Originally Posted by tawolcott
"There are very large powerful forces, with lots of money and political influence,"
Correct, on both sides of the equation. To my knowledge there has been no definitive conclusion on the topic. Should we err on the side of caution, perhaps but I've seen as much (if not more) presented scientific evidence of it being cyclical as anything else. When Al Gore has to include digitally created scenes from Hollywood movies in his 'documentary' (and not label them as such), it hurts the cause more than helps it.
What are the very large powerful forces with lots of money and political influence that want us to STOP sucking down oil? Tree huggers? Birkenstock? The Audubahn society? The environmental lobby is quite weak compared to that of big oil and big business.
As to definitive conclusions, I'd cite to international global opinion as manifested by treaties and pacts like the Kyoto Protocol. Defer to the experts as I always say.
But this is all just my opinion. I like the reefs the way they are, well, better the way they were 14 years ago when I was certified. Last summer I returned to where I was trained. A national park (in the ocean) off the coast of the Florida Keys called John Pennycamp State park. The bleaching and overall blandness struck me. To be fair, it's impossible to measure how much is due to global warming, chemicle change, hurricanes, etc.