Is Climatology a Science?

Robert Tracinski asks that exact question. His article is very well thought out and clearly poses some interesting questions. I would add another question, Is Climatology the new Religion?.

Anyway the article is well thought out and poses very intersting questions.

[quote]In the late 17th and early 18th centuries, in the early years of the science of chemistry, many serious scientists accepted phlogiston theory. This was an attempt to explain the chemical processes of combustion, oxidation, and metabolism by inferring the existence of a substance call "phlogiston." This theory was wrong, but it was not a totally crazy invention; it simply came too early, before scientists had sufficient evidence to prove a theory of combustion. Phlogiston was only superseded when the great chemist Lavoisier identified oxygen as the substance that is actually responsible for combustion, a discovery that helped pave the way for the development of modern chemistry. 

But imagine: what would have happened if the government had come along and pumped the equivalent of billions of dollars into phlogiston research? What if phlogiston had become a social cause, promoted by political leaders, touted by famous actors, defended by the culture's best writers? What if those who raised objections to the theory were vilified as "phlogiston deniers" and had to worry about losing funding for their research? 

Yet that is precisely how today's scientific, political, and cultural establishment is approaching the nascent science of climatology…. 

….Before we take any theory from the field of climatology and make it — as Al Gore is telling us — the central organizing principle of our civilization, we had better ask a few big questions. 

Does climatology have a well-developed, thoroughly proven theoretical framework, derived from decades of observations and earlier discoveries? Does it have a proven set of laws to explain what factors drive the global climate on a scale of centuries? Does climatology have an established track record of being able to predict next week's weather, much less the next century's weather? 

Or is Al Gore flogging the 21st-century equivalent of phlogiston?[/quote]

 


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