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December 2010 update: Second coldest since 1659

Paul Hudson | 16:54 UK time, Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Met Office provisional figures show that December 2010 with a mean CET temperature of -0.7C was the second coldest since records began in 1659, beaten only by December 1890 which had a mean of -0.8C.

The diagram below shows how the month ranks with other cold Decembers, a truly memorable month climatologically.



December 2010 was also easily the coldest December based on CET minimum temperature data which started in 1878.

December was Leeming's coldest month since records began in 1945. The mean was -1.75C compared to the previous coldest month of February 1963 with a recorded mean of -1.4C.

December 2010 was also a new record for minimum temperatures at Leeming for any month since records began in 1945, with a mean minimum temperature of -5.3C, illustrated below with comparison to the winter months of 1962/1963 - which turned out to be the coldest winter of the last century.


Comments

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  • 1. At 5:29pm on 04 Jan 2011, Spanglerboy wrote:

    Paul you make 2 references to December 1981 setting new records. I think you may mean December 2010?

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  • 2. At 6:12pm on 04 Jan 2011, ScudLewis wrote:

    In a word...amazing! Also, fascinating! OK, that's 2!

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  • 3. At 7:04pm on 04 Jan 2011, PingoSan wrote:

    Paul, you have to acknowledge that this is weather not climate or you'll have the Climate Science Rapid Response Team on your back via the terrible twins Roger and Richard!

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  • 4. At 8:14pm on 04 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    PingoSan

    Of course it is weather not climate!!! Don't be silly

    Who could possibly think a few winters one way or the other meant anything in the AGW debate??

    Well apparently this man does - some chap called Dr. James Hansen

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3341039.ece

    Interesting article from February 2008 in the Times. Very supportive of Dr. Hansen. Well calls him Jim.

    It was this quote in the middle that catches the eye.

    "Hansen wants to warn us, is a recipe for global warming disaster. The recent warm winters that Britain has experienced are a clear sign that the climate is changing, he says."

    Really

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  • 5. At 11:35pm on 04 Jan 2011, nibor25 wrote:

    Cold December who would have thought?

    Well.. apparently the Met office did - but they were too scared to go public in case they got it wrong. We are doomed.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/04/the-met-office-bullhockey/#more-30916

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  • 6. At 08:43am on 05 Jan 2011, ScudLewis wrote:

    @nibor25 thanks for the post.

    Perhaps 5-7 days forecasts should be their only focus.

    Can't think why they would tell the govt. and not the public.

    It all seems a bit odd.

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  • 7. At 09:11am on 05 Jan 2011, PAWB46 wrote:

    "Met Office provisional figures show that December 2010 with a mean CET temperature of -0.7C was the second coldest since records began in 1659".

    These are only provisional figures. The Met Office have yet to homogenise/adjust the data for cold biases in the thermometers. You know the kind of thing - some of the thermometers were buried in snow which insulated them fom the very warm air which was just above the snow! In fact I remember it was so warm above the snow that people were building snowmen wearing shorts and t-shirts. In a couple of years time the temperatures will have been adjusted so that December 2010 was the second warmest since records began in 1659.

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  • 8. At 09:25am on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #6 - ScudLewis wrote:
    "Perhaps 5-7 days forecasts should be their only focus."
    The M.O. claim that their 5 day forecast are accurate but does anyone actually monitor the accuracy of the 5 day local forecasts?
    My own experience is that the 5 day local forecasts are a waste of time because they will have changed several times before they become current.
    I suppose it depends on what accuracy criteria are used.


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  • 9. At 10:22am on 05 Jan 2011, minuend wrote:

    I blame Global Warming.

    If it wasn't so hot it wouldn't be this cold!

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  • 10. At 10:52am on 05 Jan 2011, ScudLewis wrote:

    @Qv. To be fair to the MET, predicting the weather is difficult. I can see why they stick to predicting the climate in 100 years time [sarc. mode off]

    In all seriousness I wonder how the MET will view this event coupled with the 2010 annual CET- a Black Swan moment or something more portentious. Something well within the norms of climate/weather for the UK?

    IMHO, I can't see how it fits so neatly into current mainstream paradigms.

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  • 11. At 1:38pm on 05 Jan 2011, nibor25 wrote:

    What I don't understand about the Met Office story, if true. Is why more is not being made of it? Why are the BBC not all over the story?

    A public funded body, providing the public(knowingly?)with false information whilst secretly briefing the Government differently.

    People, businesses and property have been severely affected during this winter and it appears we should have had some form of early warning. You can argue whether we would have prepared better or not. And what about the Government? Why did they keep this information to themselves? Or did they.. who else knew?

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  • 12. At 2:11pm on 05 Jan 2011, mailmannz wrote:

    nibor,

    Yes, odd isnt it. I do detect the stench of behind covering going on though because now the Met Office can claim they did forecast the cold, but they just didnt tell anyone.

    But also, as you say, why isnt the BBC all over this? Actually, why isnt the BBC over the much bigger picture, how the Met Office's failure to get its forecasts right is putting peoples lives at risk!

    That is the real story here...and perhaps one of the reasons why the Met Office cant tell everyone its going to be cold is simply because they are so utterly dedicated to the religion of Mann Made Global Warming (tm)!

    Once weened off the crack cocain called Mann Made Global Warming (tm) we might actually see some usefulness coming out of the Met Office!

    One thing is certainly apparent, the governmnet could save itself £15omillion pounds if it approached one of the commercial forecasting organisations for long range weather forecasts, you know...the kinds of organisations who actually manage to get their forecasts right (more often than the Met!).

    Mailman

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  • 13. At 2:25pm on 05 Jan 2011, injected wrote:

    Every BBC weather forecast should include a review of the previous day's forecast, and specific reasons for its inaccuracies. The Met Office provides slap-dash and shoddy forecasts, pays its Chief Exec £200,000 a year and seems to be accountable to no-one!

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  • 14. At 2:29pm on 05 Jan 2011, minuend wrote:

    Maybe it is time for the Met Office to stick to forecasting the weather.

    We need a competent and professional weather forecasting system and not an organisation, as we have now, that is obessed by global warming.

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  • 15. At 3:05pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Paul, would it not be sensible in this post to give some explanation as to why we have had such a cold December? An anomaly map of the Northern hemisphere for example would give a bit of context and help people to understand why our current cold weather does not conflict with continued global warming (yet alone with climate change).

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  • 16. At 3:55pm on 05 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick @15

    Well no doubt Paul could perhaps give some "context" to the cold temps, but I can't see how that would help anyone to understand anything about climate change.

    No matter which side of the divide you stand - that would not prove or disprove anything.

    We have come to learn that AGW is unfalsifiable - any weather proves it for the faithful religious adherent.

    December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month - (my specialist subject is stating the bleedin' obvious)

    When the UK has very low temps in winter it is always with a wind in the north to east quadrant (roughly). So when we get particularly low temps by day as we had in December then the place where the air has come from must be pretty cold to begin with - quite a major achievement for a region that will melt completely in a few Summers time we are told. Night-time minimums are more complicated because they depend on a number of factors. The UK's lowest temps (usually Scotland - but the Shropshire/Powys area sometimes comes close) always occur when the sky is clear, the wind is calm, the air is very dry, and a reasonable snow-cover is present. Some form of katabatic drainage (gravity) is often also present.

    So although we make comparisons with years, all we can usually say is that it is the "lowest" air temp recorded - it tells us nothing about climate really.

    BUT when the King of Warmists (see my Hansen quote at #4.) tells us only 3 years ago that our mild winters are a SURE sign of climate change, pardon me for being just a bit sceptic.

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  • 17. At 4:19pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Feetinthesnow, no weather events like this do not prove or disprove global warming (although they do perhaps give some evidence for climate change), it is the trend in global temperatures that we would need to be looking at.

    December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere - do you not think that is relevant here?

    Your Hansen quote (which was not actually a Hansen quote, but a Leake quote about what Hansen apparently said) was saying that warmer winters were evidence of climate change - which is different from (direct) evidence of global warming.

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  • 18. At 5:13pm on 05 Jan 2011, jkiller56 wrote:

    Very interesting and remarkable.

    Comparison with 1981 is difficult in that the cold spell that year did not start until much later in the month than 2010. However I would guess that the actual intensity of the cold in '81 may have been greater given that, if I remember, temps fell to minus 25 in the midlands. After an Xmas lull, the following January of that winter repeated what probably no one thought would be possible - temperatures equally if not even more intensely cold setting new British and English all time record minima. However the cold broke abruptly in mid Jan, to much milder conditions, meaning that none of the 81/82 winter months (nor the winter as a whole) really hit the record for cold mean temps.


    However as a keen gardener, I remember 81/82 as utterly devastating - it killed plants I had never seen damaged so badly before or since.

    Whether this winter as a whole turns out to be a real record breaker will depend on the next couple of months of course. Personally I am hoping it will be a season of utterly mediocre moderate cold thus confounding all sides of this endless bickering about climate change!

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  • 19. At 5:35pm on 05 Jan 2011, ScudLewis wrote:

    @OPatrick. I would argue that this cold event is less about the temp but more interestingly about the mechanisms through which we got it.

    From what I can gather, we are just experiencing the same 'weather' as we got in late Dec 09 into Jan and Feb 10. Now to see it back yet again makes you ask the question - what's changed in the last few years? Don't forget we also got very early snow in October 2008 (that was a strange extreme cold event)!!

    We also had an El Nino year and that hasn't featured in our annual CET - in fact we have had an annual CET in the top 100 coldest since 1659 - again, is this just a fluke of chance!!??

    As Paul H pointed out in his previous blog - monthly CETs have been heading south for some months.

    All interesting 'weather' events, all taken in isolation of course.

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  • 20. At 6:34pm on 05 Jan 2011, Hudsonfan wrote:

    BBC national news tonight carried this story tonight however they managed toalso say that last year was the second warmest "on record". Not since records began, why ? Because the records kept are no more than a blink of the eye and have no relevance whatsover. I would bet there have been 1000's of warmer years if not millions!

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  • 21. At 6:52pm on 05 Jan 2011, Brent Hargreaves wrote:

    Paul, you seem to be a rare species at the Beeb: one who questions the groupthink of Global Warming.

    Your colleague Richard Black reports: "For central England, it was the second coldest December since 1659.

    However, the first analysis released of global temperatures shows 2010 was one of the warmest years on record."

    There's something missing here: the mention of timescale in Black's 2nd sentence. He should rephrease it: ".... 2010 was one of the warmest years since satellite measurements began in, er, 1979 which is about as useful as the observation that City is one of the greatest football teams in Manchester."

    Paul, may your career blossom. We need more straight-talking Northerners like you, to balance out the southern jessies bleating on about global warming with a straight face.

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  • 22. At 6:53pm on 05 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick @#17

    "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere - do you not think that is relevant here?"

    It is called weather - the whole of a hemisphere is never cold or warm. It depends whether you are North or South of the Polar Front. Many of the places which were warmer than average were still bitingly cold, some were under an anticyclone in the warmer air - here it was as cold as any time in the last 350 years. Quite noteworthy really.

    Hansen has plenty of form as a warm-monger for the last 25 years with many extreme predictions that have come nowhere near reality. I don't think there is any real doubt he said it - he came to the UK to scare us into submission, that is what his trip was all about. He probably wouldn't have bothered after ClimateGate.

    As far as Global Temp trends are concerned - we are fiddling in the error bars. A recent attempt to show an exaggerated warming trend above the nothing we have had for 15 years turns out to have ascribed values to huge areas with no data - another area where Hansen has form.

    It is great having an unfalsifiable theory - any weather that comes along just proves AGW. Weather is not climate unless a warmist says it is - which they do every day. Everything is due to climate change - a recent paper in the States purports to link Climate Change to increased levels of prostitution. Hells Bells the gravy-train of AGW funding goes deep indeed.

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  • 23. At 7:16pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Feetinthesnow

    I am aware it is weather, that was rather my point, but surely if you are going to talk about this unusual weather it makes sense to talk about the related unusual weather that is linked to it? As you can see from the comments above there are quite a number of people who seem confused by this and believe, falsely, that observations about our cold weather (taken in isolation) have some impact on the fact that global temperatures continue to rise.

    Yes the cold weather here is quite noteworthy, but the exceptionally warm weather in parts of the Arctic is also noteworthy (and I'm not sure why you think it matters that it is 'still cold' in these places) and linked to our cold weather, so why not discuss this?

    Your statements about the global temperature trend are incorrect. Global temperatures continue to rise following the trend, comfortably within statistical significance, of the last few decades.

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  • 24. At 7:33pm on 05 Jan 2011, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Andrew Neil dares to speak out about this climate nonsense.

    "Global warmers can't tell us in one year that man-made global warming will make snow scarce, then a few years later claim it explains why there is so much snow now.

    Both explanations can't be right, I'd suggest."

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  • 25. At 7:45pm on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    Professor Sir David King was interviewed on the BBC News Channel tonight, spinning the official line that this winter, and other examples of "extreme" weather, were all a result of global warming. Clearly he has convinced himself of this but he doesn't seem to realise that he is making up the theory on an ad hoc basis, to explain the situation. Unfortunately I missed the start of the interview, but I think he may also have been asking for more investment in computer power, to model the climate.

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  • 26. At 8:01pm on 05 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick


    "Your statements about the global temperature trend are incorrect. Global temperatures continue to rise following the trend, comfortably within statistical significance, of the last few decades."

    Interesting that - No bigger authority on the planet on these matters than Phil Jones, who told the Parliamentary Select Committee this year that there had been no statistically significant warming for 15 years.

    There is no evidence for CAGW and no climate models have so far shown skill in predicting the future. we have not been right so far, but we know it will be frying 75 years from now.

    The sort of thing that gets me down are things like QV points out #25.

    Weather is never climate unless a warmist says it is.

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  • 27. At 8:04pm on 05 Jan 2011, Jack Hughes wrote:

    Climate change is like nostradamus - the theory can explain anything at all after it has happened.

    More snow.
    Less snow.
    Same snow.
    BBQ summers.
    Non-BBQ summers.

    You name it - they can predict it afterwards.

    The Met-Gate story is just bizarre. Julia Slingo wants more money because they cannot model climate correctly - but now they say they did predict the cold weather in secret but told the public the opposite. What gives?

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  • 28. At 8:15pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Jack Hughes, it's a shame comments are closed on Andrew Neil's piece - it's telling that he gives this one same mildly careless quote that's paraded everywhere 10 years on and then says that it was "common a decade ago". If it was so common why does everyone keep having to repeat the same quote?

    There is a lot of uncertainty about regional effects of climate change, anyone who claims otherwise is incorrect. But stop a moment and think about it - uncertainty makes the situation more concerning, not less.

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  • 29. At 8:25pm on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    The BBC are also still repeating the M.O. claim that 2010 IS the second warmest year on record. They don't seem to know that the December HadCRUT3 figure isn't available yet and that the UAH figures for December confirmed the recent cooling trend. If the fall in HadCRUT is similar to that in UAH, it is still possible that 2010 will be cooler than both 1998 and 2005 based on the CRU annual figure, using the simple average of monthly figures. However since the M.O. use a different method of calculation, which is difficult to replicate, they may come up with a different result.

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  • 30. At 9:06pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    QuaesoVeritas, perhaps as the Met Office they are using the meteorological year, from December to November - the BBC may not have realised this.

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  • 31. At 9:14pm on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #30. - OPatrick wrote:
    "QuaesoVeritas, perhaps as the Met Office they are using the meteorological year, from December to November - the BBC may not have realised this."
    I hope you are joking.
    No, they are just pre-judging the figures, as they did in the case of the "driest start to the year since 1929" episode, when they added the rainfall figures up before the end of June.

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  • 32. At 9:24pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Where is the claim you object to then QuaesoVeritas? Can you give us a link to check?

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  • 33. At 10:20pm on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #32. OPatrick wrote:
    "Where is the claim you object to then QuaesoVeritas? Can you give us a link to check?"
    Are you talking about the rainfall figures?
    If so, it has now been removed by the Ministry of Truth (Met. Office), but it was well documented elsewhere in these blogs.
    This is all that exists now:
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2010/driest-start
    Originally the claim was that it was the driest start since 1929 and that was widely reported in the press and still probably exists all over the internet, since the M.O. didn't go out of it's way to point out the error.

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  • 34. At 10:32pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    No, I'm talking about "The BBC are also still repeating the M.O. claim that 2010 IS the second warmest year on record."

    Where is the BBC repeating it and where is the original M.O. claim? I wanted to check to see what they were saying.

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  • 35. At 10:52pm on 05 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #34. OPatrick
    It was included in a report on the winter and global temperatures
    by David Shukman on the BBC News tonight. It will probably be
    shown repeatedly tonight.
    The original claim is in several news releases such as this one:
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2010/record-temperatures
    It talks about "provisional figures", but the BBC usually don't mention that.

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  • 36. At 10:55pm on 05 Jan 2011, Darren McGuinness wrote:

    Warming is inevitable as we continue to impact the environment. Earth is a closed(-ish) system - as one part of the world is plunged into freezing temperatures, the energy balance is restored through incredibly warm periods elsewhere (although that might be over oceans so not necessarily recorded in any terms to dramatic conditions).

    Something I found out a bit more on over the Christmas break was not the warming patterns but rainfall and precipitaion, and that it can be influenced by volcanoes. Previously I thought they were significant for releasing greenhouse gases, but they disrupt wind patterns and rainy seasons as well: http://tinyurl.com/2bonwg3

    'McGuinness

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  • 37. At 11:02pm on 05 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Feetinthesnow @ #26

    "Interesting that - No bigger authority on the planet on these matters than Phil Jones, who told the Parliamentary Select Committee this year that there had been no statistically significant warming for 15 years."

    Come on, Feetinthesnow, we've been through that one several times already!:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23iGJbkbzzE

    "There is no evidence for CAGW and no climate models have so far shown skill in predicting the future. we have not been right so far, but we know it will be frying 75 years from now."

    As we discussed on a previous thread, if Hansen had used the climate sensitivity figure from IPCC AR4 in his model based predictions from 1988, his projections for global temperature would actually have been pretty accurate.

    Paul

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  • 38. At 11:04pm on 05 Jan 2011, bandythebane wrote:

    Last year when we had what turned out to be the coldest winter in 13 years the explanation for this was that because of natural variability within the generally warming trend there was always by chance a 1 in 20 probability of a winter that cold.

    By this argument, the probability of this winter being as cold again is around 1 in 400.

    This is the kind of thinking that lies behind the Met Office's appalling seasonal forecasting. It hasn't yet occurred to them that their hugely expensive climate models showed continuous warming are junk and should be dumped.

    But then the Met is run by ex WWF climate zealot Napier who was this year awarded an MBE for his services to weather forecasting. How can anyone expect that the Met Office under Napier will do its job and provide us with an honest professional apolitical weather forecast?

    All we can expect is what we are getting - i.e. a tissue of lies to try to hide the extent of their errors.


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  • 39. At 11:26pm on 05 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 17. At 4:19pm on 05 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere - do you not think that is relevant here?"

    Well, OPatrick, you certainly bought into the Met.Office hype, hook, line & sinker!!

    "Professor Slingo, who is in charge of Britain's biggest research team investigating climate change, insisted that global warming was a reality despite the bitterly cold temperatures and heavy snowfalls that have brought much of the country to a standstill.

    "This is not a global event; it is very much confined to the UK and Western Europe and if you look over at Greenland, for example, you see that it's exceptionally warm there," she said. "
    http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/the-uk-may-be-cold-but-its-still-a-warm-world-says-met-office-chief-2165492.html

    you should know better than to simply swallow what the M.O. says, check the facts - what was actually happening in the rest of the world -

    Firt White Christmas since 1882 in Atanta, Georgia
    http://theglobalherald.com/usa-weather-atlanta-georgia-experiences-first-white-christmas-since-1882/8510/

    authorities in St Petersburg struggling to cope in a particularly snowy winter
    http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-world/st-petersburg-icicle-patrol-fights-winter-hazards-20101224-1977d.html

    piercing chill in Northern India
    http://www.deccanherald.com/content/123129/cold-conditions-continue-northern-india.html

    winter storm warnings down the entire east coast USA
    http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE6BP1EW20101226

    and even unusually a White Christmas in parts of Australia
    http://www.france24.com/en/20101220-australia-swaps-summer-christmas-snow

    even much of Greenland, Alaska and Western Canada were far below normal
    http://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/met-office-chief-climate-scientist-has-difficulty-reading-maps/

    and more recently causing major problems in China
    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2011-01/05/c_13677894.htm

    so not exactly "confined to the UK and Western Europe" as the Met Office claimed!!!


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  • 40. At 00:05am on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick

    "There is a lot of uncertainty about regional effects of climate change, anyone who claims otherwise is incorrect. "

    I think we could all agree on that.

    Well all except Prof Slingo and the Met Office that is.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/06/20/the-met-office-brings-doom-to-a-place-near-you/

    Last years announcement by the Met Office that it could forecast the future climate very regionally.

    You will note if you read that she agreed with us a year earlier when she was a Prof at Reading University.

    Laughable - my BS detector went off at the time.

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  • 41. At 06:12am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    QuaesoVeritas, but as you say that press release is about provisional figures, whereas you said the M.O. had said that 2010 IS the second warmest year on record. Can you find the actual link you were referring to on will you withdraw your claim?

    Can you give examples of where the BBC have made this claim without qualifications?

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  • 42. At 06:28am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Feetinthesnow, your BS detector seems to be faulty given that you have apparently managed to read through more than several words of WUWT without it going off.

    Did you not look at the post you linked to? The first section was talking about not being able to make reliable *predictions* for regional climate. Note the section in bold: "A major conclusion of the group was that regional projections from the current generation of climate models were sufficiently uncertain to compromise this goal of providing society with reliable predictions of regional climate change."

    The Met Office statements appear to be talking only about giving the most reliable *projections* - these are attempts to establish possible weather scenarios and give some indication of the probabilties of these scenarios.

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  • 43. At 06:37am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet:

    "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere - do you not think that is relevant here?"

    Well, OPatrick, you certainly bought into the Met.Office hype, hook, line & sinker!!


    Have a look at this site, the US National Snow and Ice Data Center:
    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/

    The temperature anomaly map of the arctic, about half way down the page, should give you a pretty good overview of what is going on. Selecting reports from the regions that are experiencing colder than usual weather does not negate the overall picture.

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  • 44. At 10:12am on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #41 OPatrick wrote:
    "QuaesoVeritas, but as you say that press release is about provisional figures, whereas you said the M.O. had said that 2010 IS the second warmest year on record. Can you find the actual link you were referring to on will you withdraw your claim?
    Can you give examples of where the BBC have made this claim without qualifications?"
    Clearly you don't seem to understand how the Met. Office works. The press release on December 2nd, did refer to provisional figure for January to October being 0.52c, making it equal to 1998. Is it really valid to compare the first 10 months of the year with the whole of 1998? Knowing that global temperatures were falling during the latter part of 2010, was this not misleading? This was part of the pre Cancun propaganda and since the November and December figures had not been published, it was clearly designed to leave the impression in people's minds that it was already the 2nd warmest year.
    Clearly this has worked with the BBC, since, in his report last night, David Shukman used the words "but for the world as a whole, well last year was the second warmest on record", no mention of provisional figures. Since it is now January, most viewers will have assumed that December figure was included. If David Shukman knows that the December figure isn't included, then he should have said so.
    In addition to this, the figure of 0.52c for the year to October looks high. Unfortunately I can't verify that figure, since the M.O. method of calculating the annual figure is difficult to replicate. It isn't simply a question of averaging the monthly figures (as is the case with the CRU version of HadCRUT3), to find the annual figure. However, the simple average of the monthly figures for January to October was only 0.49c, and the figure to November was only 0.48c, compared to CRU figures of 0.548c for 1998 and 0.482c for 2005. The figure of 0.52c looks more like the simple average to August, not October. We will have to take the M.O. word for it when they publish their version of the final 2010 figure, but I don't expect a high profile press release if it is lower than 2005 and turns out only to be the third warmest year.

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  • 45. At 10:43am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    So that would be a 'no' then.

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  • 46. At 10:46am on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick - good morning.

    Your link at #43 is all over the sceptic websites who publish data whether it is supportive of AGW or not. That is what sceptics are about, not just denying change or believing everything their told.

    Some years back I was very agnostic on the subject of AGW and visited both warmist and sceptic web-sites. I often posted inconvenient questions on both. I was often met by nasty replies on some of the AGW sites, and once directly accused of being in the pay of big oil (I wish). Some comments doubted both my sanity and intelligence. I have never had the same on the main sceptic sites, in fact most have policies to suppress nastiness. Occasionally people do push the boundaries but by and large it is carried out with a reasonable decorum. This and a good bit of research lead me to a sceptical view, now reinforced by a good read of the ClimateGate emails - that is not how science should be done.

    Recently on these blog comments the connection of sceptics to big oil etc was raised by an AGW adherent(you know who you are) - this is just stuff parroted from some warmist sites. I am sure some sceptical scientists are in the pay of oil and energy companies, but so are a great number of pro-AGW scientists. CRU itself has such funding, and the ClimateGate emails detail quite a lot of funding contacts from this source.

    So I would say to AGW followers - please avoid the cartoon character attacks and just stick to facts.

    The problem is that many facts have been "fudged" and always in one direction (except for temps before WW11, which exaggerates a trend).

    A simple example of disinformation (or do I mean misinformation) is this one.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/06/union-of-concerned-scientists-unwarranted-concern-about-the-northeast-us/#more-30657

    Immediately I can here some saying that is WUWT, but all that is being discussed here is a statement of fact by a warmist group - measured against reality using data from an unimpeachable source.

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  • 47. At 10:56am on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #45. At 10:43am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "So that would be a 'no' then."
    I admit that the problem is the "impression" left in the media, as a result of headlines such as this:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/weather/8175591/Cancun-climate-change-summit-2010-was-hottest-year-on-record.html
    But you under estimate the way the M.O. spin this information.

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  • 48. At 10:59am on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    There are now suggestions that the predictions of a cold December may have been kept quiet because it gave the wrong impression prior to Cancun.
    http://thegwpf.org/uk-news/2162-did-uk-government-keep-cold-winter-warning-secret-in-run-up-to-un-climate-conference.html

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  • 49. At 11:27am on 06 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    43. At 06:37am on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "...Have a look at this site, the US National Snow and Ice Data Center:
    http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/
    The temperature anomaly map of the arctic, about half way down the page, should give you a pretty good overview of what is going on..."

    Yes indeed OPatrick and thanks for the link - it simply confirms what I wrote and belies your own words and that of the Met.Office that "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere"
    where it shows both much of Russia and North America with lower than normal temperatures.

    Again I re-iterate the Met.Office misled us when they said ""This is not a global event; it is very much confined to the UK and Western Europe".

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  • 50. At 11:54am on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    I just had to copy this comment by Brent Hargreaves from another blog

    "On this subject of smoke-and-mirrors, the BBC's Richard Black is at pains to point out that, worldwide, it has been "one of the warmest years on record". This implies that it's parochial to pay much attention to the frozen pipes of Little Britain in the second coldest December since 1659.

    The gullible will assume that the "record" as in "one of the warmest on record" also stretches back many centuries. In fact his "record" covers a measly 31 years: it's satellite data.

    This is about as useful as the observation that City is one of the greatest football teams in Manchester, or that John Cleese's wife is one of the tallest people in his marriage."

    I thought it summed up the situation superbly.

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  • 51. At 12:18pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    I'm sorry Feetinthesnow but I simply don't believe your account of how you came to be sceptical of AGW. Try looking, for example, at the link to WUWT given in comment #5 - imagine how that reads to anyone who is genuinely looking for unbiased information. It is not credible to claim that the 'sceptical' side is in any way less abusive.

    I really don't understand the point of the WUWT post you linked to - those graphs clearly do show trends that support what the UCS claimed, except of course for the two individual months that Alan Cheetham chose to show. (Don't you wonder why he didn't show the other winter and summer months? Perhaps because, given the trends for the seasons as a whole, these wouldn't quite fit in with his narrative?)

    Did you really think Brent Hargreaves' comment was worth reposting? Yes the UAH record, which is the only one that has given a final figure for all of 2010, only goes back 31 years, but are you genuinely trying to claim that 2010 is not going to be "one of the warmest on record" in any of the datasets? Think for a moment how extraordinary December's temperatures would have to be for that to be the case.

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  • 52. At 12:22pm on 06 Jan 2011, jkiller56 wrote:

    to Sparklet /OPatrick 49 above
    The key question seems to be whether the unusual AO anomaly is related to sea ice decline or not. Certain lobbies seem convinced that it is.

    So does a warm arctic produce a negative AO or does a negative AO produce a warm arctic?

    Certainly, for example, a strong persistant high over Greenland would explain the anomalous temperatures in the western hemisphere to a large extent. I.e. strong southerly flow on the western side of the high would cause the unusual warmth of the Hudson Bay/ Baffin island region. Conversely the associated northerly flow down the eastern side of the high would explain the exceptional cold in N.W Europe. Perhaps a similar pattern explains the temp. anomalies on the opposite side of the arctic?

    However, is there really anything particularly abnormal or inexplicable about this pattern in itself? Only, I would argue if the pattern becomes the norm over a period of many years. Given that cold winters have historically often happened in "clusters", it would seem far too early to draw any dramatic climate change conclusions as yet.

    Personally, in the broadest terms, I would have thought that an increasingly ice free arctic ocean ought to discourage strong stable high pressure to develop, due to the instability engendered by warm air rising from the sea surface; the exception being the Greenland ice cap of course.

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  • 53. At 12:23pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    QuaesoVeritas:

    "But you under estimate the way the M.O. spin this information."

    It would help if you could give me examples to base this on, I haven't often looked at the Met Office directly, so I have little to go by. What I have read of theirs I would say is, if anything, overly cautious, but maybe you can show me otherwise.

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  • 54. At 12:32pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet:

    "Yes indeed OPatrick and thanks for the link - it simply confirms what I wrote and belies your own words and that of the Met.Office that "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere""

    No it doesn't. It shows clearly that there was exceptional warmth elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere, particularly in the Canadian archipelago and Eastern Russia. Were you looking at the correct graphic? It is titled "Air Temperature Anomaly, December 2010".

    If the Met Office said December 2010's unusually cold weather was confined to the UK and Western Europe then that is indeed incorrect. Where was this statement made? Scanning up through the thread I couldn't immediately find a link to it.

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  • 55. At 12:47pm on 06 Jan 2011, mailmannz wrote:

    bandythebane @38 wrote:
    "Last year when we had what turned out to be the coldest winter in 13 years the explanation for this was that because of natural variability within the generally warming trend there was always by chance a 1 in 20 probability of a winter that cold.

    By this argument, the probability of this winter being as cold again is around 1 in 400."

    No, its worse than we first thought. The chances of getting THREE cold winters in a row are 8000-1. In other words, we should have only got this run once every 8000 years.

    Of course I could just be spreading denier propaganda or something :)

    Regards

    Mailman

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  • 56. At 1:22pm on 06 Jan 2011, Barry Woods wrote:

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

  • 57. At 1:22pm on 06 Jan 2011, Hudsonfan wrote:

    Did anyone (apart from me) read the article in the Times about the USA's supply of shale gas? They have enough to supply themselves for at least the next 50 years. Furthermore they claim that using the same technology, reserves in Europe, from Norway through to Spain can be exploited meaning no reliance on the Russians forever! They are also reckocned to be masses of it near Blackpool as well as the new finds being made in the UK continental shelf. Once again, good news being supressed. Lets rejoice that mankind (as always|) is finding solutions to so called "peak oil".

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  • 58. At 1:41pm on 06 Jan 2011, Barry Woods wrote:

    40#

    Professor Arnell of the Walker Institute, a key team member of the AVOID consortium - Hadley Centre, Reading Walker Institute, Grantahm, and Tyndall(who advice DECC about climate changeand Reading University, who also says regional modelling and prediction VERY uncertain....

    (IPCC author, 2,3,4 and the next IPCC report)

    in a recent public lecture (slide as well)
    Look under latest news Professor Arnell.
    http://www.walker-institute.ac.uk/


    Take a look at regional forcast in their latest Met news letter - ie not very good at all..
    http://www.met.reading.ac.uk/outreach/ke/
    Also.

    Cold winters to come in europe for decade (despite hemispheric warming (where exactly?)
    Can't link to the PDF, find it here..
    http://www.met.reading.ac.uk/outreach/ke/

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  • 59. At 1:54pm on 06 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re:54. At 12:32pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "If the Met Office said December 2010's unusually cold weather was confined to the UK and Western Europe then that is indeed incorrect. Where was this statement made? Scanning up through the thread I couldn't immediately find a link to it."

    Well I'm glad you agree, the link was at my original post #39
    "This is not a global event; it is very much confined to the UK and Western Europe and if you look over at Greenland, for example, you see that it's exceptionally warm there," she said. "
    http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/the-uk-may-be-cold-but-its-still-a-warm-world-says-met-office-chief-2165492.html

    And the Air Temperature Anomaly, December 2010 does indeed show cooler than normal temperatures in Russia and North America ie not limited to the UK as your post at #17 implied ie "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere".

    But I'd also be very wary at reading too much into exceptionally warm weather in Greenland and Siberia - odd that the 'hottest' areas are often where there are relatively few temperature stations -
    http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/NOAA_JanJun2010.htm

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  • 60. At 3:04pm on 06 Jan 2011, Barry Woods wrote:


    Perhaps Paul Hudson or Richard Black could ask these questions (or Roger Harrabin)

    About the Met Office apparently knowing about a COLD winter, and had warned the government but somehow it was kept secrret..

    As reported by Roger Harrabin...(in quoted in the Telegraph)

    A suspicion that need to be put to rest that no-one wanted to announce a cold winter, before the Cnacun 'climate Chnage (global warming) conference. No doubt FOI request are being made, maybe the BBC could make some FOI requests as well , in the public interest.

