To the Editor:
Bill Hamilton’s July 5 column on global warming begs for a reply. He reports that President Obama said that “97 percent of the world’s scientists believe in man-made global warming.” He sarcastically suggests that Obama’s speech writers “must have gotten that 97-percent figure from the professors of the soft sciences,” which Hamilton says includes “sciences” like art and dance. Several polls in recent years quote a 97-percent figure, but it is only for climate scientists, who agree that climate-warming trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities.
Hamilton references the Global Warming Petition Project, in which some 31,000 scientists said “they could see no evidence of human-made global climate change.” The actual statements in the petition were a bit more extreme: For example, “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere”. The petition signers included 9,000 Ph.D’s, but only 39 of the signers had a background in climatology. The 31,000 signers represent a tiny fraction of the 10 million people in the U.S. with at least a B.S. degree. Many articles have been written debunking the Petition Project, but our columnist must have overlooked those.
Like Rush Limbaugh and his ilk, Hamilton seems to take any opportunity to belittle our current President and anyone else stamped with the Democratic or liberal label. His “Central View” columns certainly can’t be confused with anything like middle-of-the-road political thought. But it would be nice if his “facts” were a little less misleading.