A senior U.N. official says entire nations have ten years to act on global warming or be wiped off the face of the earth by rising sea levels. It sounds like something in today's headlines, but that prediction was made for the year 2000 ... in 1989.
The Associated Press covered the prediction on June 29, 1989. Noel Brown, who was then director of the New York office of the U.N. Environment Protection (UNEP), said coastal flooding and crop failures would create an exodus of "eco-refugees," threatening political chaos. Brown went on to say that governments have a ten-year window opportunity to solve the greenhouse effect before it goes beyond human control.
"No prediction made by any climate alarmist has ever proven to be true," says Steve Milloy of JunkScience.com. "They've been making them for more than 30 years now. None have been right. Their models stink. I'm not quite sure why anyone would believe them."
But people do believe them. For example, the "Green New Deal" sponsored by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York) and Senator Edward Markey (D-Massachusetts) is based on a more recent U.N. prediction that the world has roughly 12 years to act on climate change.
"I don't know how this is ever going to go away," says Milloy. "That's why that AP article ought to be useful – because ... 30 years ago they predicted that nations are going to be gone by the year 2000. Well, we're still here – and sea level rise is really not a problem."
OneNewsNow is seeking comment from climate scientists (see below).
Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist at Texas Tech University Climate Science Center, says it's important to recognize that back in 1989 Noel Brown wasn't saying the islands would be flooded by 2000.
"He was saying that to prevent this from happening in the future [over the coming century], we had to start cutting our carbon emissions instead of growing them," she explains.
Meanwhile, Hayhoe says it is "very plausible that three feet of sea level rise could happen this century," given present-day levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and present-day emission rates.
"Additionally, three feet of sea level rise is virtually inevitable over longer time frames, given present-day levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere," she tells OneNewsNow.