As has become the norm for media outlets owned by Rupert Murdoch, just before a half million people participated in the People’s Climate Marcharound the world, The Wall Street Journal published an opinion piece downplaying the risks and threats posed by human-caused global warming. The editorial was written by Steven Koonin, a respected computational physicist who claims to have engaged in “Detailed technical discussions during the past year with leading climate scientists,” but who is himself not a climate scientist.
Koonin did admit that the climate is changing and humans are largely responsible, and noted,
There is well-justified prudence in accelerating the development of low-emissions technologies and in cost-effective energy-efficiency measures.
This is a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, Koonin’s editorial focused almost exclusively on the remaining uncertainties in climate science. Ironically, he stated,
Any serious discussion of the changing climate must begin by acknowledging not only the scientific certainties but also the uncertainties, especially in projecting the future.
But Koonin himself got the certainties wrong. For example, we know that humans are the main cause of the current climate change, responsible for about 100% of the global warming since 1950.