The Division of Coastal Management shall be the only State agency authorized to 11 develop rates of sea-level rise and shall do so only at the request of the Commission. These 12 rates shall only be determined using historical data, and these data shall be limited to the time 13 period following the year 1900. Rates of sea-level rise may be extrapolated linearly to estimate 14 future rates of rise but shall not include scenarios of accelerated rates of sea-level rise.
In other words, only one state agency is allowed to perform calculations concerning sea level rise and, it is required to do so in a way that artificially limits the data set for making projections and the projections are required to be done in a manner that is scientifically unsound. This will allow and encourage the people of North Carolina to ignore unpleasant realities.
“Bring [my throne] closer to the sea,” Canute called. “Put it right here, right at the water’s edge.” He sat down and surveyed the ocean before him. “I notice the tide is coming in. Do you think it will stop if I give the command?”
His officers were puzzled, but they did not dare say no. “Give the order, O great king, and it will obey,” one of then assured him.
“Very well. Sea,” cried Canute, “I command you to come no further! Waves, stop your rolling!. Surf, stop your pounding! Do not dare touch my feet!”
He waited a moment, quietly, and a tiny wave rushed up the sand and lapped at his feet.
“How dare you!” Canute shouted. “Ocean, turn back now! I have ordered you to retreat before me, and now you must obey! Go back!”
And in answer another wave swept forward and curled around the king’s feet. The tide came in, just as it always did. The water rose higher and higher. It came up around the king’s chair, and wet not only his feet, but also his robe. His officers stood before him, alarmed, and wondering whether he was not mad.
“Well, my friends,” Canute said, “it seems I do not have quite so much power as you would have me believe. Perhaps you have learned something today. Perhaps now you will remember there is only one King who is all-powerful, and it is he who rules the sea, and holds the ocean in the hollow of his hand. I suggest you reserve your praises for him.”
Now, I suppose proponents of burying one’s head in the sand to ignore the rising tides might think Canute’s message a good one – only God can do anything about the tide, it’s arrogant of humans to think they can influence it. That kind of fatalistic, buck-passing, responsibility avoidance does humanity, posterity, and the earth a great disservice. But at least Canute was prepared to acknowledge that the damn tide was coming in; whatever his courtiers might be saying. These folks in North Carolina want to avoid even that so they can continue to roll in coastal development money.
Legislatively cooking the scientific books is just wrong on so many levels. Might as well just abandon the pretense of scientific observation altogether.