A northern Alberta geologist has embarked on a crusade to stop what he says is the madness of the prevailing wisdom that human activity is heating the Earth.

"The truth has to start somewhere," said Bruno Wiskel in an interview with the Sun yesterday.

Wiskel, who teaches a University of Alberta faculty of extension course, says climate change is an eons-old force that has nothing to do with people.

Current global warming, he said, has been going on for about 18,000 years, with glaciers retreating and sea levels rising ever since.

"If this happened once and we were the cause of it, that would be cause for concern," said Wiskel. "But glaciers have been coming and going for billions of years."

Wiskel's comments came a day after opposition MPs and environmentalists blasted as inadequate Canada's efforts to combat global warming.

A Bonn-based development group, Germanwatch, placed Canada 51st out of 56 countries that were assessed for their performance and policies on climate change.

Wiskel says climate change has gone "from a science to a religion" that preaches carbon dioxide from human activity is to blame for increasing temperatures - something with which he soundly disagrees.

He blamed people grubbing for research dollars for perpetuating what he says is a myth.

"If you funnel money into things that can't be changed, the money is not going into the places that it is needed."

Wiskel, touting his latest book The Emperor's New Climate: Debunking the Myth of Global Warming, teaches a U of A course called Building an Energy Efficient Home for Less. He started to research climate change while building a "Kyoto house" in which he now lives near Athabasca, about 150 km north of Edmonton.

He claims his house is 5,500 square feet and uses less than 10% of the natural gas that a regular home in Edmonton would use.

In building the house, he says, he was seeking to prove that Kyoto Protocol targets could be met by people making small changes in their lives, without touching industry.

Instead, he said he realized global warming theory was full of holes and "red flags," and became convinced that humans are not responsible for rising temperatures.

Wiskel is giving a free lecture on the topic on Friday, Nov. 24 at the Provincial Museum of Alberta, starting at 7:30 p.m.