I never had any doubt.
Courtesy of NASA:
For decades, people have legitimately wondered how well climate models perform in predicting future climate conditions. Based on solid physics and the best understanding of the Earth system available, they skillfully reproduce observed data. Nevertheless, they have a wide response to increasing carbon dioxide levels, and many uncertainties remain in the details. The hallmark of good science, however, is the ability to make testable predictions, and climate models have been making predictions since the 1970s. How reliable have they been?
Now a new evaluation of global climate models used to project Earth’s future global average surface temperatures over the past half-century answers that question: most of the models have been quite accurate.
In a study accepted for publication in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, a research team led by Zeke Hausfather of the University of California, Berkeley, conducted a systematic evaluation of the performance of past climate models. The team compared 17 increasingly sophisticated model projections of global average temperature developed between 1970 and 2007, including some originally developed by NASA, with actual changes in global temperature observed through the end of 2017. The observational temperature data came from multiple sources, including NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies Surface Temperature Analysis (GISTEMP) time series, an estimate of global surface temperature change.
The results: 10 of the model projections closely matched observations. Moreover, after accounting for differences between modeled and actual changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide and other factors that drive climate, the number increased to 14. The authors found no evidence that the climate models evaluated either systematically overestimated or underestimated warming over the period of their projections.
“The results of this study of past climate models bolster scientists’ confidence that both they as well as today’s more advanced climate models are skillfully projecting global warming,” said study co-author Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies in New York. “This research could help resolve public confusion around the performance of past climate modeling efforts.”
First off I think a whole lot of people owe Al Gore a heartfelt apology.
That man was trying to save us from ourselves when nobody seemed interested in hearing that.
Secondly it is clear that we should NEVER again vote for any elected official who denies the science of climate change or undermines how dire our situation has become.
And thirdly people need to watch this clip from the amazing HBO show Newsroom and take it to heart.
People were freaked out by this, which caused media folks to claim that things were not quite this bad, but in fact, they are. And the citizens of this planet deserve to know that.