Climate change denial

Discussion in 'Politics' started by futurecurrents, Jun 8, 2013.

  1. Climate change denial is a set of organized attempts to downplay, deny or dismiss the scientific consensus on the extent of global warming, its significance, and its connection to human behavior, especially for commercial or ideological reasons. Typically, these attempts take the rhetorical form of legitimate scientific debate, while not adhering to the actual principles of that debate. Climate change denial has been associated with the energy lobby, industry advocates and free market think tanks, often in the United States. Some commentators describe climate change denial as a particular form of denialism.

    Peter Christoff, writing in The Age (2007), said that climate change denial differs from skepticism, which is essential for good science. He went on to say that "almost two decades after the issue became one of global concern, the 'big' debate over climate change is over. There are now no credible scientific skeptics challenging the underlying scientific theory, or the broad projections, of climate change." The relationships between industry-funded denial and public climate change skepticism have at times been compared to earlier efforts by the tobacco industry to undermine what is now widely accepted scientific evidence relating to the dangers of secondhand smoke, or even linked as a direct continuation of these earlier financial relationships. Aside from private industry groups, climate change denial has also been alleged regarding the statements of elected officials.

    Between 2002 and 2010, conservative billionaires donated nearly $120m to more than 100 anti-climate groups casting doubt on the science behind climate change.

    In 1991 the New York Times reported that coal industry advocates were planning an advertising campaign which, according to their internal documents, was intended to "reposition global warming as theory rather than fact".[26] More groups with similar goals formed, according to Newsweek magazine.[9] In its August 2007 coverstory "The Truth About Denial", Newsweek reported that "this well-coordinated, well-funded campaign by contrarian scientists, free-market think tanks, and industry has created a paralyzing fog of doubt around climate change."[9] The article described one group's plan was to "sow doubt about climate research just as cigarette makers had about smoking research".[9] Newsweek subsequently published a piece by Robert J. Samuelson, who called the article "a vast oversimplification of a messy story" and "fundamentally misleading" because although global warming had already occurred, we "lack the technology" to unwind it, and the best we can hope to do is cut emissions. He argues that "journalists should resist the temptation to portray global warming as a morality tale... in which anyone who questions its gravity or proposed solutions may be ridiculed".

    The environmentalist writer and activist George Monbiot stated in his Guardian opinion column that he reserves the term for those who attempt to undermine scientific opinion on climate change due to financial interests. Monbiot often refers to a "denial industry." However, he and other writers have described others as climate change "deniers," including politicians and writers not claimed to be funded by industry groups.[4][5][6][16][29][30][31]

    Mark Hoofnagle defines denialism as the employment of rhetorical arguments to give the appearance of legitimate debate where there is none, an approach that has the ultimate goal of rejecting a proposition on which a scientific consensus exists.[3][32] In recent years the term has been associated with a series of views challenging the scientific consensus on issues including the health effects of smoking and the relationship between HIV and AIDS, along with climate change.
  2. Naomi Oreskes, co-author of Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming,[15] describes how a small group of retired cold-war nuclear physicists, who through their weapons work had become well-connected, well-known and influential people, promoted the idea of 'doubt' in several areas of US public debate. According to Oreskes, they did this, "not for money, but in defense of an ideology of laissez-faire governance and opposition to government regulation".
  3. Written by a public relations specialist for the American Petroleum Institute and then leaked to The New York Times, the memo described, in the article's words, a plan "to recruit a cadre of scientists who share the industry's views of climate science and to train them in public relations so they can help convince journalists, politicians and the public that the risk of global warming is too uncertain to justify controls on greenhouse gases." Cushman quoted the document as proposing a US$ 5,000,000 multi-point strategy to "maximize the impact of scientific views consistent with ours on Congress, the media and other key audiences," with a goal of "raising questions about and undercutting the 'prevailing scientific wisdom.'"[38]
  4. after the IPCC released its February 2007 report, the American Enterprise Institute offered British, American, and other scientists $10,000, plus travel expenses, to publish articles critical of the assessment. The institute, which had received more than $US 1.6 million from Exxon and whose vice-chairman of trustees is Lee Raymond, former head of Exxon, sent letters that, The Guardian said, "attack the UN's panel as 'resistant to reasonable criticism and dissent and prone to summary conclusions that are poorly supported by the analytical work' and ask for essays that 'thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs'." More than 20 AEI employees worked as consultants to the George W. Bush administration.[39] Despite her initial conviction that with "the overwhelming science out there, the deniers' days were numbered," Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer said that when she learned of the AEI's offer, "I realized there was a movement behind this that just wasn't giving up."[9]
  5. The Royal Society conducted a survey that found ExxonMobil had given US$ 2.9 million to American groups that "misinformed the public about climate change," 39 of which "misrepresented the science of climate change by outright denial of the evidence".[5][40] In 2006, the Royal Society issued a demand that ExxonMobil withdraw funding for climate change denial.
  6. In 2013, The Guardian revealed that two trusts, the 'DonorsTrust' and the 'Donors Capital Fund', operating out of a house in the suburbs of Washington DC, have bankrolled 102 think tanks and activist groups to the tune of $118m between 2002 and 2010. The conservative donors to these trusts are said to represent a wide range of opinion on the American right who have found common ground in opposing cuts to greenhouse gas emissions. They ensure their anonymity by funnelling the funds through the trusts, and the money flowed into "Washington thinktanks embedded in Republican party politics, obscure policy forums in Alaska and Tennessee, contrarian scientists at Harvard and lesser institutions, even to buy up DVDs of a film attacking Al Gore," the report said. The stream of cash was used to fund a conservative backlash against Barack Obama's environmental initiatives and to wreck any chance of Congress taking action on climate change. The money funded a vast network of thinktanks and activist groups working to redefine climate change from neutral scientific fact to a 'wedge issue' that benefits the hardcore right. Robert Brulle, a Drexel University sociologist who has researched other networks of ultra-right donors, said, "Donors Trust is just the tip of a very big iceberg."[25]
  7. In 2005, the New York Times reported that Philip Cooney, former lobbyist and "climate team leader" at the American Petroleum Institute and President George W. Bush's chief of staff of the Council on Environmental Quality, had "repeatedly edited government climate reports in ways that play down links between such emissions and global warming, according to internal documents."[44] Sharon Begley reported in Newsweek that Cooney "edited a 2002 report on climate science by sprinkling it with phrases such as 'lack of understanding' and 'considerable uncertainty.'" Cooney reportedly removed an entire section on climate in one report, whereupon an oil lobbyist sent him a fax saying "You are doing a great job."[9] Cooney announced his resignation two days after the story of his tampering with scientific reports broke,[45] but a few days later it was announced that Cooney would take up a position with ExxonMobil.[46]
  8. According to documents leaked in February, 2012, The Heartland Institute is developing a curriculum for use in schools which frames climate change as a scientific controversy
  9. pspr


    Nobody denies climate change, dipshit. The climate has been changing ever since the earth had an atmosphere.

    It's man caused climate change that is the false God. Get a clue, moron!!

    P.S. Are you going to post the entire website from Wikipedia here? :D
  10. Hey asshole. "climate change" means man made climate change. What rock have you been living under?
    #10     Jun 8, 2013