“More to work to be done to convince public of urgent need for climate change solution” says Science Museum Director

01/12/2009

Today (1 December 2009) Professor Chris Rapley CBE, Director of the Science Museum and Professor of Climate Science at UCL said:

 “More work needs to be done to convince people of the reality of human-induced climate change and of the urgency with which we must agree an international solution. Public organisations, like the Science Museum, have a responsibility to lay out the evidence and open up public discussion.”

He added:

“Over the past month the Science Museum has provided a channel for people to engage with the scientific evidence for climate change through a temporary exhibit and accompanying website called ‘Prove It!’. There is currently plenty of debate around climate change research and I believe it is important for the Science Museum to provide a means for people to engage with the issues. Prove It! has created a space for visitors, to the Museum and website, to consider the scientific evidence, come to their own conclusions and express their opinion. The indications from Prove It! are consistent with a recent Pew Centre survey and a 2007 Ipsos Mori poll: a large proportion of people do not believe in the reality of man-made climate change.

Furthermore, Professor Rapley said:

“The Science Museum is uniquely placed to engage with people about climate change, facilitating discussion and decision making based on evidence. I look forward to launching a new dedicated climate change gallery next June as the culmination of our Centenary year.”

The statement was made to coincide with the revealing of the results of a poll carried out by the Science Museum to tie in with the Prove It! project. The poll suggested that a significant number of people are not convinced by the evidence for man-made climate change so do not support strong action by the UK government at the forthcoming Copenhagen conference.

Prove It! remains open until January 2010 and is free to visit.

For further information please contact Andrew Marcus, Science Museum Press Office, on 020 7942 4357 / andrew.marcus@sciencemuseum.org.uk

Notes to Editors

From June 2009 the Science Museum is celebrating its hundredth birthday and a century of science with a year-long centenary programme to take the renowned institution into the future. For 100 years the Science Museum has been world-renowned for its historic collection, remarkable galleries and inspirational exhibitions. With around 15,000 objects on public display, the Science Museum’s collections form an enduring record of scientific, technological and medical change from the past few centuries. Aiming to be the best place in the world for people to enjoy science, the Science Museum makes sense of the science that shapes our lives, sparking curiosity, releasing creativity and changing the future by engaging people of all generations and backgrounds in science engineering, medicine, technology, design and enterprise. In 2008/09 the Science Museum was proud to have been awarded the Gold Award for Visitor Attraction of the Year by Visit London and a Silver Award for Large Visitor Attraction of the Year by Enjoy England.