One way of measuring what scientists think of each other’s work is to look at how many times scientists cite the studies of other people.
Ridd does not have a Google Scholar profile (the easiest place to check citations), but his ResearchGate page shows his work has been cited 3,113 times. For comparison, according to ResearchGate, Terry Hughes has been cited 41,600 times. Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg of the University of Queensland – a pioneer of coral bleaching research – has also been cited 41,600 times.
I mention Hoegh-Guldberg, because during one of the Rozner interviews, Andrew Bolt claimed the Queensland scientist had been forced to back-pedal on his claims over the years.
Hoegh-Guldberg told me:
“My 1999 paper predicted back-to-back bleaching and loss of corals by mid-century. But that’s happening right now. The impacts we predicted are actually unfolding much quicker than we thought.”
So, is Ridd a world-renowned expert on the Reef? “No,” said Hoegh-Guldberg. “If he was, it would be reflected in his citations. He’s not heavily cited.”
Alan Jones, a Sydney shock jock who thinks climate science is “witchcraft”, has also tried to pain Ridd as the plucky underdog going up against a big institution.
“Here is a bloke who is challenging the groupthink on climate change, but it’s unequal wherever you turn.”
Unequal? Unequal, except for the fact that it was Ridd who chose to take his employer to court, not the other way around.
Unequal, except for the support of an entire news channel and a quarter-of-a-million dollars to hire a top legal team.
And unequal, except for the support of a think tank that has accepted at least AU$4.5 million in funding since 2016 from Australia’s richest person, mining magnate Gina Rinehart.
Great Barrier Reef: Sky News and Peter Ridd are deliberately misleading