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Using Systematic Reviews to Separate Scientific from Policy Debate Relevant to Climate Change

      The Copenhagen summit was to be moment in history when the international community was to agree that climate change is the most urgent and important threat facing global health
      • Costello A.
      • Abbas M.
      • Allen A.
      • et al.
      Managing the health effects of climate change.
      and take decisive action to prevent its worst impacts.
      • Haines A.
      • McMichael A.J.
      • Smith K.R.
      • et al.
      Public health benefits of strategies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions: overview and implications for policymakers.
      Instead, the UN summit in Copenhagen was plagued by political infighting, policy disagreement, increasing public scepticism, and persistent criticism of the science in the lay literature. It is not clear what effect this critique of the science had on policymakers during and after the summit, but the effects on public opinion have been profound.
      • Juliette J.
      Sharp decline in public's belief in climate threat, British poll reveals.
      This article argues that the scientific debate could be more clearly separated from the political debate if the next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) synthesis were to be underpinned by systematic literature review methods.
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