New Survey Casts More Doubt On The ‘97% Consensus’ On Global Warming


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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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A recent survey conducted by George Mason University of more than 4,000 American Meteorological Society (AMS) members found about one-third of them don’t agree with the so-called global warming “consensus” that humans are the cause of most recent warming.

The GMU survey of AMS members found “14% think the change is caused more or less equally by human activity and natural events; and 7% think the change is caused mostly by natural events.”

“Conversely, 5% think the change is caused largely or entirely by natural events, 6% say they don’t know, and 1% think climate change isn’t happening,” according to the GMU poll.

“Fully 33% either believe climate change is not occurring, is mostly natural, or is at most half-natural and half-manmade (I tend toward that last category) … or simply think we ‘don’t know,’” Dr. Roy Spencer a climate scientist who compiles satellite-derived temperature data at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, wrote in his blog.

“For something that is supposed to be ‘settled science’, I find that rather remarkable,” wrote Spencer, who is a prominent skeptic of claims of catastrophic man-made global warming.

GMU found that 29 percent of AMS members thought global warming was “largely or entirely” caused by humans and another 38 percent believe warming is “mostly” due to humans. It should be noted, however, only 37 percent of AMS respondents considered themselves climate “experts.”

“But what I find interesting is that the supposed 97% consensus on climate change (which we know is bogus anyway) turns into only 67% when we consider the number of people who believe climate change is mostly or entirely caused by humans,” Spencer wrote.

Spencer is referring to claims from politicians and environmentalists that 97 percent of climate scientists think humans are causing global warming.

“Ninety-seven percent of scientists, including, by the way, some who originally disputed the data, have now put that to rest,” President Barack Obama said in 2013. “They’ve acknowledged the planet is warming and human activity is contributing to it.”

The 97 percent figure has largely been cited by activists looking to squash public debates about climate science. The figure is based on a now debunked study 2013 study by Australian researcher John Cook.

“Our analysis indicates that the number of papers rejecting the consensus on [anthropogenic global warming] is a vanishingly small proportion of the published research,’’ Cook and his fellow authors wrote in their study which was published in the journal Environmental Research Letters.

But the definition Cook used to get his consensus was over-simplified. Only 41 out of the 11,944 published climate studies examined by Cook explicitly stated that mankind caused most of the warming since 1950 — meaning the actual consensus is 0.3 percent.

“It is astonishing that any journal could have published a paper claiming a 97% climate consensus when on the authors’ own analysis the true consensus was well below 1%,” Dr. David Legates, a geology professor at the University of Delaware, said about a study he and four other prominent researchers authored debunking Cook’s consensus claim.

The new AMS survey, however, does show that most of the science group’s members believe global warming “is happening,” according to the GMU poll. The disagreement, however, is over what is the driving force behind global warming: is it mostly caused by humans or mostly due to natural variability?

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