The most surprising piece of information I learned in the interview with Dan Kammen is that a number of oil companies, such as ExxonMobil, had been paying scientists to research on climate change only if the results had come out the way they wanted it to. I always knew the science on climate change had been heavily politicized but this specific example of companies distributing select information to “influence science” was especially alarming. Furthermore, I was also interested in how the costs of climate change have different effects on different geographic areas, and how that slows down progress on climate change. For example, coastal areas and already developed countries have more of an incentive to invest in carbon neutral technologies; thus, other countries and areas can free-ride these technologies and have less incentive to contribute as much.
If given the opportunity to conduct the interview, I would have asked Dan Kammen is how we can make predictions, like simulations/models on climate change, less politicized. While I like how Ms. Goodman asked many questions that are practical rather than just scientific — like the psychology of climate change and how climate has to be more emphasized in the humanities as well — I would love to know Dan’s thoughts on how the accuracy of our models interplay with policymaking and the psychology of politics.