I’ve already commented on my general reluctance to enter into discussions of climate issues. My views remain as they have been for many years: using resources prudently is just common sense (not to mention good engineering) and I think we should be reducing emissions and our production of greenhouse gases as a matter of principle and policy. I’ve opposed policies that promote increased use of, for example, oil and favored solutions like nuclear power for decades. I favor Pigouvian taxes to compensate for the negative externalities presented by emissions production.
I did want to make one drive-by comment on this story, fallout from the revelations in the emails stolen from the East Anglia CRU:
The Met Office plans to re-examine 160 years of temperature data after admitting that public confidence in the science on man-made global warming has been shattered by leaked e-mails.
The new analysis of the data will take three years, meaning that the Met Office will not be able to state with absolute confidence the extent of the warming trend until the end of 2012.
I suppose the experience of others may vary but my experience in life has been that it takes longer to analyze bad or questionable data than it does good, solid data and that the longer the analysis, the more likely it is that the analysts are cooking the results.
A lengthy re-analysis may bolster the spirits of some but, honestly, it fills me with foreboding, reducing my confidence in the outcome rather than lifting it. I doubt that it will convince any skeptics.