Is there a consensus among scientists that human activity is causing climate change?

Submitted by: LCheng 132

Yes, there is a consensus among scientists that human activity is causing climate change. The vast majority of studies in this list came to this conclusion. Note that some of the studies in this list have been critiqued. (Links to critiques appear on the corresponding study summaries below).
This short answer was generated by aggregating the answers that each of the 11 studies below gave to the question (as indicated by State of K members) and adjusting for source quality and other factors. If key studies are missing or the answers attributed to individual studies are incorrect, the above answer could be wrong.
10
YES ANSWERS
0
NO ANSWERS
1
MIXED RESULTS ANSWERS
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INSUFFICIENT EVIDENCE ANSWERS
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NO DATA ON ANSWER


Chart summary of 11 studies examining this question
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All answers are assigned by State of K users. The label Mixed means that a study found some evidence to indicate that the answer to the question is "yes" and some evidence to indicate that the answer is "no". This label is often applied when a study uses two or more proxies to study the same phenomenon (i.e. firearm sales figures and self-reported firearm ownership rates as proxies for the prevalence of firearms) and the proxies yield different results when looking for correlations with another phenomenon (i.e. firearm-related deaths). Alternatively, the label may be applied if the phenomenon under study (i.e. whether breast milk improves cognitive function) is true for one group, but not another (i.e. true for girls, but not for boys). The label Insuff. Evidence means that a study found there was insufficient evidence to reach a conclusion regarding the question. The label No Data means that State of K wasn't able to identify the study's response to the question based on the information that was available. This label is often applied when the person creating the list does not have access to the full text and the answer isn't clear from the abstract.

All labels of Literature Reviews and Highly Regarded Source are assigned by State of K. The label Highly Regarded Source, as applied to journals, is a label assigned to the top 20 journals (as measured by the h-index) in various subcategories as classified and reported by Google Scholar. As applied to NGOs, the label is assigned to US NGOs ranked by the TTCSP Global Go To Think Tank Index Reports. The information contained in a source that is labelled "highly regarded" is not necessarily more accurate than information contained in a source without that label.


