Natan Slifkin, also popularly known as the “Zoo Rabbi,” best known for his interest in biology, zoology and natural history and for his books on these topics, has slammed the American Yated Ne’eman for the newspaper’s stance on global warming.
Slifkin quotes an article, “Is Global Warming a Scientific Hoax?” written by Yaakov Kornreich, news writer at Yated Ne’eman, on December 4th 2009.
Slifkin quotes the following small extract from the Yated article:
The Evolution Analogy
Global warming has been promoted as science, but in fact it is no more scientific than evolution, which has also been promoted by the liberal, secular left as a means with which to try to discredit all forms of traditional religious belief.
While evolution had its roots in the relatively crude scientific theories promoted by Charles Darwin 150 years ago, it has been promoted ever since by committed secularists as a weapon with which to attack the credibility of the Torah Sheb’ksav and to heap ridicule on the simple faith of people.
Religious scientists have proposed numerous alternative theories which are as consistent with the biological and archaeological evidence discovered since Darwin’s time as the current version of evolution, which requires as much faith to believe as any religion.
Similarly, global warming has been zealously promoted by the far left wing for reasons which have very little to do with the findings of science, and which are, in fact, driven by its political ideology.
Slifkin comments: “Perhaps global warming has indeed been promoted for reasons driven by political ideology rather than science. On the other hand, the same is most certainly true for the Yated‘s opposition.”
Yaakov Kornreich has since responded on Slifkin’s site. Kornreich’s first response is as follows:
For the record, I am the editor of “A Science and Torah Reader.” The bulk of that publication consists of reprinted articles written by prominent Orthodox Jewish scientists of that time, as well as by noted rabbinic authorities including Rabbi Dr. Immanuel Jakobovitz, The Lubavitcher Rebbe and Rav Kook. As the editor, I selected the articles and wrote connecting and explanatory material intended to make some of the more technical concepts more accessible to lay readers, but I did not endorse any specific approach. This is the opening paragraph I wrote 40 years ago for the Foreword to “A Science and Torah Reader:
“This anthology brings together the thoughts and writings of scholars of Torah and science, reacting to questions arising out of the relationship and interaction between the two fields. Due to the great diversity of opinions and the rapid pace of scientific development, no attempt has been made to set forth any one particular approach to all the problems that are discussed here, as the best or most proper. While acknowledging the supremacy of Torah over all human thought, Jews committed to Torah may still retain differences of opinion in their evaluation of scientific concepts.”
My current criticism of the proponents of the global warming theory, as recently published in the Yated, is based primarily on the fact that their claims of global warming and dire predictions of disastrous climate changes due to greenhouse gas emissions as proven facts, are simply not supported by the available scientific evidence. Greenhouse gases do tend to warm the atmosphere, and measurements between 1970 and 2000 indicate that a gradual increase in the average temperature of the Earth did take place, but that does not prove the existence of a direct cause-and-effect relationship between the two.
Some climatologists suspect that other factors , such as deep ocean currents or variations in the intensity of solar radiation, might be equally responsible for the observed global temperature changes. At this time, science has no way to prove, by direct experiment and measurement, which of these factors is dominant, nor can it prove that reducing manmade emissions of greenhouse gases would, by itself, significantly affect the rate of global climate change.
The recent admissions by proponents of global warming that they conspired to prevent the publication of competing theories, and altered or suppressed the scientific data indicating that global warming came to a halt during the past decade, has undermined the credibility of their conclusions. Such conduct proves that they have crossed over from objective scientific inquiry into the realm of defending dogma.
G*3 is correct when he says that, in its original form, evolution was not “intended specifically to discredit religion.” But at a later point, evolution was certainly seized upon by the opponents of religious faith, who then used it, without regard for the ground rules of science, to advance their own atheist agenda. The point of my article in the Yated is that much the same thing has now happened to the global warming theory.
More can be found here.