Tuesday, March 16, 2010

On errors in the IPCC report

I had been thinking recently about addressing this question, which has been much in the media, since it relates to what we do with what we know. But I have just come across this excellent open letter, signed by over 250 scientists (nearly all active in research and publication in climatology and other closely related fields and working in top US universities and institutions), which sets out the issues very clearly and with much insight. It is worth reading in full, particularly if you have got the impression from recent headlines that climate science is in some kind of crisis of credibility.

UPDATE: In Australia, the Bureau of Meteorology and the CSIRO (Australia's top two climate science institutions) have recently released a six page PDF summarising the state of Australia's climate: rising CO2 and methane, rising average temperatures, rising numbers of record hot days, falling numbers of record cold days, rising sea levels, rising ocean acidity, shifting precipitation (including falling precipitation across the vast majority of populated areas) and some very brief discussion of what we can likely expect to lie ahead.

Futher update: Here is an excellent sober discussion of the extent and significance of the mistakes by an expert in the field.