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    More than 100 comments found. Only the most recent 100 have been displayed.

  • Climategate CRU emails suggest conspiracy

    Philippe Chantreau at 05:39 AM on 18 February, 2020

    Booker is not a reliable source. The mining/fossil fuel stooge S. McIntyre years ago launched a harassment campaign by asking multiple followers to file FOI requests, directed against scientists whose work he disliked. Because they knew that the requests were not a good faith effort, the recipients were reluctant to release information, which unfortunately escalated to whole thing in a away that then became easy to exploit for the bad faith actors. It can certainly be said that Jones and others could have handled this better, and that was one of the conclusions of the investigation. Whomever can be perfect all the time when faced with bad faith attacks can throw the first stone.


  • Climategate CRU emails suggest conspiracy

    ScienceFre4k at 05:08 AM on 18 February, 2020


    in your article above you portray Climategate as follows: "Focusing on a few suggestive emails, taken out of context ..."

    After some minutes of googling I came across this article from the renowned british newspaper "The Telegraph" (in case someone doesn't know: the weekly version of "The Daily Telegraph"): LINK

    Citation: "There are three threads in particular in the leaked documents which have sent a shock wave through informed observers across the world. Perhaps the most obvious is the highly disturbing series of emails which show how Dr Jones and his colleagues have for years been discussing the devious tactics whereby they could avoid releasing their data to outsiders under freedom of information laws."

    The article also says that this scandal goes right to the heart of the IPCC: "Professor Philip Jones, the CRU's director, is in charge of the two key sets of data used by the IPCC to draw up its reports."

    The problem is that these pictures given differ so geatly that there is only one explanation: One side must be lying like a trooper.

    If the author of the article, columnist Christopher Booker, and the colleagues he is referring to, are all lying, he and them must have made up their accusations, that means the emails and the years of deceit do not exist, it is all invented. Or he misread the emails, he and his colleagues are just stupid. Or, on the other hand, climate alarmists are defending their cause by playing down a terrible scandal. Everyone shall decide for their own, which is more probable.

    The start page I read here was quite good and you made some interesting points I eventually will investigate on further. But here, talking about Climategate I once more come to the conclusion that Skeptics sometimes aren't quite that skeptic at all but love to trust in what authorities proclaim, without checking the facts.

  • How did climate change get so controversial?

    JohnMashey at 15:20 PM on 24 January, 2020


    Dark Money: Excellent suggestion for all! Jane is one of the very best investigative journalists in US, honest, fearless and a relentless digger and teller of truth. 

    As it happens, I've been looking at Kochs for a long time: search for Koch in Crescendo to Climategate Cacophony(2010)

    or look especially at p.47 and then pp.93-95, that shows which funders give money to which organizations that do climate denial. p.96 has summaries: the 3 main Koch-related foundations (there's a 4th, but small) gave much more than Exxon.  Of course, at that point I didn't know about the Kochs+allies' money anonymizer DONORS TRUST/CAPITAL FUND, which I only figured out in early 2012, updated later in Fakery 2. See pp.68-76. See also Robert Brulle's  more extensive research, summarized in Study Details Dark Money Flowing to Climate Science Denial(2013). Over time, Koch direct funding down, DONORS way up as seen in graph there. Charles Koch always hated having to report recipients of money from his private foundations.  Lately, Donor Advised Funds are increasingly used by some to obscure what they're doing, i.e., N donors give money to a DAF, which then writes the checks, but without identifying the sources. Occasionally one can figure that out, but only with luck.

  • The never-ending RCP8.5 debate

    One Planet Only Forever at 05:18 AM on 13 January, 2020

    nigelj @54 (and others),

    Discussions regarding what global leadership was aware of and understood in the 1970s should be based on a comprehensive understanding, particularly regarding what is required to develop sustainable improvements for humanity.

    It is not correct to believe that “The state of the science in the 1970's and 1980's was definitely too uncertain for us to conclude we were warming the climate and should do something.”

    In the 1960s global leadership understood that increasing atmospheric CO2 due to fossil fuel use was a concern. The 1972 Stockholm Conference compiled what was understood to be going wrong and what required expanded understanding of the directions of development and corrections required to sustainably improve the future of humanity. The report included the concern about increasing atmospheric CO2.

    Perceptions of success that rely on harmful and unsustainable activity, like fossil fuel use, are undeniably unsustainable. Fossil fuel use is making the future worse. That has been understood for a long time. The fact that such a fundamental undeniable understanding is still not generally understood in the powerful and supposedly more advanced populations today indicates that the developed socioeconomic-political systems over-developed in the wrong direction. They require significant correction, not a continuation of Kumbaya-style compromising in an attempt to have 'everyone get along with everyone allowed to believe what they want and behave as they wish'.

    The identified concern about fossil fuel use in 1972 should have been sufficient to result in global leaders cautiously restricting the pursuit of increased benefit from fossil fuel use, especially by already more fortunate people, until more was understood about the consequences. There was plenty of discussion by global leaders about it in the 1970s, even though more focus was put on concerns that more immediate threats to humanity like the ozone layer impacts, tobacco use, and vehicle safety.

    Increased pursuits of benefit from fossil fuels since the 1970s by people who were already living better than basic decent lives has tragically strengthened the resistance to correction. Powerful people who unjustifiably benefited more from continued and increased global use of fossil fuels almost certainly hoped would that increased resistance to correction would develop.

    Efforts by undeserving powerful wealthy people to raise doubts about 'climate science and the required corrections' and to discredit climate scientists (and the related scientists in fields affected by climate change), increased when global leadership was starting to responsibly restrict the continuation of that harmful behaviour by undeserving powerful people. The undeserving powerful people collectively mobilized their resistance. Their actions included:

    • getting political-minders involved in writing IPCC reports to push the wording as far away from supporting the need for corrective action as they could get away with. And they mobilized misleading marketing to popularize misunderstanding and unjustified doubt.
    • A coordination of actions to create the Climategate Scandal (theft of emails, the effort to comb through them for nuggets to abuse in misinformation programs, and the development and distribution of the misleading marketing).
    • Fighting to have national leadership restrict the science being publicly developed and presented. The Harper-led Conservatives in Canada selectively muzzled scientists and redirected federal research funding away from improving understanding of the negative impacts of climate change when they had the power to do so. The Bush and Trump led USA acted in similar ways, as have similar groups in other places around the planet (including Putin's Russian group).

    There is an identifiable global political faction that is a significant part of the problem, being deliberately correction resistant, being as harmful as they can possibly get away with. And it is correct to identify the 1970s as a point in time when that collective started to 'globally coordinate their efforts against the expansion of awareness and improvement of understanding of the corrections that climate science (and other sciences) had identified are urgently required to stop making the future worse'. There is little doubt that what has developed today is more harmful to the future than what had been developed by the 1970s, in spite of it appearing that RCP8.5 is no longer the likely rate of making the future worse.

    What is now required, and will be required at all future 'Nows' and was required in previous 'Nows', is leadership responsibly limiting how much worse the future will be, and actually acting to help sustainably improve the future. And that limiting of the harm done to the future, and helping improve the future, now includes justifiably 'reducing' the perceptions of superiority of those who unjustifiably significantly increased their benefit from the use of fossil fuels since the 1970s. The more recently the benefits have been obtained, and the wealthier the beneficiary is, the more the perception of superiority deserves to be lost.

    That may be unpopular. And it may anger many people. But it is undeniably the correct understanding.

    Compromising awareness and understanding to 'get along with people who are harmfully unaware or have developed a harmfully incorrect belief/opinion' is not helpful. There are many issues where diversity is to be embraced. Awareness and understanding regarding climate science is not one of them.

    The use of fossil fuels makes things worse. A possible exception would be fossil fuel use as a temporary transition measure to raise a desperately poor population up to a starting level for sustainable development.

    An improving future requires an end to the harmful climate change impacts of fossil fuels use, the sooner the better. And the most fortunate need to be leading the correction, including wealth from fossil fuel use being exclusively used to assist the desperately poor sustainably improve their life circumstances. And any more fortunate person that can be shown to be resisting that effort deserves a serious loss of status.

  • Video: Is CO2 actually dangerous?

    One Planet Only Forever at 12:59 PM on 7 December, 2019

    nigelj @ 34,

    I share your experience as an Applied Science Professional seeking justification for any claim or decision made (and trying to make sure my claims or decisions had a robust basis). My most common move regarding a claim was to ask the claim-maker (Sales-pitch deliverer) to provide a clarification or more detailed justification and independently investigate the issue.

    That led me to challenging "technical Sales Reps" in ways that resulted in them changing their sales pitches. In some cases they realized they had been caught making a claim they could not defend and they changed.

    To be as correct as possible here is what Mann said:

    "A runaway greenhouse effect means once the planet gets warmer and warmer, then the oceans begin to evaporate. And water vapor is a very strong greenhouse gas, even more powerful than carbon dioxide. So you can get to a situation where it just — the oceans will begin to boil, and the planet becomes so hot that the ocean ends up in the atmosphere. And that happened to Venus."

    And many years later some people, including the infamously incorrect Watts of WUWT, started claiming Mann had incorrectly declared the "End of the world". And very few reporters who started piling on to the original misleading claims about what Mann said appear to have bothered to actually better understand the issue before piling on (potentially including Potholer54). Few if any appeared to ask Mann what his comment or clarification was. And nobody asked the originators of the misleading claim making like Watts to explain themselves (just like few, maybe nobody, are asking the misleading climategate claim-makers to explain themselves).

    The same thing happened to AOC and her "End of the World" remark. AOC was most likely correctly commenting regarding the need to achieve all of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030, not just the climate change goal. But it is still correct to have said it if her comment was restricted to climate change because of the potential for significant irreversible future consequences if serious climate impact correction is not achieved by 2030 (the date for all of the SDGs). Many people did not bother to ask her to clarify what she meant. She could have, and probably would have, done that. And some reporters, after obtaining a better understanding of what she meant, could have asked the people who criticised her 'sales-pitch' what they think of the clarification (some of them would dislike the achievement of the SGDs, but probably would try to not admit it).

    It is important to understand that people like Trump do not like to be asked to explain themselves (that is why he limits his interviews and loves His One Way Rallies with his Loyal Fans). AOC and Mann are the opposite (in spite of claims that they are just appealing to 'their base' with their sales-pitches).

    Not all sales-pitchers are bad. The intention is what matters most. And seeking clarification of a sales-pitch helps determine if it is intended to improve awareness and understanding to help develop a sustainable and improving future for humanity, or is harmfully misleading and hoping to be appealing.

    Helpfully tugging on Heart-strings can be effective. And a jolt to get the heart pumping can also work. But, tragically, the likes of Trump prove that anger and fear based passion is more motivating. The likes of Greta and AOC appear to be on to that, but in a helpful rather than harmful way.

  • Skeptical Science New Research for Week #48, 2019

    John Hartz at 00:27 AM on 7 December, 2019

    ed56 @9:

    If you click on the About button on this website's Home Page, you will find the following statement:

    Skeptical Science is a non-profit science education organisation, run by a global team of volunteers.

    The goal of Skeptical Science is to explain what peer reviewed science has to say about global warming. When you peruse the many arguments of global warming skeptics, a pattern emerges. Skeptic arguments tend to focus on narrow pieces of the puzzle while neglecting the broader picture. For example, focus on Climategate emails neglects the full weight of scientific evidence for man-made global warming. Concentrating on a few growing glaciers ignores the world wide trend of accelerating glacier shrinkage. Claims of global cooling fail to realise the planet as a whole is still accumulating heat. This website presents the broader picture by explaining the peer reviewed scientific literature.

    Often, the reason for disbelieving in man-made global warming seem to be political rather than scientific. Eg - "it's all a liberal plot to spread socialism and destroy capitalism". As one person put it, "the cheerleaders for doing something about global warming seem to be largely the cheerleaders for many causes of which I disapprove". However, what is causing global warming is a purely scientific question. Skeptical Science removes the politics from the debate by concentrating solely on the science.

    This has been the mission of Skeptical Science since its inception and will continue to be its mission in the future.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    Eclectic at 17:52 PM on 2 December, 2019


    to add to Philippe's and Nigelj's comments, I shall yet again be rather tiresome to readers, in once again pointing out your major errors.

    Lindzen and Curry are intellectual failures.    And it must be very sad (for any true skeptic) that you are forced into the corner of admitting they are "the best"  of the opposition to mainstream science.

    Dr Curry is a minimizer who goes outside of scientific truthfulness, in order to give her uncritical followers the impression that hardly any global warming is the result of the Greenhouse effect.   She creates a cloud of confused ideas ~ rather like the way a squid creates a cloud of ink to conceal things.

    Prof Lindzen was a scientific force in the 1980's , but in the past decades his (initially reasonable) Iris Hypothesis has proven to be wrong, and his future projections of global surface temperature have proven to be very wrong.   Worse still , he seems to have fallen into a religious belief that Jehovah would not permit the Earth to warm by more than a fraction of 1 degree.   Quite unscientific.

    Please note that I am not saying Lindzen and Curry are unintelligent or legally  insane.   The question of their intellectual sanity is arguable.

    Nyood , it must be disappointing for you, that you cannot suggest anyone 'better'  than Lindzen or Curry.   Nor am I aware of any 'better'  contrarians, capable of providing even a small amount of evidence to challenge the mainstream science.

    And I will not bother to detail all the falseness of your ideas about the Hockeystick.   It is one more area where you seem very reluctant to educate yourself ~ likewise with Climategate !

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nigelj at 16:40 PM on 2 December, 2019

    nyood @56

    "you accept the political behaviour by the "11" as legit and only consequent. "

    Virtually all organisations have their office politics. I accept this isn't always a great thing, but the problem for me is you are not providing convincing evidence that the scientists in question have done anything significantly wrong. You are not being objective.  

    "In the end the IPCC is not researching itself but only analyzing and interpreting and they have a clear mandate, so even the egomaniac behaviour of M.Mann can be excused, he is only doing his job."

    The only mandate is the IPCC have to review the science and see where it leads. You have provided no evidence otherwise. Careful you dont slander people. Real sceptics are clear about what they mean by 'mandate'

    "It is just not fair, the IPCC is mising an organ that tries to falsify itself, here you will claim that they do that carefully, I will say: This is up to the skeptics that are cornered, shamed and excluded and people like Lindzen or Curry are no lunatics, just to name the best.

    Its a interesting point you make and I agree we need sceptical points of view, but that does not mean I have to agree with what the sceptics say, and it does not mean its ok for a scientific journal to have a board completely dominated by sceptics and Mann was justified in being annoyed by this, and scientists were justified by being annoyed by the Soon / Balinaus paper as pointed out by PC above. You have to see things in context. This was one paper and scientists haven't taken the same  stance over all sceptics papers. If they had, their might be cause for genuine concern.

    "Sceptics cornered shamed and excluded?"

    This is a wild exaggeration. Please note the IPCC goes out of its way to include sceptics in its review teams, eg Dr Vincent Grey. Please note the official investigations of climategate went out of their way to include sceptics. Please note that the scepetics have dozens of journals they can publish in, and they keep telling us how much research they publish.

    Some sceptics deserve to be shamed: I have quoted a few examples such as Moncton and Soon, but you refuse to engage and discuss.

    "9 separate investigations have completely exonerated all scientists of all charges"

    "This might be true, at the same time they were scolding the "11" for a lack of ingenuousness and transparency"

    There is no might be true about it. It is true.

    "The "Hockestick" that you use in the OP is an audacity and always will be."

    This is a composite of multiple detailed studies of the MPW. Not sure what more you would expect. How many studies would be enough for you? 

    Calling it an audacity doesn't make it an audacity. Perhaps it doesn't tell you want you want to see, so you throw mud at it.

    "This is the political thinYou know this. You know that warming periods are missing. "

    All I know is all the studies of the MPW I have seen show it was weak and I've seen dozens of studies.  I have no particular reason to doubt their veracity. Manns analysis was criticised for some bad statstics or something but the shape of his graph has been replicated over and over by other scientists using different methods. Thats good enough for me. Why would that not satisfy you?

    You sound like you are just angry that the science doesn't match how you want it to be, for whatever reason.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nigelj at 09:15 AM on 2 December, 2019

    nyood @51, I hear where you are coming from, and I have already read many of these emails ages ago, but I have to agree with eclectic. I would say a lot of the paranoia is in your own reaction to them, and you are indeed making a mountain out of a molehill.

    Mann was expressing his frustrations with a publication stacked with climate sceptics. I can understand this. It's hardly sinister and no different from the rhetoric we hear from sceptics themselves!

    Perhaps he went too far suggesting other scientists not submit to that publication, but meh. I dont know. Seems like a molehill to me.

    The pause was longer than was expected so obviously caused some concern and worried discussion among scientists, so I'm not sure why this is seen as a big deal, but in the end it turned out to be understood better, and a nothingburger. I've explaned this @30 but you fail to acknowledge the comment, learn and move on.

    There's certainly no reason to read anything sinister or questionable into the scientists discussion at the time about the pause. Scientists sometimes express doubts like anyone else. Your reaction to this is either verging on hysterical, or is contrived.

    You do not seem to apply the same standards to the sceptics. Look at the awful politicised stuff written by C Moncton, and W Soon who failed to declare funding sources and got caught and censured. There's a long list of far more troubling things than anything about climategate.

    Since you just repeat the same stuff over and over, and have not responded to most of the specific points I have made, I wont be responding to you further until you change to something else.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nyood at 07:51 AM on 2 December, 2019

    @ Ma Rodgers and nigelj

    I feel like you do not want to understand why i find it hard to trust people that talk like this. These "11" are the elite, they lose all intregrity with the leaking and i am scared by people like you that are willing to accept such behaviour considering the enormous power these "advisers" have:


    "It is pretty clear that the skeptics here have staged a bit of a coup, even in the presence of a number of reasonable folks on the editorial board30(Whetton, Goodess, ...). My guess is that Von Storch is actually with them (frankly, he’s an odd individual, and I’m not sure he isn’t himself somewhat of a skeptic himself), and with Von Storch on their side, they would have a very forceful personality promoting their new vision.There have been several papers by Pat Michaels, as well as the Soon andBaliunas paper, that couldn’t get published in a reputable journal.This was the danger of always criticising the skeptics for not publishing in the “peer-reviewed literature”. Obviously, they found a solution to that—take over a journal!"

    "So what do we do about this? I think we have to stop considering Climate Research as a legitimate peer-reviewed journal. Perhaps we should encourage our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers in, this journal. We would also need to consider what we tell or request of our more reasonable colleagues who currently sit on the editorial board.."

    This is borderline paranoid. This extreme focus on public and media perception and on control of the peer reviewed processes is way beyond any professional behaviour.


    "I hope you’re not right about the lack of warming lasting till about 2020. I’d rather hoped to see the earlier Met(eorological) Office press release with Doug’s paper that said something like—“half the years to 2014 would exceed the warmest year currently on record, 1998”!Still a way to go before 2014.I seem to be getting an email a week from skeptics saying “where’s the warming gone”? I know the warming is on the decades scale, but it would be nice to wear their smug grins away."

