Communicating climate science reconsidered

by Judith Curry

Some thoughts on the UCL Policy Commission on Communicating Climate Science Report:  Time for Change?

In the early days of Climate Etc., communicating climate science was a major topic for my posts [link to the collection; see esp the earlier posts].  As a blog proprietor focused on public engagement, I was trying to navigate this topic and figure out how to facilitate communication/engagement  across the diverse interests in the topic of climate change.  However, the denizens tended to groan whenever there was a communications post, saying just be honest as scientists and the communication issues go away.

Its not quite that simple.

From the conclusions of the recent UK House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee report on Communicating Climate Science:

“A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science. The Government and other bodies, such as the Royal Society and the Met Office, are currently failing to make effective use of [the] internet or social media to engage with the public and to become an authoritative source of accurate scientific information about climate change. The Government must work with the learned societies, national academies and other experts to develop a source of information on climate science that is discrete from policy delivery, comprehensible to the general public, and responsive to both current developments and uncertainties in the science. The Government’s current approach to communicating conflates the scientific basis of climate change and the proposed solutions to its impacts, and places a heavy reliance on individual scientists communicating about the science to justify the policy response. Efforts to create a clear narrative that is coherent, constructive and results in proper public engagement have been disappointing. As a matter of urgency, the Government needs to draw up a climate change communication strategy and implement this consistently across all departments.”

Towards addressing these concerns, the University College of London Commission on Communicating Climate Science issued a major report several weeks ago:  Time for Change?   I followed some of the discussion on Twitter, but hadn’t read the report.  Roz Pidcock at the Carbon Brief has a good overview of the report [link]. The Age also has a good article on the report [link].

This morning I received an email from Chris Rapley, Chair of the Commission,  sending me a copy of the report, and I’ve been engaging with him about this on email.  So while I am a little slow off the mark in responding to this (in context of the news and twitter cycle), this allows for some broader reflection (including other reactions to the report).

Overview of Report

Chapter Summaries:

1 Clarifying the Science–Policy Interface Climate science can inform, but should not arbitrate, policy; rather climate scientists and policymakers need to work together, and with other experts and the public, to develop and practice a ‘coproduction’ approach to policymaking. There are five key roles which climate scientists should collectively fulfil: ‘Pure Scientist’, ‘Science Communicator’, ‘Science Arbiter’, ‘Issue Advocate’ and ‘Honest Broker of Policy Alternatives’. 

2 What is Inside Our Minds? Disagreement within climate discourse is more to do with differences in values and world-views, and our propensity for social evaluations, than it is about scientific facts. Climate science contains enough complexity and ambiguity to support a variety of positions. Simply providing more facts will not resolve the disagreements. 

3 Strengthening the Public Standing of Climate Science Climate science is complex, and its results are unwelcome, inconvenient and contested. It cannot be easily rendered into simple truths. Furthermore, the climate science community is very broad and lacks a coherent unified voice. One way for climate scientists to engage more effectively with society and with policymakers is to encourage and inform discourse on tractable, ‘no or low’ regret ways forward. These should address different benefits on different timescales, starting with the near term.

4 Capturing an Engaged Audience Narrative offers a powerful means to engage an audience and convey complex concepts. Climate scientists can gain much by working with and learning from those expert in public discourse, including the arts, museum sector and media. Dialogue, rather than debate, offers the means to identify common purpose and foster constructive, evidence-based discourse. 

5 How Climate Change Features in the Public Consciousness There is widespread public acceptance of the reality of climate change, but not of the urgency and scale of the challenges that the science indicates it represents. This discrepancy derives from psychological factors and from cues from influential elites and the media. There is a need to reframe the public discourse in a way that circumvents existing entrenched positions to engage climate scientists and other experts with policymakers and society more generally to evaluate the scientific evidence and determine the appropriate responses.

6 Rising to the Challenge In an ideal world, the climate science community would have a clear understanding of its purpose and objectives, pursue proactive engagement with society and policy through a clear narrative of climate science, engage in dialogue rather than debate, and be aware of the need for active self-reflection. 

From the report Conclusions:

Climate scientists are finding themselves ill-prepared to engage with the often emotionally, politically and ideologically charged public discourse on the evaluation and use of their science. This is proving unhelpful to evidence-based policy formulation, and is damaging their public standing. As a result, there is a pressing need to re-examine and clarify the roles of climate scientists in policy, decision-making and public engagement. Their professional norms, values and practices need to be reconsidered and revised accordingly. In expanding their skills and expertise to better match societal needs, climate scientists can benefit from a mutually supportive working relationship with social and behavioural scientists, and with experts in public engagement and communication.

A climate science ‘meta-narrative’ is required that delivers the results of climate science in a manner that is accurate, engaging, coherent, relevant, and which – by making clear the limits of certainty and knowledge – is robust against new discoveries and unfolding events. Multiple narrative threads, that are consistent and harmonious with each other, are necessary both to reflect the complex nature of the climate science, and to connect with audiences with different states of knowledge, interests, values and needs.

Policy issues raised by climate science are complicated by many factors such as decisions on energy, food and water supplies, quality of life, equity, affordability, security, sustainability and societal resilience. Whilst climate science can inform such policy deliberations, it cannot be their arbiter. Decision-making should not be through the ‘linear’ mode, characterized as ‘truth speaks to power’, but by a collective process (‘co-production’) in which all interested parties, including the public, play their part.

Efforts to understand the climate system better are important, but they should not be allowed to divert attention and effort from decision-making and policy formulation based on what is already known and can be addressed. Reducing uncertainties in some areas may not always be possible but irreducible uncertainties can be addressed using a ‘decision pathways’ approach, which retains flexibility through the identification of multiple options and decision points.

At its root, the public discussion of climate science is as much about what sort of world we wish to live in, and hence about ethics and values, as it is about material risks to human wellbeing. This needs to be clearly acknowledged and addressed by climate scientists, policymakers and others engaged in the discussion. Establishing a positive and active public discourse requires recognizing that people’s feelings, beliefs, inner conflicts and world views strongly influence the way that they receive and assimilate information.

From the report Recommendations:

Communication:  There is a need for the general public and climate scientists to engage in constructive dialogue, and for climate scientists to convey a big picture that provides a context for the discussion of new scientific results and their consequences. The authentic and personal voice of climate scientists in this process is essential for the general public to establish trust in the findings of climate science.

Training: Training and development of climate scientists should address strengthening the transparency of the climate science process, and the degree of public participation within it. More specifically, the objective is to equip the community as a whole with the skills to fulfil a range of roles from ‘pure scientist’ to ‘honest broker of policy options’.

Policy: Rather than assuming a role of “truth speaks to power”, climate scientists should assume a role of “co-production”: where they can contribute their expertise alongside other experts to inform policy formulation and the decision-making process.

Leadership: A professional body for climate scientists should be established to provide a unifying purpose and to offer leadership.

Self-reflection: Active critical self-reflection and humility when interacting with others should become the cultural norm on the part of all participants in the climate discourse.

Reactions to the Report

In the blogosphere and on twitter, the reactions to the report have not been too favorable, here are a few examples.

Paul Matthews has a lengthy post Another report on climate communication. Excerpts:

The climate change industry appears to remain convinced that there is nothing wrong with climate science, but there is a problem with “climate science communication”. Or at least this is the line they are trying to maintain.

Ultimately, the failure of the document is that it does not seem to realise that this focus on presentation and communication will be seen as spin and propaganda.

Matthews’ post also includes a number of tweets from climate academics, excerpts:

Gareth Jones: Skimmed report and am fairly underwhelmed. Rather patronising to both climate scientists and contrarians

Steve Easterbrook: Climate scientists do their job well. It’s what happens after the science is done that needs fixing

Gavin Schmidt: the recommendations seem to yearn for an old-fashioned central authority to impose order on an unruly #scicomm landscape.

Bishop Hill writes:  The guts of the report is the usual climate-communication navel-gazing enlivened only by a marginally less defensive posture with regard to the misdeeds of climate scientists: “Accounts of [Climategate] and the associated ‘hockey stick controversy’ can make uncomfortable reading for those with high expectations for standards of scientific conduct.”

In the comments, John Schade sums it up this way:

So, the Schneiderian Scenario device is being discarded in favour of more bureaucracy, more chuminess with government, and maybe less science (as in ‘Efforts to understand the climate system better are important, but they should not be allowed to divert attention and effort from decision-making and policy formulation based on what is already known and can be addressed.’), and somewhere separate for concerned citizens to chat with one another, no doubt under supervision (as in ‘new organisational mechanisms are required to support the public discourse on climate science and to achieve necessary professional reforms – notably a forum for active public discussion and a professional body for climate scientists.’).

JC reflections

The report is targeted at a very legitimate concern:   the ‘gap’ between the functions the climate science community currently fulfils and societal needs, and what might be done about closing it.  However, the study is too academic, and Bishop Hill’s charge of navel gazing has some merit.

What I like about the report

There are some things that I very much like about the report:

I.  Chapter I about clarifying the science-policy interface is spot-on.  In particular:

  • The ‘linear’ or ‘technocratic’ model of science informing climate policy is inappropriate.
  • Climate science should inform policy decisions but should not be their arbiter.
  • Climate scientists should collectively fulfil five roles: ‘Pure Scientist’, ‘Science Communicator’, ‘Science Arbiter’, ‘Issue Advocate’ and ‘Honest Broker of Policy Alternatives’.

The linear model of science informing climate policy underlies the UNFCCC/IPCC.  Getting rid of the pernicious ‘speaking consensus to power’ approach to climate policy would be a huge step forward; this report moves things in the right direction.  Read Section 1.5 Why does the linear/technocratic model persist?

II.  Climate science contains enough complexity and ambiguity to support a variety of positions. Simply providing more facts will not resolve the disagreements.  I partially agree with this statement.  The key issue IMO is reasoning about climate uncertainty, see my paper on this [link].

III.  From section 2.7 Consequences of Fear Appeals:  Fear appeals are effective when they point to specific dangers and are accompanied by solutions. In other conditions, they are likely to lead to avoidance and desensitization. Alarmist messages that fail to materialize contribute to the loss of trust in the science community.  Apart from the many reasons to dislike alarmism, the bottom line is that it doesn’t work in terms of generating ‘climate action.’

IV.  The emphasis on ‘no or low regrets’  is very welcome:  One way for climate scientists to engage more with society and with policymakers is to encourage and inform discourse on tractable, ‘no or low regret’ ways forward addressing different benefits on different timescales, starting with the near term.

V. This is an important point:  there is a distinction between modelling to inform mitigation, and modelling to inform adaptation.  My recent Workshop highlighted the issues of informing adaptation (an issue that has not received sufficient focus).

V. Important point regarding the academic training systems and reward structure: Although numerous climate scientists are active in public engagement and policy formulation, they are the exception. For the majority the primary focus remains their ‘Pure Scientist’ role. The academic training systems and rewards structures provide limited capability or incentives for this to change.

VI. This point really resonated with me:  Climate scientists are finding themselves ill-prepared to engage with the often emotionally, politically and ideologically charged public discourse on the evaluation and use of their science.  This issue was discussed at length in my 2006 paper Mixing Politics and Science in Testing the Hypothesis that Greenhouse Warming is Causing an Increase in Hurricane Intensity.

VII. Acknowledgements of the problems for climate science associated with Climategate: Accounts of [Climategate] and the associated ‘hockey stick controversy’ can make uncomfortable reading for those with high expectations for standards of scientific conduct.

VIII.  This paragraph definitely strikes a chord with me:  As a result, there has been little incentive for already busy individuals to take on additional demanding commitments in areas of climate science communication the science–policy interface for which they have little training or experience. Factors reinforcing the situation are the academic rewards system, which continues to place priority on public publishing original research, and a pervasive prejudice amongst scientists that ‘outreach’ activities are lower status than, and a distraction from, the main objective (i.e. understanding and predicting the climate system). Those individuals who have engaged in such activities, with notable exceptions, have tended to be drawn from the more established members of the community. These figures are arguably better able to take the time and the risk (as well as being seen as more ‘expert’), having more freedom of control over their schedules and being more secure in their posts. Although they have been rewarded through increased status, influence and access to power, many have found the consequences double-edged, having become the target of attack within the blogosphere and the media. 

IX.  The report  acknowledges the wickedness of the climate problem.

X.  I like this statement:  welcome and actively expand the democratization of science via the internet and other means

XI. And finally, its hard to argue against this statement: Active critical self-reflection and humility when interacting with others should become the cultural norm on the part of all participants in the climate discourse.

What I disagree with

While there are many aspects of this report that I like, I have a problem with the overall framing of the problem of communicating climate science.  Here are some problems that I have with the report:

I. This statement seems to be an underlying premise of the Report: There is widespread public acceptance of the reality of climate change, but not of the urgency and scale of the challenges it presents. This is at odds with the conclusions of climate science.  Yes, climate is changing, but the key issue in both the public and scientific debate is the extent to which climate change is caused by humans.  The failure to understand this is a direct result of the misleading consensus that has been manufactured by the IPCC.  Science has nothing to say about urgency and scale of the challenges.  While the report acknowledges the problem of conflating politics and science, this conflation is endemic in the report.

II.  For all the discussion about debate and disagreement, the report is framed by the following statement:  Finally, there is a compelling argument that, whilst from a scientific standpoint there remains much to explore, for the purposes of policy ‘we know enough’ about the general trajectory of climate change and the requirement for a response.  We don’t know very much about the trajectory of climate change on decadal time scales, and we only have a general theoretical idea of the century scale response to increased greenhouse gases (and unvalidated climate models).  The requirement for a response rests on the ill-defined notion of ‘dangerous climate change’ and wildly uncertain impact assessment models.

III.  Genuine dissent about climate science isn’t discussed in a meaningful way.  Disagreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts. This in turn leads to disagreements over policy choices. The report is dismissive of dissent from the ‘consensus’:  A brief visit to a climate-dismissive blog site, or to comments posted on a climate-related media article in the right-wing media, will reveal the depth of antagonism that exists towards climate scientists, and the rich seam of dismissive arguments in play. Lacking a mechanism to eliminate misunderstandings, flaws and errors, the same arguments tend to be constantly recycled, even when discredited. A natural reaction of scientists, unused to dealing with raw personal attacks, or with having repeatedly to deconstruct and expose the same flawed material, is to disengage, leaving the climate-dismissive ‘echo chamber’ to build up its own alternative ‘reality’.  This statement shows a complete lack of understanding of the source of the antagonism (no it is not the Koch brothers).  Bishop Hill’s charge of ‘navel gazing’ is directly relevant here.

III.  The report seeks a ‘coherent voice’ about climate change and the policy makers certainly seem to want this.  Without a coherent voice, maintaining a narrative that expresses consistent purpose, values and core messages is not possible. The resulting inconsistencies undermine the basis for a productive public conversation, and open up vulnerabilities to public confusion and mistrust.  The IPCC has tried the ‘coherent’ voice thing; it has led to the distrust of climate science and scientists, and has sowed the seeds of nasty polarization.  A coherent voice is at odds with the wickedness of the climate problem, the substantial uncertainties, and the complexity of reasoning in the face of this wickedness and uncertainty.  What is needed is the acknowledgement of a plurality of legitimate perspectives.

IV.  The report identifies the following pitfalls regarding the content of climate science messaging:   oversimplification and over-emphasis on the value of predictions.  Examples of oversimplification cited are use of global surface temperature as a metric for climate change and the use of climate sensitivity.  Well ok, I am no fan of oversimplification, but frankly this comes across as trying to weasel out of the problems for the dominant climate change narrative caused by the hiatus in surface temperature increase and the lowering of estimates of climate sensitivity.  Instead, these examples should have been used to illustrate the uncertainties and genuine dissent surrounding climate science.

V.  A major element of the proposed communication strategy is storytelling: employ the elements of successful narrative including personalizing their story, drawing on emotions and expressing their opinions.  This was tried on a large scale in the series Years of Living Dangerously, which turned out to be rather a dud (beyond effectively preaching to the choir).  The foundations of communication success in a politicized scientific debate are earning trust, humility, and honesty about the uncertainties.   Beyond that, successful communicators understand the art of integrating the complex scientific and social issues surrounding climate change, and yes are able to effectively use metaphor and verbal imagery.  But without earning trust of people that are not predisposed to agree with you, you will get nowhere.

Proposal for a professional body for climate science

One of the major recommendations of the report is:

A professional body for climate scientists should be established to provide a unifying purpose and to offer leadership.

The establishment of a professional body for climate science, to represent the interests of climate scientists and society, would provide the means to develop norms, values and practices better tuned to the circumstances in which climate science finds itself.

  1. The establishment of a forum for an active and authoritative public conversation about the results and implications of climate science.
  2. The ability of climate scientists to identify themselves and demonstrate professional credentials.
  3. The means to represent climate science with authority in its dealings with society (decision-makers, politicians and the lay public) and to engage with all relevant parties in a cooperative, co-production approach, seeking common purpose and the common good.
  4. The means to promote high standards of education and training, and in particular to prepare climate scientists for each of the five idealized roles they may choose or be required to fulfil at different times.
  5.  The means to define and ensure professional standards of work and behaviour, including a commitment on the part of accredited scientists to aspire to these.
  6. The establishment of a means by which all of the above can be discussed, agreed and worked

This could be a good idea if implemented properly (the devil is not only in the details but also the fundamental framing). This thread is already REALLY LONG, so lets save this topic for another thread.

JC conclusions

The UCL Report is the most comprehensive report on this issue that I’ve seen, and it makes a number of important points.  That said, there are some structural problems to the way the the climate communication challenge is approached.

Most of the authors of the report are not climate scientists (for good reason).  Climate scientists seem dismissive of the report, which illustrates the disconnect between climate scientists and the challenges of communication and policy deliberation.  The issues raised by the report deserve serious reflection, and hopefully this will start a productive dialogue on the important, complex, and vexing issues surrounding climate communication.

397 responses to “Communicating climate science reconsidered

  1. “Climate scientists are finding themselves ill-prepared to engage with the often emotionally, politically and ideologically charged public discourse on the evaluation and use of their science.”

    Absolute tripe. It was and is climate “scientists” who have made the public discourse “emotionally, politically and ideologically charged.” Hansen, Mann, Trenberth, the IPCC in general have been crying wolf non-stop. The IPCC was formed specifically to pursue a political agenda and emotion is its primary weapon of choice.

    This report is just the latest in a long series of “reframing” arguments from those dissatisfied with the unwillingness of the voting people to act more like sheep.

    “…the denizens tended to groan whenever there was a communications post, saying just be honest as scientists and the communication issues go away.

    Its not quite that simple.”

    No one said it was that simple, or that was all there was to do. But it is an essential starting point. Without it, nothing else in this report is worth anything.

    “The establishment of a professional body for climate science, to represent the interests of climate scientists and society, would provide the means to develop norms, values and practices better tuned to the circumstances in which climate science finds itself.”

    We have had that. They call it the International Panel on Climate Change. It strikes me as naive to call for the dismemberment of the IPCC, and yet call for its replacement. Those who want a central clearing house for science, and science advocacy, are the very ones who would run such an organization. IPCC 2.0 does not strike me as a good idea.

    The problem in “climate science” is not communication. It is climate scientists and their progressive values.

    • One comment: the IPCC is not a professional society. IPCC authors (a small fraction of climate scientists) are nominated by governments and subsequently invited by the IPCC Bureau to participate in the IPCC. See the wikipedia article:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Professional_association

      • IMO that is the crux of the problem. Perhaps more so than communication. I would be more inclined to to take reports more seriously if it was climate scientists delivering scientific information without the confidence weighing mumble jumble.

      • Dr. Curry,

        I understood you to be approving the call for a “professional organization” to “provide the means to develop norms, values and practices.” Who would create, fund and staff such an organization other than the same people, or at least the same type of people, involved in the IPCC?

        Climate science is inseparable from government funding and is dominated by those who support the progressive CAGW agenda. Any “professional organization” of climate scientists will just be a non-NGO version of the IPCC.

        The problem is not the form of organization. It is the fact that the entire field is run through with group think, politicization and a progressive ethos that the means justifies the ends.

        I honestly wonder if any such organization would even let you join.

      • or better – the ends justifies the means

      • Look at the professional societies, like the Royal Society, NAS, etc. – look how well they have conducted the climategate investigations… yes, that’s definitely what we need, more whitewashing and papering over by a new “professional” society.
        Will skeptics be permitted at such a society, or will the usual practice prevail: label them “enemy of the people” and boycott them? (Like the BBC) ?

      • David Wojick

        If the AMS and AGU are models then we do not need another society. The fact that many of their members are skeptics does not prevent them from loudly endorsing CAGW.

    • Judith, good long post.

      I agree with the stuff you disagree with in the report. I also agree with GaryM.

      Somehow following your recent posts I have ended up reading Jonah Goldberg’s book “Liberal Facism”. The tactics of the Climate Protectorate are chillingly familiar in this context. The last thing we need is another professional body to simplify and find tune the alarmist message.

      • Speaking of the “message,” are we witnessing the birth of a new derogatory descriptor for skeptics – “dismissive”? So now, instead of calling someone a climate “denialist” we can sound clever by calling them a climate “dismissive.” Skeptical or Lukewarmer blogs can now be said to be “dismissing” climate. It’s the new “polite” term eh?…

        This is getting more and more stupid all the time.

      • Agreed. Except when self applied.

        They are over-simplified, ignorant, efforts to cast role expectations on a person or group.

      • tomdesabla,

        Better to be a skeptical “climate dismissive” than a CAGW “climate submissive” – a psychological disorder characterized by intellectually debilitating hockey stick envy.

      • I think that s the term I will use from now on. Not warmists, not CAGWers, but “climate submissives.”

      • +1, but only in spirit.

        won’t lower myself to the standard of other “label appliers”, which is really just name calling.

        so a quiet +1. ;-)

    • GaryM – You hit the nail on the head. I would add that a major problem with this and many other reports is that they use a top-down way of thinking. The “communication issues” are largely caused by the failure of scientists to “just be honest” and instead to try to force their will on others. With an open and honest approach, there will still be problems at times, but trying to impose solutions from above is not the way to resolve them.

      • We’ve just had the BBC apologise for not making it clear that Nigel Lawson was wrong about the science when nigh on every sentence use by his climate science opponent, Sir Brian Hoskins, was not the current position of the climate science community. Hoskins finished by saying the the “missing” heat in the deep oceans had been measured.

        What’s wrong with climate science communication is that the climate scientists know they don’t know what’s going on and instead of telling the public pretend to know, and if necessary, make things up, as Hoskins did.

        In short they have a problem with communication because if they told the truth,the whole truth and nothing but the truth, it would be clear they can’t forecast the future state of the climate and that wouldn’t help the political agenda underlying all of climate alarmism. Hence their view is that if they could get a pristine one-sided story across they would have improved communication. Dangerous people fanatics.

      • Il Duce, did not include the danger of angry mobs parameter in his model.
        When this has all run its course I wonder if we well better understand the Dark Ages? Perhaps science lead the way again?

    • GaryM summed it up well, no point dissecting the details further. As for the concept of climate “authority” constantly expounding the “communication” meme as a replacement for a convincing science argument exposes the arrogance of the parties like no other, “failure to communicate”;

      D. Curry’s middling is an indicator of why she remains a hazard in the public debate.

    • Climate Scientists are publicising something broken at source. The core of the belief system is a single -18 deg C emission zone, between 5 and 6 km in radiative equilibrium with Space. This is the source of the 33 K GHE claim, also the origin of the assumption in the modelling that Kirchhoff’s Law of Radiation applies at ToA.

