Are Climate Models Overpredicting Global Warming?

The answer is yes.

Weather forecasters know that some models work better than others in specific situations, and they tend to rely on the versions that work best, depending upon the forecast problem. When the issue is a potential big snow along the eastern seaboard, forecasters usually lean upon the model from the European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasting (the “Euro” model). When diagnosing shifts in jet stream patterns a week or 10 days ahead, they may place more weight on the American Global Forecast System model.

But the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change simply averages up the 29 major climate models to come up with the forecast for warming in the 21st century, a practice rarely done in operational weather forecasting. As dryly noted by Eyring and others “there is now evidence that giving equal weight to each available model projection is suboptimal.”

Indeed. The authors of the new paper show that the aggregate models are making huge errors in three of the places on earth that are critical to our understanding of climate.

But one of the models actually works. According to University of Alabama’s John Christy and his colleagues, only the Russian model, designated INM-CM4, gets things right. So why not weight heavily on the model that is working? Perhaps because it has less global warming in it than all the other U.N. models?

Its successor, INM-CM5, is so good that it is the only one that diagnoses the “pause” in warming from 2002 to 2014. That the “pause” was real is obvious in the global surface temperature record that the that the IPCC relies upon most heavily, from the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

Read it all here.

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