    There are countless emails of this kind. Please try to be neutral and read them all, you can skip the skeptical explanations in black like i did and read only the colored quotes:


    This is all about power, i avoided to get into the political side of climate change, i was all busy with the science, eventualy i turned my atention to climategate and my worst apprehensions came true. Climategate reads like a second - rate thriller, this is indeed sinister.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nyood at 22:47 PM on 30 November, 2019

    nigelj @16

    T.Wigley was not proven incorrect, quite the opposite for two reasons:

    1: His concern was confirmed with hundreds of emails of the following decade. Here are two more examples: M.Mann to E.Cook:

    "I don’t in any way doubt yours and Jan’s integrity here.I’m just a bit concerned that the result is getting used publicly, by some, before it has gone through the gauntlet of peer review. Especially because it is, whether you condone it or not, being used as we speak to discredit the work of us, and Phil and his co-workers; this is dangerous. I think there are some legitimate issues that need to be sorted out ....I’d be interested to be kept posted on what the status of the manuscript is."

    E.Cooks reply:

    "Unfortunately, this global change stuff is so politicized by both sides of the issue that it is difficult to do the science in a dispassionate environment. I ran into the same problem in the acid rain/forest decline debate that raged in the 1980s. At one point, I was simultaneous accused of being a raving tree hugger and in the pocket of the coal industry. I have always said that I don’t care what answer is found as long as it is the truth or at least blood close to it."

    And E.Cook to K.Biffa:

    "Also, there is no evidence for a decline or loss of temperature response in your data in the post-1950s (I assume that you didn’t apply a bodge here)"


    2. You state that Wrigley was wrong since it turned out he was hindering the 11 on their path to prove warming is manmade and a threat.

    This is wrong to me, ten years ago we were estimating with a warming of 3°C, now we have come to the lowest threshold of 1,5°C. To me the explanoray power of the IPCC declines towards none.

    I want to remind here that in my original post i was saying that climategate reveals the extent in which the thinking is political and strategical within the IPCC. Wrigley seems to realize this early on.

    I do not want the IPCC to fight an information war for us. The emails show countless concerns, predominantly expressed by M.Mann towards skeptics publishing stuff in Natur, Science and alike.

    The public and  media perception of the global warming issue seems to be the dominant task for M.Mann.

    The science itself is not in focus anymore, focus shifted towards: "What is the public thinking" and "How can we make our enemies look bad or hinder them from publishing".

    This is evidenced by numerous emails where certain media is considered "on our side" while others are considered "lost" to the skeptics:

    P.Jones to M.Mann:

    "Writing this I am becoming more convinced we should do something ...I will be emailing the journal to tell them I’m having nothing more to do with it until they rid themselves of this troublesome editor. A ClimaticResearch Unit person is on the editorial board, but papers get dealt with by the editor assigned by Hans von Storch."

    M.Mann replies:

    "The Soon and Baliunas paper couldn’t have cleared a “legitimate” peer review process anywhere. That leaves only one possibility—that the peer-review process at Climate Research has been hijacked by a few skeptics on the editorial board. And it isn’t just De Freitas; unfortunately, I think this group also includes a member of my own department... The skeptics appear to have staged a “coup” at Climate Research (it was a mediocre journal to begin with, but now it’s a mediocre journal with a definite “purpose”)."

    I do not want such peolpe to advise our gouverments, can you understand that?

    According to you and pretty much all alarmists, skeptics should be clowns, it should be easy to crush them in debates. There should be no reason to fear them this much. Ironically the fierce fight against skeptics makes them stronger, giving them meaning.

    This happened over and over in history.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    One Planet Only Forever at 09:35 AM on 30 November, 2019


    To me, your context for Climategate is incomplete and incorrect.

    Prior to Climategate it had been fairly robustly established that the developed ways of living that relied on using fossil fuels needed to be curtailed far sooner than the natural response of the marketplace would do it (especially with misleading marketing failing to be effectively penalized).

    The making of the "misleading claims regarding the illegally obtained emails" happened just before a major global leadership meeting. The timing reduced popular support for the required corrections and gave some Leaders a poor excuse to resist being Responsible Leaders on this very important issue.

    After that tragic impact on global leadership, and the delayed corrections of how people lived, it was discovered and established that:

    • The theft of the emails had happened well in advance of the release of the claims.
    • Some people scoured through the stolen emails to find nuggets they could abuse out of context in their disinformation campaign released just before the global leadership meeting.
    • Media reported the claims without any investigation into the legitimacy of the claims being made.
    • To this day there continues to be a degree of totally unjustified reduced credibility of climate science.
    • To date there is little effort to determine all the players in the damaging disinformation campaign and penalize them. Climategate damaged the future of humanity. And yet there are people who still try to defend the people who continue to repeat unjustified scepticism of climate science.

    And that Context for Climategate does not completely present how damaging the initial cuplrits of Climategate and their parade of fans have been to the future of humanity.

    As nigelj suggested some people deserve to be severely punished. I would include serious penalties for anyone today who still tries to play the Climategate card to dismiss or discredit climate science and the corrections of developed human activity that it has exposed are required. Climategate and actions like it reduced the required correction and produced the current and growing need for more rapid correction.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nyood at 22:29 PM on 29 November, 2019

    Thank you for your view nigelj, it is confirming how polarized the debate is.


    However, with the leaked emails that you quote in advance, you mention those which I agree on to be unproblematic with my sentence: "Climategate is not about scientific fraud to me, I am aware of the quotes taken out of context as a cheap trick on the far skeptical side.."

    This email here by Tom Wigley might be a good quote that shows that there is concern about the antagonism amongst themselves:

    "Dear Eleven,I was very disturbed by your recent letter, and your attempt to get others to endorse it. Not only do I disagree with the content of this letter, but I also believe that you have severely distorted the IPCC “view” when you
    9say that “the latest IPCC assessment makes a convincing economic case for immediate control of emissions.” ...This is a complex issue, and your misrepresentation of it does you a disservice. To someone like me, who knows the science, it is apparent that you are presenting a personal view, not an informed, balanced scientific assessment. What is unfortunate is that this will not be apparent to the vast majority of scientists you have contacted. In issues like this, scientists have an added responsibility to keep their personal views separate from the science, and to make it clear to others when they diverge from the objectivity they (hopefully) adhere to in their scientific research. I think you have failed to do this.Your approach of trying to gain scientific credibility for your personal views by asking people to endorse your letter is reprehensible. No scientist who wishes to maintain respect in the community should ever endorse any statement unless they have examined the issue fully themselves. You are asking people to prostitute themselves by doing just this! I fear that some will endorse your letter, in the mistaken belief that you are making a balanced and knowledgeable assessment of the science—when, in fact, you are presenting a flawed view that neither accords with the IPCC nor with the bulk of the scientific and economic literature on the subject....When scientists color the science with their own personal views or make categorical statements without presenting the evidence for such statements, they have a clear responsibility to state that that is what they are doing. You have failed to do so. Indeed, what you are doing is, in my view, a form of dishonesty more subtle but no less egregious than the statements made by the greenhouse skeptics .... I find this extremely disturbing"

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nigelj at 05:59 AM on 29 November, 2019

    nyood @10

    "However, as an every man lay when you come in contact with these leaked emails for the first time, it makes you really wonder why there is such a severe hostility towards skeptics"

    The reasons for the hostility towards sceptics include the following:

    1) the sceptics relentlessly mislead and cherry pick. Dont ask me for examples - read this website regularly.

    2) the sceptics tie up working scientists with endless pointless information requests.

    3) the sceptics verbally abuse scientists and have made death threats, particularly with M Mann, and naturally this in turn makes all climate scientists hostile towards sceptics. Why wouldn't it?

    4) the sceptics relentless junk science.

    This is more than enough to explain the scientists hostility towards sceptics, and if anything scientists have been very restrained and patient. As far as I'm concerned some of the sceptics should be in jail.

    "The language used in these emails is concerning, they are very political and extremely polarized to a point where it makes one wonder if it is still possible for the authors to keep a scientific neutrality. As I am not sure if quoting emails is allowed here..."

    Oh I'm happy to post a few from an article in Forbes, and that will be enough. We don't need too many silly lists distracting us all. I don't know if they are genuine. They are indicative of normal people dealing appropriately with difficult issues as anyone does. If they are political, its no more than any other organisation on this fine planet. There is nothing criminal, unethical or sinister, and numerous official investigations found no corruption of science.

    You denialists make me laugh. You are the people with obvious political motives, mostly right wing, and with lashings of paranoia. But people with nasty suspicious minds and bad motives assume everyone is the same. News flash - we aren't all the same.

    The emails:

    “The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guid[e] what’s included and what is left out” of IPCC reports, writes Jonathan Overpeck, coordinating lead author for the IPCC’s most recent climate assessment."

    This is meaningless without background context. Its a selective quote. And professional people decide content all the time, theres no indication of wrong doing.

    “I gave up on [Georgia Institute of Technology climate professor] Judith Curry a while ago. I don’t know what she thinks she’s doing, but its not helping the cause,” wrote Mann in another newly released email."

    It helps to actually know something about Judith Curry then you would understand and commiserate with the scientists in question.

    “I have been talking w/ folks in the states about finding an investigative journalist to investigate and expose” skeptical scientist Steve McIntyre, Mann writes in another newly released email."

    Oh dear oh dear. Given M Mann has received death threats and packets of white powder in the mail, and endless abusive emails. I'm going to "cut him some slack".

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nyood at 05:12 AM on 29 November, 2019

    To me Climategate is about the psychology and about the casual conversation within East Anglia, nothing more but nothing less.

    Climategate is not about scientific fraud to me, I am aware of the quotes taken out of context as a cheap trick on the far skeptical side and I am aware that there is in general, some ferocity in the operating language of such an institute. I  can also  follow the antagonistic attitude to an extent, since the attacks by skeptics are not always fair and go on for decades now.


    However, as an every man lay when you come in contact with these leaked emails for the first time, it makes you really wonder why there is such a severe hostility towards skeptics. And other sentences make you wonder why a cooling or hiatus is considered to be a problem, instead of a relief when it comes towards warming as a threat.

    The language used in these emails is concerning, they are very political and extremely polarized to a point where it makes one wonder if it is still possible for the authors to keep a scientific neutrality.

    As I am not sure if quoting emails is allowed here,  I will not risk to quote any, if it is within the policy of SkepticalScience please tell me, then we could talk about some examples which highlight  political thinking and involuntary confessions.


  • 2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #47

    nigelj at 13:04 PM on 24 November, 2019

    OPOF @4

    "Climate Change may be causing changes of conditions that make it 'easier' for the 'Fire-starters' you mention to actually start a fire".

    I did wonder about that, and its technically correct, but surely it's of little consequence and so it means the article detracts from the most important facts about climate change causing larger areas to burn . The warming we have seen so far seems unlikely that it would cause many more fires to start. The temperatures and moisture levels in the fire season are very different to winter enough to make a significant difference.

    It's a similar issue as to whether climate change causes a particular weather event. It does sometimes but its a difficult thing to prove and it distracts from the key fact that climate change causes more intense or frequent events, and this is easier to substantiate.

    Yes maybe its not the main point, but it just annoys me. I also wouldn't underestimate how much climategate pushed things backwards even although it was about specific denialist talking points. But I agree we need a more general philosophical awareness raising circuit breaker so people can see through all the smoke and haze. Pun not intended.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    nigelj at 06:18 AM on 22 November, 2019

    Climategate has been investigated to death and the people concerned have been cleared of any form of scientific fraud. I must admit after first reading about climate gate I was immediately suspicious of the claims of wrong doing,  because the idea of some climate conspiracy to fake data etc seems too far fetched to be plausible, so I had a closer look at a few articles and it was obvious the denialists took things out of context , and were being misleading. However I already knew about the hide the decline terminology, and anyone not already knowing this term would be justified in being a bit suspicious, and possibly saw the explanations as an ad hoc attempt to make excuses, even although they are robust explanations. The whole leak was damn rotten luck for the mainstream science community, but climate change has marched on and helped vindicate the scientists involved.

    The thing is why would denialists be less than honest? It seems to me people are sometimes less than honest when they feel threatened in some way. For example whether it be they are afraid of having to change their lifestyle, give up things they like, pay money, or if their politics and world view feels threatened, or they feel caught out in some way, or are forced to admit to themselves they were sucked in by something ( a lot of denialists probably feel this way). Lots of reasons = lots of denialism.

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    invicta at 21:06 PM on 21 November, 2019

    Not long after the email hack that became Climategate I had a discussion about global warming with my brother a self confessed petrolhead and realised I knew nothing about the subject. I went online and did some basic research and the subject of Climategate came up. It took me less than 45 minutes from logging on to realise that one side of the argument was being far from honest. I have no scientific knowledge beyond O level physics 50+ years ago but I could identify a liar when I saw one.

    This lead me to various sites but SS in particular and with the help of John Cook, Dana and the many other brilliant people on the site I was able to become that boring old uncle always banging on about climate change, except I was the one telling my nieces nephews grandchildren etc to wake up.

    The big thing I learnt from Climategate and subsequent research is that you have to be wilfully ignorant to be a climate contrarian. (perhaps coupled with a little mendacity).

  • Here Are 3 Climategate Myths That Have Not Aged Well

    shoyemore at 00:55 AM on 21 November, 2019

    The parallels between the Climategate e-mails and the Clintongate e-mails in 2016, from Russian Intelligence via Wikileaks,  is spooky.

    • Both hacks originated in Russia.
    • Both released the e-mails at key moments: The run up to an international conference, the run-up to an election, while the favoured Russian candidate was struggling with a "locker-room talk" sex scandal.
    • Both strangely well co-ordinated with right-wing media, who leaped on the stories gleefully.
    • Both trapped the "good" media into a fake story that turned out to be a ball of smoke e.g. the DNC e-mails contained nothing negative about Clinton's campaign, the "Climategate" e-mails were minor blemishes.


    No smoking gun, of course, but if the truth is ever allowed to emerge, it will be a strange and mysterious story.

  • Climate denier scientists think these 5 arguments will persuade EU and UN leaders

    MA Rodger at 22:02 PM on 12 September, 2019

    The OP suggests this silly denialist letter to the EU "represents the best case that climate deniers can make against the existence of a climate crisis." I feel that needs some qualification as it is a small set of denialists who came up with the silly five point 'oh-no-it's-not' rebuttal.

    At the end of January we hear of a large number of academics writing to the Belgian "federal and regional governments." I cannot see the actual letter sent but it did result in swivel-eyed denialists from the Netherlands responding with a point-by-point counter-argument which was quickly translated for the English-speaking deniosphere.

    (The authorship of the denial is given as the Climate Intelligence Foundation which is described as "a new Foundation that is funded by worried wealthy citizens. The Foundation focuses on independent public information. She does that by telling the entire climate story." somewhat similar to the nonsense spouted by the UK's GWPF who make out they are an educational charity (& thus trouser taxpayers money to fund their lies). The odd thing with this authorship for an OP posted 1st Feb 2019 is the Climate Intelligence Foundation (soon gaining the name CLINTEL) was not started until the end of March 2019, according to one of its co-founders. who says in this video that it will be set up "tomorrow" with the launch seemingly a couple of days later.)

    The point-by-point counter-argument of early Feb runs to seven points. The first five of these present identical argument to the silly denialist letter, although the letter has hardened the message a bit. The first five Feb points were -  (1) Climate has always changed with warming from 1850, (2) Calling recent warming 100% anthropogenic is unscientific, (3) There is no discernable trends in floods & droughts & plagues of frogs, (4) Models are hypersensitive to CO2 so any warming CO2 causes will be mild and nature can cool as well as warm. (5) The cost to Belgium & Holland of AGW mitigation is massive for "negligible and immeasurable" gain.

    (These five from February are pretty-much the same as the five in the silly denialist letter of August. The February version adds (6) AGW mitigation is not more cost-effective than doing nothing, (7) They mix up a clean environment, which all agree with, with AGW mitigation.)

    So the grand denialist message is no more than a knee-jerk response to a letter from Belgian academics supporting stronger action on AGW. That it has folk like Richard Lindzen signing-up to it when he disagrees with parts of it is presumably more a mark of solidarity than a mark of wholehearted agreement.

  • A Green New Deal must not sabotage climate goals

    RedBaron at 13:40 PM on 3 February, 2019


    That is not really point is it? It could be exactly the opposite and be just as bad. Those other economic issues are unrelated to AGW mitigation strategy one way or another. It matters little is every other country has them or or not. The US doesn't and they need debated on the own merits and not tied to AGW.

    As soon as the two are connected on the same list, you just proved every denialist's worst fears and made it all the harder to ever convince any other them that AGW is anything more than a socialist plot to tax away their freedoms.

    Look at the list again, the full one this time:

    • 100% of national power generation from renewable sources.
    • Building a national energy-efficient “smart” grid.
    • Upgrading every residential and industrial building for state-of-the-art energy efficiency, comfort and safety.
    • Decarbonising manufacturing, agricultural and other industries.
    • Decarbonising, repairing and improving transportation and other infrastructure.
    • Funding massive investment in the drawdown and capture of greenhouse gases.
    • Making “green” technology, industry, expertise, products and services a major export of the US, helping other countries transition to carbon-neutral economies.
    • Provide all members of society a job guarantee programme to assure a living wage job.
    • Basic income programmes and universal health care.

    You can go right down the list and it sounds like project drawdown and I am giving a resounding yes Yes YES! at each one, Then get to the last two OH NO! I see that they just shot themselves in the foot and took the debate back 10 years yet again making the exact same mistakes Al Gore made!

    You can't be involved in the debate and not know this is the single biggest objection presented against AGW. It is here too!

    17 "Climategate CRU emails suggest conspiracy"


    19 "Al Gore got it wrong"

    Both of those directly caused by massive funding of the Merchants of doubt. We have discussed this on other climate related websites as well. It's the main objection there as well and I know you have seen it.

    You really so naive to think the US citizens would vote for a guy like Trump who calls AGW a chinese hoax if they did not understand this attempt to link socialists policies with AGW mitigation?

    Hypothetically change the last two to:

    • Eliminate all Unemployment benefits
    • Eliminate all medicade and medicare

    and see how many Democrats would vote for AGW mitigation? I suspect damn few. It's the same here. Damn few conservatives will vote for it and they will fight against it tooth and nail!

    In the US we have had socialist policies to some degree since the first New Deal in the 1930s. So clearly any platform debating this could potentially get support on it's own merits. But as part of AGW mitigation is is off topic and fueling the opposition with billions of dollars and massive pushback. Even to the point of helping Trump get elected when the polls showed he should have lost.

    Think of all the work Katharine Hayhoe has done to show that it is an issue for everyone! 

    How do we know this climate change thing is even real?

    Watch that carefully and understand the reality she is discussing.

    This "New Deal" undermines all the gains we made by the silly inclusions of the last two and making mitigation in the US even harder than before! And it is a great pity because the actual parts of the New Deal that actually address AGW are the best I have ever seen from any politician ever! Why ruin such a brilliant plan by adding unrelated socialist policy unless AGW really is a commie conspiracy? Get it? See how easy the opposition can obfuscate?

    Luckily most conservatives haven't even seen it yet. So I would suggest a quick revamp and simply separating the two things and arguing them each on their own merits. Because the more this gets out the less support and the less chances of getting anything done.

