Oh, Noes! Climate Change Could Have Helped The Roman Empire Fall!

Obviously, this must have huge implications for Earth’s nations today, because OMG WE’RE ALL GOING TO…..well, something. Alarmists are never quite sure what will actually happen, but, something will, usually involving very specific words like “Might,” “may”, “possibly,” and “could” (via Jammie Wearing Fool)

Some House Democrats blamed their defeat in November’s midterm elections partly on Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s decision to force a vote on a climate change bill. A new study suggests that climate change has claimed bigger political victims in the past. Much bigger.

The study published in the journal Science suggests climate change contributed to the rise and fall of the Roman empire.“Climate change seems a factor in the rise and fall of the Roman empire, according to a study of ancient tree growth that urges greater awareness of the risks of global warming in the 21st century,” Reuters reports.

Um, OK? Except there is one minor problem: the Roman Empire is widely reported to have fallen on September 4, 476. That year happened to be part of the Dark Ages Cold Period.

(via CO2 Science)

So, it wasn’t actually global warming that hosed the Romans, if we were to consider climate as a cause, which could be involved, to some extent, but, a cooler period. Some other scholars claim the year 1453 as the year when Rome finally fell, due to Constantinople falling. Well, that was during the ….. Little Ice Age, another cool period! If one looks at the real reasons why the Roman Empire fell (a high level overview here), there are quite a few similarities to today’s politics, yet, times are different. Or, are they?

The study said the evidence, helping back up written records that are sparse in Europe more than 500 years ago, “may challenge recent political and fiscal reluctance” to slow projected climate change in the 21st century.

If climate change helped cause the Fall Of The Roman Empire, then, I think we should do all in our power to make sure we have a high output of greenhouse gases, to avoid any cold periods, not slow the current warm period.

Interestingly, the original Reuters article never bothers to mention that a good chunk of the dire conditions mentioned in their article occurred during cool periods. They almost make it seem as if they were during warm periods.

Crossed at Right Wing News and Stop The ACLU.

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21 Responses to “Oh, Noes! Climate Change Could Have Helped The Roman Empire Fall!”

  1. Mike says:

    Isn’t it amazing that people who put their reputations on the line as learned scholars, try to use an already refuted claim about climate change as the reason for a political event that happened several centuries ago? Wasn’t Gibbons’ “The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire” required reading back when they went to school? Hell, it was required reading for me in high school.

    What happened to the Roman Empire back then is the same thing that’s happening today…the people got lazy and let government take over more and more of their lives until their enemies perceived their weakness and struck them down.

    Mike

  2. Kevin says:

    Wow, I personally trust the scientists that talk about Global Warming and I haven’t done much research on this topic to know if it is real or not. However, that was pretty damn funny that they are blaming the collapse of the Roman Empire on global warming. That really made my day. I guess it could be argued though, that it was warming for them. The graph certainly shows that.

  3. Kevin says:

    The empire did fall in 476, but the Byzantine empire continue to call itself the Roman Empire until 1453.

  4. Exactly, Mike. You look at the reasons it fell, and they are very similar to today. High debt, high unemployment, over-reaching government, wars, etc.

    Well, yes, it did warm up between the two reported dates of the fall of the Roman Empire, but, a colder climate has tended to see more societal problems than a warm period. Famine, agricultural problems, disease, and so on. Society actually flourished during the MWP and during our current warm period. Except for France in the MWP, whihc got its butt kicked by Britain when it came to wine productions 🙂

  5. Kevin says:

    a colder climate has tended to see more societal problems than a warm period. Famine, agricultural problems, disease, and so on. Society actually flourished during the MWP and during our current warm period. Except for France in the MWP, whihc got its butt kicked by Britain when it came to wine productions

    Good point. I had no idea about the wine. That’s great.

  6. Kevin says:

    Good point Teach, that should have occurred to me, but… it didn’t. I also had no idea about the wine, that’s pretty good.

    Mike, I am a former teacher. I can tell you with certainty that things like math and literacy have gone to hell in school. I once came across a sample 8th grade literacy test from today, and the equivalent test from the 1980’s. It was night and day. One required reading comprehension, the other was multiple choice. Also, the level of reading from the 8th grade test was the equivalent of a 12th grader today.

    Do you know what the acronym IDK stands for? Students apparently think it is an appropriate response to a question when ‘I don’t know’ the answer. I’ve received entire tests where that is all that was entered, why even bother writing an answer at all?

  7. Mike says:

    Wow Kevin. I hope your first sentence in #2 was tongue in cheek. Globull warming as a science has been refuted time and time again. Pollution is less now than it was in the seventies at least in the US. GW scientists have been known to skew research to reach their preordained conclusions.

