Les anglonautes

About | Search | Grammar | Vocapedia | Learning | News podcasts | Videos | History | Arts | Science | Translate and listen

 Previous Home Up

 

Vocapedia > Earth > Global warming > Global warming denial / skepticism

 

 

 

 

Steve Breen

political cartoon

GoComics

June 22, 2021

https://www.gocomics.com/stevebreen/2021/06/22

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tom Toles

political cartoon

GoComics

April 03, 2016

http://www.gocomics.com/tomtoles/2016/04/03

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Milt Priggee

cartoon

Seattle (WA)

Cagle

18 August 2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hot Hot SOOOO HOT

Daryl Cagle is the publisher of Cagle.com

and owner of Cagle Cartoons, Inc,

which distributes editorial cartoons and columns

to over 850 newspapers.

Cagle

cartoon

19 July 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President Trump Makes a Statement Regarding the Paris Accord    White House    1 June 2017

 

 

 

 

President Trump Makes a Statement Regarding the Paris Accord        Video        The White House        1 June 2017

YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3wE7MO1uSw

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Al Gore: 'climate change deniers won't win'        G        16 July 2015

 

 

 

 

Al Gore: 'climate change deniers won't win' | Guardian Interviews        Video        The Guardian        16 July 2015

 

Al Gore speaks about Paris2015, oil drilling in the Arctic

and the forgotten tradition of environmental Republicans

in an exclusive interview

with The Guardian's Suzanne Goldenberg.

 

YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_WMEsHaQaE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

deny        USA

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/13/
us/politics/california-fires-trump-climate-change.html

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/02/
opinion/sunday/hurricane-harvey-climate-change.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/06/
opinion/sunday/as-donald-trump-denies-climate-change-these-kids-die-of-it.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate denial        UK

 

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/aug/01/
heatwave-climate-denial-summer-2018-sceptics

 

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jun/09/
secretive-donors-gave-us-climate-denial-groups-125m-over-three-years

 

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/feb/13/
climate-change-policy-britain-at-risk-ed-davey-environment-secretary

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2009/jun/05/
burger-king-global-warming-us

 

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2006/sep/20/
oilandpetrol.business

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate change / climate denial        USA

 

https://www.gocomics.com/nickanderson/2020/09/17

 

 

 

 

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/18/
climate/climate-change-denial.html

 

http://www.npr.org/2017/08/02/
541124579/al-gore-warns-that-trump-is-a-distraction-from-the-issue-of-climate-change

 

 

 

 

http://www.gocomics.com/chrisbritt/2016/12/14

 

http://www.npr.org/sections/13.7/2016/07/26/
487457043/the-remarkable-inconsistency-of-climate-denial

 

 

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/24/
opinion/l24climate.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/18/
opinion/18mon1.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate-change deniers / climate deniers        UK

 

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jul/08/
bbc-climate-change-deniers-fossil-fuel-broadcasters

 

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/nov/09/
doomism-new-tactic-fossil-fuel-lobby

 

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2016/nov/28/
danny-lyon-burn-zone-photographer-climate-change

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_WMEsHaQaE - G - July 16, 2015

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/apr/05/
california-governor-drought-climate-change-dianne-feinstein

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2009/jun/05/
burger-king-global-warming-us

 

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2007/apr/10/
comment.georgemonbiot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate change deniers / deniers        USA

 

https://www.gocomics.com/robrogers/2021/07/09

 

https://www.gocomics.com/johndeering/2021/07/01

 

https://www.npr.org/2020/09/12/
912301325/longtime-climate-science-denier-hired-at-noaa

 

http://www.npr.org/2017/07/24/
538391386/despite-climate-change-setbacks-al-gore-comes-down-on-the-side-of-hope

 

http://www.npr.org/blogs/itsallpolitics/2015/04/22/
401576009/visiting-the-everglades-obama-takes-swipe-at-climate-change-deniers

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/01/
opinion/climate-signals-growing-louder.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate change denialists        USA

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/16/
science/naomi-oreskes-a-lightning-rod-in-a-changing-climate.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate change scepticism        UK

 

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-change-scepticism 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate change skepticism        USA

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/09/
opinion/global-warming-scare-tactics.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/
opinion/climate-change-science-vs-skepticism.html

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/14/
opinion/friedman-is-it-weird-enough-yet.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

climate skeptics / climate-change skeptic        USA

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/21/us/
william-m-gray-hurricane-predictor-and-climate-change-skeptic-dies-at-86.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/apr/25/
obama-for-america-shame-climate-sceptics

 

 

 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2012/oct/03/
republican-climate-sceptics-reelection-backlash

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/
opinion/the-conversion-of-a-climate-change-skeptic.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/
opinion/climate-change-science-vs-skepticism.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/14/
opinion/friedman-is-it-weird-enough-yet.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/07/
opinion/in-the-land-of-denial-on-climate-change.html

