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Interview With Michael Mann: Climate Change Denial And Attacks On Scientists In Age Of Trump

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Hosts Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola are joined by Michael Mann, who is a distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Penn State University. He also directs the Penn State University Earth Science Center. And he’s the co-author of the book, “The Madhouse Effect: How Climate Change Denial Is Destroying The Planet, Ruining Our Politics, and Driving Us Crazy.”

Mann recounts his experience testifying before the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, which is chaired by Republican Representative Lamar Smith, a massive climate change denier. He addresses the chilly atmosphere for scientists currently in Washington, DC, and talks about the dire situation the world finds itself on as President Donald Trump rolls back initiatives intended to combat climate change.

Later in the show, Mann talks about why he wrote a satirical book about climate change. He also highlights the Science March planned for April 22, when scientists will mobilize against the Trump administration for its agenda of climate change denial and attacks on science.

“Anywhere between 97 percent and 99 percent of publishing scientists, depending on the study that you look at, [are] all on record. Climate change is real. It’s human-caused. It’s already a problem. So this is the overwhelming consensus of the world scientists, and yet at that congressional hearing, as you noted, I was the only witness there to basically put forward the consensus view on the science, and then there were three contrarian witnesses, who have attempted to attack the science in various ways in the past.”

Mann suggested any field has its “iconoclasts.” Those in science, who take contrarian views and deny the reality of climate change, have a great incentive to take such a position. “Fossil fuel interests are more than happy to provide funds for them in various ways, to promote them, to sell their books, to fly them around to give presentations.”

On the March For Science planned for April 22 (Earth Day), Mann said it speaks volumes that scientists are organizing a massive demonstration. “When you see [scientists] marching in the streets, you know the attacks on scientists have reached yet a new threshold. They’ve become so bad that scientists have decided they have no choice but to make their voices heard.”

To listen to the interview, click the above player or go here.

Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure."