A leading Australian climate scientist has said his views have been misrepresented by conservative media commentators, who have used a “misspoken” statement to dismiss the links between climate change and drought.
Prof Andy Pitman, director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes at the University of New South Wales, has told Guardian Australia there are clear links between human-caused climate change and drought, but these links are indirect.
A statement Pitman made to an event in June has been used repeatedly in recent weeks by Sky News commentators, including Alan Jones, Chris Kenny and Andrew Bolt, to undermine the impacts of climate change on drought, despite Pitman’s centre issuing a clarification weeks earlier.In some cases similar comments were also made in the commentators’ News Corp columns.
In a June event at the University of New South Wales, Pitman told an audience there was “no link between climate change and drought”.
He told Guardian Australia:“I misspoke – I missed a word in my statement and that’s my fault.I should have said no ‘direct’
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