Quadrant Online published a scientific audit of the Climate Commission report, The Critical Decade, by four scientists. The Conversation (a website funded by the CSIRO) has responded with an attack on the critics by Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.
Who’s your expert? The difference between peer review and rhetoric
by Ove Hoegh-Guldberg
But are all experts really in agreement with the Climate Commission’s report?
Enter an alternative group of experts.
Writing in Quadrant Online Bob Carter, David Evans, Stewart Franks and Bill Kininmonth stated, “The scientific advice contained within The Critical Decade is an inadequate, flawed and misleading basis on which to set national policy.”
Carter and his colleagues dispute the major findings and assert that “independent scientists are confident overall that there is no evidence of global warming” or unusual “sea-level rise”.
According to them “there is nothing unusual about the behaviour of mountain glaciers, Arctic sea ice or the Greenland or West Antarctic ice sheets.”
You would be forgiven for concluding that firm action on carbon dioxide might not be warranted if the experts can’t agree.
But is there really so much scientific dispute over the facts of climate change?
One way to resolve this is to ask a simple question. If Carter and company hold different views to those expressed in the majority of the peer-reviewed, scientific literature, then have they submitted their ideas to independent and objective peer-review?
This is a critical process that sorts opinion and rhetoric from scientific knowledge and consensus.
If the answer is “yes”, there are legitimate grounds for concern over the report’s conclusion.
If the answer is “no”, the arguments against the Climate Commission’s report fall away as unsubstantiated opinion.
We are left, then, with the observation that the Climate Commission’s report, peer-reviewed and assessed by scientists with appropriate expertise, is being challenged by four individuals who refer to websites and blogs and who have not had their core claims about climate change tested in the peer-reviewed scientific literature.
Don’t get me wrong, discussion is important, but on serious matter such as climate change, let us hope we listen carefully to the experts and not the unsubstantiated opinions of those that are not.
Source: The Conversation
Just so this is quite clear to the editors of The Conversation. The scientific audit by Bob Carter, David Evans, Stewart Franks and William Kininmonth is a challenge to debate the science, not an invitation to indulge in personal denigration.
Read the criticisms the Gillard government and The Conversation are afraid to debate: