OK suppose both choices are bad

So the idea that the burning of a million years worth of sequestered carbon every 365 days may be leading to global warming isn’t controversial anymore, at least among scientists and other followers of facts. Now here’s a new one: the burning of those materials also pollutes the atmosphere with tiny flecks of ash or other particulates - sometimes evidenced by smog, but always there even when in less concentrated form.

And what do those particulates in the atmosphere do? They cool the planet by reflecting some of the sun’s energy back into space before it hits the land and oceans below.

So now we’re still burning lots of carbon rich material: gas, oil, coal. But we’re also making the residue cleaner, which means less “cooling” in the atmosphere, which means the heating will accelerate - all other things being equal.

We’re at a fork in the road, and neither way seems to help.

Gift link, for those who need it:

But fewer people know that burning fossil fuels doesn’t just cause global warming — it also causes global *cooling*. It is one of the great ironies of climate change that [air pollution], which has killed tens of millions, has also curbed some of the worst effects of a warming planet.

Tiny particles from the combustion of coal, oil and gas can reflect sunlight and spur the formation of [clouds], shading the planet from the sun’s rays. Since the 1980s, those particles have offset between [40 and 80 percent] of the warming caused by greenhouse gases.

I have asthma, so I am glad to see the air being cleaned up, but maybe not so much if I have to play “frog in the frying pan” besides.


I just put air purifiers in my house and am now allergy free. While in the house. Big difference in my nostrils.


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