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Introduction

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Abstract

As we advance into the twenty-first century, the evidence of climate change is all around us. In the introduction to this volume, we discuss some of the successes of climate science in understanding and attributing the causes of these changes, as well as some of the challenges it faces in addressing questions for which we do not yet have the answers. We focus on the role of climate models and the philosophical and conceptual problems facing climate modelers and climate modeling. We then give the reader an outline of what they will find in each of the 15 Chapters in the volume. The book is divided into three major parts: Part 1 “Confirmation and Evidence”; Part 2 “Uncertainties and Robustness”; and Part 3 “Climate Models as Guides to Policy”.

Keywords

  • Climate Science
  • Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity (ECS)
  • Empirical Statistical Downscaling (ESD)
  • Regional Climate Change Assessment Program
  • North American Regional Climate Change

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    While a recent Gallup poll found that roughly 70% of Americans believe the claim that 2015 was the warmest year on record, we Americans remain split roughly 50/50 regarding the claim that the change in temperatures are caused by human activity (Gallup n.d.; http://www.gallup.com/poll/190319/americans-believe-2015-record-warm-split-why.aspx?g_source=CATEGORY_CLIMATE_CHANGE&g_medium=topic&g_campaign=tiles).

  2. 2.

    J. Cook et al. (2016), “Consensus on consensus: a synthesis of consensus estimates on human-caused global warming,” Environmental Research Letters Vol. 11 No. 4, (13 April 2016); DOI:https://doi.org/10.1088/1748%E2%80%939326/11/4/048002 Quotation from page 6: “The number of papers rejecting AGW [Anthropogenic, or human-caused, Global Warming] is a miniscule proportion of the published research, with the percentage slightly decreasing over time. Among papers expressing a position on AGW, an overwhelming percentage (97.2% based on self-ratings, 97.1% based on abstract ratings) endorses the scientific consensus on AGW.”

  3. 3.

    http://www.aaas.org/sites/default/files/migrate/uploads/1021climate_letter1.pdf

  4. 4.

    See http://www.gfdl.noaa.gov/earth-system-model for a description of one of the “flagship” American models.

  5. 5.

    Ben Santer, Personal Communication, 2011.

  6. 6.

    Press release from conference held at US National Press Club, January 2008.

  7. 7.

    In climate science, this generally means that the results tend to lean in one direction without a good reason or apparent cause.

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Lloyd, E.A., Winsberg, E. (2018). Introduction. In: A. Lloyd, E., Winsberg, E. (eds) Climate Modelling. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-65058-6_1

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