Credit: Hartman, Steven, Peter Norrman and Michael Mann. Why is public debate on climate change so infected? Originally published in bifrostonline.org, 30 November 2017 (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Why is public debate on climate change so infected?
Climatologist Michael Mann is nearly as well known for his pushback against fossil fuel industry-funded distortions of climate science as for his iconic “hockey stick” graph showing the dramatic rise in global temperatures during the 20th century, which first appeared in a 1999 scientific study published by Mann, Bradley & Hughes in Nature that presented global reconstructions of annual surface temperature patterns over the previous six centuries. Mann discusses how the fossil fuel industry has promoted distortions of science in public discourse and debate to protect their own economic interests, following the playbook of other industries (Big Tobacco and Big Pharma) that have previously attacked science and scientists when their studies and knowledge advancements challenge industry products and profits.