The other day I praised the well written and well framed letter to Congress by a group of top climate scientists. Well, now there’s a response from a group of climate “skeptics” that is…less well written:
In light of the profusion of actual observations of the workings of the real world showing little or no negative effects of the modest warming of the second half of the twentieth century, and indeed growing evidence of positive effects, we find it incomprehensible that the eighteen climate alarmists could suggest something so far removed from the truth as their claim that no research results have produced any evidence that challenges their view of what is happening to Earth’s climate and weather.
If there is a central argument to this new letter, it is that Congress should ignore climate models and focus on empirical “data”–which is a false choice. Also, there’s the “argument from massive footnoting”:
Do the 678 scientific studies referenced in the CO2 Science document, or the thousands of studies cited in the NIPCC report, provide real-world evidence (as opposed to theoretical climate model predictions) for global warming-induced increases in the worldwide number and severity of floods? No. In the global number and severity of droughts? No. In the number and severity of hurricanes and other storms? No.
Does the sheer number of references you provide matter? No.
There will be some who seize upon the new “skeptics” letter to bolster their conviction that climate change isn’t anything to worry about. But I began by giving praise to a good example of communication, an earnest attempt to open new minds rather than rehash old my-facts-vs-your-facts debates–and I’ll definitely stand by that, now that I’ve seen the “other side.”