November 16, 2009

The American Physical Society (APS) has “overwhelmingly rejected” a proposal from a group of 160 physicists to alter its official position on climate change. The physicists, who include the Nobel laureate Ivar Giaver, wanted the APS to modify its stance to reflect their own doubts about the human contribution to global warming. The APS turned down the request on the recommendations of a six-person committee chaired by atomic physicist Daniel Kleppner from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The committee was set up by APS president Cherry Murray in July, when the society received the proposal for changing its statement, which had originally been drawn up in November 2007. It has spent the last four months carrying out what the APS calls “a serious review of existing compilations of scientific research” and took soundings from its members. “We recommended not accepting the proposal,” Kleppner told “The [APS] council almost unanimously decided to go with that.”

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