Climategate emails taken out of context by the big bad ‘deniers’ – Al Gore

Climate Expert Al Gore weighed in on the Climategate emails saying that they have been taken out of context.

First, Barbara Boxer said that there must be an investigation into how the emails were released to the public ignoring the information that we learned from these emails.

Now, former Vice President Gore is on CNN reiterating about ‘arcane points from emails from long ago.’

“Well, they took a few phrases out of context. These are private e-mails, more than 10 years old, and they’ve tried to blow it up into something that it’s really not.”

Of course, Gore doesn’t mention the email chain dated 12 Oct 2009 from Kevin Trenberth to Michael Mann and others where he professes the following:

Trenberth, K. E., 2009: An imperative for climate change planning: tracking Earth’s global energy. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 1, 19-27, doi:10.1016/j.cosust.2009.06.001. [1][PDF] (A PDF of the published version can be obtained from the author.)
The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.

That said there is a LOT of nonsense about the PDO. People like CPC are tracking PDO on a monthly basis but it is highly correlated with ENSO. Most of what they are seeing is the change in ENSO not real PDO. It surely isn’t decadal. The PDO is already reversing with the switch to El Nino. The PDO index became positive in September for first time since Sept 2007. see [2]http://bit.ly/4HJBSE

The Climategate emails range in date from 07 MAR 1996 through 12 NOV 2009.  About 25 percent of the emails are from 2007 – 2009.  That is hardly archaic. 

The emails are available for everyone to view [click here].  Anyone can see for themselves the dates they were written. 

“If you take one little thing from 10 years ago out of context and describe it inaccurately, then it becomes a controversy without any real substance,” Gore said.

If he is only looking at the emails from 10 years ago, he is looking at the collection out of context.  If you read an email from two months ago that said that it is a travesty when the scientists – who we rely on to provide facts about climate change – cannot account for the lack of warming currently, then it becomes a controversy with tremendous substance. 

Gore defended ‘the scientists’ inability to explain what they described as a temporary slowdown in warming’ as ‘sometimes flippant or ironic and were being distorted to suit climate change denialists.’

And when they talk of ‘tricking’ the data to hide the decline in temperature (yes, that email is 10 years old), the scientists are distorting the data to suit climate change alarmists.

Al Gore has been firmly planted on the side of the pro-Global Warming scientists who repeatedly produce data that supports the existence of man-made Global Warming.  He has gone on record using alarmist phrases like ‘crossing the point of no return,’ and the world is now facing a ‘danger which could bring the end of civilization.’

Now the same scientists that he referenced for years have come under attack and instead of investigating the scientists and the emails went on the offensive and staunchly defended them.

“Is there any substantive reason to worry about them? No. Does the noise machine of the climate deniers blow them out of proportion and fool some people into thinking they have substance? Well, that’s another matter,” he said.

“This was an open process in which the studies that were being argued about actually were fully included and openly discussed and analyzed. So this was an example of people who don’t want to do anything about the climate crisis taking things out of context and misrepresenting them.”

Clearly, Gore is missing the point.  It’s not that the skeptic doesn’t want to do anything about ‘the climate crisis.’  Skeptics (or deniers as the former Vice President likes to call us) want to examine ALL of the data not just the pieces the alarmists like to cherry pick or as their emails suggest ‘trick’.

Gore on the Copenhagen climate convention next week:

“They’re close to getting a final agreement. It will probably be finalized next year after the political agreement that’s expected next week,” he said.

Next year!!!!  That could be too late.  We’ll all be dead by then.

Source:

                Gore says ‘Climategate’ emails taken out of context

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Global Warming – Forget about the science (and the e-mails)

How many times have we heard “all the scientists agree” and “the science is in?” 

“Debating Global Warming is like debating gravity?”

If scientists, economists and astronomers had stopped researching because the initial results were a certainty then we’d still believe:

  • The sun rotates around the earth.
  • The earth is flat.
  • Trickle down economics works
  • Smoking cigarettes with a FILTER is safe.

In fact, research is never complete.  Data is always coming in.  As long as one scientist exists who questions the norm, debate should continue.

There are some who argue that the skeptics of Global Warming are shills who are paid for by the oil companies. 

One could also argue that the scientists who support the theory of Global Warming depend on research grants in order to continue earning a living in their chosen field. 

Then again, as we discovered recently, some scientists attempt to ‘trick’ the data presumably to support a desired conclusion.

The Economist (a believer of the global warming threat) published an article supporting the voice of the skeptic.

A majority of the world’s climate scientists have convinced themselves, and also a lot of laymen, some of whom have political power, that the Earth’s climate is changing; that the change, from humanity’s point of view, is for the worse; and that the cause is human activity, in the form of excessive emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide. A minority, though, are sceptical. [sic] Some think that recent, well-grounded data suggesting the Earth’s average temperature is rising are explained by natural variations in solar radiation, and that this trend may be coming to an end. Others argue that longer-term evidence that modern temperatures are higher than they have been for hundreds or thousands of years is actually too flaky to be meaningful.

Such disagreements are commonplace in science. They are eventually settled by the collection of more data and the invention of more refined (or entirely new) theories. Arguments may persist for decades; academics may—and often do—sling insults at each other; but it does not matter a great deal because the stakes are normally rather low.

