Global warming emails: followup

By Phil Plait | December 4, 2009 11:28 am

I think a followup on my earlier post on the climatologists’ emails is called for.

The comments in that post have been interesting. Most of them — and there are a lot — completely missed the point I was making, which isn’t terribly surprising. I called this whole thing a non-event because it’s manufactured drama. It is not the smoking gun, it doesn’t discredit climatological research showing the Earth is warming, and it doesn’t show that scientists are some sort of priesthood guarding their domain. As Real Climate points out, it’s not what’s in the files that’s interesting, it’s what’s not in them: nothing about huge conspiracies, nothing about this all being faked. If this is such damning evidence, where’s that evidence?

What these files do show is scientists trying to deal with data, software, and science, all the while also trying to figure out what to do with attacks on their work that are largely ideologically driven. I don’t think they handled that all that well, and that doesn’t surprise me. They’re scientists, not wonks. Of course, if you look at the files from the point of view of giant conspiracies it seems very racy, and clearly a lot of the commenters on my original post feel that way. But to reiterate, this does not call into question the reality of global warming in general.

To further show that, look at some of the things being said. Many people — and some who should really know better — are saying Phil Jones, the head of the group whose files were hacked, has been "fired". That’s simply not true. He has stepped aside, temporarily, while the situation is being investigated. The news reports on this were very clear. So why would someone say he was fired? I submit it’s because they are trying to spin this situation up into more than it is.

Again, as I thought I made clear in the earlier post, the methods being used by the scientists in question don’t look to me like they were faking data. In software it’s common to test out different methods, see what works, and what doesn’t. A piece of software I wrote for working with Hubble data went through hundreds of iterations and edits before going live (and was updated quite a bit after that as well). Software used to analyze data is a little like science itself: it changes as you learn more and find better ways to do things. If you found an early version of my code you might wonder if I was faking the data too! The examples of code in the hacked files may have been early versions, or had some estimations (called, not always accurately, fudge factors) used in place of real numbers… the thing is, we don’t know. Drawing conclusions of widespread scientific fraud from what we’ve seen is ridiculous.

As far as the scientists’ attitudes go, much hay has been made of that as well. But I wonder. Imagine you’ve dedicated your life to some scientific pursuit. You do it because you love it, because you want to make the world a better place, and because you can see the physics beneath the surface, weaving the tapestry of reality, guiding the ebb and flow of forces both subtle and gross. Then you find that people start attacking you with flimsy evidence, politically motivated vitriol, and even elected officials say that what you are doing is a "hoax". How do you react?

The circling of wagons and questions of what to do and how to deal with the situation don’t surprise me at all. And again, without the context of those emails we don’t know what the real story is. You can claim scientific fraud and obstructionism all you want, but you don’t know, and I don’t either. I actually agree that this should be investigated, but I hope they look at all the evidence, and don’t quote mine and cherry pick as so many people have done.

People say I’m biased, which may be a fair cop. I am biased: to reality. If we had real evidence that global warming was not occurring, then I’d pay attention. I’ve looked at the so-called "other side", and found their claims lacking. Science is all about finding supporting and falsifying evidence. When enough data piles up that shows previous thinking is wrong, then scientists change their mind. Look up "dark energy" if you have doubts about that. In this, I am in agreement with the American Meteorological Society, Nature magazine, and Scientific American.

Science is necessarily conservative. Once something is established as being an accepted model/theory/law, then it becomes the standard paradigm until it is shown to be flawed in a significant way. You may not like it, but in modern climatology, global warming is accepted as the standard. It’s not up to me or anyone to prove it right at this point, it’s up to scientists to show it’s wrong. To do that you’ll need a lot of really good evidence, and from what I have seen and read that evidence is not there. Maybe it’s fair to say not yet there, but in reality it may not be there at all.

This has become so politicized it’s hard to know what’s right and what’s wrong. I personally would be thrilled to find out the Earth isn’t warming up. I’d like my daughter to grow up on a planet that isn’t on the fast track to environmental disaster. But I have no stake in the claim scientifically either way; I don’t cling to AGW because of political bent or any ideology. I think global warming is real because of the overwhelming evidence pointing that way.

I’ll note that some people are still upset by my use of the term deniers. Again, to be clear: a skeptic is someone who uses evidence and logic to reach a conclusion. A denialist is someone who will say or do anything to deny an issue. I stand by my definition. There are actual global warming skeptics out there — and I would not only support their efforts but praise them — but what I see on the web and in the comments overwhelmingly is denial, not skepticism.

Joshua Rosenau at Thoughts from Kansas has a lengthy post on these hacked files, which is well worth reading. He is more adamant about the icky nature of the data theft than I am — I do see where it’s wrong, but also understand that motivation is an issue, as I point out in my original post (after all, what one person calls a thieving hacker another would call a whistleblower)– but we largely agree on everything else.

Also, as predicted the comments in my original post accuse me of all sorts of horrid things, which I take in stride. I maintain that the vast majority of what I have seen claimed by the global warming deniers is simply taken out of context. Programmers and scientists complaining about software and data? Quelle horreur! Wow, we never do that.

Pbbbbt.

In conclusion: I called this a non-event because it has no real impact on global warming science or our understanding of it. Of course it has a huge impact, politically. But that’s because the ideologues out there have seized on this and made as much noise as they can, so in that sense it is an issue — an issue of how political science has become, how easy it is to disrupt the process, and the effect this has had on the scientists themselves. This issue won’t go away any time soon, but we need to focus on the signal, not the noise.

Comments (400)

  1. I really liked this post in the latest skeptics circle.

    He points out that they even quote mined computer code in order to try to make the conspiracy case.

    I’ve mentioned this at another site.

    Hypothesis arises that the earth’s temperature is rising at a rate that is not natural
    Scientists test that hypothesis
    Skeptics put up criticisms with the claims and test results and provide new contrarian claims
    Scientists test those claims and come up with more data that on the whole reinforced the AGW hypothesis
    Skeptics move goal posts and present new contrarian claims
    While still producing new measurements and evidence reinforcing AGW, they test the new claims of the skeptics (i’m at cosmic ray theory here).
    Skeptics now become denialists.
    Denialists start ad hominem attacks, quote mining, and cherry picking
    Scientists continue scientific work but now have to contend with unscientific blather and hyperbole
    Denialsits continue attacks while getting better funded from industries that benefit from emitting CO2 and other GHGs
    Scientists now have to watch what they say, deliver messages that have been couched and continue to refine and improve their data collection methods.

    Is it any wonder that scientists are annoyed and resentful towards that continued noise that comes form denialists?

  2. Cory Albrecht

    Over 2 hours an no comments yet, but on the original blog post people were commenting within minutes.

    What’s up?

  3. Cory Albrecht

    Pops!, 1 other comment. but still – why the volume difference? Astroturfing?

  4. [denier]But have you actually read the e-mails, Phil! How can you say any of that! They’re CLEARLY covering up the TRUTH and falsifying DATA!!1! Not only that, but they’re DELETING data and violating FOI laws!one!!1!! ZOMG!![/denier]

    @Cory Albrecht

    I’m expecting Spectroscope any moment, now.

  5. ND

    Here’s a another blog entry on the issue of the VERY ARTIFICIAL correction not actually being used.

    scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/12/quote_mining_code.php

    I’ve lost any and all respect towards Eric Reymond for asserting that the climate code we have seen so far proves the the numbers have been faked. The code we’ve seen and he’s pointing to does not prove that assertion. He’s a programmer, he should know better.

  6. ND

    Is Spectroscope the new Anaconda?

  7. Scott Belyea

    I agree with the substance of this post and of just about all the other posts by scientists on the topic. And I can understand both the scientists involved and those commenting being annoyed at the waste of time and the setback involved here. Fair enough.

    But as a non-scientist who is interested in the debates and concerned by climate change, I’m annoyed at many of the e-mail authors. Much, perhaps most, of the blowup is their own damned fault. And please spare me the, “Well, they’re scientists, after all” excuse. It doesn’t wash.

    The root cause is that they’ve lost sight of (if they ever thought about) one of the basics of written communication. When I started with a large IT multinational back in 1968, it was the “mom rule” – if you wouldn’t want your mom to read it on the front page of her newspaper, don’t write it. About 10 years ago, I saw it called the “enemy rule” – if you wouldn’t want it to fall into the hands of your worst enemy, don’t write it.

    Science if of course a large, distributed, messy enterprise. Anyone who can’t see the essential need for effective written communication and who isn’t aware of the dangers of misinterpretation and misuse of sloppily-written stuff really should take a couple of weeks off and get some remedial training.

  8. DrFlimmer

    Is it all this “Don’t trust the experts” thing that prevails the earth?

    Terrible.

    And, before this thread collapses, too, I just want to note that I couldn’t agree more with you, Phil! Please, feel backed! ;)

    And, again, my favorite question:

    SHALL WE RISK IT?

  9. Gus Snarp

    I think it’s also important to note that the so-called attempt to silence critics was in response to a journal that published a terrible piece of “research” funded by Exxon Mobil. You know, the kind of thing that peer review should have kept out of publication because it didn’t stand up to scientific scrutiny. The journal from which five editors resigned because they were not allowed to print an editorial debunking the flawed global warming denial research.

    Sometimes you have to know what the comments in the emails are actually about:
    http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/12/03/climategate-exxon-fascism/

  10. Practically in the same minute that Phil hit “RETURN” on this excellent essay, the New Scientist came out with a long story on “[w]hy there’s no sign of a climate conspiracy in hacked emails”. (Sadly a former editor-in-chief of that magazine is a major voice in Europe’s denialist movement, falsely blaming the Sun – that astrophysical thingy, not the tabloid paper – on GW.)

  11. Phil, just FYI your take lines up well with that of biologist John Timmer at Ars Technica, another of my favorite science journalists. And yes, the comments there are every bit as zany, if not worse.

  12. Gully Bull

    Awwww C’mon Phil! Of course there is a conspiracy. The Illuminati think that woolly jumpers and cardigans are hideous, and so decided to make the world warmer, so that they can sport ultra garish Hawaiian T shirts wherever they go. If they make us plebs believe we’re responsible for global warming then, they’ve done their job.
    And don’t tell me that the Hubble space telescope doesn’t have a lens… it would make a great space weapon, like a giant James Bond villain’s pet project! C’mon teach the Conspiracy!!!

  13. Paul M

    Great post Phil – your prior post was too fluffy – it didn’t offer the detail and passion.

    Thanks for coming back with a more worthy essay.

  14. Leander

    “Imagine you’ve dedicated your life to some scientific pursuit. You do it because you love it, because you want to make the world a batter place”

    I wonder why you bend over backwards to justify some of the attitudes displayed in the emails, you could just say it’s some black sheep and yes, shockingly, those exist among scientists as well, period. But that aside, how you justify the attitudes is amazing – because they want to make the world a better place ?
    So basically someone tainting the quest for knowledge with their personal, unavoidably limited ideas of what’s a good and what’s a bad world is to be excused ? Can you imagine anything that screams “bias” and “subjectivity” louder than someone holding strongly-defined ideas of good and bad ? So what happens if you find data that doesn’t support your ideas, which you have held on to for decades and built your whole live on ? As you point out, scientists are only human – what do most humans do in such a situation ? Drop all they’ve believed and invested time in for decades…or ignore any contradiction ?
    And come on, you really can’t get yourself to admit, at least through clenched teeth, that not all of the involved scientists had a better world on their mind, but maybe money and status – as clear from some quotes, which could not be spun any differently by any context ? Or do you really believe what you wrote ? Are you that blue-eyed ?

    “But that’s because the ideologues out there have seized on this and made as much noise as they can, so in that sense it is an issue — an issue of how political science has become, how easy it is to disrupt the process, and the effect this has had on the scientists themselves.”

    Oh, wait, I guess you really are that blue-eyed. It’s all the bad ideologies “out there” that had an “effect on” the scientists. Bad world poisons noble scientists. My god, Phil. Really ? And, uhm, wait – “ideologies out there” influencing people with an idea for a better world…uhm. Well.

    “I am biased: to reality.”

    For god’s sake, cut the crap. I mean apart from the pure idiocy of that sentence (sincere apologies, but any other word would have been understatement), how old are you ? A grown-up scientist treating reality as this objective, external thing , it just hurts. Sure, if someone throws a rock in my face, you can compute its impact velocity etc., and the pain is not just imagined. But that’s one aspect of what reality might/can mean, and might be…so stop using this limited kindergarden idea of it on a damn science blog.

  15. Yojimbo

    Dr. BA, just admit to the Vast Conspiracy (TM) and be done with it. We know what the troof is. Evidence? We don’t got to show you any steenkin’ evidence.

    And stop making sense – it is most annoying!

  16. Good luck on keeping the trolls at bay, Phil.

    @DrFlimmer, though:

    “Shall we risk it” is kind of a big deal when “not risking it” means a lot more money and aggravation spent on a pointless project.

    Not that I’m an AGW denier, just saying – I understand where the deniers’ answer for that question might be coming from.

  17. Phil, today it was +9 Celcius in Russia. What GLOBAL WARMING you keep talking about?

  18. My main comment on this whole thing, and not directed specifically at Phil, is that I’ve seen an awful lot of defense of just the result (Climate Change), as opposed to defending the scientific process itself. A hint of “The ends justify the means” has crept into various posts and such.

  19. Helioprogenus

    I don’t even know why you feel like you need to defend your initial post Phil. If these contrarians have not yet accepted global warming, regardless of all the scientific data, they’re not likely to suddenly become rational and see things with some critical insight. They might as well cover their ears and loudly proclaim LALALALA as you keep trying to defend your point. I understand your frustration and I suppose it’s cathartic to vent your true reasons, but be realistic, as long as people are denying the evidence, they will never come to embrace true skeptical thinking. People must learn to follow the evidence, not their tenuously swayed feelings about the evidence that is largely based on conjecture, superfluous data, and little cohesive science. They can attempt to shift the scientific paradigm towards skepticism even towards the evidence, but ultimately, unless it can be conclusively proven that all the data from various disparate sources that are all cohesively in agreement about anthropogenic global warming is a grand conspiratorial fabrication, then their claims hold no water. As Wolfgang Pauli would say, they’re not even wrong.

  20. PlanetaryGear

    Geeze it’s hard to separate truth from conjecture in all this.

    There was an accusation that they actually deleted their raw data so as not to have to share it with the denialists, does anybody know if this is actually true? If someone wanted could they rerun the models from base data again just to verify? or is it gone now?

    That would concern me a lot… Anything is is exactly as you’ve said.

  21. Gamercow

    I was in the Barnes & Noble last night, looking for “The evolution of everyday things”(great book) and I came across at least 3 books that were about the anti-science/pesudo-science movement, and how its ruining our country, if not our species. One even was making very pointed eye waggles in the direction of the Dark Ages.

    I never hear of these books in the popular media, but I hear about, and see, books like “Freakonomics” all the time. I have read Freakonomics, and it is anything but scientific, and it puts forth in big bold letters the “DON’T TRUST THE EXPERTS” idea.

    Maybe if we sing “ring around the rosy”, global warming will go away.

  22. Bruce the Canuck

    What’s always thrown me off is, why is such a high standard of certainty even expected for the theory of anthropogenic global warming? It’s been a while since I took a lab course, but I seem to remember the standard for publication being 95% certainty, no?

    The Stern Review (by the former chief economist at the world bank), put the annual cost of reducing emmissions at 1% of global GDP. In contrast, a likely cost of the GW resulting from business-as-usual would be a permanent 20% reduction of annual GDP.

    Now, admittedly the error bars are large. But even with a middling GW scenario it looks to me like the cost accepting the theory of AGW, and then world not warming much, is 1/20th the cost of accepting the denier’s arguments, and the world then warming.

    So if the (many) papers demonstrating the likelyhood and risks of AGW have met the standard of publication, and the AGW theory has (say) a 10% change of being wrong? Then the naive bookie calculation would say that if you were playing roulette with a basket of planets (which we aren’t), a gambler would be around 200 times better off betting on CO2 emmission cuts. And that’s not even thinking about the risk of a catastrophic climate shift of 5 deg C or more, where we’d lose the whole game.

    Plus, we’re going to have to shift away from fossil fuels at some point in this century anyways, so waiting is just procrastinating. So I don’t get it. Why be a denier? Why the set the abnormally high standard of proof? It’s a bad bet.

    Worse yet, by now targetting scientists the way they would political operatives, they’re undermining our ability to respond rationally to any future issues. This is probably going to be a rough century, we can’t afford that.

  23. @Bruce the Canuck:

    Now I have this image of the AGW-deniers – “I bet it all on double zero!”

    Edit: Or 12, or whatever… Guess who doesn’t play roulette!

  24. Awesome

    @Andrey

    Clearly, because it is still cold in Russia during the winter, the yearly temperature averages must not be getting higher anywhere on the planet. Take that, so-called mister Phil Plait!

  25. Caleb

    The fact that the Earth climate is changing is unquestionable. It has always changed and will continue to change. For me, the extent to which mankind’s CO2 emissions affect the climate will be an open question for a long time. Of course it affects it, but how much is a difficult question to answer.

    Regardless, the incessant focus on “mankind’s CO2 emissions” = “climate increasing” misses a more useful point. Why spend ALL (some yes, but not ALL) of our time focusing on the “CO2 emissions” => “climate increase” link when we can easily show the “toxic emissions” => “unhealthy planet” link.

    By focusing on eliminating toxic emissions we will have healthier air and environment (and will likely reduce C02 emissions in the process). Couple this will a drive towards less invasive energy sources (ie: green power) as a means to reduce toxic pollution and we’ll be well on our way to reducing C02 emissions all without the ridiculous C02/temperature debate.

    For me, the eggs in this debate are being placed in the wrong basket.

  26. Their are some that think oil is magivally produced all the time in the centre of the Earth. Also, if they can convince others that Climate Change is in correct then they can keep on doing whatever they want.

  27. One thing that always amuses me is that many deniers are so adamant about the fact that we don’t need to do anything. As if cleaning up after oneself is a bad thing. I know I’d prefer to leave the world a better place than what I found it, just for the sake of my daughter.

  28. Most of them — and there are a lot — completely missed the point I was making

    Oh, I think they get it all right. They just don’t like it.

    Science is necessarily conservative.

    Damn! And I thought reality had a liberal bias.

  29. Oded

    Phil – I guess this is the plight of being the bearer of bad news. Scientists have the bad news. The public doesn’t want to hear it, and will do anything to prove that they are wrong.

    The reason alt-med and other silliness ARE so powerful is not just that they are better at spinning and propagandizing, but also that the public wants their message. The spinners don’t NEED to work so hard on getting evidence, being 100% accurate always, and never screw up, because nobody is chasing them! (at the very least, the majority isn’t)

    The scientists on the other hand have an impossible task – on the one hand, they have to “stay on message” and be loud and heard, unambiguous and passionate – but on the other hand, they must ALWAYS be 100% correct, never wrong, completely backed up by evidence – because even if they have the tiniest kink, the public will be so critical of them that they will claim that they are nothing but propagandizers and fundamentalists!

  30. Duane

    Excellent article, but I have one quick quibble. The following sentence:

    “Science is all about finding supporting and falsifying evidence. ”

    I did a doubletake when I read that. I’ve spent the last 10 minutes trying to parse the sentence, and I’m certain there are people out there who would gladly run with an unintended meaning. Is there a better way to construct this sentence? Just curious!! ;)

  31. JustEric

    Phil, you should try reading the e-mails that were stolen. They’re pretty damning and you might just change your tune. Saying they don’t show conspiracy is like saying porn doesn’t show T&A. Not only does they show it, they show much, much more.

    As some journalist wrote: this isn’t a smoking gun, it’s a mushroom cloud.

  32. TheBlackCat

    @ Caleb: I already explained how we know with a very high degree of confidence that humans are the predominant reason in post 158 of the other thread. None of the denialists even tried to provide an alternative explanation. A couple tried to poke a hole in one part of my argument, but failed miserably.

  33. Daffy

    This will not go away. Why? because millions of people listen to Rush Limbaugh and others like him and mindlessly believe every stupid thing they say. It’s much easier than—you know—researching the truth.

  34. I think the deniers should publish 10 years worth of their own emails, since they are so dedicated to the cause of transparency.

  35. Gus Snarp

    So if all the climate scientists really had a mass of data that showed there was no global warming, and apparently were aware enough of it to consciously cover it up, then what exactly was their motivation? Does it actually make any sense? Oh, here’s their motivation, according to Eric Raymond, quoted from the link from ND above:

    “Most of the environmental movement is composed of innocent Gaianists, but not all of it. There’s a hard core that’s sort of a zombie remnant of Soviet psyops. Their goals are political: trash capitalism, resurrect socialism from the dustbin of history. They’re actually more like what I have elsewhere called a prospiracy, having lost their proper conspiratorial armature when KGB Department V folded up in 1992. There aren’t a lot of them, but they’re very, very good at co-opting others and they drive the Gaianists like sheep.”

    So it’s all about communism? Who sounds like a conspiracy wacko here?

  36. Getting rid of Rush would probably knock down the hot air in the atmosphere by about 5%.

  37. michaelthesteiner

    Phil, there is a difference in believing that global warming is happening and believing that AGW is happening. AGW requires different and additional proof .

  38. @Duane:

    “Science is all about finding supporting and falsifying evidence. ”

    “Science is about finding evidence that supports or falsifies a hypothesis.” ??

  39. Sean

    All we have to do is allow business as usual for another few decades. The fact of climate change will be unavoidable then, even to the most devout deniers. The question is, where am I gonna find a place to sit and watch where my feet won’t get soaked?

  40. @Sean

    Everest might be an option. ;)

  41. Mark Sletten

    The question has never been whether or not the climate is changing, it’s if, and if so to what extent, human activity is affecting the changing climate. Similarly, whether or not they purposefully did so, even giving the appearance of scientists falsifying data, not making raw data available for critical review and excluding differing viewpoints casts the ‘science’ of global-warming-as-a-result-of-human-activity in doubt. These are the tactics used by woo peddlers the world over and (rightly) bring the frequent wrath of Phil and other skeptic bloggers.

    Seriously, if we had evidence that anti-vaxxers had engaged in such activity we would be crowing to the rooftops. Oh wait… Nevermind.

    Suggesting that layman simply won’t understand communication between scientists is a cop out. If the scientists involved in the scandal want to clear the air they’ll have to explain their apparent non-scientific activities. If messages were taken out of context it’s up to them to now put them in proper context such that their activities are justified.

    Having the world’s leading climate-change scientist (for all intents and purposes) ‘temporarily step aside’ may be an expedient method to get him quickly out of the limelight, but it does nothing for the reputation of the team and facility.

  42. khan

    Even without going into conspiracies/modeling/ego: I am a gardener; and gardeners (and bird watchers among others) have noticed something amiss for several years.

  43. Its probably not going to change our hosts’s mind, but here’s just another in the overwhelming preponderance of evidence that the whole climate change movement is wrong:

    http://www2.macleans.ca/2009/12/03/the-science-of-global-warming/

    “Governments that are incapable of—to pluck at random—enforcing their southern border, reducing waiting times for routine operations to below two years, or doing something about the nightly ritual of car-torching “youths,” are nevertheless taken seriously when they claim to be able to change the very heavens—if only they can tax and regulate us enough.

    “… Uses ‘corrected’ MXD—but shouldn’t usually plot past 1960 because these will be artificially adjusted to look closer to the real temperatures.”

    “It’s all synthetic from 1990 onwards.”
    …”

    The thing is, real scientists use real data.

  44. TheBlackCat

    In my opinion there is one key way to identify a denialist: they refuse to provide a plausible alternative explanation. They attack the other side relentlessly, but refuse to provide another explicit mechanism that could generate all the observed effects. This approach is probably best characterized by Dembski, one of the leaders of the evolution denialists at the Discovery Institute:

    As for your example, I’m not going to take the bait. You’re asking me to play a game: “Provide as much detail in terms of possible causal mechanisms for your ID position as I do for my Darwinian position.” ID is not a mechanistic theory, and it’s not ID’s task to match your pathetic level of detail in telling mechanistic stories.

    You see this in the comments in the previous post. The denialists are on the attack, but have made absolutely no effort whatsoever to explain the events we are seeing in the world around us. They attack the evidence, they attack the arguments, they attack the scientists, they attack the software, they attack science itself, but at no time do they actually try to explain anything.

    True skeptics don’t do this. UFO skeptics provide plausible alternative explanations for UFO sightings. Psychic skeptics provide plausible alternative explanations for observed psychic phenomena. But AGW denialists here have made no attempt to provide any sort of explanation for events in the world right now. Evolution denialists similarly do not provide an alternative explanation that has any sort of useful level of detail.

    The reason for this approach, I think, is simple. Unlike scientists and skeptics, denialists primary goal is not to find the truth, it is to refute a specific position. Providing his or her own alternative explanation requires that a denialist put himself or herself on the same level playing field with their opponents, and requires the denialist’s ideas be open to the same level of scrutiny as he or she is using.

    Denialists know they have nothing that can stand up to any scrutiny, so instead they do their best to focus the debate solely on their opinions. The last thing a denialist wants is to make the debate and equal competition between two alternative explanations, so they do everything they can to avoid having to defend their own side.

  45. rob

    right now outside it is 265 K. since water boils at only 100°C, it is 2.65 times as hot outside than it takes to boil water. i remember when i was a kid it was only about 18°F this time of year.

    sounds like evidence of global warming to me.

  46. @rob: Argh!! Brain… can’t… math…

  47. Chris F.

    Sarah Palin seems to disagree:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/04/sarah-palin-climategate-c_n_379961.html

    : facepalm :

    “The president’s decision to attend the international climate conference in Copenhagen needs to be reconsidered in light of the unfolding Climategate scandal. The leaked e-mails involved in Climategate expose the unscientific behavior of leading climate scientists who deliberately destroyed records to block information requests, manipulated data to “hide the decline” in global temperatures, and conspired to silence the critics of man-made global warming.”

  48. David D.

    . . . over 400 comments, and BA STILL DOESN’T GET IT!

  49. Phil,

    I’ve been curious about the change in tree-ring data starting in the 60s, and that there is currently no known reason for the change in tree-ring density.

    Do you know if anyone has looked at the nuclear testing angle? Given that above-ground testing was at its peak late ’50s-early ’60s and the dates kinda correlate, is this a plausible explanation that either A) has been investigated or B) needs investigating?

    I can find lots of info on how nuclear tests affected the amount of Carbon-14 in trees, and how that affects carbon dating, but nothing on the effects on vegetation itself.

  50. Utakata

    …over 9000! And the denialists are still trying to split hairs with Phil!

    (My apologies for the hideous DBZ reference. :( )

  51. Gus Snarp

    So now that you’ve posted a follow up on this, and all the deniers have had their moment in the sun writing inane responses that fail entirely to grasp the real point, can we all stop talking about this now?

  52. Chris A.

    At the risk of being accused of “argument from authority,” I’d add to Phil’s list of whom he agrees with on this issue (“the American Meteorological Society, Nature magazine, and Scientific American”) the American Astronomical Society:

    http://aas.org/governance/resolutions.php#climate

    And I’d wager there are more organizations of professional scientists out there who agree, as well.

  53. Theron

    I don’t get it. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. We are putting more of it in the atmosphere. The planet is getting warmer. How can anyone with a straight face say that there’s no evidence for AGW?

    Jury still out on presence of intelligent life in our solar system…..

  54. The thing is, real scientists use real data.

    From a guy that quotes Mark Steyn. A pseudo-journalist with no formal training in anything and who has always manufactured facts and data.

  55. MindDetective

    @BlackCat: Could I request a clarification on post 158 in the other thread? Why does AGW predict that CO2 levels will warm the polar regions more than the equator?

    Additionally, it is worth pointing out that the black and white way that global warming is addressed is not a healthy approach to the topic, scientifically or otherwise. In cognitive science, we are often trying to infer mental processes from subtle but overt changes in behavior. The same principle applies here, except there is no truly satisfying control group and we have an n of one (which we can measure repeatedly and indefinitely, though). As in cognitive science, it should be noted that variables do not need to be causes or effects but they can also moderate or mediate changes between two other variables. Global temperature is influenced by a variety of factors, not the least of which is the sun itself, as well as CO2 levels, reflectivity of the surface of the planet, etc.. (Note, I am NOT inferring the cause of global warming here!!) As an example, humans may cause higher higher global temperatures through CO2 emissions (again, I am just using this as a working assumption) but this can be moderated by the number of plants that consume CO2. The complicated nature of the interacting variables in cognitive science is hard enough, let alone on a global scale.

    As a scientist and skeptic, I don’t think it is unreasonable to demand three things in determining a truly causal relationship: Covariation between cause and effect, cause always precedes effect, and the elimination of possible confounds. To determine a moderating or mediating factor, the requirements are a little less stringent. If climate scientists have effectively established all three determinants of a causal relationship, then I think they can draw very strong conclusions. A skeptic asks: Have they actually done this? A denialist says: There is no way they can do this. It should be okay to ask the former, at least.

  56. Paul from VA

    The reaction to this post is an awful lot quieter than the last one. It has me wondering if there is not some organized campaign afoot to undermine Copenhagen, as comments exploded on many other blogs when the ‘climategate’ story first broke. It’s not unusual to see a few anti-vaxxers in here in the vaccine related posts, but the nut to skeptic ratio is usually around 1 to 5. In the first climategate post the ratio was more like 5 to 1. I suspect that difference is likely to be statistically significant.

  57. JT

    Phil, can you comment on the issue of the apparently deleted raw temperature data?

    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=ZTBiMTRlMDQxNzEyMmRhZjU3ZmYzODI5MGY4ZWI5OWM=&w=MA==

    I take all these things with a healthy dose of skepticism, but it just smells wrong to me when Phil Jones says:

    “Since the 1980s, we have merged the data we have received into existing series or begun new ones, so it is impossible to say if all stations within a particular country or if all of an individual record should be freely available. Data storage availability in the 1980s meant that we were not able to keep the multiple sources for some sites, only the station series after adjustment for homogeneity issues. We, therefore, do not hold the original raw data but only the value-added (i.e., quality controlled and homogenized) data.”

    Jones has been very elusive about this issue. I am a firm believer in full disclosure and I wonder why CRU isn’t. What do you think?

  58. @JT:

    The 1980s data was tapes and papers – so it wasn’t deleted, it just wasn’t stored.

    You can store an awful lot of data on a tiny little Gigabyte Thumb Drive, thousands and thousands of pages.

  59. Mark

    Phil,

    I am so glad you responded to the ridiculous comments in the previous post. These people need some sense talked into them. I agree with everything you said because it’s the truth. The body of evidence for human caused global warming is mountainous compared to the poor, if not completely absent evidence against global warming.

    Many of these people are still quoting passages from the e-mails which are clearly being taken out of context. What’s worse, as you’ve pointed out, these people quoting these passages aren’t scientists, yet they claim certain rhetoric used by scientists that they don’t understand is evidence for their claims.

    Remember, you have supporters, Phil. Many more people understand the science behind Global warming than you may think after reading your comments, and they will not be swayed by illogical arguments and invalid claims.

    Keep up the good work!

  60. 20. PlanetaryGear Says:

    There was an accusation that they actually deleted their raw data so as not to have to share it with the denialists, does anybody know if this is actually true? If someone wanted could they rerun the models from base data again just to verify? or is it gone now?

    From what I’ve read, the data exists at the original sites, it’s data that was transferred to NASA, NOAA, etc. that was deleted (due to the expense, at the time, of storage).

    J/P=?

  61. Gus Snarp

    @Paul from VA – An organized campaign? Given the timing of the release of the hacked emails? Surely you jest!

  62. Paul from VA @ #56: “It has me wondering if there is not some organized campaign afoot to undermine Copenhagen, as comments exploded on many other blogs when the ‘climategate’ story first broke.”

    Careful, that’s “a little too paranoid” for some folks here.

  63. MindDetective

    Conspiracies abound, it seems.

  64. Lonny Eachus

    I still feel that you completely missed the boat, Phil.

    I agree that what MOST people are talking about (comments in the code, etc.) are really no big deal. It is the other emails that concern me… like the ones that show deliberate (and very probably illegal) failure to honor FOI requests and so on. Also, emails that indicate that the data used was improperly handled. Take this exchange, for example (I posted this same link on your other blog entry):

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/29/when-results-go-bad/

    THAT exchange is completely IN context, showing both sides. Yet it indicates that either they used improper data in their calculations, or possibly that they simply are not aware of what data they did use (which amounts to pretty much the same thing). What it does show, pretty clearly and in context, is that they made a mess of this whole study. Add to that the missing data (whether it was done on purpose or not), and what you have is BAD SCIENCE, completely aside from any conspiracy theories.

    I am not crying conspiracy, and I don’t give the slightest damn about this politics of this whole thing. But you are ignoring the real, demonstrable goofs that these people made… some very big goofs that call their whole set of data into serious question. And when you look at all the OTHER studies done that rely on this very same data… what you have is a travesty and a tragedy.

