I was recently interviewed for a February 3 Washington Post Magazine article, “The Environmental Burden of Generation Z,” written by Jason Plautz.
The article discusses “the nexus between climate change and mental health of children.”
Jason followed up our long conversation by thoughtfully informing me that my rather extensive comments (many attributing great climate hysteria blame to prevalent sensationalistic media reporting) hadn’t been included in the final cut.
Whereas Jason certainly owes me no apology whatsoever for any such routine editorial decision, our original discussion — along with his fine finished piece — now prompts me to offer some additional commentary regarding this important discussion topic.
Jason opens his article narrative by describing an event he witnessed when an estimated 7,500 teenagers poured out of buses near Denver’s Union Station to converge on Colorado’s state capitol.
Signs raised above some of their heads read, “We won’t die from old age. We’ll die from climate change.”
One high school sophomore named Sophie Kaplan carried a poster asking “Why should I study for a future I won’t have?” Sophie told Jason that she thinks about climate change every day and that she reads news “about how we’re on the brink.”
Sophie feels overwhelmed when her teachers and parents tell her that it’s up to her generation to fix things. “I don’t understand why I should be in school if the world is burning,” she says. “What’s the point of working on my education if we don’t deal with this first?”
Jason observes that “eco-anxiety,” or “climate depression” is playing out in real terms among young people, sometimes in extreme ways. He refers, for example, to the case of a 17-year-old Australian boy who was hospitalized for “climate change delusion” after refusing to drink water during nation-wide drought.
I will add a particularly tragic case involving an Argentine family in March of 2010.
Francisco Lotero and Miriam Coletti shot two of their children before killing themselves after making an apparent suicide pact over fears of global warming. Although their two-year-old son, Francisco, died instantly, their unnamed 7-month-old infant daughter remarkably survived.
Where do these impressionable young people — yes, their parents and teachers too — get such hopelessly depressing “information”? Jason correctly points out that “They’ve cried over nature documentaries about the destruction of the coral reefs and sought out coverage of 17-year-old Swedish climate activist GretaThunberg.”
They’ve also listened as Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., told them last year that “the world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change,” and have become terrified when warned that “societal collapses and mass death are seen as inevitable by scientists and other credible voices.”
And after all, who can possibly dispute doomsday climate projections of the venerable U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)?
But this being the case, how can we similarly dismiss a statement in IPCC’s 2001 report admitting, “In climate research and modeling, we should realize that we are dealing with a coupled non-linear chaotic system, and therefore that the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”
A February article published in the prestigious journal Nature challenged the veracity of IPCC computer model predictions that have been cited more than 2,500 times in scientific reports and hundreds of media stories calling for “urgent action” to avert a 10.8 degree Fahrenheit global temperature rise by the year 2100.
It turned out that the scenario presented was a worst-case projection with only a very slim three percent chance of becoming reality.
There should be no surprise nor wonder why many very caring people have become deeply troubled with eco-anxiety and guilt. The Washington Post, along with other “mainstream” “publications can do their part to end this travesty by covering some well-established facts that all audiences — young and old — deserve to know about.
For example, why not at least occasionally mention that global sea levels have continued to rise at a constant non-accelerated rate of about 7 inches per century since the Little Ice Age ended in the mid-1800s?
Perhaps inform everyone that even IPCC and NOAA admit that there have been no increases in the severities or frequencies of droughts, floods, thunderstorms, or tornadoes in decades . . . nor any validated correlations between global warming and hurricanes or tropical storms either.
Let’s also end shameful indoctrination of precious young minds and tender hearts with baseless claims that their parents’ SUVs are murdering polar bears. On the contrary, Arctic bear populations are thriving — growing so fast, in fact, that it’s the human residents that face greater dangers.
Very simply Jason, let’s all make it a big priority to become better informed about reporting objective facts, both for the sake of our children’s mental health — and also for our own.
And while we’re at it, wouldn’t it be interesting to find out who organized and financed the hundreds of charter buses that delivered those 7,500 climate-crisis-distraught protesting youngsters to Denver?