The Perks of Global Warming
Marya Mannes once wrote, "The earth we abuse and the living
things we kill will, in the end, take their revenge; for in
exploiting their presence we are diminishing our future."
Obviously Ms. Mannes preferred the status quo - health, sanity,
logic, blah, blah, blah. Why? Green House Roulette is so much
In the country, weather affects everything. For five years my
home of Western South Dakota has been gripped by drought. Water
and hay are vanishing. Farms and ranches are blowing away. While
the government bails out victims from Hurricanes and says,
'South Dawho?' our cattle are pissing dust mites. Fortunately,
things are looking up.
There is some good news! Those pesky glaciers are finally
melting off! Last fall an eight-nation report estimated an area
of Arctic icepack the size of Texas and Kansas is gone. For
those who are geographically impaired, that is an area bigger
than a breadbox.
At first, news of devastating global climate change might seem a
bit of a bummer. Then I read an LA Times article and had a
change of heart. The article began with the usual gloom.
Greenland's ice cap is melting. Our coasts will flood from
rising seawater. Inuit hunters are falling through thinning ice.
Melting glaciers change ocean temperature and salinity
contorting the jet stream, which results in altered weather
patterns worldwide. Multitudes of species are dying off . . . It
Then I got to the article's final paragraph. Bam! My faith was
restored. Here the Times pointed out the perks of global
warming. Seriously, the article actually ended saying: "The
report is not all gloomy. A warmer Arctic could increase the
number of some species, such as Arctic char, a fish. It could
extend the growing season for wheat in Canada and open up
now-treacherous sea routes, such as the Northwest Passage and
the Northern Sea Route, which parallels Russia, for shipping and
Three cheers for the LA Times! It's true! All is not gloomy.
With that glorious bit of sunshine pumped straight up my ski
bibs, I was able to see things in a whole new light. I started
thinking of other advantages to global warming. Soon you will
agree that people from all walks of life will benefit.
For starters, Inuit Hunters will benefit! Once Inuit have
nothing left to hunt there will be no need for them to risk
falling through thin ice. Plus, by needing food they will be
ripe for a floating (pontoons, not ice) Arctic Super Wal-Mart.
"Go get 'em, Sam."
Boat owners will benefit! Not only will there be smooth sailing
through the formerly bothersome ice of the Northwest Passage,
but each summer, cruise ships will be able to run tourists
straight up Bourbon Street in New Orleans.
Scuba Divers will benefit! There will be no more burning coral
cuts. In fact there will be no more coral. Once all the reefs
are gone, divers can pack away first aid kits and dive straight
in. A little silt never cut anyone.
Canadian Wheat Farmers will benefit! You see, there is a 10%
decrease in yield of corn from Midwest crops for every degree of
global warming. No worries though, now wheat can take the place
of corn. Think about all those scrumptious Wheat Dogs at the
ball game. How about popped wheat with butter at the movies or
steaming wheat on the cob? All scream 'yummy' to me.
While it is a bit ironic that ethanol is made from the corn
crops global warming devastates, I am sure some aspiring chemist
will rise to the challenge of developing 'Wheatanol.' Imagine
Canuck Wheat Farmers having more influence than the Saudi Royal
Dune-Buggy enthusiasts will benefit! The Dakotas will soon
reopen for your 4-wheelin' pleasure. Join the Mount Rushmore
Nose Climb on July 4th! It will be a bugger of a challenge!
Eco-Tourism Operators will benefit! Companies could offer new
"Emaciation Tour Packages." Tourists get closer photos of polar
bears and whales when they are too lethargic from starvation to
meander away. In addition, long treks to Inuit villages can be
avoided once they are forced to beg on the streets of Nome (or
cashiering at Wal-Mart).
Finally, the next generation of Bush family politicians will
benefit! Once again they can avoid addressing campaign issues,
this time by distracting dehydrated voters with witty campaign
phrases like; "No Kyoto Pact-No Ice Pack," or "Dead Seals Never
Flip-Flop," even promising "No Char Left Behind." Not to mention
offering new, SPF 80 tax credits.
Well, by golly, I do feel better! Shall we spin the Rolette
wheel some more?