The Skeptics Handbook is officially launched. It’s been quietly circulating by word of mouth since late July 2008 when it was sent to a few key Australian politicians, and the producers of 60 minutes. The most up to date version is on my Global Warming page.
The Handbook gives policy makers a strategy to cut through the endless irrelevant details of the debate. There are many points where the science of Global Warming is open to challenge (that’s how science works), but debating each one becomes an endless path of swapping tit for tat detail. If you enjoy that kind of stimulating discussion, go for it, but that’s not what this is about.
I want to lift the debate above the mud-slinging, pathetic ad hominem attacks, and specious argument by authority. The basic rules of logic and reasoning have been known since the Greeks. Educated adults ought to do better. Maybe one day, national curriculums will too.
“Use a surgical strike, rather than a scattergun approach”.
As a delegate to the UNFCCC conference in Bali 2007 it was obvious that skeptics need to be organized. The problem was not a lack of material, but rather too much to choose from. The handbook focuses on the only points that matter. Less is more.
If you want to add a link to the handbook, please link to the Global Warming page http://joannenova.com.au/wp/global-warming/, not directly to the pdf file, because it will change and grow as the news, weather or feedback warrants it. Obviously if someone can produce empirical evidence that adding extra carbon dioxide, above current atmospheric concentrations, measurably affects our climate, I’m all ears; I’ll update the handbook and change my mind.
What else would a scientist do?
Links to sources used in the Skeptics Handbook are here.
UPDATE: Feb 20 2012 -- For the petty ad hom minds who are looking for smears… I wrote the Skeptics Handbook entirely unfunded and independently. I offered it as a free PDF purely out of patriotic duty and professional concern. Those who do “science by vested-interests” presumably will become skeptics now right? (lol).
UPDATE: Feb 22 2012 — The “best” attempt to debunk the Handbook was by John Cook of un-skepticalscience. It took him two years with the help of UWA and 4 or 5 professors, and I explained why he was wrong on every point in just 4 days.