  65. markogts

    Phil, I’m with you on this. GW is certain, AGW is very likely, and this is based on thousands of researches and scientists working on this issue since the 20th century.

    BTW, to mitigate greenhouse gases it takes energy saving tehniques: why on earth should this be considered “expensive”? Do deniers have some kind of free gas and oil available?

  66. Muzz

    Phil Plait in “catches the denial-o-sphere napping”, shocker!

    This whole incident will cement forever to the ‘net a new branch on the “No True Scottsman…!” line of argument; the “No True Skeptic…!” argument.
    Assume good faith? A measure of trust? Benefit of the doubt? You are No True Skeptic!

  67. Lonny Eachus

    @65 markogts:

    No, it’s not. It is based primarily on 53 studies. (The “thousands” of “scientists” cited in IPCC’s list include reviewers, and are largely made up of non-scientists, some of them schoolteachers with no science degree, and even janitors.) And a number of those 53 studies rely on the very same set of data that these CRU researchers have apparently botched (see the Wegman report).

    While no doubt some people here are knee-jerk “deniers”, you are insulting the simple skeptics who have been looking at the facts. Some of them, it seems, more than you have.

  68. Monkey Deathcar

    Theron:

    “Jury still out on presence of intelligent life in our solar system”

    I’m going to use that.

    Phil:

    Agree completely.

    Denialists:

    Please use data and math. Thanks

  69. Jack Wood

    Hey Phil, great job fighting the good fight for logic and truth. But I have to say I really disagree with you on the ickyness of the computer breaking and theft.

    A whistleblower would be someone on the inside that came out with information about wrong-doing already being committed by their peers and superiors.

    If there is real evidence of wrong doing, proper authorities should be contacted with that evidence, and necessary information subpoenaed.

    Vigilantism is never okay, and the ends do not justify the means.

    I hate to get all polemicist, but look at the logic you’re using here: “Hey, if there really was something bad going on, this guy would’ve been doing the world a great service!”
    “Hey, if black men really were genetically inferior, and out to steal white women, then the Ku Klux Klan would be doing the world a favor!”

    Sure, I will admit that my argument breaks down when the proper channels are compromised. If, for instance, a significant part of the government is your bad actor, there’s not much to do (which is why we’re supposed to have so many checks and balances here in the US).
    But when you’re talking about something that serious, there comes a point where you need to acknowledge that you no longer honor the right of the government to represent you, and you’re beginning a revolution. I’d say you’d have to need a pretty serious standard of evidence to cross that Rubicon.

  70. What I dont get: why cant the deniers get together, do some science and provide a physics based (i.e. not an empirical fit) climate model that doesn’t include anthropogenic CO2 that gets similar or better result that current physics based models. Then at least the discussion can move to why some coefficients are right or wrong

  71. You’ve clarified some points …thank you.

    I hope climate scientist Phil Jones will feel able to resume his post once the University of East Anglia commissioned independent inquiry has cleared him of any wrong doing…

    Colleagues are defending Jones, Professor Andrew Watson (from the University of East Anglia, Environmental Sciences), pointed out that “There was no evidence of attempting to mislead people.” Adding that,
    “Despite the best efforts of the sceptics, there is no instance in these e-mails that anyone has found so far – and there are millions of people looking – that suggests the scientists manipulated their fundamental data.”

    The reality of climate change is indisputable…to argue that we have not contributed to the adverse change and therefore should do nothing is, insane.

  72. JJ

    If the evidence is so concrete, why would over 31,000 American scientists sign a petition against the current claims? I’d say that’s a statistically significant number, but that doesn’t mean much, see the peer reviewed papers. I still feel the current data is inconclusive that we have a “significant” effect on the climate, although we likely have some effect. The unanswered question is how much.

    http://www.petitionproject.org/

  73. Lonny Eachus

    @60 John Paradox

    “20. PlanetaryGear Says:

    There was an accusation that they actually deleted their raw data so as not to have to share it with the denialists, does anybody know if this is actually true? If someone wanted could they rerun the models from base data again just to verify? or is it gone now?”

    From what I’ve read, the data exists at the original sites, it’s data that was transferred to NASA, NOAA, etc. that was deleted (due to the expense, at the time, of storage).

    As I mentioned several times in Phil’s last blog post about this, it’s not so simple. The data in the dataset known as HadCRUT3 consists of a subset of the raw data, plus data from sources that were private (about 2% of it, according to CRU). The problem is, when choosing what data to use in their study, they necessarily (and very likely, quite properly) threw some data out as being too noisy, or otherwise unfit for their study. From what I understand, it is this “original” selected data that was discarded.

    There are several problems with this. First, some of the data is not from public sources. Second, apparently it is now impossible to tell exactly which of the public “raw” data was actually selected and used in the study. Without that information, it is now not possible to reproduce exactly how the HadCRUT3 dataset was derived from the original data. In other words, how do we know that the many “adjustments” and “enhancements” to the data were done properly? Do we just take their word for it? Of course not. That’s not how science works. The results need to be reproducible.

    We are talking about inherently noisy and problematic data to start with, and some very small temperature changes… if we don’t know the original data they worked from, then their results cannot be reproduced, and from a scientific standpoint, irreproducible results are nothing but garbage.

    In a few of the emails, Phil Jones did threaten to delete data rather than give it up under FOI requests. That is extremely unethical (not to mention illegal). This was publicly funded research; the data belongs to the public. I do not know if he ever did actually delete that data.

  74. tw

    Phil Plait Skeptic…

    Unless he REALLY believes.

  75. Jon B

    All of the politics and such aside, the AHG issue really comes down to this:

    Either it’s happening or it isn’t. Either we do something about it or we don’t.

    If we do something and it is happening, great, problem dealt with. If we do something but it isn’t happening, oh well, we’ve still improved the climate and made the world a better place.

    If we do nothing and it’s not happening, we can’t be sure that it won’t happen in future. If we do nothing and it is happening, we’re screwed.

    So — do something about it, positive results either way. Do nothing, unknown to disastrous results. Which one seems like the better choice?

  76. Bob

    Phil,

    the problem is, there _is_ evidence that discredits the climatologists involved. I do not have time to read all the leaked data and I do not have qualification or experience to decide whether “trick” means “cheating” or “nice and valid solution of a problem”. However, here are two quotation that, at least for me, is quite sufficient:
    ===
    At 09:41 AM 2/2/2005, Phil Jones wrote:

    Mike,
    […] And don’t leave stuff lying around on ftp sites – you never know who is trawling them. The two MMs [McKitrick, McIntyre] have been after the CRU station data for years. If they ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I’ll delete the file rather than send to anyone.

    From: Phil Jones (p.jones@uxxxx.uk)
    To: “Michael E. Mann” (mann@mxxxxxx.edu)
    Subject: IPCC & FOI
    Date: Thu May 29 11:04:11 2008

    Mike,
    Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4? Keith will do likewise. He’s not in at the moment – minor family crisis. Can you also email Gene and get him to do the same? I don’t have his new email address.
    We will be getting Caspar to do likewise.
    ===

    I strongly believe that one of the most important qualities for a scientist is desire to have his theories verified by other scientists and that he should make everything he can to allow this. Conspiring to _delete_ data so others can not use them to verify the results is exactly opposite and anyone who does it immediately loses any credibility.

    As I said, I do not have qualification to decide myself if global warning is real or not, I have to believe someone who has it and who is credible. Before climategate, I believed these guys and I considered denialists to be a bunch idiots. Now, I’m not that sure. If they are right, why did they deleted the data?

    Bob

  77. Blashy

    It might be real (GW), but are we the cause? I ask because GW has occured many times prior to us being around… what caused it then?

    As I always say, we should concentrate on issues that are 100% CLEAR to the general public… POLLUTION, it’s in our face everyday and everywhere, get that fixed and IF we are the cause the GW it will automatically get fixed.

  78. adam

    but I hope they look at all the evidence, and don’t quote mine and cherry pick as so many people have done.

    do you REALLY want to get into who is “mining” and cherry picking here?

    no, phil, YOU’VE missed the point. not us. the evidence that IS there strongly suggests cherry picking data, altering models to fit a desired outcome (not this “reality” you say you’re biased towards), and concerted efforts to keep their methods and data from being honestly scrutinized. this sets a precedent, and strongly suggests that this kind of irresponsible research and science may be going on elsewhere, not to mention the fact that we don’t know how many studies that support the current AGW theories have been compromised by faulty data and methods and models. and this appears to mean nothing to you. you say you’re biased toward reality–this is your reality. enjoy it.

    the rest of us honest folk will continue to seek the truth independent of our personal biases.

  79. MindDetective

    @Blashy I always felt there are many GREAT reasons to reduce CO2 output (and other environmental concerns) that are a much less contentious than AGW. That is not to say that AGW is wrong, just much less accessible to the average consumer. Make your pleas for change local and you’ll get through, I think.

  80. Lonny Eachus

    @72 Jon B:

    What you are arguing is virtually identical to “Pascal’s Wager”, which is based on several logical fallacies. Look it up.

    Probably the biggest single fallacy in that argument is that it is based on two separate “either/or” choices, each of them a false dichotomy. In fact there are a number of “middle ground” choices to be had… and some that are completely outside of that box.

  81. rob

    there should be a new internet rule, ala Godwin’s Law, that anyone affixing the suffix “gate” to any word in order create false hype about a non-issue, automatically loses the debate.

    no climategate please.

  82. adam

    SHALL WE RISK IT?

    nah, let’s not. let’s move forward full steam. let’s just forget about the millions of lives mired in poverty in third world countries that will be adversely affected by their already-toppling economies having further burden put upon them by first-world powers, merely on say-so. let’s put more restrictions on industries, businesses and people without fully understanding the problem, based on irresponsible science and research. let’s forget the fact that there is a very good chance we’re not even looking at the problem for what is actually going on and how far reaching it may actually be. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091123083704.htm

    hey, anyone remember when Bush invaded a country based on flawed, incomplete intelligence? remember that? that was fun.

  83. TheBlackCat

    Could I request a clarification on post 158 in the other thread? Why does AGW predict that CO2 levels will warm the polar regions more than the equator?

    I think it has to do with strengthening of winds carrying warm air to the poles (primarily the north pole). It is evidence in favor of AGW, but not as important as things like the stratospheric warming.

  84. TheBlackCat

    What I dont get: why cant the deniers get together, do some science and provide a physics based (i.e. not an empirical fit) climate model that doesn’t include anthropogenic CO2 that gets similar or better result that current physics based models.

    As I explained in comment 44, the fact that they don’t do this is what makes them denialists and not skeptics.

    As for the reason, they can’t do this because they know there isn’t one. Allowing the debate to veer from attacks on one position to a comparison of opposing ideas would show just how vacuous their position really is, so they definitely can’t allow that.

  85. Bruce the Canuck

    >In fact there are a number of “middle ground” choices to be had… and some that are completely outside of that box…

    Bjorn Lomborg is an example. He downplays the cost of AGW, perhaps less than honestly, and so opposes CO2 controls. But then he goes on to propose that it would be prudent to hedge our bets by investing 0.5% of global GDP in alternative energy research, of all kinds, from nuclear-thorium and fusion to solar and bulk energy storage. This is justified on multiple fronts – AGW risk, pollution, reducing resource wars, and resource depletion.

    Many find him annoying because his position does seem falsely based and environmentally unethical. But I’ve come around for the practical reason that I’m not sure we have it in us, as a species, to control our CO2 emissions by treaty until it’s too late. There is too much money involved, and we’ve spent a century investing energy-hungry consumerism with social status. But heck, maybe we’ll surprise ourselves.

    ITER for example is “only” $20B spent over 10 years. We spend more than $8 B each day, $3000 B each year, on oil and coal. Massively increasing energy research is a very safe middle ground.

    BTW, re where the flood of deniers/skeptics/crazy-conspiracy-theorists come from, all it would take is one comment on a winger blog. A fun study would be to find just how the network of winger comment warriors work, through a study of the timing of referencing postings on winger blogs, and flooding onto science and liberal-political blogs re this issue.

    I’ve lurked here every day for years, it’s a great science blog, and source of inspiring desktop images, thanks Phil :-)
    No wait, except for the posts about watching NASA launches in person. Those make me green with envy. One day…

  86. adam

    If we had real evidence that global warming was not occurring, then I’d pay attention.

    But I have no stake in the claim scientifically either way; I don’t cling to AGW because of political bent or any ideology. I think global warming is real because of the overwhelming evidence pointing that way.

    and for the thousandth time, most of us that you term “deniers” aren’t at all what you think we are. we’re asking for better science, more understanding, more time. we’re saying our current data and methods aren’t enough to show that we have a firm enough grasp of what is really going on to propel us toward far-reaching policy decisions with heavy consequences. we’re not saying there isn’t a warming trend–we’re saying we don’t understand it. we don’t understand how humans really affect it, how much they affect it, if it’s reversible or how we can stablize it if we can at all etc. and yet we’re just going to plunge headfirst into half-baked, knee-jerk solutions that are as likely as not to have absolutely no effect on the climate whatsoever. these leaked emails only STRENGTHEN our argument. and yet they’re dismissed out of hand as a “non-event.” why?

    instead of seeing this thing objectively, you people would just rather look down on us and thumb your noses and pretend like you’re enlightened and we’re morons and have nothing important to say. get over yourselves.

  87. Lonny Eachus

    @79 TheBlackCat:

    (From that post #158)
    “Water is a more powerful greenhouse gas, but it is in equilibrium in the atmosphere. If you add more water, it just comes out again as precipitation in a period of days. So you can’t directly change the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere.”

    That is simply not so. It would be if the atmosphere were near saturation, but that is seldom the case. The amount of water vapor in the atmosphere can often be changed a great deal… that is one of the effects of solar activity.

    Don’t confuse equilibrium with stasis. It is possible to change the equilibrium point.

  88. Mike K

    It isn’t that the deniers hate science, they all take their medicine, ride on airplanes and generally trust the scientific method and what it produces every day of their lives.

    What they hate is science that doesn’t agree with them.

  89. Greg in Austin

    Honestly, I think most people misunderstand the purpose of science.

    Pretend I don’t know anything about either side of the global warming debate. Pretend I have nothing to do with liberalism, conservatism, that I’m neither Republican nor Democrat. Now, show me the data that supports the hypothesis that CO2 levels are not rising, and that human industrialization has no effect on global CO2 output. Don’t try to weasel out of doing your work by claiming evidence FOR global warming was not done correctly, or that its all part of some big “gubment conspiracy.”

    Show me the data that supports your hypothesis. It seems like it should be that simple. Instead of attacking the scientists, why not try actually presenting real data?

    How hard is that?

    8)

  90. I am a skeptical warmist (the planet is warming; AGW is real; AGW is mild at worst; there’s little evidence of catastrophical changes in our future; there’s too many people jumping on the catastrophical AGW bandwagon; the vast majority of AGW fears bandied about are empty threats; ClimateGate shows no worldwide conspiracy, just a widespread it’s-all-CO2 mindset that can’t be good for science).

    Could anybody please let me know if I qualify as “denier” or “skeptic” or “mainstream”? Do I win any prize if I get into the right category?

  91. Jeff Fite

    “…guiding the ebb and flow of forces both subtle and gross.”

    Quoting Q, Dr. Plait?

  92. adam

    why not try actually presenting real data?

    that’s been tried, by many scientists. and they get dismissed or ignored by the same scientists you appeal to as authorities on the matter–including the ones writing these emails. why attempt to marginalize someone’s research if you know it’s simply false? shouldn’t it be easy enough to simply disprove? why is it necessary to ridicule and attack them and their work? shouldn’t legitimate, honest science be able to stand on its own merits? shouldn’t crappy science go down in flames under modicum of scrutiny? why all the insecurity? why so defensive? why the secrecy? where’s the transparency?

    oh, and the “real data” you refer to? would that be the same data that was lost by the CRU? or doctored or altered to fit an intended outcome? or the cherry picked tree and weather station samples? or what?

    you see, data’s only a tool. it’s what you do with it that matters, as the CRU researchers understand only too well.

  93. Steve in Dublin

    @Awesome #24

    Clearly, because it is still cold in Russia during the winter (9 deg Celsius from earlier poster), the yearly temperature averages must not be getting higher anywhere on the planet. Take that, so-called mister Phil Plait!

    Sorry, but 9 deg C (Celsius) is positively *tropical* for (I’m assuming) Moscow at this time of year:

    9 * 9/5 = 81/5 =~ 16 + 32 =~ 48 deg F

    Science (well, OK, math) FTW! But I got your point, Awesome :-)

  94. tacitus

    @Lonny:

    Without that information, it is now not possible to reproduce exactly how the HadCRUT3 dataset was derived from the original data. In other words, how do we know that the many “adjustments” and “enhancements” to the data were done properly? Do we just take their word for it? Of course not. That’s not how science works. The results need to be reproducible.

    *If* it’s true that the full paper trail from the raw data to the results issued in papers no longer exists then *perhaps* that *could* be a problem, but again, there is danger in leaping to quick conclusions.

    First, you have to convince me that this is not what happens on a regular basis in scientific experiments and analysis. Very few published papers get the type of scrutiny that the CRU results are getting, and I would not be at all surprised that the disposal of old data sets that have long been processed and homogenized aren’t discarded all the time. Perhaps that is not ideal, but the rationale is likely that nobody is going to ever bother to trawl through all that mountain of old data ever again.

    One example that springs to mind that illustrates how disingenuous this requirement of perfect from deniers can be. Andrew Schlafly, the owner of Conservapaedia, recently challenged the findings of a biologist who had published a paper showing evidence of evolution in a population of fruit flies over a period of many years. Schlafly demanded that the researcher release all of his raw data, claiming that unless he did then he would be suspected of fraud. Of course, organizing and publishing the reams of raw data that made up his study would not only have been a very long and time consuming process, it would have been utterly pointless. Schlafly has no expertise in biology and couldn’t even begin to analyze the data let alone invalidate it. He was merely doing it in an attempt to smear the scientist.

    So the question is, if all of the raw data and processing techniques were fully documented, would it make any difference? Would the skeptics who are braying for blood spend a single moment trying to validate that paper trail and reproduce the results. I highly doubt it.

    Finally, by all accounts, the original data still exists, though not in an easily accessing form. There is still nothing to stop anyone from collating that data and doing their own analysis and publishing the results. Indeed, that is what other climate research centers have done and come up with the same conclusion. Global warming is real.

  95. Utakata

    @ 83, Lonny Eachus…

    It’s not “Pascal’s Wager,” virtual or otherise. AGW is a legitmate arguement with evidence weighing is it’s favor…not some unproven diety in the sky that might send us to eternal damnation if we do not believe in it. There is a big difference between the two. Thus, there is nothing fallacy of false dichotomy in leaning on the side of caution when evidence strongly suggests we might be doing something wrong…

    …you know, the old saying of “we told you so” when the climate poop hits the fan…especially when we could of done something about all the long. Just saying.

  96. jorge c.

    mr.phil.plat. Dr. Judith Curry a real scientist said:
    “However, even if the hacked emails from HADCRU end up to be much ado about nothing in the context of any actual misfeasance that impacts the climate data records, the damage to the public credibility of climate research is likely to be significant. In my opinion, there are two broader issues raised by these emails that are impeding the public credibility of climate research: lack of transparency in climate data, and “tribalism” in some segments of the climate research community that is impeding peer review and the assessment process.”
    “1. Transparency. Climate data needs to be publicly available and well documented. This includes metadata that explains how the data were treated and manipulated, what assumptions were made in assembling the data sets, and what data was omitted and why.”
    “2. Climate tribalism. Tribalism is defined here as a strong identity that separates one’s group from members of another group, characterized by strong in-group loyalty and regarding other groups differing from the tribe’s defining characteristics as inferior. In the context of scientific research, tribes differ from groups of colleagues that collaborate and otherwise associate with each other professionally”
    do you disagree?? do you think that with your rant is sufficent??? because, doy you it or not, you are now as dr.curry said a member of a “tribe”: “the global warming tribe”
    it is not a non-event: there is an investigation in west-anglia university! because the university’s autorities think that there is a something odd.
    there are also a lot of people from the “left” who are thinking that the e.mails need a good investigation: George Monbiot, Andrew Sullivan, Megan Mcardlee,even dr.Pachauri!!!
    i do not think that global warming do not exist, but i always remember what Carl Sagan said: extraordinaries claims must be endorse with extraordinaries facts (or something like that). and when i hear that the sea level will rise 70 feet by 2100, that katrina was cause by global warming, thar aral sea is dry because of global warming, well i want extraordinaries facts, not “massaging2 the data so you colud make a 2hockey stick”.
    and please “Pascal Wager” is a RELIGIOUS argument!!!! (do you know if hell is not real??? well so be a good christian etc.etc.)

  97. Greg in Austin

    adam said,

    “that’s been tried, by many scientists. and they get dismissed or ignored by the same scientists you appeal to as authorities on the matter–including the ones writing these emails.”

    Did you not read what I said? Don’t try to claim you’re being repressed, and don’t try to attack others that are doing real work. Present your data. Gather your evidence and present it. Go to the source. Do some actual science. If your data shows that the Earth is actually cooling, and if your models predict accurately that the Earth is actually cooling, then the data will stand for itself.

    Pretend you’ve never heard of Global Warming. Gather your own data and then come back and show it to us.

    8)

  98. Bruce the Canuck

    >why all the insecurity? why so defensive?

    Because they’re academics? Seriously, have you ever hung around grad students and post docs? Scientists talk smack on email, news at 11!

    >Data…it’s what you do with it that matters, as the CRU researchers understand only too well.

    Yes, and I’m sure the conspiracy includes NASA and the Japan Meteorological Agency as well!

  99. rob

    what we really need is an expert opinion on this whole AGW thingy.

    anyone know how to get hold of kirk cameron?

  100. MindDetective

    Never has science been infused with so much sarcasm!

  101. tacitus

    @77: JJ:

    If the evidence is so concrete, why would over 31,000 American scientists sign a petition against the current claims? I’d say that’s a statistically significant number…

    LOL. Graduating college with a BS, MS, or even a PhD doesn’t make you a scientist. I have a BS in Computer Science but I haven’t done a single day’s worth of science in 25 years.

    As for the numbers, up to 14,000 BS degrees are issued in Computer Science alone the US in any one year, so 31,000 signatories just isn’t that impressive any way you look at it. I would be willing to bet that a large proportion of them are right-wing conservatives, which should give anyone pause for thought.

  102. tacitus

    @Greg in Austin:

    Did you not read what I said? Don’t try to claim you’re being repressed, and don’t try to attack others that are doing real work. Present your data. Gather your evidence and present it. Go to the source. Do some actual science.

    Why do I get the feeling that you just cut and pasted this reply from a comment thread on a biology blog where you were responding to a creationist moaning about the lack of evidence for evolution? :)

  103. JJ

    @tacitus: that’s why I said that doesn’t mean much and referred to peer reviewed studies. I have a degree in math, but I’m no scientist.

  104. Frank

    @103: As listed here, only 3,804 of the signatories are scientists that work in atmospheric, environmental, and earth sciences.

    http://www.petitionproject.org/qualifications_of_signers.php

  105. adam

    Did you not read what I said? Don’t try to claim you’re being repressed, and don’t try to attack others that are doing real work. Present your data. Gather your evidence and present it. Go to the source. Do some actual science. If your data shows that the Earth is actually cooling, and if your models predict accurately that the Earth is actually cooling, then the data will stand for itself.

    Pretend you’ve never heard of Global Warming. Gather your own data and then come back and show it to us.

    you know that’s not realistic. i could say the same thing to you. i could provide dozens of studies, peer-reviewed and not, that cast doubt on the currently accepted model of climate change. many are contextual–they take the GATA increase of our era as colored by the cooling trend that ended in the 19th century. others simply can’t find consistent, conclusive, widespread trends, or if some do find an interesting trend, they can’t ascribe it to any one prominent factor–like human-produced CO2 and so forth. some of these studies have been addressed, questions answered, some have not. some present arguments so compelling that it undermines the entire currently accepted theory of AGW. do you want me to dig them up and then make you do the research that would disprove their findings?

    none of this changes the facts at hand. the facts are that we don’t adequately understand the warming trend and that the scientific methods currently being used to investigate the trend are immature and, if we took anything from the CRU data, irresponsible.

    disprove that.

  106. tacitus

    @JJ: Then why bother bringing it up as a “significantly statistical number” at all?

  107. ND

    tacitus,

    Your example from the biollogy world sounds familiar. I think it was e coli bacteria and not fruit flies. It was a very long term and dedicated experiment. And yes the same tactic of “show me the data”. The act of publicly asking of the data and appearances is the name of of the game here.

  108. Robert

    About the desire not to fulfill FOI requests:
    Let’s pretend we are scientists (Actual Scientists can skip this step.) You have a penchant for accuracy, and a distaste for inaccuracy. That goes with the territory.
    Someone is taking FOI efforts to obtain a data set that contains obvious (to you, anyway) flaws, and you know will lead to loud, public statements that are wrong. ‘Wrong’ is actually painful to you. We have seen Phill’s pain at running into such things.
    You would love to prevent this, wouldn’t you? Especially when those loud, public, wrong statements will cause actual harm. Enough to tell a fellow scientist that you’d love to be able to nuke that data set?
    Fully understandable. Although illegal, it would be the ethical thing to do, IMHO. Unfortunately, being illegal, he will have to comply, and grit his teeth.

  109. tacitus

    Thanks for the correction, ND.

  110. SLC

    Re JJ

    1. The petition cited by Mr. JJ has been totally debunked as a fraud.

    2. Roy Spencer is a young earth creationist. Such an individual has no scientific credibility.

  111. tacitus

    The only thing I think Jones will get any lasting heat is over the FOI-related emails. In fact, I would not be at all surprised if he ends up resigning over that one aspect of this whole affair and issuing a statement that he regrets not acting more professionally in that regard.

    Talk of prosecution for conspiracy is just stupid, however.

    The deniers will crow victory and claim that it proves everything they were saying which, of course, it doesn’t — not even close.

  112. JJ

    @Tacitus: I brought it up to make a point of the sheer number of people that have signed the petition. They may not be climatologists, but they certainly familiar with the global warming debate. On that, see the site of Dr. Roy Spencer. He has some convincing arguments against current man made claims.

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/

  113. mike burkhart

    I would worry that if the gop retakes congress next year they could threaten to cut funding to science organations unless they hire global warming skeptics claiming that the first amentment prohibits tax payer funding to “organtions that supress decent”

  114. Paul

    Your pretty much bang on. There is absolutly no proof of deciet, manipulation, intimidation etc. What there are are allegations of the above, based on email data and code.

    The obvious response is to examine more closely all the various elements to satisfy the majority of people that the end result is satisfactory ie, guilty on no, some or all counts.

    Everybody wants what is right, everybody. Advocates want to act now, skeptics want to act when they are good and ready, and not too early. Good resource managment is in the best interest of everybody, but making hasty decisions is a bad idea.

  115. JJ

    I wouldn’t worry about the GOP. If they took over, you’d likely see a push for drilling here, nuclear power, clean coal, natural gas, and the same green technology we’re currently investing in. However, the GOP would not move to tax the hell out of businesses and individuals for a claim that holds little water. They certainly would continue to curb CO2 emissions, only without using it as an excuse to raise taxes.

  116. Frank

    @109: I would let them have the data, prepare an analysis of why the data is wrong and make sure the analysis is available to those with questions. If someone ignored the analysis (we’re assuming my analysis is sound), I would then publicize the fact that they not only used wrong data but they did so knowingly thus eliminating their argument. Maybe, if they keep on, I’d take it a step further and publicly challenge them to a debate which they would refuse or lose – killing their argument either way. The analytical mind loves this exercise.

    If a scientist, engineer or any analytical type hides something, my inclination is to believe that it’s not because they “know” it’s “wrong”, it’s because they “feel” it’s “wrong”.

  117. Lonny Eachus

    @96 tacitus:

    “*If* it’s true that the full paper trail from the raw data to the results issued in papers no longer exists then *perhaps* that *could* be a problem, but again, there is danger in leaping to quick conclusions.”

    No, I very strongly disagree.

    First, it was statements from CRU that claimed that the data is no longer available. If it is so easily reproducible, then let them reproduce it. The fact is that only they are capable of doing so, because only they know what data they used. Remember, some of their data is and was not publicly available. And with this kind of data, that 2% could prove to be quite significant, or even essential. There is no way for anybody else to tell. That is a problem, there is no “maybe” about it.

    Second, while your example of the fruit flies is interesting, it is not a valid comparison. I was not referring to Jones’ threat to delete their later data rather than turn it over to “unqualified” people (not all of whom are unqualified, by the way). I was referring, as I clearly stated, to the earlier data. It is one thing to be unwilling to release your experimental data to unqualified people. It is quite another to lose or destroy that data so that it is not reproducible by others or not available for review. As it stands, apparently peer researchers have no way to know what that data is, either. So your mention of unqualified people is nothing more than a red herring.

    Since then, the data has undergone a number of “massages”. The resulting data set no longer resembles the original data. Without that original data, there is absolutely no way to tell whether any of the resulting data set is valid. And that is a problem. *IF* what they stated is correct, then there *IS* a problem. There is no “maybe” here.

    Science is about reproducibility. The folks at CRU have created a situation in which (according to their own statements) it is impossible for others to reproduce or validate their data. Unless they can reproduce that original data, that does invalidate their study. In science, we do not take researchers on their word alone. Science does not work that way. It simply doesn’t.

    If it is not reproducible, it isn’t science. You are apparently okay with just taking this on their word alone. Pardon me if I am not quite so credulous. I am a skeptic. I want data. Just the facts, please. If they can’t be produced, everybody’s time and millions of dollars have been wasted. If the data can be produced, or reproduced, then let them do so. Until they do, their credibility is not worth a nickel.

  118. ND

    Here’s an article on the e coli evolution experiment.

    arstechnica.com/old/content/2008/06/conservapedias-evolutionary-foibles.ars

  119. Lonny Eachus

    @97 Utakata:

    Yes, it is Pascal’s Wager, because the choices presented ARE false dichotomies:

    (1) It is happening, or it is not.

    Maybe it is happening, but to a degree that is vastly lower than the “alarmists” would have us believe. My point is that this is not an “either/or” proposition, but rather a whole range of possibilities. Which invalidates any grid based on either/or. In that sense, this is identical to Pascal’s Wager. It doesn’t matter what the particular argument is about, unless it involves strictly binary choices, like a coin toss. Nothing here is binary. It is most definitely analog.

    (2) We fix it, or not.

    Again, we have a whole range of possibilities here, not just a simple binary choice. We might choose to fix some of it, but not all. And so on.

    So it’s still an invalid argument, no matter how you look at it.

  120. Chip

    @ Greg in Austin (See Post 91) – “…Instead of attacking the scientists, why not try actually presenting real data? How hard is that?”

    You’re correct. They can’t and they won’t. Regardless of their trumped-up drama about leaked emails, quote mining from out-of-context sources, moving the goal posts by saying “its not about climate change” while denying climate change or the quoting of an occasional scientist who disagrees with some aspects of the measurements and conclusions, climate change is real. The climate change deniers have nothing but hand waving. They are squarely in the same boat as the creationists who really want to make the minds of school kids more gullible (i.e. pliable). The irony is that industries would ultimately benefit from a cleaner and more stable environment.

  121. ehmoran

    With ClimateGate the end’s in sight,
    But we got the money and all is right,
    The final chapter has been wrote,
    So at Copenhagen, we’ll finish the fight.

    To get the rest of the public’s cash,
    We’ll blame the computer, not our faulty facts,
    No one will know the abuse we’ve done,
    ‘Til we’ve enslaved them all and nothing more can be done.

    However, ClimateGate set another debate,
    Through peer-review they’ll lock the gate,
    If you want in, we must confess,
    That what you say, we can and will oppress,
    Open your mind to nothing more,
    The cause of climate debate over,
    As professed by advocates associated with Gore.

  122. Beelzebud

    Good luck, Phil. The same people who are “skeptical” of climate science, are the same type of people that are “skeptical” of evolution.

    The ones who aren’t anti-science idiots, are just libertarian/conservatives that are more concerned with promoting their economic agenda, which is against any form of regulation when it comes to their “free market”. This is why Penn Jillette, someone held up as a skeptic, is still “skeptical” of global warming. He wouldn’t want to see any of those corporations have their free market stifled by regulating greenhouse gasses and pollution.

  123. Bottom line: No fraud has been demonstrated. Without data or a graph from a specific published paper, which can be shown to be falsified, the contrarians have nothing.

  124. Lonny Eachus

    @99 Greg in Austin:

    You do not really have a point. Have you heard the old saying, “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”?

    Well, it’s not true. Extraordinary claims need just as much or as little evidence as any other claim… but what matters is the evidence. And, sadly, we see in this whole fiasco that the evidence may not be credible.

    What is true, however, is that the more extraordinary the claim, the more solid the evidence has to be before people will believe it. That isn’t science, it’s simple human nature.

