Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Uncertainties and risk.....

With everyone running for top economist/political science critic of the IPCC, there is, as Conan Doyle said, a curious silence on "A Concept Paper for the AR4 Cross Cutting Theme:
Uncertainties and Risk
" by Martin Manning and Michel Petit which was commissioned by the IPCC preliminary to the AR4 and published in December 2003.

The remit of the paper is to discuss

• the relationship between uncertainty and risk assessment;
• the treatment of uncertainty in the IPCC Third Assessment Report (TAR);
• some general issues that arise when describing uncertainty;
• some suggested areas in which uncertainty and risk may need specific consideration;
• a suggested process for reviewing the treatment of uncertainty during the AR4 drafting process.
One of the perenniel discussions has been what the purpose of IPCC Assessment Reports is
IPCC Assessment Reports play a key role in the dialogue between scientists and non-specialists (decision makers, citizens, consumers) regarding the risks of anthropogenic climate change. The role of scientists is to understand the meaning of available observations and to develop rational projections of the future. On the other hand, a wide range of people have to make their own decisions, irrespective of their scientific background. A fundamental premise of the IPCC’s existence is that they can benefit from scientific and technical information on the possible consequences of their decisions. This requires that the IPCC process be used to translate scientific understanding into terms which can help every one in making up their own minds
Has this paper been discussed elsewhere? Eli is not fond of making rubble bounce, but much tooing and froing on how the AR4 will deal with uncertainty and risk has been discussed in a vacuum

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