What is stunning is that the pro-Global Warming side vehemently denies the skeptics the right to weigh in on the debate. 

As we have all heard by now, a new word has entered the vocabulary – Climategate.  This, of course, refers to the approximately one thousand emails that have made its way into the public forum which implies that Global Warming is a hoax.  Though most of the messages are benign, a few embarrassingly appear to indicate that things are not as they appear.

Scientists have claimed that the emails have been taken out of context.  Let’s see them in context.

From: Phil Jones p.jones@xxxxxxxxx.xxx

To: ray bradley <rbradley@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>,mann@xxxxxxxxx.xxx, mhughes@xxxxxxxxx.xxx

Subject: Diagram for WMO Statement

Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999 13:31:15 +0000

Cc: k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx,t.osborn@xxxxxxxxx.xxx

Dear Ray, Mike and Malcolm,

Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or first thing tomorrow.

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. Mike’s series got the annual land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land  N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999 for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.

Thanks for the comments, Ray.

Cheers
Phil

That is the full email.  Climate Audit did the analysis on Mike’s Nature Trick and put it into the correct context.  (Due to the high demand for this post, it had been mirrored on Watts Up With That)

Professor Phil Jones has temporarily stepped down from his post as the CRU conducts an investigation into the hacked emails.

Jones had been awarded 50 separate research grants valued at $22.6 million.  The grants were awarded largely for research into the effects of Global Warming.  (And they call the skeptics shills!)

The Telegraph contains more information regarding the research grants [Climategate professor Phil Jones awarded 13 million in research grants]

Professor Ross McKitrick, visiting professor of environmental economics at the University of Buckingham and an arch sceptic who was subject of some of the leaked emails, said: “Climate sceptics are always accused of taking money from industry but it is now clear the money is on the other side.

“There is a huge amount of money on the global warming side. Institutions like the CRU have a very large budget but that would disappear if global warming ceased to exist.

“Scientists are enjoying a funding gravy train; there is so much money in climate research. Lots of areas of science are short of money but not climate change.”

Now the debate begins -  not so much over the content of the email but of how the messages were leaked. 

One would think that this would have been all over the MSM.  It did receive some press, but nothing near what is required of something so potentially harming.

“This is a crime,” Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) said. 

“We may well have a hearing on this, we may not. We may have a briefing for senators, we may not,” Boxer said. “Part of our looking at this will be looking at a criminal activity which could have well been coordinated.”

Of course, Boxer is referring to the criminal activity of . . . hacking the emails – not defrauding scientific data for financial gain (research grants).

“You call it ‘Climategate’; I call it ‘E-mail-theft-gate,’” she said during a committee meeting. “Whatever it is, the main issue is, Are we facing global warming or are we not? I’m looking at these e-mails, that, even though they were stolen, are now out in the public.”

Instead of focusing on how the emails were released (there is time for that later), it is critical that we examine the content of the email and determine whether or not scientists actually cherry-picked the data to support their incorrect hypothesis.

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, head of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said that there should be an investigation into whether the Climategate e-mails indicate that the scientists had manipulated data on global warming.

For years, those who disagreed with these scientists were called ‘deniers’, ‘flat-earthers’ and ‘shills’.  What they were doing, in essence, was shutting out dissent – discussion – open debate.  They worked to ensure that the opposing viewpoint and supporting evidence was excluded from the conversation. 

From The Economist:

The danger of dissent

Some would argue that, in matters of great public import, scientific dissent should be silenced. It can, it is true, do harm. When AIDS first reared its ugly head, no one knew what caused it. Gradually, the virus responsible was isolated, identified and then attacked successfully with drugs designed specifically to inhibit its reproduction. A few scientists, though, refused to accept the evidence, and some politicians used their arguments to justify inaction. Since one of those politicians was Thabo Mbeki, then president of South Africa, hundreds of thousands who might have been saved by an anti-AIDS policy grounded in scientific reality died as a result of his policies.

Yet the damage in that case was done by the politicians. A leader who is determined to pursue a wrong-headed course will always find some scientist to support him. A world in which that were not true would be one in which a dangerously narrow consensus had taken hold.

This newspaper (The Economist) believes that global warming is a serious threat, and that the world needs to take steps to try to avert it. That is the job of the politicians. But we do not believe that climate change is a certainty. There are no certainties in science. Prevailing theories must be constantly tested against evidence, and refined, and more evidence collected, and the theories tested again. That is the job of the scientists. When they stop questioning orthodoxy, mankind will have given up the search for truth. The sceptics should not be silenced.

Dissent should not be silenced.

Sources:

Climate change:  A heated debate – Why political orthodoxy must not silence scientific argument – The Economist (26-NOV-2009)

UN body enters climate e-mail row – BBC

Boxer: Hackers should face criminal probe over ‘Climategate’ – The Hill

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Hacked CRU E-Mails Alter Conversation of Global Warming Debate

The New York Times headlines on Twitter displayed the following:  Hacked E-Mails Fuel Climate Change Skeptics

Apparently emails were hacked from a computer server at the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia and have quickly made their rounds on the internet.

