News of the Day ... in Perspective5/1/2005
Leading scientific journals censor debate
While news reports frequently state that reputable scientists all agree about the threat of man-caused global warming, researchers charge that the world’s leading scientific journals, Science and Nature, refuse to publish papers that challenge the supposed consensus.
The controversy followed publication by Science of a paper that claimed to demonstrate complete agreement among climate experts. Naomi Oreskes of the University of California claimed to have analyzed almost 1,000 papers on the subject since the early 1990s and concluded that 75 percent of them either explicitly or implictly backed the consensus view, and none directly dissented from it.
Dr. Benny Peiser of Liverpool John Moores University conducted his own analysis of the same 1,000 documents and concluded that only one-third backed the consensus view, while only one percent did so explicitly. Science rejected his findings, claiming that they had already been dispersed on the internet and were “not perceived to be novel.”
Professor Roy Spencer of the University of Alabama said that once he and his coworkers had produced research on satellite temperature measurements casting doubt on manmade global warming, they were no longer sent papers to review.
“Other scientists have had the same experience,” he said. “The journals have a small set of reviewers who are pro-global warming.”
Dr. Peiser says that “there is fear that any doubt will be used by politicians to avoid action [on global warming.] But if political considerations dictate what gets published, it’s all over for science.” (News Telegraph 5/1/05)