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Earth Science

97% of Climate Science Papers Agree Global Warming Is Man-made 1105

Posted by Soulskill
from the but-it-was-cold-outside-yesterday dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A meta-study published yesterday looked at over 12,000 peer-reviewed papers on climate science that appeared in journals between 1991 and 2011. The papers were evaluated and categorized by how they implicitly or explicitly endorsed humans as a contributing cause of global warming. The meta-study found that an overwhelming 97.1% of the papers that took a stance endorsed human-cause global warming. They also asked the 1,200 of the scientists involved in the research to self-evaluate their own studies, with nearly identical results. In the interest of transparency, the meta-study results were published in an open access journal, and the researchers set up a website so that anybody can check their results. From the article: '... a memo from communications strategist Frank Luntz leaked in 2002 advised Republicans, "Should the public come to believe that the scientific issues are settled, their views about global warming will change accordingly. Therefore, you need to continue to make the lack of scientific certainty a primary issue in the debate." This campaign has been successful. A 2012 poll from U.S. Pew Research Center found less than half of Americans thought scientists agreed humans were causing global warming. The media has assisted in this public misconception, with most climate stories "balanced" with a "skeptic" perspective. However, this results in making the 2–3% seem like 50%. In trying to achieve "balance," the media has actually created a very unbalanced perception of reality. As a result, people believe scientists are still split about what's causing global warming, and therefore there is not nearly enough public support or motivation to solve the problem.'"
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97% of Climate Science Papers Agree Global Warming Is Man-made

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 17, 2013 @09:23AM (#43751941)

    I am not commenting on Global warming.

    I am wondering if the bias in publications plays any role in these numbers. Any idea how hard it is to publish something that goes against standard scientific thought in any field?

  • Re:Yeah... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by GPLHost-Thomas (1330431) on Friday May 17, 2013 @09:33AM (#43752075)
    Yeah! It's like saying that 97% of priest believe in god anyway. Plus that number means nothing, it would be foolish to say that human activity has no consequence, though what matters is how much.

    Also, science isn't about democracy. More than 60% of the scientists didn't believe in the movements of continents in the 50ies, yet it is admitted now.
  • And remember folks! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by zioncat (632849) on Friday May 17, 2013 @09:34AM (#43752105)
    If you go against the consensus you are anti-science!
  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Friday May 17, 2013 @09:50AM (#43752379)
    Here's the way I see it. Scientists are like any other professionals. The ones that are doing top level research are the elites of their field. Some deniers will say that it is just everyone just covering each other when you get 97% consensus. At their level, you don't win grants and Nobel prizes by proving something everyone else has proven. You get them by discovering something no one else has found before. Scientists are arrogant and opinionated as much as your professional athlete, top notch lawyer, whatever. If you've ever attended meetings, discussions can delve into nasty fights reminiscent of British parliament debates. If 97% of them agree on something, then the science is probably sound.
  • by delt0r (999393) on Friday May 17, 2013 @10:02AM (#43752519)
    Science doesn't have a way to deal with the idea that a large number of scientist agree on something that is wrong either. As a scientist working in a different field, I assure you it is very hard to publish anything on the unpopular view point. No matter how much data you have.
  • Re:Yeah... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by smooth wombat (796938) on Friday May 17, 2013 @10:10AM (#43752619) Homepage Journal
    it would be foolish to say that human activity has no consequence, though what matters is how much.

    That has always been my opinion as well. We know the destructive capabilities we have on the environment (Love Canal, Bhopal, Agent Orange) as well as the general effects we have (heat islands around cities, depletion of water aquifers, increased desertification due to forest removal, etc), the question is, how much of what we do is causing the effects we see now? Is everything our fault, is this part of a natural cycle, or some combination thereof?

    What's funny is we routinely see news articles where farmers are talked to and almost without exception they all say climate change is real and if you don't believe it, ask a farmer. Considering the conservative nature of most farmers, one would highly doubt they would be saying such things if they didn't believe it.
  • Appeal to belief (Score:2, Interesting)

    by MacDork (560499) on Friday May 17, 2013 @10:44AM (#43753183) Journal

    Thank you. Also known as appeal to belief. [nizkor.org] 98% of Americans believe in God. [gallup.com] Therefore, God must exist.

    Now, let's all play 'Call me a denier for asking a question.' (AKA Appeal to ridicule [nizkor.com]) Let's assume for a moment that a rise in atmospheric CO2 is attributable to man. Let's assume our current atmospheric CO2 is close to 400ppm. If 400ppm CO2 is causing global warming, then can someone please explain to me how the Earth's climate was cooler during the late Ordovician period [geocraft.com] when CO2 was about 4400ppm?

  • Re:Yeah... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday May 17, 2013 @11:17AM (#43753659)

    Yeah! It's like saying that 97% of priest believe in god anyway.

    This just reveals your wooly thinking. TFA doesn't say "97% of scientists believe in AGW". It's 97% of scientific papers. i.e. 97% of the ways of examining the question scientifically resulted in a conclusion that AGW is real. Scientific method, not belief.

    The only believers in this are the deniers. People who's belief outweighs even the most overwhelming weight of scientific evidence.

