I stumbled across a documentary programme on BBC World a while back, Nature Inc. It visited two Asian regions where the impacts of climate change are being experienced and described the active local measures under way to cope with them. It’s the sort of programme we ought to be seeing a great deal more (more…)
For years, free-market fundamentalists opposed to government regulation have sought to create doubt in the public’s mind about the dangers of smoking, acid rain, and ozone depletion. Now they have turned those same tactics on the issue of global warming and on climate scientists, with significant success.
In recent months, a group called the Cooler Heads Coalition — a creation of the Washington-based Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) — has fostered a public image of climate science as a criminal conspiracy. The CEI itself has accused NASA, the largest funder of climate science, of faking important climate data sets. In February, U.S. Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma, whose positions are frequently cited and promoted by CEI, called for a criminal investigation of 17 climate scientists from a variety of institutions for allegedly falsifying or distorting data used in taxpayer-funded research. (more…)
Environmentalists have long sought to use the threat of catastrophic global warming to persuade the public to embrace a low-carbon economy. But recent events, including the tainting of some climate research, have shown the risks of trying to link energy policy to climate science.
The 20-year effort by environmentalists to establish climate science as the primary basis for far-reaching action to decarbonize the global energy economy today lies in ruins. Backlash in reaction to “Climategate” and recent controversies involving the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s 2007 assessment report are but the latest evidence that such efforts have evidently failed.
While the urge to blame fossil-fuel-funded skeptics for this recent bad turn of events has proven irresistible for most environmental leaders and pundits, forward-looking greens wishing to ascertain what might be salvaged from the wreckage would be well advised to look closer to home. (more…)
Newsweek argued that climate scientists are playing “fast and loose” with facts. The New York Times reported a controversy raging in the field of climate science. And countless other news outlets, blogs, pundits and writers followed these leaders.
As in the case of evolution, anti-scientific activists are demanding “both sides” of a one-sided issue. By “teaching the controversy” of climate science, newspapers, magazines, blogs and TV personalities damage society’s ability to deal with climate crisis. (more…)
Is it worth spending a whole book dissectinig the writing of Bjørn Lomborg, the self-proclaimed “skeptical environmentalist?” Certainly not in terms of the quality of Lomborg’s argument, which simply doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. But Lomborg’s writing has been permitted to exercise a widespread and harmful influence.
For that reason, Howard Friel’s painstaking book The Lomborg Deception: Setting the Record Straight About Global Warming represents time well and usefully spent.
Friel identifies two strains in Lomborg’s work: his “theorem” that though global warming is happening and is human-induced it is far from a catastrophe; his “corollary” that there is therefore little need to incur the costs of reducing greenhousegas emissions to the extent urged by concerned experts. (more…)