Last updated on: 6/15/2010 | Author: ProCon.org

Willie Soon, PhD Biography

Title:
Physicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Position:
Con to the question "Is Human Activity Primarily Responsible for Global Climate Change?"
Reasoning:

“There is no quantitative evidence that varying levels of minor greenhouse gases like CO2 and CH4 have accounted for even as much as half of the reconstructed glacial-interglacial temperature changes or, more importantly, for the large variations in global ice volume on both land and sea over the past 650kyr [650,000 years]. This paper shows that changes in solar insolation [amount of solar energy hitting the earth] at climatically sensitive latitudes and zones exceed the global radiative forcings [greenhouse gas accumulation in the atmosphere traping solar heat] of CO2 and CH4 by severalfold…

[T]he popular notion of CO2 and CH4 radiative forcing as the predominant amplifier of glacial-interglacial phase transitions cannot be confirmed…

Our basic hypothesis is that long-term climate change is driven by insolation changes, from both orbital variations and intrinsic solar magnetic luminosity variations. This implies natural warming and cooling variations.”

“Implications of the Secondary Role of Carbon Dioxide and Methane Forcing in Climate Change: Past, Present, and Future,” Physical Geography, Nov. 2007

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
Experts
Individuals with PhDs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to the study of climate. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to the study of climate.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Physicist, Solar, Stellar, and Planetary Sciences Division, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
  • Astronomer, Mount Wilson Observatory
  • Chief Science Researcher, Center for Science and Public Policy
  • Chief Science Advisor, Science and Public Policy Institute
  • Senior Scientist, Marshall Institute
  • Science Director, Tech Central Station
  • Global Warming Expert, Heartland Institute
  • Receiving Editor, New Astronomy
  • Member, American Astrophysical Society, American Geophysical Union, and the International Astronomical Union
  • Recipient, Peter Beckman Award, Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, 2004
  • Recipient, Graduate Scholastic Award, IEEE Nuclear and Plasma Sciences Society, 1989
  • Recipient, Rockwell Dennis Hunt Scholastic Award for most representative PhD thesis, 1989
Education:
  • PhD, Aerospace Engineering, University of Southern California (USC), 1991
  • MS, University of Southern California
  • BS, University of Southern California
Contact Info:
Phone
617-495-7488
Email
wsoon@cfa.harvard.edu
Website
Heartland Institute Profile
Other:
  • None found
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Is Human Activity Primarily Responsible for Global Climate Change?