10 December 2004

More high-level consensus

In Beyond the Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change, Science magazine confronts various members of the government and elsehwere who suggest that there might be substantive disagreement in the scientific community about the reality of anthropogenic climate change and unequivocally states that [t]his is not the case. They emphasize that all major scientific bodies in the United States whose members' expertise bears directly on the matter agree including the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the American Meteorological Society, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

The 928 papers were divided into six categories: explicit endorsement of the consensus position, evaluation of impacts, mitigation proposals, methods, paleoclimate analysis, and rejection of the consensus position. Of all the papers, 75% fell into the first three categories, either explicitly or implicitly accepting the consensus view; 25% dealt with methods or paleoclimate, taking no position on current anthropogenic climate change. Remarkably, none of the papers disagreed with the consensus position.

Is this some blindly-held belief that has gotten a foothold in the societies of Amerian science? Is this the only example? Non-scientific attacks on other scientific "theories" include the obvious creationist and Intelligent Design blather which are also summarily rejected by scientists yet believed by many. At what point does this become accepted?

[ via /. -> Science magazine ]

[ posted by sstrader on 10 December 2004 at 11:38:03 AM in Science & Technology ]