    What you seem to be missing here is that all of our data of the historical PAST shows no cause-effect between temperature and CO2 concentrations. Actually, that is not true either… there is a strong correlation, but it is the other way around. In the past, temperature variations were followed about 800 years later by CO2 concentrations. All the evidence we had showed that temperature drove CO2, not the other way around.

    So it is the idea that CO2 can cause temperature shifts that is actually the extraordinary claim, and the claim that goes against all PAST evidence.

    Did you get that? The CO2 warming theory is the extraordinary claim. The claim that has to prove itself. Not the other way around.

    (Technically, of course, it is never possible to prove a theory completely… but they can be proven to be useful theories, if they are successful at predicting the future. That is the whole value of a theory: how well it predicts the outcome of events. So far, “CO2-driven global warming” has not predicted anything. Anything at all. Not..one..single..thing.

  125. Science is about reproducibility. The folks at CRU have created a situation in which (according to their own statements) it is impossible for others to reproduce or validate their data.

    That’s completely wrong. Reproducibility doesn’t mean that you use the same data and methods and come up with the same result. When you reproduce someone else’s work, you typically produce your own data, at least in part, and you hopefully use even more rigorous methods.

    Additionally, CRU has made it clear that no data has been deleted. Copies of files have been deleted. I understand the originals are available through NOAA.

  126. Without that information, it is now not possible to reproduce exactly how the HadCRUT3 dataset was derived from the original data. In other words, how do we know that the many “adjustments” and “enhancements” to the data were done properly? Do we just take their word for it? Of course not. That’s not how science works. The results need to be reproducible.

    Sorry, but that’s a pretty ignorant thing to say, considering the results have been reproduced rather closely. Look up GISSTemp.

  127. Lonny Eachus

    @119 Joseph:

    Once again, Joseph, you have missed the boat, as I have stated several times, and which you have not addressed.

    There is no need to demonstrate fraud. Where is their data? Without the earlier data that CRU has claimed is missing, their results are not reproducible. If the results are not reproducible, there is no science. Don’t argue with me about the “raw data” still being available… some of it is, some of it isn’t. Only CRU knows what data they used, and that isn’t good enough. Reviewers must know, too.

    That is not “denier” talk. It’s a simple fact. You can’t have it both ways. Either they use the scientific method or they don’t. If they don’t, it’s not science.

  128. ehmoran

    “Reproducibility is one of the main principles of the scientific method, and refers to the ability of a test or experiment to be accurately reproduced, or replicated, by someone else working independently.

    The results of an experiment performed by a particular researcher or group of researchers are generally evaluated by other independent researchers who repeat the same experiment themselves, based on the original experimental description. Then they see if their experiment gives similar results to those reported by the original group. The result values are said to be commensurate if they are obtained (in distinct experimental trials) according to the same reproducible experimental description and procedure.”

  129. “… Uses ‘corrected’ MXD—but shouldn’t usually plot past 1960 because these will be artificially adjusted to look closer to the real temperatures.”

    “It’s all synthetic from 1990 onwards.”
    …”

    The thing is, real scientists use real data.

    Show us the published paper where the artificially corrected temperatures are used. I don’t believe there’s one.

    In any case (and this has been explained countless times) the above refers to temporary corrections they made to tree-ring reconstructions, which don’t proxy very well starting in the 1960s. It’s not surprising that they tried to come up with a model that “fixes” the proxy, and tested some ideas.

    There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. If they tried to pass the artificially corrected temperatures as true temperatures in a published paper, that would be a different matter.

  130. brooks

    I don’t even know where to start. You should spend more time reading and thinking, less time writing. But maybe you are one of those fellows that will not let facts get in the way of your beliefs.

    You might want to read this: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/04/a-devastating-response-to-theres-nothing-to-see-here-move-along/#more-13710

  131. ehmoran

    How in the heck are you guys going to agree on anything when you can’t even agree on a predefine definition.

    Waht a joke this is….

  132. Without the earlier data that CRU has claimed is missing, their results are not reproducible.

    That’s just false, as already explained. Besides, there are a lot of tree-ring based reconstructions and other instrumental data sets. This counts as reproducibility.

    (Sorry if I said that twice, but the last comment apparently got spam-trapped.)

  133. Lonny Eachus

    @122 Joseph:

    Are you being deliberately obtuse? It seems you are.

    That is NOT the same dataset as was used to create HadCRUT3. Not even close. No, the data was not “reproduced rather closely”. While some of the data might be from the same sources, much of it is not.

    You seem to be trying to say that the data from one study must be valid, simply because another study has results that are somewhat similar? Are you joking?

  134. Lonny Eachus

    @125 Joseph:

    No, it is not false, and you didn’t explain anything. Citing a different study says nothing about this one, and you damned well know it. Get real.

    Just in case your obtuseness is not deliberate, let me explain:

    I have stated, many times now, it is the HadCRUT3 data that is in question. The “results” I referred to consist of the actual HadCRUT3 dataset itself. Not the conclusions of the report, not some intermediate graph.

    It doesn’t matter what the conclusion is, if the data is worthless. Even if bad science results in a correct conclusion (and I am not judging either way, although I do suspect that it is not), it is still bad science. You can’t point at either one and use that to validate the other.

  135. ehmoran

    Since this site is similar to RealClimate, where they don’t post your comments either:

    I’m surely glad I don’t buy this magazine, and any scientists that does, would be completely confused on what the real meaning of Science was………..

  136. I have stated, many times now, it is the HadCRUT3 data that is in question. The “results” I referred to consist of the actual HadCRUT3 dataset itself. Not the conclusions of the report, not some intermediate graph.

    Why is it in question? Because you say so? Data is typically not available for most scientific papers. This has never caused data to be in question. You’re fabricating a standard that doesn’t exist. Nor does it mean it’s not “reproducible.” That was just an ignorant thing to say.

    Additionally, how do you explain that GISSTemp is similar to HadCRUT3, if HadCRUT3 is “worthless”? It couldn’t be all that “worthless.”

  137. Beelzebud

    Why hasn’t skepticblog.com covered this issue? I suspect it has something to do with the Libertarians that contribute to it…

  138. Mark

    Whats the point in arguing?

    These people won’t believe decades of scientific research from the top climate scientists in the world, and would prefer to believe media pundits, politicians, authors, and their own intiution (I cant even begin to count the number of people that I’ve heard say: “It snowed, so that just proves Al Gore wrong”)

    Nothing in the world will ever convince these deniers.

    And for all you idiots, who keep asking for “actual proof” of climate change, please for the love of god, open a book, or learn to use ‘the google’. There is overwhelming evidence available.

  139. Lonny Eachus

    @128 Joseph:

    You are claiming then, that reproducibility is not important? Now, don’t go off on a tangent again… I am saying reproducibility of the “adjusted” data from the original dataset used in the study.

    That does appear to be what you are saying.

    I am fully aware that original data does not customarily accompany a report. But it still EXISTS! So that the methods that were used can be verified! Jesus, man, you really are being deliberately obtuse. You seem to be saying that it is not important at all whether original data is preserved… and that’s just ridiculous.

    And even though I explained it in clear English, you once again confused “reproducible” in the sense of conclusions, with “reproducible” data. Do you understand the difference?

    And *I* did not say it was not reproducible. CRU did! Did you even read what I wrote, or are you just “cherry picking” the things you want to contradict?

    And while this was not part of what I originally wrote to you, did you read the exchange between Jones, Mann, and Professor Karlen that I linked to above? It seems that the CRU people don’t even know what data they used, for what part of their study. And that’s just crazy. And not only that. but as Karlen mentioned, part of the data that they DID use in the part he was referring to was clearly inappropriate.

  140. I have to agree with Phil that this “should be” a non-issue, but it has generated so much whack-a-loonacy and nut-jobbery that anyone with at least a double digit brain cell count should feel a duty to at least say something to put the hard of understanding at ease with their throbbing neck veins.

    I have a small blog about spaceflight where I pretty much never get political or opinionated, but after seeing the befuddled facial musings of Glenn Beck and hearing the dulcet ramblings of Rush Limbaugh as they narrate their adventures in cuckoo-land, I just had to blog outside of my comfort zone and add my voice to the reason mountain.

    Phil, I’m really hoping you don’t mind that I quoted you from this post in my own. Your words just summed it up soooo perfectly.

    Keep up the vigilance!

  141. MattyS

    Phil Plait, you miss so many points about the climate change debate it’s barely worth bothering with. The fact that you use the term, “denialist,” speaks volumes.

    It was amusing to go to the front page of Discover Magazine and see a big advert for Shell on the front. I guess we can discount anything Discover has to say then, huh?

  142. LatentFX

    Going back to the author’s work, how is it that AWG is his apparent abbreviation for ” Global Warming ” ?

  143. LatentFX

    Sorry “AGW”

  144. You don’t get it. Both the following may be true: (1) the climate is warming, and (2) man has nothing significant to do with it.

  145. Justin

    Those scientists, whom you defend, have been roundly criticized as being completely unscientific in their methods. Those scientists, whom you defend, faked scientific data, bullied dissenters, defrauded world governments out of MILLIONS of dollars of grant money (all based on what they knew as a lie) and now they’re trying to use that same institutes ‘findings” to usher in the next scam, the next financial bubble to burst. Climate research is a legitimate field but it has been hijacked by the fake “green” movement. The UN and other sponsor nations are just trying to scare us into new legislation based around dubious carbon taxes, which were schemed up by no less than Kenneth “Enron” Lay.

  146. Daniel J. Andrews

    As usual, many claims, no evidence. Someone actually posted a link to the 18,000 “scientists” against global warming? That is so discredited that even denialist friendly media avoids it.

    AGW is based primarily on 53 studies?! There are more disciplines than that involved in the study of anthropogenic climate change. Please link to the list of studies.

    Drop by realclimate.org and post that there are primarily 53 studies for AGW (btw, even if there were just 53 well-examined studies supporting global warming, this is still 50 some more than the skeptics/denialists have). Await the evidence avalanche.

    Maybe you mean 53 solid studies on certain subjects?–e.g. 1 subject would be role of CO2 as a greenhouse gas, which has hundreds of papers supporting it, some going back 150 years).

    IPCC reviewers were largely janitors and school-teachers? Not according to the IPCC–you’d think they might know who their reviewers were (ucsusa.org/global_warming/science_and_impacts/science/ipcc-backgrounder.html#Authors_Contributors_and_Reviewers). A list of experts were selected by science agencies and governments, and then from that list the reviewers were selected according to their level and type of expertise.

    Once a rough draft was made it was then sent back to government agencies and from there anyone could request a copy, review it, and then submit their comments. These “reviewers” could be janitors and school-teachers as it was open to anyone who asked (transparency). There are a few denialists who run around claiming they were “expert” reviewers for the IPCC, but unless they were on the nominated list their claims do not carry the authority they pretend to have.

    Having non-scientists and janitors as reviewers does undermine your credibility…ironically this argument applies not to the IPCC but the very people trying to say it applies to the IPCC.

    That is the whole value of a theory: how well it predicts the outcome of events. So far, “CO2-driven global warming” has not predicted anything. Anything at all.

    Good grief, Lonny. Anything?!! Go look up the first IPCC report and read their predictions. Look up James Hansen’s papers from the late 1980s and see what he predicted. Just because you are unaware of the predictions and how they came true does not mean they don’t exist. Are you making this stuff up yourself, or are you just repeating what you’ve read? Please stop spreading disinformation. Educate yourself on the basics. As well as the above, also see Spencer Weart’s Discovery of Global Warming (online book, or buy the hard copy).

    You can also ask at realclimate and ask them for predictions. Ask humbly and you’ll be buried under an avalanche of evidence. Make a statement like you did above, and you’ll be laughed off the board.

    Temp leads CO2 (from the Vostok data). You do not understand what you are talking about, but that is easily remedied. See here for several links: realclimate.org/wiki/index.php?title=CO2_doesn%27t_lead%2C_it_lags. Also most climatology textbooks will have a section on this.

    For a video intro to the subject and why this is a strawman argument, see youtube.com/watch?v=hWJeqgG3Tl8. Near minute 8, Peter mentions two predictions made by Hansen ten years before the data became available.

    Lonny, you no doubt think you are a skeptic, and perhpas you are. However, if you repeat the IPCC reviewer fable, the CO2 misunderstanding, and continue to claim the CO2-driven global warming theory has not predicted anything then you’ve moved out of skeptic realm and into the antiscience denier camp. (might want to look-up what “theory” means in science, by the way :) ).

    You want to really know where the big unresolved climate questions lie? Go here: climate.nasa.gov/uncertainties/

  147. Lonny Eachus

    @128 Joseph:

    My apologies. I wrote “Jones, Mann and Karlen” but I meant “Trenberth, Jones, and Karlen”.

    And re: Kevin Trenberth, did you ever read the public letter from Chris Landsea about him and his “science” regarding hurricanes?

    http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/prometheus/archives/science_policy_general/000318chris_landsea_leaves.html

  148. Phil, when I followed the link from Digg to here I fully expected to read you saying something to the effect of “variability is natural” and “the scientific record clearly shows four warming/cooling periods since the last ice age” which was only 14000 years ago.

    Instead, what I found was surprising. Please tell us, do you believe the climate naturally varies? Has it ever been hotter on earth than it is now? Has their ever been move carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than there is now? If so, was it during periods when it was hotter? Does heat lead carbon dioxide in the geological record, or does carbon dioxide lead heat?

    Please tell us, once the vikings resupplied from their farms in Greenland and continued sailing west and discovered what they named “Vineland”, were they just trying to throw us off? Or were they actually able to plant grape vines and make wine in the north eastern corner of North America? If they weren’t, why document a lie? If they were, what does that tell us about the climate in the 1200-1300’s? And then what does that tell us about today?

    Do you not believe we are rebounding from the little ice age?

  149. Justin (#149): Thank you for proving exactly the point I made in this post.

  150. Daniel J. Andrews

    Without that information, it is now not possible to reproduce exactly how the HadCRUT3 dataset was derived from the original data. In other words, how do we know that the many “adjustments” and “enhancements” to the data were done properly? Do we just take their word for it? Of course not. That’s not how science works. The results need to be reproducible.

    It is reproducable. All the original data is still there. With all the money being put into disinformation campaigns and political think-tanks in an effort to distort and lie about the science, you’d think that these companies would have purchased the data that isn’t already public access and done their own analyses. You think they also would have scoured the same records that scientists have, and done their own collation of the raw data.

    They’ve had over a decade or two to do so yet they have not. Other scientists have managed to do it. Similar results are obtained from other data sets too, which indicates they’re on the right track.

    So why haven’t the deep pockets of lobbyists and industry obtained the data, and done their own analyses? In which journal was it published? How well did it stand up to expert scrutiny?

    Carbon Cow: Your post is a list of debunked arguments and misunderstandings. See scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2008/07/how_to_talk_to_a_sceptic.php for a list of debunked arguments. Also review Crock of the Week by Sinclair at youtube. Also go to realclimate.org and click on the “Start Here” link for basic background information. Also see links I made in the above post. Good luck.

  151. Carbon Cow (#152): All of your claims have been soundly rebutted about a dozen times. Please do your research before trying to use outdated arguments here.

  152. StillMakesYouThink

    How much did they pay you to write a new article to un-discredit them?

  153. Lonny Eachus

    @132 Daniel J. Andrews:

    First, you are distorting my words. That is not what I wrote.

    It is not necessary to link to the 53 reports, you can easily find them yourself. The majority of the AGW hype is based on the IPCC reports, themselves relying on about 53 studies they used as a foundation. It takes about 10 seconds on Google to find the IPCC references. Maybe 20 if you take your time.

    If you deny that the AGW hysteria was based mainly on the IPCC reports, then I would like to know what other influential sources were responsible for it.

    I did not say that “IPCC reviewers were largely janitors and school-teachers”. I stated that the “thousands” of “scientists” that people claim were behind the IPCC reports included reviewers, and that a large portion of their list was not scientists. Some of the reviewers were schoolteachers without science degrees, and yes, there was at least one janitor. And there were some politicians as well, some of whom have had little education in science. And by the way… that url you supplied does not refute what I stated. If you want to do that, you will have to supply an actual list of the 2500+ and their occupations. Thanks very much. (They do exist, if you want to bother to find them.)

    I will thank you to not publicly twist my words in the future.

    As for predictions, Daniel, what have they predicted? Some glacial melting? Arctic melting? Etc… that is not evidence of CO2-based warming, that is simple warming which we already knew was going on. Please: present here one significant event that the CO2-based warming theory predicted that other warming theories did or would not. Just one, Daniel. I am all ears, as they say.

    In fact, the CO2-based warming theory, if you listen to the folks at IPCC, predicted that it would continue to get warmer, and that hurricanes would increase in both number and severity. And yet the opposite has actually happened. The temperature trend has been downward, and we are, this year, at a 30-year low in global cyclone energy.

    Now, I know that local variations do not global climate make, nor do the occasional warm or cold year. But we are talking about an 11-year trend so far.

    The troposphere has not been warming in proportion to the surface in the way that would be expected if the surface warming were due to greenhouse gases.

    Evidence, Daniel. Give me evidence. All I have seen is rhetoric. Show me. Not that warming is happening — we already knew that. Show me that CO2 is causing it. That’s what this is about, and that is what — so far — nobody has shown, to the very best of my knowledge, and I have looked, believe me.

  154. Lonny Eachus

    @154 Daniel J. Andrews:

    No, it isn’t, Daniel. Have you guys even been reading the emails in question? You talk about whether others are “skeptics” or not, but you don’t appear to have looked at the actual evidence yourself.

    Their dataset is NOT reproducible by outsiders at present because (depending on which of their statements you believe), somewhere between 2% and 5% of it was data from private sources, and they have agreements with those sources to not reveal that data.

    Further, it has been stated that because some of the “raw” data is redundant, or noisy, a good bit of it was discarded. But the claim so far is that there is no record of what was kept and what discarded. These are not my statements, these are from the emails.

    That is just one of the very basic things here you seem to have missed, even though it has been stated several times.

    And if you really want a genuine example of how that data was handled, you need only look at that link I supplied above to the exchange with Prof. Karlen. It sure looks like incompetence to me.

  155. Wow, this is way more serious than I thought – the hard of understanding have been breeding. I can’t believe I’m actually reading comments like “Show me that CO2 is causing it”.

    I bet these people pour milk into their coffee and deny that it was the milk that turned it a lighter shade of brown.

  156. Bruce the Canuck

    >I bet these people pour milk into their coffee and deny that it was the milk that turned it a lighter shade of brown…

    Until you have a computer model that can predict the turbulent swirls of the milk 5 seconds in advance, why should I believe you that the coffee will be lighter in tone a minute from now?

  157. you hadyourchance

    ya and tiger woods was just going out for tea he tried to get rid of the evidence and back track like you to

  158. John Rogers

    Keep drinking the Koolaid, Phil. Most, like yourself, bury your head in the sand if it goes against “official” mainstream agenda.

  159. Winter (Go Protons, Cancer in remission, will soon be removed from "Dead Man Walking" video.

    lets all say Global Warming has happened?

    Then what?

    Nothing we do will reduce the emissions, or the temp rise of .1 degree.

    And by the way, the warmer earth is a good thing for mandkind, think of the result of a global cooling period.

  160. Otaku

    Allow me to be that Fence sitter that everyone hates.

    there is clear evidence in the email that the CRU has been inputing “fudge” numbers to make there case seem more solid.

    “Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline”(quote from http://www.examiner.com/x-25061-climate-change-examiner~y2009m11d20-climategate–climate-centers-server-hacked-revealing-documents-and-emails_ )

    ….. seems like there hiding things. and thats just one quote.

    personally do i feel that humanities use of oil is raising global tempature? yes. do i feel that the recent rise in tempature is due ONLY to big oil? no.

    in fact i personally feel that part of the warming recently is part of a natural cycle that our planet goes through. there is evidence that earth rises and falls regularly in tempature. however i do think this cycle is being accellerated by big oil.

    now all that said (and if yor still reading, thanks for not being one of those dolts who reads the first line then flames the **** out of anyone they dont agree with!) i do feel that we should get cracking on such things as wind, solar, wave/tidal/current energy sources, as well as developing hydrogen systems. because its the right thing to do. we live on a small fragile mudball and untill it becomes possible to colonize other planets in our solar system (who knows, mabie we never will) we need to look after it, globar warming hoax or no.

    thanks for reading this. and may i apologize for my spelling.

  161. Frank

    The presentation:

    Global Warming. What is it all about?
    Richard S. Lindzen
    Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Sciences
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    http://tinyurl.com/y88r2um (pdf)

  162. Frank

    The presentation:

    Global Warming. What is it all about?
    Richard S. Lindzen
    Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Sciences
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    tinyurl.com/y88r2um (pdf)

  163. alumiere

    Hey – this isn’t related directly to your post, but to the advertisement that appeared at the bottom of the RSS feed when I read it in my live journal: http://www.everyotherdaydiet.com/1_flat_belly_tip.php?hop=ttinc1. Somehow, I doubt you or Discover actually believe this, and while I know you can’t control every ad that appears this felt way wrong to me. Here’s the image that links to that from the RSS feed view: http://feedads.g.doubleclick.net/~a/aRiv-Wc1_HJrf_DoHjBPo_UHA2c/0/di.

  164. MindDetective

    @125 Beezlebud: Skepticism is about being able to handle the gray area between knowing and ignorance. A true skeptic, in my view, questions not just the views they disagree with but the ones the agree with or even hold dear. A skeptic will doubt a theory they themselves created. I think many here expressed a skepticism that is healthy (from both sides) and may simply be informed by different sources. Others are trying to make skepticism into a bad word or are treating disagreement as something more than it is.

    I am a big fan of evolutionary theory. But I am also skeptical of it. I am willing to admit it may be supplanted by a better theory someday. As it stands, I think it is the best theory for species diversity, etc., that we have. I think the nature of this doubt is the same that makes me question AGW. The idea may be wrong and I think it is proper to say so. I think it should also be thoroughly examined because the idea has both strong merit and strong implications for our future.

    Please don’t dismiss those who disagree. Skepticism requires a willingness to question even that which we accept. That is the gray area that is so difficult for some to live within.

  165. Lonny Eachus

    @159 Brango:

    And what, exactly, do you find wrong with that statement? Can you in fact show me? If it is as simple as adding milk to coffee, it should be trivial, yes?

    If it isn’t… and we know it isn’t… show me. Please, tell me. Exactly what do you find wrong with that? So far, nobody has shown me. Not even once. Lots of talk, no meat.

  166. Graduate Student

    @Phil Plait:

    I have read a few of your articles, but by now I am sorely disappointed in many of your conclusions. As a graduate student studying engineering, I know how to analyze data, and I can discern fact from myth in many different cases. A realistic study of global climate change data has absolutely no support towards global warming. The data they use is SO inconclusive that it can just as easily be tweaked to show global cooling. All in all, global warming is a widespread myth, and it bothers me to see just how many people are so quick to jump on the bandwagon.

    Best regards,

  167. Lonny Eachus

    @154 Daniel J. Andrews:

    I watched the YouTube video you linked to, and got the title of the paper in question from it. It is called: “The ice-core record: climate sensitivity and future greenhouse warming” with a list of authors, Hansen among them.

    I obtained a copy of the paper and I have read it. But contrary to what is stated in the video, the paper makes no predictions at all. The paper itself is somewhat convincing that CO2 may be responsible for some climate forcing, after being primarily driven by orbital and other effects, but the sheer number of variables about which they say “effects are uncertain” or “unknown” do reduce its credibility somewhat.

    The most interesting thing, though, is that nowhere in that paper is there any prediction of future events at all. It may be that someone else took the results of this paper, and used them to make a prediction, but if so I have no idea who it might have been, or what prediction they might have made.

    Further, even if this paper did predict a warming trend due to CO2 “10 years before the actual data became available” as stated in the YouTube video (not quite: the paper was from 1990 and the recent maximum was in 1998), it has failed to predict anything at all in the 11 years since then: so far there are significantly more years that show a negative correlation than positive.

    So: I’m still waiting. Somebody show me an unambiguous prediction made from CO2 warming theory that turned out to be not only accurate, but could not be as easily accounted for by other means.

    Just one. I will keep an open mind.

  168. TheBlackCat

    Still waiting for denialists to provide an alternative explanation for observed events. We know things are happening. We have an explanation for why that can explain all of them. Until someone comes up with an equal or better explanation it is only prudent to use the explanation we have.

  169. ehmoran

    I still want to see the laboratory experiment publication showing CO2 levels influence ambient temperatures.

    This question has always been avoided.

    Also, scientists measured CO2 levels from Mt. Redoudt at 10,000 tons/day during the last eruption. How in the heck are you going to stop that?

    When the relation between CO2 and temperatures were recently restudied, the data came from Hawaii about 2 miles from the active flowing volcano. Hmmm, Volcanoes produce large quantities of CO2. Hmmmm, lava is extremely hot.

    No bias there……..

  170. TheBlackCat

    I’m still waiting. Somebody show me an unambiguous prediction made from CO2 warming theory that turned out to be not only accurate, but could not be as easily accounted for by other means.

    Sure: stratospheric cooling. Global warming based on greenhouse gas emissions was predicted to lead to cooling in the highest layers of the atmosphere at the same time the lower layers warmed. This prediction turned out to be correct. So far no one has been able to provide an alternative explanation for this observation, at least not that I am aware of.

    I still want to see the laboratory experiment publication showing CO2 levels influence ambient temperatures.

    This is basic physics, physics that was first worked out about 150 years ago. Unless our fundamental understanding of atoms and eletromagnetism is totally wrong CO2 must affect ambient temperature.

  171. TheBlackCat

    That is simply not so. It would be if the atmosphere were near saturation, but that is seldom the case. The amount of water vapor in the atmosphere can often be changed a great deal… that is one of the effects of solar activity.

    It can change a great deal, but those changes do not last over long time scales unless driver by other changes. So increased temperatures can lead to more evaporation, which can act as a positive feedback. But just, for instance, boiling a lot of water won’t make a lot of difference because the residence time in the atmosphere is too short. Water vapor is a feedback, not a forcing. Combustion of most hydrocarbons produces more water than CO2, but the water is not the problem because it does not stay in the atmosphere for any significant length of time absent some other change in the system (like increased temperatures from other sources).

  172. Marshall Cypress

    There is NO global warming!

  173. ehmoran

    Specific heat capacity water – 4.187 kJ/kgK
    Specific heat capacity water vapor – 1.996 kJ/kgK

    Specific heat capacity carbon dioxide at 300 (80 degrees F) kelvin – 0.846 kJ/kgK

    Atmospheric concentration

    Water vapor – 4% in upper atmosphere to 40% near the surface
    CO2 – 0.036%

    CO2 has been shown NOT to redirect energy back to the Earth’s Surface.

    So, what’s up with these numbers

  174. Chris

    This is great news, I hope we can get the hockey stick graph back soon, that’s one of my favorite graphs.

  175. Jimi

    If the believers really want to make their case; they should get the government to pony up another $100 billion (like they gave to to global warmongers) and give it to a group of skeptics to their own science and then compare the 2 groups results. Oh, of course you could subtract the $30 million the oil companies have donated to the skeptics from the $100 billion, to keep things fair. Considering the projected cost of COP 15 treaty is approximatley $150 trillion, over 20 years another $100 billion would be a drop in the bucket.

    Then after results are compared, and there is some scientific proof on AGW, we could go ahead and start the police state/eugenices programs all the green meanies want so badly. But please, start with your own children first.

  176. ehmoran

    The BlackCat:

    “This is basic physics, physics that was first worked out about 150 years ago.”

    150 years ago? Hey, I’ve read all Maxwell’s works. Let’s see, 150 years ago, weren’t they just coming up with the math to get to that point. Oh, like the RealClimate people said to me once, “but those people are dead, so that negates your comment.”

    I’ve got all the necessary material, nothing in it about that. Like, say, the 1994 complete edition of Encyclopedia to Chemical Technology, but that publication is probably garbage too, RIGHT?

    Not only that, you’d think that after spending nearly $1 Billion dollars on this subject, someone would have done a recent experiment. You know, the new technology thing and stuff?

  177. BoyBunny

    I have posted in this disgusting blog connected to this disgusting magazine in the past. I have in the past couple of years explained that REAL science and REAL scientists do not need to massage computer models or massage their mathematical models until the program or the math fits the desired result. I have called a spade a spade by calling Phil Plait and other devotees to this blog ‘Religious Nuts”.

    I repeat my accusations.

    Phil Plait, you are the largest tool in the shed. Your unquestionable belief in your religion (science) results in you being unable to accept that you have been called on your half truths, your lies and your deception. Please continue to deceive yourself, you are so practiced at it. Modern science is dead, it is only now that the general population is learning about it. It is also only now that the general population is learning that people claiming to be scientists (that piece of paper claiming to be a degree is worthless if you are incapable of independent thought) are not as intelligent as they claim they are, and incorrectly believe they are.

  178. Joel Greer

    Any conclusions made about: Global Warming…Global Cooling…Global Staying The Same based on only a maximum of 100 years of possibly accurate meteorological data in a statistical field of 4 billion years (Age Of the Earth) has either a .025% chance of being accurate or 99.975% chance of being wrong.
    It is easier to excuse the belief in the world being flat. as everyone did until 500 years ago, than to excuse this pathetic attempt to equate guessing with good science.
    How any person that considers themselves a “scientist” could make a claim of positive proof regarding any theory with a 99.975% chance of being wrong is just mystifying to me.
    It doesn’t make me mad, it makes me sad because I have always had so much respect for science and the pursuit of fact over fantasy, superstition, and biased emotion-based guessing.
    Humans lying about the “product” they are selling to benefit themselves financially is a story as old as mankind. Scientists are supposed to be “above” common hucksters.
    The worst thing that is going to result from this self-promoting, fabricated, fraudulent, scientific forgery is a total rejection of all scientific “proofs”. Much future “truth” will be ignored.
    For the last several hundred years, mankind has used the sarcastic phrase “flat-earth believers” to describe bad science. For the next few hundred years, we will use the term “global warming experts” to describe bad science. The world’s respect for science is going to be set back. The number of people that believe every word of the Bible is true, evolution and everything attributed to science is all wrong, are going to wave global warming around as “proof” they are right and all science is wrong. We are going to be headed backwards.
    Those scientists that are mature, emotionally stable adults and truly love science will lead the way by saying “Let’s begin now, to make sure nothing like this can happen again. A few scientists have given our profession a black eye credibility-wise. Humans successfully fooling others is not a new invention. As scientists, we must be the most skeptical segment of society. We must demand a higher degree of proof for any theory than every other segment of society. We must lead the world away from making false conclusions with any statistical data that has a 99.975% chance of being wrong.”
    It will be interesting to see how many emotionally stable adults there are in the scientific world.
    A person only becomes a fool, the 2nd time he’s fooled about the same issue. There’s no shame in being fooled once….only twice or more.

  179. Lonny Eachus

    @176 TheBlackCat:

    No, as I stated, it is possible to change the equilibrium point as long as the solution is not near saturation. That is simple physics (as you stated to someone else), and I can think of some real-world examples.

    For just one, large areas of the Central Valley in California are now much more humid than they used to be (in fact it used to be arid desert), because of land use changes that were made, including diversion of water resources. But precipitation has changed little if at all. And those are changes that are semi-permanent. Certainly the geography will change over a long time period, but that works both ways.

    The upshot is that over large areas, the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere is consistently much greater than it was before. And that is possible because the amount was far below saturation to start with.

  180. Tim

    Conspiring to “hide the decline” with “tricks” and trashing the raw data is a non-event?? Dude!…Seriously?

  181. Lonny Eachus

    @175 TheBlackCat:

    “Sure: stratospheric cooling. Global warming based on greenhouse gas emissions was predicted to lead to cooling in the highest layers of the atmosphere at the same time the lower layers warmed. This prediction turned out to be correct. So far no one has been able to provide an alternative explanation for this observation, at least not that I am aware of.”

    Ah, but that is offset by the utter lack of tropospheric warming that the theory also calls for. While the stratosphere may be cooling in accordance with the theory, the troposphere has not been warming in proportion to the surface as predicted by the theory.

    Your turn.

  182. ehmoran

    The amount of heat held by CO2 in the atmosphere is negligible, as from the physics I pointed out in #177.

    The specific heat of CO2 varies little between normal Earth’s atmospheric temperatures.

    So what’s holding all the heat in the atmosphere? As I stated: “CO2 has been shown NOT to redirect energy back to the Earth’s Surface”.

    Where’s the Experiment and Publication? Since this is required in most hard sciences. You know, the $1 Billion thing…….

  183. Tim

    @SLC Says: A petition with over 31,000 signers cannot be debunked. You are lying and that petition has more PHDs than the IPCC’s list has total signers.

  184. Lonny Eachus

    @173 TheBlackCat:

    We do have viable alternative explanations. As Prof. Karlen pointed out in the email exchange I linked to above, those explanations have, as often as not, been rejected out of hand even before review by the IPCC and other organizations.

    This is documented. Why don’t you send an email to Prof. Karlen and ask him about it?

