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'Climategate' - What next?

Paul Hudson | 20:02 UK time, Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Like many of you I've been watching the story at the University of East Anglia develop with interest. I first became aware of the news late last week, but because of my weather and filming commitments couldn't deal with it myself and so passed the news on to some of my colleagues in the BBC's environment and science team, including our environment analyst Roger Harrabin who wrote about it on saturday morning, and Newsnight, who covered the story last night.

As you may know, some of the e-mails that were released last week directly involved me and one of my previous blogs, 'Whatever happened to global warming ?'

These took the form of complaints about its content, and I was copied in to them at the time. Complaints and criticisms of output are an every day part of life, and as such were nothing out of the ordinary. However I felt that seeing there was an ongoing debate as to the authenticity of the hacked e-mails, I was duty bound to point out that as I had read the original e-mails, then at least these were authentic, although of course I cannot vouch for the authenticity of the others.

There are clearly some very serious issues that arise from the information that has been released. Some people are suggesting that spin has infiltrated science. Others worry that there are suggestions that the peer review process has been compromised and those with contrary views are being frozen out. There are issues regarding data; how has it been used? But those scientists that are convinced that man is responsible for global warming are troubled that all this takes attention away from the real issue here: that action is needed to be taken from the world's biggest polluters to cut carbon dioxide emissions. This was certainly the message that came across the morning, in this story on our science website.

How will this all be resolved? Momentum does seem to be growing, from people on both sides of the argument, behind calls for a full independent enquiry that can once and for all get to the bottom of the many issues that have been raised. A recent survey showed that climate scepticism in this country is growing, and this episode may increase it further. Some would say that an enquiry is the only way to bring clarity to the science of global warming and climate change that has enormous implications for all of us.


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  • 1. At 8:45pm on 24 Nov 2009, RobWansbeck wrote:

    Great to see this blog.

    'Climategate' - What next?

    Let's hope it's science.

    All this could have been avoided if the scientific method had been followed. Perhaps in the future the media could help by questioning the claims of any scientists who fail to fully disclose data and methodology. I realize that the desire for headlines will override this but at the very least an item could state 'Full Data and Methodology NOT Disclosed'.

    The intended audience could then reach their own conclusions.

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  • 2. At 10:13pm on 24 Nov 2009, minuend wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 3. At 10:15pm on 24 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    "A full independent enquiry". How do you find someone independent to oversee the enquiry? The government tells us the Climate Change Committee is independent. But it's full of yes-men. We've had lots of "independent enquiries" in the past!!! Hmmmm.

    As a retired "independent" scientist, who has never been employed by big-oil or big-coal or the climate industry or the government, I'd would be quite prepared to serve on an independent enquiry. Fat chance.

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  • 4. At 10:59pm on 24 Nov 2009, Andydaws wrote:


    you seem a tad obsessove on the subject....

    Think of it this way...Paul's ex Met Office. It's a fair assumptiion that He retains links with individuals there. When mails about him personally start doing the rounds in a small professional community, it won't take long for someone who knows him to see them, and pass on a 'word to the wise'.

    A long way from being party to the whole 'FOI' file, isn't it?

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  • 5. At 11:05pm on 24 Nov 2009, vidl wrote:

    "that action is needed to be taken from the world's biggest polluters to cut carbon dioxide emissions"

    Why? Please explain.

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  • 6. At 11:37pm on 24 Nov 2009, echofloripa wrote:

    read this piece below, one of the emails sent by Michael Mann, regarding the article of BBC's Paul Hudson questioning the GW on the face of the current cooling trends:

    Michael Mann wrote:
    Subject: BBC U-turn on climate
    extremely disappointing to see something like this appear on BBC. its particularly odd, since climate is usually Richard Black's beat at BBC (and he does a great job). from what I can tell, this guy was formerly a weather person at the Met Office.

    We may do something about this on RealClimate, but meanwhile it might be appropriate for the Met Office to have a say about this, I might ask Richard Black what's up here?

    They are discussing about this article:

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  • 7. At 11:43pm on 24 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Thank you for the timely update Mr. Hudson.

    Perhaps in your next blog you could address one or more of these questions:
    1. Do you hope that anyone who believes that they have a computer simulation that accurately models the global climate is deluding only themselves?
    2. Considering the problems that have been alleged with the methods of the Climatic Research Unit; should the IPCC reports be taken seriously, even if NASA's and other's research don't have similar problems?
    3. How warm do you think the Medieval warming, Roman warming and little ice ages were - since the CRU seem to believe that they were much like 1850? How likely is it that an Eskimo was observed kayaking up a Scottish river if this is true?
    4. Aren't the scarier scenarios envisioned in the run-up to "Hopenhagen" just idle guesses?
    5. It's often said that predicting the weather is completly different to predicting the climate. Isn't it funny how similar they are in their success rate?
    6. If the current lull in solar activity continues might we be in for another mini ice-age or, God forbid, an actual ice-age?
    7. Have people commented on your blog from the computers at EAU CRU? Have you checked?
    8. Are they reading this right now?
    9. Do they feel any shame for the damage that they have done to the subject they study, to the global temperature record, to legitimate researcher's careers and to science in general?

    Many thanks for doing overtime on your meteorological work in order to keep us informed.

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  • 8. At 11:55pm on 24 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Sorry, forgot one:

    10. Do you remember David Bellamy? Isn't he an excellent television presenter and a true friend of the environment? Why don't you see him on BBC anymore?

    Many thanks again.

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  • 9. At 11:58pm on 24 Nov 2009, echofloripa wrote:

    I quite liked the newsnight piece, and the professor from Virginia. Although showing very biased views from this other professor about cold and warm years, to justify the cold years, it put quite clear the points.

    One thing I would you Paul from commenting or covering in a post is about the fortran code and the terrible code and comments that without a doubt show that the data was created or manipulated to not show the decline.

    Congratulations for this blog

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  • 10. At 01:29am on 25 Nov 2009, Pete-R wrote:

    "Climate Gate" - What Next ?

    Indeed. Well, what we have next is indeed the momentum of the rather narrow BBC articles continuing. Roger Harrabin doesn't seem to allow interactive comments on his Blog (from what I can tell) and yet tonight he produces the story: "This year is top 5 Warmist"


    It contains a number of odd statements:

    1) ROGER: "The UK's weather service projects that, unless there is an exceptionally cold spell before the end of the year, temperatures will be up on last year. Climate sceptics had pointed out that the temperature rise appeared to have stalled in the last decade or so. "

    2009 looks indeed it will be a Top 5 year, but indeed it will also be the 12th Year since 1998 that no new Warming record has been broken. In order to have "New Global Warming" which is supposed to be +0.2C / decade (IPCC et al) you do actually have to break the global record (per year) more than once ever 12 years! Otherwise there is no new radiative forcing at work supposedly from AGW causes!

    In fact since 1998 to 2009 (12 years) the trend from Hadley is actually +0.0C / decade - absolutely neutral. The graph here shows 2009 in context and it is still unremarkable as shown here:


    So I don't understand Roger's link between sceptics saying temperatures ain't risen for a decade and 2009 being Warmer actually since only 2005? Especially odd seeing as the current El Nino is well documented as being the cause of 2009 being Warmer than usual. Infact what is very unusual is that considering we do have a 'Moderate' El Nino at work, why hasn't it broke the Hadley 2005 temperature which was also a El Nino year? Surely this shows the underlying 'base' temperature is not able to support breaking any records except that of 5th. Only getting 1st will you convince anyone we have new Warming being measured, and to get a decadal "Warming Trend" you need that 1st to be every 2-3 years not infact less than every 12 years and still counting.

    2) ROGER: "The last ten years have been in the top 15 warmest on record. And this summer the UK enjoyed temperatures higher than the long-term average. Although the Met Office was pilloried after forecasting a "barbecue summer", it was their rainfall forecast, not the projected temperatures, that was wrong."

    I don't see the link between a UK Summer Forecast, which is barely ONE GRID POINT on the Global Model Mesh, and the Global Temperature? Most odd comparison indeed.

    3) ROGER : "Next year we will see the influence of the warming El Nino current, and the Met Office says there is a 50% chance that global temperatures will hit an all-time high."

    He He! Of coarse we only have to go back to the infamous January 2007 incident when the Met/Hadley proudly announced 2007 would be the new Warmest Year on record due to the exceptional El Nino which was taking place in January of 2007. Of coarse it is a matter of scientific fact that a moderate La Nina then started and 2007 ended up being rather a cooler year. I'm not sure the Met Office/Hadley progress on understanding ENSO phases has progresses so much in 2 years they can now confidently predict 2010 will break global records even 2 months earlier than their failed 2007 prediction? So, you need to read the Meto Press Release below from 2007 and then consider a bit of Deja Vu here! ;-|


    Link above from 4th Jan 2007 "2007 forecast to be the Warmest Year Yet - Each January the Met Office, in conjunction with the University of East Anglia, issues a forecast of the global surface temperature for the coming year."

    Hmmmm, so now they issue it in Nov as they know so much more do they ;-D There reasoning was: "The potential for a record 2007 arises partly from a moderate-strength El Niño already established in the Pacific, which is expected to persist through the first few months of 2007."

    So, like I said, Roger should be so quick to let his fingers get burnt less than 3 years since the last failed forecast of new global records.

    4) Actually 4 is now directed ar Prof Phil Jones, which seems rather more on-topic. Back in 2003 he made a famous forecast which I have been tracking every year, and it is from this BBC article at the time. I think everyone should agree scientistis predicting the future should be judged on their results as compared with real measurements? It's ironic the article below from the BBC archive in 2003, is actually about 2003 'failing' to meet expectations of another global record - hmmm deja vu again? But right at the end of the piece are the famous words of Prof Jones:


    "Globally, I expect the five years from 2006 to 2010 will be about a tenth of a degree warmer than 2001 to 2005."

    So his prediction in 2003 was that the average temperature for 2006-2010 would be 0.1C higher than the average temperature from 2001-2005. Actually if you believe the concensus view of +0.2C / decade then it's a fair assumption one might make that two 5 year averages would rise by +0.1C in a Global Warming scenerio?

    Well, by comparing the average so far from the Hadley database itself:

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

    Then we have:

    2001 0.400
    2002 0.455
    2003 0.457
    2004 0.432
    2005 0.479

    2006 0.422
    2007 0.403
    2008 0.312
    2009 0.439 (so far)
    2010 ---

    Anyone that is even average at Maths will see, that were we stand today, with 2009 more or less in the bag is:

    2001-2005 average of 0.445C
    2006-2010 average of 0.394C

    So, with just year to go (2010) then temperature has actually DROPPED by -0.051C, which is actually the opposite sign and half the magnitude of Prof Jones prediction (so far).

    But, let's be fair if 2010 came in at 0.65C that would pull the average up to 0.445C, so that would mean No Change! Of coarse 0.65C would indeed be a new Warm Record by some magnitude considering 1998 came in at 0.515C!

    Oh and for Prof Jones prediction of the 2006-2010 average to come in at +0.1C above 2001-2005 - so that means the 2006-2010 average he predicted was for +0.545C, then 2010 will have to post a temperature of just 1.15C - so basially The Sun had to Super Nova ;-O

    So, tell me another fairy tale next year won't you!

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  • 11. At 06:40am on 25 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:


    "One thing I would you Paul from commenting or covering in a post is about the fortran code and the terrible code and comments that without a doubt show that the data was created or manipulated to not show the decline."

    the missing word suggests that what you are saying is for Paul NOT to comment on the code and data? Or are you asking him to actually comment on the code and data? I hope the latter. In my opinion the mess that the code is and the mess that the data are in are far more important than the emails.

    Yes, Paul, please let's have some comments on the code and data.

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  • 12. At 08:04am on 25 Nov 2009, Sparklet wrote:

    Totally agree with the comments above - how can we take any forecasts seriously when the temperature data has been manipulated in the manner described in the CRU Harry read me file.
    Nor is it only CRU temp data that is questionable. The attached shows the placement of temperature monitoring stations in the US


    they even have photographs of the locations of some of the weather stations and the temperatures they have recorded through time. Go to the bottom of the page to see one that is well placed compared to one that has been swamped by urbanisation and is now situated near two air-conditioning units and a car park!!!

    Copenhagen seems to be far more about politics than climate and the BBC seems to have gone into overdrive pushing the agenda.

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  • 13. At 09:05am on 25 Nov 2009, LabMunkey wrote:

    Paul, i fully appreciate that you are somewhere between a rock and a hard place here. But the content of the emails- as damaging as they are (despite best efforts to label them as out of context/irrelevant/jokey) are the side issue. It's the fudged data and code that's a huge issue.

    When will the bbc comment on that or are they just hoping it will all go away before people realise there's two sides to this story?

