I tend to avoid the AGW “debate” and rarely mention science/political reports such as the IPCC reports unless drawn into discussions in comments. I don’t think such things are necessary with the wealth of literature and healthy reasoning for increased efficiency and sustainable practices already at hand. Indeed, I feel that the “debate” itself is simply another ploy by do-nothing advocates to maintain business-as-usual for as long as possible.
A little while ago, I learnt of Donna Laframboise; a self-employed photographer who developed the noconsensus website and designed the citizen audit of the forth IPCC report. I’ve previously commented on her audit and obviously limited understanding of climate science. However, her apparent success in the 1990′s to help a wrongly accused man be set free has led her to believe that she has the sleuthing skills to debunk climate science.
Obviously there is a fair amount of difference between political reporting and scientific analysis. Over the Innovation series and previously, I’ve posted on the relevant literature that looks into a whole host of bio-physical indicators of change. You don’t need a consensus; the entire world is demonstrating change and it is not an automatic acceptance, but rather one that is based on the disturbing evidence.
Anyway, the reason I brought this up is that on the BBC News website, they had an article that explained how the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency (PBL) has also conducted an audit of the 4th IPCC report. Unlike Ms. Laframboise’s “F” grading, the PBL did, in general, find the report up to scratch. I guess Ms. Laframboise would, or at least should, be the first to say that a civilian judgement cannot be held beyond scepticism. Someone who gets weather and climate mixed up on her page and obviously doesn’t understand predictive modelling (see Laframboise’s global warming theory 101 page) probably isn’t the best and most experienced to gather suitable auditors, while it’s safe to say that the PBL would most likely have the required skills.
In both cases (and especially the findings of the PBL) this should be kept in mind as work begins on the 5th report. The PBL called for greater transparency in the coming report – which is a great thing as it will further stress the reality of climate change. It is always difficult discussing politically sensitive material in political reports. It’s a bit like being a nervous, politically correct GP trying to tell an overly sensitive patient that they have to lose a lot of weight – there’s no way to do it without ruffling a few feathers.
Hopefully improving on the previous report, the 5th will lead people like Ms. Laframboise to begin discussing how we can approach a changing climate rather than worry about the occasional typos. The sooner we begin to address the effects of climate change, the less the impact will be on biodiversity, food and water availability, economy and ultimately our health.
Cheers to MT for pointing this comic out.
For more on Donna Laframboise, see Donna Laframboise and Cloud screaming