    GWPF release about this subject which is (VERY ) on topic.

    Transport System’s Winter Fiasco

    http://www.thegwpf.org/uk-news/2162-did-uk-government-keep-cold-winter-warning-secret-in-run-up-to-un-climate-conference.html


    I wonder if Paul Hudson could ask Richard Black or the moderators, why the last 2 earthwatch blog articles, have closed very quickly for comments, when there is clearly an interest..

    It allmost looks like the BBC does not want to see a debate about global warming...


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  • 61. At 3:06pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Barry Woods @ #58,

    Thanks for the links. These confirm some of the things we've been discussing here for a while.

    As stated in IPCC AR4, whilst existing models do seem able to predict global temperature, the effects of global warming on climate change at a regional and local level are far less certain.

    I think it's fair to say that the Met Office have not communicated this message very well to date!

    Paul

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  • 62. At 3:15pm on 06 Jan 2011, Barry Woods wrote:

    It appear the chiefs say they can, and the indians say they can't!!!

    Ie proffesor Arnell was saying, regionally they have different model outcomes for the same regions, for increased rainfall or severe drought or many things in between (in say Africa, for example) and no idea which is correct...

    Making mitigation and adaption, somewhat problematic!!!

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  • 63. At 3:47pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet, in the Independent article Julia Slingo was talking about the current weather, not the December result as a whole, although I suspect that there was probably colder weather elsewhere even at that time - she should probably have been more precise or careful in her wording.

    Saying that it was warm elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere does not imply that it was warm *everywhere* else in the Northern hemisphere, I'm not sure why you would interpret it in that way.

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  • 64. At 3:48pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #53OPatrick wrote:
    "It would help if you could give me examples to base this on, I haven't often looked at the Met Office directly, so I have little to go by. What I have read of theirs I would say is, if anything, overly cautious, but maybe you can show me otherwise."
    I am afraid that this is a conclusion I have come to over the years, by comparing what the Met. Office say with the actual facts. What I have detected is a bias which tends to support the AGW agenda, often to the point of of being misleading. I'm afraid that you are going to have to form your own conclusions based on the evidence. We shall see whether the M.O. estimate for 2010 was correct when they publish the final figure later this month. Another M.O. prediction to look out for is the one which said they expected "at least half" of the next 5 years to be warmer than 1998. It will be interesting to see their explanation for that not being correct.

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  • 65. At 4:31pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #59

    You linked to the following article:

    http://www.appinsys.com/GlobalWarming/NOAA_JanJun2010.htm

    I've had a look at this in some detail and there are far more questions than answers!

    First of all, the article is reproduced word for word at WUWT with the exception that the first figure - the gridded dataset under examination - is different! One of them is clearly wrong.

    Second, the author is using HADCRUT temperature anomalies to check the validity of the NOAA gridded anomalies. These are not directly comparable because they have different baselines and hence different values at any point in time.

    Finally, if you go to the NOAA website, you will find the following statement:

    "We developed these gridded data sets to produce the most accurate time series possible. However, this required that we treat months and grid boxes independently through time. The use of this data is most appropriate for analyzing the change in temperature within a particular grid box, or set of grid boxes, over a span of years. If one is more interested in analyzing temperature changes within individual years, e.g., the change in temperature between February and March, 1908, or between two regions in 1908, we recommend that the GHCN station data be used directly."

    In other words, NOAA set up this dataset to monitor temperature trends over longer periods (and the validation research confirms that it is good at doing this). However, it was never intended to produce an accurate representation of temperature for a particular location at a specific point in time. For that you need to look at the raw data.

    This difference between raw and adjusted data seems to be one of the biggest sources of confusion amongst bloggers.

    Paul

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  • 66. At 4:36pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    It may be of interest to some people reading this blog to know that the 10 year linear trend of the Monthly HadCRUT3 global anomaly fell below zero as a result of the November 2010 anomaly figure. This is the first time that the 10 year linear trend of monthly figures has been negative since May 1997. Otherwise, according to monthly HadCRUT3 figures, global temperatures now show a downward trend, over the last 10 years, equivalent to about 0.11c per century, after reaching a peak of about +3.98c per century in June 2002. Based on cyclical patterns within the HadCRUT3 series, I expect the 10 year linear trend to fall to about -2c per century by December 2013.

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  • 67. At 4:51pm on 06 Jan 2011, Spanglerboy wrote:

    There is a big difference between the quality value and relevance of these 2 statements:

    1. "December 2010 with a mean CET temperature of -0.7C was the second coldest since records began in 1659..." and

    2. "first analysis released of global temperatures shows 2010 was one of the warmest years on record."

    In the case of December 2010 in the UK, we know that it was cold because we all had to live through it. The statement is credible and, also as the statement only refers to land temperatures - not ocean temepratures (as I understand it), it is relevant to use the notion of temperature to describe that which we have experienced. We can readily accept that we have had a month without heat energy! It is therefore a statement that has value and relevance and most people I am sure would accept it as a statement of fact.

    On the other hand, the reference to 'global temperatures showing one of the warmest years' does not in my opinion have any relevance except as a declaration to support a political standpoint. As I have said many times, the concept of a mean global surface temperature is not a scientific concept. It is not possible to average temperature. It is intended to be a proxy for heat energy but tells us nothing about the vast amount of heat energy stored in the oceans. As such it is at best unreliable and at worst completely useless. Moreover, no single person on this planet experiences mean global surface temperature. It is for this reason that we (well me and the man sitting next to me wearing the silly hat) find it hard to connect to the global warming scare stories. The statement has no relevance, no value and no credibility.

    The use of global temperatures to support AGW policy is deeply flawed and I would guess is one of the many reasons that so many people are sceptical of AGW claims. Those people who believe that AGW is a problem need to accept that the tactics used to date have been ineffective. The scientific community can do better, but only if they stick to the science and put their personal beliefs to one side.

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  • 68. At 5:06pm on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    If anyone wonders why AGW adherents can stick to their position come what may - you just have to read this. I am not that clued up on psychology myself (anyone who goes to see a psychiatrist needs their head examining - sorry its an old joke). The guy is a sceptic of course so that means he knows nothing according to AGW supporters.

    http://omniclimate.wordpress.com/

    You will note that it is an addendum with a link to the original post at the top.

    The note to AGW believers close to the start of this post is worth a read.

    The note no.4 certainly applies to some of the AGW persuasion you come across on many blogs. I try to be non-arrogant myself - perhaps I fail, if so I apologise now. I often don't know, so its difficult to be arrogant - I just seek enlightenment.

    I remain sceptical - that is what a scientist should be. Attributing darker motives to others is just the mark of superstition.

    More personally

    I am sorry you think I am a liar OPatrick. I can assure you that I described the situation accurately and it is sad that you cannot except that. I guess I must be a bad person in some way.

    I have never been addressed discourteously on WUWT (although I have not contributed for a while). In fact Anthony Watts often allows guest posts from AGW supporters who are willing to engage in science and not dogma. He posts what he considers reasoned arguments then other will comment where they see the argument fall or otherwise - it is called science.

    I know people on Sceptic sites will state their views robustly on occasions but I have never seen anything remotely like the nastiness and arrogance that I received a few years back on one or two of the main AGW sites. I remember quite vividly expressing an agnostic view on CO2 as a driver for warming, merely suggesting that there was not much evidence to suggest the levels of warming predicted by the models (my comment was a little more detailed scientifically than this, but you get the drift). There was no attempt made to argue scientifically to convince me that I should view it from the warmist point of view. I was flamed in a very arrogant manner, as an idiot - I must be if I could not see it their way.

    One or two of the things listed in the link above chimed with my experience.

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  • 69. At 5:16pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    There seem to be some disagreements above regarding which parts of the World have been warm and which have been cold. So I thought I'd call on the December 2010 satellite data for a different perspective:

    http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_monthly.html

    You'll need to select "anomaly" at the top of the page to get the correct graphic. As you'll see, NE of North America/Greenland and E Asia and the N Pacific appear to have been very much warmer than usual in December.

    Paul

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  • 70. At 5:18pm on 06 Jan 2011, nibor25 wrote:

    Well, someone is beginning to ask questions.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/06/metoffgate-the-questions-begin/

    Interestingly in the letter there is this question.

    16. Is it appropriate that the chairman of the Met Office is a member, or a former member of climate pressure groups or carbon trading groups?

    Big Oil...more like Big Green

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  • 71. At 5:18pm on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    QV

    Phil Jones did admit this trend earlier in the year to the Select Committee, although he was a little less specific (no significant warming). Though we only have the transcript of the session to go on. I didn't hear him say it.

    And of course it means nothing does it?? If you get my drift? If it was going the other way, it would of course.

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  • 72. At 5:43pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Spanglerboy @ #67

    I agree that "global mean temperature" is not by any means the whole story, as most of the Earth's heat energy (apart from that at the core!) is in the oceans.

    However, the global mean temperature is still the best single indicator we have of the total heat content. In fact, the real problem is that the oceans are constantly playing catch-up due to "thermal inertia" (otherwise known as "climate lag"). You will find an explanation of this here:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climate-Change-The-40-Year-Delay-Between-Cause-and-Effect.html

    Several scientific papers have calculated total heat content of the Earth. You will find links to them towards the bottom of this article:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/empirical-evidence-for-global-warming.htm

    Paul

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  • 73. At 5:46pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    QuaesoVeritas, is this the 'at least half of the next 5 years warmer than warmest on record' prediction you were referring to?
    http://www.agci.org/dB/PDFs/08S1_DSmith.pdf

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  • 74. At 5:50pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #71. - Feetinthesnow wrote:
    "Phil Jones did admit this trend earlier in the year to the Select Committee, although he was a little less specific (no significant warming). Though we only have the transcript of the session to go on. I didn't hear him say it.
    And of course it means nothing does it?? If you get my drift? If it was going the other way, it would of course."
    I'm not 100% certain but I think that Jones said there was no "significant" warming over 15 years. I haven't done a 15 year rolling linear trend calculation but I suspect it would still show a rising trend. However, this is actually a declining trend over 10 years and while it is currently very low, I expect it to increase over the next few years. The point is that doing the trend over monthly figures gives a quicker response to changing trends than waiting for annual figures. Again, I haven't calculated a rolling trend based on annual figures, but the one for the years 2000 to 2009 is positive and the one for 2001 to 2010 will be negative. The main reason for this, of course is that the relatively low year of 2000 will drop out of the figures, despite the fact that 2010 is warmer. I know the warmists will say that 10 years is arbitrary, but I still think that this change from a positive trend to a negative one, of some significance. For the first time in a while, it's not simply that there is no warming, but actually a slight and increasing downward trend.

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  • 75. At 5:53pm on 06 Jan 2011, oldgifford wrote:

    Paul Briscoe wrote:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climate-Change-The-40-Year-Delay-Between-Cause-and-Effect.html

    I haven’t had time to read the article but if the lower temperatures we have seen since the 1998 peak are delayed by 40 years, doesn’t this mean that the rise in CO2 40 years ago has been the cause of global cooling?


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  • 76. At 6:03pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #73. - OPatrick wrote:
    "QuaesoVeritas, is this the 'at least half of the next 5 years warmer than warmest on record' prediction you were referring to?
    http://www.agci.org/dB/PDFs/08S1_DSmith.pdf "
    Not as such. The predictions were included in statements on the M.O. website.
    I am fairly certain that there were two version of the prediction. One was "about half" and the other was "at least half".
    I will try and find the original sources when I get the time.

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  • 77. At 6:05pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    oldgifford @ #75

    I think you know as well as I do that if you cherry-pick a particular starting point for a temperature series you can construct pretty well any trend you like!

    As you also know, the scientists use rolling averages precisely to avoid the peaks (eg. 1998 high due to El Nino) and troughs (due to La Nina). Once you take out the effects of ENSO, the temperature TREND is still positive....... and if you check the other article I linked to you'll see that the oceans are also still accumulating heat.

    Paul

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  • 78. At 6:08pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Feetinthesnow:

    "I have never been addressed discourteously on WUWT (although I have not contributed for a while)."

    Then I suggest you try an experiment and question some of the more obviously incorrect statements made there, you will fnd the courtesy somewhat short-lived no matter how politely you make your points.

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  • 79. At 6:16pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV @ #66

    Do you have a link to the monthly anomalies from HADCRUT that illustrates what you're saying? The most recent one I have seen is the one here:

    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm

    Of course, we are in the middle of a La Nina event, so you would expect the anomaly to be low just now.

    I've said to you before that I think the next few years are critical in terms of temperature trends - the scientists clearly don't expect what you are predicting for the next couple of years.

    Paul

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  • 80. At 6:47pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #79 - Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "Do you have a link to the monthly anomalies from HADCRUT that illustrates what you're saying? The most recent one I have seen is the one here:
    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm"
    I do my own analysis using the M.O. monthly HadCRUT3 figures which can be found here:
    http://hadobs.metoffice.com/hadcrut3/diagnostics/global/nh+sh/
    Click on the "data file" link under the monthly series graph. Then it's simply a question of putting the data into a spreadsheet and calculating a linear trend figure for each 120 month period in the series.
    "Of course, we are in the middle of a La Nina event, so you would expect the anomaly to be low just now."
    Not sure of the relevance of that comment. It isn't the result of recent figures, but a change in the 10 year trend.
    "I've said to you before that I think the next few years are critical in terms of temperature trends - the scientists clearly don't expect what you are predicting for the next couple of years."
    Some scientists do:
    http://www.reportingclimatescience.com/news-stories/article/global-warming-temperature-rise-may-be-lower-than-predicted.html
    The above paper actually gives very similar results to my own work on cycles within the 50 year linear trend of monthly HadCRUT3, although my own long term linear trend is about 0.85c per century.


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  • 81. At 7:41pm on 06 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    OPatrick

    My last comment - your last comment

    QED.

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  • 82. At 7:51pm on 06 Jan 2011, timawells wrote:

    Paul Briscoe

    To a much earlier comment from you about me not understanding how science works.

    It has been proofed that time slows down, as we speed up. Somebody carried an atomic clock around the world on a plane to proof the fact. Einstein was right and used his imagination correctly to come up with the correct formulae.

    The problem is that people who believe in Global warming are basing it on false evidence appearing real. What people tend to believe in, they find evidence to proof the fact. The same mind set as the people who believed in weapons of mass destruction, that were never found.

    I believed in global warming up to 2006, but as soon as I found out about the suns change in temperature even over the last 1000 years, then my view changed. I haven't been one bit surprised with the winters in the UK over the last three years, it makes sense, the sun is now much cooler. The next 30/40 years will leave a few people will egg on their faces and us with pointless carbon reduction policies, that achieve nothing.

    I am very green, when market forces allow I will have a wind turbine on my house, solar panels and ground source heating and a car running off a truly green fuel that is cheap.

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  • 83. At 8:31pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Feetinthesnow, your last post was one where you appear to misrepresent Phil Jones and then insinuate dishonesty - is that the one?

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  • 84. At 9:10pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #73 - OPatrick wrote:
    "QuaesoVeritas, is this the 'at least half of the next 5 years warmer than warmest on record' prediction you were referring to?"
    Actually, there are at least three versions of this prediction.
    The first one says: "We project at least half of the years after 2009 will be warmer than the 1998 record.", but doesn't seem to specify a time period. Presumably it means to the end of the century.
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/climatechange/policymakers/policy/slowdown.html
    The second says: "However, the Met Office’s decadal forecast predicts renewed warming after 2010 with about half of the years to 2015 likely to be warmer globally than the current warmest year on record"
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pressoffice/2009/pr20090914.html
    The third says: "Looking further ahead, our experimental decadal forecast confirms previous indications that about half the years 2010–2019 will be warmer than the warmest year observed so far — 1998."
    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/corporate/pressoffice/2009/pr20091210b.html
    Since the first one doesn't seem to specify a time period, it will be difficult to check it's accuracy, but we will know within a few years if the second and third predictions are likely to be correct.

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  • 85. At 9:13pm on 06 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #71. - Feetinthesnow wrote:
    "Phil Jones did admit this trend earlier in the year to the Select Committee, although he was a little less specific (no significant warming). Though we only have the transcript of the session to go on. I didn't hear him say it."
    I'm fairly certain I have a recording of the session, so I will check it out and post his exact words, if I do have it.


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  • 86. At 9:56pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    timawells @ #82

    "The problem is that people who believe in Global warming are basing it on false evidence appearing real."

    ....... and which particular bit of evidence is false?

    To help you, I'll direct you to an article which gives an overview of the basic science:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/10-Indicators-of-a-Human-Fingerprint-on-Climate-Change.html

    However, some of the most compelling evidence actually comes from the fossil record:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Geological-Society-discuss-climate-change-evidence-from-the-geological-record.html

    The latter recently caused Geological Society president Bryan Lovell, an oil executive and confirmed sceptic, to change his mind.

    Paul

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  • 87. At 10:17pm on 06 Jan 2011, brossen99 wrote:

    http://www.sovereignindependent.com/?p=7774

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  • 88. At 09:31am on 07 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #86 - Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "However, some of the most compelling evidence actually comes from the fossil record:
    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Geological-Society-discuss-climate-change-evidence-from-the-geological-record.html
    The latter recently caused Geological Society president Bryan Lovell, an oil executive and confirmed sceptic, to change his mind."
    I wonder which part of this caused him to change his mind?
    What this seems to demonstrate is that the Earth's climate changes naturally, without human intervention. Presumably we didn't cause the "sudden" warming event 55 million years ago. Was this caused by CO2 emissions or did they result from the warming? Also, the climate has clearly recovered from that situation since then, indicating that there are natural feedback mechanisms which will probably prevent uncontrolled temperature increase. If not, why didn't the Earth's temperature continue to increase, once the additional CO2 was added to the atmosphere?

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  • 89. At 09:50am on 07 Jan 2011, ukpahonta wrote:

    Paul,

    On your blog post http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/2010/10/another-cold-winter-ahead.shtml you made this comment:

    The Met Office don't issue their seasonal forecast to the general public anymore, using them for internal research purposes only, but as I understand it, their forecast also suggests that the probability of a cold winter is higher than normal.
    It would seem that one of the reasons for a higher probability of another cold winter is down to a forecast negative NAO (North Atlantic oscillation)

    I was wondering if you could direct me to the source of the information that led you to write this comment?

    Excellant blog by the way.

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  • 90. At 09:50am on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV,

    Re: your comments about a 10 year linear trend in the HADCRUT temperature data.

    I've taken another look at the Climatedata4you site and in fact they perform the same analysis themselves:

    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm#Global temperature trends

    They also confirm your finding for the HADCRUT data. However, they do express some pertinent points:

    "Linear trends depend on the length of the time period considered. The shorter the period considered, the more variable the calculated trend will be as new monthly data are added to the data series."

    In other words, a trend as short as 10 years is bound to be influenced far more than a longer one by natural variations such as ENSO and solar cycles (hence the reason why scientists use rolling means).

    "In addition, linear trends calculated for short periods often have higher numerical values than trends calculated for longer periods."

    True, although the opposite can also be true if the baseline happens to be unusually high!

    "In addition, linear trend analyses represent a relatively crude way of numerical analysis, and often a better approximation to the original data may be obtained by using other data models, e.g., polynomial"

    An example of a polynomial plot is included.

    Personally, I think you would learn far more by looking at long term trends based on rolling means, as these look beyond the natural cycles.

    Paul

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  • 91. At 09:55am on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV @ #88

    "I wonder which part of this caused him to change his mind?"

    It was the sudden warming event at the end of the Paleocene period. The following letter from David Mackay (which you may have seen before) describes this and another older example from the Toarcian period:

    http://www.rationaloptimist.com/blog/david-mackays-letter

    Paul

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  • 92. At 09:58am on 07 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Opatrick

    Not that I really want to get involved in others discussions, but what you've said about WUWT is completely untrue. There are no other words for it.

    Not Only does Anthony allow anyone a guest post (Sceptics, Luke Warmers and Warmists) He's been actively trying to encourage more debate. He's been trying to Tamino to post for what seems like an age now.

    Plus, when it comes to politeness in posts and responses WUWT, is very strict about that.

    So, firstly, they are inclusive, secondly, they are polite and thirdly, they dont censor posts that happen to contain information that goes against the general meme of the blog. Unlike the good old boys over at real climate and other warmist blogs.

    Sorry, but you really don't have a leg to stand on as far as this particular argument is concerned.

    You only have to Look at the treatment handed out to Dr. Curry to see how your side react to views that fall even slightly outside the standard mantra.

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 93. At 11:48am on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV,

    I've just noticed that my link to Climate4you is broken. You'll have to use the one below and then navigate to the relevant section yourself, I'm afraid:

    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm

    Paul

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  • 94. At 12:02pm on 07 Jan 2011, timawells wrote:

    Paul Briscoe

    As I said previously when you believe in something, whether it is right or wrong, you will gather information that proofs your point.

    When many in science have totally the wrong end of the stick and are trying to proof global warming looking from the wrong angle and bringing in systems of Carbon Management, that offer very little benefit and tax us even more, it is no laughing matter. As far as I am concerned, science is measuring this problem in the wrong way.

    When you have a great ball of fire and it warms or cools, then that will have the biggest effect on the earth and that trend is the one that statistics should be gathered about. It is funny since I discovered the fact in 2006 that winters have been getting colder, no coincidence I say. Do we have to wait for 30/40 years of cold winters, before people wake up to the fact that they got it seriously wrong.

    People are worried about C02 which is perfectly harmless, when really nasty pollutants such as acid rain need more attention. When I worked for a Carbon Management company, the owners were killing themselves smoking every day and worrying about C02. The benefit of me being there, was that they had to stand outside and smoke, which probably did them more good, that they were out in the fresh air.

    As I said previously it concerns me that the leaders of this world and scientists seem to be totally out of step with reality. We are insignicant compared with what nature can do and would be arrogant to think we could control it. We are not here by mistake and I am sure god has a plan for us and we aren't going to fall off the end of the earth.

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  • 95. At 12:04pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #92

    I have to confess that I've never seen any evidence of posts being removed at WUWT and I agree that the tone seems to be respectful.

    Of course, this doesn't mean that O'Patrick is wrong, especially if he has had a particular experience. After all, very few AGW supporters actually post over there, so it's very unlikely that most people would ever witness a post being removed!

    In my experience, the problem with WUWT is that articles there tend to have some major flaw which invalidates them. I have described one such example further back up this thread. What I HAVE seen is posters expressing concerns over the flaws and simply being ignored!

    In the scientific commumity, when someone makes a mistake in a paper, they issue a corrigendum or other scientists write replies to correct the error. The scientific community does not cite the flawed paper. The problem with WUWT and other sceptic blogs is that flawed articles tend NOT to get corrected. This leaves the original flawed claims up online (and on the Google search engine!) to confuse bloggers.

    Paul

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  • 96. At 12:07pm on 07 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    blunderbunny @92

    Thank you for your defence of WUWT - even though you didn't want to get involved.

    I can only underline your remarks, and I find it very sad that people on the AGW supporters side just engage in this arrogant and non-scientific behaviour.

    Your example of the treatment doled out to Dr. Curry by warmists squares with my own treatment a few years back - although I wish I had a fraction of her intellect.

    There are many areas of the Climate Change debate where opinions are divided, but to accuse Anthony Watts (a self confessed Skeptic)in this way is demonstrably a zealots position.

    On many occasions there have been warmist guest posts, although like Dr. Curry such people are often made to feel like traitors for engaging with sceptics, and I am sure that many are discouraged from the effort. The bullying of magazine editors and other AGWers exposed in the Climategate emails underlines the dangers of departing from the grand plan.

    WUWT while definitely sceptic tries to engage with anyone as you say, in a polite atmosphere . As I said once earlier - it is called science.

    Thanks again

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  • 97. At 12:28pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    timawells @ #94

    You said that those who believe in AGW do so based on false science. You have not provided ANY evidence to support this claim.

    Scientists have been studying the science of AGW for well over 100 years, so they know more than a bit about it by now and they have figured out how best to study what is a very complex subject.

    Most of what you are saying relates to policy, which is for governments rather than scientists to decide.

    Having said that, I think you were making an indirect reference to the sun, which I'm sure we discussed before. It is definitely NOT the sun which is causing the present warming. Here is a basic explanation:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming-basic.htm

    ...... and here's more detail for those who want it:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming-advanced.htm

    You also mentioned acid rain, which I studied in some detail as part of my degree. It was actually far more of a problem back then than it is now (except perhaps in the developing World), whereas ocean acidification as a result of CO2 emissions is something we should all be concerned about.

    Personally, I'm not willing to rely on God to save us if we fail to look after our planet for our children...... especially after we have been forewarned!

    Paul

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  • 98. At 1:00pm on 07 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #93 - Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "I've just noticed that my link to Climate4you is broken. You'll have to use the one below and then navigate to the relevant section yourself, I'm afraid:
    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm"
    For some reason both of your links seem to be including the URL for this blog, but even when I strip that out, I don't seem to be able to access the Climate4you site, even using links from a Google search.
    Anyway thanks for confirming that my calculations were correct.
    I appreciate that 10 years is a short and fairly arbitrary period. In fact, I more or less said that in post #74. However, it has the advantage of picking up the start of possible trends before calculations over longer periods do.
    If my calculations are correct, the 15 year trend will not start showing a negative value until late 2015, but it has been showing a downward trend since 2004.
    I disagree that the use of linear trends is a crude method of analysis and that rolling means would be better. The 50 year rolling linear trends seems to have revealed patterns which are not apparent in rolling means.
    I don't know why you would want to look beyond natural cycles, since it seems to me that they are critical.

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  • 99. At 1:21pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    For those claiming that WUWT encourages resectful dialogue, can I direct you again to the link in post #5
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/04/the-met-office-bullhockey/#more-30916

    This includes:

    "The spin you are about to witness is Maytag quality spin. It is shameless, stupid, and beyond anything I’ve ever seen. Both James Delingpole and Autonomous Mind take the Met Office out for a spin cycle that ends up in a full stop. The propaganda is shameless, the smell odious, and the public relations disaster is even worse than before."

    "The stench of deceit surrounding the Met Office, it’s disgraceful self serving effort to mislead the public and apparent attempt by a publicly funded BBC journalist to distort the facts is overpowering."

    "Roger Harrabin as in the BBC’s High Priest of Gaian Worship and Climate Alarmism."

    Can I also suggest you read through the comments with an open mind and reflect on the tone of these.

    Judith Curry failed repeatedly to answer clear questions that were put to her. It is impossible to argue reasonably with someone who refuses to do this, which is why many people became frustrated by her.

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  • 100. At 1:50pm on 07 Jan 2011, timawells wrote:

    Paul Briscoe

    There isn't much point discussing things with you. Facts and figures are only part of an equation, intuition has to be used if science is to make real break throughs, to create a better world. I have had the same problem proofing Hypnotherapy works with the medical establishment, but achieved something they couldn't do in 50 years with my dad and helped him to stop his migraines.

    If Einstein hadn't imagined been sat on a beam of light, we wouldn't have known that as speed increases times slows down. He then worked back wards to proof it.

    I use the same approach with the sun causing the world to warm and cool and evidence will start to come out over the next 10 years to proof me and many right thinking scientists correct.

    Carbon Management in this country is doing more harm than good. Our industry is suffering unfairly due to the burden of the past 20 years of government.

    To a brighter future without global warming and the wrong people playing god.

    Tim

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  • 101. At 2:46pm on 07 Jan 2011, oldgifford wrote:

    Paul B

    ...... and here's more detail for those who want it:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming-advanced.htm

    It says:

    “In the last 35 years of global warming, the sun has shown a slight cooling trend. Sun and climate have been going in opposite directions. In the past century, the Sun can explain some of the increase in global temperatures, but a relatively small amount.”

    35 years is a very short period of weather to infer a climate, especially when you look at the cyclical nature of the warming/cooling. Don’t forget we are still in a period when we are emerging from the ice age so natural warming is to be expected until we head for the next ice age. Why have we had a relatively flat period of global temperature increases/decreases in the last 15 years or so? [ smoothed values ]

    Perhaps this is inertia? What is the thermal mass of the earth and the expected response time in terms of increased heat in/out and the associated temperature rise?

    We regularly get new evidence of unknown solar effects on our weather. This one popped up a few years ago but I don’t remember a great fuss about it.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/358953.stm

    “Global warming may not be caused by humanity's fossil fuel emissions, but could be due to changes in the Sun.

    Research suggests that the magnetic flux from the Sun more than doubled this century. As solar magnetism is closely linked with sunspot activity and the strength of sunlight reaching Earth, the increase could have produced warming in the global climate.

    Prof. Mike Lockwood: "The man made greenhouse gases is accelerating as time goes by"
    The evidence for an increasingly energetic Sun comes from a new analysis of the magnetic field between the planets, carried out by scientists at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, near Oxford, UK.”……etc.

    Prof. Mike Lockwood’s observations initially that the sun had stopped warming was seized on by AGW supporters and was the “proof” it was all AGW, but whenever a contrary argument appears they go quiet.

    Recent research seems to validate the Soon and Baliunas papers much attacked by the warmists, see overview at

    http://www.suite101.com/content/global-warming-is-caused-by-our-sun-a218913

    Paul I admire your attempts to support AGW but perhaps you would like to comment on the link brossen99 gave?

    http://www.sovereignindependent.com/?p=7774

    It shows just how unscientific and unprofessional the pro AGW supporters are, quite ready to lie to us without any scruples. Just two examples:

    Science? What does this mean?

    “The data doesn’t matter. We’re not basing our recommendations on the data. We’re basing them on the climate models.”

    * Prof. Chris Folland, Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research

    Politics?

    “No matter if the science of global warming is all phony… climate change provides the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.”

    * Christine Stewart, former Canadian Minister of the Environment

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  • 102. At 3:10pm on 07 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @OPatrick

    Sorry mate, but that's outrageous to try and compare the abuse levelled at Dr. Curry with the rather mild comments on WUWT in the article that you've linked to.

    I'm quite frankly appalled that you think Dr. Curry's venomous treatment over on RC was even vaguely justified.

    If you want to know why your side of the argument is failing to engage with the public at large, then you've got no further to look than this kind of issue. It simply boggles the mind that the warmist camp seems to think that these sorts of things actually help your cause......

    I'm guessing from the tone of your posts that you might even have thought that the 10:10 campaign video was okay?

    How about the ever popular Greenpeace, "We Know Where You Live" Debacle, was that okay too?

    Or Hansen's "Death Trains" perhaps?

    The ends justifying the means have led to some of humanity’s darkest days..... and IMHO those days are not something that we should ever be keen to revisit.

    I really am at a loss for any more words.......

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 103. At 3:52pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Blunderbunny, I gave examples of the "rather mild comments" from WUWT (I'm slightly surprised that you would think "odious", "stench of deceit", "High Priest of Gaian Worship" and such language to be 'rather mild'), can you give the examples of abuse that Curry received that are worse than this?

    How does the sort of language I have quoted being used at WUWT, the Telegraph and other places that promote sceptical views help their cause?

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  • 104. At 4:03pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    oldgifford

    "Why have we had a relatively flat period of global temperature increases/decreases in the last 15 years or so?"

    We haven't. The temperature trend in the last 15 years has continued the trend from the previous comfortably with statistically significant bounds.

    Are you seriously expecting anyone to take The Sovereign Independent seriously as a source? You will note that they use the "Unless we announce disasters no one will listen" quote, even though it is not possible that they do not know this was a fabricated quote. See here for example http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/climate-change/fabricated-quote-used-to-discredit-climate-scientist-1894552.html

    Are you willing to be sceptical? Perhaps you could try being sceptical of these out of context and in at least some cases demonstrably false quotes?

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  • 105. At 4:16pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: #103. At 3:52pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "How does the sort of language I have quoted being used at WUWT, the Telegraph and other places that promote sceptical views help their cause?"

    Seems pretty mild when you come across this sort of thing
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/11/the-new-post-partisan-world/

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  • 106. At 4:20pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re 63. At 3:47pm on 06 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    "Saying that it was warm elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere does not imply that it was warm *everywhere* else in the Northern hemisphere, I'm not sure why you would interpret it in that way."

    Probably because in your original comment at #17 "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere" you emphasised *in the UK* without pointing out that it was also exceptionally cold in Russia and North America.

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  • 107. At 4:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet, you seem to be clutching at straws.

    You have linked to a cartoon - do you seriously think this is equivalent to, yet alone worse than, the direct and personal attacks and the language used in the WUWT post?

    As to my emphasising the UK, that would be because the post was about winter in the UK.

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  • 108. At 4:36pm on 07 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @OPatrick #104

    That's simply not true either(Quote from your Post):

    "We haven't. The temperature trend in the last 15 years has continued the trend from the previous comfortably with statistically significant bounds. "

    Quote from Dr. Phil Jones, who said "that for the past 15 years there has been no 'statistically significant' warming."

    In Direct response to: Do you agree that from 1995 to the present there has been no statistically-significant global warming?

    "Yes, but only just. I also calculated the trend for the period 1995 to 2009. This trend (0.12C per decade) is positive, but not significant at the 95% significance level. The positive trend is quite close to the significance level. Achieving statistical significance in scientific terms is much more likely for longer periods, and much less likely for shorter periods."

    And, in reponse to: Do you agree that from January 2002 to the present there has been statistically significant global cooling?

    "No. This period is even shorter than 1995-2009. The trend this time is negative (-0.12C per decade), but this trend is not statistically significant."

    And whilst this in itself is this is not yet a statistically significant trend change, you can't actually claim that it's a positive 15 year trend that’s either statistically significant or that’s continued unabated. That's being slightly creative/disingenous don't you think?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 109. At 4:57pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    blunderbunny, these two statements do not contradict each other:

    "We haven't. The temperature trend in the last 15 years has continued the trend from the previous comfortably with statistically significant bounds. "

    Quote from Dr. Phil Jones, who said "that for the past 15 years there has been no 'statistically significant' warming."