  • Freedom of Information (FOI) requests were ignored

    Daniel Bailey at 09:53 AM on 26 December, 2018

    Note that the Muir Russell Commission was able to do a full global reconstruction from the raw data linked to from the above page, without any code, in a mere 2 days (when asked, they replied "any competent researcher" could have done the same).

    The Auditors over at McIntyre's Climate Audit have been struggling with their "audit" reconstruction for many years now.

    The "any competent researcher" bit comes from here:

    "key data was freely available and could be used by any "competent" researcher"...They used data from public databanks and wrote their own computer code, which they say could be repeated by any "competent researcher". The results were similar to those of the CRU."


    "Their conclusion: "A researcher can evidently produce a study which would test the CRU analysis quite precisely, without requiring any information from CRU to do so.""

    The "2 days" bit comes from here:

    "They managed this in two days"

    The report itself is here.

  • But their Emails!

    nigelj at 12:02 PM on 4 December, 2018

    JP66, @ 21 & 22

    "No. My quote was not previously released."

    Yes it was. I found your quote on several other websites for example here, just by googling it and it certainly forms part of climategate according to them. Whether it does or does not doesn't actually seem that significant anyway, nobody is denying that it's real.

    Why for example would it be wrong to stitch recent temperatures onto a paleo reconstruction? You don't say. I cannot see the problem. Science combines data sets all the time. Nobody has shown a specific problem in the way the data is stitched together, and obviously modern instrumental data is going to be more accurate than modern paleo data.

    There were some criticisms of Manns statistics in the official enquiry, but this is a separate thing. Official reviews of his hockey stick did not say it was fundamentally wrong.

    "and the original paper said it should only be a piece of the picture, but the posters here use it as THE proof."

    Proof of what?

    Like I said additional papers have been done using different approaches and found much the same result of a relatively weak MWP, so things do not hinge around M Manns original paper. This seems to be fairly compelling evidence relating to the MWP. Even if the MWP was warmer than today, what do you think that would prove?

    "I will never post here again because it is apparent this site is against discussion. You just lost points in the war."

    But your problem is you dont discuss things. You have not specifically addressed points people have raised above including myself. Instead you just repeat yourself and go onto new issues, and you just make assertions.

  • But their Emails!

    nigelj at 10:27 AM on 1 December, 2018

    JP66, the email you quote is a single email relating to climategate taken completely out of context, which shows the whole problem with these thefts / hacks. It's hard to even know what they are really saying, other than they appear to be arguing whether a paleo climate reconstruction of the medieval warm period is reliable, notice its in reference to "a" reconstruction.

    I don't see what "theory" this undermines. Greenhouse gas theory, human impacts on climate,and future modelling of temperatures obviously do not rely on reconstructions of the medieval warm period.

    What theory do you claim it undermines? What is it you think they are really saying?

    Yes they are also talking about problems they are having with analysing the past, misakes that might have ocassionally been made, people attacking their work and how they should respond to this. Wouldn't any normal person do this? Why do you think this is somehow nefarious or abnormal?

    If this is the so called smoking gun in climategate its laughable.

    I do agree with you if the latest data and the accepted theory diverge then question the theory, but this is not apparent in this case.  Also question whether the data is reliable, as it often turns out the data is wrong, for example the problems where the satellite temperature record originally showed a cooling, when it turned out there were problems with the satellite sensors or something.

    Please note that many groups have analysed the MWP and found it was no warmer than temperatures over the last decade.


  • How to Change Your Mind About Climate Change

    Tadaaa at 07:36 AM on 24 February, 2018


    "I agree about climategate. Private emails from other organisations would probably be much the same or worse. In fact, what surprised me about climategate is how little of substance was revealed. It actually convinced me more that scientists could be trusted. "

    100% spot on - and me too, you put it better than i did

  • How to Change Your Mind About Climate Change

    nigelj at 05:21 AM on 10 February, 2018

    I started out believing in agw climate change, then went through a brief sceptical period after seeing some sceptical movie, can't remember the name, then went back to believing in the mainstream position after looking more closely at all sides of the issue. It wasn't one thing that convinced me really, although understanding solar trends was important.

    Moncton drives me insane, but is presumably quite well educated. Its a mystery to me whether he really believes the "insignificant trace gas" theory, or it's just deliberate stupidity, or maybe hes just talked himself into it.

    But there are just so many obvious examples of very small quantities having profound impacts, such as certain toxins, and semiconductor physics. But it appears a lot of people struggle with this concept.

    Yes peer reviewed science is not perfect, but nobody has a better alternative as you say. Individuals and governments must go with the mainstream, weight of peer reviewed evidence, even if it sometimes turns out to be wrong, which is not actually very often. The only alternative is gut instincts and conspiracy theories, which will be wrong a great deal more of the time. Anyway, the climate issue has been researched in vastly more depth than most scientific issues, like for example the saturated fats issue where a lot of reliance was put on a couple of poor quality, ancient studies.

    I agree about climategate. Private emails from other organisations would probably be much the same or worse. In fact, what surprised me about climategate is how little of substance was revealed. It actually convinced me more that scientists could be trusted. 

    But it all hinged around the "hide the decline" email. This looked really bad from the general publics point of view, and has set things back in terms of winning over the public. I knew roughly what was meant by that, and it as a legitimate technical term, not meaning literally manipulate the evidence, but the general public would not know, and trying to then explain "after the event" sounds defensive and like a convenient excuse, even although it isn't. Someone in politics said that "explaining is losing". Of course this is a rash generalisation and not literally true, but you would understand his point.

  • How to Change Your Mind About Climate Change

    Tadaaa at 22:57 PM on 9 February, 2018

    I actually came to the "climate debate" (in 2011ish) a bit of a sceptic tbh (although i knew nothing the science) but it was Potholer54's debunking/demolition of Monkton (and his video series) that really hit me. In particular it was the “trace gas” meme they trotted out, because when you sit down and think about it just contains no actual science – it is simply nonsense, yet it seemed a tenet of faith to people like Monkton et al.

    That really made me just trust the science, not in a blind way but simply a belief in peer review science as a way to gaining knowledge – it is not perfect, but the best we have. (Actually the concept of “perfection” is a recurring conspiracy theorist meme - the theorise that because we do not have a perfect record of an “event” – well it must be “fishy” – it is similar to the “because we don’t know everything we know nothing” the AGW deniers use about climate science

    And you are right about the fact that conspiracies do occur – we know that because we have evidence, Watergate et al, but the evidence CT provide simply does not pass the smell test

    Actually "climategate" is a good example – when you look at it with a debunker’s mentality and apply the null hypothesis i.e. if you expose the email conversations of the “movers and shakers” of any worldwide company or organisation (political or not), would you find disagreements and rudeness as in the climategate expose

    Err yes you would – and probably a lot more, the emails did not reveal anything you would not find if you had hacked into the top brass of the Sony Corporation – and if the one or two they highlighted was the best they could find!!!! It actually shows that the science is robust and agreements very few

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    nigelj at 12:43 PM on 29 September, 2017

    Judith Currie is not making a lot of sense to me. She makes a lot of criticisms of the IPCC and climategate and climate science in general. These criticisms are largely quite petty criticisms, or related to isolated problems any professional body will have, or they are idealistic suggestions. She blurts all this out in public forums, and its potentially undermining public confidence in the IPCC. Maybe she is grandstanding, because it just doesn't make sense otherwise.

    Some things are best done in private and by all means forcefully done if required with backup from other colleagues. Not everything has to be in the public domain. And some of her suggestions are good, like putting costs to a range of temperature scenarios.

    If there was a big systemic problem, or many problems, of course blow the whistle, but there just isn't. Climategate comprised leaks (actually theft)  of thousands of emails and you have a couple of small things and numerous reviews done finding no problems. IPCC reports thousands of pages long and about one single mistake on some glacier. Many reviews have already been done of the IPCC. Currie is making the perfect the enemy of the good, time and time again. She is tearing herself and climate science to pieces, and what good has come of it?

  • The Mail's censure shows which media outlets are biased on climate change

    MA Rodger at 01:17 AM on 29 September, 2017

    Eclectic @34,
    You say you have examined the history of Judy's little asteroid Climateetc but that was not the start of her journey to the dark side. A lot of stuff preceded the creation of Climateetc in Sept 2010 but, as with much else, Judy has her own take on the journey she took. Her version of it is set out at the start of her 2015 Senate testimony:- (PDFp39)

    "Prior to 2009, I felt that supporting the IPCC consensus on climate change was a responsible thing to do. I bought into the argument don’t trust what one scientist says, trust what an international team of 1,000 scientists have said after years of careful deliberation.
    "That all changed for me in November 2009, following the leaked ‘‘Climategate’’ e-mails that illustrated the sausage-making and even bullying that went into building the consensus. I started speaking out, saying that scientists needed to do better at making the data and supporting information publicly available, being more transparent about how they reach conclusions, doing a better job of assessing uncertainties, and actively engaging with scientists having minority perspectives.
    "The response of my colleagues to this is summed up by the title of a 2010 article in the Scientific American, ‘Climate Heretic: Judith Curry Turns on Her Colleagues.' I came to the growing realization that I had fallen into the trap of group think. I had accepted the consensus based on second-order evidence, the assertion that a consensus existed."

    This seems to suggest that in the two days following Climategate, Judy went from happy-bunny climatologist to happily posting on denialist websites like Wattsupia (a re-post from ThinkProgress but Wattsupia is the version she links to here) and denialist Climate Audit, the place she tells us "became my blog of choice, because I found the discussions very interesting and I thought, ‘Well, these are the people I want to reach rather than preaching to the converted over at [the mainstream climate science blog] RealClimate.’” That's a big big shift in just two days, Judy! Almost as abrupt as the next leap to full denialist in the following year, assuming you go along with Judy's timeline.

    The story actually begins in 2005 with Webster et al (2005) 'Changes in Tropical Cyclone Number, Duration, and Intensity in a Warming Environment'  which was published just as the 2005 hurricane season was making hurricane studies highly political. So the paper drew a lot of denialist flack from contrarians to which Judy found herself responding (being a co-author) and was still providing expert hurricane testimony in July 2006.  She was also the lead-author on a paper addressing the scientific argumentation of hurricane studies (although note that while the article is described here as "unapologetic in advancing their particular point of view", the article is actually setting out its scientific position as being no more than "the central hypothesis."
    But there are then the first signs in 2006 of Judy falling out with her scientific colleagues but over the narrow issue of how to treat with denialists. We find Judy commenting at what would become her "blog of choise" ( eg. about halfway down this 2006 thread where she would soon earn her posting rights). Also in 2006, she was talking on the need for engaging with denialism which heavily hints at her future path. This 2006 talk was tellingly titled "Falling Out of the Ivory Tower" and bullet points included ♠ inadequate assessment and communication of uncertainty ♠ turf battles and appeal to authority ♠muddy relationship between climate research and policy. It can thus be seen that Judy was already engaging with her "group think" monster by 2006, years before 'climategate'.
    Her immediate response to 'climategate' (in web-pages linked above) was to advocate openness so denialists can spot any errors allowing (apparently) corrections to be made with minimum fuss. "Doing this would keep molehills from growing into mountains that involve congressional hearings, lawyers, etc." while she says she isn't implying "climate researchers need to keep defending against the same arguments over and over again." (I would agree with this last point as they would instead have to 'keep defending against the same arguments over and over & over & over & over & over again, ad nauseam.')
    And by mid-2010 our Judy had become one of her own "scientists having minority perspectives" becoming an uncritical conduit for denialst argument and thus unable to connect with her peers (as her input into this July 2010 RealClimate comment-thread well demonstrates).
    Two months afterwards she had her little un-worldly asteroid Climateetc to retreat to, where she could cultivate her persona as The Daily Mail climate scientist of choice.


    Tapping this out, I was surprised to read in that article critical of Judy which she cited in her testimony that:-

    "Curry asserts that scientists haven’t adequately dealt with the uncertainty in their calculations and don’t even know with precision what’s arguably the most basic number in the field: the climate forcing from CO2 —that is, the amount of warming a doubling of CO2 alone would cause without any amplifying or mitigating effects from melting ice, increased water vapor or any of a dozen other factors."

    Question- Is that right? Has she fallen that far into the denialistic pit to consider this a substantive issue. Answer - She certainly had back in Dec 2010.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    nigelj at 08:15 AM on 6 September, 2017

    NorrisM @53

    "Bob Loblaw, I understand your criticism of Steve Koonin reaching past his expertise but I have seen nothing to impact his integrity."

    No, with respect you miss the point. Its not a question of integrity alone. S Koonin has a lack of grasp of the science, and an obvious sceptical bias which makes him totally unsuitable. Would you be happy with Al gore leading / organising the debate?

    "Why not, with the support of the Democrats, make sure this Red Team Blue Team is independent?"

    Its going to be very hard to do this, especially given your very own suggestions so far.

    "There is clearly something that is driving conservatives and others "in the middle" when you look at the Pew Research results (I do not believe anyone is questioning the integrity of Pew Research). "

    Yes on the science. But do you seriously believe conservatives would accept a red blue team result that found climate change was even more serious and proven than the IPCC claims? Really?

    "I think you find a reluctance in much of the American public to accept the "scientific consensus" of major global warming and its effects because the costs are so drastic."

    Maybe, maybe not. The pew research you yourself are fond of quoting shows the majority are uncertain on the science, but the majority actually want more done about the climate problem, and favour renewable energy. I think the scepticism about the science might be largely politically and ideologicall driven, so a sort of dislike of liberal elites who are generally support the science. Theres certainly some evidence of ideological factors behind it is you read for example The Economist which is pretty reliable.

    Of course commonsense suggests cost of renewable energy are at least some degree of concern, but your red blue team is not actually debating that aspect, so your point is irrelevant.

    "When or where else has the American public (or any democracy for that matter) been asked to make massive and costly changes to their lifestyle based upon predictions of the future?

    How is that relevant really? Theres a first time for everything. And plenty of environmental law has been passed that has had significant costs at least short to medium term. There's some precedent there even if the scale is different.

    "There is an expression used with religious claims that applies to other areas of human endeavour. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence".

    This is yet another meme copied and pasted from denier websites. I'm wondering how a busy lawyer like yourself has the time for all your commentary.

    Anyway we do have good evidence for climate science and perhaps you also need to take into account the "extraordinary scale and implications" of climate change.

    "So this Red Team Blue Team approach, if the Trump administration goes along with it, is that opportunity to get that confidence level up so that it at least includes those in the middle."

    By rehashing over studies of climate sensitivity, the mwp, sea level rise projections etc? I cant see it. They will probably conclude much the same as the IPCC . The red blue process is too tainted with bias to have much appeal to moderates in the middle.

    "Because both the IPCC and the National Academy of Sciences are populated with climate scientists who have taken a clear position on the issue, this investigation has to be conducted by some other body."

    So on that basis you would have to have a red blue team debate for every scientific issue in history. Just so absurd.

    And the people you have on the teams also have a "clear view" on the issue negating your argument.

    "I think there is an underlying distrust that climate scientists are consciously or subconciously misrepresenting the existing state of knowledge in their zeal to get people onside. "

    There will be considerably more distrust of a red blue team collection of scientists picked by a climate denying organiser.

    "Climategate reinforced that view or perhaps caused it. "

    Well it left a bad impression, but given the red blue team doesn't really address the climategate thing, I can't see how it changes the perception. Basically people need to read up on climategate carefully, and they will realise the scientists did nothing wrong or deceptive. Unfortunatly people are clutching at any reason possible, no matter how silly, or scurrilous or lying, to deny fossil fuels are a problem.

    "Judith Curry suggests another US body which I think deals with national security which, as she says, does not have a "dog in the fight".

    Actually they do, or at least the military do, because they have produced reports greatly concerned about climate change.

    Pleas also note the IPCC teams do include some sceptics. The IPCC makeup reflects weight of climate opinion but does make sure it always includes several sceptics, this is deliberate.

    "The constitution of the body has to be equal otherwise you are deciding the issue before the contest. "

    No it doesn't. Its not even supposed to be a contest of people like some silly school debate. Science is a contest of ideas and if most scientists support one idea, you can't force them otherwise.

    Public debates have their place, but are mere entertainment, and should not be used as alternatives for IPCC process on serious issues.

    "What I come back to is, what are your choices?"

    One of the real problems is money in politics. Your quoted pew reseaarch shows one important thing that people do generally want more done about climate change, even if they are sceptical of causation, but they are ignored by Trump and Congress, and I suggest this is money in politics and influence of lobby groups, and this is what needs to change.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 03:53 AM on 6 September, 2017


    Just reread my last post.  Apologies for comments re public views expressed in Pew Research and Climategate.  This is repetitious.

    I highly respect  all of the climate scientists who have dedicated their life to this important issue including those contributing to this website, including Bob Loblaw (notwithstanding his irritation with me) and a number of others who I assume are climate scientists, although not specifically disclosed.  

    I am just trying to make the point that this Red Team Blue Team proposal is an opportunity which should be embraced as long as its independence is protected.

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 01:53 AM on 6 September, 2017

    Bob Loblaw @ 47 and Nigelj at 51

    Bob Loblaw, I understand your criticism of Steve Koonin reaching past his expertise but I have seen nothing to impact his integrity so your scenario of an effective kangaroo court I do not think is apposite. 

    But to the two of you, my question still remains, what do you do given the reality of a Republican White House for at least the next 3 years?  Why not, with the support of the Democrats, make sure this Red Team Blue Team is independent?

    There is clearly something that is driving conservatives and others "in the middle" when you look at the Pew Research results (I do not believe anyone is questioning the integrity of Pew Research).  I think you find a reluctance in much of the American public to accept the "scientific consensus" of major global warming and its effects because the costs are so drastic.

    When or where  else has the American public (or any democracy for that matter) been asked to make massive and costly changes to their lifestyle based upon predictions of the future?  Look how long it took the US to engage in both WWI and WWII when the danger was very obvious to Western liberal democratic order.  

    There is an expression used with religious claims that applies to other areas of human endeavour.  "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence".

    The facts remain that even with an Obama administration the "scientific consensus" was not able to convince the American public.  So this Red Team Blue Team approach, if the Trump administration goes along with it, is that opportunity to get that confidence level up so that it at least includes those in the middle.

    Because both the IPCC and the National Academy of Sciences are populated with climate scientists who have taken a clear position on the issue, this investigation has to be conducted by some other body.  I think there is an underlying distrust that climate scientists are consciously or subconciously misrepresenting the existing state of knowledge in their zeal to get people onside.  Climategate reinforced that view or perhaps caused it.   But leaving out "qualifying statements" in Summaries for Policy Makers etc that clearly has happened does not help.   Judith Curry suggests another US body which I think deals with national security which, as she says, does not have a "dog in the fight".  Perhaps this body would be better than the EPA.  I do not think this matters as much as the constitution of the body.

    The constitution of the body has to be equal otherwise you are deciding the issue before the contest.  I think you should again, recognizing the reality that the Republicans are in power,  "play the hand your are dealt".

     What I come back to is, what are your choices?

  • The Trump administration wants to bail out failed contrarian climate scientists

    NorrisM at 16:47 PM on 3 September, 2017

    JW Rebel @ 19

    I do not want to make a big deal of this but there is an underlying assumption you make. You assume that because one group may citicize the explanation of some theory that it is not acceptable to criticize that theory without coming up with an alternative theory.  You are 100% wrong in that assumption.