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  • 14. At 09:25am on 25 Nov 2009, minuend wrote:

    "5th warmest year on record", claim the MET Office.


    This from a organisation where its scientists manipulate data to enhance warming. An organisation that predicted a "barbecue summer" and who have failed to predict the seasonal weather for over 3 years.

    Pull the other one, it's got a bristlecone pine attached to it.

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  • 15. At 09:39am on 25 Nov 2009, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Climategate has lifted the lid on a scary world where honest scientific enquiry left the building long ago.

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  • 16. At 09:54am on 25 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    There is a news item today, though not picked up by the BBC, that Pres. Obama recently went ice fishing in Michigan. Ice fishing in Michigan? in November? A very early event because if there is ice on Lake Michigan in November it is too thin to walk on in November. This early event should have given a clue to the most powerful person on earth that perhaps climate theory of a warming planet is wrong. He has yet to comment on Climategate but Sen Inhofe has and is driving for a full enquiry which could see the US do a U-turn in climate policy. I have yet to hear any report of this on any BBC news report. Newsnight does not catch the little people so is not really a news program but a comment program. Please get this onto the News!

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  • 17. At 11:05am on 25 Nov 2009, minuend wrote:

    From the Daily Mail, quote, "Another (email) appeared to call for pressure on the BBC after a reporter suggested that evidence for rising temperatures since 2001 was thin."

    What was the nature of that pressure and did it come from Richard Black?

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  • 18. At 12:38pm on 25 Nov 2009, seanm wrote:

    Why was the code manipulated?

    Don't get bogged down in detail people. Just ask this question. You have been lied to, why? Don't let the storm take over the story or this will be brushed aside.

    Why was the code manipulated??

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  • 19. At 12:39pm on 25 Nov 2009, FrancisTurner wrote:

    You can put me, and a lot of the more "nuts and bolts" critics of AGW (e.g. Steve McIntyre) as Lukewarmers. We don't deny the the earth has warmed up over the last century but we do wonder
    a) if the current temps are unprecedented ot not
    b) if the cause is humanity
    c) just how much warming there has been

    In order to get some answers to this we have tried to look into the science and discovered that it is next to impossible to replicate some* of the results (e.g. the HADcru temp series) without help from the scientists who did them. As Willis Eschenbach explains very clearly here - http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/24/the-people-vs-the-cru-freedom-of-information-my-okole%e2%80%a6/ - these scientists seem to be determined to continue to obfuscate their working. This seems to be counter to the heart of the scientific method and, also, somewhat suspicious.

    In particular we wonder why if as you write "those scientists that are convinced that man is responsible for global warming are troubled that all this takes attention away from the real issue here: that action is needed to be taken from the world's biggest polluters to cut carbon dioxide emissions" they aren't willing to make the effort to show us how/why they have reached their conclusions, but instead seem to make a big effort to hide the hows and whys.

    *some of the other results are rather easy to replicate once you find a "trick" to "hide the decline" or similar but oddly people seem to object when we criticise the trick.

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  • 20. At 12:46pm on 25 Nov 2009, seanm wrote:

    Good post Pete-R but you have forgotten something.....

    The children, think about the poor children who will never see Polar Bears, oh hang on a minute, they've survived warmer times ok think about the disappearing species, oh no hang on a minute deforestation is irradicating more species than climate change.

    Act on co2. ie cap the developing countries who's economies can't be manipulated and create a revenue stream from our own. People won't see this, they'll be busy protecting the children. Their children.

    This is so refreshing to have come from the BBC though, they're almost allowing open mindedness, whatever next Zeitgeist screenings`;-)

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  • 21. At 1:11pm on 25 Nov 2009, DavidCognito wrote:

    > Complaints and criticisms of output are an every day part of life, and as such were nothing out of the ordinary.

    For some reason, I'm not surprised that you learnt nothing from the multiple expert responses that showed how factually wrong, confused and misleading your previous blog post was.

    * http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/10/a-warming-pause/
    * http://climateprogress.org/2009/10/13/the-bbc-hudson-what-happened-to-global-warming-hottest-decade-in-recorded-history/

    And no surprise that you would skip over the 'minor' issue of illegal, immoral conduct of those who stole the emails and are now crowing victory on the basis of a few cherry-picked words and phrases from them.

    And no surprise that you've missed the rather 'minor' detail that nothing from these emails or data have refuted any part of the *science*.

    Perhaps you should wait until there is something substantive to write about before penning another blog post - because this Fox News-style "I'm not saying there's any corruption, I'm just asking questions" is contemptible.

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  • 22. At 1:17pm on 25 Nov 2009, DavidCognito wrote:

    P.S. If we ignore the squawking of those who were certain that global warming was a hoax long before these emails were stolen, we can read the science based on thousands of different data sets from thousands of scientists all over the planet that clearly shows global warming is real and is much worse than feared just a few years ago:


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  • 23. At 1:56pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    You guys are just worried about the code? Wake up. The data was just as bad. Garbage-in-garbage-out is a phrase used to describe bad information being fed to a computer giving useless results.

    These geniuses took it to a whole new level:

    They put garbage data into a garbage program and managed to get it to give whatever answer they wanted! Nobel Prizes all round!

    Here's the laureates' winning equation: *drumroll*

    Garbage into Garbage = Whatever you want!!

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  • 24. At 2:05pm on 25 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    Now that this out perhaps we can persuade the chools to stop brainwashing our children. The facts are these and endorsed by the IPCC, though not in plain view. If the greenhouse effect is to be believed then 95% is caused by water vapour. The rest, of which CO2 is but one of the gasses, is the 5%. We humans produce 3% of the total annual global CO2 budget. This is again endorsed by the IPCC and the US Dept of Energy. The rest is from natural sources. So even from these two figures our input would have minimal effect on climate.
    One problem with the greenhouse effect is backradiation, that which causes the warming, which violates the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics so cannot happen.
    One other fact that is ignored is that all ice core data places temperature rise BEFORE CO2 rise not as would be expected if CO2 was thedriver behing warming.
    All these facts have been known for years but HADCRUT has continued to advise the IPCC that we are the main cause of climate change through falsification and adjustment of data. May Copenhagen fail as it should!

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  • 25. At 2:20pm on 25 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    DavidCognito, do you realy expect a web site devoted to the Copenhagen Conference to tell the truth, not to be biased? Shame on you! Global temperatures have fallen during the last 12 years whilst CO2 levels have risen, mostly through natural causes! Human Caused fall I presume.

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  • 26. At 2:33pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Forget about CO2. The world isn't warming so it can't be CO2.

    Henrik Svensmark nailed the answer to the wall in front of them in '96 and they laughed at him. Here's what caused global warming, watch:


    They won't be laughing at Svensmark now. He got access to an old particle accelerator in Switzerland. The experiments are being done right now:

    They'll have irrefutable proof in the Spring, but you don't have to wait that long because the now quiet Sun is causing exactly what Svenmark predicted. Do none of these charlatans have a backbone? They all know the truth now. The first one among them who stands up and shouts "Stop!" will be a hero.

    Watch the Youtube video up there, it wasn't really warming; it's a cycle.

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  • 27. At 2:36pm on 25 Nov 2009, Spanglerboy wrote:

    # 21 (now you see it now you dont) and
    As you are clearly a man with all the answers please explain to Kevin Trenberth what is driving the climate
    'We are not close to balancing the energy budget. The fact that we can not account for what is happening in the climate system makes any consideration of geoengineering quite hopeless as we will never be able to tell if it is successful or not!
    If you can copy us in instead of posting links to realclimate, so much the better
    PS Kevin's mate Tom does not appear to be any the wiser for he says
    I didn't mean to offend you. But what you said was "we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment". Now you say "we are no where close to knowing where energy is going". In my eyes these are two different things -- the second relates to our level of understanding, and I agree that this is still lacking.

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  • 28. At 2:46pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Read #26

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  • 29. At 2:57pm on 25 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    SeanM #18. Nobody is answering us. Either nobody is at home or they are afraid to stick their heads above the parapet (mind you we know where they've been stuck for years).

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  • 30. At 3:15pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    [i]Sorry, repost to correct typos, you BBC moderators are world class, I'm sure that everyone is very grateful for your hard work[/i]

    Forget about CO2. The world isn't warming anymore so it can't be CO2.

    Henrik Svensmark nailed the answer to the wall right in front of them in '96 and they laughed at him. Here's what caused global warming, watch:


    They won't be laughing at Svensmark now. He got access to an old particle accelerator in Switzerland. The experiments are being done right now:

    They'll have irrefutable proof in the Spring, but you don't have to wait that long because the now quiet Sun is causing exactly what Svensmark predicted. Do none of these charlatans have a backbone? They all know the truth now. The first one among them who stands up and shouts "Stop!" will be a hero.

    If they don't own up long before Copenhagen they risk condemning humanity to the guilt of an original sin they didn't commit and a life of working to buy indulgences for breathing.

    Watch the Youtube video up there, it wasn't really warming; it's a cycle.

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  • 31. At 3:20pm on 25 Nov 2009, seanm wrote:

    We were lied to, I want to know why.

    Copy and Paste or roll over, your choice

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  • 32. At 3:45pm on 25 Nov 2009, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Jones must go.

    From blog WattsUpWithThat

    "At this point if Jones, Mann, et al had to start from scratch with just the raw data and their notes, could they even replicate their own work? Oops, no raw data, and apparently no notes. According to the emails, Jones doesn’t even seem to know exactly which stations he used to produce the “global average.”"

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  • 33. At 4:04pm on 25 Nov 2009, minuend wrote:

    Remember the eco-banner - We Are Only Armed With Peer Reviewed Science

    With AGW hypothesis falling apart because of ClimateGate the eco-activists will have to invent something more appropiate for their faith in Copenhagen. Perhaps - We Are Only Armed With A Bogus Consensus.

    Meanwhile AGW is being openly mocked:



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  • 34. At 4:25pm on 25 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:


    Hilarious, but so true.

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  • 35. At 4:48pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    In #30:

    I should say that it is Sir John Mason former Director-General of the Meteorological Office who laughs at Svensmark's correct explanation of global warming.

    Sir John has 12 honorary doctorates. He wrote a book about clouds but he doesn't know how clouds are made.

    Please read #30 and watch the video.

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  • 36. At 5:59pm on 25 Nov 2009, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #22 - DavidCognito
    "P.S. If we ignore the squawking of those who were certain that global warming was a hoax long before these emails were stolen, we can read the science based on thousands of different data sets from thousands of scientists all over the planet that clearly shows global warming is real and is much worse than feared just a few years ago:"
    It should be noted that while the paragraph about greenhouse gasses refers to an increase of 40% between 1990 and 2008 (18 years), the one about temperature rise refers the last 25 years (presumably 1983 to 2008). Why use a different period? Obviously because the temp. rise between 1990 and 2008 is much lower. To the uninitiated this difference of 7 years may not appear significant but the periods have been carefully chosen.
    The obvious question is, why if greenhouse gasses have been increasing so rapidly, have global temperatures barey changed over the last 10 years?

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  • 37. At 6:15pm on 25 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    If you work at CRU, or any of the climate departments which advised the IPCC then I hope that you have insurance that covers long-term unemployment.

    Svensmark's name must be spread far and wide, he is the man who solved the global warming problem.

    Please read #35; then:
    Understand what the moderators here allowed me to say about a former Director-General of the Meteorological Office; then watch the video.

    Henrik Svensmark's name will be known by everybody soon.

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  • 38. At 02:50am on 26 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    Three blog posts in a row with no unsubstantiated claims or logic errors; completely destroys my meme.

    Now I need a new meme.

    To those who have implied Paul Hudson has softened, changed, weakened, caved, altered, submitted or reduced his climate scepticism or opinion as a result of pressure or manipulation, I'd like to say in his defense -- as someone who disagrees with his stance in -- the following:

    Paul Hudson has staked his professional reputation on his point of view tirelessly and scrupulously for many years; he has volunteered and worked to promote his opinion and inform his audience in what he knows and what he believes, before the current fashion and in the face of substantial opposition.

    Mr. Hudson began this long, long before his blog started on the BBC, and he's retracted nothing at all since his blog began. This approach must have cost him greatly in time and effort, and I certainly admire his zeal and energy, despite disagreeing with his conclusions.

    He has demonstrated nothing of the character of a yes-man who would kow-tow for the sake of getting along; far from it in what I've seen.

    His original blog has not been taken down, and he often refers to and links to it without hint of diminished faith in what he has said.

    I'm aggravated, but sadly not surprised, that so many people who agree with the man turn on him so quickly and for so little cause.

    Mr. Hudson is clearly responsive to comments on his blog, without addressing specific comments directly; he's certainly done substantial study and his focus is, if anything, far more interesting now than when he started so few weeks ago -- regardless of what side of the many issues that comprise climate change one follows.

