Fletcher falls into the bias trap

Recently the Mirror published the opinion piece “Polluting the Climate Change Debate” by Tom Fletcher.

In it he chastises the use of the term pollution in reference to carbon emissions, due to it being an essential component of nature, or as he terms it, “life giving.”

The term pollution is defined as ‘the presence or introduction of a substance that can cause harmful effects.’ The term has been correctly applied in the past to other chemicals that also have an essential role in our ecosystem, such as ground level ozone, as well as more ambiguous things, such as noise.

The increase in our atmospheric carbon dioxide level past 400 ppm is inarguably a result of human activity, and the current and projected unchecked future levels will result in a number of significant harmful changes, most notably in weather patterns and rising sea levels.

The term pollution is, therefore, quite accurate. By quoting rare blogs which do not entirely agree with the overwhelming consensus of the scientific community and scolding celebrities, Fletcher shows himself quite guilty of the very bias that he claims is hindering the furtherance of the fossil fuel industry.

Jeff Temple

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