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SUMMARIES OF STUDIES
Total studies in list: 11
Sorted by publication year
1
Public and Scientists' Views on Science and Society
"This report is based on a pair of surveys conducted by the Pew Research Center in collaborationwith the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). It looks at the views of thegeneral public and scientists about the place of science in American culture, their views aboutmajor science-related issues, and the role of science in public policy.This is the first of several reports analyzing the data from this pair of surveys. This report focuseson a comparison of the views of the general public and those of AAAS scientists as a whole. Followup reports planned for later this year will analyze views of the general public in more detail,especially by demographic, religious, and political subgroups. And, some results from the survey ofAAAS scientists will be presented in a follow-up report in mid-February."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHOR
Pew Research Center
PUBLISHED
2015 in Pew Research Center
Yes
Yes
2
The climate change consensus extends beyond climate scientists
"The existence of anthropogenic climate change remains a public controversy despite the consensus among climate scientists. The controversy may be fed by the existence of scientists from other disciplines publicly casting doubt on the validity of climate science. The extent to which non-climate scientists are skeptical of climate science has not been studied via direct survey. Here we report on a survey of biophysical scientists across disciplines at universities in the Big 10 Conference. Most respondents (93.6%) believe that mean temperatures have risen and most (91.9%) believe in an anthropogenic contribution to rising temperatures. Respondents strongly believe that climate science is credible (mean credibility score 6.67/7). Those who disagree about climate change disagree over basic facts (e.g., the effects of CO2 on climate) and have different cultural and political values. These results suggest that scientists who are climate change skeptics are outliers and that the majority of scientists surveyed believe in anthropogenic climate change and that climate science is credible and mature."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
Linda S Prokopy
Matthew Huber
Rebecca Perry-Hill
J S Carlton
PUBLISHED
2015 in Environmental Research Letters
Q1
FUNDERS
Purdue Center for Climate Change Research
Yes
Yes
3
Meteorologists' Views About Global Warming: A Survey of American Meteorological Society Professional Members
"Meteorologists and other atmospheric science experts are playing important roles in helping society respond to climate change. However, members of this professional community are not unanimous in their views of climate change, and there has been tension among members of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) who hold different views on the topic. In response, AMS created the Committee to Improve Climate Change Communication to explore and, to the extent possible, resolve these tensions. To support this committee, in January 2012 we surveyed all AMS members with known e-mail addresses, achieving a 26.3% response rate (n = 1,854). In this paper we tested four hypotheses—1) perceived conflict about global warming will be negatively associated, and 2) climate expertise, 3) liberal political ideology, and 4) perceived scientific consensus will be positively associated—with 1) higher personal certainty that global warming is happening, 2) viewing the global warming observed over the past 150 years as mostly human caused, and 3) perception of global warming as harmful. All four hypotheses were confirmed. Expertise, ideology, perceived consensus, and perceived conflict were all independently related to respondents' views on climate, with perceived consensus and political ideology being most strongly related. We suggest that AMS should attempt to convey the widespread scientific agreement about climate change; acknowledge and explore the uncomfortable fact that political ideology influences the climate change views of meteorology professionals; refute the idea that those who do hold nonmajority views just need to be “educated” about climate change; and continue to deal with the conflict among members of the meteorology community."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
Paul Croft
Andrea Bleistein
Ray Ban
Sara Cobb
Edward Maibach
Neil Stenhouse et al
PUBLISHED
2014 in Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society
Q1
Yes
Yes
4
Scientists’ Views about Attribution of Global Warming
"Results are presented from a survey held among 1868 scientists studying various aspects of climate change, including physical climate, climate impacts, and mitigation. The survey was unique in its size, broadness and level of detail. Consistent with other research, we found that, as the level of expertise in climate science grew, so too did the level of agreement on anthropogenic causation. 90% of respondents with more than 10 climate-related peer-reviewed publications (about half of all respondents), explicitly agreed with anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) being the dominant driver of recent global warming. The respondents’ quantitative estimate of the GHG contribution appeared to strongly depend on their judgment or knowledge of the cooling effect of aerosols. The phrasing of the IPCC attribution statement in its fourth assessment report (AR4)—providing a lower limit for the isolated GHG contribution—may have led to an underestimation of the GHG influence on recent warming. The phrasing was improved in AR5. We also report on the respondents’ views on other factors contributing to global warming; of these Land Use and Land Cover Change (LULCC) was considered the most important. Respondents who characterized human influence on climate as insignificant, reported having had the most frequent media coverage regarding their views on climate change."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
Jeroen Peters
Kees Vringer
Rob van Dorland
John Cook
Bart Strengers
Bart Verheggen et al
PUBLISHED
2014 in Environmental Science & Technology
Q1
FUNDERS
Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment, Netherlands
Yes
Yes
5
Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the scientific literature
"We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, examining 11 944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 matching the topics 'global climate change' or 'global warming'. We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming. In a second phase of this study, we invited authors to rate their own papers. Compared to abstract ratings, a smaller percentage of self-rated papers expressed no position on AGW (35.5%). Among self-rated papers expressing a position on AGW, 97.2% endorsed the consensus. For both abstract ratings and authors' self-ratings, the percentage of endorsements among papers expressing a position on AGW marginally increased over time. Our analysis indicates that the number of papers rejecting the consensus on AGW is a vanishingly small proportion of the published research."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