    Do I approve of his blog?

    I still think the BBC did a great wrong by lending its credibility to many of the statements contained in Paul Hudson's first few posts because they would falsely lend weight to obstructionist efforts. The objective truth of these statements could be tested and determined, and publishing them as they were worded was at best misleading.

    I also believe, however, that Paul Hudson can be an excellent spokesman for enlightened scientific dissent, and when he makes substantiable claims using clear logical arguments -- which he does more often than not, and without backing down from his point of view -- he's bringing to debate much of value. I'd love if my own views had as able a champion.

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  • 39. At 10:26am on 26 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    I have yet to hear of any of Climategate on the main BBC News. This is important not least because we will be overtaxed because of the belief in CO2 as a climate driver. If, as Dr. Svensmark thinks, CO2 has norhing to do with climate then all the political meanderings are for nothing and Copenhagen can be cancelled for lack of interest. The trouble with government is they like some Damaclesean Sword to hold over our heads to keep us in check and control what we do and climate change was just such a sword.

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  • 40. At 10:34am on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    I'll comment on the code. At least I'll comment on the analysis I have seen of the code.

    The internet 'experts' that appear to have looked at the code are from a commercial software background and not a scientific background. The commercial software sector spends more money on testing and error checking etc than on anything else in a project, because of the commercial risks, health and safety etc.

    This level of testing, documentation, error checking etc. is not used in scientific software created by scientists. That would include all sorts of research, such as astronomy, molecular science etc.

    Stuff like boundary testing was introduced into commercial software testing in order for large teams of software engineers to work on large projects for the military, flight control systems etc. It is also a way of making sure the flight you take to America doesn't drop out of the sky because of a software error. eg. it is largely there to reduce risks. In fact boundary tests don't implicitly mean that an error will be passed through the code.

    The use of Fortran is common and indeed preferred in the scientific community. You aren't going to get scientists to learn a load of different computer languages or even be bothered to much about putting comments in the code, whether they are climate scientists, biologists or nuclear physicists. Comments are primarily for teams of software developers, scientists are scientists, not software developers. They write the code to for their research, not for the mass market or for the space shuttle!

    Of course if you want code that, is fully tested, commented and is suitable to sale to the general public so that they can run climate models on their Nintendo Wii's, then the best thing to do is to employ some software developers, spend a lot more money to test the software and let the scientists get on with the research.

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  • 41. At 11:33am on 26 Nov 2009, Ally Gory wrote:

    "What next?" seems to be the revelation the manipulation of data is not isolated, as some have suspected for some considerable time.



    Two things arise from the above articles, if temperatures are not rising, what is the issue? Should we still be concerned about CO2 output when historic records confirm it has no undue influence on the climate of the planet? It seems we shouldn't, unless a new scientific consensus can be invented to show it has some other adverse effect that has never previously been mentioned. It also seems wise to consider the possibility of man's relatively recent proliferation on this planet has coincided with an unusually benign climate and we have no right to expect that to continue. Seashells are found in the middle of mountain ranges and confirm massive change has always taken place here, why should we think that will cease?

    Massive amounts of money have been extorted from taxpayers to line the pockets of those who spread the scare stories, where has that money gone?


    We are being taxed to subsidise windfarms and we will be well and truly mugged to pay for new nuclear generators, many years after they should have been built. Perhaps if we recognised the untruths we are asked to swallow about fossil fuels, bored sheikhs wouldn't be able to coat their supercars in gold.


    The scandal involves politicians, so there's no surprise there. It increasingly seems the decision to lie to the public is based on two things, it's very difficult for us to hold them to account and they know that. That doesn't mean we should stop trying.

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  • 42. At 11:53am on 26 Nov 2009, yertizz wrote:

    Paul, you wrote:

    'But those scientists that are convinced that man is responsible for global warming are troubled that all this takes attention away from the real issue here:....,

    True to form spin, sophistry, obfuscation etc, etc,....(YAWN)...etc...etc...ZZZZZZZZZZ.........

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  • 43. At 12:31pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    Re: Ally Glory

    The government does not use tax payers money to subsidise wind farms. Your tax payer money is not used to subsidise the ROC system.

    You also link to the 'Canadian Free Press' which is run by one women, probably from the owners house, at an American location (not Canada).

    I can see the quality of comments here rapidly dropping with this sort of referencing.

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  • 44. At 12:37pm on 26 Nov 2009, seanm wrote:

    The scandal involves politicians, so there's no surprise there. It increasingly seems the decision to lie to the public is based on two things, it's very difficult for us to hold them to account and they know that. That doesn't mean we should stop trying.

    I thought it was worth repeating. I'll never roll over. I hate liars.

    Act on CO2 - Says it all

    We'll control CO2 emissions when we can erect a sunshield to stop the 97% of the worlds CO2 being NATURALLY evaporated. They'll be taxing us to build this next. Or taxing milk because of the methane bi-product. Then again it's easier to get money from 4x4 drivers. So many less of them on the roads now isn't there.


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  • 45. At 12:37pm on 26 Nov 2009, JaneBasingstoke wrote:

    @Paul Hudson

    Your comments in Monday's blog about receiving emails are ambiguous. ( http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/2009/11/climategate-cru-hacked-into-an.shtml ) People don't automatically find your clarification on this page.

    The following is from a Daily Mail article, apparently published yesterday evening.

    However, Hudson does not explain why he sat on the controversial information for so long, but added: 'I do intend to write a blog regarding the CRU being hacked into, and the possible implications of this very serious affair.'


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  • 46. At 12:50pm on 26 Nov 2009, Rachel Blackburn wrote:

    "The commercial software sector spends more money on testing and error checking etc than on anything else in a project, because of the commercial risks, health and safety etc.

    This level of testing, documentation, error checking etc. is not used in scientific software created by scientists." - Paulville

    So what you're saying is that software which adjusts and models the data and predictions which are the only basis on which decisions are being proposed which will drastically affect everyone's lives ... are being written with less quality control and design oversight than that used in designing a car drinks holder? And you somehow think this is okay?

    You don't need a degree or lifetime's experience in software development to know the two basic rules of computer programming:

    1) Computers only do what they're told
    2) Garbage in = Garbage out

    "Harry" spent 3 years trying (and failing) to reproduce earlier CRU results from what is clearly a disordered, undocumented and randomly suck-it-and-see adjusted mess of data sets. But that's okay, you think, we should trash our economies because these bozos are "scientists" and so their multi-million pound research doesn't need to be held to the same standards as anyone else's?

    Science should have *higher* standards than the commercial world because its data and code *must* be made public so other scientists (favourable, neutral or opposed) can attempt to duplicate the work and its results.

    Whatever CRU and its associates at Hadley, NASA, Penn and elswhere are doing, it isn't science as we know it.

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  • 47. At 1:18pm on 26 Nov 2009, Jnhn Bowman wrote:

    The BBC article to which you refer above Mr Hudson, "Global warming science alarming..." contains the usual rehash of generalisations, mis-directions, half-truths and claims of future doom offered as evidence. This is not science. It seems that even after the HadCrut revelations, "scientists" are still practising to deceive and unhappily the BBC is a witting dupe.

    There is also the sin of conflation, deliberately running together two issues - effect and cause - as if they were synonymous. Whatever evidence there might be of global warming is not evidence of what is causing it. And please, please - science does not accept correlation as evidence, yet that is precisely what is being done, CO2 up, temperatures up, ergo... No evidence is offered showing that CO2 from fossil fuels has caused recent past observations. Observation over the past decade does not support the claim.

    As a meteorologist Mr Hudson, you will know that climate is an average of various physical events - known as weather in the short range - over a long periods. I believe 30 years is the usual averaging period. You, and anyone who understands averages, will surely know that part way through a data series it is meaningless and misleading to take extremes of any of the measurements as indicative of what the final result will be.

    So "growing evidence of climate change" is a nonsense.

    What the HadCRU e-mails are showing is what a poor state so called climate science is in, with its so-called scientists peddling their (religious) beliefs and politics as science.

    A sensible debate is long overdue but look how hard the "scientists" have plotted and intrigued to prevent one, for hath it not been declared ex cathedra by Eminence Gore, "The debate is over."?

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  • 48. At 1:33pm on 26 Nov 2009, Ally Gory wrote:

    Paulville, it seems the quality of posts plummeted with your effort.

    It is astonishing to claim the public does not subsidise wind farms. Of course it does and confirmation of that can be easily obtained with a simple search.

    Your point regarding the Canadian Free Press is what precisely? Are you saying Peter J Morgan, the author of the piece, is a woman? Maybe you're trying to tell us New Zealand, where he/she lives, is not in Canada? He may be more astonished to learn that than I was to learn you are unaware of British taxpayers' funding of wind farms.

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  • 49. At 1:33pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "So what you're saying is that software which adjusts and models the data and predictions which are the only basis on which decisions are being proposed which will drastically affect everyone's lives ... are being written with less quality control and design oversight than that used in designing a car drinks holder? And you somehow think this is okay?" - RachelBlackburn

    Those are your words not mine.
    I believe the code that has been analysed is for creating the Hadcrut figures, it isn't climate modeling software (climate modeling software is freely available to from various sources, including the code). The data provided to CRU for the creation of the Hadcrut figures comes from various nations around the world, from instrumentation. If you believe their data is 'garbage' you need to go to them.

    Quality control has to be appropriate to the context.
    You need greater quality control if the software is designed by a big team, it's really a part of the management of the software creation process.

    If you have one or two scientists writing some code for running their own research team, then there is not a great need for the same level of quality control, because that small group of people know the quirks of the software and know when it will give poor results or good results.

    It's not just scientists, in thousands of organisations there will be chunks of software that have been created for a specialised purpose for internal use. The fact that it has no comments, or hasn't got extensive error trapping doesn't matter as long as the person using it knows the quirks. If the software isn't for public release and isn't being used in a critical safety situation then as long as the people using it are happy it produces the correct results, then that is fine.

    The other point is that the data output is matched against other teams results around the world. So if the software were producing results that were out of sync with other teams, then the errors would be apparent.
    And of course this software producing the Hadcrut data is the one that suggests some recent cooling. So if it is faulty (as you suggest) it appears to be benefiting the skeptics.

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  • 50. At 1:55pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "It is astonishing to claim the public does not subsidise wind farms. Of course it does and confirmation of that can be easily obtained with a simple search." Ally Gory.

    The result of a simple search:

    You also specifically stated that tax money was used to subsidise wind farms. To quote you: "We are being taxed to subsidise windfarms..."

    The ROC system is managed by a government agency, it doesn't provide government tax subsidises to wind farms.

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  • 51. At 1:58pm on 26 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Paulville #40

    "The use of Fortran is common and indeed preferred in the scientific community. You aren't going to get scientists to learn a load of different computer languages or even be bothered to much about putting comments in the code, whether they are climate scientists, biologists or nuclear physicists."

    How wrong you are! You must be speaking from a position of zero knowledge. I spent many years in industry using Fortran codes. Code was not considered to be good or useable unless about 25% of it was comment. Checking (verification), validation, documentation and quality controls were vital. A large fraction of code development would be spent on the these activities. CRU obviously ignore this best practice, as you seem to think acceptable. Harry obviously thought the same way as me. He couldn't sort out the CRU code mess because of the lack of comment and zero quality.

    As for your comment #43 - well you are being very misleading or at best disingenuous. "The government does not use tax payers money to subsidise wind farms. Your tax payer money is not used to subsidise the ROC system." Wind farms are subsidised by the taxpayer because they do not pay the CCL (climate change levy). However the ROC subsidy is paid directly by all electricity consumers, although they aren't told about this unitemised, and increasing, addition to their electricity bills.

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  • 52. At 2:04pm on 26 Nov 2009, ManmadeupGW wrote:

    I am glad the BBC is starting to give this some prominence but certainly not the prominence it deserves.

    It has not covered the following in any detail whatsoever:-

    1. The possibility of a conspiracy to thwart the release of documents under the FOI act.

    2. The use of tricks and the hiding of data which showed cooling.

    3. The possibilty of illegal actions by a public servant in requesting other parties to delete emails.

    On other web sites I have been called a Denier, no one objectively reading the leaked documents can be left in any doubts as to whom the real deniers are.

    It also appears that playing around with the temperature record is happening in NZ?

    I have always been a great supporter of the BBC but when this story broke it was treated as just a leak of documents. If the BBC is to continue as a prime news source and justify the liscence fee it must ensure that people do not have to get news and information from the web.

    Finally what type of human being takes pleasure in the death of another, I think that tells me so much about the character of the person and their lack of credibility.

    It's over, the hypothesis that man made CO2 emissions will cause dangerous global warming is proved false the only man made global warming is from the UK scientists and now NZ scientists involved in the whole sordid tale.

