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Fellow, Michael Kelly says The Royal Society must not hide uncertainty of climate

Posted By Joanne Nova On March 16, 2015 @ 4:14 am In Global Warming | Comments Disabled

Another excellent job by the UK Daily Mail.

Professor Michael Kelly, Fellow of the Royal Society, was one of the 43 who protested back in 2010 at the Royal Society’s climate change position. (Read up on the Rebellion of the 43 at the GWPF p32.) They felt the Royal Society was breaking its own motto: motto ‘Nullius in verba’ – or ‘Don’t take another’s word for it; check it out for yourself’. Now five years later, Michael Kelly gives us an update, and he fears things are worse: “... since then the Society has become more, not less dogmatic – despite the fact that since we sent that letter, it has become evident that there is even more uncertainty than previously thought.”

Why my own Royal Society is wrong on climate change: A devastating critique of world’s leading scientific organisation by one of its Fellows

His main point is that the Royal Society is not giving balanced information about the uncertainties and model failures. (It’s the same pattern of telling us half truths, while hiding the bombs, that we see in the BBC and the ABC, and “love media”.) Kelly argued that Society ought to distance itself from levels of certainty which could not be justified.

Real scientists put forward everything they know that is relevant. As Kelly says: “Those who fail to provide balance are not giving advice, but lobbying.”

The great 20th Century physicist, Richard Feynman, wrote in his autobiography: ‘Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know them. You must do the best you can – if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly wrong – to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out, then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree with it.’ This the Royal Society has failed to do.

The reason for this lack of nuance seems to be that policymakers say they want ‘scientific certainty’. As an engineer, I find that amazing: we remain legally liable for what we say professionally, so will always qualify our statements. But the misleading lack of qualification in the statements made by the Royal Society and others is creating policy nonsense.

The project to ‘solve the climate change problem’ is a modern version of the biblical Tower of Babel. We do not know how much the project will cost, when it will have been completed, nor what success will look like.

During my time as a government departmental Chief Scientific Adviser, I was always aware that politicians made the final decision on any issue on the balance of all the evidence. For this reason, civil servants are trained to draw their attention to all the upsides and downsides of taking a particular course of action.

Those who fail to provide balance are not giving advice, but lobbying. It is with the deepest regret that I must now state that this is the role which has been adopted by the Royal Society. And when scientists abandon neutral inquiry for lobbying, they jeopardise their purpose and integrity.

PROFESSOR MICHAEL KELLY IS THE PRINCE PHILIP PROFESSOR OF TECHNOLOGY AT CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY AND FELLOW OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

For those who are interested, Michael Kelly spoke about the late great Tony Kelly (no relation) who was one of the leaders of the protest of 43.

GWPF have a briefing paper The Small Print: What the Royal Society left out (pdf)

Endorsed by the following:

Prof Robert Carter
Prof Vincent Courtillot
Prof Freeman Dyson
Prof Christopher Essex
Dr Indur Goklany
Prof Will Happer
Prof Richard Lindzen
Prof Ross McKitrick
Prof Ian Plimer
Dr Matt Ridley
Sir Alan Rudge
Prof Nir Shaviv
Prof Fritz Vahrenholt

h/t Eric Worrall, Pat, and others.

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