The good news undercutting most forecasts of a climate disaster

One of the four scenarios of our future given in the IPCC’s AR5 (2013) is the basis for almost all the disturbing and often apocalyptic forecasts of future climate: RCP8.5. Climate scientists often describe it as the “business as usual scenario”. Scientists, activists, and journalists use horrific forecasts based on RCP8.5 as a core argument for massive public policy action.

Here is an important fact seldom mentioned: RCP8.5 is an unlikely scenario, assuming large changes in long-standing trends of population growth and technology evolution. It cannot be accurately represented as a “business as usual” scenario.

This insight undercuts a large body of the peer-reviewed studies since AR5, and a larger fraction of the scary stories in the general media.

I revised my original post about RCP8.5. You can see the new shorter and clearer version at Climate Etc, the website of eminent climate scientist Judith Curry — where it has sparked a lively discussion (already 125 comments).

Go to Climate Etc and see for yourself.

Cooking the world

 

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