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  • 53. At 2:05pm on 26 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Paulville #49.

    I cannot believe your excuse for writing shoddy and faulty software. You take my breath away with your acceptance of garbage code written with no checking and full of faults.

    You say "Quality control has to be appropriate to the context." However, the HADCRUT results are the basis for governments proposing spending trillions of taxpayers money and yet you think zero quality control is appropriate.

    You are unbelievable.

    I hope I don't use anything that you have been involved in.

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  • 54. At 2:40pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "How wrong you are! You must be speaking from a position of zero knowledge. I spent many years in industry using Fortran codes." PAW46

    That's the first time I have ever seen a software developer use the term - "using Fortran codes". Interesting. I guess Fortran users have a different terminology to the rest of the industry!

    The type of validation, documentation etc. is normally appropriate to the situation, best practice or not. If you have experience of software, then you know as well as I that not all code is well commented or documented.
    It isn't at all unusual for one developer to whine about another developers code. I myself have seen plenty of poorly documented code produced by professional developers.

    It only ever gets done correctly by software professionals, largely working for big organisations where team effort, safety and long term company profits are at stake. Individuals and small groups of scientists are very unlikely to follow the best practice.

    "Wind farms are subsidised by the taxpayer because they do not pay the CCL (climate change levy). However the ROC subsidy is paid directly by all electricity consumers, although they aren't told about this unitemised, and increasing, addition to their electricity bills." PAW46

    ROCS are not subsidies paid from taxes (at least we agree on that) and CCL exclusions are available to many different organisations.

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  • 55. At 2:49pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "You say "Quality control has to be appropriate to the context." However, the HADCRUT results are the basis for governments proposing spending trillions of taxpayers money and yet you think zero quality control is appropriate." PAW46

    I am appalled that an alleged developer has some ridiculous idealistic view of the industry that they worked in!
    If you want better quality software (which would no doubt produce the same results), then the answer is going to be more expensive!
    That's fine by me. The work has to be done.

    As I stated earlier and satisfying 'best practice', two other teams produce similar results using different software.

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  • 56. At 2:56pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "The use of tricks and the hiding of data which showed cooling." - wrapupwarm

    Maybe Paul Hudson would like to comment on this one :-)

    I'm sure his knowledge could throw some light on this. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink.

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  • 57. At 3:22pm on 26 Nov 2009, Kamboshigh wrote:

    Paulville, before you dig yourself an even bigger hole perhaps you should read the following link about the CRU code:


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  • 58. At 3:26pm on 26 Nov 2009, Ally Gory wrote:

    Paulville, I have already spent far too much time trawling through various suites to be able to provide a source to confirm taxpayers' money is subsidising wind farms. The funds allocated in the budget for "low carbon investment" total £50 billion and that does not include the government's ROC scheme, which is a levy imposed on energy consumers. I accept energy consumers and taxpayers are not the same, but the ROC scheme still represents a government levy on households and is, in essence, a tax. As far as finding a breakdown of the budget spending is concerned, life is too short, but there are various examples of government funding to companies developing both onshore and offshore wind farms. I'm really not interested in trying to convince you, as there seems no point.

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  • 59. At 3:30pm on 26 Nov 2009, seanm wrote:

    Just to keep putting us back on track every now and again...

    Results were fudged and then an attempt at a cover up was made.


    It's that simple

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  • 60. At 3:41pm on 26 Nov 2009, scott wrote:

    The fact that the mainstream media and the BBC are hiding this is a disgrace!!!!

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  • 61. At 4:08pm on 26 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Paulville: Yes you are digging a deep hole. Did I say I was a developer, which you claim twice. No I didn't. And I made damn sure the code that my people used was fit for purpose. Fit for purpose costs money. Good code costs money. CRU produce bad code because they prefer to spend the money on conferences and not on the basics of good code, dood data, good procedures, good archiving, good documentation. CRU have produced a crock of SH1T which wouldn't get past the door of a commercial organisation (unless someone like you ran it).

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  • 62. At 4:12pm on 26 Nov 2009, Rachel Blackburn wrote:

    "As I stated earlier and satisfying 'best practice', two other teams produce similar results using different software." - Paulville

    And would these "other teams" have been lead or directed by certain other "leading climate experts" we've seen incriminated in these emails as having no scientific scruples or principles when it comes to abusing data or position in support of their holy self-beliefs? I bet they would.

    In fact I'd go further. If other teams are producing the same answers as a set of data and programs we now strongly suspect to be corrupt, is that not reasonable suspicion to also conclude that exactly the same problems and contempt for scientific truth and method probably pervade said other teams?

    (There has also been a persistent discrepancy problem between the various 'adjusted surface' and the satellite temperature records. Perhaps now we can start to see why...)

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  • 63. At 4:31pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "I accept energy consumers and taxpayers are not the same, but the ROC scheme still represents a government levy on households and is, in essence, a tax." Ally Gory

    It is an adjustment based on carbon emissions. The issue of whether it is a good or bad thing is basically linked to 'the eye of the beholder'.
    A tax is a specific term, as is a subsidy.

    The alternative to ROCs, is higher insurance, higher costs elsewhere etc. in order to compensate for the impacts of climate change.

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  • 64. At 5:00pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "before you dig yourself an even bigger hole perhaps you should read the following link about the CRU code:" Kamboshigh

    The Briggs analysis appears to be for proxy data. Can't comment on his opinion.

    The code review I have seen is for the hadcrut data set.
    The Hadcrut data set is based on specific readings from weather stations.

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  • 65. At 5:02pm on 26 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Paulville: You're full of excuses. Why doesn't nuclear power get ROCs if "It is an adjustment based on carbon emissions"? Nuclear power emits far fewer emissions than wind power (that is a proven fact).

    The whole issue of emissions is now proven to be based on fraudulent data, so it is now irrelevant anyway.

    ROCs should be scrapped and then electricity prices would fall and we would all be better off.

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  • 66. At 5:08pm on 26 Nov 2009, Sparklet wrote:

    Re #41 Ally Gory

    Many thanks for the links - particularly the Canadafreepress article by Peter Morgan - fascinating, have added it to my list of 'Climate Change Blogs'.
    Unfortunately the warmist brigade have a habit of trying to divert attention by discrediting the sources - a favourite tactic when they can't argue with the content.

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  • 67. At 5:24pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "Did I say I was a developer, which you claim twice. No I didn't. And I made damn sure the code that my people used was fit for purpose." PAWB46

    Interesting, so you didn't apparently do any coding then.
    You actually make my point well. You were allegedly a manager of a team of developers, which is the exact environment I have worked in, but I also know that in different environments, people work differently.

    I wouldn't expect scientists to write code in the same way as someone writing code for a web site or aircraft engine control. If you expect that, then you would be unsuitable for some jobs, probably making some projects to expensive.

    Get real.

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  • 68. At 5:31pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "You're full of excuses. Why doesn't nuclear power get ROCs if "It is an adjustment based on carbon emissions"? Nuclear power emits far fewer emissions than wind power (that is a proven fact)." PAWB46

    Well despite what you think, i take your point.
    I think there is a case for nuclear to be in the ROCs scheme.
    In fact the Institite of Phycists did propose it.

    I know a pro-nuclear person who thought nuclear didn't need to be in it.
    Can't remember why he suggested it now.
    I disagree about the carbon footprint, most academic analysis shows wind and nuclear to be about the same gCO2/kWh. In fact the world nuclear association web site has quite a good list of carbon footprint research papers that show this, as well as energy payback ratios.

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  • 69. At 5:39pm on 26 Nov 2009, steve wrote:

    Paul firstly thank you for commenting on the issue.
    The BBC does appear to be treating this topic indifferently so it is good to see your blog.
    There appear to be some strongly held views in the replies to your blog which are not helpful to the debate. Speaking from conviction is in fact the nub of the problem.
    Karl Popper established that science is at it's most effective when it seeks to disprove a hypothesis, not prove it. When evidence points to a hypothesis being right we cannot claim it is proven, it is just more right than it was before. However, when evidence demonstrates the hypothesis to be wrong then we know undeniably that this is true.
    This is where my great disquiet lies. Neither side of this debate can be said to be practicing good science when they are focussing on trying to prove something.
    There is evidence on both sides that both data and method have been made subject to the wish to prove a hypothesis.
    This is junk science and will only cause waste of resources and time.
    Before we can get anywhere we now need a full enquiry into the North Anglian CRU's methods ,and those of others groups both pro and anti the GHG hypothesis.

    As to a previous posters understandable scepticism that it is not possible to find anyone to perform an independent review if true this speaks volumes for the regrettable state of GHG research, however, correctly formed scientific method is intolerant of belief and bias-it delivers facts and disproves hypothesis. This is the best we have and all we need to resolve this poor affair

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  • 70. At 6:05pm on 26 Nov 2009, yertizz wrote:


    Your patronising tone towards anyone who disagrees with you says all anyone needs to know about your arguments.

    Grow up!

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  • 71. At 6:05pm on 26 Nov 2009, SmokingDeepThroat wrote:

    The truth will out eventually. I believe that truth will be that global warming is all one big scam. By then science will have been damaged severely, as will have the reputations of the BBC and others. Personally, I've given up looking at the science pages on the BBC web site as it's pointless. They are completely drunk on the idea of climate change.

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  • 72. At 6:26pm on 26 Nov 2009, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #37 - FergalR wrote:
    "If you work at CRU, or any of the climate departments which advised the IPCC then I hope that you have insurance that covers long-term unemployment.
    Svensmark's name must be spread far and wide, he is the man who solved the global warming problem.
    Please read #35; then:
    Understand what the moderators here allowed me to say about a former Director-General of the Meteorological Office; then watch the video.
    Henrik Svensmark's name will be known by everybody soon."
    An interesting documentary, I hope that it will becoome better known. Do you know if it has been shown on UK t.v., I don't recall seeing it before? If not, it seems unlikely that it will ever be shown. I will just have to buy a copy.
    It seems like a likely theory, although CO2 enthusiasts will say that current temperature rises are "unprecedented". I suspect that the situation is very complicated and that no single theory is the answer.
    I am not surprised at the reaction to the theory or the difficulty in getting the paper published. It is a myth that scientists are open minded and rational. History shows us that often they are committed to their "pet" theories, which I suppose is only human nature.

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  • 73. At 6:26pm on 26 Nov 2009, Andydaws wrote:


    you're very, very wrong on two counts.

    First, on the ROC scheme. It's most certainly NOT based on CO2 intensity. Not only nuclear is excluded, but also large scale hydro. The rates of ROC allocation vary even between renewable technologies, in a way that bears no relationship to their carbon output, or effectiveness as generators, or GHG impact For example, landfill gas generation – which burns methane which would otherwise to to atmosphere, and is a far more potent GHG than CO2, receives 1 ROC/MWh generated. Offshore wind gets two.

    You've also forgotten that about 30% of ROC moneys aren't managed by direct sale/purchase of ROCs. The “buy-out” when a retailer can't produce enough ROCs is paid to OFGEM – a Government Agency. Who then disburses the money to the renewable generators pro-rata to their net generation. Now, if you can tell me how money collected by a Government Agency on pain of legal penalty, and then distributed directly by that Agency isn't a de-facto tax and subsidy, I'm all ears.

    Second re code. Back in the 1980s, I used a lot of fortran, for things like modelling blast impacts on power stations. I used to work in some cases with academics, and people in research institutes. The most complex bit of work I was involved in was modelling the probabilities of AGR fuel stringer sleeves failing due to impact on fuel channel walls during refuelling. It involved using a statistical technique called “convolution” to superimpose the statistical variability of the impact energy with the variability of the point strengths of the graphite sleeve.

    To be acceptable, that code had to be rigorously commented; tested to death; compared with experimental confirmation, and error trapped throughout.

    Further, I left that job to go back to University, where d to I did research of reliability engineering. The code developed under that had to be presented in my thesis, otherwise external examiners wouldn't touch it. Years later, I took an MBA, and did a dissertation on forecasting company failure from financial ratios. And had to present full documentation of statistical model and supporting code (i.e. methods applied on a statistical package) for the dissertation to be considered.

    So, please, don't try to tell me this pile of pooh is normal academic practice, or is the rule in fortran development. It isn't.

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  • 74. At 7:11pm on 26 Nov 2009, ManmadeupGW wrote:


    You make a good point:-

    "And would these "other teams" have been lead or directed by certain other "leading climate experts" we've seen incriminated in these emails as having no scientific scruples or principles when it comes to abusing data or position in support of their holy self-beliefs? I bet they would."

    Professor Wegman's report into the validity of the Hockey Stick graph raised concerns about cohorts. [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]
    A reader needs to scroll to page 41.

    So was it cohorts in cahoots or groupthink.


