To the Editor:
I would like an opportunity to reply to the “No Deal” letter in the April 11 edition of the Islander which describes my Feb. 28 letter supporting the Green New Deal as “screaming ‘Fire!’ in a crowded theatre.”
I’m not the one sounding the alarm about the necessity to make massive greenhouse gas cuts by 2030. That’s the IPCC, the world’s most pre-eminent scientific authority on climate science (phy.org), comprised of thousands of atmospheric scientists, climate modelers, oceanographers, ice specialists, economists and public health experts, drawn from the world’s best universities and research institutes. They work on a volunteer basis and the IPCC speaks for every National Academy of Sciences in the world, including ours, and every accredited scientific agency around the world.
The writer of “No Deal” apparently does not even know the difference between the IPCC and the U.S. Climate Assessment reports, the primary authorities I cited in my letter, repeatedly conflating the two by referring to “The IPCC U.S. Climate Assessment.”
The “No Deal” letter makes a number of patently false claims, using as its sole authority on climate science a non-scientist, Don Dears, who received a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the Merchant Marine Academy in 1952, worked as a GE executive and later led an organization that serviced refineries, oil drilling and production facilities and open pit and underground mining operations. Now in his 80s, Dears has become a professional climate change denier, and like all professional climate change deniers, he is clandestinely paid by this country’s largest fossil fuel corporations for his services.
Dears is affiliated with the Heartland Institute which launders the money that comes from the Koch brothers and ExxonMobil and goes to Heartland’s “climate experts” like Dears (desmogblog.org one of TIME’s Top Ten Blogs). Dears is also affiliated with the Cato Institute, which was founded by and is funded by the Koch brothers, and the George C. Marshall Institute, which was founded and funded by ExxonMobil.
You can learn more about the fossil fuel industry’s decades long, secretly funded $2 billion climate change denial operation at Scientific American online, “Dark Money” and “How to Make Friends and Bamboozle People About Climate Change” and the Union of Concerned Scientists’ website, “Climate Deception Dossiers.”
This newspaper’s decision to give equal time to letters which misinform and mislead the public about a life-and-death issue like global warming is irresponsible in the extreme. I doubt your editors would publish letters from anti-vaxers. It is people like the writer of “No Deal” who have put us in the position where we now find ourselves, with just a decade left to prevent runaway global warming which could destroy not only our economy, but our civilization (National Academy of Sciences).
By presenting a false equivalency between thousands of the world’s best climate scientists and one totally unqualified person with no background in science, much less climate science, you give your readers the false impression that there is some kind of “debate” or question about whether excess CO2 emissions from the burning of fossil fuels are the primary cause for our current global warming.
Every scientific body of national or international standing says that the idea that excess CO2 does not cause global warming is dead wrong. We perpetuate the falsehood that there is any question about this at our peril.