8 June 2011

The Great American Disconnect

Posted by Dan Satterfield

Awhile back, I did a short post about the greatest scientific myth in America. The myth is that scientists are divided about whether or not climate change is happening. As I said in the previous post, this is just not true.

Peer reviewed studies (see here and here)  have shown consistently that about 97.5% of active scientists working ion the field agree that the planet is warming. They agree that the warming is almost entirely to rising greenhouse gases and you see almost nothing disputing this in the peer reviewed literature. A list of the world’s scientific bodies that agree is available on WIKI here.

A new survey by Anthony Leiserowitz  and Ed Maibach at the George Mason University Center for Climate Change Communication (and others at Yale Univ.) confirms just how ingrained this myth is in America. You can read the entire report by clicking on the image at the right and it is well worthwhile.

Now, take a look at the survey questions below. The questions asked were what the average American believed that scientists thought about the issue. Only 13% of those polled got the correct answer!

The next time someone tells you they don’t believe in climate change, ask them what they know that the world’s scientific experts on the issue do not. What we do about the problem is a policy question, but the existence of the problem is a scientific question and one that has been answered.