    1 Illusions of invulnerability creating excessive optimism and encouraging risk taking.
    2 Rationalizing warnings that might challenge the group's assumptions.
    3 Unquestioned belief in the morality of the group, causing members to ignore the consequences of their actions.
    4 Stereotyping those who are opposed to the group as weak, evil, biased, spiteful, disfigured, impotent, or stupid.
    5 Direct pressure to conform placed on any member who questions the group, couched in terms of "disloyalty".
    6 Self censorship of ideas that deviate from the apparent group consensus.
    7Illusions of unanimity among group members, silence is viewed as agreement.
    8 Mind guards — self-appointed members who shield the group from dissenting information.

    My view is Groupthink. It just occurrred to me it's all men like an old boys club could this be the problem?

    Thank you Wikipedia

    Thank you Mr Tim Berners-Lee without you we would never have been any the wiser.

    Thank you Larry Kealey I hope you are still around.

    No need to thank the bloggers who have been on the case for years they would do it anyway"

    "Who pay no praise or wages
    Nor heed my craft or art."

    extract quote by Dylan Thomas

    Nos Da

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  • 75. At 7:28pm on 26 Nov 2009, Tom wrote:

    Can't help thinking Paul, you missed the scoop of the decade by not publishing the Emails.
    Or are you so inured to the hypothesis of man-made CO2 = climate forcing temperatures?
    Though you studied for what must be a fascinating degree it must have given you a perspective of man's place in the firmament and of our insignificance, man changing the planets atmosphere? - we have grown a little above ourselves and to think we can somehow change it 'round' its nearly comical or mad.

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  • 76. At 7:29pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "It's most certainly NOT based on CO2 intensity. Not only nuclear is excluded, but also large scale hydro." - Andydaws

    Again those are your words not mine! I think there is a theme here!

    I actually agree with you.
    The ROC scheme is to encourage new low carbon technology, not old hydro-power schemes.

    Your description of the ROC scheme is generally fine. The fact is, no tax is collected from individual tax payers to pay into the scheme, which is what the original commenter suggested.

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  • 77. At 7:46pm on 26 Nov 2009, Andydaws wrote:

    "The ROC scheme is to encourage new low carbon technology, not old hydro-power schemes."

    actually, it doesn't even pay for new large scale hydro schemes, even when they incorporate pumped storage capability - Balmacaan won't benefit for example.

    As to "old" v "new technology, the Lough Foyle tidal flow scheme gets one ROC/MWh - London Array will get two. Which is the new technology?

    "The fact is, no tax is collected from individual tax payers"

    in fact, VAT isn't collected from individual taxpayers - it's paid by the retailer. And who pays the RO?

    The retailer.....

    A suggestion - when you're at the bottom of a hole, stop digging....FWIW, I've worked in the energy sector for the last 25 years or so, doing things that range from nuclear construction to designing systems that allow Retailers to manage their risk exposure to renewables markets. As far as I can see, you've read a Wikipedia article....

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  • 78. At 8:45pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    Well, that's impressive Andy.
    I guess we'll just have to get rid of electricity, then we won't have to pay any tax on it!

    If there was zero VAT on energy, the RO would still be paid.
    Would that mean higher prices?
    Possibly, but it isn't a tax.
    And of course VAT pre dates the ROC system.

    Seems like you're in the hole.

    I can't remember what the ROC distributions was in the last review. I seem to remember that marine energy got more, but i could be wrong.

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  • 79. At 9:05pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    Personally it doesn't surprise me that the code created for or at CRU may have been created in an adhoc manor.
    I and many software engineers have seen it happen with internally created code produced for a specific purpose.

    My understanding (based on the latest comments at Realclimate) is that the 'Harry' document is a log of the work the person upgrading the software did to improve the code and produce documentation etc.

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  • 80. At 9:24pm on 26 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Paulville #67

    Still jumping to conclusions. I never said I was "a manager of a team of developers".

    Garbage in, garbage out = HadCRUT

    Quality in, quality out = proper science

    I agree completely with Andydaws #73 & #77.

    "To be acceptable, that code had to be rigorously commented; tested to death; compared with experimental confirmation, and error trapped throughout." That's precisely what I have been trying to tell Paulville, but you put it better. That's what CRU should have done instead of creating a pile of crock. We now know they have wasted enough money to have employed the finest Fortran programmers and put in place a rigorous quality management system. If it can be done by private enterprise without subsidy, it can be done by academics over-endowed with funding. Question is why wasn't it?

    Well said sir, I couln't have put it better. Do we know each other?

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  • 81. At 9:31pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    "As to "old" v "new technology, the Lough Foyle tidal flow scheme gets one ROC/MWh - London Array will get two. Which is the new technology?" - Andydaw

    Not sure where you get those figures from. Decc figures show the new ROC figures as Tidal stream = 2 and offshore wind = 1.5:


    I have also not seen any info about the Lough Foyle scheme. The Strangford Lough marine current turbine is the only one that gets any ROCs currently, 2 per MWh.

    I prefer this site to Wiki :-)

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  • 82. At 9:42pm on 26 Nov 2009, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Remember that "realClimate.org" is run by Fenton Communications - they are PR advisors to Al Gore. Not really a go-to for factual coverage.

    Google for "realclimate EMS fenton gore".

    In fact Harrabin should be ashamed of the way he keeps running to them to find out what to say next...

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  • 83. At 10:29pm on 26 Nov 2009, Paulville wrote:

    Lets start a link war then hears Realclimate's response to some of the current CRU Myths:


    And here's one about the alleged NZ 'coverup':


    Evil commie stuff obviously, don't trust em! :-)

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  • 84. At 10:59pm on 26 Nov 2009, Mark Taylor wrote:

    @ FergalR:

    Have you heard the 555 - 55% story about Bellamy?

    @ Paul Hudson:

    Excuse me if I've missed it, but have you actually stated your opinion on the main issue involved here, ie. are you convinced that AGW is happening? I've not read all your blog entries, I admit, but I wouldn't like to think you were merely in the business of spreading FUD.

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  • 85. At 03:55am on 27 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    About code, specifically Fortran, with comments, one section in context of dendrochronology.

    Without comments, the code would be practically uninterpretable by the vast number of readers, and even experienced programmers would need to be mind readers to determine its purpose or intent.

    The purpose and intent per comments: "to facilitate calibration;"

    As an ad hoc program thrown together to allow an analyst to determine if a dataset approximates a set of known targets, not a sterling example of prize-winning literature, but arguably suited to that particular job if used once and only for the sake of calibration.

    Note that substantial sections of the comments are disclaimers saying that it's a fudge factor, artificial, etc.

    I'm not particularly interested in dendrochronology. Strikes me as an exercise in eyestrain. Can't comment on the validity of the data or of the statistical strength of the conclusions on their own.

    Odd fragments of phrases from Best Practices pamphlets from the 1980's as applies to production software applications -- on one side or the other -- notwithstanding, in and of itself evidence of nothing.

    (For those of you unfamiliar with 'ad hoc' vs 'production' code, not to worry. The vast majority of 'high quality production ready' software is no better than the mediocre ad hoc subroutine in question.)

    Code alone is just code; without testing logs, test parameters, user acceptance, design notes, the whole SDLC documentation.. (which I suspect this subprogram was too unimportant to require) drawing conclusions of the sort posted above from a piece of code is like picking a random hieroglyph out of the Rosetta stone and purporting to have proven the pyramids to be a vast fraud constructed in 1950 to bilk tourists.

    Find the same string of code used to directly generate a graph published without clear explanation of adjustments made, and one would show (to my mind) flagrant abuse.

    Find the same string of code repeated nowhere else, the results used for nothing but calibration, and the usual disclaimers, and you exonerate those involved of the very serious allegations of intentional wrongdoing extrapolated from this string of variables and calculations.

    So.. Anyone going to FOI all programs with exact copies of the lines in question, their output and documentation?

    Because, now that you know what you're looking for, FOI means you're hardly limited to the leaked file for your researches.

    Have fun.

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  • 86. At 10:48am on 27 Nov 2009, Ally Gory wrote:

    "Let's start a link war then..."

    Why would you suddenly want to do that Paulville?

    Your link re the New Zealand graphs was interesting and it does suggest conclusions were leapt to, but when a similar suggestion is made re the IPCC reports, personal attacks ensue. This is a significant part of the problem, the demand that only AGW favouring material is plausible and peer-reviewed and that anyone who questions it must have an ulterior motive or is simply stupid. Many have accused me of being stupid and I have given them plenty of reasons to do so, but when I see the reaction to anyone questioning AGW theory, I can see there is a problem. When I see information about the overestimate of AGW being given substantially less publicity than vague political promises, such as the recent Met Office release on Arctic sea ice, I smell a rat.

    The BBC's objectivity is not even questionable in this regard, it is non-existent. On another discussion thread, approximately 40 articles/news items have been counted as broadcast or published by the BBC in the past week, whereas the possibility that significant questions have been raised over the treatment of data supporting these claims has barely been mentioned. Surely the suggestion data was destroyed very shortly after a Freedom of Information request was submitted should raise suspicions?

    In general terms, even if those who merely seek clarification of claims were tolerated, that would be a substantial improvement over what has gone before. Those who are qualified to draw their own conclusions on man's influence on the climate and who do not adhere to the IPCC's claimed scientific consensus should not be silenced and any attempt to do so should be vigorously opposed. They may be wrong and they may not, but they should be heard. I note your first reply to my original post was a clumsy effort to undermine the source of the information rather than the information itself Paulville, which so typifies the eager champion of AGW theory. Your reaction is likely to entrench an opposing position, rather than stimulate debate, which you pretend to prefer. If you want to offer information to the likes of me, who understands only some of it, then fine, but don't insult others on this thread by pretending you are open to having your opinion changed by anyone who happens to hold a different opinion to yours.

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  • 87. At 10:52am on 27 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    New BBC story: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8381317.stm

    "Unusually warm and cold periods in Earth's pre-industrial climate history are linked to how the oceans responded to temperature changes, say scientists."
    "We reconstructed patterns of [the Earth's] surface temperature during those two intervals," explained Professor Michael Mann from Pennsylvania State University in the US, who led the study."

    Ah, thank you, Professor Mann, it was nature all along then. Oh, well, here's your pink slip, don't get your head get caught in the door on your way down to the unemployment office.

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  • 88. At 11:50am on 27 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    There seems to be some faith in the Peer Review system that is science. This sorry period has shown this to be a failure not least because these 'scientists' peer reviewed each others work. Jones also put pressure on publishers to remove non sympathetic periodical editors unless they toed the alarmist line and proscribed the sceptic view. Very scientific I do not think. In the old days peer review meant just that, you did not get to choose who did the review this was done by others. This was a system that produced good science. the HADCRUT system means that anyone who could disprove your theory would be excluded from making any comment. Disgraceful!!
    To systematically alter, deface, or invent data to prove a theory is fraud! To introduce this fraud as a guide government policy making is criminal.
    If data has to be altered to prove a theory it also means that the theory is faulty. AGW is faulty, nay false, for the reasons I have blogged above.
    It turns out that Russian RT is reporting this better than the BBC! Shame on you BBC News.

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  • 89. At 11:51am on 27 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Bwahahaha, now Mann is saying that:


    The lunatics have taken over the asylum.

    Celebrate everyone. Best wishes all.

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  • 90. At 12:16pm on 27 Nov 2009, Spanglerboy wrote:

    Ally Gory # 86
    Nice post. There are a lot of zealots that come on here to have their say and I have no problem with freedom of speech. You dont need to be a genius to spot them. As I have said many times, their approach to the issue breeds scepticism. Very often they travel in pairs but the Savlon twins seem to have gone quiet - or maybe they have transmuted!!!!!

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  • 91. At 1:15pm on 27 Nov 2009, WicstunTomo wrote:

    What amazes me about the whole climate issue is the stance taken by the media - esp. the BBC, they had already decided that Climate Change and Global warming was a scientifically proven fact and rarely if ever aired the other point of view! Ironic when they have just run a series about Charles Darwin who at the time was a sceptic of the establishment view on evolution!!
    For the record I was a farmer for 20+ years so have seen quite abit of the climate over the years. I am also a science teacher so let me explain how science works - people have an hypothesis which they then check with experiments & results after a lot of experiments and research this hypothesis or theory then becomes accepted as science 'fact' for example photosynthesis , even then the exact science 'facts' may change in view of new experiments.
    As I see it the idea of global warming / climate change is still in the hypothesis stage - so should not the media esp the BBC seek to give a fair change to all sides of the argument and not pre-decide what the science fact will actually become?

    The most worrying part to this route we have been led by the media and politicians is what it will cost, it may not be necessary and we make bad decisions based on only part of all the evidence!

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  • 92. At 1:37pm on 27 Nov 2009, Plato-says wrote:

    I see we're still in nothing-to-see-here-move-along mode.

