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A Foolish Letter from AAAS

Jack Hays

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The AAAS has written a letter which will have as its primary impact making the AAAS look foolish. Oh well.

Climate power play by the AAAS et al.

Posted on July 4, 2016 | 63 comments
by Judith Curry
The AAAS and affiliated professional societies just shot themselves in the foot with the letter to U.S. policy makers.
Continue reading

The AAAS and affiliated professional societies just shot themselves in the foot with the letter to U.S. policy makers.

Last week, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) issued a press release entitled Thirty-One Top Scientific Societies Speak With One Voice on Global Climate Change. Punchline:
In a consensus letter to U.S. policymakers, a partnership of 31 leading nonpartisan scientific societies today reaffirmed the reality of human-caused climate change, noting that greenhouse gas emissions “must be substantially reduced” to minimize negative impacts on the global economy, natural resources, and human health.
The text of letter to Congress can be found here [link]. . . .

This statement is a blatant misuse of scientific authority to advocate for specific socioeconomic policies. National security and economics (specifically called out in the letter) is well outside the wheelhouse of all of these organizations. Note the American Economics Association is not among the signatories; according to an email from Ross McKitrick, the constitution of the AEA forbids issuing such statements. In fact, climate science is well outside the wheelhouse of most of these organizations (what the heck is with the statisticians and mathematicians in signing this?)
The link between adverse impacts such as more wildfires, ecosystem changes, extreme weather events etc. and their mitigation by reducing greenhouse gas emissions hinges on detecting unusual events for at least the past century and then actually attributing them to human caused warming. This is highly uncertain territory – even within the overconfident world of the IPCC. And the majority of the signatories to this letter have no expertise in the detection and attribution of human caused climate change.
The signatories whose membership has some expertise on the detection and attribution of climate change are only a few: American Geophysical Union, American Meteorological Society, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, Geological Society of America. The rest are professional societies who are not involved with the physics of climate but explicitly profit from the alarm. . . .

 

Deuce

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"Science shouldn't be used to decide how to do things!!"


It's not a "specific socioeconomic policy" to advocate for reduced climate emissions. Do you even think about this stuff before you paste it?
 

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Deuce

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Please cite with quotes the portion you paraphrased with quotes.
Quotes are usually reserved for what is an actual, quote of something!

Instead of fixating on my one-liner, you could try instead providing rebuttal to the actual thrust of that post.
 

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Instead of fixating on my one-liner, you could try instead providing rebuttal to the actual thrust of that post.
That Scientific Societies, should present Science, as opposed to becoming political advocates.
That perhaps the idea of a Scientific consensus of such an immature science is not in agreement with the scientific method.
I find Dr. Curry's comments to be fairly accurate.
 

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That Scientific Societies, should present Science, as opposed to becoming political advocates.
That perhaps the idea of a Scientific consensus of such an immature science is not in agreement with the scientific method.
I find Dr. Curry's comments to be fairly accurate.

I don't. See, Curry is claiming that "reduce carbon emissions" is a "specific socioeconomic policy."

If that were the case, we'd actually be able to describe those specifics. How do we do that? How much will it cost? What benefit will it provide? How much do we expect global temperatures will change if we do this?

But you can't answer those questions because it's not a specific socioeconomic policy. Nor is it "political advocacy."

It's a scientific recommendation based on data.
 

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I don't. See, Curry is claiming that "reduce carbon emissions" is a "specific socioeconomic policy."

If that were the case, we'd actually be able to describe those specifics. How do we do that? How much will it cost? What benefit will it provide? How much do we expect global temperatures will change if we do this?

But you can't answer those questions because it's not a specific socioeconomic policy. Nor is it "political advocacy."