    The first is about continuing a trend (I had meant to include "25 years" between previous and comfortably, although any other appropriate number of years would do) and the second is about looking at a short period in isolation. Consider this simple example to see the difference: if you flip a coin and get 4 heads in a row this is unusual but not statistically significant. If however the 4 heads come after previously getting 6 heads in a row then it certainly looks like there is significance in the results.

    There is a lot of natural variation in global temperatures, the variation is about ten times that of the underlying warming trend. It therefore takes a longer period of time than 10 or even 15 years to establish a statistically significant trend in such data. Those who originally designed this specific question for Phil Jones and who continue to use his honest answer, knew this, yet still misrepresent the response. I would hope that you are not using this knowingly and will be willing to try to understand the difference.

    The trend over the last 15 years does continue the trend from the previous 25 years. Try plotting these trends for yourself on a site like Wood For The Trees or use the data directly yourself.
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1995/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1970/to:1995/trend

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  • 110. At 5:03pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Oldgifford @ #101

    "Don’t forget we are still in a period when we are emerging from the ice age so natural warming is to be expected until we head for the next ice age. Why have we had a relatively flat period of global temperature increases/decreases in the last 15 years or so? [ smoothed values ]"

    Not so. The mid-Holcene optimum occured around 6000 years ago! The following article explains that we are not even still warming after the Little Ice Age, let alone the last ice age:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/coming-out-of-little-ice-age-advanced.htm

    The following article explains that the rate of warming has remained well within the expected range over the past 15 years:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23iGJbkbzzE

    So the temperature trend is far from "flat".

    Regarding your links, you certainly choose your sources! Given that you have previously written a scientific paper, I'm surprised that you didn't check the validity of the articles' claims in a little more detail before posting the links. Instead it falls to me to spend time pointing out the obvious problems with them.

    Did you check the date on the BBC article you linked to? It was back in 1999. Sadly, I can find no link to Prof Parker's paper, but it has certainly been superceded by much more up to date research, much of it detailed in the following article:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming-advanced.htm

    The article includes a link to a more recent paper by Prof Lockwood which certainly doesn't provide any support for what you are suggesting.

    Regarding your second link, I can't imagine where it managed to find a link with AGW, because other accounts show that Richard Harrison made no reference to it at all:

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/science/space/article7012205.ece

    It is well known that there is a natural and regular solar cycle and it is widely accepted that this has a transient effect on global temperatures.

    I admit that I ignored brossen99's final link...... and for a good reason. Has it not struck you that the document provides no link to where the original statements were made? In other words, it gives the reader no opportunity to put the statements in their proper context. Without their full context, they are meaningless!

    Paul

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  • 111. At 5:13pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    timawells @ #100

    Tim,

    Youa are obviously quite within your rights to think what you like and it's obvious that I'm not going to sway you!

    However, the study of anthropogenic global warming is a science and science is evidence-based. If a pioneering scientist were to discover some previously unknown element of solar activity which explains AGW, I would be the first to applaud them....... I don't think many scientists WANT it to be true any more than you do. Sadly, at present all of the available evidence shows that the sun cannot explain the warming trend over recent decades.

    So forgive me if I appear dismissive, but if someone makes an uncorroborated claim that AGW science is "false", they can hardly be surprised if I ask them to produce evidence to back up their assertion.

    Paul

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  • 112. At 5:19pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    So that we can end the endless arguments over whether there has been warming or not over the past 15 years, PLEASE will everyone watch the excellent video explanation here:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23iGJbkbzzE

    OPatrick is quite correct and is explaining it very well, but a picture (or several actually) tells a thousand words........

    Paul

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  • 113. At 5:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 65. At 4:31pm on 06 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "This difference between raw and adjusted data seems to be one of the biggest sources of confusion amongst bloggers".

    Well I'd certainly agree with that Paul which is why I was delighted when I came across this link -
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/ushcn/ushcn.html
    which I thought explained very nicely the adjustments which have been used to provide temperature data. I must admit to being rather surprised at the overall bias of the adjustments made!

    Joseph D'Aleo and Anthony Watts have numerous examples of adjusted bias in their report on Surface Temperature Records

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/originals/policy_driven_deception.html?Itemid=0

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  • 114. At 5:33pm on 07 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @OPatrick

    The wording "We haven't. The temperature trend in the last 15 years has continued the trend from the previous comfortably with statistically significant bounds."

    Specifically,

    "with statistically significant bounds"

    Implied that there was an element of statistical significance, when there is and was not. The 15 yr trend is under the bounds of statistical significance and is therefore NOT statistically significant. So, you were being a tad creative or disingenuous with your use of language and are therefore giving a misleading impression. We wouldn’t want people to get the wrong idea, now would we?

    If you’d have liked to consider another trend period, then you should have done so.

    One of the Lobby

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  • 115. At 5:51pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    107. At 4:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "Sparklet, you seem to be clutching at straws.
    You have linked to a cartoon - do you seriously think this is equivalent to, yet alone worse than, the direct and personal attacks and the language used in the WUWT post?"

    On the contrary it is quite indicative of the views that many CAGW proponents seem to have on sceptics as exemplified by the repeated 'Denialist' remarks made.

    "As to my emphasising the UK, that would be because the post was about winter in the UK."

    No OPatrick, it was in your post #17 about winter in the Northern Hemisphere.

    To repeat yet again your words -
    "December 2010 was an exceptionally cold month *in the UK*, but it was an exceptionally warm month elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere"

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  • 116. At 5:52pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #113

    The D'Aleo and Watts claims are old news and there are the parallel claims of Surfacestations.org. If there had been any real basis to them they would have been written up as a peer reviewed paper by now!

    Here are some articles which explain much of what is wrong with their claims:

    http://www.yaleclimatemediaforum.org/2010/01/kusi-noaa-nasa/

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Dropped-stations-introduce-warming-bias-intermediate.htm

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/surface-temperature-measurements-advanced.htm

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/microsite-influences-on-global-temperature-intermediate.htm

    Paul

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  • 117. At 5:55pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #114

    Please will you confirm that you have watched and inwardly digested the contents of the video that I linked to at #112?

    Paul

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  • 118. At 6:09pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    It's particularly interesting that Phil Jones admitted there was no statistically significant warming since 1995
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8511670.stm
    when at the same time CO2 emissions from China have gone through the roof(it overtook the US back in 2006) -
    "The researchers' most conservative forecast predicts that by 2010, there will be an increase of 600 million metric tons of carbon emissions in China over the country's levels in 2000. This growth from China alone would dramatically overshadow the 116 million metric tons of carbon emissions reductions pledged by all the developed countries in the Kyoto Protocol."
    http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/thisweek/2008/03/17_chinacarbonemission.asp

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  • 119. At 6:21pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #118

    Did you not watch the video I linked to at #112? It makes some important points which might clear up some of your misconceptions.

    With regard to CO2 levels, although emissions from China have undoubtedly gone up and are a huge cause for concern in the longer term, it's important to remember that close to half of the CO2 emitted each year by Man is absorbed by the oceans. Consequently, CO2 levels are still "only" rising by around 2 ppm per year. This rate will certainly increase unless measures are introduced to limit emissions, but the long term warming trend is in line with the present rate of increase in CO2.

    Paul

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  • 120. At 6:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 116. At 5:52pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe

    Paul I'm not at all impressed by the term 'peer-reviewed papers' particularly after the Wegman report and what came out at Climategate.
    There have also been several articles about what a nonsense the peer review process has become.

    Nor can you deny that Anthony Watts Surface Stations Project was a very valuable excercise - it has highlighted numerous instances of very badly placed temperature stations and his photographic evidence was very revealing.
    http://www.surfacestations.org/
    Hardly surprising that the CAGW community go into overdrive to try and pick holes in it - the fact remains that there is much that is seriously wrong with our temperature data as Roger Pielke Sr has also reported.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/08/26/pielke-senior-on-the-surfacetemperatures-org-effort/

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  • 121. At 6:36pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 119. At 6:21pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    Sparklet @ #118

    "Did you not watch the video I linked to at #112? It makes some important points which might clear up some of your misconceptions".

    Indeed I did but please identify exactly what these 'misconceptions' are that you believe I have?


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  • 122. At 6:44pm on 07 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    Paul Briscoe and OPatrick

    Thanks for the video -same old - "well that's not quite what he said".

    It hasn't warmed significantly however you look at it - it might even cool now , so who knows.

    I have no idea what he told the BBC for a start - I was referring to his statements made to the Parliamentary Select Committee, at the beginning of March, on the subject.

    I particularly thought the point at which someone on the committee faced him with his email comment to Steve McIntyre - "why should I let you have my data, when your only aim is to find fault with it" was particularly telling. I think the committee member (himself a scientist) thought that was how science worked. We know from the climategate emails that peer-review was just mate-review and they were determined to stop anyone else getting a look.

    The usual AGW arrogance - how dare you challenge my findings I'm a world authority.

    He was tackled about UHI effects and admitted that as late as 2008, he hadn't allowed enough for this in China. It is probably quite an effect elsewhere, especially in the USA where some sites have virtually been tarmaced over in the last 40 years. The exposure of some American sites is abysmal.

    You would have thought that Prof Jones would have learnt a lesson about archiving data - but look at this from your hated Steve McIntyre yesterday

    http://climateaudit.org/2011/01/06/more-data-refusal-nothing-changes/


    It isn't the science here that is worrying - its the lack of transparency and the apparently poor archiving practices.

    Here is another example still ongoing reported in yesterdays Washington Examiner -

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/2011/01/yes-virginia-you-do-have-produce-those-global-warming-documents

    Where even the US Attorney General is finding it hard to get the information that he wants.

    Anyway you will not convince me gentleman and obviously I will not convince you - so I will withdraw to lick my wounds. It is a waste of time (yours and mine) - sorry if that sounds arrogant.

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  • 123. At 7:12pm on 07 Jan 2011, nibor25 wrote:

    @ Feetinthesnow - you don't sound arrogant quite the reverse. Keep up the good work. Its people like you who through the dark days kept the "Scepticism (loud and proud)" alive whilst many of us, me included for my shame, just took in the propaganda and sucked it up. Still.. I did wake up eventually.

    Enjoyed the post re Washington post - that's the next stage - get these guys in the courts...you have to ask what they have to hide when they spend 1/2 million dollars trying to keep the Attorney General at bay.

    Asia never gave two hoots about CO2, the Yanks flirted with it but its dead there now, only us poor Brits still to go, won't be long though once the party gets started in the US.

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  • 124. At 7:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    Yep, I watched your youtube video. I'm stating exactly the same as Dr. Jones and in this case making no other paticular claims other than that.

    Opatrick's post was written to give the exactly opposite impression, I'm merely pointing that out and without reference to any sceptical or even skeptical resource..... I guess that must be a tad annoying ;-)

    One of the Lobby

    PS. Plus, too honest - Come on, how can a scientist be too honest?

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  • 125. At 7:54pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    blunderbunny:

    "The wording "We haven't. The temperature trend in the last 15 years has continued the trend from the previous comfortably with statistically significant bounds."

    Specifically,

    "with statistically significant bounds"

    Implied that there was an element of statistical significance, when there is and was not."

    I'm sorry but you are wrong, or at least you are misinterpreting what I have said (possibly because I left off the -in at the end of with). It is the trend that has been continued within statistical bounds - I'm not sure how else I can phrase that so you will understand what is meant by it.... The trend over the last 15 years is statistically indistinuishable from the trend over the past 25 years, does that help?

    The only reason why the trend in the last 15 years, taken in isolation, is not statistically significant is because 15 years is (just) not long enough to establish statistical significance in such noisy data. If you were to choose any 15 year period from the last 40 years it is quite likely you would not be able to establish a statistically significant trend for it. But take all of the data together and, even though the trend itself might actually be smaller than the trend over the last 15 years it definitely is statistically significant. This is because it is 40 years of data, not 15.

    I know there are some who are genuinely unaware of the difference between what Phil Jones said and the interpretation that is being put on it by people determined to use it to misinform. However, if even after having it pointed out and explained you do not try to understand this distinction and continue to use it to that effect then you are being dishonest. Please make the effort to understand the point I, and Paul Briscoe, am making.

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  • 126. At 8:05pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet:

    ""As to my emphasising the UK, that would be because the post was about winter in the UK."

    No OPatrick, it was in your post #17 about winter in the Northern Hemisphere."

    By post I mean the original post, by Paul Hudson, which is about the December temperatures in the UK. I would refer to *comments*, e.g. 'comment #17' if I meant individual comments. Sorry for the confusion there.

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  • 127. At 8:10pm on 07 Jan 2011, brossen99 wrote:

    Paul Briscoe # various over the past week

    Do you really support the aims of these people and the political policy direction in which they intend to take us ?

    http://www.infowars.com/ipcc-professor-calls-for-elite-warrior-leadership-to-rule-over-eco-dictatorship/

    http://www.prisonplanet.com/eco-fascists-call-for-prison-cities.html

    http://www.infowars.com/eco-nazi-orders-americans-to-pay-carbon-tax-on-children/

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  • 128. At 8:22pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet, analysis of Watts' Surface Station Project shows that the stations he identified as poorly sited anctually introduce a very slight cooling bias.

    Although the Wegman report was clearly deeply flawed I don't think it is fair to use it to form the basis of your impression of peer-review, it was hardly a valid example of peer-review itself after all. Or have I misinterpreted what you were saying there?

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  • 129. At 8:56pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re:126. At 8:05pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "By post I mean the original post, by Paul Hudson, which is about the December temperatures in the UK. I would refer to *comments*, e.g. 'comment #17' if I meant individual comments. Sorry for the confusion there."

    Can't see why there should have been any 'confusion' OPatrick as I (unlike you) always reference the post to which I'm referring. I think it would be appropriate if you were to do the same.

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  • 130. At 9:05pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #120

    "Paul I'm not at all impressed by the term 'peer-reviewed papers' particularly after the Wegman report and what came out at Climategate."

    We've been throught this in some detail elsewhere, Sparklet. First of all, let's get Climategate out of the way. The problem here was that emails were reproduced without their proper context and in such a way that people with little knowledge of how science operates would jump to the conclusion that there was corruption. The independent reviews rejected the accusations:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climategate-peer-review.html

    http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/d0cf6618525a9efb85257359003fb69d/56eb0d86757cb7568525776f0063d82f%21OpenDocument

    You also mention the Wegman report into the work of Michael Mann. However, there are serious question marks over the objectivity and independence of this enquiry. Significantly, the genuinely independent review by the US National Academies of Science reached totally different conclusions. Mann acknowledged that his original statistical analysis was flawed, but critically, the USNAS showed that it actually made no difference to the findings.

    Let's be clear. Scientists DO make mistakes from time to time - they are human beings - but this is not peculiar to climate science. Also, peer review does not always pick up problems - this, too, happens in other branches of science. Ultimately, though, the scientific community as a whole identify the problems and they are either corrected or the paper does not gain acceptance.

    "Nor can you deny that Anthony Watts Surface Stations Project was a very valuable excercise - it has highlighted numerous instances of very badly placed temperature stations and his photographic evidence was very revealing."

    Nobody is denying that, Sparklet. Watts and his helpers WERE thanked for their efforts. The problem for Watts was that he expected his study to uncover a warming bias in the temperature record as a result of the problems he unearthed. However, the scientific study described in my previous link above showed that there was actually a slight cooling bias. This was because most of the offending stations had been fitted with a different type of sensor.

    Regarding Pielke, he is a well known contrarian and the overwhelming majority of scientists working in the field reject his views:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Pielke-Sr-and-scientific-equivocation-dont-beat-around-the-bush-Roger.html

    Paul

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  • 131. At 9:06pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet #129 - my comment #126 was quoting from your comment #115.

    Just to clarify, the reason I emphasised that it was cold *in the UK*, and didn't think to mention it had also been cold elsewhwere in the Northern hemisphere, was because the original post was only about the UK temperatures. Conclusions appeared to be being drawn about global warming based on the UK December temperatures, but I was pointing out that elsewhere in the Northern hemisphere it had actually been exceptionally warm.

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  • 132. At 9:09pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re 128. At 8:22pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "Sparklet, analysis of Watts' Surface Station Project shows that the stations he identified as poorly sited anctually introduce a very slight cooling bias.

    Although the Wegman report was clearly deeply flawed I don't think it is fair to use it to form the basis of your impression of peer-review, it was hardly a valid example of peer-review itself after all. Or have I misinterpreted what you were saying there? "

    Sorry OPatrick but I haven't been at all impressed by analysis I've seen so far from the CAGW crowd - perhaps you could link to the report to which you refer.

    I'd also be interested in reading exactly why you believe the Wegman report to have been 'clearly deeply flawed' - on the contrary I think it was a very fair assessment!

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  • 133. At 9:10pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Glancing pack at my comment #125 I've noticed yet another slip in my comments - Friday evening is taking its toll. The end of my first paragraph should have read

    "The trend over the last 15 years is statistically indistinuishable from the trend over the *previous* 25 years, does that help?"

    (Although I suspect what I had written accdentally is actually also true.)

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  • 134. At 9:11pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #121

    Your post at #118 appeared to be suggesting that there was a lack of warming at a time when there were large emissions of CO2 from China - as though this was not consistent with the science of AGW.

    I was merely wanting to point out that "lack of statistically significant warming" is NOT the same as "no warming".

    Paul

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  • 135. At 9:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet #132, the analysis of the Surface Stations results is here http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ushcn/v2/monthly/menne-etal2010.pdf

    The obvious place to start with the Wegman report is John Mashey's exhausitve analysis - the 'executive summary' is here http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/strange-scholarship-v1-02-exec.pdf and the full report here http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/strange-scholarship-v1-02.pdf

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  • 136. At 9:44pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 130. At 9:05pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    "...First of all, let's get Climategate out of the way. The problem here was that emails were reproduced without their proper context and in such a way that people with little knowledge of how science operates would jump to the conclusion that there was corruption. The independent reviews rejected the accusations"

    Sorry Paul but this is utter nonsense. The emails were quite explicit and the scientists in question have not been able to produce any other emails that would change the context.
    And both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough.

    http://climateaudit.org/2010/09/14/climategate-inquiries/

    If you recall respected physicist Hal Lewis' comments on his resignation from the APS -

    "It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.) I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion."
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/10/16/hal-lewis-my-resignation-from-the-american-physical-society/

    Regarding your further comments it seems that any person or scientist who doesn't exactly follow the CAGW dogma is besmirched as a 'Denialist' or 'Contrarian' indeed there seems to be a marked preference for playing the man rather than the ball - such does nothing to help the futherance of science and has done much to promote scepticism.

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  • 137. At 9:56pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Feetinthesnow @ #122

    "Thanks for the video -same old - "well that's not quite what he said"."

    I think the problem here may lie with your interpretation of scientific language.

    When I started my PhD, the first thing that was drummed into me was the importance of being precise and specific in my use of language. This is absolutely essential in scientific research because you can be pretty well certain that if you are not precise someone will pick you up on it!

    Sadly, many non-scientists miss the nuances in what scientists say and therefore get the wrong end of the stick.

    For instance "A may be linked to B" is very different to "A proves B". The second statement is absolute, whereas the first conveys a sense of uncertainty - this is often lost in media reports.

    Phil Jones chose his words very carefully and his meaning was absolutely clear. It is just that the Daily Mail misinterpreted it and you, together with pretty well the entire sceptic movement, have chosen to accept the Mail's claim (which was what you wanted to hear) rather than what Jones actually said!

    "I particularly thought the point at which someone on the committee faced him with his email comment to Steve McIntyre - "why should I let you have my data, when your only aim is to find fault with it" was particularly telling. I think the committee member (himself a scientist) thought that was how science worked."

    There are a few pertinent points which you haven't covered above. First of all, McIntyre had an unfortunate habit of filing FOI requests for data that was already in the public domain (most of the temperature data was) and it was not CRU's data anyway. He also had an unfortunate habit of insinuating malfeasance by scientists when there was no evidence to support it. Also, much of the data held by CRU was covered by confidentiality agreements and they were therefore quite correct to withold it from McIntyre. Given many of the comments from McIntyre that I have read, I'm not really surprised that Prof Jones chose not to cooperate with him any more than the law required. I agree that he was probably foolhardy, because it simply gave McIntyre yet more ammunition!

    "We know from the climategate emails that peer-review was just mate-review and they were determined to stop anyone else getting a look."

    No! I've already covered that above at #130

    "He was tackled about UHI effects and admitted that as late as 2008, he hadn't allowed enough for this in China. It is probably quite an effect elsewhere, especially in the USA where some sites have virtually been tarmaced over in the last 40 years. The exposure of some American sites is abysmal."

    Feetinthesnow, this has all been looked at in detail in scientific papers. The points you mention have been shown to introduce no bias.

    Finally, did you not look into the past history of Virginia Attorney Cuccinelli? Take a look under the "Environmental policies" section here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ken_Cuccinelli

    Could this latest development not just be a part of the same agenda?

    "Anyway you will not convince me gentleman and obviously I will not convince you - so I will withdraw to lick my wounds. It is a waste of time (yours and mine)"

    Agreed!

    Paul

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  • 138. At 10:29pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #136

    "Sorry Paul but this is utter nonsense. The emails were quite explicit and the scientists in question have not been able to produce any other emails that would change the context. And both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough."

    With respect, the enquiries were far more independent and objective than either Monckton or McKitrick. I have yet to see any document from Monckton that is not at the very least a gross misrepresentation of the facts.

    I looked at the emails myself long before the enquiry teams reported. As a scientist, having checked the CONTEXT, I could see that there was nothing incriminating in them. I fear that you have been too easily swayed by the mass hysteria and appalling propaganda that filled the blogosphere at that time. To my mind, this article puts Climategate in its proper perspective:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/fake-scandal-Climategate.html

    You mention Hal Lewis...... and of course WUWT faithfully reports it. However, how many thousand more scientists DIDN'T resign? The majority of scientists could see that Climategate was a "stitch up" from start to finish - the dead giveaway was the timing....... just before Copenhagen!

    "Regarding your further comments it seems that any person or scientist who doesn't exactly follow the CAGW dogma is besmirched as a 'Denialist' or 'Contrarian'"

    Not so! There are some well respected sceptical scientists who do occasionally produce papers. However, in the REAL World of AGW science, the debate is not over whether AGW exists. Rather it is about the rate of warming and its effect on future climate.

    To finish, I'll post you a link to an article by one of these sceptical scientists, Dr Roy Spencer. It shows that even a confirmed sceptic, doing his own study, confirms the HADCRUT temperature data:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/02/new-work-on-the-recent-warming-of-northern-hemispheric-land-areas/

    It's a shame that McIntyre and McKitrick didn't do this instead of insinuating corruption at CRU!

    Paul

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  • 139. At 10:30pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 135. At 9:32pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    "Sparklet #132, the analysis of the Surface Stations results is here http://www1.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ushcn/v2/monthly/menne-etal2010.pdf

    The obvious place to start with the Wegman report is John Mashey's exhausitve analysis - the 'executive summary' is here http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/strange-scholarship-v1-02-exec.pdf and the full report here http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/strange-scholarship-v1-02.pdf"

    The report you reference actually pre-dates the report I referred to so is hardly an analysis of said report but simply an analysis of an incomplete dataset from the surface stations project. They also appear to have analysed data that had been through most of the homogenisation process when a comparison with raw data would have been far more appropriate.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/01/27/rumours-of-my-death-have-been-greatly-exaggerated/

    I've already come across Mashey's analysis and was far from impressed, which particular comments of his do you believe to be worthy of note?

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  • 140. At 10:41pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 138. At 10:29pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    Sparklet @ #136

    "Sorry Paul but this is utter nonsense. The emails were quite explicit and the scientists in question have not been able to produce any other emails that would change the context. And both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough."

    With respect, the enquiries were far more independent and objective than either Monckton or McKitrick.

    -------------------------------

    Interesting Paul, please point out those specifics of their reports that you have found to be untruthful or erroneous, I found them to be quite forensic in their analysis and would be very interested in any errors.

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  • 141. At 10:47pm on 07 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    137. At 9:56pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    "Phil Jones chose his words very carefully and his meaning was absolutely clear. It is just that the Daily Mail misinterpreted it and you, together with pretty well the entire sceptic movement, have chosen to accept the Mail's claim (which was what you wanted to hear) rather than what Jones actually said!"

    Actually Phil Jones testimony was quite contradictory in places - can you please link to the Daily Mail's misinterpretation and identify where the errors are - it would be interesting to compare the Mail's claims with what was said.

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  • 142. At 11:29pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet #139 - I'm sorry, have I missed Watts' analysis of his data? I couldn't see an obvious link to it you have given and I hadn't heard that he had published it. The analysis I linked to is the only published one I am aware of.

    Yes, I assume you have come across Mashey's analysis - what specifically were you not impressed about?

    For me the most telling problems in the Wegman report are the poor quality of the referencing, including many irrelevant or dubious ones, and the biased and unscientific language used throughout. The plagiarism issue is obviously a big one, but what really matters in a way is not so much that they have seemingly plagiarised work but that in some cases they appear to have deliberately made small changes that significantly alter the meaning of the texts in order to fit their narrative. Another issue that raises very serious questions and is indicative of the quality of science in the report is their method of selection for the leading principle components, as outlined in detail here http://deepclimate.org/2010/11/16/replication-and-due-diligence-wegman-style/

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  • 143. At 11:46pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #140

    I think you misunderstood me, Sparklet. The point I was making was that McKitrick and Monckton have been directly involved in the criticisms of the science and the scientists over a long period and actually contributed to the circumstances which led to the Climategate enquiries. As such, their accounts could never be considered as independent and objective. Indeed, I would go so far as to say that they had a vested interest in convincing the enquiry teams that the scientists were corrupt by putting their own spin on things.

    For example, from Monckton's testimony:

    "The CRU disclosures demonstrate that the peer review process can be subverted by a small but influential group of scientists."

    This was an assertion and not an established fact - it was for the enquiries to determine it for themselves.

    Sorry, but I just don't have your confidence in Monckton and the team at Climateaudit. Consequently, I am far more covinced by the findings of the various enquiries.

    Paul

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  • 144. At 11:51pm on 07 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #141

    "Actually Phil Jones testimony was quite contradictory in places - can you please link to the Daily Mail's misinterpretation and identify where the errors are - it would be interesting to compare the Mail's claims with what was said."

    Perhaps we are talking at cross purposes here. I am talking about Jones' interview with the BBC - the Daily Mail's headline was a comment on this. The video I linked to details exactly what Jones said and the Mail's headline.

    Paul

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  • 145. At 00:06am on 08 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    Paul Briscoe - thank you for confirming the total ARROGANCE of your position in your departing comment at #137.

    I have not bothered to state my qualifications - I don't wear them as a badge as you obviously do.

    Having worked in the practical side of science all my working life, and having managed a considerable number of Phd's, I can assure you that it takes more than letters to impress.

    Goodbye

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  • 146. At 00:10am on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul Briscoe, a couple of things. Firstly, SkepticalScience is an advocacy website which has no more credibility (and probably significantly less) than RealClimate. Your links there don't do your credibility any favours.

    Neither does your suggestion (though you make it as a tu quoque logical fallacy) that the Oxburgh and Russell UEA enquiries were independent lend to your credibility. Neither does suggesting that they were of integrity, that they were thorough, that they asked the right questions or asked them of the right people. Suggesting any such things diminishes your credibility terribly.

    It is a straw man to claim that climate sceptics reject AGW. They do not. It is reasonable, and it is accepted, that increased anthropogenic contributions to atmospheric CO2 will likely contribute a warming effect on the troposphere.

    What climate sceptics challenge is the unproven, hysterical, and scientifically untenable claim that the extent of net warming as a result of anthropogenic CO2 will be catastrophic (catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, or CAGW). The amount of climate sensitivity to A-CO2 is hotly debated in the scientific community with nobody (and I do mean nobody) having a lead or trump card to be able to claim that their estimate is more accurate than anyone else's. Everybody has a working hypothesis but this pivotal aspect of the science is not resolved.

    The strongest cases made for high sensitivity to A-CO2 are derived from GCMs. Their model runs are mediocre explorations of hypotheses, not observational experiments. They do not produce empirical data. This is postnormal science, not scientific method, and it is not dependable.

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  • 147. At 00:20am on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, Mashey's analysis frequently ventures into the style of conspiracy theory. This is not to say that there are not problems with the Wegman report to congress (note: not an academic, peer-reviewed paper but an analysis report for congress) with poor citations, but the climate sceptical case does not rest on Wegman. Compared with the BCP and Tiljander series selection of Mann's paper (which persists to this day), the PC selection of Wegman's report pales by comparison. (To butcher Animal Farm) Nobody is perfect, but some people are less perfect than others.

    The McShane & Wyner analysis, coupled with Mann et al's response, and McShane & Wyner's follow-up essentially kills the MBH hockey stick from the perspective of statistical integrity. Today, MBH is to climate science what Wakefield's 98 autism study is to medicine.

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  • 148. At 00:24am on 08 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    I think perhaps, someone should point out that the only person to mention/bring up the Daily Mail story was you, with the aid of your youtube clip..... Seems that you are trying to introduce a strawman argument here.

    My quotes, were direct Dr. Phil Jones quotes from the BBC interview.

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 149. At 01:07am on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul Briscoe writes:
    "For example, from Monckton's testimony:

    "The CRU disclosures demonstrate that the peer review process can be subverted by a small but influential group of scientists."

    This was an assertion and not an established fact - it was for the enquiries to determine it for themselves."

    =======

    Interestingly, you don't give your assessment of the UEA enquiries' analyses and conclusions on this important matter. To suggest deference to enquiries (particularly THESE enquiries! Pfft!) to determine the correctness of something wholly in the public domain is another logical fallacy. In fact it's for anyone to make up their own mind on the behaviour of the scientists involved. Nobody wants or needs their own views dictating to them.

    The Climategate disclosure contains prima facie evidence of a clear determination to subvert peer review. For example: "I can't see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep
    them out somehow - even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !"

    You claim that these emails are meaningless when taken out of context. This is not at all true, particularly when implicit is the suggestion that it is impossible to place the emails in their proper context. I wholly reject that. Read Steve Mosher and Tom Fuller's "CruTape Letters" for example.

    But there is much more than just Climategate evidence of tampering with scientific processes such as the peer review process, all meticulously documented and entered into the historical record with supporting evidence and correspondence. Arguments to the contrary are argumentum ad ignoratiam. Hmm.. Paul, you invoke a lot of logical fallacies.

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  • 150. At 03:04am on 08 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    @ 146 & 147 and 149, Simon H

    Extremely well put.

    Mann accused his critics of using random noise with, IIRC, 'artificially inflated redness'. His complaint was that critics had to use non-realistic contrived noise to fool his skilful and robust method. It could have been argued that BCPs possess some magical property unknown to science that allow them to measure hemispheric temperatures rather than reacting to storm damage or some other factor but the Tiljander sediments prove that even the new improved methods mistake noise for a signal. In fact they even get the signal upside-down.
    One would have hoped that people who specialize in temperature proxies would have a better understanding of what is causing the wiggles in their data but apparently not.

    It seems that if a proxy looks too good to be true then it is too good to be true.

    But they never learn. In the now discredited Steig 09 paper, of which Mann was a co-author, they found a large warming trend in Antarctica. They had chosen to retain 3 PCs. It turns out that choosing 3 PCs gives the maximum trend. Obviously just a coincidence but given the controversy over PC retention again one would have hoped that one of the authors or peer reviewers would have looked into this. Again apparently not.

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  • 151. At 03:45am on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    @138 Paul Briscoe:
    "With respect, the enquiries were far more independent and objective than either Monckton or McKitrick. I have yet to see any document from Monckton that is not at the very least a gross misrepresentation of the facts."

    This is in response to Sparklet @ 136:
    "[..] both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough."

    Paul, which report by Monckton are you referring to? Sparklet referred to Andrew Montford's report. I am unaware of Monckton's report but evidently you are, since you have clearly formed an opinion on it - dismissing a report on the enquiries out of hand without examining the evidence presented therein would show poor form. I would very much appreciate a link to Monckton's report at your earliest convenience.

    As for Andrew Montford's analysis of the enquiries (which found the Parliamentary enquiry to be the most thorough of all of them), I found the case he made to be compelling. As with Montford's book, "The Hockey Stick Illusion", the report is well-written and meticulously referenced. Also, as with "The Hockey Stick Illusion", I have yet to find a CAGW proponent provide any evidence or case whatsoever to counter the analysis given. That said, I've yet to find a CAGW proponent who has actually read it. Very poor form indeed.

    Tamino tried to mount a counter-attack on HSI, but ended up exposing and loosely conceding one of several of Mann's statistical manipulations. To garner the full context, however, one needs to read Tamino's heavily moderated RC thread concurrently with corresponding threads at Bishop Hill and at ClimateAudit. I hope that, one day, Montford will compile a composite analysis to show just how badly Tamino ("the dog") bit Mann.

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  • 152. At 04:02am on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    @ 150 RobWansbeck: Cheers! :)

    Amazingly, Steig et al are claiming the O'Donnell et al paper confirms their key findings. On the contrary, it improves on Steig 09 and refutes is key findings.

    It's been observed that Climategate has produced two pronounced net effects. One, that public trust in climate scientists has been irreparably damaged. Two, that climate scientists have learned that they can get away with doing or saying anything.

    The responses to O'Donnell from "the team" confirms that climate scientists have learned that their proclamations need bear absolutely no relation to scientific truth. The funding will just keep rolling in.

    @ Paul Briscoe, incidentally, the O'Donnell et al 2010 paper's experiences in consideration for publication is further evidence of the corruption of the peer review process by a small group of climate scientists known as "the team". Don't need no stinkin' Climategate to demonstrate this incontrovertible fact.

