Professor Stephen Schneider of Stanford University, a prominent proponent of man-made global warming fears, appears to be backing off of his boast that he could “slaughter” skeptical scientists in a global warming debate. In a May 24, 2009 interview, Schneider publicly boasted any skeptical scientist would be “slaughtered in public debate” against him.
But after many dissenting scientists happily took up the debate challenge, it now appears Schneider is shying away from any such debate.
“I certainly will not schedule some political show debate in front of a non-scientific audience,” Schneider told the San Francisco Examiner in a follow up June 1, 2009 article.
“A presidential like debate format with shallow staccato jibes and no nuanced arguments, no–confusion only in that style. I never do those anymore,” Schneider explained.
Former Colorado State Climatologist Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. publicly accepted Schneider’s global warming debate challenge just days after it was issued. “I would be glad to debate Dr. Schneider…he represents a narrow perspective on climate science,” Pielke Sr. said on May 24, 2009. [Editor’s Note: Climate Depot was copied on many emails from scientists writing to Professor Schneider accepting his debate challange and Climate Depot also received numerous notes from many scientists eager to accept Schneider’s debate challenge in the past week.]
“If [Climatologist] Roger [Pielke Sr.] wants a debate, he can set one up at the American Meteorological Society meeting or the American Geophysical Union meeting and if dates work I’ll be happy to go and will encourage others like Ben Santer or Kevin Trenberth to join in. That I would do,” Schneider now asserts.
Schneider explained: “Some of the skeptics are going ballistic over my admittedly too provocative word ‘slaughter’–though given the framing I said I believe it would happen. But they misquote me in saying I challenged them to a debate. I challenged them to go to a legitimate scientific meeting with a knowledgeable audience and challenge from the floor with a room full of experts. I think they would be pretty unhappy with the outcome.”
Update: Meteorologist Joe D’Aleo weighs in on Schneider’s “terms” for a global warming debate.
“In other words, like the sports teams that prefer to play in the friendly confines of their home park than at a hostile away team’s stadium, Schneider insists on having the debate at one of the conferences attended by grant toting scientists and thus have a crowd of fellow alarmists to cheer him on and TO MAKE IT A FAIR FIGHT,” D’Aleo wrote on his IceCap.Us website on June 2, 2009.
Below is Climate Depot’s May 24, 2009 report on Schneider’s orginal debate challenge.
Skeptics ‘slaughtered’? Global Warming Professor Stephen Schneider boasts he could ‘slaughter skeptical scientists in public debate!’
Professor Stephen Schneider of Stanford University, a prominent proponent of man-made global warming fears has publicly challenged scientists skeptical of warming fears to debate. (Schneider’s public website with bio and contact info is here. ) Schneider was interviewed by Thomas Fuller of the San Francisco Examiner on May 24, 2009. [Update: Former Colorado State Climatologist Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. accepts the global warming debate challenge. See: Pielke Sr. ‘I would be glad to debate Dr. Schneider…he represents a ‘narrow perspective on climate science’ – May 24, 2009 ]
Examiner Excerpt: Question: More specifically, the principal skeptic websites (Watt’s Up With That, Climate Skeptic, Climate Audit and Climate Science) that I look at regularly seem to think they are winning the day. They think data is coming in that questions the established paradigm.
Schneider: They have been thinking that as long as I have observed them and they have very few mainstream climate scientists who publish original research in climate refereed journals with them–a petroleum geologist’s opinion on climate science is a as good as a climate scientists opinion on oil reserves. So petitions sent to hundreds of thousands of earth scientists are frauds. If these guys think they are “winning” why don’t they try to take on face to face real climatologists at real meetings–not fake ideology shows like Heartland Institute–but with those with real knowledge–because they’d be slaughtered in public debate by Trenberth, Santer, Hansen, Oppenheimer, Allen, Mitchell, even little ol’ me. It’s easy to blog, easy to write op-eds in the Wall Street Journal.
Question: How would you characterize the state of play regarding scientific discussion regarding anthropogenic contributions to global warming? What is happening in science today that bears on the debate?
Schneider: Not much change over the past few decades, except nature is cooperating with theory as formerly theoretical projections like heat waves and ice melt is now observed–at faster rates than predicted. All in IPCC and NAS reports. Why ice is melting faster than the models suggest is still not known, but certainly not encouraging!
For complete interview with Schneider see Examiner’s article here: