For an inordinately long time, one of the biggest troubles with Climatology has been its fixation with predicting the future, far before it will ever be able to understand the actual mechanisms of Earth’s climate in detail enough.
This has several nasty consequences, including a predisposition on the part of the very scientists to describe the future as some kind of catastrophe, and to make do without professional niceties (what is the point of being gentlemanly when the world is risking a fiery end of ice or fire?)
There are however indications that, in truth, the situation is the other way around, with the mainstream climatologist a prisoner of the past.
One could look at the humorous suggestions by Italian scientist Vincenzo Ferrara on how to be right about climate change (always). More seriously, the 1972-1975 paradigm shift seems to speak loud and clear on the subject.
As should now be understood by all, the scientific consensus in 1972 was that the world was cooling. Even Peterson, Connolley and Fleck state as much between the lines of their much-misunderstood (by its authors) paper. Things changed then with Damon and Kunen’s paper in 1975, the consensus became about a warming globe, and the rest as they say is history (more here).
How intriguing then to find that the World’s temperature might have started going upwards (again) but when, between 1973 and 1975. Says who? Says Tamino.
In a world they believed was cooling, climatologists found ways to explain why it was cooling. In a world they believe is warming, climatologists find ways to explain why it is warming. The fact that those beliefs are based on scientific data and theories means nothing more than current and past climate science have been scientifically feeling their ways through a very obscure dark. No sign any of us is any the wiser.
This bodes nothing well about Climatology’s ability to tell us anything about our future, in terms of risk management or much else. Like WWI generals, mainstream climatologists constantly fighting the last war might actually end up becoming a policy hindrance, a litigious and politically untrustworthy source of continuousdistraction.
The only surefire prediction we can therefore makeis that if for any reason the Earth’s temperatures will plummet, there will be no shortage of well-intentioned people, scientists and otherwise, ready to extend a trend of the recent past to next century and beyond.