    It is perfectly acceptable to criticize a theory without coming up with an alternative.  One may question the existence of God (for lack of evidence) without coming up with an alternative explanation of why we are here.

    In the area of climate change, it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the existing theories without coming up with an alternative explanation.  In science, it perfectly acceptable to simply say, this theory is wrong but we just do not know what the answer is.  You do not have to come up with a viable alternative.

    At this point in my personal deliberations, I am convinced that man has caused the temperature to increase because of CO2 emissions but I am not convinced that the models can accurately predict what the effects will be over the next 70 years or beyond.  What troubles me is that these computer models have to make massive assumptions about the impact of clouds because they simply do not have the computer power to properly build them into the models.  I think the term they use is "parameterizations".  Another issue is how sensitive the climate is to the massive increases in CO2, namely, how much in "positive feedbacks" are created by water vapour, etc..  I would like to hear from both sides on this issue.  I would also like to hear from both sides how successful the models have been in predicting temperatures since the models have been developed.  I read Michael Mann's support for the James Hansen predictions in an recent article in Foreign Affairs but it seems to me that he "cherry picked" his predictions.  Many of Hansen's predictions as to temperature increased in the last 20 yeas were quite far off which were not referenced.

    I would also like to hear whether the experts agree on whether there really was a Medieval Warming Period and a Little Ice Age.  According to Michael Mann there was no such thing in the promotion of this "hockey stick" which was to show that the temperature increase today is unprecedented in the last 2000 years.  A recent Chinese study has shown that certainly in China there have been periods of warming corresponding to the MWP and periods of cooling corresponding to the Little Ice Age.  This corresponds to the information we have both about Greenland and Europe.

    I am not saying that proving there was a MWP or a Little Ice Age means that we do not have a problem today but I would just like to get the facts and I am not convinced Michael Mann et al have delivered same.  I have to admit that Climategate seriously impacted my trust of Michael Mann and Phil Jones.  I do not care that their respective universities "cleared" them of any wrongdoing.  You have to have massive blinders on you not to read these emails and wince.  Are they scientists or are they going beyond the science to promote what they think is the "right thing to do"? 

    Returning to your main point, it may very well be that there are so many factors involved that it is impossible to predict what the climate will do in 30, 70 or more years.  And it may be impossible to predict what portion of today's temperature increase is attributable to anthropogenic influences.  This does not end the argument.  We clearly have polar ice caps and glaciers melting.  Oceans are rising (although they have been for 150 years). 

    So it behooves us to consider what we should do.  

    I just had to comment on your premise that the "other side" has to come up with a viable explanation otherwise you just accept the present premise and predictions of future temperature increases and the concomitant effects.

    So I am hoping that a red team blue team can deal with some of these issues.  I do not have any preconceived views on what would be achieved but I would enjoy seeing each side go at each other. 

    For those who say that it is too complicated, I say "fooey".  If you cannot hit the main points and come to a conclusion then we should not be going down the road of massive changes to our society because it is undemocratic.  If you cannot distil these issues for the public and you therefore have to rely on arguments of "trust me" or "trust the IPCC" then I do not think you have a chance at all of convincing the majority of the US public to go along with the massive changes proposed.  Gradually switching to RE, yes, but not massive changes which impact their economic well being.  It is like asking the Oracle of Delphi to tell the ruler whether he should go to battle.  I think we have got beyond that stage.


  • CERN CLOUD experiment proved cosmic rays are causing global warming

    MA Rodger at 22:10 PM on 22 August, 2017

    Mick Stupp @19,

    That graph appears here having been "adapted by Dr. Tim Patterson.from: Friis-Christensen, E., and K. Lassen, Science, 254, 698-700, 1991." Thus the original is Fig 2 of that paper. The level of nonsense and error engendered by that particular exercise in curve-fitting is set out in this SkS post.

  • 2017 is so far the second-hottest year on record thanks to global warming

    John S at 04:37 AM on 2 August, 2017

    I just finished viewing a doc on You-Tube entitled “Climategate II Explained – NOAA Whistleblower – Data Manipulation – Global Warming Hoax” by Larouche PA published recently. Wikipedia’s account of Larouche PAC seems entirely economic, no climate change involvement indicated. The gist of the 72 minute lecture by an unidentified (?spokeperson for Larouche PAC?) was that ““NOAA breached its own rules on scientific integrity when it published the sensational but flawed report, aimed at making the maximum possible impact on world leaders including Barack Obama and David Cameron at the UN climate conference in Paris in 2015.” This was by Karl et all (2015) that claimed warming rate was twice what prior versions showed ( source Anthony Watts October (2015) and argued that truth was shown by satellite data from both UAH and RSS showing a flat line over this period. I know that Anthony Watts is a notorious climate change denial blogger, but rather than just dismissing the whole argument based on its source, I’d rather understand more of the background on this – basically is it true that, as alleged in this doc, NOAA fiddled the data, suppressed any internal dissention and then mysteriously “lost” the data all as revealed by whistleblower John Bates, a 40 year NOAA veteran and eminent climate scientist. I’m well aware that cherry-picking end-points over such a short period is no good way to consider the warming trend and that RSS put out a correction to its earlier data. What I want to know is any specific background on this specific accusation of wrong-doing by Karl et al exposed by Bates..
    Later the talk characterizes such antics as typical for climate change advocates, citing the “broken hockey stick” supposedly exposed by McIntyre & MacKitrick in Energy and Environment. I heard Michael Mann’s response that their method was flawed but, again, I’d like to understand this on a deeper level than just “he said, she said”.
    It also goes on about NASA supposedly lowering data before 1950 and raising it after 1950 thereby supposedly creating a warming trend. I heard about the correction of “bucket variances” for ocean data but I also thought I’d heard that these NASA adjustments created a lower warming trend not higher – so is the Larouche Pac presentation just a bald-faced lie or is there some more subtle fallacy involved in it?. The same accusation of NASA adjusting data upwards after 1950 was made in another doc on You-Tube, so, on the basis that where there’s smoke, there may be fire, I’m wondering where this story is coming from. I appreciate that adjustments to the temperature record have to be made to produce the best estimate of trend and so this can change retroactively and this fact alone allows the deniers to come in with clod-hopping boots, but as I said above, my understanding was that the net result of these adjustments was a lower warming trend not higher as alleged, so is that just a lie or what?
    They also had a more fundamental question which I admit has confused me quite a bit also and that is how it is at all possible to calculate a global average from such a variety of circumstances affecting each temperature measuring device? I saw an explanation on NASA’s web-site of why changes were more reliable to average than absolute values but even so (and even after watching Cowtons’ excellent presentation on Denial 101x) it’s still a baffling subject. Maybe there is a good reference you can give me to read up on this.

  • Bad news for climate contrarians – 'the best data we have' just got hotter

    nigelj at 07:14 AM on 10 July, 2017

    I just don't understand Judith Curry at all. She is certainly very vague.

    She says climate gate raised genuine doubts with her. I find this incomprehensible, because I have looked at the actual evidence and there's just nothing there, nothing wrong and various investigations have found the same. So what is she on about? She is certainly unable to specifically say when asked. She  is a scientist for goodness sake!

    Yes, climate scientists do sometimes make mistakes like anyone, but there was nothing remotely significant in the climategate thing! In fact when you look at the desperate attempts to get dirt on climate scientists, and the many documents found (or hacked illegally) theres just remarkably little dirt there.

    I think Curry is an attention seeker, and this is her way of creating a following of people on her blog.

    Of course climategate showed some grumpy scientists complaining about somebody trying to publish a sceptical paper, and hoping it might not get published. This is people in a frustrated mood, as we all get, it is not evidence of a global conspiracy!

    Jo Nova and Judith Curry are of course entitled to their websites. Free speech and all that is very important to me. It doesn't change the fact the content is largely nonsense.

    People like Joe Nova claim to be intelligent, discerning sceptics, but they do not apply this equally to everything, they ignore patent nonsense, so they are intellectually shallow.

    They are not genuine sceptics. I think they simply have some deep seated distrust or dislike of climate science, that is probably a mish mash of different motivations, some genuine scepticism, but I think much of it more about gut reactions, politics and protecting their general world view. You will learn precious little reading their websites.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    nigelj at 06:49 AM on 10 July, 2017

    Climategate was unfortunate. Of course it was theft of documents we shouldn't ever forget that, and an attempt to dig dirt and basically politically motivated.

    The accusations turned out to be empty, (no surprise there) and several official investigations found nothing wrong.

    It was almost just rotten luck. Things were leaked and some of the language used was unfortunate and not a good look, unless you knew the background. I was familiar with the term "hide the decline" and knew it wasn't how it sounded, but from the point of view of the general public this understandably sounded sinister. Its rotten luck, and sometimes the events of history turn on such things.

    The hackers and climate sceptics are driven by a whole mish mash of vested interests, excessive, paranoid fears  about government regullation, and protecting personal wealth and established power bases, and even just personal habits. Climategate played into their hands, and gave them a further excuse. Any investigations probably "fell on deaf ears" but remember the general public and moderately open minded people have more respect for official investigations. Still it was rotten luck, and could have had a rather large if disproportionate impact on the whole debate.

    Nevertheless the denialists and wealthy power play denialists in particular are acting unacceptably like OPOF says, and values have to change. I think they need to change back to the more ethically focussed and moderate, consensus seeking capitalism before the "greed is good" nonsense emerged in the 1980s. 

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    One Planet Only Forever at 02:10 AM on 10 July, 2017


    "Climategate" exposed the exploitation of criminal theft of emails by very smart undeserving wealthy people who abused bits of information completely out of context to achieve a damaging objective. "Climategate" did not expose subversive actions by scientists. The worst that it exposed was the use of terms that can have a meaning twisted when they are taken out of context (like presenting the average of longer periods of data to hide a short-term decline, or excluding tree ring data that was inconsistent with all of the other data until the inconsistency was better understood). The fact that many people still believe it exposed anything else is a serious problem.

    Increasing awareness and providing better explanations of what is going on is effectively being attacked by damaging irresponsible adults telling other people that they can believe what they prefer to believe and that anyone who says otherwise is a liar and a hypocrite and all manner of other derogatory names.

    Unltimately, the only future for humanity is for the vast majority of the population to become compassionate considerate responsible adults who will rationally evaluate what is presented to them with the objective of improving the future for all of humanity. And that majority must have no hesitation to disappoint the stubborn people who resist becoming responsible adults because they like the idea of getting away with less acceptable behaviour.

    The expectation that everyone must be allowed to believe whatever they want to excuse or defend doing what they please is the problem. Climate science is only one of many 'constantly improving understandings of what is really going on' that have exposed the fundamental problem. The solution to that problem is not the responsibility of climate scientists, acting to correct the problem has to be understood to be the responsibility/obligation/expectation of every 'leader/winner' (in business and government) in every society on this planet, no matter how unpopular or less profitable the many required corrections may be regionally.

  • 2017 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #27

    ubrew12 at 00:27 AM on 10 July, 2017

    For those interested, I highly recommend the David Runciman article: "How climate scepticism turned into something more dangerous".  Some quotes from that article: "climate scepticism is being driven out by climate cynicism. A sceptic questions the evidence... A cynic questions the motives... In these politically charged circumstances, there is no safe space for the facts to retreat to. That was made clear by... “climategate"... the emails betrayed the scientists’ awareness that the idea of a consensus on... climate change was under concerted attack. So they went out of their way to shore up the consensus. Which, when revealed, confirmed to their opponents that the consensus was a sham... we dislike hypocrisy more than we dislike lying... [and this] is not just a problem for climate politics. It is a problem for democracy... Trump has always been careful not to come across as the wrong sort of hypocrite: the kind who seems to be talking down to people. Hillary Clinton was not so careful. And when the voters get to choose between the two, the hypocrite loses to the liar... We live in an age when mistrust of politics has spilled over into mistrust of expertise... To respond with ever-greater certainty in the name of science is a big mistake... climate science... in the age of Trump should not keep saying that the populists are lying about the consensus. They should say that they are hypocrites about the doubt: they do not practise what they preach because they think they know the answers already. Climate change deniers argue they are only trying to discover the truth. We should all be sceptical about that."

    Denial thrives on the idea of science hypocrisy.  It is combatted not by attempting science purity, but by hammering on denial hypocrisy itself.  At the very least, point out how someone cannot be a skeptic if he ignores the ocean of evidence before him to focus on one bit of cherry-picked data.  And keep hammering the idea that much 'denial' is being funded by an industry with a $22 trillion interest in the outcome of this debate.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    scaddenp at 07:37 AM on 7 July, 2017

    Contributing my 2c.

    "The models did not predict this and therefore are unreliable."  This is a rhetorical trick - a straw man. Models have no skill at decadal prediction, never claim to. If you look at individual model runs,

    pauses are not uncommon.

    Going back to early times, I think republicans had a visceral response to AGW from combination of sounds expensive/more govm't/less freedom/Al Gore is fat. From there it is look for reason to discount it. "Climategate" gave one. I would suspect 99% read the damaging attacks from denialists and believed them as confirming what they suspected without making any effort to seek out context despite climate scientists almost immediately providing that context. Investigations of course did look at context and exonerated the scientist but I doubt many read the detail, preferring to claim whitewash/cover up.

    Why are US and particularly GOPers so locked in denial? More interesting question. To me it seems "critical thinking" skills are completely lost. I wonder whether there is a deep distrust in teaching critical thinking least it lead to atheism? The red/blue team idea seems to indicate a strong tendency to legal thought and process rather scientific.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    ubrew12 at 02:33 AM on 7 July, 2017

    NorrisM@6 said: "ClimateGate had a very damaging effect... It is very similar to evidence given by a witness testifying in some legal case... For any jury, ALL of the evidence of that witness is tainted."

    I'm constantly amazed how often climate deniers use the Law as an example to Science.  Who has a more questionable reputation, lawyers or scientists?   Next time I see a scientist chasing an ambulance I'll revise my opinion.  For example, deniers keep harping on the exact timing of the demise of the Arctic summer sea ice.  It is apparently really, really important to them that the scientists accurately predict the exact year when Arctic summer sea ice disappears.  Who, other than a lawyer, performs this kind of misdirection?  Hey, prosecutor, 80% of the sea ice is already gone!  Past tense.  In the last 30 years.  Outside a courtroom, is there any question where the remaining 20% is headed?

    Those of us fighting what is going on need to be aware that we are fighting rooms full of lawyers, and their speciality is misdirection.  A favorite is 'moving the goalposts': like suddenly its no longer sufficient to point out that 80% of Arctic summer sea ice is gone, scientists must now predict exactly when the remaining 20% will be gone or their reputations will be ruined, their testimony tainted, and climate denial justified for the rest of eternity.  

    The appeal to jurisprudence is how NorrisM can point to the 'hiatus' and render judgement, "The models did not predict this and therefore are unreliable."  But barrister, outside the kind of courtroom that found OJ Simpson guiltless of murder, any model of reality fundamentally cannot beat reality.  It's not possible.  It can only beat other models.  It's not the fault of scientists if the Heartland Institute won't produce any.  What you really should be asking yourself, NorrisM, is: 'Why won't they?'.  That would at least lead you to a constructive outcome.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    Eclectic at 22:58 PM on 6 July, 2017

    NorrisM @6 ,

    regarding the APS (American Physical Society) workshop/review of global warming [carried out in January 2014] and its 500+ page transcript (fortunately each page is brief!!!) :-

    I have read through the transcript, with particular attention to the sections which you highlighted (in another thread) as showing dubious science and/or dubious answers/fudging ..... and I must say I found nothing substantive there which could be taken as overthrowing the mainstream science.     Nothing at all.    So I must beg you to be specific in nominating and clarifying any points which you feel strongly could support the denialist position (other than points of sheer empty rhetoric — of which there were many!!!!).

    And in support of my statement above : it comes as no surprise that the senior officials/scientists/physicists of the APS found nothing substantive enough to justify them altering the APS Statement on AGW and climate science.

    Furthermore, you will have noted that the review panel workshop date was January 2014 : just before the 3 record hot years 2014 / 2015 / 2016 (plus year-to-date in 2017) gave added demonstration of how empty and unreal were the claims that Global Warming had stopped.   On top of that, the accompanying tropospheric warming now shows Christy's own claims to be wrong.  And also reinforcing that Lindzen is very, very wrong.

    Tom Curtis and Nigelj have indicated the false reasoning i.e. "motivated reasoning" used by many science-deniers such as Koonin Lindzen Christy and Curry.  It must be highly likely that Curry's claim that "Climategate" suddenly converted her away from mainstream science ..... is a factitious claim made in retrospect : a demonstration of "motivated reasoning" on her part.  After all, numerous independent reviews have shown that the "Climategate" allegations were a beat-up over nothing substantive.  And what real scientist would alter her views, citing evidence known to be false?!

    That is why the Republican politicians' professed desire for "Red Team" reassessment, is pure poppycock.  All they wish to do is achieve further years of delaying tactics, and at the same time give the public the impression that the genuine climate scientists are sufficiently moved by doubt of their own position (as to agree that review is necessary).

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    nigelj at 18:44 PM on 6 July, 2017

    Norris M @6

    Interesting comments, but I largely disagree.

    "Rightly or wrongly, I think that ClimateGate had a very damaging effect on the climate change views of conservatives everywhere. "

    Well it probably didn't help their views. I  can appreciate that much. 

    People do get tainted by one so called mistake (alleged in the cause of climategate), but that is very shallow to dismiss people on that basis.

    It's also very much "wrongly" that climate gate tainted anyones views. I'm a political moderate, with a reasonably  decent arts, technical and some science education. It only took me five minutes reading the actual evidence of climate gate and both sides of debate and commentary, to see there was literally nothing there, nothing wrong. Numerous investigations have also concluded the same.

    People concluding otherwise, must want to conclude otherwise, and are being irrational. I do however agree it was an unfortuante thing and rather bad luck, but to claim it means the damage is irreversible is absurd, innacurate and lazy thinking.

    "Judith Curry has herself admitted that this made her seriously question her position which was until then "mainstream"

    Her views are in a small minority of climate scientists, and she does not have a spectacular research record or any great clarity on anything, in fact she is rather vague about things. So please explain why you give her views prominence.

    "The hiatus"

    So much rubbish is talked about this. Firstly the latest information shows the pause was more of a short blip, and entirely within expectations. Last years temperatures changed everything.

    It's at least partly  inaccurate to claim models didn't predict the pause. All models without exception expect flat periods, but its impossible to predict them exacly because short term natural variation is slightly random. Models have been reasonably reliable predicting temperatures, as evidenced by articles on this website.

    Things are still slightly under predictions, but only slightly and this is not enough to be concerned about. Republicans dont appear to want to hear that, instead they seem to hear, things are not 100% as predicted to within millimetres, so everything must be wrong. With respect this is childish, self interested, and intellectually empty thinking, and they are smarter than that.

    "For now let us not get into arguments about this because you will NOT convince the Republicans by one "new study" that shows that the IPCC was mistaken. "

    So you are saying don't even try because people are so stubborn with minds closed? Humanity might as well give up. Just imagine your outrage if Hilary Clinton said something like that. Nobody needs to be that closed minded.

