WSJ’s Message is Always Deny or Delay: Koonin Just the Latest Misinformer
The Wall Street Journal’s Saturday Essay by Steven E. Koonin, titled Climate Science is Not Settled follows WSJ’s standard playbook. Have a so-called expert either deny the science or advocate for delay on action to address the issue.
I spoke to my liberal arts classes about this essay and focused on four simple points:
1) Koonin’s arguments all hinge on climate model accuracy. Historical evidence shows us that when we double CO2 or triple (as we are likely to do), climate change has been significant. Models just verify this. And models have been very good at modeling past climate.2) The rate of increase in CO2 is unprecedented in the past few million years (adding 100 ppm took thousands of years historically but now humans are doing so in decades)
3) Koonin was either ignorant or being intentionally deceptive when he compared Arctic sea ice loss to Antarctic sea ice gain. Arctic sea ice loss dwarfs that of the Antarctic sea ice gain. TOTAL ice in Antarctica is rapidly decreasing and it is THIS ice loss that has sea level implications. If a person loses 30 pounds in one year while not cutting his hair, do you point to the “increased hair length” when somebody asks about weight change? Koonin does.
4) 97% of expert researchers, every international science academy, health officials, military experts, and insurance companies agree that human-caused climate change is increasing risks across multiple sectors of society and cannot be ignored. We can listen to Koonin who cannot even get the simple concept of sea ice correct or we can listen to people who do this for a living.