    I’m not against “green” technology, but it must become more economically feasible before the general public will jump on the band wagon, so to speak. I will give kudos to Ed Begly, Jr. however, because he’s at least putting his money where his mouth is by living that minimalist green lifestyle, but he can afford it, unlike the majority of John Q. Public.

    Mike

  8. gitarcarver says:

    Did you know that the Roman Navy was predicting the and of the Arctic Ice cap by 390 AD?

  9. […] Oh, Noes! Climate Change Could Have Helped The Roman Empire Fall! Obviously, this must have huge implications for Earth’s nations today, because OMG WE’RE ALL GOING TO…..well, something. Alarmists are never quite sure what will actually happen, but, something will, usually involving very specific words like “Might,” “may”, “possibly,” and “could” […]

  10. Kevin says:

    Honestly, I don’t have much of an opinion on global warming. I think we need to find renewable sources of energy and those are going to be expensive at first. Not to mention some of the methods, i.e. Wind Power, create so much noise pollution that they aren’t feasible. So yes, my comment was at least partly tongue in cheek.

    I was aware of the Roman Navy. Global warming doesn’t interest me. Now, the dying of bees, that is something I am concerned about.

  11. […] Oh, Noes! Climate Change Could Have Helped The Roman Empire Fall … […]

  12. John Ryan says:

    Thanks Teach for posting the graph of temps showing the summer sea surface temps record off the northern coast of ICELAND. But I am not too sure what that has to do with the LAND temps in the Roman Empire. Perhaps you should instead post a graph showing what the EARTH”S temps were for the last 2000 years. You know, the one that shows that temps today are higher than at any time on the last 2000 years.

  13. John Ryan says:

    Teach I think what that article was trying to say was that climate change produces civil/societal/cultural change.

  14. captainfish says:

    Quote:
    the Roman Empire is widely reported to have fallen on September 4, 476. That year happened to be part of the Dark Ages Cold Period.

    Teach, that is caused by Global Warming, donchaknow!

    You should know by now that when the climate warms, you get colder temps.

    Thus, during the Roman warm period, the climate got colder and 100’s of years later, the Romans just couldn’t cope from that change 100’s of years earlier.

    You see, when its hot, its cold. When its cold, its hot. That’s climate change.

    Change.

  15. gitarcarver says:

    Perhaps you should instead post a graph showing what the EARTH”S temps were for the last 2000 years. You know, the one that shows that temps today are higher than at any time on the last 2000 years.

    You can see such a graph here:

  16. captainfish says:

    Yes, gitarcarver, that does explain a lot.
    Every AGW Rhetorical believer should check out that link. It is their basis of their belief system.

  17. Mike says:

    @ Kevin #6

    Yep, I know what you mean. Having gone to school in the sixties and early seventies, you actually had to pass the tests as well as show a body of work as a percentage of your grade to get promoted to the next grade. It wasn’t uncommon for a kid to be held back two or three times if they couldn’t “cut the mustard.”

    Mike

  18. I recently tried to find reasonably good data on the climate of Europe during the period of the Roman Empire. I could find nothing of any value and concluded that we just don’t know. This study seemed to offer some new relevant data but it is all too vague to draw any conclusions from.

    But as you guys on here seem interested in the subject, Chapter Nine of Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire has the earliest reference to anthropogenic climate change I have come across. But it is obvious from what he writes that it is being debated by other people at the time. Does anyone know just how long this debate has been going on for?

  19. captainfish says:

    What debate?
    Whether the Roman Period was warm? (a huge yes)
    Or, the debate on whether man is responsible for the warm periods over Earth’s history? (Since the 80’s after they got off the theory the world was getting colder in the 70’s)

    Quote:
    “Chapter Nine of Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire has the earliest reference to anthropogenic climate change “

    Are you serious? Are you citing a work of fiction written about a period around 2,000 years ago, that supposedly gives scientific proof of MAN causing the Roman Warm Period? A work written during the late 18th century.

  20. Trish says:

    What a way to start my week- your comments were great! Well, ‘cept for John’s, whihc were the same as always, different day. And GC had me laughing, using John’s “navy thinks the ice caps are melting” line so well!!

  21. I wasn’t making any particular point, just observing and asking a question. Gibbon’s book is a factual one, and in it he seriously discusses the climate in Germany quoting his evidence. When you take into account the limited information available to him it is a pretty good analysis. I didn’t mean to give the impression that I was quoting him to support the current case for global warming.

    I just found it interesting that the climate change debate has been going on for so long.

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