A new group challenging the general consensus on climate science is getting significant air time in Australia, where uproar over a proposed carbon tax may topple the country’s minority government.
Launched in February, the Galileo Movement is getting much of its lift from its influential “patron,” conservative radio personality Alan Jones, one of the most popular broadcasters in Australia, who has touted the effort on his daily morning show.
The effort is the brainchild of two retirees frustrated by what they see as the orthodoxy of “settled science” on climate change. They cite as inspiration Galileo Galilei, the 17th century astronomer and father of modern science, who challenged the dogma of the Roman Catholic Church to report the Earth orbited around the sun.
Why Carbon Dioxide Is a Greenhouse Gas
In making a case against CO2 as a greenhouse gas, the Galileo Movement relies on irrelevant facts while omitting pertinent ones
The Australia-based Galileo Movement touts a series of “basic facts” on carbon dioxide that attempt to explain why the greenhouse gas can’t contribute to climate change.
John Smeed, the movement’s co-founder, says the case against carbon dioxide as a global warming culprit is simply a matter of “junior school physics.”
“If you show this to any scientist and say to them, ‘Disprove to me any of these points,’ they can’t,” he said in an interview.
And he’s right: Many of the facts are perfectly true.
But they are also irrelevant in the climate debate. And many facts about CO2 pertinent to climate science are omitted.
DailyClimate.org took up Smeed’s challenge and passed the fact sheet on to a climate scientist – Gavin Schmidt, a climatologist with NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Science. He also publishes the blog RealClimate.org, one of the more-respected climate science blogs.
“You’ve got true facts,” Schmidt said of the Galileo Movement’s pamphlet. “They’re just not the relevant facts.