Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Two MIT Scientist's Differing Views On Global Warming.

The Reference Frame brought my attenition to a story in The Boston Globe about two MIT scientists who were once friends and now at bitter odds over the global warming debate. I will post both their interviews below.

Don't Be Confused: I very much believe the data overwhelmingly supports the idea global warming is happening and very much influenced by humans.  However, for whatever reason there are still some prominent scientists who are not entirely convinced.  To be fair, I want to post responses by both sides.

Also, before one thinks this proves scientists disagree, just know the "nonbelievers" are so few in number that they are beginning to look like crackpots.

Feel free to debate this if you feel necessary.

Why you should worry:

Why you should not worry:


  1. Thanks for the informative post.

    I believe that the earth is warming, but I am not convinced that mankind is driving the warming. Even if our CO2 emissions are contributing to warming, I am inclined to believe that natural forces carry much more sway. I think nature is driving the warming.

    If natural forces dictated that the world is to enter into a dramatic cooling phase next year, all the manmade CO2 emissions in the world will likely not stop the next ice age from happening.

    I wish that our focus would be turned toward preventing pollution. I can get on board with cleaning the air in Salt Lake County. I cannot get on board with crap & trade legislation in the name of preventing global warming. Ciao!

  2. "I wish that our focus would be turned toward preventing pollution."

    I'm of the opinion that whether you believe global warming is manmade problem we should worry about or not, I believe we should all want to pollute less.

    Now we need to develop cost effective and convenient technology/ways to encourage companies to do the same. I feel only the development of new clean and cheap technology will solve these problems. I'm not convinced legislation will do nearly as well.

  3. The fact that CO2 has a green house effect coupled with the fact that we are emitting huge amounts of CO2 that has been sequestered in the earth's crust since the carboniferous period 360 million years ago should alone *predict* human caused global warming. Add that to the obvious signs of receding glaciers and polar ice, the documented effect on sensitive species etc... and I think this is a no brainer.
    The prospect of adversely affecting our economy, raising taxes and other negative economic effects is what makes people skeptical. Really, if there were no economic effects people would be all over limits on CO2 emissions. Instead they acknowledge a little bit of warming but nothing serious or unnatural.

  4. Stan,

    " Really, if there were no economic effects people would be all over limits on CO2 emissions."

    Well said! I think you hit the nail exactly on the head.

    I think economics is the *main* motivation for many people to be critical of global warming. As the phrase goes: "It's the economy stupid!"

  5. I agree that economics is a big consideration. Why support the expensive Kyoto Treaty, if it doesn't significantly reduce climate change?

    Until we can find some sane, cost effective methods of limiting CO2 that gives us a decent ROI, can we focus on things we can change right now?

    Besides, past global warm periods have actually been very helpful to mankind and many other species. Many fear the demise of the polar bear, but there are thousands more today than there were 50 years ago. And bears have proven themselves to be extremely adaptable over the eons.

  6. Global warming could be worse if human beings were not pumping oil and gas (and these were going naturally out), their action is a minimum participating to global warming but in fact the balance of it could be positive (decreasing the warming) and even more with polluting less, but this is not too much bad.


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