“The 97% estimate is bandied about by almost everybody. I had a close look at what this study really did, and as far as I can see the study just crumbles when you touch it. None of the statements in the papers is supported by any data that is actually in the papers. It is pretty clear that most of the science agrees that climate change is real and most likely human made, but this 97% is essentially pulled from thin air – it’s not based on any credible research whatsoever.”
Cook has told DeSmogBlog that he and his colleagues have found numerous errors [in Tol's final accepted manuscript to Energy Policy].
Tol’s attack plan
Tol presents no evidence that this is a large problem that would significantly alter the results, though, to the contrary – the numbers he presents suggest it is a small problem that would not significantly alter the conclusion of an overwhelming consensus.
All data relating to the “Quantifying the Consensus on Anthropogenic Global Warming in the Scientific Literature” paper that are of any scientific value were published on the website Skepticalscience.com in 2013.Only information that might be used to identify the individual research participants was withheld.
Our finding of 97% consensus on human-caused global warming in relevant climate papers was based on the most comprehensive analysis of peer-reviewed climate papers yet to be conducted. Our result is consistent with previous studies, using different methods, which have independently found 97% agreement amongst climate scientists.I have been invited by the journal to submit a reply to Professor Tol’s paper, to be published in the same issue. Our reply will document a number of critical errors in Professor Tol's paper and will be available once his paper has been published.