‘Consensus is collusion’–Is climate science maturing, or should we reach for our tinfoil hats?
(Part of the How to Talk to a Global Warming Skeptic guide)
Objection: More and more, climate models share all the same assumptions — so of course they all agree! And every year, fewer scientists dare speak out against the findings of the IPCC, thanks to the pressure to conform.
Answer: The growing confluence of model results and the increasingly similar physical representations of the climate system from model to model may well look like sharing code or tweaking ’til things look alike. But it is also perfectly consistent with better and better understanding of the underlying problem, an understanding that is shared via scientific journals and research. This understanding is coming fast as we gather more and more historical and current data, all of which provides more testing material for model refinement.
Viewing the increasing agreement among climate models and climate scientists as collusion instead of consensus is a rather conspiratorial take on the normal course of scientific investigation. I suppose that fewer and fewer scientists disagreeing with the status quo is indeed consistent with some kind of widespread and insidious suppression of ideas, but you know, it is also consistent with having the right answer.
More stories in this series:
(Part of the How to Talk to a Climate Skeptic guide) Objection: Despite what the computer models tell us, there is actually no evidence of significant global warming. Answer: Global warming is not an output of computer models; it is …
(Part of the How to Talk to a Global Warming Skeptic guide) Objection: CO2 levels are recorded on top of Mauna Loa … a volcano! No wonder the levels are so high. (image courtesty of Global Warming Art)
(Part of the How to Talk to a Global Warming Skeptic guide) Objection: The apparent rise of global average temperatures is actually an illusion due to the urbanization of land around weather stations, the Urban Heat Island effect.
(Part of the How to Talk to a Global Warming Skeptic guide) Objection: One hundred and some years of global surface temperatures is not long enough to draw any conclusions from or worry about anyway. Answer: The reliable instrumental record …
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