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2OHAuvoUkQ

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/23/
science/earth/23virginia.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/nov/08/
scientists-unite-climate-sceptics

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/19/
science/earth/19fossil.html

 

 

 

 

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2006/oct/30/
greenpolitics.uk1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

global warming sceptics        UK

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/may/09/
prince-charles-climate-change-sceptics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Coal        USA

 

https://www.gocomics.com/chrisbritt/2016/12/14

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Oil        USA

 

https://www.gocomics.com/chrisbritt/2016/12/14 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

hoax        USA

 

https://www.gocomics.com/mattwuerker/2022/06/04

 

https://www.gocomics.com/stevebreen/2021/06/22

 

https://www.gocomics.com/robrogers/2020/09/18

 

https://www.gocomics.com/chrisbritt/2016/12/14 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doonesbury

by Garry Trudeau

GoComics

September 25, 2011

http://www.gocomics.com/doonesbury#mutable_672086

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Corpus of news articles

 

Earth > Global warming >

 

Global warming denial / skepticism

 

 

 

Global Warming Scare Tactics

 

APRIL 8, 2014

The New York Times

By TED NORDHAUS

and MICHAEL SHELLENBERGER

 

OAKLAND, Calif. — IF you were looking for ways to increase public skepticism about global warming, you could hardly do better than the forthcoming nine-part series on climate change and natural disasters, starting this Sunday on Showtime. A trailer for “Years of Living Dangerously” is terrifying, replete with images of melting glaciers, raging wildfires and rampaging floods. “I don’t think scary is the right word,” intones one voice. “Dangerous, definitely.”

Showtime’s producers undoubtedly have the best of intentions. There are serious long-term risks associated with rising greenhouse gas emissions, ranging from ocean acidification to sea-level rise to decreasing agricultural output.

But there is every reason to believe that efforts to raise public concern about climate change by linking it to natural disasters will backfire. More than a decade’s worth of research suggests that fear-based appeals about climate change inspire denial, fatalism and polarization.

For instance, Al Gore’s 2006 documentary, “An Inconvenient Truth,” popularized the idea that today’s natural disasters are increasing in severity and frequency because of human-caused global warming. It also contributed to public backlash and division. Since 2006, the number of Americans telling Gallup that the media was exaggerating global warming grew to 42 percent today from about 34 percent. Meanwhile, the gap between Democrats and Republicans on whether global warming is caused by humans rose to 42 percent last year from 26 percent in 2006, according to the Pew Research Center.

Other factors contributed. Some conservatives and fossil-fuel interests questioned the link between carbon emissions and global warming. And beginning in 2007, as the country was falling into recession, public support for environmental protection declined.

Still, environmental groups have known since 2000 that efforts to link climate change to natural disasters could backfire, after researchers at the Frameworks Institute studied public attitudes for its report “How to Talk About Global Warming.” Messages focused on extreme weather events, they found, made many Americans more likely to view climate change as an act of God — something to be weathered, not prevented.

Some people, the report noted, “are likely to buy an SUV to help them through the erratic weather to come” for example, rather than support fuel-efficiency standards.

Since then, evidence that a fear-based approach backfires has grown stronger. A frequently cited 2009 study in the journal Science Communication summed up the scholarly consensus. “Although shocking, catastrophic, and large-scale representations of the impacts of climate change may well act as an initial hook for people’s attention and concern,” the researchers wrote, “they clearly do not motivate a sense of personal engagement with the issue and indeed may act to trigger barriers to engagement such as denial.” In a controlled laboratory experiment published in Psychological Science in 2010, researchers were able to use “dire messages” about global warming to increase skepticism about the problem.

Many climate advocates ignore these findings, arguing that they have an obligation to convey the alarming facts.

But claims linking the latest blizzard, drought or hurricane to global warming simply can’t be supported by the science. Our warming world is, according to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, increasing heat waves and intense precipitation in some places, and is likely to bring more extreme weather in the future. But the panel also said there is little evidence that this warming is increasing the loss of life or the economic costs of natural disasters. “Economic growth, including greater concentrations of people and wealth in periled areas and rising insurance penetration,” the climate panel noted, “is the most important driver of increasing losses.”

Claims that current disasters are connected to climate change do seem to motivate many liberals to support action. But they alienate conservatives in roughly equal measure.

What works, say environmental pollsters and researchers, is focusing on popular solutions. Climate advocates often do this, arguing that solar and wind can reduce emissions while strengthening the economy. But when renewable energy technologies are offered as solutions to the exclusion of other low-carbon alternatives, they polarize rather than unite.

One recent study, published by Yale Law School’s Cultural Cognition Project, found that conservatives become less skeptical about global warming if they first read articles suggesting nuclear energy or geoengineering as solutions. Another study, in the journal Nature Climate Change in 2012, concluded that “communication should focus on how mitigation efforts can promote a better society” rather than “on the reality of climate change and averting its risks.”

