Betts Bluedot

Professor Betts spoke at the Bluedot festival last month

Top climate scientist on summer festival line-ups

Climate science is on the bill alongside acts like the Manic Street Preachers at this year's Beautiful Days festival.

Top climate scientist Professor Richard Betts will appear in the “Rebel Tent” at the Devon festival on Sunday 19 August.

It follows his successful appearance last month at Bluedot, a music and science festival at Jodrell Bank named in reference to a famous speech in which astronomer Carl Sagan described Earth as a “pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known”.

Professor Betts opposes the polarisation of views on climate change, and aims to confront both alarmism and scepticism.

At Beautiful Days he will give some examples of why “climate sceptic” arguments are flawed.

"We are changing the environment on our pale blue dot. Global warming is causing large-scale environmental changes, the world is getting greener, the ice caps are shrinking and sea levels are rising,” he said.

"The planet will be fine but our living environment will change – maybe hugely.

"Some changes are already locked-in, and humans will need to adapt the way we live to cope with these.”

But Professor Betts emphasises that it's not all doom and gloom.

"Severe changes to our environment can still be avoided – there is still hope,” he said.

“We can reduce greenhouse gas emissions to limit future warming.  We also need to take steps to adapt to some changes that are now unavoidable.”

Professor Betts has advised politicians extensively on the science of climate change during his career.

He has had lead author roles for the IPCC's (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) fourth, fifth and sixth Assessment Reports, and played a similar role in the UK government’s Climate Change Risk Assessment.

He also led the EU Project HELIX (High-End cLimate Impacts and eXtremes, which assessed the impacts of climate change at different levels of global warming from 1.5°C up to 6°C. He is on Twitter as @richardabetts.

The Beautiful Days festival will take place at Escot Park, Devon, from Friday 17 August to Sunday 19 August.

Performing artists include Manic Street Preachers, The Hives and The Levellers.

Date: 6 August 2018

Read more University News