While skeptics are quickly verifying and shifting through the hundreds of email messages, the alarmists are franticly working to defuse the possible fall-out.  (I, on the other hand, have a nagging feeling that I’m being punked.)

The timing on the release of these emails is a little suspicious to me as it is so close to the Climate Conference in Copenhagen next month.  Then again, in a previous post, I questioned the timing of a re-release of the story that the snow cap on Mount Kilimanjaro is shrinking.

The blogosphere was rampant with commentary:

Raw Story:  Skeptics claim stolen emails prove global warming a hoax

“Now, however, those skeptics can barely contain their glee at the release of a cache of stolen emails that they believe prove global warming is nothing but a colossal hoax.”

I wouldn’t exactly call this feeling ‘glee’.  I actually feel outrage when I’ve been deceived.  The question I have for these alarmist websites, is why aren’t they outraged at the deception?  Instead they are turning it around and putting the skeptics on the defensive.

Wonk Room :  Think Progress – ClimateGate:  Hacked Emails Reveal Global Warming Deniers Are Crazed Conspiracy Theorists

“Global warming deniers are sifting through the illegally obtained letters of private correspondence for “proof” that the scientific consensus on climate change is actually a global conspiracy.”

Do I detect a hint of panic in the Wonk Room?  In this one sentence they include name-calling (‘deniers’), an accusation (‘illegally obtained letters …’), sarcasm (‘”proof”’) and mockery (‘a global conspiracy’).

Climate Progress – Hacked Hadley emails Hottest Decade on Record and the Oceans Planet keeps warming:

“Here’s what we know so far:  CRU’s emails were hacked, the 2000s will easily be the hottest decade on record, and the planet keeps warming thanks to us!

“The NY Times blows the story.”

How do you ‘know’ these things are true?  It appears that there has been deception and collusion in some of these studies.  Besides, even without these emails, there is sufficient evidence to debunk 3 different points in the Climate Progress sentence:  ‘the 2000s will easily be the hottest decade on record’, ‘the planet keeps warming’, and ‘thanks to us’.

Some highlights from the New York Times story:

In a 1999 e-mail exchange about charts showing climate patterns over the last two millennia, Phil Jones, a longtime climate researcher at the East Anglia Climate Research Unit, said he had used a “trick” employed by another scientist, Michael Mann, to “hide a decline” in temperatures.

Dr. Mann, a professor at Pennsylvania State, confirmed in an interview that the e-mail was real. He said the choice of words by his colleague was poor but noted that scientists often use the word “trick” to refer to a good way to solve a problem, “and not something secret.” “It sounds incriminating, but when you look at what you’re talking about, there’s nothing there,” Dr. Mann said.

Dr Mann’s explanation doesn’t really improve his case.  He is, in essence, saying that he was solving the problem of – hiding a decline in temperatures.  Not only are the alarmists cherry-picking the scientific data but they are hiding data that does not support their theories and hypotheses.

“The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t,” Dr. Trenberth wrote.

Other scientists went on to rebut him, saying that the fluctuations were not inconsistent with a continuing warming trend.

Dr. Trenberth said Friday that he was appalled at the release of the e-mails, which he said were private discussions.

But he added that he thought the revelations might backfire against climate skeptics. If anything, he said, he thought that the messages showed “the integrity of scientists.”

Here is the link to the e-mails in question:  Anelegantchos

Hacked E-Mails Fuel Climate Change Skeptics

New York Times

November 21, 2009

By ANDREW C. REVKIN

Hundreds of private e-mails and documents hacked from a computer server at a British university are causing a stir among global warming skeptics, who say they show that climate scientists conspired to overstate the case for a human influence on climate change.

The e-mails, attributed to prominent American and British climate researchers, include discussions of scientific data and whether it should be released, exchanges about how best to combat the arguments of skeptics, and casual comments — in some cases derisive — about specific people known for their skeptical views. Drafts of scientific papers and a photo collage that portrays climate skeptics on an ice floe were also among the hacked data, some of which dates back 13 years.

In one e-mail exchange, a scientist writes of using a statistical “trick” in a chart illustrating a recent sharp warming trend. In another, a scientist refers to climate skeptics as “idiots.”

Some skeptics asserted Friday that the correspondence revealed an effort to withhold scientific information. “This is not a smoking gun, this is a mushroom cloud,” said Patrick J. Michaels, a climatologist who has long faulted evidence pointing to human-driven warming and is criticized in the documents.

Portions of the correspondence portrays the scientists as feeling under siege by the skeptics’ camp and worried that any stray comment or data glitch could be turned against them.

The cache of e-mails also includes references to journalists, including this reporter, and queries from journalists related to articles they were reporting.

Officials at the University of East Anglia confirmed in a statement on Friday that files had been stolen from a university server and that the police had been brought in to investigate the breach. They added, however, that they could not confirm that all the material circulating on the Internet was authentic.

But several scientists and others contacted by the Times confirmed that they were the authors or recipients of specific e-mails included in the file.

The revelations are bound to inflame the public debate as hundreds of negotiators prepare to hammer out an international climate accord at meetings in Copenhagen next month, and at least one scientist speculated that the timing was not coincidental.

