Question on Models
So I have a question about models. No, not Victoria’s Secret or Sports Illustrated models. Sorry to disappoint. I was actually referring to the computer models that meteorologists and climatologists use to help make predictions about the earth’s atmospheric conditions. When your local weather girl flashes her bright smile to tell you that there is a 30% chance of afternoon thunderstorms tomorrow, that information is being derived from computer models. Hundreds, if not thousands, of data points are being gathered, accumulated, normalized, analyzed and then projected into the future to make predictions about what your local weather will be like tomorrow. All sorts of data are being collected to make determinations about the types of weather systems that are headed your way and whether or not you need to worry about an umbrella tomorrow or not. Temperature readings, humidity levels, wind speeds, barometric pressures, types of cloud formations, doppler radar readings and entire hosts of other measurements are pulled together in real time and analyzed using computer programs and simulation models in order to give you, the average citizen, an idea about what is going to happen over the next couple of days in terms of weather.
Tropical storm and hurricane predictions are made in a similar fashion. Currently, the South Eastern United States is watching tropical storm Chantal. In order to help determine the path for Ms. Chantal, different computer models are used to try and predict the path that the storm will take. The picture below shows the projected paths of the storm using 25 different computer models. Notice that the closer you are to the current location of the storm, the more the models seem to agree with one another. As you move further along the projected paths, you are moving further out in time. As you will see, the further in time you move, the more divergent the models become. Whereas all 25 models are in fairly solid agreement 24 hours out, anything beyond that and the odds of predicting where the storm will be drops significantly.
So while it is fairly certain that the storm will hit Haiti and the Dominican Republic over the next 24 hours or so, it is difficult if not impossible to tell where it will be five days from now. According to these models, it could be anywhere from the middle of the Gulf of Mexico to north central Georgia. That’s a pretty big difference. Especially to the people living in or around these areas. Obviously most, if not all, of these models are going to be wrong. They can’t all be right. They are predictions and no prediction is 100% accurate.
As a matter of fact, when it comes to weather and atmospheric conditions, many times predictions and forecasts are wildly inaccurate. Granted, weather prediction has come a long way in the last 50 years or so and it has gotten steadily better and better. But it is still nowhere near a perfect prognostication. This website claims that weather forecasts are right only half the time. Even with all of our technological marvels, we still leave our umbrellas at home expecting to have sunny skies only to be caught in a torrential downpour. We wear our tank tops and shorts expecting the day to be warm and humid only to have sleet and snow to dampen our day.
So now we get to the crux of this post and to my question.
Given that computer models are often very wrong in predicting what conditions will be like within the next couple of days, why should we believe predictions of gloom and doom of the Climate Change Alarmists that want to tell us about minute changes in the earth’s climate in the next 50-100 years?
I know, I know, the first thing that a critic of this post might say is that there is a difference between weather and climate. They are vastly different systems that involve different dynamics and predictive methodologies. I got it. But in both cases, computer modeling is used to make their respective predictions. Data points are a bit different, starting assumptions are a bit different, but in the end, you are inputting a bunch of data and asking a computer model to spit out a forecast about what our atmosphere is going to be like.
One tries to predict what it’s going to be like over the next few days and the other tries to predict what will happen over the next century or so. While your local weather guru is quite often 5-10 degrees of temperature off in their prediction and has a hard time predicting how much moisture you are going to encounter tomorrow, so-called climate scientists want to convince the public that they are able to make temperature predictions for the entire world to within tenths of a degree. Meteorologists generally use real time data to feed into their models and are able to modify their algorithms on the fly to adjust for changes in weather dynamics. And yet, they still get it wrong a good proportion of the time. Climatologists, on the other hand, generally use historical data that is oftentimes dubious in its origin and validity. Ice core samples and tree ring analysis is used alongside other measures and a butt load of over-generalized assumptions to make very specific predictions that are supposed to come true decades or even centuries out. Let’s consider the graph below. The information comes directly from the IPCC or the International Panel on Climate Change, the U.N. organization that has been perpetrating one of the largest frauds in human history. But even according to their own data, the historical predictions have been wrong. And notice the range of the temperature. We are talking about predictions made within one half of one degree and these predictions occurred IN RETROSPECTIVE ANALYSIS. This means that they took their model(s) and went backwards in time to see how well their predictions would hold up to reality. As you can see, they didn’t. And these are the same people that want developed nations to spend trillions of dollars in “green” energy boondoggles and to stifle innovation and productivity where ever they can while giving a free hand to countries like China and India to pollute and do what they want. Give me a break! The cult of man made global climate change is hurtling towards a hard crash and an ignominious death. It can’t get here soon enough for me.