Those "numbers" are 2C temperature rise, 445ppm CO2 and 25—40 percent reduction in global warming gases.
In the end, at U.S. insistence, none of those numbers appeared in the U.N. conference's key final document. But in the coming two years of crucial climate negotiations, as authorized at Bali, those simple numbers are sure to become chips in the high-stakes diplomatic, political and economic bargaining of almost 190 nations involved.
The U.S. team did well to resist the rush pell-mell to develop policy based on the IPCC report as the "science" underlying the report is seriously flawed:
- Thermal energy gains not temperature increase should be the metric.
- Methane emissions are mentioned in passing even though methane is a more potent greenhouse gas.
- The IPCC models claim feedback mechanisms amplify human generated forcings. But, using their own data, it can be shown those mechanisms have muted the effects of human activity.
- The models employed by the IPCC scientists have little predictive skill. As a consequence, the IPCC is currently rushing to 'fix' their models to account for the recently observed reductions in Arctic ice pack.
Given all the shortcomings in the IPCC report and the underlying science, one thing is certain: Any policy developed using the report as a basis is sure to be misdirected.