Re: Climatologists Can't Explain Why Global Warming Has Slowed Down
posted at 4/2/2013 2:45 PM EDT
I didn't realize that the scientific process has to run on a straight and undeviating line. Or that all theories have to be absolutely correct at the outset. It amazes me that some people want to disown science so adamantly only to suit a political agenda.
Here. For your convenience I'm posting a link to a definition of the "scientific method."
Here is the important bit with some notes by me:
I. The scientific method has four steps
1. Observation and description of a phenomenon or group of phenomena. (The world is getting warmer.)
2. Formulation of an hypothesis to explain the phenomena. In physics, the hypothesis often takes the form of a causal mechanism or a mathematical relation.(Maybe the cause of the warming are 'greenhouse gases.')
3. Use of the hypothesis to predict the existence of other phenomena, or to predict quantitatively the results of new observations.(the development of climate models.)
4. Performance of experimental tests of the predictions by several independent experimenters and properly performed experiments.(collect data, compare against model predictions.)
If the experiments bear out the hypothesis it may come to be regarded as a theory or law of nature (more on the concepts of hypothesis, model, theory and law below). If the experiments do not bear out the hypothesis, it must be rejected or modified. What is key in the description of the scientific method just given is the predictive power (the ability to get more out of the theory than you put in; see Barrow, 1991) of the hypothesis or theory, as tested by experiment. It is often said in science that theories can never be proved, only disproved. There is always the possibility that a new observation or a new experiment will conflict with a long-standing theory.
(What has happened is that the predictions based on the theory have not borne out the hypothesis. Therefore, it must be rejected or modified. This is not politics, this is just the correct application of the scientific method.)