William Happer

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William Happer

William Happer (born July 27, 1939) is an American physicist who has specialized in the study of atomic physics, optics and spectroscopy. He is professor of physics, emeritus, at Princeton University and a long-term member of the JASON advisory group, where he pioneered the development of adaptive optics. From 1991 to 1993, Happer served as director of the Department of Energy's Office of Science as part of the George H. W. Bush administration. Happer rejects the scientific consensus on climate change. He has no formal training in climate science, but he is an expert on the characteristics of the CO2-molecule due to his extensive work with CO2 lazers.


  • I, and many other scientists, think the warming will be small compared the natural fluctuations in the earth’s temperature, and that the warming and increased CO2 will be good for mankind.
  • We know that carbon dioxide has been a much larger fraction of the earth's atmosphere than it is today, and the geological record shows that life flourished on land and in the oceans during those times. The incredible list of supposed horrors that increasing carbon dioxide will bring the world is pure belief disguised as science.
  • ...the public in general doesn't realize that from the point of view of geological history, we are in a CO2 famine....
    There is no problem from CO2. The world has lots and lots of problems, but increasing CO2 is not one of the problems. So [the accord] dignifies it by getting all these yahoos who don't know a damn thing about climate saying, 'This is a problem, and we're going to solve it.' All this virtue signaling. You can read about it in the Bible: Pharisees and hypocrites and phonies.

Quotes about Happer[edit]

  • Happer is a former Princeton physics professor who co-founded the group in 2015. Before that, he chaired the George Marshall Institute—dissolved around the same time of the CO2 Coalition's founding—and developed a reputation as one of the nation's premier climate skeptics.
  • Before he founded the CO2 Coalition, Happer chaired the George Marshall Institute and developed a reputation as one of the nation's premier climate "skeptics." The Institute received $865,000 from ExxonMobil between 1998 and 2011. (Elsewhere, ExxonMobil-funded think tanks have been found offering scientists $10,000-a-pop to undermine climate reports.) With a degree in physics from Princeton, Happer is unusually qualified to serve in this area—the various other deniers I spoke to for the story had degrees like a bachelor's in political science or a PhD in geography—but he is a professional denier all the same.
  • It’s important to note the person behind this attempt to chill our defense agencies from understanding and managing climate risk is Dr. Will Happer. Dr. Happer testified before Congress in December 2015 that the world has too little Carbon Dioxide and is too cold – an extreme, fringe view even for the tiny number of scientists who call themselves climate skeptics. This is a clumsy attempt to force the entire federal government to conform to a bizarre view thoroughly rejected by the vast majority of scientists.

External links[edit]

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