After the excoriation they received after publishing their letter questioning the validity of the conclusions by some climate scientists as a WSJ op-ed, the “Sixteen Concerned Scientists” have answered their critics with a second piece, asking even more poignant questions about the science, climate models, and what they see as an unreasonable push for draconian measures to combat something that may not even exist.
One of their biggest concerns is the reliance on climate models that have not lived up to their hype, failing to predict the actual global temperatures, including those in the past.
I've mentioned this before. It's called hindcasting and it uses climate data from 70 or 80 years – generally from 1900 onward, for instance – to predict the temperatures for the following 20 or 30 years. To date, every climate model has failed miserably, overestimating the actual temperatures by a wide margin. This means the models don't work and shouldn't be used to predict temperatures over the next 10 years, let alone the next 100 years. Nor should we base any corrective actions based on these seriously defective models. But of course that hasn't stopped the AGW faithful from claiming that we have to “Do Something!” right now or we're all doomed because the climate models say so.
One of the best comments to this second piece came down to a phrase in Latin that is the basis for all scientific inquiries - Nullius In Verba - which means “Take no one's word for it” and is the motto of the Royal Society. And when it comes to the claims that human activity is the major cause of global warming, nullius in verba should be kept in mind until all the work, data, and experimentation has produced repeatable results. So far we haven't reached that point. And until we do I'll maintain my skepticism.
And to quote another non-climate scientist, John Maynard Keynes, whose words should also be kept in mind - “When the facts change I change my mind. What do you do?” That is a question we should be asking all of the AGW faithful. Their answers would be illuminating.