by Judith Curry
This is rather astonishing, kudos to Best Schools for putting this together.
Best Schools has put together another very interesting list: Top 15 Climate Change Scientists – Consensus and Skeptics. Recall their previous list that included the top 50 women in STEM
Here is the rationale for what they have done:
We are well aware that those who support the mainstream position that anthropogenic climate change represents a grave threat to the future of humanity will deplore our decision to represent both side of the debate (or even to characterize the ongoing discussion as a “debate” at all). They have convinced themselves that only cranks and paid stooges could possibly disagree with them. We see things differently.
Simply stated, we maintain that appeals to authority and scurrilous ad hominem attacks are no substitute for rational argument. We also hold that what is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. This means, among other things, that mainstream climate scientists who roundly condemn climate skeptics for seeking support from private industry ought to be a bit more circumspect, seeing that they themselves receive millions in financial backing from government agencies. The tacit assumption behind their indignation — that only private actors have material interests, while public actors are by definition impartial seekers after truth — simply won’t wash. We strongly suspect that in, say, 100 years’ time, when (we hope!) scholars will be in a position to investigate this whole disgraceful episode in the history of science more objectively, they will find plenty of blame to go around.
Our position is simple. It is the classical liberal one. Drumroll. Cue the shade of Voltaire: “I disagree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Why should I defend someone else’s freedom to say what I myself believe to be wrong? Because the truth is one thing, my knowledge of it is something else. And because this means that the essence of rational inquiry is intellectual humility. And also because the slow and painful advance towards truth is best served by the open and honest airing of disagreement. For all of these reasons, we deplore all attempts to use political muscle to shut down academic debate. Perhaps our liberal take on the ethics of inquiry has become unfashionable in this postmodern age. To which we respond: So much the worse for intellectual fashion.
That said, we do not feel under any obligation to give “equal time” to both sides. In the end, we came up with the following formula: the mainstream position will be represented by 10 scientists; the skeptical position by five.
Here is the list:
10 Consensus scientists ( alphabetical):
- Wallace Broecker
- James Hansen
- Phil Jones
- Syukuro Manabe
- Michael Mann
- John Mitchell
- V. Ramanathan
- William Ruddiman
- Susan Solomon
- Tom Wigley
5 skeptical scientists:
- Lennaert Bengtsson
- John Christy
- Judith Curry
- Richard Lindzen
- Nir Shaviv
I am very impressed by this article, and very thoughtful biosketches for each are included.
Your thoughts on the list?
This article appeared on the Climate Etc. website at https://judithcurry.com/2018/06/05/top-15-climate-scientists-consensus-and-skeptics/