The problem with understanding climate change is that there is so much information to sift through and so many forecasts. You can find directly opposite forecasts from different bodies which have scientific qualifications. The latest Met Office forecast is warming by 0.43⁰C between now and 2017, which brings us back to roughly where we were in 1997.
If that forecast is right (and it may not be) we have had twenty years without annual earth temperature increases. Twenty years is a short period of time when it comes to climatology, and predicting future climate change and the rate of them is a matter if incredible scientific complexity. It is possibly the most complex calculation that you can make; it requires huge amounts of data and the correct weighting of one set of data (such as earth temperatures at present) against all the other sets of data (such as the radiative strength of the sun and the changes of air and ocean oscillations and the atmospheric particulate levels).
This complexity enables many people to obtain quite radically different projections and to pick and mix to find some support for whatever view they hold about climate change.
That being so you may ask what is the value of these projections? I think that the value lies in understanding risk. If there is a risk that the climate will warm over the next century we must act to mitigate that risk, just as any person tries to mitigate risk when they insure their house and just as businesses try to mitigate risk when they cover themselves against market changes.
It is relatively easy to mitigate against the risk of the climate getting cooler compared with the mitigation that needs to be undertaken if the climate warms. Much of our infrastructure and many of our buildings were built in most of the developed world at a time when the climate was a little cooler, so I believe that many of the steps that need to be taken if there is a two degree cooling have already been taken.
However, none of the infrastructure in the developed world was built when the world was warmer, and none of it was built to take into account the increasing frequency of weather events that climate change implies.
I think it boils down to this; you may think that the likelihood of your house being destroyed by fire is so remote, but should that stop you from insuring against fire and buying a fire blanket and an extinguisher?