« Keep Turkey Mating Local | Main | I have a little list...from the TaxPayers Alliance »

IPCC - Wrong and Too Conservative - RealClimate

IPCC under fire in blogosphere for 'sealevelgate' | guardian.co.uk

From RealClimate, part of the Guardian Environment Network

In its latest report, the IPCC has predicted up to 59 cm of sea level rise by the end of this century. But realclimate soon revealed a few problems....IPCC would never have published an implausibly high 3 meter upper limit like this, but it did not hesitate with the implausibly low 59 cm. That is because within the IPCC culture, being "alarmist" is bad and being "conservative" (i.e. underestimating the potential severity of things) is good.
Why do I find this IPCC problem far worse than the Himalaya error? Because it is not a slip-up by a Working Group 2 author who failed to properly follow procedures and cited an unreliable source. Rather, this is the result of intensive deliberations by Working Group 1 climate experts. Unlike the Himalaya mistake, this is one of the central predictions of IPCC, prominently discussed in the Summary for Policy Makers. What went wrong in this case needs to be carefully looked at when considering future improvements to the IPCC process.
And let's see whether we learn another lesson here, this time about society and the media. Will this evidence for an underestimation of the climate problem by IPCC, presented by an IPCC lead author who studies sea level, be just as widely reported and discussed as, say, faulty claims by a blogger about "Amazongate"?

Ummm - The RealClimate story is three years old and didn't get any traction then. And this resurrection attempt smacks of desperation.

Comments

That is because within the IPCC culture, being "alarmist" is bad and being "conservative" (i.e. underestimating the potential severity of things) is good.

IPCC culture? To a large extent, that is the attitude of most scientists - the ones who use data to test and refine (or discard) their nodels, not the Hansen/Jones types who use models to test and refine (or discard) data.

There is a lot of real science reported by the IPCC, but the Summary apparently is produced largely by disciples of "humans are bad and killing themselves anyway so let's get rid of them" Ehrlich.

Post a comment