I wrote much of the below in response to a friend's post on Facebook. Figured it was worth sharing in a more public format...
There is no credible dispute over the following facts: 1.) The Greenhouse effect is real and can be easily replicated through simple experiments, 2.) Humans are pouring Greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere at unprecedented levels, 3.) The planet is warming and has been since 1880.
What is much more difficult to know and remains under intense study and debate is exactly what impact humans are having on Climate Change. Based on all known evidence, the majority of Climate Scientists believe humans are playing a significant role in accelerating global warming. It's all very complex, too complex to be easily proven.
It is good that there is debate and intense study within the scientific community. That is the very foundation of science.
But to take that debate out of context and to present select tidbits to an ignorant public is just the same FUD techniques used by Cigarette companies, Dioxin manufactures, ...
Currently, the best science tells us it is real, we are causing it, and to continue the current trend could be catastrophic.
Perhaps in 10 years we'll have enough data and models to better access the anthropogenic impact. But for now, it would seem to me that the appropriate conservative approach would be to take the safe road and try to decrease our output of greenhouse gasses.
Even if it does turn out that humans have a minimal impact on climate change, we'll still be less dependent on foreign oil, our air and water will be healthier and lots of great jobs will have been created.