WHEN you read this article and comments in the paper that seem to state something else, it can be confusing. 

As a science person, I like a challenge, and to be a scientist you should always keep an open mind. Lately, a few letters have quoted a Professor William Happer and Prof Richard Lindzen. I have sat and listened to Prof. W Happer and know his confused thinking. 

Strangely enough, I agree with over 60% of what he states. This man now into his 80s still has a jovial way of putting his ideas over and has a TV YouTube channel to do it on. I agree with him when he states that ‘Co2 is a greenhouse gas and has a warming effect on the planet. Also, that many eco warriors and climate change campaigners are like religious zealots’ looking for someone or thing to save as modern man has lost its faith in God and is now looing for something to believe in.’ As Blaze Pascal (1623 – 1662)  philosopher and scientist, said, ‘we all have a God shaped gap in us until we find God, if not, another God or cause will fill it.’ 

Prof W Happer, has a record of controversy when he did some work for the fossil fuel industries and was paid handsomely for it. He worked for the US government and was asked to leave due to his controversial views. Later on, he was asked to help President Donald Trump - not surprisingly, but left after a year. 

As a fellow scientist, I have much time for such a learned person, but he is just as religious in his jovial and eccentric ways as the eco warrior he belittles. The most important thing to understand is if you are going to be balanced in your science, you should not follow just one or two people’s views, but get a broad understanding of the subject from all quarters, otherwise, as he quotes himself,’ you can end up in a cult blinkered view.’ Prof. W Happer’s calculations are based simply on his physics and energy academic studies, but climate change is far more, including – astronomy; biology; geology; environmental studies and most importantly meteorology. 

Most of the greatest scientists in the world with feet in all of these disciplines have contributed to the UN IPCC and have stated that climate change in now mostly man made and by burning too much fossil fuels. One last quote from the Professor, which I agree with in part but like most people pushing an agenda, leaves out the context: he says, ‘Co2 is good, and we need more, it makes the plants grow faster.’ 

He is right about the growing. But he also says, ‘Co2 makes little difference to the temperature but fails to tell you that without any Co2, todays temperature in the UK in April would be up to 30 degrees colder at  - 19 C. This he knows, but fails to say and proves that Co2 indeed makes a big difference in raising the temperature, proving his theory wrong when he says, ‘it makes only a small difference.’ 

We are now finding that in nature and planetary science, that balance is the key. And it doesn’t take much to unbalanced everything with unseen consequences. The Carbon and Co2 cycle are vital for life on earth and too little or too much will change life as we know it. It’s all about balance.

One final comment if the learned prof who thinks as he quotes in his broadcast, ‘that we need more Co2,’ then what he does not say that at just 5% atmospheric concentration would become suffocating for mammals – remember the crew in Apollo 13 who nearly died of Co2 poisoning at way under 5%! 

The truth is all about balance and multi-disciplined science.