To the Editor:
Thank you for publishing Professor Michael Mann’s response to Andrew Engleman’s climate change letter that raised so many unsubstantiated claims about climate change, false claims that have been debunked many times. I understand Mr. Engleman’s confusion about climate change. Although I am married to a scientist and heard him tell me for 30 years about his worries about global warming, I never understood what he was talking about. I never appreciated the magnitude of the problem, nor its urgency. I am embarrassed to admit that while shoveling out from record snow falls, I too expressed certainty that global warming was untrue.
I only paid attention to a call for climate action when it came from a friend. Why could I hear her but not my husband? Perhaps because my scientist-husband was trained to explain the scientific facts but not to advocate. His training taught him to speak from the head, but not from the heart. My friend spoke from her heart, and my heart heard and knew what she was saying was true.
So what did I do? I joined Citizens’ Climate Lobby to learn how to advocate effectively: from the heart, with the facts, with respect but applying sustained effort. CCL volunteers lobby for Congressional legislation to reduce emissions and slow global warming.
Now, when I respond to articles or letters denying climate change, I often need to check the facts about carbon emissions, climate change, the organized misinformation campaign and those who are doing the most to undermine the political will to affect change. I keep Michael Mann’s book Hockey Stick and Climate Wars on my desk as a reference. I found it to be an excellent introduction to the issue that even I, a non-scientist, can understand and appreciate.