Update: High extinction risk from climate change?

When last we left Ilya Maclean’s claim that ongoing climate change represented a major threat to biodiversity, our probe had been put off by an autoresponder e-mail from Maclean:

I am out of office until Tuesday 12th July.

But true to his word, Maclean got back to me this morning:

Apologies for the delay. Hopefully the alternative contact provided in my automated email response was able to help if you had any urgent queries.

We reconcile the statement in our abstract by showing that, averaged across the examples we looked at, climate warming poses a major threat. Although no example involved an extinction risk of >95-100% (in your words, high confidence that show recent climate change has caused/will cause species extinction), the mean extinction risk was 10%. A risk of 10% is a major threat. I am attaching a copy of the paper together with the accompanying material, which gives details of all the examples we looked at, together with their extinction risk.

In answer to the second question – no. We compared actual and predicted responses. Sorry if this wasn’t made clear in my previous response.

Moving on from the alternative contact (the University of Exeter’s media relations manager) being no substitute for Maclean, we note that Maclean has again confirmed that there is no evidence that ongoing climate change has caused, is causing, or will cause species extinction. What is left — and what is claim is built on — are mere predictions, and highly unlikely ones at that.

So the next time alarmists begin hyperventilating about ongoing climate change causing species extinction, you will know that, despite 1,120 studies published since 2005 on this topic, there is no evidence that there is any relationship between the two phenomena.

3 thoughts on “Update: High extinction risk from climate change?”

  1. When there are so many important subjects for bright minds to be employed upon, it (to us lower minded classes) makes no logical sense for these overpaid citizens to be chasing after invisible rainbows. Every day I hear of previously unknown species being discovered and let us also remember that all the fauna and flora on earth have already experienced huge changes in climate over the history of the planet and yet they persist!

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