Since we seem to be having a Vox-centric day here at Twitchy, why not make room for one more piece from the explainers hard at work there? This one’s surprising because it sounds a lot to us not only like fake news, but fake news that’s good for climate change skeptics.
Almost 90% of Americans don’t know there’s scientific consensus on global warming https://t.co/m3PP05V0cX
— Eliza Barclay (@elizabarclay) July 6, 2017
This is so alarming I almost don't believe it. I can't believe that most of my fellow liberals don't know there is general consensus.
— LP (@LegLamp) July 6, 2017
You made that number up. I'm sure it's high. But I'm 100% certain that you pulled that 90% out of your ass. Everyone makes up statistics.
— HamBurgler (@HamiltonBurger) July 6, 2017
According to a recently conducted survey of 1,266 adults, “only 13 percent of Americans correctly identified that more than 90 percent of all climate scientists have concluded that human-caused global warming is happening.” Again, that just seems impossible believe, if only for the fact that any climate skeptic who speaks up is “corrected” immediately by hordes citing the mythical “97 percent” number.
Vox’s concern is that the perception of an overwhelming scientific consensus is essential to motivating people to take action — something the authors of the study knew full well and included in their introduction:
Why is perception of scientific consensus so important? Turns out that it’s actually a “gateway belief” to support for public action on climate change, according to a study from 2015 cited in the report. In other words, the more one perceives there to be a scientific consensus on the reality of human-caused climate change, the more likely they are to believe that it is real and worrisome. And the more one believes that human-caused climate change is real and worrisome, the more likely one is to support public action on the issue.
Not only does science not operate by consensus; the 97 percent figure itself is the result of a study — a study that no one seems to question. So now we’re looking at a survey to determine how many Americans are aware of a study about which they’ve been told practically nothing aside from a single number.
Vox says the survey result is “not good,” but we’re encouraged that people aren’t buying every number they’re fed — that’s not good for science, either.
"Consensus" is a political term, it has no place in scientific discussions.
— Uncommon Sense (@MeosoFunny) July 6, 2017
As Michael Crichton explains, "consensus is NOT science." pic.twitter.com/OgoV1kdlXc
— Soquel by the Creek (@SoquelCreek) July 6, 2017
'Scientific consensus' is an oxymoron. 'Largely agree' would be much better.
— Hans Koevoet (@hans_koevoet) July 6, 2017
— Erin WG (@erin_wg3) July 6, 2017
science doesn't have clue how much humans contribute 2 climate warming & are clueless how much methane earth spews (30x worse)
— Leonard Dye (@PutterX) July 6, 2017
Earth's Climate is always changing. Huge warming trend in Middle Ages & Mini Ice Age in 18th century, neither caused by humans #climatehoax
— Charlotte Corday (@Ursula007007) July 6, 2017
It'd be swell to have a source on that number, and the source for the consensus.
— Riley R (@rileymancr) July 6, 2017
Here again is the source for the 97 percent consensus; if that 13 percent “correct” number is surprisingly low, what’s even more surprising is how heavily the AGW crowd has leaned on this one study of “consensus” in place of actual climate research to garner public backing.
* * *
More swamp to drain: Map of flooded Washington, DC shows the upside of climate change https://t.co/AIAltUKqOR
— Twitchy Team (@TwitchyTeam) June 2, 2017