Brilliant sceptic on climate change

In: Uncategorized

6 Jun 2009

I was struck by the good sense of Freeman Dyson in his interview with Yale Environment 360 on climate change. The eminent 85-year-old scientist upset the orthodox climate change lobby when he criticised their views in a recent profile in the New York Times Sunday magazine. His views are sceptical in the best sense of the term. For example, he questions the usefulness of models in predicting climate and challenges the view that change is necessarily for the worse. He also takes a broadly humanistic perspective. According to Dyson in his Yale interview:

“I feel very strongly that China and India getting rich is the most important thing that’s going on in the world at present. That’s a real revolution, that the center of gravity of the whole population of the world would be middle class, and that’s a wonderful thing to happen. It would be a shame if we persuade them to stop that just for the sake of a problem that’s not that serious.

“And I’m happy every time I see that the Chinese and Indians make a strong statement about going ahead with burning coal. Because that’s what it really depends on, is coal. They can’t do without coal. We could, but they certainly can’t.”

He also wrote a review of some key books on climate change in the New York Review of Books last year.

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