The documents will undoubtedly raise questions about the quality of research on some specific questions and the actions of some scientists. But the evidence pointing to a growing human contribution to global warming is so broad and deep that the hacked material is unlikely to erode the overall argument.

In several e-mail exchanges, Kevin Trenberth, a climatologist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, and other scientists discussed whether a string of recent years of relatively stable temperatures undermined scientific models that predict long-term warming.

“The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t,” Dr. Trenberth wrote.

Other scientists went on to rebut him, saying that the fluctuations were not inconsistent with a continuing warming trend.

Dr. Trenberth said Friday that he was appalled at the release of the e-mails, which he said were private discussions.

But he added that he thought the revelations might backfire against climate skeptics. If anything, he said, he thought that the messages showed “the integrity of scientists.”

Still, some of the comments might lend themselves to sinister interpretations.

In a 1999 e-mail exchange about charts showing climate patterns over the last two millennia, Phil Jones, a longtime climate researcher at the East Anglia Climate Research Unit, said he had used a “trick” employed by another scientist, Michael Mann, to “hide a decline” in temperatures.

Dr. Mann, a professor at Pennsylvania State, confirmed in an interview that the e-mail was real. He said the choice of words by his colleague was poor but noted that scientists often use the word “trick” to refer to a good way to solve a problem, “and not something secret.” “It sounds incriminating, but when you look at what you’re talking about, there’s nothing there,” Dr. Mann said.

Dr. Jones, writing in an e-mail, declined to be interviewed and pasted in the university’s statement.

Stephen McIntyre, a blogger who has for years been using his Web site, climateaudit.org, to challenge data used to chart climate patterns and came in for heated criticism in some e-mails, called the revelations “quite breathtaking.”

But several scientists whose names appear repeatedly in the e-mails said they merely revealed that scientists are human beings, and did nothing to undercut the body of research on global warming.

“Science doesn’t work because we’re all nice,” said Gavin A. Schmidt, a climatologist at NASA whose e-mail exchanges with colleagues over a variety of recent climate studies were included in the cache. “Newton may have been an ass, but the theory of gravity still works.”

He said the breach at the University of East Anglia was discovered after hackers who had gained access to the correspondence sought Tuesday to hack into a different server supporting realclimate.org, a blog unrelated to NASA that he runs with several other scientists pressing the case for global warming.

The intruders sought to create a mock blog post there and to upload the full batch of files from Britain – nearly 200 megabytes’ worth.

That effort was thwarted, Dr. Schmidt said, and scientists immediately notified colleagues at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit. Nearly all the material in the hacked files, which quickly spread to a variety of servers, originated with or was sent to climate scientists at the school.

The first posts that revealed details from the files appeared on Thursday at The Air Vent, a Web site devoted to skeptics’ arguments. Almost instantly readers there and elsewhere began posting excerpts that they felt illustrated scientific bias or dishonesty.

At first, said Dr. Michaels, the climatologist who has faulted some of the science undergirding the global warming consensus, his instinct was to ignore the correspondence as “just the way scientists talk.”

But on Friday, he said, after reading more deeply, he felt that some exchanges reflected a concerted effort to block the release of data for independent review.

He said that some e-mails mused about a way to discredit him by challenging the veracity of his doctoral dissertation at the University of Wisconsin by claiming he knew his research was wrong.

“This shows these are people willing to bend rules and go after other people’s reputations in very serious ways,” he said.

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Mount Kilimanjaro’s snow cap disappearing – Alarmists disagree over Global Warming’s involvement

The blame everything on Global Warming crowd is back.  The latest target is Mount Kilimanjaro.

According to scientists, Kilimanjaro has lost 85% of its snow cap since 1912 and has shrunk by 26% since 2000.

Of course scientists say the most likely culprit – Global Warming.

“The findings point to the rise in global temperatures as the most likely cause of the ice loss. Changes in cloudiness and precipitation may have also played a smaller, less role, especially in recent decades, they added”

Let’s first point out that in the mid 1970’s, the concern was that we were heading into another ice age.  Global cooling was highly discussed in the mainstream media including in Newsweek as well as the television program In Search Of.

While the earth was cooling, we must note that the snow caps were still shrinking on Kilimanjaro.

Before discussing the conflicting reports, let’s begin with the November, 2009 articles:

“The snows capping Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s tallest peak, are shrinking rapidly and could vanish altogether in 20 years, most likely due to global warming, a US study published Monday said.”

One of the study’s producers was Ohio State University earth sciences professor, Lonnie Thompson.

“The fact that so many glaciers throughout the tropics and subtropics are showing similar responses suggests an underlying common cause,” Thompson said in a statement. “The increase of Earth’s near surface temperatures, coupled with even greater increases in the mid- to upper-tropical troposphere, as documented in recent decades, would at least partially explain” the observations.

Changes in cloudiness and snowfall may also be involved, though they appear less important, according to the study.

According to this study Kilimanjaro could be ice-free as early as 2022.

Clearly the ice has been thinning for decades, this study compared photographs from 1912 and 1953 as well as satellite images from 1976 and 1989.

A study comparing new measurements with those taken in 2000 show that a layer of Kilimanjaro ice between six and 17 feet thick has vanished since then.

What about the earlier photographs and satellite images?

