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Climate Hustle

Abraham reply to Monckton

Posted on 6 June 2010 by John Abraham

Guest post by John Abraham

Dear Mr. Monckton,

Thank you for taking the time to comment on my presentation. I encourage people to view both of our arguments and make their own conclusions. I stand by my work and welcome judgment by the public and the scientific community. My intention as a professional scientist is to help provide a public disclosure of your scientific methods. I continue to believe that your work seriously misrepresents the science upon which you rely.

I would like to briefly address some matters which you raised. First, I will address your comments about my credentials. To begin, let me identify some of the subjects which are critical to understanding our world’s climate. Climate processes involve radiation, convection, and conduction heat transfer. In addition, fluid mechanics governs the flow of the atmosphere and the oceans. Chemistry is critical to understanding chemical reactions which take place in both the oceans and the atmosphere. Quantum mechanics deals with the interaction of airborne molecules and photons (radiation). Geology and its related subjects are important for many reasons, including the study of past climate (paleoclimatology). Skills in numerical simulation are essential for the creation and operation of models which allow scientists to predict climate change. There are other subspecialties which are also important; this is only a partial list.

I am a tenured professor at the University of St. Thomas, a private, Catholic university in Minnesota. I have taught courses in heat transfer, fluid mechanics, numerical simulation, and thermodynamics. Topics in my courses include radiation, convection, and conduction, the same physical processes which govern energy flows in the climate. My PhD thesis dealt with combined convection and radiation heat transfer. My thesis is held in the library at the University of Minnesota, it is available to the public.

My published works span many topics including convective heat transfer, radiative heat transfer, fluid mechanics, and numerical simulation. My work on numerical simulation is at the very forefront of computational fluid dynamic (cfd) modeling. I am an expert in non-linear fluid simulations. My background does not span the entire range of topics related to climate change (no one is able to claim this), it does cover many of the essential subtopics.

In addition to academic research, I am an active consultant in industry. I have designed wind turbines, built and tested geothermal cooling systems, studied the potential of biofuels to replace petroleum, and designed and created solar-radiation shields for buildings in desert climates. Taken together, I believe that I have the background required to discuss the issues of energy and the environment.

Next, your written reply to my work focused on a small number of my original points; I will discuss just a few of them here. Throughout this discussion, it must be recognized that you have not addressed the many serious scientific lapses which were present in your presentation.

  1. You correctly pointed out that in your presentation, you stated that you were “boring” whereas I stated you were “bored”. I apologize for misquoting you. In this regard, the point you were trying to make is that there is no consensus on global warming. You cited three search words and a range of years (2004-2007). Since the purpose of my presentation was to show that audience members have the capacity to investigate claims for themselves, I used a publically available academic search engine (GOOGLE SCHOLAR). I showed that there are many papers that can be found dealing with the dangers of climate change, using your search parameters. I invite readers to reproduce my search results and read the abstracts of those papers and come to their own conclusion. Your assertion that these papers existed, but that they did not provide “evidence for catastrophe” was, in my mind, unconvincing.
  2. You suggested that your temperature graphs referencing your own organization were properly cited. I disagree. It is the obligation of a scientist to show the original source of data, your work did not meet this standard. Citing your own organization is, in my view, improper, particularly since your organization was not involved in obtaining the data.
  3. I showed a number of slides which had no attribution. I note that among the totality of unattributed slides, you agree with me on all but one. You correctly point out that one had the letters “UAH” listed. I can assure you that I understand UAH refers to University of Alabama Huntsville. I continue to believe that a proper citation would include a journal in which this data was published with a volume number and pages.

I would like to disclose some new information that I have unearthed. On your 13th slide (another slide with no attribution), you present a graph showing that the Beaufort Sea Ice is growing. Your slide gives the impression that since ice in the Beaufort Sea is growing, there is no concern about global warming. Despite the lack of a citation, I have been able to learn about its origin. The following citation should be useful in this regard for your records.

H. Melling, D. Riedel, and Ze’ev Gedalof, Trends in Thickness and Extent of Seasonal Pack Ice, Canadian Beaufort Sea, Geophysical Research Letters, 24, 1-5, 2005.

I have written to the lead author and he replied….

