The 16 scientists who signed the Wall Street Journal editorial are a minority, but they're not outliers. They're not "flat earthers." They're not "scared of science." They are, quite simply, distinguished scientists with a dissenting opinion.
And their opinion deserves our respect.
Following are the scientists and engineers who signed the WSJ editorial.
Claude Allegre, former director of the Institute for the Study of the Earth, University of Paris
J. Scott Armstrong, co-founder of the Journal of Forecasting and the International Journal of Forecasting
Jan Breslow, head of the Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics and Metabolism, Rockefeller University
Roger Cohen, fellow, American Physical Society
Edward David, member, National Academy of Engineering and National Academy of Sciences
William Happer, professor of physics, Princeton University
Michael Kelly, professor of technology, University of Cambridge
William Kininmonth, former head of climate research at the Australian Bureau of Meterology
Richard Lindzen, professor of atmospheric sciences, MIT
James McGrath, professor of chemistry, Virginia Tech University
Rodney Nichols, former president and CEO of the New York Academy of Sciences
Burt Rutan, designer of Voyager and SpaceShipOne
Harrison H. Schmitt, Apollo 17 astronaut and former US Senator
Nir Shaviv, professor of astrophysics, Hebrew University, Jerusalem
Henk Tennekes, former director, Royal Dutch Meteorological Service
Antonio Zichichi, president of the World Federation of Scientists, Geneva
I came across an interesting article a while ago, and found my copy again recently. The author presented a very reasonable explanation of how global warming does cause an increase in th amount of carbon dioxide produced. So even if all the data were completely correct, it may be that the interpretation is wrong, and that the cause and effect are incorrect. What happens if it is something else warming up the planet, and the result is an increase in carbon dioxide? And what happens if the frantic efforts to reduce it's production have no effect at all? And meanwhile whatever is in fact causing the warming trend gets no attention at all? Of course that suggests that the cause would actually be something that we could change, and not something like a long, slow cycle in the amount ofsolar energy delivered.
Remember that old tale about the folks who believed that it was the tree branches waving that caused the wind to blow? But after they cut down all the trees to stop the wind they discovered that was not the case. And so now that country has to import all of it's wood, since they have no trees. We should examine our system and make sure we avoid making a similar mistake.
ambassador, thanks for supporting my point that the original post is one-sided. However, you are just justifying it as not being balanced because you think there needs to be more such articles in order to balance against everything else in the media (outside of UBM). Journalism should be balanced when there is no wrong or right, just opinion. Here there are facts and science at stake. Presenting junk science as counterbalance for real science is not good journalism, "balanced" or not, just like the article's cherry-picking a handful of scientists' opinion as carrying convincing scientific weight is no substitute for sorting out the science and presenting that handful of scientists in context against the thousands of actual climate scientists (97-98% has been estimated without contradiction) who recognize AGW.
Thanks again, though, for acknowledging the bias in Mr. Murray's post.
The contention here is that humans are causing the climate to change. However, millions of years before humans were on the scene, the earth was warmer than it is now.
Have you considered that earth may be at it's natural temperature for this period of time? That if human activity never existed, we might still be at this same temperature right now?
There is a level of hubris in taking responsibility for current partially perceived state of system that is both massive and complex and only partially understood. 30 years ago, these same global warming advocates (and advocates they are) were decrying the coming ice age.
In my opinion, this is the balance. If you added up the number of dissenting scientists as a percentage of believing scientists, and then you add up the number of dissenting articles, against the unbalanced believing articles, TV shows, books etc. I think the percentages would be pretty close. I here your tone being political, which in my opinion is the problem. This has become more of a political issue than a scientific one.
I am not one who disbelieves in globel climate change, but I am also a scientist and do not believe you have read the article correctly. The article did not conclude that putting tons of CO2 in the atmosphere does not have unforseen affects, it just says there are dissenting opinions that don't believe it does what the supporters of global climate change are saying. That includes both degree and malevolence. THey say the data is inconclusive.
That is the answer they would give to your question, and it is a scientifically valid answer. It has not been proven scientifically to the level as such things as 1st and 2nd law of thermodynamics etc. THe problem lies in the ramifications of us being wrong. If most are wrong about global climate change, then we have been hurt economically for a short period. If most are correct, then we are in for some large trouble. It makes sense to me to try to fix even potential problems.
It is true that global warming is not universally accepted by all scientists, just like the moon landing is not believed by all the general public. But can anyone make a coherent argument that releasing millons of years of sequestered carbon into our atmosphere cannot be expected to have unforseen consequences?
Interesting article. For those of you defending the viewpoint presented to the angry global warming proponents who will accept no disent, I'd say don't bother. Clearly, with these people it is at the point of radicalized religion. Any attempt to debate this will shouted down with name-calling. Anybody who disagrees is simply ignorant or worse.
UBM gets a new black eye for dishonesty, anti-science, and biased journalism every time it re-spams the link to this deplorable post, as it did again today. If it or Charles Murray had an ounce of integrity they would update this with a corrected post that is accurate and honest to science.
A more balanced post would at least counterbalance your post about 16 scientists believing "no," with reporting at least equal weight to 255 real climate scientists who say "yes," the science of global warming is indeed incontrovertible. It would only add to the interest of readers to point out that the Wall Street Journal refused to publish the rebuttal from these 255 scientists. Do you care, Mr. Murray?
As it stands, UBM and Charles Murray are just toeing the line for right-wing politics and the fossil fuel lobby. That's no way for a legitimate media organization to operate.
One very interesting thing that I came across recently pointed out thet toward the end of the 1600s(1645) and a bit into the 1700s(1715) there was a period of very few sunspots, and places froze that had not frozen before. There was another cycle of sunspot activity proposed, based on observed data, the Gleissburg cycle, which appears to be 87 years. The cooling of the earth at that time would appear to have been due to a lower output of solar energy, although what was recorded was the number of sunspots. It is lots eassier to count sunspots than to accurately measure solar energy flux, even today.
This bit of old information backs up my assertion that our weather system is far more complex than what some folks believe, and also allows for activities for which we understand neither the cause nor the mechanism very well. So to assert that one clearly knows both what is happening and exactly why it is happening is not a very good way to achieve credibility.
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