Today’s climate change debate has evolved much like the forecasting controversy of the 1860s. Similar questions arise: How can we trust scientists to warn of coming danger? What economic costs should we expect?
These climate disputes continue to resonate in part because meteorology is among the most difficult of sciences. It is one of the few fields of applied science that demands prediction. As any prediction involves uncertainty and uncertainty is anathema to scientists, meteorology seems condemned to exist in a fraught intellectual space.
Peter Moore, “The Great Victorian Weather Wars”, The New York Times (9 August 2015), SR7.