Tom Lowe of Australia's Centre for Risk and Community Safety has some very sensible things to say about the parlous state of the climate wars, based on his work at the UK's Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research on "the effects of extreme representations of climate change upon public perceptions and willingness to act. " His conclusion ?
"Alarmist’ representations, either depicting catastrophic effects as a result of man’s influence upon the climate system or, conversely, deeply sceptical views of climate change, lead to public confusion and inaction.
* It is apparent that the vast uncertainties associated with climate modelling necessitate a wide range of possibilities, the extremities of which produce fertile ground for sensational reporting...
* The public is being subjected to a media-led campaign of
alarmism and doubt. At either end of this spectrum are states of denial
* ….as a result, research indicates that the public feel unwilling or unable to do anything about climate change.
* The ‘mainstreaming’ of climate change by business, industry and politicians in recent times has relocated the issue in the eyes of much of the public; moving from a fight for global sustainability and equity to a corporate buzzword or political banner. Public control over the issue appears lost while distrust in the policies and processes is on the increase.
* This situation has been exacerbated by a lack of awareness among scientists and the media about scientific message communication to the public.
He shares the dim view of The Great Global Warming Swindle voiced here in March:
"Given the current state of understanding and global scientific consensus on climate change, the ABC’s decision to show the GGWS appears to have more to do with ratings and political appeasement than with free speech and journalistic balance. The channel, which leads the way in broadcasting intelligent and informative debate, should consider the criticism that the documentary has already received from scientific groups around the world "