1995 Global Climate Coalition Draft Climate Change Science Primer

“Predicting Future Climate Change: A Primer” is a draft document from the Global Climate Coalition (GCC), dated December 1995. This document and others were submitted during discovery in Green Mtn. Chrysler Plymouth Dodge Jeep v. Crombie and Central Valley Chrysler-Jeep, Inc. v. Witherspoon. Covered in part by The New York Times in 2009, the full set are available in full here.

Written after the publication of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Second Assessment, this document acknowledged the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming while highlighting remaining uncertainties – showing industry how they could emphasize those uncertainties. The draft primer, created by Lenny Bernstein of Mobil Corporation, said “[t]he scientific basis for the Greenhouse Effect and the potential impact of human emissions of greenhouse gases such as CO2 on climate is well established and cannot be denied.”

The draft also included a section debunking “contrarian theories” on climate change. In the document, the work of climate deniers Patrick Michaels and Richard Lindzen was characterized by Bernstein as “not convincing.” In the GCC’s “Year-End Bulletin,” published the same month as this document, the GCC cited both Lindzen and Michaels and advanced the likelihood of natural warming.

“The contrarian theories raise interesting questions about our total understanding of climate processes, but they do not offer convincing arguments against the conventional model of greenhouse gas emission-induced climate change,” it said.

Members of the GCC later removed the draft language acknowledging the areas of scientific consensus and eliminated the last five pages debunking “contrarian theories” from the primer before it was made public.

Interested in more GCC documents? See more in the full Global Climate Coalition collection.

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