Ill winds passed during Congressional hot-air debate

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An article in the Chronicle of Higher Education, a leading academic newspaper, suggested Congress was treading on dangerous territory recently in discussing “the climatic effects of dinosaur farts,” given members’ own reputations “for producing hot air.”

Members quizzed four scientists who had helped oversee a report issued last week by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a UN panel. It began seriously enough with an introduction by Susan Soloman, a senior scientist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, who said global warming is unequivocal with a better than 90 per cent likelihood people are mostly responsible.

The discussions started to deteriorate, however, when Bert Rorabacher, a California Republican and former speechwriter for President Ronald Reagan, took issue with the IPCC’s finding of human blame, suggesting “dinosaur flatulence” might be the culprit.

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