I have become embroiled in researching a column on climate alarmism and skepticism. Embroiled is the right word. It’s a mess of scientific controversy, academic mugging, and reputation-slurring.
In the process I have become much more skeptical myself as to the claims from all sides (though I am far more skeptical of government-backed “alarmists” such as as found in the UN’s IPCC reports, than of “skeptics” who attack them)
I have been reading passionate books on both the alarmist case , and on the skeptical case.
The best recent alarmist book is by Joseph Romm, Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know. It is very well done and easy to read. You may be able to download the book here:
The skeptical position is well-outlined in a publication by The Heartland Institute. It is also well done and very clear. During the last IPCC conference, Heartland ran an alternative conference down the street for its 700 member-scientists. This ought to indicate a healthy climate of debate, but I fear the two sides are just experiencing a hardening of the attitudes rather than working out their differences.
You can get this important dissenting study on the site below. Just go to the homepage and click “Download” to get a free pdf copy.
For those too busy to read the whole thing, there is a three-page executive summary that will shock most people who have swallowed the alarmist story whole.
In my upcoming column I intend to look at both sides, but mostly to ask the questions any reasonable citizen might want to ask.