Archive for Claude Allègre

Climatic street fight

Posted in Books, University life with tags , , on April 3, 2010 by xi'an

While a former US vice-president, Al Gore, dedicates his time and energy to warn about global warming, a former French minister for education and retired head of the Earth sciences institute in Paris (IPGP) engages into a crusade against it! Claude Allègre is an internationally recognised geochemist and a member of the French Academy of Sciences, as well as a foreign correspondent of the US National Academy of Sciences, but his attempts at establishing that climate change is part of a natural cycle and not partly induced by human activities are of a very low scientific level. He recently published a popular science book called L‘Imposture Climatique ou la Fausse Ecologie where he repeatedly bends facts and references to fit his thesis. (The curve above is a reproduction of the curve of temperatures shown in the book [black] versus the one initially published by Grudd [in red].) The impact of this book is obviously negligible at the scientific level, but the agressivity of Allègre’s tone against academic climate specialists is such that a petition of 400 scientists protesting against the accusations contained in the book (and reflecting the current suspicions from the “public” about climatologists) has been sent to the current minister for higher education and research, as well as to the Academy of Sciences, in order to establish the debate at the proper academic level. Not that this should have the slighest impact on public opinion, of course! (Or it could simply reinforce the lack of trust about “scientific” arguments…)