Have 500 scientists denied the danger of climate change?


At least that’s how it reads in reports on websites like Tichy’s Einblick. On September 26, an article appeared there entitled “500 scientists declare: ‘There is no climate emergency'”. According to the analysis tool Crowdtangle, the article was shared more than 6900 times on Facebook.

In Switzerland, “Weltwoche” reported on 9 October under the title “Fresh air for the climate debate” on the “European Climate Declaration” signed by “500 qualified personalities”.

This is reason enough to tackle the issue of climate change, because here too there is a lot of misinformation and targeted, manipulative disinformation campaigns circulating on the Internet. Unlike the disinformation campaigns on 5G, these campaigns are not aimed at preventing a new infrastructure and it must remain a mystery why someone is sawing through the climate branch on which we are all sitting, but they do exist and we must deal with them.

The Infosperber has examined the above-mentioned declaration in detail and compared it with scientifically founded facts.

Conclusion: Although the statements are – with the exception of two – partially correct, they often omit central contexts, such as previous research or the assessment of official bodies. Because these important positions are missing, the claims can be misleadingly read. (In plain language: they are misleading.)

In addition, not a single assertion is accompanied by comprehensible sources, evidence or quotations, although this is actually the norm in science. Such assertions are not verifiable and thus cannot be disproved – a widespread manipulation technique, which appears particularly in connection with propaganda techniques of populist election campaigns. For an assessment of the different types of information, we recall our earlier articles, “What is scientific thinking?” and “5 types of information“.

The organisation Climate Feedback has also had the open letter analysed by six researchers: They conclude that its overall scientific credibility is “very low”. Thus, the letter is more like “raisin-picking”, it is inaccurate and biased. Last but not least, it should be mentioned that the 500 persons are not only scientists and that some of them have demonstrably falsified biographies. The real scientists in the list are mostly not climate scientists, so they don’t know more about the topic than anyone else.

Continue to read the fact-check in full length (in German)


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