Wednesday, November 11, 2009

APS Council Overwhelmingly Rejects Proposal to Replace Society’s Current Climate Change Statement

In a blow to those who still doubt the science and physics of anthropic global warming, the APS has overwhelmingly rejected a petition to soften the society's statement on this matter.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Council of the American Physical Society has overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to replace the Society’s 2007 Statement on Climate Change with a version that raised doubts about global warming.

The Council’s vote came after it received a report from a committee of eminent scientists who reviewed the existing statement in response to a petition submitted by a group of APS members. The petition had requested that APS remove and replace the Society’s current statement. The committee recommended that the Council reject the petition.

The committee also recommended that the current APS statement be allowed to stand, but it requested that the Society’s Panel on Public Affairs (POPA) examine the statement for possible improvements in clarity and tone. POPA regularly reviews all APS statements to ensure that they are relevant and up-to-date regarding new scientific findings.

Appointed by APS President Cherry Murray and chaired by MIT Physicist Daniel Kleppner, the committee examined the statement during the past four months. Dr. Kleppner’s committee reached its conclusion based upon a serious review of existing compilations of scientific research. APS members were also given an opportunity to advise the Council on the matter. On Nov. 8, the Council voted, accepting the committee’s recommendation to reject the proposed statement and refer the original statement to POPA for review.

What this means is that the APS, which is the preeminent society of physicists in the US, and which tends to be extremely conservative in its policy and statements, continues to support the prevailing consensus of AGW model based on the scientifically available studies and results. The APS has never been known to choose something based on a whim or political pressure (refer to its statement on Missile Defense project). That is why many anti-AGW camp were quick to latch on to any possible hint that the APS might change its stance, because they know that this would be a major coup for an organization as respected as this one to show some doubt in this issue. Just look at the brouhaha when the APS Newsletter published a contradicting viewpoint to AGW a while back!

Alas, this is not to be the case here, and the APS's statement on AGW is extremely clear.


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