      The purpose is to provide a negative energy flux in the two-stream approximation, equal but opposite OLR. Atmospheric heating is 238.5 W/m^2 thermalised SW + 333 W/m^2 ‘back radiation, really Irradiance so can do no thermodynamic work, – 238.5 W/m^2 = 333 W/m^2. It’s an increase of 40%, a Perpetual Motion Machine of the 2nd Kind.

      As for the real story, OLR comes from between 0 and ~20 km altitude: the former for the atmospheric window, 15 deg C, the latter for CO2, -50 deg C AND between =5 and – 30 deg C for the various H2O bands. -18 deg C is a flux-weighted virtual mean; it does not exist, the atmosphere is semi transparent and you can’t apply Kirchhoff’s Law at ToA.

      In the absence of any other factor there would be 1.2 K CO2 climate sensitivity; the atmosphere reduces this to near zero.

    • A few years ago, i discussed the Kirchhoff’s Law assumption in depth and with some hostility from Met Office modellers, who have invented a spurious way to justify the claim.

      238.5 + 333 – 238.5 = 333 is a stupid error or outright fraud. The people I conferred with assumed, as claimed by Houghton, that the atmosphere is a grey body emitter. It is nothing of the kind; the -18 deg C claim is imaginary.

      To claim Kirchhoff’s Law of Radiation at ToA means ToA emits DOWN to offset IR from the surface in the atmospheric window, also H2O IR from the middle tropopause. This and the 40% energy increase from nowhere is absurd physics.

    • An interesting point, but only true if you believe that (1) the surface transfers to the atmosphere real energy at 97 + 396 = 493 W/m^2 AND (2) 396 W/m^2 is absorbed by GHGs AND the energy thermalised in the gas phase at Local Thermodynamic Equilibrium. (The total heating is 238.5 + 396 = 571.5 W/m^2). Answers:

      (1) Net surface IR flux = Δ[Irradiance] = 396 – 333 = 63 W/m^2.

      (2) The Tyndall experiment does not prove GHG-absorbed IR is thermalised in the gas phase. if that were true, absorptivity would exceed emissivity, a breach of Kirchhoff’s law of Radiation which requires LTE. You get this from statistical thermodynamics; the experimental proof is the CO2 laser.

      To summarise, only 23 W/m^2 surface IR, non self-absorbed H2O bands, is absorbed in the atmosphere; this can only be thermalised at the surface of condensed matter. There is no ‘back radiation’, no positive feedback.

    • 5 How Climate Change Features in the Public Consciousness There is widespread public acceptance of the reality of climate change, but not of the urgency and scale of the challenges that the science indicates it represents.
      =========
      the report demonstrates its bias. the public accepts that the climate has been changing long before humans could have had any effect. the public accepts that they don’t want to pay to try and stop this change, and that it would be foolish to try. the public accepts that politicians and scientists want to try and get money from the public to help the scientists and politicians. the public accepts that “saving the world” is one of many arguments that are used to try and fleece the gullible.

  2. “A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science. The Government and other bodies, such as the Royal Society and the Met Office, are currently failing to make effective use of [the] internet or social media to engage with the public and to become an authoritative source of accurate scientific information about climate change. ”

    I just couldn’t read any further. The government? The Royal Society? The risible Met Office? Authoritative sources? How did we sink this low?

  3. If the perceived problem is communications then it would seem to me that any attempt to rectify public opinion would be nothing more than propaganda. The mistake was made by the IPCC in implying prematurely that the science was settled, which is is not! So the debate ended up with one side saying all change was to do anthropogenic carbon and the other side saying carbon had no effect. Policy makers seeing a way to increase taxes (they never have enough money) seized on the concept before the debate was settled and now after climategate and the Hockey stick we have much distrust in the system.

    Personally, my opinion that its about a 60/40 split with natural cycles accounting for 60% and 40% of the current temperature changes being based on the increase of Carbon. There also appears to be an upper limit to the climate forcing from carbon since the levels in the past have been significantly higher than the 400 ppm today. If this view is correct than global temperatures will cycle their way up for the next hundred some years and then move back down for another 500 some years even if carbon Dioxide goes over 1,000 ppm.

    • “…that any attempt to rectify public opinion would be nothing more than propaganda. The mistake was made by the IPCC in implying prematurely that the science was settled, which is is not!”

      Right, Propaganda. My thought exactly.

  4. I find this report a good step in the right direction. But you cannot expect a body of non-climate scientists to solve all the problems. The mere fact that such a body finds it useful to address the difficulties met by another scientific community says a lot about the importance of the problem. This in itself is revealing. Many of their recommendations might be simply be read as follows, as far as I can understand it: “it cannot go on like that; the way the IPCC addresses these issues is inappropriate; let us be more professional and less emotional”. But the ball is not in the camp of a few UCL scholars. What they do is simply raise a warning sign that enough is enough.

  5. Seems to me, “Climate Science” has been hi-jacked by the radical left. At this point in time, there is little likelihood of undoing the damage or the immense distrust that is being generated in about 50% of the population. More-or-less parallels politics, at least in the US.

    As with most things, the political pendulum will swing back to a more middle-of-the-road position as the ballot box exercises its power. More reasoned analysis and even-handed policy will follow.

    My advise to “Climate Science”: stick to facts. Try not to get stampeded by the emotional heat of the moment. The planet’s physical data will ultimately decide the true state of affairs. In the interim, use energy wisely to save money, with the happy byproduct of fewer emissions, irrespective of whether or not CO2 is actually a meaningful problem.

    • Mike Keller
      +1

      “More-or-less parallels politics, at least in the US.”
      Not only in US but in UK also where we find the majority of politicians pampering the green and educated fashionable society city vote.

    • 1+,

      Just to be accurate, “hijacked” doesn’t do it justice. AGW and “climate science” is an evolution of greenshirt extremism that can be rooted to the 1950’s or further. There is a long history of academic subversion and social radicalism, “climate science” was just another more recent manifestation. The core movement was and is always tied to collectivism, wealth redistribution and global socialism. They’ve known it from the moment the plane left the ground.

      The make believe involved is the media and academic hostility of having their core political views discussed as if this somehow insults their “professionalism” etc. etc. They were once much smaller in number but the design of academic political radicalism largely funded on the backs of taxpayers and grants is nothing new or unique. Consider NPR, Women’s Studies Departments or the Columbia School of Journalism all operate with similar bias systems and agendas.

      There was never a large scale centered in science “climate science” community. There were only various specialties on a very small scale that were relatively easy to infiltrate and gain political consensus, then the growth funding followed the usual crony pattern of knowing what would make it self-perpetuating along an orthodox political function. So unless you are referring to processes from the 50’s and 60’s “hijack” makes it sound like the climate science world has only recently gone off the deep end. It was spawned in the deep end ages ago and the rest is make believe.

      • catweazle666

        ““climate science” is an evolution of greenshirt extremism that can be rooted to the 1950′s or further. “

        Hence “Watermelons”, Green on the outside and Red on the inside.

    • As someone from the (almost) radical left, I’m saddened to say I agree with Mr. Keller. It’s an extension of the traditional politics practiced by many on ‘my side’ of the political spectrum and it has never helped us at all. (Hey, but at least we’re consistent!)

      I would distinguish, however, climate science communications prior to about 2007 and climate policy anguish transmitted afterwards. Before you had people like Hansen, Trenberth, Santer and others who were honestly concerned by what they had found in their research.

      Since then, we’ve had a Parade of Fools consisting of Lewandowsky, Gleick, Mann, Prall and others who don’t practice good science and ‘communicators’ about science policy that think that communicating is the same as messaging.

      Small wonder they are in disarray and casting about for solutions.

      For what it’s worth, the lessons from history regarding we leftists offer some hope–the radical fringe usually marginalizes itself fairly quickly and progressives get back to trying to reconcile our leftist hopes with reality.

      • Leftist hopes are very likely irreconcilable with reality. Humans are a lot harder to herd than sheep.

  6. k scott denison

    Time for *climate science* to realize that no amount of marketing will sell a poor product.

    Work on the product and put the marketing aside for now.

  7. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    J. Bohr’s recent Public views on the dangers and importance of climate change: predicting climate change beliefs in the United States through income moderated by party identification (Climate Change, July 2014) strongly affirms the identity

       \text{Wealth}+\text{Conservatism} \equiv \text{Denialism}

    Conclusion  To the degree that a centrist coalition of medium-income liberals and conservatives is forged within the coming decade, climate-change denialism will become isolated to a marginalized “bubble” of “one-percenters”, such that effective communication of climate-science will be greatly facilitated.

    *THAT* emerging political/scientific calculus is plain common-sense, eh Climate Etc readers?

    \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • You didn’t actually read the article, did you? Then why did you comment? Is it because you have an obsessive need to spread poorly-researched disinformation?

      From TFA: The Government’s current approach to communicating conflates the scientific basis of climate change and the proposed solutions to its impacts, and places a heavy reliance on individual scientists communicating about the science to justify the policy response.

      That conflation is what you do consistently, Fannie boy. The point that policy response is not of a piece with the science seems to continually escape you.

    • Matthew R Marler

      a fan of *MORE* discourse: \text{Wealth}+\text{Conservatism} \equiv \text{Denialism}

      Or liberals are just more gullible.

      Take your pick.

    • In Fan’s world it is ok to be prejudiced as long as it is not shown against the groups he/she favors????

      All wealthy are the same huh?

      All conservatives the same huh???

      Fan should be ashamed

  8. “The establishment of a professional body for climate science, to represent the interests of climate scientists and society, would provide the means to develop norms, values and practices better tuned to the circumstances in which climate science finds itself.”

    So, who gets to define the “interests of climate scientists and society”? As to developing norms, values, and practices better tuned to the circumstances… How about we start from a position of “we don’t know” instead of “it’s all the fault of humans burning fossil fuels and we are going to build models to prove it”. Values of honesty, integrity, and civility would be welcome changes to “circumstances in which climate science finds itself” which is due in large part by data manipulation to support an agenda, efforts to silence dissent, and efforts to hide data and code from those who may be critical of of the “consensus” view.

    We have a long way to go.

  9. Judith, you are too charitable. The reason the CAGW messaging is failing it that it it simply wrong, not that it has somehow been miscommunicated. All the fancy reports in the world cannot fix the failed past specific prophesies (Viner, no snow in our children’s time, Hansen Manhatten under water, AR4 Himilayan glaciers gone by 2035,…) nor the gactbthatbthenpause is falsifying the IPCC models uponnwhichnall the failed prophesies are based.
    They can put lipstick on the pig, but it is still a pig, and smells like one. “professional bodies to provide leadership??” We already have the IPCC. We already have NOAA and NASA. We need less, not more, of those.

    • “The reason the CAGW messaging is failing it that it it simply wrong,”

      Bulls-eye. For some reason all this talk about messaging reminds me of the AIDS epidemic. In that case, there really was a strong consensus about HIV, and the public for the most part understood this, and began to modify their behavior accordingly.

      Climate change, not so much.

    • “Judith, you are too charitable. The reason the CAGW messaging is failing it that it it simply wrong, not that it has somehow been miscommunicated.”

      Since Judith obviously knows this, I can’t help wondering how she has the stomach to wade through all this dreck.

      • She shares a political culture with AGW advocacy, while she struggles with her reason the culture is strong within her.

        It’s the schism that people are in denial about. It becomes very evident when she relists positively (anything at all in this case) the entire farce of the “communication” meme. There is absolutely nothing in climate authority grasping that is quantitatively supported by “science”. It’s an “opinion” science more closely matched to humanity studies in academia with the usual social deterioration of the post WW2 era funded by massive growth in public funding along partisan enclave lines.

        The idea of expert “authority” in progressive culture is hardly new, that is passes the laugh test in many circles on this topic is what is shocking and appalling. “Scientific socialism” by any other name from the 1930’s Soviet.

        PG, she didn’t just “wade through it”, she found principals in the dreadful text to support. That’s reprehensible.

      • We should all remember that Judith voted, like Pielke Jr., for Obama. Think about all that entails and you might possibly be informed.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Rud Istvan babbles incoherently regarding Hansen Manhatten under water

      Rud Istvan, ain`cha concerned that counter-factual confusion and confabulation are pathognomonic of denialist demagoguery?

      It’s simple enough for Climate Etc readers to compare what Hansen (and colleagues) wrote in 1981 to what Hansen (and colleagues) wrote in 2014 … thirty-three years later.

      Conclusion  Hansen’s science stands up d&mn well!

      Of course, *THAT’S* evident to *EVERYONE* — especially young scientists and young voters — eh Rud Istvan?

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Matthew R Marler

        a fan of *MORE* discourse: Hansen (and colleagues) wrote in 1981 to

        That one again? It was wrong by a wide margin. The Earth surface has remained cooler than even the lowest of the three scenarios. There was no scientific basis to the claim that the warming of the Earth’s ocean surface would increase drought intensity and frequency. They just made it up.

        what Hansen (and colleagues) wrote in 2014 …

        that’s a puff piece.

        Hansen is a perfect example of a scientist who should give up “communicating” and go back to scientific research.

      • Exactly corrent Matthew, with one exception – I am not sure that Hansen ever actually did legitimate climate research, I’d say it was/is closer to agenda driven research.

    • David Springer

      Rud Istvan | July 13, 2014 at 9:50 pm | Reply

      Judith, you are too charitable. The reason the CAGW messaging is failing it that it it simply wrong, not that it has somehow been miscommunicated.

      ——————————————————————–

      Precisely. +1

      • Yes, it’s all a fr@ud to install one-world government.

      • Michael, no. It’s to be part of the group, to feel important, ‘save the world’, and to profit of course.

      • OK,

        It’s also a fr@ad to feel important!

        Go Team ‘Skeptic’!!

      • David Springer

        Noble Cause, Michael. Need I give you a tinyurl to google it or can you handle it yourself? R.Gates hit the progressive nail on the head. If you give the world’s poor more energy they just use it to breed and then need even more energy. The world will be overrun by poor uneducated brown people rutting like bunnies and consuming everything like locusts.

        Nothing is too drastic to stop that. We have to destroy the third world in order to save it.

        I respectfully disagree. Technology always comes to the rescue. No need to start killing off billions who haven’t yet been conceived. Give technology a chance.

      • Mr Springer, despite past disagreements, this is an A class statement, imho…

        “I respectfully disagree. Technology always comes to the rescue. No need to start killing off billions who haven’t yet been conceived. Give technology a chance.”

        ?;-)

      • Ledger entry trillions and loan the real people a million or so, for nothing. It is our red neo-money that scientists have cooked up; just to work for you. Another invisible gas with adjustments thrown in for free.

        http://mediaequalizer.com/2014/07/the-mega-rick-rant-returns

        The world loves Fed Model Freedom but now WHO is going to pick up the tab?
        Taxes will go up but everybody gets to work less and spend more time with kids. Win, win. Take a number.

    • I see the ‘communication problem’ slightly differently. I think climate science has been very effective at communicating and I have gotten the message load and clear: they don’t have a clue about what is happening with the climate; many climate scientists are incapable of objective scientific study of climate; and any paper making a claim about future catastrophe is more likely to be rubbish than science.

      I think it is also clear that a ‘science’ that is incapable of considering alternative hypotheses, relies on unvalidated models, ignores failed predictions, and blithely makes ad hoc adjustments instead of throwing out their hypotheses and starting over is not a science in the traditional sense.

      • Dave W re: “I see the ‘communication problem’ slightly………and starting over is not a science in the traditional sense.”

        Perfect!!

      • They own the communications channels and are effective almost to the point of brainwashing, so what is their problem exactly? I think it is the lack of solutions. Windmills, solar panels, and wishful thinking are not making any significant difference.

  10. It’s all about: how to convince the public in something that doesn’t exist…! How about: starting to acknowledge the truth: 1] climate is controlled by altitude, latitude and by water.
    2] There is no such a thing as ”GLOBAL” warming; warmings are always localized. 3] starting to distinguish between ”shortwave IR” and ”longwave IR” , which is just; disposing of any extra heat by the ”Self Adjusting Temperature Mechanism” :http://globalwarmingdenier.wordpress.com/2014/07/12/cooling-earth/

  11. .”..climate-change denialism will become isolated to a marginalized “bubble” of “one-percenters”, such that effective communication of climate-science will be greatly facilitated.”

    Why not just lock us up? Much quicker.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      pokerguy wonders “Why not just lock us up? Much quicker.”

      Lock up? Too expensive! Not to mention, plenty of middle-class conservatives and liberals would alike be *ENTIRELY* comfortable with an updated common-sense science-respecting middle-of-the-road Berry synthesis.

      Give it some thought, why don’cha pokerguy!

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • One-percenters are on the AGW bandwagon.

    • pokerguy…
      .”..climate-change denialism will become isolated to a marginalized “bubble” of “one-percenters”, such that effective communication of climate-science will be greatly facilitated.”

      coincidentally, the term genius applies to the top 1% of a population, as determined by standardized IQ testing.

      99% may not see the relation there, 1% will. ?;-)

  12. Matthew R Marler

    I liked your points I, II, III(i), III(ii), IV and V

    Personally, I think the best things for scientists to do is abandon policy and “communication” all together, and work hard and quietly on the scientific problems for the next few decades. That summary you wrote suggests that the authors want a quick fix, and there isn’t one.

    • The points in Dr Curry’s analysis (both pros and cons) makes sense but in order for climate science to move from infancy to maturity it needs to develop from being normative in its conclusions to being scientifically impartial.

      I would like to see more meteorology being used and a focus on developing better medium range weather forecasts to assist in the adaptation of communities to climate change.

  13. “Gavin Schmidt: the recommendations seem to yearn for an old-fashioned central authority to impose order on an unruly #scicomm landscape.”

    Shoot, even Darth Schmidt sees this for what it is. What surprises me is that he apparently sees centralization (in this instance) as a bad thing. Doesn’t he realize that the whole decarbonization movement is about an “old-fashioned central authority to impose order on” the energy economy?

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      GaryM deplores “Old-fashioned central  authorities  fishery treaties [that] impose order.”

      Old-fashioned conservative fishing-families just *HATE* fisheries treaties.

      Right up until those treaties expire. Then whose *SAME* conservative families start *FAVORING* strengthened fisheries treaties.

      Conclusion  Common-sense tells us that markets commonly fail, and middle-income conservatives appreciate this reality.

      Ultra-wealthy conservatives, not so much. For the self-interested reason, that the top-decile wealthiest simply don’t much *CARE* about the long-term health of the communities they came from.

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Yes fan, the complexity and economic and developmental costs of setting quotas for fishermen is exactly the same as those for decarbonzing the global energy economy. China, India and Africa need unrestricted access to salmon and crab to pull themselves out of the economic stone age.

        You are aware that one of the primary effects of fishing quotas is lowering the cost of food by preventing shortages in particular species, right? And being the genius you are, you must have noticed that this is exactly the opposite scheme, with exactly the opposite impacts of decarbonization, musn’t you? (Forget dcarbonization as a whole, look how much good you rocket scientists have done for the price of food for the poor worldwide with your ethanol mandates.)

        But you knew all that, right? You were just being your ironic self again, weren’t you? Because otherwise, one might think you don’t have clue what you are talking about.

        It’s like letting your 5 year old draw up the architectural plans for your three story home because he colored within the lines in his Transformers coloring book last night. The role of the 5 year old in this illustration being played by fan.

      • David Springer

        Crank alert!

      • catweazle666

        Heh!

        You’re funny!

  14. see my paper on this [link].
    Empty link.

  15. Richard Feynman, (Born May 11, 1918 — Died February 15, 1988) an American Nobel prize winning physicist who also wrote on the ‘scientific method’ while at Caltech. Much of his work shows that a large number of his principles have been severely compromised with the current anthropogenic Climate Change agenda being promoted by the media and the politicians.

    1. Science is a method of finding things out by observation, experimentation, and testing, which is the ultimate judge of the truth of a concept.
    2. If any exception to a concept can be proven by observation, the concept is wrong.
    3. The number of scientists who believe something is irrelevant to the validity of a concept.
    4. No government or other authority can decide the truth of a scientific concept.
    5. All scientists are skeptics—it is important to doubt in order to test concepts and look in new directions.

  16. ‘A camel is a horse designed by a committee.’

    ‘An elephant is a mouse designed by a committee to
    guvuhmint requirements.’

    ‘Norms and practices designed by a committee ……….?

  17. Sir Karl Raimund Popper (July 28, 1902 – September 17, 1994) a British philosopher and a professor at the London School of Economics who is considered one of the most influential philosophers of science of the 20th century, and he wrote extensively on social and political philosophy. The following quotes of his apply to this subject.

    1. If we are uncritical we shall always find what we want: we shall look for, and find, confirmations, and we shall look away from, and not see, whatever might be dangerous to our pet theories.
    2. Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to solve.
    3. … (S)cience is one of the very few human activities — perhaps the only one — in which errors are systematically criticized and fairly often, in time, corrected.

  18. I am 97% sure that the first step in improving communications should be to stop making poorly supported claims.

  19. If Galen Winsor is correct, the communication problems in climate science are dwarfed by those in nuclear radiation safety:

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      It’s true that safe carbon energy and safe nuclear energy both pose significant communication problems

      “The failings were many and reinforcing: arrogance, weakness, lying in the pursuit of self-interest, and, above all, the abdication of responsibility.”
         H.R. McMaster (critique of the Vietnam war)

      Aye, Climate Etc lassies and laddies  we can all of us look to the Vietnam War, BP’s Deepwater Horizon blowout, and TEPCO/Fukushima, for abject lessons in “communication problems”.

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Listen to the video and decide for yourself if exaggerated claims of danger from nuclear radiation might explain the rapid and complete recovery of Hiroshima and Nagasaki into bustling cities after being bombed in August 1945

        My research group worked with high levels of radioactivity. I assumed the radiation standards were reasonable, and we always followed them.

        Imagine my surprise on listening to the video message from the head of radiation safety at the Hanford, WA site where plutonium was processed for the bomb that destroyed Nagasaki on August 9, 1945.

      • FOMD , unknowing, wrote
        ” BP’s Deepwater Horizon blowout”

        With BP’s David Eyton busy absolving CRU by being in charg of reading the climategart emails.
        Bio
        “David joined BP in 1982 from Cambridge University with an Engineering degree. During his early career, he held a number of Petroleum Engineering, Commercial and Business Management positions. In 1996, he was named General Manager of BP’s North West Shelf interest in Australia. David later managed Wytch Farm in the UK and then BP’s Gas Businesses in Trinidad. In September 2001, he became Lord John Browne’s Executive Assistant in the company’s London headquarters. Following that assignment, David was Vice President of Deepwater Developments in the Gulf of Mexico and prior to his current role was BP’s Exploration and Production Group Vice President for Technology.”

    • If the above video by Galen Winsor is correct – as I suspect from the rapid and complete recovery of Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the end of the Second World War – then the US NRC provided The Missing Part of the Puzzle!

      a) CHAOS and FEAR in August 1945:

      https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/10640850/CHAOS_and_FEAR_August_1945.pdf

      b) Destroyed the foundations of religion, science and democracy:

      https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/10640850/Humanity_Lost_WWII.pdf

      c) Generated misleading government propaganda on:

      1. The internal compositions of stars were changed from mostly iron (Fe) in 1945 to mostly hydrogen (H) in 1946.

      2. Albert Einstein’s and Francis Aston’s valid equations for nuclear stability were replaced with Carl von Weizsacker’s invalid nuclear binding energy equation, exaggerating proton-proton repulsion and minimizing NEUTRON-NEUTRON REPULSION, . . . The source of energy that powers the cosmos from cores of heavy atoms, some planets, ordinary stars, galaxies and our ever expanding universe!

