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President Trump and the Madhouse Effect

In preparation for Micheal Mann’s Sydney Ideas public lecture, Christopher Wright discusses the importance Mann’s talk in today’s political climate.

The inauguration of billionaire property developer and reality TV star Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States has presaged a new era in US and global politics. President Trump’s commitments to dramatically expand fossil fuel developments and neuter environmental protections run in direct counterpoint to the rapid decarbonisation required to avoid dangerous climate change. Given US energy and climate policy has huge global implications, we now appear to have entered a new Dark Age of climate politics.

To help understand the new reality of US climate politics and where we might be heading, The Sydney Environment Institute is hosting a visit to the University of Sydney during the first week of February by world-renowned US climate scientist Professor Michael Mann.

Professor Mann is Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science at Pennsylvania State University and famous for his pioneering research into the Earth’s past climate patterns, including the iconic ‘hockey stick’ graph of long-term temperature variations. As a result of his research, Professor Mann became a central target of a decade-long attack by conservative US politicians, industry groups and the fossil-fuel funded climate change denial industry. As documented in his best-selling book The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines, this included orchestrated campaigns of harassment via conservative op-eds, email and social media, challenges to his job security and career, and even death threats. Professor Mann is therefore particularly qualified to speak not only on the scientific aspects of our current climate crisis, but also through direct, personal experience on the toxic, partisan war that has engulfed US climate policy.

On Wednesday February 8th, Professor Mann will present a Sydney Ideas public lecture entitled ‘The Madhouse Effect: Climate Change Denial in the Age of Trump’. Based on his recent book with Washington Post editorial cartoonist Tom Toles, Professor Mann will review the scientific evidence of climate change, the reasons we should care, and the often absurd efforts by special interests and partisan political figures to confuse the public and attack the science. In the new Trump era of ‘alternative facts’ and the silencing of scientists and public officials, this should be a timely and important contribution. Join us to discuss how climate change denial is threatening our planet, destroying our politics, and what we can do to counter it.

Author: Christopher Wright

Event Details

Wednesday 8 February 2017 | 6.00 – 7.30PM

Abercrombie Business School Auditorium | Level B2, Abercrombie Business School | Cnr Codrington & Abercrombie Streets | The University of Sydney

For the event map, Click here.

To register, Click here.