Climate Poll Asked Wrong Questions

Media Appearances, Climate, Tom Harris

Re: Survey finds 2 per cent of respondents don’t believe climate change is happening, by Jennifer Graham, The Canadian Press, Aug. 15.

Queen’s University Prof. John Smol is right to say that it’s “discouraging how slowly the science seems to have been translated into public policy and public opinion.” If science was driving climate policy, then we would have no carbon dioxide regulations at all since the global warming scare is so weak scientifically.

Smol is totally mistaken to say that “the science has been in for a long time.” As I showed the 1,500 students I taught for the past three years at Carleton University, the science of climate change is immature and discoveries are regularly being made that overturn previously popular ideas.

A quick check of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change shows that literally thousands of peer reviewed scientific papers have been published that disprove Smol’s overconfident statement.

Sadly, the public opinion poll Smol was commenting on failed to ask the most important question of all, “Do you believe that emissions of carbon dioxide from human activities are causing dangerous global warming and other problematic climate change?”

It must be “dangerous” climate change that is being asked about. Anything less than dangerous, while interesting to scientists, is of no concern to politicians who continue to divert billions of taxpayer dollars to the climate file while important social programs remain underfunded.

TOM HARRIS, executive director, International Climate Science Coalition (ICSC), Ottawa