15 September 2009

Are You a Climate Skeptic?!

Further evidence that climate science is deeply troubled. In a conversation on the difficulties of sustaining intensity of public opinion on climate policy, I cited the Knight et al. BAMS piece in conversation last night in a small group of professional colleagues, mentioning that it said that global temperatures had not increased in a decade, and that this sort of thing worked against sustaining intense public support. It seemed like a fairly obvious point, and uncontroversial.

However, one colleague, a scientist working at the climate science-policy interface who I met for the first time this week, looked at me incredulously when I mentioned the 10-year period of no warming and asked, "What are you a climate skeptic?!"

I said, "No I'm not, I'm just citing a paper in BAMS I saw today."

He accused, "You said ten years; That is selective."

I replied, "Well, that is just what the paper says. I'm just explaining what it said."

He again accused, "No, you said 10 years!"

Um, OK.

When stating facts reported in peer reviewed journals that are in articles justifying continued concern about warming results in being called a "climate skeptic" by a colleague, then you know that the community has some deep issues.