RALEIGH — Environmental pressure groups, activist scientists, and the legacy media are predictably upset by the movement of a bill through the N.C. General Assembly that requires state policies dependent on sea level forecasts to be based on historical trends, rather than speculative computer projections.
The implications for such policies are not small, as extreme predictions — such as the 39-inch-rise-by-year-2100 prophecy spat out by computer models — would, at a minimum, require billions of dollars (much of it from taxpayers) to build new infrastructure; adjust to new building codes and higher insurance rates; and restrict land use and property rights.
Yet those aspects of the debate were downplayed in nearly every green activist’s testimony and major news story. Instead, property rights defenders such as the NC-20 coalition, which represents coastal counties, were marginalized as “deniers” of real science. At the top of nearly every news report journalists bemoaned the fact that North Carolina has been “mocked” worldwide because of its ignorance.