  185. Lonny Eachus

    @176 TheBlackCat:

    I would also be remiss if I did not point out that when it comes to cloud cover in response to solar activity, water vapor can act as a forcing, not just a feedback.

  186. ehmoran

    From Nathan

    Take a look at the code. They intentionally created an array used to fudge the numbers. It starts at 0, actually goes negative for a period, then rises to 2.6 degrees. The original programmer actually labeled this array “fudge factor” and if you go through the readme you can find the surprise expressed by the guy who was supposed to maintain this. Here is the fudge factor array taken verbatim from the code:

    valadj=[0.,0.,0.,0.,0.,-0.1,-0.25,-0.3,0.,- 0.1,0.3,0.8,…1.2,1.7,2.5,2.6,2.6,$
    2.6,2.6,2.6]*0.75 ; fudge factor”

    My comments:
    These scientists used more than a third degree polynomial to fit the data. What’s worse, they extended the curve to extrapolate the data. My gosh, that’s why they’ve got such a huge upswing. Anybody that models into the future knows you can’t do that and get anything remotely reliable…….

    WOW

  187. Scott

    6.67300 × 10^-11 m^3 kg^-1 s^-2 , anyone?

  188. Lonny Eachus

    @181 ehmoran:

    The retention of heat by CO2 (if you subscribe to the theory) is not due to the actual absorption of heat by the gas, but rather by the reflection of heat by the gas back to the surface.

    A good analogy is your car in the summertime. Most automobile glass is transparent to UV, but reflects IR. Visible and UV light goes through your windows, and heats the interior of your car. In response (just like the surface of the earth), the interior of your car emits IR radiation (radiated heat). But… since the glass does not pass IR, that heat is reflected back to the interior, and turns it into an oven. That’s greenhouse warming.

  189. Daniel J. Andrews

    ehmoran. Good work. All you need to do now is show that they actually used this code for any published work. Let me help. Here’s the file-name from that email: osborn-tree6/briffa_sep98_d.pro, and if you check Osborn and Briffa for 1998, you’ll find this paper: Briffa, Schweingruber, Jones, Osborn, Harris, Shiyatov, Vaganov and Grudd Trees tell of past climates: but are they speaking less clearly today? Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. B 1998.). Just run the numbers using this code and compare to the graphs in the paper.

    Oh yeah, you might also explain why the cryosphere (rapidly warming Arctic, thinning ice, glacier thinning/retreating, permafrost melting) also indicates increased temps, why RSS, GISS, and UAH readings also indicate warming, why ocean heat content is increasing, why the stratosphere is cooling, why migratory species are altering their migration times, why peak flows of glacial run-off are arriving earlier, why plants are blooming earlier, why borehole analyses and proxy data also tell the same warming story….

    Before you do that though, you might just want to do a bit of research into the context of that email. You might save yourself a lot of work.

  190. ehmoran

    @185 Lonny Eachus:

    The percentage of CO2 is to low for that effect and there has only been an absorptive study. The reradiation back to the surface was argued against by the MIT Professor (forgot his name).

    It’s all water……….

  191. Hey, guys, I’ve just proved that homoeopathy works!

    I’ve done this neat little trick with the enhanced data and it all comes out tickety-boo. Sorry, I can’t show you the original raw data because I’ve destroyed it, and I’m not going to let you examine the algorithm I used to enhance it because it’s mine, not yours, and giving it to you might make it easier for you to criticise me. If you try to publish anything critical of it, I’ll do my darnedest to stop you, even if it means I have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!

    Yes, I know you’ve found some emails and computer programs that I and some like-minded people exchanged, but you are selecting quotes and taking them out of context. No, I am not going to publish the “context” so that you can put them in context (and anyway, I destroyed some of it when the FoI requests started pouring in).

    This is a non-issue anyway, because the emails don’t do anything to contradict the evidence that homoeopathy works. So, if you persist in challenging me, I’m going to liken you to a holocaust denier.

    Yes, I know that science should be conducted in the open, with all evidence and methodology available for scrutiny, but this is far too important for that, but it’s special, so it’s still science.

    And I’m the Queen of Sheba!

  192. Daniel J. Andrews

    From /slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1459338&cid=30248840, a comment by MoellerPlesset2 that every misinterpreted scientist will understand. Some quotes below. S/he’s not a climate scientist.
    ——————————————

    It took years of study for me (and everyone else) just to get to the level where you can properly understand what it is, exactly, that I do. …

    Now when I get into a dispute with someone, they typically have the same level of expertise. They know more or less everything I do. I know what they’re saying, and they usually know what I’m saying.

    Now you bring into that situation some layperson with their religious reasons or ideological reasons or crank personality, who wants to dispute the results of my work. So they pore over it, and they simply don’t understand it. … But they think they do. And then they formulate their criticism.

    Even if that criticism makes sense (often not), it’s typically wrong at the most basic level. And that will practically always be the case – because there’s virtually *nothing* in the way of criticism that a beginner would be able to think of that an expert hadn’t thought about already.

    Now I’m happy to defend my science against legitimate, good, criticism. But a scientific debate is *NOT* where anybody should be TEACHING anybody science. What kind of ‘debate’ is it if every answer amounts to “That’s not what that word means, read a damn textbook.”,

    It’s not the scientists who are being arrogant then. Hell, since when didn’t scientists bend over backwards to educate the public? We write textbooks, and popular-scientific accounts. Research gets published in journals for everyone to see, etc. It’s not like we’re keeping it a big secret - The problem is that some people are simply unwilling to learn, yet arrogant enough to believe they should be entitled to ‘debate’ with me, and that I should be personally burdened with educating them in the name of ‘open debate’!

    The fact that these climate-skeptics were prepared to take these e-mails, pore over them for some choice quotes (which didn’t even look incriminating to me out of context), blatantly misinterpret them without making any kind of good-faith effort to understand the context or the science behind it, and trumpet it all out as some kind of ‘disproval’ of global warming (which wouldn’t have been the case even if they were right), just goes to show that they’re simply not interested in either learning the science, or engaging in a real debate.
    ————————————–
    Then scroll down to apoc.famine’s comment, which is amusing and true in a blood-thirsty way. Here’s a section of it.

    As a scientist, surrounded with scientists, and friends with a lot of scientists, I can tell you, there’s nothing any of us would like to do than destroy the establishment. If I could disprove evolution, I’d do it in a heartbeat. If I could prove General Relativity wrong, I wouldn’t hesitate. It would put me in the text books. It would make me famous. If I could prove climate change wrong, I’d do the same.

    But I’m in the middle of that science. And I can’t. It’s solid, despite what the media makes it out to be. If it wasn’t, I’d be famous. You have to realize that most scientists want to know the truth. And as humans, we like nothing better than to be able to yell, DUMBASS in a very loud voice, while pointing at the dumbass so everyone notices.

    I believe in science because if I screw up, that will happen to me. So I try really hard not to screw up. As do all scientists. The ridicule of your peers is a very good tool to keep you honest. While there are some bad scientists, we all know who they are. They’re the ones that we watched get called a dumbass at the last conference.

    They’re the ones who published an article last year, which was utterly demolished by one this year. I’ve been to those conferences. I’ve read those articles. Scientists are blood-thirsty, brutal individuals. If you do poor science, you’ll be ripped to shreds. That’s how scientists advance in levels. :)
    —————————————————
    Oh yes, science can be brutal. Get caught being dishonest or fudging the numbers, you are pretty much finished as a publishing scientist…you’ll have to take a job as industry lobbyist. :)

  193. ehmoran

    @186. Daniel J. Andrews:

    Actually, the Arctic Ice sheet has now been extending to St. George Island, AK. Not previously seen for some time. Beneath the Ross Ice Shelf is one of the largest dormant volcanoes on Earth. (Likely still generating heat).

    Why are deep ocean ocean temperatures rising? In Nature, one scientist thinks the geothermal gradient is changing……..

    Seasons are changing, I agree. Been getting colder sooner.

    I never said there’s no Climate Change, its all natural.

    Warmer and colder might be from that big furnace (bed warmer) at the center and that blast furnace in the sky.

  194. #189: “But I’m in the middle of that science. And I can’t. It’s solid, despite what the media makes it out to be. If it wasn’t, I’d be famous. You have to realize that most scientists want to know the truth.”

    1. There are other scientists “in the middle of that science” who hold contrary views.
    2. “Most scientists” also includes those that are climate sceptics; they also want to know the truth.

  195. Lonny Eachus

    @187 ehmoran:

    Probably Lindzen. But if I were you, I would be careful about throwing his name around, lest you be knee-jerk labeled as a “denier”, as he has been. Never mind that he works for MIT and has himself done work for the IPCC. The name Lindzen is now recognized as being on the politically incorrect side of this argument. :0)

  196. TheBlackCat

    Ah, but that is offset by the utter lack of tropospheric warming that the theory also calls for. While the stratosphere may be cooling in accordance with the theory, the troposphere has not been warming in proportion to the surface as predicted by the theory.

    Way to move the goalposts. You asked for a prediction of CO2-based warming that could not be explained by other means. You got it. But of course when you got it you dismissed it. Expected, but disappointing.

    You are wrong anyway. Early results did indicate a discrepancy, but newer, more thorough studies show no such discrepancy.

    If you want a source (which I note that you did not provide for your claim), check out page 14 of The Copenhagen Diagnosis (google it), which lists some sources.

  197. ehmoran

    @190. Lonny Eachus:

    Don’t quite understand the “politically correct side of the argument” statement here. I thought politics, religion, entertainment, fame, and wealth had nothing to do with Science? At least that’s the Scientific Philosophy I’ve studied and practiced.

    You think that might be the whole problem here?

  198. Lonny Eachus

    @188 Daniel J. Andrews:

    That’s all very nice, Daniel. So, since this is supposed to be about informed debate, would you care to address any of the points I actually made earlier?

    I have sufficient intelligence AND education to recognize when I see people handling and using data inappropriately. I have supplied you with evidence of such. Not just random misunderstood quotes out of context, but full exchanges very much IN context. Do you have an answer to that? So far you haven’t answered any of the points I have made.

  199. TheBlackCat

    No, as I stated, it is possible to change the equilibrium point as long as the solution is not near saturation. That is simple physics (as you stated to someone else), and I can think of some real-world examples.

    Yes, but the global equilibrium point is not going to change on its own.

    For just one, large areas of the Central Valley in California are now much more humid than they used to be (in fact it used to be arid desert), because of land use changes that were made, including diversion of water resources. But precipitation has changed little if at all. And those are changes that are semi-permanent. Certainly the geography will change over a long time period, but that works both ways.

    Changing the water balance at a local level is not going to change the global temperatures. We are talking about global warming here, not regional warming.

    I would also be remiss if I did not point out that when it comes to cloud cover in response to solar activity, water vapor can act as a forcing, not just a feedback.

    If you don’t understand the difference between clouds, which are primarily composed of tiny water droplets and act primarily to reflect sunlight, and water vapor which absorbs it, then I am not sure there is much hope for you.

  200. TheBlackCat

    We do have viable alternative explanations.

    Such as…?

  201. TheBlackCat

    The percentage of CO2 is to low for that effect and there has only been an absorptive study. The reradiation back to the surface was argued against by the MIT Professor (forgot his name).

    This is basic physics. High-frequency radiation is absorbed and then re-emitted by the ground at a lower frequency. Part of this escapes into, part of this is absorbed by particular gases in the atmosphere heating up the air through molecular collisions, and part of it is absorbed and then re-emitted gases, part of which is emitted back towards the ground and part of which gets emitted towards space. There is nothing even remotely controversial about this. Rejecting this is rejecting basic physics, period.

  202. Lonny Eachus

    @191 TheBlackCat:

    “Way to move the goalposts. You asked for a prediction of CO2-based warming that could not be explained by other means. You got it. But of course when you got it you dismissed it. Expected, but disappointing.”

    No, no, sorry, you won’t get away with that. I moved no goalposts. What you gave me was half an answer, and the other half doesn’t match the theory. You can’t have that both ways.

    Further, the answer you gave me had to do with greenhouse warming, but not CO2 specifically, which is what I asked for. So don’t go getting all haughty at me; you didn’t answer what I actually asked.

    So… I have looked up what you mentioned. I take it you are referring to this?

    “The IPCC AR4 noted a remaining uncertainty in temperature trends in the atmosphere above the lowest layers near the Earth’s surface. Most data sets available at that time showed weaker than expected warming in the atmospheric region referred to as the tropical upper troposphere, ten to fifteen kilometers above the surface. However, the observations suffered from significant stability issues especially in this altitude region. Researchers have since performed additional analyses of the same data using more rigorous techniques, and developed a new method of assessing temperature trends from wind observations (Allen and Sherwood 2008). The new observational estimates show greater warming than the earlier ones, and the new, larger set of estimates taken as a whole now bracket the trends predicted by the models (Thorne 2008). This resolves a significant ambiguity expressed in AR4 (Santer et al. 2008).”

    Hahaha! What this says, is that they found a new way to massage the existing data so that it now matches the results they expected!

    Hahahaha!

    Spare me, please. I laughed so hard I nearly fell over.

  203. ehmoran

    “Relations between Earth’s magnetic intensity and climatic temperatures were suggested and investigated during the 1970’s and early 1980’s. The strong statistical correlation was dismissed owing to no explanation for the process. However, research shows that the intensity of a material’s magnetic field changes as the material’s temperature changes, thus suggesting that the Earth’s core temperature varies. Additional and more complete global-scale datasets and advanced analytical techniques indicate that global and, to a lesser degree, continental average annual temperatures respond significantly to secular variations of core- generated magnetic intensity. Simple polynomial-regression techniques show that globally-averaged secular variations predict and explain 79-percent of the variability in global average-annual temperatures 7-years in the future; thus suggesting another or additional process contributing to climate change.”

  204. ehmoran

    @196. TheBlackCat

    CO2 has very little in common with CFCs or water. I just stated the scientist from MIT about the reradiation hypothesis.

    All instruments I’ve measured CO2recorded CO2 as the absence of oxygen on a 100% basis. So, you’re only measuring a surrogate for CO2.

    If CO2 is increasing, what compound is decreasing? Don’t say water, please..

  205. Lonny Eachus

    @194 TheBlackCat:

    “Changing the water balance at a local level is not going to change the global temperatures. We are talking about global warming here, not regional warming.”

    Look who’s talking about “moving goalposts”. At no time was I referring to global temperatures, or even regional warming. I was referring to your implication that the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere was essentially unchangeable. That is false. There are ways to do it. They may not be easy, and each individual change may be regional, but it can be done.

    And you can call it “regional”, that’s fine, but in this case those regions are thousands of square miles.

    “If you don’t understand the difference between clouds, which are primarily composed of tiny water droplets and act primarily to reflect sunlight, and water vapor which absorbs it, then I am not sure there is much hope for you.”

    Of course I understand the difference… although let’s not carry it so far as to say that clouds are not water vapor. Clouds form from water vapor, and clouds can almost as easily dissolve into water vapor. They may not be exactly the same, but they are exchangeable.

    My point was that as clouds, that same water can act as an agent of forcing climate, not just a feedback. It seems to me that was pretty clearly stated. If your intention is to nitpick, fine. That reflects on you, not me.

  206. Jason

    “In conclusion: I called this a non-event because it has no real impact on global warming science or our understanding of it. Of course it has a huge impact, politically. But that’s because the ideologues out there have seized on this and made as much noise as they can, so in that sense it is an issue — an issue of how political science has become, how easy it is to disrupt the process, and the effect this has had on the scientists themselves. This issue won’t go away any time soon, but we need to focus on the signal, not the noise.”

    Of course ideologues have hijacked the debate. It happens on almost every issue and from All sides of the political spectrum. Political science and politicized science are bound together and with dollar amounts involved I don’t see it changing. So the noise is not going to go away. And contrary to many, I think that the noise is actually healthy for the debate. There are many that may belittle Justin(#149) for his right-wing conspiracy theory, but many other’s think Al Gore is pedaling cataclysmic hyperbole. I think it is responsible to explore all of the ecological, social and political ramifications from each side of the issue. So I’ll give it thought and consideration when I am told that the Predictions for the future are dire unless something is done. But I would suggest that instead of laughing off ideas such as Justin’s you consider that history has Proven that government does not always act in the best interest of it’s citizens.

  207. ehmoran

    @200. Lonny Eachus

    Water regulates our climate…..

  208. TheBlackCat

    No, no, sorry, you won’t get away with that. I moved no goalposts. What you gave me was half an answer, and the other half doesn’t match the theory. You can’t have that both ways.

    You asked for a prediction, you got it, you ignored it.

    Further, the answer you gave me had to do with greenhouse warming, but not CO2 specifically, which is what I asked for. So don’t go getting all haughty at me; you didn’t answer my question.

    Got any other greenhouses gases that are changing enough to account for this? Well, I guess methane could, but it is being caused by humans too so it doesn’t actually help your case.

    Hahaha! What this says, is that they found a new way to massage the existing data so that it now matches the results they expected! And of course the source is Santer!

    Ah yes, when you don’t like the results, attack the scientists. I find it hypocritical how you keep criticizing scientists for rejecting things without looking at them, yet you seem to have no problem whatsoever doing this yourself. Do you have any specific criticisms of the methodology or are you just going to reject it out of hand? And what about the second paper (Allen and Sherwood 2008)? Does just being mentioned in the same paragraph as a different paper involving Santer and 16 other authors invalidate that paper as well?

    If you had bothered to glance at one of the references you would see that the Santer paper is using data not available previously and the Allen and Sherwood paper is using an entirely new analysis of a different metric, neither was just a re-hashing of old data. But of course you don’t actually care enough to look at the papers, just seeing Santer’s name is enough to invalidate any paper mentioned anywhere nearby.

  209. TheBlackCat

    Look who’s talking about “moving goalposts”. At no time was I referring to global temperatures, or even regional warming. I was referring to your implication that the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere was essentially unchangeable. That is false. There are ways to do it. They may not be easy, and each individual change may be regional, but it can be done.

    And you can call it “regional”, that’s fine, but in this case those regions are thousands of square miles.

    We are talking about global warming here. Of course I was talking about things from a global perspective. Sorry, I keep assuming we are dealing with length and time scales that are appropriate for the current global warming, I keep forgetting that denialists insist on discussing totally irrelevant length and time scales. I need to remember to state the obvious. In case you are wondering, yes I understand boiling water in a tea pot on your stove can heat up your kitchen. Can we get back to discussing global warming now?

    Of course I understand the difference… although let’s not carry it so far as to say that clouds are not water vapor. Clouds form from water vapor, and clouds can almost as easily dissolve into water vapor. They may not be exactly the same, but they are exchangeable.

    Yeah, the ocean can change to and from water vapor as well, it doesn’t mean the optical properties of sea water is even remotely similar to the optical properties of water vapor. If you knew the difference why bring it up? It is irrelevant.

    My point was that as clouds, that same water vapor can act as an agent of forcing climate, not just a feedback. It seems to me that was pretty clearly stated. If it is your intention to nitpick, fine. That reflects on you, not me.

    We weren’t talking about clouds, we were talking about water vapor. Whether clouds is a forcing was not the subject of discussion, it has no bearing on whether water vapor is a forcing or not. What was the point in bringing it up? It has no bearing on the discussions we were having and does absolutely nothing to support your position or weaken mine.

  210. Bruce the Canuck

    197: …What this says, is that they found a new way to massage the existing data so that it now matches the results they expected!

    Uhm, no, what that says is, they found an unexpected result in one vertical segment of one geographic area of the atmosphere:

    “…Most data sets available at that time showed weaker than expected warming in the atmospheric region referred to as the tropical upper troposphere, ten to fifteen kilometers above the surface…”

    Note they referred to an actual paper, which I found here:
    http://lubos.motl.googlepages.com/sherwood-allen-ngeo-2008.pdf

    Finally something I have some first expertise in! The radiosonde’s temperature sensor is heated slightly by the sun, and/or randomly shadowed, and its time lag is affected by the ascent rate of the balloon, and reynolds number. There are other effects, but you get the idea. For boring reasons, these effects can be strongest in the segment of the atmosphere mentioned, the upper troposhere and lower stratosphere. As far as I know, nobody wants to change the sensors because they’ve been the same for decades, nay generations, and so it’s better to be consistent.

    But, the radiosondes also provide wind velocity profiles, and wind is a more consistent thing once you get up out of the turbulent part of the troposhere. So as a cross check to the sonde temperature data, they used a correlation between wind and temperature in the relavent segment of the atmosphere. It’s a clever bit of work.

    This is typical instrumentation and proxy measurement stuff, not a smoking gun. Nevermind real-world science, a lot of control engineering relies on similar tricks. Oh noes! That word!

  211. ehmoran

    @204. Bruce the Canuck :

    But they can only calculate wind direction between stations using pressure? Is that right?

  212. Hazzard

    We can argue all day about what the leaked emails say about those scientists’ intentions, but at the end of the day, the leak at least causes one to ponder whether the way we’ve been going about climate research is correct or not. With a great deal of government money being directed towards these pursuits, should the public, which is paying for this research be able to see the data and the models used? I think any reasonable person would say that the data and models should be available to substantiate or insubstantiate claims made by these scientists. It would seem to me that if, for instance, a cigarette company has data and models that show that smoking doesn’t cause cancer, but refuses to release that information, people should rightly doubt their claims. Openness is a good thing, right? Or should we all be rushing out to defend Microsoft and their closed-source software?

    In the comments I’ve read on this post, it seems everyone wants to get down to a single study/conclusion/etc that they feel is irrefutable and debate smaller conclusions, but that may miss the forest from the trees. So, let’s boil the issue down… Is the Earth warming or cooling? Are humans the cause? What is the impact that humans have? What’s the cost to avoid it?

    If the Earth is warming and humans are the cause, what is the solution? If we assume both of these points are true, it becomes an economics question – what reduction of CO2 are we willing to shoot for and at what cost. This is where the debate lies in my view, and why it gets so heated. The left has their preferred economic system, just as the right does, and they are generally diametrically opposed. The right wants unfettered capitalism and the left wants strict regulations on what businesses may do, with regard to emissions and otherwise.

    We label one another – “alarmists” – “denialists” – yet, whatever camp (or side) we fall into, it’s just an attack as a proxy for our preferred economic system. To take the “alarmist” perspective, there are three questions that need to be answered – is the Earth warming, is mankind the cause of it, and is it going to be catastrophic (in the sense of a pure catastrophe or impossible to turn back once started, eventually leading to a catastrophe)? From the “denialist” perspective, only one of these conjectures needs to be falsifiable to justify their perspective. Thus, “denialists” feel that they only need to shoot down one of the three questions, so if it’s a 50-50 proposition on any individual issue, the “alarmists” only have a 1 in 8 shot of upholding their full conjecture.

    It would seem that the “alarmists” have a tough road to hoe, but if they’re right, what is the economic damage? As previously stated, it’s purely an economics question at this point, so what is the solution? To prevent this catastrophe, do we need to take CO2 emissions back to 2000 levels, 1900 levels, 1800 levels, 1700 levels, or what? From what I’ve seen of future “alarmist” predictions, should we take CO2 emissions down to a level of our relatively recent past (say 1990), even if it doesn’t make much of a difference in the amount of temperature increase modeled over the next century?

    Everyone should accept that this is an economics question – if we assume it’s going to cause a catastrophe, what price are we willing to pay to prevent it? Should we all give up our Internet connections and LCD TVs and read by candlelight to entertain ourselves? Should we invest all our money in “green” technologies and accept a vastly lower standard of living as a result (at the very least in the short term)? If we all switched to “green” power tomorrow what would the result on our standard of living?

    There have been a lot of people throwing around the “false choice” label on questions similar to what I am asking. So, if I misunderstand, correct me, but it really seems to me that in the real world there are trade-offs, and every decision faces a consequence. One can call others who don’t agree with their science or philosophy “deniers” all they want, but what hardship are such people prepared to accept for themselves, let alone foist on the common man?

    This debate isn’t about biology or climate or science – when you boil it down, it’s all economics, which should be readily evident.

  213. Bruce the Canuck

    @ 205. ehmoran

    They don’t seem to mention wind direction, they only seem concerned with wind speed. Where they mentioned pressure, they mean altitude – radiosonde data and upper-air forcasts use air pressure level as a proxy for altitude. Here’s an example:

    http://www.hko.gov.hk/nwp/nwp200wd00e.htm

  214. Cesar Hechler

    I think the only lesson being learned here is that the mob rules and the mob picks the stupidest people it can find with the most whacko conspiracy theories as the ones to follow. I don’t detect any sense of urgency or sane sense of precaution in the general public’s letters to the editor or comments in discussions. I do sense a lot of ‘I haven’t been convinced so I’m not doing anything about it right now.’ It is that kind of response that has to drive researchers mad that have data contradictory to the public mental malaise. I know it certainly drives me nuts seeing the apathy and ignorance displayed by people on the freeway in Orange County every day, with the giant SUVs passing me going 20 mph over the speed limit. The ridiculous thing is, if things go as some models have predicted, OC will be one of the first places to have to be abandoned because of desertification. I think I share some of the morbid desire to see the deniers have to face a poetic justice if such a thing does come to pass. I would be willing to take names and have them forced to stay behind in the places that become uninhabitable because they didn’t have the sensibility to play it wise when there was ample cause and warning to play it safe.

  215. Lonny Eachus

    Hmmm… one of my replies was inexplicably lost in the ether.

    @203 TheBlackCat:

    “You asked for a prediction, you got it, you ignored it.”

    No, you gave me a prediction based on greenhouse gas, not CO2 specifically, which is what I clearly asked for, in unambiguous terms. Don’t try to weasel out of that. You currently have no way to separate the CO2 terms (if any) from the rest. Stop blaming this on me. That was not what I asked for. Period.

    If you are going to continue in this manner, I will simply stop responding to you at all. You are wasting my time.

    “Got any other greenhouses gases that are changing enough to account for this? Well, I guess methane could, but it is being caused by humans too so it doesn’t actually help your case.”

    So far, we don’t know for sure that any greenhouse gases can account for this. Come on. You are here on a skeptical blog, but you seem to have “swallowed the koolaid”, as Phil puts it. Give me a break. I am willing to discuss the evidence, but I am not willing to put up with someone who is convinced that it is all decided, end of story, because it is not.

    “Ah yes, when you don’t like the results, attack the scientists. I find it hypocritical how you keep criticizing scientists for rejecting things without looking at them, yet you seem to have no problem whatsoever doing this yourself.”

    Really? Please, give me an example of this. Where did I attack any scientists? Hmmm… since it has been brought up, I did in fact disparage the actions of Jones, Mann, et al., but that was because I have actual evidence of their misdeeds. But other than that, where and when have I attacked any scientists? You can find it hypocritical all you like… but before you do that, if I were you I would just plain try to find it. If you do, please point out to me where that is, specifically, and I will apologize.

    As for the troposphere information, that is new to me and I will indeed look at it. But… are you aware, or are you not, that a good part of this whole debate is about possible mis-handling (I am putting that politely) of data? And then you point me at a paragraph that states, essentially, “We found a new way to massage the data so that it now meets our expectations.” Now don’t blow up… if you look at the actual words, that is what it that paragraph says. And in context, that is absolutely hilarious! I mean it was a real gut-buster.

    I am not making judgments about the papers themselves, I have not seen them. But I will. And I will do my best to judge them on their merits. But to say that I have been attacking scientists… where did that come from?

    “We are talking about global warming here.”

    No… in the context of the statement you were referring to there, what I was talking about — as I stated in plain English TWICE — was whether it was possible to change the equilibrium point of water vapor concentration. Period. You implied that it was unchangeable, I was refuting that. If you want to make further assumptions about my statements, that is of course up to you, but don’t then blame me for them. I am not responsible for your assumptions.

    “Yeah, the ocean can change to and from water vapor as well, it doesn’t mean the optical properties of sea water is even remotely similar to the optical properties of water vapor. If you knew the difference why bring it up? It is irrelevant.”

    Oh, come on. That is far out of the context of what I was saying. Are YOU trying to say that solar activity does not indirectly serve to form clouds from water vapor? Okay, I might have erred in saying water vapor instead of just water, but let’s not get ridiculous about this. Again, we are back to nitpicking.

    Yet I am the one who is doing the attacking? That’s pretty rich, coming from someone with no apparent sense of humor.

    @Bruce the Canuck:

    “Uhm, no, what that says is, they found an unexpected result in one vertical segment of one geographic area of the atmosphere”

    No it doesn’t, Bruce. The papers might say that, but I haven’t read those papers yet. The paragraph I quoted says pretty much what I stated it said.

  216. Bruce the Canuck

    208 Lonny: >No it doesn’t, Bruce. The papers might say that, but I haven’t read those papers yet. The paragraph I quoted says pretty much what I stated it said.

    Uh huh. Let’s see:

    “The IPCC AR4 noted a remaining uncertainty in temperature trends in the atmosphere above the lowest layers near the Earth’s surface. Most data sets available at that time showed weaker than expected warming in the atmospheric region referred to as the tropical upper troposphere, ten to fifteen kilometers above the surface.”

    IE, the data didn’t fit their model in one layer of the atmosphere, over the tropics.

    “…However, the observations suffered from significant stability issues especially in this altitude region…”

    IE, however the radiosonde observations were known to be a bit flakey in that region and altitude range. In other words, not just fitting their model, inconsistent.

    “…Researchers have since performed additional analyses of the same data using more rigorous techniques, and developed a new method of assessing temperature trends from wind observations (Allen and Sherwood 2008). ..”

    IE, they took another look at the noisy data, and realized there was a possible proxy as a cross-check, namely the wind speed correlation. From my reading of the paper they referenced, the confidence level for the wind correlation was 99%.

    You do realize that proxies are used all the time when studying the natural world outside of a lab? Such as, for example, in astronomy?

    They’re scientists. You’re not. You don’t think remotely like one. You’re acting like a crank, taking a hostile eye to normal scientific work. In fact, at a guess, you argue like a libertarian chewing away at a threat to his worldview. The real world is not clean and neat libertarian philosophy.

  217. Jeremy

    This idiotic story, and the conspiracy-minded hysteria it’s spawned, just further convinces me that we should stop focusing our efforts on the “ounce of prevention” and start looking for the “pound of cure.” As a species we’re simply too stupid, lazy, and short-sighted to prevent a change this gradual and intertia-laden from occurring. It’s too easy to do nothing, and too easy to ignore and deny that anything is happening. We should turn our attention to addressing the problems that this climate change will cause, and potentially finding ways to reverse it down the road. We’ve lost the first battle, time to move on and try to win the war despite it. Leave the deniers to their yowling, the rising seas will prove the point in due course (albeit too late for preventative measures to be meaningful).

  218. wagdog

    I’ve lost any and all respect towards Eric Raymond for asserting that the climate code we have seen so far proves the the numbers have been faked. The code we’ve seen and he’s pointing to does not prove that assertion. He’s a programmer, he should know better.

    He’s a Libertarian. ClimateGate/SwiftHack and AGW denialism finds the most traction on extremist (laissez-faire) Libertarian forums.

    Politics trumps both science and logic.

  219. “…Researchers have since performed additional analyses of the same data using more rigorous techniques, and developed a new method of assessing temperature trends from wind observations (Allen and Sherwood 2008). ..”

    In other words, if a thermometer doesn’t give you the temperatures that you need to fit your preconceived notions, measure the temperatures with an anemometer.

  220. Not a denier

    Humanity caused global warming doesn’t exist! Its caused by the sun, volcanic activity, planetary cycles, as punishment for gays, president Obama, not accepting the ONE TRUE BIBBLE.
    Human industrial global warming isn’t real because some scientists started acting like real people, and not the kind of white labcoated folks that pour coloured liqiuds from one glass flask to another, that I’ve seen in movies.
    Phil Plait is obviously a “human caused global warming” hoax perpetrator because he doesn’t agree with me.
    So there, the FACTS of the matter explained. HUMAN CAUSED GLOBAL WARMING ISN’ ‘T REAL. The martians did it. Where is my tinfoil hat?

  221. Bruce

    Phil Jones “temporarily steps down”. Yeah, and Tiger Woods is having “personal problems”.

    Al Gore tells us “the debate is over”. Any decent scientist knows the debate is NEVER over. James Hanson spreads gloom & doom about global warming. This is after he spread gloom & doom years ago about global COOLING.

    Phil, you’re the denier. You’re holding onto your beliefs and blocking out reality. It’s like you’re turning into a creationist. It’s time to start using some of that skepticism you’re always talking about.

  222. Utakata

    @ 122, Lonny Eachus…

    What evidence do you have to claim it to be false? Your arguement only works if both positions are unproven. But if one of them is backed up and quite likely true, then your claim simply falls flat.

    Furthermore preventative measures…which is leaning on the side of caution are practise by health professions for example on dailey bases. It’s quite likely smoking is harmful to you and may shorten your lifespan…so you should stop. As it is by industry and their products spewing pollutants into the air is quite likely harmful to our atmosphere and may do irrepetible damage…we should stop. There is no falseness to that assertion, dichotomey, alarmisn or otherwise. Only a fool would believe that.