“You are correct in your assessment that statements in the paper were nuanced…. The change in atmospheric circulation is attributable to… no one really knows but human influence on the atmosphere emissions either of chloro-fluorocarbons or carbon dioxide is the primary candidate. However, with so much multi-year ice gone, it is easy to understand why we have much more open water in September.”

Finally, I would like to point out the reason for the delay between your October, 2009 presentation until my reply, it was caused by my desire to present a thoughtful, thorough reply. You have dealt with a small number of very peripheral issues. There remain very severe errors with your presentation that are yet unanswered. If you have corrected the many errors which I have disclosed, please accept my apologies.


Dr. John Abraham
Associate Professor
University of St. Thomas
School of Engineering

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Comments 51 to 94 out of 94:

  1. I thought I would do a search in the news filter of Google for anything about Monckton. It came up with this headline:

    "Viscount Monckton is an embarrassment to global warming sceptics ..."

    Which was apparently a blog entry by Tom Chivers:

    But it appears the Telegraph have deleted the page!
    But Google still has it indexed as being posted 3 days ago.

    Does anyone know how to retrieve an archived/cached page?
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  2. Re my last post...

    Found a copy on a blog. Read it quick before the Telegraph track it down!
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  3. The Ville: You'll find Tom Chiver's blog post linked to in Lord Sidcup's comment @ #47
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  4. #47 Lord Sidcup and DB

    I seems likely that is Monckton. The note picks up memes (Bible college) from his rebuttal, such as it is, and actually tones them down a bit, albeit with a little added menace in suggesting her will "be in contact." He (or his emissaries) have repeatedly shown up to say similar things in other blogs, so it is consistent.

    On the other hand, it does also seem really ham handed and ill-advised. Can he really be that tone deaf?
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  5. Re: 47 lord_sidcup

    Is UKIP's Deputy Leader, Christopher Monckton, having a hand in censorship of the British press? Interesting.

    In stark contrast:
    UKIP MEP stands by attack on “biased, censoring” BBC
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  6. @Ned #48

    Although there has been some moderation of this thread, I think its on topic as it stands, though worn out. The situation so far...

    We've in front of us a strong case from Abraham that Monckton is wrong or misguided on virtually ever major point he made about the state of climate research in his presentation at Bethel. Moreover, it appears Monckton systematically misinterpreted prior research to fit a preexisting narrative that directly contradicts the conclusions of much of the research he cites.

    At this point, we are waiting for a substantive response from Monckton since Abraham's points largely concern his use of the existing research. So far we mostly have invective and (possible) threats to Abraham and others seen to be promulgating his analysis. As I see it, the discussion has centered around whether that approach is justified, or justifiable. Reasonable given the context.

    Frankly, I'm inclined to ignore Monckton completely after this debacle. Unfortunately, he seems to be actively engaged in trying to censor rational debate. As, this site is dedicated to the proposition that such debate can and should occur, it concerns us all. That kind of behevior must be called out.

    As for what Monckton will eventually do, I'm not sure. He's got a huge hole to climb out of. Based on past behavior, I'm not expecting a mea culpa , nor am I expecting a sharp right turn toward a full rational engagement with the literature and climate researchers. Instead I bet he'll sidetep the whole issue and make the claim that he is free to interpret the prior research unfettered by the actual opinions of the researchers themselves.

    That will appeal to those who identify with him and have come to see the "debate" as a ball game in which they are the underdogs. But I think it is the wrong way forward, for everyone concerned.
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  7. I do not think Monckton should be ignored. Monckton has an important audience. His recent testimony to the US Congress should be the next target of the same sort of detailed scientific analysis Abraham conducted, and I would like to see him defend that document in front of cameras and questions with sworn affidavits by the scientists whose papers he cites. I hope this event is just a dry run for that.
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  8. Stephen Baines, thinking of Monckton as a social phenomenon I doubt this episode will cut into his popularity as an attraction for folks having beliefs similar to his. In our minds we may know magicians are masters of distraction and illusion but in our hearts we still find them entertaining.

    Personally I find Monckton's writing to be amusing if I detach myself from its consequences and forget that he's aiming at real people. Monckton fires words like a gunner having an automatic weapon and an inexhaustible supply of ammunition, spraying verbiage wildly with abandon. That's entertaining, even if what he's writing is ultimately useless.

