FRST 439 Critical Review #4
A unique perspective on climate change was recently published in the Wall Street Journal. The authors argue that because climate models have been consistently incorrect in their predictions for future temperature changes, combined with the complexity of climate and the assumptions that go along with climate models, that we don’t fully understand climate change, and that we are limiting our economic growth and making bad policy decisions due to consensus science. The authors contend that consensus science is dangerous, comparing themselves to skeptics of the flat earth belief held in earlier times.
While the authors are attempting to represent the scientific method that is essential to new discoveries, the article makes obvious that climate change science and politics often go hand in hand. Rather than removing politics and delving deeper into the science, the authors showcase their current political viewpoints, arguing that tragic consequences are bound to happen if we keep climate change based on consensus science. If we remove the politics and feelings from the article and keep it based on science, we see that their main arguments do not refute climate change nor whether the climate is warming due to anthropogenic causes or not. Their main argument about incorrect modeling and the complexity of climate is valid in that it does indicate our inability to predict, but it does not mean we don’t understand the effects of increased CO2 output, and ignores all the other negative consequences of increased CO2 such as ocean acidification, air pollution, changes in habitat, reliance on foreign oil, etc.
Furthermore, if the authors intended to refute man made climate change, they would have to provide some evidence that climate is not influenced by increased CO2 output. Other sources have indeed found that climate is sensitive to CO2 output (Solomon et al. 2007). However, the article should overall be welcomed because any skepticism...
2)Solomon, S., D. Qin, M. Manning, M. Marquis, K. Averyt, M. M. B.
Tignor, H. L. Miller Jr., and Z. Chen, Eds., 2007: Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Cambridge University Press, 996 pp.
Please join StudyMode to read the full document