    This is why I don’t like to argue with denalists…because in their defence of grasping at straws, they like to split hairs with details like this that are or are not true depending on the circumstances given. It’s much easier to mock them from the sides than engage in meaningful debate. /sigh

  223. Utakata

    He is Bruce…

    …he just like many of us find your and your peers’ position full of bunk. /shrug

  224. Lonny Eachus

    @208 Bruce the Canuck:

    Jesus, lighten up!!!

    Bruce, the paragraph I quoted does not say anything like that. If you translate it into plain English, what is says is that the data has been massaged to conform to expectations.

    And that’s funny!

    That may not be what they MEANT, in context, but that was not my point. I was trying to show how funny it was!

    Then you added in a bunch of other stuff from the actual papers referenced which were NOT included in the paragraph I quoted, and took me far too seriously, apparently assuming I had no idea what they were saying. Which is ridiculous.

    Further, I have not been taking a “hostile eye” toward normal scientific work. What I have done is point out where there has been REAL EVIDENCE OF SHODDY SCIENTIFIC WORK. That is the only “scientific work” I have been “attacking”. If you can refute the evidence, then do so, but stay off my back for pointing it out. It is the message, sir, not the messenger, that is the issue here.

    Now, I have in fact been arguing with some people here, for fun, but that’s just because it is so easy to show where their logic fails. I have not been “attacking” any other “science”. But if you simply don’t like someone playing Devil’s Advocate, then get the hell off of a skeptic’s blog. You don’t belong.

    Do you even know when someone is making a joke? Apparently not. Instead you say I am being a “crank”. Jeez. Get a life. People here have been far too serious as it was, and I was trying to correct that situation a little bit.

    You have absolutely no idea who I am, what my knowledge or educational levels are, or anything else about me. If I were you I would stop making assumptions, lest I become embarrassed. Actually, if I were you, I would already be embarrassed, for having had the joke sail so far over your head it was not even visible.

  225. Lonny Eachus

    @211 Utakata:

    No, the argument is invalid on its face, as I already described. Was there something about my explanation that you did not understand? Dividing a whole range of possibilities into a simple dichotomy (either/or) is a logical fallacy. In this case, it was done twice.

    There are other fallacies involved in the actual Pascal’s Wager, but the argument as presented is demonstrably invalid in one of the same ways as Pascal’s Wager, because it was presented using two separate false dichotomies.

    If you do not understand this, I urge you to look up “Pascal’s Wager”, and the philosophical and logical discussions surrounding it. It has been known to be a fallacious form of argument for, what, about 600 years now? Something like that.

  226. Not a denier

    Bruce whines:

    “Phil Jones “temporarily steps down”. Yeah, and Tiger Woods is having “personal problems”.

    So global warming doesn’t exist because of that.

    “Al Gore tells us “the debate is over”. Any decent scientist knows the debate is NEVER over. James Hanson spreads gloom & doom about global warming. This is after he spread gloom & doom years ago about global COOLING.”

    So global warming doen’t exist.

    “Phil, you’re the denier. You’re holding onto your beliefs and blocking out reality. It’s like you’re turning into a creationist.”

    So these ad hominems show that global warming doesn’t exist. Don’t tell us, Phil is a “pseudo skeptic” and you’re a REAL SKEPTIC.

    ” It’s time to start using some of that skepticism you’re always talking about.”

    So Mr Bruce “I’m a REAL SKEPTIC”, where is your scientific evidence that human industry has not contributed to global warming? Because all I see is your OPINION and not any scientific data.
    By the way Brucey, I have a great deal for you on tin foil hats.

  227. Spectroscope

    @ 195. TheBlackCat Says:

    We do have viable alternative explanations.

    Such as…?

    Natural cyclical climatic variability, solar factors & Earth’s natural orbital and geological factors eg. volcanoes, continental drift changing ocean and atmospheric circulation patterns & more.

    We are living in an interglacial period within a broader on-going Ice Age. Its *meant* to be warmer and that’s a good thing for us. No need to panic and pretend the sky is falling in or use it as a political ideology to damage our society out of misplaced socialist fanaticism masquerading as “science”.

  228. Spectroscope

    Occams razor says the Sun and Earth’s natural cycles outweight farting cows and smokestacks in likelihood.

    “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” says the burden of proof is on the Alarmists to prove the sky is falling in.

    If C02 was causing global warming why were the 1970’s so cool – & why is it cooler now than in past years eg.1998? Why does the climate still vary so much year to year and not show a constant rise equal to the steadily increasing rate of C02 in the air?

    Why was Co2 much higher when in past aeons incl. ice age ones and how do the Alarmists explain so many previous warming and cooling cycles both historic and prehistoric before Humans were producing any Co2 emissions?

    The Copernican principle says we’re probably NOT that special – what’s more likely to dominate our climate the Sun & Earth’s natural orbital and geological cycles the flux of cosmic rays and so on or us burning a bit of coal, driving cars and raising flatulent cows?

    Well there’s no need for hairshirt hubris.
    Far less committing economic and political suicide as the Alarmists would have us do.

    We are still insignificant in climate terms. Wetlands naturally produce three times as much c02 per year as all human emissions combined.

    Until we can turn down the Sun’s thermostat or shift Earth’s orbit we are just NOT powerful enough to seriously affect climate. A miniscule amount of C02 which is atrace gas which trails and not precedes tmperatur ersies anyway is nothing.

    Conclusion : The Gore-bull Warming Alarmist hype about natural climatic variability is falsified and a hoax. The fact that the CRU have lied and suppresed and manipulated the data -and are still baffled by the lack of warming they predicted is the final nail in the Great Global Warming Swindle.

  229. Lonny Eachus

    @202 TheBlackCat:

    Ah. I see now. Yes, initially I made that remark about Santer, but then I saw that I had misinterpreted the reference, and it was clearly inappropriate, so I removed it. For a moment I thought it might add to the joke. But no.

    It was present in the blog for maybe about 30 seconds. If you look at the saved record, you will see that it is not there.

    From that perspective, I can see how you might have been under the impression that I was “attacking scientists”. That is not the kind of person I am. I am happy to speak up if I see what appears to be evidence of wrongdoing, but I do not simply attack people for no reason.

  230. amphiox

    The arguments about “non-reproducibility” are simply stupid. You want to reproduce the climate data? Take a thermometer and go outside. Or check the rings on all the trees that are STILL THERE. Or get your own ice cores, or sediment samples. In short, go out and DO YOUR OWN SCIENCE.

    A warmer earth is a more productive earth (to a point – note End Permian Mass Extinction), of that much the fossil record is pretty clear. Warm periods are verdant paradises – for the fauna and flora that evolves in them. For the species adapted to the cooler times preceding the warm periods (like everything living on the earth today)? They’re mostly not around anymore.

  231. Spectroscope

    Jones, the head of the group whose files were hacked, has been “fired”. That’s simply not true. He has stepped aside, temporarily, while the situation is being investigated.

    The “temporary” stepping aside of Phil Jones might end up being something like twenty- thirty years after the investigations result -as they should – in criminal charges being filed and Jones (along with other Gorebull Warmer Fraudsters) being convicted of fraud and serving a lot of time in a federal penitentiary! ;-)

    See : http://minnesotansforglobalwarming.com/m4gw/2009/11/hide-the-decline.html

    “Making up data the old hard way
    Fudging the numbers day by day
    Ignoring the snow and the cold & the downward line.
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    Michael Mann thinks that he’s so smart
    Totally inventing the hockey stick chart
    Ignoring the snow and the cold & the downward line.
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    Climate Gate I think you have sealed your fate!
    I hope you do a lot of time
    Cuz what you did what such a crime!
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    The tree ring data was very thin
    You should have chopped more trees instead of hugging them!
    Ignoring the snow and the cold & the downward line.
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    Climate Gate I think you have sealed your fate!
    I hope you do a lot of time
    Cuz what you did what such a crime!
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)
    Hide the decline! (hide the decline)

    http://www.minnesotansforglobalwarming.com/m4gw/

  232. Lonny Eachus

    @218 amphiox:

    Gee, thanks for calling me stupid! I haven’t heard that one before.

    The issue, amphiox, is whether the CRU study is based on good science or not. If the data is corrupt, it is bad science. If the data they generated cannot be reproduced from the original, it is bad science.

    You can do you own studies, all you want. And maybe your studies will validate the conclusions of the CRU study. Maybe not. But that is not the issue here. The issue is whether the CRU study used valid scientific methodology. And this is especially important, since so many other papers since then have relied on this same data. It’s not as if this was just some question about one little part of a much larger issue… it *IS* a very large issue.

    If the CRU data falls apart, as it seems it very well may, then a number of other influential papers will fall apart as well. It would be a fairly large chain reaction.

    If they then want to go back, and re-do their studies, on a new or different set of data, that is of course up to them. But don’t expect results for a few years.

  233. Chaz Moore

    This is a wonderfully articulated post and I find the biggest arguments are one of semantics and most people don’t even realize it. I hear “If its global warming why am I freezing up here in Michigan?” or something similar. The reality it seems is one that when you really look at Global Warming papers from scientists you recognize that they are talking about the process occuring on the Earth that will change the different environments across the globe. I had read in one report that in some extremes deserts could become lush landscapes and rainforests become deserts. That is an extreme example, but I think you can see what I am getting at. Sometimes I do think it is good the public scrutinizes scientific research so intensely even if it is over nothing serious because it pushes us to look into these things and become knowledgeable. Just some interesting thoughts.

  234. Ken

    If, as you claim, you are biased to reality, how can you make a statement like this: “I’d like my daughter to grow up on a planet that isn’t on the fast track to environmental disaster.” Are you, in addition to being scientist, a seer as well? You’ve no proof whatsoever that warming will result is disaster. We are in an interglacial period… that’s a good thing. If it gets a little warmer, that is a great thing. More heat = more plants and animals. If the world were going through a cooling process, farms would produce less food, there would be famine, less plants, less animals… a bad thing. Even if you could prove warming, you can’t prove man is responsible… we produce an exceptionally small amount of the planet’s overall greenhouse emissions. Even if you could prove a greenhouse effect were taking place, you cannot prove this would be cataclysmic in any way, shape, manner, or form, in fact it is only likely to increase farming seasons… more food.

    Modern scientists have been corrupted by the pursuit of the almighty dollar. Whatever the hot topic is at the time, that is what they write about. The more sensational the claims, the greater the headlines, the more the public interest, the greater the funding. Why else would, say, H1N1, which has a kill rate about the same or maybe a little less than the regular flu, lead to billions in research, government spending, and panic? Anyone remember avian bird flu? Billions of dollars in research, government spending, slaughter of commercially farmed birds in certain areas, etc. How’d that one pan out? How about Y2k? Anyone remember that one? Planes are going to fall out of the sky because the computers aren’t y2k compliant… y2k became a billion dollar industry with billions and billions spent to update the infrastructure. AIDS? Should we go there too? Its a terrible disease, wouldn’t want to make too light of it, but the hype never lived up to the reality (and don’t even suggest that it did live up to the hype in Africa, because they don’t even test there… if a person is sick, they say it is AIDS so the international community will keep funding their hospitals).

    In the early 90’s if you wanted federal funding, you had to tie your research into AIDS research. So if you studied the mating habits of squirrels, you would have to make that somehow topical to AIDS if you wanted those federal dollars. If you studied deer ticks, again, you would make that topical to AIDS if you wanted the dollars.

    What is the hot topic of the 2000’s? Global warming. Guess what happens if you write a an article dismissive of global warming. For starters you aren’t going to get headlines. Second you are going to get scorn from the people who are cashing in on global warming. Third, if you work for a liberal university (and lets be fair, they are all liberal) they you are probably not getting tenure.

    However, if you write a sensational piece about how a half the worlds population will die (according to your model… all the variables in the model were tweaked by you) then you get news coverage, funding, academic praise…

    It doesn’t take a grand conspiracy for junk science to become the accepted standard. In fact, the current state of affairs in the academic and scientific communities lends itself to this phenomenon.

  235. common sense

    As an economist – not scientist – who builds multi-variate regression models for a living I would like to point out anyone suggesting you TWEAK the raw data doesn’t know what the hell they are talking about. You can TWEAK your model but the raw data is never touched. The fact that the underlying raw data has been destroyed at NASA and CRU is disgusting.

    I for one and not willing to see my utility bill climb by 20% because someone not even following basic modeling principles believes they can “prove” man made global warming. I think if you were being honest with yourself and your readers you would agree this is no longer “settled” science. Release the raw data – not your TWEAKED models and let us all see what’s going on.

  236. Ken

    The way to tweak data is by controlling which variables you take into account and which you do not. You can also tweak the data by, say, eliminating outliers.

  237. The fact that the underlying raw data has been destroyed at NASA and CRU is disgusting.

    You’re spreading misinformation. Again, CRU is saying no original data has been destroyed. The NASA bit is probably just made up.

    Refer, for example, to this comment.

  238. Take a look at the code. They intentionally created an array used to fudge the numbers. It starts at 0, actually goes negative for a period, then rises to 2.6 degrees. The original programmer actually labeled this array “fudge factor” and if you go through the readme you can find the surprise expressed by the guy who was supposed to maintain this. Here is the fudge factor array taken verbatim from the code:

    valadj=[0.,0.,0.,0.,0.,-0.1,-0.25,-0.3,0.,- 0.1,0.3,0.8,…1.2,1.7,2.5,2.6,2.6,$
    2.6,2.6,2.6]*0.75 ; fudge factor”

    My comments:
    These scientists used more than a third degree polynomial to fit the data. What’s worse, they extended the curve to extrapolate the data. My gosh, that’s why they’ve got such a huge upswing. Anybody that models into the future knows you can’t do that and get anything remotely reliable…….

    This has been discussed to death, e.g. here.

    That would be relevant if they had tried to pass the artificial corrected data as actual data in a paper. No one has pointed out any graph or paper that would appear to contain data corrected in this manner. In fact, it’s pretty well know what the above is about. It’s about a temporary correction for the tree-ring divergence. I don’t see any issue with researchers temporarily modifying their private code in order to test some ideas, and trying to come up with better models for proxies.

    Also, if you’re trying to obfuscate wrong doing, you would not add all-caps comments in code like “ARTIFICIAL CORRECTION !!” or “fudge factor.” Whoever developed that knew that was only temporary code. That’s the non-paranoid explanation, anyway.

  239. If C02 was causing global warming why were the 1970’s so cool – & why is it cooler now than in past years eg.1998? Why does the climate still vary so much year to year and not show a constant rise equal to the steadily increasing rate of C02 in the air?

    Because CO2 is not the only thing that drives climate, and also because the wold is chaotic?

    If you look at 11-year series throughout the last 100 years or so, you’ll see that the 11-year trend deviates from the long-term trend by as much as (+/.) 2.7C/century, 95% of the time. You need to look a longer series, like 30 years, if you want to get a better idea of the real trend.

  240. @Joel Greer:

    Any conclusions made about: Global Warming…Global Cooling…Global Staying The Same based on only a maximum of 100 years of possibly accurate meteorological data in a statistical field of 4 billion years (Age Of the Earth) has either a .025% chance of being accurate or 99.975% chance of being wrong.

    Total nonsense. Imagine the same reasoning applied to the study of human disease, for example.

  241. You are claiming then, that reproducibility is not important? Now, don’t go off on a tangent again… I am saying reproducibility of the “adjusted” data from the original dataset used in the study.

    That does appear to be what you are saying.

    That’s a completely ridiculous misrepresentation, Lonny. I explained (and I thought it was clear) that you simply don’t understand what “reproducibility” (the scientific concept) means. You’re confusing reproducibility with being able to repeat the same thing the researchers did, with the same exact data sources and processes, etc. You’re entitled to request that you be allowed to see the raw data and algorithms, but you’re talking about it as if this were a scientific standard. Such a standard doesn’t exist. The raw data for most scientific papers is not available, and in most cases it would simply be impossible to replicate it exactly.

  242. Grog

    This all seems more like a religious controversy than a scientific one. Someone has discovered evidence that some scriptures were fabricated and everyone is lining up consistent with their prior religious beliefs. The believers discount the questionable scriptures and say that it doesn’t taint the entire religion. The nonbelievers claim it is additional evidence that their arguments have even more validity. No one seems to be changing their core beliefs.

    I don’t see the objectivity I expected to find in a discussion among scientists.

  243. Short version: “I did not read those emails, but I know it’s non-issue”.
    Nice and unbiased.

  244. Lonny Eachus

    @247 Joseph:

    No, it isn’t, Joseph. Look, let me start from the beginning, and put it in as plain language as I can, so there is no misunderstanding, okay? THIS is what I am talking about:

    When you make a dataset for your climate model from raw data, and then make a number of “adjustments” to make that data “value added” (their words), you are obligated to preserve your steps so that it can be verified that you used valid methodologies in the massaging of that data. This is a very basic concept. If you disagree, I would like to know why.

    Regardless of whether the CRU study published correct or incorrect conclusions, the question is: did they use valid, reproducible methodologies in the process of their study? The reason I am focusing on the data here, and not their conclusions, is that so many other subsequent papers relied on this same data. Okay? So even if others have obtained similar results, the data here is still very, very important.

    And as I have mentioned several times now, even just this one email exchange

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/29/when-results-go-bad/

    calls into very serious question whether their data was used or handled properly. There may be more evidence yet. I have not yet gone through all the emails or files. They constitute 61MB of text. Add to that mentions by CRU staff that some of the data may simply no longer available, and you have a potential fiasco on your hands.

    I just don’t want to get bogged down in misunderstandings about what one person or another means by “reproducibility”. What I am talking about is verifying that the data was handled properly. Plain and simple.

  245. Beautifully written as usual, and full of the kind of information that answered all of my questions. You’re a gem, Phil. Thank you for taking the time to address these histrionics dubbed “climategate”.

  246. Jason Smith

    The point is they are tweaking or discarding data that doesn’t fit with their hypothesis. That is not science. They are ignorant about too many things in their fledgling field. They don’t know why temps have been flat for the last ten years while atmospheric CO2 levels have risen. They don’t know exactly what causes ice ages or solar variability. We don’t know what caused the MWP, but it surely wasn’t SUVs. We don’t know how much heat escapes from our planet’s molten core or if it varies. We do know that climate varied widely for millenia before humanity appeared. Scientists can’t even agree on exactly how much effect each greenhouse gas has, yet we are to believe the science is settled on this and there is “consensus”. Don’t argue silly citizens, just accept this huge tax increase. Humans cause global warming. Yeah, right. Why aren’t you bad astronomers and bad scientists worried about what the scientists said 100 years ago? America will be waist deep in horse manure by the year 2000…

  247. common sense

    @Joseph Says

    I’m not sure you understand the data protocol here – CRU designed their models based upon raw data. The raw data they compiled has been destroyed because of storage limitations. It also appears they kept none of the original tables compiled from that data – only their adjusted data. It may be true that the original raw data may be available elsewhere – but you also know it would be impossible to recompile that data without enormous effort and in missing any one data set you would have a situation where the CRU models cannot be replicated. Regarding NASA – read the news, dude. They are being sued under FOI and have yet to release their raw data.

  248. MadRocketScientist

    Did my last comment get eaten by the spam filter?

  249. It may be true that the original raw data may be available elsewhere – but you also know it would be impossible to recompile that data without enormous effort and in missing any one data set you would have a situation where the CRU models cannot be replicated.

    I don’t doubt it might take quite a bit of work and know-how to replicate. So?

    Regarding NASA – read the news, dude. They are being sued under FOI and have yet to release their raw data.

    Clearly, NASA is also being harassed with FOIAs, but this is not the same thing as asserting that NASA has destroyed its data – which, again, would be misinformation.

  250. common sense

    @Joseph Says

    Unless NASA produces the data – I can say they destroyed it all I want. Since the requests are at least 3 years old – You are posting the misinformation when you say it still exists. You don’t know it exists and the lack of disclosure makes it more likely my hypothesis is correct and yours is incorrect. They can prove me wrong by releasing the data and I will gladly admit to being misinformed. Until then, you are making crap up.

    Both CRU and NASA have received extensive government funding – I am surprised at your casual blow off regarding the fact they won’t release the information. WE paid for the information to be gathered. It’s not a PRIVATE study. What harm could there possibly be in releasing the data?

  251. turbowei

    wow, science, now that is a word that befuddles teabaggers.

    “NOOOOO”, Global warming must have been started by liberals!

  252. Jacqueline

    PZ Myers has posted an interesting video on the climategate debacle here:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/

    JS;)

  253. Lonny Eachus

    @256 common sense:

    And don’t forget, according to CRU, somewhere between 2% and 5% of their data came from non-public, confidential sources. Is that 2%-5% significant? Who knows. We certainly don’t. But one would thing that it is significant, covering gaps in the public data. Otherwise, why use it at all?

  254. Utakata

    @ 231, Lonny Eachus….

    Oh I understood what your saying…I just think you’re completely wrong.

  255. Randy Johnston

    “Climategate” is a predictable product of the ideologically blinkered. The denialists reveal themselves to be a cult like any other. I’ve watched global warming reveal itself as a real threat over the past 30 years. No ranting, red-faced zealot is going to sway me from a long accrued understanding. It is truly a sick. sad world and America is descending into medieval madness.

  256. Lonny Eachus

    @260 Utakata:

    You can think I am wrong all you want, but I am not. I did not make up the rules of logic. They have been around longer than I have. I just try to follow them.

    Try this on for size: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_dilemma

    If you don’t like that one, there are about a thousand other references that will tell you the same thing. All you have to do is type “false dichotomy” or “false dilemma” into Google.

  257. Mike Mullen

    Look at it this way:
    If AGW=True
    Then we need to increase energy efficiency and new energy sources to replace fossil fuels to combat global warming.

    If AGW=False
    Then we need to increase energy efficiency and new energy sources to replace fossil fuels to combat the upward spiral in the price of oil and prevent future economic catastrophe.

  258. Yojimbo

    Sheesh – nothing on this channel but re-runs :)

  259. Unless NASA produces the data – I can say they destroyed it all I want.

    Hey “common sense,” can you prove to me you have stopped beating your spouse?

  260. Gary Ansorge

    262. Lonny Eachus

    I’d love to give you all that “original” data. Unfortunately, it’s scattered all over the planet, written in log books and recorded on mylar mag tape and devices to read this old tape data are most likely non-existant.

    But you could probably start sorting thru the local refuse dump, if you really want that old data recorded on paper . It’s right next to that smaller mountain of paper diapers, the one that’s only a mile high.

    GAry 7

  261. ehmoran

    In the late 1800’s, Arrhenius built upon Fourier’s assessment of atmospheric properties by plotting CO2 and temperature data collected in industrialized England. Arrhenius’ plots and calculations showed a relation between CO2 and ambient temperatures. In 1930’s, Callendar extended the analysis using long term observations from 200 stations arguing that there was a link between CO2 and climate warming. Keeling began collecting atmospheric CO2 samples from the Mauna Loa Observatory site in Hawaii in the late 1950’s and is the most complete record.

    The USGS reports that all volcanic activity produces nearly 200-million tons CO2 annually; much less than that produced by human activity. Mauna Loa, near the Observatory and the world’s most active volcano erupted 39 times since 1832, had major eruptions in 1950, 1975, and 1984. Atmospheric CO2 levels measured at volcanoes indicate the degree of activity and estimates of heat flow from one volcano have been reported at140-mW/m2. Correlating CO2 and temperatures from data collected near an active volcano should be significant but not show a cause and effect relation; however, correlating world-wide data significantly shows CO2 lagging temperature by approximately two years. The data analyzed by Arrhenius and Callendar also could be significantly biased similarly owing to the urban heat-island effect and extensive coal burning at the time, as CO2 is an abundant byproduct of burning.

    Apparently, no laboratory control experiment to date, such as in a biodome, has shown CO2 levels influencing ambient temperatures. Tyndall (1861) measured the absorptive characteristics of CO2 followed by more precise measurements by Burch (1970). Absorbance is a measure of the quantity of light (energy) absorbed by a sample (CO2 molecule) and the amount of absorbed energy can be represented as specific heat of a substance. Specific heat of CO2 ranges from 0.791-kJ/kgK at 0-degrees F to 0.871-kJ/kgK at 125-degrees F and average atmospheric concentrations 0.0306-percent. As revealed, the specific heat of CO2 increases as ambient temperatures increase showing CO2 likely is an ambient temperature buffer.

    The atmospheric generally consists from 4-percent water vapor in the troposphere to 40-percent at the surface. The specific heat of water vapor is relatively constant at 1.996-kJ/kgK. Water absorbs energy (heat) and evaporates to water vapor. During condensation (precipitation), latent heat is released to the atmosphere thus increasing ambient temperatures. Water vapor holds the majority of atmospheric heat and regulates climate and temperature more than any compound. Historically, however, the characteristics of water vapor related to climate were much less appreciated but investigations into the significance that water vapor plays in global climate-dynamics are just beginning.

    The amount of energy not stored in the atmosphere is released into space through radiation. Re-radiation is the emission of previously absorbed molecular radiation. The specific heat of molecules of water vapor and CO2 shows that water vapor reradiates significantly more energy back to the Earth’s surface and the atmospheric quantities for each compound further justify this case. Thus, this and other publicized reports suggest that the minute variability in atmospheric CO2 concentrations likely results in an insignificant affect on climate change; whereas water vapor is the significant factor.

  262. correlating world-wide data significantly shows CO2 lagging temperature by approximately two years.

    As they say in Wikipedia, citation needed.

    I’ve looked at land temperature data, sea-surface temperature data, CO2 reconstructions from ice cores, the Mauna Loa data, human carbon emission data, etc. I always find the best correlation results from temperatures lagging CO2 by 10 years. For an example, see my latest blog post.

  263. ehmoran

    268. Joseph,

    When I did my own analysis, I considered Ice data and such not of the same sample. I took globally averaged publicly available data from 1970 to 2001 (linear R2=0.44, CO2 lagging temps by 2-years).

    So, for my analysis, I feel I didn’t have enough enough data to look further ahead. Don’t know about the other studies, I just assumed they did it right. But with the recent events, some might want to recheck their data also.

  264. I recently heard Robert Balling, widely regarded as a “climate skeptic,” speak at Arizona State University, where he’s a professor. Though he’s a skeptic, he agrees that global warming is real and that there is a human component to the cause (because there’s clearly a human component to atmospheric CO2), but he thinks there may be natural factors like solar radiance, land use, desertification, and so on that are relevant. (This is common–a lot of the “skeptics” are *not* deniers of anthropogenic global warming, though organizations like The Heartland Institute *are*, and exploit their criticisms to argue for a point they don’t agree with.) I asked him what is the best source of accurate scientific information for the layman about climate change, and he said–the IPCC report.

    The IPCC *includes* the reputable climate skeptics. John R. Christy was a WG1 (the science working group) lead for AR4, the 2007 report.

    Jim Prall’s site on climate science citation counts is invaluable for responding to nonsense about climate change; see Greenfyre’s overview:

    http://greenfyre.wordpress.com/2009/07/29/climate-maniac-jim-prall-informative-and-dangerous/

  265. Just food for thought. If the history of the entire Earth were condensed into one year, we’d exist somewhere in the last 5 minutes on December 31st. We’re but a blip on the cosmic radar. Are we really that influential as to be able to create a global disaster? [short of detonating every nuclear weapon on the planet]

    Maybe it’s just me but warmer would be better than cooler, yes? Also, ‘green’ always confused me. Warmer climates favor plant growth more; so wouldn’t warmer be green? I think it should be “go blue!”

    Once again, there are those of us who are truly skeptical because we’ve read, and actively read, both sides of the argument. We’re just not sure who is right. The email/documents that were hacked don’t help public perception of AGW that’s for sure.

    We’re inclined to truly believe something if the overwhelming consensus is firm on an issue. With a little research you will find actual real life scientists *gasp* who question our role in climate change. Science is about having differing ideas and proving/disproving them until you get the right one. That isn’t the definition of science. Don’t use semantics on me.

    Each side is passionate as well and reading the comments here make that obvious.

    Finally, once you get any sort of politics involved is there ever any true science being done? ;)

    [note: our existence, meaning the last 100,000 years or so. don’t quote me but it’s late and i don’t want to dig up the exact time frame and numbers.]

  266. ehmoran

    @271. Lewis,

    Wouldn’t it be amazing if the whole thing was the natural evolution of the planet?

    Warmer means extended growing degree days and more fertile land for crop production and more moisture (precipitation) in northern latitudes. Likely, deserts only would slightly expand. Maybe this is the natural answer to the Malthus story?

  267. MadRocketScientist

    So why is AGW such a hard sell to the general public? Precisely because it’s being presented as a hard sell.

    Think about it, for 30+ years science has been talking about human induced climate change and the danger it presents, but people aren’t really feeling it. It’s not really that much warmer, and weather has always been a bit strange from time to time, so really, where is the danger? It’s like the used car salesman who is telling you that the rusty old TransAm on the lot is a real reliable car and a sweet deal, but he won’t let you see the CarFax report and since you are not a mechanic, looking under the hood is a pointless exercise. You have to take him at his word, and he’s really trying to sell you that car. If you have any common sense, you’re suspicious as to why he wants it off the lot so badly.

    Still, that alone probably wouldn’t quite do it, because while people don’t trust used car salesmen, they do trust scientists. I mean, no one is wondering if Astronomers have really been finding other planets around other stars, or if there really are black holes out there, even if no one has ever produced a clear telescope image of one. So why the recent skepticism? Well, in my opinion, it’s not due to the general lack of scientific literacy (although that doesn’t help), or even really due to individual political persuasion (although that does affect how receptive a person is to the proposed solutions to AGW). No, in my opinion, it’s all due to terrorism.

    Or rather, the global response to the 9/11 attacks and the subsequent bombings in Spain & London. It also has a lot to do with the shameful fear mongering in the news media. And the likes of Ralph Nader. Honestly, I think people are becoming exhausted at being told every day about the latest threat to their health/safety/finances/homes/kids/etc. If it isn’t terrorists making threats, it’s the latest study about the dangers of lead or other chemicals and elements in our environment, or child kidnappings/rapes & sexual predators amongst us, or war, or the economy failing, or layoffs, or… the list goes on. People are exhausted with worry and fear, and when they hear that politicians & bureaucrats, people who are arguably in a better place financially to bear the individual costs of halting climate change (or who will use their position to justify not having to do their part) will be getting together to tell the rest of us what we have to pay & do to help, folks understandably get a bit uneasy. Couple all of this with the growing distrust of authority that the public has, and you should start to see the problem.

  268. MadRocketScientist

    Of course, it doesn’t help that the messages being put out by those calling for sweeping reform (scientists & politicians alike) bear an uncomfortable familiarity to other messages that have come from those in authority. For example:

    -Global Warming is a terrible danger & threatens the very fabric of civilization as we know it.
    -Terrorism is a terrible threat and the terrorists want to destroy our very civilization.

    -The AGW threat is real, you have to trust the climate scientists, they’ve seen the data, they know!
    -The threat of global terrorism is real, you have to trust the intelligence agencies.

    -Images of melting glaciers/arctic environments, photos of seals & polar bears.
    -Images of the twin towers burning, the dust clouds, terrorist fighters, war in Iraq.

    Now add in some paraphrased excerpts from the CRU leak:

    -Failure to account for the current cooling trend
    -Failure to find WMDs

    -Labeling skeptics & any who question AGW as a ‘denier’
    -Labeling any who don’t support the GWOT as ‘unpatriotic’

    -Talking about how those who are skeptical just don’t understand the science & data or have a profit agenda
    -Discussions of those who don’t support the GWOT or the Iraq war as not understanding the intelligence data or the have a political motive

    etc.

  269. MadRocketScientist

    It really doesn’t matter if the quotes are out of context, or if they don’t include the whole picture, the pattern people are starting to see is the same, and it is inducing the same reaction, “Should we trust these authority figures?”.

    IMHO, the fastest way to win back public trust is this. First, all CRU research and data is treated as suspect for a time and opened up wide to the public. Datasets, codes, methodologies, all up on the web for all to see, IP agreements be damned. If an entity refuses to release the data, then someone makes them do it. This isn’t trade secret data anymore, it’s public domain because it affects us all in a very fundamental way. Second, any non-CRU research that is based off of CRU datasets & graphs gets reviewed. If, as some claim, the data is there but no one knows what was used and what wasn’t, then we toss out the research that is questionable. There IS plenty of independent research supporting AGW and current warming trends that the CRU data is not crucial. If it is somehow crucial, then we have a major problem on our hands.

    As for the CRU staff, the key players, my impression is that a whole lot of this impassioned defense is an attempt to save these careers. People need to stop doing that. Leaks like this have destroyed more careers than I can count (usually political careers, but still). These gentlemen made the mistake of committing to writing opinions and statements that show them in a bad light (that is what personal email accounts are for people). These gentlemen got sloppy, both with their methods, and with their opinions (I personally think they started playing in an arena they were not ready for, i.e. politics). It may be normal, but it doesn’t look good. How many times have we heard the same from politicians or businessmen, that a scandalous leak merely shows evidence of business as usual? How many times has that saved those careers? The CRU staff will walk or hang on their own merits, and while you don’t need to hand over more rope for them, you also don’t need lift them up after the bottom drops out either.

