Well, it's not much of a newsflash. As much as anything can be, the finding that humans are the cause of global warming has become established science. The American Association for the Advancement of Science did its part with this report on Sunday to advance the debate. And by "advance the debate," I mean move on from arguing over whether global warming is real or whether humans are the cause. The debate should now focus on, "What are we going to do about it?"
Unfortunately, it will be a while before the debate moves on to policy solutions. This is as frustrating to science-types as waiting behind a row of cars stopped at a green light. But this is par for the course. Creationists cling to their non-science nonsense and continue to confuse biology students. And as far as I know, the Flat Earth Society hasn't closed up shop.
The problem is that we all feel entitled to an opinion. An opinion that must be respected on the merits of arguments one might construct on its behalf. That's how normal discourse works. But in science, we respect evidence and simple, logical explanations. So science doesn't really care about opinions or impacts on the economy. So disrespectful and reckless, science. But that's how it goes.
And maybe you've heard, "But in the 1970s, they were scaring us with global cooling." It would be an amusing exercise to source that gem. Who were "they?" What was the evidence? Nevertheless, science moves on. Ask proponents of that argument if they would prefer medical treatment and medicines from the 70s or something from the 2000s. I mean, if we have better medicines now, that means "they" were wrong in the 70s. And hey, if they were wrong in the 70s, why trust them now? The logically consistent answer for "global cooling"-objectors should be, "No!" They should be skeptical of today's medicine because it has changed since the 1970s. Therefore it must all be wrong!