You know Michael Mann as the scientist who described recent climate change with the "hockey stick" graph. He also wrote The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines. He is talking about the McCarthyistic tactics of the climate change denialists, including crazy people lurking in the shadows, and sitting members of the United Stated Congress.
If the interview does not work properly, you can view it here.
What's the best way to respond to a denialist who jumped on the Lovelock walk back as proof that climate change is just a hoax?
Looks like Professor Mann is the victim of a conspiracy so vast it threatens our very way of doing science.
Well, I don't know if you are being cynical or not, but yes, it does look that way. But actually, the science gets done. But the science policy does not get implemented. That's the problem.
Could 100 climate scientists reach consensus on what we should do about AGW? Would that consensus be realistic?
@bks: Who knows. There was the Kyoto Protocol in which the agreed 'solution' was known even at the time to be ineffective (planting trees) but people said "what the hell, it does some good even if it does jack to lessen global warming". Part of the problem is that there's no One Solution That Will Work. We simply have to put effort into developing alternative energy sources, especially the wind/sun/tidal types and see how we go. I think even "biofuel" should be developed but kept experimental (it competes with good land which is probably better used for crops). A lot of the scientists involved are also rather clueless about the scale of the problems. Even many who routinely write out "TgC/yr" tend to propose impractical things that just wouldn't work because they don't know much about the current practices for obtaining fuel/energy and the scales involved. The world today consumes tens of millions of barrels of oil per day (and thousands of tons of coal, and millions of cubic meters of gas) - that's some monstrous figure which we need to work on. Then of course many businesses will fight every step of the way to maintain the status quo.
What’s the best way to respond to a denialist who jumped on the Lovelock walk back as proof that climate change is just a hoax?
Point out that nobody who knew the subject took Lovelock's original ideas seriously, because they were completely ridiculous. Lovelock is not and has never been a climatologist, and has never really had anything worthwhile to say on the subject. He didn't know what he was talking about then, and he still doesn't.
You know Michael Mann as the scientist who described recent climate change with the “hockey stick” graph.
I'm not really sure that this is accurate. The "hockey stick" isn't really about describing recent climate change, it's about placing recent climate change in a wider historical context. (For human-scale values of "recent". I suppose you could say the HS describes "recent climate change" if you were talking in geological terms, but that risks playing into the meme that we only know it's getting warmer by looking at proxy reconstructions, which isn't really true. It's funny really - most of the attacks on the HS have been attacking the wrong bit. We know what the shape of the "blade" should be, because that's the instrumental record.)
Show them that Lovelock's old views were not driven by reality any more than his new ones. Climate change is bad, but lovelock used to believe that mankind would be huddled at the poles dying by the year 2100. That was never a defensible position. His reasons for changing views are also easy to expose as ridiculous. He claims that warming has not followed projections. Just show them the actual graphs of warming v IPCC projections.