Freeman Dyson at Realclimate

  • 10 Feb 2011, 11:34
  • Luke

Real Climate's Eric Steig and Ray Pierrehumbert have written an engaging post about Freeman Dyson, the world-renowned physicist and member of the Global Warming Policy Foundation's academic advisory board.

Quoting Kenneth Brower, Dyson's biographer, they try to answer the question: "How could someone as smart as Freeman Dyson… be so wrong about climate change and other environmental concerns?"

They observe that Dyson's fascination has always been with the stars and space travel, rather than the earth. They also question his knowledge of ecosystems and biodiversity, suggesting he is more of an "extreme techno-optimist" than a climate sceptic.

... Dyson has an abiding faith in the ability of technology to do anything we want it to. It's not surprising, then, that Dyson thinks we can 'fix climate' as well. That, in itself, makes Dyson not so much a "global warming skeptic" as an extreme techno-optimist. In fact, even leaving technology aside, he has a touching faith that whatever humans may do to the environment, it usually turns out for the best.

Read it here.

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