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IPCC “Consensus”—Warning: Use at Your Own Risk

By Chip Knappenberger -- January 29, 2010

The findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are often held up as representing “the consensus of scientists”—a pretty grandiose and presumptuous claim. And one that in recent days, weeks, and months, has been unraveling. So too, therefore, must all of the secondary assessments that are based on the IPCC findings—the most notable of which is the EPA’s Endangerment Finding—that “greenhouse gases taken in combination endanger both the public health and the public welfare of current and future generations.”

Recent events have shown, rather embarrassingly, that the IPCC is not “the” consensus of scientists, but rather the opinions of a few scientists (in some cases as few as one) in various subject areas whose consensus among themselves is then kludged together by the designers of the IPCC final product who a priori know what they want the ultimate outcome to be (that greenhouse gases are leading to dangerous climate change and need to be restricted).…