Climate Debate Daily is a shiny new site from the nice people who brought you Arts & Letters Daily. Dennis “A&L” Dutton, who is sceptical about the idea that the present warming trend is mostly anthropogenic, has got together with Douglas Campbell, a philosopher/biologist /computer scientist who isn’t. In their own words:
Climate Debate Daily is intended to deepen our understanding of disputes over climate change and the human contribution to it. The site links to scientific articles, news stories, economic studies, polemics, historical articles, PR releases, editorials, feature commentaries, and blog entries. The main column on the left includes arguments and evidence generally in support of the IPCC position on the reality of significant anthropogenic global warming. The right-hand column includes material skeptical of the IPCC position and the notion that anthropogenic global warming represents a genuine threat to humanity.
While we welcome such a high profile effort to promote discussion of climate change issues – and there’s certainly a lot of great material up on the site already – we are not entirely convinced about their binary, for-and-against approach to the subject. One of our main quibbles with the way the climate change debate is presented is precisely that the IPCC “consensus” belies a broad range of nuanced positions and arguments – both scientific and political – as does the so-called sceptic camp. Given Dutton and Campbell’s mission statement, one wonders in what column they’d put an article arguing, for example, that climate change is real and anthropogenic (à la IPCC WGI), but that efforts to mitigate are misguided (contrary to WGII and III). Time will no doubt tell.