A comprehensive survey of science teachers at middle and high schools across the US, conducted by the journal “Science”, finds that teachers generally devote a paltry 1 to 2 hours to the topic of climate change, and despite the fact 97 per cent of experts agree climate change is mainly human-caused, many teachers still “teach the controversy”, suggesting a sizeable “consensus gap” exists. The survey showed seven in 10 teachers mistakenly believe that at least a fifth of experts dispute human-caused climate change.
Vested interests in fossil fuels, led by the Koch brothers and Exxon, have spent tens of millions of dollars to create the impression of a consensus gap, orchestrating a public relations campaign aimed at attacking the science and the scientists, and confusing the public about the reality and threat of climate change. They also created a partisan political divide on the issue, most evident in the US.
Our children will bear the brunt of the climate crisis, battling coastal inundation, extreme weather, withering droughts and devastating floods. We owe it to them not only to give them the facts, but to help them clean up the mess that we created.
(Michael Mann, distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Pennsylvania State University).
This nonsense about the science of climate change is not confined to schools. You encounter it frequently, although rarely among well-informed and educated people. Members of Congress, supplicants at the tables of the oil and gas companies, are particularly guilty. I think there should be a memorial set up on the Mall in Washington DC. The monument should read
“To the irresponsible, greedy and short-sighted people who fought the idea of man-made climate change, and thus bequeathed to future generations flood, tempest, starvation, drought, unpredictable weather, and mass migration. Their companies and CEO’s are listed below. May They be forgiven.”