      3. Dangers of AGW and nuclear radiation were wildly exaggerated (See Galen Windon’s video above)

  20. “A brief visit to a climate-dismissive blog site, or to comments posted on a climate-related media article in the right-wing media, will reveal the depth of antagonism that exists towards climate scientists, and the rich seam of dismissive arguments in play. Lacking a mechanism to eliminate misunderstandings, flaws and errors, the same arguments tend to be constantly recycled, even when discredited. A natural reaction of scientists, unused to dealing with raw personal attacks, or with having repeatedly to deconstruct and expose the same flawed material, is to disengage, leaving the climate-dismissive ‘echo chamber’ to build up its own alternative ‘reality’.”
    Sound familiar?

    • Jim, it sounds very familiar. It sounds like exactly every blog on climate that doesn’t outright delete opposing views. Only the sides switch depending on the blog.

    • Judith has occasionally, but all too rarely, tried to expose this blog’s denizens to real scientists and their research, but mostly they have met rudeness, and don’t hang around long, except for a few like Lacis who seem to take pleasure from the back and forth. It is not a productive use of their time, they soon realize. The “skeptics” here already have their minds made up and their favorites memes, unfortunately, and they make that very clear to everyone who visits. While this blog is a lost cause, except for entertainment purposes, there are probably other media forms where they can get to the real public who do want to learn what the future scenarios may hold sans politics. If they can separate science from politics, it may help with the centrists and apolitical types that make up a large fraction of the public.

      • I haven’t been around too long but I agree with your first sentence. And that’s something people who comment can fix.
        Here’s her apparent popularity ranking:
        http://scottishsceptic.co.uk/2013/12/15/ranking-of-climate-blogs-dec-2013/
        Setting aside the comments, I think few match the quality of Dr. Curry’s posts. As I’ve mentioned, there’s an opportunity to make this a more welcoming place for warmists. Would that be more interesting?

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D. , but mostly they have met rudeness, and don’t hang around long, except for a few like Lacis who seem to take pleasure from the back and forth. It is not a productive use of their time, they soon realize. The “skeptics” here already have their minds made up and their favorites memes, unfortunately, and they make that very clear to everyone who visits.

        Mostly they are exposed to evidence and propositions that they can’t address, and questions that they can’t answer. The same important questions are repeated because no adequate answers are provided. Lacis in particular does not do nearly as much “back and forth” as has recently been demonstrated by Marcia Wyatt and Zeke Hausfather.

      • Jimd

        I for one appreciate the input from real scientists. it is a shame we can’t attract more of them. I am not sure that they are necessarily treated rudely once here, but perhaps don’t turn up in the first place as they might consider this place something of a bear garden.
        tonyb

      • verytallguy

        climatereason

        I am not sure that they are necessarily treated rudely once here…

        in which case, you might wish to play closer attention

        Did you get your physics degree out of a crackerjack box? ALL matter with temperature above absolute zero emits thermal radiation. Fercrisakes Lacis you’re phucking unbelievable.

        https://judithcurry.com/2014/07/06/phunny-physics/#comment-605118

        It would also be worth asking why the denizens here let this stuff pass without comment.

        It would be even more instructive to have Judith say why it’s OK.

      • verytallguy.

        you are right, there are certainly one or two people here who are rude to scientists, but then again they are often rude to everyone.

        As a general rule most denizens are not rude to visiting scientists.

        I have rebuked some of the commenters here but it is water off a ducks back. it needs a generally more civil tone when the sort of example you give is so striking and unusual that it can be isolated.

        Which goes back to my point about this often being a bear garden so scientists probably don’t turn up in the first place.

        The worst thing is that the one or two people who can be exceptionally rude can often make some very good points as well.

        I don’t pretend to know the answer as robust banter makes this site interesting. When does it cross that line into something much more unpleasant (which happens from both sides)

        tonyb

      • @JimD..It is a constant source of amazement to me that American culture is so wimpy when it comes to discussing controversial topics. There seems to be some inbred need to stamp everything with a smiley face…Americans seem to need everyone smiling or they are desolate.
        I’d much prefer the kind of rhetorical battles that take place in the British Parliament to the mamby pamby, squishy discourse of Americans in Congress or on the airwaves or in the blogosphere..

        Here’s a great example of a Brit criticizing the BBC.

      • Matthew R Marler

        climatereason: The worst thing is that the one or two people who can be exceptionally rude can often make some very good points as well.

        Without citing specifics, I have noticed that as well. There was one writer I respect whom I cautioned, without positive effect, about “poisoning the well” (as it was called in one of my English classes.) It’s one of the aspects of our discussions that made me liken this to “playground football”.

        Since Prof Curry has been grossly insulted by some mainstream climate scientists, I don’t see why she should be strongly motivated to spend more time than she does trying to be referee. I have no positive suggestion since I think that any set of rules can be gamed.

      • If you look at the number of people who just don’t get something, are rude, etc. then you have a point. However, my guess is that they are many people who read through the material, and rarely comment that are getting more informed and see through the blathering. For instance, I thought the pieces on the temperature record to be informative, and substantial. I came to appreciate that despite the fact that raw data used to not be available, and methods hidden, the best information is that the world warmed after the LIA until the hiatus. The problems with the temperature record are substantial as well, and having those spelled out was refreshing. I went from a position of pretty much all of the data has been tortured beyond recognition to maybe it is a select few who have done that.

        In general, I find the articles here to be rather timely and the discussion to be good (if you ignore some, and understand the tendencies of a few others). For instance, the above quote. Was the person correct in noting that something had been said that was not true? Well from my understanding yes. Did that make any difference to the argument that was being made? Again from my understanding, no. Did the point have to be made in such a demeaning way? Absolutely not. If you have read a couple of these blogs you would pick up that certain people will concentrate on one point of an argument and then try to make that a distraction from the overall argument. Once you figure out which people do that then a comprehension is possible of fact from fiction and which facts actually make a difference.

        I applaud Dr. Curry’s efforts to inform, and to mitigate this site. I think that this site above others tries to strike a balance to remove really offensive remarks, and allowing others such as the above, because they say as much about the speaker than they do the target of the remark.

        On the particular item of communication, I agree that the problem is not generally of communication but of getting the science correct. However, this blog is in my opinion, getting both correct. This particular article has issues, but I find that if you look at it from a perspective of Dr. Curry trying to inform and conduct the conversation, then this blog is really the best place to stay up to speed.

      • I think Judith has occasionally persuaded real scientists to post here, but has been let down by her denizens despite calls for staying on subject in these threads. It usually degenerates very quickly.

    • Jim D: If you don’t think there is antagonism and an echo chamber on your side, you are either not paying attention or you are less than honest.

      What’s worse, though, is that your side also routinely censors and bans opposing viewpoints. That’s a big reason so many skeptics show up here. We can’t say much of anything on climate orthodox sites before the hammer comes down. I’m sure all the regular skeptics at CE have been so squelched.

      And worse than that, large public venues like the LA Times and the BBC are making it policy to ban publishing skeptic views. The consensus does not seem include freedom of speech. And I say, shame on you guys.

      Basically I accept the “consensus” in its broad outlines before it’s bait-and-switched for CAGW. I try to post in civil thoughtful way, but again and again I was forced out of the orthodox discussions, in some cases rather nastily.

      That’s why I count myself as a skeptic. Not only do I find the gagging of skeptic speech repellent, but I believe it shows the orthodox lack confidence they can make their arguments with good old-fashioned, reasoned, civil discourse.

      • I don’t think places like Realclimate are good for skeptics because they usually only go by what is actually published, and have little tolerance for hear-say in place of hard evidence. The skeptical view does find outlets in the media, and in some circles of the media it even dominates, so you can’t say it is suppressed. The BBC may not have found much of value in Lawson’s views, and seem to have decided against inviting what they have now judged to be a fringe opinion.

      • JimD: AFAIK, Realclimate and Sks are still defending Mann’s discredited proxy research. If they can’t even do math right, why should anyone believe anything they say?

      • Jim D: I notice you are fond of conflating all climate skepticism as one and the same and pretty much on par with anti-evolution and creationism, as you did yesterday.

        Skepticism covers much ground and some of it, I’ll grant you, isn’t reasonable. But you are avoiding the harder cases for your argument, as you did in this response to my comment.

        Realclimate is hardly the only orthodox blog which treats skeptics poorly and RC doesn’t just discuss published science.

        I got squelched by Gavin Schmidt after Climategate when I pressed him for a straight answer for when all the data and methods would be made available. That’s a reasonable question on an important climate issue, especially at the time. But no matter. Verboten. Not allowed.

        At ClimateSight I was censored out of existence for daring to question Stephen Schneider’s wisdom.

        I consistently get the impression the climate orthodox aren’t much different from the Roman Catholic orthodox. They will explain the Truth to you, but they will not allow you to question it.

        As Scientific American labeled Dr. Curry: “Heretic.”

      • Oops, my second attempt to post omitted the following: Jim D, re the BBC and Lawson, read Matt Ridley’s comment:

      • huxley,

        I’ve actually seen plenty of discussion of the pause on “consensus” blogs, not so much about the hockey stick recently – I doubt many of think there is much of interest still worth saying on the subject. There seems to be an implicit assumption in your and Gary’s comments that because you think these things are important or difficult issues, we should be talking about them. It doesn’t work like that – we are not obliged to accept your interpretation of these and other issues or spend our time discussing them because you think they are important.

      • The principle of Freedom of Speech does not entail anyone having the right to a platform on the BBC, or any other media outlet, to air their views. As JimD points out, “skeptical” views get plenty of exposure in the media, some of us would say probably more than they deserve. The BBC has not banned skepics’ views, but its editorial guidelines rightly require it to put them in proper context. This means making it clear to the audience thay they constitute a minority view and not seeming to give the views of a political activist like Nigel Lawson equal weight to those of scientists on the scientific questions around climate change. There is nothing wrong with people like Lawson being involved in discussions around policy.

      • Andrew Adams: To be sure the BBC and LA Times any are not obligated to provide a forum for climate skeptic views. Nonetheless, as long as they advertise themselves as something more than party organs for particular agendas, then there is an odor of decay in the state of Denmark. The rest is rationalization.

        I care about the Hockey Stick and the Pause, but my point in reply to Jim was that he was evading the main force of Gary’s comment, preferring to nitpick on a minor point he could successfully address.

        Which seems to be your modus operandi as well.

        If your side wishes to state clearly that you will do your best to squelch skeptic views whenever and however you can, that’s fine by me. Climategate, Gleickgate, lawsuits, banning and censoring skeptics etc.

        But please drop the pretense that the climate change orthodoxy is part of the Western democratic tradition of open, civil, rational debate.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: I don’t think places like Realclimate are good for skeptics because they usually only go by what is actually published, and have little tolerance for hear-say in place of hard evidence.

        My experience was that they suppressed even references to the peer-reviewed publications such as Science Magazine, if they didn’t like the topic — for example, uncertainty about the sign of the water vapor feedback. They also will not answer questions, but will refer back to other posts where the questions also were not answered. Admittedly, they do put up with some flack and many repeat questions whose answers are already known, or at least addressed at the links they provide.

      • huxley,

        I don’t know much about the LA Times but I have no problem rationalising the BBCs treatment of climate change. I certainly think it could be better – some of it is pretty superficial and focuses more on supposed “controversy” rather than in depth understanding, hence the undue credence given to likes of Lawson and Montford. But they aren’t following some “agenda” – on scientific questions it’s right that it should give more weight to mainstream views than fringe ones, and more weight to the views of scientists than non-scientists, just like it does on every single other scientific subject I can think of. On the wider political issues it’s right that a wider range of voices are aired, but even then climate change “skepticism” is still a fringe view here in the UK and that’s bound to be reflected in the amount of coverage such views are given.

        As for open, civil, rational debate, there is plenty of that amongst the “climate orthodoxy”, but given that this is a political issue with strong views on both sides, and that this is the internet, you will certainly find plenty of snark, antagonism etc. directed towards the other “side”. In this sense the climate “debate” is no worse than other issues, and better than some. I’ve said exactly the same to people on my side of the argument who complain about the tone of some of the exchanges.

        No one is denying skeptic their freedom of speech. But blog owners are perfectly entitled to moderate out comments which don’t add anything to the overall discussion or are off topic or just plain dumb– I don’t doubt there is a natural tendency to be tougher on those who have opposing views but I don’t buy the argument that it’s because “sceptical” arguments are so devastating that they can’t answer them. Scientists are also entitled to sue people who accuse them of criminal behaviour or scientific fraud – the US has defamation laws as well as protection for freedom of speech so they are seemingly not incompatible. And people are entitled to object if they feel that media outlets are promoting junk science.

      • The latest news is that the BBC are not banning skeptical views, unlike what Lawson said. They are not as bad as flat-earthers is the justification.
        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/10965729/Climate-change-sceptics-must-be-heard-on-the-BBC.html

      • So, Lawson created the impression that he was banned. It was good for some screaming headlines like this for a while.
        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2685405/Ive-banned-BBC-Ex-Chancellor-Lord-Lawson-passionate-climate-change-sceptic-accuses-BBC-bosses-silencing-debate-global-warming.html
        But in the end he may now continue to debate scientists on the BBC. However, the BBC may not like him for his accusations of Stalinism, so perhaps he has effectively banned himself now by his misguided rant against them.

      • Nobody expects jimmy dee to be honest.

    • Hmmm. Where precisely can we find the consensus’ mechanism to eliminate their misunderstandings, flaws and errors? As far as I can tell, y’all are still defending the hokey stick, and ignored 16+ years of “pause” in your own temp reports, until it got just too embarrassing.

      And “rich seam of dismissive arguments?”

      Have you ever actually read anything at RealClimate, SkepticalScience, Climate Progress, Stoat, Tamino’s or Eli’s?

      • Currently Realclimate are talking about Rossby waves and slow-moving patterns connected to extreme temperatures. They only have about an article or two per week, so it is limited in that way. With this subject, they have not immediately supported the Francis view, but have taken Barnes into account where the case isn’t proven about climate change affecting this.

      • Jim D: Again, you’re avoiding the hard cases Gary presents — the Hockey Stick and the Pause — and focusing on the bit you can handily dispose of: whether you read RC.

      • GaryM,

        A better question is why ‘skeptics’ continue to obsess about a 16 yr old paper.

        It holds some kind of cultural/symbolic power that people interested in science just don’t get.

      • Gary, why not take a balance view of the temperature trends, instead of relying on the one outlier?

        And why not use temperature trends long enough to achieve statistical significance.

        Why indeed, is it because you do not understand the science?

        It is the same old whack a mole, whack a mole

      • bob droege,

        I do take a balanced view of the reported temperature trends. I don’t believe that any of them reflect global average temperature, or global average surface temperature, or global heat content, with anywhere near the accuracy and precision their proponents claim.

        The recent post by Zeke Hausfather just helped clarify how much assuming, estimating and in filling goes into creating even the “best” reports on temperature trends.

        My favorite assumption is the claim that determining average temperature for a large area is difficult, but determining temperature trends using anomalies, which require first determining an average from which they are anomalous, is so much easier. Everywhere you look in climate science, you have Bayesian priors, estimated averages for determining anomalies, in filling, krigging, etc. And yet reports of these statistical conglomerations are sold to the public as “global average temperature,” with grand pronouncements on the warmest day, year, decade, based on trends of tenths of a degree per decade.

        Every time I write that out, I end up shaking my head. Yet not a single warmist can even see the issue.

      • The world has moved on from the hockey stick which was ten years ago. More recent papers by Marcott and Neukom are now where that part of the debate is. The pause also doesn’t show up in 30-year trends, not even as a dent, and a true skeptic would understand why that is and would question the significance of the pause. Skeptics dismiss ocean data as it supports an inconvenient explanation that it comes from natural variability (PDO etc.). Lawson even calls the ocean data “speculation”.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: The world has moved on from the hockey stick which was ten years ago.

        Has the world indeed moved on from the hockey stick? Have you pointed that out to the writers here who occasionally assert that the hockey stick has been strongly confirmed by subsequent research? Who was that, you might ask? We can direct your attention to him, or her, when the next such defense is written here.

      • JIMD

        A few weeks ago I heard Thomas Stocker himself say the ocean temperatures at depth could not be accurately known as we did not possess the technology to do so.

        As for the Hockey Stick, of course it is still quoted. The most recent examples were to me at the Met Office late last year and by my MP a few months ago.

        It still holds a powerful sway over policy makers.

        tonyb

      • The hockey stick fiasco will continue to be relevant to the climate science debate as long as the quality control ‘system’ which allowed it to be embraced and celebrated by the science establishment continues unreformed. The hockey stick is a ridiculous piece of junk. The total absence of any quality control allowed it to become the icon of climate science. Nothing has been done to fix the problem. Climate science continues to operate on the same “no quality” basis and continues to produce the same junk.

        As long as climate scientists continue to demonstrate a complete lack of interest in quality, skeptics will continue to conclude that the pronouncements lack quality science to back them up.

      • Curious George

        Jim D – has the hockey stick been officially retracted? No, the Hockey Team is alive, well, and well fed. And, of course, should the “pause” last 50 years, it would not show up in 100-year trends. What a science!

      • The skeptics are trying to keep the Hockey Stick alive, but there have been two IPCC reports since then and countless other independent paleo studies shown in them refined knowledge over AR3 which the skeptics are struggling to find criticism with. Remember Climategate was also about the data for CRUTEM, but that subsided quietly when other studies of surface temperature just confirmed them.

      • Curious George

        You are right, a famous skeptic Dr. Mann is certainly keeping the hockey stick alive by suing dissenters for libel. The climate science community is doing its best to forget it.

      • Mann and the ‘hockey stick’ are important cultural symbols for the socio-political ‘skeptics’.

        They’ll never let it go.

        You can try and engage them on the fact of many subsequent studies using different methods and different proxies, all showing the same basic finding – but they are not interested. That’s science. They have no interest in science.

        It’s all social values, cultural identity and ideology.

      • when one wants most to discredit another, one uses the most obvious, confirmable, example of silliness to undermine their credibility. It’s a natural technique. Whether “right” or “wrong” to do so. I think.

        another example might be labelling all skeptics, and deniers, as users of the hockey stick graph as a method of undermining all skeptics, deniers, and people that don’t understand, or agree with one’s own belief’s or pay them much interest.

        Perhaps??

      • Jim D,
        Yes, there have been 2 more IPCC assessments. And they were prepared with the exact same non-existent quality control as the third assessment which featured the hockey stick so prominently. They are, therefore, no more trustworthy.

        This shouldn’t be difficult to understand. Without any quality control, the work is untrustworthy. What part of this do you fail to comprehend?

  21. Sure, sure it’s easier dealing with government and not the public because the government has the money and all researchers have to do to get it is deliver–i.e., tell the government what it’s wants to hear. The public does not care to fund being lied to which is why the public must change the government; but, that will be battle with academia and the media that is aligned with the government against the people who work to pay all of the bills.

  22. Well I agree with some of this – but of course, it assumes science whereas the CAGW supporters pretty much left science decades ago. In the absence of science, this is just a road map for useless propaganda.

  23. The issues raised by the report deserve serious reflection, and hopefully this will start a productive dialogue on the important, complex, and vexing issues surrounding climate communication.

  24. Judith Curry

    The problem in communicating climate science is the science itself. Climate science is an immature field currently preoccupied by a 19th Century speculation about CO2 and atmosphere, temperatures, and changing for the worse, earth’s habitat. The trace gas radiative transfer model is perpetuated in the face of realities (the hiatus) and uncertainties (ocean circulation and heat storage) primarily as the default of: “…we can’t think of anything else…” mentality.

    The communication of climate science sucks because of the certainty by which the likes of Trenberth, Hansen, Mann, & Schmidt predict the future. Everybody know, and I mean everybody knows that the future is uncertain and that the predictions of the future is a carnival game.

    We don’t trust carnival game people with our life savings as they will abscond with them. Climate scientists of the ilk of T H M & S are viewed rightly as carnival charlatans; hence, their utterances are unbelievable: so, you can’t fool all the people all of the time.”

    Essential to communication is: believability; hence, trust by the audience towards the speaker. Climate scientists have allowed the charlatans in their midst to speak for the group as a whole; hence, climate scientists, and, as a corollary, climate science is tarred with the same brush of unbelievability.

    Public jousting with the likes of T H M & S feeds the media but does not inform the public. The appropriate response by the public is to be “turned off” by the spectacle.

    When Obama leaves office; when the EPA has budget struggles for implementation of its CO2 agenda; when the West Coast billionaires find other ideological toys to play with; the present climate hoop-and-hollarers will recede into their proper roles as historical, hysterical footnotes.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      RiHo08 foresees “When Obama leaves office the present climate hoop-and-hollarers will recede.”

      LOL … well, *FOMD’S* personal palantir shows plainly that President Al Franken will double-down on carbon neutrality!

      The Common-Sense Reason  All around the world, carbon-energy is toxic-politics.

      *EVERYONE* sees *THAT*, eh Climate Etc readers?

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • David Springer

        Crank alert!

      • Your “Personal Palantir”? That explains why you are such a wack job. If you have been looking in that thing, then all you see and believe is what those with stronger wills than you possess want you to see and believe.

        You have become this guy:

    • David Springer

      @RiHoo8

      +1

    • While climate science may be in it’s infancy, too many politicians, virtually all the MSM, and too many progressive elites are so heavily invested in the CAGW meme that it may take a couple of generations for it to run it’s course. At this point in time, given the trajectory of the political discourse, the coverage by the MSM (think BBC and LA Times as the poster children in the coverage allowed), the general apathy and ignorance of the low information voter, I’d say we have a rough road ahead and are likely to suffer real economic harm due to continued investments in “green” energy initiatives that have no hope of replacing fossil fuels for base load power generation, flying airplanes, or moving large ships around the globe, while passing legislation that will make fossil fuels more expensive, and therefore making everything else we eat, wear, walk on, or otherwise use more expensive. And, this will impact those the most that the left professes to care so much about – the poor, and especially the poor in developing countries.

  25. One quote to rule them all. One quote defines them,
    One quote explains it all and in the darkness blinds them.

    After you have convinced people that you fervently believe your cause to be more important than telling the truth, you’ve lost the power to convince them of anything else.

    ~ Megan McArdle

    • +100

    • +100 likewise.

      My problem in a nutshell. Before Cilmategate I argued the orthodox case to my skeptic friends. After Climategate and other experiences with the orthodox, I realized they weren’t good faith scientists or good faith advocates.

    • David Springer

      “lost the power to convince them of anything else”

      They haven’t lost that power with me. Science, like math and engineering, speaks for itself through verifiable reproducible results. I’m still waiting for those.

    • I wish your McArdle quote were true, but there are too many “big lie” counter-examples, unfortunately.

    • Exactly. Some of this was posted on an earlier thread, but bears repeating:

      Quote by Paul Watson, a former board member of Greenpeace: “It doesn’t matter what is true, it only matters what people believe is true.”

      Quote by Jim Sibbison, environmental journalist, former public relations official for the Environmental Protection Agency: “We routinely wrote scare stories…Our press reports were more or less true…We were out to whip the public into a frenzy about the environment.”

      Quote by Ottmar Edenhoffer, high level UN-IPCC official: “We redistribute de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy…Basically it’s a big mistake to discuss climate policy separately from the major themes of globalization…One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy anymore.”

