there... To answer your argument, yes, I am aware of the scandal, but no, I do not believe that it means anything, other than the fact that deniers are going to be that much more difficult to deal with. As I said, it would be really nice if you were right, but the sad fact is that years of scientific conjecture are not going to change because of a few emails. These emails are just a red herring of sorts. But to claim that they overturn years of science and research is ludicrous at best.

"We are talking about an average over a long period of time to determine warming. Everyone would agree that one hour or one day of higher than normal temperatures does not constitute as a long enough time to establish global warming."
You are correct, but the increased incidence of unusual occurrences and records make it clear that something is happening. For example, we have always had El Nino events, but they have become much more common and much stronger in recent years. If we didn't have that trend, an El Nino year would just mean that the south Pacific was warm at that particular point. Now, it means that the south Pacific is getting warmer, and it might not go back.

"The EPA report you continue to quote says that it is uncertain in "Projecting future greenhouse emissions and how the climate system will respond within a narrow range." If your coveted EPA cannot project future climate changes, how can you?"
Greenhouse emissions are from people, my friend. We don't know how society will be in the future, and so we can't know how the climate will change if we don't know what we're going to be putting into the system.

"They continue to explain they aren't certain about "Improving understanding of natural climatic variations, changes in the sun's energy, land-use changes, the warming or cooling effects of pollutant aerosols, and the impacts of changing humidity and cloud cover.""
I'm sorry, but Merlin does not run the EPA. You can try to tell Lisa Jackson that she needs to take psychic lessons. My point is, there is a fine line between following scientific trends and predicting the future. We can't study things that haven't happened yet, or are so new that we can't have seen the results. That is why they invented CFC's in the first place; because they didn't know that CFC's eat up the ozone layer.

"There are major scandals around covering up and hiding evidence that global warming does not exist."
I agree with that whole statement except all of it. There are minor red herrings around scientific secrecy, most likely so other scientists won't discover what they're trying to discover before they discover it. Yes, I know that that's unfortunate, but it by no means disproves or even hurts the case for climate change.

"The EPA even admits that it is unclear as to how the human race effects climate change."
I believe that to be a gross misinterpretation on your part. They are certain that humans, in some way or another, affect climate change. They just don't quite know exactly how or how much.

"I must defer back to you yet again after you read all this compelling evidence and explain that the burden or proof is yours to prove and without it, American Only regulations cannot be expected."
You have shown me your "evidence," but the burden of proof is, in fact, upon yourself to show how that "evidence" can be applied as anything other than a mildly interesting piece of information. I'm sorry, but a memo and some emails can't just negate every single piece of information I gave you. If that was how life worked, we wouldn't get anywhere. It is really irresponsible to interpret facts like that, because you are completely ignoring the vast majority of facts. (Can you tell how much I enjoy the argument that it is a scandal/hoax?)

"This 'hand picking' of evidence to prove climate stability and then a large spike in change raised many questions across the scientific community."
Once again, how is this anything but a slightly interesting piece of trivia. You can analyze and scrutinize all of the more controversial aspects to the world's end, but you really need to look for the big picture. Basically, what I'm saying is that I really could care less about these so-called "scandals" because they do absolutely nothing to my argument, which you seem to have completely lost track of.

"very continent for someone who's data is the reason we have this global warming debate today."
So, what you're saying is that, whether or not this was a hoax, this graph made us realize and study something which is very real. If you think that this is the only research that has been done, I don't see how you can be qualified to debate this. The fact is, the vast majority of the evidence that we have is absolutely real, peer reviewed data from independent labs. So, I don't want to hear about your scandals or conspiracy theories, because you are completely missing the point.

The fact is, any data or theories opposing the idea of climate change absolutely pale in comparison to all of the evidence and conclusions that climate change is a very real problem with very real consequences and very real ways to prevent it. It is ignorant and irresponsible to deny that. As I said earlier, if there is any reasonable evidence that climate change is caused by humans, there is absolutely no reason to not be more responsible in what we do, just in case. Every single other country is leaps and bounds more responsible than the US in terms of environmental issues. Obviously it would be virtually impossible to spontaneously get 300 million people to be more responsible, so that's why the government needs to step in. There is nothing that says that the US has special rights to spew greenhouse gases into the environment at our own expense as well as the expense of the rest of the world. That is irresponsible. That is selfish. That is just incredibly, astoundingly, disgustingly stupid. It is an incredibly easy fix, and there is nothing more important. What kid doesn't grow up without wanting to save the world? Well, my friend, environmental protections very literally save the world.