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  • 153. At 09:18am on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Feetinthesnow @ #145

    My "parting shot" was not arrogant. It was merely agreeing that we would have to disagree.

    "I have not bothered to state my qualifications - I don't wear them as a badge as you obviously do.

    Having worked in the practical side of science all my working life, and having managed a considerable number of Phd's, I can assure you that it takes more than letters to impress."

    I mentioned my PhD as anecdotal evidence just to explain that I have a good understanding of how scientific terminology works.

    If you have indeed worked in science all of your life I am frankly disappointed that you have made a comment such as this:

    "-same old - "well that's not quite what he said"."

    The implication of that statement is surely that you think I was trying to make excuses for Jones. Instead I was pointing out that what he said to the BBC was exactly what he meant. Why would you want to claim otherwise?

    Paul

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  • 154. At 10:29am on 08 Jan 2011, Feetinthesnow wrote:

    I don't know whether this was reported in the Mail - I don't read it.

    Phil Jones at the Parliamentary select Committee

    This interesting account comes from his evidence.

    Jones insisted that what he did, for good or ill, was what his fellow climate scientists did. They didn’t publish all their data and methods because, ‘it hasn’t been standard practice to do that. Maybe it should be, but it’s not.’

    Following that came the most startling observation, when Jones was asked how often scientists reviewing his papers for probity before publication had requested to see details of his raw data, methodology and computer codes.

    ‘They’ve never asked,’ he said.”

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  • 155. At 10:32am on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H (Various)

    I think we've been through most of these points before!

    "Firstly, SkepticalScience is an advocacy website which has no more credibility (and probably significantly less) than RealClimate."

    I think it's difficult to argue that ANY site discussing this topic is not guilty of advocacy to some extent - and that goes for your sources too. However, Skeptical Science does at least back up its reasoning with links to the peer-reviewed scientific literature. Consequently I make no apology for using it. Sure, sceptics don't like it, but I suspect that's because real scientific evidence is hard to argue against.

    "Neither does your suggestion (though you make it as a tu quoque logical fallacy) that the Oxburgh and Russell UEA enquiries were independent lend to your credibility. Neither does suggesting that they were of integrity, that they were thorough, that they asked the right questions or asked them of the right people. Suggesting any such things diminishes your credibility terribly."

    I suspect the above statement is based on your belief that the accounts given by the main players over at Climateaudit are a more accurate representation of the facts! Are they too not guilty of advocacy? Of course the Climateaudit team claim the above, but they have to, don't they? It is their assertions, NOT the findings of the various independent reviews, which are not credible.

    "Interestingly, you don't give your assessment of the UEA enquiries' analyses and conclusions on this important matter. To suggest deference to enquiries (particularly THESE enquiries! Pfft!) to determine the correctness of something wholly in the public domain is another logical fallacy."

    Personally, I think the enquiries are far better placed than you or I to assess the real significance of the evidence. I put it to you that you are making the claims above because the enquiries findings were not what you had hoped for.

    "It is a straw man to claim that climate sceptics reject AGW."

    If you check the bottom of #138, you'll see that I am not claiming that at all. REAL climate sceptics are indeed arguing what you claim. As you will know from our previous discussions, I feel there is good reason to believe that the Climateaudit team are not sceptics in the true sense of the word.

    By no means all of the available evidence for the IPCC's estimate of climate sensitivity comes from GCM's. However, I am increasingly coming around to the view that the criticisms of models are being overplayed by sceptics. After all, similar models are used very successfully in other fields of science. You'll find some interesting points about this in the body of this article:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Is-it-safe-to-double-atmospheric-Carbon-Dioxide-over-200-year-period.html

    You certainly make plenty of ASSERTIONS, but most of the available scientific evidence points in the other direction.

    "Paul, which report by Monckton are you referring to?"

    Perhaps we are talking at cross purposes here. I was referring to Monckton's written submission to the House of Commons.

    You mention Monckton being "meticulous". The problem, Simon, is that I have seen FAR too many examples of him blatantly misrepresenting the facts. His written testimony to the US Congress is a case in point. You'll find a link to a scientific rebuttal at the top of this article:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/sep/21/climate-scientists-christopher-monckton

    Monckton's original statement is presented in full in the appendices, so it's easy to corroborate what the scientists are saying.

    This is just one example of many and fully justifies my view that his claims are not credible.

    "It's been observed that Climategate has produced two pronounced net effects. One, that public trust in climate scientists has been irreparably damaged. Two, that climate scientists have learned that they can get away with doing or saying anything. "

    By whom, I wonder?! I agree that public trust has been undermined, but that was precisely the purpose of Climategate:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/The-question-that-skeptics-dont-want-to-ask-about-Climategate.html

    Now, just before I go out, I want to turn briefly to the question of Steig et al, which RobWansbeck and myself have already done to death on another thread. This too has been grossly overplayed.

    Yes, Steig's original statistical analysis was wrong and for this he issued a corrigendum. He also accepts that the O'Donnell paper found a better way of analysing the data and has welcomed the new paper, although he has reservations about one or two of the findings, which don't fit in with other independent observations.

    What is unfortunate about this is that the original criticisms of Steig were made on a public forum with associated accusations of malfeasance that are utterly groundless (but sadly quite typical of the individuals in question). The final outcome, in the form of a peer-reviewed paper, was correct.

    Of course, other equally groundless accusations relating to peer review were also made over at Climateaudit. Yes, an anonymous reviewer asked for a lot of alterations, but this does NOT represent evidence that "the team" were trying to subvert peer review.

    Thankfully, although O'Donnell was obviously frustrated by the reviewer, who he felt was being unreasonable, hee refrained from getting involved in the accusations. Instead he said:

    “With that being said, I am quite satisfied that the review process was fair and equitable, although I do believe excessive deference was paid to this one particular reviewer at the beginning of the process.”

    “My feeling is that Dr. Broccoli did a commendable job of sorting through a series of lengthy reviews and replies in order to ensure that the decision made was the correct one.”

    “Overall, we find that the Steig reconstruction overestimated the continental trends and underestimated the Peninsula – though our analysis found that the trend in West Antarctica was, indeed, statistically significant. I would hope that our paper is not seen as a repudiation of Steig’s results, but rather as an improvement.”

    In other words, O'Donnell et al actually confirmed the central finding of Steig et al - statistically significant warming in West Antarctica.

    Paul

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  • 156. At 10:38am on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Feetinthesnow @ #154

    "Jones insisted that what he did, for good or ill, was what his fellow climate scientists did. They didn’t publish all their data and methods because, ‘it hasn’t been standard practice to do that. Maybe it should be, but it’s not.’

    Following that came the most startling observation, when Jones was asked how often scientists reviewing his papers for probity before publication had requested to see details of his raw data, methodology and computer codes.

    ‘They’ve never asked,’ he said.”"

    I can confirm that this was the case in my chosen area of research too, so it's nothing unusual.

    Yes, the internet age is changing things, but certain things have always been taken on trust in science. After all, even passing someone the raw data doesn't prove that it hasn't been fabricated. Ultimately, the only way to confirm someone's work is to reproduce it from scratch.

    Paul

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  • 157. At 10:56am on 08 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Paul Briscoe, I was going to respond to some of Simon H's contentless assertions but you've covered almost everything I would have said. I will just add that one of the best measures of Sceptical Science is the quality of its sceptics - many here would benefit from going over and seeing how the best of them can make a genuinely challenging argument.

    I'm tempted to stay here and continue arguing along with you but I've already broken my rule of not carrying a discussion on beyond the point where any sane person who has not already made up their minds on this issue will have given up reading. This is especially true when the Internet version of the Gish Gallop comes in to play - note for instance Feetinthesnow's oh so subtle switch from 'Phil Jones said there was no warming' to 'Phil Jones said that peer-reviewers didn't bother to check his data'.

    All the best

    OP

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  • 158. At 12:11pm on 08 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Actually i'll add some more comments on Simon H's comments:

    "What climate sceptics challenge is the unproven, hysterical, and scientifically untenable claim that the extent of net warming as a result of anthropogenic CO2 will be catastrophic (catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, or CAGW)."

    This is a mischaracterisation of the position of many who are concerened about catastrophic impacts of climate change. Firstly I doubt that there are many who say that climate change *will* have direct catastrophic impacts, but rather most say that there *may* be direct catastrophic impacts. Secondly it should be made clear that most of the concerns about catastrophic impacts are not so much about the direct effects of extreme weather events and rising sea-levels, but the indirect effects of reduced yields and water-stress, leading to deprivation and conflict.

    "Today, MBH is to climate science what Wakefield's 98 autism study is to medicine."

    This is an entirely false and crass comparison. Firstly, though the statistical techniques used in MBH have been correctly shown to be sub-optimal, and no one argues otherwise, they still produce a valid result and correct statistical techniques produce essentially the same result. More importantly though the 'hockey stick' has been replicated many times over using a wide range of techniques and proxies. Where in medicial science are the studies that replicate Wakefield's research?

    "As for Andrew Montford's analysis of the enquiries (which found the Parliamentary enquiry to be the most thorough of all of them), I found the case he made to be compelling."

    As I've said elsewhere, I found it to resemble nothing so much as an extended blog post masquerading as a seriouse document. It was full of minor, technical criticisms followed by ridicuously over-blown conclusions about the impact these had on cliamte science as a whole.

    "The strongest cases made for high sensitivity to A-CO2 are derived from GCMs."

    No, the strongest case probably comes from a combination of the paleological record and basic, widely accepted physics. Previous climate behaviour cannot be explained adequately without a senistivity of at least that given in the IPCC range.

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  • 159. At 1:46pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: “I think it's difficult to argue that ANY site discussing this topic is not guilty of advocacy to some extent - and that goes for your sources too.”

    No, Paul. Ignoring the tu quoque logical fallacy in your argument, it is NOT to be assumed that everyone and every source will be guilty of advocacy. This is supposed to be about science, and the most grave contaminant of science is advocacy. I reject your argument – and I reject skepticalscience - because they are both anti-scientific.

    You write: “However, Skeptical Science does at least back up its reasoning with links to the peer-reviewed scientific literature. Consequently I make no apology for using it. Sure, sceptics don't like it, but I suspect that's because real scientific evidence is hard to argue against.”

    No, Paul, skepticalscience cherry-picks its sources and ignores counter-evidence. You need make no apology. I am merely making it clear that I reject it as an aggregator of scientific sources.

    You write: “Personally, I think the enquiries are far better placed than you or I to assess the real significance of the evidence. I put it to you that you are making the claims above because the enquiries findings were not what you had hoped for.”

    The reason I reject the enquiries’ findings is because I read the enquiries’ reports (including the submissions made to them) and found the reports substantially lacking. The suggestion that I reject the findings because of my preconceived notions is a logical fallacy and I will not (though it would be easy) counter it with the same.

    You write: “By no means all of the available evidence for the IPCC's estimate of climate sensitivity comes from GCM's. However, I am increasingly coming around to the view that the criticisms of models are being overplayed by sceptics. After all, similar models are used very successfully in other fields of science. You'll find some interesting points about this in the body of this article:”

    I'm going to quote myself from elsewhere (it's easier than re-typing it): GCMs are the embodiment of Cargo Cult. A model that hindcasts effectively has absolutely NO IDEA WHY it's getting the right results. It is only correlating; it is not achieving the right results for the right reasons because it is not operating with the complexity of the environment it is trying to emulate. It is not using the same dynamics as the atmospherics that it's simulating, and it's not a model of our atmospheric make-up. GCMs are linear models.

    Weather and climate are, by their very nature, incomprehensibly and (literally) unpredictably chaotic. A GCM will always be limited by OUR understanding of the chaotic operation of the air around us. And our understanding of it is, always has been, and likely always will be, abysmally poor.

    Like the Cargo Cult natives of the Pacific islands, building ever more impressive effigies of Lockheed C-130 cargo planes from lengths of bamboo to attract bountiful gifts from their long-dead ancestors, new and expensive computers to run GCMs will never bring us enlightenment nor give us the gift of fortune-telling or prophecy.

    All the short-term forecast improvements in recent years have been the result only of our better detection and understanding of initial conditions. The attribution of improvements to greater computing power is substantially a falsehood.

    I'll break my response here, and begin writing part two. You've given me much to write about, Paul.

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  • 160. At 2:08pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: " "Paul, which report by Monckton are you referring to?"

    Perhaps we are talking at cross purposes here. I was referring to Monckton's written submission to the House of Commons.

    You mention Monckton being "meticulous". The problem, Simon, is [..]"

    ... The problem is, Paul, that you keep conflating Monckton and Montford. I did point this out at length, but apparently you missed it again. Monckton did indeed write a submission to the enquiry, but he did not write an enquiry report and he did not write "The Hockey Stick Illusion". That was Montford, and it's Montford's report and book that I referenced. Thus I'm afraid your points about Monckton are irrelevant to the points I raised.

    You write: "What is unfortunate about this is that the original criticisms of Steig were made on a public forum with associated accusations of malfeasance that are utterly groundless (but sadly quite typical of the individuals in question). The final outcome, in the form of a peer-reviewed paper, was correct."

    Paul, are you not aware of ("team member") Gavin Schmidt's very public challenge in the public forum to counter Steig et al? While I am not able to pinpoint accusations of malfeasance (I will presume they happened), certainly Steig et al's initial failure to archive data for the purpose of replication while Schmidt's gauntlet throwing was happening did not help make a case of high integrity for Steig et al.

    You write: "In other words, O'Donnell et al actually confirmed the central finding of Steig et al - statistically significant warming in West Antarctica."

    This is rather disingenuous, Paul. Steig's central warming argument was not limited to West Antarctica. His method was flawed, his conclusions incorrect. His statistical method was challenged, its flaws exposed and his conclusions substantively diminished.

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  • 161. At 2:27pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "This is a mischaracterisation of the position of many who are concerened about catastrophic impacts of climate change. Firstly I doubt that there are many who say that climate change *will* have direct catastrophic impacts, but rather most say that there *may* be direct catastrophic impacts. Secondly it should be made clear that most of the concerns about catastrophic impacts are not so much about the direct effects of extreme weather events and rising sea-levels, but the indirect effects of reduced yields and water-stress, leading to deprivation and conflict."

    What you are not addressing is the failure among climate scientists to acknowledge the uncertainty in the science, and the purposeful downplaying of uncertainties by advocacy climate scientists. You are also not addressing the problem of treatment of model data as empirical data, which is a dramatic breach of the Scientific Method.

    The precautionary principle is a value judgement, not a scientific judgement. I don't personally take issue with policymakers making decisions based on the precautionary principle but I do take issue with scientists operating as - rather than "honest brokers" of the science - proponents of particular and specific precautionary measures. Climate scientists have been caught crossing the line between science and policy. The result has been catastrophic for the credibility of earth sciences and has impacted other sciences too.

    People expect scientists to do science, and for elected officials to make policy. That is fundamental to the function of our democracy. Climate scientists forcing policy through manipulative advocacy (bending the science) are in breach of the trust and confidence apportioned them and they are in breach of the rules of public mandate.

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  • 162. At 2:57pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: " "Today, MBH is to climate science what Wakefield's 98 autism study is to medicine."

    This is an entirely false and crass comparison. Firstly, though the statistical techniques used in MBH have been correctly shown to be sub-optimal, and no one argues otherwise, they still produce a valid result and correct statistical techniques produce essentially the same result. More importantly though the 'hockey stick' has been replicated many times over using a wide range of techniques and proxies. Where in medicial science are the studies that replicate Wakefield's research?"

    Let me first say that a technique which is known to be flawed cannot, definitively, produce a result which is VALID, UNLESS what is desired is a SPECIFIC result as (diametrically) opposed to a scientifically justified result.

    Further, the hockey stick has not been replicated many times over. The Wahl Ammann result fails statistical skill, and there are no other replications that do not use the same flawed proxies and novel statistical techniques which have been exposed in MBH. I suspect that you are confusing replication and reproduction.

    Wakefield's research passed muster in peer review, as did MBH. It was later falsely claimed that the New Jersey Medical School had replicated Wakefield's 98 study, just as it has been falsely claimed that MBH has been replicated.

    I might agree that the comparison seems crass but, on balance, what is actually crass to the point of ridicule is Mann's and "the team's" continuing defence of a proxy reconstruction which has been shown incapable - using _real_ statistical methods, by _real_ statisticians - of distinguishing signal from noise.

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  • 163. At 3:30pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: ""As for Andrew Montford's analysis of the enquiries (which found the Parliamentary enquiry to be the most thorough of all of them), I found the case he made to be compelling."

    As I've said elsewhere, I found it to resemble nothing so much as an extended blog post masquerading as a seriouse document. It was full of minor, technical criticisms followed by ridicuously over-blown conclusions about the impact these had on cliamte science as a whole."

    This is an extremely poor dismissal of Montford's analysis. I would be interested in reading and discussing a challenge with some substance, but there is no meat in this, just allusions to ad hominem insults which I'm afraid I can say nothing about which is not extremely disparaging.



    You write: " "The strongest cases made for high sensitivity to A-CO2 are derived from GCMs."

    No, the strongest case probably comes from a combination of the paleological record and basic, widely accepted physics. Previous climate behaviour cannot be explained adequately without a senistivity of at least that given in the IPCC range."

    OPatrick, if you seriously wish to argue that the strongest evidence for high climate sensitivity is in the paleoclimatic record, then you are seriously arguing that we know as good as nothing about climate sensitivity to CO2. Even the worst of the "deniarrrs" out there don't argue that.


    As for "basic physics", need I remind you that "basic physics" asserts that a feather and a hammer will fall at exactly the same speeds. We are not dealing with basic physics when we are addressing climate. You're introducing a variation on another logical fallacy, plurium interrogationum - a simple answer to a complex question.

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  • 164. At 4:02pm on 08 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    #155, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    “ …. In other words, O'Donnell et al actually confirmed the central finding of Steig et al - statistically significant warming in West Antarctica. …. “

    Here is Steig's actual claim:
    “ Here we show that significant warming extends well beyond the Antarctic Peninsula to cover most of West Antarctica, an area of warming much larger than previously reported. West Antarctic warming exceeds 0.1 deg C per decade over the past 50 years, and is strongest in winter and spring. “

    First part: “ Here we show that significant warming extends well beyond the Antarctic Peninsula to cover most of West Antarctica, an area of warming much larger than previously reported. “

    O'Donnell et al show that statistically significant warming is confined to parts of the peninsula.

    Second part: “ West Antarctic warming exceeds 0.1 deg C per decade over the past 50 years, … “

    O'Donnell et al show West Antarctic warming exceeds 0.01 deg C per decade over the past 50 years. I guess that if you are really desperate you could claim that a figure one tenth of that claimed by Steig confirms his findings since it is greater than zero. Are people really that desperate?
    Additionally, Steig showed the greatest warming outside the peninsula in contrast to O'Donnell who showed far greater peninsula warming.
    As an aside, even the improved method of O'Donnell et al will contain some smearing of peninsula heat so their figure of 0.01 deg C per decade may be high.

    Third part: “ … and is strongest in winter and spring. “

    O'Donnell et al show this to be an artefact of the method used.

    Apparently some people believe that this confirms Steig's results. I don't.

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  • 165. At 4:03pm on 08 Jan 2011, Spanglerboy wrote:

    @ Simon H

    Simon I admire your tenacity but don't envy you dealing with 'true believers' who will never accept any fact that might undermine their faith. Of course the important thing is that people reading this blog can apply their own minds to the issues and draw their own conclusions. That is why the public is becoming more and more sceptical. The sad thing is that the scientific community cannot see that it is their conduct that is driving scepticism. Trully bizarre.

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  • 166. At 4:24pm on 08 Jan 2011, Spanglerboy wrote:

    @ Paul Hudson

    interesting that Look North did a piece on the risk of the lights going out as the windmills stand lifeless in the bleak midwinter. And of course no-one in government could be bothered to make an appearance to explain why we are wasting our money in this way.

    Can I suggest that you keep an eye on this as the winter progresses and update us from time to time. If government want to pursue crass policies the public should be kept informed of just what harm they are doing.

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  • 167. At 4:29pm on 08 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Spanglerboy, you hit the nail on the head. These assertions of impending catastrophe, which I'm sure sound very compelling to those who are unfamiliar with the science, are nevertheless totally ethereal, being wholly dependent on an ideological (precautionary) premise rather than a scientific basis.

    I hold no expectations on being able to change participants' ideologies here (and when it comes to conservation, I'm still an activist) but for the sake of the integrity of the Scientific Method I feel bound to expose and challenge the invasive cancer of postnormalism.

    The illusion that climate science adheres to established scientific processes is the reason CAGW gained the popular credence it did. The reason it is losing credibility is because of the popular realisation that the integrity of "scientific fact" has been undermined by political/ideological advocates pursuing postnormal methodologies within the climate establishment and earth-sciences academia.

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  • 168. At 7:55pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H

    OPatrick was indeed right to mention Gish Gallop!

    Let's take a look at what advocacy actually means:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advocacy

    With respect, what are Monckton, Montford, Watts...... and dare I say even Climateaudit doing if not trying to influence public policy? They are saying that there are too many question marks over the science to justify damaging the economy with measures to control CO2.

    The following is the final paragraph from Monckton's written testimony to the US Congress:

    "There are many urgent priorities that need the attention of Congress, and it is not for me as an invited guest in your country to say what they are. Yet I can say this much: on any view, “global warming” is not one of them."

    Now, please tell me how that is anything other than an attempt to influence US policy!

    The approach at Climateaudit may be more subtle, but in many ways it is actually more insidious. You and I have discussed the Climateaudit agenda before and I could easily point you back to the detailed investigations by Deepclimate which exposed this in all its gory details - the links to the George C Marshall Institute (which is certainly an advocacy group!) and the behind the scenes dealings with a right wing US administration...... and much more. In a nutshell, though, Climateaudit is all about manufacturing distrust of science amongst the public, with obvious knock on effects on policy decisions.

    Does Skeptical Science try to directly influence policy? No! In fact, all it attempts to do is counter the bogus arguments used to discredit the science........ and if you can point me to specific EXAMPLES of where it has ignored peer reviewed scientific literature which counters its arguments, I will be only too happy to discuss these with you.

    So, if you are accusing Skeptical Science of advocacy, the old adage "people in glass houses......." comes to mind.

    "The reason I reject the enquiries’ findings is because I read the enquiries’ reports (including the submissions made to them) and found the reports substantially lacking."

    Is it not the case that you simply didn't like the terms of reference? Have you not considered the possibility that those who set up the reviews could see something you couldn't - that the entire Climategate "scandal" was part of an organised campaign to smear the scientists? In truth, if the terms of reference had been widened, they would have needed to be widened sufficiently to look at the activities of the denial movement too....... including Climateaudit! So perhaps you should consider yourself lucky that they were not!

    Simon, you have gone on at length about GCM's in the past. What makes you think that you know more about them and their appropriate use than an experienced multi-disciplinary team of scientists? I also note that whilst you constantly throw up objections (a la Gish Gallop!), you never come up with solid examples in the form of peer-reviewed literature.

    Weather may be chaotic, but climate is not:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/chaos-theory-global-warming-can-climate-be-predicted-intermediate.htm

    ...... and the scientists are perfectly comfortable that hindcasting gives confidence in the models:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/climate-models-intermediate.htm

    The problems obviously lie in unknowns and this is why the IPCC AR4 states that there is uncertainty over predictions of climate at a regional and local level...... but for projecting global temperature they do now seem to be pretty reliable.

    Now, it would appear that OPatrick is not posting at present and I don't have unlimited time, so I'll just link you to an article on the various methods used to estimate climate sensitivity:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/climate-sensitivity-advanced.htm

    Regarding your post at #160, you are correct - I did mix up Monckton and Montford - it must be my advancing age! Frankly, though, I'm not sure it really matters which of them says what. What matters in this case is that they both clearly have an advocacy agenda. As such, their testimonies have far less credibility than the findings of any independent review (of which there were several).

    I particularly liked this review of Montford's book "The Hockey Stick Illusion" over on the RSC website:

    http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/Issues/2010/September/Reviews/ClimateChangeScepticism.asp

    ........ and here is Realclimate's take on it:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/

    Finally, turning to Steig et al. I did see comments from Schmidt, who was clearly angered by the unwarranted accusations against Steig. Perhaps you forget that these are real people, Simon! I don't believe there is any need to say more on this matter.

    This is the abstract from Steig et al:

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v457/n7228/abs/nature07669.html

    Here is the corrigendum, with a link to the results table:

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v460/n7256/full/nature08286.html

    Here is the abstract for O'Donnell et al:

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2010/12/01/doing-it-ourselves/

    O'Donnell found warmth concentrated in the Western Peninsula whereas Steig found the heat in the west more evenly spread, but both papers found statistically significant warming in Western Antarctica. According to the data presented, mean trends were positive in all parts of the continent in both papers (just).

    Compared to many competing papers I've seen, these differences are very minor indeed! So why have some chosen to make it into such a big issue? I wonder?!

    Paul

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  • 169. At 8:03pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    RobWansbeck @ #164

    Rob, we've been through this before and done it to death. I've presented both the abstracts and the central tabulated data above (note that the comparison should be with Steig's corrigendum) and I will now allow other readers to make up their own minds as to whether it is really worth arguing over!

    Paul

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  • 170. At 8:20pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #163

    Just quickly before I go and do something else........


    You rubbished OPatrick's comments about paleoclimate. Of course, some of them were covered in the article I linked to above (and they are far from rubbish if you understand the science that underlies them). However, you might also want to take a look at a recent report by the Geological Society, which is linked to in this article:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Geological-Society-discuss-climate-change-evidence-from-the-geological-record.html

    The report documents episodes from the geological record which show major and catastrophic warming events associated with sudden increases in CO2 (almost certainly from major volcanic eruptions).

    I also note that you seem to be using the "logical fallacy" argument quite a lot......

    "As for "basic physics", need I remind you that "basic physics" asserts that a feather and a hammer will fall at exactly the same speeds."

    I'll presume that the omission of three very important words "in a vacuum" was just an accident!

    Paul

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  • 171. At 8:46pm on 08 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Paul Briscoe, I completely concur with the excellent observations made by Simon H. and would further add that many of your posts appear to be an exercise in obfuscation and digression.

    Let me repeat my comment at #136

    "Sorry Paul but this is utter nonsense. The emails were quite explicit and the scientists in question have not been able to produce any other emails that would change the context.
    And both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough."

    http://climateaudit.org/2010/09/14/climategate-inquiries/

    And your comment in reply at #138

    "I looked at the emails myself long before the enquiry teams reported. As a scientist, having checked the CONTEXT, I could see that there was nothing incriminating in them. I fear that you have been too easily swayed by the mass hysteria and appalling propaganda that filled the blogosphere at that time."

    Despite your assertions above the mails contained prima facie evidence of wrongdoing which was not adequately covered by the Inquiries and I am singularly unimpressed by your claim that "as a scientist, having checked the CONTEXT, I could see there was nothing incriminating in them". (An excellent example of why some scientists are held in such contempt)
    The reports provided by Montford and McKitrick gave a detailed and forensic analyses of the various Climategate Inquiries and left no doubts that they were neither 'independent' nor thorough. Kindly identify those passages contained in their reports that you have found to be untruthful or erroneous. Failure to do so will simply confirm that your assertions are based on dogma rather than evidence.

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  • 172. At 8:56pm on 08 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    #168, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    “ …. I particularly liked this review of Montford's book "The Hockey Stick Illusion" over on the RSC website:

    http://www.rsc.org/chemistryworld/Issues/2010/September/Reviews/ClimateChangeScepticism.asp


    ........ and here is Realclimate's take on it:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/

    ….. “

    The first link doesn't review the book merely rambles about greenhouse gasses which are not the subject of the book then breaks into ad homs. I doubt if the reviewer even read the book, I guess he just didn't like the title.

    The second by Tamino has been well sorted. You can start here:

    http://climateaudit.org/2010/07/27/taminos-trick-mann-bites-bulldog/

    You will need to try much harder. I am unaware of anyone who has found any substantive error in the HSI.

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  • 173. At 9:52pm on 08 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re#142. At 11:29pm on 07 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:
    Sparklet #139 - I'm sorry, have I missed Watts' analysis of his data? I couldn't see an obvious link to it you have given and I hadn't heard that he had published it. The analysis I linked to is the only published one I am aware of.

    Yes, I assume you have come across Mashey's analysis - what specifically were you not impressed about?

    For me the most telling problems in the Wegman report are the poor quality of the referencing, including many irrelevant or dubious ones, and the biased and unscientific language used throughout. The plagiarism issue is obviously a big one, but what really matters in a way is not so much that they have seemingly plagiarised work but that in some cases they appear to have deliberately made small changes that significantly alter the meaning of the texts in order to fit their narrative. Another issue that raises very serious questions and is indicative of the quality of science in the report is their method of selection for the leading principle components, as outlined in detail here http://deepclimate.org/2010/11/16/replication-and-due-diligence-wegman-style/

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    The link to the D'Aleo and Watts report was contained in my post at #113.

    The Mashey report contains numerous instances of conjecture and supposition and his 'key people' with colour codings was certainly not professional nor objective but more like an exercise in propaganda and certainly 'biased and unscientific language used throughout'.
    http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/strange-scholarship-v1-02.pdf
    And interesting that despite being 250 pages long and containing accusations of plagiarism v Wegman, Mashey fails to identify that passages Wegman was accused of plagiarising from Bradley, Bradley had himself plagiarised from Fritts.
    http://climateaudit.org/2010/10/18/bradley-copies-fritts/

    And as far as accusations of plagiarism v. Wegman are concerned OPatrick these are a nonsense.
    From Wikipedia
    "Plagiarism is defined in dictionaries as "the wrongful appropriation, close imitation, or purloining and publication, of another author's language, thoughts, ideas, or expressions, and the representation of them as one's own original work"

    The Wegman Report was a Congressional report, an investigative report on(not an original work of) Climate Science, and as such he gave background info. on the science and cited the reports he used/reviewed. In no way did he try to pass off this scientific work as his own.

    As Steve McIntyre puts it
    "Although Wegman cites Bradley no fewer than six times in the approximately 1640 words of section 2.1, there are some suggestions that this was insufficient homage. The more problematic issue pertains to the lifting of text with very slight paraphrasing. This issue is not unique to the Wegman Report. As shown below, substantially similar situations arise with the Oxford Companion to Global Change, the Climate Change Study Guide, Enviropedia and Luterbacher et al 2010, and, under a zero-tolerance policy, with Bradley 1999 itself."

    This has simply been used as a distraction by CAGW proponents to deflect from the appallingly bad 'science' behind Mann's hockey stick.

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  • 174. At 10:22pm on 08 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Thanks for the link @ 138
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2010/02/new-work-on-the-recent-warming-of-northern-hemispheric-land-areas/

    It has an interesting chart which shows 'weather stations reporting at any time 1901-1999'

    Compare this with your link @69
    "You'll need to select "anomaly" at the top of the page to get the correct graphic. As you'll see, NE of North America/Greenland and E Asia and the N Pacific appear to have been very much warmer than usual in December."
    http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_monthly.html

    And I'm struck once again by how the 'hot spots' seem to be centred over those areas where there have been very few temperature stations.
    Quite a coincidence!!!

    Difficult to reconcile the glaring orange/yellow hot spot over the Russian Sea of Okhotsk in this 'virtual world' with the actual reality where we have fishermen and canning factory workers stranded out to sea in unusually thick (two metres)ice
    (and yes the BBC misreported this as being only 12 inches!!!)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-12099928
    http://eureferendum.blogspot.com/2011/01/crises-in-east.html

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  • 175. At 10:41pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #171

    "Sorry Paul but this is utter nonsense. The emails were quite explicit and the scientists in question have not been able to produce any other emails that would change the context. And both Andrew Montford and Ross McKitrick showed in their respective reports that these so-called 'Independent' inquiries were neither independent nor thorough."

    "Despite your assertions above the mails contained prima facie evidence of wrongdoing...."

    Sorry Sparklet, but it is your claims which are nonsense.

    If you work on the premise that everything said by the likes of Montford, McKitrick et al is correct, then you are bound to arrive at your conclusion. However, as I pointed out above, there are serious question marks over their objectivity and their motives. You cannot seriously expect me to accept that claims made by bloggers with a clear vested interest carry the same weight as independent review teams!

    The enquiry teams (not just Muir Russell, but also the US EPA) did what Montford and McKitrick (and apparently you) failed to do (or perhaps more to the point CHOSE not to do) - they looked at each individual email with the full context of what was being discussed. Then, it became quite clear that they were discussing papers which were seriously flawed and simply did not justify publication - this is normal science in action. Furthermore, in a case where Jones had appeared to suggest that he would stop papers being included in the IPCC report, the enquiries were able to show that he had not acted on his words.

    You simply CANNOT convict scientists by means of a McCarthy-style witch hunt based solely on what they may have said to one another in private emails - we all say things to freinds and colleagues, in unguarded moments, that we would never act on. Ultimately, it was how they acted that mattered.

    So I utterly reject your claims and refer you back to the findings of several reviews by people far more trustworthy and credible than those you support:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/The-question-that-skeptics-dont-want-to-ask-about-Climategate.html

    For instance, the US EPA said:

    "EPA reviewed every e-mail and found this was simply a candid discussion of scientists working through issues that arise in compiling and presenting large complex data sets. Four other independent reviews came to similar conclusions."

    In other words, as I said above, just science in action.

    Paul

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  • 176. At 11:06pm on 08 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H:

    "What you are not addressing is the failure among climate scientists to acknowledge the uncertainty in the science, and the purposeful downplaying of uncertainties by advocacy climate scientists. You are also not addressing the problem of treatment of model data as empirical data, which is a dramatic breach of the Scientific Method."

