The global warming debate is a tricky subject for leader and op-ed writers and you can always rely on there being some marvellous errors and misunderstandings when these generalists hold forth.
Today, the Sunday Times (£) carries a long opinion piece from Adam Boulton on the rise of the sceptics within the Conservative party. While we've seen hints of such a shift over the last few months, Boulton seems rather more certain than I am that it's a real phenomenon. He's also pretty sure that it's a mistake since swing voters are apparently more likely to be greens. I have no idea if this is true or not.
But as expected, there are plenty of things to take issue with. This is the most toe-curling bit, on the new Sherwood paper and the consensus:
Last week the journal Nature published a paper reporting that the Earth’s climate was more susceptible to carbon dioxide emissions than previously thought, and predicting global temperature could go up by 4C this century. True, as the tireless climate change “realist” Lord Lawson points out, the global temperature so far has not risen as much as some of the direst predictions but, equally, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded last September it was “unequivocal” that global warming was taking place because of human actions. The panel said its view was supported by 97% of scientific research.
As you can see, he has clearly read the press release rather than the paper itself, and has little or no idea of what the paper actually means for estimates of climate sensitivity. As for the bit about the 97%, I think he is just very, very confused.