Mailbag: Climate science open to debate

Mailbag: Climate science open to debate


Mr. Lawson (Mailbag, March 3) claimed we should blindly accept his definition of climate expert and fallaciously said that I “cherry-picked misinformation from political pundits without physical science experience.“ Criticism is the backbone of the scientific method, which is derailed by such broad dismissal of differing opinions, showing naked partisanship. As a former director of the largest U.S. environmental consulting firm, I know when the science is far from settled, having read work from hundreds of qualified researchers with viewpoint diversity.

After reading more than a hundred articles with viewpoint diversity, questions remain.

Climate has changed through millennia, and we’re in a 300-plus-year warming trend since the Little Ice Age. The current warming trend is not unprecedented, as it was warmer during the Medieval and Roman Warm Periods, which happened well before fossil fuel. These periods were caused by natural effects, which continue today.

CO2 may be one of many causes of global warming, but its anthropogenic portion is only 4%, with no proof that these molecules have greater greenhouse effect than the 96% of natural origin.

We’re asked to believe that anthropogenic CO2 has relegated natural climate causes, such as earth’s orbital wobble, solar irradiation and the hydrologic cycle, to irrelevance.

Global average temperature failed to rise significantly during “The Pause" (1998-2016), despite a record increase in CO2 emissions. Climate model predictions of a 1 degree Fahrenheit rise were wrong, disrupting the theory that CO2 drives climate and exposing model flaws.

The science is not settled, nor is there any consensus.

Greg Peterson, PE



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