Thursday, February 14, 2013

Engineers, geoscientists: only 36% believe in CAGW

Fritz Zwicky would celebrate 115th birthday today. He was quite a character.
James Taylor's blog at Forbes points out an interesting peer-reviewed survey
Science or Science Fiction? Professionals’ Discursive Construction of Climate Change by Lefsrud, Meyer (PDF)
in Organization Studies, a SAGE journal. 1,077 geoscientists and engineers in Alberta (yes, I suppose that those who are good in searching for oil are generously represented), Canada were asked about their opinion on the climate change debate. A cute detail is that the survey takers themselves are alarmists who enjoy using words such as "deniers".

They try to analyze how expertise is being exaggerated, claims are being hyped, metaphors are being used, and so on. But the main numbers you are probably interested in are hiding in the following distribution:

36%: CAGW, warming is man-made and dangerous
24%: overwhelming naturalists, warming is a natural cycle and harmless
17%: fatalists, warming has mixed causes, isn't a top concern, research is biased
10%: economic responsibility, warming has mixed causes, CO2 regulation would be economically harmful
5%: regulation activists, warming has mixed causes, moderate impact, debate isn't over, models probably inaccurate

You see that only 36% agree with the positions that are often presented as inseparable parts of the "consensus". In other words, one may pretty much say that there is a consensus among the experts – except that the consensus says the opposite than what is often being said.

A year ago, similar views were found among meteorologists.

When we talk about folks in Alberta, Canada, this is how Calgary fans from Hardisty (yes, they live closer to Edmonton but they're not behind Edmonton Oilers, to be sure that Evil Oil isn't involved) congratulated Jaromír Jágr with his 41st birthday on Friday:

Using some wigs, they cloned him six times and dressed the clones in outfits of major teams Jágr has played for. To be sure who they are, they also Jágr-saluted. ;-)

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