Romney’s Profs: Dude, Climate Change Is Real!

Mitt Romney, maybe you need to go back to college.

The Republican nominee for president has shifted in the past year from accepting that “the world is getting warmer” and “humans contribute” to climate change, to mocking President Obama for vowing to do something about it, to suggesting it could be happening but there’s no scientific consensus on it. But a new study finds Romney’s latest contention is at odds with the published work of professors at Harvard, Stanford and Brigham Young, the universities Romney attended.

Mitt Romney, Solyndra, Konarka

image via Romney for President

The Cambridge, Mass., nonprofit Better Future Project said 96.7 percent of the professors at that trio of schools who have published on climate change agree with the scientific consensus that the planet is getting warmer and humans are to a great extent driving the process.

Romney wasn’t the only pol to fare poorly in this study. Sen. Scott Brown and several House candidates from Massachusetts have “either at times publicly question(ed) whether or not the consensus exists, or fail(ed) to take a position on it,” contrary to the views of their professors. This underscored the point of the study: The science on climate change, while not unanimous on every detail, is firmly established on the central points, no matter what the politicians say.

The report “merely seeks to demonstrate the gap that exists between the scientific community and the political community on the issue of climate science,” Better Future Project said. “Nothing in this report should be construed as an endorsement of any candidate for any position. Rather, this report is an endorsement of the idea that science should inform policy, and that candidates who reject the consensus of our nation’s experts should publicly declare which sets of experts they look to when making policy decisions.”

obama solar power

image via the White House

President Obama has been criticized by many on the left as timid in taking on climate change, but he’s never wavered in accepting the scientific consensus. The Better Future Project research showed that eight out of eight professors at Occidental College who have published in peer reviewed journals on climate change accept the consensus; 30 of 30 at Columbia do, as well; and all 16 at Harvard are on board.

In fact, out of the 203 professors in the study who had published on climate change, only one – one! – did not accept that climate change is real and humans are largely responsible. That one was at BYU, where Romney spent most of his undergraduate years and received his bachelor’s in English, after a freshman year at Stanford.

See a PDF version of the entire study, including an analysis of Romney, Obama and candidates for Congress in Massachusetts, here.

Pete Danko is a writer and editor based in Portland, Oregon. His work has appeared in Breaking Energy, National Geographic's Energy Blog, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle and elsewhere.

  • mememine

    Science has betrayed us once again after poisoning the planet with their pesticides and cancer causing chemicals as they still refuse to say any crisis “WILL” happen, only “might” and “could” and… thus leaving us all looking like fools.
    NOT ONE single IPCC warning is without “maybes” despite “being at the tipping point, maybe” and threatening the voter’s children with deaths by CO2 is as good as voting for Romneycon. Climate change was Liberalism’s Iraq War of Climate WMD lies and fear mongering. Bush laughs and admires the legal exaggeration of “crisis”.
    *Occupywallstre­et does not even mention CO2 in its list of demands because of the bank-funded carbon trading stock markets run by corporations.

    *Obama has not mentioned the crisis in the last two State of the Unions addresses.

    *Julian Assange is of course a climate change denier.

    *Canada killed Y2Kyoto with a freely elected climate change denying prime minister and nobody cared, especially the millions of scientists warning us of unstoppable warming (a comet hit).

    Meanwhile, the entire world of SCIENCE, lazy copy and paste journalism and Liberal progressivism had allowed bank-funded and corporate-run “CARBON TRADING STOCK MARKETS”(ruled by trustworthy politicians) to trump the UN’s and entire world’s efforts into 3rd world fresh water relief, starvation rescue and 3rd world education for just over 26 years of insane attempts at climate CONTROL.