    No, you are correct - I'm not addressing your imagined problems. The uncertainty in the science is stated repeatedly and unambiguously, although of course greater uncertainy would be more of a cause for concern than less. Think about it.

    I have no idea what you mean by 'treating the model data as empirical'.

    "Let me first say that a technique which is known to be flawed cannot, definitively, produce a result which is VALID"

    This is simply wrong (although you have stated it in as extreme a way as you can to try to make your point) and assumes some false view of science that has a perfect method. The MBH method was, in retrospect, not the optimal choice, but it was a viable one and it did produce a result which has changed very little with the improvements, and this is not through chance. No science is perfect, all work can be improved. This does not invalidate all science.

    "Further, the hockey stick has not been replicated many times over.... I suspect that you are confusing replication and reproduction."

    No, I'm pretty sure I'm not. The hockey stick, i.e. the shape if the graph of global temperatures constructed from proxies, has been replicated many times over. You appear to be one of those who are fixated on the MBH reconstruction, but their results have been shown repeatedly in other independent studies to very likely reflect the reality of historical global temperatures.

    "which has been shown incapable - using _real_ statistical methods, by _real_ statisticians - of distinguishing signal from noise."

    No it hasn't.

    "This is an extremely poor dismissal of Montford's analysis. I would be interested in reading and discussing a challenge with some substance"

    I can state with some confidence that you wouldn't. I have been involved, at some length, in discussions about Montford's analysis and it is a deeply tedious experience. I will simply encourage anyone who reads it to do so with a sense of perspective. Look at the points he makes and think, even if his criticisms are true in every detail, is he really justified in the sweeping conclusions he draws from them?

    " if you seriously wish to argue that the strongest evidence for high climate sensitivity is in the paleoclimatic record, then you are seriously arguing that we know as good as nothing about climate sensitivity to CO2"

    You would appear to be suggesting that we know nothing about, for instance, past ice-ages. The known past changes in climate become very difficult indeed to explain without climate senistivity at least within the range of those suggested by the IPCC. This on its own would be evidence enough to take action, but its consiliance with multiple other lines of evidence makes action imperative for anyone with a stake in the future wellbeing of our civilisation.

    "I hold no expectations on being able to change participants' ideologies here"

    Can I suggest you look at the earlier posts here and ask yourself, with honesty, who it is that is displaying ideology?

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  • 177. At 11:08pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    RobWansbeck @ #172

    "The second by Tamino has been well sorted."

    You mean Climateaudit style?! Personally, I found Tamino's arguments quite convincing. It's all a matter of taking one person's word against another, isn't it? You naturally trust McIntyre whereas I believe there are good reasons not to.

    Paul

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  • 178. At 11:20pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #173

    Again, OPatrick isn't here so I'll attempt to answer. I haven't time at present to check on McIntyre's claim that Bradley copied Fritts. Even if that is so, it still doesn't excuse what Wegman did and it implies a lack of due diligence in preparing what had the potential to be a very far reaching report policywise.

    Did you actually read the Deepclimate article and the detailed line by line comparison of the Wegman report with Bradley's? There were obvious changes of emphasis and it is this more than the plagiarism itself which is the cause for concern.

    I think I'm correct in saying that there are proceedings in train to force the withdrawl of the report.

    Paul

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  • 179. At 11:28pm on 08 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    175. At 10:41pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe

    Paul you are left with absolutely no credibility. You totally ignore the evidence provided by Montford & McKitrick simply resorting to ad-hom attacks. This is not 'science' but dogma.

    At one time there was such a thing as professional integrity, I refer you back again to the words of a real scientist (not one blinded by dogma) who had it and resigned from the APS, his reason...

    "It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.) I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion."
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/10/16/hal-lewis-my-resignation-from-the-american-physical-society/

    "I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion"


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  • 180. At 11:38pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #174

    You appear to have made a number of incorrect assumptions in this post.

    The Roy Specer article is looking at the instrumental record, whereas the anomaly in the second link is the SATELLITE data and is therefore not in any way linked to the number of stations on the ground.

    Second, the anaomaly is for December as a whole and it is entirely possible that, just as here in the UK, conditions changed at the end of the month.

    Finally, ice cover and snow fall are not always indicative of unusually low temperatures. In particular, it is frequently the case in colder parts of the World that snow is associated with warmer than average weather!

    Paul

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  • 181. At 11:47pm on 08 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sparklet:

    "The link to the D'Aleo and Watts report was contained in my post at #113."

    Ah yes, well that was an exciting read. I could be wrong, but firstly it doesn't appear to have been put forward for publication and secondly it doesn't appear to actually contain any analysis of the data as a whole to show that a warming bias has been introduced.

    I notice you focus on the plagiraism issue with regards to the Wegman report, and it is likely this will be the issue that will also be the focus of the GMU inquiry, but really it is a side issue in a sense as I pointed out.

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  • 182. At 11:54pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #179

    The problem here is that you appear totally fixated with the idea that everything Montford and McKitrick say is correct and reliable. I have put forwards extremely good reasons for concluding that they are NOT reliable at all. Indeed, given that Climategate came about primarily because of the "feud" (for want of a better word) between Climateaudit and what they term "the team", McKitrick would be the LAST person whose testimony I would trust!

    In your second paragraph you are saying that you would prefer to believe the views of ONE scientist and the claims of an unreliable blog source rather than accept the findings of no fewer than SIX independent reviews into different aspects of AGW science.

    With respect, it is your position which lacks credibility.

    Paul

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  • 183. At 00:02am on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    OPatrick,


    I somehow missed your post before replying to Sparklet @ #178 - you must type faster than I do!

    It's been a long day, so I'll check back in the morning!

    Paul

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  • 184. At 00:05am on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Paul, sadly I suspect I will too. It's a compulsion I need to learn to break.

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  • 185. At 01:16am on 09 Jan 2011, mailmannz wrote:

    Paul,

    >If you work on the premise that everything said by the likes of Montford, McKitrick >et al is correct, then you are bound to arrive at your conclusion. However, as I >pointed out above, there are serious question marks over their objectivity and their >motives.

    And yet Paul, it wasnt Montford or McKitrick or McIntyre or Holland or any other person skeptical of man being the sole cause of Mann Made Global Warming (tm) that have purposely been breaking the FOI laws in the UK, refusing to release data solely because them horrible skeptics want to pick holes in climate scientists studies, undermining the pal review process and corrupting their science while at it.

    >Then, it became quite clear that they were discussing papers which were seriously >flawed and simply did not justify publication - this is normal science in action.

    Really...so how did the rubbish about the Himalaya's and the Amazon get in to the IPCC report?

    These were clearly included for thier alarmism, yet clearly had no place in any IPCC report. Normal science you say. Yep, couldnt agree with you more in regards to the deliberate alarmism purposely created to ramp up the political impact of the IPCC's report.

    >Did you actually read the Deepclimate article and the detailed line by line >comparison of the Wegman report with Bradley's?

    And did you read any one of the many refutations of Mashe's attempt to blackmail Wegman to amend his congressional statements?

    Face it, deepclimate are advocates for catastrophic Mann Made Global Warming (tm) and are targeting an irrelevant, 6 year old document. Its rather telling that you have latched on to this irrelevant document as proof positive of your religious convictions.

    Its also interesting how all of these issues cropped up just as the Republicans were about to take over in Washington. Seems more like political activism taking place, trying to make things as difficult as possible before, hopefully, the many investigations will take place by the new congress in to the conduct of climate scientists like Jones and Mann and Hansen etc.

    To me, Mashes desperation is exactly that, the last dieing flings of a dead religion.

    Oh and by the way, in regards to your belief that the planets temperature can accurately be measured by as little as 61 weather stations;
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/05/20/giss-arctic-trends-disagree-with-satellite-data/

    The blue GISS line is what we will see more of, artificial warming where none exists, sort of like 2010 being the second hottest year in the history of the planet. Only problem is, the only places it seems to be getting hotter is those areas of the planets surface where there is very little temperature data.

    "GISS has explained their steeper temperature slope since 1998 vs. Had-Crut, as being due to the fact that they are willing to extrapolate 1200 km across the Arctic into regions where they may have no data."

    Then again, I guess Watts is just misinterpreting the science and spreading misinformation?

    BTW, the reason I asked if you were really the Director of Communications and Propaganda at the Grantham Institute is simply because like Bob, you seem to pop up almost religiously as soon as there is any doubt expressed about the religion of Mann Made Global Warming (tm).

    And then we have another example of data refusing to be released;
    http://climateaudit.org/2011/01/06/more-data-refusal-nothing-changes/

    Actually, McIntyre has a point. If data is going to be used to support a paper that cant be released, then how can that paper be trusted?

    Although Im sure you will have some convenient excuse...but does it not alarm you when climate scientists wont release the data they used to support their paper? If you cannot get access to the data, how can their findings be checked and confirmed?

    Why am I going here again? Because of this, this is what happens when data isnt released, and friends give you a friendly pal review;
    http://www.physiciansweekly.com/blog/2011/01/06/infamous-study-linking-autism-to-vaccines-called-a-“fraud”/

    Regards

    Mailman

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  • 186. At 03:26am on 09 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    177, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    “ ….. RobWansbeck @ #172

    "The second by Tamino has been well sorted."

    You mean Climateaudit style?! Personally, I found Tamino's arguments quite convincing.
    ….. “

    I am not the least surprised that you found Tamino's arguments quite convincing. I would assume that many others who have no idea of the facts would also be quite convinced by Tamino's arguments.

    I will just stick to facts. Tamino stated:
    “ ….. As another example, Montford makes the claim that if you eliminate just two of the proxies used for the MBH98 reconstruction since 1400, the Stahle and NOAMER PC1 series, “you got a completely different result — the Medieval Warm Period magically reappeared and suddenly the modern warming didn’t look quite so frightening.” ….. “

    Neither Montford nor McIntyre performed the operation Tamino mentions. It was, in fact, performed by none other than Mann himself. You should have read the link I gave you.

    Tamino goes on to say:
    “ ….. As a great deal of other research has shown, you can even reconstruct past temperature without bristlecone pine tree rings, or without any tree ring data at all, resulting in: a hockey stick. ….. “

    This is true if you include the Tiljander sediments but everyone knows that the up-tick, which is really a down-tick, is caused by building work and has nothing to do with temperature.

    If you don't believe me then here is a quote from none other than RC's Gavin:
    “ ….. For further information, the no-dendro/no-Tiljander sensitivity test is also part of the SI in Mann et al (2009) (figure S8), where it is noted that it doesn't validate prior to 1500 AD. ….. “

    So we know that Mann's reconstruction without tree-ring data has no validity before 1500AD and is incapable of telling anything useful about the MWP. That is a fact. If you don't believe me ask Gavin.

    The list goes on but perhaps you could show two such large factual errors in the HSI?

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  • 187. At 05:38am on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you say: "With respect, what are Monckton, Montford, Watts...... and dare I say even Climateaudit doing if not trying to influence public policy? They are saying that there are too many question marks over the science to justify damaging the economy with measures to control CO2."

    With respect, Paul, with the exception of ClimateAudit, all of these are drawing attention to the inappropriate influence of shoddy science by advocacy scientists on public policy.

    ClimateAudit is, and always has been, very specifically and exclusively about the science, about addressing the flawed statistical analysis being performed by climate scientists and about the abuses of privilege those climate scientists have committed. If you can't see this, you should have gone to SpecSavers.

    You quote Monckton's testimony and then ask: "Now, please tell me how that is anything other than an attempt to influence US policy!"

    Frankly, Paul, I don't think I could find a less supportive Monckton quote to back your argument. Read what he wrote again. Heavens.

    You write "[..] I could easily point you back to the detailed investigations by Deepclimate which exposed this in all its gory details - the links to the George C Marshall Institute (which is certainly an advocacy group!) and the behind the scenes dealings with a right wing US administration...... and much more. In a nutshell, though, Climateaudit is all about manufacturing distrust of science amongst the public, with obvious knock on effects on policy decisions."

    I mentioned Mashey's conspiracy theory rants earlier. Frankly, Paul, the DC and Mashey extrapolations regarding the Marshall Institute etc and Sen. Inhofe are hilarious. The cherry on the cake is that, politically, McIntyre is a "Clinton Democrat".

    Of the enquiries, you write: "Is it not the case that you simply didn't like the terms of reference? Have you not considered the possibility that those who set up the reviews could see something you couldn't - that the entire Climategate "scandal" was part of an organised campaign to smear the scientists?"

    What I found offensive was that the enquiries did not keep to their terms of reference. They were also specifically asked by the Parliamentary STSC to conduct their enquiries in public. They assured the STSC that they would examine the science. They assured the STSC they would operate with integrity and above reproach. They kept precisely none of their promises and met exactly none of these targets.

    You write: "In truth, if the terms of reference had been widened, they would have needed to be widened sufficiently to look at the activities of the denial movement too....... including Climateaudit! So perhaps you should consider yourself lucky that they were not!"

    What an utter nonsense rant, Paul.

    You write: "Simon, you have gone on at length about GCM's in the past. What makes you think that you know more about them and their appropriate use than an experienced multi-disciplinary team of scientists? I also note that whilst you constantly throw up objections (a la Gish Gallop!), you never come up with solid examples in the form of peer-reviewed literature."

    Firstly, one doesn't have to be a computer programmer to understand the limitations of a computer program. But I am one anyway, so perhaps I have a head-start. Secondly, because it is irrational to believe that a model which does not fully understand the climate can model the climate. It can't. Whatever approximation a model can achieve in hindcasting, with human-influenced variable tweaking and fudge factors, does not endow the linear model with the ability to accurately project the behaviour of the complex, non-linear system it is attempting to simulate.

    So, in short, all I need is the capacity for reason to know that climate models are simply not up to the task. And for the record, whatever climate modellers might claim, I really do doubt that they believe in the ontological prowess of their models either.

    You write: "Weather may be chaotic, but climate is not"

    A logical fallacy - petitio principii. While there is evidence that climate is cyclic (and that evidence itself undermines the CAGW argument, thank you), what is falsely implied here is that climate is therefore predictable. It remains our lack of causal understanding of both weather patterns and climate cycles which precludes any predictive prowess of future climatic behaviour. This fact is inescapable.

    RobWansbeck and Sparklet have picked off the rest of this post of yours nicely. I'll just address your addendum @170:

    You write: "I also note that you seem to be using the "logical fallacy" argument quite a lot......"

    You're invoking them, I'm just picking them off. You hum it, I'll play it. :)

    You write:" "As for "basic physics", need I remind you that "basic physics" asserts that a feather and a hammer will fall at exactly the same speeds."

    I'll presume that the omission of three very important words "in a vacuum" was just an accident!"

    Well anything other than in a vacuum is no longer basic physics, is it? This being the point, Paul. Barry Woods - I'm sure you know him well - has a guest post addressing this conflation of simple and complex physics, a popular pastime at septicalscience. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/12/28/simple-physics-in-reality-my-feather-blew-up-into-a-tree/

    Dear god, it's gone half five. There goes my sleep in. I'll be back later, when I've sobered up and slept some.

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  • 188. At 05:45am on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Oh.. Paul.. "the hockey team" is a self-designation by.. "the team". This is not a name given them by the sceptics or deniarrrrs. You can look it up, it's all played out on RC yonks ago.

    Nighterz

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  • 189. At 09:19am on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sadly I don't have a lot of time just now, so I won't even attempt to tackle individual misepresentations and distortions in posts 185 - 187.

    However, I will say that "Gish Gallop rides again":

    http://rationalwiki.org/w/index.php?title=Gish_gallop


    I believe it is always illuminating to ask people in debates such as this what criteria would cause them to change their minds.

    It's a fairly easy question for me to answer, because my conviction lies in the scientific evidence, so on a previous thread I laid out specific crieria.

    After obfuscating for a long time, Mailman finally said that he would only be satisfied with a thorough review of the science and the scientists.

    It may surprise some of you to know that I DON'T oppose this, but given what has been posted above it is ESSENTIAL that such a review look at ALL aspects of the debate, including the activities, motives and agendas of those behind the sceptic blogs and advocacy groups (eg the George C Marshall Institute, to which both Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick are linked).

    Predictably, Mailman rejected such a wide-ranging review, claiming that it was only the scientists who were involved in advocacy (sound familiar Simon H?), but I have been able to demonstrate many times over in the posts above that this is NOT the case.

    Mailman's refual to even countenance a review of his sources exposes the utter hypocrisy of his position. However, to the rest of you I say this -

    I DO NOT FEAR A REVIEW OF THE SCIENCE. DO YOU FEAR A REVIEW OF THOSE YOU SUPPORT?

    Paul

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  • 190. At 10:39am on 09 Jan 2011, oldgifford wrote:

    From "The Register"

    The Met vigorously denies the map, reproduced below, is a "forecast". However it has confirmed that it "provided a long-range forecast to the Cabinet Office at the end of October highlighting the risk of a cold start to the winter".

    According to separate internal documents released under the FOI Act, saying two things to two audiences is advisable. The BBC News website published excerpts from several internal executive reports that bemoan the ability of the public to understand probabilistic forecasts. This resulted in "less 'intelligent' (and potentially hostile) sections of the press, competitors and politicos" conspiring to damage the Met Office "brand".

    By contrast, people who the Met deems "interested customers" should be told the three-month outlook will be available on the research pages of the website. "'Intelligent' customers (such as the Cabinet Office) find probabilistic forecasts helpful in planning their resource deployment."

    The Met recommended that three-month forecasts should be available on the research pages of its website but "this message should not be used with our mainstream audiences" [our emphasis].

    Critics have called for a Parliamentary enquiry by the Science and Technology Select Committee. Why the fuss?

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  • 191. At 12:15pm on 09 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    "I DO NOT FEAR A REVIEW OF THE SCIENCE. DO YOU FEAR A REVIEW OF THOSE YOU SUPPORT?"

    You really, really are in trouble ;-)

    One of the Lobby

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  • 192. At 12:25pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #191

    "You really, really are in trouble ;-)"

    Do you intend to answer the question I posed, blunderbunny?

    After all, a wide ranging review would certainly clear the air!

    Paul

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  • 193. At 1:47pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, could you explain what you would like an investigation to determine please?

    What should have happened (and what was promised by Acton regarding the Science Appraisal panel), but didn't happen, was a thorough examination of the science at the CRU.

    What sceptics hoped for, but what didn't happen, was a thorough examination of the science and the case made by sceptics against the CRU (and other members of the team).

    What sceptics hoped for, but what didn't happen, was for sceptics (eg. Steve McIntyre, Doug Keenan, David Holland) to be asked questions about their complaints and for them to be closely cross-examined.

    What is very apparent is that it is the CRU, and it's enquiry defenders, who do not wish to examine the sceptics' cases against the CRU or to give sceptics a platform to have their positions examined or pitted against the scientists' positions.

    The opportunity to do as you suggest - both regarding the CRU and regarding prominent sceptics - was at these enquiries. But it was the enquiries (in concert with Prof. Acton) which purposefully avoided inviting such a situation by being thorough, despite the requests of the sceptics to do so.

    Of course sceptics would welcome the opportunity to have a proper, open enquiry into the science and advocacy implications of both the CRU climatologists and their sceptical critics.

    Will it happen? Well, we can forever hope. It would certainly redress Mashey's entertaining conspiracy theory. That would be convenient for sceptics, but it would not be convenient for proponents of the abysmal scientific practices of the CRU and its friends and close associates.

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  • 194. At 1:50pm on 09 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re:180. At 11:38pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "Sparklet @ #174

    You appear to have made a number of incorrect assumptions in this post.

    The Roy Specer article is looking at the instrumental record, whereas the anomaly in the second link is the SATELLITE data and is therefore not in any way linked to the number of stations on the ground.

    Second, the anaomaly is for December as a whole and it is entirely possible that, just as here in the UK, conditions changed at the end of the month.

    Finally, ice cover and snow fall are not always indicative of unusually low temperatures. In particular, it is frequently the case in colder parts of the World that snow is associated with warmer than average weather!"

    Paul

    *******************************************************************

    On the contrary Paul it is you who have made the 'incorrect assumptions' (your posts are littered with them).
    I am well aware that the second link is to satellite data hence the comment "Quite a coincidence!!!" However if the virtual reality created fails to match the actual reality then that calls into question the original callibration process.

    "Second, the anaomaly is for December as a whole and it is entirely possible that, just as here in the UK, conditions changed at the end of the month."

    So let us go to some more historic data Jan 2010 and compare it to the actuals.
    Select 2010 Jan Anomaly
    Check the orange glow over eastern China -
    http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_monthly.html
    ...and compare that to the reality ...
    where we have 50- and 70-year record low temperatures recorded - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winter_storms_of_2009%E2%80%932010_in_East_Asia

    "Finally, ice cover and snow fall are not always indicative of unusually low temperatures. In particular, it is frequently the case in colder parts of the World that snow is associated with warmer than average weather"
    - except we are talking about record low temperatures being broken!!

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  • 195. At 3:19pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, the "Gish Gallop" here is septicalscience - links to this site are a dominant feature of your posts.

    You write: "I believe it is always illuminating to ask people in debates such as this what criteria would cause them to change their minds."

    I have written before about "ontic uncertainty". This precludes the ability for us to predict outcomes of chaotic systems. We may, in the future, better our ability to bound the uncertainties of an outcome (eg. knowing that a card pulled randomly from the deck will not be a 17 of Hearts, or will certainly be of one of four known suits) but we will not be able to predict with sufficient certainty any outcome of a system of which we have insufficient understanding.

    Let me ask you an equivalent question, no less reasonable: I do not believe in god. What do you suggest I do to finally resolve my agnosticism, once and for all, and begin worshipping god?

    You write: "It's a fairly easy question for me to answer, because my conviction lies in the scientific evidence, so on a previous thread I laid out specific crieria."

    I wholly accept that it is your conviction. However, I do not share your conviction; on examination, I find the case for CAGW to be unconvincing. I acknowledge inherent uncertainties in the science which, by their existence, prevent me making the same leap of faith that you have made. In order to have the conviction of faith you have, you have to put aside the presence of uncertainties and make an ideological stand.

    In other news, I also accept that people believe in god.

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  • 196. At 3:37pm on 09 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    182. At 11:54pm on 08 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    Sparklet @ #179

    The problem here is that you appear totally fixated with the idea that everything Montford and McKitrick say is correct and reliable. I have put forwards extremely good reasons for concluding that they are NOT reliable at all. Indeed, given that Climategate came about primarily because of the "feud" (for want of a better word) between Climateaudit and what they term "the team", McKitrick would be the LAST person whose testimony I would trust!

    In your second paragraph you are saying that you would prefer to believe the views of ONE scientist and the claims of an unreliable blog source rather than accept the findings of no fewer than SIX independent reviews into different aspects of AGW science.

    With respect, it is your position which lacks credibility.

    Paul

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    "I have put forwards extremely good reasons for concluding that they are NOT reliable at all".

    On the contrary, Paul, that is something you have singularly failed to do despite repeated requests. I have asked repeatedly that you identify any particular errors in their respective reports regarding the Climategate Inquiries but you have come up with none.

    "Climategate came about primarily because of the "feud" (for want of a better word) between Climateaudit and what they term "the team""

    And why on earth should you assume that? A group of scientists, whose work is being used to implement policies that will be very damaging to the western economies, have their mails released showing they have deliberately evaded giving info. on FOI requests, have subverted the peer review process and conspired to prevent reports they disliked from being published in scientific journals, have conspired together to undermine the existence of the MWP and you believe that the interest in these mails is because of a 'feud' between Climateaudit and 'the team' - Paul, you are being quite delusional!!

    "In your second paragraph you are saying that you would prefer to believe the views of ONE scientist and the claims of an unreliable blog source rather than accept the findings of no fewer than SIX independent reviews into different aspects of AGW science"

    Again,on the contrary, I am simply illustrating the point by quoting the views of a scientist I respect. I had already read the evidence provided by the Climategate emails and the various reports and commentary on them and have formed my own opinion based on those. Your description of Climate Audit as an unreliable blog source is farcical in the extreme. Please provide actual evidence of this rather than simply opinions. As for these 'SIX'(non) Independent Inquiries please identify which aspects of the 'AGW science' were actually covered. It seems to me that most didn't cover the actual 'science' at all!!

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  • 197. At 4:17pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sucked in again *sigh*

    Sparklet, can I just ask - given that the flow of water in a river is chaotic do you believe it is impossible to predict that river water will flow downhill to the sea?

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  • 198. At 4:18pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Sorry, that should have been to Simon H

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  • 199. At 4:52pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    @ 197: OPatrick, thank you for further adding to the set of logical fallacies that you and Paul rack up. This is a non-sequitur.

    Please give the equivalent, in climate, of gravity in your hydrological example.

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  • 200. At 6:33pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H, you really have some gall accusing me of logical falacies after this "I have written before about "ontic uncertainty". This precludes the ability for us to predict outcomes of chaotic systems. " in relation to the climate.

    The flowing river is an analogy, not an exact equivalent. However, if you want the equivalent of gravity in the cliamte system is the total energy content of the global system.

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  • 201. At 6:44pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #194

    In your previous post on this subject you were talking about a weather event at the end of December 2010. My points regarding that were entirely valid. I'm also not sure why you chose the term "quite a coincidence" when the satellite data has nothing to do with the surface stations that you were previously questioning.

    Now you are looking at the winter of 2009-2010, during which there were record low temperatures in Northern China and Korea for 2 days on the 1st and 2nd January. As far as I can see the graphics for December 2009 and January 2010 are not at odds with the reports of low temperatures in eastern Asia at that time, as the cold spell appears to have ended before mid January.

    Please let me know if there is something I'm missing here!

    Paul

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  • 202. At 7:23pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    @200: OPatrick, where is the logical fallacy in what I wrote? Explain to me how it is possible to side-step inherent insurmountable uncertainties to arrive at a certain conclusion. While you're at it, please let me know next week's lottery numbers. If you can do the former, you can do the latter.

    If the flowing river is an analogy rather than an equivalent then it most certainly IS a non-sequitur logical fallacy because, while it bears no relation whatsoever to the process of projecting climatological outcomes, you present it as if it does.

    The "total energy content of the global system" you present as a direct equivalent (let's call it the energy budget) might indeed be the best equivalent of gravity in the hydrogeological example you gave. Now tell me, have we (i.e. has anyone, anywhere at all) remotely balanced the energy budget? Or is it instead true that we CANNOT balance the energy budget, that there is heat that we cannot find, and that Kevin Trenberth has conceded that it's possible that the missing heat has actually escaped, undetected, into space instead of contributing to global warming?

    I'd appreciate an honest answer, OPatrick, if it is within your capacity to deliver.

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  • 203. At 7:28pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #196

    Let's look at this in a slightly different way so that you can better understand what I'm saying.

    On the one hand there were some submissions to the enquiries which asserted that there was evidence of corruption. On the other there were submissions which urged against drawing that conclusion.

    The job of the enquiry teams was to look at the evidence in an objective manner and determine who was right. They also had to bear in mind that an email alone is not of itself evidence of wrongdoing - they also had to look at how the scientists had acted.

    Like it or not, the review teams did NOT agree with you or Montford, McKitrick and McIntyre. The only area of concern was over FOI request handling........ and even there the point was made that the data did not belong to the scientists, with much of it being covered by confidentiality agreements.

    So why would anyone want to accept the claims of Montford and McKitrick ahead of the findings of independent teams which had considered all of the evidence (rather than just one rather biased view of it)?

    "I have asked repeatedly that you identify any particular errors in their respective reports regarding the Climategate Inquiries but you have come up with none."

    What I have been saying is that the reports of Montford and McKitrick are merely stating OPINIONS rather than established facts - until they have been confirmed by the review teams they remain assertions. For instance, in his submission to the House of Commons McKitrick appears to be claiming that the methods do not adequately describe the adjustment procedure for the temperature data........ yet the Muir Russell team was able to construct its own series using Jones' methods in just 2 days.

    Now, you asked me for evidence as to why I do not consider Climateaudit a credible source. You will not like it, but given the many uncorroborated assertions of malfeasance made against climate scientists, including here on this blog, I don't think you can justifiably complain:

    http://deepclimate.org/2010/02/04/steve-mcintyre-and-ross-mckitrick-part-1-in-the-beginning/

    http://deepclimate.org/2010/02/08/steve-mcintyre-and-ross-mckitrick-part-2-barton-wegman/

    http://deepclimate.org/2010/03/10/mcclimategate-continues-yet-another-false-accusation-from-mcintyre-and-mckitrick/

    As I said in a previous post, in my opinion this is more than sufficient evidence to justify extending any future review to look at this too.

    Paul

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  • 204. At 7:43pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Wait a second, why are you suddenly talking about "certain" conclusions? Earlier you were just talking about "sufficient certainty". Are you *sure* you want an honest response from me?

    The river analogy fitted your general statement about chaotic system as well as the climate does, this does not mean there is an exact equivalence between them.

    I see you have moved on to a new issue again - now we are talking about problems with accounting for the energy budget, whereas we started with your assertion that we couldn't predict the outcome of a chaotic system. It is certainly the case that we need a much more accurate understanding of the overal energy budget in the global system if we are going to be able to make useful predictions in terms of adapting to climate change. We do have an accurate enough understanding to make general predictions about the range and probabilities of effects we can expect. It is even possible that the 'missing heat' has somehow dissipated off into space by some unknown mechanism (though much more likely it's in the ocean somewhere I think).

    Once again though I'd point out that uncertainty is not a comfort - this should make us more wary of the future consequences, not less.

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  • 205. At 7:59pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "The only area of concern was over FOI request handling........ and even there the point was made that the data did not belong to the scientists, with much of it being covered by confidentiality agreements."

    There are many issues with what you posted, but I thought I'd just address this one. Firstly, treatment of FOI requests was far from being the only are of concern. I'm at a loss to understand how you can possibly maintain such a ludicrous position unless your intention is merely to "take the micky".

    Secondly, the principle issue at the enquiry with specific regard to FOI (rather than simply the principle issue at the enquiry) was the prima facie evidence of intent to subvert FOI requests by deleting emails which were subject to them.

    Phil Jones wrote an email to others asking them to delete emails regarding IPCC AR4. This email was written the day after the CRU received and logged a FOI request from David Holland for copies of all emails regarding IPCC AR4.

    Quite incredibly, none of the official enquiries properly addressed this very specific issue appropriately. Neither of the enquiries even asked Phil Jones (or any other CRU scientist) if they did indeed delete emails which were at the time subject to FOI requests.

    The very simple principle followed by the enquiries is quite clearly that, if you don't think you'll like the answer, don't ask the question.

    For extra entertainment, note that Phil Jones has since claimed that he did not personally delete the emails in question. What he doesn't mention is that he was not one of the correspondents in the emails he requested others delete.

    Gotta love that sleight of hand, haven't you?

    The Climategate emails clearly indicate the intention of scientists at the CRU to subvert FOI requests by claiming that data is covered by confidentiality agreements. In a great many instances, if such agreements were in existence, they would be surpassed by Environmental Information Regulations (meaning that, regardless of the existence of a confidentiality agreement, the data must be released subject to European freedom of information regulations). The CRU has failed to produce ANY of these confidentiality agreements, despite outstanding FOI requests for them since July 2009.

    In December 2009 Phil Jones, with the assistance of the Met Office, wrote to the countries whose data they were required to release under British and European FOI law, asking permission to release CRU-value-adjusted versions of their raw data while describing that data as raw country data. Famous rejections of this request are Canada and Sweden. These countries did not, however, refuse to allow their data to be released. Their specific objection was for the CRU to present tampered/adjusted data as if it were raw data. They made no objection to allowing the *true* raw data to be released.


    Did you know this, Paul, or are you purposefully misrepresenting the situation?

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  • 206. At 8:14pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick:

    You introduced river flow. I merely entertained it, ludicrous though it was.

    You introduced energy budget, not me. I merely entertained it.

    Now you're complaining? It's a bit like stabbing someone, then blaming them for bleeding on your Axminster.

    Courtesy of our lack of understanding of forces and feedbacks, OPatrick, we do NOT have "an accurate enough understanding to make general predictions about the range and probabilities of effects we can expect." On the contrary, we have an abysmally poor understanding of climate sensitivity to increases in CO2. Instead we are depending on probabilistics with ranges so broad as to be completely worthless. Or, if not worthless, as useful as a mild winter forecast and a barbecue summer prediction.

    You write: "Once again though I'd point out that uncertainty is not a comfort - this should make us more wary of the future consequences, not less."

    This is an ideological value judgement, not a scientific assessment. It has absolutely no place in scientific endeavour.

    One day we will be able to look back at the era of ideological corruption of scientific discovery and laugh. Oh yes, we will.

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  • 207. At 8:53pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #205

    Simon,

    When I have a little more time I will try to address some more of your points above, but I feel this is the most pressing for now.

    I believe the following article from Skeptical Science covers the issues you raised:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climategate-freedom-of-information.html

    and also this:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/jul/07/climategate-scientists-main-points

    You will note that it is not against the law to delete emails just as long as they have not already been requested.

    Nobody, Jones included, claims that CRU and UEA handled FOI well, but Muir Russell clearly understood that the scientists were suspicious of the motives of McIntyre et al and that this contributed substantially to the way they acted.

    Regarding your last point, I was not aware of this, although it does seem to have been claimed by Watts on the Climateaudit website rather than any source that I might have a lot of confidence in (sorry!).

    I will check further. However, at first glance it appears to me that the Swedes did not give Jones permission to publish their data until 4th March, which was after he had testified to the Select Committee (1st March).

    Paul

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  • 208. At 8:54pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H:

    "You introduced river flow. I merely entertained it, ludicrous though it was.

    You introduced energy budget, not me. I merely entertained it.

    Now you're complaining?"

