Climatic Change

, Volume 85, Issue 1, pp 1-9

First online:

Probabilities in climate policy advice: a critical comment

  • Gregor BetzAffiliated withInstitute of Philosophy, Free University Berlin Email author 

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This essay explores as to whether probabilistic climate forecasting is consistent with the prerequisites of democratic scientific policy advice. It argues that, given the boundaries of our current knowledge, it is highly problematic to assign exact, unconditional probabilities to possible values of climate sensitivity. The range of possible–instead of probable–future climate scenarios is what climate policy should be based on.