How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic

How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic: Responses to the most common skeptical arguments on global warming | A Grist Special Series | Grist.

Below is a complete listing of the articles in “How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic,” a series by Coby Beck containing responses to the most common skeptical arguments on global warming. There are four separate taxonomies; arguments are divided by:

Individual articles will appear under multiple headings and may even appear in multiple subcategories in the same heading.

Stages of Denial

  1. There’s nothing happening
    1. Inadequate evidence
    2. Contradictory evidence
    3. No consensus
  2. We don’t know why it’s happening
    1. Models don’t work
    2. Prediction is impossible
    3. We can’t be sure
  3. Climate change is natural
    1. It happened before
    2. It’s part of a natural change
    3. It’s not caused by CO2
  4. Climate change is not bad
    1. The effects are good
  5. Climate change can’t be stopped
    1. Too late
    2. It’s someone else’s problem
    3. Economically infeasible

Scientific Topics

  1. Temperature
  2. Atmosphere
  3. Extreme events
    1. Temperature records
  4. Cryosphere
    1. Glaciers
    2. Sea ice
    3. Ice sheets
  5. Oceans
  6. Modeling
    1. Scenarios
    2. Uncertainties
  7. Climate forcings
    1. Solar influences
    2. Greenhouse gases
    3. Aerosols
  8. Paleo climate
    1. Holocene
    2. Ice ages
    3. Geologic history
  9. Scientific process

Types of Argument

  1. Uninformed
  2. Misinformed
  3. Cherry Picking
  4. Urban Myths
  5. FUD
  6. Non Scientific

Levels of Sophistication

  1. Silly
  2. Naive
  3. Specious
  4. Scientific

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