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Thursday, November 15, 2007
Lindzen Tells Colgate Students and Faculty to Chill Out on Global Warming

By Geoff Guenther, Colgate Maroon News

Students and faculty crowded into the Henshaw Lecture Room in Lathrop Hall on Thursday afternoon to hear a controversial lecture by Massachusetts Institute of Technology Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology Richard Lindzen. Colgate Professor of Political Science, Presidential Scholar and Director of the Center for Freedom and Western Civilization Robert Kraynak, who introduced Lindzen, explained that the original title of the lecture had been “Global Warming: Science and Moral Responsibility” but that he and Lindzen had come up with a better one: “Global Warming: Who’s to Blame, Human Activities or Natural Causes?”

Lindzen is one of the most noted and prolific detractors from what Kraynak described as the “popular wisdom of global warming.” Lindzen began by saying that he had “always assumed that talking about the weather was a source of boredom.” He then began to explain his real concern that too much alarmism surrounds the topic of global climate change. His first goal: to debunk Al Gore. He recalled that all schools in the United Kingdom had recently been required to show Gore’s film An Inconvenient Truth. He noted that a judge ruled that all presentations of the movie be accompanied by a presentation of critiques and explanations of some of the movie’s scientific exaggerations. Lindzen cited one of Gore’s statements in that film that a melting of the icecaps at either Greenland or West Antarctica would result in a sea level rise of 20 feet “in the near future.” The judge, according to Lindzen, said, “this remark was distinctly alarmist” and that Gore’s predicted result would take millennia to come about. Lindzen called Gore’s statement that “warming is real and caused by humans,” a “masterful example of creative ambiguity.”

“The points of agreement [on warming] have no discernable connection to the alarm,” Lindzen said. “If it turns out that we don’t have warming or that it is not due to man, that has implications that the association of alarm with greenhouse gas emissions is baseless.” “I thought that he made a very compelling argument,” first-year Mike Abrahamson, who attended the lecture on suggestion from a professor, said. “I would say as someone who knows very little about the science on either side that it was very convincing.” Read more here.

Posted on 11/15 at 05:31 PM
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