    Interesting leader in the Washington Times


    And I see that climategate references on Google are now clocking up 500k new hits every couple of hours - now at over 9m since Sunday.

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  • 93. At 1:45pm on 27 Nov 2009, yertizz wrote:

    Just watched the 1o'clock News......

    Without pausing for breath or batting an eyelid they are STILL presenting climate change as if Climategate never happened!

    Unbelievable arrogance!

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  • 94. At 2:14pm on 27 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Yertizz #99:

    Me too. The BBC is fast becoming a joke. Correction, people around the world are becoming more aware that the BBC has become a joke and can no longer be relied on as a source of unbiased information. I am surprised the management at the BBC aren't aware of the harm they are doing themselves. But of course the BBC are not aware of what goes on in the real world (self-evidently).

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  • 95. At 2:21pm on 27 Nov 2009, Ally Gory wrote:

    I suppose it's not really funny, but it made me smile anyway. BBC News reported China had promised to cut their carbon emissions and then went on to explain in more detail what the Chinese were actually offering was a cut in the rate of growth of carbon emissions.

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  • 96. At 2:30pm on 27 Nov 2009, Vangel wrote:

    The independence of reviewers will not be an issue if the data and methods that produced the reconstructions are made available to the public. It is hard to lie if everyone is watching and can replicate the review process, which is why science demands transparency.

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  • 97. At 2:58pm on 27 Nov 2009, Plato-says wrote:

    BishopHill appears to know what is planned next by UAE etc


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  • 98. At 3:03pm on 27 Nov 2009, yertizz wrote:

    PAWB46 @ 94 says: But of course the BBC are not aware of what goes on in the real world (self-evidently).

    This is because it doesn't have to rely upon sourcing its own funding instead of being given £3.6 billion every year by way of the licence fee.

    The sooner this situationchanges, the better.

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  • 99. At 3:13pm on 27 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    So.. do any wish to compare the CRU leak with the 9/11 Text Message Leak, either as media events or as leak events?

    (Keeping in mind, American Thanksgiving weekend, so there may be heightened sensitivities about the 9/11 Text Messages so one wishes to be respectful.)

    Personally, though the climate is by far more important to me, I believe the CRU leak to be a molehill compared to the mountain of this other non-climate story.

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  • 100. At 3:15pm on 27 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Remember these strange clouds?

    When did they start to show up? Let me refresh your memory:

    Watch this video, only the first 2 minutes are in Danish.

    Henrik Svensmark will be remembered as the man who solved the global warming problem.

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  • 101. At 3:44pm on 27 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    Who is The Establishment, and who is not?

    Those who propose that climate change is real, that it is caused by GHG emission as a result of human activity, and that its effects will be bad in the long run have been making their case against the establishment since roughly 1988, although the solid science had been formulated since at least 1978, and some trace the start of environmental science to Rachel Carson's 1962 Silent Sprint.

    In 1988 it was an act of sceptism to reject the long-held Establishment view that CO2 was innocuous an the environment could absorb any amount without impact. The Establishment came to their beliefs without apparent study, research, foundation or even thinking. They just assumed no emission would ever matter.

    These 'emission sceptics' went about forming the GHG hypothesis, based on researches into the Physics of gases dating back and never disproven or even controversial for well over a century. Their researches compiled before they became alarmed indicated that the mildly interesting anomalies between The Establishment view and reality disproved The Establishment belief that CO2 emissions were harmlessly absorbed into the environment.

    The first order effect of increased CO2 emission is increased CO2 concentration. This rise is itself the important one.

    Forget the derivative effect of increased heat and its second order derivative temperature and third and fourth order proxies for temperature.. so far removed and dislocated from the source and center of the problem as to be like determining how dangerous the pack of wild dogs at one's throat by charting the colours of their coats. Temperature is _just_ temperature. It takes decades of temperature data to adequately provide the evidence to disprove a climate hypothesis.

    CO2 levels themselves are the issue, and they and their change are not in question.

    Forget unverifiable historical claims from limited geographic areas, as at best the confidence level one can draw about temperature in such periods will always be much lower than what present CO2 measurements provide.

    CO2 is a gas that has had a more-or-less stable level in chaotic climate and biological planetary systems for far longer than human history, other than during short-term volcanic events never changing much. It has both climate and biological effects. These effects are not thoroughly delved, though parameters for these effects ought be at the very least concerning to those dependent on climate or biology.

    CO2 is the issue. Not temperature. Not warmth. Not derivatives of derivatives of derivatives extrapolated and tied in red tape bows.

    CO2 has been changed by The Establishment with no good reason but personal profit, as free riders who gain without paying the price for the resource they use up -- our atmosphere.

    Even Sarah Palin got this, when as governor of Alaska she pressed for federal relief for her state because it suffers damage from climate change.

    Charles Darwin published his theory how long ago, and Sarah Palin still rejects that.

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  • 102. At 3:59pm on 27 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    CO2 was not the cause of the warming,
    #100 above has the true explanation,
    thank you and many thanks to the hardworking moderators, I'm sure we all agree that they are excellent.

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  • 103. At 5:35pm on 27 Nov 2009, Plato-says wrote:

    A rather good post that explains the decision tree process over the CRU/AGW stuff

    Note - there is no swearing in this post [it's not written by DK :) ]


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  • 104. At 5:53pm on 27 Nov 2009, mattmurdock wrote:

    @Paulville #83

    OK, so lets actually look at the Real Climate response, particularly around the data issues/fudges:

    I quote -
    'This is a 4 year-long work log of Ian (Harry) Harris who was working to upgrade the documentation, metadata and databases associated with the legacy CRU TS 2.1 product, which is not the same as the HadCRUT data (see Mitchell and Jones, 2003 for details). The CSU TS 3.0 is available now (via ClimateExplorer for instance), and so presumably the database problems got fixed.'

    So, their defense is that all of the commentary in the HARRY_read_me.txt file relates to an old version of the temperature data, and that because there is a new version this means that it is fixed?

    I thought they were supposed to be intelligent people, but their serious, logical proposition is that a flawed database, where data was missing, approximated, double counted in some places and artificially adjusted in others, has magically turned into a perfectly designed database that just happens, 'co-incidently' to produce virtually the same results? This is the best that they can do? Seriously??

    Without any analysis of the comments, without any review of the data, they are simply putting all of the comments in that readme to one side and saying that 'presumably' the problem was all fixed?

    And the following point about the FOI requests is an even bigger joke:

    'From the date of the first FOI request to CRU (in 2007), it has been made abundantly clear that the main impediment to releasing the whole CRU archive is the small % of it that was given to CRU on the understanding it wouldn’t be passed on to third parties. Those restrictions are in place because of the originating organisations (the various National Met. Services) around the world and are not CRU’s to break. As of Nov 13, the response to the umpteenth FOI request for the same data met with exactly the same response. This is an unfortunate situation, and pressure should be brought to bear on the National Met Services to release CRU from that obligation. It is not however the fault of CRU.'

    So, let me get this one straight. Because of some form of contractual agreement entered into by the CRU and the National Met. Services around the world, they are not allowed to respond to FOI requests? On what grounds, commercial confidentiality?? So they cannot be properly peer reviewed because big weather organisations are preventing access to the data? And I thought it was only the sceptics being driven by big business. Also, they mention that it is only a small proportion. So if, for example, it is 5%, they cannot produce the other 95%?

    So they are effectively saying that they have adjusted the data so much that they cannot reconstruct the source data to the degree that they can release the other 95%, and therefore their only options are to release 100% or release nothing.

    What I can't understand is how anyone with any reasoning ability at all cannot see that these answers do not add up. If they cannot go back to the source data and release the 95%, then how on earth can they reconstruct any of their data? If they cannot reconstruct their data, how on earth can anyone outside of the CRU recreate and peer review their results? Oh, wait, that is the problem - they only allow people within the CRU to peer review their results...

    Please tell me reasoned debate, transparency of data and rigourous peer review are still breathing somewhere. I thought it was only the bully boys like the BPI, oil and tobacco companies that refused to share the data used in the spurious studies to support their positions, not supposed free thinking academics.

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  • 105. At 8:51pm on 27 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:

    Matt #104

    Yes you would think that in the ivory towers of academia, with all the taxpayer funding sloshing about, that transparency and openness would be the norm. In fact, in my experience it appears to be quite the opposite. In my line of work, within the company, everything was fully open to scrutiny. And the regulator could come in at any time and demand to see anything. Consequently the standard of work was very high. Everything was checked, reviewed and archived and always available for inspection. In this day and age of electronic data management systems, there is absolutely no excuse for anything to be lost or hidden away.

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  • 106. At 9:05pm on 27 Nov 2009, theskyisnotfalling wrote:

    Maybe Paul could comment on this:


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  • 107. At 9:24pm on 27 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    from the BBC article put online this morning:
    'Professor Mann explained that a "La Nina-like climate" brings colder than normal temperatures in the eastern and central tropical Pacific and drier than normal conditions in the desert southwest of the US".

    Most climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) show that the Earth will respond in an El Nino-like way to global warming.

    But a few of the models do recreate this dynamic "La Nina effect", and suggest that that when you heat the Earth's surface, the climate system tries to offset and cool.

    "If the response of the Earth in the past is analogous to the temperature increase caused by greenhouse gases... it could lend credence to this counterintuitive notion of a La Nina response to global warming," said Professor Mann.'
    He's saying that Global Warming causes Global Cooling, read it 1,000 times if you like. The game is up, Svensmark was right, read #100 for the true explanation of global warming (happy ending for all you hopeless romantics).

    #100 please read the truth. (he stole the word counterintuitive from some sexy genius by the way.)

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  • 108. At 02:18am on 28 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    Why should anyone be surprised that 'Global Warming' causes some cooling sometimes?

    The term 'Climate Change' has been around for just such reasons for three decades. Because the anticipated outcomes of increased CO2 include increased variability and increased perverse climate effects.

    Have you been spending all this time arguing about something having only read the first line of the explanation?

    Increased CO2 has probable botanical effects (not expected to become strongly noticeable until CO2 concentrations exceed 550 ppm), and plausible climate effects, among them increased variability, a strong risk of increased temperatures, a weak but substantial risk of frequent low temperatures, a very high risk of increased windspeeds and storms, an unpredictable effect on cloud cover and formation, an amplifying effect on other GHG gas issues -- including water vapour, methyl hydrates, and natural CO2 release -- as well as acidification of seas and soils.

    Note 'probable' and 'plausible'. There might be other explanations, but since the same conditions of observational difficulty affect collecting data on the climate for all hypotheses equally, it will take decades to reject or accept these third, fourth and fifth order or higher effects to any degree of statistical surety, if then.

    Such is science.

    What can be said for sure?

    CO2 has certainly increased in concentration because of human activity to a statistical likelihood above 99.75%.
    Increased CO2 concentration in the shared resource that is our air might have profound effects none can predict.
    Free riders who increase CO2 concentrations get something from those who do not wish to take the risk of this increase without paying for the privilege.

    How am I to be expected to regard people who take something from my pocket against my express wishes for their personal gain?

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  • 109. At 07:32am on 28 Nov 2009, Barry Woods wrote:

    From the telegraph today:

    Not everyone shares the BBC’s rosy view of discredited Climategate scientist Michael Mann (inventor of the roundly discredited Hockey Stick graph and unlikely Youtube comedy musical star) (hat tip: Bishop Hill) (Still less will they do so after the gobsmacking revelations by Steve McIntyre that in his latest paper, he’s actually got his data UPSIDE DOWN!)

    One of his IPCC co-authors Eduardo Zorita has demanded that Mann should be banned from contributing to future reports because his scientific assessments are “not credible any more.” Zorita also calls for the barring of CRU’s director Phil Jones and another IPCC lead author, Stefan Rahmstorf.

    Zorita, who works in the paleoclimate department of the Institute of Coastal Research, has issued a statement on his website in which he complains that the “scientific debate has been in many instances hijacked to advance other agendas.”

    “These words do not mean that I think anthropogenic climate change is a hoax. On the contrary, it is a question which we have to be very well aware of. But I am also aware that in this thick atmosphere -and I am not speaking of greenhouse gases now- editors, reviewers and authors of alternative studies, analysis, interpretations,even based on the same data we have at our disposal, have been bullied and subtly blackmailed. In this atmosphere, Ph D students are often tempted to tweak their data so as to fit the ‘politically correct picture’. Some, or many issues, about climate change are still not well known. Policy makers should be aware of the attempts to hide these uncertainties under a unified picture. I had the ‘pleasure’ to experience all this in my area of research.”

    Zorita was one of the contributing authors to the IPCC’s Fourth Assessment Report. He’s unlikely to be asked to contribute to the Fifth. Indeed, as he ruefully acknowledges, this brave admission could well be the death of his career:

    By writing these lines I will just probably achieve that a few of my future studies will, again, not see the light of publication.