    What are you talking about? I'm complaining about you starting off with a false assertion about how we cannot make any 'sufficiently certain' predictions about climate because it was a chaotic system and then segueing into a separate point about difficulties in establishing the energy budget. You started with a 'philosophical' generalisation about uncertainty in chaotic systems and then began to talk about the specifics of accounting for energy in the system. Are you really unaware of this or are you being dishonest?

    "Courtesy of our lack of understanding of forces and feedbacks, OPatrick, we do NOT have "an accurate enough understanding to make general predictions about the range and probabilities of effects we can expect." On the contrary, we have an abysmally poor understanding of climate sensitivity to increases in CO2. Instead we are depending on probabilistics with ranges so broad as to be completely worthless. Or, if not worthless, as useful as a mild winter forecast and a barbecue summer prediction."

    I would say your analogy of predictions of a mild winter or a barbecue summer are probably about right in terms of the ranges of temperature change we can predict in the climate system. We cannot predict with very much accuracy if next summer is going to be exceptionally warm or a bit of a wash out. However, we can say with some certainty that the average temperature is going to be warmer than the average temperature in winter. Similarly we don't know if we are going to get 1 or 2 more degees centigrade of warming before the end of the century or 5 or 6. There is a great deal of uncertainty in projections of future climate. Unfortunately those uncertainties lie between serious and catastrophic for our civilisation.

    "This is an ideological value judgement, not a scientific assessment. It has absolutely no place in scientific endeavour."

    I don't know why you felt in necessary to put in the extra "ideological" in there, presumably to play to your gallery and try to undermine my position. But yes, it's a value judgement in a sense (although I find it hard to believe that there are many whose values aren't at least to some extent drawn from a stake in the future of our civilisation). Political decisions need to be made about our response to the threats of climate change. An understanding of uncertainties is important in this decision making process. To be honest, I'm not sure what you thought your point was here - it doesn't seem to bear on your rather sad final paragraph.

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  • 209. At 9:13pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, just quicky, you write: "You will note that it is not against the law to delete emails just as long as they have not already been requested."

    However Paul, you will note that, as I pointed out, Jones' request to delete the emails was made AFTER the FOI for those emails was received, NOT before.

    This is a simple chronology, Paul. I don't understand how the logic escapes you.

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  • 210. At 9:34pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "I'm complaining about you starting off with a false assertion about how we cannot make any 'sufficiently certain' predictions about climate because it was a chaotic system and then segueing into a separate point about difficulties in establishing the energy budget. You started with a 'philosophical' generalisation about uncertainty in chaotic systems and then began to talk about the specifics of accounting for energy budget."

    It is not a false assertion, that we cannot make sufficiently certain predictions (especially using linear modelling) about the chaotic, non-linear, coupled climate system. The only way to increase the certainty in our future projections is to agree to deny or conceal the presence or significance of existent uncertainties. This is termed "obfuscation", and it is scientific misconduct. - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_misconduct

    You write: "You started with a 'philosophical' generalisation about uncertainty in chaotic systems and then began to talk about the specifics of accounting for energy in the system. Are you really unaware of this or are you being dishonest?"

    My point regarding uncertainties in chaotic systems is not a "'philosophical' generalisation". Acknowledgement of error ranges is fundamental to scientific endeavour. Acknowledging that we are unable to account for missing heat ("and it's a travesty that we can't" - Kevin Trenberth) is fundamental to the science, and its downplaying - for example excluding any mention of uncertainties in the IPCC SPM, and the inappropriate under-acknowledgement of uncertainties in the IPCC report - is a breach of trust and a breach of scientific standards.

    Look, if you're happy for scientists to downplay or understate the prohibitive presence of wide error ranges in scientific conclusions, that's your choice. However I hold scientists to a higher standard than that, and I expect science to be performed far more rigorously than it has been, and with far greater scientific integrity - particularly when that scientific work is being used as justification for life-changing economic and social restructuring. Your mileage clearly varies and it IS a value judgement. I merely set the bar higher.

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  • 211. At 10:09pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "Similarly we don't know if we are going to get 1 or 2 more degees centigrade of warming before the end of the century or 5 or 6. There is a great deal of uncertainty in projections of future climate. Unfortunately those uncertainties lie between serious and catastrophic for our civilisation."

    This is actually a gross misrepresentation of the current climate scientist "consensus"*. The uncertainties in fact lie between no discernible signal and, at the outlying, 5-6 degrees. Given the logarithmic effect of CO2=>T, and the tapering-off of effect, the higher sensitivity is wholly unqualified and depends instead on erroneous modelling rather than observation, and completely ethereal "tipping points" which are entirely hypothetical and are scientifically unqualified. See: http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/1994/logwarmingillustratedeo8.png

    The global average temperature anomaly is currently running at ~+0.6C/century. This is arguably including the net result of coming out of the LIA, but even pretending that the LIA historical event never happened, this is not a dangerous or alarming rate of increase. Add to this the completely unexplained cooling period, mid-20th C, despite a steady and continuing increase in CO2 levels and the correlation between CO2 and temperature substantially undermines the case for even a discernible climate sensitivity to increases in CO2.

    *The "97%" "consensus" is exposed for the cherry-picked figure that it is, here: http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/01/03/lawrence-solomon-97-cooked-stats/

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  • 212. At 10:20pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #209

    "However Paul, you will note that, as I pointed out, Jones' request to delete the emails was made AFTER the FOI for those emails was received, NOT before."

    So you are saying that you are right and Muir Russell was wrong? The chronology I have seen suggests that Jones' request to colleagues to delete emails predated the FOI request by some time. Frankly, I am more inclined to accept the findings of the review team unless you can produce clear evidence to the contrary.

    Paul

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  • 213. At 10:57pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, yes. I'm afraid that is precisely what I am saying.

    I was, myself and another, working on a second revision of David Holland's submission to the Russell review (redacting some non-CRU names, as demanded by Russell, and rewording for clarity) when David was contacted by Russell's team and informed that his submission would not be accepted by the review. Later submissions in support of the CRU were accepted.

    The matter of David's FOI request, and its timing, were not properly addressed by Sir Muir Russell's enquiry. In fact it is difficult to interpret this failure as anything but purposeful. It is an important matter, and the evidence in David's submission was key to establishing the truthful sequence of events. His FOI request (08/31) was excluded from the review's list of FOI requests - http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/02%20July%20CRU%20FOI%20&%20EIR%20requests.pdf

    I'm not trying to score points here, Paul, I just think it's important to have the record set straight on this.

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  • 214. At 11:01pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H

    "It is not a false assertion, that we cannot make sufficiently certain predictions (especially using linear modelling) about the chaotic, non-linear, coupled climate system. The only way to increase the certainty in our future projections is to agree to deny or conceal the presence or significance of existent uncertainties. This is termed "obfuscation", and it is scientific misconduct."

    Nice. You're accusing scientists of misconduct on the basis that you believe they are understating uncertainties. I see you misuse Trenberth's quote on not being able to account for the heat in support of this, which gives a pretty good idea of the level of evidence you have for your position.

    " I merely set the bar higher."

    Oh my.

    "This is actually a gross misrepresentation of the current climate scientist "consensus"*."

    No it isn't. There may be some at the extreme end of the spectrum who believe there is a significant chance we will have no warming this century, though I would be interested to see any evidence of this in the scientific literature as I can't remember hearing of any, but at the other end there are some who argue there is a possibility of significantly higher warming than 6 degrees.

    "The global average temperature anomaly is currently running at ~+0.6C/century."

    Erm - I'm just a little suspicious that you should have stated this value without any indication of how you obtained it, can't think why. No, the trend for the last few decades has been about 1.5C/century and there is no indication that this has changed with any statistical significance in the past 5, 10, 15 years. Have a look on Wood For Trees
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1970/to:1995/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1995/to:2010/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1970/to:2010/trend

    The mid-20th century cooling is certainly an interesting phenomenon, but aerosols are certainly a viable explanation and more credible than your 'net result of coming out of the LIA' explanation for the warming.
    You are not seriously trying to argue that there should be an exact correlation between CO2 levels and warming on even a decadal timespan are you?

    *And seriously - Lawrence Soloman in the National Post?

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  • 215. At 11:07pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Sorry, Paul, I got distracted by a terrible B-movie on SyFy. I didn't add the essential detail to definitively resolve the chronology.

    Here is the revised version of FOI and EIR requests, including FOI_08-31, which was added to the Russell review long after the review's findings had been published: http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/FOI%20requests_CRU_revised_DP.pdf

    Just so there is no confusion, this request was entered into the UEA record dated 27/05/08.

    Phil Jones' email to Mann, requesting email deletions pertinent to Holland's FOI request, was dated 29/05/08. http://www.eastangliaemails.com/emails.php?eid=893&filename=1212073451.txt

    As I said, no points scoring, just the chronology of events.

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  • 216. At 11:26pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "the trend for the last few decades has been about 1.5C/century"

    Nothing like the arbitrary selection of start/end dates for manufacturing trends, eh? How about examining the trend during the historical record during industrialisation? The trend is ~0.6C/century.

    "and there is no indication that this has changed with any statistical significance in the past 5, 10, 15 years."

    Now that's a twist. There has been no statistically significant WARMING in the last 5-15 years, not that there has been no statistically significant change in the trend.

    I usually don't make any reference to Phil Jones' concession that there is no statistically significant warming over the last 15 years because I feel that arbitrary selection of a short time-frame is abusing the science, but you're the first - the VERY first - warmy that I've witnessed contort this period to the point of inversion! Your misrepresentation is appalling.

    You write: "Nice. You're accusing scientists of misconduct on the basis that you believe they are understating uncertainties."

    I've made no such accusation. But what I say about obfuscation is true, and it amounts to scientific misconduct - as clearly indicated in the detailed description at the Wiki link. Doug Keenan is usually the one to make direct accusations of fraud, but as he's found there are no mechanisms in place at universities to deal with such activities by research scientists. This itself should give pause for thought.

    You write: "I see you misuse Trenberth's quote on not being able to account for the heat in support of this, which gives a pretty good idea of the level of evidence you have for your position."

    In which way am I misusing Trenberth's quote? It is a fact that Trenberth, along with all other climate scientists, is unable to balance the earth's energy budget. There are some hypotheses out there, but none of them yet tested. Trenberth suggests that the missing heat is located at deep ocean depths, but so far hasn't managed to track it down. The most recent study of ARGO data is unable to find it [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]. It's missing. We'll all be glad when we find it.. but I suspect Trenberth's suspicion is well-founded and it has indeed escaped into space, undetected.

    So explain to me, where is the missing evidence in support of my position, OPatrick? Or is this just gratuitous posturing and insult?

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  • 217. At 11:30pm on 09 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe #212

    Well the Parliamentary Committee had this to say:

    "There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000. It would, however, be premature, without a thorough investigation affording each party the opportunity to make representations, to conclude that UEA was in breach of the Act. In our view, it is unsatisfactory to leave the matter unresolved simply because of the operation of the six month time limit on the initiation of prosecutions. Much of the reputation of CRU hangs on the issue. We conclude that the matter needs to be resolved conclusively— either by the Independent Climate Change Email Review or by the Information Commissioner"

    Escaping prosecution due to a six month limit, is not actually the same as being innocent.... no matter what a certain skeptical web site might tell you............

    You're really not doing your cause much good you know. Silence, might well be a better form of advocacy, just a thought ;-)

    Actually, no, what am I saying? Please, please keep it up

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 218. At 11:37pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "*And seriously - Lawrence Soloman in the National Post?"

    If you'd like to challenge the substance or veracity of Solomon's entry, by all means do so.

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  • 219. At 11:51pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H (Various)

    I have never questioned your right to be sceptical of the science of AGW. There are indeed a few respected scientists who take your view.

    The main reason why I have challenged you repeatedly is because I firmly believe that you have been grossly unfair towards some of the scientists...... and I fear that most of your claims are based on your following of Climateaudit. I also firmly believe that that website has an agenda which goes substantially beyond simply checking the validity of results. In my opinion it makes far too many unsubstantiated claims to be credible and I think you take those claims too much at face value.

    I am also concerned from your recent posts that you appear to be putting yourself forwards as an expert on a great many things..... a la Gish Gallop! I suspect that OPatrick may have more to say on some of your claims, so I'll leave them to him.

    Now I want to return to some comments you made earlier..... I don't intend to be comprehensive, as I simply don't have that much time!

    You accused Skeptical Science of conflating simple and complex science. Not so!

    Let's take a look at the example used by Barry Woods regarding simple radiative physics. Here is how Skeptical Science puts this into context:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/empirical-evidence-for-global-warming.htm

    First it links to the basic physics experiments and calculations. Next it does what any good scientist does by looking for evidence in the real world. It actually finds it from 2 separate sources - satellite data and infrared radiation re-radiated back to Earth. I could, of course, then take you to other pages that take the argument further by pulling together all of the different strands of evidence. I certainly see no signs of conflation. Rather I see a website which has been painstakingly constructed by a working physicist with a good working knowledge of the literature and science generally.

    If you are going to make assertions you can rest assured that I will expect you to provide specific EVIDENCE.

    ....... and by the way, Skeptical Science is definitely NOT guilty of Gish Gallop tactics - it is always quite specific and has no need to hide behind unsubstantiated assertions. It is YOUR arguments that come without accompanying scientific literature to back up what you're saying - this includes your apparent confidence that you know more than the scientists about models and chaotic weather/climate!

    I was actually asking what might cause people to change their minds over the science of AGW specifically - NOT God (Gish galloping again!)! I think it is an important question for each of us to answer honestly as it tells us a lot about our motives (and possibly our agenda).

    Your comments regarding a possible wide-ranging enquiry actually give me some cause for optimism. Perhaps an opportunity was indeed missed over Climategate, although I suspect that those looking for answers were keen to get them quickly rather than have an enquiry drag on for years (as would undoubtedly have been necessary to look at everything in detail). I'm also quite sure that the authorities could see that Climategate was a set up!

    I was just about to post this and then picked up your latest post regarding deleting emails. I can't confirm that the email you pointed to was indeed from Holland from the information you've given me. However, I would point you to the fact that Jones actually justified his request for emails to be deleted thus:

    "......I see that CA claim they discovered the 1945 problem in the Nature paper!!"

    It seems strange that he would say that if he was actually asking for them to be deleted in response to Holland's request.

    Anyway, that's quite enough for now - I have other things I should be doing!

    Paul

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  • 220. At 11:51pm on 09 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, I thought I'd give you an example of arbitrary trend-setting, just for grins.

    Hadcrut actually shows a per-century trend, actually using data FROM the last century, of ~0.7C. More than my 0.6C, but nowhere near your preferred 5 or 6 degrees.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1910/to:2010/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1930/to:1980/trend

    Here's the last century, with the mid-century trend plotted. Flat as a trump for 50 of the last 100 years. Whodathunkit?

    Yeah, we love arbitrarily selected start/end points for trend lines don't we!?

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  • 221. At 11:58pm on 09 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H:

    "How about examining the trend during the historical record during industrialisation?"

    Why?

    ""and there is no indication that this has changed with any statistical significance in the past 5, 10, 15 years."

    Now that's a twist. There has been no statistically significant WARMING in the last 5-15 years, not that there has been no statistically significant change in the trend.

    I usually don't make any reference to Phil Jones' concession that there is no statistically significant warming over the last 15 years because I feel that arbitrary selection of a short time-frame is abusing the science, but you're the first - the VERY first - warmy that I've witnessed contort this period to the point of inversion! Your misrepresentation is appalling."

    You are very muddled here. I have no idea what your accusation of 'contorting this period to the point of inversion' means. The trend we have experienced in global temperatures since the '70s has continued unabated. Unless of course you choose to measure trends by looking at only very short time spans, which rather defeats the point of a trend. The trend in the 15 year period Phil jones was commenting on was, if I remember correctly, something like 0.12C per decade, which is not statistically significantly different from the trend for the previous 25 years. I'm not sure why this would be difficult for you to understand.

    "In which way am I misusing Trenberth's quote?"

    By taking it out of context of course and assigning to it import and meaning that it did not carry. Your accusations of understating uncertainty are

    Oh, enough. I can't believe I am still here. I'm not any longer.

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  • 222. At 00:00am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    I've already demonstrated to you, with the aid of peer reviewed papers that your favourite web site is certainly not giving you the full picture on the MWP, so

    "....... and by the way, Skeptical Science is definitely NOT guilty of Gish Gallop tactics - it is always quite specific and has no need to hide behind unsubstantiated assertions"

    Not only is this not true, you know it's not true......

    You mention science a lot, and yet you seem to care for it and it's processes not a jot.

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 223. At 00:03am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny,

    We've already done this to death on previous threads and I don't have time to go back over it again now in detail, so I suggest that you look back through recent threads to find my comments if you're after my considered response.

    There's far more detail in the reports. No UEA did not handle it well and a few lessons have been learned, but there were other contributing factors too (ie Climateaudit!), which is probably why the authorities chose to take no action.

    Paul

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  • 224. At 00:11am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Opatrick

    Not that I want to stoop to using pro-AGW tactics, but in this case I feel that I have to point out........ That's the same Dr. Trenberth that brought you the need for scientists to "massage their data, exercising judgment about what might be defective and best disregarded"

    I wouldn't start trying to stand up for him or his missing, not missing, now where did I put it, I swear it was here a minute ago, heat, if I were you - You'll need to explain the bulk of the argo studies and their data first.

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 225. At 00:14am on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "You are very muddled here."

    On the contrary, I'm very clear and I'm just beginning to get warmed up.

    You write: "I have no idea what your accusation of 'contorting this period to the point of inversion' means. The trend we have experienced in global temperatures since the '70s has continued unabated."

    Remember, you wrote ""the trend for the last few decades has been about 1.5C/century." My issue is the arbitrary selection of trend date start/end.

    "Unless of course you choose to measure trends by looking at only very short time spans, which rather defeats the point of a trend."

    My point exactly. Examining trends over "a few decades" while per-century data is available, and then referring to their indication in per-century terms is contorting evidence to fit your point.

    "The trend in the 15 year period Phil jones was commenting on was, if I remember correctly, something like 0.12C per decade, which is not statistically significantly different from the trend for the previous 25 years. I'm not sure why this would be difficult for you to understand."

    No, in fact 0.12C per decade would amount to a statistically significant warming signal. Jones said there was no statistically significant warming signal since 1995, which means what it says on the tin - none. In fact the trend over the last 15 years, if anything, has been cooling, but as I said before, 15 years is too short a time-frame to determine signal from noise. I don't make reference to it because it's too easy to score cheap points.

    Regarding Trenberth's quote, I most certainly am not taking it out of context. I am placing it precisely IN context. I can only assume that you are not familiar with the known issues with balancing the energy budget. There's nothing wrong with not knowing, but there is something very wrong with emboldening yourself with your own ignorance in order to accuse me of misrepresenting Trenberth!

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  • 226. At 00:18am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    Okay Paul, I'll play.

    First thing The UEA and CRU are not exactly the same. You should know this.

    Secondly, the only reason there was no prosecution was the timing - The words are in black and white for all to read.

    Comments?

    With regard to your previous comments, you did not address the bias of your favourite site, so don't attempt to give the impression that you did.

    Regards,

    One of Lobby

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  • 227. At 00:26am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul

    Ohh! and this

    "There's far more detail in the reports. No UEA did not handle it well and a few lessons have been learned, but there were other contributing factors too (ie Climateaudit!), which is probably why the authorities chose to take no action."

    THEY BROKE THE LAW (Well at least the CRU did)..... How much clearer does that need to be pointed out to you.

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 228. At 00:27am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #222

    "I've already demonstrated to you, with the aid of peer reviewed papers that your favourite web site is certainly not giving you the full picture on the MWP"

    No you have not!

    You presented a collection of articles, one or two of which MIGHT have been peer reviewed and NONE of which remotely undermined the article I linked to at Skeptical Science - indeed, one of your papers included an author who contributed to a paper quoted by Skeptical Science on the same subject.


    ""....... and by the way, Skeptical Science is definitely NOT guilty of Gish Gallop tactics - it is always quite specific and has no need to hide behind unsubstantiated assertions"

    Not only is this not true, you know it's not true......"

    The whole point of Gish Gallop is that it uses rhetoric and unsubstantiated assertions. Skeptical Science uses neither. Every scientific argument is backed up with scientific literature. If it doesn't mention papers you are aware of, it is either because there is another paper saying the same thing or your paper has not gained the acceptance of the scientific community as a whole....... or possibly your paper was not peer reviewed.

    ....... and we've done peer review to death too, haven't we?!

    "You mention science a lot, and yet you seem to care for it and it's processes not a jot."

    Yet another baseless assertion!

    Regards,

    One Not Connected to ANY Lobbies!

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  • 229. At 00:33am on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, just as a note - an important one, though - I'm genuinely not interested in treating septicalscience as a balanced or authoritative source, because it is not. I will not endorse its misrepresentations by entertaining reference to it. The site is one of the worst sources of misinformation and misdirection I have every seen, in any political arsenal. I apologise profusely for my stubbornness, Paul, but of all the possible sources of information out there, septicalscience is the most infuriating I have encountered for its conflation of political agenda with current scientific knowledge. It has no honour, at all.

    To cut to the chase on this, I strongly suggest that you read the comments on the piece that you linked. What is stated in the article as certain actually depends on conflation, as many commenters correctly point out. Key comments are:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/empirical-evidence-for-global-warming.htm#477

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/empirical-evidence-for-global-warming.htm#3055

    Note that the second link has a reply which does not accurately counter the points made in the comment.

    Please remember, Paul, that there is a difference between accepting AGW and accepting CAGW. The septicalscience site is pushing for belief in CAGW but purposefully blurs the line between the two using conflation. I can only believe that the conflation is deliberate. Sceptics accept AGW but challenge this site's assertions of CAGW.

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  • 230. At 00:42am on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "I am also concerned from your recent posts that you appear to be putting yourself forwards as an expert on a great many things"

    I hope I have not suggested that I have more detailed knowledge than I have. I certainly don't argue outside my range of expertise. I do know what I know, however limited that knowledge may be, and I don't see a need to apologise for it.

    Could you point to where I have suggested that I am an expert on any particular aspect of climate. If I have alluded incorrectly, I would like to address the mistake.

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  • 231. At 01:10am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul

    Hehe! Okay shall we examine your post above:

    "'I've already demonstrated to you, with the aid of peer reviewed papers that your favourite web site is certainly not giving you the full picture on the MWP'

    No you have not!
    "

    If we go and look at the page you linked to, we get:

    While the Medieval Warm Period saw unusually warm temperatures in some regions, globally the planet was cooler than current conditions.

    I'd like to know what the evidence for this statement is in detail.

    As:

    1. I think Tamino accidentally demonstrated when trying to help Mann out, that the MWP Period existed in Mann's own data - So, it's in Mann's evidence

    2. It's in all the Oxygen Istope Proxies

    3. It's in all of the papers and studies that I listed for you previously, many of which were peer reviewed.

    4. It was apparent in both hemispheres, not sure what your defnitiion of global is, maybe you'd like to tell us ?

    I'll grant you it probably didn't occur on the Moon, but other than that I think we've got it covered.

    So, Again would you like to point me to any of this stuff on your favourite web site?

    "One Not Connected to ANY Lobbies!"

    It's okay, I don't think we'd let you join ;-)

    Regards,

    One of the Vestibule (It's okay that means Lobby too - Maybe you can look it up?)

    By the Way - You do realise that's a Joke, admittedly it's not so funny since Many Summits left us, but a it's a joke nonetheless.

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  • 232. At 01:29am on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "I can't confirm that the email you pointed to was indeed from Holland from the information you've given me. However, I would point you to the fact that Jones actually justified his request for emails to be deleted thus:

    "......I see that CA claim they discovered the 1945 problem in the Nature paper!!"

    It seems strange that he would say that if he was actually asking for them to be deleted in response to Holland's request."

    I gave two links. One is the record of FOI requests, available from the Russell review website, which was updated after the enquiry to include the relevant Holland FOI request - strangely absent from, and excluded from, the report and the website at the time it made its findings.

    The second link is to Phil Jones' email to Mann, asking him to delete any emails containing discussions of AR4 with Keith Briffa, and asking Mann to ask Eugene Wahl to also delete such emails. Jones also intimates that he will be asking Annan to delete the same emails.

    A cursory examination of each of these links will lead you to conclude that Holland's request arrived two days before Jones' email and was in fact the reason for Jones' email.

    The additional line regarding "the 1945 problem" is conversational and secondary to the purpose of the email, which is clearly indicated in the subject line of the email: "IPCC & FOI". It bears no relevance to Holland's FOI request.

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  • 233. At 01:31am on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Sorry, typo.. Caspar Ammann, not (James) Annan.

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  • 234. At 02:20am on 10 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    #231, blunderbunny wrote:

    “ …. I think Tamino accidentally demonstrated when trying to help Mann out, that the MWP Period existed in Mann's own data - So, it's in Mann's evidence. …. “

    That is correct. I pointed this out to Paul in my post #172 but no response so far:

    http://climateaudit.org/2010/07/27/taminos-trick-mann-bites-bulldog/

    I also made Paul aware of this quote by none other than RC's Gavin in my post #186:

    “ ….. For further information, the no-dendro/no-Tiljander sensitivity test is also part of the SI in Mann et al (2009) (figure S8), where it is noted that it doesn't validate prior to 1500 AD. ….. “

    Still no response.

    Yes, Mann's 2009 paper relies on bridge building during the instrumental record to remove the MWP. Apparently there used to be an MWP until some guys started building bridges and digging ditches which caused it to disappear.
    Sadly some people believe that this is science.

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  • 235. At 02:27am on 10 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    PS. By Paul I mean Paul Briscoe.

    I haven't got the stamina of #187, Simon H :

    “ …. Dear god, it's gone half five. There goes my sleep in. I'll be back later, when I've sobered up and slept some. …. “

    Barely half two and I'm away to dry out.

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  • 236. At 07:14am on 10 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    (Oh, why, why why...)

    Wow Simon H, I've been in some pretty depressing discussons with the sort of person who would use the term 'warmy', but I don't think I've come across any who have been willing to claim the trend in global temperatures shows *cooling* over the last 15 years (what am I saying? That is exactly the sort of claim they make repeatedly and without shame.)

    The trend from 1995 to 2009, which Phil Jones was asked about, is approximately 0.12C per decade and it is not, quite, at the statistically significant level (95%) for such noisy data. The trend over the previous 25 years was also something like 0.12C - this is statistically significant because there is a longer period of time. Combining the data as a whole, from 1970 to 2009, shows a trend of about 0.12C per decade, which is statistically significant because it is over more than 15 years. Trends don't just not exist because they are not statisitcally significant, however it would be correct with such noisy data to ignore such trends *if they were not part of a longer previous trend*.

    Simon H, if you were looking at the trend in motor car thefts would you consider it to be most sensible to look at the overall linear trend in thefts since 1900 or perhaps to consider maybe just the last few decades? (Please note this is a rhetorical analogy and is not intended to be an exact analogue to the consideration of trends in global temperatures. The intention is to get you to reflect on your suggestion that we use an average trend over the enitre industrialised period.)

    Also note that I am not suggesting extrapolating the current trend in warming over the next century, I think there is clear evidence to suggest the most likely outcome is for this warming to accelerate significantly. Extending the current (i.e. past 40 years) linear trend is very likely an underestimate of the warming we can expect.

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  • 237. At 09:38am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #226 & #227

    Did you read the review reports?

    If you did you will presumably know that the House of Commons review reserved its strongest criticisms for UEA specifically rather than CRU - for not providing CRU with the support it needed to deal with large numbers of requests.

    I presume that you will also be aware that CRU was suddenly hit by a large number of requests in mid-2009 following a post by Steve McIntyre at Climateaudit - in this he incited bloggers to post multiple FOI requests for different countries. This was a clear attempt to make CRU's job of dealing with them as difficult as possible.

    Yes, as has been acknowledged several times, CRU did break the law by simply ignoring the requests, but there were clear mitigating circumstances - the FOI requests were vexatious in nature. Perhaps this is why the authorities chose not to take action...... in effect they admonished CRU.

    Paul

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  • 238. At 09:50am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #229

    I did have a look at the blog post related to the Skeptical Science articles - basically, I think the guy was using the same arguments as you. I also agree that whoever responded did not do so comprehensively.

    However, given the complexity of the science, it is simply impossible to give a comprehensive coverage of all the science in every article. Otherwise articles would become unfathomable for most readers. The point is that all the objections raised in the blog are comprehensively dealt with elsewhere on the site. I think you will also find that OPatrick has dealt with the claim that warming has stopped over the past decade - it hasn't!

    Paul

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  • 239. At 10:01am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #230

    The concern I have is that you are making claims that you know most ordinary bloggers will not have sufficient expertise to dispute! I do not claim to be an expert on GCM's or chaos theory, but I do know that the scientists don't share your views.

    What is conspicuously absent from your claims is any literature to back them up. It is also strange, is it not, that contrarians have not been able to put together such arguments in the form of peer reviewed papers if the problems are as obvious as you claim. So until such time as you are able to publish a paper in one of the leading journals your arguments lack real credibility.

    Just one or two more thoughts regarding models:

    The scientists do openly acknowledge the uncertainties - in particular the ones relating to regional and local effects on climate and effects of clouds. However, climate sensitivity estimates based on past events (eg recent volcanic eruptions) do obviously include feedbacks - both known AND unknown. Also, you may be aware that a recent paper appears to confirm that any feedback from clouds is fairly small and likely to be positive rather than negative.

    Paul

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  • 240. At 10:21am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #231

    I'm not going to go back into lots of detail, but I'll refer you to the Mann et al paper linked to here:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Was-there-a-Medieval-Warm-Period.html

    The point is that whilst many regions did apparently reach temperatures at least comparable to the 1961-1990 reference mean, there were some regions that were apparently still cooler. So it was a regional phenomenon.

    I don't think anyone doubts that most parts of the planet were warmer than during the Maunder Minimum, as pretty well all proxies show some sort of "bump" relative to the LIA (and confirmed in the oxygen istope studies - which don't show regional variations), but the available data does not support the claim that the MWP was either global or as warm as today.

    Also, given that everything is based on proxies (which all scientists admit are not entirely reliable estimates of temperature), there will always be considerable uncertainty....... and the science of AGW does not rely on the proxy data anyway. So this only really matters to those who are determined to discredit Michael Mann and his original paper!

    Paul

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  • 241. At 10:39am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #232

    The point I'm making is that the complete email from Jones is as follows:

    "Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4?
    Keith will do likewise. He's not in at the moment - minor family crisis.
    Can you also email Gene and get him to do the same? I don't have his new email address. We will be getting Caspar to do likewise. I see that CA claim they discovered the 1945 problem in the Nature paper!!"

    It is the final sentence which I'm drawing your attention to. Unless it is totally dissociated from the rest of the email, it suggests that the request to delete emails was related to this rather than any request from David Holland. I'm also not sure why Jones would be warning people at other institutions to delete emails in response to a FOI request to CRU.

    Also, it might seem pernickety but......... the above email does NOT prove that Jones deleted his emails after David Holland's FOI request - after all, there's nothing to say that he hadn't done so some days (or even weeks/months) previously.

    So on closer inspection I'm not at all convinced by your argument, Simon.

    Paul

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  • 242. At 10:43am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H

    Correction to my previous post - of course Keith Briffa IS at CRU and I can't comment on whether he still had all of his old emails at that time (he may not have done)!

    Paul

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  • 243. At 10:54am on 10 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #90 - Paul Briscoe wrote:
    "I've taken another look at the Climatedata4you site and in fact they perform the same analysis themselves:"
    I have now been able to access the climate4you website and look at the analysis of global temperatures there. While there is some comparison of HadCRUT3 linear trends over various periods, from 5 to 100 years, there appears to be no evaluation of how those trends have changed over time, similar to that which I have done.
    I had presumed that due to the long term rise in temperature, the linear trends would have also shown a consistent rise, particularly the longer term ones, e.g. over 50 years. However, I was personally surprised to see that the trends have fluctuated considerably over time and in particular, the 50 year linear trend appears to display a cyclical pattern which fits very closely to that of a sine wave, which reached a peak of about 1c per century around 1950-51, fell back to about 0c by 1980-81 and rose again to the current rate of about 1.4c. If that pattern is repeated, the 50 year linear trend is approaching a peak and we can expect the 50 year trend to fall to under 0.5c by 2040. Of course, the underlying temperature figures which produce this pattern in the 50 year linear trend, also affect trends over other periods, which is why I said that I expected the 10 year trend to -2c by 2013.
    One graph on the Climate5you web site which I find interesting, is the one which compares the observed decadal surface temperature change between 20N and 20S, with that expected from the models, and which includes the following comment:
    "Thus, these radiosonde and surface meteorological data from the Equatorial region do not at the moment display the signature of enhanced greenhouse warming. With the observed warming rate of about 0.1260oC/decade at the surface, a warming rate of at least 0.3oC/decade would have been expected at the 200 and 300 hPa levels to comply with the CO2 hypothesis."
    Does this not, at the very least, suggest a problem with the models on which the dire predictions of temperature rise are based?

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  • 244. At 10:56am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    RobWansbeck @ #234

    I believe I've addressed the first point in my response to blunderbunny.

    Regarding your claims of a comment by Gavin Schmidt, please can you point me to it so that I can check on its context (which is often important). The only place I can find it in a Google search is over at Climateaudit....... which may well be where you found it. Personally, I would like to check the original.

    Paul

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  • 245. At 11:02am on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV @ #243

    I have to go out, so I'll look at this in more detail later.

    First off, I'm glad you've now got into Climate4you.

    Now regarding your last point, I seem to remember that there was some type of problem with the radiosonde data which required a correction. I'm not saying that's definitely the answer here, but I don't have time to look at it until later in the day.

