January 19, 2009

Scientists say global warming real

A wide range of Earth scientists say humans contribute significantly to global warming, suggests a poll conducted by the University of Illinois at Chicago.

The poll should dispel doubts by some that a consensus about global warming exists among scientists, said Peter Doran, a University of Illinois professor who conducted the poll with students last year.

The 3,146 Earth scientists interviewed around the world overwhelmingly agreed that global temperatures have risen in the last 200-plus years and human activity is a significant factor, Doran said in a statement released Monday.

The scientists, chosen from the 2007 edition of the American Geological Institute's Directory of Geoscience Departments, were asked two questions via e-mail: if mean global temperatures have risen compared to pre-1800s levels, and if human activity has been a significant factor in changing mean global temperatures.

About 90 percent of those polled agreed with the first question and 82 percent the second question, Doran said.