My friend Mary Stafford-Smith sent me this article from The Australian newspaper last week. Dr Michael Ashley (Professor of astrophysics at the University of NSW) seems to have the final word in this debate!
It is hard to understate the depth of scientific ignorance that the inclusion of this information demonstrates. It is comparable to a biologist claiming that plants obtain energy from magnetism rather than photosynthesis.
Plimer has done an enormous disservice to science, and the dedicated scientists who are trying to understand climate and the influence of humans, by publishing this book. It is not “merely” atmospheric scientists that would have to be wrong for Plimer to be right. It would require a rewriting of biology, geology, physics, oceanography, astronomy and statistics. Plimer’s book deserves to languish on the shelves along with similar pseudo-science such as the writings of Immanuel Velikovsky and Erich von Daniken.
It is no great surprise that pseudo-scientific views such as Plimers’ are rife in economic geology circles, particularly the fossil fuel industries. What is surprising is that this sort of drivel comes from an academic, who apparently publishes in peer reviewed journals and supposedly accepts how science is done. This is particularly disturbing and surely a collective embarrassment to the academic geoscience community downunder.