Scientific Consensus

The tastiest bit of the recent controversy over the IPCC’s mistake is this nugget:

Interestingly, the IPCC study is reported to have taken the deadline on the melting of the Himalayas from a Russian study, which predicted the melting of the glaciers by 2350. IPCC changed it to 2035, making it a ‘Himalayan’ blunder.

If you’re predisposed to reaching a particular conclusion, and all your incentives are tailored towards it, then such mistakes become inevitable. It doesn’t help that RK Pachauri, the head of the IPCC, calls himself “unsinkable”. Mr Pachauri, remember the Titanic, for which that term was also used? There’s an iceberg of truth heading your way.

Also, Pachauri really does owe VK Raina an apology. Maybe, following the example of David Frith, he should literally eat up all the IPCC reports. That would make for a good YouTube video.

(I got some of these links via an online discussion involving Mohit Satyanand, Barun Mitra, Yazad Jal and Sruthijith KK, among others.)