      Quote by Club of Rome: “In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill….All these dangers are caused by human intervention….and thus the “real enemy, then, is humanity itself….believe humanity requires a common motivation, namely a common adversary in order to realize world government. It does not matter if this common enemy is “a real one or….one invented for the purpose.”

      Quote by emeritus professor Daniel Botkin: “The only way to get our society to truly change is to frighten people with the possibility of a catastrophe.”

    • catweazle666

      A perfect summation, Charles.

      +100

      “To capture the public imagination,
      we have to offer up some scary scenarios,
      make simplified dramatic statements
      and little mention of any doubts one might have.
      Each of us has to decide the right balance
      between being effective,
      and being honest.”

      Leading greenhouse advocate, Dr Stephen Schneider
      ( in interview for “Discover” magagzine, Oct 1989)

    • +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

  26. I like this:
    1) ‘Pure Scientist’,
    2) ‘Science Communicator’,
    3) ‘Science Arbiter’,
    4) ‘Issue Advocate’ and
    5) ‘Honest Broker of Policy Alternatives’. 

    1s We only read about what they’ve done and they’re probably the biggest group.
    2s Might include Dr. Curry and John Cook through his SkS site. Not sure if Gavin Schmidt fits this category too. Not to be in any way critical, but they seem to be self appointed and poorly or uncompensated for their blogging efforts.
    3s Not sure about these. At climate workshops I imagine there are some. How often do they get between the warmists and the skeptics, I don’t know? I do think Arbiters are lacking. Perhaps they could be described as the ones who have approached the other tribe. When Lacis, Perlwitz or Colose post here, is that an opportunity for a little arbitration?
    4s There should be advocates. But do they advocate because they know as for instance with 95% certainty or because the want something? If 1s are the majority, do they advocate for the majority or their own ideas? If they wish to draw upon their expertise as a climate scientist, they might perhaps distinguish they are not speaking for all climate scientists as to their preferred solutions.
    5s This looks like Lomborg. The skeptics probably talk about this more than others. If there is a vacuum here, this might an area for both sides to look at.

    As was mentioned, are people really getting paid for 2-5? What are the chances they would be and by whom? Individual colleges and universities could initiate 2, 3 and 5. They may have already done so. They’d say, look we have this Scientist being paid to be a full time 2, 3 or 5. One faculty position for this wicked problem?

    Now let’s try to turn this on our governments. Are they making an attempt at 2, 3 and 5?

    • Ragnaar, I read ‘3) Science Arbiter’ to mean someone who would make a definitive decision on what was (perhaps more or less) the ‘correct’ scientific conclusion to reach on a topic, i.e. someone who understands all sides and then decides which is most correct. If my reading is correct, there is and never can be a place for such a role in science.

      In general the report seems to recycle a number of lazy assumptions about who sceptics are and what they say.

      • I was thinking along the lines of voluntary arbitration. If there are two opposing parties, the arbiter would try to work with them to find agreement.

  27. From the main post:
    Climate science contains enough complexity and ambiguity to support a variety of positions. Simply providing more facts will not resolve the disagreements.
    (end quote)
    Translation: Nope, we don’t really understand it all and we don’t really have any more “facts” to communicate. But nevertheless, we have butterflies in our scientific stomachs and feel something must be done about catastrophic global warming … errrr … climate change, that is.

  28. Did everybody miss something? Under “meta-narrative” the narrative “…by making clear the limits of certainty and knowledge – is ROBUST AGAINST NEW DISCOVERIES AND UNFOLDING EVENTS.” (my caps) So the science is settled- anything new will be dismissed as “we don’t have complete knowledge” or “climate is very complex”, and the message continues. This is nothing more than rephrasing the same old/same old. Nothing new here- move along.

  29. Climate scientists and activists need to debate their critics. I see all kinds of softball interviews with Michael Mann, where he mischaracterizes his critics as part of a disinformation campaign by the fossil fuel industry and they have no opportunity to respond and defend themselves. This is an insult to the public’s intelligence and sense of fairness.

  30. CO2 / pollution is big city problem, not ”global” problem; H2O controls the climate, not CO2 – that makes both camps wrong!

    • Water is abundant. Water, in all its states does regulate the temperature of earth. That helps show that Pope’s Climate Theory is Right.

      • Hi Pope (is that shortening all right?)?

        Mr Pope, maybe?

        I think it plausible that water is a large part of the mechanism, that I think gravity/pressure/roil fluctuations caused by the shape of the gravity waves, as evidenced clearly in interference pattersn on the earth.

        If your open to exchanging notes, I’d be happy to.

        :-)

    • popesclimatetheory | said: ”Water is abundant. Water, in all its states does regulate the temperature of earth. That helps show that Pope’s Climate Theory is Right”

      Alex, you are spot on; unfortunately, what you are saying, is not part of the Warmist & Skeptic’s gospel… they are scared from the truth, as the devil from the cross. All they need is: to open their eyes – the proofs are everywhere in nature. Keep on the good work; the truth on the end always wins. .

    • popesclimatetheory | July 16, said: ”Link to the latest short version of Pope’s Climate Theory”

      Pope, I cannot comment on your post, because is in pdf. What’s from YOU on that post, is brilliant; unfortunately, you are trying to fit the misleading propaganda with your knowledge

      just a small example: ”ice core data” is pure con! Ice on Greenland, Antarctic is getting melted by one meter every year FROM BELOW, by the geothermal heat – and is replenished by similar amount on the top, by freeze-drying the moisture crystallizing from the air / blizzards. Therefore: if is a 1km thick ice – the last meter of ice on the bottom is only 1000y old! When they drill 150m deep in the ice – for them is as going 20000y in the past, which is completely misleading, but you believe them…!

      P.s. if you know physics and being working for NASA; you should know this:
      http://globalwarmingdenier.wordpress.com/2014/07/12/cooling-earth/

  31. The document is clearly built on the consensus view, which JC doesn’t like, but it holds the truth to be self-evident that climate is changing already, and as much as expected from central sensitivity estimates of AGW, as determined by the warming since 1950 for example. This observational support of the idea is a strong enough basis for planning to proceed using a range of projections around this central estimate.

    • Matthew R Marler

      Jim D: The document is clearly built on the consensus view, which JC doesn’t like, but it holds the truth to be self-evident that climate is changing already, and as much as expected from central sensitivity estimates of AGW, as determined by the warming since 1950 for example. This observational support of the idea is a strong enough basis for planning to proceed using a range of projections around this central estimate.

      What is the “consensus” central sensitivity estimate — ca 1.25C per doubling of CO2 concentration, where the next doubling will take about 140 years? A “range of projections” includes a strong likelihood of repeated alternations of floods and droughts, hot and cold epochs in every place that has experienced such alternations? The “range of projections” to include the possibility that reduction of CO2 will have no effect on climate? If that were the view of the AAAS leadership, I would certainly agree instead of writing my complaints in response to Alan Leshner’s call for urgent expensive action to combat climate change.

      That was not the policy pushed in California (perhaps not your fault, but is it something you have criticized or objected to?), where the policy is to neglect the flood control and irrigation system, and commit instead to a high speed train that will bypass the major urban centers (why? you may ask); and commit to large scale wind farms and solar farms.

      Is anybody of importance (James Hansen? IPCC? Al Gore? Senate Democrats?) proposing such an approach? The view that you outlined is highly concordant with Bjorn Lomborg’s view, a view for which he has had to endure considerable calumny.

    • The 0.7 C observed rise since 1950 is consistent with transient sensitivities of 2 C per doubling accounting for other factors like aerosols, other GHGs, the sun, ice, ocean, and volcanoes. There are no surprises about the 0.7 C rise when compared to what AGW said CO2 could do as the main driver. This is why a working theory so far should be used as a first-order estimate in planning, allowing for uncertainty equally in both directions around it.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: The 0.7 C observed rise since 1950 is consistent with … .

        And the other part, the next doubling to take place over 140 years, for about 0.07C/decade, much lower than the IPCC forecast of 0.21C/per decade? With uncertainty equally in both directions?

        Is some important body of scientists advocating that as a basis for planning? It’s not what I get from AAAS, or from letters from environmental groups.

      • Matthew Marler, I don’t know where you get your numbers, but business as usual would put us at 700 ppm by around 2100, which, just from 2 C per doubling, gives 0.2 C per decade on top of the 0.7 C we already have, and this is just the transient rate, not the final committed warming for 700 ppm. The worst thing is that we will only have used less than half of our fossil fuels by then, so a lot more warming would be possible after that with no policy of leaving them in the ground.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Matthew Marler, I don’t know where you get your numbers, but business as usual would put us at 700 ppm by around 2100, which, just from 2 C per doubling, gives 0.2 C per decade on top of the 0.7 C we already have, and this is just the transient rate, not the final committed warming for 700 ppm. The worst thing is that we will only have used less than half of our fossil fuels by then, so a lot more warming would be possible after that with no policy of leaving them in the ground.

        The current best estimate I have obtained (and I suppose I should double check, but someone else posted a link in response to my writing that the next doubling would occur in 70 years) is a CO2 growth rate of 0.5% per year, which puts the next doubling time at 140 years.

        “On top of the 0.7C we already have” — well the totality of the evidence is that the 0.7C has been mostly beneficial: higher crop yields, fewer tornadoes (more precisely, less total energy dissipated, also applies to hurricanes and typhoons), slightly less drought; faster forest growth, fewer deaths due to cold and so forth. The evidence that the 0.7C increase has produced anything bad is really full of holes. Remarkably little actual science has gone into the claims that future CO2-induced warming at the scientifically substantiated rates will be detrimental through the rest of the century.

      • Matthew Marler, as I have said in the past, that is where the debate should be; on the final ppm value. Is 1000 ppm or 700 ppm more beneficial than say 500 ppm or 450 ppm? The former do go with faster sea level rises, but what about the other parts? When you say “another doubling” maybe you mean double today or 800 ppm. Is that a good target to have? Allowing for world development and population growth, we could reach 800 ppm within a century. It only requires double today’s emissions averaged over that period which is actually a slowing down of the past growth rate. Anything less than 1000 ppm requires a policy of leaving at least a lot of coal in the ground and not developing new fossil fuel resources such as tar sands and methyl hydrates. Should such policies be agreed to internationally, or what?

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: Matthew Marler, as I have said in the past, that is where the debate should be; on the final ppm value. Is 1000 ppm or 700 ppm more beneficial than say 500 ppm or 450 ppm?

        That is one of our disagreements, and I repeatedly focus the discussion on rates of change. If it takes 140 years for the next doubling (to 800), and if the increase since the end of the LIA is good (which is what I think the evidence supports), and if the expected result is 2C, then the largely alarmist emails that i have been receiving from AAAS is baseless.

        This is especially so if the equilibrium response near the surface is close to the transient response, and the rest of the equilibrium response (“warming in the pipeline”) is mostly in the deep ocean.

        Back to my main point: the rates matter a great deal, because there is no equilibrium, among other reasons.

      • The transient response over land is currently 3.5-4 C per doubling, just based on the last 30 years. This rate does lead to some urgency, but the land responds more quickly to forcing changes, so it may also respond noticeably to decelerating emission rate changes. What we do in the near term does make a difference.

      • Matthew R Marler

        Jim D: The transient response over land is currently 3.5-4 C per doubling, just based on the last 30 years.

        No large body of evidence supports such a large value for the transient response to a doubling of CO2.

      • The observational evidence is that the land has been warming twice as fast as the ocean.

  32. Judith Curry Says:

    IV. The emphasis on ‘no or low regrets’ is very welcome: One way for climate scientists to engage more with society and with policymakers is to encourage and inform discourse on tractable, ‘no or low regret’ ways forward addressing different benefits on different timescales, starting with the near term.

    Judith, you completely ignore the context of that statement, and the import of that statement being delivered in that context. That emphasis on ‘no or low regrets’ was presented in section 3. Section 3 was not about policy. It was about science, and improving the public opinion of climate science. It starts with the statement:

    Climate science is complex, and its results are unwelcome, inconvenient and contested. It cannot be easily rendered into simple truths. Furthermore, the climate science community is very broad and lacks a coherent unified voice.

    And what is their proffered suggestion for dealing with the fact that the science is complex and uncertain? What is their method for addressing the fact that the science is unsettled? What is their idea for improving the standing of the science in the eye of the public? A policy advocacy prescription!

    For f*cks sake. It is so much about politics with these clowns that they can’t help themselves and don’t even notice it when they’re doing it. Doesn’t speak well that you bit the buzzword and didn’t notice it either …

    The whole piece is simply more propaganda training for people who believe that their problem is not poorly-constructed, blatantly-politicized, grossly over-conclusive “science”. It is that the poor, geeky egg-heads with all the right answers just don’t know how to communicate their brilliance to us monkeys.

  33. Willis Eschenbach

    A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science.

    Hogwash. People don’t trust climate scientists because far too many of the leading lights of alarmism have lied, cheated, packed the peer review panels, subverted the IPCC, and broken laws in a futile attempt to advance their cause.

    Judith, this is merely another pathetic try at convincing folks that the problem is poor communication. It is nothing of the sort. We got the messages loud and clear, we just don’t believe them, and for damn good reasons.

    Not trusting the alarmists is a sane, rational, well thought out response to the kinds of underhanded actions that the alarmists seem to specialize it.

    Bottom line? It has nothing to do with communication. They lied to us, and they have never even apologized, much less changed their ways. We’d be absolute fools to trust them at this point.

    w.

    • David Springer

      That’s all true Willis but I don’t care about the character of climate scientists. Whether a guy is an a-hole with ulterior motives or not won’t change whether a prediction his hypothesis makes is demonstrably correct or not.
      For instance lets take severe weather. Where’s the increase in hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and droughts that was predicted to come with rising temperature? Missing in action is where it’s at. If anything there’s less severe weather associated with global warming. Where’s the crop failures and famine? Missing in action too. Global food production continues to grow apace with population. Where’s the accelerating rise in sea level? MIA. Where’s the 0.2C/decade warming? MIA. Where’s the huge push to develop dependable economical substitutes for the fossil fuels without which there would be a global population crash? MIA.

      The science is all handwaving hyperbolic bullshiit. That’s the problem and no amount of communiphuckingcation is going to fix that.

      • Without replication, science is nothing but about the character of the scientists.

      • Springer

        I agree with much of what you wrote, but disagree with “The science is all handwaving hyperbolic bullshiit”—it is inaccurate to write it is ALL BS. There is good and bad

      • David Springer

        What did the science get right? It got the temperature rising too fast in the tropics and not fast enough at the north pole and much too fast for the globe as a whole. Severe weather lessened if anything. No regional or short term projections are worth a damn. And as time goes on the long term projections are coming up wrong. More wrong with each passing day.

        So what exactly did you have in mind as the “good” in there’s good and bad in climate science?

    • Bottom line? It has nothing to do with communication. They lied to us, and they have never even apologized, much less changed their ways. We’d be absolute fools to trust them at this point.

      Works for me.

      As long as climate scientists stay in their ivory towers, run their billions of climate simulations, and peer review each other to their heart’s content, that’s fine with me. I’ll stay out of the way and watch with some interest how their science stacks up with reality.

      But if they want to come into my world and demand that the rest of us upend our lives and foot immense bills for their schemes to save the planet because this time it’s not like the Population Bomb or the Limits to Growth or Global Cooling, then the orthodox had better raise their ethical standards and offer better communication than “Shut up; we’re the scientists and we explained it.”

    • Willis Eschenbach says

      A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science.

      Hogwash. People don’t trust climate scientists because far too many of the leading lights of alarmism have lied, cheated, packed the peer review panels, subverted the IPCC, and broken laws in a futile attempt to advance their cause.

      Exactly. The problem with “climate science” is that has been providing clear, consistent messages. Clear, consistent, and demonstrably unscientific.

  34. Willis is right, communication is not their problem; how can it be when only one side is allowed to make its case and the whole scientific establishment is behind the story?
    You can be sure when they claim that communication is the problem that its the quality of the goods they are trying to sell that is the real problem.

  35. Judith –

    ==> “This statement shows a complete lack of understanding of the source of the antagonism (no it is not the Koch brothers). ”

    It is interesting how you pick and choose (er….selectively…) when to acknowledge evidence and when to ignore evidence. For example, you cite Kahan at times, which means that you are mostly likely not unaware of his evidence showing that:

    Disagreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts.

    Exactly as stated in the report.

    You claim that such a view “shows a complete lack of understanding,” yet you offer nothing more than an argument by assertion.

    What is your evidence, Judith, I mean scientific evidence backed up by empirical analysis, as to the “source of antagonism.” Reducing evidence to an absurd counterargument (i.e., that it is the Koch bothers, and nothing else) – even if that absurd argument can be found in the threads of the climate blogosophere – does not substitute for a scientific argument.

    Judith – are you capable of presenting an argument about the “source of the antagonism” that rises above a mere argument from assertion? Don’t you think that it is worthwhile to undertake a more thorough approach?

    Your arguments here, are no better than Willis’. We have two arguments from assertion offered to explain a complicated phenomenon. Neither argument makes even a cursory attempt to present validated, quantified, or qualified evidence in support. Neither argument event attempts to apply due skeptical scrutiny.

    How is someone whose mind is not already made up supposed to judge one argument from assertion relative to another?

    Kahan’s arguments may be wrong – but at least he presents evidence in support.

    • “Judith – are you capable of presenting an argument about the “source of the antagonism” that rises above a mere argument from assertion? Don’t you think that it is worthwhile to undertake a more thorough approach?” – Joshua.

      Judith has a made a very clear and consistent ‘social evaluation’ on this matter.

    • @Josua

      Kahan’s argument is wrong…well, wrong in what it implies due to what it ignores.

      “Disagreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts.”

      What makes that true? When the disagreement is about the ‘science’ there seems to be little of the ‘world-view’ notion at work. But when the disagreement is over what to do, the politics of the matter, is when world-view prevails, which means Kahan’s statement is true but trite. Ie , trivially true.

      What the Left has done here is play word games which they are so habituated to. With a sleight of hand the critics of AGW, the skeptics can be reduced to having no valid criticism, but simply working out their world-view. Coming from a Yale academic, there is no surprise in that. But realizing that the ‘world-view’ of the speaker functions most when sealing with the purely political and least when dealing with the purely scientific renders the whole point…useless.

      Is there any disagreement over the capacity of CO2 to absorb and re-radiate energy that reflects differences in world view? No.

      Is there a disagreement over what the constituents of climate change are that reflects a difference in world view. Not really but being closer to implied policy changes begins to bring about a delineation based on world view.

      The slide from ‘science’ to ‘policy’ seems to be isomorphic with how much world view is a distinguishing feature in a disagreement. So as I said, true, but trivially so.

      • > When the disagreement is about the ‘science’ there seems to be little of the ‘world-view’ notion at work.

        Yet Kahan’s results show otherwise.

        Begging Dan’s question may not be optimal.

        ***

        > Is there a disagreement over what the constituents of climate change are that reflects a difference in world view.

        Yes. See figure 4:

        http://www.culturalcognition.net/blog/2014/6/16/external-validity-of-climate-science-communication-studies-r.html

        Disputing Kahan’s claims without looking at his results may not be optimal either.

      • Dan,
        All you need to remember is that AGW is certain to be terrible enough to justify at least a carbon tax and international treaty to hand out “climate reparations” or, at most, a radical re-evaluation of consumerism, capitalism, and even democracy.
        But building a nuclear power plant or permitting the use of natural gas? It’s not THAT bad!

      • Daniel –

        ==> “Kahan’s argument is wrong…well, wrong in what it implies due to what it ignores.”

        Let’s see evidence to support your argument. There are aspects of Kahan’s thesis that I don’t exactly agree with (more specifically, I think that “world view” is a somewhat arbitrary distinction) – but his evidence is hard to argue with, IMO. The only counterargument that would seem to me to hold water would be one based on contradictory evidence. Instead, what we get are assertions, made by people who are heavily invested and quite likely prone to observer bias, confirmation bias, etc.

        ==> “What makes that true? When the disagreement is about the ‘science’ there seems to be little of the ‘world-view’ notion at work. ”

        There is nothing inherent to say that disagreement about science necessarily derives from world view. For example, with any given “skeptic” it is certainly possible that his/her perspective is independent of his/her world view. But there is a problem with a general statement such as that Judith offered:

        “This statement shows a complete lack of understanding of the source of the antagonism (no it is not the Koch brothers). ”

        In fact, as a general statement such as that Judith offered, I’d say that the evidence is that the antagonism is certainly very likely due to world view. Reducing the “world view” argument to a caricaturized version (in other words, equating it to the argument that it is all due to the Koch brothers) is weak. It is unscientific. And it doesn’t address the actual world view argument or the evidence in support.

        ==> “But when the disagreement is over what to do, the politics of the matter, is when world-view prevails, which means Kahan’s statement is true but trite. Ie , trivially true.”

        The problem with your argument there is that it is extremely difficult to draw some line of distinction between when the argument is about what to do. There is no categorical distinction, that I can see. Politics creeps into science, inevitably (in fact, such a view tends to be an article of faith among “skeptics’), but even if such a categorical extinction did exist in some perfect world, it certainly is a blurry distinction in where the antagonism meets the road. Look at virtually any thread here about the “science” and see whether or not it seamlessly bleeds into the politics/antagonism.

        ==> “What the Left has done here is play word games which they are so habituated to.”

        The problem with that argument is that it relies on an implausible (IMO) categorization of the debate into a left/right paradigm. What I see is that the attributes of the “antagonism” are not so differentiated. And Kahan’s evidence supports my view, IMO. Show me evidence otherwise. Show me a categorical difference in how the left approaches the debate from how the right approaches the debate. What I see is just another example of a polarized foodfight – just like many others. But I’m open to evidence. Evidence based on empirical study. Evidence of the sort that would seem to be a precondition for formation of a “skeptical” viewpoint.

        ==> ” Coming from a Yale academic, there is no surprise in that.”

        Sorry – but at this point I’m afraid that your argument no longer even merits a serious response. Guilt by association is fallacious.

        If you’re interested, let’s stop there and revisit the previous points. At that point we could move on to the rest. If you’re interested.

      • I wonder what Kahan would find if he asked the question:-
        On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 means almost completely innate and 10 means almost completely learned score these human attributes:

        1) Intellegence
        2) Homosexuality
        3) Respect for others

        I always find that Kahan only ever performs <40% of an experiment, no internal or external controls in sight.

    • Steven Mosher

      huh,
      I’ve never seen any evidence from him or arguments from him that are not tainted by his motivated reasoning.

      • Apparently you think that suffices as a substantive argument.

        He presents evidence. Judith does not.

        You can choose to engage with his evidence. You can choose to question Judith why she doesn’t present evidence.

        But instead, you add yet another argument by assertion.

        I admire your loyalty, steven. But it is irrelevant.

      • Steven Mosher

        Joshua

        R^ of .65

        and assumptions made about latent variables.

        nuff said.

        if you dont see the problem here, check your motivated reasoning.
        That is, if the obvious flaw doesnt pop out and shout to you, there is a reason why it doesnt and a reason why you can never see it, even if it is pointed out to you.

        “Exactly how “strong,” though, is that correlation? An “r” of “- 0.65” might intuitively seem pretty big, but determining its practical significance requires a meaningful benchmark. As it turns out, subjects’ responses to the party self-identification and liberal-conservative ideology items are correlated to almost exactly the same degree (r = 0.64, p < 0.01). So in this nationally representative sample, perceptions of the risk of global warming are as strongly associated with respondents’ right-left political outlooks as the indicators of their political outlooks are with one another.

