The Moral Burden of Knowledge

(Retired Professor & Minister.) #1

As we learn more about our world, we are increasingly struck by the implications of our own personal decisions, including our buying decisions. I think of this often in a world where carbon footprints and air pollution are ever more sobering issues, especially as we ponder the dangers of climate change.

Today I was reminded of the ramifications of my purchases of consumer products and commodities from far away lands. Consider the pollution of cargo ships, most of which use the lowest quality of fuels known as marine heavy fuel aka “bunker fuel.” (Some even call it “liquid asphalt”, well know for its copious sulfur dioxide emissions.) Here’s a few articles on cargo ships and their pollution:

As I become aware of the serious ramifications of my personal choices, what are my responsibilities? What role should I play in curbing climate change, air pollution, and other problems of our day? What degree of concern represents a well-formed conscience and at what point does extreme concern become unhealthy obsession?

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(Robert Byers) #2

As a thoughtful person you should question climate change by humans as suspect.
think about how gloriously great this globe is . is it reasonable for humans(tailless primates for some) to be bugging it into a change in its climate?? NO!
Its a humbug. Its like evolutionism. Error thats not closely watched by the public.

(Retired Professor & Minister.) #3

Yet another Argument from Personal Incredulity fallacy.

Robert, are you implying that Christ-followers shouldn’t care whether their personal decisions add to the pollution of the planet? What about God assigning to humans a role of careful dominion and stewardship of the world he created?

For those who care about evidence, here’s a NASA website presenting the facts about climate change and the human role in this problem.

#4

YES!!! All you need is this one graph:

The natural level of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere is 180 to 300 ppm. It is now over 400 ppm. That 30% increase is rich in 12C which is the fingerprint of fossil fuels. We did that. We have the proof.

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(Retired Professor & Minister.) #5

I recently came to realize that some of the same fundamentalist Christians in the American Bible Belt who gleefully speak of how hard-working Israelis since nationhood in 1948 have managed to change positively the climate of formerly arid and barren areas (through wise applications of irrigation and agriculture) nevertheless deny the possibility that humans have otherwise impacted climate on our planet. Interesting.

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(Robert Byers) #6

I don’t know if the bible belt exists. The term is evangelical protestant. fundamentalist is never used by us and is really a slur. I;m not saying you are slurring but mostly thats why its used.
Making a desert bloom is trivial. nothing like affecting a globe.
yes many evangelicals are pro israel because of the belief its part of gods plan for the end times and belief that jews should have their own country.
So they flatter a third world people in a third world nation.

(Robert Byers) #7

The earth has only been around 6000 years. the ice core things are not accurate. adding a little to nothing is still nothing. there is no evidence mankind affects the climate of this planet.
its silly.

#8

And the Earth is flat.

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(Retired Professor & Minister.) #9

And so is the diet root beer I left in the fridge too long, @Patrick . (Yes. Byer’s Point™ reached.)

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#10

We can look at just the last 1000 years if you want.

300 ppm is not nothing, and 400 ppm is definitely not nothing. You are just making stuff up at this point.

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(Retired Professor & Minister.) #11

Wow, that is one very very powerful set of datapoints consolidated in one impressive graphic! I was already familiar with much of it but I had never seen the green tree ring delta-C13 data curve before. That’s such a great addition.

Apparently Robert Byers still considers what God has revealed in his creation to be unreliable and to be ignored. Are ice cores a false record of the past? Is this like the preachers I recall from the 1950’s and 1960’s who claimed God planted deceptive data into his creation in order to “confuse the atheist scientists and test the faith of his people”? Much like them, Robert appears to believe that evidence goes away simply by stating one’s confident denial.

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