    Yep. I think the poor fellow’s right. Never mind the damning revelations. The vested interests behind AGW are going to make darned sure that that AGW bandwagon keeps roll roll rollin’ along.

    And never mind which honest, decent saps get squashed under its wheels.

    c'mon bbc

    It seems like that rosey consensus that the science is settled. is not even true at the AGW's champoin the IPCC.

    The bbc is looking very out on a limb, now...

    They will not report the story -
    They will not properly report even, the story about the story.

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  • 110. At 11:40am on 28 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    Where does B-Broda get his scientific data from? Realclimate.com? This is run by Mann who has mangled all his data to produce the hockey stick graph. Nothing in the natural world would produce a hockey stick shape! And to eulogise over Carson's book Silent Spring which was the driving force behind the DDT ban which led to over 50 million deaths from mosquito borne disease beggers belief.
    To state that CO2 levels have been static, or nearly so,in the past shows a lack of understanding of geological history. It also shows a lack of understanding of the role of CO2 in the natural world. All the atmospheric oxygen has come from the breakdown of CO2 by cyanobacteria and plants. Oxygen is far too reactive to have survived the first billion years of planet earth unattached to any other element. If an average is required for atmospheric CO2 concentration then 2000-3000 ppmv would be about right. The present 385 ppmv is therefore too low. Plants would love more CO2 and since CO2 does not drive climate then there is no problem for it to increase. Venus is always sited as an example of a planet with a CO2 atmosphere and killing heat. Let's look at the facts- Venus gets twicw as much solar radiation as earth, but the vital thing that we have and Venus does not is water and we still do not understand the role of water vapour in the atmosphere or the interaction between the atmosphere and the oceans. Nor do we understand the various decadal oscillations of the Pacific and Atlantic, both of which have inputs into global climate and weather.
    I am still waiting for the BBC News to start reporting Climategate. I am not holding my breath! Remember Russia RT has reported, even CNN has said a few words.

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  • 111. At 1:26pm on 28 Nov 2009, Nick wrote:

    I watched this video on Henrik Svensmark's work on what governs our climate, he is a physicist at the Danish National Space Centre and it certainly deserves main stream air time.... as yet it has never been broadcast in the UK or USA... i have to question why that is??


    Thanks to FergalR on a previous posting here highlighting this video.

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  • 112. At 3:03pm on 28 Nov 2009, Vangel wrote:

    There is clear evidence that spin has infiltrated science and that the people who act as data gatekeepers at CRU are acting as advocates rather than scientists.

    There is clear evidence that the peer review process has been corrupted and legitimate papers with views that oppose the AGW myth are being kept from publication.

    There is clear evidence that the gatekeepers at the IPCC are keeping legitimate peer reviewed papers from being discussed in the assessment reviews.

    There is clear evidence that the data has been corrupted. Most of the warming shown in the temperature reconstructions is coming from a warming signal added to the original data rather than from actual measurements.

    There is clear evidence that the methodology is flawed and creates much of the warming that has been hyped up as evidence of man's effect on climate. When proper methods are used there is no evidence of significant warming during the 20th century.

    There is clear evidence that the incentives push researchers towards the position held by the IPCC. Dissenters have been punished by having their employment terminated, their research grants cut off, and their reputations attacked by the AGW cult.

    Worst of all, there is clear evidence that the scientific method has been compromised by individuals who keep their data and methods secret. Without transparency research is not science so all claims for which either the data or methods are not available must be dismissed as narrative.

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  • 113. At 5:17pm on 28 Nov 2009, Barry Woods wrote:

    their is preety clear evidence that the bbc is in denial that this is a story

    climate scandal america - google search 11,300,000

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  • 114. At 6:53pm on 28 Nov 2009, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #111 - Nick
    "I watched this video on Henrik Svensmark's work on what governs our climate, he is a physicist at the Danish National Space Centre and it certainly deserves main stream air time.... as yet it has never been broadcast in the UK or USA... i have to question why that is??"

    I don't recall ever seeing this on UK t.v., although I may have missed it. It looks like a good candidate for a "Horizon" episode. Maybe we should all Email the Beeb and request them to show it. Or possibly Channel 4, although they are probably still smarting after showing "The Great Global Warming Conspiracy".

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  • 115. At 8:05pm on 28 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    @110 John Marshall, I'd like to address the issues you have with things I've said.

    Since you seem to have lost track, there's still the unresolved thing we'd been discussing on previous posts where you were going to explain your 2nd Law of Thermodynamics argument taking into account lateral warming winds like warm monsoons, the Sirocco, and the Chinook. You know, those things (like any warm wind over a cool body of water) that, if they exist, make your argument fall into shambles.

    As you're still claiming the 2nd Law makes these oft-observed phenomena impossible, I'd like for that extraordinary claim to be better justified.

    As for DDT, your concern for peoples in equatorial countries is touching, if there is evidence to support your somewhat alarmist claim and it was not balanced by an equal and opposite horror. A shame it doesn't cover the much greater suffering CO2 increases are still likely to produce, even if most of what you have said to date were true.

    As for your 'origin of oxygen' argument, are you asking the world to believe conditions that predate multicelled organisms are a relevant model for the current situation, or do you mean they are a desirable goal for the future? I've gotten rather used to oxygen, however poisonous or unstable you may find it.

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  • 116. At 04:26am on 29 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Immediate Attn: Mr. Hudson,

    I'm sorry for being brief but there is a matter which requires your urgent attention. I read in my evening newspaper today that unusually thin Arctic ice has recently been observed from an icebreaker. Given the perilously endangered nature of our ice, despite the fact that Summer Arctic Sea ice has increased for two consecutive years, I feel it would be remiss of me not to suggest an immediate moratorium on the use of icebreakers. I mean, they break ice don't they? Perhaps if we prevent icebreakers from breaking the ice for a couple of years and leave things as they are we might perhaps ascertain as to whether or not the icebreakers weren't the problem all along.

    Yours, in haste.

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  • 117. At 04:47am on 29 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    Ye Gads,

    My apologies for the further interruption, but another urgent matter has caught my eye. It seems that carbon dioxide is causing brittle bone disease among fish. I read it just now. That carbon dioxide that stopped warming the planet 10 or 11 years ago is now giving fish brittle bones. This is an outrage since, as any elite climatologist will tell you, fish have the hardest bones of any mammal. I feel that I must demand an immediate cessation of all carbon dioxide emissions. I mean, what if some hapless fishery worker were to gut one of these unfortunate fish? They'd most likely faint at the sight of the first recorded case of ichthyological osteoporosis. The fact that the mass of the Earth's oceans is a buffer for such things which is too large for the human mind to conceive is no excuse.
    Everyone reading this should immediately cease breathing in order to preserve the bones of our unfortunate fish.

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  • 118. At 08:11am on 29 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:


    "SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.
    It means that other academics are not able to check basic calculations said to show a long-term rise in temperature over the past 150 years.
    The UEA’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) was forced to reveal the loss following requests for the data under Freedom of Information legislation. "
    If this report from the Times is true then the staff at CRU are the greatest known vandals since those who burned the library of Alexandria. If it's true that irreplaceable data that belongs to 7 billion people, and should have been held in trust, has been destroyed - stolen really - then no punishment is too severe. I'm massively anti-capital punishment; but if the international trial that these alleged criminals deserve happens to take place in Texas or perhaps a football stadium in Afghanistan then I'm not going to tell them how to enforce the law.

    I'm shaking with rage. I hope they're innocent. The IPCC's 2,500-3,000 so-called Nobel Peace prize winners and everyone who advised them are all suspect now. They'd be well advised to grass on who was giving the orders - only if any of this is true, obviously.

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  • 119. At 08:33am on 29 Nov 2009, PAWB46 wrote:


    We are all wasting our time here. The BBC is biased, either internally or is being lent on by the government.

    Go to Christopher Booker

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  • 120. At 09:06am on 29 Nov 2009, FergalR wrote:

    You're mistaken PAWB46. But I understand how you made the mistake.

    Even the Nobel Committee are suspect now.

    Oh, and, um, if there's any of you die-hard AWG enthusiasts reading this:
    "SOMETHING D_____" See that?

    The "D" word there has been terribly badly abuse lately. The only time that D word should be used like that is if the word Holocaust is before it.

    The Holocaust, when the Nazis killed 6 million Jews and homosexuals and gypsies and disabled people and those who didn't fit their plans.

    Someone who says this didn't happen or wasn't so bad is called a:

    Holocaust Denier

    That's the only way you use that "D" word in that sense. Please tell your children.

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  • 121. At 11:51am on 29 Nov 2009, John Marshall wrote:

    BB, the DDT ban was based on ONE scientific paper which was written after poor research peer reviewed by 'friends' of the authors. DDT was found in the bodies of dead raptors. There was no attempt to establish the exact cause of death, no attempt to establish if the death rate had increased, no attempt to establish prey species numbers. Predator numbers follow prey species numbers. If prey numbers decline then predator numbers follow until prey increase to be followed by predator numbers. This is a continuing series and whilst DDT can be stored by the body it is not broken down and does not cause death. The stability of DDT is what makes it so long lived and the need for repeat doses lessened, or at least a reduction of repeat doses.It is cheap and effective controlling the malarial mosquito and Africa needs it. I am sorry to be concerned for Africa but if they were allowed to develope properly, which needs energy, then they would not be in such a parlous situation as they are today. Have some consideration for your fellow man.
    As to the 2nd Law, it cannot be broken. It states, simply, that heat can only flow from hot to cold. Your examples of warm winds, the chinook is a fohn wind, but the sirocco is a pressure driven wind from the hot Sahara to the cooler Mediterranean occurring chiefly in the eastern part of this area and Lybia is fairly flat near the coast as far as I remember from visits in the 60's so no fohn effect. These winds, though warm, are constrained by cooler air above but they loose heat with mixing and convection. Convecting air cools through adiabatic expansion as it rises by about 3C per 1000 meters, depending on water content, so air at, say 2000 mt. will not reradiate heat down, as per the greenhouse effect, because it is warmer below,by 6C, so heat must go upwards to the stratosphere. There is an inversion at 17 km called the tropopause but strongly convecting air can burst through this layer. I have seen this whilst crossing the ITCZ over the Indian Ocean and trying to escape the clear air turbulance associated with the Cb clouds. We climbed to over 62,000ft, 19 km, and were still in the turbulance and the Cb clouds were building to over 70,000 ft. very energetic!
    To return to warm winds, if a temperature gradient were to be taken through such a moving air mass there would be cooling throughout the height of that air mass. There would be turbulent flow due in no small part to convection of the warmer layers. Visible inversions are low level transient phenomena usually on cold still days. Solar heating will destroy the layer due to mixing from below.
    I have said before that the theory of the greenhouse effect was disproved in 1909. The only reason to resurrect it is if some agenda is in mind or there is money to be made. Snake oil comes to mind!

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  • 122. At 7:48pm on 29 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    @121 John, thanks for getting back about my concerns. It was very courteous of you to do so. So I will in the same light of courtesy reply.

    And since you've mentioned snake oil..

    What you say about DDT being banned on the basis of a single study by friends of Rachel Carson.. is on its face an outrageously inept lie.

    By 'the DDT ban' one supposes you must mean the Stockholm Convention, which happened not until 1995; that international treaty was ratified by over a hundred countries.

    Did all of those hundred plus nations' lawmakers, courts, lawyers, negotiators, diplomats, scientists and scholars fall under the spell of one single almost four-decade old study, proceding on its merits alone?

    To suggest that one single flimsy and suspect study before 1962 is the sole cause of such a huge international legal action is pure fraud, and insultingly blatant.

    No sir, there are mountains of good evidence for banning DDT. Overwhelmingly so.

    Also, since that 'ban' specifically allows use of DDT to control disease vectors, and it is used for that purpose still, your claim of 50 million deaths is not merely unsustainable, but panderingly exploits people in whom you have no apparent interest except to make party to the lies you tell.

    While DDT is significantly effective at controlling disease vectors for a time, spraying it is neither the only nor the best treatment.

    Compared to bed net programs -- either with or without insectide embedded in the netting -- DDT spraying is much less effective and much more temporary. If one were really concerned about disease deaths, in any mention of DDT one would also use the phrase "second to bed nets".. if spraying were indeed as high as the second best measure.

    Since significant progress is being made on an actual cure for malaria, it is hoped the whole sad chapter of DDT spraying will soon be behind us.

    As someone from a population that can see bald eagles daily, and who has been part of a peregrine falcon hack program and seen generations of descendants of those birds flourish when returned to their historic range, I'm personally glad of the bans.

    Would I trade the priviledge of seeing these creatures in the wild for a single human death?


