Global Warming and Political Intimidation: How Politicians Cracked Down on Scientists as the Earth Heated Up

Global Warming and Political Intimidation: How Politicians Cracked Down on Scientists as the Earth Heated Up

by Raymond S. Bradley
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Global Warming and Political Intimidation: How Politicians Cracked Down on Scientists as the Earth Heated Up by Raymond S. Bradley

Global warming is the number one environmental issue of our time, yet some prominent politicians have refused to accept scientific evidence of human responsibility and have opposed any legislation or international agreement that would limit greenhouse gas emissions. A few have gone even further and have tried to destroy the reputations of scientists researching climate change by deliberately undermining the credibility of their research. These politicians have sought to sow seeds of doubt in the minds of the public and to weaken public and political support for the control of fossil fuel use.

In this powerful book, highly respected climate scientist Raymond Bradley provides the inside story from the front lines of the debate. In clear and direct language, he describes the tactics those in power have used to intimidate him and his colleagues part of a larger pattern of governmental suppression of scientific information, politics at the expense of empirically based discourse.

Speaking from his experience, Bradley exposes the fault lines in the global warming debate, while providing a concise primer on climate change. The result is a cautionary tale of how politics and science can become fatally intertwined.

University of Massachusetts Press

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781558498693
Publisher: University of Massachusetts Press
Publication date: 07/31/2011
Pages: 184
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

RAYMOND S. BRADLEY is University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Geosciences and director of the Climate System Research Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is author of Paleoclimatology: Reconstructing Climates of the Quaternary, described by Quaternary Science Reviews as "an indispensable work of reference for scientists and students alike."

University of Massachusetts Press

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Global Warming and Political Intimidation : How Politicians Cracked Down on Scientists As the Earth Heated Up 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
leopardiNJ More than 1 year ago
In 1998 Mike Mann, Ray Bradley & Malcolm Hughes published a research paper in the journal Nature in which they presented a reconstruction of global temperatures over the past 600 years. That work was followed a year later by another in Geophysical Research Letters in which they extended the temperature record to the past millennium. Both papers included graphs of temperature vs. time which reflected a very marked increase in global temperature over the past few decades, a temperature maximum well above that of the entire analyzed record and a trend that was decidedly upward. Those graphs of temperature vs. time henceforth came to be known as the "hockey stick" and were incorporated, along with many others, into the Third Assessment Report (2001) of the Intergovernmental Panel and Climate Change. This simple, iconic graph quickly became the lightning rod which attracted the fulsome wrath of the community of climate-change deniers. The authors were dragged before congressional committees and subjected to all manner of threats and intimidation. While these attacks had no effect upon the convictions of climate scientists they did succeed in quashing public debate on climate change right up to the present day. This earlier book, Global Warming and Political Intimidation by the second author, Ray Bradley, of those original two "hockey stick" papers was soon followed in 2012 by one by the first author, Mike Mann, The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars. Bradley's account of political action is a bit edgier and partisan than that of Mann and not anywhere near as complete or authoritative. One of the few events covered by Bradley that does not appear in Mann's work is the rather humorous account of plagiarism on the part of a congressional witness brought in by the climate-change opposition in an absurd attempt to discredit the "hockey stick". Like most books on the subject written by distinguished and serious scientists in the field, Global Warming fails to come to grips with the underlying fundamentals of the current American anti-science fad. Sure, the fossil-fuel industry had in the past and continues to bankroll the denial community. But even Exxon-Mobil is shrinking back from their contrarian positions. Yet, the denialists remain in control of the climate-change (non)-debate. There's a deeper story here that has not yet been adequately examined. The author's almost-exclusive and frequent use of lower-case earth instead of Earth when referring to the planet detracts from the impact of many of the points made. Brief notes, a very brief bibliography, a few illustrations and an index complete this little book. Richard R. Pardi Environmental Science William Paterson University