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23 December, 2010

Climate Skeptics Are Like Creationists

Some people might say that climate skeptics are simply taking the same position as atheists: they hear a claim and reject it until sufficient evidence shows the claim is substantial. The problem here is that their analogy is flawed. An atheist waits for evidence of God that goes outside of simple coincidence and anecdotal stories of people recovering well after receiving care from doctors. The simple fact is that observable and measurable evidence never comes. Theists themselves claim that God can't be measured, therefore the proof must be philosophical or circumstantial.

Climate scientists make no such claims about Climate Change/Global Warming. They don't reduce the argument to philosophy and circumstance, they actually measure the temperatures of the different layers of the atmosphere and observe and record weather patterns and activities. It's absurd to try to confound theology with climatology.

There's simply no reason to think that thousands of scientists are lying or mistaken about what they have seen in study after study. It is the skeptics themselves that are the most like the theists (and most likely to be theists themselves by demographic). The people making claims against the scientists are not actually climate scientists themselves. In fact, in research for a paper I wrote, I found that one of the most outspoken critics of the IPCC report was being paid by Exxon Mobil. Another received over $200,000 from coal companies. Neither had a background in climatology.

I discovered a site in my research by climate scientists from all over the world that started a blog to inform people about climate change and explain the data in somewhat layman's terms (which means that you won't pick up the info straight out of high school and some terms you'll have to google or look in the archives for, but you don't have to have a degree in climatology to follow their posts). It's called realclimate.org and they have a great, easy to navigate site with links to common questions and common rebuttals by climate skeptics. They also link to other websites that address skeptics.

I found this link particularly interesting as it has a lot of the questions the so-called liberal news media picks up and runs with on a regular basis, such as This is just a natural cycle and It's cold today, so they must be wrong. And for more info, many of these sites point to NOAA and NASA for information about the Earth's mean temperature. Could these guys really be so wrong about this? These are the same people that sent us to the moon. Anyone holding to the claims of the climate skeptics with so much evidence out there is clearly the kind of person that could hold onto a delusion despite all evidence. It's a dogmatic position and the position of the atheist is from neutrality. They are worlds apart. The skeptics are more closely related to the Creationists who repeatedly deny fossil and DNA evidence for the evolution of biological organisms. The analogy is broken.

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