Monday, September 25, 2006

Public challenging global warming skeptics

It's good to see people challenging the global warming skeptics that make it to the Letter pages of my Sydney Morning Herald:

:::[SMH Letters to the Editor, 23/9/2006]

A role for sceptics

Pat Sheil's article, "Earth frying by the seat of its pants" (September 21), exemplifies the orthodoxy and fervour of those who urge action to prevent global warming.

There is no acknowledgment that back in the 1970s most climatologists were predicting exactly the opposite: a forthcoming ice age. Are they just crying wolf again?

Worse, why are scientists so eager to dismiss sceptics? Sheil says, "These people can be ignored. The data is solid."

This is an appeal to prejudice, not the language of science. I prefer to go with Albert Einstein who said, "Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth."

Paul Roberts Lake Cathie

In response to Allan Lehepuu (Letters, September 22), dried-up rivers are not prime evidence for or against global warming. Funnily enough, the prime evidence is the warming of our globe: temperatures are rising at a far greater rate than at any time in history.

Luke Egan Ermington

:::[SMH Letters to the Editor 24/09/2006]

Heat causes brain drain

Paul Roberts (Letters, September 23-24) laments the loss of voice for sceptics in the global warming debate. This could not be further from the truth.

Indeed, all good scientists are sceptics. However, when research provides an overwhelming body of evidence a consensus starts to form. Like the dangers of smoking and exposure to asbestos, the role of human activity in changing our climate is accepted by the vast majority of those who know the most about the subject. To remain in denial is to ignore the combined knowledge and experience of the scientific community. I'm sure Einstein would agree, it's great to have an open mind, but not so open as to let your brain fall out.

Eamon Grattan-Smith Avalon

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