Viewpoint: Have an open mind on global warmingGlobal warming aficionados typically claim that an overwhelming number of scientists think that climate change is human induced, raising the specter of rising sea levels, widespread droughts and other assorted disasters.
By: Thomas St. Martin, Viewpoint Writer, Woodbury Bulletin
Global warming aficionados typically claim that an overwhelming number of scientists think that climate change is human induced, raising the specter of rising sea levels, widespread droughts and other assorted disasters.
Those who hold such views might be surprised, then, to learn that 31,000 atmospheric scientists, climatologists, earth scientists, environmentalists and others — 9,000 of whom hold Ph D.’s and 337 of whom are from Minnesota — have signed a petition rejecting the assumption that human production of greenhouse gases is damaging the earth’s climate.
The signers contend that “there is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of CO2, methane or other greenhouse gases is causing or will... cause catastrophic heating of the earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the earth’s climate... moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric CO2 may [have] many beneficial effects...”
The petition further states that the late Prof. Frederick Seitz, past president of the U.S. Academy of Sciences...[once] wrote a letter stating that the United States [was] very close to adopting an international agreement [the Kyoto Treaty] that “would ration use of energy and of technologies that depend on coal, oil... This treaty... is based on flawed ideas....”
Assertions such as these will no doubt be dismissed by global warming alarmists as the views of right wing kooks or the shills of Big Oil (or Big Something).
I think, however, that they are views to be taken seriously.
Petitions, no matter how numerous the signatories do not, of course, prove anything: truth, whether scientific or otherwise is not determined by counting noses.
Yet, a petition signed by such a large number of credentialed individuals does strongly suggest that the global warming debate is, in fact, far from closed: that it is, rather, a controversy to be approached with an open and critical mind.
St. Martin is a resident of Woodbury.