Where have all the climate deniers gone?

Or: How to save your river
new york city skyline wildfires
The New York City skyline inundated with smoke from wildfires burning in Quebec in June 2023 (photo: Anthony Quintano / cc2.0, cropped).

Once upon a time, back in the day, just about all online mentions of global warming provoked CAPS LOCK outrage:


My response to this sort of behaviour has been to hunker down. I don’t want to be heckled — who does? So I’ve been watching from a safe distance … and I think I’ve spotted a change in key-banger behaviour. Maybe you’ve noticed it too?

I wonder if they’re going a bit droopy — like that toy rabbit on TV with the wrong brand of battery? I’m talking sotto voce for now because I don’t want to wake them, but do you think they’re getting — old?

Musk has turned their Twitter volume up to 12, which hides some of the decrepitude, but it’s increasingly clear that a generation is thinning out. Back in their pomp they stood proud among friends, bonding over beers and howling at bogeymen. It was fun, the company was good and they felt like an unstoppable force. The world was theirs for the taking. Heck, they could even get laid. Those were days!

Then, over time, the group frayed and faded. Familiar faces moved away, some died and a lucky few retired to sunbeds by the sea. Now, depressingly, the headlong rush of young love is a dim memory, and wearily beating a caps lock key won’t bring it back. Age has got their number.

So, while I think we should feel some sympathy towards our denialists (we all get old), we should not be surprised by their plight. They are the original stay-at-home globalists, persecuted by malign world forces. This miserable everybody-hates-me-nobody-loves-me mindset also happens to be the signature trait of almost all conspiracy theories, so people who buy into one are predisposed to have a bucketful. If you know for a fact that George Soros and his glove puppet Greta can fake all the climate data everywhere, you also know that wherever you stash your cash The Global Elite will sniff it out (it happens all the time!).

It’s carnage out there in conspiracy land. Innocent bystanders are killed by 5G death rays, chemtrails, and fluoridated water, or abducted and raped by both real and false-flag aliens, some of which are Lizards. The last generation of conspiracists had scary Reds under their beds and would be horrified to learn that today’s have Reds in their heads. Stalin was satan, Putin is a buddy, Kennedys won’t die and some Americans want a breakaway Red State Caliphate. I hope you're keeping up.

Then there’s The Fear:


In contrast, statistics and fact-checking are inherently dull — but they can make a succinct point. Globally, most people believe that climate change is both a crisis and an emergency, echoing the language used by climate change campaigners. In the US, about 80% say climate change is happening, outnumbering those who think it isn't by a ratio of more than six to one. In the UK, 90% think it's real. And another fact: 99-100% of climate scientists say it’s real and deadly serious. That’s a slam dunk (for people who do facts — but not so good with voodoo).

Other forces also conspire to undermine our deniers, not least their own eyes. There are only so many decades you can fish the same river and not notice something’s wrong. And is there anyone for whom freak weather isn’t the new normal? So, according to the liberal wokesters at Forbes, hardcore denialist numbers have fallen to just 6% of Americans which is still well above the global average of 4%. All of them hammering away at Twitter. Thank you, Elon.

This data is, of course, all red-mist-inducing heresy for our remaining jihadi denialists, for whom an attack of heresy-rage is about as exciting as life gets.


It’s a level of victimhood that‘s a hard sell among younger generations. More youthful movements offer rewards like happiness, cupcake recipes, glowing good health, a ripped body or, in Gwyneth Paltrow’s case, fragrant orgasms. Tik-Tok thrills meet educated opinions. In contrast, conspiracy theories are gloom, doom and misery. Incels excepted, who’d double-click on that?

Back in my world, climate science is fact-based, measurable, progressive and has an off-ramp. We can slow down and change course. And for the hard-core miserabilists, all is not lost. You can also get utterly despondent about the science of global warming. The so-called climate-doomers probably outnumber the deniers by a lot, and I suspect their roll-over and die mentality is as damaging to planetary well-being as the cranky deniers. Maybe there’s some misery-laden itch deep in the human psyche that we’re desperate to scratch?

Nevertheless, I’m going to puncture the glum-fest because we can do something about climate change. There is salvation in the denialist’s climate heresy.

Here’s how: There’s no shortage of great organisations committed to mitigating the impacts of climate change. Some of these actions need the power and deep pockets of government, while others are small and local. That means there’s a level of contribution to suit us all. We can volunteer and/or donate, big or small and as best we can. For example, I support organisations that work on conservation and legal protection for rivers and their catchments. And because most of us think this is now urgent, most of us can surely do something, no matter how small, because every little bit counts.

So, please, let’s all get involved. And let’s do it for our future generations because they’re going to have to live here. Maybe Gramps and Grandma will donate if it’s for their favourite river and their own family? Would it really be so terrible if they funded some research into migratory fish or warming redds?

And last, please say hi to Gen Z and the Millennials. It’s their planet now.

face palm / github

All quotes were pulled from fishing forums, social media, or other public forums.


