A Closer Look at the ‘Climategate’ Computer Code

An excellent post at Deep Climate looks into the exaggerated and false claims being made about the computer code released along with those stolen “Climategate” emails: McClimategate continues: Yet another false accusation from McIntyre and McKitrick.

How do they get away with it? That’s the inevitable question as I examine one of the most specious – and despicable – “climategate” allegations from contrarians, namely the oft-repeated claim that climate scientists at East Anglia University’s Climate Research Unit inappropriately adjusted certain tree-ring temperature proxy data to provide a better match with instrumental temperature record.

In an extraordinary interview with FoxNews in December of last year, economist Ross McKitrick alleged that scientists were “faking the match” between proxy and temperature data. McKitrick averred this was “not being honest with the reader” and even invoked a comparison to falsified experimental medical research. Stephen McIntyre of ClimateAudit recently claimed that the “artificial correction” seemed “to have entered the CRU toolkit” (in his submission to the U.K. parliamentary committee examining allegations arising from stolen CRU emails, no less).

Yet a close examination of the computer code and ensuing research bears out the key contention of the firm rebuttals from East Anglia University, as well as CRU scientist Tim Osborn, namely that the specific adjustments in question were for private exploration only and never incorporated into CRU scientists’ subsequent published temperature reconstructions. So, once again, McIntyre and McKitrick have made odious and unfounded accusations, based on non-existent evidence. They should withdraw these specious allegations immediately. [Don’t hold your breath. – ed.]

And here’s a quote from the submission to the UK Parliament by CRU paleoclimatologist Tim Osborn, that makes the deceptive nature of the claims about the computer code even clearer:

8. CRU’s Computer Code is Fit For Purpose and Does Not Reveal Secret Manipulation of Data

A small sample of my computer programming code was included in the disclosed files. It has been argued that comments within the code such as “Fudge factor” and “shouldn’t usually plot past 1960 because these will be artificially adjusted to look closer to the real temperatures” demonstrate that data have been manipulated in an inappropriate and undisclosed manner. My programs that were highlighted on BBC Newsnight that contained comments such as these were not the basis for any published article or dataset, and thus are not a valid indication of inappropriate data manipulation. If we do need to make adjustments to data that are scientifically justified, then we state clearly both the justification and the adjustment when we publish the article or dataset. In relation to the second of the two highlighted comments, it was simply a note that should have read “…because these will have been artificially adjusted…” to remind myself that I had applied an adjustment to this particular set of data (for the purposes of exploring the consequences of recent trends for the calibration of tree-ring temperature proxies) and that if I did plot them it would give a false impression of the agreement between tree-rings and temperature because of the adjustment. Thus, rather than indicating that an undisclosed adjustment would be made, it was a warning to avoid using adjusted data without realising it. To re-iterate: I have made no adjustments to data except those that are scientifically justified and stated in published papers. [Emphasis added].

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.

Recent PagesClick to refresh
Happy 40th Anniversary Star WarsYes, it has been that many years and that many versions and off shoots of this movie. A movie that was expected to fail. The movie redefined the definition of blockbuster. In fact when the second movie came out in ...
PhillyPretzel
35 minutes ago
Views: 75 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
CSPAN Coverage: White House Warned General Flynn Compromised Russian Interference in 2016 Election Former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates and Former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testified at a Senate subcommittee hearing on Russian interference in the 2016 election. Ms. Yates told lawmakers she raised concerns ...
Birth Control Works
1 hour, 43 minutes ago
Views: 172 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
What I Learned After My Study on Men Secretly Removing Condoms Went Viral But it struck a chord, and somehow managed to trigger an international conversation about assholes who remove condoms during sex without their partners' permission. (Some people call this "stealthing," but I think the term trivializes the harm.) The paper ...
Birth Control Works
1 hour, 48 minutes ago
Views: 198 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
‘Racist’ Flyers Urge Black Chicagoans to Help Deport Latino Neighbors - Pilsen - DNAinfo Chicago CHICAGO — A South Side alderman is slamming a flyer found in neighborhoods around the city asking black Chicagoans to report suspected undocumented residents to immigration agents. The flyer says that "Sanctuary city Policies endanger the lively hood[sic] of ...
Birth Control Works
2 hours, 25 minutes ago
Views: 158 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
23 Million Fewer Americans With Health Coverage, Yes MILLION Twenty-three million fewer Americans would have insurance under legislation that House Republicans narrowly passed last month, the Congressional Budget Office reported on Wednesday. The agency also predicted the deficit would come down by $119 billion over the next decade ...
Unshaken Defiance
4 hours, 30 minutes ago
Views: 245 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Britain Irritated by US Intel Leaks Thanks Trump. Your administration is a hazard The U.K. government has expressed its displeasure at the U.S. over the leaking of information about the Manchester bombing to the media. “The British police have been very clear that they want ...
Unshaken Defiance
10 hours, 28 minutes ago
Views: 251 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Infowars Granted White House Press CredsIt appears as if Trump has granted official Press Credientials to that vomitorium of an opinion/con man site, Infowars: thinkprogress.org At least this administration is consistent. A Kakistocracy cannot be complete without the dumbest, stupidest information peddlers on the planet ...
Rocky-in-Connecticut
14 hours, 19 minutes ago
Views: 154 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
You Have One Last Chance to Repent, Sean Hannity….Help me force Sean Hannity to repent. If he doesn't, The Major will bring incredible the damage to Mr. Hannity using the new weapons of The Internet. I tried to warn you, Sean. You didn't listen then. If you choose ...
The Major
23 hours, 2 minutes ago
Views: 267 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Intelligence Alert: How to Sniff Out Fake Identities on Twitter @FlorenceOconne5 Lesson Learned for Twitter Users: Check who follow you closely. If it has a high following/follower count, it's probably fake. — TheMajor (@TheMajorsViews) May 24, 2017 Now that we know how they do it, it's time to ferret ...
The Major
23 hours, 41 minutes ago
Views: 274 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Doctors Argue That Female Genital Mutilation Is Protected Under First Amendment Two doctors in Detroit, along with one of their wives, are about to take the first religious defense of female genital mutilation to a US Federal court. The case stems from a FBI investigation into Dr. Jumana Nagarwala after ...
Birth Control Works
1 day ago
Views: 334 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 3 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 1
Comments: 0
: 1