97% of Research Confirms Climate Change, But 40% of Americans Still Think Its Controversial
Breaking News: Global warming is real. It’s also our fault.
Actually, maybe it should be breaking news that people still think it’s breaking news. Hmm.
Last week yet another study was released that confirms the consensus among climate scientists. What does consensus look like? 97%.
97% of the 4,000 papers that analyzed the causes of climate change came to the same conclusion: humans are causing global climate change.
97%. Yes. This is what consensus looks like. Despite what the climate change deniers would want us to believe, there is no controversy. None at all.
This comes after another report that said, among 14,000 peer reviewed studies on climate change, only 24 rejected the phenomenon. I know there has been a lot of number repetition in this post already, but let’s do it again, shall we?
Twenty-four out of 14,000. That is bananas.
That number is a little bit harder to wrap one’s head around. Luckily, Kyle Hill at the Scientific American blog Overthinking It is on the case.
If you put all of the almost 14,000 climate change papers, including the contrary 24, in a bag, the chances that you would pull out 10 studies that reject climate change is 0.000000000000000000000000003%.
Ok, ok. That number is even worse. But how’s this? According to Hill, you are more likely to be struck by lightening…then hit by an asteroid.
Wow. Now that’s a tiny chance.
Despite the overwhelming evidence supporting human-made climate change, less than half of Americans understand this. In fact, 40 percent think that there is widespread disagreement between climate scientists on global climate change.
Why is that? It certainly has to do with how the media handles climate science. In an attempt to not be labelled as a partisan, a proponent and a denier are deployed. This has undoubtedly caused a false equivalency in the minds of the average person. In addition, according to Ed Maibach of the Center for Climate Change Communication at George Mason University, people’s perception of climate change hinges greatly on the current weather situation. During the last cold winter, acceptance of climate change dipped seven points.
Perhaps as the weather gets more dramatic and dangerous, people will start to wake up to the reality. Until then, those of us who accept what the evidence tells us have another arrow in our quiver.
Featured image credit: Flickr