How do you publish a article about science while exclusively quoting fish forums and social media?

Hi Jack. It seems that the author is not quoting those sources as examples of science, but rather as examples of how an awful lot of people (too many people) on social media - including on angling forums where you might expect outdoorsmen to be more educated - were Not educated, were buying into conspiracy theories, and were spreading unscientific nonsense. Some still are spreading this nonsense. I know... sad but true.

Is Climate Change real? Absolutely! As a former weatherman, I can attest to the fact that the climate is constantly changing. It has been changing since God made the earth. Is it all human caused? Hardly.
Mans impact on the climate is miniscule. Can we minimize our impact? Sure and we should, and I do. I have lived off grid in my 1700 sq ft log home on 38 acres for nearly 30 years while the climate changers telleverybody they have to change, yet they themselves still fly private jets and drive ICE autos, and build massive homes using fossil fueled electricity. If they were worried so much about sea level rising, why are they still buying oceanfront properties?
The world has seen heating, cooling, drought, famine, and storms forever.
Some of these climate change "sportsmen" are telling the rest of us what to do, yet they are still driving the gas powered offroad towing rv's and campers and flying all over the world to hunt and fish. Have you seen Mount Everest? It has become a garbage dump by a bunch of climate changers. Climate Change is for the masses, not them.
Here in Colorado, people say leave no trace, yet they leave trash and poop on the trails and burn our forests while the scream about climate change.
Do what you can to care for the earth, but telling others they are the cause of climate change while doing what you darn well please says alot. They have no answer. They are above the rest of us. Hypocrits!
Is Climate Change real? YOU BET, and it will keep on changing whether we do anything or not.

Great response! Why do the world leaders of Global Warming fly private jets to meetings? My guess, they’ve never heard of ZOOM!

Even the arsonist set fires in Canada are blamed on Global Warming. Anything colder water, warmer water are blamed on Globak Warming. It’s said that if a lie is stated enough, it becomes truth. We’re there.

I believer we are to be stewards of our planet, however those preaching the most are polluting the most. It like THEY don’t care as in “do as I say and not as I do”.
Still, our best efforts can be blown away with another Mt St Helen’s eruption.
Here’s some fun “history” to remember.
For clarity….


Doom from 2008

No one has yet said the first hurricane, first forest fire, first drought, us the one caused by climate change. We have had them for ages. Only now have they become due to climate change. Maybe that's because I am older and have a longer memory. When will we know we have done enough? Spent enough? What's the end game? No carbon. When was the last occurrence of that? Get a grip guy the world (and trout) are not ending.

Phillip - Please post a link to someone claiming that we didn't have forest fires or hurricanes before anthropogenic climate change. I've yet to see anyone make that claim. Evidently you have, and I'd love to see it. I have, however, seen plenty of peer-reviewed science that says that hurricanes are more intense, possibly more common, and slower moving (which makes them more damaging), due to climate change. Likewise, I've seen plenty of peer-reviewed science that has demonstrated that AGW is fueling more frequent and more intense wildfires.

Science is hypothesis and theory; never fact. Therefore, stating 99.9% of 'scientist' agree with data is what; opinion.

Climate-change deniers make no sense to me. Who is telling them what to do? No one is telling them what to do. They act they are victims of liberal thinking. I guess they have and always be victims in their minds. Snowflakes. Give me a break.

Geez louise
Al Gore told me we would be frozen to death by 2000. Most of the 97% of scientists ( tsk, tsk ) are USG, Euro and UN funded...the outcomes are expected. We are supposed to be underwater here in NY. It goes on and on. Mother Nature is way more formidable than a few billion people and their cars and factories. Yes, it's getting warmer, and yes maybe faster than we would like but that pendulum will swing in another generation somewhere down the road and all of the "Sky is Falling" officianado
s will be joke fodder.

This cynical collection of name calling and insults masquerading as journalism is wildly inappropriate for this publication, in my opinion.

I find myself - as a usually do - between the extremes on both sides and objectively questioning the wilder claims, and hypocritical actions of much of their leadership, but I have a very low tolerance for the kind of juvenile nonsense this "article" spews.

Anyone who has to stoop to this kind of finger pointing, insulting and name calling behavior clearly has nothing useful to bring to the discussion and should be dismissed out of hand.

An often overlooked consequence of this kind of keyboard pounding is that it drives away potential supporters of conservation and habitat work because it insults potential donors and contributors. But that's OK, I guess, because the angry person who wrote it feels better for crapping all over a group of people he doesn't know with infantile, broad brush accusations that anyone who lives in the real world understands are inaccurate.

A written apology from Hatch for publishing this would not be out of line either.

America is luck we never have had a Chernobyl. There would be people saying there's no such thing as radiation. They would be living in the fall out. It amazes me the ignorance that some display when it comes to AGW. The evidence is in front of them with extreme weather events but deny is the flavor of the day with them. Sad. Just sad and dangerous.