Climate change is “settled science,” we’re told over and over again, and only anti-science flat earthers believe otherwise. The problem is that often the predictions made by climate scientists turn out to be wrong. I could point to the fact that most long-range models showing global warming trends (you know, the ones reams of government policy are based on) have turned out to be off by a lot, but how about a more immediate example?
Like the fact that the the federal government, through the NOAA, predicted that this winter we are just emerging from (though parts of North Dakota are still buried in a blizzard) would be mild:
Winter 2013-2014 may be a cold one for some in the Midwest, but relatively mild in other parts of the nation, according to the winter outlook released Thursday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
It turns out the NOAA was wrong. This winter has been pretty severe for a lot of areas in the United States. In fact, the Famer’s Almanac (whose predictions are derided by many) seems to have gotten more right than the government scientists did:
The Farmers’ Almanac is generating a tremendous amount of buzz around a “C-O-L-D” winter forecast. And it’s ratcheting up the hype by forecasting a “Super Storm” for Super Bowl XLVIII at the Meadowlands in New Jersey. But its forecast is baseless and lacks credibility.
With 20/20 hindsight, I think most would say it was pretty credible.
The larger point, though, is why we should be so derisive of skepticism about climate change theories when it’s clear that there’s a lot we don’t understand about climate science. If we can’t accurately forecast weather trends over a few months, or a year, how can we forecast decades or centuries-long trends?
(via Million Dollar Way)