Letter - Ignoring science advances is irresponsible


I owe the U-B’s headline writer an apology. When I first saw “Global Warming: Is the science settled? Not Necessarily” and glanced at the writer’s credentials I thought maybe he grasped at an easy headline. In fact, the headline if anything understated John Christy’s column.

Mr. Christy claims he “found all 102 model runs overshot the actual temperature change on average by a factor of three” but fails to provide a source.

This is important. While a newspaper column is not a scientific paper, neither should a popular writer misrepresent the science. Christy’s observation deviates from established literature. He is obligated to explain the variance.

Christy goes on to use the rhetorical device of sowing doubt in lieu of opposing: “The climate’s complexities are innumerable and poorly understood ... Climate change is a murky science.”

Climate scientists certainly agree that climate is complex but I suspect reject that they practice a murky science. To ignore the impressive advances in both climate measurement and model building is irresponsible.

Incidentally, this week the World Meteorological Organization reported that 2013 was the sixth hottest on record. The 21st century (14 years) has had 13 of the 14 hottest years on record.

Pleading the ignorance of a murky science seems misplaced.

Don Schwerin



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