Nonetheless, virtually every major national environmental organization continues to reject nuclear energy, even after four leading climate scientists wrote them an open letter last fall, imploring them to embrace the technology as a key climate solution. Together with catastrophic rhetoric, the rejection of technologies like nuclear and natural gas by environmental groups is most likely feeding the perception among many that climate change is being exaggerated. After all, if climate change is a planetary emergency, why take nuclear and natural gas off the table?

While the urgency that motivates exaggerated claims is understandable, turning down the rhetoric and embracing solutions like nuclear energy will better serve efforts to slow global warming.

 

 

Ted Nordhaus is the chairman and Michael Shellenberger

is the president of the Breakthrough Institute,

an environmental research organization.

A version of this op-ed appears in print on April 9, 2014,

on page A23 of the New York edition with the headline:

Global Warming Scare Tactics.

Global Warming Scare Tactics,
NYT,
8.4.2014,
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/09/
opinion/global-warming-scare-tactics.html

 

 

 

 

 

The Conversion

of a Climate-Change Skeptic

 

July 28, 2012

The New York Times

By RICHARD A. MULLER

 

Berkeley, Calif.

 

CALL me a converted skeptic. Three years ago I identified problems in previous climate studies that, in my mind, threw doubt on the very existence of global warming. Last year, following an intensive research effort involving a dozen scientists, I concluded that global warming was real and that the prior estimates of the rate of warming were correct. I’m now going a step further: Humans are almost entirely the cause.

My total turnaround, in such a short time, is the result of careful and objective analysis by the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project, which I founded with my daughter Elizabeth. Our results show that the average temperature of the earth’s land has risen by two and a half degrees Fahrenheit over the past 250 years, including an increase of one and a half degrees over the most recent 50 years. Moreover, it appears likely that essentially all of this increase results from the human emission of greenhouse gases.

These findings are stronger than those of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the United Nations group that defines the scientific and diplomatic consensus on global warming. In its 2007 report, the I.P.C.C. concluded only that most of the warming of the prior 50 years could be attributed to humans. It was possible, according to the I.P.C.C. consensus statement, that the warming before 1956 could be because of changes in solar activity, and that even a substantial part of the more recent warming could be natural.

Our Berkeley Earth approach used sophisticated statistical methods developed largely by our lead scientist, Robert Rohde, which allowed us to determine earth land temperature much further back in time. We carefully studied issues raised by skeptics: biases from urban heating (we duplicated our results using rural data alone), from data selection (prior groups selected fewer than 20 percent of the available temperature stations; we used virtually 100 percent), from poor station quality (we separately analyzed good stations and poor ones) and from human intervention and data adjustment (our work is completely automated and hands-off). In our papers we demonstrate that none of these potentially troublesome effects unduly biased our conclusions.

The historic temperature pattern we observed has abrupt dips that match the emissions of known explosive volcanic eruptions; the particulates from such events reflect sunlight, make for beautiful sunsets and cool the earth’s surface for a few years. There are small, rapid variations attributable to El Niño and other ocean currents such as the Gulf Stream; because of such oscillations, the “flattening” of the recent temperature rise that some people claim is not, in our view, statistically significant. What has caused the gradual but systematic rise of two and a half degrees? We tried fitting the shape to simple math functions (exponentials, polynomials), to solar activity and even to rising functions like world population. By far the best match was to the record of atmospheric carbon dioxide, measured from atmospheric samples and air trapped in polar ice.

Just as important, our record is long enough that we could search for the fingerprint of solar variability, based on the historical record of sunspots. That fingerprint is absent. Although the I.P.C.C. allowed for the possibility that variations in sunlight could have ended the “Little Ice Age,” a period of cooling from the 14th century to about 1850, our data argues strongly that the temperature rise of the past 250 years cannot be attributed to solar changes. This conclusion is, in retrospect, not too surprising; we’ve learned from satellite measurements that solar activity changes the brightness of the sun very little.

How definite is the attribution to humans? The carbon dioxide curve gives a better match than anything else we’ve tried. Its magnitude is consistent with the calculated greenhouse effect — extra warming from trapped heat radiation. These facts don’t prove causality and they shouldn’t end skepticism, but they raise the bar: to be considered seriously, an alternative explanation must match the data at least as well as carbon dioxide does. Adding methane, a second greenhouse gas, to our analysis doesn’t change the results. Moreover, our analysis does not depend on large, complex global climate models, the huge computer programs that are notorious for their hidden assumptions and adjustable parameters. Our result is based simply on the close agreement between the shape of the observed temperature rise and the known greenhouse gas increase.

It’s a scientist’s duty to be properly skeptical. I still find that much, if not most, of what is attributed to climate change is speculative, exaggerated or just plain wrong. I’ve analyzed some of the most alarmist claims, and my skepticism about them hasn’t changed.

