The most conspicuous doubter in France is Claude Allegre, a former education minister and a physicist by profession. His new book, ``Ma Verite Sur la Planete'' (``My Truth About the Planet''), doesn't mince words. [``Ma Verite Sur la Planete'' is published by Plon/Fayard (240 pages, 18 euros).]
He calls Gore a ``crook'' presiding over an eco-business that pumps out cash. As for Gore's French followers, the author likens them to religious zealots who, far from saving humanity, are endangering it. Driven by a Judeo-Christian guilt complex, he says, French greens paint worst-case scenarios and attribute little-understood cycles to human misbehavior.
Allegre doesn't deny that the climate has changed or that extreme weather has become more common. He instead emphasizes the local character of these phenomena.
While the icecap of the North Pole is shrinking, the one covering Antarctica -- or 92 percent of the Earth's ice -- is not, he says. Nor have Scandinavian glaciers receded, he says. To play down these differences by basing forecasts on a global average makes no sense to Allegre.
He dismisses talk of renewable energies, such as wind or solar power, saying it would take a century for them to become a serious factor in meeting the world's energy demands.
NUKES ARE THE ANSWER?
France has taken another path: Almost 80 percent of its electricity comes from nuclear reactors. What's more, France has a talent for eating its cake and having it, too: Although it signed and ratified the Kyoto Protocol, the country is nowhere near meeting the agreed targets. As with almost all others who signed.....
Jean de Kervasdoue, a health expert, also stresses the benefits of nuclear power, noting that it emits only a small fraction of the greenhouse gas that comes from burning coal, oil or gas. His pet peeve, though, is genetically modified food. In ``Les Precheurs de l'Apocalypse'' (``The Doomsday Preachers''), Kervasdoue decries how shrill and sometimes violent campaigners have prevented GM foods from gaining a foothold in Europe. They way they talk, he says, ``it sounds as if Martians are attacking the Earth.''
Kervasdoue goes on to note that many genetically modified products are in everyday use around the world.
In fact, genetically modified organisms have proved highly beneficial to mankind, he argues, pointing to insulin, an artificially created hormone that has saved the lives of countless diabetes sufferers. A much greater danger to health and life expectancy, he says, is obesity -- even though the food that European fatsoes ingest is ``natural.'' Kervasdoue also has politically incorrect things to say about asbestos and Chernobyl. The motto of his book comes from Marcel Proust: ``Facts don't enter a world dominated by our beliefs.''
Richard Feynman warned that "Cargo Cult Science" was a looming threat to the integrity of the scientific process of testing and verification before publishing. Nowadays, self-proclaimed "sciences" like "climatology" are used to make doomsday predictions in order to achieve unrelated political goals, like raising taxes to cover so-called carbon emissions [like breathing!] if you live in a rich country like the USA. Curiously, poorer countries are exempt.
The UN is already pushing for the abolition of the right of self-defense. The new religion of climatology wants to tax the air we breathe...!