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Trust scientists


The three letters (NCE, 3 May) supporting the Bellamy & Barrett paper offered a familiar combination of conspiracy theories and unwitting arrogance.

'Perhaps, as mere engineers, we have to ask the simple questions?' says Mr Witt, as if the scientists were all too dim to do so.

I found the paper persuasive.

So is the opposing view. Which is right?

I don't have the time to re-train as a climate scientist. Anyway, the evidence is complex and incomplete, and certainty isn't available. So what do I do? I heed the best professional advice, as my clients do.

That advice is the consensus among climate scientists that anthropogenic carbon dioxide is our main climate problem and that we need to reduce emissions drastically. Instead of insulting an entire professional community by asserting that they are scoundrels, I accept that they are for the most part rigorous and honest, just like us.

I leave those professionals to get on with their job, and expect my fellow engineers to get on with ours, which is to apply our skills to solving the problem.

It is unlikely that the trend of recent evidence will be reversed. But even if that does happen, it will have been much less costly than if we do nothing now and then find that the great majority of our scientific colleagues were right after all.

Gabriel Hyde, Penygaer, Groeswen, Cardiff

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