    Remember the only evidence that really counts is the science, and weight of scientific evidence, and it all points one way. Not politics, or character of climate scientists, or scandals, or occasional mistakes, or the like. One mistake on a minor point does not make an entire theory wrong, or key conclusions wrong. Climate change theory is built on wide evidence, not one piece of evidence.

    "So "97% of climate scientists" does not cut it with Republicans. They simply do not trust the climate scientists believing, rightly or wrongly, that their bread and butter is really based upon making sure that climate change is primarily man-made."

    Well that is just foolish thinking. Scientists are not exaggerating to manufacture work. Scientists get work in all sorts of fields because its needed, without glamourising everything.  

    We could turn around and say we dont trust politicians because their bread and butter depends on xyz, or business people or anyone. The world cannot and doesn't work like that or it would come to a complete stop . You have to have fundamental trust in professionals, unless they personally start to consistently act otherwise. Now look at the many, many false claims by Donald Trump, and there you have someone of dubious integrity.

    Basically people just do their jobs, and scientists are no different. They very critical of each other if they can find fault, because its in their interests. 

    "Can anyone really be a scientist and say that 100% of climate change is man-made? "

    Obviously yes, if thats what the science finds, and it does or very close to it. It's like certain diseases have very precise causes.

    "Climate change has been on-going for the life of the planet and the man-made CO2 emissions simply cannot be 100% unless you have strong evidence that we are in a natural "cooling period". "

    There is overwhelming evidence that we are in a natural cooling period. The solar energy output of the sun has been in a decades long cooling phase. Review "Is it the sun" on this website. This is a key reason for scientists beings concerned, quite apart from the evidence and calculations that point at CO2.

    "It is not possible that the climate naturally is not going either up or down. "

    No because the science doesn't find this. There are over 12,000 research papers on climate change, and many look at this aspect. How many would be enough for you?

    "When you say "100%" you sound like an extremist. Most people, and especially conservatives, do not like extremists. Not a smart thing to say."

    Maybe so, but when they said 90% that was too extreme as well. Seriously do we have science here, or "pc" correctness on an acceptable level? What is an "acceptable level" and why? 

    "But back to the Republican position. When they see there are real-life climate scientists like Judith Curry (who I have to admit sounds much more balanced than Michael Mann in testimony before the various Congress committees and who is not subject to any "ad hominem" attacks that seem to be levelled at Christy and Lindzen),"

    With respect, you are being one eyed. There's fault on both sides. Michael Mann gets abuse each week for example. Forget the short tempers, and look at the scientific research.

    "then the "red team blue team" approach with other scientists (primarily physicists I hope) may be the best answer to the Republicans"

    It's a staged, dubious sort of enquiry that can achieve nothing new. It's too small. The IPCC is much, larger and they include sceptics as well as so called warmists, and rotate new scientists on each review panel. You have a very good process, but most people haven't read what really happens overall, only biased little snippets of information taken out of context.

    The rest of the world has moved on while the Republicans alone seem stuck. You are just engaging in delaying tactics yet again, and we are sick of it for over a decade now. The rest of the world has seen through the ruse, and moved on to accept the obvious reality of human caused warming.

    "Once we get past what Dessler calls "positive statements" (in his very good book on climate change)"

    It's a very dubious book, and it's not about books and opinions, it's about the weight of published evidence in proper journals.

    "I just think the climate science community has to do a reality check. Trump won and he in all likelihood is here for at least for the remainder of his first term and possibly 8 years (would Pence be any better?). "Anyone who does not accept this is really like the ostrich in the sand pictured on the home page of this website."

    That's a real laugh given Trumps approval ratings are so low. I doubt he will even survive this term, and chances of re-election look slim. I'm sorry he is probably a good family man, but imho he is a confidence trickster, and does not have solidly founded policies and beliefs.

    "I personally am very unhappy with this situation but the American people have spoken!'

    Yeah sure. All your previous comments suggest otherwise. 

    "Churchill has noted, democracy is close to unworkable but compared to the alternatives, it is the best. "

    Well I would agree on that, but not with much else.

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    Tom Curtis at 18:32 PM on 6 July, 2017

    NorrisM @6, while I agree that "climategate" was damaging, your analysis does not give the reason. 

    In the first instance, while the climate scientists may have used a poor choise of words in several (among many thousands of) emails, multiple independant investigations showed they had done nothing wrong as regards science (one was guilty of trying to avoid Freedom of Information requirements).  This is even demonstrable on the public record, with the most damaging accusations being that the scientists "hid the decline" whereas they had discussed the decline in late twentieth century tree ring widths (ie, the decline in question) in multiple publicly available scientific papers.  Several more damaging accussations were complete fictions; ie, the people making the accussation were involved in fraudulent behaviour in making and presenting "evidence" for the accussation.

    Secondly, even if the scientists in question had been guilty of scientific misconduct, they represented a handful of scientists among literally thousands of climate scientists.  In almost all industries, cases of misconduct will rise well above the approx 1% level that would imply.  The people rushing to condemn climate science do not typically condemn those industries of dishonesty on that greater basis, so it is not true that they are condemning climate science on that much smaller sample.

    Thirdly, the climate "skeptics" in general, and nearly all of them in particular, have been guilty of demonstrable dishonesty or sharp practise on a regular basis.  So much so that it is difficult to find a single "skeptical" paper in recent times that does not involve blatant misrepresentation of either what others have claimed, basic science, or observed facts.  This far more wide spread dishonesty has not resulted in a general distrust of climate "skeptics", or their positions.  Therefore they have not rejected climate science because of the purported dishonesty of climate scientists.

    The second two points rely on a fundamental of causation, ie, that like causes have like responses.  This is a factor in reasoning.  If we do not trust x because of circumstances, y, then we will also not trust x' if an exactly similar set of circumstances, y' applies.  The exception is with motivated reasoning.  That is, when we do not trust x because we do not like the message they give, but we asribe the mistrust to circumstances y to give a cloak of rationality to our mistrust.  If we then come across x' who gives a message we do like, even though exactly similar circumstances, y' apply, we will trust them because the actual reason for our distrust was the dislike of the message.

    To be honest, most conservatives are probably not that direct.  They may reject climate science simply because Pravda on the Hudson (ie, Fox News) does so, which they in turn trust because of motivated reasoning; while Fox News gives great, and very distorted prominence to "climategate" while concealing the many distortions of their regular contributors on climate.

    The same motivated reasoning applies to rejection of consensus messaging, as it implicitly means accepting Scott Westerfield's far more implausible "plot idea":

  • Why the Republican Party's climate policy obstruction is indefensible

    NorrisM at 16:31 PM on 6 July, 2017

    Rightly or wrongly, I think that ClimateGate had a very damaging effect on the climate change views of conservatives everywhere.  It is very similar to evidence given by a witness testifying in some legal case who is  completely honest in his testimony until the last question, where, in his desire to "win the case" for whatever side, he  "fudges" his last answer.  The cross-examining lawyer then leads another witness who proves on that very point that the witness was not telling the truth.  For any jury, ALL of the evidence of that witness is tainted.  I truly think this happened with this issue.  Judith Curry has herself admitted that this made her seriously question her position which was until then "mainstream".   It is just about irrelevant now as to what was or was not the intention of those emails.  The damage has been done.  End of story.

    When you add this to the issue of the "hiatus" of X number of years whether or not it was really there (the IPCC at least in 2013 coined that term) has added to the legitimate questions of conservatives that are we being led down a garden path.  The models did not predict this and therefore are unreliable.    That is not an unreasonable position to take IF the hiatus really occurred.  For now let us not get into arguments about this because you will NOT convince the Republicans by one "new study" that shows that the IPCC was mistaken. 

    Then you add on John Christy's famous graph which so impressed Steve Koonin between the predictions of the models and the actual observations (see APS panel hearing below).  Do you not think that those pressing the Republicans not to do anything on the climate change file have not read the transcript of the APS panel hearing where three (3) of the top IPCC contributing climate scientists, Collins, Hand and Santer, admitted that the model predictions do not track the observations?  Their answer was that they do not trust the observations.  Can you not see how this would make conservatives suspicious?

    So "97% of climate scientists" does not cut it with Republicans.  They simply do not trust the climate scientists believing, rightly or wrongly, that their bread and butter is really based upon making sure that climate change is primarily man-made.  Can anyone really be a scientist and say that 100% of climate change is man-made?  On  that point I fully agree with Perry.  Climate change has been on-going for the life of the planet and the man-made CO2 emissions simply cannot be 100% unless you have strong evidence that we are in a natural "cooling period".  It is not possible that the climate naturally is not going either up or down.  When you say "100%" you sound like an extremist.  Most people, and especially conservatives, do not like extremists.  Not a smart thing to say.

    But back to the Republican position.  When they see there are real-life climate scientists like Judith Curry (who I have to admit sounds much more balanced than Michael Mann in testimony before the various Congress committees and who is not subject to any "ad hominem" attacks that seem to be levelled at Christy and Lindzen), then the "red team blue team" approach with other scientists (primarily physicists I hope) may be the best answer to the Republicans.  Give it a go and see what happens.  If the Koch Bros result happens again, then you will have a very legitimate and strong position to force the Republicans to act.  If their own "red team blue team" comes to the conclusion that CO2 emissions are really the cause then we are at least then only into the question of how much warming and decisions as to how best to approach this.  So I say, fully support the "red team blue team" even if it has been done before. 

    Once we get past what Dessler calls "positive statements" (in his very good book on climate change) which are the facts, then we can get into "normative statements" on what we think the results are in economic terms and what we should do about it, both as to mitigation and adaptation.

    I do suspect that such a "red team blue team" debate will get bogged down on the facts and largely because we do not have the proper instruments to measure what is happening year to year.  If the result is that the Republicans do at least decide to dedicate much more money to funding both weather/climate satellites and water buoys and on-land temperature measurements then it will be a "win" for the majority of climate scientists who believe that we are the cause.

    What I found most unsatisfying about the APS panel struck in 2014 to re-evaluate their statement on Climate Change is that after having somewhat of an "appellate hearing" there were no "reasons for judgment", just a decision by the Board of Directors of the APS one year later to effectively stick with their previous statement.  I have no problem with them sticking with their same statement but by providing their reasons they could have provided massive "independent evidence" outside the climate science community that man made warming is a major threat to our world.  On another post, I have made reference to the APS panel.  You can read the APS Workshop Framework Questions and transcript of the proceeding with 6 of the top climatologists on both sides of this debate on the website just searching "Climate Change Policy Review".

    I just think the climate science community has to do a reality check.  Trump won and he in all likelihood is here for at least for the remainder of his first term and possibly 8 years (would Pence be any better?).  Anyone who does not accept this is really like the ostrich in the sand pictured on the home page of this website. 

    I personally am very unhappy with this situation but the American people have spoken!  Get used to it!  As Winston Churchill has noted, democracy is close to unworkable but compared to the alternatives, it is the best.  Comey must stay awake at nights realizing how he might have turned the course of history.  


  • Models are unreliable

    NorrisM at 08:59 AM on 27 June, 2017

    I would first like to state that I have finally found a website that is balanced on this very emotional issue. I also want to thank SemiChemE and Tom Curtis (along with a few others) who have engaged in a very fascinating discussion on climate models.

    My intention is to pose a question on climate models in keeping with this blog, however because this is my first post, I would like to explain my background. I am a lawyer by training and have a very limited base in physics (took Latin in Grade 12 rather than physics) although I always did well in science. I will also disclose that I do have an involvement in the Canadian oil and gas industry notwithstanding that I live in Vancouver, BC.

    Ever since the issue of global warming came to the fore in the late 1990’s and since, I have to admit that I have tended to accept the “scientific consensus” if only because I had no reason to question it. Climategate shook my confidence in 2009 but if Neil DeGrasse Tyson still believes that the principal causes are anthropogenic then far be it for me to question it. However, it always seemed logical to me that a first step in reducing the effects of CO2 should be to move from oil and coal to natural gas (especially for electrical generation) which puts about one half of the pollutants into the air compared to coal and oil. After spending enough holidays in France, I have also thought that a switch to nuclear energy made more sense than disfiguring our planet with massive wind turbines and great areas of solar panels. Driving from LA to Palm Springs is not a pretty sight. But I do appreciate that there are real concerns relating to disposing of nuclear waste and issues of terrorists getting their hands on nuclear fuel. However, someone as significant as James Hansen believes that we will not achieve our goals without a turn to nuclear energy.

    In any event, my recent interest in the causes of global warming really came about because I have two sisters who are just about no longer on speaking terms owing to their disagreements on global warming. When one sister called me asking where I stood on climate change and if I truly believed that this was all a “global conspiracy of the left” to increase taxes and government control over our lives, I promised her that I would buy some books on both sides of the argument and get back to her. Needless to say, I do not believe in conspiracy theories of any sort.

    So the two books I located were The Science & Politics of Global Climate Change by Dessler and Parson and Climate Change the Facts edited by Alan Moran.

    By the time I was finished with Dessler’s book I was convinced of the science. Then I read the essays in the Moran book and found myself at least questioning some things.

    I actually then went back and re-read Dessler’s book to see where the gaps were. I have to say that when I found that Mark Steyn had an essay in the Moran book I almost did not read the book because of his extreme views. Just to make my political views clear, I think Donald Trump poses a major threat to liberal democracy in the US and to the world in many ways. But it does look like the US institutions may be able to withstand him and his cohorts. I also follow Sam Harris’s podcasts “religiously”.

    Since reading these two books I have largely pursued my research on the web even reading the submissions of the four climatologists on March 25, 2017 to the House Committee on Science Space and Technology.

    Based upon Judith Curry’s reference in her submission, this led me to the most fascinating discussion of the topic of climate models by a panel of physicists formed by the American Physical Society (APS) which posed questions to six (6) well-known climatologists having “different perspectives”. Three (3) of them (Collins, Santer and Held) are IPCC climatologists and the other three (3), Curry, Christy and Lindzen are on the other side of the debate. This was the 2014 Workshop sponsored by the APS as part of its 5 year review of its Climate Change Policy Statement.

    As a lawyer, I have to admit that if I treated (i) the IPCC 2013 Assessment as an appellate lawyer’s factum, (ii) the Workshop Framework posed as questions from the bench, and (iii) the 600 page transcript of the panel hearing as the “give and take” between the judges and lawyers during the oral argument of the appeal, I would have predicted a “win” for Curry, Lindzen and Christy and a “loss” for Collins, Santer and Held. Both the Workshop Framework questions and the transcript are on the website. Just search “Climate Change Statement Review”. If anyone has read any legal transcript of a hearing you know it is a simple read so don’t be put off by the “600 pages”.

    The APS panel consisted of six (6) arm’s length physicists (with no axe to grind) chaired by Steve Koonin who were asking hard questions of both sides. What actually struck me as very astounding was how honest Koonin was about his previous lack of understanding as to how uncertain climate science is owing to the uncertainties underlying the climate models.

    This panel hearing took place in February 2014. By November 2015, the judgment of the Board of Directors of the APS was in. The connection between increases in CO2 and global warming was “compelling”. However, the APS did acknowledge that there were significant uncertainties in the science and urged sustained research in climate science.

    Where my comparison with an appellate hearing breaks down is that no appellate court would render a significant judgment without providing its reasons. We do not get any reasons from the panel as to why it recommended to the Board of Directors (as I assume it did) that the APS “stay the course” with its policy statement notwithstanding the serious reservations you could see in Koonin’s and other panel members questions to Collins, Santer and Held and the weak answers provided by them. The IPCC climatologists in effect admitted that Christy’s now famous chart showing how far apart the average predictions of the climate models were from actual observations was “old information” and did in fact represent the existing state of models predictions versus observations. See Santer page 504. The IPCC climatologists effectively said that they could not trust the observations! Koonin’s rhetorical question to Held to this "observational" response earlier was: “So the ability then to reproduce historical data is neither necessary or sufficient to predict the future. Is that what I understand?” See page 453 of the transcript. Held effectively avoids answering the question. See page 454. Read it yourself and see if you disagree with my view of his response.

    So here is my question.

    From everything that I have read so far, other things being equal, a doubling of CO2 in the atmosphere from pre-industrial levels of CO2 of around 280 ppm to 560 ppm will increase the global surface temperature by about 1 to 1.2C and the balance of the predicted range of 1.5C to 4.5C of the IPCC 2013 Assessment is based upon “positive feedbacks” resulting from increased water vapour that is assumed will form arising out of the 1C increase by CO2. I accept (or understand) that the 1C increase is “solid physics” or “hard science”.

    Is it “solid physics” that:

    1. Water vapour will in fact increase as modelled?
    2. Water vapour will cause the predicted additional increase in temperature by a factor of 2 to 3 times?

    Although this next observation is not specifically focused on the climate models, what also troubles me in everything that I have read so far on climate change is the following:

    1. The Mediaeval Warming Period had temperatures for at least 200 years in at least Greenland and Northern Europe close to or equal to our present temperature.

    2. During the 1600's and 1700's there was a "Mini-Ice Age" when they were skating on the Thames.  We were just coming out of this cold period at the beginning of the American Revolution (good timing).

    3. From 1990 to 1940 we experienced about .3C warming; then from 1940 to 1975 there was a levelling off or cooling period; then from 1975 to 1998 we experienced .5C warming; and then there was a levelling off (termed the “hiatus” by the IPCC) of now about 17 plus years that may or may not have ended in 2015 (El Nino event 2015-2016). I appreciate that 1998 was an El Nino year but the IPCC 2013 Assessment recognized the “hiatus” up to that time.

    If climatologists cannot explain why these other warming and cooling periods occurred which, other than the 1975-1998 period, were primarily or completely caused by natural climate change, then why can they so confidently claim that this one warming period was primarily caused by the CO2 rise?  Just because there was a concomitant rise in CO2?  What about the rise of CO2 from 1950 to 1975?

    The models predicted that our temperature would increase on a linear basis. There were no “waves” in the models. I guess based upon Michael Mann’s most recent testimony the most recent peer reviewed papers are now suggesting that we will be going up in steps or waves. Can we now expect that the new models with show the steps or waves?

    So where did the “warming” go during this “hiatus”? If the answer is into the oceans, then why did the “warming” not come from the oceans during the period 1975-1998? Could we have had a cooling period during the “hiatus” that offset the warming from CO2 during this period? What are the impacts of a decrease or increase in low clouds caused by natural factors which impacts the amount of sunlight hitting the earth? Because of computer capacity issues, we can only make “parameterizations” of clouds in the models.  These are the kinds of questions that make me question the validity of the models.

    When we talk of the difference between weather and climate we say we cannot predict weather but we can predict climate because we know that next July it will be warm. But why do we know that? Not from models, from observation. If observations and models do not correspond, when do we admit that the models do not have sufficient predictive value to be relied upon? It is OK for science to say “we just do not presently understand the science sufficiently to make reasonably accurate predictions”.

    On the other hand, here are the major science societies of the world like the APS, the US National Academy of Sciences and the UK Royal Society coming out strongly in support of the proposition that man-made global warming is a serious problem and is going to get worse. My worry is that they got on a band wagon in the early 2000’s before the “hiatus” was apparent and they now find it very difficult to get off even when they see that these models are not predictive.

    I apologize for such a long-winded initial blog. If you think I have to reduce it, please advise.

