Monday, April 1, 2013

Climate science: A sensitive matter

I read the noise on different climate change claims without the energy to explore the issue in depth, so I was encouraged to see Judith Curry's Climate Etc. blog entry  recommend, as "a must read" an article by "The Economist’s new editor for energy and environment, John Parker."  

Climate science: A sensitive matter | The Economist:
It is possible, therefore, that both the rise in temperatures in the 1990s and the flattening in the 2000s have been caused in part by natural variability.
So what does all this amount to? The scientists are cautious about interpreting their findings. As Dr Knutti puts it, “the bottom line is that there are several lines of evidence, where the observed trends are pushing down, whereas the models are pushing up, so my personal view is that the overall assessment hasn’t changed much.”
But given the hiatus in warming and all the new evidence, a small reduction in estimates of climate sensitivity would seem to be justified: a downwards nudge on various best estimates from 3°C to 2.5°C, perhaps; a lower ceiling (around 4.5°C), certainly. If climate scientists were credit-rating agencies, climate sensitivity would be on negative watch. But it would not yet be downgraded.
The entire article can be read at The Economist:

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