The US Chamber of Commerce filed papers this week in Federal Court seeking to put climate science “on trial” - based on many of the same arguments that have been making the rounds for years.
Here is a quick run down of the legal theory that they want to present before a judge:
1) Higher temperatures will reduce human mortality.
Documents filed by the Chamber state “ that the net impact of the UN/IPCC’s forecasted temperature increases will result in lower net mortality rates in the United States.”
In contrast a recent report from the UN showed that climate change is already responsible for 300,000 additional deaths each year around the world. An additional 330 million are “seriously affected” by even the beginnings of climate change, with monetary costs currently at $125 billion per year and rising.
By 2030, the UN estimates that annual deaths associated with climate change will hit 500,000 per year; with up to 660 million people affected (about 10% of the planet’s population), with an annual economic cost around $340 billion.
Of course the Chamber’s brief is only concerned with the US. Living in a developed nation, Americans will be able to cope better than most due to greater wealth, but that does not affect the weather outside.
Dr. Christopher Field, of the Carnegie Institution for Science recently testified before the US Congress that scorching temperatures in an altered climate could result in cities like Sacramento experiencing heat waves for up to 100 days a year.
“We are close to a threshold in a very large number of American cities where uncomfortable heat waves make cities uninhabitable,” Field told the Senate’s environment and public works committee. That doesn’t sound very healthy.