Tuesday, January 31, 2012

It's Getting Hot In Here...

I do not think you could find a sane person at this point, who would question some of the largest environmental disasters our species brought upon this fragile planet: DDT in the 60s, acid rain in the 70s, ozone depletion in the 80s and finally anthropomorphic global warming in the late 90s and 2000s. All of them except the last one (as of today) were averted to some extend by a joint cooperation of many nations and all of as together.

The crazy thing is that while all of those issues had gone through a period of scientific uncertainty (as they should, given the proper scientific process), they also encountered a stiff opposition from denialists, usually associated with some political option. This denial went on for years, against well established scientific facts, studies and despite an overwhelming consensus from the experts in each field of study.
The methods and strategies used by such denialists have not changed for years and can be clearly seen in today's debate on the anthropomorphic global warming.

There is a number of reasons why I'm writing about this topic:

1. Wall Street Journal had a terrible article called "No Need to Panic About Global Warming", which, instead of using science to back up its claims (true or not), used a version of Godwin's Law, and invoked discredited Stalin's scientist Lysenko to drive its point, which can be otherwise refuted in a few easy steps (and, as a matter of fact has been: here, here, and here, to link to just a few of them, not to mention the letter signed by 255 National Academy of Science members).

2. National Center for Science Education (NCSE), a long time defender of quality evolution science education in the US schools, branched out and decided to use its resources on climate science as well. This move comes as no surprise, as both "controversies" keep showing up in our school systems and are driven by mostly beliefs and not real science, which is pretty much settled in both cases.

3. By pure coincidence I just finished reading "Merchants of Doubt", which connects the dots and shows pretty clearly how science has been covered up and muddled for political and financial reasons for many years, starting in the early 1950s with the tobacco industry's fight to cover up effects of smoking, to the present day with a fight to ensure that people are kept in the dark about the anthropomorphic global warming.

The science is in, the verdict has been reached, multiple studies and 99% of scientist around the world have said the same thing: our planet will be a very different place to live for our children, if we don't take action now. There is nobody else, who can fix it for us.