        We could thus combine the global-warming ISM with the party-identification and liberal-conservative ideology items to create an even more reliable political outlook scale (α = 0.81), one with which we could predict with even greater accuracy people's positions on issues like Obamacare and Roe v. Wade. From a psychometric perspective, all three of these items are measuring the same thing—a latent (unobserved) disposition that causes different groups of people to adopt coherent sets of opposing stances on political matters (DeVellis 2012)."

        Go ahead, demonstrate your ability to drop your bias and see the problem. Its right there.

        you wont see it.

      • Steven –

        I’m not smart enough to argue the statistics. And even if I were, I’m not interested in jumping through hoops in response to your baiting me about my biases (first, of course I;m biased and second, nothing I could do or say would lesson your obsession with me and my biases).

        So you can lay out your argument and maybe I’ll be able to understand it. Better yet, why don’t you do over to Dan’s and make your argument to him? It would be interesting to read the discussion. Maybe you’d contribute something, evidence-wise, to the analysis instead of just reflexively justifying Judith’s lack of evidence-based argumentation. That gets old.

        And it’s irrelevant.

        Your call, bro.

      • Steven Mosher

        “I’m not smart enough to argue the statistics. And even if I were, I’m not interested in jumping through hoops in response to your baiting me about my biases (first, of course I;m biased and second, nothing I could do or say would lesson your obsession with me and my biases).”

        Interesting. you are not smart enough to see the problem, but you accept the ‘evidence’. You can’t see the problem there?

        you are disposed to accept the ‘evidence’ because it fits your notion of how people operate rather than suspending judgment because you lack the expertise to understand the governing assumptions.

        you had a choice: suspend judgment or believe. you chose to believe.
        not because of the argument which you dont understand, but rather because you apparently like the answer or because the answer works for you.

        As for informing Dan. Like you he can’t see the issue. His own research explains why he can’t see it. The fact that he doesnt discuss the issue should show you that.but you can’t or won’t see it. neither does he.

      • Steve, as you know I am English and have lived in the US for a decade. The correlation between Climate Science and political affinity holds up pretty well, with the right far more skeptical than the left. However, in Britain we didn’t have a Roe vs. Wade decision and vote on abortion issues in Britain is a ‘free vote’; none party political.
        The law was last changed for the upper gestational limit in 1990 at 24 weeks, from 28 week.s In 2008 a drop from 24 to 22 weeks was lost by 304 votes to 233, a 20 week limit by 332 votes to 190,16 weeks was defeated by 387 votes to 84 and 12 weeks was opposed by 393 votes to 71.
        The left/right split on this issue, in the USA, is not found in the UK, nor any other EU nation.

      • ==> “Interesting. you are not smart enough to see the problem, but you accept the ‘evidence’. You can’t see the problem there?”

        It’s easy to argue against people when you make up what they say, isn’t it? I accept that Kahan provides evidence, which is in contrast to what you’re doing, what Judith does, what Willis does, etc. I don’t assume that his evidence nor his analysis is perfect, but evidence generally has advantages over argument by assertion.

        You talk to plenty of people about issues where you don’t think they are likely to accept conflicting views. It’s interesting that you spend so much time doing so, so often, yet seem reluctant to talk to Dan about what you consider to be obvious, and fatal flaws in his analysis.

        Regardless, steven, your obsession with my biases is irrelevant. Judith’s input is relevant, which is why her failure to support her arguments with evidence is relevant. Dan’s input is relevant, which is why if you have valid counterarguments to make, they would be relevant. Offering me hide and seek games to satisfy your obsession with proving my biases is irrelevant.

      • Steven Mosher

        wrong Joshua

        ” I accept that Kahan provides evidence, which is in contrast to what you’re doing, what Judith does, what Willis does, etc. I don’t assume that his evidence nor his analysis is perfect, but evidence generally has advantages over argument by assertion.”

        I accept that he provides “evidence” as well. However, he is what I wrote

        “I’ve never seen any evidence from him or arguments from him that are not tainted by his motivated reasoning.”

        Now you see? you read that and entirely missed the meaning. Why?
        I dont argue that he supplies no evidence. rather, I say his evidence is tainted. You cant see that. Even when I point it out.

        Note, I asserted a fact. you cant argue facts. Facts just are. See how you missed that? Now his evidence is actually an argument that makes assumptions. he doesnt lay out those assumptions. You missed that.
        why? And further, asserting a fact, trumps an argument that makes undisclosed assumptions.

        so, what did I assert. A fact. I have never seen an argument from him or evidence that wasnt tainted. I’ve never seen a unicorn. This is the kind of thing one can only assert, and not argue.

        But you cant see that because you have set responses you need to make.

        I have never seen evidence from him that wasnt tainted. Are you telling me I have seen it and am just mistaken? or maybe I forgot.
        which is it?

      • Steven –

        ==> “Now you see? you read that and entirely missed the meaning. Why?
        I dont argue that he supplies no evidence. ”

        This gets funnier by the comment. I didn’t say that you said that he didn’t provide evidence. I didn’t miss the meaning. I saw the meaning and described that it was irrelevant. Why? Because it is an empty argument by assertion.

        Provide evidence for your arguments, it might be interesting. Geez, how about you even supply an argument? Either might be relevant. Talk to Dan about your evidence. Present to him an argument. The discussion might be interesting.

        This is ZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

        Anyway, I’m going to bed now. It’s late where I am. Have a good day.

    • Joshua says:

      For example, you cite Kahan at times, which means that you are mostly likely not unaware of his evidence showing that:

      Disagreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts.

      The necessary corollary is that agreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts.

      BTW – “mostly likely not unawares”? I guess if you spin frequently enough, the retained angular momentum makes it hard to stop, huh?

      • JJ –

        ==> “The necessary corollary is that agreement within climate discourse has more to do with differences in values and world-views, and by our propensity for social evaluations than it is about scientific facts.”

        Agreement has to do with differences? I don’t understand. Suye, Kahan’s data show that views on climate change are strongly associated with world view, with identification, and with identity-protective and identity-aggressive behaviors. That would have implications to agreement as well as disagreement, but I don’t see how agreement has to do with differences.

        ==> “I guess if you spin frequently enough, the retained angular momentum makes it hard to stop, huh?

        I fail to understand why you have a problem with…”most likely are not unaware of. It is like saying “most likely are aware of.” I’m not absolutely certain, but think it is quite likely. Seems pretty straight forward to me.

      • Joshua,
        Go back to your piece and as Mosher would say, “read harder”, “mostly likely not unaware of…” is what you wrote, not “most likely are not unaware of”

      • Brian –

        ???

        Sorry for adding the “are.” What difference does that make?

        Judith is most likely not unaware of = Judith is most likely aware of….

        Seems rather obvious to me. What is your point? Do you think that she isn’t most likely aware of Kahan’s evidence?

      • Joshua

        Suye, Kahan’s data show that views on climate change are strongly associated with world view, with identification, and with identity-protective and identity-aggressive behaviors. That would have implications to agreement as well as disagreement, but I don’t see how agreement has to do with differences.

        The “consensus” agree with each other, because they differ from the skeptics in worldview, yada, yada, yada. The substance of those differences not only draw them toward the climate cultist view, but that they relish drawing the distinction between themselves and those they perceive as “other” on the basis of those differences is itself part of their motivation. And this goes as much if not more for the “scientists” as the laity.

        I fail to understand why you have a problem with…”most likely are not unaware of.”

        Well, what you actually said was “…you are mostly likely not unaware of …” I’m not surprised that even the guy that said it can’t follow the twists and turns of it. Kind of my point.

        “It is like saying “most likely are aware of.” I’m not absolutely certain, but think it is quite likely. Seems pretty straight forward to me.

        Yes, that is what I said: You are so screwed up from constantly spinning your words that a mess of weasel words and double negatives seems straight forward to you.

        Or should I say that you are mostly likely so not undisfunctioning from not unwinding your words that you definitely might maybe not find this incomprehensibly other than backwardly miscommunicated.

      • JJ –

        ==> “The “consensus” agree with each other, because they differ from the skeptics in worldview, yada, yada, yada. The substance of those differences not only draw them toward the climate cultist view, but that they relish drawing the distinction between themselves and those they perceive as “other” on the basis of those differences is itself part of their motivation.

        Yes – the evidence he provides shows that identity aggressive and identity protective behaviors are part of what he describes – on both sides.

        ==> “And this goes as much if not more for the “scientists” as the laity.”

        His evidence shows that the polarized views intensify along with “expert” knowledge. I disagree with him a bit about the cause-and-effect related to that, but the implications would apply to “skeptics” as well as to scientists.

        So you seem to be saying that you agree with Kahan’s perspective – except it seems that you want to think that it applies only to one side of the climate wars. Please provide evidence to support your argument (if, indeed, you are saying that there is some kind of an asymmetry).

        ==> “Yes, that is what I said”

        Ok. So you understood what I said all along, but you’re going on at length in a couple of comments now because you don’t like my syntax?

        ==> ” I’m not surprised that even the guy that said it can’t follow the twists and turns of it. Kind of my point.”

        ??? I understood it quite well. I have no particular trouble with double negatives.

        So you want to keep coming back to this, to insult me about it, even though you understood what I said from the start?

        Fine. If that’s how you get your rocks off, have at it. Knock yourself out.

  36. David Springer

    The public is not going to accept conclusions that drive policy from a soft science that cannot make accurate predictions.

    That’s the bottom line. Get the phucking science right then we can talk policy.

  37. ‘Examples of oversimplification cited are use of global surface temperature as a metric for climate change and the use of climate sensitivity. Well ok, I am no fan of oversimplification, but frankly this comes across as trying to weasel out of the problems for the dominant climate change narrative caused by the hiatus in surface temperature increase and the lowering of estimates of climate sensitivity. Instead, these examples should have been used to illustrate the uncertainties and genuine dissent surrounding climate science?.”

    There seems to be no alternative to the use os global temperature as a metric. Granted it relies on dicey calculations on global averages, both spatial and temporal, but fits in well with satellite observations and the validation of models. Although regional temperatures are probably the more important and ultimate requirements, it seems that global surface temperature is a reasonable first step.

    However climate sensitivity is a fairly useless metric, particularly after it was redefined in terms of itself at the Copenhagen conference. It fails mainly because it fails to recognise the on/off nature of climate change. An example: before 1940 climate sensitivity was +0.15C/decade, after 1940 it was -0,15C/decade

    • While Judith is right to question the motivation of such a change, I would find the change welcome. Temperature is simply not climate. Focusing on the specific, regional changes to weather patterns and biology seems to me where research should be focused.

      We should be more focused on hydrology and fertilization. Policy as well (and probably not government policy, but corporate, business, and household) should be focused there. We need to find what changes have taken place and are taking place regardless of whether they are human caused or not so that we can not only prevent costs, but take advantage.

  38. David Springer

    Curry how about a blog focusing on what predictions “Climate Science” got right that are clear, unambiguous, and convincing to Feynman’s stereotypical barmaid.

    That’ll be a short blog.

  39. My first impression: This is an argument to fortify the consensus. I’ll read it again in the morning to see if my first impression holds. I sense a bias – urgency is expressed. If that perception is true how to resolve it given the duration of the inconvenient pause? What’s the hurry? I also sense some hysteria. People are not responding to their side of the debate. Well, maybe because the observed record does not support the alarmist message at this juncture. Maybe if they drop the “we’re on a death march to certain disaster” meme people will come around. A minimal trace lifestyle is self-justifying and doesn’t require a death march. But don’t expect me to give up my Harley. Life is inconsistent with a zero trace lifestyle. It just is.

  40. I guess the debate over scientists being advocates, or “issue advocates” has been settled. It is afterall “psychological factors and from cues from influential elites and the media” that turn people off, not scientists behaving like Greenpeace.

  41. Judith, “This morning I received an email from Chris Rapley, Chair of the Commission, sending me a copy of the report, and I’ve been engaging with him about this on email.” I hope he reads your blog and associated comments! His response might be interesting.

    Faustino

  42. Why not communicate only what you know about climate (it won’t be much), in language carefully purged of buzz-words, management-speak and academese? It’s amazing how little “communication” you need when you actually have a fair grasp of something.

    Also, I can’t help noticing that nearly every new bowl of such verbal spaghetti is dosed with a sly dash of warmism – like they’re going to get me to swallow some one way if not the other.

  43. Judith

    In the first major statement in this article it is said;

    ‘From the conclusions of the recent UK House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee report on Communicating Climate Science:

    “A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science. The Government and other bodies, such as the Royal Society and the Met Office, are currently failing to make effective use of [the] internet or social media to engage with the public and to become an authoritative source of accurate scientific information about climate change. ‘

    I am sorry, but this is completely risible. The authorities have had a clear run in communicating their message via a near unanimous vote to approve the climate change act, subsequent legal devices to ensure every organisation in the country from councils to schools complied with it, the endorsement of the BBC, plus the in house newspaper of Parliament known as ‘The Guardian’ and a free rein in much of the media.

    The EU has very much the same complaint that people ‘don’t understand the message’ and need to communicate better. The problem is that we do understand it very well. We just don’t BELIEVE much of it!

    GaryM summed it up very well up thread;

    “The problem is not the form of organization. It is the fact that the entire field is run through with group think, politicization and a progressive ethos that the means justifies the ends.”

    It is high time that more scientists spoke out against the message and the messengers and we returned to science AND the historic context.

    The Met Office deny their own historic records as it does not fit their current mantra. On climate Audit at present the BBC has been exposed for their hypocrisy in banning sceptics such as Lord Lawson from the airwaves whilst allowing Nurse to promulgate nonsense about flooding precisely because they will not take into account the historic context of modern flooding which shows it to be less severe than episodes from the past.

    The idea that the authorities are not getting over a clear consistent message is demonstrable nonsense.

    tonyb

  44. There is no communication issue!

    The alarmist message is loud and very clear, and was fully understood, adopted and implemented in all Western countries (developed countries). Legislation has been passed. 360 billion $ is being spent [wasted] annually on “mitigation”. All that can be done has been done.

    So, where is the “communication problem”? Is the problem that they have failed so far to shut up some pesky and marginal blogs, like this one or WUWT or GWPF ? What have this blogs achieved policy wise ??

    The problem, from alarmist perspective, is, that no mitigation, i.e – no emissions reduction has been achieved so far. But this is not due to communication failure. This is due to the fact that emission reduction is technically and physically impossible. We do not posses the technology that can produce emission free energy in the required amount.

    The problem is not the [alarmist] scientists’ failure at communication. It is their failure at understanding technology, engineering and economy. It is their stubborn and idiotic promotion of policies that don’t work.

    There is no communication failure.

  45. nottawa rafter

    In the second sentence of the UK House of Commons report they use the phrase “climate change”. Therein lies the problem. They took us to the destination rather than bringing us along on the journey. What happened to scientific inquiry? Yes climate has changed since the 1970s, or appears so. But has it changed since the 1930s? Has it changed since the MWP?. If not, then has it “changed” at all. If you accept the word “changed”, then that has connotations of a much longer term than the last few decades. It implies being unprecedented. If not unprecedented, then it is just repeating previous experiences and thus no “change” at all.

    I have a low standard for conversion. When science shows we are in unprecedented territory, I will be all ears. So far I see no such conclusions.

  46. I think one problem is that climate scientists engaged the public begin with and that this seems pervasive. Suggests the field attracts a certain personality type that should call any advocacy into question.

  47. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    Legal Wisdom:

    When the facts support your case, pound on the facts.

    When the law supports your case, pound on the law.

    When neither supports your case, pound on the table.

    More Legal Wisdom:

    “Justice is the tolerable accommodation of the conflicting interests of society, and I don’t believe there is any royal road to attain such accommodation concretely.”
       — Judge Learned Hand

    Lessons Learned

    When it comes to communicating science, history teaches the virtue of fact-pounding and law-pounding:

    Public sanitation  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Vaccination  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Creationism  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won (mostly!).

    Ozone depletion  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Atmospheric H-bombs  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Persistent pesticides  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Nuclear disarmament  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Tobacco/cancer  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Healthcare reform  Scientists pounded upon denialists … and won.

    Conclusion  Scientists are pounding upon climate-change denialists … and are winning.

    Scientists aren’t likely to alter their historically winning pound-on-the-facts and pound-on-the-law strategy, eh Climate Etc readers?

    Not when the sole requirement is persistence!

    \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • catweazle666

      “Conclusion Scientists are pounding upon climate-change denialists … and are winning.”

      Mother Nature doesn’t think so.

      You and your ilk are the deniers now, live with it!

    • Curious George

      I am not familiar with a healthcare reform science, so you win this point. Regarding sanitation and second-hand tobacco smoke, please read an excellent overview by Dr. Michael Crichton, which strongly opposes your conclusions. Of course, he was merely an MD.
      http://stephenschneider.stanford.edu/Publications/PDF_Papers/Crichton2003.pdf

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Curious George [cites Michael Chrichton’s denialism of both tobacco-risk and climate-change risk]

      Since Michael Chrichton is deceased (and has been for several years), his ignorance regarding tobacco-risks (PMID: 20081539) and his ignorance regarding climate-risks *BOTH* are excusable.

      Plenty of folks here on Climate Etc can’t claim that excuse, eh Curious George?

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Re: (undefined NaN NaN:NaN), From Fan’s link to a data mining mish moss.

        Second-hand smoke exposure at home was not associated with total mortality (1.03 [0.93-1.13]).

        .

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse

        LOL … appreciation and thanks are extended to “Charles the Moderator” for so vividly illustrating denialist cherry-picking.

        Because to mine one denialist factoid, “Charles the Moderator” had to flagrantly skip-over — just as The Heartland Institute flagrantly skips-over — the ever-stronger scientific evidence that second-hand tobacco smoke gravely harms all who are exposed to it

        • Second-hand smoke exposure at home was associated with an increased risk of dying from cardiovascular diseases (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.38 [95% confidence interval = 1.01-1.90]), all circulatory diseases (1.28 [0.98-1.69]), and coronary heart disease (1.31 [0.83-2.08]) after adjustment for age, sex, education, physical activity, and body mass index.

        • Dose-response relationships were observed between exposure to second-hand smoke at home and risk of circulatory death (HR per each additional hour/d = 1.25 [1.04-1.50]).

        • Having a partner who smokes more than 30 cigarettes per day considerably increased the risk of a circulatory death (2.94 [1.11-7.78]).

        “Charles the Moderator”, what cognitive mechanism(s) enable you — and The Heartland Institute — to sustain your willful ignorance of these plain scientific findings?

        The world wonders!

        Michael Crichton’s sustained ignorance can be excused: he’s deceased.

        The sustained ignorance of denialist individuals and denialist institutions is *NOT* so easily excused, eh Climate Etc readers?

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • Matthew R Marler

      a fan of *MORE* discourse: Scientists are pounding upon climate-change denialists … and are winning.

      There are no “climate change denialists”. Everyone affirms climate change. Where the scientists are in dispute amongst each other is the magnitude of the CO2 effect, especially future climate change in response to future CO2 accumulation. There is some dispute about exactly how much warmer the previous warm epochs were than now, but the idea that the current warming is unprecedented has taken a beating since the Mannian “hockey stick” tried to erase the Medieval Warm Period.

      Scientists aren’t likely to alter their historically winning pound-on-the-facts and pound-on-the-law strategy, eh Climate Etc readers?

      Depends which scientists. James Hansen has been “pounding” the streets and “pounding” the smokestacks a lot more than pounding the science recently. Michael Mann is trying to pound the US First Amendment.

      Our estimable host, Prof. Curry, has been scientifically pounding the dissensus and uncertainty; main stream scientists have been pounding her (ineffectually, I hope), in an unseemly manner.

  48. From today’s Wall Street Journal …

    The Corruption of Peer Review Is Harming Scientific Credibility

    Dubious studies on the danger of hurricane names may be laughable. But bad science can cause bad policy.

    Absent rigorous peer review, we get the paper published in June in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Titled “Female hurricanes are deadlier than male hurricanes,” it concluded that hurricanes with female names cause more deaths than male-named hurricanes—ostensibly because implicit sexism makes people take the storms with a woman’s name less seriously. The work was debunked once its methods were examined, but not before it got attention nationwide.

    http://online.wsj.com/articles/hank-campbell-the-corruption-of-peer-review-is-harming-scientific-credibility-1405290747

    It’s interesting that climate scientists believe that they have a communications problem when the Main Stream Media uncritically publishes lightly edited versions of university-written press releases and calls softball interviews “in-depth reporting.”

  49. If you want to find the place where the leaders and teachers are most afraid of an honest debate visit a University campus in the US. Until that changes, no number of papers on communications are going to make a lick of difference.

  50. My comment ended up in moderation, so here is a slightly sanitized version of it.

    There is no communication issue!

    The message is loud and very clear, and was fully understood, adopted and implemented in all Western countries (developed countries). Legislation has been passed. 360 billion $ is being spent [wasted] annually on “mitigation”. All that can be done has been done.

    So, where is the “communication problem”? Is the problem that they have failed so far to shut up some pesky and marginal blogs, like this one or WUWT or GWPF ? What have these blogs achieved policy wise ??

    The problem, from warmist perspective, is, that no mitigation, i.e – no emissions reduction, has been achieved so far. But this is not due to communication failure. This is due to the fact that emission reduction is technically and physically impossible. We do not posses the technology that can produce emission-free energy in the required amount.

    The problem is not the scientists’ failure at communication. It is their failure at understanding technology, engineering and economy. It is their promotion of policies that don’t work.

    There is no communication failure. There is a policy failure, but the problem isn’t that “not enough is being done”. The problem is that what is being done doesn’t make sense and doesn’t work.

    • @ jacobress

      “The problem is that what is being done doesn’t make sense and doesn’t work.”

      Depends on whether we are discussing overt objectives: controlling the climate and ‘setting the global thermostat’ or covert objectives: converting western civilization into a society in which everything not commanded is forbidden, with progressives doing the commanding and forbidding.

      In establishing a progressive Shangra-La the policies have been and continue to be wildly successful. Contolling the climate: not so much. I. e. zero efficacy, now and in the foreseeable future.

      • Let’s not turn this into an ideological debate, let’s stick to facts: has the enormous amount of money and effort already invested in “mitigation” achieved any reduction in emissions? I’m not asking “reduction in future temps”, but “reduction in emissions”.
        If not, maybe it’s time to rethink what has been done so far.

      • @ jacobress

        Hi jacobress

        Rather than turning this into an ideological debate, I will, as you advised, ‘stick to the facts’.

        Rather than reiterating them, I’ll just refer you to this (accurate) post by another ‘denizen’:

        cwon14 | July 14, 2014 at 11:13 am | Reply

        Bottom line: It BEGAN as an ideological debate. Global warming/climate change is not now nor has it ever been a ‘problem’; it is an excuse.

      • “Global warming/climate change is not now nor has it ever been a ‘problem’; it is an excuse.”

        Maybe.
        But I stopped debating religion at the age of 15, long time ago. This the sort of things that are not worth discussing or debating. It’s futile.
        I try to limit my debates to things that can be measured….

    • “Solar PV and wind energy will beat both coal and gas on costs – without subsidies”.

      If this is true (from your link above), then fine. No need for any more “science communication”, climate policy, “goals”, “mandates”, climate conferences, IPCC reports, debates, “professional bodies”, regulation.

      Stop wasting money on subsidies, repeal food-burning (a.k.a ethanol) mandates, close the carbon trading schemes. Stop the vociferous scare-mongering.

