by David Safier
The Star has a very short print excerpt from a longer AP article about physicist Richard Muller's discovery that global warming is for real. This should be about as earth shattering a news story as an 1850 piece like, "Astronomer discovers Earth revolves around Sun." But Muller was the global deniers' scientific ace in the hole. "See, here's a guy who's not a nutjob or a corporate hack like the rest of us, and he thinks the numbers have been cooked just like we do."
Indeed he did, because he didn't trust the methodology used by climate change scientists. So, non-nutjob that he is, he decided to start over and do the analysis right, funded in large part -- I love this -- by the Daddy Warbucks of deniers, the Koch Brothers.
What Muller found was, the difference between his findings and that of the climate change scientists basically amounted to a rounding error. They were right! he decided.
There is no reason now to be a skeptic about steadily increasing temperatures, Muller wrote recently in The Wall Street Journal's editorial pages, a place friendly to skeptics. Muller did not address in his research the cause of global warming. The overwhelming majority of climate scientists say it's man-made from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. Nor did his study look at ocean warming, future warming and how much of a threat to mankind climate change might be.
Still, Muller said it makes sense to reduce the carbon dioxide created by fossil fuels.
"Greenhouse gases could have a disastrous impact on the world," he said. Still, he contends that threat is not as proven as the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says it is.
Muller still maintains a touch of skepticism, but he's clearly changed sides.
So, deniers. Your one credible witness has turned on you, not because he doesn't like you (after all, he'd have an endless source of funding if he came stayed in Denier Land), but because he's an honest man who believes in good science and good data.
Now it's your move. I know what you're going to say, but it's gonna be fun to watch you say it.