Thursday, December 10, 2009

Where to Start?

If I'm going to try to get off the fence about CACC(GW) what process should I use? I prefer the process of asking questions. So I'm trying to compose a series of questions that will help me assess, as an ignorant lay-person, the validity of the various claims made.

First question, is the global climate warming? If so, over what period of time and relative to what? This involves a lot more research than I'm entirely comfortable doing. I'd have to assess paleoclimatological questions as well. Hypotheses like the MWP and the "Little Ice age", not to mention even more ancient climate change theories, would have to be dealt with.

Second question, to what extent is this change, if it exists, outside normal change?

Third question, what contribution, if any, are human beings making towards this change, if it exists?

Lastly, what are the chances, assuming we can estimate such things, that these changes will have catastrophic effects on humankind?

Unfortunately, I seem to be stuck at the first question. If the "overwhelming proof" that the climate is rapidly warming has been created by statistical manipulation, how am I to assess what is really happening? The good news is that the blogosphere is on the job:

Intellectual freedom: The difference the blogosphere makes:

In "Bloggers peer review a scientific 'consensus,'" Gordon Crovitz writes (Wall Street Journal, December 6, 2009),

Blogging scientists have been busy reviewing the 15,000 lines of code by programmers that were included in the "Documents" folder of the leaked materials. The latest twist is hidden notations in the data from programmers that indicate where they had manipulated results. The programmers expressed frustration when the numbers didn't fit the case for global warming.

Comments in the code include "These will be artificially adjusted to look closer to the real temperatures," referring to an effort to suppress data showing that the Middle Ages were warmer than today. Comments inside the code also described an "adjustment" as follows: "Apply a VERY ARTIFICIAL correction for decline!!" Another notation indicated when a "fudge factor" had been added.
Read the rest here.

Read the whole thing.

(Via Post-Darwinist.)

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