In his column (NCE 1 February) Antony Oliver stated that 'perhaps the most positive thing to take from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report by 2,000 of the world's leading climate scientists is that they virtually rule out any further doubt over man's inuence on global warming'.
Now 2,000 is a nice round number and implies a consensus that there should be no further argument. The last time there was a consensus in the 'climate' community was some 30 years ago when we were being urged to prepare ourselves for the next Ice Age.
A more recent consensus was about 25 years ago when 364 economists wrote to The Times ridiculing Margaret Thatcher and Geoffrey Howe's economic policies. . .a consensus is something of which one should be wary.
There probably is climate change happening. Indeed, given the changes in climate recorded during the past 2,000 years, it would be surprising if there wasn't.
However, despite what is being reported, there is little or no evidence that current measured changes are out of the ordinary.
Having said that, there is no doubt that we have been proigate in our use of the Earth's resources and careless and thoughtless in our treatment of the natural environment. This is wrong and, for many reasons, should change.
Gerald Beers (F), gbeers@lineone. net