Global Warming Nontroversy of the Day

Right wing bloggers and climate “skeptics” are ranting and fuming about “the global warming scandal of the century,” after the email server of one of the UK’s leading climate research centers was hacked, and thousands of emails were stolen and promptly posted all over the web. (Which is, of course, completely illegal.)

However, reading the summaries that these folks have posted, such as the one in this almost comically exaggerated article by Telegraph writer James Delingpole, one thing stands out — there’s no there there. There’s no evidence of a conspiracy to commit massive fraud. There are no admissions of faking data. The worst thing they’ve dug up out of thousands of emails is this one referring to a “trick” used to adjust warming data, which Delingpole dramatically labels “Manipulation of evidence:”

I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.

“Trick,” of course, can also mean “an effective technique,” but if you were desperately hunting for anything smear-worthy, I suppose the word would stand out.

RealClimate has responded to this stolen email nontroversy here: The CRU hack.

Since emails are normally intended to be private, people writing them are, shall we say, somewhat freer in expressing themselves than they would in a public statement. For instance, we are sure it comes as no shock to know that many scientists do not hold Steve McIntyre in high regard. Nor that a large group of them thought that the Soon and Baliunas (2003), Douglass et al (2008) or McClean et al (2009) papers were not very good (to say the least) and should not have been published. These sentiments have been made abundantly clear in the literature (though possibly less bluntly).

More interesting is what is not contained in the emails. There is no evidence of any worldwide conspiracy, no mention of George Soros nefariously funding climate research, no grand plan to ‘get rid of the MWP’, no admission that global warming is a hoax, no evidence of the falsifying of data, and no ‘marching orders’ from our socialist/communist/vegetarian overlords. The truly paranoid will put this down to the hackers also being in on the plot though.

Instead, there is a peek into how scientists actually interact and the conflicts show that the community is a far cry from the monolith that is sometimes imagined. People working constructively to improve joint publications; scientists who are friendly and agree on many of the big picture issues, disagreeing at times about details and engaging in ‘robust’ discussions; Scientists expressing frustration at the misrepresentation of their work in politicized arenas and complaining when media reports get it wrong; Scientists resenting the time they have to take out of their research to deal with over-hyped nonsense. None of this should be shocking.

Read the whole thing; they make more excellent points about the absurdly exaggerated denialists’ claims.

Here’s their response to the “trick” comment:

No doubt, instances of cherry-picked and poorly-worded “gotcha” phrases will be pulled out of context. One example is worth mentioning quickly. Phil Jones in discussing the presentation of temperature reconstructions stated that “I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) and from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.” The paper in question is the Mann, Bradley and Hughes (1998) Nature paper on the original multiproxy temperature reconstruction, and the ‘trick’ is just to plot the instrumental records along with reconstruction so that the context of the recent warming is clear. Scientists often use the term “trick” to refer to a “a good way to deal with a problem”, rather than something that is “secret”, and so there is nothing problematic in this at all. As for the ‘decline’, it is well known that Keith Briffa’s maximum latewood tree ring density proxy diverges from the temperature records after 1960 (this is more commonly known as the “divergence problem”–see e.g. the recent discussion in this paper) and has been discussed in the literature since Briffa et al in Nature in 1998 (Nature, 391, 678-682). Those authors have always recommend not using the post 1960 part of their reconstruction, and so while ‘hiding’ is probably a poor choice of words (since it is ‘hidden’ in plain sight), not using the data in the plot is completely appropriate, as is further research to understand why this happens.

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds Tweet

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Donate with
PayPal
Square Cash Shop at amazon
as an LGF Associate!
Recent PagesClick to refresh
Captain’s Overconfidence and Poor Crew Training Sank El Faro, NTSB Says Image: 2016-12-13T183635Z_1_LYNXMPECBC11F_RTROPTP_3_SHIP-ELFARO.jpg Author: Ian Simpson, Reuters WASHINGTON – The sinking of the U.S. freighter El Faro in 2015 with the loss of 33 lives came after an overconfident captain set the ship and its poorly trained crew on a ...
Cheechako
1 hour, 39 minutes ago
Views: 52 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Russia’s Putin Visits Syria Airbase and Orders Start of Pullout Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the partial withdrawal of Russian troops from Syria, during an unannounced visit there on Monday. Mr Putin was met by Syrian President Bashar Assad as he arrived at the Russian Hmeimim air base, ...
Thanos
2 days, 14 hours ago
Views: 181 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Orkestra Obsolete Play Blue Monday Using 1930s Instruments - BBC Arts More information: bbc.in New Order's Blue Monday was released on 7 March 1983, and its cutting-edge electronic groove changed pop music forever. But what would it have sounded like if it had been made 50 years earlier? In a ...
Thanos
3 days, 12 hours ago
Views: 206 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 2
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Tune-Yards - ABC 123 (Official Video) 'ABC 123' by Tune-Yards. New album 'I can feel you creep into my private life' is released January 19th 2018: smarturl.it Director: Dear Mr QuistgaardProducer: Abi Atkinson, LS ProductionsCommissioner: Gabe Spierer, Beggars GroupExec Producer: Saskia Whinney, SomesuchDOP: Deepa KeshvalaEditor: ...
Thanos
3 days, 12 hours ago
Views: 164 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Funding Restrictions Have Made Gun Violence Researchers Get Creative A study published Thursday concludes that a subsequent increase in gun exposure led to more accidental firearm deaths than otherwise would have occurred in the months after the school shooting. "It was the spike [in sales] itself that sort ...
Thanos
3 days, 14 hours ago
Views: 223 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Recycling Chaos in U.S. As China Bans ‘Foreign Waste’ Like many Portland residents, Satish and Arlene Palshikar are serious recyclers. Their house is coated with recycled bluish-white paint. They recycle their rainwater, compost their food waste and carefully separate the paper and plastic they toss out. But recently, ...
Thanos
3 days, 14 hours ago
Views: 376 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 3 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Trump Jerusalem Move: Tear Gas at Lebanon US Embassy Protest There have been violent clashes near the US embassy in Lebanon, in the latest protest against President Donald Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Security forces fired tear gas and water cannon to force back ...
Thanos
3 days, 14 hours ago
Views: 232 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 5 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Trump Says He and Trudeau Disagree on Trade Deficit. U.S. Stats Seem to Be on the PM’s SideHair Furor just can't seem to catch a break these days....Despite Trump's insistence the U.S. has a trade deficit with Canada, statistics from the website of the office of the U.S. Trade Representative -- the office handling NAFTA negotiations -- ...
The Major
3 days, 20 hours ago
Views: 242 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Blondie - Doom or Destiny (Official Video)Blondie performing "Doom or Destiny" from the new album "Pollinator".Out Now: blondie.lnk.to Follow Blondiefacebook.cominstagram.com@BlondieOfficial vevo.ly
Thanos
4 days, 23 hours ago
Views: 326 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 3
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa - Black Coffee (Official Music Video) Official video for Black Coffee from the new Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa album Black Coffee. Pre-order: smarturl.it BLACK COFFEE is available to pre-order on CD and vinyl. The limited CD box includes 2 coasters, a postcard and an ...
Thanos
4 days, 23 hours ago
Views: 2,475 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0