Some interesting evidence has emerged about the artificial ‘debate’ that has been created about the reality of human-induced climate change. Documents filed in a federal lawsuit reveal that the scientists working for the Global Climate Coalition – a fossil fuel industry front group that sought to prevent action on climate change – were themselves convinced of the reality of the problem. Back in 1995, they advised in an internal paper that: “The scientific basis for the Greenhouse Effect and the potential impact of human emissions of greenhouse gases such as CO2 on climate is well established and cannot be denied.”
This contrasts sharply with what the group said in public, and what they probably said to politicians while lobbying. It helps to demonstrate that the tactic here isn’t appropriate scientific skepticism, but simply a rearguard action to delay climate change mitigation policies. They have certainly succeeded in confusing some politicians with an ideological bent that predisposes them to rejecting climate policies. For instance, Republican Representative for Minesota Michele Bachmann has publicly expressed an absurd position on the science of climate change, while also calling for those who are opposed to climate legislation to be “armed and dangerous” and ready to “fight back hard” against legislation like the Waxman-Markey bill.