Global warming: Facts don’t change with the weather

curry testimonyThe issue of global warming is once again becoming a topic of hot debate in news headlines, among the scientific community and even in the halls of Congress. As the president is pushing for the most restrictive standards on emissions from fossil fuels in history, voices on both sides of the issue are speaking out.

However, modern journalists and some doomsday scientists regularly suppress any evidence or opinions that do not support their prophecy of a fossil fuel induced apocalypse. An honest look at valid data is rare within the “global warming” community.

Recently, some scientists have brought their concerns to Congress about the bias in the media and from those within the scientific community. In recent testimony before Congress, highly respected climate scientist Dr. Judith Curry, professor at the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Georgia Tech, addressed the problems brought on by the global warming alarmists.

In her sworn testimony, Dr. Curry stated, “The information cascade of climate change as apocalypse is impeding our ability to think rationally about how we should respond to climate change. …”

According to Dr. Curry, the Earth’s climate has been warming since the 1700s. But to what extent have humans contributed to this trend? She says, “It is very difficult to separate out the impacts of human caused climate change from natural climate change and from other societal impacts.” The clear and honest answer, scientifically speaking, is that we don’t know the extent human activity is having on climate change — if any at all.

Recently, I was asked to weigh in on the climate change debate and offer my views on the subject. Unfortunately, since my quote didn’t fit into the predetermined outcome, it was manipulated to fit the liberal narrative that conservatives are anti-environment and anti-science. The MDJ columnist conveniently omitted several key points within my statement, presenting a false narrative that furthered his agenda. If we’re going to present the facts, let’s present the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Here’s my comment in its entirety: “The climate has been changing as long as the Earth has existed. We absolutely should be good stewards of the planet, and I am very much opposed to reckless pollution and disregard for the environment, but I also know that some politicians and bureaucrats believe in whatever theory gives them an opportunity to take money from the energy sector and spend it themselves in the name of saving the planet.”

Interestingly, the columnist strategically omitted the second sentence about being good stewards of the environment and protecting against reckless pollution.

More often than not, conservatives are willing to engage in intelligent dialogue about climate change. However, the left must be willing to have the discussion without shrouding dissenting viewpoints or manipulating data. Truth is truth, no matter how inconvenient.

Scientists who question the cause of global warming are often given the same treatment that I received from the local columnist. While they may have legitimate arguments to slow the speed of the global warming train, their work is often discredited and, at worst, silenced.

Suppressing data that is contrary to a preconceived idea, and manipulating data to justify more burdensome government regulations, is frustrating for scientists such as Dr. Curry. No longer is global warming an honest scientific study, but a political movement that believes the end justifies the means. Dr. Curry, who has devoted 30 years studying climate change, does not reject the idea of climate change, but holds that “efforts to link dangerous impacts of extreme weather events to human-caused warming are misleading and unsupported by evidence.”

If we are going to have a debate on global warming, then let’s have it based on true, honest and empirical data. And, if journalists want to gain the trust and respect of their readers, they should also present the whole truth, not alter and adjust facts and statements to justify a predetermined end.

As we move forward, we must take a judicious approach toward enacting future climate policy, especially since our understanding of climate change is rapidly evolving. The last thing we want to do is enact job-killing regulations that weaken our position as a global energy leader and sacrifice America’s economy.

Human nature has a predictable way of avoiding realities that go against our core beliefs. Even if the data doesn’t support a preconceived idea, shouldn’t we be on a quest for truth — even if it makes us uncomfortable?

Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) represents Georgia’s 11th Congressional District, which includes all of Bartow and Cherokee counties and portions of Cobb and Fulton. Loudermilk serves on the House Committees on Homeland Security and Science, Space, and Technology.