Thursday, May 25, 2006

Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" Movie: Fact or Hype?

National Geographic News asks a few experts about claims made in Al Gore's new movie about global warming and climate change. You can watch the trailer below:

I haven't seen the movie yet. It won't be released in my area until late June. If I'm able to go see it, I'd like to do that. But the theater it's playing at in my town is rather small. I've read on other sites that theaters are already selling out. I have no problem waiting for the DVD to come out. You can check here for a list of theaters and dates of when the film will be playing near you.

The National Geographic piece speaks primarily to Eric Steig, an Associate Professor from University of Washington's Earth and Space Sciences department. He wrote a more in depth piece on the film for the website Real Climate: "RealClimate is a commentary site on climate science by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists." Steig is also a founder of that site.

Most of the reviews from scientists that I've read resonate with Steig's commentary. I'm sure there's a handful of scientists who will contest every point in the film and I'm sure those individuals will get plenty of sound bites on certain radio and news shows. Most agree that Gore has presented the big picture on global climate change quite well. It's the smaller facts that seem to be not discussed adequately. NPR has the audio of a nice report and review on the film here.

The Boston Globe has a great article surrounding the events of the film including current politcal moves:
"The film has already provoked a backlash. The Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free-market group that gets funding from oil companies, is running television ads rebutting Gore's arguments."
So there's forces out there already trying to make this an "us against them" kind of issue. I'm so tired of that cliche and I hope the film doesn't take that angle. From what I've read, it doesn't do that and it's presented more as a lecture with slick slideshow. I'll see the movie and I'll post my own opinion and review of it at that time.


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