Scientific consensus is what you talk about when you don't have scientific fact. The object of science is to establish fact. That is what the scientific method is all about.
NO. NO. A MILLION TIMES NO. Once again an old tactic rears its head. As with the evolution battles, those who oppose overwhelming scientific opinion attempt to obfuscate how science works in an effort to paint a picture of controversy and disagreement. Sort of like the need to be"fair and balanced" when it's obvious only one side contains the truth.
Brit, stick to journalism. Science is not about establishing facts. Science is about trying to understand the facts that exist. And no, hardly ever is there absolute agreement on what those facts mean. However, when a consensus of the scientific community agrees, it should carry a heavy weight.
It continues to amaze me that we as a society blithely watch as millions of dollars are paid to a ball player who fails 70% of the time yet if only 5% of the scientific community disagrees with a position, the veracity of the 95% is put to question.