Monday, March 27, 2006


Consensus is a difficult thing to garner, no matter what happens, or how it is stated, there are going to be those that disagree. J-Dub accurately pointed out that some of the signers on the Heidelberg Appeal later went on to encourage countries endorse Kyoto. And later still there was a petition called the Oregon Petition that was signed by as many as 19,000 scientists but that petition is also criticized.

Instead of getting into a "who can get more scientists on their side" contest, perhaps we can look at the science involved, and the actual report that the scientists are either opposing or confirming...this is from page 439 of the IPCC report:

Finally, we come to the difficult question of when the
detection and attribution of human-induced climate
change is likely to occur. The answer to this question
must be subjective, particularly in the light of the large
signal and noise uncertainties discussed in this chapter.
Some scientists maintain that these uncertainties currently
preclude any answer to the question posed above.
Other scientists would and have claimed, on the basis of
the statistical results presented in Section 8.4, that confident
detection of significant anthropogenic climate
change has already occurred.

For those that require a little assistance in discerning exactly what they mean, let me paraphrase. "Some scientist think that their are too many uncertainties to come to any conclusions, others think that climate change has already occurred."

So by the IPCC's own admission, some scientists agree and some disagree. Next question?

Is the planet significantly warmer today than it was 100 years ago? 500? 1000 years?


Blogger Just Some Guy on the Radio said...

Consensus is not always equivalent to fact. In the 14th century, leading scientists were of a consensus that the sun revolved around the earth. Oops.

That's not to say that global warming is NOT occurring. Climate change is measured over centuries, not decades. And we don't have centuries worth of data. We don't have consistently collected data from even the past few decades. Methodologies differ, so what data we have is suspect. And even if warming IS occurring, identifying the actual cause is a different matter. Is it greenhouse gases or the increased urbanization of the earth? After all, more cement and asphalt means more retained solar heat and a gradual increase in overall temperature.

I'm not fool enough to get between you and J-Dub. Just wanted to throw a little more fuel on the fire, because I enjoy the way you two go at it!

8:39 AM  
Blogger djobe said...

thanks for the comment. If you have 40 minutes to spare, go over to J-Dub's site and check out the most recent "podcast."


4:21 PM  
Blogger Dave Morris said...

I get what you are saying, Bill. But honestly, what does it matter? If cement is causing it, shouldn't we, for the future of the race, look into decreasing cement? Maybe.

There is NO doubt that decreasing carbon dioxide emissions will benefit mankind and the earth. No doubt whatsoever.

My point is, in order to preserve the race and the planet, fruitless or not, (and how do we know which is right?) isn't it best to err on the side of caution? I dunno, that's the side I would err on. However, those making the decisions are more interested in short-term profit than the long-term survival.

But that's just my opinion. And I'm drinking right now. :)

10:38 PM  

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