Friday, November 23, 2012

IPCC lead author Myles Allen on the IPCC: 'Stalinist' notion of a single information vehicle; partly motivated by a desire "to make a big media splash"; focus for sceptics; oh my

Note another nice touch:  This article includes the infamous "Ursus Bogus" polar bear photoshop.

IPCC should drop its big reports, meeting hears - SciDev.Net
[OXFORD] The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) should stop publishing broad scientific assessments of the state and the implications of global warming every five or six years, and concentrate on producing smaller, more focused reports, a meeting in Oxford was told last week.
Myles Allen, head of the Climate Dynamics Group at the University of Oxford, United Kingdom, and a lead author and reviewer on previous IPCC assessments, said that as a result of criticisms of earlier reports "IPCC statements are becoming so legalistic that their value as a communication tool is diminishing".

"We should give up on the 'Stalinist' notion of a single information vehicle," Allen told the meeting, organised by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, part of the Department of Politics and International Relations at Oxford.

Allen suggested that the IPCC process was partly motivated by a desire "to make a big media splash," as a way of getting key messages through to policymakers.
"The main function [of IPCC reports] at the moment is to provide a focus for sceptics," he added. If the misleading data about the Indian glaciers had been in a regional report, “it would have made only a small impact."

He was supported by Arthur Peterson, chief scientist at the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency and a member of the Dutch delegation to IPCC meetings. Peterson said that the intergovernmental panel "is not really up to the task of effective communication about the risks and uncertainties of climate change".

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