I would like to thank my opponent for making excellent arguments and, admittedly, being much friendlier than I. While my opponent has done a wonderful job, his arguments were completely unsupported by no fault of his own, but because there is nothing to support them with. It is a fact that humans cause climate change, and the government can very easily alleviate our impact. Therefore, there is absolutely no reason to not vote PRO. Thank you.
jonpistone2

Con

I would like to thank my opponent for a wonderful debate. There has been wonderful information and opinion shared by both sides and it has been enjoyable. That said, in all three of the rounds, I fail to see a direct connection between humans and global warming proven by my opponent. Without a direct connection, and surely without a direct cause, regulations are only going to funnel money from one big organization to another and not fix the problem. We cannot be expected to blindly throw money at a guess and hope things change.

In addition to the lack of evidence directly linking global warming to humans, there is also no proof as to how these regulations will actually change anything in terms of climate. There have been numerous scare tactic comments followed by minimal solutions which may or may not fix a problem that may or may not exist. It has also not been shown to what extend regulations on the American people will have on the globe as a whole. In fact, the EPA have stated that if there is a 60% reduction in carbon-dioxide emissions by 2050, the global temperature will be reduced by 0.1 to 0.2 degrees Celsius by 2095. (http://www.heritage.org...)

I can understand that any change in the right direction is a good thing but at what cost and for what result? This is nearly 100 years later and since the EPA has already admitted that they do not know how much of a role the environment plays on climate change, how many other factors could go in to altering these numbers. Also, the American economy is in a troubling time at the moment and a further burden on businesses will only increase the problem; all because there is a chance that the temperatures may reduce by .2 degrees in 85 years. This is simply too far fetched of a plan to cause enforcement of regulations.

I continue to talk about these loose connections between global warming and humans because, even if my opponent may not personally agree, there are many well respected scientists who have not been involved in scandals stating that there is no link. In December of 2008, the US Senate Minority leader released a report which included 650 dissenting scientist refuting the EPA's Claims. As of April 2009, that number increased to over 700 scientist. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change which the EPA relied heavily on in their conclusions only had 52 scientists; less than 1/13th of those opposed. (http://www.heritage.org...)

While some try to sweep this decent under the rug in yet another scandalous act, there are some things which cannot be disputed. If the EPA has their way and is able to regulate CO2 output by the American people, it would be the most expansive and most expensive environmental regulation in history. In addition, it will let the EPA bypass the legislative process complete. In essence, the decisions of a few will drastically alter the lives of many; all for a change in the Earth's temperature too small to ever notice. (http://www.heritage.org...)

The non profit group from the home state of my opponent, the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine have started a petition against the adoption of regulations on the American businesses and public in the name of global warming. They have had over 31,000 American scientists sign this petition stating they have reviewed the research literature and found no link between humans and global weather changes. (http://www.oism.org...) In fact, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which was discussed earlier having a direct link on the EPA's conclusions have failed to prove a link between humans and global warming.

The IPCC actually states, "The Earth's atmosphere-ocean dynamics is chaotic: its evolution is sensitive to small perturbations in initial conditions. The sensitivity limits our ability to predict the detailed evolution of weather; inevitable errors and uncertainties in the starting conditions of a weather forecast amplify through the forecast. As well as uncertainty in initial conditions, such predictions are also degraded by errors and uncertainties in our ability to represent accurately the significant climate process." (http://www.aproundtable.org...) So by their own admission, their researched is filled with errors and speculation.

Over and over again, my opponent continually denies the the overwhelming data which shows there has yet to be a direct link proven between humans and global warming. If there was a direct link out there to be proven, why hasn't anyone done it yet; not just in America but across the world? A huge scandal took place involving the Climate Research Unit and it is simply dismissed by my opponent as he states, "I do not believe that it means anything". The EPA has explained they are uncertain as to the cause of global warming and how human involvement relates to climate change. My opponent responds by saying, "They're just not certain about how much humans contribute", as if that somehow makes it okay to impose regulations on Americans. If the EPA is uncertain as to what the human contributions are and if the EPA reports are under suspicion anyway, why would we put them in charge of regulating American businesses and lives?

My opponent's defense to all this uncertainty around global warming and human cases of climate change is that, he wishes global warming did not exist, but it does. He continues to claim that, "The fact is, there is scientific evidence supporting climate change and the fact that it is caused at least significantly by humans". But he has failed to show this overwhelming evidence and has moved from the EPA's 'unknown' significance of human involvement to his new statement claiming human involvement actually being 'significant'; an unsubstantiated leap to say the least.

While I give my opponent credit for commenting on most of the scandals and scientific reports disproving his case, I simply cannot agree that global warming exists because he says so. Those who blindly support global warming caused by humans continually write off these problems in their data as 'minor red herrings' but fail to show the actual connection. This debate, as many others, has tried to turn the table on who has the burden of proof. The side believing global warming is caused by humans still needs to prove and show a direct link between the human involvement and in what capacity. But what we have here is my opponent claiming, personally, that it not only exists and is caused by humans but any data which disproves this claim should be dismissed as minor speed bumps.