It's a scientific recommendation based on data.
Well I never said she calmed that, but let's look at the letter to congress.
http://www.aaas.org/sites/default/files/06282016.pdf
There is strong evidence that ongoing climate change is having broad negative impacts on
society, including the global economy, natural resources, and human health. For the United
States, climate change impacts include greater threats of extreme weather events, sea level rise,
and increased risk of regional water scarcity, heat waves, wildfires, and the disturbance of
biological systems. The severity of climate change impacts is increasing and is expected to
increase substantially in the coming decades.1
To reduce the risk of the most severe impacts of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions must
be substantially reduced. In addition, adaptation is necessary to address unavoidable
consequences for human health and safety, food security, water availability, and national security, among others.
They use the normal vague alarmist language.
basically they are saying "lots of bad things could happen unless greenhouse gas emissions are substantially reduced.
Notice that they do not go into specifics, but only state,
To reduce the risk of the most severe impacts of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions must
be substantially reduced.
 

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Well I never said she calmed that, but let's look at the letter to congress.
http://www.aaas.org/sites/default/files/06282016.pdf

They use the normal vague alarmist language.
basically they are saying "lots of bad things could happen unless greenhouse gas emissions are substantially reduced.
Notice that they do not go into specifics, but only state,

Curry:

This statement is a blatant misuse of scientific authority to advocate for specific socioeconomic policies.

And the statement you quoted is factual, not political advocacy.
 

Jack Hays

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"Science shouldn't be used to decide how to do things!!"


It's not a "specific socioeconomic policy" to advocate for reduced climate emissions. Do you even think about this stuff before you paste it?

This is not science; it is policy advocacy.

"To reduce the risk of the most severe impacts of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions mustbe substantially reduced. In addition, adaptation is necessary to address unavoidableconsequences for human health and safety, food security, water availability, and nationalsecurity, among others."
 

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This is not science; it is policy advocacy.

"To reduce the risk of the most severe impacts of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions mustbe substantially reduced. In addition, adaptation is necessary to address unavoidableconsequences for human health and safety, food security, water availability, and nationalsecurity, among others."

It's factual. If you think facts have a political bias, that's your issue, not mine.
 

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Whether it's factual is a political question. You just made Curry's point.

:lamo

No, it's not. It's a scientific question. Carbon dioxide doesn't care about political decisions.

I just love this idea that politics decides the truth.
 

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:lamo

No, it's not. It's a scientific question. Carbon dioxide doesn't care about political decisions.

I just love this idea that politics decides the truth.

Their statement is that greenhouse gas emissions "must be substantially reduced." That's not science, it's policy debate. Whether it is desirable to reduce such emissions is a political choice.
 

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Their statement is that greenhouse gas emissions "must be substantially reduced." That's not science, it's policy debate. Whether it is desirable to reduce such emissions is a political choice.

Must be substantially reduced to achieve a particular outcome, which is factual.

Whether or not to actually do it, and how, is the political question.
 

Jack Hays

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Must be substantially reduced to achieve a particular outcome, which is factual.

Whether or not to actually do it, and how, is the political question.

Whether we should do it? Whether it's worth doing? Whether the consequences are considered serious enough to warrant concern? And on and on . . . All political and policy questions.
 

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Whether we should do it? Whether it's worth doing? Whether the consequences are considered serious enough to warrant concern? And on and on . . . All political and policy questions.

You must have read a much longer letter than i did.
 

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Those are the types of policy questions whose answers are (illegitimately) assumed by the letter.

I'm sure you would have similarly objected to "we must increase vaccination rates to eliminate polio."
 

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Sorry, but no. Not analogous.

If this is advocating "specific socioeconomic policy," can you identify, say, the cost of the advocated program? How many years to implement it? What the effect will be?
 

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If this is advocating "specific socioeconomic policy," can you identify, say, the cost of the advocated program? How many years to implement it? What the effect will be?

Policy does not equal program.
 

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Policy does not equal program.

So, your "specific socioeconomic policy" is really just "reduce carbon emissions" after all.

So was "increase vaccination rates."
 

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So, your "specific socioeconomic policy" is really just "reduce carbon emissions" after all.

So was "increase vaccination rates."

No. There's no doubt about the relationship between polio vaccination and polio, or about the consequences of polio. That science is actually settled. There is no analogous certainty about climate, the consequences of action/inaction or the efficacy of any particular course of action. And all those are policy questions, not science questions.
 
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