    That you pretend it is otherwise is morally offensive.

    And you repeat the same sort of absurdist nonsense in your CO2 doggerel.

    The 2nd Law of Thermodynamics is well known to be breakable; if looking at any system so small in scale that it consists of fewer than a statistically significant number of molecules or so large in scale that other dynamics dominate -- for example, at a global level -- the 2nd Law is just a meaningless phantom.

    You had said it is impossible for the troposphere (or 'air' colloquially) to transmit heat to the surface.

    You affirm that heat can only flow from hot to cold, and then chant strings of terms from a meteorology text to lead away from the very clear and simple fact that (hot) air often heats the (cold) surface, proving you wrong on the face of your 1909 claim.

    Other dynamics particate in the troposphere than pure thermodynamics.

    And all of that is only important if your 'backradiation' argument were true.

    Putting some 'mirror of heat' codicile in the GHG theory is a cunning device for proving it wrong, but so far as I can tell, the only people who believe there is a backradiation heat mirror in GHG theory are people who have been trying to discredit real GHG theory.

    The walls of my house are cooler than the sources that heat my house. If I doubled the insulation in my walls, it would become warmer.

    If I did away with the walls entirely, it would become very chilly.

    The mechanism for increasing the equilibrium heat of the atmosphere is a delay in the outflow of heat, not a mirror of it back to the surface.

    If you genuinely just didn't listen when GHG theory was explained by its proponents, or were handed a bad transcription, one could credit you with merely being mistaken or misled.

    Having had all this time to familiarize yourself with the argument you are attacking so underhandedly and deliberately, one cannot escape the conclusion that you are a malicious and convinced liar.

    Keep in mind, I am not a 'warmist'.

    I do not know if the slow, gradual, proven increase in heat in the biosphere will lead to warmer temperatures or cooler. Weather is perverse, as any who make their living by it must know or make a poor living.

    Temperature, I cannot predict.

    But I do know John Marshall has proven himself an intemperate liar.

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  • 123. At 05:24am on 30 Nov 2009, TJ wrote:

    Hey BB. From my recollection I think you’re missing the point.

    The WHO was administrating DDT procedures with vector controls way before Ms Carson got going. From what I remember the various bodies trying to fight malaria had to fight a huge battle to get the vector use of DDT continued and there were many places, that because of the political pressure, banned DDT all together and yes, millions died unnecessarily. I would not think much of your chances of survival if you had taken this stance to an African village where friends and relatives were dying for the lack of DDT spray in their homes, even if this was a worrying measure.
    Sitting in our comfy air conditioned/heated homes with an AE down the road we are too removed from the reality to make such comments.

    As for the 2nd law of thermo dynamics being meaningless I think that is a step too far. All laws have boundaries. We just have to define them. There is the coefficient of elasticity that is true until the yield point is past etc. If you take your line of argument you might as well write science off all together. I’m sure this is not what you mean or I have misunderstood.

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  • 124. At 08:10am on 30 Nov 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    We're splitting the same hair on DDT, TJ.

    I have nothing against appropriate use of the stuff, only against the banned inappropriate uses.

    Somewhere around a million people needlessly die of malaria and like diseases carried by mosquito and similar insect vectors.

    The spectacular success of DDT spraying in some places does excuse an amount of overly-enthusiastic praise for it as a panacea, but often led to inappropriate use where it has less spectacular success, and often no measure at all would be used in any event because of unrelated factors. Otherwise, there would not be the million deaths annually.

    Bed nets, non-chemical insect control, application of limited amounts of DDT to walls and ceilings of homes, and aggressive disease treatment are as effective as widespread spraying programs, less likely to promote resistant mosquito populations, and more general in working for example on mosquito species that do not breed only in still water.

    All this while reducing the risk of exposure to non-targets like birds and humans. Most of it costing less than repeated DDT spraying.

    If one supported several villages worth of bed nets, one may think one's chances in those villages better than fair. If one had actually dedicated years to going to one of those villages and taking huge anti-malaria pills all that time, one might feel the reality of the need to correct untrue comments.

    While there are political objections that include DDT as a purported concern, most in a position of responsibility who refuse to deliver aid or condone programs do so because of other reasons -- mainly religious, economic or geopolitical -- in any case.

    What politician is campaigning against netting? What organization is opposed to the draining of uncovered stagnant pools? The deaths happen because of reasons unrelated to Silent Spring. I'd blame them on other books, written by prophets and kings.

    Now, that said, it's entirely possible to argue that Silent Spring contributed to countless abortions and forced sterilizations performed in countries whose leaders were influenced by its malthusian message. Not hard to prove that link.

    I don't eulogize the book. I don't own a copy. I'm not sure I've even read the thing. I just comment on its relevance as a historical artifact.

    And I certainly did not say the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics is meaningless. I said where it doesn't apply it's meaningless. As in, where it's not applied correctly, it's wrong. This quoting out of context you do, is it a medical condition?

    At a certain level, an air conditioner violates the 2nd Law, because on the whole a cooler house gives heat to a warmer exterior. Air conditioning doesn't 'really' break the 2nd Law, on a detailed level, of course.

    J.M. is making an argument that if applied the same way to air conditioners would prove they cannot work. And then he obfuscates with bafflegab to cover up that he really just spouting nonsense terms and magical reasoning dressed up as science.

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  • 125. At 06:40am on 01 Dec 2009, TJ wrote:

    BB #124. You say:
    "We're splitting the same hair on DDT, TJ"

    So you appear to be saying that your piece of the hair equates to the loss of millions of lives.

    I have no answer for that.

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  • 126. At 06:49am on 01 Dec 2009, TJ wrote:

    Addition to previous post:

    I do apologies for my comment where I miss quoted you on what you said on the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    "And I certainly did not say the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics is meaningless. I said where it doesn't apply it's meaningless. As in, where it's not applied correctly, it's wrong. This quoting out of context you do, is it a medical condition?"

    I was thinking of a previous post where we had a similar discussion. These blogs move along so quickly that I shall have to be more careful in my responses.


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  • 127. At 1:03pm on 01 Dec 2009, Jeremy Dunning-Davies wrote:

    The recent disclosures concerning the problems of global warming and climate change raise several important issues for science in general. Most importantly, they bring to the fore the aims of the Telesio-Galilei Academy and hence occasion this piece. At the outset, it should be remembered that those aims include furthering the ideal of complete openness in all areas of science. This entails examining all proposals with an open mind and ensuring that none is dismissed for reasons of vested interest. So-called conventional wisdom cannot be allowed to dominate over true scientific method. In the present case, one argument has been advanced, especially to the public, to the exclusion of all others. One or two snippits of information advancing alternative views have crept out but, in general, those scientists interviewed and the media itself have restricted the outflow to support for the notions of man-induced global warming and climate change.
    It might be remembered that it was through investigating a computer programme dealing with weather that Lorenz came across unusual behaviour in the results which eventually led to the birth of chaos theory. In fact, on the matter of weather forecasting, Lorenz has many words of wisdom in his book The Essence of Chaos (UCL Press, 1995). For example, he states that, when asked why weather forecasts cannot be improved, he is often tempted to reply “Well, why should we be able to make any forecasts at all?” This is, indeed, a very sensible question. All such forecasting is based on man-deduced laws of physics in which we actually trust implicitly. Also, weather forecasting is concerned with making predictions, not revealing actual facts, about future weather conditions. Many predictions may be made with great accuracy because the resulting occurrences have been found to agree with them in a large number of cases. However, for many of these, the forecaster is dependent on the use of a computer and that computer will only give answers which rely on the initial information fed into it and that will, in turn, depend on the model adopted. As with any physical theory, it doesn’t matter how many positive results that model provides, you only need one erroneous result to cast extreme doubt on the validity of the model and probably discredit it completely. Hence, the need for completely open minds in science; politics can have no place here; the science must rule.
    What has happened in the topics under discussion here is that a tremendous amount of information relating to both climate change and global warming has been suppressed to prevent widespread examination both by other scientists and by members of the public. The latter category is important in this case because eventually they form the source of all future research funding. The basic problem has been exacerbated in the present situation because the popularly known results are seemingly being used to increase the burden of taxation on people. Hence, for scientist and layman alike, the complete truth concerning these two important issues should be made public.

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  • 128. At 03:57am on 02 Dec 2009, Boleslas_Broda wrote:

    The hair I spoke of splitting was "DDT spraying," (of the saturation type) which is generally banned, and DDT targetted only to disease vectors, which is controversial in that it is often ill-used, but is not banned, and may include non-saturation types of spraying.

    Millions of lives are lost as a result of tropical disease, approximately at a rate of one million lives a year.

    J.M. said specifically that 50 million lives are lost as a direct result of Silent Spring.

    Since Silent Spring was published in 1962, and it is not yet quite 2012 (the 50th anniversary of its publication), he's a few million lives short.. if _all_ lives lost to tropical disease vectors since 1962 could be directly blamed on Silent Spring. We'll call that a rounding error.

    The earliest widespread bans on DDT happened not until about 1971, which now makes J.M.'s figure high by about 25%. We can call that exaggeration, or reliance on poor data.

    Between the publication of Silent Spring and the 1971 US ban, dozens of books, hundreds of studies, and thousands of papers on related topics sprang up; there were public hearings, court cases, appeals, election campaigns, where J.M. claims only one single study by friends of Rachel Carson was responsible for all bans since. We can not call that anything but J.M. deliberately lying about the cause of 50 million deaths.

    Most of the bans on DDT use were not in the tropics nor for disease control, but rather in agriculture. Conservatively, this would be half of the DDT ban. This fact doesn't reduce the tally of deaths, but it does dilute the complaint about bans being needless, if the cause of the complaint is really deaths from disease.

    Saturation DDT spraying under ideal conditions has 100% effectiveness.

    So too do bed net programs.

    Conditions are not always ideal for saturation spraying.

    It has to be applied every year, not taking full effect until the second year.
    It must have a target only of still-water breeding insects.
    It depends on weather to be fairly good;
    The population to not be mobile;
    The saturation spraying to cover all possible breeding sites.

    Once the DDT runs its course, the insect population returns in subsequent years, possibly with increased tolerance to DDT; the predators that control the insect population however do not return for many years if at all, and the insect problem is worse than ever, unless DDT saturation continues without end.

    At best, DDT saturation is around 75% effective, because of problems with conditions. That makes J.M.'s 50 million claim 50% high. Too high for rounding, and at least highly exaggerated.

    Bed nets have immediate year one effect. They last five years. They affect insects regardless of where they breed. They are not weather dependent. They do not lose effect when the population is mobile. They do not deplete the reservoir of insect predators, but they do deny insects with a reservoir of disease to become infectious from.

    Bed nets are not the only alternative to DDT saturation, but they are a better one.

    If anything, forcing people to look beyond DDT for better alternatives means the quarter of a million lives that would still be lost every year if only DDT saturation were used could be saved.

    There are millions of deaths. DDT can play a role in reducing them with targeted application to the walls of homes where the other alternatives are not as appropriate. But it's splitting a hair to say 'DDT' vs. 'DDT saturation', and it's a lie to say Silent Spring caused 50 million deaths in this way.

    As I've said, it's easier to attribute forced abortions and sterilizations to the book.

    Why falsely grind the DDT axe when there's a true horror of equal proportion at hand?

    One can only guess that J.M. prefers to lie.

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  • 129. At 8:27pm on 06 Dec 2009, Antti Roine wrote:

    Carbon dioxide cause or effect?

    We should take the climate change seriously because these changes have created and destroyed huge empires within the history of mankind. However, it is a shame that billion dollar decisions in Copenhagen may be based on tuned temperature data and wrong conclusions.

    The climate activists believe that the CO2 has been the main reason for the climate changes within the last million of years. However, the chemical calculations prove that the reason is the temperature changes of the oceans. Warm seawater dissolves much less CO2 than the cold seawater. See details from:


    This means that CO2 content of the atmosphere will automatically increase, if the sea surface temperature increases for any reason. Most likely, carbon dioxide contributes to global warming, but it is hardly the primary reason for climate change.

    The magnitude of CO2 and water vapor emissivity and absorptivity are the same, however, the concentration of CO2 (0.04%) is much less than water 1% in atmosphere. In this mean the first assumption is that water vapor effect on the climate change must be much larger than CO2.

    The climate models may give wrong results, 1) if they assume that the CO2 is the primary reason for the temperature changes, 2) if they do not take into account the role of oceans, and 3) especially if they are based on purpose-oriented CRU temperature data.

    Kyoto-type agreements transfers emissions and jobs to those countries which do not care about environmental issues. New post-Kyoto agreements must channel emissions trading funds directly to the R&D of new solar technology and commit to curb population growth. Feeding money to underdeveloped countries does not help, because this money will be used to increase population and wellfare.

    Antti Roine

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