… and if we don’t stop emitting carbon, our children won’t be able to control the climate. BTW, where is the global thermostat?
From the transcript of James Hansen’s testimony before the House of Commons:
Q7 Dr Offord: Thank you. As a result of the report from the Meteorological Office, some of the press have picked up on this and decided that global change isn’t happening and we don’t need to continue in the fashion that I hope some of us are trying to achieve. Some politicians are swayed by that kind of media reporting. How do you feel that we should disseminate some more of the research that you have been talking about-not among just politicians, but among the public as a whole-to try to get across the conditions that you describe?
Professor Hansen: That phenomenon with the media and these overreactions is what Albert Einstein referred to. He stopped communicating with the press because he said they made it sound like every year there is a revolution, like in these little Eastern European countries; in his day, there were revolutions in these small Balkan countries that had global implications. However, the science is not fluctuating crazily from year to year. There are fundamental facts that override.
Of course, there are interesting things that happen on short timescales, and we like to understand those, but it doesn’t change our overall understanding that humans have now become the dominant driving force for climate change on decadal timescales. So there is no reason to alter the goals and the requirement that will bring the human-made forcing under control, or we will leave our children with a situation that is out of their control. [Emphasis added]