The Fish and Wildlife Service has determined that the whitebark pine tree faces an “imminent” risk of extinction from climate change. But unless global warming caused trans-Pacific shipping and computer modeling, the claim does not appear to be supported by reality.
Supposedly global warming is promoting the major threats of white pine blister rust and mountain pine beetles.
- White pine blister rust came from Asia and “the disease is often most severe in areas and following years with extended, cool, moist conditions during late summer and early fall” [Emphasis added];
- There appears to be no real-life evidence that mountain pine beetle populations have been at all affected, positively or negatively, by slight and gradual climate change. The FWS determination relies on non-scientific computer modeling.
As we pointed out last week, there is no evidence that ongoing climate change has caused, is causing or will cause species extinction despite more than 1,100 studies published since 2005.
Not surprisingly, reality had no opportunity to intrude upon the Washington Post reporting of Juliet Eilperin as the only two sources she cited in her story were the former FWS staffer responsible for the above-mentioned computer modeling and the Natural Resources Defense Council, the activist group petitioning the FWS to list the whitebark pine in the first place. Quel balance!
We have an inquiry out about the mountain pine beetle modeling and will report back if and when we get a response.