      Let technology and invention advance unhampered.

      • A fan of *MORE* discourse
        jacobress asserts [without evidence] “Emission reduction is technically and physically  impossible  inevitable

        Denialism by jacobress, facts by FOMD!

        jacobress changes his tune “Stop wasting money on subsidies, repeal food-burning (a.k.a ethanol) mandates, close the carbon trading schemes.”

        LOL … jacobress, yer list plumb fergot `ta price carbon externalities!

        *EVERYONE* appreciates *THIS* market-driven common-sense, eh Climate Etc readers?

        Because markets *DO* fail, eh jacobress?

        \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

      • Why only **your** pet externalities ?Pay for the noise damage, killed birds, lowered property prices, grid enhancements and backup fossil power that windmills entail. You want me to pay for what you claim are externalities ? Fine, I have some claims too. The biggest externality being the hundreds of billions of $ already wasted on useless and harmful schemes.

      • and the waste of resources such as peoples attention, that could have been invested in medical cures, crop efficiency, educational advancements.

        deceleration of those types of efforts, is worse than wasteful.

        that such is done, to enrich the initiators of the fear, is so wrong, it is EVIL.

      • With no fanfare or meta narrative at all, the European Commission
        in their data base posted their 2013 figures for grant funding,
        including NGO’s, in 2012, funded of course by the taxpayers.
        The EU subsidized UN Institutions to the tune of 140 million, that’s
        pounds, not dollars, grant funding to the BBC of 6,100, 987 pounds,4,188,230 to Friends of the Earth, say, be generous to
        yr friends, and WWF got 5, 344,641 pounds.

        https://www.google.com.au/?gws_rd=ssl#q=EUReferendum.com+Global+governance+funding+the+NGO+monster

      • what will they do, when they realize they cannot “un-elect” a prince, for his hand in affairs, the way presidents can get “put to pasture” for their sins.

        pity. (you gotta say it like the “only in Canada” commercials from Salada.

        Beth The Serf, you put good food on the table.

        ?:-)

      • Put to pasture? The latest out of NY is that the Left’s choice for His Imperial Majesty and commander over the nation’s productive is now ‘weary of the obligations of the White House’ and ready to party but then, ‘not weary enough to resign.’ Missing capitalism yet?

      • Hi Wagathon,

        I shouldn’t really consider myself in the position to judge him, if advisors advice and scientist representation, at risk to their reputation are willing to say things, it is his job to represent the “flow”.

        But then there is the dude in Australia who fought the flow at the national level, by bending it, and won. So at the national level, if CO2 is innocent, there has been a standard of performance set for heads of state, for which other world leader’s can be held in accountable comparison.

        I would suggest. Albiet with crowns on their heads, this doesn’t hold true. There is a much harsher level of guilt, when you are born to a position. You can’t blame society for driving your opinion, you are assumed self responsible in this regard. your word can be miscontrued as “law”, to a degree. Unless you have exhibited wanton incompetence.

        When it is supposed your opinion is superior because you were born into it. To whom much is given, from much is expected. The after taste of a silver spoon, perhaps. The lack of public opinion as your shield. An unfortunate position to be in, when one has stretched out ones neck, like a chicken on a chopping block, at the cost of massive public inconvenience. (a whack of disgruntled coal miners, and builders who like to build cleaner coal plants that don’t pollute much, but still create CO2.).

        And public unhealthy direction of transfer of funds, within the economy. A negative cash flow position sounds right but I am no economist.

        at least I think the above to be mostly correct, if not all. :-)

      • …at least I think the above to be mostly correct, if not all.

         

        To that I think the observations of Patrick Buchanan (Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?) are right on point. Buchanan says the counterculture of the 60s, “is dominant in the culture, the arts, the academy, and the media. The Fifth column of the cultural revolution is entrenched in the courts where judges and justices…”

        Those who voluntarily provide all of the goods and services and profits in the capitalist economy that provide all of the taxes that operate government are now the counterculture. In other words, society is not so free anymore. The blood, sweat and investment of the productive in the free enterprise system are being usurped against their will by government and transferred to those who vote to keep government in power.

      • Wagathon, I like what and how you wrote that. May I suggest it would be eloquent to include the notion, that only the absolute truth shall set them free.

        This is tongue in cheek. But a printing of money, given in multiple amounts proportionally to those who could least afford to have had it wasted, will devalue some accumulated riches rebalancing the playing field a little. repay actual costs with actual printed money, to spread the burden. Globally as orchestrated by the U.N. There could be world wide issuing of “uncarbon fighting” transfers. Back to the poor poor.

        lol. never happed.

        government will refunnel money into new versions of old plants and crap like that. average Joe never get’s it back.

      • True, true the government’s theoretical solutions to illusory problems are unending, like the farmer whose chickens became less and less productive. “The farmer calls a physicist to help. The physicist does some calculations and says, I have a solution but it only works for spherical chickens in a vacuum.

      • Perhaps once in a while a little “Jonathon Kent” style ability to see what he sees, while living amongst a fairytale land of native american indian culture, which ornate, and captivating facets of their knowledge embedded in one by the patterns of dream catchers, teepees, and connected together by Stephen King’s book DreamCatcher, which can be an incredible tool of memory unlocking if you choose to use it that way. And a penchance for using google images to attain altering beliefs of similar notions, to find out what others accidentally believe. Cause he hates when that happens to him. When his common sense is confounded.

        Might be worth listening to, since his barometer is another trump card in a common sense solution created by the proposed “shape” and related math, of gravity at every level.

        Maybe.

        Crying Wolf and being chicken little are sad shoes to choose to walk in, right? Professor Brown is not so bad an alternate role model. ?;-)

      • Perhaps Western climatologists will be like Douglas Adams’ unknowing Rain God who to his vexation was followed by rainclouds wherever he went only, instead of causing rain, climatologists’ models bring miserable and disgusting global warming where before there was none.

      • Wagathon, I feel I may have responded to the wrong half of what you said.

        Sorry if so.

      • But, but big oil and koch brothers…

      • The climate science meta-narrative: invent reasons to explain why you agree with whatever the government wants to hear and pay for (Any model, including those predicting climate doom, can be tweaked to yield a desired result. I should know. ~Robert J. Caprara, WSJ: Confessions of a Computer Modeler).

      • Finally, when reality can no longer be ignored, people are confused upon learning that, Global warming computer models are confounded as Antarctic… (It’s unprecedented: across the globe, there are about one million square kilometers more sea ice than 35 years ago, which is when satellite measurements began).

      • Wagathon,

        I read that op-ed on the train the other day. It’s excellent. The WSJ is paywalled, but this is the same piece at the GWPF site.

        http://www.thegwpf.org/confessions-of-a-computer-modeler/

        (An example of what I said elsewhere about GWPF and Heartland being alternative outlets for conservative/skeptical views.)

      • Fracked gas has saved more carbon emissions than all of these “alternate energy” schemes combined.

      • Markets fail, people are poorer for a while, central planning fails, millions die; viz Great Leap Forward, Soviet Union.

      • FOMD, could you give me one example of a ‘market failure?’

  51. From the report:
    ” There is a need for the general public and climate scientists to engage in constructive dialogue”

    Does this include deniers (under “general public”) ? Or is it better to deny the deniers access to the media (BBC) ?

  52. David Wojick

    Ironically the report contains the single sentence that negates its own arguments:
    “Climate science contains enough complexity and ambiguity to support a variety of positions.”

    The debate exists because the science is inconclusive regarding AGW. This is not a communication problem, it is a scientific problem. In the meantime strong policy action is not justified, EPA to the contrary notwithstanding.

  53. “The report is targeted at a very legitimate concern: the ‘gap’ between the functions the climate science community currently fulfils and societal needs, and what might be done about closing it.”

    There’s a use for the solecism “fills a much-needed gap.”

    Cut loose climate science from funding and the problem goes away.

    What science bits survive will do so on their own by being interesting.

    Models will not survive.

  54. Finishing that long post my immediate reaction was just what GaryM wrote.
    My advice to ‘climate scientists’ is do the science and leave the politics to others. There is far too much of the philosopher king attitude among scientists in almost any branch and it just shows itself more in climate science because they chose to cry wolf and demand policy action. Scratch a scientist and 9 out of 10 times you uncover an authoritarian a la John Holdren.
    Most scientific professional organizations tend to cohere around the philosopher king paradigm, ie, top down, authoritarian, centralized control.
    Why is that?

    • They spent so much time and effort to get the PhD that the wider populace should pay more homage to their opinions.

      They should run the opinions against the real world results. The models don’t predict empiracal evidence so go back to adjust the models.

      Don’t go back and adjusat the climate temperature record.
      Scott

  55. One of the recommendations:

    Self-reflection: Active critical self-reflection and humility when interacting with others should become the cultural norm on the part of all participants in the climate discourse.

    Maybe this should start with the Report itself? Dr. Curry’s criticisms correctly point out the authors still don’t get it.

  56. I’m not aware of any other branch of science having this problem; although many other branches of science, agricultural, metallurgical, chemical, medical etc have vast impacts on how societies and economies proceed. What, in any case, is “climate science”? Meteorology? Radiative physics? Fluid dynamics? Paleobiology? Marine biology? It seems a confluence of these and more, but tends to be held together in the support and amplification of a central idea from radiative physics. We might do better by dis-aggregating the components. And certainly would do better by separating the scientific debate from the political.

    • I always felt oceanography with a few gas molecules riding on top was the main actor, but it’s sitting on a spinning wobbling rock bathed by emissions from a large fusion reactor.

    • “I’m not aware of any other branch of science ” It isn’t strictly science but medicine is plagued with this same attitude as represented by the pronouncements of the AMA.

  57. I suppose I have to repeat my usual comment, that a problem like this isn’t really one climate scientists are educated or trained to solve. I wouldn’t exclude climate scientists from a multidisciplinary team trying to design possible solutions (or options we can follow), they would be needed as part of such a team. But they definitely would need to be trained to work in such an environment. My experience shows they also deserve and need to receive feedback regarding where to focus in their work. Thus the process is quite iterative, a quality effort leads to blind alleys which have to be abandoned, and so on.

    For those climate scientists who read this and may feel they are being picked on, this isn’t really a criticism of climate scientists. All of us in our own specialties or abilities have to learn to interact and communicate with others to arrive at truly high quality or optimized solutions.

    And by communication I don’t mean communication with the public, I mean communication amongst the different professions as well as individuals from different countries. Many of you come from cultural tribal groups which tend to dismiss members of other groups subconsciously. This in turn stifles communication and leads you to miss by a huge margin. And this is all I can write about that before getting too wordy.

    By the way, tell the guy who lumped skepticism about the IPCC line with right wing politics than some of us are atheist radical libertarian pro Palestinian anti communists and agree it would be a good idea to move on to renewables as soon a it’s practical.

    • “to move on to renewables as soon a it’s practical.”
      Fine.
      But we have already moved to renewables, despite it being impractical. That is the whole point of the policy debate.

  58. Kent Draper

    They lost me when they asked for my money to fix the problem they couldn’t show we had.

  59. GaryM put it nicely: “Absolute tripe.”

    Stalin did an excellent job of communicating “science” as this report seems to define it: If you publicly doubted Lysenko then you went to the Gulag.

    “A lack of clear, consistent messages on the science has a detrimental impact on the public’s trust in climate science.”

    The clear, consistent message on climate science should include the facts that it is still in its infancy, its major hypotheses have not matched reality, and its research has been encouraged primarily to confirm preconceptions. The public should not trust it as a basis for major policy decisions.

    Roy Spencer communicates the current state of climate science very well:
    http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/49789102

  60. Pingback: Cool Weather | Tumbleweeds Tumbling

  61. stevefitzpatrick

    The authors of the report seem unable to understand the very real potential for values and world view to not just change how people receive information from climate science, but to change how climate science is carried out and communicated. It is a strong, and I think prudent, suspicion of bias in both the practice of climate science and its communication that causes so much distrust of climate science and climate scientists among the public. One need only read the email messages from the UEA trove to see just how political climate science is.

    Eliminate the politics, and the rest takes care of itself; that is as likely to happen as 1+ meter sea level increases by 2100, which is to say, ‘taint gonna happen. IMO, only unfolding reality over the coming decades, including advances in technology, will provide the guidance needed for sensible public policy on energy. Climate science and climate scientists have too tarnished a brand to reestablish their credibility any time soon, since only attrition can change the people in the field. There is no guarantee that less politically active people will enter the field in the future, so it may never become less political.

  62. “The establishment of a professional body for climate science, to represent the interests of climate scientists and society, would provide the means to develop norms, values and practices better tuned to the circumstances in which climate science finds itself.”
    ———————————————-
    The old bureaucratic nostrum. The current system has failed, so let’s double down (and, BTW, we have a few people in mind for well-paid jobs in the additional layer). Do people still fall for this?

    The Royal Society encapsulated it – “nullius in verba.” Why, apart from empire-building, are additional structures required? Why not just insist that everyone adheres to the rules?

    Judith, you are probably way smarter than I am, and I would not lift a finger against you in any discussion of physics. But you fall for the three-card trick in policy and politics again and again.

    “Science communication” is a Trojan Horse for grants and empire building. And the notion that the masses are not complying, therefore it needs more money and support, is so politically naive as to be breathtaking.

    .

  63. By the way, Fan, are you a fan of food burning (ethanol mandates) or not?
    Just curious.

  64. Pingback: Communicating climate science reconsidered | Tumbleweeds Tumbling

  65. Doug Proctor

    The basis is, as JC notes, that the “facts” are clear and unarguable, while the implications are value-loaded, values that are socially, politically and ideologically determined. As a skeptic, I dispute that the “facts” are clear and unarguable. The house is built on sand, says I, while the IPCC, Gore, Hansen et al say that the house is built on unfractured bedrock. Therein lies the basis of the dispute.

    I am alarmed at the repeated indications of an elite scientific group producing a coherent and stable narrative to the cause, the progress and the end results of continued CO2 release. Those who think the climate science world is nailed to the floor would naturally (and legitimately) find themselves frustrated with this position, as questioning the basis invalidates (at least until the basis is reestablished) the entire project. If you can’t be certain that 75% of the post-1880 temperature rise, or 90% of the post-1975 rise, is due to A-CO2, you can’t identify AS SCIENTIFICALLY BASED any “solutions” other than adaptation: the Precautionary Principle is not a science-based reason but an Utopian reason. Real-world situations require pragmatism more than clean principles.

    What I think WOULD be more effective in getting people behind climate change is a clear explanation of local weather changes that are clearly outside “normal” variability on the post 1920 period. Trouble is, local variability is so high that the alleged “global” changes are within either variation or error bars. On the Alberta prairies we have had floods and heat this summer, but neither are out of my personal experience. I expect it would be difficult to convince Albertans that global climate change – as against local weather changes over the years – is showing up. Convince them, at least, on the basis of “facts”.

  66. Faith is a strong card to play.

    Only plausible explanations trump faith.

    • One of the messages of “The True Believer” by Eric Hoffer. Two ingredients to the deadly mixture are (1) A strong leader and (2) An enemy.

      • I would argue however that faith trumps plausible explanations. Try talking, as I have done, to a sympathizer of middle east terrorism and the murder of innocent civilians.

      • There are extremists, who despite evidence, will never believe.

        But the masses can be swayed with plausible provable communicable truths especially when they manage to predict the future accurately enough.

        At least I believe that to be the case.

        Religious arguments are tougher, because there can be no evidence that a god exists. And must therefor be followed on faith. I don’t participate in that type of argument anymore. There is nothing to be “won”. And despite being atheist, I do see value in most religions. Which are mostly “moral programming for the good of society”. And provide it’s members with social acceptance, often social and business benefits, a source of unconditional love, and belief in a higher purpose. Society may not be entirely ready to operate without religions.

  67. catweazle666

    “Alarmist messages that fail to materialize contribute to the loss of trust in the science community. “

    So that’ll be all of them, right?

  68. catweazle666

    “But without earning trust of people that are not predisposed to agree with you, you will get nowhere.

    Why should anyone genuinely sceptical concerning the existential threat posed by “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming” (especially as there currently doesn’t seem to be any warming at all – anthropogenic or otherwise) be remotely predisposed to agree with a group who sneeringly conflate them with Holocaust denial and any and every other crackpot conspiracy theory – which is the attitude of the majority of so-called “climate scientists” such as Mann, Cook, Lewandowski, Nutticelli et al, and who appear entirely incapable of permitting any scrutiny whatsoever of their methodology or data – and worse – appear to have a serious penchant for making stuff up (zombie weather stations, anyone)?

    • ..who sneeringly conflate them with Holocaust denial and any and every other crackpot conspiracy theory..

      ..appear entirely incapable of permitting any scrutiny whatsoever of their methodology or data – and worse – appear to have a serious penchant for making stuff up..

      It’s a conspiracy to fool the public, eh?

  69. I think the tone of that report is overly pessimistic about the general public. The general public gets it. The world is warming and the burning of fossil fuels is doing it. Ask anyone who only follows these things loosely in the media, which is the majority. This is now common knowledge, and it goes into school textbooks. That is where the people are, not just in the US, but globally.

    • Jim D,

      “The general public gets it. The world is warming and the burning of fossil fuels is doing it. Ask anyone who only follows these things loosely in the media, which is the majority. This is now common knowledge, and it goes into school textbooks. That is where the people are, not just in the US, but globally.”

      Some FOBs in the past, put a bunch of stuff in a book, and created a religion around it. Encouraged hundreds of millions of people to believe in it. Used it as justification to start wars, colonization, inquisitions even. Amongst that group, it is strongly believed that at some point in the past, the earth was flooded because of mankind “unclean” behaviour.

      Not everything in a book is true.
      Not everything that is common knowledge is correct.
      Not just in the U.S., but globally.

      People seldom are aware they have been brainwashed, until someone is unkind enough to point it out to them, at which point they have to start to question everything. And that is just too much mental work for many.

      Easier to continue a path of blind faith, and flock following. The sheep in the middle is the last eaten after all. It is “safe”. Risk adverse. Comfortable.

      But definitely is NOT the sheep that chooses which direction the flock will travel.

  70. solvingtornadoes

    Since Judith is a bureacrat I guess it’s not surprising that her solution is more bureacracy.

    The solution is not to add another layer of bureaucracy. The solution is to pass laws that force scientists–especially those making alarmist proclamations–to publicly discuss/debate their thinking and answer questions from all comers, especially skeptics/critics, so that they are not able to hide behind bureacracy.

    • I think that would be a great idea. You probably couldn’t get the law passed as there is a considerable amount of money involved and you know what happens then. The thought though is common sense correct.

  71. The problem with climate science communication in 4 words:

    WHAT THEY SAY: “we might be wrong”.

    For all the time spent on “communicating” uncertainties, does anyone get the feeling the message above is what they are really trying to communicate? No, instead the message they “communicate” is always this:

    WHAT THEY MEAN: “we might be wrong, but we aren’t”.

    There is no humility here, what I see smells a lot more like arrogance. Nor is it politically acceptable to show this humility. Look what happens to any climate scientist that goes public with doubts on the consensus. Undeniable ostracization.

    Of course we must take on this debate one fact at a time, and acknowledge certain things are known, and certain things are not. Whether the communication is legitimate or propaganda depends very much on what you are talking about. Debates on the temperature record are a lot different than debates on climate model predictions and attribution.

  72. The weakness of the consensus is reflected by the codling of similarly politically coded media operatives and academics that ignore the most basic contradictions of what is “communicated” and what is systematically ignored and minimized;

    A. “Anthropologic” is messaging used to capture the most populist support but all the mitigation rules, extortion and wealth distribution promises are targeted at carbon interests with the deepest imagined “pockets”. Aerosols, land use, irrigation get lumped in to raise “human impact” consensus support but remain un-quantified. The climate hustle begins.

    B. The “Consensus” prefers complete political anonymity generally with partisan MSM assistance. Obfuscating their political ID has been essential to maintain the illusion of “science” objectivity. Regardless that most of the leading advocates are clearly left-wing academic orthodox, the faux protests defending their “professionalism” and the absurd metaphors regarding those who question them as “conspiracy theorists”. This is even more laughable then the communication meme from above. Zero self-awareness and gratuitous public denial of what essentially accounts for the propaganda failure of the AGW movement. Many know exactly who these people are.

    Since nothing about AGW “science” is seriously presented aside from the political goals of the demagogic enclave mostly in hiding “communication” is a bogus claim of dysfunction.

  73. What exactly are the externalities of the effects of cheap energy on society? Somehow this part of the equation is always missing in these studies.

    For example:

    Cheap energy = More GDP to spend on health care and other life extending products = longer lives. There are many more counter examples.

    I doubt you will ever see an honest depiction of these secondary effects from anyone, and they are for the most part unmeasurable and extremely prone to model manipulation, the epidemiologist fallacy, and confirmation bias. This is some of the shakiest science on the planet.

    Ignore the ones from people with a climate agenda, which is pretty much all of them.

    http://wmbriggs.com/blog/?p=8108

    • @ Tom Scharf,

      If I understand you correctly, I would agree whole heartedly. And suggest, sometimes we don’t see things because we don’t look.

      WW 1 and 2 on the surface at least, would seem to have accelerated advances in science tremendously (rocketry, x-rays, nuclear energy, radar, navigation, portable communications, emergency medical treatment, artificial limbs, etc.)

      unfortunately they did it in a very wrong way.

      I think that the “war” against CO2, however misguided, will have, and has had, some benefits for humanity. But the cost is huge, and the premise, likely false.

      We may advance science, and in the long run, discover better, cheaper, types of energy.

      unfortunately we are doing it in a very wrong way.

      :-)

      • I read an analysis somewhere that claimed WW2 accelerated development of existing science rather than stimulating much new science and that science not supporting the war effort was suppressed/defunded. So, existing science was mined for war products, the search for new science was discouraged, and the net result was fewer new advances. I think this is more like the effect of diverting billions to climate research, but instead of atomic bombs, rockets and jets, they’ve come up with duds and models that don’t fly. I’m trying hard to think of something good or useful that has come from climate science but failing. Is there anything?

        Perhaps a better example would be the space race. I’ve seen that credited with a lot of useful spin-offs. I think governments should jettison climate research and pick something with clearer goals and implied benefits. Energy independence seems a worthwhile goal and just could result in less burning of fossil energy sources and less anthropogenic CO2 at the same time. It always seemed to me more than a bit short-sighted to burn hydrocarbons when there are so many other uses for them.

      • Hi DaveW. I agree. I can see where acceleration in one area, would cause deceleration in another. And that can have a related proportional negative of it’s own. Which could in turn have some positives. But each should be proportionally smaller at least. at least one hopes.?? ?:-)

  74. “Solar PV and wind energy will beat both coal and gas on costs – without subsidies”

    WILL beat…..when do you envisage this happening? How much energy is produced by them now? Why do they need constant back-up supplied by the aforementioned coal and gas?

  75. the more intelligent an individual…

    the more aware they are of what they do and do not know. more aware of where they got their beliefs from. more aware of why they believe what they believe. less impressed by credentials. more impressed by plausible explanations. more evidence based. less faith based. more able, willing, and likely to “think for themselves”.

    less likely to make assertions, based on possibilities, and deductions, without concrete evidence.

    less likely to falsely alarm people. less likely to abuse their time, or feel the need to obligate them to their own purposes.

    more likely to be more respectful of others opinions.

    less likely to argue based on beliefs.

    more likely to argue based on questions.

    ?;-)

    • Alistair: Perhaps “more” and “less” are accurate, but the exceptions stand out in my memory. Intelligent people are fully capable of being illogical.

