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Climate change is real despite the skeptics

Richard Haddad's commentary "Get past alarmism on global warming" (Oct. 26) is the usual diatribe of denial on this subject. He uses a false standard — that there is no unanimity among scientists studying the issue — to suggest that science does not support the view that global warming is a significant problem.

True, there is no "unanimity" — there rarely is among scientific researchers. But there is a strong consensus that human activity contributes to global warming.

The so-called "scandal" of scientific investigators inventing or misrepresenting data has been refuted by reputable scientific groups who found no evidence of fraud or misconduct by climate researchers.

Skeptics may continue to cite "Climategate'" as a way of discrediting global warming, but there is no conspiracy either to suppress or to falsify the facts.

While Mr. Haddad cites Rasmussen polls to show that the public disagrees with the global warming hypothesis — polls that have a well-known conservative bias — he ignores a Gallup poll this year showing many more people worry about global warming than don't. Only 19 percent of those polled by Gallup said global warming isn't real.

In any case, public opinion is rarely a reliable way to evaluate scientific facts, especially when it is influenced by unscientific writings such as Mr. Haddad's.

Mark Silbergeld, Baltimore

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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