BY JOHN LANG
To support the release of Richard Black’s new book, get your copy here: Denied: The Rise and Fall of Climate Contrarianism.
Denied would make a great Christmas present for your climate-change-denying uncle. But if he’s already a lost cause, Denied would equally suit your climate-curious friend — Black’s run down on the scientific aspects of human-induced climate change is as good as it gets.
We’re planning to review Denied in full early in the new year.
A Note About Denied’s author
Richard Black is Director of the Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit. He studied Natural Sciences at Cambridge University before joining BBC World Service in 1985. He subsequently produced and presented on a wide range of programmes including current affairs, science, health and sport. While he was with the BBC, Black had longstanding stints as their Science and Environment Correspondent.
A Note On Climate Denial
I was first brought to the issue of climate change by the blood-boiling realisation of its denial. Merchants of Doubt, by Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway, was the book that awoke me to it. History will one day join science and evidence in providing vindication to the Black’s, Naomi Oreskes’, Erik Conway’s, Michael Mann’s, Chris Mooney’s, James Hoggan’s, Matthew Hope’s, David Mitchell’s and DeSmog’s of this world. These names represent a mere fraction of the journalists who have devoted the better part of their careers to revealing denial in all its glory.
While most ‘contrarians’ will soon be dead, their ideas will not be. The disinformation they’ve sown will be alive for many moons to come. Most perniciously, climate denial has massively exacerbated the public confusion surrounding the causes and seriousness of climate change, in the UK and around the world. Of course, not every contrarian position is ‘denial’ — Black makes that abundantly clear. But denial in its broadest sense is espoused, consciously or subconsciously, to ensure that policies aimed at transitioning societies from a fossil fuel to low-carbon economy are continually retarded.
Or in other words, to keep the good times — and the ideology of the good times — rolling.