Posts tagged ‘UEA’

Climate and Religious Fundamentalism

I thought this was funny.  I am not going to deconstruct or lampoon this guy's beliefs, nor am I knowlegeable enough to argue whether Genesis 1:28 really mandates that man should forecast the climate system.  I am in fact trying really hard to say that I am not making an ad hominem attack here, but merely pointing out an irony:  Many dismiss skeptics as all part of the religious fundamentalist Right, I presume to try to lump us in with evolution deniers.  I can't tell you how many emails I get calling me some sort of religious fundamentalist freak, which is actually hilarious given a) I never mention religion of the g-word on either of my sites almost ever and b) the actual nature of my beliefs.

So this is funny in an ironic way:  The guy that originally wrote a bunch of the CRU code that has since been criticized as forcing a warming result is Tim Mitchell, who has shared some of his thoughts online (via Odd Citizen):

The climate system is made up of the earth's atmosphere, oceans, ice, vegetation, and streams. It is both beautiful and complex. Humans have a mandate to forecast its behavior and use it (Genesis 1:28). However, we feel in awe of its destructive potential, seen in such things as hurricanes and floods, which are part of the curse inflicted upon the earth following the Fall (Genesis 3.17). Moreover, control and certainty belong to God alone (Job 38-41). So there is a possibility that our actions may affect the climate system in unexpected ways. It was claimed in the 1970s that the earth might be about to enter an ice age. The evidence for this was minimal, but the decades of painstaking research that have followed the 1970s have unveiled both the natural variability in the climate system, and the dramatic effects of human actions....

What can individual Christians do? Some, but not many, are called to be scientists and politicians. However, we all have the vote, and environmental issues ought to be among those that we weigh up carefully before casting our vote. We are also each responsible for a small part of the daily emissions of greenhouse gases. Do we use our energy-intensive cars wisely? Are we guilty of worldly attitudes to public transport? With domestic heating and insulation, do we spend more and pollute more than is necessary? The government urges us to reduce our energy usage so that we may indulge ourselves in other ways, but we have a higher motive for reducing waste (1 Timothy 6.17-19). Although I have yet to see any evidence that climate change is a sign of Christ's imminent return, human pollution is clearly another of the birth pangs of creation, as it eagerly awaits being delivered from the bondage of corruption (Romans. 19-22).

Tim Mitchell works at the Climactic Research Unit, UEA, Norwich, and is a member of South Park Evangelical Church.

Again, I am not trying to purge the scientific ranks of Christian fundamentalists, I just think this is funny given all the accusations of blind Christian fundamentalism aimed (often with no basis) at skeptics.