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Writing about vaccines, evolution, and even dark matter has ended up setting off contentious discussions here at Ars. But no area seems to bring out impassioned arguments as reliably as climate change. Covering the latest scientific results can bring forth cries of scientific fraud, conspiracies, and denialism; considering policy implications can be even worse.
It can be really difficult for anyone not well-versed in the debate to get any sense of the science at all, something that’s clear from the huge gap between the scientific community’s acceptance of climate change and the public’s wariness about the topic. So it’s probably useful to step back from the latest findings, and look at science’s basic understanding of how greenhouse gasses can force climate change, which often gets lost in the arguments.