A reader writes:
Your correspondent claims the group of scientists who have produced work supporting the climate change theory is quite small. He seems oblivious to the fact that there are thousands of members of the American Meteorological Society who've studied the theory. Classes at hundreds of campuses in the US alone are examining facets of the theory, and there are more faculty members studying climate at many individual state universities than the total number of denialists actually working in the field.
The list of academics in the sciences bandied about by the deniers has 60-70 people, but anyone who actually looks at it realizes it includes 15-20 emeritus professors, 15-20 political scientists and other irrelevant academics; the remainder are mostly geologists, not climate scientists, and they don't come close to agreeing what their complaint with the theory is - some continue to deny warming; others deny the anthropogenic causes, and no one lets on that the two positions are incompatible.There are words in biology for groups of animals - a pride of lions and so on. In climate science, the word for scientists who don't believe the theory of anthropogenic climate change is "a smidgen of denialists". The numbers are so small that they should greater anthropological curiosity - how did these people arrive at such wildly varying views? - than curiosity about the truth of anthropogenic warming.Giving this anonymous person the opportunity to spread a whole new set of lies about climate science, unrebutted, is committing the same error that has put us in this situation in the first place. I have no problem with differing opinions. Someone knowledgeable enough to admit "huge numbers of working scientists are examining this question, and they feel the science is decided, but I and several others like me don't" would be fine. But the denialists out themselves when they proclaim there is no broad consensus, or that only a few scientists are on the other side. The assertion is so patently false that anyone making it has shown they don't have enough familiarity with the question, or enough integrity, to be listened to.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.