. . . .
Oh, right. There isn't one.
There is no good argument against global warming. In all the brouhaha about tiny errors recently found in the massive IPCC report, the posturing by global climate deniers, including some elected officials, leaked emails, and media reports, here is one fact that seems to have been overlooked:
Those who deny that humans are causing unprecedented climate change have never, ever produced an alternative scientific argument that comes close to explaining the evidence we see around the world that the climate is changing.
He also points out the problems caused because scientists follow scientific principles but denialists are held to an asymmetrical standard where they can simply say "no, no, no" without having to offer any ideas that explain what is being observed.Â Scientists do science, denialists argue policy.Â Another problem is the media who in the (stated) attempt to "balance" (but really to create controversy, which creates ratings, which creates ad revenues) effectively put the entire body of science up against the guy standing on the park bench yelling "Elvis Lives" as if their veracity should be accepted on an equal basis.
Gleick also offers this:
Here is the second best argument used by deniers against global warming, (but edited for children) from a message received by a colleague of mine:
"Mr. xxx, this is John Q. Public out here. Perhaps you don't understand there's no such thing as man-made global warming. I don't care if you call it f!@%$#%@ing climate change, I don't f!@%$#%@ing care what you call it. The same thing you communists tried in the 1970s. I've got a f!@%$#%@ing 75 articles from Newsweek Magazine stating we were making the earth freeze to death and we would have to melt the f!@%$#%@ing ice caps to save the earth. You, sir, and your colleagues, are progressive communists attempting to destroy America...Your f!@%$#%@ing agenda-driven, money-f!@%$#%@ing grabbing paws and understand there's no such thing as global warming, you f!@%$#%@ing idiot and your f!@%$#%@ing colleagues."
Nice, eh? Unfortunately, lots of climate scientists get emails and other messages like this. Note the careful reasoning? The persuasive and logical nature of the debate? The reference to the best scientific evidence from 1970 Newsweek magazines? Very compelling arguments, yes?
Note that this article is now located in a group called "Exposing Climate Denialism - A Guide to Tactics and Tall Tales," located at climatelies.gather.com.Â Please join the group and set settings to receive new articles when they are posted.Â The group also includes an archive of past pasts.