Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I see you pitched into the thread where this idea was floated for the first time here...

A swedish kind of death:


Is it just my impression or are physicists common among climate change opponents?

I have a theory about that. I would today consider physics to be the science with the highest prestige among sciences. I think it is that way because of physics big funding, stemming from a close relationsship with big government and big industry. Physics gives guns and toys. The problem with climate change (from a physicist perspective) is the lack of solutions involving big piles of money to physics reserach. Hence the denial.

The alternative solution is to claim that it is an astronomical effect, where the sun is causing increased heat (nevermind that pouring out ghg should have some effect), because that would get astrophysics institutions more money.

Now, I am not saying that individual physicists are trying to shut down a theory that would hurt them. It is probably not that easy. It is more that a theory that hurt physics (as an institution) gets disliked among physicists and therefore a greater number of physicists then people in general becomes climate change deniers. Add the credibility of physics in general and you get prominent climate change deniers.


Re: Physicists

Eeer... When did climate modeling cease being physics?

The physicists among the AGW denialists probably have higher profiles than the rank-and-file (for much the same reasons that creationist engineers and doctors get more press than creationist pastors), but I very much doubt that scientists of any stripe are over-represented in the denialist community.

There does seem to be a small number of astrophysicists who are sufficiently enamored of the solar-forcing theory that they seem like AGW denialists, but I would not be surprised to find out that the newsies and politicians who reference them exaggerate their claims.

- Jake

"While the truth is always revolutionary, the revolutionary is not always true." - Proverb

BTW, JS, are you at NBI?

We have met the enemy, and it is us — Pogo
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 17th, 2007 at 01:53:01 PM EST
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