Jack Kelly, in a column titled “Ship of Fools” (Jan. 12), trots out the usual suspects from the armamentarium of the anti-climate change clique. For example, he says, “For the 17th consecutive year, global temperatures were lower than in 1998.” This is true, insofar as it refers to atmospheric temperatures, but recent science informs us that up to 50 percent of our excess carbon dioxide is being absorbed by the oceans — a kind of “heat sink” for pollutants. This is, however, only a temporary reprieve, and, as the oceans are resultantly becoming more acidic, for marine biodiversity the damage may be irreparable.
Mr. Kelly’s other observations can be as easily dismissed by anyone riffling through science periodicals at a library or newsstand.
The real problem, as I see it, is that the average reader of this newspaper may well assume, in the absence of any disclaimer to the contrary, that he has been given at least tacit approval to “discuss the controversy.” In fact, outside the fevered imaginations of several ideologues, there is none. Climate change science, at least in broad outline, is solid and settled.
The Los Angeles Times has recently taken the bold and principled stance that it will no longer publish letters from climate-change deniers. Should we expect the PG, “One of America’s Great Newspapers,” to exhibit less probity toward science, or less responsibility to its readership?