I tried to submit the following post to FT on a climate change story, GE rejects Republicans’ climate change doubts. My comment was rejected due to “suspected profanity”. For the life of me, I can’t figure out what the problem is.
There is no doubt that climate is changing. The question under doubt is whether the changes are man-made and require trillions in expenditures to address. This last one is not as well established as they are economic and political questions, not scientific ones. The scientific fact is that we are undergoing a pause in warming that is, at best, at the far end of the lower error bar bounds of the current models. Once the error bars are exceeded, you toss that model out and get something better.
If you’re depending on these models to justify trillions in expenditures over the next decades, you take a step back and you are a bit humble. A cold year or two and the problem isn’t even arguable anymore. It means that the science wasn’t right and we’re driving the world economy blind, without working models. We might as well call in a shaman. He would have equal scientific validity as models whose error bars are exceeded by stubborn, plain, empirically observed reality.
We are currently undoing major scientific damage that the climate modelers have inflicted on science by hiding their data and stonewalling independent inquiry. The Berkley BEST effort at least will be open and the skeptics can take their best shot at working out the problems. And there are problems, from Briffa’s magic tree in the Yamal data set (the one tree whose inclusion or exclusion reverses the entire conclusion of a highly influential tree ring data set) to the reversal of sign in the Tiljander sediment data (you don’t get to just reverse signs on measurements when they are inconvenient to your conclusions). Time after time data that has been stonewalled turns out to have problems when it is finally pried out into the light of public scrutiny.
There is nothing wrong with GE betting on efficiency and reducing pollution. That isn’t what this is about. It is about public monies and massive changes in the world economy based on science that is tough to check because the original data is often kept out of the hands of skeptics.