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The UN climate body does not back climate alarmist claims

By Tom Harris - posted Wednesday, 8 May 2024

Climate alarmists often tell us that their frightening forecasts are backed up by the best available science. In particular, they point to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports that they tell us are the gold standard of climate science research. If the IPCC said it, it must be true, they proclaim!

The late Dr. Jay Lehr and I have often written about the serious flaws in the IPCC reports. Indeed, much of the IPCC science has been shown to be wrong, leading many participating scientists to resign from the body.

As documented in the Climate Change Reconsideredseries of reports of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change(the most recent of which appears at right), there are thousands of scientists across the world publishing in leading peer reviewed journals who show that much of what the IPCC conclude is incorrect. Consequently, basing our nations' climate and energy policies only on what the IPCC say would be irresponsible, even reckless.


But in many cases, climate campaigners are not even following the conclusions of the IPCC. In this article, I will discuss what the IPCC actually said in their reports and show some examples (there are many) where even the UN body itself contradicts what alarmists tell us.

First, it is important to understand what the various confidence levels used by the IPCC mean. They are:

  • Very Low: Indicates very limited evidence or low agreement.
  • Low: Suggests limited evidence or agreement.
  • Medium: Represents moderate evidence or agreement.
  • High: Signifies substantial evidence or high agreement.
  • Very High: Implies robust evidence or very high agreement12.

Climate alarmists often tell us that we should expect to see increases in flooding due to man-made climate change. But the IPCC finds no trends in flooding globally.Specifically, the IPCC write on p. 1569of the latest Assessment Report, the sixth:

In summary there is low confidence in the human influence on the changes in high river flows on the global scale. In general, there is low confidence in attributing changes in the probability or magnitude of flood events to human influence because of a limited number of studies, differences in the results of these studies and large modelling uncertainties.

Similarly, in the Fifth Assessment Report the IPCC wrote:


There continues to be a lack of evidence and thus low confidence regarding the sign of trend in the magnitude and/or frequency of floods on a global scale.

Note that they don't even feel confident enough to conclude that floods are increasing or decreasing!

It seems that after every intense rainfall event, we are told that we will see even more of these due to man-made climate change and these are responsible for more flooding. But the IPCC actually says:

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About the Author

Tom Harris is an Ottawa-based mechanical engineer and Executive Director of the International Climate Science Coalition.

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All articles by Tom Harris

Creative Commons LicenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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