The new global warming documentary, Cool It opens today. It’s based on the 1998 book, The Skeptical Environmentalist and 2007′s Cool It: The Skeptical Environmentalist’s Guide to Global Warming, both by Danish economist Bjørn Lomborg. This film by Academy Award-winning film maker Ondi Timoner is being billed as the “anti-Inconvenient Truth” … although not by the film maker.
Lomborg is a controversial figure. The Danish Committees on Scientific Dishonesty found his book “scientifically dishonest” based upon six criteria:
- Fabrication of data;
- Selective discarding of unwanted results (selective citation);
- Deliberately misleading use of statistical methods;
- Distorted interpretation of conclusions;
- Deliberate misinterpretation of others’ results.
Although he accepts man-made global warming, Lomborg has consistently been an outspoken critic of the Kyoto protocol, Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, cap and trade, and efforts to cut carbon emission.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) lead author Brian O’neill has criticized Lomborg:
… Bjorn Lomborg is like the Oliver Stone of climate change. He has written a book that sets out to support a certain point of view, and, unless you are an expert, you will never know which facts are correct and appropriately used and which are not. You might not be aware that large (and crucial) chunks of the story are skipped altogether. But like a Stone movie, it is a well-told tale and raises some questions that are worth thinking about. So if you are going to read only one book on climate, don’t read this one. But if you are going to read ten, reading Lomborg may be worthwhile.
Director Ondi Timoner told The Wall Street Journal she did not intend for the film to be an assault on Gore:
I’m a Democrat, I was a page in the U.S. Senate. I’m not against Gore… The anti-‘Inconvenient Truth’ would say global warming is not happening. The reason I wanted to make the film is the pragmatic solutions that he puts forward… Until alternative energies become less expensive, fossil fuels are never going to go away…. That’s my favorite point and I hope that’s what people take away from the film.
Unfortunately, with today’s regressive political environment, many will likely just use this as another source of their anti-climate change rhetoric.
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
Wired: Cool It Doc Slams Inconvenient Truth ‘Alarmists’
NY Times: ‘Cool’ Climate Film Takes On ‘Truth’
NPR: ‘Cool It’: On Climate Change, An Inconvenient Dude
Orlando Sentinel: Review: ‘Cool It,’ a new documentary that may not be trustworthy
Cool It – The Movie