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Across the lines

I haven’t really come across anything to write about recently. I’ve been thinking a bit about models and how they are used to inform decision making. I’ve been thinking a bit about the use of scientific advice. I also had…

The Imperial College code

The Imperial College code, the results from which are thought to have changed the UK government’s coronavirus policy, has been available for a while now on github. Since being made available, it’s received criticism from some quarters, as discussed by…

Attacking scientists who tell the truth?

There’s been some discussion about scientists being attacked for telling the truth. I do, of course, think that this is a real issue, but I also find myself somewhat frustrated by all of this. It’s hardly surprising to anyone who…

Outgoing longwave radiation

Something that often strikes me is that when I think I understand something quite well, there often turns out to be an aspect that I haven’t understood particularly well. I sometimes think that this is can be an important thing…

Scenario use in climate research

If you’ve been following the blog for a while, you will be aware that I’ve commented on a number of occasions about the whole RCP8.5 issue. You may also be aware that one of the chief protagonists in that whole…

Chanting to the choir?

Before I head off to the office (or, more correctly, go from watching the news in the living room, to the dining room table) I thought I would briefly mention a recent paper that has analysed blog comments. It’s by…

Seven years

Once again, WordPress has reminded me that this is the anniversary of me starting this blog. It’s been going for seven years now. If you’re interested in numbers, I’ve written about 1080 post. There have also been about 20 Guest…

Models

I have a feeling that our response to this pandemic may lead to some reflections on the role of scientific models in the decision making process. I would normally err on the side of defending scientific advisors, but I have…

Stay in your own lane?

Even though there are scientists who have the kind of expertise that might help us to better understand this pandemic, there’s a tendency to suggest that it would probably be best if they stayed in their own lane. Although I…

Sometimes it’s never good enough

I’ve, in the past, suggested that climate scientists could end up being criticised whatever happens. If the impact of climate change ends up being less severe than it could have been, climate scientists will probably be criticised for being alarmists.…

Richard’s Decoupling

Richard did it again and forgot to say “oops”: It’s one thing to deplore eugenics on ideological, political, moral grounds. It’s quite another to conclude that it wouldn’t work in practice. Of course it would. It works for cows, horses,…

Responsible SciComm

Yesterday, a group in Oxford released a paper that implied that a signifcant fraction of those in the UK may already have been infected. This was quickly picked up by numerous media outlets who highlighted that coronavirus could already have…

A physicist for president?

Jim Al’Khalili has an article in Scientific American called [a] physicist for president? Jim is a physicist, so he’s probably being somewhat provactive. Also, he’s mostly arguing for someone who applies the scientific method to thinking and decision-making and is…

Andrew Dessler rebuts Roy Spencer

Most of the focus at the moment is rightly on the coronavirus. Since I have no relevant expertise whatsoever, all I’ll say is that I hope everyone is doing their best to stay safe, and listening to the advice that’s…

A couple of highlights

Since I haven’t had much chance to write anything recently, I thought I would briefly advertise a couple of papers that may be of interest to my regular readers. One is by Clare Marie Flynn and Thorsten Mauritsen and is…

Zharkova et al. – retracted

Just a quick post to highlight that the Zharkova et al. paper, that I’ve discussed in a couple of previous posts, has now been retracted. The retraction notice is here. There’s a Retraction Watch post, which also includes a link…

Growth?

Just over a year ago, I wrote a post about limits to growth that focussed on an article written by Michael Liebreich. I found his argument particularly silly as it seemed to suggest that the economy could grow until the…

Debate about communicating tipping points

The new book about Contemporary Climate Change Debates, that I discussed in this post, includes a debate about whether or not ‘tipping point[s]’ [are] helpful for describing and communicating possible climate futures? James Annan suggests that the answer is “no”,…

But RCPs

Just as I thought I was out the ClimateBall Gods pull me back in. The “but RCP” flythe club got the best of me. For the time lost I found talking points for my Bingo. More on this project in…

feebacks, runaway, and tipping points

There’s been some discussion on Twitter about feedbacks, runaways, and tipping points. The issue is that some seem to confuse these and sometimes imply that we could cross thresholds where we’ll undergo a runaway. I thought I would briefly try…

RCP8.5 – another update

In case anyone is interested, Zeke Hausfather and Glen Peters have a Nature comment about the whole RCP8.5 issue. Unfortunately, they used misleading in the title, which seems to have produced an unfortunate headline on a BBC article. Otherwise, Zeke…

Slow travel

If you’ve been following my Twitter threads, you should be aware that I’m just back from a trip to Austria that I decided to do via train. The meeting was for a collaboration that developed after I spent some time…

Sherelle’s Bingo Squares

Yesterday Michael Brown alterted me (see “@nevaudit”) of this contrarian editorial: Can you OD on #climate bingo @nevaudit? This is only a partial list – watch out for the hit of Galileo. https://t.co/GY6m5aqmeA— Michael Brown (@MJIBrown) January 24, 2020 As…

Consensus messaging, an update

If you’re a regular follower of this blog, you’ll know that some of the most active threads have concerned the scientific consensus about climate change and, more specifically, the issue of consensus messaging. Recently, a new book has been released…

Zharkova et al.: an update

Last year I wrote a couple of posts about a paper by Valentina Zharkova and colleagues, which suggested that global warming was partly due to the Earth moving closer to the Sun as the Sun moves around the Solar System…

Another CMIP6 climate sensitivity constraint

I thought I would follow up yesterday’s post with one that highlights another paper that looks at CMIP6 climate sensitivity. It’s a paper by Femke Nijsse, and colleagues, and considers [a]n emergent constraint on Transient Climate Response from simulated historical…

Climate sensitivity in CMIP6 GCMs

Anyone who is aware of what’s going on in climate science should have heard that the latest generation of climate models, known as CMIP6, seem to be suggesting a somewhat higher climate sensitivity than suggested by the previous CMIP5 models.…

2019: A year in review

The end of another year, so time to do another round-up of this year’s posts. My main impression of 2019, unfortunatey, is that the climate debate is moved from disagreements with people who either deny climate change or the need…

Listen to the (political) science

I’ve been meaning to post a review of 2019, but wanted to first comment on something else. I quite often see criticism of how some people approach the issue of climate change. For example, in the Guardian yesterday, there was…