Inexact science

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Tavish Scott (Perspective, 
1 August) implies that modelling of climate change incorporated apparent periods of stasis in temperature.

These claims were never made when the models were constructed and their projections made at the time should have seen us all incinerated by now. But these flawed projections were used to commit this country to damaging and futile carbon reduction targets and to the ruinously expensive and ugly folly of wind turbines.

There were periods of stasis in the 1940s to 1950s and now in the past 15 years. No explanation was offered 60 years ago and none backed up with credible measurements is available now. Stasis indicates that there are unknown climate properties that counterbalance the potential warming effects of CO2. Current models are not only imperfect they may even be totally wrong; time will tell.

Science is not about certainties; it simply assesses current knowledge. But that can change and often does, as understanding improves.

This island is crowded, there will never be enough acceptable room to accommodate turbines in the numbers required to generate electricity at an affordable price. And if that price is not damaging enough, wait until the bills come in to maintain those at sea or remove them altogether.

Levying the costs of this folly on electricity bills is a disgraceful and regressive income tax; we all need electricity. Scotland may have led the way in getting rid of the poll tax, but in what way is this tax on electricity bills any different?

Politicians of all kinds have the unwelcome tendency to commit us, without consultation, to the noble gesture and to imposing virtue from on high, particularly in Scotland. It is time instead for political humility and realism, not hubris.

Prof Tony Trewavas

Scientific Alliance 
Scotland

North St David Street

Edinburgh