Here’s a list of predictions made with much fanfare and extensive coverage in the media in the 1970s
- the population explosion would be unstoppable;
- global famine would be inevitable;
- crop yields would fall;
- a cancer epidemic caused by pesticides would shorten lifespan;
- the desert would advance at two miles a year;
- rain forests would disappear;
- acid rain would destroy forests;
- oil spills would worsen;
- oil and gas would run out;
- and so would copper, zinc, chrome and many other natural resources;
- the Great Lakes would die;
- dozens of bird and mammal species would become extinct each year;
- and a new ice age would begin;
All of these were extolled in the mainstream media. Not one of them has come even close to meeting the apocalyptic expectations of their promoters. Often it was because the scare was exaggerated.
Later, more predictions of doom:
- sperm counts would fall;
- mad cow disease would kill hundreds of thousands of people;
- genetically modified weeds would devastate ecosystems;
- nanotechnology would run riot;
- computers would crash at the dawn of the millennium, bringing down civilization;
- the hole in the ozone layer would cause blindness and cancer on a huge scale;
- malaria was going to get worse because of rising temperatures; it didn’t.
- snow would become a thing of the past; yet northern hemisphere snow cover shows no trend
- hurricanes/cyclones would get worse; they haven’t.
- droughts would get worse; they haven’t
- the Arctic sea ice would be gone by 2013; it wasn’t.
- glacier retreat would accelerate; yet more than half the retreat of glaciers happened before 1950.
- sea level rise would accelerate; it hasn’t
- the Gulf Stream would falter, as this clip from the movie the Day After Tomorrow latched on to.
All these predictions have also failed so far.
The death toll from droughts, floods and storms has been going down dramatically. Not because weather has got safer, but because of technology and prosperity.
James Hansen in 1988 said that by the year 2000, “the West Side Highway will be under water. And there will be tape across the windows across the street because of high winds. And the same birds won’t be there.”
The UNEP predicted in 2005 that by 2010 there would be 50 million climate refugees. In 2010 it tried to delete the web link.
Ten years ago, Al Gore said that within ten years we would have reached the point of no return. [Inconvenient truth]