Re: [asa] World sets ocean temperature record

From: Rich Blinne <>
Date: Wed Aug 26 2009 - 13:17:19 EDT

On Wed, Aug 26, 2009 at 7:53 AM, John Burgeson (ASA member) <> wrote:

> Cam: You may be interested in this article
> which deals with the problem you identify.
> Burgy
Burgy, there's a huge problem with this article. It doesn't break out
independents like Gallup does here:
only Dems and Reps are mentioned it's possible that both are living in
their own respective bubbles. On the other hand, Gallup's data does support
the headline, namely that it's Reps versus everybody else.

Gallup shows as a rule Reps are more skeptical about AGW than Dems with
Indies in between but closer to Dems than Reps. As the scientific evidence
strengthened in the past decade both Dems and Indies tracked less skeptical
while Reps tracked in the opposite direction.

While the political debate raged on let's look at what was happening behind
the scenes in the scientific community. The 2001 report of the IPCC had the
reality of AGW as likely and the 2007 report had it at very likely. The
terms "likely" and "very likely" have precise definitions in the IPCC
reports. Likely maps to > 66% probability and very likely maps to > 90%
probability. It would have been "virtually certain" (> 99% probability) but
China and Saudi Arabia objected in the Summary for Policy Makers
negotiations. The scientific representatives from every other country in the
world including the U.S. wanted the stronger statement. Since every line in
the SPM had to be agreed to by every country the compromise language of
"very likely" was agreed to. The full report, reviewed by over a thousand
scientists (including people identified as climate skeptics like John
Cristy) and which referenced around ten thousand peer-reviewed papers, did
not require these line-by-line negotiations. Their report was unanimously
approved on a chapter by chapter basis where the respective countries could
not modify their language. Thus, this report was free to provide the
supporting data behind the virtual certainty conclusions without the
political interference of the Chinese and the Saudi Arabians. The full WG1
report can be found here:

Also interesting is the perception of what scientists' opinions are versus
reality. On the question of do scientists believe that AGW is real from

56% of Reps
63% of Indies
74% of Dems

As I stated earlier a 2009 AGU poll of their members who have published
peer-reviewed papers in climatology 97% believe that AGW is real.

Rich Blinne
Member ASA

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Received on Wed Aug 26 13:18:10 2009

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