In 2012 sixteen notable scientists published an opinion piece claiming that there is \”no need to panic about global warming\” and \”there\’s no compelling scientific argument for drastic action to \’decarbonize\’ the world\’s economy\” (Allegre et al., 2012).
Read the Case study, which is below, and answer the questions that will be provided below.
Case 1.4: Getting Warmer?
In 2012 sixteen notable scientists published an opinion piece claiming that there is \”no need to panic about global warming\” and \”there\’s no compelling scientific argument for drastic action to \’decarbonize\’ the world\’s economy\” (Allegre et al., 2012). This flew in the face of conventional wisdom and many scientific articles to the contrary (see Lavell, 2008; Farnsworth & Lichter, 2011; Oreskes, 2004). The sixteen scientists were widely representative academically (MIT, Princeton University, Cambridge University, and the University of Paris), professionally (American Physical Society, The National Academy of Engineering, The National Academy of Sciences, and the World Federation of Scientists), and globally (United States, Europe, The Middle East, and Australia). Since the mid-twentieth century there was growing public consensus of experts and nonexperts that anthropogenic (human-caused) climate change was real and dangerous. The American Physical Society had recently summed up the position thus: \”\’The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth\’s physical and ecological systems, social systems, security, and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now\” (Allegre et al., 2012). Allegre et al. (2012), including Roger Cohen, a fellow of the American Physical Society, deny that such evidence is incontrovertible and argue that the evidence suggests the contrary: The earth is not getting warmer and carbon dioxide, a major greenhouse gas, is not a pollutant. They suggest that a major reason for denying this is financial: \”alarmism over climate is of great benefit to many, providing government funding for academic research and a reason for government bureaucracies to grow. Alarmism also offers an excuse for governments to raise taxes, taxpayer-funded subsidies for businesses that understand how to work the political system, and a lure for big donations to charitable foundations promising to save the planet.\”
Moreover, Allegre et al. (2012) claim that it would make better economic sense to remove greenhouse gas controls, especially for \”the less-developed parts of the world that would like to share some of the same advantages of material well-being, health and life expectancy that the fully developed parts of the world enjoy now.\” While this might lead to increased carbon monoxide and \”modest warming,\” Allegre et al. (2012) believe this \”will be an overall benefit to the planet.\”