      • Hi RLS,

        re: “Alistair: Perhaps “more” and “less” are accurate, but the exceptions stand out in my memory. Intelligent people are fully capable of being illogical.”

        True dat !!
        :-)

  76. Part of the communication that is lacking is that the Mosher Message that there is no “raw data” is being suppressed.

    Andrew

  77. Fact of the week: Sea surface temperatures last month surpassed the peak of both the 1997/1998 El Nino and the 2010 El Nino. no mean feat given this was done without an El Nino. Must be a hell of a lot of anomalous heat have built up in the oceans.

  78. Dr. Curry — I have slogged through the introduction of Tine for Change and the closest the authors come to acknowledged that there has been something rotten in Denmark is the following:

    QUOTE
    But progress is hindered by an increasingly entrenched battle between those who accept that transformative action is necessary and those who do not. Climate science is centre stage and is regularly employed in a selective manner by protagonists seeking to justify their stance and vanquish opposing views.
    END QUOTE

    That’s a long way from admitting that a major cleanup is needed.

    When we have as the “Public Face of Climate Science” something like the Trenberth presentation at the Conference for World Affairs, in Boulder
    Colorado, in early April 2014, the situation is far worse than the prescribed cure. [ see
    https://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/trenberth.pdf ]

    Here is their recommendation:

    QUOTE
    We recommend the creation of a communications forum for climate science, and of a professional body for climate scientists. The purpose of the communications forum is to engage actively with the public in a discourse on the results and implications of climate science, thereby building interest, understanding and trust, and to develop and convey a ‘meta-narrative’ which is accurate, engaging, coherent and relevant, and which – by making clear the limits of certainty and knowledge – is robust against new discoveries and unfolding events.
    END QUOTE

    My fear is that their called for “meta-narrative” means no more than :

    “Let’s all agree on our story *before* we talk to the cops….and make it vague enough to give ourselves a lot of wiggle room in case new discoveries show we were wrong.”

    They do need a professional body — one with a real sharp edged “Master at Arms” with authority and guts to publicly handle both scientific and ethical lapses.

  79. Concerning the link by the Twitterati to the ‘heat spell” article, thank god the seas stopped rising under Obama or there could have been a lot of drowning deaths.

  80. Maybe UCL and the BBC should collaborate on how to more effectively communicate on Climate Science.

    By the way, Steve McIntyre had a great post yesterday setting the record straight on the BBC’s scandalous behavior towards Nigel Lawson.

  81. “Solar PV and wind energy will beat both coal and gas on costs – without subsidies”

    Another claim that is easy to make and impossible to falsify.

    Until the sun shines more than 12 hrs per day on average, a solar PV source can not be more than 50% efficient on average; and in practice less than that due to clouds, dust, bird bombs, etc.

    With the exception of nitche markets, the average wind farm produces 20-30% of rated power. Since that is primarily controlled by nature, marginal improvements are the best that can be expected.

    It would be hard to envision cost of fab, installation, maintenance, and additional feeder infrastructure making up for those inefficiencies.
    Since statements that are impossible to falsify are cheap, I will make one:
    “Nuclear fusion will be available and cheaper than both coal and gas before wind or solar PV will.”

  82. Upon reading the plethora of information above, I find myself with one question burning in my head.

    Why was it necessary to do this report?

    I would prefer seeing a title “Substantiating Climate Science Reconsidered”.

    After all, that is what is being attempted with a direct “soft sell” around communication as the problem. No admission to failure of theory and forecast in any way.

    They are at least recognizing that you cannot force feed science with out evidence, and it is obvious that models cannot be treated as such any longer.

    It is becoming more evident that the back pressure through the ranks is being felt in a significant way. Many are experiencing their own pause, if you will pardon the pun.

  83. ‘The climate system has jumped from one mode of operation to another in the past. We are trying to understand how the earth’s climate system is engineered, so we can understand what it takes to trigger mode switches. Until we do, we cannot make good predictions about future climate change… Over the last several hundred thousand years, climate change has come mainly in discrete jumps that appear to be related to changes in the mode of thermohaline circulation.’ Wally Broecker

    Closer to home there are discrete jumps in ocean and atmospheric circulation at 20 to 40 years intervals – although the really hugely significant climate shifts do seem to involve AMOC as Wally says. The most modern climate science says that we should take him at his word.

    This seems to be our climate reality. Discrete shifts in the system that imply a lack of predictability until the mode of shifts are better understood. Until then – communicating inadequate science hardly seems to serve any purpose other than to mislead and misconstrue. .

    • Hi Rob,

      If I haven’t replied to you thus, before, may I suggest I believe the trigger to be gravity fluctuation, as provable by analysis of the interference patterns thta gravity pains on the earth. They reveal themselves pretty plainly to me, and I am happy to explain what I believe I see to others, for their consideration. With pictures to prove at least some truth in what I suggest.

      And offered with respect, for you position whether it be AGW belief or not.

      As straight up information that I believe matters, no matter what. :-)

      • It goes well beyond AGW or not to dynamical complexity.

        And climate is ice, dust, cloud, ocean and atmospheric circulation and biology – not gravity. You have got only empty words – mad speculation.

        And really someone who starts with an assertion that relativity is incorrect – has very little credibility to carry on with.

      • Every assertion is only words :-)

        Data on gravity anomalies is from NASA at:
        http://geoid.colorado.edu/grace/dataportal.html

        it can only be your review, understanding and acceptance of the assertions that can turn the words into anything else, relative to your own beliefs and framework.

        Cheers,
        Alistair

      • Hey Rob,

        Have you considered that by reacting to disbelief in the standard model, you by implication stand behind it, and a belief in the “bending of time” against observation, and the existence of four unique “magical” forces.

        It makes me question it.

      • also please note I don”t offer only empty words. I am happy to show gravity interference patterns, and lensing due to gravity, to support alternate, plausible theory. and explanation as to why, as far as I can figure. and supporting material for that. and the effects seem to be real. (gravity interference pattern, relation gravity to magnetism, etc.)

      • Hi again Rob, sorry to seemingly belabour the point…

        re: “And climate is ice, dust, cloud, ocean and atmospheric circulation and biology – not gravity. You have got only empty words – mad speculation.”

        forgets that 254 degrees kelvin of surface heat budget is internally generated from pressure, friction, and radioactive decay.

        everything else put together is another 33 degrees.

        the effect of gravity and magnetism has a HIGH likelihood of making a LARGE difference, whether anyone sees it, or not.

        Without willingness to investigate that suggestion, what would we actually be discussing??

        hmmmm.

      • Many empty words that are not merely off topic but totally out there.

        I’d suggest you stop spamming the forum with the same copious nonsense time and again.

      • I am sorry if anyone, despite which side, or edge of the coin the tend towards believing, (I could propose that analogy as an appropriate method of quickly conveying opinion in the debate, my answer being, sometimes the coin lands on it’s side.)

        You know what would help prevent this happening, a collection of pinpress type articles and open contributions that perpetually collected and through upvoting helped plausible supportable truths and related quotes/pics, movies, etc. Perhaps an accelerated path to the absolute truth lies that way. Let “popular ability to reason” amongst a crowd in a non-combative environment of respectful disagreement. To cast respectful votes that otherwise cost nothing. See what the crowd says.

        Crowdthinking.

        As a support feature menu item of a popular blog would be an excellent place for a perpetual knowledge accumulation and voting mechanism. ?;-) Just thinking out loud. (at least clacking the keys).

    • The average energy hitting the Earth from the sun is 342 odd W/m2. The power flux from the core and mantle is some 0.5W/m2. So some 800 to1 in favour of the Sun.

      Relativity is not based on satellites and atomic clocks. There was a dearth of these in 1905. It is based on the measured constancy of the speed of light wrt inertia frames of reference.

      Theories explain data – and make predictions. Vague handwaving about gravity anomalies doesn’t count.

      • Rob.

        Dude. Here’s the deal.

        I provided visual evidence many times to support the concept of an interference patter in gravity, that is both internal and external in source. Which is the only explanation for it’s actions and shape and phase changes.

        comes straight from NASA.

        is a strong contender as a pace setter, and gravity/mass windshield wiper, that remakes the decision as the “line” of pull towards the moon and sun, during earths rotation each day, stretch the entirety of the contents that are between them, and then release it again as it spins past. That is two opportunities per day for all the matter of earth to decide, settle again as I was, or settle as increased mass, or settle as decreased mass, and emit more energy.

        the entire earth “stretches” toward the sun by one yard on 6,000 km. That stretching is an opportunity to remake that choice of how to act. The fulcrum between mass and energy.

        every day.

        plausible, evidence based.

        relativity, speed of light???? Consider the helical lensing of light through large gravity fields. The copies of the object that is lensed, undulate in outward sprirals in patterns of both age, and radius from center.

        that shows that the time that some of the light took to get here, relative to it’s distance traveled, has not been proportional. Spectral analysis will confirm this. (PREDICTION).

        if the age of the light, relative to it’s traveled distance is not proportional, it is prov3ed that angular momentum experienced by light DOES affect it’s speed, as only perceivable in relation to other light from the same source.

        you cannot have old light, and young light, from the same source, that has traveled the same distance, using conventional physics, to the best of my knowledge.

        I really don’t think my hands are empty.

        maybe you just played to much three card monty and are afraid to commit to what you know you see as a result.

        or I might be wrong. but then I hope I hear some better feedback, than you are evidenceless and our current “theory” of time dilation and magic forces, is more plausible than any other theory, so we’re just not looking any more (which would not go over well if said in MANY labs around the world, but you can try that for yourself if you like). :-)

        I might be wrong. but please consider the possibility for more than -1 seconds, before retorting again?

      • Quote from Rob Ellison
        “The average energy hitting the Earth from the sun is 342 odd W/m2. The power flux from the core and mantle is some 0.5W/m2. So some 800 to1 in favour of the Sun.”

        Alistair Riddoch,

        Your assertion that;

        “forgets that 254 degrees kelvin of surface heat budget is internally generated from pressure, friction, and radioactive decay.

        everything else put together is another 33 degrees.”

        Is not intuitive. I believe you are ignoring the insulating properties of dirt and rock, but could be mistaken.

        Either you made a mistake, in which case you should say so, or you are sticking by your assertion. I would like to know which.

        Thanks.

      • Hello Atandb, I appreciate your asking a question.

        I stand by my assertion. I have made many related, I may at some times on some comments have missed a mark, or used ambiguous wording, or presented an alley as significant, that is over-ridden by something more significant yet again.

        But I make no claim of limitation of the significance of the facts that:
        The “entireity of the planet earth” stretches and snaps back into place by 1 meter, on 6,000 of km of distance (regardless of exact dimensions, so I round), is an abvious example of the entire earths ability to transfer energy from one layer to another, through the mechanism of gravitational/pressure “breathing” for want of a better term.

        Energy is given the choice to turn to mass at least daily. And vice verse. And I believe that to be “irrefutable”. That this happens in a pattern that presents itself quite obviously on the face of earth, as revealed by the GRACE satellites, I fully stand behind.

        The interaction between gravity and magnetism is obvious when seen in hindsight. Magnetism can create anti gravity. Light is half magnetism. The math becomes simple and obvious.

        We just don’t see it all as clearly as we could. There is room for improvement. Then videos like:

        Won’t surprise the watcher anymore. They just recognize what they see.

        Spinning magnetism affects gravitation motion.

        Think about it.

        Direct evidence of the interplay between gravity and magnetism, seen for what it truly is.

        Yes. I stand behind my assertions.

        100%.

      • to be as accurate as possible.

        100% behind the core essence of all assertions, 99.7% of the off shoot thoughts I have had, or potential for tweaking past ones, based on current knowledge.

        double, triple, and quadruple blind self confirmation has occurred in my research. I saw the shape of a hydrogen atom as expected, before I saw what the shape of a hydrogen atom was. The magnet in the provided video may have surprised some people. Acted contrary to what they expected to see. I intuitively was NOT surprised to find that atoms are not spherical.

        the action of the gas supposedly being emitted by pulsars, is not so. It is creation of matter taking place at one of the “nodes in ” the “ripping point” of entropy, that makes that happen. what I found in pictures didn’t surprise me.

        the lensing of light around bodies of light, and it’s pattern of big small, bright dim, and helical nature, didn’t surprise me.

        the ripping of a galaxies matter towards the black hole of another, not a surprise. the shape of nothing surprises me anymore. the motion of nothing surprises me anymore. at least for more than a second, then I go, mmm hmmm.

        supercooled helium going THROUGH an especially made beeaker, or climbing and going over the lip in a reverse super thin tornado around the outside of the cup. not a surprise. anymore.

        Christopher Hadley’s experiment wriinging out a wet napkin within the confines of the space station, and then “unwringing it”. The action made temporary “water” gloves. A direct example of the internal “roil” that exists in water. And it’s nature. And it’s importance, relative to overall motion.

        The world is full of confirming evidence, when it is viewed for what it is.
        100% stood behind.

        And I think and hope it will end the stupid debate about the climate so we can all go home and enjoy time with families and doing something more productive than “winning a debate”.

        :-)

      • Dear Rob,

        If you watch this video, maybe yo uwill see the interaction between magnetism, and gravity, is not hand waving. And then keep in mind that light is half magnetism.

        This is not “defying” gravity, it is transferring is to kinetic energy pulling down on the tube in his hand. Evidence of the kinetic component of magnetism, and the magnetic component of gravity. Just not both recognized as such.

        gravity/magnetism/light interacts as you expect they will, only after someone points it out to you. You did not “rationally” expect the materials in this video to act as they did. But you can instantly relate to the reasons why.

        You don’t rationally recognize gravity anomalies for what they cause. But something drew you to respond to my post as apposed to ignoring it.

        So I respectfully offer yet more visual, tangible confirmation, and ask you to recognize it for what it is. ?;-)

        you can be a skeptic, and I will respect your questions, because if you can convince a skeptic, you can convince anyone.

        and a converted skeptic is a more powerful ally than an at once believer, because they have seen the shape of the doubts that haunted them. And only when you can “see” both sides of an argument, can you best support the right one. ?;-)

        so there will be no “hard feelings” :-)

        if I have planted any seed of doubt in your mind, feel free to skip to asking questions based on an exploring mindset, for the joy of exploration. there is still much to be figured out, confirmed and proven that will relate.

        Cheers,
        Alistair

      • You need to look for correlations and plausible mechanisms. The energy alone looks unlikely, but your interference patterns could trigger responses in other factors like cloudiness, wind patterns, ocean circulation, biological…

  84. A poster immediately sends the discussion off topic by inserting his assumption about values, “The problem in ‘climate science’ is not communication. It is climate scientists and their progressive values” even though he later shows his mistake by reference to Gavin Schimdt: “Doesn’t he realize that the whole decarbonization movement is about an ‘old-fashioned central authority to impose order on’ the energy economy”? And what follows are the typical me too back and forth insults. Of course Schimdt doesn’t realize it because only in your bias are progressive values about imposing orders to control. Can’t we get beyond the “conservatives lack compassion” type of mislabeling. I looked at how some liberal, progressive, conservative, and libertarian sites refer to their values. It’s very instructive to know how these terms have been used through history and are used in different parts of the world now and how nuanced and similar they are. The problem of communication, whether climate science or politics, requires using words that and phrases that communicate by being grounded in a common body of knowledge. I am a center-left, a pragmatist, a climate “luke warmer”, and someone who apreciates progressive, conservative, and libertarian points of view, but not the exagerations and assumption of motives that lead to incivility and ad hominem. The use of symplistic assumptions and perjorative language in politics or climate science is equally unhelpful. I think both the UCL Policy Commision and the political fanatics, right and left on this blog are part of the problem because they make unfounded assumptions which determine their unhelpful response. Unfounded assumptions result from lack of knowledge. Does the UCL Policy Commision understand the diversity of POV by climate scientists? Do the political fanatics understand the diversity of POV of conservatives and progressives? Does anyone want to be open-minded and informed enough to communicate?

    • Ah, the above it all lukewarmer contingent. I’ll take advice from “center-left, pragmatists” when they start showing they have a clue about what is happening in the real world.

      You might well “ap[p]reciate[] progressive, conservative, and libertarian points of view,” but you don’t have a clue what those points of view really are.

      There has always been a tension between elitists who feel they have the right to govern others because of their superiority, and those who believe that people governing themselves under a limited government is best for everyone.

      The elitists have gone by various names throughout history – monarchists, aristocrats, emperors, supreme rulers, socialists, communists, fascists, up to modern day liberals/progressives. All claiming the right to rule due to birth, wealth, divine right, or now SAT scores.

      History is full of their manifest failures. Empires, monarchies and dynasties often lasted for multiple centuries, but never raised themselves out of the economic and social bronze age.

      Only recently has mankind seen the results of a free market system, combined with a democratic republican government, and tempered by the Judeo-Christian ethic. And it has produced the richest, most powerful, most generous, most just society in the history of the mankind.

      We can’t just all get along because there is a movement throughout the west to undo all of that for the sake of centralization of power. From the Democrats in the US trying to get rid of the strictures of the Constitution by presidential and judicial edict, to the EU bureaucracy taking ever more sovereignty from the European nations and voters.

      The climate debate is just one example, but a good one. Our fearless center-left moderate here is apparently blissfully unaware of just what “decarbonization” really means. But he is probably sure it is about “fairness” and is certainly “for the children.”

      It is tiresome hearing “a pox on both their houses” from people who have no clue of what progressivism is really all about, or conservatism for that matter. It’s not hard to find out. Progressives from Woodrow Wilson to Margaret Sanger to Barack Obama have said right out what they want to do. But it would take some effort to actually educate oneself in that reality. It is so much easier to sit in front of your computer and blithely dismiss ideologies that are in a very real struggle over the nature of our society.

      Ignorance may be bliss, but it can also be annoying as hell.

      • Doug, as someone whose background should make them a natural leftie but has learned a bit in life, I full support GaryM’s post.

      • Well, Gary, I’m a lukewarmer and a leftist. I’ve lived in four different countries on three continents. I’ve done business with some of the largest companies in the world and consulted with governments at national and international level. I think I know something about how part of the world works. I

        I know something about what you refer to as decarbonization, having written industry reports on renewable energy and energy efficiency. I don’t think you have the correct opinion on it, or perhaps not a clear understanding of it. However, I have no advice for you, as it is clear that you know everything you want to know.

      • there aren’t too many substitutes for a few trips around the block ?;-)

      • Gary: Agree. The super elite (super SAT) can be described as “snobbish; ref “Coming Apart” by Charles Murray. Snobbishness is the result of reverence shown them in early life; the result of high academic performance. The super elite also attend super elite universities, become super wealthy, settle in super elite (and closed) clusters, vote liberal, and acquire disproportionate influence.

      • Hi RLS. True and well said, in my estimate. :-)

      • Tom Fuller: Living in four countries, doing business with companies, and consulting with governments is not the type of experience needed to understand the dynamics discussed by Gary. To understand you would have to dig for answers as to why industry and government leaders have decided to decarbonize. I think Gary is saying that the answer lies more in who they are, rather than what they are. Living in the right neighborhhods and attending the right parties probably helps more in that regard than doing business and consulting.

      • Living in the right neighborhhods and attending the right parties probably helps more in that regard than doing business and consulting.

        helps more to publicize false answers, or helps more to forumlate correct ones? the answer doesn’t seem obvious. ?;-)

      • Tom Fuller,

        Living in countries and on continents teaches is not the best teacher of what the people who run those countries (or want to) believe. Particularly if you have been raised in an educational system that takes Howard Zinn and Noam Chompsky (sic) as its primary sources of understanding history and the various ideologies that have formed it.

        You for instance are a strong supporter of President Obama and lived for a while at least in the US while he was president. So can you tell me about his ideology? Not his campaign stump speeches, but the sources of his own beliefs, and how he has advocated and pursued them throughout his adult life?

        Again, it’s all there for someone looking for it. His own words and actions, not his critic’s, tell you all you need to know.

        To take your own argument, I have lived and worked in Illinois through much of Obama’s pre-presidential career. I have seen his ideology and politics in stark relief for a long time, and they aren’t pretty. And I am seeing exactly the same sort of progressive activist mentality and tactics from him now.

        He is no genius, but he is clear on his ideology, has surrounded himself with like minded ideologues, and knows exactly how he wants to “fundamentally transform America.” And frankly, because of weak and incompetent opposition, he is making greater strides than Wilson, Roosevelt (either of them), LBJ or Clinton ever did in changing the very nature of American government.

        If a Republican did ten percent of what Obama has done as far as being an imperial president, you would be shouting from the roof tops. But however nice a guy you are, you are a long time member of the see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil left.

      • It doesn’t make sense to me to worry about the absolute long term “untouchability” status of land that is going to get wiped clean and rebuilt by ice ages every 100,000 years. Yet we stress so about the tar sands and strip minins and so many other things. Sure some consern is valid. But at some point do we go too far? Canada government faulted for considering reducing official stewardship over lakes and streams and creeks and rivers and ponds and what not. Down from 2.1 million or some such. We have a body of water for every 15 citizens, and we’re supposed to take responsibility for monitoring how many? What a ludicrous task we give ourselves instead of allowing nature to takes it’s course a little more, and accepting everyone as self responsible enough. Teach the everyone better, and remost the cost of stewardship, and cost of use of land, for only good intended purposes. as a thought. And consider this “percieved” need of nature, to need our concern, where is the damage that matters in the long term. The real long term. Proving a long term requirement in the face of the know knowledge that an ice age will come, is tougher question to answer than most for either side, I think.

        if we aren’t going to stop a wall of ice from destroying toronto, pretending it away, with self instilled fears of global warming wont help.

        there are many facets to the current perception of reality.

        ?;-)

      • Hi Gary,

        See, this is where I wonder about the conservative perception of the world. It is clear to both leftists and centrists that Obama is a cautious and pragmatic middle of the roader. As a leftist, I am frustrated that he has not gone as far as I would have liked in pursuing a social justice agenda.

        Not that I want to anger you, but I would probably be more happy with Obama if he had made you much angrier. Most of what I read (via the Internet, so obviously I don’t see everything) is small ball. I’m really happy Obamacare made it through, but joining the rest of the developed world can’t really be considered a radical leftist maneuver.

        I look at the U.S. and see you still have capital punishment, Guantanamo, militarized police forces, 522 military bases around the world, etc., etc. Calling Obama a leftist or even saying he’s pursued a leftist agenda is an insult to leftists everywhere.

        Obama probably hasn’t done very much that would have been different to Mitt Romney, in all honesty. But the people at Fox certainly don’t seem to like him very much, do they?

      • Tom Fuller,

        “It is clear to both leftists and centrists that Obama is a cautious and pragmatic middle of the roader.”

        That is only because “centrist” throughout the west is skewed by the fact that there are so few genuine conservatives. I doubt you really understand what I mean by conservatism, because your lifetime exposure to it has probably been close to nil. There are virtually no major parties in the west that are governed by politicians who have rejected the statism that has become the norm.

        “Obama probably hasn’t done very much that would have been different to Mitt Romney, in all honesty.”

        I agree 100 percent, on domestic policy. Which is precisely my point. No conservative, in the sense I use the term (one who holds conservative positions on the free market, foreign policy and social issues) would see Romney as a conservative. But in your progressive press he was vilified as a radical rightist who cared only about the rich.

        Romney called himself a “severe conservative,” despite Romneycare, because he apparently had as little exposure to genuine conservative economic thought as I suspect you have had.