Thompson cited five surveys of Kilimanjaro, from 1912, 1953, 1976, 1989 and 2000. From 1912 to 1953, global temperature rose 0.74ºF. Most scientists think this warming had mainly to do with the sun, and little from human activity, as the bulk of human greenhouse gas emissions took place in the second half of the last century, not the first.

Kilimanjaro’s glaciers lost 45 percent of their real extent in that era of non-human warming. If the glaciers had continued on their merry way at the pace established in that period, they would be gone by now.

This data was provided by Patrick Michaels from the Cato Institute.  Michaels points out that 21 percent of the coverage was reduced between 1953 and 1976.  This was during the period of global cooling.   According to Michaels:

Ohio State could have accurately written the following hype at that time: “Kilimanjaro’s glaciers will completely disappear by 2015 if this cooling trend continues”.

Interestingly, the slowest rate of decline occurred after 1976 when 12 percent of the ‘original mass disappeared.’

Admittedly, Michaels is a Global Warming skeptic, however it doesn’t take much effort to find contradicting studies from scientists who believe in the Global Warming threat yet disagree with Thompson’s assertion.

This from Kilimanjaro’s Shrinking Snow Not Sign of Warming (2007):

While the retreat of glaciers and mountaintop ice in the mid-latitudes — where much of the world’s human population lives — is definitely linked to global climate change, the same cannot be said of Kilimanjaro, the researchers wrote in the July-August edition of American Scientist magazine.

This 2007 study was produced by pro-Warmers Philip Mote and glaciologist Georg Kaser from the University of Innsbruck.

Most of the retreat occurred before 1953, nearly two decades before any conclusive evidence of atmospheric warming was available, they wrote.

“It is certainly possible that the icecap has come and gone many times over hundreds of thousands of years,” Mote, a climatologist, said in a statement.

“But for temperate glaciers, there is ample evidence that they are shrinking, in part because of warming from greenhouse gases.”

Unlike mid-latitude glaciers, which are warmed and melted by surrounding air in the summer, the disappearance of Kilimanjaro’s ice is driven by solar radiation, since the air around it is rarely above freezing, they wrote.

From NatureJobs.com:

“As director of the new Oregon Climate Change Research Institute in Corvallis, Mote will design a research agenda to help the state and private sector incorporate climate-change considerations into their policy and investment decisions”

Mote and Kaser believe that where glaciers are shrinking due to Global Warming, the same can not be said for those on Kilimanjaro.

Much of Kilimanjaro’s ice is vanishing by sublimation — where ice at very low temperatures converts straight to water vapor without going through a watery phase — rather than by melting, the scientists said.

Interestingly, an article from 2008 (Kilimanjaro could be snow-free by 2020: UN) opens as follows:

Some of Africa’s most famous landscapes such as snow-capped Mount Kilimanjaro and Lake Chad are at risk of vanishing forever as a result of global warming, a new UN report warned.

Achin Steiner, executive director of the United Nations’ Environment Program (UNEP) said that ‘it was vital that the international community delivers a new climate agreement before the global convention.’  This 2008 report along with Thompson’s 2009 version of the same report puts the alarmist view on Kilimanjaro in advance of the convention.

The survey warned that Mt Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, could be snow-free by 2020.

What I found interesting was the paragraph immediately preceding that statement.

Some of the startling revelations by the report include satellite images of Mount Kilimanjaro’s glaciers which have been disappearing since the beginning of the 20th century.

This, of course, brings us back to the question of how Kilimanjaro’s glaciers have been shrinking in the decades before Global Warming.

An article written by James M. Taylor for Junk Science (Kilimanjaro’s Snow Cap) from 2005 addressed the following:

The ice cap atop Central Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro has been slowly melting for decades, and perhaps even centuries, scientists report. Until recently, global warming was a prime suspect.

Scientists now agree, however, that the retreat of Kilimanjaro’s ice cap is due primarily to deforestation at the base of the mountain.

That conclusion has been reached by a wide variety of scientists and scientific publications. Nevertheless, the Reuters News Agency has teamed up with several extremist environmental activist groups to falsely report that global warming is causing a retreat of Kilimanjaro’s ice cap.

This is exactly what we’re seeing now.  Taylor links to numerous other studies that support his assertion that causes other than Global Warming can be attributed to the shrinking snow caps.

Dry Air:

“A drastic drop in atmospheric moisture at the end of the 19th century and the ensuing drier climatic conditions are likely forcing glacier retreat on Kilimanjaro.”

Temperature is NOT the driving force:

The underlying climatic forcing, however, merits further exploration, which was emphasized in the latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [2001] in the context of global warming, since it has not been demonstrated that air temperature is the primary control of tropical glacier recession.

{snip}

On a regional scale the background of this study is twofold. First, it has been speculated that general global warming is directly driving the retreat of Kilimanjaro’s glaciers [e.g., Irion, 2001]. However, detailed analyses of glacier retreat in the global tropics uniformly reveal that changes in climate variables related to air humidity prevail in controlling the modern retreat

Deforestation:

“Although it’s tempting to blame the ice loss on global warming, researchers think that deforestation of the mountain’s foothills is the more likely culprit. Without the forests’ humidity, previously moisture-laden winds blew dry. No longer replenished with water, the ice is evaporating in the strong equatorial sunshine.”

