I received the following email regarding some of the results of the survey of climate scienitsts. Rather than try to answer the questions I thought it more appropriate to post them and let a broader range of opinions to be presented. Please allow me to introduce myself. I am a British based blogger and lay enthusiastic in most things scientific - but as with most alive at the moment I take particular interest in Climate Science.
I am somewhat late in coming to your Survey of the Perspectives of Climate Scientists Concerning Climate Science and Climate Change but I would like to say that I found the results very interesting indeed.
There is a reassuring pluralism of opinion in the scientific community on climate change, its affects and its modelling. But there was one subset of the survey on which I would like your opinion if possible.
The section which most interested me was on the breadth of opinion on the ability of global and regional climate models to accurately predict specific future events.
However, it seemed that there was a far greater degree of confidence that the world was warming, and that this was anthropogenic in origin, than there was in the models which were used to make those predictions. In my view there are a number of things which account for this difference.
Firstly, there are observational disciplines which complement these models. Next, the reported short comings of some elements of the models - for example, global models predicting extreme events over the next 50 years - little impact the concrete findings in favour of anthropogenic global warming. Also, as the predominance of respondents were involved in physically modelling climate in seems sensible they would spend a large amount of time seeking out flaws in their models in order to improve them.
I was wondering if you had any further insight on this divergence.