Normally not a friend to climate science, the Register reports:
Google chairman Eric Schmidt has a low opinion of climate-change skeptics and global-warming deniers.
“You can hold back knowledge, but you cannot prevent it from spreading,” Schmidt told his audience at his company’s “How Green Is the Internet? Summit” in Mountain View on Thursday. “You can lie about the effects of climate change, but eventually you’ll be seen as a liar.”
“The math says that there are a couple of billion people who are going to want our carbon footprint,” he said, “and we can’t afford that carbon footprint as a global thing – and we don’t want to reduce our own.”
When they discuss this problem, he said, “The media gets confused because they don’t believe in facts, and public-policy people get confused because they don’t believe in innovation.”
That innovation is the solution to the growing problem of climate change, Schmidt said. “Come up with things that use less carbon – more efficient, new materials, and so forth.”
Including himself among the assembled Real Smart People™, he said, “That’s what we do. That’s our job. That’s why what you all are doing is so important.”
Of course he falls back to the Breakthrough position in the end.
there’s a real problem. The math doesn’t work. The solution is the use of the internet to create an awareness and empower individuals. You empower those individuals to come up with creative solutions.
My response to this position is to quote the words of Piet Hein, “Let us only hope, but not only only hope.” It seems that empowering individuals will not be enough. Disempowering destructive forces will probably be necessary, and this may need to be done collectively.