Hansen Concedes Skeptics Winning Public Debate

Hansen Concedes Skeptics Winning Public Debate
October 11, 2011

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is senior fellow for environment and energy policy at The Heartland Institute, and... (read full bio)

Prominent global warming alarmist and NASA official James Hansen is acknowledging in the UK Independent that skeptics are winning the public opinion battle on global warming. Hansen claims the science is continually getting clearer that humans are causing a global warming crisis, but the public is nevertheless being duped by communications professionals employed by skeptics.

"They have been winning the argument for several years, even though the science has become clearer," said Hansen.

"There's been a very strong campaign by those who want to continue fossil fuel 'business as usual', and the scientific story has not been powerful enough to offset that push," Hansen argued.

According to the Independent, "Part of the problem, he said, was that the climate sceptic lobby employed communications professionals, whereas 'scientists are just barely competent at communicating with the public and don't have the wherewithal to do it.'"

Said Hansen, "a gap has opened between what is understood about global warming by the relevant scientific community, and what's known by the people who need to know – and that's the public. However there's nothing that has happened to reduce our scientific conclusion that we are pushing the system into very dangerous territory, in fact that conclusion has become stronger over that same time period."

Or maybe the public simply recognizes that temperatures are not rising nearly as rapidly as predicted by IPCC computer models.

James M. Taylor

James M. Taylor is senior fellow for environment and energy policy at The Heartland Institute, and... (read full bio)