24 September 2009

Joe Romm: Lukewarmer

Every once in a while amid Joe Romm's name-calling and doomsaying, he says a bit too much. In this case Chip Knappenberger takes Joe to task for offering up a very weak bet on future global temperature change for the 2010s. Remarkably, the terms of Joe's bet fall below the range projected by 87% of the IPCC models, indicating that Joe thinks that the IPCC has overestimated warming, which is inconsistent with Joe's frequent statements to the contrary. Nothing like some numbers to cut through the verbiage.

Here is what Chip has to say:
So, instead of [Joe Romm] offering up something on the namby-pamby side of things (which seems to run counter to his character), he ought to put something strong and confident out on the table—at least a bet that the 2010s will minimally average 0.25°C above the past decade’s average temperature, but even more impressive would be 0.30° or 0.35°C.

Come to think of it, if he really believes the “doubled” warming projections from the MIT study that his is so keen on touting, he ought to man-up and proffer a 0.50°C average temperature rise during the next decade as a reasonable 50-50 value. That would certainly cement his reputation as a true believer.

Offering anything less, would indicate that Joe really isn’t all that convinced that global warming is going to progress at rate leading to “unmitigated catastrophe.” Offering to bet on a 0.15°C rise is more like something I would put up (if I were the betting sort)!

So is Romm a closet “lukewarmer?” Or is he starting to become a bit worried that global warming is being a bit overblown? He has already reversed course to endorse a very weak climate bill (Waxman-Markey, what James Hansen called a “monstrosity”) as “the only game in town.” Perhaps he is unwittenly softening his physical science view as reality too.

So here’s a challenge to Joe (‘I’m-right-you’re-wrong’) Romm: will you offer a global warming alarmism bet instead of a ‘global lukewarming’ one? Will you walk your scary talk?

Romm has painted himself into a corner (and not for the first time). Will he escape with silence or bluster? Or will he actually walk his talk? The climate corner of the blogosphere awaits his monumental decision. Meantime, it is just a bit embarassing to be caught out as being so inconsistent.