"What if, even after the worst of the pandemic is behind us, face masks continue to be used as a tool in managing public health during the regular flu season, which the World Health Organization says kills as many as 650,000 people a year? ... What if we stopped politicizing the face covering, which has been maligned as a muzzle and a violation of civil liberties, and normalize the mask as simply an effective barrier to keep our harmful germs in, and deadly particle pollution out?"
"From a global production projection of 52 billion masks for 2020, we estimate that 1.56 billion masks will enter our oceans in 2020, amounting to between 4,680 and 6,240 metric tonnes of plastic pollution. These masks will take as long as 450 years to break down and all the while serve as a source of micro plastic and negatively impact marine wildlife and ecosystems."
Another objection: "Well, we can never know for certain HOW MUCH WORSE it could have been without masks." First, that's not science - that's unfalsifiable nonsense. Maybe consider that the virus is beyond your control.
"I expect that wearing a mask will become part of my daily life, moving forward, even after a vaccine is deployed," Amy Hobbs, a research associate at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told The Times.
Michael Webster-Clark of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill said he expected "further relaxation of most precautions by mid-to-late summer 2021" following widespread availability of the vaccine.
Marilyn Tseng, an assistant professor at California Polytechnic State University, said life would never revert to the way it was, though the preventative measures currently practiced—masks and social distancing—will feel "normal" in time. Similarly, Vasily Vlassov, a professor at HSE University in Moscow, said life was perfectly normal now because this is the new normal.
Reason's ROBBY SOAVE: " Everyone has a right to dissent from the epidemiologists' contentment with the way things are now...Epidemiologists are free to take whatever precautions they deem necessary in their own lives, of course—as are the rest of us. But for too long, their pessimistic dictates have provided cover for politicians and government employees to make people's lives miserable."
On the HadCRUT4 data, there has been no global warming for close to eight years, since March 2014. That period can be expected to lengthen once the HadCRUT data are updated – the “University” of East Anglia is slower at maintaining the data these days than it used to be.
Michael Shellenberger: A major new staff report from the New York Federal Reserve Bank throws cold water on the over-heated rhetoric coming from activist investors, bankers, and politicians. “How Bad Are Weather Disasters for Banks?” asks the title of the report by three economists. “Not very,” they answer in the first sentence of the abstract.
The reason is because “weather disasters over the last quarter century had insignificant or small effects on U.S. banks’ performance.” The study looked at FEMA-level disasters between 1995 and 2018, at county-level property damage estimates, and the impact on banking revenue.
UK Independent: "Your home, sometime in the next decade. You click the heating on and receive an app notification telling you how much of your carbon allowance you’ve used today. Outside in the drive, your car’s fuel is linked to the same account. In the fridge, the New Zealand lamb you’ve bought has cost not just pounds and pence but a chunk of this monthly emissions budget too. Welcome to the world of personal carbon allowances – a concept that is increasingly gaining traction among experts as a possible response to the climate crisis. Each month, it would see every person or household in the country given a limited emissions quota to spend on heating, energy, travel, food and possibly consumer goods. Those who wish to expend more could buy top-ups. Those who require less would be able to sell their left-overs back to the ‘grid’." ... Now, in the wake of Cop26, many feel the concept – radical, perhaps, but demonstrably do-able – has never been riper for consideration. So, could this be our future? ... “By establishing an equal monthly budget for everyone, you create a sense of a shared effort to address a shared problem,” says Fawcett.