There have been enough studies over the years to completely dispute Thompson’s (and others) claim that Global Warming is the root cause of the shrinking snow caps on Mount Kilimanjaro.  Regardless of which side of the Global Warming argument you belong, one thing is clear – Global Warming is not the culprit.

As a result, one can deduce that those who throw the claim around fall into one of two categories:

Those who cherry-picked the facts – intentionally ignoring all evidence that is contrary to the position they support.

Lazy scientists who refuse to do thorough research.  Instead of looking at all the facts – including previous studies and reports – they work to prove their hypothesis.

Either way, it is disingenuous.  What is worse was a simple Google search contradicts Thompson’s study by people who support the same pro-Global Warming position.  Since media outlets refuse to investigative research or have their own political agenda, it is easy to see how a incorrect study can be publicized in a story distributed by a major news outlet.

It is also shameless that AP would run this story – since it is essentially a reprint from June 2008 and right before the upcoming global convention in Copenhagen.

kilimanjaro 19127000

Kilimanjaro 1976 2006

Kilimanjaro 1976 and 2006

Kilimanjaro 1993 2000

Kilimanjaro 1993 and 2000

Sources used:

Snows of Kilimanjaro could vanish in 20 years: study -  02-NOV-2009

Current Kilimanjaro story

Snow cap disappearing from Mount Kilimanjaro -  2-NOV-2009

Kilimanjaro Snow May Vanish In 20 Years – 03-NOV-2009

Kilimanjaro could be snow-free by 2020: UN – 11-JUN-2008

Philip Mote & George Kaser’s position

Kilimanjaro’s Shrinking Snow Not Sign of Warming – 13-JUN-2007

Kilimanjaro snow decline ‘not due to global warming’ – 12-JUN-2007

Skeptic resources

The Snow Jobs of Kilimanjaro

Junk Science: Kilimanjaro’s Snow Cap – 01-MAY-2005

Links found through the Junk Science article:

Modern Glacier Retreat on Kilimanjaro as Evidence of Climate Change:  Observations and Facts - March 15, 2004

Journal of Geophysical Research August 25, 2004

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AP scoop: Statisticians decide – Alarmists right; Deniers wrong

One of the top stories on Yahoo this past week was the Seth Borenstein / AP article called AP IMPACT: Statisticians reject global cooling.’

My first thought was ‘oh, good. Statisticians are now overruling climatologists.’

Before I begin, I want to point something out. What you are reading now is a blog post. It is information I disseminate and then put my own particular spin on the writing style.

Borenstein is a writer for a ‘news’ organization. His job should be to disseminate information and present it in a objective way allowing the readers to reach their own conclusions.

That said – here’s how Borenstein’s article begins:

WASHINGTON – Have you heard that the world is now cooling instead of warming? You may have seen some news reports on the Internet or heard about it from a provocative new book. Only one problem: It’s not true, according to an analysis of the numbers done by several independent statisticians for The Associated Press.

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Seth Borenstein

Borenstein takes great pains to let us know just how objective and unbiased this AP research was yet they gave the story to one of their biggest alarmist reporters.

In a blind test, the AP gave temperature data to four independent statisticians and asked them to look for trends, without telling them what the numbers represented. The experts found no true temperature declines over time.

The statisticians examined two spreadsheets. One was an annual listing of global temperature changes from 1880 to 2009 using ground measurements provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The other was an annual listing ranging from 1979 to 2009 using atmospheric measurements by satellite provided by the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

“If you look at the data and sort of cherry-pick a micro-trend within a bigger trend, that technique is particularly suspect,” said John Grego, a professor of statistics at the University of South Carolina.

When first reading the previous paragraph, one really isn’t certain who Borenstein meant to indict. Clearly, the alarmists cherry-pick their research yet claim the skeptics do.

Don’t believe me? Here are a few examples.

Greenpeace and members of Congress publicly blame Global Warming for the 2009 California wildfires

They cherry-picked the facts to ignore the cooling temperatures in the Pacific actually cause California to be drier.

Katrina and other hurricanes are fiercer courtesy of Global Warming.

The fiercer hurricanes are actually limited to the last 3 decades. If they were a little more honest they would investigate the hurricane seasons from 1933.

Quick note: Notice that the storms all started west of 45W. There were no satellites back in 1933 so there is a good possibility that a decent number of storms were missed yet 1933 still had 21 named storms, 10 hurricanes.

Global warming skeptics base their claims on an unusually hot year in 1998. Since then, they say, temperatures have dropped — thus, a cooling trend. But it’s not that simple.

Since 1998, temperatures have dipped, soared, fallen again and are now rising once more. Records kept by the British meteorological office and satellite data used by climate skeptics still show 1998 as the hottest year. However, data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA show 2005 has topped 1998. Published peer-reviewed scientific research generally cites temperatures measured by ground sensors, which are from NOAA, NASA and the British, more than the satellite data.

This is a disingenuous argument by Borenstein. I don’t think one scientist believes that a trend means that for warming to exist temperatures must increase annually or for cooling to decrease annually.

