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article imageNASA smacks down trolling climate change deniers on Facebook

By Megan Hamilton     Apr 16, 2016 in Science
Climate change deniers take note: If you hop on social media to deny that human-caused climate change is happening, don't cite NASA incorrectly. Because if you do, the U.S. space agency may embarrass you with a public smackdown.
When well-known science educator Bill Nye, "The Science Guy," posted an article on Facebook about a prominent climate change denier who refused his $20,000 bet that Earth will continue to get hotter, commenters turned nasty — attacking Nye and the fact that climate is occurring, Quartz reports. And surprisingly, NASA jumped into the fray.
The agency did this by referring the doubters to evidence showing climate change is occurring, posting a link to a University of California, Berkeley, study. The study shows that global temperatures have risen 1.5 degrees during the past 250 years.
At one point, commenter Fer Morales disagreed with the article's statement that human emissions are warming the planet, and, according to the Independent, wrote:
"Riiiiight, despite Nasa confirming that fossil fuels are actually cooling the planet's temperature, and that there's more ice than in the last century in the polar caps. And the fact that so-called rises of the sea levels have not materialized, and that any real scientist doesn't back up man-made climate change at all, since it's a cycle that has existed even before we did."
To which NASA responded:
"Do not misrepresent NASA. Fossil fuels are not cooling the planet."
NASA's replies were usually short, informative, and to the point, HuffPost Politics reports.
Andy Andreadis: NASA loves to fudge the numbers anyway. NASA should be irrelevant just like their space program.
NASA replied:
"Andy Andreadis NASA does not 'fudge' numbers. All data requires statistical adjustments to remove bias. Temperatures are adjusted to coordinate time of day, remove the urban heat island effect, account for station moves, etc. This is all very clearly documented. These adjustments are performed to make the data more accurate." Then the agency provided this link for further information.
Another commenter seemed to think other planets were also going through climate change.
Jason Anderson: There is reason to believe Earth is not the only planet in the solar system undergoing climate change, meaning CO2 emissions are not the primary force responsible for the rise in global temperatures.
NASA had this to say:
"Jason Anderson Other planets in the solar system are not warming. There is a small amount of evidence of seasonal changes in parts of the solar system, but there is no evidence of global warming anywhere--except on Earth."
As this article notes, climate change denial is a big business.
In a statement to Quartz, NASA said the "NASA Climate Change" Facebook page is one of a variety of ways that the agency regularly informs the public about results of NASA-related research on climate change as well as many other topics related to Earth science.
The agency said it values and supports "direct engagement with the public," and invites the public to ask questions about its missions, and also said it works to correct "misperceptions or inaccuracies," such as, say, "Internet rumors about about Earth-ending asteroids or comets that sometimes go viral."
Hopefully, as NASA continues to do this, it will continue to dispel inaccuracies and misconceptions about climate change.
More about NASA, us space agency, Facebook, Bill nye, university of berkeley
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