    On the other hand, Monckton's work is undoubtedly having an effect on the amount of C02 being emitted into the air, helping to increase the committed amount of warming we're facing unnecessarily and thus he's having an impact on the physical world quite beyond his value as a road show. Next time he's up for consideration to be used as an expert source of testimony, drawn upon as a resource to help shape public policy, I hope the memory of the scientific community is sufficiently long as to recall this matter and make sure those listening to his opinions are keenly aware of his liabilities, his unreliability as a well of useful knowledge and interpretation.

    John Abraham has helped to establish a means of gauging Monckton's utility for assisting with public policy formulation and thus has probably reduced to some extent Monckton's future contribution to C02 emissions and committed warming. Let's hope the painstaking effort Abraham has invested in creating this metric will not be forgotten when it's most needed.
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  9. J -- thanks, I'll keep that in mind! I'm going to try to email Monckton directly today. Mark Swanson kindly let me know his email address posted at the Heartland Institute.
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  10. Let me be more specific, I would "prefer" to ignore his specific claims about climate. I simply don't have the time to waste on them if he is going to be so cavalier with the literature. However, I won't pretend he doesn't have influence. While his rhetorical audacity often makes me chuckle, its not funny when he's playing so loose with science on such important issues in front of people of power.

    I wonder how many of the scientists that he contacted were even aware that Monckton was using their research to support his own ideas. Scientists often have little to gain professionally from engaging the public. Episodes like this make it clear that they are engaging the public in ways they were not even aware of. Will it make them more receptive to engaging the public and dispelling the myths and oversimplifications when they arise? I sure hope so.
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  11. Further to Stephen's remarks about Monckton's influence, an example.

    Here in the U.S. the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) is preparing to regulate some types of C02 emissions as a form of pollution, which depending on the source and effect it clearly is under the wording of the agency's mandate. Hearings on EPA's budget were used as an opportunity to delve into legislation proposed by Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski, Murkowski's intent being to selectively slice out C02 as a pollutant that EPA may address.

    Here's Monckton's "expertise" appearing in that discussion:

    [U.S. Senator] Inhofe, whose leading campaign funder is the oil and gas industry, has been trying for years to back up his claim that climate science is a "hoax". His colleague, Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), joined his criticism, drawing from British business and policy consultant Christopher Monckton's science skeptic group, the Science and Public Policy Institute, for his arguments.

    US Plans for Greenhouse Gas Regulations in 2011, Hopes for CCS

    Presuming Monckton's input more or less influences the outcome of this matter, Monckton's activities may be said to influence future committed warming. Given a susceptible policy environment pure rhetoric may translate into physical effects. In this situation we see senators from states directly benefiting from fossil fuel extraction leveraging Monckton's claims to change the course of public policy.
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  12. Bern at #2

    What was the outcome of his three months searching?

    This, or something similar, is what he should have found :

    Instead he came up with a spread-sheet calculation based on the Stefan Boltzmann equation which is far too simple to model the behaviour of a gas with a highly non-uniform temperature, and a spikey absorption spectrum. There was also no way that it could include the time delay caused by the huge thermal capacity of the oceans. This over-simplified model was triumphantly published by the Sunday Telegraph as a disproof of the scientific consensus. The reason is that it had derived a very low climate sensitivity.
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  13. Marketing rule #1 is that perception is reality, regardless of facts! Monckton is apparently quite skilled in the art.
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  14. deconvoluter at #62: thanks for that, it looks like a nice concise summary of the relevant equations.

    As I mentioned, I only googled for three seconds, so I obviously only found the basic radiative heat transfer equations. Reality is much more complex, as your link shows, when you throw an absorbing/re-radiating atmosphere into the mix.

    I would think, though, that a quick search for papers discussing heat transfer through the atmosphere would get you there a lot faster than three months! Or perhaps it took three months to find some equations that gave answers Monckton liked? It's a shame physics doesn't work that way, or we'd have free energy, anti-gravity, hyperdrives, and colonies in other star systems already!
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  15. Uh, was it unacceptable to post that Monckton is misrepresenting Abraham and also that he is demanding a professional courtesy even though he's not a professional?
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    Moderator Response: The "lying" and "lie" in your comment violated the comments policy.
  16. So it did. First item. Sorry about that.

    I admit, I hadn't read the policy because I assumed it was like many others. But it seems that dishonesty is a "method" used against AGW, not just a motive, so it's difficult to talk around the problem of lies.