    Paul

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  • 246. At 11:19am on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    "The point is that whilst many regions did apparently reach temperatures at least comparable to the 1961-1990 reference mean, there were some regions that were apparently still cooler. So it was a regional phenomenon. "

    It was in both Hemispheres and I've kindly provided you with evidence that it was ;-)

    For you to be able to claim that it wasn't global, you'll need to provide evidence that much more of the globe, did not experience any anomalous warmth and as the skepticalscience site is so complete, you shouldn't really have any problem doing that....

    I await said papers with baited breath.... remember both hemisphere’s and you’ll need at least 10 of them, before we can start even having a conversation about it ;-)

    Then we had:

    “I don't think anyone doubts that most parts of the planet were warmer than during the Maunder Minimum, as pretty well all proxies show some sort of "bump" relative to the LIA (and confirmed in the oxygen isotope studies - which don't show regional variations), but the available data does not support the claim that the MWP was either global or as warm as today."

    As far as I know, all of the oxygen isotope studies show both a MWP and a LIA - I’d be very interested if you could point me in the direction of one that doesn’t. Plus, again - Exactly how do you define Global?

    And:

    “So this only really matters to those who are determined to discredit Michael Mann and his original paper!”

    As to whether a MWP is important or not, well that’s a different question, but, it really isn’t possible to try to maintain the illusion that it wasn’t global.

    I’d simply ask you the reverse question. If it’s really not that important if there was one, then why do the team expend so much effort on trying to disprove its existence as a global event? Plus, if they are wrong about that... What else might they be “inadvertently” wrong about?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 247. At 11:32am on 10 Jan 2011, Hudsonfan wrote:

    Just to bring the debate back to more pressing matters.The BBC reported that during the coldest weather we've had for years the much vaunted wind turbines did not work, funnily enough because there was not enough wind. This is a power generating source that apparently we will rely on for 20% of our future use. It is a really frightening thought and makes me believe more than ever that this madness about man made CO2s being the main driver of climate change must be stopped for the good of mankind. It is worth noting that it was the coal powered stations that manged to keep the heat and light on and at the same time saved the lives of 1000's of people in Britain.
    I can only compare with what is going on as the old saying that "the lunatics have taken over the asylum" I honestly believe this to be the case and if this madness continues then God help us all.

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  • 248. At 12:12pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick #236, let's interrogate the HadCRUT global adjusted series from 1998, which it is argued is the warmest year, until now.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1998/to:2011/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1998/to:2011/trend

    The meaningless trend is about 0.03 during the 14 years, or 0.021C/decade.

    And it is meaningless, because it's a short period of time and because it is an arbitrarily selected period of time. You can select other years to coax either a more or less steep trend, either up OR down, but the bottom line is that it is FAR from being "approximately 0.12C/decade". 0.12C/decade would represent 2x the rate of warming seen over the entire last century, and if you have any honour whatsoever you will not claim that - or you will STOP claiming that.

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  • 249. At 12:22pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul Briscoe, you write: "Yes, as has been acknowledged several times, CRU did break the law by simply ignoring the requests, but there were clear mitigating circumstances - the FOI requests were vexatious in nature. Perhaps this is why the authorities chose not to take action...... in effect they admonished CRU."

    Let's be clear, here, the Information Commission Officer (ICO), in his testimony to the Parliamentary Enquiry, stated that the FOI requests were NOT vexatious. The ICO also EXPLICITLY made clear that the reason no action was, or had been taken, was because the statutory limit of 6 months had passed. The ICO was also EXPLICIT in stating that "The prima facie evidence from the published emails indicate an attempt to defeat disclosure by deleting information. It is hard to imagine more cogent prima facie evidence."

    Paul, you either have a poor memory for events or you are deliberately misrepresenting the historical record. It seems pointless to ask which it is.

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  • 250. At 12:47pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "The concern I have is that you are making claims that you know most ordinary bloggers will not have sufficient expertise to dispute! I do not claim to be an expert on GCM's or chaos theory, but I do know that the scientists don't share your views."

    I'm not responsible for the lack of expertise in others to counter my points. The only way to redress this imbalance would be to not speak of the things I'm knowledgeable. I'm afraid that's just not an option. I will make an effort to cite sources when making assertions, if you will promise not to point to

    I read a helpful comment on climate modelling the other day, which I thought succinctly summarised the problem of overconfidence in climate models: "In theory, reality and theory are the same. In reality, they are different."

    Computer models are limited by our own limited understanding of mechanisms influencing the climate. Scientists DO accept that our understanding is limited - we cannot model the effect of cloud, whether their effect is positive or negative, and we do not understand and therefore cannot predictively model cloud formation or dissipation. I would argue that one of the developments within the climate science community in the last year is the general acceptance and acknowledgement of their historical overconfidence in, and overdependence on, climate models.

    I'm interested to read the paper you cite regarding albedo and clouds as a positive feedback. Please point me the way.

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  • 251. At 1:06pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "It is the final sentence which I'm drawing your attention to. Unless it is totally dissociated from the rest of the email, it suggests that the request to delete emails was related to this rather than any request from David Holland. I'm also not sure why Jones would be warning people at other institutions to delete emails in response to a FOI request to CRU."

    I've covered this fairly comprehensively at 213, 215 and 232.

    I'm beginning to realise that you don't understand the context of the emails at all. On the one hand it explains your reticence in acknowledging what is plain to see, but on the other hand your lack of knowledge of the situation is not my responsibility.

    But Paul, you've been extremely vocal on this matter, and have made some very strong assertions which are patently false. You cannot make these assertions out of ignorance, it's simply not acceptable to do that. Read the information, read the emails, understand the context and THEN make your assertions from a position of knowledge and understanding. Your stance on this, Paul, is wholly untenable.

    "Also, it might seem pernickety but......... the above email does NOT prove that Jones deleted his emails after David Holland's FOI request - after all, there's nothing to say that he hadn't done so some days (or even weeks/months) previously."

    Jones was not in fact part of the email chain that he was asking others to delete. The issue is not actually that Jones deleted emails, the issue is that he conspired to subvert FOIA law by scuppering FOI requests.

    Since it's become obvious that you don't understand the context of Jones' email, let me fill in a little of it for you. What Jones was seeking to conceal was a breach of the rules of IPCC expert reviewers and authors during the authoring of IPCC Assessment Report 4 (AR4). The reason for the breach was an effort to prevent evidence of statistical flaws in the infamous "Hockey Stick" graph and paper from being included in AR4.

    If you want to debate this further, by all means, but I'm not hand-holding you. There may be a test later.

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  • 252. At 1:07pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "Correction to my previous post - of course Keith Briffa IS at CRU and I can't comment on whether he still had all of his old emails at that time (he may not have done)!"

    Briffa, apparently, "took the emails home".

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  • 253. At 1:20pm on 10 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #247 - Hudsonfan wrote:
    "Just to bring the debate back to more pressing matters.The BBC reported that during the coldest weather we've had for years the much vaunted wind turbines did not work, funnily enough because there was not enough wind. This is a power generating source that apparently we will rely on for 20% of our future use."
    I wonder if the target of 20% takes into account the additional generation capacity which will be required if everyone converts to electrically powered cars?

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  • 254. At 1:41pm on 10 Jan 2011, OPatrick wrote:

    Simon H, you have linked to a graph showing linear trend from 1998, when the point at issue was Phil Jones' statement about the significance of warming in the years from 1995 to 2009. Yet you talk about my honour!

    You are, fortunately, an extraordinary person.

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  • 255. At 1:49pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, you write: "Simon H, you have linked to a graph showing linear trend from 1998, when the point at issue was Phil Jones' statement about the significance of warming in the years from 1995 to 2009. Yet you talk about my honour!"

    I gave a reason for selecting 1998, but you ignore it, and I have repeatedly made the point that selective and arbitrary selection of start and end dates means you can torture the data any which way you want. It would help if you read my entire comment instead of simply referring to the graph I linked. Seriously, are you at all reading this discussion in full or are you just blithely picking out bits to complain about, without any regard at all for context?

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  • 256. At 2:47pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, I've just digitised the output of woodfortrees.org's trend line from 1995 to 2009.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1995/to:2009/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1995/to:2009/trend

    Over the 14 years, I calculate a trend of 0.176 degrees. See the graph. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    0.176C/14 (1995-2009) equates to 0.125C/decade. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    0.125C/decade, extrapolated, is 1.25C/century. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    A trend of 1.2C/decade is what you CLAIMED was the trend during the period 1995-2009. Do you NOT dispute this figure? If so, why NOT?

    Seriously, I want to know.

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  • 257. At 2:56pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    I've just re-examined my digitised image from woodfortrees.org. I had assumed that 0.1C was 50 pixels wide. In fact it's 56 pixels. The trend line extends 88 pixels. Therefore:

    Over the 14 years, I calculate a trend of 0.157 degrees. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    0.157C/14 (1995-2009) equates to 0.112C/decade. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    0.112C/decade, extrapolated, is 1.12C/century. Do you dispute this figure? If so, why?

    A trend of 1.2C/decade is what you CLAIMED was the trend during the period 1995-2009. Do you NOT dispute this figure? If so, why NOT?

    I seriously still want to know.

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  • 258. At 3:09pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    OPatrick, I've re-read your post #221 and it appears I misread you. You did indeed indicate a 0.12C/decade trend. I apologise.

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  • 259. At 3:24pm on 10 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    201. At 6:44pm on 09 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:
    Sparklet @ #194
    In your previous post on this subject you were talking about a weather event at the end of December 2010. My points regarding that were entirely valid. I'm also not sure why you chose the term "quite a coincidence" when the satellite data has nothing to do with the surface stations that you were previously questioning.
    Now you are looking at the winter of 2009-2010, during which there were record low temperatures in Northern China and Korea for 2 days on the 1st and 2nd January. As far as I can see the graphics for December 2009 and January 2010 are not at odds with the reports of low temperatures in eastern Asia at that time, as the cold spell appears to have ended before mid January.

    Please let me know if there is something I'm missing here!
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Paul, The satellite data does not actually measure temperature but uses a proxy (microwave emissions) which presumably have been calibrated at some point with the gridded surface temperature data to get an agreement between the direct surface measurements and the satellite measurements.
    If this is not the case then I would welcome a link to an explanation of how this agreement between surface measurements and satellite measurements has been obtained.
    (I believe the O'Donnell paper on Steig's report of the Antarctic cited incorrect calibration of satellite data as one of the deficiencies).

    I cited the eastern half of China as opposed to the Western half as that is the area covered in the article linked (see maps). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winter_storms_of_2009%E2%80%932010_in_East_Asia
    To say there were record low temperatures for only 2 days is something of a misrepresentation
    Here is the reality -
    Heavy snowfall in eastern China
    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=42172
    "According to the Beijing Climate Center (BCC), parts of China was hit by two cold waves. The first cold wave occurred during the first week of January. On January 6th, temperatures in Beijing dropped to -16.7°C (1.9°F)—the lowest minimum temperature in the first ten days of January since 1971. The second cold wave occurred during January 17th-23rd, in which temperatures were reported to have dropped 10°C-25°C (18°F-45°F) over this seven-day period across parts of northern China."
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2010/1
    "The under construction project of Jiaozhou Bay cross-ocean bridfge is stuck by ice in Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province, Jan. 10, 2010. The worst sea ice of the last three decades freezes in Qingdao's coastal waters, according to the data released by the North China Sea Branch (NCSB) of the State Oceanic Administration on Friday. (Xinhua/Li Ziheng)"
    http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2010-01/11/content_12787170.htm
    "Jan. 26 (Bloomberg) -- The ice pack that had stranded ships and disrupted oil production in northern China continued to thaw in Bohai Sea as ports 150 miles south began to recover from the region’s worst freezing in 40 years."
    "China faced its coldest winter in at least 50 years as heavy snowfalls snarled overland transportation while fog and high winds shut seaports, including Qinhuangdao in Bohai Bay, from which the nation ships half of its seaborne coal. Temperatures in the north are forecast to rise today, the China Meteorological Administration said."
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aSd6p2omL_oI
    "An ice climbing lover climbs his way up on a frozen waterfall at the Mount Qilianshan scenic spot of Wulian County, east China's Shandong Province, Jan. 23, 2010. (Xinhua/Chen Weifeng)"
    http://english.sina.com/life/p/2010/0124/301463.html


    And in an article headed "Cold Winter in a Warming Earth" 8th feb 2010 the reporter assures us that "A bone-chilling winter throughout the Northern Hemisphere does not refute global warming"

    "The sudden drop in temperature came as a surprise to people in north China as meteorologists had predicted in December 2009 that the region would see a warmer-than-average winter."

    However a scientist confirms that an unusual warming pattern has made this El Niño more like La Niña, which usually means a cold winter in China and heavy rainfall and snowfall in northern parts.

    And the effects -
    "In northwest China, blizzards killed at least 20 people in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region as of January 27 after freezing temperatures and record snowfalls battered northern parts of the region. Military helicopters were mobilized to transport people trapped by the snow that measured up to two meters thick in some areas."

    "many parts of north China have also been struggling through snowstorm after snowstorm during the coldest winter in decades"

    "The temperature in Fuyun County, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, drops to a rare low of minus 45 degrees Celsius on January 20"
    "In east China, the Bohai Sea, a semi-enclosed inland sea the size of South Carolina, experienced its worst freeze in four decades. About half of the waters were covered by ice as of January 23. Ice floes stranded ships, disrupted oil production and caused economic losses to marine farms where frozen surfaces blocked oxygen to fish."

    However -
    "Chen Xianyao, a research fellow with the State Oceanic Administration, is about to launch his study on the links between climate and ocean change. He told Guangming Daily that he disagrees with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change hypothesis that global warming is due mainly to human activities. He believes that global temperature vibrates in a cycle of 65 to 70 years and peaked over the past decade. "I know I am the minority with this view," said Chen.

    "But the Chinese Government is determined to protect the voices of non-mainstream scholars like Chen”
    http://bbs.chinadaily.com.cn/viewthread.php?gid=2&tid=672959

    I'm sorry but I simply cannot accept that the orange glow we see over the eastern half of China and Bohai Bay is representative of the reality that was experienced by the people living there.

    2010 Jan Anomaly on the report
    http://www.remss.com/msu/msu_data_monthly.html

    And it will be very interesting to see the anomaly chart for the Okhotsk Sea when Jan 2011 becomes available as it appears that the icebreaker sent to rescue the trapped ships has itself become stuck!
    http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/01/10/39158854.html

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  • 260. At 3:55pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #246

    Just very briefly, as I'm supposed to be in the middle of something else......

    Did you actually look at the Mann et al paper in detail? It actually uses a different approach to most previous studies.

    Neither I nor the scientists are trying to suggest that warming was restricted to just one hemisphere - I'm not sure where you got that idea, as I never actually said it and neither did the paper. In fact, the paper is looking at regional variations.

    The point is that there were sizeable geographic regions (most notably eastern Europe and West Asia) which were not warm. Compare Figure 1 from the Skeptical Science article with Figure 3 which is the modern day equivalent. Then you might understand a little better what I'm saying. Figure 3 shows that modern warming is almost universal, whereas this was definitely not the case for the MWP (Figure 1).

    "As far as I know, all of the oxygen isotope studies show both a MWP and a LIA - I’d be very interested if you could point me in the direction of one that doesn’t. Plus, again - Exactly how do you define Global?"

    I can't help thinking that you are just trying to score points here! On reflection, I think you may be making a reference to your South African paper, which actually relates to 2 specific locations - one in South Africa and the other in Madagascar. The paper just confirms the findings of Mann et al - that some parts of the World were warmer than average at some points between around 900 and 1300 AD. This warmth was not uniform and was very variable. As with the findings of your other articles/papers, it doesn't in any way undermine the fact that other parts of the World were cooler.

    "If it’s really not that important if there was one, then why do the team expend so much effort on trying to disprove its existence as a global event?"

    More specifically, some (not mentioning any names!) have always claimed that Mann was simply trying to "hide" the MWP. In this latest work I think he proves that they, like you, have missed the point!

    Paul

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  • 261. At 4:17pm on 10 Jan 2011, RobWansbeck wrote:

    #244, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    “ ….. Regarding your claims of a comment by Gavin Schmidt, please can you point me to it so that I can check on its context (which is often important). ….. “

    Examples here #414:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/comment-page-9/#comment-182703

    and here #529:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/comment-page-11/#comment-183210

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  • 262. At 4:24pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #249

    "Let's be clear, here, the Information Commission Officer (ICO), in his testimony to the Parliamentary Enquiry, stated that the FOI requests were NOT vexatious."

    You are not the first person to claim this, but I've looked through the document several times and cannot see where it actually says this. Perhaps it is my deteriorating eyesight but I genuinely cannot see such a statement!

    "The ICO also EXPLICITLY made clear that the reason no action was, or had been taken, was because the statutory limit of 6 months had passed. The ICO was also EXPLICIT in stating that "The prima facie evidence from the published emails indicate an attempt to defeat disclosure by deleting information. It is hard to imagine more cogent prima facie evidence.""

    I don't think this is the whole story. As far as I can see, there were 2 parts to the ICO evidence:

    The first came from a former Deputy Mr Thomas, who laid out the criteria under which a FOI request could be turned down. I can see no statement from him which expresses an opinion as to whether CRU met these requirements or not....... maybe I'm looking in the wrong place, so please correct me if I'm wrong.

    The second relates to a Mr Smith, who did apparently state that there was prima facie evidence that UEA had broken the law. However, UEA correctly pointed out that prima facie evidence is not in itself proof of an offence - it would have required a proper investigation of the details pertaining to each request to draw such a conclusion. No such investigation was ever carried out. The review team concluded:

    "There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000. It would, however, be premature, without a thorough investigation affording each party the opportunity to make representations, to conclude that UEA was in breach of the Act."

    I think it's important to make this point, because if the ICO had investigated they might well have found that CRU were justified in refusing some or all of the requests.

    Paul

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  • 263. At 4:36pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #250

    I'm not suggesting that you don't have the right to express your views. However, you are not simply saying that you don't agree with the approach being used by scientists. To me, it appears that you are saying the scientific community has got it wrong....... to the point of rubbishing them. In this you have an awful lot in common with the Climateaudit site. Perhaps this is where you get it from.

    What I'm saying is that you need something more than the courage of your own conviction to make such a claim - you need to produce a properly reasoned argument in the form of a peer reviewed paper.

    You asked about the new paper regarding cloud feedbacks. It is described here:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/12/feedback-on-cloud-feedback/

    Paul

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  • 264. At 4:46pm on 10 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    253. At 1:20pm on 10 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:
    #247 - Hudsonfan wrote:
    "Just to bring the debate back to more pressing matters.The BBC reported that during the coldest weather we've had for years the much vaunted wind turbines did not work, funnily enough because there was not enough wind. This is a power generating source that apparently we will rely on for 20% of our future use.
    I wonder if the target of 20% takes into account the additional generation capacity which will be required if everyone converts to electrically powered cars?

    ..............

    Hmmmm, think yourselves lucky - in Scotland the target is 80% by 2020, yes that figure is 80% (50% pledged at Copenhagen and moved up to 80% in Sep 2010) after saying "Climate change is one of the most serious threats we face. Urgent action is needed to cut emissions which cause climate change."!!).

    So the First Minister is pushing hard for wind turbines littering the beautiful Scottish countryside and coastline.

    And this is the same guy who was 'very sad' when Stewart Stevenson the Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Climate CHange resigned (due to the transport shambles experienced in December in the heavy snowfall)
    and said
    "At the end of the day, you know, no man can tether time nor tide, and certainly you can’t control the elements. I am very sad that a decent man, a competent minister has been forced to resignation because of the extremities of the climate"
    (Stewart Stevenson is not the only one who should resign!!)
    http://omniclimate.wordpress.com/2010/12/13/climate-change-minister-resigns-because-of-the-extremities-of-the-climate/

    And I wonder how long it would take the battery to run down and the heating to fail stuck in an electric car in these conditions!!!
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/topics/weather/8187980/Fresh-snow-brings-Scotland-to-a-halt.html

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  • 265. At 5:57pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

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

  • 266. At 6:05pm on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe #260

    Well that is excellent news!

    So, using that logic..... And given that the planet currently has the occaisional cold variation, especially in Antartica and in Northern Europe for the last month or so, we can say that any warming that we are experiencing is actually not Global in Nature, it's merely local phenomena and we can therefore safely ignore it ;-)

    Everyone will be pleased!

    A particularly lonesome and perhaps very dry or otherwise incapacited tree, shows no evidence of warming - so it can't be a global phenomena?

    Seriously, mate, do you even bother to think about what you're typing?

    So, I'll ask again what constitutes the difference between global/regional events as far as you and the team are concerned? What level of granularity/coverage would be required?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 267. At 6:17pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul Briscoe, I posted a response providing you with links to the parliament.uk oral evidence given by Mr Thomas, formerly of the ICO, because you said that you couldn't find that evidence. I also included a link to the email where Jones states that, rather than submit to FOI, he will delete data.

    Unfortunately, the BBC moderators have seen fit to remove my entire comment, including the evidence you requested.

    The evidence does exist and it is entered into the record at the UK government's website. You will have to find it yourself, I'm afraid.

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  • 268. At 6:26pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "I'm not suggesting that you don't have the right to express your views. However, you are not simply saying that you don't agree with the approach being used by scientists. To me, it appears that you are saying the scientific community has got it wrong....... to the point of rubbishing them. In this you have an awful lot in common with the Climateaudit site. Perhaps this is where you get it from."

    I think I see the problem here. You are under the impression that the whole scientific community uses the product of computer models as empirical evidence, and regards computer modelling as the equivalent of observational data collection. This is not correct. In fact, it is far from the truth.

    The treatment of computer models as empirical evidence is limited to a very few, small areas of scientific research. Primary among them is climatology. The stance that I take is, I would suggest, the dominant stance in scientific discovery. The treatment of model data as real data is a postnormal concept, incompatible with scientific method.

    "What I'm saying is that you need something more than the courage of your own conviction to make such a claim - you need to produce a properly reasoned argument in the form of a peer reviewed paper."

    I suggest you explore Judith Curry's blog category regarding climate modelling. You will find a plethora of opinion there, some in agreement with me and some in disagreement. I think it's worth spending an hour or two on this particular subject: http://judithcurry.com/category/climate-models/

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  • 269. At 6:29pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #251

    Sorry! Had to go out again.

    I'm perfectly happy to admit that I haven't looked in detail into all of the allegations made by Climateaudit with regard to the emails, mainly because I was happy to let the review teams do their job. In this sense, as a regular visitor over there, you are obviously one up on me.

    I also confess that this email was the only one which troubled me. It is clear that the ICO felt that Jones was indeed responding to the Holland request....... but are we absolutely certain that's the case?

    Is it not possible that Jones was asking colleagues to delete emails relating to the IPCC before Climateaudit asked for them? Just a question!

    Also, I note that several individuals claim that no emails were ever deleted as a consequence of this...... and they obviously always remained on the back up server!!!

    Paul

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  • 270. At 6:42pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "It is clear that the ICO felt that Jones was indeed responding to the Holland request....... but are we absolutely certain that's the case?"

    I don't see how it could be more clear, Paul. On 27th, David Holland requests all emails regarding AR4. On 29th, two days later, Phil Jones instructs CRU scientist Briffa and his correspondents (Wahl, Ammann & Mann) to delete all emails regarding AR4.

    You ask: "Is it not possible that Jones was asking colleagues to delete emails relating to the IPCC before Climateaudit asked for them? Just a question!"

    The question is still whether Jones' request to delete emails was made before or after the CRU was asked for the emails. The answer is that Jones asked for emails to be deleted after receiving an FOI request for them.

    ClimateAudit, here, is a red herring (logical fallacy). It does not negate the above question or influence the above answer.

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  • 271. At 6:45pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "Also, I note that several individuals claim that no emails were ever deleted as a consequence of this...... and they obviously always remained on the back up server!!!"

    I do know that the emails and attachments have not yet been released in accordance with Holland's FOI request. But hey, it's not even been outstanding 3 years yet! As far as I know, the backup server is still in the hands of Norfolk Constabulary.

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  • 272. At 6:57pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #266

    You appear to be confusing proxy data, which is responsive to longer term trends (ie climate), with actual instrumental temperature data. Proxies reflect average temperature, NOT short term (eg month long) fluctuations (ie weather).

    Did you actually go back to the Skeptical Science article and compare the 2 figures I directed you to?

    I'm also not sure where you get the idea that the data all comes from tree rings. If you check the original paper, you will see that this is far from the case:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2527990/

    Please check the graphic explaining the various proxies used for different parts of the World.

    Now please stop patronising me and actually look objectively at what the literature says.

    Paul

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  • 273. At 7:29pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #264

    To be honest, I'm really not sure what point you're making here.

    You started off by apparently criticising the large gaps between ground-based stations and then appeared to suggest that satellite data somehow confirmed your suspicions. I just don't see the connection so I'm at a loss to know how to discuss it further.

    For your information, the satellite data is not calibrated against the surface station data. The basic methodology is described here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satellite_temperature_measurements

    Paul

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  • 274. At 7:31pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #267

    I am quite busy with other things at present and don't have time to go chasing the information. However, I'm prepared to take your word for it - it would appear that some of the information is not in the main report.

    Paul

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  • 275. At 7:49pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #268

    "I think I see the problem here. You are under the impression that the whole scientific community uses the product of computer models as empirical evidence, and regards computer modelling as the equivalent of observational data collection. This is not correct. In fact, it is far from the truth."

    I don't think even AGW scientists see models as providing "empirical evidence" and I certainly don't. Models are an inevitable consequence of the need to predict the effects of AGW.

    Here's another article from Skeptical Science. It is fairly simplistic, but I would draw your attention to the comments in blog post #5 from a spacecraft thermal engineer:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Confidence-in-climate-forecasts.html

    I am well aware that models have their limitations in situations where not every variable is known, but I feel that you are overplaying the uncertainties.

    Paul

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  • 276. At 7:51pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #270

    The main question is surely whether the emails were in fact deleted. As I said above, they clearly remained on the back-up server!

    Paul

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  • 277. At 7:58pm on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    "You appear to be confusing proxy data, which is responsive to longer term trends (ie climate), with actual instrumental temperature data. Proxies reflect average temperature, NOT short term (eg month long) fluctuations (ie weather)."

    By Jove, I think he's got it......

    So, all of the proxy temps are essentially long term averages - Good we're making some progress, normally in climate studies that would actually make them better than thermometers, wouldn't it?

    Then we have the links that I posted for you previously:

    You'll need to search for some of them because of the rules about links to pdf files(please note the geographic spreads - The Americas both North and South, South East Asia, Southern Africa, China and I did have one for New Zealand):

    The Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period in the Sargasso Sea

    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/274/5292/1503

    New Temperature Reconstruction from Indo-Pacific Warm Pool

    http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=39136&tid=282&cid=59106&ct=162

    The Little Ice Age and Medieval Warming in South Africa

    http://home.arcor.de/gheiss/Personal/Abstracts/SAJS2000_Abstr.html

    Then we have Canada

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/metadata/noaa-lake-6195.html

    Plus you can also search for "Summer temperatures in the Canadian Rockies during the last millennium: a revised record"

    South America

    Search for "A quantitative high-resolution summer temperature reconstruction based on sedimentary pigments from Laguna Aculeo, central Chile, back to AD 850"

    China

    "Alkenone-based reconstruction of late-Holocene surface temperature and salinity changes in Lake Qinghai, China"

    and

    "Climate variability in central China over the last 1270 years revealed
    by high-resolution stalagmite records"

    and finally the ever popular Greenland

    http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/82002932/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0

    I did have a link for a similar paper about New Zealand, but there seems to be something wrong with the Nature server at the moment, so I’ve omitted it for the minute.

    Precisely, how much of the globe needs to be sampled to make this global?

    You'll note I've not even mentioned Mann's own data/evidence of the MWP, the oxygen isotope studies or, indeed, all of the anecdotal evidence from Northern Europe.....

    So, I say again, how is that not a global phenomena?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 278. At 8:12pm on 10 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    "I don't think even AGW scientists see models as providing "empirical evidence" and I certainly don't. Models are an inevitable consequence of the need to predict the effects of AGW."

    Actually, Paul, I think you should read up a little. They certainly, use them to derive signal to noise ratio's for one..... Plus, most of your sides evidence regarding climate sensitivity and the apparent hefty positive feedbacks for CO2 are model based..... So, it's good to know that you don't regard them as empirical evidence...... as without them you've not really got much of a case of anything and you've definitely got no (C)AGW at all ;-)

    Maybe there's a bit of a sceptic in there trying to get out?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby


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  • 279. At 8:34pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, I think blunderbunny actually has summarised the actual situation pretty well. He is entirely correct that estimates of high climate sensitivity are sourced from models rather than empirical evidence. His point is entirely in accordance with a point that I made, way back at #146:

    "The strongest cases made for high sensitivity to [anthropogenic CO2] are derived from GCMs. Their model runs are mediocre explorations of hypotheses, not observational experiments. They do not produce empirical data. This is postnormal science, not scientific method, and it is not dependable."

    Also, Paul, you write: "The main question is surely whether the emails were in fact deleted. As I said above, they clearly remained on the back-up server!"

    As I said at #251: "Jones was not in fact part of the email chain that he was asking others to delete. The issue is not actually that Jones deleted emails, the issue is that he conspired to subvert FOIA law by scuppering FOI requests."

    That Jones might have failed in his mission to erase all record of emails subject to FOI is not what I would call vindication, Paul. Neither would I call it lawful - conspiracy to commit this crime is in fact a crime. Neither would I call it honourable, and neither would I call it the act of a trustworthy recipient of public funds.

    Would you, Paul?

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  • 280. At 8:49pm on 10 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "Here's another article from Skeptical Science. It is fairly simplistic, but I would draw your attention to the comments in blog post #5 from a spacecraft thermal engineer"

    I don't find his argument, that climate modelling is "trivial, to the point of boring", to be rational or at all connected to reality. I doubt that Julia Slingo of the Met Office, who is asking for tens of millions of pounds towards a new and faster supercomputer to perform climate forecast modelling, would appreciate or agree with his claim either.

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  • 281. At 11:08pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #277

    I cannot decide whether you are being deliberately obtuse ot whether you really haven't grasped what I have been saying.

    "Precisely, how much of the globe needs to be sampled to make this global?"

    Far more than you have provided data for thus far!

    As you will be aware, I have already checked the papers and articles you linked to on the other thread. I wish I could be just as sure that you have read the articles and papers I have linked to.

    Anyway, until such time as I can be sure that you have, I'm not going to spend any more time on this than absolutely necessary.

    There is one thing which all of your proxy studies have in common - they all look at specific regions. As far as I can see they are not at odds with the findings of Mann et al - indeed it is quite possible (although I'm not going to spend hours checking!) that at least some of the same data is used in the Mann paper.

    More significantly, as far as I can tell, you have not provided any proxy data which contradicts the findings of Mann et al regarding regions which he found to be cooler. Unless you do you cannot realistically say that the Mann et al findings are wrong.

    Paul

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  • 282. At 11:16pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #278

    I think we can both agree on most of this post. We do need to be clear that signal to noise and climate sensitivity are not part of what I would consider "empirical evidence".

    The difference between us is that you appear to believe that calculating climate sensitivity using models renders them unreliable. The scientific community disagrees with you.

    Paul

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  • 283. At 11:42pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #279 & #280

    I never did question the fact that GCM's are normally used to calculate climate sensitivity (although it is also possible to calculate it from basic physics theory as Callander did it).

    What I don't accept is that your assertion that GCM's are unreliable in this regard outweighs the opposite view amongst scientists who work in the field.

    We'll just have to agree to disagree on this.

    Regarding Jones, I am not saying that his suggestion that others should delete emails was ethical, although I do wonder whether it was strictly against the law given that the emails are indeed still in existence.

    However, in common with most scientists, I do have some sympathy for Jones et al - it is this human element that your approach fails to recognise, but given your sympathies, I suppose this is hardly surprising.

    You talk of the scientists being dishonourable and untrustworthy, yet you appear blind to all of the unprofessional behaviour by those at Climateaudit - the insinuations of malfeasance and baseless personal attacks over many years and the incitement to mass FOI requests. It is the atmosphere of distrust that this engendered which ultimately led the scientists to behave as they did. To my mind the Climateaudit team, with their links to a known advocacy group, have at least as many questions to answer....... I wonder what a detailed examination of their emails would reveal?

    So please spare me the moral lecture, Simon!

    Paul

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  • 284. At 02:08am on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "I never did question the fact that GCM's are normally used to calculate climate sensitivity (although it is also possible to calculate it from basic physics theory as Callander did it)."

    I'm not sure where "normally" has come from. It is not actually possible to definitively calculate climate sensitivity. Estimates range from negligible to 5 or 6 degrees. The higher estimates are from GCMs. These higher estimates, from GCMs, do not match observations.

    You write: "What I don't accept is that your assertion that GCM's are unreliable in this regard outweighs the opposite view amongst scientists who work in the field."

    Climate scientists are not computer computer programmers. Computer programmers are.

    You write: "Regarding Jones, I am not saying that his suggestion that others should delete emails was ethical, although I do wonder whether it was strictly against the law given that the emails are indeed still in existence."

    Since you know that conspiring to delete emails subject to FOI is a prosecutable offence, I'm afraid that the only explanation I can come up with for your inability to grasp events as they occurred and equate those with their legal implications is sheer bloody-mindedness and wide-eyed denial.

    You write: "However, in common with most scientists, I do have some sympathy for Jones et al - it is this human element that your approach fails to recognise, but given your sympathies, I suppose this is hardly surprising."

    Circumstantial argumentum ad hominen - guilt by association - and argumentum ad misericordiam - appeal to pity. You just can't construct an argument without exploiting logical fallacies, can you Paul?