  270. MadRocketScientist

    One other thing to keep in mind, people are not inclined to believe the worst. I mean, how many people elect to ride out hurricanes every year. They can see the damn things coming on the radar for days, but they always wait to evac until the last minute, or they ride it out. Yet scientists and politicians expect people to be concerned about rougher weather when folks won’t even take the current stuff seriously. They want people to care about a rising sea level measured in mm per year? I mean, at that rate, people can walk for their lives. It’s like being worried about an encroaching glacier.

    Of course, this is also in light of all that worry and money in order to track all the near earth big hunks-o-rock that could wipe out a city, or raise a tsunami, or cause an extinction level event.

    How about it Phil, is the world spending enough money, or being worried enough about us getting smacked with a good sized chunk of rock?

  271. Lonny Eachus

    @266 Gary Ansorge:

    Gary, snarky comments aside, you seem to keep missing the point.

    This is not some simple paper based on a little bit of data. It is a climate model, requiring a lot of mathematical manipulation to work. As such, everything depends on what you do to the data. Everything. You can’t say, as you can with a lot of other kinds of science, that it is unimportant whether the original or intermediate data still exists. In situations like this, it is vitally important to making their case.

    If you have used invalid methods of, say, normalizing or smoothing the data, then your climate science is junk. And without that data, there is absolutely no way to verify whether they used appropriate methodologies.

    Which means their science is likely junk. And not only that, but all the other papers that relied on that same data are also junk… and there were more than just a few.

    Now, the UK government understands that this data is in fact vitally important to the global warming argument, and they have already stated that they are going to do a thorough re-analysis of that data (or at least as much of it as they can find), but they have also stated that it will take 3 years.

    So you can take all your comments about it simply not being important, and put them where the sun doesn’t shine. Other people who know what they are talking about know better. It doesn’t matter what “side” of the argument you are on. If you don’t understand this, then you don’t understand how climate modeling works.

  272. John Case

    My problem now with the debate (I have many others) is at a very basic level.
    Scientists begin with the theory. If the data doesn’t fit, the theory changes.
    Liars begin with the theory. When the data doesn’t fit, they change the data.
    Simple enough. Admittedly, this is as complex a problem as can be found. When politics and money (lots of it) come into play the problem is muddied as well.

    The fact that this is a political probelm now understates it. It has always been a political problem but now people know it and are pissed.

    It is unfortunate that science requires money that must be tagged with pre-concieved beliefs on either side.

  273. Lonny Eachus

    I found this page to be rather interesting, even though it is just a general statement and does not address any specifics:

    http://www.americanthinker.com/2009/11/the_mathematics_of_global_warm.html

    I find it especially interesting in that it pretty much agrees with Edward Wegman’s report on the invalidity of the statistical methods used to try to show that the 1990s were warmer than the MWP.

  274. Lonny Eachus

    Hmmmm…. I just found THIS recent paper from the Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation and NOAA, indicating that in fact, the stratosphere has probably been warming since 1996, not cooling!

    http://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/sola/5/0/53/_pdf (pdf)

    If that is so, then we are still missing half the evidence that greenhouse gas warming is occurring… only this time it is the stratosphere temperature, not the troposphere temperature.

    It would also mean that even if greenhouse warming is occurring, the models are wrong, wrong, wrong.

  275. John

    Phil, given your relationship to NASA, and their shaky, dogmatic position in this debate, I’d say you were VERY biased.

    You still haven’t even looked at the data being discussed, or even have any idea how damning it is.

    Why are you even posting about this subject when you refuse to look past the politics?

  276. Tobin Dax

    @ John, What relationship to NASA? Phil has never worked for or been affiliated with NASA, so there’s no factual basis for your opinion.

  277. John

    Wikipedia could be wrong about this, but…

    “Plait performed web-based public outreach for the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope (renamed Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope upon launch in 2008) and other NASA-funded missions while at Sonoma State University from 2000 to 2007. Prior to that, during the 1990s, he was part of the Hubble Space Telescope team at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, working largely on the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph.”

  278. When I did my own analysis, I considered Ice data and such not of the same sample. I took globally averaged publicly available data from 1970 to 2001 (linear R2=0.44, CO2 lagging temps by 2-years).

    @ehmoran: When I analyze data, I use the longest time range possible, namely 1850-present. But even for 1970-2001, do you really get a better correlation for CO2 lagging temperatures by 2 years than temperatures lagging CO2 by 10 years? I’ll have to confirm that sometime.

  279. Jacqueline

    Rimantas Said:

    “Short version: “I did not read those emails, but I know it’s non-issue”.
    Nice and unbiased.”

    Don’t tell me Rimantas, you only read the e mails that were spun to make it look like there was a conspiracy. And if you didn’t read them ALL you’re the one sounding biased and kneejerk.

  280. Jacqueline

    John Said:

    “Phil, given your relationship to NASA, and their shaky, dogmatic position in this debate, I’d say you were VERY biased.

    You still haven’t even looked at the data being discussed, or even have any idea how damning it is.

    Why are you even posting about this subject when you refuse to look past the politics?”

    I ran this whine through my translation filter and got this:

    “Phil, given your being a scientist, and I want to discredit science in this debate, I’d say you were VERY biased.

    I THINK you still haven’t even looked at the data being discussed, or even have any idea how damning it is. Neither do I, but that is beside the point when I’m trying to discredit science.

    Why are you even posting about this subject when you refuse accept my biased viewpoint?”

    JS;)

  281. John

    Jaqueline, I have read a lot of the emails, as well as a lot of the code too. (there’s a huge amount of data – 65MB of text, I doubt anyone has sifted through everything)

    There was nothing spun about this, nothing selectively edited (except temperature data) or taken out of context.

    The data was faked. Artificial values were applied to give a false predetermined result.

    It’s as incriminating as it’s possible to get.

    What’s more, now NASA aren’t playing ball with their data, and it looks like the sh*t is really going to hit the fan there sometime soon. Something Phil is all too aware of, hence his desire to try and play this massive fraud down.

  282. John

    285 Jaqueline.

    You completely re-wrote my post to say what you wanted it to say.

    That’s exactly what the CRU did with their data.

    Thankyou for so tangibly demonstrating what they, and all, alarmists are trying to do.

  283. Jacqueline

    John, you’re the alarmist.

    “There was nothing spun about this, nothing selectively edited (except temperature data) or taken out of context.”

    No, quotes weren’t taken by the right wing media and selectively quoted without explanation were they?

    “The data was faked. Artificial values were applied to give a false predetermined result.
    It’s as incriminating as it’s possible to get.”

    I look forward to you producing your evidence for the investigation.
    More likely you are putting your own spin on something unextraordinary and mundane, to try to discredit the science.

    “What’s more, now NASA aren’t playing ball with their data, and it looks like the sh*t is really going to hit the fan there sometime soon.”

    Keep repeating “its a conspiracy” and trying to paint normal scientific procedure as a conspiracy. Its easier than actually looking into whats really going on.

    ” Something Phil is all too aware of, hence his desire to try and play this massive fraud down.”

    Phil is all too well aware of how real scientists (as opposed to the movie ones in white labcoats, that pour coloured liquids from one glass vial to another, that you believe in) behave, being one himself. Since you’re calling AGW a “massive fraud” you’re gonna need more than active misconstruing of other peoples’ data to back up your assertions.

    “You completely re-wrote my post to say what you wanted it to say.”

    Thats what you’re really saying isn’t it? Put your spin on fairly mundane comments and make it look like a (cue creepy theramin music) conspiracy.

    “That’s exactly what the CRU did with their data.”

    You mean thats what YOU think CRU did. Which is jumping to a conclusion, unless you’re on the investigating team and you’re not telling us.

    “Thankyou for so tangibly demonstrating what they, and all, alarmists are trying to do.”

    Like I said earlier, you’re the alarmist. And you’ve amply demonstrated that some folks desperately want AGW to be wrong, and they’re willing to try to discredit science to do it.

    JS;)

  284. anonymous

    if this is such a nonevent simply because it doesn’t prove that all of the data is falsified then, by your own logic, so too are the arguments of climate scientists because they have yet to even prove in experiment that carbon dioxide is even a greenhouse gas, let alone to what degree it is. everything is based on assumptions about the nature of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. nonetheless, the truth to the theories of global warming is irrelevant, what is relevant here is that these emails exposed a total lack of scientific ethics, and no one of significant intelligence is arguing that they prove that global warming is itself false. whether global warming is manmade or not, the logical flaws in your argument are the same. if irrelevance is defined by a lack of proof, then there are few things more irrelevant than global warming study and models.

  285. Uncle Fester

    “what is relevant here is that these emails exposed a total lack of scientific ethics, and no one of significant intelligence is arguing that they prove that global warming is itself false. whether global warming is manmade or not, the logical flaws in your argument are the same. if irrelevance is defined by a lack of proof, then there are few things more irrelevant than global warming study and models.”

    Total lack of scientific ethics? Where is the evidence for such an assertion? Or does your hot air magically count as such? As to logical flaws in arguments, yours contains a huge one. You gabble on about lack of proof and then provide no proof to back up your words, merely more hot air.

  286. The data was faked. Artificial values were applied to give a false predetermined result.

    Again, show us where the faked data was published. I’ll give you a hint. The source file that has been mentioned is called briffa_sep98_d.pro. Clearly this refers to a paper by Briffa and others published circa 1998. There is such a paper: Briffa et al. (1998) titled “Trees tell of past climates: but are they speaking less clearly today?” And look, it’s available online.

    What do you see there? Another hint: Check Figure 6. Does it look like the decline was hidden there with artificially corrected offsets?

  287. Jason Smith

    Jacqueline said “No, quotes weren’t taken by the right wing media and selectively quoted without explanation were they?”

    Right wing media? How many times has this story appeared on ABC, NBC or CBS news shows again? For the first two weeks, not a single story. Then finally this past Friday, NBC Nightly News reports it, but then whines that it may cause us to delay action on AGW. One can only hope…

    What changes would have to be made to lower temperatures by a single degree over the next 100 years? We would have to stop generating all electricity produced by coal and fossil fuels. Then, kill all livestock worldwide. Then impound all automobiles, trucks and airplanes. Would that be enough? No, that would only account for about four tenths of a degree. More is needed as we absolutely must keep the earth at the exact same temperature it was…

    Wait, exactly what temperature are we shooting for again?

  288. John

    “John, you’re the alarmist.”

    Jaqueline. You think the world is coming to an end, i think some data was faked. I guess we have different ideas about what constitutes alarmism.

    When I say data was faked, I mean some numbers were crossed out and new ones penciled in because the data didn’t support the theory. That’s not scientific, nor is it honest. It’s also a no brainer, obvious to everyone who isn’t in love with AGW theory.

    Joseph 293, you’re showing me a single link in the chain that isn’t broken and asking me to accept that the entire chain isn’t broken. Nice try… works with some I guess.

  289. Lonny Eachus

    Regardless of whether the data was in error, or deliberately fudged, or even correct, that data was later used improperly to form bogus conclusions.

    Let me ask this one more time, as I have twice already in these two blog posts: can anybody look at the following email exchange (I do not see how it can be claimed to be out of context… it shows both sides of the exchange), and refute that inaccurate statements were made about what is in the data, and how it was used? I am not even claiming that the inaccuracies are intentional… but if they were made out of ignorance of their own data (the only other possible reason), the results are still the same:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/29/when-results-go-bad/

    So far, nobody has looked at this and replied to me about the conclusion that Prof. Karlen is correct, and Trenberth and Jones just plain wrong. In at least one place they say that sea surface temperature can have a large effect on the results shown (even though SST was supposed to have been filtered out of this particular data), and in another place they say that urban heat islands were removed because of their anamolous temperature increases, yet in fact heat island temperate was definitely part of the data used, at least for major cities around the globe. That could not help but have had some effect on their results. Otherwise there would have been no need to filter it in the first place.

    If you pro-AGW people want something solid to refute, rather than just some vague statements out of context, then there it is. Why haven’t you done so? This is my third invitation. What I see is gross misuse of the data to form inappropriate conclusions, regardless of whether that data is correct.

    I have also seen no mention of the other link I posted last night, to a paper that appears to show that the stratosphere has actually been warming since 1996, not cooling as others have asserted. I do not know if that paper has been published in any journals so far, but it certainly appears to be genuine and contain solid evidence. If that paper is correct, then there have been some ozone changes or some other factor that the models have not accounted for, and that is a pretty major flaw.

  290. adam

    293. Joseph: Again, show us where the faked data was published. I’ll give you a hint. The source file that has been mentioned is called briffa_sep98_d.pro. Clearly this refers to a paper by Briffa and others published circa 1998. There is such a paper: Briffa et al. (1998) titled “Trees tell of past climates: but are they speaking less clearly today?” And look, it’s available online.

    you are aware of the fact that Briffa’s work on more than one occasion has been shown to contain egregiously cherry-picked data, right? Briffa uses, among other things, the Yamal tree ring series to make his point–to show his hockey stick, as it were. close examination of the data (which took Briffa about 10 years to finally–and reluctantly–give up) has shown the Yamal-based series to be the only one (out of five) with anomalous 20th century measurements. interestingly, an update made to the Polar Ural series used in other earlier papers (Briffa’s included) collected in 1999 (a year after the paper you mention was published and a year before Briffa’s most widely publicized paper was published) shows no damning uptick, no indication of a widespread, sudden warming trend. hence the move to the nearby Yamal region, which DID happen to show–at least in some samples–a dramatic upswing.

    but there is every indication that, overall, the Yamal data was largely within a normal range. how do we know this? the two Russian scientists, Hantemirov and Shiyatov, who collected the data for the Yamal series used for Briffa 2000 were also published in 2002 using the same data set, only they didn’t cherry-pick certain anomalous tree data nor did they use unmentioned additional data or quietly merge datasets from disparate regions as Briffa apparently did, and their findings indicate nothing more than a stable temperature trend. Briffa claims the methods he used on the Yamal data differs from those of the Russians’, but can’t adequately explain why he selectively chose to use samples that, using his own methods, show an uptick, but left out samples that didn’t.

    to his credit, Briffa himself in September of this year grudgingly admitted the possibility that an updated, revised version of his study using more sensible, logical sample selection may be a more appropriate indication of what trends exist(ed) in the region, if any. this revised study shows no dramatic temperature change.

    i might mention that Briffa’s papers based on these data have been used as the basis for several other peer-reviewed, “conclusive” papers commonly cited by the alarmist community.

  291. Steve in Dublin

    @anonymous #291

    if this is such a nonevent simply because it doesn’t prove that all of the data is falsified then, by your own logic, so too are the arguments of climate scientists because they have yet to even prove in experiment that carbon dioxide is even a greenhouse gas, let alone to what degree it is.

    Good thing you posted anonymously there. Epic fail. Tell ya what… I mostly just lurk here, and would only weigh in if I felt I was sufficiently informed on the subject to contribute meaningfully to the discussion.

  292. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    More is needed as we absolutely must keep the earth at the exact same temperature it was…

    No, not at all. In fact, that will be practically impossible.

    What people are discussing is whether or not to avoid taking Earth to a new climate type, out of the ice-age cycling. To do that would mean making billions of people climate refugees, and be very costly in economical and human terms (suffering surely, but also deaths). This is immoral, by any definition of the term.

  293. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    Let me ask this one more time, as I have twice already in these two blog posts: can anybody look at the following email exchange (I do not see how it can be claimed to be out of context… it shows both sides of the exchange), and refute that inaccurate statements were made about what is in the data, and how it was used?

    We could do that, go through interminably details of thousands of emails, or we could discuss actual science. As Phil noted in the post already, way above, we don’t know the context of the emails. So they are a scientific non-issue.

    What you need to do, and Phil has said that too already, is to show that AGW is somehow not happening as all the evidence tells us. That won’t come out of emails, but out of (more) science.

    However, I don’t agree with Phil that this needs to be investigated. It won’t change the science results.

    It may change how science is made however. But not in a positive way, as the result inevitably will be less openness. (The other route won’t happen, as science is a competitive process, as it should be.)

  294. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    they have yet to even prove in experiment that carbon dioxide is even a greenhouse gas, let alone to what degree it is.

    Been there, done that. IPCC of 2007, to be more precise. Read all about it.

    [Executive summary: CO2 is one among other greenhouse gases. Water vapor stands for 50 %, clouds for 25 %, and the rest is shared between methane, CO2, et cetera. And AGW is mainly caused by CO2 increase.]

  295. So far, nobody has looked at this and replied to me about the conclusion that Prof. Karlen is correct, and Trenberth and Jones just plain wrong.

    I read through the email exchange, and I’m not sure what you think is underhanded/fraudulent/etc. Or maybe that’s not what you’re saying. I’m guessing someone is in fact wrong in that discussion, but I don’t know enough to evaluate who that would be (and I assume nor do most people.) So?

  296. Dan Pangburn

    The hacked emails of Climategate are not necessary to show that human caused global warming never was.

    A simple, science-based EXCEL model has been derived that accurately (sd = 0.064 C) predicts all average global temperatures since 1895. The model did not need any consideration whatsoever of changes to atmospheric carbon dioxide or any other greenhouse gas.

    A description of the model and its development along with an eye-opening graph that shows measured and predicted average global temperature are in the pdf dated Oct 16 at http://climaterealists.com/index.php?tid=145&linkbox=true

  297. Lonny Eachus

    @300 Torbjörn Larsson:

    Torbjörn, that is the most specious argument I have so far seen here. If you had actually read the emails, you would see that there is no question of context, and that they speak very clearly and unambiguously for themselves.

    You are asking me to prove a negative, and that, from someone claiming to know about science, is clearly ridiculous.

    What I note about your reply is that you have not even tried to do what I asked, but just dismissed it as unimportant without even looking at it. Which is the only kind of response I expected, if I got any at all.

    The evidence in this email exchange is very clear, and there is no ambiguity about it. If you can actually refute it, do so. If you can’t (and you can’t), then go ahead and keep spouting statements to the effect that your ignorance doesn’t matter, if you like. Either way, I can honestly continue to claim the truth: that the CRU “study” is clearly shown to be an irresponsible and incompetent excuse for “science”.

    I don’t have to show that anything isn’t happening. All I have to show is that someone else’s “evidence” that it is happening is full of crap. Now demonstrated. Q.E.D.

  298. MadRocketScientist
  299. I don’t have to show that anything isn’t happening. All I have to show is that someone else’s “evidence” that it is happening is full of crap. Now demonstrated. Q.E.D.

    Not true. For example, let’s say one of the epidemiological studies showing an association between smoking and lung cancer is deeply flawed methodologically. Would this be enough to overturn the entire medical consensus? Absolutely not. You’re sorely mistaken about the means to falsify a huge body of evidence.

    (I’m not necessarily assuming you’re correct in your evaluation of that discussion. I frankly don’t care a whole lot if you are or not.)

  300. Lonny Eachus

    @302 Joseph:

    I did not, anywhere, state that it was underhanded or fraudulent. Where did you get that idea in the first place? Please go back and re-read that post of mine. I clearly stated that it doesn’t matter whether it is underhanded, fraudulent, or simply “accidentally” erroneous because of incompetence. It is still erroneous.

    Trenberth, Mann, et al. have clearly (and repeatedly) stated that urban heat islands must be excluded from the warming data, because the urban heat islands are anomalous. (But not hard to understand… clearly at least some of the heating is due to work being done by human energy use). In any case, they must be filtered out, otherwise they artificially skew the naturally-caused temperatures upward.

    In the email exchange I linked to, it is quite clear that they state that the urban heat island data was filtered in order to calculate the land-only warming that is shown in their report(s). And yet, as it turns out, urban heat island data was, incontrovertibly, included in the data that was claimed to have been used in the calculations.

    They also tried to make the excuse that the results shown might be higher than expected because surface sea temperatures (SST) can have a strong effect on the results shown… yet these results were supposed to have been calculated with the SST data filtered out, according to the report.

    The inescapable conclusion, then, is that — according to their own statements — the temperature graphs shown in their report have been artificially skewed upward. They can’t have it both ways: either urban heat island data does not in fact skew results (which is something that climate scientists I am familiar with would strongly disagree with), or their results are skewed.

    I do not understand why you fail to see that… it is very clear from their statements in the emails, when you compare it with the data that is claimed to be used, and the data that was actually used. It is simple logic, Joseph.

    To put it in as simple terms as possible: they claimed to have used one set of data for their calculations, when in fact they used another… a different set that was guaranteed to skew the results upward. Whether they did it on purpose or through sheer incompetence does not matter… they still did it.

  301. Lonny Eachus

    @304 Joseph:

    Please leave your specious arguments at home. Consensus is not science.

  302. adam

    304. Joseph: Not true. For example, let’s say one of the epidemiological studies showing an association between smoking and lung cancer is deeply flawed methodologically. Would this be enough to overturn the entire medical consensus? Absolutely not. You’re sorely mistaken about the means to falsify a huge body of evidence.

    the huge body of evidence you speak of is itself gapingly open to interpretation. AGW-centric scientists themselves admit as much. i’ll be the first to admit that i haven’t seen ALL the evidence, but i would suspect you haven’t either. i would also bet that some portion of the data and/or methods used to make the hockey stick analyses that form much of the basis of current warming theories are suspect or would be, given further, fairer scrutiny. i can legitimately make that assessment because of the precedent of disinformation and opacity set by Mann, Briffa and others at CRU.

    of course, my own speculation isn’t science. i recognize that. and even if we were to prove that the tree-ring analyses carried out by certain scientists were flawed and couldn’t be relied upon, there are still a goodly number of studies using other proxies for temperature reconstruction–notably boreholes and glacier length. right? direct instrumental measurements only go back fairly recently and, when all is said and done, don’t give us an accurate enough picture of macro-scale climate change across a long enough time period. AGW advocate scientists will say that much (at least, when it’s convenient, in an effort to convince us of the necessity of proxy data).

    so in order to supplement recent-history direct instrument measurements, what we’ve got are a bunch of proxy data going back 1300-1800 years. temperature reconstructions are formed thusly: climate reflection data from varying proxies (particularly the two i mentioned) taken together and then supplemented with more recent direct instrumentation data. however, the accuracy of that reflection data drops off precipitously after about 400 years. the error range of proxy data prior to about 1500 AD is, on average, around 1.0-1.3 degrees. that is a lot.

    what’s most interesting about this is that scientists on both sides acknowledge that there is evidence of the onset of a pronounced cold period coinciding with the drop off in accuracy of this proxy data (the Little Ice Age) in the opposite direction–the cold spell begins as our measurements become more trustworthy. anything prior to that period is, quite simply, very uncertain. this makes it easy for warming skeptics to say that any observed upswing in temperature trends is simply a return to the normal temperatures of the medieval warm period.

    so what to do to remedy the lack of accuracy? well, do a lot of studies with a lot of data and eliminate as much anamalous data as possible, reduce the error range and get an accurate picture of what is going on, if anything. sounds like a good plan. unfortunately, the data doesn’t always show what we expect. in fact, if we examine the data closely, very few of the measurements show a dramatic upswing of any kind. and guess what? the most dramatic upswings are given in one of two cases: instrumentation records (which only go back to around 1850–the end of the LIA) like CRUTEM3 or tree-ring data like that given by Briffa.

    i’ve already gone into depth on Briffa. as for CRUTEM3, just as an example:

    “The data of CRUTEM3 extend far into the sea; and the data of HadSST2 extend far inland. Grid boxes with only a tiny fraction of land are included in CRUTEM3, and grid boxes with only a tiny fraction of sea are included in HadSST2. The temperatures of these grid boxes are not very reliable, especially for HadSST2. In the merged HadCRUT3 dataset these boxes are often weighed strongly due to the low variability. ”

    that’s from the data source itself, by the way. nothing overly damning, but certainly not confidence-inspiring. the author even adds “use with care” at the end of the note. and now we find out that the entire dataset in question may have been compromised, along with who knows what others.

    so for the sake of argument, just bear with me, and let’s say that direct instrument readings are problematic because they don’t match up with proxy data–like comparing apples and oranges. not to mention that may have been compromised. so let’s use JUST proxy data for our reconstruction. what do we see? click the link, and ignore the gray and orange lines. look at the rest:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2008/09/progress-in-millennial-reconstructions/

    just what we might expect. what appears to be a recovery from an unusually cold period (all WELL within the error range reported by the researchers from earlier measurements) which was preceded by a period of definitively uncertain temperature, but nonetheless a period with indications that it may have been every bit as warm as today, if not more so.

    what i’ve just explained is only one weak link in a very long, fractious chain. so you can see why an honest, responsible truth seeker like myself has a hard time buying into AGW wholesale from such unconvincing peddlers.

  303. adam

    ignore the gray and orange lines.

    sorry, meant gray and RED lines.

  304. Lonny Eachus

    @306 Joseph:

    “You’re sorely mistaken about the means to falsify a huge body of evidence.”

    I am not trying, nor do I need, to falsify a huge body of evidence. It is only THIS body of evidence, the CRU study, that — according to statements by the authors themselves — is falsified.

    It should be noted, however, that this is, without doubt, the most influential study so far in the whole AGW argument. A very large number of AGW papers have relied on this study for data… and a large part of it is very clearly in error.

    That is sufficient for me, for one day’s work. And what the heck… I did it for free. Call it a public service.

    (Actually, of course, I did not do it at all. That credit belongs to WUWT… whether you like them or hate them. If you want to dispute it, you should contact the CRU staff and/or Watts and/or Professor Karlen, and complain to them.)

  305. Jacqueline

    John whined:

    “Jaqueline. You think the world is coming to an end, i think some data was faked. I guess we have different ideas about what constitutes alarmism.”

    Straw man. I don’t think the world is coming to an end. It would take more than global warming to do that. If you want to know about the world’s possible demise then I suggest you read Phil’s Death from the Skies.

    “When I say data was faked, I mean some numbers were crossed out and new ones penciled in because the data didn’t support the theory. That’s not scientific, nor is it honest. It’s also a no brainer, obvious to everyone who isn’t in love with AGW theory.”

    Well, I look forward to you sending your evidence to the investigative team. As it is up to them to judge wether there has been any wrong doing, and not someone with an axe to grind.

    JS;)

  306. Petrolonfire

    @ 6. ND Says:

    Is Spectroscope the new Anaconda?

    Why – what’s wrong with the old Anaconda? ;-)

    (Where did ‘Oil-is-mastery’ go btw too?)

  307. Lonny Eachus

    @314 Jacqueline:

    “Well, I look forward to you sending your evidence to the investigative team. As it is up to them to judge wether there has been any wrong doing, and not someone with an axe to grind.”

    That won’t be necessary. See the exchange above between myself and Joseph. It is very clear, from the CRU team’s own statements, that they have admitted (although they did not mean to admit it… they slipped up a couple of times) to using the wrong data for at least a large part of their study. And the conclusion that they did use improper data does not rely on just their admission, but on the data itself.

    It seems to me that people who are spending years of time and millions of public dollars performing studies — regarding issues that in fact could cost industrialized nations trillions of dollars — would be more careful than to make stupid mistakes that other people can catch in a mere few days after their correspondence comes to light.

    But no. Go figure.

  308. Listrade

    Preface: I too accept the overwhelming evidence supporting AGW. There is no convincing argument from those so vehemently against AGW.

    However, while I also agree this is a storm in a tea cup, I’m still not happy. My reading of the emails is that some aspects, whether important or not, were withheld. To me, if you’re producing reports based on science, you are duty bound to publish every thing. Every result, positive or negative. You’re duty bound to highlight as much as possible as to how your conclusion could be “falsified”, highlight potential bias, potential errors and limitations. If you make conclusions you show me the ones you’ve dismissed and why.

    Some of the issues in the emails are understandable, they were fighting against a pseudoscience and they understood that some of the “weaknesses” in their data could be used against them. I sympathise, but you don’t fight pseudoscience by lowering your own scientific standards. Once you do you’re in the remit of politics and you lose the moral high-ground.

    This is the exact same stance we take with “big” pharma reports ignoring data that doesn’t support their claims of efficacy.

    The science still shows us what the problem is, by taking the decisions they have, they’ve weakened that argument. All the issues in this “conspiracy” should have been published and explained as to why they’re irrelevant, not left out and hoped that nobody realises.

    So I’m the same side regarding the overall conclusion, but I’m disappointed that the strict code of science was ignored for whatever reason. I think it’s sad that we don’t see how one simple oversight or deliberate decision not to keep to the principles of scientific reporting really has messed everything up. I think it sad that I can’t be angry at those involved in these decisions without being represented as some kind of denialist.

    I’ll just leave it with a quote from RP Feynman:

    “One example of the principle is this: If you’ve made up your mind to test a theory, or you want to explain some idea, you should always decide to publish it whichever way it comes out. If we only publish results of a certain kind, we can make the argument look good. We must publish both kinds of results.”

  309. I know probably no one is around anymore, but here’s a question – re: tree ring fudging

    Is the whole ‘hiding the decline’ supposed to mean that they’re using the ‘trick’ to fix the fact that tree ring data shows a decrease in temperature which has been actively measured differently?

    So a tree ring shows temperature in 1965 as 50 degrees, but a thermometer measurement shows it at 60?

  310. Jacqueline

    Lonny Eachus announced:

    “That won’t be necessary.”

    STAND DOWN INQUIRY TEAM!!! Stand back everyone! We’ve got Lonny on the job!

    “It seems to me that people who are spending years of time and millions of public dollars performing studies — regarding issues that in fact could cost industrialized nations trillions of dollars — would be more careful than to make stupid mistakes that other people can catch in a mere few days after their correspondence comes to light.”

    Hey Lonny, the Discovery Institute could do with hiring you! You’d get to the bottom of that pesky evolution conspiracy and to the Truth in no time, at no cost!!

    In the meantime I’ll be waiting for the inquiry team to investigate the matter and not some bod on the “intarwebz”.

    JS;)

  311. Dan Pangburn

    Tens of billions of dollars have been spent in futile efforts to prove that added CO2 caused Global Warming while an unpaid engineer with a desk-top computer and using simple engineering analysis has discovered the real cause of the temperature run-up in the 20th century. The research, with an eye-opening graph showing predicted and measured temperature anomalies, is in the pdf dated Oct 16 at http://climaterealists.com/index.php?tid=145&linkbox=true . With this discovery, changes to ghg levels have been found to have no significant effect on climate and Natural Climate Change has been verified. This does not show that added ghgs have zero effect. It does show that the temperature anomalies can be accurately calculated by ignoring any effect from changes to the level of ghgs.

  312. I have very double feelings about this whole thing, partly because I am squarely on the dividing edge between pro-AWG and AWG-sceptic.

    With regard to this specific leaking of e-mails, I am however in general agreement with you Phil. A lot of it is out of context and could basically mean anything. Some of it is simply (deliberately or not) misinterpreted science lingo. Some of it *could* indicate questionable data massage, but the lack of context makes it difficult to judge from the outside.

    Regarding the bigger discussion: personally, I am on a real straddle between being a “climate sceptic” and a non-sceptic, and that is an uncomfortable position as you are apparently deemed a “denialists” by default as soon as you cast doubt on the anthropogene cause of the current warming trend.

    Let me explain this further. And let me ad first, that I am a Quaternary scientist used to working with climate proxies, and working with large scale climate fluctuations of the past. My professional research deals with Human evolution and climate change.

    I think there is little doubt that our climate over the past century-and-a-half has been trending towards getting warmer (even without the “hockey-stick” analysis now under fire). I think it is well possible that human CO2 overproduction plays a role in this. I think models on the effects of CO2 and greenhouse warming urge for CO2 emission reductions, as they point to the clear potential of large scale CO2 emmisions to alter climate.

    So far so good: that is my pro-AGW side. But I also have an AWG-sceptic side, because: at the same time, I think at least part of the trend we observe is very likely natural and part of the temperature resurge from the dip of the “small ice age”, the 14th-15th century dip in temperatures. Moreover: I feel that common to what seems to be the prevailing dogma on this blog, it has not been that well proven at all yet that the current trend must be artificial (due to human excess CO2 production). And hence I disagree here with you, Phil.

    The temperature datasets (direct and proxy) used to corroborate this simply cover too little of a full interglacial cycle to allow to make such definite statements. And we lack detailed data of previous interglacials to take into consideration.

    Put it simple: we do not have enough real grasp on what are realistic climate variations over a long duration interglacial such as our Holocene. Any notion that we do, is flawed.

    An assessment from a few hundred years of temperature data out of a 10 000 yr duration interglacial is simply a too inadequate set of data. Certainly when it comes to actual temperature measurements. Our Dutch data set, which is the oldest semi-continuous dataset in the world starting in AD 1706, barely covers 3% of the current interglacial. 3%! To put it in context: that is like trying to assess temperature variation over a full year, based on just the last 11 days of temperature measurements.