Hurricane Katrina cannot be attributed to global warming. The number of hurricanes hitting the United States has been going down, not up; likewise for intense tornadoes. Polar bears aren’t dying from receding ice, and the Himalayan glaciers aren’t going to melt by 2035. And it’s possible that we are currently no warmer than we were a thousand years ago, during the “Medieval Warm Period” or “Medieval Optimum,” an interval of warm conditions known from historical records and indirect evidence like tree rings. And the recent warm spell in the United States happens to be more than offset by cooling elsewhere in the world, so its link to “global” warming is weaker than tenuous.

The careful analysis by our team is laid out in five scientific papers now online at BerkeleyEarth.org. That site also shows our chart of temperature from 1753 to the present, with its clear fingerprint of volcanoes and carbon dioxide, but containing no component that matches solar activity. Four of our papers have undergone extensive scrutiny by the scientific community, and the newest, a paper with the analysis of the human component, is now posted, along with the data and computer programs used. Such transparency is the heart of the scientific method; if you find our conclusions implausible, tell us of any errors of data or analysis.

What about the future? As carbon dioxide emissions increase, the temperature should continue to rise. I expect the rate of warming to proceed at a steady pace, about one and a half degrees over land in the next 50 years, less if the oceans are included. But if China continues its rapid economic growth (it has averaged 10 percent per year over the last 20 years) and its vast use of coal (it typically adds one new gigawatt per month), then that same warming could take place in less than 20 years.

Science is that narrow realm of knowledge that, in principle, is universally accepted. I embarked on this analysis to answer questions that, to my mind, had not been answered. I hope that the Berkeley Earth analysis will help settle the scientific debate regarding global warming and its human causes. Then comes the difficult part: agreeing across the political and diplomatic spectrum about what can and should be done.

 

Richard A. Muller, a professor of physics

at the University of California, Berkeley,

and a former MacArthur Foundation fellow, is the author,

most recently, of “Energy for Future Presidents:

The Science Behind the Headlines.”

    The Conversion of a Climate-Change Skeptic, NYT, 28.7.2012,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/opinion
    /the-conversion-of-a-climate-change-skeptic.html

 

 

 

 

 

Leak Offers Glimpse

of Campaign Against Climate Science

 

February 15, 2012

The New York Times

By JUSTIN GILLIS

and LESLIE KAUFMAN

 

Leaked documents suggest that an organization known for attacking climate science is planning a new push to undermine the teaching of global warming in public schools, the latest indication that climate change is becoming a part of the nation’s culture wars.

The documents, from a nonprofit organization in Chicago called the Heartland Institute, outline plans to promote a curriculum that would cast doubt on the scientific finding that fossil fuel emissions endanger the long-term welfare of the planet. “Principals and teachers are heavily biased toward the alarmist perspective,” one document said.

While the documents offer a rare glimpse of the internal thinking motivating the campaign against climate science, defenders of science education were preparing for battle even before the leak. Efforts to undermine climate-science instruction are beginning to spread across the country, they said, and they fear a long fight similar to that over the teaching of evolution in public schools.

In a statement, the Heartland Institute acknowledged that some of its internal documents had been stolen. But it said its president had not had time to read the versions being circulated on the Internet on Tuesday and Wednesday and was therefore not in a position to say whether they had been altered.

Heartland did declare one two-page document to be a forgery, although its tone and content closely matched that of other documents that the group did not dispute. In an apparent confirmation that much of the material, more than 100 pages, was authentic, the group apologized to donors whose names became public as a result of the leak.

The documents included many details of the group’s operations, including salaries, recent personnel actions and fund-raising plans and setbacks. They were sent by e-mail to leading climate activists this week by someone using the name “Heartland insider” and were quickly reposted to many climate-related Web sites.

Heartland said the documents were not from an insider but were obtained by a caller pretending to be a board member of the group who was switching to a new e-mail address. “We intend to find this person and see him or her put in prison for these crimes,” the organization said.

Although best-known nationally for its attacks on climate science, Heartland styles itself as a libertarian organization with interests in a wide range of public-policy issues. The documents say that it expects to raise $7.7 million this year.

The documents raise questions about whether the group has undertaken partisan political activities, a potential violation of federal tax law governing nonprofit groups. For instance, the documents outline “Operation Angry Badger,” a plan to spend $612,000 to influence the outcome of recall elections and related fights this year in Wisconsin over the role of public-sector unions.

Tax lawyers said Wednesday that tax-exempt groups were allowed to undertake some types of lobbying and political education, but that because they are subsidized by taxpayers, they are prohibited from direct involvement in political campaigns.

The documents also show that the group has received money from some of the nation’s largest corporations, including several that have long favored action to combat climate change.

The documents typically say that those donations were earmarked for projects unrelated to climate change, like publishing right-leaning newsletters on drug and technology policy. Nonetheless, several of the companies hastened on Wednesday to disassociate themselves from the organization’s climate stance.

