wrdeer

Climate change deniers out to dupe the public

In Uncategorized on December 8, 2009 at 5:30 pm
Interesting  article in the guardian covering the reaction to the climate email crisis and the  tactics those supporting the climate change denial movement are willing to use to spread disinformation.

 The denial industry, which has no interest in establishing the truth about global warming, insists that these emails, which concern three or four scientists and just one or two lines of evidence, destroy the entire canon of climate science.

 

Even if you were to exclude every line of evidence that could possibly be disputed – the proxy records, the computer models, the complex science of clouds and ocean currents – the evidence for man-made global warming would still be unequivocal. You can see it in the measured temperature record, which goes back to 1850; in the shrinkage of glaciers and the thinning of sea ice; in the responses of wild animals and plants and the rapidly changing crop zones.

 

No other explanation for these shifts makes sense. Solar cycles have been out of synch with the temperature record for 40 years. The Milankovic cycle, which describes variations in the Earth's orbit, doesn't explain it either. But the warming trend is closely correlated with the accumulation of heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere. The impact of these gases can be demonstrated in the laboratory. To assert that they do not have the same effect in the atmosphere, a novel and radical theory would be required. No such theory exists. The science is not fixed – no science ever is – but it is as firm as science can be. The evidence for man-made global warming remains as strong as the evidence linking smoking to lung cancer or HIV to Aids.

And an exert below from the supporting notes.

1 The public persuasion campaign

 

In 1991 the Western Fuels Association, National Coal Association and Edison Electric Institute set up a group called the Information Council for the Environment (Ice). Its founding documents were leaked. The text has been made available online by the scientist Naomi Oreskes. The strategy was spelt out in a document produced by the Western Fuels Association: to "reposition global warming as theory (not fact)".

 

Ice was given $510,000 to test its messages in key markets, all of which happened to be the homes of members of the energy and commerce or ways and means committees of the US House of Representatives. The purpose was to "demonstrate that a consumer-based media awareness program can positively change the opinions of a selected population regarding the validity of global warming." If it worked, Ice would "implement program nationwide".

 

It identified "two possible target audiences": "Target 1: Older, less educated males". These people, Ice said, would be receptive to "messages describing the motivations and vested interests of people currently making pronouncements on global warming – for example, the statement that some members of the media scare the public about global warming to increase their audience and their influence … "

 

"Target 2: younger, lower-income women" … "These women are more receptive … to factual information concerning the evidence for global warming. They are likely to be "green" consumers, believe the earth is warming, and to think the problem is serious. However, they are also likely to soften their support for federal legislation after hearing new information …"

 

Ice discovered that "members of the public feel more confident expressing opinions on others' motivations and tactics than they do expressing opinions of scientific issues." Here are some of the messages it tested:

 

"Some say the earth is warming. Some also said the earth was flat."

 

"Who told you the earth was warming … Chicken Little?"

 

"How much are you willing to pay to solve a problem that may not exist?"*

 

These messages must have worked, because they were later used by Ice in a wider media campaign.

Posted via email from wrdeer

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