Rob Painting
Bärbel Winkler
Mark Richardson
Sarah A Green
Dana Nuccitelli
John Cook et al
PUBLISHED
2013 in Environmental Research Letters
Q1
Yes
Yes
6
The Structure of Scientific Opinion on Climate Change
"Over the past several decades, environmental issues have become a steadily more significant part of political discourse in the United States and around the world. Since the 1990s, politicians, journalists, and the public have focused increasingly on global climate change, the possibility that human activities are creating significant increases in planetary temperatures. Throughout these debates, the comments of technical experts have played an important part. However, the debate has had an important political dimension, with policymakers either seeking out scientific voices in support of their policies or discounting scientific opinion that failed to support them.The Obama administration has taken global climate change as a given and has enlisted scientific expertise in developing its policies to combat global warming, a sharp contrast from Republican efforts during the George..."
AUTHORS
S. Robert Lichter
Stephen J. Farnsworth
PUBLISHED
2012 in International Journal of Public Opinion Research
Q1
Yes
Yes
7
Expert credibility in climate change
"Although preliminary estimates from published literature and expert surveys suggest striking agreement among climate scientists on the tenets of anthropogenic climate change (ACC), the American public expresses substantial doubt about both the anthropogenic cause and the level of scientific agreement underpinning ACC. A broad analysis of the climate scientist community itself, the distribution of credibility of dissenting researchers relative to agreeing researchers, and the level of agreement among top climate experts has not been conducted and would inform future ACC discussions. Here, we use an extensive dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data to show that (i) 97–98% of the climate researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of ACC outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and (ii) the relative climate expertise and scientific prominence of the researchers unconvinced of ACC are substantially below that of the convinced researchers."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
S. H. Schneider
J. Harold
J. W. Prall
W. R. L. Anderegg
PUBLISHED
2010 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
SUBMITTED BY
BBlack 104
Yes
Yes
8
The scientific consensus of climate change revisited
"This paper first reviews previous work undertaken to assess the level of scientific consensus concerning climate change, concluding that studies of scientific consensus concerning climate change have tended to measure different things. Three dimensions of consensus are determined: manifestation, attribution and legitimation. Consensus concerning these dimensions are explored in detail using a time series of data from surveys of climate scientists. In most cases, little difference is discerned between those who have participated in the IPCC process and those who have not. Consensus, however, in both groups does not amount to unanimity. Results also suggest rather than a single group proclaiming the IPCC does not represent consensus, there are now two groups, one claiming the IPCC makes overestimations (a group previously labeled skeptics, deniers, etc.) and a relatively new formation of a group (many of whom have participated in the IPCC process) proclaiming that IPCC tends to underestimate some climate related phenomena."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHOR
Dennis Bray
PUBLISHED
2010 in Environmental Science & Policy
Q1
Mixed Results
Mixed Results
9
Climate change: a profile of US climate scientists’ perspectives
"Climate scientists have played a significant role in investigating global climate change. In the USA, a debate has swirled about whether a consensus on climate change exists among reputable scientists and this has entered the policy process. In order to better understand the views of US climate scientists, we conducted an empirical survey of US climate scientists (N = 468) in 2005, and compared the results with the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) physical science report and policy summaries. Our results reveal that survey respondents generally agree about the nature, causes, and consequences of climate change, and are in agreement with IPCC findings. We also found that there is strong support for a variety of policy initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHORS
Sammy Zahran
Deborah F. Cowman
Arnold Vedlitz
Stacy Rosenberg
PUBLISHED
2010 in Climatic Change
Q1
Yes
Yes
10
Examining the Scientific Consensus on Climate Change
"Fifty‐two percent of Americans think most climate scientists agree that the Earth has been warming in recent years, and 47% think climate scientists agree (i.e., that there is a scientific consensus) that human activities are a major cause of that warming, according to recent polling (see http://www.pollingreport.com/enviro.htm). However, attempts to quantify the scientific consensus on anthropogenic warming have met with criticism. For instance, Oreskes [2004] reviewed 928 abstracts from peer‐reviewed research papers and found that more than 75% either explicitly or implicitly accepted the consensus view that Earth's climate is being affected by human activities. Yet Oreskes's approach has been criticized for overstating the level of consensus acceptance within the examined abstracts [Peiser, 2005] and for not capturing the full diversity of scientific opinion [Pielke, 2005]. A review of previous attempts at quantifying the consensus and criticisms is provided by Kendall Zimmerman [2008]. The objective of our study presented here is to assess the scientific consensus on climate change through an unbiased survey of a large and broad group of Earth scientists."
AUTHORS
Maggie Kendall Zimmerman
Peter T. Doran
PUBLISHED
2009 in Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union
Yes
Yes
11
The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change
"Policy-makers and the media, particularly in the United States, frequently assert that climate science is highly uncertain. Some have used this as an argument against adopting strong measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. For example, while discussing a major U.S. Environmental Protection Agency report on the risks of climate change, then-EPA administrator Christine Whitman argued, “As [the report] went through review, there was less consensus on the science and conclusions on climate change” (1). Some corporations whose revenues might be adversely affected by controls on carbon dioxide emissions have also alleged major uncertainties in the science (2). Such statements suggest that there might be substantive disagreement in the scientific community about the reality of anthropogenic climate change. This is not the case."
HIGHLY REGARDED SOURCE
AUTHOR
Naomi Oreskes
PUBLISHED
2004 in Science
Q1
Yes
Yes







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