Borenstein did discuss El Nino and La Nina but did not elaborate.  In the chart below, notice how El Nino, La Nina, volcanic cooling and aerosol content affects the temperature.  {hat tip to ICECAP}

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The recent Internet chatter about cooling led NOAA’s climate data center to re-examine its temperature data. It found no cooling trend.

“The last 10 years are the warmest 10-year period of the modern record,” said NOAA climate monitoring chief Deke Arndt. “Even if you analyze the trend during that 10 years, the trend is actually positive, which means warming.”

That’s as ridiculous as me saying – if I start at 150 pounds and gain 10 per year for the next 7 years before losing the 70 I put on and maintaining it for 2 years it doesn’t mean that I’ve lost weight. It means I’m fatter over the last 5 years than the first 5. {Doing the math: First 5 years of 150, 160, 170, 180. 190 = 850 pounds. Second 5 years: 200, 210, 220, 150, 150 = 930 pounds. Though for the second 5 years I am heavier, I still look good at 150 pounds which I have now maintained for 2 years.}

To be honest, you must look at the annual temperatures, not the average over a 10 year period. That would be – cherry-picking.

Then Borenstein had some subjective fun at the expense of the reader. He used perspectives from 2 skeptics showing a contradiction. Interestingly, he didn’t name the first skeptic unless his name is ‘One prominent skeptic.’

Next, he played 3-card monte with the starting dates for the downward trend. Borenstein points out that skeptics say the cooling trend begins after 1998. He then proceeds to discuss 1997 and later.

Skeptic experts don’t say to ignore the data prior to 1998. Including all the data supports the trend.

Borenstein uses strong subjective journalist practices by presenting the argument he wants to refute first in order to follow it up with his perspective. An example is when he discusses one quote from the book by Stephen J. Dubner, “Super Freakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance” and then follows it up with a ‘rebuke’ from the Union of Concerned Scientists.

How’s that for a name? As if only Global Warming Alarmist Scientists are concerned.

The rest of the article proceeded along the same path. Upon looking at an archive of Borenstein articles, it is immediately evident that he has a history of writing alarmist articles. He doesn’t only write about Global Warming, it’s just when he does, he proves he is an alarmist.

  • “’The Arctic is screaming’ — summer sea ice could be gone in five years” 12/11/2007
  • “Rising Seas Likely to Flood U.S. History” 9/22/2007
  • “New US climate report dire, but offers hope” 6/17/2009

To his credit, he does call those who disagree with him – skeptics. He doesn’t use name-calling techniques so for that – thank you.

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BBC / PM Brown use alarmists fear only 10 days after printing ‘What Happened to Global Warming?’

On October 9th, the BBC ran a story entitled ‘What happened to Global Warming.’

It accurately pointed out that the warmest year globally was 1998 and not anytime in this millennium.  The article also asked that if man-made carbon dioxide has continued to rise, ‘what on Earth is going on?’

According to the story, skeptics argued that Pacific Decadal oscillation (PDO) is one of the most important trends that warm and cool the earth cyclically.

It was a very informative article written by Paul Hudson and can be found here:  What happened to global warming?

So how do we explain the egregious statements printed by the same BBC News on October 19thPM warns of climate ‘catastrophe.’

We better watch out, if we listen to British Prime Minister Gordon Brown (renowned climate expert) when he warned of ‘floods, droughts and killer heatwaves if world leaders fail to agree a deal on climate change.’

He also warned that there was ‘no plan B’ and no turning back.  “Once the damage from unchecked emissions growth is done, no retrospective global agreement, in some future period, can undo that choice.”

“The extraordinary summer heatwave of 2003 in Europe resulted in over 35,000 extra deaths.”

This article continued on with its doomsayer statements without offering a shred of scientific data.  In fact, the most interesting item I took from the ‘catastrophe’ article was the following paragraph.

“During his term as chancellor, environmental groups often accused Gordon Brown of not paying enough attention to climate change, and the Treasury of blocking “green” policies. He was sometimes compared unfavourably to Tony Blair.”

What fascinates me is the people who are just now coming out vocally in support of Global Warming as well as those who seem to be screaming louder.

Why I find it fascinating is that evidence now supports that the warming cycle that ran from the 1970’s through 1998 has now begun turning around.    Temperatures are now on a cooling trend and the Arctic Ice extent has increased 23.4 percent over the last two years.

Another subtle item that I find humorous is that the term ‘Global Warming’ has been replaced with ‘Global Climate Change’.

It’s also nice to see that the Alarmists continue to use their scare tactics when promoting their case.

Mr Brown said: “If we do not reach a deal at this time, let us be in no doubt: once the damage from unchecked emissions growth is done, no retrospective global agreement, in some future period, can undo that choice.

“So we should never allow ourselves to lose sight of the catastrophe we face if present warming trends continue.”

We all better listen to Chicken Little – The sky is falling.

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Peter Wadhams contradicts Arctic ice extent facts

This morning I woke to the following story on Reuters:  ‘Arctic to be ice-free in summer in 20 years; scientist.’  

That would be fine except that it contradicts a story we posted on September 24th which indicated that the ice extent actually increased for the second successive year.  In fact, the Arctic Ice Extent on 17 September 2009 was 23.4 percent greater than it was on the same date in 2007.

