Combatting Climate Skepticism for Dummies


Do you get frustrated when your friends/family/peers/superiors/strangers tell you that global warming is a hoax, but you don’t have enough factual ammunition to convince them otherwise? You are not alone. Are you a skeptic yourself? Grist has a seriously extensive guide to talking to climate skeptics. The guide is so extensive it borders on overwhelming, but it is laid out in an easily navigable way so that you can skip around to topics that interest you. It is divided into four different taxonomies, as they call them – Stages of Denial, Scientific Topics, Types of Argument and Levels of Sophistication. Here’s the outline to get your wheels turning:

Stages of Denial
1. There’s nothing happening
a. Inadequate evidence
b. Contradictory evidence
c. No consensus
2. We don’t know why it’s happening
a. Models don’t work
b. Prediction is impossible
c. We can’t be sure
3. Climate change is natural
a. It happened before
b. It’s part of a natural change
c. It’s not caused by CO2
4. Climate change is not bad
a. The effects are good
b. The effects are minor
c. Change is normal
5. Climate change can’t be stopped
a. Too late
b. It’s someone else’s problem
c. Economically infeasible
Scientific Topics
1. Temperature
2. Atmosphere
3. Extreme events
a. Temperature records
b. Storms
c. Droughts
4. Cryosphere
a. Glaciers
b. Sea ice
c. Ice sheets
5. Oceans
6. Modeling
a. Scenarios
b. Uncertainties
7. Climate forcings
a. Solar influences
b. Greenhouse gases
c. Aerosols
8. Paleo climate
a. Holocene
b. Ice ages
c. Geologic history
9. Scientific process
Types of Argument
1. Uninformed
2. Misinformed
3. Cherry Picking
4. Urban Myths
5. FUD
6. Non Scientific
7. Underdog Theories
8. Crackpottery
Levels of Sophistication
1. Silly
2. Naive
3. Specious
4. Scientific

Go get informed!!


12 thoughts on “Combatting Climate Skepticism for Dummies

  1. You guys are retarded, its all a government conspiracy. The climate has been changing steadily since forever. Get informed about both sides of the argument. You children are very ignorant.

  2. people are just selfish and dont care because their head is so far up their ass. what people need to figure out is that, if you like penguins, and you think your kid might also(or does) then you need to do your part and help keep them here so you can brag to people about how much yopu hepled save them.

  3. heh, heh, heh. is this what people are doing on there spare time? I hope you people really know what you’re talking about. I just have one question; what in your eyes is the so very toxic gas that is causing “global warming”? What are these emissions hoding that causes ice caps to melt? And it cannot be damns from larger cities around Uganda drying their rivers up. It must be global warming, because if I remember biology class carbon dioxide was a gas used added to hydrogen to create glucose to create energy which is used to buold the plant. This whole entire theory is about as reasonable as jews are our enemy. It is obviously meant to waste our money and be used for the governments gain.
    Silly liberals checks are for REAL workers.

  4. First of all, people who think that there is nothing wrong with the environment is wrong and they should look it uo in the website and see how much of the things are being extinct and how to emprove the world and every thing around us.

  5. Thankyou Bailey! Someone else who doesn’t just sit there and get misinformation fed to them.
    Ever heard of pounder the maunder or something written about climate change by someone with half a brain?
    This is bogus.
    Sure its hot now but we’re @ the end of a warming cycle and things are about to cool down. Hopefully that’ll be the end of this stupid debate. Unless the “scientists” can make it look like our “polluting” (which is natural anyway) CO2 is making the earth cool.
    Go on then, give Al Gore your money, your house, everything, but it wont get you anywhere.
    A little something of mine:
    The facts and the figures; are they the same thing?
    Does it strike you as odd that (supposedly):
    • the ten hottest years on record occurred in the last 15
    • the 20 hottest years on record occurred in the last 25
    The numbers are too perfect.
    But the main point wrong with these is just that they’re, well, wrong.
    And how can we predict the weather 50 years in advance if we can’t give an accurate report on tomorrow.
    About climate change;
    the climate is always changing, not just when it suits the figures.

  6. And you too have a brain JXJ.
    Says you Bailey.
    Look at both sides before you make up your mind.
    Oh and I meant Jonny has a brain.
    The format on this site is weird!
    Ignorant idiots.
    If you are right then why have over 18 000 people (including scientists) signed the Oregon petition?
    If you’re too ignorant to know what it is then look it up.
    Get some science into your head,

  7. The website is called green my ninja please

    Ever occur to u guys
    this is total bogus. Global warming is real.

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