    I don't have much sympathy for Jones. His unreasonable and at times gleeful obfuscation is what has caused the situation in which he finds himself. If Jones had acted with integrity, and if Jones had acted in the way that scientists are expected to behave, and if Jones had not himself been an active participant in schoolyard insult and abuse early on, when McIntyre and others first asked (and they asked politely) for the data and code required to replicate Jones work - in accordance with age-old practices of scientific method - then none of this would have happened. The poor practices of some climate scientists would have been exposed long ago, before Climategate instead of at Climategate, but that is supposed to be how science works.

    The abuser is Jones. He has abused his position, he has abused those who legitimately challenged his science, and he has abused the scientific method. For this, I have very little sympathy.

    You write: "You talk of the scientists being dishonourable and untrustworthy, yet you appear blind to all of the unprofessional behaviour by those at Climateaudit - the insinuations of malfeasance and baseless personal attacks over many years and the incitement to mass FOI requests. It is the atmosphere of distrust that this engendered which ultimately led the scientists to behave as they did. To my mind the Climateaudit team, with their links to a known advocacy group, have at least as many questions to answer....... I wonder what a detailed examination of their emails would reveal?"

    Substantiate or retract, Paul. Point me to a single example where Steve McIntyre, the blog author at ClimateAudit (or "Fraudit", as Jones describes him), has ever accused Jones, Mann or any other climate scientist of fraud, of malfeasance, of misconduct. Or anything like it. ONE example, Paul. That's all I ask.

    I think you've heard bad things about Steve McIntyre at ClimateAudit, and I think you've heard wrong. You make accusations that I don't think you could substantiate in a month of Sundays. Substantiate or retract.

    Nullius in verba, Paul. Take nobody's word for it.

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  • 285. At 10:30am on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #284

    Let's be clear - your post above is merely your "gloss" on something which is very complex.

    With regard to climate sensitivity, yes, these days scientists do tend to (although not exclusively) use GCM's to estimate climate sensitivity. Please note that I use the word "estimate" deliberately because the scientists openly acknowledge that there is no absolute value. They fully appreciate, for example, that the relationship between CO2 concentration and its radiative forcing is logarithmic rather than linear whilst their models assume a linear relationship between 2 points in time. They also acknowledge that they don't have absolute values for all of the forcings and feedbacks (and yes, there may be some that remain unknown). Yet, if you produce a model based on existing data (which IS absolute) from a previous period, you don't NEED to know all of the individual forcings and feedbacks in order to estimate climate sensitivity.

    The error limits around the current IPCC estimate of climate sensitivty (3 Celsius for a doubling of CO2) are wide in recognition of the uncertainties, but the more work that has been done, the more confident scientists have become that the actual value is likely to be around 3.

    You say:

    "Climate scientists are not computer computer programmers. Computer programmers are."

    True, but computer programmers are not climate scientists either! Computer programmers do not necessarily understand the complex interactions of the different variables, or even the subtle nuances..... this is why I utterly reject your claims to know better than the scientists whether their use of GCM's is appropriate. Do you REALLY think that Gavin Schmidt, for example, does not understand computer programming when has to constantly change subtle nuances to test different things?...... but he certainly knows a lot more about climate science than you do!

    In fact, the same criticism applies to the Climateaudit team. They have arrogantly presumed that their apparently superior understanding of statistics makes them better qualified than the scientists to judge how to analyse data - there is an awful lot more to it than that. Sure, in one or two instances they have picked out obvious flaws, but after the early work on the hockey stick, M&M's subsequent criticisms of the proxy reconstructions have NOT been upheld by the wider scientific community. Indeed, some of their papers (eg McKitrick & Neirenburg) have been refused for mainstream journals specifically because they haven't properly grasped the science.

    Now let's turn to the emails. One point which I picked up on whilst trawling through the emails again last night was that the scientists deeply resented David Holland's request that they should hand him their private emails. Frankly, I don't blame them! After all, if CRU had been part of a commercial operation rather than a public institution, there would have been no requirement to release the emails. Also, those attacking the scientists were under no obligation to disclose theirs.

    Jones pointed out to colleagues that the FOI laws had never been framed with this in mind - Holland was in effect exploiting a loophole in the law to make what any fair-minded person would consider an unreasonable infrigement of privacy. Clearly, UEA had spoken to the ICO about this and believed that they had found a way around it. I guess we will never know exactly what that was, but everything which happened subsequently has to be considered in this light.

    So maybe Jones and UEA were acting on the advice of the ICO. Could this be why the authorities chose not to act against them for breaking the letter of the law........ or was it just, as I pointed out above, that the authorities knew the game the denial movement was playing?

    Either way, the various reviews effectively admonished CRU on FOI and dismissed the other allegations. You can complain about it all you like, Simon, but your grumbling rings very hollow in the light of the circumstances....... and you are clearly very biased!

    So once again, I ask you to spare me the lecture on morality. Those you support have every bit as much to be ashamed of as Jones - the only difference is that they can continue to make their baseless allegations without having to worry about being able to back them up with evidence. They can also leave those baseless allegations up on their blogs for ever to poison the debate still further..... and they can do all this without ever having to worry about their emails being demanded, sifted through and then presented out of context to the whole World.

    Believe me Simon, I did give the Climateaudit team a chance - and in fact it was on your advice that I went to look. However, I have seen more than enough unsubstantiated claims (eg the claim of peer-review corruption with Steig et al to name but one) and insinuations to make a valued decision. After all, if they had been genuine in their desire to "improve" the science, they would have gone through normal scientific channels (as the Muir Russell enquiry said they should) and they would have objectively audited papers from both sides of the argument. They would also have given up on their vendetta against Michael Mann before now!

    Then, of course, there is this:

    http://deepclimate.org/2010/03/10/mcclimategate-continues-yet-another-false-accusation-from-mcintyre-and-mckitrick/

    So I won't be retracting Simon. It is the Climateaudit team who should be retracting fasle accusations.

    Paul

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  • 286. At 12:01pm on 11 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    You just keep misrepresenting things:

    "So maybe Jones and UEA were acting on the advice of the ICO. Could this be why the authorities chose not to act against them for breaking the letter of the law........ or was it just, as I pointed out above, that the authorities knew the game the denial movement was playing?"

    The ONLY Reason there was not a prosecution of the CRU and it's employees was because of the 6 Month Time Limit. So, will you STOP trying to state otherwise.

    Can't even bring myself to type "Regards" to you,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 287. At 12:07pm on 11 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul Briscoe

    "and you are clearly very biased!"

    Plus, pot, kettle, black.

    Seriously mate, your certainty seems extreme, in an already acknowledged sea of uncertainty, you seem unable to admit that either you or your favourite internet site could ever be wrong, even in the the face of .... to steal some words from the committee..... "prima facie evidence"

    One of the Lobby

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  • 288. At 1:27pm on 11 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    In an attempt to illustrate what I was talking about in my previous posts, I attach the actual figures for the 50 year linear trend in monthly HadCRUT3, since 1899. Rather than post the figures for each month, I am posting only the figures for December of each year, which still shows the cyclical pattern. The first number corresponds to the 50 years ending December 1899 and the last to the 50 years ending December 2009. I think it should be possible for anyone to cut and paste these figures into Excel, in order to view them in the form of a graph.
    When this is done, it will be seen that far from showing a steady increase over time, the 50 year linear trend appears to fit into a regular cyclical pattern, which approximates very closely to a sine wave form, with a period of about 60 years and which is increasing by slightly under 0.5c per cycle. This has resulted in a rise in the linear trend to about 1c in 1953 and a subsequent fall to almost zero by 1979, followed by the most recent rise to the present figure of about 1.36c by December 2009.
    It is possible to calculate the annual anomaly figures which would result in this pattern continuing into the future and when that is done, it points to the 10 year mean anomaly remaining below 0.4c until approximately 2034, and a 50 year linear trend of under 0.5c per century by about 2042, followed by another period in which the trend will rise to about 1.8c per century by 2075.
    Consequently, the latest increase in the trend should be seen as being part of this repeating pattern rather than as the normal long term increase in the trend. I believe that this is only one example of where proponents of AGW have jumped to the conclusion that climate patterns over the last 30 years are indicative of a long term permanent change in the Earth's climate.

    0.060
    0.061
    0.079
    0.066
    0.026
    -0.016
    -0.024
    -0.035
    -0.111
    -0.201
    -0.251
    -0.300
    -0.368
    -0.443
    -0.463
    -0.485
    -0.435
    -0.436
    -0.459
    -0.440
    -0.414
    -0.381
    -0.346
    -0.324
    -0.310
    -0.316
    -0.306
    -0.267
    -0.176
    -0.055
    -0.030
    0.046
    0.135
    0.214
    0.246
    0.290
    0.331
    0.399
    0.467
    0.553
    0.669
    0.730
    0.812
    0.838
    0.856
    0.919
    0.952
    0.987
    1.014
    0.994
    0.998
    1.000
    1.018
    1.025
    1.020
    0.946
    0.898
    0.853
    0.830
    0.804
    0.757
    0.698
    0.650
    0.619
    0.590
    0.530
    0.512
    0.456
    0.379
    0.326
    0.320
    0.300
    0.263
    0.227
    0.227
    0.152
    0.107
    0.069
    0.072
    0.054
    0.031
    0.062
    0.111
    0.125
    0.141
    0.139
    0.127
    0.136
    0.209
    0.289
    0.348
    0.446
    0.546
    0.583
    0.629
    0.727
    0.818
    0.825
    0.881
    0.976
    1.003
    0.995
    1.047
    1.131
    1.223
    1.249
    1.270
    1.254
    1.291
    1.322
    1.362

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  • 289. At 1:37pm on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: "Yet, if you produce a model based on existing data (which IS absolute) from a previous period, you don't NEED to know all of the individual forcings and feedbacks in order to estimate climate sensitivity."

    This is something of a goal-post shift, Paul. Estimating climate sensitivity is an academic exercise. The question needing to be answered is whether or not GCMs can have skill in forecasting future climatic conditions. They still cannot, for the same prohibitive reasons I gave @159. You have underlined the reasons why not by asserting, wrongly, that they "don't NEED to know all of the individual forcings and feedbacks". In order to model the climate, they most certainly do.

    Computer science, climate science, statistics. All substantially different disciplines. And yet we have climate scientists trying to be statisticians, climate scientists trying to be computer programmers and climate scientists trying to be climate scientists. What has been made clear several times now, and by different enquiries, is that climate scientists have repeatedly failed to involve different and appropriate disciplines in order to perform their work. Paleoclimate reconstructions are fundamentally exercises in statistical analysis of statistical data, and yet paleoclimate scientists have an established and ongoing history of derision, and indeed active concealment of data, and obfuscation of methodologies, specifically intended to thwart the efforts of statisticians (McIntyre being one of several) to replicate their results. Whatever excuse you make for their behaviour, this is not appropriate behaviour from scientists.

    Turning to the emails, what Holland's FOI would have done is to expose abuse of the regulations of the IPCC regarding contributing authorship and to expose the scientists' underhanded activities in manipulating the outcome and implications of AR4. I have no sympathy for scientists whose intent was to steer the AR4 to their own ideological conclusions rather than reporting, as they should have done, the scientific assessment of the current (at that time) state of the science.

    Jones was not acting on the advice of the ICO. He was manipulating and steering UEA's own information officer, responsible for receiving and satisfying FOI requests. Familiarity with the emails you say you've been trawling would have made this clear.

    You keep repeating that I am "clearly very biased". What do you think my bias is towards? I consider my bias to be towards the scientific method, the integrity of science, and exposure of subterfuge and manipulation. But by all means, tell me what you think it is.

    The deepclimate post is purposeful misdirection. The objection from MM in fact refers to "Mike's Nature Trick", which most certainly is fudging the graph. Splicing instrumental data onto tree ring data and smoothing the series to conceal the divergence of tree ring proxy data from observed temperatures is, without question, a gross abuse of statistical data. It is a purposeful method of concealing the lack of integrity of tree rings as a proxy for paleoclimatic temperatures. It is indefensible.

    I note that you have refused to substantiate your accusation that Steve McIntyre has accused climate scientists of fraud, and that you are nevertheless refusing to retract your assertion that he has.

    I find that disappointing but unsurprising.

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  • 290. At 2:21pm on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    QuaesoVeritas, ooh! Thanks for that! Yes, the cyclic nature of the

    Accepting OPatrick's point that it is essential to use ALL data available for trend analysis, and that the longer the series the higher the confidence in the trend can be. His point is well made and not different from mine. But what do the numbers say?

    I did a trend analysis using HadCRUT last night (1850-2010) and turned up a 0.00441019C/year trend, or 0.4C/century over the period of industrialisation - i.e. the period of anthropogenic CO2. I'd never run that analysis before. Wow.

    It really does beg the question.. WTF is the fuss? It is absolutely clear that in order to make the whole CAGW concept roll requires a lot of hysteria, an awful lot of number distortion and contortion and as little actual science as possible.

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  • 291. At 2:23pm on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Oops.. random mouse-click = accidental submission. I meant to say:

    QuaesoVeritas, ooh! Thanks for that! Yes, the cyclic nature of the temperature mean is quite clear in that! Nice one!

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  • 292. At 2:32pm on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    blunderbunny writes: "The ONLY Reason there was not a prosecution of the CRU and it's employees was because of the 6 Month Time Limit. So, will you STOP trying to state otherwise."

    Quite right! What I find ironic is that it's the climate realists that are repeatedly tagged with the misnomer "denier".

    The office of the ICO is quoted clearly here:
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7004936.ece

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  • 293. At 3:39pm on 11 Jan 2011, Sparklet wrote:

    Re: 283/285. At 11:42pm on 10 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe
    Paul your posts are such a blatant misrepresentation of the facts that I feel I have to respond.

    You have often mentioned context in your previous posts and brought this up as some sort of defence of Jones, Mann & their colleagues. Yet you ignore the wider context. It is not science driving politics but quite the reverse. Don't you realise where the massive funding has come from for the fraudulent science promoted by these individuals because there is simply no other word for it.

    "The real culprit in the corruption of the scientific process and the promotion of climate alarmism is named again and again in the East Anglia e-mails and documents. But the culprit is named with many different names, mysterious combinations of letters and numbers and lyrical code words, names like “dgxii, dgxi fp5 fp6 fp7 life enrich.” What do they mean? In the final analysis, it is but one and the same multinational organization that lurks behind all these designations: the European Union."

    In the Climategate emails it was revealed that Jones had received £13.7m in funding for CRU climate research but this is simply the tip of the iceberg, other recipients include the Institute for Connective Environmental Research, the Tyndall Center for Climate Change Research, UK Met Office and the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)as well as Pachauri's TERI from a massive budget running to many billions of pounds.
    "It is no accident that EU funding leads to politicized science. “Promoting research that supports EU policies” is, after all, one of the stated “main strategic objectives”"

    But always in one direction of course -

    "the EU’s funding for climate research is based on the proverbial assumption that the science is “settled,” the debate “over.” Skeptics, so to say, need not apply. That the earth is warming, that the causes are anthropogenic, and that the consequences will be devastating — all these propositions, despite their largely empirical character, are treated as axiomatic by the EU’s program and hence placed outside the realm of legitimate inquiry. The program is thus at variance with the very nature of the normal scientific process".

    And you often question the motivation of sceptics but what better motivation can there be to those scientists lacking integrity than a guaranteed income stream.

    But the EU doesn't simply fund much of the 'science' it also funds much of the 'climate activism' - the World Wildlife Fund for example with their continued promotion of stranded polar bears and the like.
    "WWF also receives substantial funding from the European Union. Indeed, the financial ties between the EU and WWF are so regular and systematic that it would be more accurate to describe the organization as a PGO — or “para-governmental organization” — rather than an NGO. According to publicly available European Commission data, WWF was awarded nearly €9 million in EU support in 2008 alone. In 2007, the figure was over €7.5 million.". Others include Friends of the Earth and Climate Action Network.
    Not bad eh, fund the science to promote your policies and fund the activist groups to support them so you can claim 'popular' support!!
    http://www.hoover.org/publications/policy-review/article/43291

    And this article gives a far better background on the state of Climate science than your preferred Scepticalscience site.
    http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/global/climate3.htm

    Don't you realise the effect those policies implemented on the strength of this science is having, you who prefer the graphic imagery of computer models to the actuality of what is happening in the real world! Our countryside is being littered with hideous, utterly inefficient and hugely expensive wind turbines, the main beneficiaris of which are the huge corporations backing them. (quite surprising then that Lord Oxburgh the Chairman of one of your Climategate 'Independent' Review panels should also be the Chairman of Falck Renewables, a company involved in the construction and operation of windfarms)
    Whereas we the tax payers who actually funded the 'research' are having to pay vastly inflated energy prices such that many pensioners are dying prematurely because they simply can't afford to heat their homes adequately. Huge increases in energy prices will also have a massively detrimental impact on western economies, already companies are packing up and moving eastwards (also with the help of EU funding!) A report on the Spanish economy and the impact of renewable energy policies there found that for every green job created 2.2 other jobs were lost!

    And you really expect us to have sympathy for so-called scientists who do their utmost to hide the data and methodolgy behind their fraudulent 'science'!!

    Nor do you seem to realise how utterly absurd your comments on having peer-reviewed articles published in the 'mainstream' journals are in the light of what was revealed by the Climategate emails, and the extraordinary lengths the Hockey Team will go to to ensure that any articles critical of them remain unpublished.

    And finally I'd like to re-echo Simon H's challenge. This is the Climate Audit site -
    http://climateaudit.org/
    Please identify "the unprofessional behaviour by those at Climateaudit - the insinuations of malfeasance and baseless personal attacks" in any of Steve McIntyres articles.

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  • 294. At 4:17pm on 11 Jan 2011, QuaesoVeritas wrote:

    #290 - Simon H wrote:
    "I did a trend analysis using HadCRUT last night (1850-2010) and turned
    It really does beg the question.. WTF is the fuss? It is absolutely clear that in order to make the whole CAGW concept roll requires a lot of hysteria, an awful lot of number distortion and contortion and as little actual science as possible."
    I think that it is significant that the recent period of increasing trend has coincided with the AGW theory, and appears to support it, but that might be nothing else but coincidence. It is also interesting that the end of the period of declining trend more or less coincided with the "global cooling" theories of the 70's. Also, during the previous warming phase, which ended in the early 50's, there was no theory of "climate change" and no computers or computer models which could be used to "prove" that theory.
    Of course, the cyclical pattern of the 50 year trend may turn out to be spurious, but we should find that out during the next few years.


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  • 295. At 5:56pm on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    QV @ #288 and #294

    Thanks for your posts, QV. I will take the time to look at them in more detail and we both agree on your last comment - that we will find out over the next few years.

    Talk to you later,

    Paul

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  • 296. At 6:42pm on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny,

    For me your "signature" says it all - "one of the lobby". In a way it is a "badge of honour" a little like Mailman's "Mann Made Global Warming" - sorry, I forgot the (TM)! It also tells me that for you this whole debate has become almost "tribal" and you have clearly alligned yourself with what you see as a "side".

    I have no such allignment. I have drawn my conclusions over time by looking at the facts - as any objective scientist should. Why do I believe what I do? Mainly it is down to the empirical science evidence. Sadly though, increasingly I find my views being reinforced by the blatant misrepresentations of the sources used by "sceptics" in their attempts to undermine what I have learned. At best these sources are ignorant.

    The point I'm making here is that you are looking at this from the point of view of someone who HAD ALREADY DECIDED that the scientists were guilty before the reviews began. Therefore, any mitigating circumstances and detailed objections to an outright conviction of Jones will cut no ice with you anyway.

    "The ONLY Reason there was not a prosecution of the CRU and it's employees was because of the 6 Month Time Limit. So, will you STOP trying to state otherwise."

    The emails indicate that UEA had been in touch with the ICO regarding David Holland's FOI request. So the ICO clearly knew about it back in 2008. We can't know what was said and agreed. All the emails tell us is that UEA believed they had a way around what they saw as a problem - was this with the ICO's tacit approval or not?

    What Mr Smith from the ICO actually said was:

    "The legislation requires action within six months of the offence taking place, so by the time the action came to light the opportunity to CONSIDER a prosecution was long gone." (my emphasis).

    In other words, there is no guarantee that they would have taken action even if 6 months had not passed. Yes, Mr Smith did initially say that there was prima facie evidence that the law had been broken, but the ICO later back-tracked on this.

    One point not previously made is that if you look at the wording of the FOI laws, it is the ACT of concealment which is against the law. So Jones, who asked others to delete emails, might well not have broken the law at all.

    The review team pointed out that:

    "It would, however, be premature, without a thorough investigation affording each party the opportunity to make representations, to conclude that UEA was in breach of the Act."

    There are more questions than answers here, blunderbunny. Phil Jones was certainly stupid and even his colleagues told him so, but was he guilty of an FOI law breach? You will obviously say "yes", but the review team say that there is not sufficient evidence to say that he did. Sorry!

    "...you seem unable to admit that either you or your favourite internet site could ever be wrong...."

    Have you proved that Skeptical Science is wrong? Answer: No!

    Paul

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  • 297. At 7:37pm on 11 Jan 2011, blunderbunny wrote:

    @Paul

    First things first:

    "For me your "signature" says it all - "one of the lobby". In a way it is a "badge of honour" a little like Mailman's "Mann Made Global Warming" - sorry, I forgot the (TM)! It also tells me that for you this whole debate has become almost "tribal" and you have clearly alligned yourself with what you see as a "side"."

    The origins of my signature are bound up with one of our previous contributors, who was not only convinced that there was indeed, a lobby, but also that myself amongst others were part of it.

    Having finally, got more than a little tired of denying these accusations, I decided to adopt and embrace it instead.

    It was an attempt at humour (at the time), but over the months, it might even be a year by now, I've become rather attached to it.

    Finally,

    "I have no such alignment. I have drawn my conclusions over time by looking at the facts - as any objective scientist should. Why do I believe what I do? Mainly it is down to the empirical science evidence. Sadly though, increasingly I find my views being reinforced by the blatant misrepresentations of the sources used by "sceptics" in their attempts to undermine what I have learned. At best these sources are ignorant. "

    I'm open minded and receptive to good science where ever I find it. One might even say I'm consumed with an overriding urge to try and know everything. Obviously, that's just not possible..... But, that's part of the fun and there's always something new to learn.

    Science is a journey - We can hardly complain about where that journey takes us....

    We can, perhaps, choose not to travel and we can try to ensure that when we travel, we travel well.... but we can't really complain that we don't like the destination when we get there.... you can look to ethics and the scientific method for guidance - you could maybe think of them as travel guides, if you like.

    I can hand on heart say, that if you lot could merely demonstrate a few simple things, then I'd be quite happy to change my view point and I'd argue that's the real difference between us - To me, it’s truly only the science and how that science is being done that's important.

    So, to sum up:

    If you lot start doing better science then you might actually convince me (and others), until then, I'm afraid I'll happily wait in the Lobby/Vestibule/Hall ;-)

    Actually I've just noticed the little sly comment: Would you care to point out, exactly what I've misrepresented?

    Regards,

    One of the Lobby

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  • 298. At 8:14pm on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    blunderbunny @ #297

    Thanks for explaining your position in a way that I can understand.

    In fact, I have been reading your comments on Paul Hudson's new thread (I haven't got there yet being the only "warmist" left posting here!) and it may surprise you to know that I agree with you entirely - so we are not perhaps as far apart as you thought!

    Also, I want to make it clear that I was not accusing you personally of "misrepresenting" the facts regarding AGW science. My concerns relate to the various blog sites which IMHO mislead their readers.

    I'll hopefully see you on the new thread sometime soon!

    Paul

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  • 299. At 10:26pm on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Simon H @ #289

    "This is something of a goal-post shift, Paul."

    No, not at all. It is just an extension of what I have been saying all along.

    "Estimating climate sensitivity is an academic exercise."

    Now that is certainly debatable.

    "The question needing to be answered is whether or not GCMs can have skill in forecasting future climatic conditions."

    That IS moving the goalposts, as we were talking about climate sensitivity rather than future climate as a whole. The IPCC have already acknowledged the uncertainties regarding using GCM's to predict future climate at a local and regional level. However, studies have shown that the GCM's ARE now pretty good at predicting future temperatures.

    "You have underlined the reasons why not by asserting, wrongly, that they "don't NEED to know all of the individual forcings and feedbacks". In order to model the climate, they most certainly do."

    Again, you are shifting the goalposts. We were talking about climate sensitivity, which relates to temperature alone. The above certainly does stand for climate sensitivity.

    "Computer science, climate science, statistics. All substantially different disciplines. And yet we have climate scientists trying to be statisticians, climate scientists trying to be computer programmers and climate scientists trying to be climate scientists."

    This is demonstrably untrue. For example, Gavin Schmidt is a mathematician by training, with a PhD in Applied Maths - there's surely no better qualification for mathematical modelling than that! Climate science is multidisciplinary, Simon, meaning that there are specialists in every field. The argument you are using is one which you have been fed by those wishing to undermine confidence in the science. I have also pointed out that anyone who works in the study of dynamic systems HAS to have a reasonable working knowledge of statistics. Believe me, it is MUCH better to be a scientist with an understanding of statistics than the other way around - I will provide some evidence to support this in a future post.

    ".....yet paleoclimate scientists have an established and ongoing history of derision, and indeed active concealment of data, and obfuscation of methodologies, specifically intended to thwart the efforts of statisticians (McIntyre being one of several) to replicate their results."

    I will also be posting evidence which explains exactly why the scientists came to resent Climateaudit so much. As I said above, if Climateaudit had gone through proper scientific channels, as Muir Russell has called on them to do, the present situation would not have developed.

    ".......what Holland's FOI would have done is to expose abuse of the regulations of the IPCC regarding contributing authorship and to expose the scientists' underhanded activities in manipulating the outcome and implications of AR4."

    Do you have evidence to support this, Simon? Or is just yet more assertions?

    "Jones was not acting on the advice of the ICO. He was manipulating and steering UEA's own information officer, responsible for receiving and satisfying FOI requests. Familiarity with the emails you say you've been trawling would have made this clear."

    What you have seen is only a small fraction of the total emails of CRU. So your confidence in your version of events may well be overstated. I am saying that UEA and the ICO had obviously spoken and the implication was that some advice had been given. For the record, I did NOT suggest that Jones himself was acting on the advice of the ICO and he was probably being stupid, but as I pointed out in a previous post, he may well NOT have broken the letter of the law.

    "You keep repeating that I am "clearly very biased". What do you think my bias is towards? I consider my bias to be towards the scientific method, the integrity of science, and exposure of subterfuge and manipulation. But by all means, tell me what you think it is."

    The problem, as far as I am concerned, is that you have closed your mind to the possibility that what you read at Climateaudit may not be as real and reliable as you think it is. IMHO, the "subterfuge and manipulation" you speak of are manufactured by those you follow.

    "The deepclimate post is purposeful misdirection."

    Open your eyes, Simon! It is very easy to check up on what Deepclimate is saying - I would say that he's actually very thorough.

    "I note that you have refused to substantiate your accusation that Steve McIntyre has accused climate scientists of FRAUD......" (my emphasis)

    I chose my words far more carefully than that, Simon - go and check if you want. Climateaudit is far more subtle than that....... but all the more insidious for it! Don't worry, though - I do intend to prove my point....... when I have the time.

    Paul

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  • 300. At 11:43pm on 11 Jan 2011, Paul Briscoe wrote:

    Sparklet @ #293

    You appear to be basing your argument on the fallacy that scientists have a vested interest in promoting falsified science because their funding depends upon it. This is an old and very tired argument, Sparklet.

    You mention big sums of money, but you appear to forget that it actually COSTS a lot to run a major international research programme these days. You also forget that there are literally hundreds of scientists in this effort and quite a number of them are doing their AGW science as a sideline. It COULD just be that one or two have been seduced by the money...... but hundreds of independent scientists all over the World?!!

    Of course, if the scientists were to PROVE AGW, their funding would dry up overnight, with a whole bunch of technology driven research by other specialists becoming the emphasis of spending - so why should climate scientists want to be in such a hurry to convince us that the threat is real if they were simply wanting to protect their funding?! Think about it!

    I did a quick Google search and came up with the following, which sees this from the perspective of a non-scientist:

    http://www.helenlibdem.org.uk/Blog/Entries/2010/4/6_Climate_Change_and_Vested_Interests.html

    In other words, Helen Flynn, like me, thinks you've got this all the wrong way around - it is the vested interests of big business, which feels threatened by emission limits, that has infiltrated this debate. Also, there is now very strong evidence that a right wing movement, which is ideologically opposed to ANY environmental control, is also pulling the strings.

    First, let's look at the big business angle. This has been going for some while. Initially it was in the form of the "Global Climate Coalition". You'll find a little more information about this and some of its exploits here:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/24/science/earth/24deny.html?_r=4

    You'll note that the GCC continued to manufacture doubt over AGW even after its own scientists told it the science was irrefutable! Also, although the GCC was disbanded in 2002, some former members continued to fund the same types of activities. Greenpeace also claim that the Koch Institute is doing much the same:

    http://www.greenpeace.org/international/en/news/features/dirty-money-climate-30032010/

    However, the main development in this area in recent times has been the following investigation by Prof Naomi Oreskes:

    http://www.merchantsofdoubt.org/

    There's a bit more detail here:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/Naomi-Oreskes-Merchants-of-Doubt-Australian-tour.html

    You also link to a website called "seafriends". I wonder why you would think this was a credible source? It clearly isn't peer reviewed and it also talks of "temperature corruption" when the review teams proved this isn't true. At least Skeptical Science backs up what it says with other reliable sources.

    I'll leave the rest of your post, because it is all based on uncorroborated assertions made by the sceptic blogs you obviously follow.

    I'm not deliberately ignoring your comments relating to policy (eg carbon taxing). Policy is down to government and I'm no more happy with the way it is being handled than you are, but the scientists don't make these choices, so please don't blame them!

    Paul

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  • 301. At 11:45pm on 11 Jan 2011, Simon H wrote:

    Paul, you write: " "Estimating climate sensitivity is an academic exercise."

    Now that is certainly debatable."

    Well of course it is. It's an academic exercise, and therefore is infinitely debatable. Particularly at our current state of knowledge of the climate and its operation, which as far as I know all climate scientists agree is the case.

    GCMs are responsible for irrational higher estimates but they are not the only means by which estimates for climate sensitivity are derived. They're just the more idiotic ones. Nobody said linear models were smart, though, and as has been made clear by many, not just me, a linear model cannot predict the behaviour of a non-linear, chaotic system any more than you can get 40mpg out of a Dinky Toy.

    You write: "Again, you are shifting the goalposts. We were talking about climate sensitivity, which relates to temperature alone. The above certainly does stand for climate sensitivity."

    I am not at all shifting goalposts, Paul.

    What on earth does "temperature alone" mean, in your world? Climate sensitivity is the estimate of atmospheric temperature sensitivity to a doubling of CO2. In the consideration of climate sensitivity, all forcings and feedbacks are considered, including greenhouse gases, including natural re-sequestration, including cloud formation and feedbacks and many other considerations.

    Is this another aspect of the discussion that you, in fact, don't actually know much of anything about, Paul? Because it certainly appears this way.

    You write: "This is demonstrably untrue. For example, Gavin Schmidt is a mathematician by training, with a PhD in Applied Maths - there's surely no better qualification for mathematical modelling than that!"

    In my frequent discussions with many people and on many topics, including climate change, I have never interacted with anyone who so frequently exploits logical fallacies as you, Paul.

    Here are the logical fallacies racked up by you, that I have pointed out in this thread alone: Tu quoque; Appeal to authority; Argumentum ad ignoratium; Ad hominem circumstantial; Plurium interrogationum; Petitio principii; Red herring and; Argumentum ad misericordiam.

    Now, to add to your list, you're invoking a non sequitur logical fallacy. That Schmidt is a mathematician and a climatologist does not counter my argument that we have climate scientists trying to be statisticians and computer programmers. Mann is not a statistician, but paleoclimate reconstruction is principally an exercise statistical analysis. This is how a paleoclimatologist's reconstruction's overconfidence can be defeated by a semi-retired Canadian statistician.

    You write: "I will also be posting evidence which explains exactly why the scientists came to resent Climateaudit so much. As I said above, if Climateaudit had gone through proper scientific channels, as Muir Russell has called on them to do, the present situation would not have developed."

    Where?

    Page 31, para 26/a of the Muir Russell report states: "We do not suggest that the allegations made against McIntyre are correct."

    Where is the criticism, in the Muir Russell report, of McIntyre or of ClimateAudit? Where does Russell call on them to use, as you say, "proper scientific channels"? What are "proper scientific channels", Paul, as different from asking politely (and being refused) and being forced to use FOIA?

    Or is this another assertion you will continue to insist on making, while flat refusing to substantiate?

    You write: " ".......what Holland's FOI would have done is to expose abuse of the regulations of the IPCC regarding contributing authorship and to expose the scientists' underhanded activities in manipulating the outcome and implications of AR4."

    Do you have evidence to support this, Simon? Or is just yet more assertions?"

    Yes I have, but when I post links you enter into ad hominem attacks on the individuals concerned in order to dismiss the evidence presented. Logical fallacy really is your thing.

    You write: "I am saying that UEA and the ICO had obviously spoken and the implication was that some advice had been given."

    Where is your evidence to support the claim that this is evidenced in the emails? Where is it obvious? Where is it written? I've already pointed out your confusion over the ICO and the UEA information officer. I suspect you continue to confuse yourself.

    You write: "The problem, as far as I am concerned, is that you have closed your mind to the possibility that what you read at Climateaudit may not be as real and reliable as you think it is. IMHO, the "subterfuge and manipulation" you speak of are manufactured by those you follow."

    I think what you're confusing as a closed mind is actually my stubborn obstinacy in refusing to accept shoddy second-rate and excruciatingly expensive postnormal science, or the scientists that indulge themselves in it, or burden our economies with its product.

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