They were friends as global warming skeptics, but then their minds and lives diverged. That these MIT experts now see the facts, and each other, so differently shows how hard climate consensus will be.
By Beth Daley
It is no surprise they grew to be friends.
Richard Lindzen and Kerry Emanuel are both brilliant and convivial. Both study the atmosphere and climate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where their offices overlooking the Charles River are one floor apart. In an academic world often dominated by liberals, both have strong conservative streaks and once agreed that the evidence for catastrophic man-made global warming just wasn’t there.
But then the climate changed between them. Friends became intellectual foes, dueling icons in one of the world’s most acrimonious political debates.
Friends had a hard time staying friends. (more…)