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All IPCC definitions taken from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis. Working Group I Contribution to the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Annex I, Glossary, pp. 941-954. Cambridge University Press.

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Climate Hustle

A look back - SkS in 2013

Posted on 18 July 2017 by BaerbelW


The year of the 97%

The year started innocently enough with announcing the SkS Glossary in February, a neat piece of code making use of the IPCC glossary published with AR4 and programmed by Bob Lacatena. Hinting at more exciting news to come, Dana Nuccitelli and John Abraham launched their Guardian Blog "Climate Consensus - The 97%" in April. 


Shortly afterwards it became a bit clearer where this was leading to when John started a crowdfunding appeal to cover the publication fee for an open access peer-reviewed paper about the scientific consensus our team had been working on for more than a year. Within nine hours, the SkS readership had duly obliged and it was good to go.

SkS-Crowdfunding-20130425Crowdfunding appeal captured on Wayback after it had already run its course.

On May 16 everything was revealed in a post aptly titled "Skeptical Science Study Finds 97% Consensus on Human-Caused Global Warming in the Peer-Reviewed Literature" and accompanied by a memorable graphic which started to make the rounds fairly quickly:

consensus pie chart

Publishing our consensus study caused quite the stir, from getting tweeted by President Obama's Twitter account, to getting mentions in many media outlets around the globe. It warranted the publication of a special News Bulletin just a couple of days afterwards. Needless to say – and entirely as expected – attacks started to come in as well. To head them off, we had created a homepage for the project which has been kept current with adding links to relevant material and FAQs to it as needed.

By October, the paper had been downloaded more than 100,000 times making it the most downloaded paper in all of Institute of Physics journals (it currently stands at more than 700,000 downloads). 

November saw the publication of two new interactive features, the history of climate science created by Paul D and the Heat widget created by Bob Lacatena leveraging an analogy used by John in a presentation earlier in the year.


In December, the SkS team was present at AGU's Fall meeting for the third year in a row to give talks and present posters, thereby contributing to scientific research.

All told, 2013 was a very productive year for our team as Dana's summary post makes clear. We published 487 blog posts from 56 authors (With 183 John Hartz had by far the most posts followed by Dana with 106 and John with 33).


2012tiny   main   2014tiny

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