[Read:  Arctic Ice Increases For 2nd Straight Year But Don’t Tell the Alarmists]

The Reuters story opened with the following:

Global warming will leave the Arctic Ocean ice-free during the summer within 20 years, raising sea levels and harming wildlife such as seals and polar bears, a leading British polar scientist said on Thursday.

Peter Wadhams, professor of ocean physics at the University of Cambridge, said much of the melting will take place within a decade, although the winter ice will stay for hundreds of years.

Does Wadhams have any supporting evidence to suggest that the two year increase in Arctic ice will take a turn over the next 20 years?  First he would have to acknowledge that the increase occurred.

Scientists say evidence of melting Arctic ice is one of the clearest signs of global warming and it should send a warning to world leaders meeting in Copenhagen in December for U.N. talks on a new climate treaty.

“The data supports the new consensus view — based on seasonal variation of ice extent and thickness, changes in temperatures, winds and especially ice composition — that the Arctic will be ice-free in summer within about 20 years,” Wadhams said in a statement. “Much of the decrease will be happening within 10 years.”

Peter WadhamsWadhams is considered one of the world’s leading experts on sea ice cover in the North Pole region so why ignore data that refutes this data?

One of the things we try to accomplish here is properly vet the organizations or people who discuss this issue.  As such, we have forgone using some people as they may have been employed by or served on a board of a company that would cause a conflict of interest with the subject matter.

Reuters obviously doesn’t concern themselves with such trivialities.  A couple of simple Google searches produced the following information about Wadhams.

Berks at NERC snub Peter Wadhams, again  

This article was published in the Telegraph (UK) on 04 September 2007. 

He lived, but he has now fled the country after suffering academic death by a thousand cuts at the hands of a research council charged with keeping British environmental research afloat. In my humble view, it is a disgrace.

Wadhams is most famous among scientists as the man whose researches aboard a British sub in 1996 revealed that Arctic ice had thinned by 40 per cent since the 1970s.

Do we have to mention that the warming trend ran from the late 1970’s through 1998?  Therefore, it should be no surprise that the Arctic ice had thinned during this time period. 

When researching weather patterns you can’t extract a portion of time.  You must include historical patterns.  That is why some in the scientific community were warning of a coming ice age since the ice was increasing during the 1960’s and 1970’s.

Trends occur over multiple decades and there is significant evidence that the pendulum is now trending cooler over recent years.  Wadham doesn’t have to venture far from the same Arctic he is researching.

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Atlantic water makes its way into the arctic beneath the ice from Barents Sea reaching Siberia a few years later. Pacific waters enter through the Bering Strait. See how the Pacific (PDO) and Atlantic (AMO based temperatures relate to the arctic temperatures as measured by Polyakov.

Notice the dip in the Arctic Mean Temperature in the 1970’s – around the Ice Age concern – as well as the earlier dip in the 1920’s.  Conversely, see the peaks in the 1930’s and around 2000.  Clearly, this is a cyclical temperature pattern.

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NOAA GHCN (Global Historical Climatology Network) arctic temperatures show the same cyclical temperature pattern.

Both graphs from Intellicast.com

What also caught my attention was that Wadhams had suffered ‘academic death by a thousand cuts at the hands of a research council.’

Apparently, Wadhams has the ability to do his research from British and US naval submarines which seemingly upset the British government’s National Environment Research Council (NERC).

“NERC is constantly saying in its publicity that sea ice is a critical parameter of climate change,” says Wadhams. “But it won’t provide me with any funding, even though the submarines are being provided free of charge.”

[snip]

NERC has turned down his last TEN grant applications – including critical studies into mysterious giant whirlpools off Greenland that may drive the Gulf Stream, another topic on which he is a world authority. “I am the most experienced Arctic researcher in Britain. So I have to conclude that it is personal,” he says.

But it may be bigger than that. His problem may be that he is based at a British university, Cambridge, and not at NERC’s big budget National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, which soaks up most of the available cash for studying the oceans, including the Arctic.

Gideon Henderson, professor of earth sciences at Oxford University, complained to a Commons select committee back in May of a “widespread frustration” in the country’s top universities that NERC was hogging all the cash.

As this 2007 article points out, Wadhams had ten consecutive grant applications denied. 

One of the attacks alarmists use is that skeptics are all on the payroll of Big Oil.  What goes unnoticed is that many of the alarmist scientists need grants in order to continue research.  Without grant money or if the hypothesis is disproved, the scientist must move onto a new research project.

By producing results that support the hypothesis there could be support to continue the research.  And if the subject matter is extreme enough, it is easier to garner grant support.  At this point in history, not too many subjects can harvest the kind of grant dollars that ‘Global Warming’ can.

As with all good Global Warming alarmist articles the Reuters story conclude with the following:

“The Arctic Sea ice holds a central position in our Earth’s climate system. Take it out of the equation and we are left with a dramatically warmer world,” he said.

“This could lead to flooding affecting one-quarter of the world’s population, substantial increases in greenhouse gas emissions …. and extreme global weather changes.”

Britain’s Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband said the research “sets out the stark realities of climate change.”

“This further strengthens the case for an ambitious global deal in Copenhagen,” he added.

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