Climate Rap, Yo!

By Douglas Fischer, Daily Climate

The media landscape is dotted by climate believers and deniers, but why are those who do much of the speaking about climate science so rarely climate scientists?

That's the question raised by a handful of Australian climate scientists who, teamed with producers from the Australia Broadcasting Corp. variety show “Hungry Beast,” recently offered their riposte: A Beastie Boys-style video attacking those who deny the science showing human activity is altering the climate.

The two-minute video runs through a fair share of cliches – icebergs, big-hatted oil tycoons, scientists in white lab coats and cheap shades.

But it is blunt in its critique of the United Nations' climate talks (indeed, language on the video is not exactly work- or kid-safe). And several of the scientists are identified by name and affiliation.

Not surprisingly, most of the scientists identified are young and early in their careers – graduate students and post-doctoral researchers. But a few senior folk struck the pose: Roger Jones from the Center for Strategic Economic Studies and Leanne Armand of Macquarie University, to name two.

The YouTube clip is showing the some sign of a viral lift-off – at least for videos that don't include cats, kissing kids or miraculous lacrosse shots. Posted to the Web on Monday, it had 45,000 views by Thursday afternoon and 63,000 by Friday morning.

Not too shabby for a bunch of scientists who rap. Still, those Australians have a ways to go before they can match the pull of mass-market entertainers like, say, the Blue Man Group. Their 2006 video, “Earth to America,” to date has been seen by almost 4 million.

**Note that some language in this video is not suitable for viewing at work or by young children.**

DailyClimate.org is a nonprofit news service covering climate change and a Climate Central content partner.