Scott Adams’s Climate Science Challenge is of interest—thanks to reader Francsois for bringing it to our attention—because of his name-brand recognition. Here is the gist:
So today’s challenge is to find a working scientist or PhD in some climate-related field who will agree with the idea that the climate science models do a good job of predicting the future.
Notice I am avoiding the question of the measurements. That’s a separate question. For this challenge, don’t let your scientist conflate the measurements or the basic science of CO2 with the projections. Just ask the scientist to offer an opinion on the credibility of the models only.
Remind your scientist that as far as you know there has never been a multi-year, multi-variable, complicated model of any type that predicted anything with useful accuracy. Case in point: The experts and their models said Trump had no realistic chance of winning.
Your scientist will fight like a cornered animal to conflate the credibility of the measurements and the basic science of CO2 with the credibility of the projection models. Don’t let that happen. Make your scientist tell you that complicated multi-variable projections models that span years are credible. Or not.
Then report back to me in the comments here or on Twitter at @ScottAdamsSays.
This is the point which I (a bona fide climate scientist) and my compadres (also bona fide climate scientists) having been making for years—and years. Mostly in vain for, you see, climate science has long been eclipsed by climate politics and climate religion.
Climate politics insists on maintaining the status quo, i.e. the moneyed Consensus, and climate religion believes mankind is necessarily harmful to the environment. Both views aren’t keen on the points Adams makes.
It is the key, fundamental, and only point necessary to understand that if a theory or model makes lousy predictions, then something is wrong with the theory which needs to be fixed.
Global climate models make lousy predictions, therefore the models are in error due to, say, typos in the computer code, or the theory on which they models are based is in error due to mistakes in the physics or chemistry. Both the models and theory could be broken, of course.
Adams’s point is that, even if a scientist can admit that the models make lousy predictions, he will insist that adding CO2 to the atmosphere must raise the temperature near the surface. Nobody disputes that. The consensus on this is 100%. It had better be 100%, else there is something basic wrong with our physical understanding of the world.
But even though all (as in all) agree that adding CO2 warms the air, it is not true that it warms it to any dangerous level. And that if, perchance, it does warm it to dangerous levels, that we as a species cannot figure out how to handle it with aplomb.
It is those two points—the amount and consequence—which are being questioned. The amount we already know, based upon year after year of busted forecasts, is unlikely to be dangerous. And the consequences, we know based upon much experience, don’t appear drastic, or even noticeable.
Anyway, it ought to be a small amount of fun to see if any Consensus scientist will allow his name to be used on the record for Adams’s Challenge. At best, I’m guessing, he’ll get one or two who admit the forecasts have so far been bad but they’re going to get better any day, with the implication that they’re going to predict warmer weather accurately.
This leads us to an email from reader Dominik Wegrecki:
I really want to share your articles on facebook, especially the ones about how climate models are bad at predicting climate change, however I’ve been hassled for not “fact-checking” before, so this time around I’m doing just that.
See the link for a rebuttal to your claims that models aren’t doing a good job.
I would refute it myself, but unfortunately when it comes to statistics and sciency talk, it’s mostly gibberish to me. I was hoping you could refute the refutation.
Since I’m sick unto death of climatology, as we repeat the same points endlessly as we wait for time to pass and the old guard to die, I’m too tired to repeat them yet again. As a resource, I have the search function (bottom of the page) and a number of articles on the Classic Posts page.
Meanwhile, let’s follow the Challenge. Maybe something fun will come out of it.
Oh, since this was big: 100% Of US Warming Is Due To NOAA Data Tampering.