CliSAP: Mr. Held, several hundred researchers worked for several years on preparing the recently published third part of the Assessment Report, without pay and on top of their normal duties. The result was a work over two thousand pages long. Was it worth it?
Held: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, or IPCC, determines the difference between what we concretely know about climate change and what remains controversial. That’s enormously important, because it’s the only way to escape the unfortunate situation of talk-show formats: one expert claims one thing, the other claims just the opposite. What gets ignored in the process is that some theories have almost no backing whatsoever in the scientific community. Though the Assessment Reports don’t tell people what to think, they do provide clarity on which statements are sound and reliable and which aren’t.