Big news from the UN: We’re actually, like, totally 95 percent sure that human activity is the main driver of climate change
posted at 4:41 pm on August 20, 2013 by Erika Johnsen
This is an increase of the mere 90 percent confidence the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change asserted in their last ‘definitive’ report in 2007, by the way. Via the NYT:
An international panel of scientists has found with near certainty that human activity is the cause of most of the temperature increases of recent decades, and warns that sea levels could conceivably rise by more than three feet by the end of the century if emissions continue at a runaway pace.
The scientists, whose findings are reported in a draft summary of the next big United Nations climate report, largely dismiss a recent slowdown in the pace of warming, which is often cited by climate change doubters, attributing it most likely to short-term factors.
The report emphasizes that the basic facts about future climate change are more established than ever, justifying the rise in global concern. It also reiterates that the consequences of escalating emissions are likely to be profound.
“It is extremely likely that human influence on climate caused more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 to 2010,” the draft report says. “There is high confidence that this has warmed the ocean, melted snow and ice, raised global mean sea level and changed some climate extremes in the second half of the 20th century.”
Okay, guys. Once more, with feeling: First of all, nobody but nobody is a “skeptic” or “denier of the very longstanding process of climate change itself, and secondly, I’m not even denying that human activity contributes to climate change. In fact, much like these 95 percent of scientists, I happen to think that it very probably does — but to what degree and with what causes and effects? Consensuses of scientists really haven’t done their credibility any favors when they’ve been hysteria-mongering for decades about how humanity is just around the corner from imminent global catastrophe and offering nothing but hugely expensive, bureaucratic, and market-interfering dramatic policy overhauls as the solutions. The science is “settled,” we’ve heard for years, and yet we’re recently discovering that most of those much-touted climate models are now coming up conspicuously short: Yes, we’ve been introducing increasing levels of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere for decades, but somehow the planet has neglected to warm for a solid fifteen years. Does this mean that climate change isn’t a cause for concern and consideration that requires further study to determine its real causes and the depths of their effects? Certainly not. Does it mean that we should immediately and quixotically sink our productivity and economy on behalf of policies whose consequences we obviously don’t have accurate methods of predicting? Nope.