“We absolutely do not endorse or support their views on the environment or climate change,” said Sarah Alspach, a spokeswoman for GlaxoSmithKline, a multinational drug company shown in the documents as contributing $50,000 in the past two years to support a medical newsletter.

A spokesman for Microsoft, another listed donor, said that the company believes that “climate change is a serious issue that demands immediate worldwide action.” The company is shown in the documents as having contributed $59,908 last year to a Heartland technology newsletter. But the Microsoft spokesman, Mark Murray, said the gift was not a cash contribution but rather the value of free software, which Microsoft gives to thousands of nonprofit groups.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of the Heartland documents was what they did not contain: evidence of contributions from the major publicly traded oil companies, long suspected by environmentalists of secretly financing efforts to undermine climate science.

But oil interests were nonetheless represented. The documents say that the Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation contributed $25,000 last year and was expected to contribute $200,000 this year. Mr. Koch is one of two brothers who have been prominent supporters of libertarian causes as well as other charitable endeavors. They control Koch Industries, one of the country’s largest private companies and a major oil refiner.

The documents suggest that Heartland has spent several million dollars in the past five years in its efforts to undermine climate science, much of that coming from a person referred to repeatedly in the documents as “the Anonymous Donor.” A guessing game erupted Wednesday about who that might be.

The documents say that over four years ending in 2013, the group expects to have spent some $1.6 million on financing the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change, an entity that publishes periodic reports attacking climate science and holds lavish annual conferences. (Environmental groups refer to the conferences as “Denialpalooza.”)

Heartland’s latest idea, the documents say, is a plan to create a curriculum for public schools intended to cast doubt on mainstream climate science and budgeted at $200,000 this year. The curriculum would claim, for instance, that “whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy.”

It is in fact not a scientific controversy. The vast majority of climate scientists say that emissions generated by humans are changing the climate and putting the planet at long-term risk, although they are uncertain about the exact magnitude of that risk. Whether and how to rein in emissions of greenhouse gases has become a major political controversy in the United States, however.

The National Center for Science Education, a group that has had notable success in fighting for accurate teaching of evolution in the public schools, has recently added climate change to its agenda in response to pleas from teachers who say they feel pressure to water down the science.

Mark S. McCaffrey, programs and policy director for the group, which is in Oakland, Calif., said the Heartland documents revealed that “they continue to promote confusion, doubt and debate where there really is none.”

 

Steven Yaccino contributed reporting from Chicago.

    Leak Offers Glimpse of Campaign Against Climate Science,
    NYT, 15.2.2012,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/16/science/earth/
    in-heartland-institute-leak-a-plan-to-discredit-climate-teaching.html

 

 

 

 

 

Climate Change:

Science vs. Skepticism

 

September 19, 2011

The New York Times

 

To the Editor:

Re “Is It Weird Enough Yet?,” by Thomas L. Friedman (column, Sept. 14):

I agree strongly that “we need to take steps to mitigate climate change — just in case Governor Perry is wrong.”

The French philosopher and mathematician Blaise Pascal, in what has become known as Pascal’s wager, suggested that even people who did not believe in God should act as if they did, since being wrong could be catastrophic.

I would say to the climate skeptics: If you do not believe in climate change but act as if you did, even if you are right, the result would be a society with clean, sustainable jobs, less dependence on Mideast oil and healthier lives. But if you are wrong and we do not act immediately, the results would be catastrophic.

PHILLIP GOTTSCHALK
Montville, N.J., Sept. 14, 2011

To the Editor:

Thomas L. Friedman is obviously correct to point out that Gov. Rick Perry’s and Representative Michele Bachmann’s views on climate change are wrong. But it’s clear that they won’t have their minds changed simply by showing them more scientific data or by explaining to them that 97 percent of the most published climate researchers — the group of people on the planet most knowledgeable about the subject — agree that human activities are causing rapid climate change.

The problem is that their denial of reality is a byproduct of a culture that marginalizes the scientific method as a way of thinking and promotes faith as a virtue, even if it is in direct opposition to the facts. Changing their minds about climate change will take more than presenting the evidence for it. It will require a seismic shift in the way they choose to understand reality.

MARK BESSOUDO
Toronto, Sept. 15, 2011

To the Editor:

Like many people, I don’t know if the climate is actually changing or, if it is, whether or not it is caused by carbon emissions, agricultural practices, solar activity or even cow flatulence. I do know, though, that like most people who want to breathe clean air and have a healthy planet, I strongly support realistic, comprehensible and well-enforced regulations that will protect our environment without stifling economic growth.

I think it is called common sense.

VAUGHN GILBERT
McKeesport, Pa., Sept. 14, 2011

To the Editor:

Thomas L. Friedman claims there is dispositive scientific proof of climate change. The fires in Texas are a result of droughts, caused by the hottest Texas summer on record, which was caused by climate change, which was caused by manmade carbon emissions.

