Columnist Williams Wrong On CO2
March 23, 2015, Daily News-Record
In a recent column, Walter Williams tried to discredit the idea that atmospheric CO2 levels are causing climate change (“Climate Change a Ruse for Socialism,” March14). He did so by noting that “460 million years ago, CO2 concentrations were 4400 ppm, and temperatures were about the same as they are today,” thereby implying that CO2 levels and Earth’s temperature are not connected.
Mr. Williams failed to add that another determinant of Earth’s temperature, the sun, was weaker 460 million years ago. The sun was so weak that at least 3000 ppm of CO2 was needed in the atmosphere just to prevent an ice age. Thus, rather than discrediting the role of CO2 in regulating Earth’s temperature, his example affirmed it.
Today, the level of CO2 in the atmosphere is the highest since the development of human civilization. Humanity’s greatest challenge is stopping its increase.
Leslie Grady Jr.