        But even Romney would not have tried to shred the Constitution as Obama has done, at least not consciously. Look, progressives since Wilson have realized that the US Constitution it the biggest impediment to “radically transforming America.” Franklin Roosevelt outright blackmailed the Supreme Court into ignoring his revisions of that founding document, and he was a piker compared to Obama.

        Nixon was a (progressive Republican) criminal who abused the Justice Department and IRS, and would have been impeached if Republican Senators hadn’t gone to him and told him they would vote for impeachment if he didn’t resign.

        Obama’s abuse of the IRS makes Nixon look like a saint in the scale of massive targeting of even potential political opponents. Not only that, but his apparatchiks suddenly discovered that dozens of hard drives with potentially incriminating emails suddenly crashed, as one, and all were impervious to recovery efforts, and by the way, they were coincidentally destroyed. And his Justice Department is just another arm of his never ending political operation. See no evil, hear no evil, prosecute no evil, by the administration, is their motto.

        Obama picks and chooses what portions of Obamacare, an idiotic monstrosity of a 2000+ page bill of which no one knew the contents before it was enacted. But it was a law passed by Congress and signed by him nonetheless. I can’t think of an another president who has shown, and openly expressed, such open contempt for the constitutional limits on his power on such a systemic basis.

        He ignores some parts that are politically inconvenient, and rewrites others as he sees fit/

        And he is brazen about all of it. And what do we hear from your progressive colleagues? Crickets. You all are fiddling while the very system that has given you the opportunity to achieve what you have, is altered in ways you do not understand.

        And the real risk is not Obama, or a Romney or McCain. Not even Hillary.

        Politics swings like a pendulum. The stupid voters are eventually going to get tired of a president, congress and “journalistic” media that don’t give a damn about the Constitution or their liberty. Particularly when Obamacare causes the crash in insurance and healthcare it was designed to create. (We are not joining Europe – their adoption of socialism was done with the consent of the governed – many of whom like Sweden are pushing back from the edge.)

        One real risk is someone who comes along, claims to want to restore this country’s values, solely for the purpose of gaining power. At which point whoever he is, (and I don’t see anyone lie this on the horizon yet), will inherit an imperial presidency, a defenestrated Congress and courts, and a media that will have no credibility when it suddenly rediscovers the Constitution.

        It is a very small step to go from corporations do not have rights of free speech and religion, to news media are virtually all corporation, to the first amendment protection of free speech means no more than its increasingly hollow guarantee of free speech and religion in general.

      • Well, if Obama ain’t a leftist and Romney ain’t a conservative, why don’t we just sit around and roast marshmallows or something?

      • I love GaryM –

        The stupid voters are eventually going to get tired of a president, congress and “journalistic” media that don’t give a damn about the Constitution or their liberty. Particularly when Obamacare causes the crash in insurance and healthcare it was designed to create. (We are not joining Europe – their adoption of socialism was done with the consent of the governed – many of whom like Sweden are pushing back from the edge.)

        That is just a beautiful comment – of the sort 2nd only to those written by my move favorite Climate Etc. commentor – Wags.

        The best part of GaryM’s comments is that, with his absolutist argument that only he and a few others get to determine who is or isn’t a true “conservative,” and his constant complaints about the stupidity and immorality of everyone who doesn’t hold his extremist views, also claims that he isn’t an elitist.

    • It does get old hearing all the political wrangling and stereotyping. Ultimately the science that bears out is really entirely independent of political thought as you can’t change reality with opinion. The trouble is that policy will continue to be a political battle so how people view the world and want it to be will ensure the struggle in the political vein. I don’t know if communication can cure this. It’s like asking the Israelis and Palestinians to stop fighting.

    • There are even more practical considerations involving politics.

      You would think that Chinese south sea ambitions, Nigeria, Venezuela, the Middle East, Russia and the gas spats, EU energy pressures etc etc would have the West thinking twice about shutting down local and domestic energy sources. Apparently not. Our leaders puzzle over “tackling climate” in one room, then walk to another room and fret over what’s happening in that naughty, restless, angry place called The World. No connections made.

      • mosomoso

        I think we should buy all our oil from those nice reliable people in Russia and those running ISIS.

        Who needs perfectly good local power stations when we have such reasonable energy vendors abroad?
        tonyb

      • When we have one of those interesting oil shocks due to “Nigerian tribespeople” it will be so reassuring to know the ISIS bowser is still pumping.

        If the Ukrainians start feeling chilly later this year and decide to rob the pipeline, England can take comfort that all her woodchips have been purchased legally out of South Carolina forests.

        And what good greenie is going to miss a few trees out of South Carolina or Louisiana? (Actually, it’s more than just a few, but what the hell. At least it’s not coal, right?)

      • I’ve read that Canada is the world’s 6th largest petroleum producer, and there are only 30,000,000 of us, and the sheiks with all those gold plated rolls don’t seem to have too tough a life.

        the current direction of the value and cost of fossil fuels saddens me deeply.

      • I thought it was north carolina forests being pellitized to avoid releasing co2 from coal because apparently, releasing co2 from a less dense energy source is so much better, but I could be wrong.

      • So it’s those North Carolina forests! They must make pretty good pellets: only a bit more CO2 than coal and just a little over twice as much gas. Not so bad. All up, after processing, transport etc, maybe 20% more GHGs. I’m sure any apparent problems or contradictions can be cleared up by some of that communication thingummy.

        Nonetheless, if ever I need to get my shoelaces tied nice and tight or if I want someone to feed my budgerigar over the weekend…

        Please remind me not to ask the European Union for any ideas or assistance.

      • mosomoso

        surely wood chippings are just putative coal?

        tonyb

      • Tony

        Just “puta” will do.

      • barnes, “I thought it was north carolina forests being pellitized to avoid releasing co2 from coal because apparently, releasing co2 from a less dense energy source is so much better, but I could be wrong.”

        I believe NC trees got to Britain and NY garbage goes to SC. The Carolinas appear to be part of the world’s backyard.

    • Alistair: The super elite, super wealthy, with disproportionate influence, include high level government bureaucrats (the fourth branch of US government), Washington lobbyists, some in the media, and CEOs. Not many scientists. They’re not interested in scientific facts, but are motivated by ideas developed on university campuses and reinforced by like minded neigbors; progressive ideas that prove the goodness of the beholders. It is only important that actions be taken on their ideas, not so important that the actions have positive results; the ideas and actions stand alone as proof of goodness.

      Put another way: Hansen and Mann, mere scientists, were used by influential progressives, not the other way around; CO2 reduction to save the planet became a clear way for the progressives to prove their goodness, no facts needed. And keep in mind that the influential progressives include many of those in the media.

      • Hey rls, I agree with all you say. I also recognize the potential that there could be circles of higher understanding. But I heard one guy say if the US was hiding a UFO, they would be doing a better job of that, than anything else they have ever done.

        Who knows from where knowledge is collected.

        Who know’s why some resist knowledge based on source not plausbility.

        But then feedback shows interest and carries it’s own honour, and good or bad is appreciated that a person follows this far. :-)

  85. Judith: You really have an uphill battle on your hands. It all goes back to the formation of the UNFCCC/IPCC and AL Gore’s widely acclaimed Sci-fi film on the supposed effects of climate change. The film made an enormous impression on the public mind that lingers to this day, It also politicised the entire issue, almost irretrtrevably from proper scientific discussion. Remember ‘the science is settled’ statement that brooked no argument. That the science was actually a wicked problem did not enter the public consciousness.

    It seems unlikely that a President from the Democrat Party will reverse this mistake, although our luke-warm PM might have tried. We can only keep plugging away.

    • A fan of *MORE* discourse

      Historical Footnote
      Eye-Witness Reports

      “The absolutely essential people who moved the NSFNet [the beginning of the Internet] through the Senate and House, respectively, were … Al Gore, Jr and Newt Gingrich”

      Conclusion  Science-respecting foresight can be found on *BOTH* sides of the aisle, eh Climate Etc readers?

      It’s good when folks like Al Gore and Newt Gingrich work together on technology *AND* science!

      \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

  86. The first lesson in communications is to know your audience. Do you really want to target the “public”? For what gain? A few might listen, but will that change the course of events? Doubtful. Can a suitable audience be identified? IMO the answer is no and the communications plan should be scrapped. The perceived need for informing the public will end in due time when climate science becomes more informed, not when the public becomes more informed.

  87. Talking about communicating, here is what they are up against: Rupert Murdoch communicating (?) the opposite view.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/07/14/rupert-murdoch-elderly-media-baron-says-we-should-be-sceptical-about-climate-change_n_5584546.html?utm_hp_ref=uk

    • Here is what we are up against. HP says that Murdoch “was asked about the scientific research that shows that man-made climate change will have a devastating impact on the earth over the next 100 years.” I’ve been following this issue since the 1980s, and have seen no “scientific evidence” that demonstrates “devastating impacts.” I am sure that the HP writer hasn’t either. The Post dismissing Murdoch as “an elderly media baron” resorts to an ad hom attack on someone who is a very clear thinker on economic and policy issues, as well as an extremely successful purveyor of quality media (as well as some of lesser quality). [I intended to link to a Murdoch talk, but find I haven’t followed my usual practice of adding the URL to my copy.]

      Faustino

    • Jim, would you mind linking the youtube video directly. That malware site sent my hard-drive spinning and I had to cold boot my computer.


    • Murdoch

  88. “There is widespread public acceptance of the reality of climate change…”

    Two things:

    There’s the use of an all but meaningless expression “climate change” in either a sloppy or manipulative way. After all this time and all the billions spent, they still don’t want to give a clear name to whatever they are banging on about? Or does it suit them just fine to have an expression with interchangeable meanings, so that contradiction is all but impossible? Climate has gotta change, right? Good one, warmies.

    Secondly, does all this communication (which is usually as clear as blackstrap molasses but as substantial as saccharin) mean we are going to go on paying for white elephants, but we will feel more “consulted” and more “communicated” with? They might even dignify us with our own title: the Dissensus?

    Meanwhile those jet trails to aimless climate conferences will continue to etch the sky, and those white elephants will go on trampling the economies of the West.

    Good one, warmies.

    • “Climate change” is the perfect liberal cause – they can blame pretty much every “bad” thing that happens on it.

    • Curious George

      The term “climate change” may be meaningless, or liberal, but it surely is lucrative.

  89. “Efforts to create a clear narrative that is coherent, constructive and results in proper public engagement …”
    ***
    Maybe the narrative isn’t coherent because scientists aren’t really in agreement?

  90. Get your one stop climate source right here. Be sure to stay on topic, and if there are any logical arguments against AGW, be sure to belittle, shout, condemn, sick – needing mental help, on the payroll of big oil, delusional, and in denial. I have a handout from one of the climate workshops – 10 or 12 years ago now. My how time flies, meanwhile the warming has been on pause. (meaning it will resume some day, probably right after the next ‘SUPER” el Nino, they are praying)

  91. This “we’ve got a communication problem” and we’ll fix it by doing more of the same reminds me of that whole “the beatings will continue until morale improves” idea. Good luck with that. You’re going to need it.

  92. Do we forget, The Ice Age Doth Come???

    Does it strike anyone else, that a true, and understood, yet oft ignore past rule, regarding the climate was that “the ice age cometh”.

    That perhaps, the fear of that is partially what makes us hope for, want to fear, that it is not the truest of all statements made by a climatologist, anywhere, ever, as a more substantial, and self evident threat, based on substantial evidence of repeatability, that seems to be beyond refute.

    Which is more than can be said, for the potentially self serfing, and potentially self destructive, desire, for a new rule to be correct. That we matter. That we can control. That we can prevent the ONE RULE that BINDS THEM ALL, the rule of having to believe we have accurately portrayed the seeming evidence of the past. For I will note again, if they are correct, is there any among us, warmist, or not, that deny the inevitability, of the coming of the ice age, and the carnage on current civilization that such WILL wreak?

    So we pretend to have a reason to worry about a lesser fear, that can be cured with a few air conditioners and a bathing suit or two. Increased construction industry as we react to changing coastlines.

    A mile of ice over the city of Toronto.

    And how is that for concise and relevant communication.

    In the heart of men (and women), we know the ice age cometh. How do we know that fear doesn’t produce the current one. And an inherent desire, in some, to believe it, because what they really, REALLY, know scares them too much to consider it??

  93. to describe accurately the only thing that will end the debate once and for all, is a better explanation of how things actually are, that that which exists, so far. And it has to be solid: Plausible. Irrefutable. Understandable. Observationally confirmable. Concise. Compelling.
    And found.

    another truth about climatology and the current debate, is that no matter what, one side or the other is wasting their time, and potentially preventing good from happening. both sides have a vested interest in the absolute truth, and the sooner, the better.

    n’est pas??

  94. “Simply providing more facts will not resolve the disagreements.”
    Really and why not? Simple me always thought that facts and the proper use of data were the back bone of scientific proof.

  95. “A climate science ‘meta-narrative’ is required that delivers the results of climate science in a manner that is accurate, engaging, coherent, relevant, and which – by making clear the limits of certainty and knowledge – is robust against new discoveries and unfolding events.”

    You know what is robust against new discoveries and unfolding events? The simple truth.

  96. this report actually reads like the sort of junk found on the skeptical science propaganda website.
    the more i look into the entire debate ,the more incredulous i become at the sheer amount of time ,effort,money and words in debate spent by seemingly well educated people ( from all positions) on what appears to be the glaringly obvious . the planet gets a bit warmer during inter-glacial periods and cooler during glacial periods.

    communicate all you like,but the simple fact remains when group think attempts to scare people into acting based on tenths of a degree temperature rises it will always fail.
    then come the lies,hottest days on record ,record droughts , increased extreme weather events,decreasing polar bear populations etc,etc. all easily dispelled by checking actual factual records.

    then we have the supposedly disappearing arctic ice,which is doing a great job of making a lot of “scientists” look like the idiots they truly are. the claims of snow being a thing of the past ,and various other knee jerk reactions to small changes in weather events over a few years which are entirely down to natural variables that have happened before and will again.

    any attempt to communicate a message which is at best based on limited knowledge and guesswork ,at worst on bare faced lies is doomed to fail,and rightly so.

    more and more the term “climate science” and the practitioners within are looking like quite possibly the greatest collection of stupid the world has ever witnessed.the untold harm this branch of “science” has on the scientific community as a whole will have lasting ramifications long after the sector has shrunk to a fraction of the current size when the funding rightly dries up.

    pre internet all this stupidity could have gone on quietly until the knowledge base on the basics was in a position to support scientific statements .that would have been the time to begin to communicate . instead the whole debacle has taken place in the public domain , and will remain there for evermore.
    in years to come people will look back at entire careers based on nothing more than hyperbole , careers that could and should have made meaningful contributions to society as “real” science has for hundreds of years.

    i think brandon shollenberger recently coined the term “the stupidity, it burns”. climate science to a tee.

    • if climate research is shown to have inspired the uncovering of a better than standard model of the universe, which in turn accelerates the speed of discoveries in related areas, it will have a redeeming purpose that is perhaps as large as the current massive cost has been.

      or put this way. Al Gore said, I think people are so stupid, I can show them this video, and have them believe.

      perhaps he will inspire a video, that knows that “people are so smart, I know they can learn the truth when they are shown it the right way.”

      his belief in the stupidity of people is an insult to humanity that needs some correcting. A fundamental flaw in understanding is one way to soothe the consience of John Q. Public, because it was never their job to figure out light and gravity and such, for more than their own purposes. A much smaller subset than John Q. then has to carry the burden of failure to recognize the truth faster.

      straight up.

      • that is a big if,amongst many other ifs . if climate science was currently fit for purpose ,we would not be having this discussion.

  97. “A climate science ‘meta-narrative’ is required that delivers the results of climate science in a manner that is accurate, engaging, coherent, relevant, and which – by making clear the limits of certainty and knowledge – is robust against new discoveries and unfolding events. ”

    So their basic premise is to have an body of climate scientist impose a narrative upon the field. And the narrative should be unfalsifiable by new data or science that contradicts the theory. How is that different from the IPCC? And how can they call it science with a straight face?

    “Leadership: A professional body for climate scientists should be established to provide a unifying purpose and to offer leadership.”
    The unified purpose of a science organization should be to remove uncertainty and error from scientific theory. The only way to do that is to actively share reasearch and data for the purpose of falsifying theories and assumptions and reducing uncertainty to get closer to the truth

    “Fear appeals are effective when they point to specific dangers and are accompanied by solutions. In other conditions, they are likely to lead to avoidance and desensitization. Alarmist messages that fail to materialize contribute to the loss of trust in the science community.”
    And the way to resolve that? Falsify the theories of those using them to create scary scenarios that undermine the credibility of climate scientists. Rather then pretending every falsification of alarmists only means it is worse than we thought.

  98. Looks like that BXXXXX Goddard has opened another can of worms LOL
    https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2014/07/15/mullermosher-diverging-from-reality-at-3-3c-per-century/
    I trusted BEST 100% like an idiot..at the time their report was released. Only to find the Skeptic Prof Muller had been an AGW advocate way back. In any case the data seems to back up SG again.

    • Does that BXXXXX stand for Birther? lol

      I wouldn’t be surprised if Goddard is a truther too. Him and monckton are the gift that keeps on giving.

  99. A fan of *MORE* discourse

    BREAKING NEWS
    Communications That Folks Can Understand

    Earth Just Finished
    Its Warmest Quarter-Year Ever

    New data released Monday shows humanity has just unlocked another achievement in the race to cook the planet: The last three months were collectively the warmest ever experienced since record-keeping began in the late 1800s.

    Conclusion  Now that ‘the pause’ is over, the consensus of Slashdot’s technorati is embracing:

    Good Science  James Hansen’s energy-balance worldview.
    Good History  Naomi Oreskes’ truth-to-power worldview.
    Good Morality  Pope Francis’ sustainability worldview.
    Good Governance  Wendell Berry’s Jeffersonian worldview.

    Whereas in regard to (for example) The Heartland Institute brand of willfully ignorance faux-conservatism, Slashdot’s readers are merciless:

    * “The [Heartland] organization, whether unintentionally or deliberately, has inaccurately characterized and misrepresented [climate data] information and what it shows.”

    * “Heartland Institute deliberately misrepresenting something to influence public policy? Surely you jest!”

    * “No kidding. ‘Heartland Institute cherry picks data… news at 11′”

    * Miami is f***ed. NYC, unless they build some wall, is f***ed. So where are the debates on how to build the containment walls?

    * “Ah yes, all those super-rich climatologists picking on poor impoverished Big Oil.”

    Conclusion  There’s no need for the Hansen/Oreskes/Berry/Francis message to change substantially … `cuz Mother Nature is weighing-in on their side … and the world’s STEM professionals — young ones especially — are receiving the message *LOUD* and *CLEAR*.

    These cumulative-and-accelerating trends are evident to *EVERYONE*, eh Climate Etc readers?

    \scriptstyle\rule[2.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}\,\boldsymbol{\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}\,\heartsuit\,{\displaystyle\text{\bfseries!!!}}\,\heartsuit\,\overset{\scriptstyle\circ\wedge\circ}{\smile}}\ \rule[-0.25ex]{0.01pt}{0.01pt}

    • fan,

      I’ve been involved in STEM education for almost 20 years now and I can assure everyone here that James Hansen, Naomi Oreskes’ and Wenddell Berry have never come into the conversation.

      You want to see real science education, come down to Oregon when the fall season starts up.

  100. Robert of Ottawa

    Once gain, concentration on the medium, not the message.

    Q: Why have “Efforts to create a clear narrative that is coherent, constructive and results in proper public engagement have been disappointing”

    A: Because the public recognizes codswollap when they see it.

  101. Being publicly funded, how can NASA/NOAA and the website produced by the Earth Science Communications Team at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory / California Institute of Technology get away with publishing bogus data without being sued?

    I’m talking about the data here: http://climate.nasa.gov/key_indicators/#globalTemp

    It seems that it’s either correct or not. If it isn’t, how can they keep dipping into the public trough to publish this sort of thing. Unless there is some interpretation where they can argue for a legitimate way of interpreting the data to show this.

    If they are wrong, clearly wrong, would it not be legitimate to go before the House and argue that they be defunded?

  102. Emotional? As though any of the climate models have been anywhere near right. The critics of AGW weren’t the ones crying that we had to sign treaties, implement laws and basically destroy western civilization in order to save the planet. I can’t think of one critic that said that we needed to sign laws now or it’s the end. If you don’t stop producing co2 right now, it’s worse than we thought, the world will end. That is emotional. I can see that the supporters of AGW are wringing their hands in the hopes that some hair brained scheme will turn the tide in their favor. Yea, that’s what they need to do, is communicate as to how they are going to fix this problem they created with pseudo science. How about some jail time for fraud? And some hefty monetary penalties. They didn’t mind taking money for awards or setting up carbon trading schemes or slamming anybody that disagreed with them. You know, since the debate is settled. It’s a building, they signed off on it, and it collapsed. Who built this edifice? What are they trying to convince me of, that their science is right?

  103. http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/07/biology-ideology-john-hibbing-negativity-bias

    this seems an interesting article that speaks to the potential for productive communication within a politically oriented sub group.

    Cheers,
    A.

  104. Curious George

    There were several comments by knowledgeable non-skeptical people on this post Taken together they illustrate illustrate a “communicating climate science” problem beautifully . I’ll paraphrase what they wrote; text in parentheses is what they omitted.

    (We got a Nobel prize, partly for a popular graph that turns out not to be very kosher.) The skeptics are trying to keep the Hockey Stick alive. (Let bygones be bygones).

    That is an attitude of a successful bank robber. No apology, no admission of guilt. No wonder that people don’t trust them.

  105. Soon of latter you have to accept that is not the way you deliver the message that is the problem but the message itself.
    For great claims, you need great evidenced and that is far from the case.
    Sticking lipstick on pig , does not change the fact it’s a pig and claiming ‘you know it all ‘ does not work when in fact its clear you know very little.
    In the ‘good old days’ we accepted that much in climate forecasting was unknown or poorly understand because in the end there was not much ridding on it being right or wrong for most people. What changed is now that great claims of certainty and massive demands for change , often based on political ideology , are made based on these same unknown or poorly understand factors which have not been made to ‘go away’ through wishful thinking of those working in the area.

  106. Another collection of words on a page that rather misses the point, communication isn’t just what you tell people it includes what they see, a sort of experiential learning which humans can be very good at. So when the scientific community condescendingly talk about the public’s lack of understanding, we find they are not talking about a fixed state of opinions, for and against, but a gradual waning of any interest. Its not just the scientists, thought their dishonesty has done irreparable damage to the whole scientific community, it includes the Universities and journals, it includes the activists calling for the deaths of dissenters and of course people also see the introduction of political policies associated with AGW but are in reality simply about money. How to you try to get people to accept a message from people who they have no faith or confidence in. I think this whole farce is only just starting to have an impact on the organisations involved. I think people are worrying about communicating when an increasing number should be worrying about their own future. I remembered Calvins answer to his teachers question, “What state do you live in Calvin?” he answered “Denial, Mrs Wormwood”

  107. Essentially a very long-winded way of avoiding saying that what needs to ,is for climate scientists to start doing honest science. (And Yes Judith, is it that simple).
    Which may of course be impossible, since government – the funder of climate science – has a colossal vested interest in an alarmist outcome being predicted. Being an honest climate scientist will do your government-funded career no good at all.

    • Tuppence. And this is a sincere question.

      If one could, actually decipher the climate and proving it was not related to CO2. Irrefutably. Do you think the world would be happier with that individual, than the sum of the ill will of individuals the act crossed??

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