[T]hough they have tried many different arguments, climate advocates have thus far largely failed in making a sufficiently strong case for emissions limits on any basis. While the scientific case for climate change is solid, the “approaching calamity” argument about its expected consequences hasn’t gained traction. This appears partially due to good public relations by climate skeptics (helped recently by foolish and highly-publicized emails among a handful of scientists) and to record-high snowfall throughout the United States in the winter of 2009-10 that was consistent with climate change modeling but confused many Americans.
The moral argument for action to save indigenous peoples, animals, and glaciers is closely related to the calamity argument and often has a greater emotional appeal. However, despite support from some evangelical Christian groups focused on humanity’s stewardship of God’s creation, this has also fallen short.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
After This Winter, We're Even More Confused
My former colleague Paul Saunders, executive director of the Nixon Center, and Vaughan Turekian on the international and U.S. domestic political complexities of the climate change issue: