Just a few weeks ago, our good friends at the National Center for Science Education announced they are stepping into the climate change arena. And that is welcome news. It’s never a bad thing having sound scientific, rational minds addressing the problems that concern us.
But climate change continues to be a very different type of inquiry point than say teaching creationism in science class. One of the reasons is, it’s often unclear what the claim or phenomenon is exactly that scientists are addressing. Just recently, BBC online reported that the scientific consensus on climate change may be cracking.
Now, that may seem ominous, but as the author of the BBC piece, Richard Black, points out, the idea that the “consensus is cracking” is troublesome in many ways. And I thought this idea would make for a great exercise in critical thinking and hopefully a good discussion.
What are your thoughts on this meme of “the consensus is cracking”? Is there any evidence for it? What exactly is the consensus that may be cracking? What are the scientific consensuses that could play into this notion? What is this on my elbow? If the idea that the concensus is cracking is true, does it matter? Why? Why not?
The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays at 3pm ET.