Thank god for climate change.
I realized that global warming is a good thing on Saturday. I was standing on the edge of a precipice on a cloud enshrouded Dewey Point at 7,200 feet — some 3,200 feet above the Yosemite Valley floor.
In brief breaks in the misty clouds engulfing sheer granite cliffs in a fashion more striking than fog rolling across the Golden Gate Bridge, I could catch glimpses of one of climate change’s grandest creations — the glacier carved Yosemite Valley.
A week early I had hiked among the redwood giants of Big Basin State Park a mere 20 miles away from San Jose and the high tech cradle of the world. The trees were made possible over the millenniums by shifting climate patterns and geological changes that created an ideal climate for redwoods to prosper.
We live virtually midway between Yosemite Valley and Big Basin State Park in an area that was once a massive inland sea. Changes in climate — working in unison with other forces of nature — created what is now the richest agricultural valley in the world.
Glaciers during a period a million to 10,000 years ago took a once warm temperate area of rolling hills and broad valleys and started the long, tedious job of carving out Yosemite Valley.
It’s amusing to hear politicians and others warn of the horrors of global warming when 4 million people travel from around the globe to marvel at the poster child for climate change — Yosemite National Park.
And it’s absurd how politicians bellow about how man must stop climate change as if that is something mere mortals can do.
Man must be good stewards of the earth. Other animals from dogs to bears don’t soil where they live nor should we.
That said, the Chicken Little routine that climate change alarmists keep sounding ignores reality.
The current drought, as an example, is nothing new. Mother Nature provides plenty of evidence that the aberration in California is the recent 100-year plus stretch of higher precipitation years of the past 3,000 years or so. Tree rings — unless climate change alarmists want to debunk science — suggests what we are now experiencing in California in terms of the climate is more the norm.
As for global warming, exactly what do you think happened to the glaciers that once covered and carved Yosemite Valley? Temperatures had to increase and precipitation had to decrease. We could very well be in a continuum of that trend.
Man is without doubt the most smug of all creatures.
We may not believe in God but we act like mankind is a race of gods that somehow has control all of the forces that have shaped this planet.
And as such we believe in our collective subconscious that what we see around us in nature is what will — and should — be here on earth for another 4.54 billion years.
Without man in the picture the temperatures will still rise — or fall. Species whether it is the Delta smelt, dodo birds, dinosaurs, or man — will disappear. Plant life and even animals we never dreamed off could populate the Central Valley a hundred thousand years from now.
Plant and animal species that survive the longest are the ones that can adapt. The redwoods are lightweights in the ability to survive when compared to the bristlecone pines of California’s White Mountains where the grotesque dead looking trees push the 5,000-year mark in terms of age.
Modern humans— as science tells us — have been around for 195,000 years. That’s 60,000 years after scientists believe what is today Half Dome poked up 900 feet through a massive sheet of ice that covered virtually every recognizable granite landmark surrounding Yosemite Valley today.
It is clear climate change — or more precisely global warming — made it possible for Yosemite Valley to be created and for man to evolve.
Whether we carelessly are helping to accelerate it is one thing. But to contend that mankind is the force behind global warming aka climate change is absurd.
Perhaps if politicians took a hike along Yosemite Valley’s rim and used scientific research to explain what they see before them, they might endeavor to keep the global warming debate in perspective.
Drastic measures won’t save us. We are destined to go the way of other plants and animals. It won’t happen overnight but it will happen.
Meanwhile instead of stressing about world disaster and greenhouse gases, enjoy the fruits of global warming. Take a hike in Yosemite.
This column is the opinion of executive editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Bulletin or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 209.249.3519.