    Not that you want my opinion, but the whole thrust of Abraham's presentation is that Monckton is making false statements. I'm about a quarter of the way through the thing, and it's breathtaking.
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  17. JESTL I share your frustration to some extent but think about this problem from an analytical perspective.

    The term "false statement" does not imply certain knowledge of motivation, while "lie" connotes intentional conveyance of inaccuracy. Short of us being somehow telepathic, "false statement" is arguably a superior way of describing the utility of a given example of Monckton's erroneous communications because the term does not presume to characterize the underlying cause of the problem.
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  18. I was quite impressed with Professor Abraham's presentation. His excellent contribution deserves to be widely disseminated both for its content and for its example. I've tried to do my little part by compiling notes on all 126 slides of his presentation along with an index (weighting at 18 pages and 8,000 words)
    A Citizen’s Unauthorized Notes...
    Science On Trial.

    An exploration of the recent presentation:
    “A Scientist Replies to Christopher Monckton”

    Abraham v. Monckton
    If anyone is curious please visit
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  19. More observations for the Monckton Phenomenon data collection, as collected by the Guardian newspaper:

    Climate change sceptics last week co-opted Margaret Thatcher into their lobbying campaigns, illustrating once more the strong ideological streak that drives their efforts.

    Viscount Christopher Monckton of Brenchley has posted, on the blog operated by former TV weatherman and prominent "sceptic" Anthony Watts, a personal account of his influence on Lady Thatcher's views about climate change during the 1980s. Thatcher shocked the UN in 1989 with a call to action on man-made global warming, but has since made sceptical public statements about anthropogenic climate change.

    As we have come to expect, Viscount Monckton's recollection of events makes for interesting reading.

    He begins with the claim that: "I gave her advice on science as well as other policy from 1982-1986, two years before the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] was founded", pointing out that the prime minister's policy unit at that time had just six members and that he was "the only one who knew any science". Monckton then goes on to suggest that "it was I who – on the prime minister's behalf – kept a weather eye on the official science advisers to the government, from the chief scientific adviser downward".

    This revelation might be news to Lady Thatcher. On page 640 of her 1993 autobiography Margaret Thatcher: The Downing Street Years, the former prime minister describes how she grappled with the issue of climate change, referring only to "George Guise, who advised me on science in the policy unit". Indeed, given Monckton's purportedly crucial role, it seems to be heartless ingratitude from the Iron Lady that she does not find room to mention him anywhere in the 914-page volume on her years as prime minister.

    Viscount Monckton also modestly notes that he was responsible for bringing in "the first computer they had ever seen in Downing Street", on which he "did the first elementary radiative-transfer calculations that indicated climate scientists were right to say some 'global warming' would arise as CO2 concentration continued to climb".

    It is perhaps surprising that this novel and important innovation by Viscount Monckton was not recognised by the current minister for science and universities, David Willetts, who was also a member of the prime minister's policy unit between 1984 and 1986. In 1986, "Two Brains" wrote a prize-winning essay on the role of the unit, but mysteriously omitted to mention Monckton's historic contribution.

    Thatcher becomes latest recruit in Monckton's climate sceptic campaign
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  20. Another professor examines Monckton's work and finds it wanting.

    Detailed dissection here: The Monckton Files: Solar Variation

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  21. I'm just a vet, though believe it or not, I can remember Boltzman's Constant from our old Physics lectures, so I like to believe that I inhabit the ranks of the scientific semi-literate.

    My question is, if the Earth has an arbitrary average temperature of circa 15degC and the temperature of space is 270degK ie -270degC, then what's the problem? Anything that stems the ferocious heat loss to the exterior, surely has to be a good thing? Surely the correct thing to do is to pump CO2( or more potent greenhouse gases) into the atmosphere in order to keep the planet as warm as possible?
    What a nutty idea , I hear you say, but in reply I say....-270degC, out there. Not much chance of too much warming when you're up against that. It's bloody cold out there!
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  22. Awol - "as warm as possible". Why not even more potent GHGs then and get us to Venus-like temperatures? Well obviously because we want planet to be around the temperatures we evolved to live in. However, this debate isnt really about what would be an optimal temperature but is about how fast we are changing it. Think of your farm animals and about how easily farmers are able to cope with rapid climate change. We have huge urban centers and complex food production systems that have developed in stable climate. Rapid change is not good for them. Ask how farmers on the great deltas are going to cope with coast erosion and salt incursion as sealevel rises as well. Over a 1000 years (ice cycle type change) possible. Over 100 years - hmm.
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  23. scaddenp at 08:14 AM, whilst the climate might be described as "stable", agriculture generally has continually had to deal with rapid climate change forcing farmers and all manner of farmed animals and plants to adapt quite rapidly.