There’s just one little problem. The previous temperature record was set in 1934. This raises the question, if hot weather and droughts today are a result of climate change caused by increased manmade carbon emissions, what were the hot weather and droughts (remember the Dust Bowl?) in 1934 caused by? Maybe the science isn’t so irrefutable.

FREDRIC MORCK
Redwood City, Calif., Sept. 14, 2011

To the Editor:

Thomas L. Friedman suggests that Representative Michele Bachmann and Gov. Rick Perry are crazy for denying the existence of global warming. They’re not crazy; they are ideologues. After all, it’s nearly impossible to deny that the planet is warming. The only real debate is whether global warming is caused by humans.

Mr. Friedman says America needs to implement a carbon tax or a cap-and-trade system to mitigate the emission of greenhouse gases, which cause global warming. I agree, but now is not the time for that regulation. For the 14 million Americans who are currently unemployed, Washington has one job and that’s getting American workers back to work. Increased environmental regulation would only add to the uncertainty of economic conditions, discouraging corporate investment in job creation.

MIKE BROST
Eau Claire, Wis., Sept. 14, 2011

To the Editor:

I can’t help but note that politicians like Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann, who demand absolute scientific proof that climate change is real, are the same ones who treat as undisputed fact the assumption that tax cuts for the wealthy create jobs for the unemployed.

BRUCE HARVILLE
Madison, Wis., Sept. 14, 2011

    Climate Change: Science vs. Skepticism, NYT, 19.9.2011,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/opinion/
    climate-change-science-vs-skepticism.html

 

 

 

 

 

Is It Weird Enough Yet?

 

September 13, 2011
The New York Times
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN

 

Every time I listen to Gov. Rick Perry of Texas and Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota talk about how climate change is some fraud perpetrated by scientists trying to gin up money for research, I’m always reminded of one of my favorite movie lines that Jack Nicholson delivers to his needy neighbor who knocks on his door in the film “As Good As It Gets.” “Where do they teach you to talk like this?” asks Nicholson. “Sell crazy someplace else. We’re all stocked up here.”

Thanks Mr. Perry and Mrs. Bachmann, but we really are all stocked up on crazy right now. I mean, here is the Texas governor rejecting the science of climate change while his own state is on fire — after the worst droughts on record have propelled wildfires to devour an area the size of Connecticut. As a statement by the Texas Forest Service said last week: “No one on the face of this earth has ever fought fires in these extreme conditions.”

Remember the first rule of global warming. The way it unfolds is really “global weirding.” The weather gets weird: the hots get hotter; the wets wetter; and the dries get drier. This is not a hoax. This is high school physics, as Katharine Hayhoe, a climatologist in Texas, explained on Joe Romm’s invaluable Climateprogress.org blog: “As our atmosphere becomes warmer, it can hold more water vapor. Atmospheric circulation patterns shift, bringing more rain to some places and less to others. For example, when a storm comes, in many cases there is more water available in the atmosphere and rainfall is heavier. When a drought comes, often temperatures are already higher than they would have been 50 years ago, and so the effects of the drought are magnified by higher evaporation rates.”

CNN reported on Sept. 9 that “Texas had the distinction of experiencing the warmest summer on record of any state in America, with an average of 86.8 degrees. Dallas residents sweltered for 40 consecutive days of grueling 100-plus degree temperatures. ... Temperature-related energy demands soared more than 22 percent above the norm this summer, the largest increase since record-keeping of energy demands began more than a century ago.”

There is still much we don’t know about how climate change will unfold, but it is no hoax. We need to start taking steps, as our scientists urge, “to manage the unavoidable and avoid the unmanageable.” If you want a quick primer on the latest climate science, tune into “24 Hours of Reality.” It is a worldwide live, online update that can be found at climaterealityproject.org and will be going on from Sept. 14-15, over 24 hours, with contributors from 24 time zones.

Not only has the science of climate change come under attack lately, so has the economics of green jobs. Here the critics have a point — sort of. I wasn’t surprised to read that the solar panel company Solyndra, which got $535 million in loan guarantees from the Department of Energy to make solar panels in America, filed for bankruptcy protection two weeks ago and laid off 1,100 workers. This story is an embarrassment to the green jobs movement, but the death by bankruptcy was a collaboration of the worst Democratic and Republican impulses.

How so? There is only one effective, sustainable way to produce “green jobs,” and that is with a fixed, durable, long-term price signal that raises the price of dirty fuels and thereby creates sustained consumer demand for, and sustained private sector investment in, renewables. Without a carbon tax or gasoline tax or cap-and-trade system that makes renewable energies competitive with dirty fuels, while they achieve scale and move down the cost curve, green jobs will remain a hobby.

President Obama has chosen not to push for a price signal for political reasons. He has opted for using regulations and government funding. In the area of regulation, he deserves great credit for just pushing through new fuel economy standards that will ensure that by 2025 the average U.S. car will get the mileage (and have the emissions) of today’s Prius hybrid. But elsewhere, Obama has relied on green subsidies rather than a price signal. Some of this has really helped start-ups leverage private capital, but you also get Solyndras. The G.O.P. has blocked any price signal and fought every regulation. The result too often is taxpayer money subsidizing wonderful green innovation, but with no sustainable market within which these companies can scale.

