From studies of history and geology, it is clear that what we now call Ireland experienced cycles of climate change. We have rocks that formed under tropical seas and others formed in hot deserts. We are not a million years away from what we call the Ice Age. Most of our present-day soils were formed from rock debris laid down during and after that period. Over the last 2,000 years, there have been warm periods and mini ice ages.
An example of the latter occurred in Shakespeare’s time, when he wrote “When icicles hang by the wall”.
Prophets of doom now say that our climate is changing rapidly — and for the worse. Ten successive summers, with their unusually bad and wet weather, give this some credence. I would have agreed our mean temperatures are on the increase were it not for the extreme cold in early 2010, when icicles, again, hung by the wall.
We are being told we must save our planet and put a brake on climate change by banning the burning of
fossil fuels. Irish farmers are accused of keeping too many methane-producing cattle. We are all made to feel guilty about some “wrongdoing”. We cannot win, it seems.
What if there is another perfectly logical reason for climate change? In the following argument, I take my cue from an RTÉ TV programme called Secrets of the Stones. It claimed that a major catastrophic event occurred in the year 536. It changed the climate and shook the faith of the Celts in their ancient pagan gods of nature. There is definite evidence, in polar ice-caps and in very old trees all around the world, that a massive volcanic eruption on the far side of the world sent a veil of volcanic dust around the world.
The sunlight was blocked out and, for the following nine years, temperatures dropped rapidly. Plants stopped growing and there was starvation and famine. The Celts felt abandoned by their gods and quickly adopted Christianity.
In the year 2010, did not volcanic ash coming from a big volcano in Iceland stop many plane flights in the North Atlantic? Are our present bad summers not linkable to that big eruption? Therefore, I argue that there are bigger reasons for climate change than burning fossil fuels and emissions from cattle.