    This is not by virtue of extreme changes in the weather, but by migration.
    Animals that had developed over generations under one set of climatic conditions, either gradually or suddenly find themselves in areas where conditions are totally different.
    Dairy cattle bred for the cold wet conditions of England or Europe find themselves being milked in a somewhat drier Australia for example or in a decidedly hotter tropical Asia.

    The Australian fine wool industry was largely built on sheep with origins in the dry and arid areas of northern Africa, then from the plains of Spain, within a few decades they adapted to the colder wetter conditions of southern Australia.

    These days with modern transportation, both for domestic movement and international, animals often have to adapt from one extreme to another very quickly.
    The limitation seems to be not so much of animals from colder wetter areas adapting to warmer drier conditions, but the reverse.

    Even with grain crops, they too have migrated, but here technology in the form of genetic modification, and breakthrough cultivation practices has allowed production to occur and increase in areas previously considered unviable.

    The changes that have occurred within ones lifetime would only have been imagined by those of the previous generation who had both imagination and vision, and choose to try and overcome what others saw as impossible obstacles.
    That is one thing that remains unchanged today.
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  24. scaddenp has given an answer of sorts,but I have to say I'm not entirely satisfied.
    The Venus comparison is no good as there is a lot of controversy over the workings of the Venusian atmosphere.Most agree that it is not comparable to Earth, and in fact the greenhouse effect of CO2 plays but a small part in explaining the high surface and atmospheric temperatures on that planet.

    Regarding the consequences of the overheated planet which you envision. Why all the doom and gloom? In the deltas that you mention, could not the farmland, assumimng that there is any, be replaced with fish-farming and shellfish production? People could live on man-made islands as have been constructed in Dubai.In Japan and Hong kong hasn't there been considerable land reclamation? Then there's the Dutch and their dykes.Isn't nature herself lending a hand in the creation of new land ie the Surtseys and the Icelandic Westmann Islands. Isn't isostatic rebound still underway from the last ice age? Or has that come to a stop?
    With regard to agricultural production, I can't help feel that you are miles off the beam. Wasn't it Herschel the astronomer, that correlated increased sunspot activity with lower grain prices? Everything starts from plants. What's good for plants is good for animals which is good for people.Plants like the heat,given adequate water, and they positively love CO2.

    Where you, scaddenp,see doom and disaster, I see formerly barren territories transformed into luxuriant swards and dense woodlands, inhabited by contented happy people.
    That's the bit I don't get. Why is climate change, ie getting hotter, always accompanied by doom and disaster,when if anything, it is more likely to be accompanied by happiness and prosperity? Any changes are not going to happen overnight, so there's plenty of time to react.And never before have people been able to move so rapidly, and easily establish new settlements, thanks to the extra power to their elbow of readily combustible,energy-dense hydrocarbons.Markets and the intiative of adaptable people will solve any problems far more effectively than any number of governmental organisations.

    The Sahara was once green. There was no UN in those days.The people didn't die, but moved, adapted and went forth and multiplied......and very good at multiplication they were ..... a bit too good, for their own good, I sometimes think.
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  25. No, AWoL, there is not "a lot of controversy over the workings of the Venusian atmosphere." Perhaps you've been misled by the artificial controversy sparked by Goddard and Motl, and addressed in multiple places such as at Chris Colose's place.
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  26. AWoL, please provide more information as to your views on Venus - briefly, if you can.

    Also, with regard to us on this planet, you seem to have forgotten about :

    Population totals and density,

    National borders,

    The slowness of geological time as opposed to the quickness of present climate change,

    The recent credit crunch,

    The nonsense of skeptical arguments, and

    The rise and fall of civilisations.

    Aside from all that, erm, you have nothing new to add except wishful thinking.

