A Teenager Looks at Climate Change

Teenager's View

This is a guest post by my grandson, William Desormeaux age 17, consisting of an English translation of his essay in French to fulfill a philosophy class requirement.  The words and thoughts are entirely his own, based on his own research.  I added the images.

For a few decades, many people have given their opinions about climate change. Some are concerned by this phenomenon, while others try to prove that these changes do not actually have impact. The first group can be called warming alarmists and the second warming skeptics. For other individuals who are not part of these groups, the following question arises: Should we act against climate change? In my opinion, alarmists exaggerate much too much on the problems. In fact, the conditions of the Earth have already been worse, humans are not actually responsible for these changes and measured results contain errors.


First, I do not believe that we should act against climate change because the situation of the Earth, in respect of carbon dioxide has already been much worse. Indeed, according to Ian Plimer, Professor of geology at the University of Adelaide, several millennia ago, Earth had a rate of carbon dioxide 1000 times higher.1 Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and alarmists say that it is bad for the environment. It is true that it has an impact on our planet. On the other hand, when we look at the statistics of Ian Plimer, we realize that the Earth has already included much more of this gas and survived. Moreover, plant life depends on carbon dioxide and grows bigger and faster in higher concentrations than we have today. In short, although the concentration of greenhouse gases increases, it remains that it has been much higher without damage caused to our planet.

Greenhouse gases diagram

Secondly, in the same vein, I am not convinced that we actually have the possibility of acting against climate change since we are not responsible. Indeed, again according to Ian Plimer, human activities are responsible for only 3% of carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere.2 If we take a moment to analyze these figures, we can quickly see that even if we succeed in halving our emission of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, there would still remain 98.5% of the gas that “pollutes our planet”. Further, I consider that all the sacrifices that we should take just to halve our emissions will do nothing to save the Earth. So, 98.5% means that climate changes are part of a natural cycle, and we shouldn’t be overly preoccupied about this issue.


Thirdly, the results recorded by meteorological stations are not completely reliable. Indeed, according to Anthony Watts, Chief Meteorologist of KPAY-AM radio, 89% of stations recording temperatures do not respect National Weather service standards.3 This statistic shows that some results used by alarmists are erroneous. It is easy for people to believe that the temperature is rising when different weather stations do not meet standards. For example, some of these stations have been found in the middle of parking lots, an area where heat is absorbed. So, in this way, the displayed temperatures are higher than they should be. Thus results promoted by alarmists are not typical since there are only 11% of stations that are adequate. Finally, I do not believe that action must be taken against climate change since published temperatures are misleading. In this way, it is easy to make global warming look worse than it is.


In conclusion, I am convinced that we should not take action against climate change. Several experts like Mr. Plimer and Mr. Anthony Watts have convinced me that these changes have already been worse, that they are not the fault of humans and that they are exaggerated by alarmists due to poor data collection. In addition, I believe skeptics’ thoughts are less taken into account by the population since they are less disclosed by the media. Among other things, it’s much more interesting for them to mention that a phenomenon such as climate warming may disrupt our lives than to share with readers that everything is normal. Finally, although I myself pay attention to my planet, by recycling and taking public transit frequently, I’m not convinced that it is crucial to act against climate change.

1 http://pcc15.org/the-ten-questions/question-1/
2 http://pcc15.org/the-ten-questions/question-1/
3 http://pcc15.org/the-ten-questions/question-10/