  • This is why conservative media outlets like the Daily Mail are 'unreliable'

    Jim Hunt at 23:28 PM on 20 February, 2017

    This story is set to run and run! The 3rd instalment of David Rose's anti NOAA fantasy fiction saga was published in Sunday's MoS:

    "Climategate 2 – Episode 3 of David Rose’s Epic Saga"

    A couple of UK Met Office scientists have already identified some gaping holes in Mr. Rose's latest set of "Alternative Facts"

  • This is why conservative media outlets like the Daily Mail are 'unreliable'

    Jim Hunt at 19:05 PM on 15 February, 2017

    Digby @4 - Quite so. For chapter and verse on the "Trump Administration emasculat[ion of] NOAA" please see:

    "Climategate 2 Falls at the First Hurdle?"

    Watch the video to discover how “The Land of the Free” has morphed into “TrumpLand” in a matter of weeks. The “interrogation” of Rush Holt of the AAAS. A show trial of the American Association for the Advancement of Science? Congressman Lamar Smith presiding!

  • Why claiming that climate scientists are in it for the money is absurd

    nigelj at 07:51 AM on 15 February, 2017

    I agree. The accusation that climate scientists are faking data to make things look worse, and that they are scaremongering, all so that they get research grants, is absurd. It would be much easier and less risky just to get a better paying private sector job.While all professions have a few people with little integrity, there is no evidence such things are widespread or the norm, or the courts would be ten times busier.

    There is no proof of fake data, fake photos of glaciers, or incorrect data adjustments, or distorted exaggerations within climate models, or anything else. These issues have been investigated over and over by officially appointed people, (eg climategate, or The Best Study) and they found no problems.

    The people investigating would clearly be rewarded for finding any slight problem, in terms of more prestige, promotions, and bonuses etc. This is important to realise. They have considerable reason to look closely and be very criticial.

  • Mail on Sunday launches the first salvo in the latest war against climate scientists

    Jim Hunt at 09:52 AM on 10 February, 2017

    Intriguing news from my personal perspective. I've long advocated that surrealism is the better part of valour, and it seems the Met Office has picked up that baton with enthusiasm! See Richard Betts mercilessly poking David Rose with a pointy stick:

    Eat your heart out Josh!

  • Whistleblower: ‘I knew people would misuse this.’ They did - to attack climate science

    nigelj at 06:45 AM on 10 February, 2017

    Excellent points. The accusations against NOAA are another beat up, and vicious attack on climate science, without any real foundation. I agree with how you characterise all this. It is certainly a nothingburger, and hopefully it will very soon be a goneburger.

    The bottom line is there is no evidence of significant policy breaches, and the data adjustments make only an incredibly small difference to the data, and have been verified by other agencies anyway. This will of course be lost on the denialist crowd, who obviously don't care about facts, honesty, or the big issues, merely scoring points, destroying careers over trivial issues, and advancing their own agenda. It's almost animal like behaviour.

    The term "war on science" is a big term, but how else can it now be described, if not a war on science?

    I'm intrigued by what would be Bates motivation. Firstly "in principle" whistle blowing has it's place, and that no organisation is above this. In fact I'm a strong believer in whistle blowing, and laws often protect whistleblowers.

    But surely whistle blowing carries some big responsibilities as well? Huge moral responsibilites. You need to get your facts right before blowing the whistle. You could potentially damage peoples lives and your own cause. Surely you also need something substantial?

    I can't see that anything NOAA did rises to these sorts of levels. It seems like Bates has got it all wrong. He has not got his facts right. He has claimed things that he is allegedly in no position to have the full information on, by what is now said.

    It makes me wonder if he is an attention seeker, or disgruntled employee. Every organisation has one of these.

    But it's another pseudo scandal with a lot of smoke and no real fire, and is now in the public domain. Its like climategate or the hockey stick controversy. These things are boldy presented in the media, and are in the public mind, as negative sorts of things, and the enquiries finding there was nothing wrong are posted in the media, usually in the fine print in the back that nobody is going to read. Apart froom a few websites like this, the media are unbalanced, and constantly letting us down, when they do this. 

  • Mail on Sunday launches the first salvo in the latest war against climate scientists

    nigelj at 05:19 AM on 9 February, 2017

    MA Rodger @3

    Yes it seems pretty obvious from your document that the process was indeed not rushed. Other articles I have read said the same, which is why I said there was no proof anything was rushed.

    I really didn't have much time to comment. I just wanted to post a connected article which seemed interesting, and make a brief comment on what I generally thought.

    I have been following the climate debate for 20 years, just as a casual observer, and seen hundredss of attacks on the science and hundreds of sceptical claims. Every one has turned out to be deceitful, or nonsense, or worse. Right now I believe nothing scpetics say, even if they have some documents, until I see an independent, high quaility investigation. Needless to say all those have turned up nothing as well, eg Climategate. This NOAA issue is yet another beat up. There is nothing there that warrents any investigation.

    It's time some of these sceptical bodies were sued for harassment  or the like.

  • Mail on Sunday launches the first salvo in the latest war against climate scientists

    Jim Hunt at 05:03 AM on 9 February, 2017

    Factotum @5 - Ever heard of IPSO? We're on the case!

    Scroll down the comments a bit for the "libel" discussion too:

    So, let’s just sit this one out and see who takes legal action.

  • Mail on Sunday launches the first salvo in the latest war against climate scientists

    JWRebel at 21:56 PM on 8 February, 2017

    There is a real problem here: This is being touted as ClimateGate2 and there are calls on all sorts of platforms not only to fire but to jail the people involved. The denialists act as though they have demonstrated a proven pattern of dishonesty, tampering, and fraud with regards to the data. This article has made a big splash.

    In fact, what controversy there is, is not about the data, but about strict compliance with very technical methodologies about record keeping and storage, where John Bates feels others have not paid full homage to his proposals since being retired. Even if that is 100% true, even he does not articulate any doubts about the truth and reliability of the data and the arguments in the article.

    Rose is a master manipulator, a sophist in the worst sense of the word, he has sold his soul to the devil and willingly serves evil.

  • Global warming hiatus claims prebunked in 1980s and 1990s

    Tom Dayton at 23:28 PM on 6 February, 2017

    Haze: Bates's claims are without merit. Eli Rabbett provides context (especially the supposed rushing to publication and lack of archiving) for the detailed rebuttal that was posted by Peter Thorne who (unlike Bates) was directly involved with the people and processes of the actual science-doing.

    Variable Variability has a devastating rebuttal of fake journalist David Rose’s even more outlandish accounting of Bates's claims. The Great White Con has more. Also regarding Rose's baselines deception: And Then There's Physics.

    Zeke described how the recent study by he and coauthors solidly backed the conclusions of the Karl et al. paper.

  • Russian email hackers keep playing us for fools

    RenaissanceMan at 21:39 PM on 17 January, 2017

    Nigelj@1:  "Let’s be clear the Clinton and climategate email hacks were theft of people’s private correspondence. The thieves can’t even claim a public interest defence, or whistle blower defence, because there was no wrongdoing found in the documents."

    You mean that a Democratic operative at CNN can hand over debate questions to Hillary Clinton and that doesn't represent "wrongdoing"?

    Oh please.  Bernie Sanders can be ousted by the joint efforts of DNC operatives who want Hillary crowned, and no "wrongdoing" there?

    And on and on..


    "People I know still quote climategate as if it proves the IPCC wrong. "

    Why your ongoing uproar if climategate documents showed no wrongdoing?  In fact, it was a major embarrassment which showed inexcusable and indefensible bias by supposed "scientists" with a very profitable "research" axe to grind.


    "I don’t like the thought of Trump attempting to appease Putin any more than the way Clinton antagonised him. Both can only create all sorts of obvious problems. It would be better to maintain a sincere, respectful, but slightly detached approach."

    How did you like Obama appeasing Putin in 2012: "Tell Putin I'll have more flexibility after the election," Obama said to the Russian diplomat.

    And then Hillary giggled as she and a different Russian diplomat hit the little red "Reset Button" she gave him.  Democrat appeasement of Russians is just fine, isn't it.  But when the other side does it.... ooooo baby.   Danger Will Robinson.

  • Russian email hackers keep playing us for fools

    nigelj at 06:14 AM on 25 December, 2016

    Come on you "hacking sceptics" and see the big picture on this. Russia relies very strongly on oil and gas exports. They therefore have enormous motivation to undermine climate science, support Trump, attack Clinton and Obama etc. I would therefore not be remotely surprised if Russia is implicated in the email hacks of both clinton and climategate.

    This doesnt mean Russia is an evil empire and America is allways pure and innocent. When you look at politics, foreign policy, etc,etc, there is often fault on both sides.

    However right now Putin does not appear to be the quality of leader Gorbachev was. Human rights  are under threat. Russias economy is in trouble and Putin is maintaining public popularity by finding as many scapegoats to blame as possible, and America is an easy target.

  • Russian email hackers keep playing us for fools

    nigelj at 05:29 AM on 25 December, 2016

    Stevecarsonr @8, Im going to agree with you on one thing.The CIA have a certain history of activities that are rather dubious and questionable, if I can put it that way. A related book is "Confessions of an economic hit man".

    But the point I'm making is you need to avoid a total over reaction or total lack of trust in anything the CIA say. Some of the activities they have engaged in would have been pushed on them by certain presidents. I just dont believe they are totally corrupt or incompetent  on every issue.

    As I pointed out other sources have found a connection between the hacks and Russia, like the FBI. Tom Curtis has listed a whole lot more, and these sources are not known to be corrupt and its unlikely they would "all" be corrupt. You are fixated on the CIA (although I do understand why) and as a result are ignoring the weight of evidence from numerous other sources.

    This is what interests me more. I believe the CIA did have weak and mistaken evidence on Iraqs weapons of mass destruction. But the point is it was obvious at a glance that the evidence was weak and the CIA never claimed it was strong evidence. It was Bush and Blair that decided to go with such weak evidence, so its unreasonable to entirely blame the CIA. The Iraq war was arguably a mistake, but thats another issue.

    I believe (just my opinion here) the net result of the Iraq War was ordinary Americans including both Democrats and even Republicans have lost faith or trust in politicians and agencies of the state. Other leaks have found solid evidence that the other American spy agency the NSA exceeded its surveillance powers. This has added to the problem of trust.

    Americans have over reacted to all this, and lost all trust in government and "all" its agencies. This is a step way too far, and a dangerous situation where facts and truth now become elusive and truth is whatever you want to believe.

    This history has undoubtably reinforced scepticism about climate change and agencies like NASA who do the research. They have probably been labelled just another lying government agency, all because a couple of problems emerged with the CIA. But its totally irrational to deduce all agencies of the state are somehow corrupt, because of the intelligence services. I'm not saying you are doing this, but many appear to be.

    Climate change scepticism increased after the Iraq war blunder and again after climategate. Its an unfortunate over reaction.

  • Russian email hackers keep playing us for fools

    nigelj at 11:33 AM on 23 December, 2016

    Let’s be clear the Clinton and climategate email hacks were theft of people’s private correspondence. The thieves can’t even claim a public interest defence, or whistle blower defence, because there was no wrongdoing found in the documents.

    It’s quite absurd to suggest climate scientists should be required to publish their correspondence. I don’t see Trump publishing his own private or business correspondence. Hell would freeze over first before he did that.

    People I know still quote climategate as if it proves the IPCC wrong. The trouble is the media publish the headlines about a hack, but the enquiries that found no wrong doing never get published in the media, or only in the fine print at the back somewhere, and so another urban myth gets born.

    We have evidence these hacks originated in Russia at high level. Putin is an authoritarian, and a populist, and his popularity has rested on him demonising America, especially liberal America. Trump has used similar tactics to get elected. They talk the same language so no wonder theres an attraction.

    I don’t like the thought of Trump attempting to appease Putin any more than the way Clinton antagonised him. Both can only create all sorts of obvious problems. It would be better to maintain a sincere, respectful, but slightly detached approach.

  • They changed the name from 'global warming' to 'climate change'

    atthehelm at 23:10 PM on 8 December, 2016

    Did the change in nomenclature occur when ice core samples were more closely looked at (50 years of scientific endevour hardly says mastery to me Why did climategate  get swept under the rug? The real reason you have skeptics is due to those emails regardless of how they were dismissed- which I'm sure is part of another topic and I'll be chastised for bringing it up here- scoff- guffaw- also there is the interesting bit about where the temperatures are being read from- as we all know, concrete creates and stores heat so placing a reading site in the city where thirty years ago temp readings were done atop grassy plains will skew the data- - just a skeptic of all things derived by humans- especially when the "solve" is taxation and doesn't focus on the real elephant in the room- toxic waste. Nuclear wastE. medical waste. We don't dare touch those as the united corps of greed would report less profit that quarter. And don't get me started on DU chemical weapons and the MIC-  I digress. Appogies for any errs as I typed this on my phone

  • Dear Mr President-elect: a message from across the Pond

    ubrew12 at 00:03 AM on 1 December, 2016

    Trump says he has 'an open mind' about Climate Change.  In the same interview, he says CC is 'a very complex subject', says on one hand 'they have science' and on the other hand 'there are those horrible [Climategate] emails... where they got caught, you know', says 'we've had storms always', and says 'the hottest day ever was in 1890-something'.  Today we learn KellyAnne Conway, his campaign manager and likely press secretary, will travel to the Alberta tar sands in January, to highlight its importance to America.  So, in this case, we're talking about an 'open mind' filled with Koch-propaganda.

  • Over 31,000 scientists signed the OISM Petition Project

    jmcookie at 11:42 AM on 13 July, 2016

    I've been following the climate change issue for some time and although This petition does not hide their academic degree list of signatories or their fundamental argument against AGW. They do have peer reviewed research papers giving details if anyone that reads this site is actually interested. I'm not a climate scientist I watch a lot of the skeptics like Dr Roy Spencer and John Christy who seem very well informed. I've never watched a NASA climate scientist speak out so I checked and I found that NASA is a executive government agency and the climate scientists are told to NOT discuss their views publicly (so we actually don't know how many NASA scientists are skeptics). I've also watched a lot of deceit and data manipulation from major players like IPCC (Climategate) and NAOO (2015 data manipulation). I’ve read these reports and I think all this is common knowledge as these events are in Wikipedia if references are necessary.

  • Lord Krebs: scientists must challenge poor media reporting on climate change

    barry at 07:59 AM on 21 May, 2016

    Zoli, you can get the raw data and do the graph yourself. Skeptics have done it and come up with the same result as the Met Office, GISS, NOAA and the Japanese Meteorological Association.

    BEST is a project run by critics of AGW. Same results. Here's a link to the work done by other skeptics. They get more warming than the Met Office. Read the commentary.

    First the obvious, a skeptic, denialist, anti-science blog published a greater trend than Phil Climategate Jones. What IS up with that?

    Multiple groups have done the analysis using raw and adjusted temperatures. This part of the debate is over. The raw data is available for anyone to try and do it better.

  • CO2 effect is saturated

    KR at 00:14 AM on 20 June, 2015

    A better discussion on this runs in a Comments section on the EIKE website (German climate denial group) where Harde's paper was discussed, in particular the comments by Dr. Gerhard Kramm - an expert on climate modeling. From his first comment (translated, emphasis added):

    Apparently not know Harde what he does. [...] The rivers of sensible and latent heat may be charged only according to local temperature and humidity distributions. Everything else is Blooming nonsense. [...] ...Harde temperatures...have nothing to do with reality.

    Enough said.

  • 2015 SkS Weekly News Roundup #18A

    Leto at 22:29 PM on 3 May, 2015

    Very sad to hear, chriskoz,but sadly no surprise.

    This is not a rhetorical question... Do you think many people seriously believed that TA's direct action was meant to achieve anything?

    I see the right-wing media and a few TA fans playing along with the charade, but I always imagine they know better deep down. After all, TA got into power on a denialist wave, within his own party, around the time of 'Climategate', and he knows that is where his fanbase still is.

    I see scientists and environmental groups declaring Direct Action to be a doomed strategy of paying the polluters to achieve very little. Most Liberal voters could not care less about the scientific details, or they woudln't have let an antiscience prime minister come into power in the first place.

    Are there really people who actively argue with conviction that this is a good idea and that it is going to have a useful effect (on a per capita basis) on global warming? I see it more as a foil with which they can deflect criticisms from the left, as in: "Global warming is rubbish, and even if it turned out to be real, we're doing our bit anyway, so stop complaining.. "

  • Medieval Warm Period was warmer

    DSL at 03:13 AM on 26 April, 2015

    I'd say it's less about trust than cherry-picking on the part of the "people."  People for whom critical thinking is not a matter of habit are going to cherry-pick the field of information according to what makes them comfortable.  These people aren't trying to put together an understanding of the situation.  I talk regularly with people who claim, all at the same time, that 1) climate has changed before, 2) it's been much hotter in the past, and 3) climate science is a fraud. (and how do we know about the past?  Climate scientists — the same ones who are telling you that AGW is, in fact, quite real.)  The information is not being put together into a coherent picture, and there's no desire to do so.  The desire is to surround oneself with claims that block responsibility--responsibility for current activity and for future activity.  Trust means going to sources that tell you what you want to hear (in the name of freedom).  

    When people hear that the MWP exists, they have a range of possible responses.  
    1. Those climate scientists are hiding stuff.
    2. How warm was the MWP?
    3. What was the cause of the MWP?
    4. Really?  I think I'll go check it out on Wiki and google scholar.
    5. So? Stop talking to me about stupid crap. I'm trying to get into the game.

    It would be less easy to automatically go with no. 1 if climate science communication wasn't primarily defensive.  Sources that misrepresent the science are not legally bound in the US to represent the science accurately.  Thus, we have some very good, very well-paid rhetoricians who frame the message in the most effective way.  The sources don't simply point to Al Gore not talking about the MWP; instead, they create a narrative of persistent deceit, and they can do that because very few sources put together the actual science into a narrative, the narrative that scientists see.  It's simply too complex for the general public.  There will always be little bits of information that don't get included, bits that can be re-framed and blown out of proportion by experts.  The so-called "climategate" is an excellent example, and it revealed the willingness of the "people" to jump all over anything that suited their interests, even while just a tiny effort toward critical thinking would have revealed the absurdity of the whispered claims.

    The MWP is a good example for another reason.  All due respect to Mike Mann, but his multi-proxy record of the last 1000 years of surface temperature is not fundamental to the theory of anthropogenic global warming.  It's important, but one cannot work backward from it to confirm or refute the basic physical foundation of the theory, regardless of the accuracy of the work.  Yet that is precisely what "denier" opinion shapers claim. At every step, they push the logic that one alleged inaccuracy causes a breakdown of the entire theory.  The details are irrelevant; the logic is the message.  It is the logic of doubt, the logic that says "You're right: you don't need to try to understand this, because everyone has an agenda, and you're never going to get good information."

    In this sense, people "trust" Rush Limbaugh, but not blindly.  They trust him until he rubs up against their own expertise and experience.  And if he's just plain dumb where their expertise goes, it doesn't transfer to the stuff they don't know anything about.  As long as his message is about not being responsible for the woes of others, everything is all good.