    See further on this very website.
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    Moderator Response: JMurphy is correct that other posts on this site are appropriate for AWoL's comments and for responses by other people. That conversation is diluting this thread, so further off topic comments will be deleted. Remember that you can see recent comments on all threads at once, by clicking the "Recent Comments" link in the blue horizontal bar at the top of every page on this site. Lots of people watch that page, so you need not worry about people missing your comment even if it is on a different thread than this one.
  27. Thank you, Dr. Abraham, for doing this. You not only thoroughly exposed Monckton, you provided valuable teaching on how to find and evaluate information.

    It's perfectly absurd that Monckton, with his journalism degree and 0 journal articles, is trashing your credentials as not good enough to understand climate science. Can he not hear himself?
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  28. Just read through Monckton's reply to Dr Abraham.Must say I found it pretty impressive. Abraham doesn't come out of it well at all(IMHO).
    In fact overall, despite,allegedly, having this overwhelming consensus of some 3000 scientists, isn't it odd that they can't find some one with the erudition and panache to match his Lordship? A curious lack of passion and interest seems to pervade the scientists...or so it seems to me.
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  29. AWoL - I hope that is sarcasm. As to scientists response - I suppose a deep respect for the truth is holding them back.
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  30. Hello folks,
    I've been going over Monckton 466 questions to Professor Abraham and watching his 9-14-9 presentation - quite an amazing exercise creative thinking, writing, character attacks and worse. My goal is to write a little more about it but I'm look for some background I'm not finding.

    Is anyone out there familiar with the UK law suit against Al Gore, its process and results. All I seem to come up with is from the AGWHoax community and somehow I imagine there is a lot being left unsaid.

    Also, does anyone know of someone serious who has gone head to head with SPPI's "35 Inconvenient Truths: The errors in Al Gore’s movie"

    Any help would be appreciated, Peter{at}gmail
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  31. citizenschallenge at 09:33 AM on 2 August, 2010

    Not sure exactly what you need, but you can read the Court Proceedings here:

    England and Wales High Court (Administrative Court) Decisions

    and the science context is quite well described in RealClimate and Deltoid posts.
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  32. I have looked into Monckton's "SPPI temperature index" and written a blog post on the findings:
    Evolution of the “SPPI global temperature index”
    It started out as a simple mean of HadCRUt3, NCDC, RSS, and UAH. However, NCDC and HadCRUt3 were soon dropped and right now the "index" seems to be down to just RSS. In addition, the "index" is shifted for each plot such that its minimum value within the given graph is 0°C. So the value of the "index" may change depending on the time period covered.
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  33. AWoL. You found Monckton's rebut 'pretty impressive'? I on the other hand, thought of a line by Shakespeare. I'd describe is as "... full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

    If you find the scientists responses lacking in passion, perhaps it's because they are concerned primarily with precision, accuracy and facts. Remove the many colourful ad hominem attacks by Monckton in his rebut and you'll find that while it may have style, it's sorely lacking in substance.
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  34. There is a certain irony in Mr Monckton attacking anyone's academic or scientific credentials concerning climate science as this is a man whose only academic qualification is in "Classics" and he received a bachelors degree, which he insists on calling a masters.

    Mr Monkton has no scientific qualifications at all. He does however claim to have the cure for HIV. Watch this space. I see a Nobel Prize coming... Do they award Nobel Prizes for BS?
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  35. I've heard several people say that Monckton said that Abraham looks," and overcooked prawn." Yet, it doesn't seem to appear in Monckton's response.

    That would be truly hilarious if Monckton actually did say that.
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  36. I've been trying to find out where this thing went? Was Abraham making false accusations etc.

    Monckton claims that Abraham was misquoting him etc. I found this, which does appear to indicate some wrong doing on Abraham's part.
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  37. KaneWilliams, a thread at The Blackboard, which contains the following email from Abraham, should interest you :

    on June 10 he sent me this document. It sounds like he hasn’t changed it since then. My reply is that I continue to stand by my work, I invite people to view it and come to their own conclusions. Finally, my university has not asked me to remove the presentation. How is that for a reply?

    As should these links :

    Monckton embarrasses himself further

    Monckton's response to John Abraham is magnificently bonkers

    Monckton's reply to Abraham, and how science really works

    By the way, it is never a good idea to use links to WUWT - unless you include some humour or irony in your comment...
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  38. Thanks JMurphy

    I had seen those links, although not read through them in their entirety. I have heard Monckton say that Abraham's 83 page assignation of his talk does indeed make him sound bonkers and that he has misrepresented other's scientific studies, but that is only because Abraham has cleverly twisted and misquoted what he actually said.

