Kevin Vranes wonders if scientists have oversold climate change:
We wonder if we’ve oversold the science. We’re wondering what happened to our community, that individuals caveat even the most minor questionings of barely-proven climate change evidence, lest they be tagged as “skeptics.” We’re wondering if we’ve let our alarm at the problem trickle to the public sphere, missing all the caveats in translation that we have internalized. And we’re wondering if we’ve let some of our scientists take the science too far, promise too much knowledge, and promote more certainty in ourselves than is warranted.
Andrew Dessler says that the IPCC assessments don’t oversell the science:
Because assessments are written by literally hundreds of scientists, the biases of individual scientists tend to cancel out. As a result, they have shown themselves remarkably good reflections of the scientific consensus, and remarkably lacking in bias. For example, it is difficult to argue that the working group I report of the IPCC assessments has in any way oversold the science of climate change. The upper range of our climate predictions is indeed dire, but that, unfortunately, is what the data indicate — they have not been “sexed up” to push a preferred policy.
My view is that the statements of the scientific community (as represented by the IPCC assessments) are remarkably sound and not at all “oversold”. During the five days I was at the AGU, I did not encounter anyone who suggested otherwise — except for Dick Lindzen.
Lindzen was one of the authors of the NAS report on the IPCC TAR (third assessment report). The NAS report endorsed the credibility of the TAR, but Lindzen denied the plain meaning of the NAS report.