    Even extending that period to 1000 years with proxy data (as the IPCC report did) is still inadequate in my opinion, as that still covers only 10%. And moreover, it is a set of which we *know* it largely concerns a temperature downswing, the 14-th-15th century dip known as the “little ice age”. It is therefore a dataset that almost certainly is not representative of the ‘baseline’ Holocene temperature range, if such exists at all: a considerable part of it can be expected to be situated below that baseline.

    It has always worried me that this is glossed over so easily by the AWG-movement. In my opinion, many researchers involved in the current debate simply lack a proper and necessary perspective on, and appreciation of, the timescales involved (which, frankly, is a bit amazing). The data the IPCC report employed to reach their conclusions, is in my opinion simply not on an adequate timescale to grasp phenomena on the timescale of a full interglacial cycle.

    With regard to a “macro” view on climate anomalies, as an extra warning: the current temperatures are not unusually high when we consider other past interglacials. Both during the peak of the Eem, and at least one of the Saale interglacials (OIS 7), it was warmer, with amongst others the European pond tortoise Emys orbicularis being present in the Netherlands during one of the Saale complex interglacials (where it is absent now as it is too cold for its eggs to hatch. There are more of such examples, it really has been warmer in several past interglacials, this is something where paleo-ecologists and paleoclimatologists agree). If temperatures reached higher levels in past interglacials, why should the current temperatures be out of a natural range in the current interglacial?

    To end, I wish to note that people have an unreasonable expectation for things to stay “stable” and to preserve a status quo. But climate never has been stable (nor has ecology). This with regard to comments here like “as a gardener I know something is amiss the past years”. Again, that climate is changing, no rational scientist will deny (those who do are true denialists). Climate *should* change, it always has done so. Ecology *should* change as a result of that too. Changing climate does not necessarily implicate a human cause per se.

  313. Lonny Eachus

    @319 Jacqueline:

    Get off it, Jacqueline. First, I am not trying to take credit for anything. I did not find that. Someone else did. Second, this is a matter of the CRU team’s own admission.

    Refute it if you can. That’s all I have been asking anybody. Go look at their claims, and the data that was used. If you can’t refute it (and I really think not), then just what is it you have to say that adds to the actual debate here? Just insults?

    You haven’t been “waiting” for anybody… you have been happy to chime in with your own opinions, whether they have any basis in reality or not.

    So far, nobody else on your side of the fence has been able to do better than insults, either.

  314. Is the whole ‘hiding the decline’ supposed to mean that they’re using the ‘trick’ to fix the fact that tree ring data shows a decrease in temperature which has been actively measured differently?

    So a tree ring shows temperature in 1965 as 50 degrees, but a thermometer measurement shows it at 60?

    Roughly, yes. Apparently, young tree rings are unreliable as temperature proxies. That’s my limited understanding. The technique for “hiding the decline” is actually quite legitimate, even though the CRU scientists probably didn’t know it’s called left-censoring. I explain the whole thing here.

  315. Jacqueline

    Lonny Eachus wailed:

    ” First, I am not trying to take credit for anything. I did not find that. Someone else did. Second, this is a matter of the CRU team’s own admission.”

    Where do I write that you are trying to take credit for anything?

    “Refute it if you can.”

    Refute what? Your straw man?

    ” That’s all I have been asking anybody. Go look at their claims, and the data that was used. If you can’t refute it (and I really think not), then just what is it you have to say that adds to the actual debate here? Just insults?”

    Since when has “trial by internet” been useful in determining wether there has been any scientific wrongdoing? I’ve seen the posts of people that claim to have read all the emails and they give widely different interpretations. Should we cobble the contradictory lot of them all together and declare the matter closed? Or should we get a proper official inquiry to find out what the deal is?

    “You haven’t been “waiting” for anybody… you have been happy to chime in with your own opinions, whether they have any basis in reality or not.”

    I’ve been wading in to slap those folks that are giving Phil Plait a hard time because he is such a denier that he wants an inquiry into the whole shebang. As to wether the admissions of the CRU scientists have any merit in the matter, or not, should ideally be dealt with by the inquiry team, and not some spod on the internet. Unless you deem yourself Mighty Prince Lonny Final Arbiter of All Things.

    “So far, nobody else on your side of the fence has been able to do better than insults, either.”

    You are too full of yourself to know if I’m even in the garden, let alone on which side of the fence.

    JS;)

  316. Taylor

    I think your assertion that you believe global warming because of overwhelming evidence supporting is requires your willful dismissal that the e-mails do show an effort to keep skeptics from having access to the numbers, and being heard in the scientific community. It seems there is “overwhelming evidence” in support because skeptics are blackballed from the process. Furthermore admission that they cannot explain the decline in temperatures over the past decade is admission that their models do not work. They are not accurate at making predictions and based on that information alone we cannot re-order the global economy because people spent years making models that don’t predict.

  317. Lonny Eachus

    @325 Jacqueline:

    What straw man, Jackqueline? You are saying that solid evidence that someone was using the wrong data in their study is a “straw man” argument? Do you even know what a straw man argument is?

    Can’t you do any better than that?

    “Since when has “trial by internet” been useful in determining wether there has been any scientific wrongdoing?” …

    So you are saying that everybody’s arguments here are merely a waste of time? Then what were you doing here? Wasting everybody’s time? Hmmmm…. methinks I detect just a little bit of hypocrisy.

    “I’ve been wading in to slap those folks that are giving Phil Plait a hard time because he is such a denier that he wants an inquiry into the whole shebang.”

    Really? That’s what you were doing here? Let’s see. Jacqueline wrote:

    “Don’t tell me Rimantas, you only read the e mails that were spun to make it look like there was a conspiracy. And if you didn’t read them ALL you’re the one sounding biased and kneejerk.”

    “John, you’re the alarmist.”

    “No, quotes weren’t taken by the right wing media and selectively quoted without explanation were they?”

    “John whined”

    “Lonny wailed”

    “Mighty Prince Lonny Final Arbiter of All Things.”

    I don’t see any reference to Phil in any of those comments. They sure look like opinions to me. And pretty snarky opinions, too. From the preponderance of the evidence on this page, it would seem that you have a downright habit of insulting people.

    Since according to your own statement, you think discussion of the issue here is a waste of time, why don’t you just let all of us stupid people waste our own time in our own manner, without the insults? How does that hurt you? Or is it that you didn’t really mean that?

    Jacqueline: “Should we cobble the contradictory lot of them all together and declare the matter closed? Or should we get a proper official inquiry to find out what the deal is?”

    Of course there should be an inquiry. And in fact there are going to be. At least three of them have been announced: one at EAU, one at Penn State, and one by the government of the UK.

    But that doesn’t mean discussion is useless.

    “Since when has “trial by internet” been useful in determining wether there has been any scientific wrongdoing?”

    Actually, there have been a number of scandals — scientific and otherwise — which were decided by evidence gathered by people on the internet. There’s nothing terribly unusual about that.

    Lonny wrote: “So far, nobody else on your side of the fence has been able to do better than insults, either.”

    Jacqueline wrote: “You are too full of yourself to know if I’m even in the garden, let alone on which side of the fence.”

    Hmmmm. Well, thanks for helping me make my point.

    I think from now on I will confine my comments to people who at least have something halfway intelligent to say. Some of them probably even know what a straw man is.

  318. As a skeptic of AGW but not GW it is not a question of doing something or not doing something. It is how fast and forceful we do it. Of course it would be best to clean up what we have made a mess of either way but without hard evidence that it WE who caused it, a better approach would be to just invest in perfecting the new technologies needed to get clean safe energy over a fairly short period of time making it more cost effective instead of just laying down taxes and and raising prices for energy (which trickles down to increase the cost of everything). Instead of making a panic out of it take it slow, understand it and make the best possible decisions. Both sides need to take a step back and take a breath. As for the emails, its not that its a smoking gun but as some have pointed out, they dont even seem to know what data they used. Again that makes it imposible to recreate so its not woth a damn. If the original data is still there then redo it, document it, and prove it to us. You already have the models worked out and the processes taken care of so it shouldnt take that long comparatively.

  319. adam

    @ 321. Marco Langbroek

    THANK YOU. my posts are being ignored, but raise the same exact issues as your insightful take on the matter. i don’t know if your posts will be similarly ignored, but it is nice to have a little support as someone rationally skeptical of those trying to convince us of the irrefutable reality of human-caused, mass-scale, cataclysmic global warming.

    we’re not deniers. we’re asking the questions you who claim to be responsible skeptics should be asking. you’ve accepted scientists at their word despite dubious methods, dubious data and conclusions that in no way reflect the actual complex reality of the situation. i struggle to understand why, with stakes so high.

    and, in case anyone is wondering, i fully support efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions, provided they are fair to developing nations AND don’t force wealthier nations to subsidize them with crippling tax increases or excessive gifting. i also support alternative energy research and efforts to put a stop to wanton, irresponsible destruction of forests and ecologies.

  320. To visualize what I say in post # 321, I have created a diagram that shows:

    a) the full extend of the current 10 000 years of interglacial;
    b) GISP proxy data over that full extend (delta 18O);
    c) the extend of the proxy data considered in the ICCP report;
    d) the extend of available direct temperature measurements.

    (c) is indicated by “1” in the diagram, (d) by “2”.

    Most of the discussion on artificial global warming is based on the stretch of data indicated by “2”.

    As you can see, you can really question how representative that small part of considered data is with regard to the full interglacial duration and variations in the delta 18O curve over that full duration. Does it really allow to say that the warming trend documented over the past century cannot be natural variation?

    Link to the diagram is posted in a post directly below this one, because of moderation issues.

  321. Lonny Eachus

    I have located another interesting email exchange. I have verified that these emails are indeed in the collection of leaked emails. However, it is a lot easier (and much more space-friendly) to link to a site that has posted them than to reproduce them here:

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=809

    Admittedly, this is about earlier data. But at that time, only 38 potential urban heat islands out of the 2,666 that had been identified, had been removed. That is about 1.4%. It also states that urban heat island data is not corrected for… only removed when deemed necessary. As we have seen, they did not “deem it necessary” to remove the urban heat islands for at least 500 major cities worldwide, even though they have claimed that they did.

  322. Lonny Eachus

    Another email from 2005 (which, again, I have verified is in the collection) shows Phil Jones stating that he has been getting a U.S. Department of Energy grant every year since 1980, and that he hopes Congress does not find out:

    http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=545

  323. Lonny Eachus

    Hmmmm. The more of these emails I look into, the more interesting it gets. By now we all know that Wei-Chyung Wang was charged with fabricating data in 2 papers submitted to the IPCC.

    What I did not realize, however, was that Phil Jones was the first name on one of those papers:

    Jones P.D., Groisman P.Y., Coughlan M., Plummer N., Wang W.-C., Karl T.R. (1990),
    “Assessment of urbanization effects in time series of surface air temperature over land”,
    Nature, 347: 169–172.

    http://www.informath.org/WCWF07a.pdf (PDF)

  324. Lonny Eachus

    Comments by F.B. Wood on Jones and Wigley climate data, 1988. Includes replies by Jones and Wigley, and further comments by Warwick Hughes:

    http://www.warwickhughes.com/cru86/wood.htm

    Yet again we see apparently deliberate inclusion of urban heat island data.

  325. Jacqueline

    #327. Lonny Eachus whined:

    “What straw man, Jackqueline? You are saying that solid evidence that someone was using the wrong data in their study is a “straw man” argument? Do you even know what a straw man argument is?”

    The straw man where you think I’m accusing you of taking credit for something. Where did you get that idea from?
    ” First, I am not trying to take credit for anything.” These are your words, are they not? Do you know what a straw man fallacy is, Lonny?

    “So you are saying that everybody’s arguments here are merely a waste of time?”

    No, you’re saying that. Another straw man.

    “Then what were you doing here? Wasting everybody’s time?”

    And you’re doing it here again ineffectually.

    “ I detect just a little bit of hypocrisy.”

    And I detect a dickwaving individual who is pissed because I didn’t run to read his ultimate take on Climategate.

    “I’ve been wading in to slap those folks that are giving Phil Plait a hard time because he is such a denier that he wants an inquiry into the whole shebang.”
    Really? That’s what you were doing here? Let’s see. Jacqueline wrote:
    “Don’t tell me Rimantas, you only read the e mails that were spun to make it look like there was a conspiracy. And if you didn’t read them ALL you’re the one sounding biased and kneejerk.”
    “John, you’re the alarmist.”
    “No, quotes weren’t taken by the right wing media and selectively quoted without explanation were they?”
    “John whined”
    “Lonny wailed”
    “Mighty Prince Lonny Final Arbiter of All Things.”
    I don’t see any reference to Phil in any of those comments. “

    Lets see, selective cherry picked quotes. I did the right thing in assuming that you weren’t going to have an unbiased opinion on the Climategate emails.

    “Since according to your own statement, you think discussion of the issue here is a waste of time.”

    Putting words into another person’s mouth is what straw manning is all about, Lonny. Even more reason to be suspicious of your take on Climategate.

    .”. why don’t you just let all of us stupid people waste our own time in our own manner, without the insults? How does that hurt you?”

    And where am I stopping you? And why shouldn’t I insult folks that are calling reasonable folks, like Phil, deniers? Who put you in charge of moderation on this blog?

    “Of course there should be an inquiry. And in fact there are going to be. At least three of them have been announced: one at EAU, one at Penn State, and one by the government of the UK.”

    Finally something we both agree on.

    “But that doesn’t mean discussion is useless.”

    Point out to me where I say this Lonny, or admit that you’re tilting at straw men.

    “Actually, there have been a number of scandals — scientific and otherwise — which were decided by evidence gathered by people on the internet. There’s nothing terribly unusual about that.”

    Well then I look forward to your dodgey opinion settling the matter once and for all. But in the real world an inquiry team would be the better option, unless you have delusions of grandeur that make you the final arbiter of Climategate.

    “Hmmmm. Well, thanks for helping me make my point.”

    No the thanks are all mine. You’ve railed against a series of straw men because I didn’t quickly rush to read your opinion on the matter. Your opinion on Climategate is most likely not as objective as you would believe. All the more reason to await a proper inquiry held by people with the background to actually understand the matters at hand.

    “I think from now on I will confine my comments to people who at least have something halfway intelligent to say.”

    You should have something halfway intelligent to say as well, instead of dickwaving.

    “Some of them probably even know what a straw man is.”

    Are you miffed that I do? And that I easily detected yours?

    JS;)

  326. Lonny Eachus

    Hmmmn again. I have not seen this portion of the HARRY_READ_ME.txt file posted elsewhere, so I will copy it here (emphasis mine, but the smiley is in the original file):

    “Here, the expected 1990-2003 period is MISSING – so the correlations aren’t so hot! Yet
    the WMO codes and station names /locations are identical (or close). What the hell is
    supposed to happen here? Oh yeah – there is no ‘supposed’, I can make it up. So I have :-)

    If an update station matches a ‘master’ station by WMO code, but the data is unpalatably
    inconsistent, the operator is given three choices:

    You have failed a match despite the WMO codes matching.
    This must be resolved!! Please choose one:

    1. Match them after all.
    2. Leave the existing station alone, and discard the update.
    3. Give existing station a false code, and make the update the new WMO station.

    Enter 1,2 or 3:

    You can’t imagine what this has cost me – to actually allow the operator to assign false
    WMO codes!! But what else is there in such situations? Especially when dealing with a ‘Master’
    database of dubious provenance (which, er, they all are and always will be).”

  327. Lonny Eachus

    @337 Jacqueline:

    “The straw man where you think I’m accusing you of taking credit for something. Where did you get that idea from?”

    I got it from here: “STAND DOWN INQUIRY TEAM!!! Stand back everyone! We’ve got Lonny on the job!”

    The implication seems pretty clear to me.

    “No, you’re saying that. Another straw man.”

    Hmmmm. “Since when has “trial by internet” been useful in determining wether there has been any scientific wrongdoing?”

    Again, the implication seems pretty clear to me. If the discussion you are referring to is not “useful”, then it’s a waste of time.

    “And I detect a dickwaving individual who is pissed because I didn’t run to read his ultimate take on Climategate.”

    So you admit you didn’t even look at the evidence I was pointing at… but you dismissed it anyway, in the most insulting manner possible. Wow. That’s mature. And helpful to the discussion.

    Pardon the sarcasm, I am not generally prone to use it, but this situation almost screams for some.

    “Lets see, selective cherry picked quotes. I did the right thing in assuming that you weren’t going to have an unbiased opinion on the Climategate emails.”

    No, it’s YOU that I do not have an unbiased opinion about. But then you have given me plenty of reason. And those particular comments were in fact cherry-picked from your posts, but nowhere in those entire posts were you specifically defending Phil, as you stated you were here to do, so my point is still made.

    “And where am I stopping you? And why shouldn’t I insult folks that are calling reasonable folks, like Phil, deniers? Who put you in charge of moderation on this blog?”

    You aren’t stopping anyone, but you sure as hell are interfering. And please… point out where I called Phil a “denier”. I don’t recall doing so. And I certainly did not presume to be a moderator, I simply suggested — politely even — that you leave people alone. I don’t know about anybody else, but you have given me the very strong impression that you are a mean and vindictive person.

    “Point out to me where I say this Lonny, or admit that you’re tilting at straw men.”

    Right here: “Since when has “trial by internet” been useful in determining wether there has been any scientific wrongdoing?” Q.E.D.

    “Well then I look forward to your dodgey opinion settling the matter once and for all. But in the real world an inquiry team would be the better option, unless you have delusions of grandeur that make you the final arbiter of Climategate.”

    Yet another snarky comment, about an innocent and true statement I made. I am not exactly impressed with your poise and impartiality, Jacqueline.

    “No the thanks are all mine. You’ve railed against a series of straw men because I didn’t quickly rush to read your opinion on the matter.”

    You keep stating “straw men”, as though it were you I were arguing against. I pointed to a valid piece if evidence, and you don’t seem to like that, resorting to insults and snarky comments to try to make your “point”, if you actually have one. I have not been aiming any “straw man” arguments at you, Jacqueline, because I am not even arguing with you. (For some reason, I suspect that you will have a comment about that.) All I have been doing is making observations about your own comments.

    “Your opinion on Climategate is most likely not as objective as you would believe.”

    Perhaps that is so, but there is no doubt at all that you have abandoned any pretense to objectivity.

    “All the more reason to await a proper inquiry held by people with the background to actually understand the matters at hand.”

    Right. Trust the data police to save us all. Pardon me, but I don’t think so.

    “You should have something halfway intelligent to say as well, instead of dickwaving.”

    I could analyze that comment, but I think I’ll just leave it stand on its own.

    Lonny: “Some of them probably even know what a straw man is.”

    Jacqueline: “Are you miffed that I do? And that I easily detected yours?”

    To be honest, no. I still strongly suspect that you don’t know what it means. You definitely haven’t demonstrated that you do.

    Jacqueline, I will be blunt. You are doing nothing here but wasting everybody’s time. I will not allow you to waste my time any further. You can expect any further comments you make to be ignored.

  328. Jacqueline

    Lonny Eachus wailed:

    “Right. Trust the data police to save us all. Pardon me, but I don’t think so.”

    Ah the irony! Trial by internet is your preferred option.

    “..here is no doubt at all that you have abandoned any pretense to objectivity. ”

    Now who is being hypocritical?

    “I am not exactly impressed with your poise and impartiality…”

    Yeah you’re right. Lets all trust Lonny, final arbiter and super objective One Man Inquiry Team. Lonny you’re just some spod on t’internet, not a member of the inquiry team. So don’t try to make out that your opinion is anything remotely as informed as an inquiry team, composed of folks with the right training and education in science.

    “And please… point out where I called Phil a “denier”.”

    I never said you did. But the folks I slapped sure did. But in your haste to cherry pick quotes you forgot to quote them as well.

    “But that doesn’t mean discussion is useless.”

    Trial by internet sure is useless in determining scientific wrongdoing, but you believe that your “objective” opinion carries the weight of a proper inquiry. You equivocate discussion with trial by internet here.

    ” And I certainly did not presume to be a moderator, I simply suggested — politely even — that you leave people alone. ”

    In other words you tried to act like a self appointed moderator.

    “You are doing nothing here but wasting everybody’s time. I will not allow you to waste my time any further.”

    And you’re doing it again.

    “You can expect any further comments you make to be ignored.”

    Thats it Lonny. Take your ball away from the mean skeptic and go off to cry.

    JS:)

  329. Lonny Eachus

    Hahaha.

    “…!!!” The Snark harrumphed.

    That’s really pretty funny. This was just exactly the kind of response I expected to get. Well, no, actually now that I think about it, it isn’t. I kind of expected it to make a little more sense.

    Consider the “ignore” switch turned on from here on out.

  330. Jacqueline

    @337 Jacqueline:

    “The straw man where you think I’m accusing you of taking credit for something. Where did you get that idea from?”

    I got it from here: “STAND DOWN INQUIRY TEAM!!! Stand back everyone! We’ve got Lonny on the job!”

    “The implication seems pretty clear to me.”

    By the way lonny, your “implication” is a straw man. Where exactly am I saying you’re taking credit for anything? Putting your words into peoples’ mouths to attack them is a straw man fallacy. Even more reason for not trusting your opinion.
    Is it my fault if you’re too dense to understand that I’m mocking you for your “That won’t be necessary” quote, when I stated “Well, I look forward to you sending your evidence to the investigative team. As it is up to them to judge wether there has been any wrong doing, and not someone with an axe to grind.”

    You obviously think that your opinion carries the weight of an inquiry team. Egotistical or what?

    “You definitely haven’t demonstrated that you do.”

    Oh yes I have. See above.

    JS;)

  331. Lonny Eachus

    Haha. I apologize to other readers, because I stated that I would ignore you, but I just can’t resist one last time.

    Jacqueline, you haven’t shown a damned thing. And the fact that you think you have is just plain amusing. Now please go away.

  332. Jacqueline

    341. Lonny Eachus Says:

    “That’s really pretty funny. This was just exactly the kind of response I expected to get. Well, no, actually now that I think about it, it isn’t. I kind of expected it to make a little more sense.”

    You sound confused, maybe you should get some therapy for that huge ego thats pressing down on your brain. Also you are a liar. You said: “You can expect any further comments you make to be ignored.” Even more reason not to trust your opinion on Climategate.

    “Consider the “ignore” switch turned on from here on out.”

    You said that before Lonny, and then you went and did the opposite. Even more reason to distrust anything you say on Climategate. Perhaps its best if you stopped digging yourself into a hole, while belting yourself around the head with a spade.

    JS:)

  333. Jacqueline

    “Jacqueline, you haven’t shown a damned thing. And the fact that you think you have is just plain amusing.

    Yeah! Lets trust Lonny’s super objective opinion. I’ve demonstrated otherwise and you’ll just have to live with it.
    You can’t even keep your own word. How trustworthy is that?

    “Now please go away.”

    I’ll do as I choose. Not what you want me to do, you silly little man. By the way that was an Ad Hominem, or are you going to say that I don’t know what that means as well?

    JS:)

  334. Lonny Eachus

    Hey, folks! Here’s another “global warming” tidbit for you!

    You know all that talk about sea ice diminishing in the Arctic? Well it turns out, according to NCAR, that a 15% ice concentration was considered a common definition of “sea ice”, up until at least 2002:

    http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/guide/Data/walsh.html

    But now, as you have probably read or heard, they are using a figure of 30% concentration to define “sea ice”.

    So that‘s where it all went! Go figure.

    Well, one mystery solved. On to the next.

  335. Lonny Eachus

    “Now please go away.”

    I’ll do as I choose. Not what you want me to do, you silly little man. By the way that was an Ad Hominem, or are you going to say that I don’t know what that means as well?

    Hahaha. From what you wrote there? Yeah, I’d say that’s pretty good evidence that you don’t know what it means.

    Now, I am very serious: please go away. If you do not stop sniping at me, I am going to report you for abuse. I have some serious business I am trying to do here, and you are getting in the way.

  336. Lonny Eachus

    I have tried to read all the posts here, but I don’t think anyone has mentioned the “temperature scandal” out of New Zealand:

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100017977/climategate-the-scandal-spreads-the-plot-thickens-the-shame-deepens/

    It seems that NIWA was in close communication with CRU. What are the odds of that?

    (To answer my own question: pretty good, actually.)

  337. adam

    Lonny, i’d suggest you hold off until Phil posts again denying that the leaked emails/code have any significance. it seems the only audience you have left is one immature girl with nothing worthwhile to say.

    of course, i’m assuming everyone has left because they think the thread dead, not because they can’t or don’t want to engage in honest debate with you or me or whoever else isn’t fully on board the AGW train.

    and i’m assuming Phil will actually post about this again. i get the feeling if he read this entire thread and saw the legitimate criticisms people like you have levelled at AGW, he wouldn’t want to address them. it’s easier to just marginalize us with claims that we’re “ignorant” and “deniers.” it’s certainly easier than the potential embarrassment of being exposed for not having honestly, skeptically considered the SCIENCE behind AGW.

  338. Cryothere

    Lonny, i’d suggest you hold off until Phil posts again denying that the leaked emails/code have any significance. it seems the only audience you have left is one immature girl with nothing worthwhile to say.

    Adam, Lonny has been pretty immature himself, Jacqueline just kicked his butt to show him the error of his ways. He isn’t an official inquiry team composed of scientists, and trying to masquerade as one is pretty laughable.

    i get the feeling if he read this entire thread and saw the legitimate criticisms people like you have levelled at AGW, he wouldn’t want to address them. it’s easier to just marginalize us with claims that we’re “ignorant” and “deniers.” it’s certainly easier than the potential embarrassment of being exposed for not having honestly, skeptically considered the SCIENCE behind AGW.

    Somehow I think that your estimation of Phil taking notice of Lonny’s lies is edging into fantasy. Which is typical of your kind.

  339. Eris Schroeder

    Sock puppet Adam said:

    “it’s easier to just marginalize us with claims that we’re “ignorant” and “deniers.” it’s certainly easier than the potential embarrassment of being exposed for not having honestly, skeptically considered the SCIENCE behind AGW.”

    You and Lonny are denialists pure and simple. No matter how much you strive to put a coating of scientific knowledge on yourselves you’re still antiscientific know nothings.
    A poster on Pharyngula sums up the types of denialists eloquently:

    “They are spreading lies, whether they are aware of it or not. Personally, in terms of climate denialists, I use the following categories
    1)Ignorant–They really are unaware of the mountains of evidence showing that we’re warming the planet
    2)Wilfully ignorant–they’ve gone out of their way to keep themselves ignorant of said evidence
    3)True denialists–there is no way they can truly be ignorant of the evidence but they still refuse to acknowledge it
    4)Wingnut, tin-foil-hat conspiracy theorists–think the entire scientific community is scamming the world’s population
    At this point, I’d say most fall into categories 2 and 3, but there are a surprising amount in category 4.”

    What category do you fit into, Lonny the liar and sock puppet Adam?

    Eris

  340. Jacqueline

    #347. Lonny Eachus hysterically whined:

    “Hahaha. From what you wrote there? Yeah, I’d say that’s pretty good evidence that you don’t know what it means.”

    Well, now you’ve shown beyond reasonable doubt that you definately are a denialist. If you don’t like what you read, regardless of it being true, then you ignore it. Even more reason not to trust your take on Climategate.

    “Now, I am very serious: please go away. If you do not stop sniping at me, I am going to report you for abuse. I have some serious business I am trying to do here, and you are getting in the way.”

    You sure are a sore loser Lonny. If you hadn’t been so egotistical as to think yourself equal to an official inquiry team, made up of professional scientists, I’d not have mocked you. Please report me to Phil. I’m sure he needs at good laugh at a whining overly sensitive AGW denier like yourself. “The mean skeptic called me out! BWAAAAH!”

    “Consider the “ignore” switch turned on from here on out.”

    You are loquacious considering that you’re supposed to be ignoring me. Another reason why your words aren’t to be trusted. Lonny you are a liar.

    “I have some serious business I am trying to do here, and you are getting in the way.”

    Mr big serious man, equal to a whole inquiry team of scientists are you? More like an egomaniac AGW denier that thinks folks are gullible enough to swallow his BS.

    JS:)

  341. Lonny Eachus

    @350 Cryothere:

    I admit that I made one post much earlier that was pretty silly. But to say that J “kicked my butt” is pretty funny. All she did was make an entire series false personal attacks. That doesn’t mean squat. She even admitted that she attacked me without even looking at the evidence I was pointing to.

    And THEN… and this is the kicker… she accused me of making an Ad Hominem attack against her because I wrote “please go away”! She doesn’t even know what it means, but she was doing it herself all evening!

    Ah, and yet another call for an “official inquiry team”. Are you sure you aren’t someone showing up here under two different names? And please: where do I “masquerade” as a scientist? I keep getting these charges leveled at me but I have no idea where they are coming from.

    And once again, if you were to go look at that particular WUWT page to which I linked, I defy you to point out where it does not contain legitimate criticisms. So far, nobody has been able to do so.

    My “lies”? Now that is a curious statement. Can you point out where I “lied”?? I really am curious. I don’t recall doing so. I would be interested in knowing where you think that is.

    @adam

    Oh, the heck with them.

    I appreciate that you have taken the time here in the last couple of days to present some reasoned arguments. I may not be perfect, but I have also tried, in my own way. To be honest, the main reason I have been adding the last few posts is that not only might it get some of the word out to a few people yet, it is also a good way for me to keep track of the issues, for constructing my own summary.

    Have a nice day. :0)

  342. Chris Winter

    Phil,

    I just want to say you’ve done a good job in both your posts on (to use the common moniker) “ClimateGate” and in your responses to various comments. It’s a damn shame there are so many people who just can’t be bothered to check a few facts and employ a little reasoning.

  343. Chris Winter

    Spectroscope (#237) fumed: “The ‘temporary’ stepping aside of Phil Jones might end up being something like twenty- thirty years after the investigations result – as they should – in criminal charges being filed and Jones (along with other Gorebull Warmer Fraudsters) being convicted of fraud and serving a lot of time in a federal penitentiary!”

    Ah, the true skeptic returns! So you’ve examined all the evidence and your opinion as an attorney is that there’s a solid case against Dr. Jones, eh? So which federal peniteniary are you hoping he gets? Leavenworth? Perhaps the Supermax in Colorado?

  344. Lonny Eachus

    On the sea ice comment I made above:

    After having looked into it a little more, I see that depending on who is doing the calculations, the “definition” of “sea ice” today can range anywhere from 15% and above to 30% and above. It seems to me that for the sake of consistency in science, this figure should be standardized. It would appear that using a different percentage today (sometimes twice as high) than was historically used (15% up until 2002 or later) cannot help but confuse some calculations.

    The Arctic sea ice has indeed been trending slowly toward retreat, but it has been doing so for at least 30 years. So it cannot be shown that CO2-based warming is causing it. The trend started before the supposed effect.

    As for the paper that appears to show CO2 climate forcing from the Vostok ice record, in the paper Climate change and trace gases, James Hansen 2007, Hansen states:

    “Despite multiple careful studies, uncertainties in the ice–gas age differences for the Vostok ice core remain of the order of 1 kyr.”

    Somebody please show me, then, how there is sufficient time resolution to show forcing after a 600 to 800 year lag. That would be completely buried in the time uncertainty. If you don’t know when the CO2 came from within 1000 years, there is no way to say that temperatures in any given 100-year period, for example, were caused by CO2 climate forcing after a lag of 600 years. You still might be able to see a sequence, but there is just too much time uncertainty to connect your forcing with the earlier event.

    And would you people please stop using terms like “whined” and “fumed” and “wailed”? This is supposed to be an intelligent discussion, not some elementary-school creative writing class. You can write what you want, of course, far be it from me to say otherwise. But it looks pretty silly, and you are also attributing attitudes to people and their words that may not exist.

  345. Lonny Eachus

    Does anybody here besides myself get the vague impression that Jacqueline, Cryothere, and Chris Winter share the same apartment, if not actually being the same person?

    I could be wrong. Just a feeling.

  346. adam

    Adam, Lonny has been pretty immature himself, Jacqueline just kicked his butt to show him the error of his ways. He isn’t an official inquiry team composed of scientists, and trying to masquerade as one is pretty laughable.

    kicked his butt? i guess this whole thing is a matter of opinion. you disagree with Lonny (though you’ve presented no actual arguments against his that i am aware of), so Jacqueline’s (similarly fact-less) railing against him is pretty appealing, i guess. if we wanted to try quantifying “immaturity” i have no doubt that Jacqueline with all her high-minded “wailing,” “crying,” and so on would come out on top, but whatever. it’s not worth arguing about and is beside the point anyway. what you think of him has nothing to do with whether or not his arguments are sound.

    Somehow I think that your estimation of Phil taking notice of Lonny’s lies is edging into fantasy. Which is typical of your kind.

    what lies? if you’re going to make blanket assertions about the intended and factual bases of Lonny’s arguments and questions, at least present something tangible to back them up. you can’t just say “lies!”, make snide, insulting comments and then run away into the next room satisfied that victory is yours. that’s how 9 year olds win arguments, not adults.