    One example is states Abraham claimed he said in his presentation that David Hathaway concluded that Solar activity is the dominant cause for global warming, when in fact all he did was use a graph produced by David Hathaway and drew his own conclusion from the graph, never once stating that this is the conclusion reached by Hathaway. He did however site the conclusions made by Skaffeta and West regarding solar activity and climate change.

    This is just one example and it does seem like some manipulation of Monckton's words has taken place?
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  39. Come off it, KaneWilliams - you may see nothing wrong with Monckton using that particular graph (and a reference to an IAU conference, alongside clearly denialist views about the sun's impact on our climate) and implying support from that graph (and conference), in order to try to bolster the scientific case for his nonsense. He's very good at implying and creating associations, without actually stating the facts : in fact, he makes up his own 'facts' and tries to use the work of others to fit in with his own agenda, thereby misleading the credulous and the naive, while denying having actually intentionally creating any such implicit associations.

    The only manipulation going on here is being carried out by Monckton and the way he tries to broadcast his propaganda. Don't be taken in by it - stick to the views of the scientists, not the propagandists.
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  40. When Kane first posted here, their post hinted at concern troll-- and their link to the disinformer blog WUWT did not help. I did not jump in right away, as I wanted to see how things progressed. Sadly my suspicions have been confirmed.
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  41. KaneWilliams at 88

    I coudn't disagree more strongly. You (and others) should listen to the slide in Abraham's talk more carefully. It's a good indication of how wrongheaded Mockton's criticisms of Abaraham are.

    Abraham said that Monckton modified a graph from Hathaway and, by adding lines to it that emphasize the long term increase in solar radiation after the Maunder Minimum in the 1700s, used it to argue that warming could be caused by long terms variation in solar energy. I think that's a fair assessment of Mockton's intent with that graph.

    Abraham then contacted Hathaway to get his sense of whether it was appropriate to interpret his data in the way Monckton has. Hathaway said no. Specifically, in his email he said solar variability is not a major driver of climate - el Nino, GHGs and aerosols from volcanoes are more important (slide 94 of Abraham's presentation). That statement cuts right to the core of Monckton's argument since it suggests that long term increases in solar flux are not relevant to climate in the way Monckton suggests.

    Of course, that is only the first step in Abraham's argument. He then goes on to point out many papers showing that the science is in unform agreement that solar variation have contributed little if anything to the recent warming over the last 40 years. This context is directly pertinent to Mockton's argument, but not provided by Monckton.

    Monckton certainly has the right to interpret that graph from Hathaway anyway he wants. And Abraham has the right to point out that Monckton has not provided a lot of relevant information that may alter our assessment of his positions. We are then allowed to draw our conclusions. That is what scientific debate is about.

    As for Abraham's tone, if all reviewers were as civil and fair as Abraham was about this, my life as a scientist and editor would be a lot easier! Most reviewers would be absolutely livid at Mockton's repeated failure to acknowledge large bodies of literature and to twist interpretations of the original work. Scientist are not allowed the privelege of only aknowledging those pieces of evidence that agree with our position.

    As has been pointed, Monckton has been far less civil in his responses to Abraham as well, not to mention in his suggestions of conspiracy. In my opinion, critizing Abraham for lack of fairness and civility in this case is kind of like criticizing the victim of a mugging for using his/her face to hit the mugger's fist.
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  42. Kane. You might have time to watch an occasional video presentation.

    There are 3 here at Fool Me Once

    And this is the first of 4 items on Monckton's presentations at Potholer.
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  43. Question 14 of Monckton's Deliberate Response is interesting.

    Monckton claims that he was paid nothing for delivering the speech in Minnesota. He also challenges Abraham to provide evidence to support the claim that Monckton is paid by the Science and Public Policy Institute. If you look closely, you'll notice that he did not actually deny being paid by SPPI.

    Is there any way to prove whether or not he is compensated for his work on SPPI's behalf or for his speaking appearances?

    If he is not compensated, why on Earth does he do it? Is this his way of "giving back to the community"?

    Note: When reading Monckton's response it is important to note that he was responding to Abraham's original presentation
    , not to his later, more refined presentation.
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  44. Scoop! "Lord Monckton" actually always has been Sasha Baron Cohen in unbelievably convincing character!
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