I received this polite email about climate change yesterday.
I have been a regular reader of your blog for a number of years, and while your attitude can be at times combative, I appreciate the straight-up, “no bullshit” approach you take to both your content and your readers, and your emphasis on facts over rhetoric is refreshing, particularly in an environment where many of your peers in the information industry cannot be relied on to get things right. Unfortunately, there’s one subject on which I feel you have failed to meet your own high standards. That subject is climate change.
I have no doubt that your position on climate change was based on what you believed to be legitimate information at the time you formed your current views, but I do think that it’s an area you have neglected to look at again after making up your mind, and continuing to promote this position without ensuring that it can be reconciled with the actual state of the planet is doing both yourself and your readers a disservice. Every time you publish a post along the lines of “colder than average / coldest event ever, therefore global warming is a con”, you’re ignoring the fact that climate change / global warming on a planetary scale doesn’t mean that every part of the planet is warmer 100% of the time, nor that the warming of Earth’s climate as a whole can actually cause cooling in some areas. You’re also ignoring a very large body of evidence that the planet is in fact warming considerably.
I would like to respectfully ask that you take another look at this issue, openly, and from a neutral perspective. If you still feel that the evidence supports your position after genuinely researching the topic, I will be very much surprised.
I am fully aware you are more than capable of doing your own research, and finding your own sources which you believe to be trustworthy. Noting how busy you are though, I would like to point you in the direction of one resource I feel you may find useful if you’re pressed for research time – Ramez Naam’s book “The Infinite Resource – The Power of Ideas on a Finite Planet” (I am happy to purchase an ebook copy for you if that would be useful). If you do nothing else, please at least read chapter five of this book – it’ll point out more than a few holes in your current position. All conclusions drawn or facts provided are fully cited, with an extensive bibliography of sources should you wish to follow up further. I should also point out that the book’s style alternates positive / negative perspectives, so if you do not read any part of the book other than chapter five, you’re only seeing a part of what the author’s trying to get across.
I have every faith that you will act with integrity and have the courage to change your currently held beliefs on climate change once you are in possession of the relevant facts – I only ask that you are open enough to take another look.