Environment

A Climate Olive Branch

Collide-a-ScapeBy Keith KloorJun 22, 2011 3:06 PM

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Leo Hickman in the Guardian takes stock of some recent encouraging developments and muses:

Could peace talks ever end the 'climate war'?

In his article, he wonders,

are there any shared goals between the two warring parties in the climate debate worth finding "peace" for?

Towards the end, he sums up:

When so much of this war is fought in anonymous online forums (see below for details!), would it be constructive to bring these two groups together in a room to begin tentative "peace talks" based on first trying to identify any common ground? Or is it hopelessly naïve of me to even suggest that this could ever bring positive results?

My immediate reaction to Hickman's olive branch (before reading any response to it) was captured by the "BBD" commenter at Bishop Hill's blog:

My own small experience - some of it in comments here - is that closed minds rule.

And indeed, a quick scan of the 100-plus comments on that thread bear this out. Hickman, in his comment at Bishop Hill's, also noticed:

Thanks for responding to my Guardian article. Unless Andrew [Montford] has his own views, I'll conclude from the reaction here that the answer to my headline question is a resounding 'no'. It's a shame that there doesn't appear to be any common ground at all, but I'm glad I asked the question.

I have some ideas on why I think the hostilities between the warring camps will continue unabated, but first I'd like to hear from you. Do you think the 'climate war' will grind on, irrespective of olive branches waved from either side? Or do you see some possible middle ground that can be agreed on?

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