1970s Global Cooling Consensus
Q.1. Whether there was a consensus in the 1970s
There was no consensus among scientists on global cooling; it was a media hoax. The information contained in the scientific literature between 1965 and 1979 confirm that there was no such thing as global cooling. This literature was written by scientists and peer-reviewed meaning they were the best in the field. Also, a 19977 survey after the severe winter of 1976/77 of Eastern America confirms that scientists of the time were anticipating a slight global warming rather than a cooling. A survey carried out by the authors identified 44 articles between 1965 and 1979 talking about global warming while seven articles were for global cooling, and this indicates that majority of the scientists were biased towards global warming. Most of the reviews in the 1970s addressed the issue of global warming, and if at all there was a consensus, it should be about global warming and not cooling.
Q.2 whether the media should frame the discussion
The role of the media in any discussion cannot be overlooked. The media should frame the debate on the global change to influence policymakers, and it should be done with a lot of caution. Seemingly, it was the media that misled the masses about the 1970s global cooling consensus. The media gave all the misleading information on global cooling, and none of it came from scientific websites; these shows how deceptive the media can sometimes be. The press should also frame discussion but after extensive consultations with experts in the field to ensure no misleading information is given out.
Q.3 the author’s argument
The authors contend that the measure of relevance of a research paper to developing scientific consensus is the number of citations. I disagree with them, but partly. Although the number of citations is significant, what matters most is the quality of the quote. Therefore, the correct measure of relevance of paper in developing scientific consensus should be both the quality and quantity of citations.