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Letter: Earth’s warming is based on sound scientific evidence

Earth’s warming is based on sound scientific evidence

Where to begin in addressing the Feb. 2 letter, “Let’s have open discussion regarding climate change”? The writer seems to say that we can only know about climatic change during the relatively short period in the Earth’s history that mankind has directly observed it. Beyond that, therefore, “any hypotheses are guesses.” Leaving aside that a hypothesis and a guess are not the same thing, there is much that we know about global temperature and carbon dioxide concentration in distant past, from ice core sampling and other methods.

Although we will never have the 100 percent certainty that the writer and other skeptics seem to demand, the conclusions of the vast majority of scientists – that the Earth has warmed rapidly over the past several decades, and that greenhouse gases are driving that warming – are based on sound evidence and are not “guesses.”

The balance of the writer’s letter is a mixture of vague allegations and conspiracy theory. To the extent that he is suggesting that there is a massive hoax or conspiracy going on, it must be a humdinger: More than 190 nations were bamboozled into going to Paris and reaching an international agreement to reduce emissions.

I believe his views are distinctly in the minority. That is one thing. Having those views stifled is another. The writer seems to confuse the two. There is, and should be, open debate. I’d be happy to have a respectful debate with him.

Ron Scott

Buffalo Area Chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby