“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”
—Attributed to 19th-century British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli (1804–1881)
If you follow my blog, you likely believe that global warming is real and that most of it is our fault. But there are also times when you’ve participated in a discussion or read something that challenged those beliefs. Often you’ll be exposed to a “scientific argument” or the latest information that seems to refute either that global warming is indeed happening or that it’s because of our human activities. Deep down, you still believe the facts. You’re strong in your convictions but you wish you knew the whole story and suspect that somehow the truth is being distorted with these “arguments.”
I’ve certainly found myself in that situation from time to time over the last few years because I realize that I don’t know everything about climate science. It doesn’t happen as frequently now for the simple reason that writing a blog on the climate crisis forces you to learn much of the “science” used out there to argue against global warming.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have the rebuttals at your fingertips to some of these comments?
- Climate has changed before.
- Global warming is due to the sun.
- The planet is actually cooling.
- There’s no consensus among the world’s scientists.
- Carbon dioxide rise lags behind temperature rise, not the other way around.
Thanks to the website Skeptical Science, you can now have all of those answers and over a hundred more in your smart phone. They’ve previously published rebuttals to these one-liners on their website so you can easily access the information without a smart phone, but now they’ve created free apps for the iPhone and Android that will keep those answers handy for you whenever you need to check on them. If someone tries to point out to you that the planet stopped heating up in 1998, within just a few seconds you can respond with the facts and point out how that frequently-used statement is incorrect. Or if you’re reading a blog and the claims seem far-fetched, you can quickly get the truth.
I’ve downloaded the app and find it very handy. There’s a “Top Ten List” of the most common arguments disguised as “facts” which are used against global warming. There are also different categories such as “It’s not real” or “It’s not us” where you can easily access all of the various arguments used within those subheadings.
All of the proper science is found within the rebuttals including charts, graphs and references. They also add updated information and the latest news on climate change as it comes available.
Some of the rebuttals are lengthy, but it usually requires a great deal of explanation to properly refute one-liners, so the authors are making sure you have all of the information you need as well as the references to support their claims if you’d like to explore the information in greater detail. I think everyone who likes to keep abreast of the fallacious arguments used to try to refute that global warming is real or that it’s our fault would benefit from this handy app.
Nothing will ever convince the die-hard skeptics and deniers out there from their own beliefs, but at least you’ll have your responses handy when one of them throws some of their “facts” your way.