38 Climate Scientists Criticize Global Warming Op-ed in WSJ
The Wall Street Journal published a letter to the editor on Feb. 1 from a group of 38 climate scientists, harshly criticizing a global warming op-ed that ran in that paper last week for its scientific inaccuracies. The letter, "Check with Climate Scientists for Views on Climate," states that the op-ed misstated the evidence on global warming and falsely represented certain authors as climate scientists despite their lack of expertise in the field.
Nine of the 10 warmest years since 1880 have occurred since the year 2000, as the Earth has experienced sustained higher temperatures than in any decade during the 20th century. Credit: NASA Earth Observatory, Robert Simmon.
The op-ed states:
"You published "No Need to Panic About Global Warming" (op-ed, Jan. 27) on climate change by the climate-science equivalent of dentists practicing cardiology. While accomplished in their own fields, most of these authors have no expertise in climate science. The few authors who have such expertise are known to have extreme views that are out of step with nearly every other climate expert."
The letter pushes back against the assertion that global warming has stopped in recent years, which is a claim that has frequently been made in the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal and elsewhere.
"Climate experts know that the long-term warming trend has not abated in the past decade. In fact, it was the warmest decade on record," the letter states. The lead author of the letter, Kevin Trenberth, is a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research.
Many other climate scientists, economists and writers have also weighed in on last week's op-ed. A few notable examples include climate scientist and water expert Peter Gleick, who wrote a piece for Forbes.com, Andy Revkin of the DotEarth blog, and Bill Chameides, a dean at Duke University, writing for the Huffington Post.
The following 38 climate scientists signed the letter:
Kevin Trenberth, Sc.D, Distinguished Senior Scientist, Climate Analysis Section, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Richard Somerville, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego
Katharine Hayhoe, Ph.D., Director, Climate Science Center, Texas Tech University
Rasmus Benestad, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, The Norwegian Meteorological Institute
Gerald Meehl, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Michael Oppenheimer, Ph.D., Professor of Geosciences; Director, Program in Science, Technology and Environmental Policy, Princeton University
Peter Gleick, Ph.D., co-founder and president, Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security
Michael C. MacCracken, Ph.D., Chief Scientist, Climate Institute, Washington
Michael Mann, Ph.D., Director, Earth System Science Center, Pennsylvania State University
Steven Running, Ph.D., Professor, Director, Numerical Terradynamic Simulation Group, University of Montana
Robert Corell, Ph.D., Chair, Arctic Climate Impact Assessment; Principal, Global Environment Technology Foundation
Dennis Ojima, Ph.D., Professor, Senior Research Scientist, and Head of the Dept. of Interior's Climate Science Center at Colorado State University
Josh Willis, Ph.D., Climate Scientist, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Matthew England, Ph.D., Professor, Joint Director of the Climate Change Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Australia
Ken Caldeira, Ph.D., Atmospheric Scientist, Dept. of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution
Warren Washington, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Terry L. Root, Ph.D., Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
David Karoly, Ph.D., ARC Federation Fellow and Professor, University of Melbourne, Australia
Jeffrey Kiehl, Ph.D., Senior Scientist, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Donald Wuebbles, Ph.D., Professor of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Illinois
Camille Parmesan, Ph.D., Professor of Biology, University of Texas; Professor of Global Change Biology, Marine Institute, University of Plymouth, UK
Simon Donner, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Geography, University of British Columbia, Canada
Barrett N. Rock, Ph.D., Professor, Complex Systems Research Center and Department of Natural Resources, University of New Hampshire
David Griggs, Ph.D., Professor and Director, Monash Sustainability Institute, Monash University, Australia
Roger N. Jones, Ph.D., Professor, Professorial Research Fellow, Centre for Strategic Economic Studies, Victoria University, Australia
William L. Chameides, Ph.D., Dean and Professor, School of the Environment, Duke University
Gary Yohe, Ph.D., Professor, Economics and Environmental Studies, Wesleyan University, CT
Robert Watson, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Advisor to the UK Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; Chair of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia
Steven Sherwood, Ph.D., Director, Climate Change Research Centre, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Chris Rapley, Ph.D., Professor of Climate Science, University College London, UK
Joan Kleypas, Ph.D., Scientist, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, National Center for Atmospheric Research
James J. McCarthy, Ph.D., Professor of Biological Oceanography, Harvard University
Stefan Rahmstorf, Ph.D., Professor of Physics of the Oceans, Potsdam University, Germany
Julia Cole, Ph.D., Professor, Geosciences and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona
William H. Schlesinger, Ph.D., President, Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
Jonathan Overpeck, Ph.D., Professor of Geosciences and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona
Eric Rignot, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory; Professor of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine
Wolfgang Cramer, Professor of Global Ecology, Mediterranean Institute for Biodiversity and Ecology, CNRS, Aix-en-Provence, France
At first glance, you wouldn't think avocados and almonds could harm bees; but a closer look at how these popular crops are produced reveals their potentially detrimental effect on pollinators.
Migratory beekeeping involves trucking millions of bees across the U.S. to pollinate different crops, including avocados and almonds. Timothy Paule II / Pexels / CC0<p>According to <a href="https://www.fromthegrapevine.com/israeli-kitchen/beekeeping-how-to-keep-bees" target="_blank">From the Grapevine</a>, American avocados also fully depend on bees' pollination to produce fruit, so farmers have turned to migratory beekeeping as well to fill the void left by wild populations.</p><p>U.S. farmers have become reliant upon the practice, but migratory beekeeping has been called exploitative and harmful to bees. <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/10/health/avocado-almond-vegan-partner/index.html" target="_blank">CNN</a> reported that commercial beekeeping may injure or kill bees and that transporting them to pollinate crops appears to negatively affect their health and lifespan. Because the honeybees are forced to gather pollen and nectar from a single, monoculture crop — the one they've been brought in to pollinate — they are deprived of their normal diet, which is more diverse and nourishing as it's comprised of a variety of pollens and nectars, Scientific American reported.</p><p>Scientific American added how getting shuttled from crop to crop and field to field across the country boomerangs the bees between feast and famine, especially once the blooms they were brought in to fertilize end.</p><p>Plus, the artificial mass influx of bees guarantees spreading viruses, mites and fungi between the insects as they collide in midair and crawl over each other in their hives, Scientific American reported. According to CNN, some researchers argue that this explains why so many bees die each winter, and even why entire hives suddenly die off in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder.</p>
Avocado and almond crops depend on bees for proper pollination. FRANK MERIÑO / Pexels / CC0<p>Salazar and other Columbian beekeepers described "scooping up piles of dead bees" year after year since the avocado and citrus booms began, according to Phys.org. Many have opted to salvage what partial colonies survive and move away from agricultural areas.</p><p>The future of pollinators and the crops they help create is uncertain. According to the United Nations, nearly half of insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, risk global extinction, Phys.org reported. Their decline already has cascading consequences for the economy and beyond. Roughly 1.4 billion jobs and three-quarters of all crops around the world depend on bees and other pollinators for free fertilization services worth billions of dollars, Phys.org noted. Losing wild and native bees could <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wild-bees-crop-shortage-2646849232.html" target="_self">trigger food security issues</a>.</p><p>Salazar, the beekeeper, warned Phys.org, "The bee is a bioindicator. If bees are dying, what other insects beneficial to the environment... are dying?"</p>
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