So you think man-made global warming is a hoax, eh?


The graphic above is intended for the edification of those commenters here at Applesauce who think there is lots of skepticism among climate scientists about anthropogenic global warming.

Take, for example, the guy who referred just the other day to “the mountains of evidence on the opposite side of the argument.”

My response was this:

“The truth is that more than 95 percent of scientists working in the disciplines contributing to studies of our climate accept that climate change is almost certainly being caused by human activities.

“Moreover, there are no national or major scientific institutions anywhere in the world that dispute the theory of anthropogenic climate change. Not one.”

That guy who knows of “mountains of evidence on the opposite side of the argument” has not yet submitted any rejoinder. Nor do I expect that he ever will.

Indeed, comments here from global-warming deniers have steadily declined in recent years, a trend that comports with polls showing ever wider public acceptance of mainstream scientific theories regarding climate change. Three and four years ago, we frequently got comments like the one in April of 2009 that said man-made global warming is just is “a theory and there is no consensus among scientists.”

My favorite comments from back then, of course, were those we got with every uncommonly cool spell locally or in some part of America. The skeptics would ask: Where’s your global warming now?

For some reason, they’re not saying that so much anymore.



  1. Fortunately the Koch brothers can’t buy Mother Nature.

  2. Brian Opsahl

    Yes, but they can buy one Mitt (im a loser) Romney…and Paul (they sent me to campaign in Alabama) Ryan. These guys and there dissaray party can be bought for …?….I don’t know lets ask Carl (it’s not over in Ohio) Rove…

  3. I think really the bone of contention is not that man is causing global warming, but that man is making it worse. I don’t think there is any serious person left who would deny that things are getting warmer. It is a matter of whether or not man is making it change faster than it would if man were not around.

  4. Ian Orchard

    I think the fact that many millions of vehicles, aircraft and coal-fired power stations are dumping fossil carbon into the biosphere 100x faster than all the volcanos combined suggests it’s very hard to imagine how we are NOT contributing to climate change.

  5. Jerry, I can think of five attribution studies right now that find that we are at least 100% responsible for the trend in global energy storage over the last fifty years. Some find us more than 100% responsible, since total solar irradiation has been flat or falling for fifty years (in other words, we should be on a cooling trend rather than no trend or warming).

    Lean & Rind (2008)
    Foster & Rahmstorf (2011)
    Gillett et al. (2012)
    Huber & Knutti (2011)
    Pasini et al. (2012)

  6. Hmm, lets see.. I’m trying to see where your argument fits… I think I have it..

    from Wikipedia; “In logic, an argumentum ad populum (Latin for “appeal to the people”) is a fallacious argument that concludes a proposition to be true because many or most people believe it. In other words, the basic idea of the argument is: “If many believe so, it is so.””

    Argumentum ad populum, I think that’s the one which fits your topic. Since 13,900 papers say it is so, it is so. What do you think Mr. Cunnigham?


  7. Klem: I think you’re onto something. Now you’ve got me doubting all those theories that the Earth is round and is billions of years old. And perhaps we should rethink our previous dismissal of notions that the moon is made out of green cheese.

    By the way, I don’t like Latin, per se. (Someday, I’m going to find someone who gets that joke.)

  8. Klem: One other thing:

    Your cute little reference to “an argumentum ad populum” requires clarification in this context. Until only recently, many or most lay folks had their doubts about mainstream scientific theories regarding anthropogenic global warming. Those doubts were encouraged by the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Fox News and more than a few Republican politicians. So obviously, the mainstream scientific theories weren’t based on their popularity among the masses, especially the masses who get their scientific instruction from right-wing media.

    Putting it another way, the overwhelming majority of climate scientists haven’t been influenced by any argumentum ad populum, at least not in the broad sense of that term.

  9. Translation: Almost 100% of the pseudo-scientists who are making a living off of the anthropogenic global warming scam agree that it’s not a scam. Basically you aren’t published or funded in climatology unless you are a card carrying global warming cult member (fanatic). It’s so uplifting for those of us who have been fighting to expose this scam for so many years to see you become the punchline that we always knew you were. And it’s cute to watch you warmists rant on your obscure blogs and delude yourselves that you’re still relevant. ROFLMAO!!!!!

  10. shawnnews

    Klem would be correct that it is an informal fallacy to believe an argument solely on the basis that everyone believes it or deny an argument because everyone denies it.
    The link I provided is for NOAA . They are some of the people studying the subject for the last 30 years. If you want actual numbers and data, there’s a place to go.
    But let’s have Klem speak for himself. Where is NASA, NOAA and other science organizations making their mistake?
    I believe the mistake lies with the people who threw their lot in with Rush Limbaugh in the 90s and decided not to believe climate science because it was Al Gore’s cause.

  11. Brian Opsahl

    Nail on the head Shawn, Because Al Gore said it first, and the alarm came from Democrats and not the republicans it can’t possibly be true.
    We still have a chance to make meaningful changes, but we have to start NOW NOT later.

  12. Ian Orchard

    Leigh: you are claiming a conspiracy of monumental dimensions. Not only the thousands of scientists working in climate science but all the botanists, biologists, physicists, oceanographers, atmospheric scientists, glaciologists, the list of disciplines producing peer-reviewed supporting evidence goes on and on and on. All lock-stepped in this vast “scam”. Supported of course by basic high school physics that says “adding a green house gas to an atmosphere increases the thermal blanket effect”.
    Even the US Navy, who can apply the ultimate sanction to employees who betray secrets, admit they can’t stop leaks and envy the thoroughness of this so-called global “conspiracy”.
    Can you explain how they do it? The military would dearly love to hear.

  13. Craig Knauss

    I love Leigh’s use of the phrase “pseudo-scientists”. It is priceless. Apparently anyone who gets a science, engineering, or technical degree from an ABET university is a “pseudo-scientist”, while all the real “scientists” get their knowledge from people like Glen Beck. Does Leigh have a science degree? Did Leigh even finish high school? Obviously, he or she didn’t learn much.

    Here’s a thought to ponder: there are now 7 billion people on this planet. There has never, ever, been that many. Does any rational (this doesn’t mean people like Leigh) person really think that 7 billion human inhabitants will not have some sort of effect?

  14. Brian Opsahl

    If Rush Lintball says its true they might start beleiving it…or maybe one of the smartest republicans they have ….Yes Sarah Palin…she actully seen it happen in her other home State when she was a Governor for a few months…?

  15. “..I don’t like Latin, per se. (Someday, I’m going to find someone who gets that joke.)”

    I think most people already know ‘per se’ is Latin Mr. C.

  16. klem: If that were true, I wouldn’t encounter so many people who don’t get the joke. It’s a case of ipso facto.

    But anyway, tell us more about your specious notions regarding argumentum ad populum as it applies to mainstream theories on anthropogenic global warming.

  17. François

    Actually, I think Klem is right.

    I have no idea if man-made global warming is an hoax or not, I’ve never experienced it myself, so I let other judge it.

    But, from pure logic, Pat Cunningham argument is one of an « argumentum ad populum ». Since science hypotheses are “hypotheses” and not pure logic consequences. Scientists use the term “theories” since they are aware of this.

    I think that saying climate scientists were not influenced by any argumentum ad populum is right. But yet, to deny the statement of Klem, we would need to prove that scientists are right. And if you would say that scientists are right, simply because they are scientists, it would be another fallacy called an « argument from authority ».

    Also, when Pat Cunnigmham says « Now you’ve got me doubting all those theories that the Earth is round and is billions of years old. And perhaps we should rethink our previous dismissal of notions that the moon is made out of green cheese. », this is an « appeal to ridicule ». I hate it when people does that. Klem commentary was honest and respectful…

    Quantum mechanics between 1900-1924 was not popular among scientists because a lot of them relied on Newton’s laws of physics for their researches and were not interested to adjust them for the quantum theory. With a similar argument as shown above, you could have said, in 1924, that quantum mechanics are false since there were not enough publication supporting it. (See Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions for a good read about how science paradigm changes operate.)

  18. Thanks Francois.

  19. Mankind’s contribution to global warming is oversold, IMO. The earth will continue to warm or cool according to its own cycles irrespective of human help. I believe that the energy presently wasted on minimizing man’s contribution to so called global warming could be better utilized elsewhere. Why are the global warming fanatics so excited about global warming? I think it is because they want to use the issue as leverage to as fast as possible extract as much money as possible by exploiting the issue. Hence their motives are suspect as well as their alleged facts.

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