While driving home from an Easter gathering not long after midnight and trying to keep my eyes open, something on the radio made them wide. “The plants believe they’re going extinct because of climate change,” said the speaker, “so they’re releasing more pollen,” is how I remember it.
Had the Onion entered the terrestrial radio market? Had I gotten it wrong in my fatigued state? After a little investigation, I found the source of this WCBS NewsRadio 880 segment: An April 17 report entitled “Allergy Season Is Getting Worse As More Children, Adults Diagnosed.”
The newscaster, Sophia Hall, outlined the matter and then played a couple of clips from one Dr. Payel Gupta, an allergist at ENT & Allergy Associates’ Manhattan, NYC office. After mentioning some basic signs of allergies and diagnostic options, Gupta channeled Al Gore and played climatologist, explaining that Global Warming™ was exacerbating the problem.
“‘Climate change and global warming and how that [sic] impacting allergies and essentially, each pollen season is getting a little bit worse because, essentially, the plant [sic] feel in danger of extinction and [are] releasing more and more pollen because they’re worried that they’re not gonna be around for too long,’ she said,” WCBS relates — essentially.
I do not know if Gupta, aside from being an allergist and closet climatologist but not much of a linguist, is also a plant psychologist. But I had no idea the poor flora were agonizing over their impending doom.
Imagine the anguish: Living with the knowledge that not only is your end nigh, but your species itself will soon fade into oblivion with its only slim hope being that, perhaps 100 million years hence, some ambitious archaeobotanist will resurrect it in a future Quaternary Park. And unlike the extraterrestrial Triffids, you can’t even uproot yourself, move about, and try to vanquish those rapacious creatures threatening your existence (video below).
Speaking of which, Gupta did not explain whether the plants were spewing this extra pollen as a result of melancholia or in a last-gasp effort at vengeance. You know, “If I’ve gotta’ go, I’m makin’ sure those humans spend my last days red-eyed, coughing, wheezing, sneezing, and blowin’.” But can we talk, my (mostly) green friends?
Perhaps the plants won’t see this; maybe they get their information only from the New York Times and the rest of Enemedia Central. Or perhaps they’re blinded by emotion and, to paraphrase Jonathan Swift, “You cannot reason a plant out of a position it has not reasoned itself into” and all we can do is spike the soil with Prozac. But do know this:
CO2, which is supposedly increasing because of globull warming, is not a pollutant — it’s plant food.
This is why, green ones, human botanists kindly pump it into greenhouses. It’s why crop yields are greater when CO2 levels are higher. (Okay, I’m sorry, we do eat some of you. But the flip side is that marketable plants are under no threat of extinction.) It’s also why the dinosaur age, when CO2 levels were five to 10 times today’s, was characterized by lush foliage everywhere.
Also consider the following:
• Climate data appear very unreliable, and many scientists say that the temperature ceased rising approximately 20 years ago. Moreover, one report indicates that Arctic sea ice is the same thickness now as it was 75 years ago.
• The claim that “97 percent of scientists affirm” man-caused global warming was always false. There’s much disagreement on the matter, and, besides, “consensus” isn’t a term of science, but politics.
• Climate models have been consistently wrong, yet alarmists still want them to shape policy. Is this rational? Would you take a “hot stock tip” from a broker who’d been consistently wrong for more than a generation?
(More science-denier-debunking climate realism here.)
In truth, my stationary friends, you should thank us. Astrobiologist Jack O’Malley-James warned in 2013 that life on Earth will end because of too little CO2 (in approximately one billion years), as you plants can’t photosynthesize when levels are too low. Moreover, some scientists believe we’re poised to enter another ice age, and most living things — flora especially — fare far better in warmer temperatures. So if the anthropogenic-climate-change thesis were true, perhaps we’d just be forestalling your demise.
Then again, maybe all this will just fall on deaf ears, especially since plants have no ears. But, hey, warmth is bad, CO2 is pollution, and flora worry — all ideas brought to you by the science deniers of the Cult of Globull Warming.
If you have the reasoning ability of a plant, though, it all makes sense.
Photo: Robert Daly/OJO Images/Getty Images