My opponent makes a remarkably embellishment of the facts as he claims, "The fact is, any data or theories opposing the idea of climate change absolutely pale in comparison to all of the evidence and conclusions that climate change is a very real problem with very real consequences and very real ways to prevent it. It is ignorant and irresponsible to deny that." Does my opponent really expect us to believe that he has reviewed all the information offered on both sides of this debate to such an extent that he can numerically calculate which side has more evidence? It is scary, to me, that people make such vast generalizations. It is also scary, to all of us, when those such as my opponent talk about human habits equating to death. These general speculations and scare tactics do not translate into fact as shown above. Without absolute proof that human change will alter climate, there is absolutely no need for government to step in and alter our economic strength and way of life.

I thank my opponent for starting this topic and for a great debate!
Debate Round No. 3
22 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
abard says "Wait... Sourced materials from Wikipedia are biased, but Heritage isn't?"

You have to judge the specific articles. The global warming stuff in Wikipedia is extremely weak. The problem is that they leave things that contradicts their opinion. Those counter to global warming crisis theory are pretty much forced to cite the claim that they are countering, so they have to reference both sides. Wikipedia just pretends, too often, that opposing viewpoints do not exist. I think Wikipedia is very good with non-controversial subjects, but they strongly favor leftist viewpoints on many controversial topics.

A good example is the Wikipedia presentation of the "spaghetti graphs." The graph shows all sorts of different measurements of global temperature rising dramatically. The time scale of the graph is adjusted to just show recent rises, ignoring the history of ups and downs. More importantly, the seemingly independent measurements of temperature actual share a considerable amount of suspect data.
Posted by abard124 6 years ago
abard124
@The_Insider: Do you want to source that claim? If it had been disproved, then wouldn't it be silly to have all these scientists study it?
Posted by The_Insider 6 years ago
The_Insider
I'm a little tired of people talking about Global warming! It has been disproved! The middle ages were hotter than now! The earth has a cycle. It gets hotter. It get colder. Hotter. Colder. Simple.
Posted by abard124 6 years ago
abard124
Wait... Sourced materials from Wikipedia are biased, but Heritage isn't?
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
The major weakness in Pro's case was with the EPA site. It stated that global warming exists and that, basically, CO2 is a greenhouse gas. However, it went on to acknowledge all the uncertainties of how much of a factor CO2 is in global warming. The basic physics of CO2 are such that it can be used to account for about a third of the observed global warming through 1995. Some hypothesized multiplying factor must be included to make global warming a serious problem, and that has not been proven.

Con should have pointed out that even global warming alarmists acknowledge that there has been no global warming for 15 years. Something else, as important as CO2, must be influencing climate. Note also that Arctic ice disappears about every 60 years and then reappears. It is doing so on schedule.

The Hockey Stick theory has been demolished. The methodology was examined at the behest of the Senate, by a team of ultra-expert authorities on statistics. The Hockey Stick was found to be a bogus product of bad methods.

Con should have raised cost-benefit issues in his first round. Argument introduced in the last round must be ignored. Nonetheless, the burden of establishing a serious problem was not met.

Wikipedia is a wretched source for global warming info. They are extremely biased and reference dubious sources.

A good topic and an interesting debate.
Posted by abard124 6 years ago
abard124
I only used sourced material on Wiki. The particular fact I gave you was sourced. Twice.
Posted by jonpistone2 6 years ago
jonpistone2
i didn't want to comment any more on this point---but I had to.

you cant quote WIKIPEDIA as a source for a consensus on arguably the most controversial environmental topic in the 21st century.....you are aware that Wikipedia is filled with peoples personal comments and not an actual reliable or fact-checked source...right?

so...either way...I wont touch upon any other points, just that wiki isn't much more than a personal web page.

i will still give you the last word if you feel the need to add more comments but i am honestly done this time---promise!
Posted by abard124 6 years ago
abard124
Fair enough...
Posted by abard124 6 years ago
abard124
The number of signatures is irrelevant at this point. Whether or not I had the burden of proof, you have not yet addressed any of the data which I have given you, other than attempting to write it off as a hoax which is absolutely ludicrous.

"And I am against the info because it isnt proven."
Climate change is a theory. So is evolution. So is gravity.

"im just saying that you have some people who side with it, not the consensus and that the earth may be warming."
http://en.wikipedia.org...... Looks like a consensus to me...

Please don't argue like John Cleese.
Posted by jonpistone2 6 years ago
jonpistone2
but honestly my friend....this is not the place for a debate....we already had a debate...nothing should be made here in the comments....people who want to vote get to vote in the comments...

if you want a SECOND debate on this issue...we can surely talk about that -- that said, lets start a new topic...something new and fresh...okay?

truce for now....new topic...agreed friend? :)
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