    Any why was Mann attacked so ferociously?  Because he scored a rhetorical home run with his graphed results.  Easy to understand.  No one puts an attack on Lacis et al. 2012 in front of the general public.  It's a fine publication, and works through the fundamentals in a readable way, but it didn't produce any easy-to-get visuals.  Once you see the 'hockey stick' graph, it can't be unseen, and so denierville's experts have to attack, attack, attack.  Same thing happened to Marcott et al. 2013.  They shape public opinion, and, given the enormous amount of money going into the opinion shaping campaign, it's a credit to the people of the US that perhaps only a third of them have fallen for it hook, line, and sinker.

  • Understanding adjustments to temperature data

    Stephen Pruett at 08:19 AM on 2 March, 2015

    Excellent article.  Will you be addressing the status of metadata in the climate records and how this influences adjustments? After reading the Harry_readme file of climategate fame, I have the impression that at least some climate records have incomplete, confusing, and perhaps incorrect metadata. I have also read that older records (pre 70s) generally have little or no metadata associated with them. I would appreciate any information you could provide about this issue.  

    Also, are any of the raw climate records with metadata available online? It would be interesting to me to see at least a small sample. I have done analysis of microarray data for quantifying gene expression for over 40,000 genes and these data generally require normalization due to quirks of the fluorescence readers and the microarrrays, so I understand that it is sometimes necessary to adjust data. However, most journals that publish microarray data require the results and a description of the normalization method to be placed in a public database before the paper can be published.  Wouldn't something like that be useful for enhanced credibility in climate science?

  • Understanding adjustments to temperature data

    ryland at 20:52 PM on 1 March, 2015

    But the real point Rob Painting is that very few people are going to read either your comments or my comments while several tens of thousands and possibly a hundred thousand or more will read the pieces in the Australian and the Telegraph.  As the Australian piece is quoting emails in what it refers to as "Climategate" that don't portray the scientists involved in a very good light, the majority of the readers may well consider global warming to be something less than it really is. 

  • 2015 SkS Weekly Digest #8

    One Planet Only Forever at 01:31 AM on 24 February, 2015

    The comments on the NY Times article include some hints of how the people who create and try to prolong any success of deception or misrepresentation of what is going on (including "Climategate"), will respond to this.

    There are posts indicating that the focus should be on the impressions of scientific merit of the creations of the likes of Soon, not the actual validity of it just the public perceptions of it, and there should be no consideration of the potential motivations of the likes of Soon or awareness of the connections between the participants in the creation and dissmination of information like Soon's.

    And that type of irrational defense will work in the minds of people who have personal interests that motivate them to uniquely filter each piece of information to maintain their preferred beliefs by establishing perceptions of validity. And such a person would make no connections between contradictory beliefs they hold or the irrationality of such beliefs if better understanding things would challenge their preferred beliefs and interests.

    I have my doubts that Willie Soon (and the people who fund his creation of reports, and the powerful people who refer to and rely on his creations), have duped themselves about what they are doing. I believe it is likely they are well aware of the unacceptability of what they are doing. And I believe that all parts of the chain from the "funding fathers of the creations like the Kochs" through to the "Loudspeakers like Inhofe and Fox News pontificating and disemminating the creations " are connected and aware of the full chain of unacceptable pursuers they are a part of.

    Hopefully the exposure of this case of attempted cover-up and deception will lead some of those who were easily impressed by past actions of the participants in this group to question the validity of what they had previously allowed themselves to believe about this group. However, anyone who still holds perceptions of validity related to "Climategate" cannot be expected to change their mind.

  • Climate Deniers Employ Predatory Tactics in Fight Against Facts: Scientist

    william at 07:05 AM on 12 January, 2015

    John Hartz-apologies a typographical error I will not repeat. See here for UK Greens amazing policy statements (}

    Phil@21 I live in the UK and really don't need to be told what is and what isn't happening here politically.  DSL@22 I taught biochemistry and endocrinology.  scaddenp@23.  Not sure the climategate emails are the best thing to introduce on this particular forum dealing with freedom of speech, considering the comments made in those emails about how to treat journals and their editors.  As for false information being spread, surely it is just being put out there for discussion.  Isn't it?  Just because the "authorities" claim one thing it isn'rt necessarily always entirely the case.  

  • Climate Deniers Employ Predatory Tactics in Fight Against Facts: Scientist

    scaddenp at 06:07 AM on 12 January, 2015

    Universities should indeed welcome differing views and robust debate certainly goes on in climate circles (eg witness the "climategate" emails which would be robust enough for anyone). Other obvious examples would be the hypothesis that jet streams are influenced by polar melting, causes for Antarctic sea ice expansion, effect of GW on ENSO, effect of GW on hurricanes, on tornados, effect of meltwater of ice sheet dynamics etc.

    What you dont expect in university environment is pulmagation of misinformation and crackpot theories from people with little to no background in climate science who are informed from their political values and not by even textbook physics.

    What would you make of someone who continues to spread false information to an uninformed public when it is clear that they have been shown that the presentation is misleading and/or wrong and do not hold those views when talking to a professional audience? Does that strike you as the actions of a responsible academic?

  • Global warming denial rears its ugly head around the world, in English

    mancan18 at 18:39 PM on 20 August, 2014

    scaddenp and One Planet Forever.

    I am not disagreeing with you and I am not saying forums like Sceptical Science  are not important, but I am saying that the argument is already lost if you cannot even get through to a denier/skeptic about the basic idea that increasing greenhouse gases and its significance, has warmed and will continue to warm the globe.

    In Australia,  the likes of Andrew Bolt, a prominent newspaper opinion writer for the Murdoch press and host of a "current" affairs show that has a wide following, gets away with the most outrageous comments regarding climate change, and influences a lot of people. He does this without challenge and he reaches a wider audience than anyone from the climate science community does. His tactic is to pick trite points irrelevant to the arguments being made and bury anyone who is trying to make a factual point. The problem is that he conducts a political interview rather than a scientific one. He needs to be challenged about his view of the science and to do this, you need to go back to the basics of the science and not try to argue about the significance as to why it's been hot, whether climategate was a scam or not, and what needs to be done; because he and his audience don't believe there is a problem anyway.

    Also, which is even worse, one needs wonder why someone as obiviously intelligent as Maurice Newman is a denier.  He's been Chair of the ABC, Chancellor of Macquarie University and a key Government business advisor for over a decade, so he obviously has a few brains. He is still steadfastly a denier and he influences many of his other business mates to the same way of thinking. Again, whenever he makes a denier argument, you need to make arguments and challenge him from the basics so he doesn't have room to move. Expecting ordinary people with little knowledge or interest to follow the debate in its entirety is a bit much to expect, and most are not going to read the IPCC report anyway. However, they are going to listen to the likes of Andrew Bolt and Maurice Newman. If Bolt and Newman are confronted with the basic tenets of the science of global warming, everytime they try to make an argument, then their ridiculous statements, like the one Bolt uses about CO2 being harmless, can be put to rest and he can be shown to be the fool that he is and, hopefully, leave people who are just trying to understand a little less confused.

    Hopefully, by going back to the basics of the science, will relegate the likes of Bolt and Newman and climate change denial to the realm of such myths as the "Earth being 6000 years old" and "we didn't land on the moon" fads. You need to remember the overwhelming majority of scientists are reasonable people whereas the politcal ideologues who argue against the science aren't and will use any political tactic in their arsenal to get their views across. Climate change advocates, despite their overwhelming arguments, will always lose against climate change deniers, because deniers by and large are never directly challenged to prove their stance, while the advocates always are.

  • Climate change and sensitivity: not all Watts are equal

    Timothy Chase at 10:12 AM on 14 March, 2014

    BaerbelW wrote in 4:

    Re. RealClimate: not sure what's going on but when I try to go to I immediately get a "Forbidden - You don't have permission to access / on this server."

    That sounds like a shutdown in response to attack, possibly due to an intrusion, similar to the Climategate upload.  The details are more likely to be discussed in a less public forum.

  • A Hack By Any Other Name — Part 4

    KR at 03:32 AM on 8 March, 2014

    r.pauli - I believe the aim was similar to that seen in the ClimateGate hack. To take private conversations, including the hyperbole and sarcasm seen in discussions among friends and colleagues, and to quote them out of context. And using those out of context lines to claim nefarious intent and ill will on the part of forum participants, a very basic ad hominem logical fallacy attack on the science presented by SkS. 

    This underhanded approach is hardly new:

    "If you give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest of men, I will find something in them which will hang him." - Cardinal Richelieu

  • A Hack By Any Other Name — Part 1

    Timothy Chase at 02:47 AM on 23 February, 2014

    I too, am looking forward to part 2, of course.  Reminds me of how Real Climate was hacked at one point.  That was back at the beginning of Climategate.

    Appropriately named, that.  A break-in was used to illegally obtain documents intended to be used for the purpose of systematic smear campaigns.  But the similarity breaks down soon after that.

    In this case, the crooks got away.  Then the smear campaign actually worked for a while, with the press working often as unwitting accomplices, putting the victims of the attack on trial rather than trying to uncover those who were behind the criminal act.

    With the break-in at Real Climate, the perpetrators uploaded a zip of the files they thought they could best spin for their campaign to the Real Climate server.  They were planning on making a post that would include a link to the file.

    But at the time Gavin Schmidt was in the system.  He noticed that someone had broken in, then soon realized they were still there.  At that point he shut down the server.  He said something about it a while back, I believe in an interview.

  • Newcomers, Start Here

    Phil at 00:53 AM on 26 January, 2014

    Zinckidd @236.

    Coming to this a bit late, sorry - hope you're still reading ...

    One point that follows on from DSL's is why, if your friend is right, is there no Climate Change equivalent of Edward Snowden ? Now whatever you think of him, you cannot deny that the CIA and NSA managed to employ someone who, through the courage of their convictions, eventually blew the whistle on what he saw as a wrongdoing (at considerable personal cost). How come, given the size that the "Climate Change grant funding conspiracy" would have to be (and the number of years it would have to have been in action) why has no-one blown the whistle ?

    Another point concerns the "ClimateGate" emails. Deniers trawled those email for evidence of wrongdoing and found only a few instances of anything of interest, all of which, under closer examination turned out to nothing more than unfortunate turns of phrase that sounded damming only when taken out of context. But there was nothing at all in the entire archive to suggest a link (either real or imagined by the researchers themselves) between funding and the results they obtained.

  • 2013 in Review: a Productive Year for Skeptical Science

    Bienh at 09:24 AM on 6 January, 2014

    I am looking for a reference I can use regarding "increased volcanic activity," as one of the reasons why there has been some apparent cooling, as I am writing a chapter on 'climate change denial' as unethical behaviour for a book on ethics (to be called "Engineering ethics: International and environmental stability"). I am sure I have read somewhere that "volcanic activity has been approximately twice as strong in the years 2008 to 2011 than between 1999 and 2002." I thought it was in WGIAR5 SPM, but I cannot find it there. I also keep reading that the Pinatubo eruption was stronger than anything later. I am aware of papers explaining other reasons why surface warming has been less than expected. By the way, an multi-disciplinary online course on "Climate change: challenges and solutions" by scientists from Exeter University and the Met Office starts next week. I just hope it helps to change the indifferent and hostile reaction towards the subject which has been so common after Climategate,


  • Deconstructing former Australian Prime Minister John Howard's 'gut feeling' on climate change

    Matt Fitzpatrick at 06:16 AM on 14 November, 2013

    Easy fix, remove the quotes from around "religious zealots".

    There's no doubt that Howard calls climate activism a religion, and more than once. And, from the text of this speech, I see Howard drawing no meaningful distinction between climate activism and climate science. In fact, Howard conflates activism and science on page 4 of his speech, by invoking the specter of the "Climategate" East Anglia e-mail theft, and repeating the old "redistributing the world's wealth" quote mine to accuse the IPCC of advancing political agendas.

  • US school infiltration attempt by Heartland’s IPCC Parody

    Rob Nicholls at 08:34 AM on 5 November, 2013

    MA Rodger @37. Thanks for the link. I do love the BBC's idea of balance. Perhaps I'm naive but I think a lot of the poor coverage and the false balance is because of utter cluelessness rather than a sinister agenda. (I've noticed a lurch to the right at the BBC under the current government, but I'm not sure whether the climate change coverage is any worse than before. The reporting of "climategate", before the change of government, was abysmal.) It saddens me because the IPCC pretty much hands any reporter a very solid primer in the science on a plate, and yet it appears that few journalists who feel qualified to report on climate change even bother to read the IPPC's reports.

  • Scientists tried to 'hide the decline' in global temperature

    scaddenp at 11:12 AM on 27 October, 2013

    Ironbark, if your impression of climategate emails is based on solely on emails as reported by the misinformation crew, then you are missing some interesting information - like how the misinformation/disinformation sites manipulate you. You might want to check out about:

    Selective editing of the emails to cast them in a different light

    Manipulation of figures

    and strangely omitted emails that provide context. The links allow you to check blog posts against the emails so you can see that there is no further wool being pulled over your eyes.

    How do feel about being manipulated like this?

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    MA Rodger at 18:12 PM on 26 October, 2013

    Ironbark @13.
    Your request that I ease up on the 'denialist' trigger would be more likely heeded if you ease up on the denialist argumentation. This you singlularly fail to do. In the very same paragraph as your request you tell us Richard Muller describes that the e-mail hacks from CRU demonstrated 'scientific malpractice' (he may well have done, he has a history of denial) and you then intimate that "the graph" (presumably the "hockey stick" from Mann et al 1999) used by the IPCC and Al Gore was also show after 10 years to be wrong. You cannot be serious!

    I do not know where you get such deluded ideas from. Mann et al 1999 featured in IPCC TAR of 2001 and along with a whole bag full of other 'hockeysticks', also in IPCC AR4 of 2007. And if you bother to examine the final draft of IPCC AR5 WG1 Chapter 5 figure 5.7 you will see that Mann et al 1999 is now replaced by Mann et al 2008, within which the work of Mann et al 1999 remains all correct and ship shape being presented within figure 3(b) of that paper. There was no error, no malpractice attached to the 'hockeystick'.
    Do you deny this to be so? Or will you accept that 'climategate' had zero impact on the science.
    (Note. There is somewhere on video a UK climatologist (?) who delights in pointing to some minor adjustment to a global temperature record for part of a decade of the 19th century that was the sum total scientific impact of 'climategate', so perhaps "zero impact" is not entirely correct.)

    Of course (as pointed out @24) this is off topic here. Indeed, to remain on topic, please do not present your detailed thoughts concerning a different SkS post in this comment thread. That other SkS post does have a comment thread of its own which is provided for such a purpose.


  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Tom Curtis at 14:06 PM on 26 October, 2013

    Ironbark, further to the moderators comment @19, your comments on "climategate" are not sloganeering because you make them.  They are sloganeering because you make them but decline to provide evidence in support of your stated position.  Where you to provide that evidence on an appropriate thread, they would not be sloganeering.  Where you to provide that evidence here, they would still not be sloganeering, but would remain off topic.

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Tom Curtis at 10:15 AM on 26 October, 2013

    Ironbark writes @13:

    "My point is that if it takes a decade for that to come out from the original papers, after the graph was used by the IPCC and Al Gore, what hope now do ordinary people have to take any study that's not older than 10 years on face value?"

    S/he continues @15:

    "People objectively seeking the truth (which we're all keen to know) would have encouraged people trawling over their work. It would have been far more relevant and less damaging to the AGW hypothesis if the hockey stick had been displayed what the proxy data actually showed. Then others could have built on that."

    I am not going to discuss these comments in detail here, as they are off topic.  If Ironbark wants a serious discussion on this issue, s/he should post on the topic here.

    I will, however, point out that Michael Mann's graph as featured in the IPCC TAR, and in Al Gore's lecture series, movie and book does not hide the decline.  Nor does it substitute real temperatures for proxy temperatures in any case.  The suggestion that he did so comes from a blatant misinterpretation of something that Phil Jones says he (Phil Jones) did with another graph that has never appeared in any IPCC publication, nor been used by Al Gore (or anybody else so far as I know).  Nor, for that matter, did Phil Jones do what Michael Mann actually did in his paper that produced the graph used by the IPCC and Gore.

    This is typical of the whole "climategate" farce.  Almost the entire basis of attack against the authors of the CRU emails has been on the misinterpretation of a few lines of text taken out of context.  I strongly recommend that Ironbark not keep on spreading that misinformation until they have investigated the issue in detail here on an appropriate thread where more knowledgable people can point out, point by point, the nature of the misinterpretation involved.  Alternatively, they can consider the possibility that many independent inquiries that have exonerated the authors of the emails of wrongdoing have all simply conspired to hide the truth.  Absent such a conspiracy theory, it is absurd to keep on pushing the misinformation about the emails in the face of those multiple, independent exonerations. 

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Ironbark at 09:39 AM on 26 October, 2013

    At 10 - DSL, whether others agree with me or not on the Climategate issue is secondary to my overall question. 

    Unless the emails I've read, are not the emails commonly understood, the use of words trick, 'hide the decline', the attempts to control what Journals published to restrict dissenting papers shows clear bias.  People objectively seeking the truth (which we're all keen to know) would have encouraged people trawling over their work.  It would have been far more relevant and less damaging to the AGW hypothesis if the hockey stick had been displayed what the proxy data actually showed.  Then others could have built on that.  Humanity would be better off for those scientific papers.  Instead those papers set back the cause of objective people who say the evidence substantiates AGW and the climate community is only making it worse by not calling a spade a spade.  People like Professor Richard Mullins calling it 'scientific malpractice' are to me, the best hope of restoring integrity in the eyes of the ordinary person, though apparently his opinions are the minority here.

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    doug_bostrom at 09:34 AM on 26 October, 2013

    Just so we keep our stories straight...

    -- Climategate and MBH 98 have to do with models how?

    -- Al Gore has to do with models how?

    -- Poor people we're presently choosing not care for have to do with models how?

    Would be nice if we could stay on topic. Distinguishing one topic from another is a skill that can easily be learned. Start by remembering that GCMs are are not policy, GCMs are not celebrities, GCMs are not paleoclimate reconstructions, GCMs are not archaic emails on unrelated topics. 

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Ironbark at 09:14 AM on 26 October, 2013

    At Moderator - understood, appreciate the feedback and thanks for the link.  I don't agree with one of it's conclusion though that 'we can’t wait for 30 years to see if a model is any good or not' - that is an opinion that people are allowed to have regarding their own perceptions of the costs vs benefits.   That is a subjective comment though - I don't believe it's a scientific comment.  Being subjective, my own perception is that there will be lots of needless suffering on the poorest if we are incorrect in regulating CO2 footprints (i.e. if CO2 footprints are to blame, we can't address the issue without preventing poor countries from improving their quality of life, since improved quality of life comes from fossil fuels).  Is there a scientific position as to how long model predictions can deviate from observations without questioning the underlining inputs and assumptions?

    At 12, MA Rodger - easy on the 'denialist' trigger.  My conclusions on Glimategate correspond with Prof Richard Muller's lecture on youtube, who for what I can make out, appears to think that all the warming we've seen is caused by humans, yet says Climategate was 'scientific malpractice'.   My point is that if it takes a decade for that to come out from the original papers, after the graph was used by the IPCC and Al Gore, what hope now do ordinary people have to take any study that's not older than 10 years on face value?