Let’s fix that. We need revenue to balance the budget. We need sustainable clean-tech jobs. We need less dependence on Mideast oil. And we need to take steps to mitigate climate change — just in case Governor Perry is wrong. The easiest way to do all of this at once is with a gasoline tax or price on carbon. Would you rather cut Social Security and Medicare or pay a little more per gallon of gas and make the country stronger, safer and healthier? It still amazes me that our politicians have the courage to send our citizens to war but not to ask the public that question.

    Is It Weird Enough Yet?, NYT, 13.9.2011,
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/14/opinion/friedman-is-it-weird-enough-yet.html

 

 

 

 

 

In Climate Denial, Again

 

October 17, 2010

The New York Times

 

Former Vice President Dick Cheney has to be smiling. With one exception, none of the Republicans running for the Senate — including the 20 or so with a serious chance of winning — accept the scientific consensus that humans are largely responsible for global warming.

The candidates are not simply rejecting solutions, like putting a price on carbon, though these, too, are demonized. They are re-running the strategy of denial perfected by Mr. Cheney a decade ago, repudiating years of peer-reviewed findings about global warming and creating an alternative reality in which climate change is a hoax or conspiracy.

Some candidates are emphatic in their denial, like the Nevada Republican Sharron Angle, who flatly rejects “the man-caused climate change mantra of the left.” Others are merely wiggly, like California’s Carly Fiorina, who says, “I’m not sure.” Yet, over all (the exception being Mark Kirk in Illinois), the Republicans are huddled around an amazingly dismissive view of climate change.

A few may genuinely believe global warming is a left-wing plot. Others may be singing the tune of corporate benefactors. And many Republicans have seized on the cap-and-trade climate bill as another way to paint Democrats as out-of-control taxers.

In one way or another, though, all are custodians of a strategy whose guiding principle has been to avoid debate about solutions to climate change by denying its existence — or at least by diminishing its importance. The strategy worked, destroying hopes for Congressional action while further confusing ordinary citizens for whom global warming was already a remote and complex matter. It was also remarkably heavy-handed.

According to Congressional inquiries, White House officials, encouraged by Mr. Cheney’s office, forced the Environmental Protection Agency to remove sections on climate change from separate reports in 2002 and 2003. (Christine Todd Whitman, then the E.P.A. administrator, has since described the process as “brutal.”)

The administration also sought to control or censor Congressional testimony by federal employees and tampered with other reports in order to inject uncertainty into the climate debate and minimize threats to the environment.

Nothing, it seemed, could crack the administration’s denial — not Tony Blair of Britain and other leaders who took climate change seriously; not Mrs. Whitman (who eventually quit after being undercut by Mr. Cheney, who worked for the energy company Halliburton before he became vice president and received annual checks while in office); and certainly not the scientists.

In 2007, when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued its most definitive statement on the human contribution to climate change, Mr. Cheney insisted that there was not enough evidence to just “sort of run out and try to slap together some policy that’s going to try to solve the problem.” To which Mrs. Whitman, by then in private life, said: “I don’t see how he can say that with a straight face anymore.”

Nowadays, it is almost impossible to recall that in 2000, George W. Bush promised to cap carbon dioxide, encouraging some to believe that he would break through the partisan divide on global warming. Until the end of the 1990s, Republicans could be counted on to join bipartisan solutions to environmental problems. Now they’ve disappeared in a fog of disinformation, an entire political party parroting the Cheney line.

In Climate Denial, Again,
NYT,
17.10. 2010,
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/18/
opinion/18mon1.html

 

 

 

 

 

There is climate change censorship

- and it's the deniers who dish it out

 

Global warming scientists
are under intense pressure to water down findings,
and are then accused of silencing their critics

 

Tuesday April 10, 2007

The Guardian

George Monbiot

 

The drafting of reports by the world's pre-eminent group of climate scientists is an odd process. For months scientists contributing to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change tussle over the evidence. Nothing gets published unless it achieves consensus. This means that the panel's reports are conservative - even timid. It also means that they are as trustworthy as a scientific document can be.

Then, when all is settled among the scientists, the politicians sweep in and seek to excise from the summaries anything that threatens their interests.

The scientists fight back, but they always have to make concessions. The report released on Friday, for example, was shorn of the warning that "North America is expected to experience locally severe economic damage, plus substantial ecosystem, social and cultural disruption from climate change related events".

This is the opposite of the story endlessly repeated in the rightwing press: that the IPCC, in collusion with governments, is conspiring to exaggerate the science. No one explains why governments should seek to amplify their own failures. In the wacky world of the climate conspiracists no explanations are required. The world's most conservative scientific body has somehow been transformed into a conspiracy of screaming demagogues.

