Seminar Review: Ivar Giaever on Global Warming

A lecture called “The strange case of “global warming” by Dr. Ivar Giaever was given on February 8 2012 at RPI. It was a classic armchair science critique. It was peppered with anecdotes, such as how much more nervous he was about a long ago conference appearance than he was at RPI (he meant to amuse I suppose – but how many of the audience realized that he was insulting them?). He also freely used ridicule, for example expressing incredulity that anybody could measure global temperature. He then contradicted himself when he claimed that the global temperature had not risen recently. He wound up concluding that global warming was a pseudoscience (“absolutely”).

I have to give students and faculty who attended the lecture credit. A good number of them challenged Dr. Giaever on both interpretation and on facts.

It is sad that a man with such a distinguished career (he won a Nobel Prize in physics) should find it acceptable to impugn the integrity of a whole community of scientists, self-admittedly on the basis of nothing more than his own opinions and Google searches.

Here is a link to an article by Peter Gleick that explains part of the deception involved in his argument, which is neither original nor new.

Glieck is CEO of the Pacific Institute, a MacArthur Fellow, and a member of the National Academy of Sciences

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