Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Is the debate on climate change international?

By Joe Munoz

     Many skeptical parties in the united states and abroad might be cited for their part in the “harassment” of climate scientists. Clearly, this is illustrated by the voracity of the debate solely in the United States, fueled by the bi-partizan nature of legislature. Scientific groups claim that these hostilities are derived from two primary sources: (1) debilitating amounts of Freedom of Information requests and (2) online and legislative assaults, funded by special interest groups.

     A report from the Checks and Balances Project in December 12, 2012 investigated contributions to various special interest groups in regards to climate change discussion contributions. A summary of the findings illustrates that of the massive amount of contributions, fossil fuel groups are mentioned without explicitly naming themselves or their motivations in over 95% of occurrences. Journalists have claimed that this anonymity is descriptive of the negative effects on legislature and public opinion that corporate interests may elicit.

     Interestingly, even foreign climate scientists have remarked on the original nature of hostility unique towards their American counterparts. "I feel for my American colleagues and what they've had to deal with," said Tim Lenton, in an excerpt from a climate news article. Tim Lenton is a prominent earth system scientist who specializes in climate tipping points at the University of Exeter in the UK, continues on to claim that he received hostile dissent to a much lesser degree.


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