This is just one aspect of a story that is endlessly told the wrong way round. In the Sunday Telegraph and the Daily Mail, in columns by Dominic Lawson, Tom Utley and Janet Daley, the allegation is repeated that climate scientists and environmentalists are trying to "shut down debate". Those who say that man-made global warming is not taking place, they claim, are being censored.

Something is missing from their accusations: a single valid example. The closest any of them have been able to get is two letters sent - by the Royal Society and by the US senators Jay Rockefeller and Olympia Snowe - to that delicate flower ExxonMobil, asking that it cease funding lobbyists who deliberately distort climate science. These correspondents had no power to enforce their wishes. They were merely urging Exxon to change its practices. If everyone who urges is a censor, then the comment pages of the newspapers must be closed in the name of free speech.

In a recent interview, Martin Durkin, who made Channel 4's film The Great Global Warming Swindle, claimed he was subject to "invisible censorship". He seems to have forgotten that he had 90 minutes of prime-time television to expound his theory that climate change is a green conspiracy. What did this censorship amount to? Complaints about one of his programmes had been upheld by the Independent Television Commission. It found that "the views of the four complainants, as made clear to the interviewer, had been distorted by selective editing" and that they had been "misled as to the content and purpose of the programmes when they agreed to take part". This, apparently, makes him a martyr.

If you want to know what real censorship looks like, let me show you what has been happening on the other side of the fence. Scientists whose research demonstrates that climate change is taking place have been repeatedly threatened and silenced and their findings edited or suppressed.

The Union of Concerned Scientists found that 58% of the 279 climate scientists working at federal agencies in the US who responded to its survey reported that they had experienced one of the following constraints: 1. Pressure to eliminate the words "climate change", "global warming", or other similar terms from their communications; 2. Editing of scientific reports by their superiors that "changed the meaning of scientific findings"; 3. Statements by officials at their agencies that misrepresented their findings; 4. The disappearance or unusual delay of websites, reports, or other science-based materials relating to climate; 5. New or unusual administrative requirements that impair climate-related work; 6. Situations in which scientists have actively objected to, resigned from, or removed themselves from a project because of pressure to change scientific findings. They reported 435 incidents of political interference over the past five years.

In 2003, the White House gutted the climate-change section of a report by the Environmental Protection Agency. It deleted references to studies showing that global warming is caused by manmade emissions. It added a reference to a study, partly funded by the American Petroleum Institute, that suggested that temperatures are not rising. Eventually the agency decided to drop the section altogether.

After Thomas Knutson at the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) published a paper in 2004 linking rising emissions with more intense tropical cyclones, he was blocked by his superiors from speaking to the media. He agreed to one request to appear on MSNBC, but a public affairs officer at NOAA rang the station and said that Knutson was "too tired" to conduct the interview. The official explained to him that the "White House said no". All media inquiries were to be routed instead to a scientist who believed there was no connection between global warming and hurricanes.

Last year Nasa's top climate scientist, James Hansen, reported that his bosses were trying to censor his lectures, papers and web postings. He was told by Nasa's PR officials that there would be "dire consequences" if he continued to call for rapid reductions in greenhouse gases.

Last month, the Alaskan branch of the US fish and wildlife service told its scientists that anyone travelling to the Arctic must understand "the administration's position on climate change, polar bears, and sea ice and will not be speaking on or responding to these issues".

At hearings in the US Congress three weeks ago, Philip Cooney, a former White House aide who had previously worked at the American Petroleum Institute, admitted he had made hundreds of changes to government reports about climate change on behalf of the Bush administration. Though not a scientist, he had struck out evidence that glaciers were retreating and inserted phrases suggesting that there was serious scientific doubt about global warming.

The guardians of free speech in Britain aren't above attempting a little suppression, either. The Guardian and I have now received several letters from the climate sceptic Viscount Monckton threatening us with libel proceedings after I challenged his claims about climate science. On two of these occasions he has demanded that articles are removed from the internet. Monckton is the man who wrote to Senators Rockefeller and Snowe, claiming that their letter to ExxonMobil offends the corporation's "right of free speech".

After Martin Durkin's film was broadcast, one of the scientists it featured, Professor Carl Wunsch, complained that his views on climate change had been misrepresented. He says he has received a legal letter from Durkin's production company, Wag TV, threatening to sue him for defamation unless he agrees to make a public statement that he was neither misrepresented nor misled.

Would it be terribly impolite to suggest that when such people complain of censorship, a certain amount of projection is taking place?

There is climate change censorship
- and it's the deniers who dish it out,
G,
10.4.2007,
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2007/apr/10/
comment.georgemonbiot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related > Anglonautes > Vocapedia

 

Earth >

weather, wildlife,

resources, farming,

population,

waste, pollution,

global warming,

climate change,

disasters, activists

 

 

energy > renewables

 

 

transports > cars

 

 

 

home Up