  • Re:Yeah... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rainmouse (1784278) on Friday May 17, 2013 @11:33AM (#43753909)
    I'm simply staggered by the number of nay-sayers posting here and being modded up to +5 who are doing little more than desperately grasping at straws while denying the staggering array evidence in the world around them. Ignoring such overwhelming proof isn't even a matter of blind faith, its just willful ignorance sponsored by parties with a massive financial interest in staving off the inevitable as long as profitably possible.
  • by macbeth66 (204889) on Friday May 17, 2013 @11:35AM (#43753937)

    Not if the author has actual data. Authors who go against a known field of study that don't actually have good data risk their careers, as they should.

    And if the data goes against dogma, it is called into question. Something was not done correctly or quite often, the researcher is accused of fabricating the results. I've seen this way too often in Medical, Psychological and Physics research. Granted, these were papers close to thirty and plus years ago, but I suspect things have only gotten worse in this regard, not better.

  • Re:Yeah... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Immerman (2627577) on Friday May 17, 2013 @01:49PM (#43755681)

    How exactly is the fact that we may be entering a solar minima comforting? That simply means that for a short time things will be warming much more slowly than they would be otherwise. If we were actually doing something about the underlying problem that would be great, it buys us a little extra time to get things under control before runaway positive feedback loops profoundly alter the planetary ecology.

    As it is though it simply masks the reality a bit, making it easier for people like you to shout "see, the warming isn't so bad!" and encourage business as usual to continue to pump CO2 into the atmosphere at an ever increasing rate. Then in a few years when the sun's output returns to normal levels there will be a massive surge in warming rates, and we will have lost another decade of opportunity to get this problem under control. And frankly we're already working on borrowed time - if we wanted to prevent drastic planetary changes we needed to have gotten serious about reducing CO2 emmissions several decades ago, at this point th best we can hope for is just to limit catastrophic changes, and people like you aren't helping.

  • by dublin (31215) on Friday May 17, 2013 @02:20PM (#43755999) Homepage

    Except it's not 97%, read the actual paper instead of the summary. And the others are producing evidence [masterresource.org], and aren't on the payroll of major financial interests.
    Other than that, it's just like what you said.

    The "science" behind this ridiculous "97% of all non-corrupt, progressive scientists agree" paper is even worse than the "science" arguing for AGW in the first place:

    Note this excerpt from Anthony Wattts' blog on Cook's more-than-a-little-suspect claims [wattsupwiththat.com]:

    Now, Cook has upped the ante, allowing the average person to help participate in the lie and make it their own, as Brandon Schollenberger observes, Cook has launched a new “Consensus project” to make even more certain the public gets his message:

            The guidelines for rating [the] abstracts show only the highest rating value blames the majority of global warming on humans. No other rating says how much humans contribute to global warming. The only time an abstract is rated as saying how much humans contribute to global warming is if it mentions:

            that human activity is a dominant influence or has caused most of recent climate change (>50%).

          If we use the system’s search feature for abstracts that meet this requirement, we get 65 results. That is 65, out of the 12,000+ examined abstracts. Not only is that value incredibly small, it is smaller than another value listed in the paper:

            Reject AGW 0.7% (78)

            Remembering AGW stands for anthropogenic global warming, or global warming caused by humans, take a minute to let that sink in. This study done by John Cook and others, praised by the President of the United States, found more scientific publications whose abstracts reject global warming than say humans are primarily to blame for it.

    It’s gobsmacking. But, I see this as a good thing, because like the lies of presidential politics, eventually this will all come tumbling down.

    (Emphasis added by /. poster)

  • Re:Yeah... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by vux984 (928602) on Friday May 17, 2013 @03:15PM (#43756731)

    You do realize medicare/medicaide is more expensive than private insurance, don't you?

    Are you living under a rock?

    Canada, UK, and other 'socialized medicine countries" pay less per capita for healthcare than American's do.

    Sure, you may not pay for it up front when visiting the doctor or paying for your drugs, but you do pay for it in taxes, along with everyone else.

    Yes, and it still costs less.

    American's pay more per capita and more as a percentage of GDP, than any country with socialized medicine.

    It baffles me that anyone would argue for privatized health care. Unless you are the 1% private healthcare its not "better" healthcare. Its not cheaper healthcare for society as a whole.

    I really don't object to the 1% wanting to spend their money on private health care (because they aren't really buying "insurance" they are just buying the healthcare they need directly, as needed, when needed -- they are "self insured"). I can see why they want that, and if I was in their position I'd want it to. Its their money, and they can decide how little or how much of it they want to spend on their healthcare.

    But I can't figure out why the other 99% wants private for profit insurance companies managing their healthcare, when it just costs them more and provides them less. Its counter to their own interests.

  • by cheater512 (783349) <nick@nickstallman.net> on Friday May 17, 2013 @03:56PM (#43757281) Homepage

    a) Its not possible to have a negative proof. Case in point, prove that I don't own a invisible pink unicorn.
    Its not actually possible.

    b) This study shows consensus however that still doesn't mean anything in science.
    There isn't a hypothesis that 97% of scientists agree on, it is purely American Idol style popularity contest of the idea.

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