    The link you've provided helps, though I'm not sure it gets to the crux of the question.  The essence of the 'Does the global warming 'pause' mean what you think it means' thread, appears to be that there is no pause over a longer period.  Whilst this is interesting and I would agree that to discern overall trends needs long time frames, the context of my question was that of someone who just wants to look at how predictions have gone against observations to make a decision.   Why - because the reason to regulate CO2 footprints now is predicated on the assumption that we have no time to lose.  Since models weren't making predictions 30 years ago, their performance over that time period isn't relevant to that question.  The relevant time period is to match when models were predicting the future, against those now historical observations.  From what I can make out those predictions appeared to start in the late 1990's (please correct me if I'm wrong).  The link talks about the oceans switching to another warming cycle - how long would this be, if it's long, can that not support the position that we don't have to act imminently?  How many years of no warming from when models started making predictions would it take for ordinary people to be able to say that there might be more going on here that we don't understand?

    As an aside, I don't think the graph on that page comparing how 'realists' and 'skeptics' view climate doesn't helps the case.  I haven't seen anything said by skeptics which would support such a graph - their overall argument in fact appears to be the opposite, that even 30 years is to short a trend - some are saying we need to look a trends over thousands of years.   I don't know which one is right, other then that graph characterising the 'skeptics' view, doesn't correspond with anything I've read from them.  Obviously it's up to this site to determine how it wants to reflect opposing viewpoints, however IMO I think it detracts from great work that's being done here as opposed to helping it.

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    DSL at 02:36 AM on 26 October, 2013

    You're not being reasonable, though, Ironbark.  You've already admitted not knowing enough about the science to make a reasonable science-based conclusion, yet you uncritically accept interpretations of the work of Mann and Jones based on severely de-contextualized snippets of text.  Worse yet, the interpreters you rely on cannot be identified.  Their memes have been spread far and wide, but no one is stepping forth to defend those memes.  No formal allegations were ever made, despite the extreme seriousness of the whispered claims.  Nine investigations found the scientists not guilty of scientific misconduct.  And you just want everyone to accept your understanding of "climategate" without question?  I feel I should be more skeptical.  

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Ironbark at 02:08 AM on 26 October, 2013

    At 6, Dikran I'm raising a concern that's held by many ordinary people who don't have the time or expertise to read every science paper to check whether the claims are true or not.

    Those ordinary people either have to trust that the science is objective, or find another way to inform themselves that isn't reliant on trust. 

    Yes there are probably climate scientists out there who are objective, and they should rightfully feel disappointed that their objectivity is questioned.  I've read the Climategate emails and I don't belief that the hypothesis in those papers was tested without bias.  (-snip-)

    The beef of truly objective scientists shouldn't be at ordinary people who don't have the time or skills to tell who is objective, and who isn't, but rather at those peers who brought the overall climate community's reputation into disrepute.   (-snip-)

    My comments are reasonable discussions being had by ordinary people who just want to know whether we should restrict carbon footprints or not.  Banning reasonable questions which seek to find the easiest way to determine the truth (matching predictions with observations) may keep the comment board 'clean', but doesn't deal with the concerns of ordinary people which was what I thought was the intention of this website.

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    DSL at 23:16 PM on 25 October, 2013

    Ironbark, you admit having no expertise, and then you point to "climategate" as evidence of fraud.  Upon what basis do you interpret "climategate"?  If you respond, respond on one of these threads.  Your comment will be seen, since most of the SkS regulars follow the aggregate comment page.

    As for models, what is your definition of "accurate"?  Modeling has done remarkably well, with the exception of its massive underestimation of Arctic sea ice loss.  Consider where the surface temp trend could have reasonably (from the perspective of someone naive of the science, like you) gone over the last fifty or twenty or ten years.  Now look at the model projections. Surface temp is still within the bounds of the range described by 95% of the model runs, and that range isn't all that wide.  So where and why have models failed--and failed to the point of uselessness?   Respond here or on one of the many model posts.

  • Why trust climate models? It’s a matter of simple science

    Ironbark at 22:09 PM on 25 October, 2013

    I'm a layman - no climate creditionals, no science degrees.  I'm simply a voter (probably like lots of others out there) being asked to regulate CO2 footprints.

    I don't have the expertise to understand the science - if I'm to trust others to do the science, I have to see that it's being done objectively.  The Climategate emails showed me that there were (and probably still are) lobbyists masquerading as scientists out there.  There's enough of them for it to take a decade for that fact to come out.

    All that leaves is the models.  If the models are accurate in predicting the future, then ordinary people like myself don't have to understand the science or trust the objectivity of others.  We can judge for ourselves whether CO2 emissions are to blame. 

    It seems that there's been a disconnect between the what the models have predicted so far, and what has eventuated.  It's understood that there are difficulties modelling a chaotic system.  My question is though, how long is it expected for this disconnect to remain, and how long should we give the models before it is a fair conclusion that we don't yet understand what's going on in the climate enough to regulate CO2 footprints?


  • Why climate change contrarians owe us a (scientific) explanation

    scaddenp at 06:44 AM on 14 October, 2013


    "I am entitled to that opinion and that is what I say."

    You are entitled to your own values and political opinions, but you cannot have your own version of reality. What you are saying is that your opinion is not based on any reasonable evidence so there is no basis for anyone else to be interested in what you think.

    "It is easy for everyone on here to talk about 'scientific evidence' when your view is the evidence of an army of climate scientists. Given that there is a distinct absence of investigation into the merits or not of climate science it will always be a one sided debate."

    As far as I can see all this statement means is that you dont believe the evidence therefore you must conclude that somehow the evidence is flawed, rather than question the basis by which you came to your own opinion instead. You are agreeing there is no evidence to support your view but you hold to that believe anyway?

    In fact, the army of scientists is constant investigating the merits of the science - one positive that came out of the climategate leaks is the robust nature of climate debate between climate scientists. If there is one group of people that have scientists, funding, resources and particularly the motivation to attack climate science, then it is the fossil fuel industry. Instead of doing the science they instead spend their money on disinformation. Why is that? Well because their own scientists tell them the science is solid so it would be a waste of money. This is my industry. I dont know of a single climate denier among colleague in my department.

  • Climategate CRU emails suggest conspiracy

    YubeDude at 13:04 PM on 17 September, 2013

    Wow, look what happens when you have a life away from online threads...

    A few days back I was reading a rather disingenuous post by josieki and asked her two questions about her observation that science, from her personal experience, is often corrupt. My questions were directed at her personal experience and inquired if working in the corporate world of science for profit that certain shareholder issues may have had more to do with creating the air of corruption she precived then any other explanation…it was her world I wondered if she had considered that possibility. After her opening salvo aimed at the integrity of science she attempted to anchor her point to "Climategate"

    It was her mention of Climategate that caused me to log in and reply I responded and thought I had accurately characterized the nature of this non-conspiracy conspiracy. She started this with an attempt to kick a dead horse that has long ago been shown to be a rotting corpse of cherry pick snippets and out of context personal correspondence that in no way has been shown to establish evidence of scientific collusion in the service of an agenda that is counter to the findings. Now she gets to have my own post pulled and retreat into the ether and anyone who was engaged by her is to suffer a moderated silence?

    The beauty is that there is still a world outside of thread discussions and moderation...time to go enjoy the day.

  • An accurately informed public is necessary for climate policy

    shoyemore at 18:18 PM on 30 July, 2013

    richard betts, #16,

    I took the trouble to re-read much of what Hulme wrote in 2009-2010 that lost him my respect. Admittedly, I may have been hard on him and his comments seem to be more cogent after 3 or 4 years.

    However, I did note at the time, and still do, that in pieces like his Wall Street Journal op-ed, at no point did he remind his readers that the "Climategate" charges against his colleagues were baseless, and exaggerated in the media.  I think that would have been a useful point to make to make to WSJ readers. Instead, he seemed focussed on his own philosophical and ideological agenda regarding science and the IPCC.

    I am glad he wrote a good book, and some day I may even read it.

  • An accurately informed public is necessary for climate policy

    Daniel Livingston at 11:18 AM on 30 July, 2013

    Barry Woods asserts a widespread reframing of climate change discourse, which apparently he believes has relevance to readers here. That may well be true, but his framing of the reframing comes across to me as nitpicky and adversarial – the very thing that ironically it seems he wishes wasn’t part of climate discourse. Political science suggests there may indeed be power in reframing discourse. In fact, I appreciate how this site (SkS) helps to reframe cognitive discourse (at least on this site) away from myth and propaganda toward science.

    “Prof Mike Hulme’s... view that the climate communications environment with the politicians, media and the public has changed post Copenhagen Conference (or climategate - 2009)”

    “Evidence (if only ancedotal) that the comms climate has changed i the UK at least”

    In addition to claiming that this reframing is widespread, Barry implies that this reframing is beneficial, and that communicators who are framing the discourse differently are counterproductive. It is not entirely clear what Barry’s reframing is other than that current ‘contrarians’ (WUWT etc) be categorised as part of a new ‘consensus’ where the consensus envelope is redrawn to be far more inclusive, and then that we resume discussions about things over which there is disagreement (sensitivity and a perceived hiatus). In my opinion this would probably leave us not far from where we are now except that we would have to find other words to describe the current ‘consensus’ that current ‘contrarians’ fall outside of.

    “So maybe it is time to accept Roy Spencer, Prof Lindzen, Anthony Watts and Andrew Montford, etc into the consensus?”

    I wonder whether Barry would consider a contribution at WUWT in which he encouraged its readers to view themselves as part of a meaningful consensus (not just mockery of the idea of consensus) that includes, presumably, SkS authors/readers? While on the one hand that would be a wonderful development, I unfortunately doubt the discourse has moved to this point from the point of view of WUWT authors/readers.

    Barry, in one or two sentences, could you succinctly characterise the change in climate discourse that you are talking about?

    Further, in another one or two sentences, what is your objective for facilitating a reframing of climate change discourse, and what should be the objective generally for climate communication?

    Finally, if one believes the premise of Dana’s conclusion in the OP, would it make to participate in the reframing you are talking about? If so, why? Or if one must logically dispute Dana’s conclusion in order to participate in such a reframing, perhaps it would be useful to start with evidence-based reasoning to come to a different conclusion than that of the OP.

  • An accurately informed public is necessary for climate policy

    richard.betts at 09:10 AM on 30 July, 2013

    Hi Dana

    Bit surprised to read your sentence "Ben Pile repeated claims made by ... Richard Betts ... suggesting that even climate “skeptics” would fall within our 97% consensus ... these claims display a lack of understanding of the nuance in our study."

    Ben pointed to my post at Bishop Hill where I asked the sceptics who considered themselves in the 97%, and in which I was careful to quote your exact definition, which was "97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming".  

    I think it's a bit strong to say I was making "claims" and imply that I'd not understood your definitions.  It would be useful if you could check your reading of your sources a bit more thoroughly!

    Incidentally, shoyemore, since Climategate Mike Hulme has published an excellent, insightful book called "Why we disagree about climate change".  It's a very well-informed and well-argued examination of the complexities of the climate debate and the different viewpoints people are coming from - I think it's a very useful book, and makes a great contribution to moving the dialogue forward beyond the current stalemate between entrenched positions.  Mike is well worth listening to, and I thoroughly recommend his book.

  • An accurately informed public is necessary for climate policy

    Barry Woods at 08:18 AM on 30 July, 2013

    As I'm in the UK and John Cook is in Australia (Dana the USA) - I'll have to wait (hopefully) to a reply to my question (comment 1) from the authors of the paper.

    I'm a little surprised that Dana did not focuss on the first part Prof Mike Hulme's (founding director of Tyndall Centre for Climate Change) comment, as this has recieved the most attention around the blogs (in particular Prof Judith Curry and Prof Dan Kahan), it talks mainly about his view that the climate communications environment with the politicians, media and the public has changed post Copenhagen Conference (or climategate - 2009):

    "Ben Pile is spot on. The “97% consensus” article is poorly conceived, poorly designed and poorly executed. It obscures the complexities of the climate issue and it is a sign of the desperately poor level of public and policy debate in this country that the energy minister should cite it. It offers a similar depiction of the world into categories of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ to that adopted in Anderegg et al.’s 2010 equally poor study in PNAS: dividing publishing climate scientists into ‘believers’ and ‘non-believers’." - Prof Mike Hulme

    Prof Dan Kahan (Yale) made a similar observation of how succesful this consensus aproach communications would be likely to work, in a post when the paper was published:

    "Annual "new study" finds 97% of climate scientists believe in man-made climate change; public consensus sure to follow once news gets out " - Prof Dan Kahan


    Prof Dan Kahan revisited this paper when Prof Mike Hulme's comment came to his attention, and seems to be agreeing with Hulme that the climate of communications has moved on:

    "On the contrary, there’s good reason to believe that the self-righteous and contemptuous tone with which the “scientific consensus” point is typically advanced (“assault on reason,” “the debate is over” etc.) deepens polarization. That's because "scientific consensus," when used as a rhetorical bludgeon, predictably excites reciprocally contemptuous and recriminatory responses by those who are being beaten about the head and neck with it.

    Such a mode of discourse doesn't help the public to figure out what scientists believe. But it makes it as clear as day to them that climate change is an "us-vs.-them" cultural conflict, in which those who stray from the position that dominates in their group will be stigmatized as traitors within their communities."

    This is not a condition conducive to enlightened self-government." - Prof Dan Kahan

    Is it not possible to change focus, and to attempt to discuss what we all agree on, going forward?

    Evidence (if only ancedotal) that the comms climate has changed i the UK at least:

    At the recent Oxford Union Interview with Prof Lindzen, with Mark Lynas (author Six Degreees, God Species and environmental writer/activist), Prof Lyles Allen - Oxford Uni - opposing, and David Rose - Mail on Sunday supporting, surprising the interviewer I think, they all agreed that current EU climate policies were pointless futile symbolic gestures, Myles Allen stated that he and Lindzen were in agreement about most of the science and Mark Lynas stated aterwards that they all agreed on 7 out of 10 things.

    So is it time to work out what we all can agree on and move forward.

    Mike Hulme suggests in this comment that the world has changed and despairs at the polarised and quality of the public debate.

    Consider that  Prof Mike Hulme (Tyndall Centre, UEA) was quoted in a climategate email of trying to keep sceptics like Prof Stott off the BBC airwaves, and Mark Lynas was writing 6 years ago that climates sceptics were the moral equivalent of Holocaust deniers, that surely is an indication of  how things have changed?

    I had lunch with Mark Lynas last year and he expressed surpise at the contents of the full Doran survey, an earlier 97% consensus paper (especially the appendices,) he is the unatributed environmental writer here in the WUWT article below, he had often quoted it, but had never read - The Consensus on the Consensus - M Zimmerman (the survey cited by Doran)

    Both Hulme and Kahan are saying that yet another 97% consensus paper is unlikely to change anything and perhaps a new approach is required, even psychologist Dr Adam Corner is trying to broaden the tent, to include conservatives (UK sort) who whilst many care about the environemnet, Dr Adam Corner (Cardiff Uni, Guardian, COIN, PIRC, formerly Green Party MP candidate, and Friends of the Earth) recognises that the issue has become symbolic and identified with the left, and needs a broader viewpoint to actually ever achieve anything with respect to policy.


    If Mark Lynas (who put Lindzen into a who is who of Climate Change Deniers - (with Exxon fossil fuel links innuendo) in the New Statesmen a decade ago and equated sceptics with moral equivalent of Holocause deniers ( 6 years ago) can sit down  with me ( a Watts Up With that very occasional Guest Author)  civily and have lunch, discuss, agree to disagree or even agree to agree on many things (I even 'know where he lives' - ref Greenpeace, he had a bad back, so I gave him a lift), have things moved on?

    Or after the Lindzen debate, when Mark Lynas was asked, do you think Prof Lindzen's scence is in anyway influenced by any fossil fuel infuence, he said highly highly unlikely, Prof Myles Allen was really offended that Lindzen had been asked this sort of question (repeatably, a lot was cut from the video edit) , Myles (frustrated with the interviewer) even saying Exxon paid for my ticket once, can we move on, and that consensus was not getting us anywhere , is that a not a sign that the climate of communications has moved on (in the UK at least)


    So maybe it is time to accept Roy Spencer, Prof Lindzen, Anthony Watts and Andrew Montford, etc into the consensus? As they all agree that the Earth has warmed in the last 200 hundred years, that CO2 is a green house gas, and that man contributes to climate change.

    We can then discuss what we all disagree about, which I think is mainly policy and the hot topics of climate science, senitsivity and the reason for the hiatus in temps in the last decade or so.?

    And also perhaps it is time to drop Deniers Disinformation Databases (Desmogblog) or Deniers Halls of Shame (Rising Tide, Campaign Agansit Climate Change) as a tool in the communications debate (it is ever so counterproductve)


    (sorry the comment was a bit long)



    Prof Myles Alen comments about Prof Lindzen treatement by the interviewer (comment 23):


    the Oxford Union Lindzen interview (Allen, Rose, Lynas)

  • An accurately informed public is necessary for climate policy

    shoyemore at 07:37 AM on 30 July, 2013

    I had not heard of Hulme since he made some inaccurate interjections into the faux-scandal Climategate back in 2009-2010.

    It would be interesting to know if he has done anything at all useful in the meantime.

    IMHO, this latest intervention moves him from zero to zero, or even to less than zero.

  • Global warming games - playing the man not the ball

    Micawber at 20:15 PM on 20 July, 2013

    CSLDF is a significant source of help to beleaguered scientists who in my experience have a strong belief if data-based truth and expect legal or justice systems to work on this basis. The Anglo-American adversarial legal system works by arguing polarised views with the winner being the best arguer. That is not necessarily or even usually the truth. Indeed a Harvard law prof stated that in his experience the verdict in legal cases rarely reflected the evidence. He said it was fortunate that accused were usually guilty of something so a guilty verdict could be justified.
    It is a total shock to hardworking scientists to be exposed to such an unjust system. Clever wordsmiths can twist a narrative into a very persuasive argument that can easily sway non-scientist judge and jury. So CSLDF is welcome, though it will only make the lawyers even richer.
    I note CSLDF is US-based. Science is international. One only has to think of Climategate and Phil Jones of UEA to realised that an international branch of CSLDF is sorely needed. Indeed Monckton is UK based for his international fund-raising attacks against climate science. He is thoroughly imbued with Catholic belief system so the parallels to Galileo were appropriately drawn in your article. Thus the deniers have an international fund raising association (hence the request for the Knights of Malta). Is there an international arm to CSLDF?

  • How SkS-Material gets used - Slovenian translation of the Scientific Guide

    BojanD at 05:58 AM on 18 June, 2013

    'Think globally, act locally' is the way to go. I never lose an opportunity to correct misinformation when an article on climate change is being attacked by trolls and translated material on SkS is of great help. Resisting those trolls in comment section is probably more helpful than it seems, since it gives a casual reader a chance to dig further.

    I'm not sure what author meant when he talked about a growing denial movement in Slovenia. I haven't noticed any. Sure, a well-known know-it-all contrarian published a book soon after climategate, but I think almost nobody is taking him seriously.

  • New study by Skeptical Science author finds 100% of atmospheric CO2 rise is man-made

    DSL at 01:48 AM on 8 June, 2013

    reality, I'll be happy to discuss "climategate" with you on the appropriate thread.  I'm professionally interested in what you learned from "climategate."

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