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The Sciences

Al Gore Launches the "Climate Reality Project"

The IntersectionBy Chris MooneyJuly 12, 2011 11:12 PM

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Here's the description, and note the Enlightenment language:

Climate change is not your fault for the car you drive, the lights you turn on, or the food you eat. The climate crisis is our problem. Real solutions, systemic solutions, innovative solutions, can only come when we address it together. That’s what The Climate Reality Project will do. Without doubt. Without delay. And with your help. The Climate Reality Project is bringing the facts about the climate crisis into the mainstream and engaging the public in conversation about how to solve it. We help citizens around the world reject the lies and take meaningful steps to bring about change. Founded and chaired by Al Gore, Nobel Laureate and former Vice President of the United States, The Climate Reality Project has more than 5 million members and supporters worldwide. It is guided by one simple truth: The climate crisis is real and we know how to solve it.

The problem is, what if we don't all agree upon the same "reality"? If so, calling for an embrace of the "facts" and an end to "doubt" won't work, because we lack a consensus about what the facts are--and everybody has an argument that he/she thinks is right and convincing (even if it's just the result of motivated reasoning). In my view, Gore has been pretty much right about the science of climate all along. But sad to say, everything I've learned about this issue convinces me that there is little he can say or do to get conservative climate "skeptics" to accept that. Yes, they need to renounce their counter-reality and come back to this one. But paradoxically, having Al Gore tell them that may just drive them farther away. Let's hope he can appeal to the middle, anyway...

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