Scientists blast Jonathan Franzen's 'climate doomist' opinion column as 'the worst piece on climate change'
- Scientists and climate experts are furious after a New Yorker opinion column declared the fight against climate change useless.
- In an essay entitled "What If We Stop Pretending" published Sunday, journalist and author Jonathan Franzen writes that the destruction of the planet by human-induced climate change is inevitable and that environmentalists and climate change activists are delusional for trying to stop it.
- Alex Steffen, an author focused on climate issues, tweeted that he "would vote for this as the worst piece on climate change yet published this decade-flawed in both concept and execution, morally cowardly, and lavishly self-indulgent."
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Scientists and climate experts are furious after a New Yorker opinion column declared the fight against climate change useless.In an essay entitled "What If We Stop Pretending" published Sunday, journalist and author Jonathan Franzen writes that the destruction of the planet by human-induced climate change is inevitable and that environmentalists and climate change activists are delusional for trying to stop it.
The scientific consensus is that reducing emissions can still slow climate change. An October 2018 report by the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change found that keeping global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius of pre-industrial average temperatures could reduce the frequency of the most dangerous climate events, such as severe drought and extreme heat.Franzen disagrees with the notion.
"If you're younger than sixty, you have a good chance of witnessing the radical destabilization of life on earth-massive crop failures, apocalyptic fires, imploding economies, epic flooding, hundreds of millions of refugees fleeing regions made uninhabitable by extreme heat or permanent drought," Franzen wrote in The New Yorker. "If you're under thirty, you're all but guaranteed to witness it."UC Santa Barbara assistant professor Leah Stokes, NYU professor and climate economist Gernot Wagner, Project Drawdown director and environmental scientist Jonathan Foley, and author Alex Steffen were among those who criticized Franzen's opinion.
Both Franzen and The New Yorker did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment.
Thanks @NewYorker for publishing this terrible article by Jonathan Franzen which is so off base it would be laughable if it wasn't so problematic. Love it when our most prominent outlets give voice to doomsday climate predictions that are wildly out of step with reality. THREAD. pic.twitter.com/NL2PpfJB5w- Leah Stokes (@leahstokes) September 8, 2019
This @NewYorker take by Jonathan Franzen ist indeed horribly off base, beginning with pretending that something magically happens at 2.000001°C that isn't occuring at 1.999999°C.- Gernot Wagner (@GernotWagner) September 8, 2019
Yes, 2°C has its uses. No it's not some God-given bright line. https://t.co/ij5b9AQyxv
This is such a shallow, poorly researched, self-indulgent piece.- Dr. Jonathan Foley (@GlobalEcoGuy) September 8, 2019
Probably one of the worst climate pieces I've ever read outside the denier's camp.
- After violent clashes with police, farmers swarm Red Fort
- DMRC closed entry and exit gates of yellow, green, violet and blue lines in surge of farmers protest
- Delhi Police fires tear-gas shells on farmers near Akshardham temple and Sanjay Gandhi Transport Nagar
- Protesting farmers break barricades at Delhi borders, entering the national capital ahead of time
- BJD chalks out issues for upcoming budget session of Parliament