  347. adam

    @adam

    Oh, the heck with them.

    I appreciate that you have taken the time here in the last couple of days to present some reasoned arguments. I may not be perfect, but I have also tried, in my own way. To be honest, the main reason I have been adding the last few posts is that not only might it get some of the word out to a few people yet, it is also a good way for me to keep track of the issues, for constructing my own summary.

    same for me, i’ve been compiling a lot of your comments as well as saving my own for future use. i hope you don’t mind. i find this:

    It’s a damn shame there are so many people who just can’t be bothered to check a few facts and employ a little reasoning.

    the most interesting part about this whole thing. if we were to look back across this thread, we’d find that far and away the people presenting actual facts and figures are the AGW skeptics. meanwhile the AGW proponents’ arguments generally amount to “REFER TO THE MOUNTAINOUS EVIDENCE” accompanied, in my mind, by a lot of vague gesturing toward somewhere else.

    we are referring to the evidence, and we have over and over again. no one seems willing to engage us honestly on the level of the same evidence you refer to. instead we just get, in Lonny’s case, personal attacks, or in the case of me and several others, ignored.

    and then we’re accused of not employing reason. evidently this individual has not read the arguments he is attempting to belittle. how overwhelmingly unsurprising.

  348. Jacqueline

    #357. Lonny Eachus whined:

    “Does anybody here besides myself get the vague impression that Jacqueline, Cryothere, and Chris Winter share the same apartment, if not actually being the same person?

    I could be wrong. Just a feeling.”

    Lonny, I’d like to disabuse you of that paranoid notion. I only post as myself. Not that anyone will take notice of your opinion, after I showed how untrustworthy you are.

    Anyway, seeing as you are still here long after the party has finished you may want to watch some informative Youtube vids on Climategate.

    Enjoy!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7nnVQ2fROOg

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P70SlEqX7oY

    JS;) Phil Plait I love you ’cause you’re so free of woo woo woo! XXX

  349. Bob Faulks

    lonny/adam, the link at #348 you posted comes from the Daily Telegraph. A paper notorious for badly researched journalism. I mean the likes of Melanie Phillips, a known evolution denier writes for that rag and her research is the worst I’ve seen. So you’ll have to come up with a source that is more reputable, or risk looking like cranks.
    As an open minded sceptic I’m willing to engage you in debate if your sources aren’t known to be bad sources of information.

    If you’d like to write a paragraph or so detailing what your position is I will read what you say. Even better if you can put some links to papers or reputable sources in support of your I will be able to evaluate your data .
    Please don’t use vague words in your post. Please be specific in your use of words. I’ve had experience with debaters that employ such tactics and I find it a waste of my time.

  350. Bob Faulks

    Lonny/adam as a sceptic I should back up my words on the daily Telegraph being a paper notorious for shoddy journalism:

    http://www.badscience.net/2009/01/the-telegraph-misrepresent-a-scientists-work-on-climate-and-then-refuse-to-correct-it-when-he-writes-to-them/

    As you can see I’m not the only person that thinks them a bad source for information.

  351. adam

    lonny/adam, the link at #348 you posted comes from the Daily Telegraph. A paper notorious for badly researched journalism. I mean the likes of Melanie Phillips, a known evolution denier writes for that rag and her research is the worst I’ve seen. So you’ll have to come up with a source that is more reputable, or risk looking like cranks.
    As an open minded sceptic I’m willing to engage you in debate if your sources aren’t known to be bad sources of information.

    i didn’t post any links to the telegraph. in fact, the only links i’ve posted have been from sciencedaily and realclimate. feel free to go back and read my posts–my position on the matter is stated pretty clearly throughout. posts 81, 85, 89, 95, 108, 297, 310…

    i have many more sources of information. i don’t see any reason to use them until someone willing to engage on an even level (not sneering, not insulting, not ignoring the actual issues being raised) comes along.

    and if i were you i would be very careful about carelessly bandying about the term “bad sources of information.”

  352. EgoTrip

    “As Real Climate points out, it’s not what’s in the files that’s interesting, it’s what’s not in them: nothing about huge conspiracies, nothing about this all being faked. If this is such damning evidence, where’s that evidence?”

    That’s Right,, use a website the emails shows is RUN BY THE MISCREANTS SUBVERTING THE DATA to show there was no problem. Great catch. *facepalm*

  353. Bob Faulks

    “i have many more sources of information. i don’t see any reason to use them until someone willing to engage on an even level (not sneering, not insulting, not ignoring the actual issues being raised) comes along.”

    Well Lonny/adam if you won’t tell us about your position on AGW I guess that you’re not ready for a debate then. Since I’ve engaged with you on an even level.

    “and if i were you i would be very careful about carelessly bandying about the term “bad sources of information.”

    Now you’re the one sneering. All because I pointed out that your “information” source was disreputable. I wonder if your other sources include such laughable “scientific” luminaries as Chris Monckton?

    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2008/07/moncktons_triple_counting.php

    Since you don’t want to share your position on AGW with us, and all you seem to be doing is whining, then you may as well find some blog that is more amenable to your childish diversionary tactics. Because all you’re doing here is demonstrating how you have an aptitude for wasting our time.

    Jacqueline was right about you when she wrote:

    “Well, now you’ve shown beyond reasonable doubt that you definately are a denialist. If you don’t like what you read, regardless of it being true, then you ignore it. Even more reason not to trust your take on Climategate. ”

    Let me make a prediction here. You’ll just whine on about the mountains of evidence ( of the extremely dodgey kind) for your delusions. And whine on about how you are characterized (correctly) as ignorant and a denier. You’ll try to take the high moral ground if someone insults you, because you think that politeness equals truth, and then go off claiming victory because no one disected your crappy articles from the Huffington Post, The Daily Telegraph and the old wino around the back of the liquor store that tells you that he is a climate scientist.

    By the way Lonny/adam, when you refer to yourself you should use a capital ” I”, like this. Not “i”. If you can’t even master basic english what hope have you of understanding, let alone debating, the complex subject of climate change.

  354. Chris Winter

    Lonny Eachus hallucinated: “Does anybody here besides myself get the vague impression that Jacqueline, Cryothere, and Chris Winter share the same apartment, if not actually being the same person?”

    Man, you are way off base!

  355. Lonny Eachus

    @361 Bob Faulks:

    First, I insist that you stop referring to me as Lonny/adam, or for that matter referring to adam as Lonny/adam. He is definitely not me and I am not amused.

    If you have some reason to suspect that we are the same person, which is what you seem to be implying, then just say so. Don’t pull that kind of garbage.

    Thanks for pointing out that the Telegraph is not a reliable source. I did not know that. Other sources have reported the same thing, however.

    I don’t HAVE a “position” on AGW, “Bob Faulks”, so it’s not possible to give you one. And it’s pretty weird, on a skeptic’s blog, that you would insist that I take a “position”. I have simply seen some things that I feel are suspicious and I am trying to track them down and find out the truth. Some of the evidence is pretty strong.

    Since you brought up unreliable sources, if I were some people who have posted here (or reading the posts for that matter), I would look into RealClimate just a bit more, as EgoTrip stated. The whole site has been run by Mann and friends. I would hardly call that an impartial source of information, when it comes to anything about climate. Especially under the current circumstances. I don’t think anybody can really expect to be taken seriously if they cite RealClimate as a source right now.

    What I find the most interesting however, and pretty darned amusing, is that a number of recent posters seem to have had not just similar writing habits, but amazingly similar attitudes, and even make the same the same kinds of insults and the same spelling mistakes. But I won’t post my conclusions about that here, I’ll leave it up to the readers. I think they can tell easily enough what’s going on.

  356. Lonny Eachus

    I will be just a bit more specific: I would be willing to bet real money that several of the accounts that show on this page share a single IP address. I will let readers guess which ones I mean.

    If anybody wants (or is able) to check the IP addresses of adam and me, however, I can guarantee that they are different. And I don’t know where he lives, but I bet you would find that the origination point of his IP address is nowhere near my own.

    That wouldn’t actually prove anything, of course. But it would be pretty good evidence.

  357. adam

    Well Lonny/adam if you won’t tell us about your position on AGW I guess that you’re not ready for a debate then. Since I’ve engaged with you on an even level.

    why didn’t you read the paragraph preceding the one you quote? here, i’ll paste it:

    i didn’t post any links to the telegraph. in fact, the only links i’ve posted have been from sciencedaily and realclimate. feel free to go back and read my posts–my position on the matter is stated pretty clearly throughout. posts 81, 85, 89, 95, 108, 297, 310…

    notice the part in bold? or is it just that you want a stated position in brief? ok, here it is: the science isn’t settled.

    that work for you?

    what, exactly, has led you to believe all i am doing is whining? it’s pretty obvious you haven’t taken the time to go back and read my posts. if you’re asking me to repost everything, forget it. do a little work. scroll up.

    and as has been mentioned, Lonny and i are not the same person. i also encourage you to ask Phil for IP address information if you don’t believe us.

    Now you’re the one sneering. All because I pointed out that your “information” source was disreputable. I wonder if your other sources include such laughable “scientific” luminaries as Chris Monckton?

    sneering? no. i’m warning you that this discussion will rapidly descend into useless attacks and cries of “ad hominem” if you aren’t willing to discuss the merits of an argument simply due to the fact that you refuse to trust the source. i could just as easily cast doubt on warmist sources of information as being bad because of past indiscretions and mishandling of facts and data. CRU is one example. as a gesture of good faith, i will consider any and all sources of information you present, provided they are able to stand on their own merits and reasonably back up their facts.

    By the way Lonny/adam, when you refer to yourself you should use a capital ” I”, like this. Not “i”. If you can’t even master basic english what hope have you of understanding, let alone debating, the complex subject of climate change.

    oh, excuse me, I wasn’t aware I had to capitalize letters to your liking in order to make a coherent argument. I type all day long for my job, and my fingers, hands and wrists become fatigued. for this reason, I do not capitalize properly in every instance if it is not necessary. reaching for the shift key every few words becomes irritating when you do it all day. But hey, I‘ll start right now if it’ll make you feel better. Anything for you, honey.

    Couple pointers, since we’re on the subject: punctuation usually goes inside quotations, “English” should be capitalized and question marks usually follow questions. I’m going to be extra generous today and assume that you can still debate intelligently despite these mistakes.

  358. Lonny Eachus

    @370 adam:

    I probably overstated the case about RealClimate. I have to remember that it is the message, not the messenger, which is important. Nevertheless, I would caution people to take anything they get from there with a grain of salt right now.

    The longer this goes on, the more I suspect that the person behind these several accounts that have been posting recently, is really just a kid who is trying to play in the wrong league.

  359. Bob Faulks

    Lonny Eachus Says:
    “I don’t HAVE a “position” on AGW, “Bob Faulks”, so it’s not possible to give you one. And it’s pretty weird, on a skeptic’s blog, that you would insist that I take a “position”. I have simply seen some things that I feel are suspicious and I am trying to track them down and find out the truth. Some of the evidence is pretty strong.”

    So being suspicious of AGW scientists isn’t a position? The “pretty strong” evidence you have is just your skewed conspiracy monger perceptions actively misconstruing what has already been explained. Don’t pretend otherwise. You’ve also shown how lax your attitude is to credible sources of information when you posted the link to the Daily Telegraph.

    “I will be just a bit more specific: I would be willing to bet real money that several of the accounts that show on this page share a single IP address. I will let readers guess which ones I mean.
    If anybody wants (or is able) to check the IP addresses of adam and me “

    And we’ll also let the readers see that you and adam share the same traits in insults. It doesn’t take a degree in psychology to see that you two are “ clones”. A different IP address means nothing, ever heard of internet cafes?

    I’ve read your earlier posts adam. They are mostly you whining about legitimate scientists. How about you go and get qualified as a climate scientist and find out how real scientists go about their business before you try to cast them as villains. And then you write

    “of course, my own speculation isn’t science.”

    And then you go on to try to interpret some climatic events like you think you’re a real climate scientist. Same MO as your clone Lonny methinks.

    adam Says
    “ok, here it is: the science isn’t settled.”

    Except if you’re a denier, then the scientists are manufacturing the data and its all a conspiracy. Since this is Phil Plait’s blog I couldn’t do better than to quote his words.

    “This has become so politicized it’s hard to know what’s right and what’s wrong. I personally would be thrilled to find out the Earth isn’t warming up. I’d like my daughter to grow up on a planet that isn’t on the fast track to environmental disaster. But I have no stake in the claim scientifically either way; I don’t cling to AGW because of political bent or any ideology. I think global warming is real because of the overwhelming evidence pointing that way.”

    If the scientists are wrong about AGW the empirical scientific method will eventually produce enough evidence to show it. But at the moment AGW deniers are in a minority. Is that because the science points towards affirming AGW, or that AGW is just a myth created by the all powerful Conspiracy?

    “if you aren’t willing to discuss the merits of an argument simply due to the fact that you refuse to trust the source. i could just as easily cast doubt on warmist sources of information as being bad because of past indiscretions and mishandling of facts and data. CRU is one example. ”

    This is telling. If the source is a bunch of lazy reporters that are unwilling to correct their outright lies, then you can bet your bottom dollar that I’m going to reject it. Past “indiscretions and mishandling” of facts from “warmist” sources is more than likely active misreading by deniers (as in the Daily Telegraph and others) as well as misinterpretation of standard procedures by non scientists speculating about stuff they don’t understand.

    At the end of the day a bunch of skeptics , that have seen it all before with AIDS and evolution denialism, aren’t the ones you should be trying to convince. If you had any real and relevant data of your own the best possible argument would be to publish it in a respected peer reviewed scientific journal. That is the way real science is done. If you aren’t willing to do that then you’re nothing but time wasting cranks.

  360. Matt

    Climate change is not a issue because people don’t think its happening, its a issue because its the basis for a huge tax increase “to save the world.” Funny how almost all ideas that don’t involved increasing funding for government are given very little merit. Oh well Its not like India or China would follow these Climate Deals even if they did sign them which are going to make up most of the Carbon output of the next century. If you want to see how strong International law ask Iran if they have any Plans to stop making Nuclear Weapons.

    The issue isn’t that there is a Great Conspiracy. The issue is that the base data that so many other scientific use looks to be faulted. Whats more the original data is gone so no one can go back and look at it. It that doesn’t raise red flags then hell lets just push that Tax rate up to 100% on the air we breath because that IS what this is about. Its not about make the world saver its about who gets paid. Follow the money.

  361. Lonny Eachus

    @374 Bob Faulks, or whatever your name really is:

    I think it is pretty obvious to most people that I am not going to post from one IP address in Portland, and then a few minutes later from one in Dallas, or wherever he is. But once again, I suspect that if your accounts are not posting from the same IP address, they are at the very least in the same general neighborhood.

    But I think most people would bother anyway; as I stated before, I think most people can look at your posts and see what is really going on.

    The rest of your remarks are not worth answering. All you are doing is wasting everybody’s time. Please stop bothering decent people who are simply trying to hold an intelligent discussion.

  362. adam

    I’m done here. Bob Faulks has nothing relevant to add to this discussion, and everyone else is gone or doesn’t want to discuss the facts at hand.

    Keep flying the banner of the true skeptic, Lonny.

  363. Bob Faulks

    While I was reading your posts I found a few fallacies, and as a skeptic I’d like to show them to you since you have a hard time recognizing them.

    370. adam, or whatever your name is, Said:

    “ok, here it is: the science isn’t settled.”

    False dichotomy. Science isn’t binary, either settled or not but ongoing.

    127. Lonny Eachus, or whatever your name is, Said:

    “Well, it’s not true. Extraordinary claims need just as much or as little evidence as any other claim… but what matters is the evidence.”

    Equivocation. Extraordinary applies not to the amount, but to the content.

    You might want to look them up Lonny/adam:

    http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/mathew/logic.html

    When you send your scientific paper for peer review please make sure you tell me, otherwise you are still nothing but timewasting whining cranks.

  364. Lonny Eachus

    @378 Bob Faulks:

    “Equivocation. Extraordinary applies not to the amount, but to the content.”

    Obviously you did not understand my statement. There is no equivocation present. You are also incorrect in your assessment of adam’s statement. He was not using a false dichotomy, he was pointing out that others had.

    In fact, you have repeatedly monkeyed the statements and logic that I and others have used here… in every case incorrectly.

    You are just being ridiculous and everybody is tired of putting up with you.

  365. Chris Winter

    Lonny Eachus wrote: “And would you people please stop using terms like ‘whined’ and ‘fumed’ and ‘wailed’? This is supposed to be an intelligent discussion, not some elementary-school creative writing class. You can write what you want, of course, far be it from me to say otherwise. But it looks pretty silly, and you are also attributing attitudes to people and their words that may not exist.”

    For the record, I have never posted in this thread on the Bad Astronomy blog using other than my full real name. I’m using the DHCP server in a public library for Internet access, so it could well be that others using the same library at different times might have the same IP address. That would be purely coincidental.

    Regarding my use of the term “fumed”: If someone writes that a scientist who has not been charged with anything must be guilty of fraud and deserves a decades-long sentence in a federal penitentiary — when he is not even a U.S. citizen — then I submit that saying the writer is fuming is a fair call. Perhaps a snarky or sarcastic tone will induce the target of such messages to think a little. Straightforward argument works too seldom.

  366. Lonny Eachus

    @380 Chris Winter:

    If you want to assume emotions then that is your business. But if you make a habit of it, you could end up looking pretty foolish. Just sayin’.

    But it was the similarity between your writing and certain others that got my attention. Maybe it was coincidence, maybe not. I will keep an open mind.

  367. Buzz Parsec

    “There is no global warming” – AGW denier

    “There is no arrow” – Lope de Aguirre

  368. Bob Faulks

    #127. Lonny Eachus Says:

    “What you seem to be missing here is that all of our data of the historical PAST shows no cause-effect between temperature and CO2 concentrations. Actually, that is not true either… there is a strong correlation, but it is the other way around. In the past, temperature variations were followed about 800 years later by CO2 concentrations. All the evidence we had showed that temperature drove CO2, not the other way around.
    So it is the idea that CO2 can cause temperature shifts that is actually the extraordinary claim, and the claim that goes against all PAST evidence.”

    Lonny, you need to do your homework before spouting off like that. If you make a habit of it, you could end up looking pretty foolish. Just sayin’.
    Anyway, six minutes into this video it starts to explain the CO2 lags, and comes to the point eight minutes in.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=52KLGqDSAjo

    “Did you get that? The CO2 warming theory is the extraordinary claim. The claim that has to prove itself. Not the other way around.”

    “(Technically, of course, it is never possible to prove a theory completely… but they can be proven to be useful theories, if they are successful at predicting the future. That is the whole value of a theory: how well it predicts the outcome of events. So far, “CO2-driven global warming” has not predicted anything. Anything at all. Not..one..single..thing.”

    There aren’t really any peer-reviewed papers as such countering the “CO2-lags warming” meme, because it is precisely what you’d predict given the consensus theory of climate.
    The CO2 has to come from somewhere, right? Well, if you have warming after an ice age (google Milankovitch cycles, Lonny), eventually the permafrost starts to thaw and outgasses the CO2 that was trapped there. The released CO2 intensifies and prolongs the warming. In this case, the cause of the initial warming is increased insolation due to small changes in Earth’s orbit around the Sun, and CO2 is a feedback that causes more warming.
    Like most denialist arguments, this one winds up being a bit of an own goal. Eventually, we will warm the planet sufficiently to release the CO2 and methane now frozen in the tundra, and that will further intensify the warming, probably making it irremediable.

    “Did you get that? The CO2 warming theory is the extraordinary claim. The claim that has to prove itself. Not the other way around.”

    You need to learn more about CO2 too, Lonny. The situation is really quite simple. Earth is warmed by the light from the Sun, mostly in the visible spectrum. Earth cools by infra-red radiation. CO2 is transparent to visible light but absorbs infra-red light. Increasing the CO2 in the atmosphere reduces heat loss from the earth; so we get warmer. This is about as difficult or controversial as the proposition that if I drop a teacup off a roof, it will break when it hits the ground. Historically, I’ve never dropped a cup before- but so what?
    We’ve known about this mechanism for more than a century. Claiming that CO2-induced warming is an extraordinary claim is, effectively, claiming that if I insulate my house and don’t turn down the heating, it’s extraordinary to claim that my house will get warmer!
    Feeling foolish yet Lonny?

  369. Bob Faulks

    #379. Lonny Eachus Says:

    “Obviously you did not understand my statement. There is no equivocation present.”

    Yes I did you numbskull. You are using extraordinary to mean two different things. Which is equivocation. Denying it doesn’t magically change the fact.

    ” You are also incorrect in your assessment of adam’s statement. He was not using a false dichotomy, he was pointing out that others had.”

    Here is what adam said

    “or is it just that you want a stated position in brief? ok, here it is: the science isn’t settled.”

    This is where he is stating his position on the matter. If you don’t believe me me he states before the quote above

    ” feel free to go back and read my posts–MY position on the matter is stated pretty clearly throughout”

    So you are wrong on that matter as you are on most of the things you post.

    “In fact, you have repeatedly monkeyed the statements and logic that I and others have used here… in every case incorrectly.”

    This is a case of projection, where you project your actions onto me.
    You appear to post on this thread and the other AGW thread, in order to conduct a smear campaign and cast doubt on AGW science. You also post links to Anthony Watts, a known denier, and the Daily Telegraphs distortions and lies. I have no doubt that you’re a denier trying to push your propaganda.

    “You are just being ridiculous and everybody is tired of putting up with you.”

    So you claim to speak for everyone eh? Jacqueline’s accusation of arrogance is backed up by your smug tone.

    No Lonny, you’re the one who is being ridiculed, especially when you post quotes from Frank Tipler the physicist for Jesus, which reports the propaganda of such a pseudoscientific AGW denier as Chris “not a climate scientist” Monckton.

    Lonny, you need to engage your brain before spouting off like that. If you make a habit of it, you could end up looking pretty foolish. Just sayin’.

  370. Lonny Eachus

    @384 Bob Faulks:

    Well, now you are just reinforcing the impression that you and Jacqueline and those others are all the same person.

    You took my comment about projection, turned around and projected it on me; thus demonstrating my point. In fact you have been helping many of my points throughout your comments.

    I don’t mind. Keep going. Your insults mean nothing to me. They aren’t making ME look bad.

  371. Bob Faulks

    So then Lonny, when are you going to stop whining and try to refute the rebuttal I posted (# 383) of your ignorance concerning science?
    Or will you continue to deny that you are looking extremely foolish right now?

  372. Bob Faulks

    “In fact, you have repeatedly monkeyed the statements and logic that I and others have used here… in every case incorrectly.”

    Funny how you don’t go into detail about that. Merely assert it. Whereas I point out your fallacies and you either deny or actively misconstrue that I have done so. I’ve no doubt that you will do so again, to try to distract everyone from the fact that you are ignorant of over a hundred years of empirical science concerning CO2. I sprayed my tea all over my computer laughing at your ignorance of science.

    As well as quoting religious cranks like Tipler, who thinks that Chris Monckton’s word is a good source of information. Or the Daily Telegraph, or denier Anthony Watts. My sides still hurt from laughing at that.

    I wrote
    “We’ve known about this mechanism for more than a century. Claiming that CO2-induced warming is an extraordinary claim is, effectively, claiming that if I insulate my house and don’t turn down the heating, it’s extraordinary to claim that my house will get warmer!”

    Lonny you suck at anthropogenic climate change denialism. You can either continue to be foolish, or you can learn more about the real science behind AGW. The choice is yours. Now I’m going to have to explain to my wife why I’ve been laughing so much.

  373. Lonny Eachus

    @386 Bob Faulks:

    Ah, but I had already rebutted that rebuttal… long before you made it. Haven’t you been reading the posts?

    Like I stated: keep on going, all you like. It’s not me you are making look bad.

  374. evolved hydra

    Wow, I actually read the entire discussion! It was a good one, at least until it devolved into ad hominem attacks on the part of the AGW consensus side. I wonder if these posters realize what a disservice they do to their cause by using such tactics. If AGW is as serious a problem as it is appears at face value–and it may very well be–we can’t afford to be name-calling everyone into submission. That is not the way minds get changed.

  375. You’re missing the point about the relevance of the leaked climategate emails and data. They are telling us several thing. First is that Jones, Mann et all are proactively biasing the peer review process in favor of their preferred hypothesis. Second is that this group of people seems overly concerned about allowing those not in their little AGW cabal to review their work. Third is that this collusion is international in scope. Fourth is that when confronted with contrary evidence, they go out of there way to discredit that evidence, science be damned. Fifth, they promote sites like RealClimate and Wikipedia as being neutral, while in fact, they are both under strict control of the cabal (G. Schmidt for RC and W. Conolley for Wikipedia). Sixth, they systematically cherry pick data and play fast and loose with statistical analysis in an effort to bolster their case. Seventh, they have no qualms about hiding data to avoid complying with FOIA requests. Finally, the entire IPCC case is driven by the ‘science’ coming from CRU and GISS, which now appears to be highly suspect.

    You can keep your head in the sand to avoid the reality of the situation, or you can
    step up, show some courage and confront the issue head on. Even a vehement pro AGW’er can’t rationally conclude that the science is settled in light of the evidence.

    As an AGW skeptic (I used to be an AGW proponent until I made the effort to understand the science for myself), all I want to see from this is open debate, which in climate science circles has been absent for over a decade. Here are a few links which talk about the real science.

    http://www.palisad.com/co2/slides/siframes.html

    http://www.palisad.com/co2/eb/eb.html

    Regards,

    George

  376. danilo

    as a human being and part of what they called god:s creation.only god,the creator can predict the exact events to be happened for the next time in our life on this planet.scientist whom defend and practices their knowledge is part of these creation or a member of our society as human being,what we observed now is only a global issue,in case that we can encounter this,we can react at the same time were affected,what we need is to prevent it and to practice in our daily life

  377. Lonny Eachus

    This may be beating a dead horse by now, but here is some of the latest news. (And yes, this article is from the Telegraph of the UK, but remember, it is the message, not the messenger, that is important.)

    “On Tuesday, the Moscow-based Institute of Economic Analysis (IEA) issued a report claiming that the Hadley Center for Climate Change based at the headquarters of the British Meteorological Office in Exeter (Devon, England) had probably tampered with Russian-climate data.”

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100020126/climategate-goes-serial-now-the-russians-confirm-that-uk-climate-scientists-manipulated-data-to-exaggerate-global-warming/

  378. Ron

    I started following the email issue by using Google News Alerts for various combinations of appropriate words.

    There actually was very little news about it, but the opinions were copious and fairly evenly split. Stolen v. leaked v. hacked pretty much became the watch words to the opinions.

    I decided the only way to get to the bottom of it was to read the emails themselves and form my own opinion. I spent the better part of one day reading and then more hours through two weeks.

    Before any more comment, my educational background is in math and physics. I do understand the scientific method and human nature. (If possible, to some reasonable level.)

    I am 68 years old and have been through many huge media hypes, (Global Cooling, Y2K, ZPG, pitted windshields, Global Warming, Flu (bird, swine, Asian, West Africa) epidemics, etc. etc. etc.)

    One important lesson. The more something you cannot personally observe is hyped, the more likely it is to be false or overkill. A simple example is airport security. Really, I can’t take my fingernail clippers behind security. Ok, I’ll buy them at the magazine store behind security. You really think it is necessary for that grandma with the walker to be stripped searched but not 18 year old Mohawk Been Laden behind her?

    To my point.

    After reading more than sufficient emails, there is only one set of conclusions that an honest person would reach.

    1. These people are unethical. An ethical person with truth on their side need only demonstrate it. An unethical person must shut off skeptics.

    2. The emails clearly demonstrate a manipulation of times to come to certain results. i.e. select dates (eras) wherein they get favorable result.

    3. They destroyed data. A first year science major knows that data is never destroyed and is, in fact, backed up by multiple copies. One who looses or destroys data is not to be trusted.

    4. They attempted to avoid the release of data. Release of data is the best way to substantiate conclusions and thwart criticism. If one is confident in the conclusions, data requests are welcome.

    5. These people tried to shut down skeptics. In the science world, one who demonstrates another’s errors SHOULD be thanked by the one who made them. I believe it was Nels Boar who got a thank you from Einstein when Boar corrected him. (Memory of the incident is vague at this point.)

    The conclusion. If GM is so absolute and “so widely know by all scientists,” then those involved would have no reason to do what they did. I do note however, that slowly but surely the skeptics are becoming more willing to speak out. Until the emails were stolen, hacked or leaked, enough careers were destroyed that skeptics were fearful of pointing out errors over fear of their jobs.

  379. John in San Diego

    AMAZING in the same article that you accuse “deniers” of being merely “ideology driven” you blatantly state a hypocritical point:

    ” Imagine you’ve dedicated your life to some scientific pursuit. You do it because you love it, because you want to make the world a better place, and because you can see the physics beneath the surface, weaving the tapestry of reality, guiding the ebb and flow of forces both subtle and gross. Then you find that people start attacking you with flimsy evidence, politically motivated vitriol, and even elected officials say that what you are doing is a “hoax”. How do you react?”

    It is absurd to expect any AGW promoting scientist to allow any contradictory evidence to surface, it places their entire belief set and their very careers which put their food on the table at risk. “Politically motivated vitriol”? Like what, please, leftists voting green?

    Let me ask you, HOW MANY ROMAN CATHOLIC PRIESTS ARE ATHEISTS?

    Would you expect said clergy to provide an objective viewpoint on whether God exists or not? Openly present data which contradicts their very belief set and all they live for?

    you yourself say they devote their life to it, it’s no different. at all.

    you’ll possibly claim it’s okay if the data is flawed out of the ideology that man’s been harming the planet anyway so riding the coattails of AGW legislation is good for the environment. Well YOUR ideology driven flawed logic so far has brought Kyoto, which served only to allow corporations to exploit massive third world populations Kyoto exempted from binding emissions controls. The per capita and overall output of GG emissions from China and India soared, the former eclipsing that of America- whose service economy has stagnated because you convinced us all we’re harming the planet by driving our cars. Using energy to cook food and LIVE.

    Which indulges the primary ideology that drives most of you: Self loathing and guilt for being born a “have”.

    I wouldn’t mind but EXCUSE ME YOU’RE RUINING THE PLANET TO DO IT.

  380. Sarah Pressman

    “I don’t mind. Keep going. Your insults mean nothing to me. They aren’t making ME look bad.”

    From where I’m stood Lonny you look like a right fool. You’re so blinkered that you deny when you’ve been shown to be ignorant of the basic facts of carbon dioxide. Not only that but you go on to post more conspiracy BS. Epic fail on your part! All you deniers have is mud to sling and your ignorance of any real science.

  381. Molecular symbiote

    297. adam Says

    “you are aware of the fact that Briffa’s work on more than one occasion has been shown to contain egregiously cherry-picked data, right? Briffa uses, among other things, the Yamal tree ring series to make his point–to show his hockey stick, as it were. close examination of the data (which took Briffa about 10 years to finally–and reluctantly–give up) has shown the Yamal-based series to be the only one (out of five) with anomalous 20th century measurements. interestingly, an update made to the Polar Ural series used in other earlier papers (Briffa’s included) collected in 1999 (a year after the paper you mention was published and a year before Briffa’s most widely publicized paper was published) shows no damning uptick, no indication of a widespread, sudden warming trend. hence the move to the nearby Yamal region, which DID happen to show–at least in some samples–a dramatic upswing.
    but there is every indication that, overall, the Yamal data was largely within a normal range. how do we know this? the two Russian scientists, Hantemirov and Shiyatov, who collected the data for the Yamal series used for Briffa 2000 were also published in 2002 using the same data set, only they didn’t cherry-pick certain anomalous tree data nor did they use unmentioned additional data or quietly merge datasets from disparate regions as Briffa apparently did, and their findings indicate nothing more than a stable temperature trend. Briffa claims the methods he used on the Yamal data differs from those of the Russians’, but can’t adequately explain why he selectively chose to use samples that, using his own methods, show an uptick, but left out samples that didn’t.
    to his credit, Briffa himself in September of this year grudgingly admitted the possibility that an updated, revised version of his study using more sensible, logical sample selection may be a more appropriate indication of what trends exist(ed) in the region, if any. this revised study shows no dramatic temperature change.
    i might mention that Briffa’s papers based on these data have been used as the basis for several other peer-reviewed, “conclusive” papers commonly cited by the alarmist community.”

    Lets have an update on this to debunk the mush that adam comes out with:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/09/hey-ya-mal/

    and for the technically minded amongst you:

    http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/people/briffa/yamal2009/

  382. Bob Faulks

    388. Lonny Eachus Said:
    December 14th, 2009 at 1:17 am
    “@386 Bob Faulks:

    Ah, but I had already rebutted that rebuttal… long before you made it. Haven’t you been reading the posts?”

    I can see no rebuttal from you Lonny. What I can see is your ignorance that weathering causes CO2 to enter the atmosphere after a covering of ice has gone from the ground.

    Like I stated: keep on going, all you like. It’s not me you are making look bad.

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