Friday, February 09, 2007

The Consensus on Global Warming

A really good blog to keep up on science of climate change that you won't read elsewhere is Roger Pielke's blog.

Roger notes two attempts to remove state climatologists -- David Legates in Delaware and George Taylor in Oregon -- because of their failure to follow the consensus views on global warming. Roger also gives the cite to Heidi Cullen's (of the Weather Channel) post where she speaks about having the American Meteorological Society remove their seal of approval from meteorologists who "can't speak to the fundamental science of climate change" and about the inability of some meteorologists to differentiate between "solid, peer-reviewed science and junk political controversy." Take a look at Roger Pielke's resume and tell me if you see anything other than solid, peer-reviewed science. About all you will see on his site is peer-reviewed science, and it is good stuff.

So what kind of consensus is this, if by speaking out against it you are vilified?

Wait -- another late breaking item, Ellen Goodman from the Boston Globe says

"I would like to say we're at a point where global warming is impossible to deny. Let's just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers, though one denies the past and the other denies the present and future."

Now if you read my post on warming from February 1, you will see I agree that global warming (that the average global temperature has increased in the last 100 years) is tough to deny. But that, I don't think, is what Ms. Goodman means when she refers to the deniers of global warming. I suspect that if I said to her that maybe the best response to warming is to make sure that the world economy grows at a good rate for the next 100 years so that our children have the capital and capacity to adapt to climate change, she would consider me a denier. Or if I said that it simply did not make good economic sense to spend a lot on reducing CO2 given the cost of reductions and the relatively minor benefits that would be forthcoming, she would consider me a denier. Or if I said that it was not clear just how much of the warming of the last 100 years was due to anthropogenic greenhouse gas emisssions, she would consider me a denier. Read her editorial and tell me if I am wrong.

At any rate, bringing the Holocaust into the argument over climate change is just going way over the edge.


Adrienne said...

A cry from the western wilderness of rational thinking that is commonly known as the West Coast: Your blog continues to be a refreshing resource on this topic. (I was in your inaugural BIB-Tuck Exec. class last fall.)
The comments eminating from Boston are not unlike the trends on the West Coast.
"An Inconvenient Truth was "required viewing" in my son's high school, but when I inquired among the faculty and dean of students if there would be an opportunity for discussion or evaluation of the underlying scientific concepts and assumptions, they said, "No, it speaks for itself." That is simply unacceptable to me--especially coming from academics and educators.
I have recdently discovered an answer for them. The BBC broadcast this video and it is now available on Google. It is not as sharply honed as the Hollywood production starring Al Gore, but it is extremely effective in presenting the other side of the story, offering some insights as to vested interests in promoting Gore's "truth," and offering some Good science refutation to the Hollywood version of the story. I would love to hear what you think.


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