A new briefing paper from the Global Warming Policy Foundation examines the World Health Organisation’s recent report on climate change and finds that its estimates of future mortality from global warming are grossly exaggerated.
The WHO report predicted that climate change would bring about 250,000 extra deaths annually between 2030 and 2050, but relied upon absurd assumptions to reach this conclusion.
For example, the report assumes that the people affected by climate change will forgo commonsense steps to protect themselves, including several that are already in the works in some developing countries.
Briefing paper author Dr Indur Goklany said:“The idea that people would not, for example, react to higher sea levels by building higher sea defences or even moving away from the coast is preposterous, so for the WHO to suggest such a high death toll from climate change completely misleads the public.”
And as Dr Goklany goes on to explain, the WHO’s results use climate model results that apparently overstate the warming trend three-fold compared to observations despite using 27% less greenhouse gas forcing.
The WHO also assumes that higher carbon dioxide levels will have no beneficial effects on crop yields, despite scientific studies having confirmed that this is precisely what will happen in a wide range of crop species.
“Because of its willful exaggerations,” says Goklany, “the WHO study risks scaring people into taking ill-considered costly actions to limit greenhouse gases rather than focusing on higher priority global health issues such as hunger, malaria and diarrhoeal diseases, which can be addressed at a fraction of the cost”.