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Trump's Climate Modeling Reform Heats Up His Critics

The Trump administration has made, and is still making, adjustments in the way the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other agencies approach climate change and the predictions that drive climate policies. Not everyone is pleased, to put it mildly.
New York Times reporters Coral Davenport and Mark Landler, in a piece that sounds more like a screed than a news story, can barely contain themselves.
“Now, after two years spent unraveling the [environmental] policies of his predecessors,” they write, “Mr. Trump and his political appointees are launching a new assault.”
They continue: “In the next few months, the White House will complete the rollback of the most significant federal effort to curb greenhouse-gas emissions, initiated during the Obama administration. …
“And, in what could be Mr. Trump’s most consequential action yet, his administration will seek to undermine the very science on which climate change policy rests.”
And what is this “science” the president seeks to undermine? Climate models.
“As a result, parts of the federal government will no longer fulfill what scientists say is one of the most urgent jobs of climate science studies: reporting on the future effects of a rapidly warming planet and presenting a picture of what the earth could look like by the end of the century …”
Interesting concept: “reporting on the future effects.” One might be forgiven for thinking that reporting was supposed to focus on past events. Indeed, it’s not entirely clear how one reports on something that hasn’t happened—and may never happen.
What the Trump administration is actually doing is limiting the predicted scope of climate models to the year 2040—20 years in the future.
There’s a reason for that: Climate models have often overestimated future warming and other climate changes.
And the further one goes in the future, the less reliable any predictions will be. That’s not just true of climate models, it’s true of all econometric models.
Congressional Budget Office (CBO) econometric models often overestimate the negative impact of tax increases and underestimate the positive impact of tax cuts, even though the CBO usually predicts just 10 years in the future.
The point here isn’t whether climate change is occurring; it’s whether climate change models accurately predict any future changes
Environmentalists believe they do and are pushing for radical policy changes that would dramatically disrupt if not devastate the economy and the U.S. standard of living based on questionable long-term climate predictions.
Of course, nothing stops academics and environmental groups from continuing their climate modeling independently and taking their findings to the press.
But the president’s policy merely accepts what these two “reporters” deny: the future of the economy and country is far too important to be based on sometimes questionable climate models.