by Steven W. Mosher
December 18, 2009 (pop.org) – How do you create a Global Warming panic when the weather isn’t cooperating? Here are a few tricks of the trade that the scammers are using to explain away the recent cooling trend, as revealed by the hacked e-mails of the world’s leading advocates of man-made Global Warming.
As you read these disturbing e-mails, bear in mind that Obama administration officials remain determined—scandal or no scandal, fraud or no fraud—to compromise the future prosperity and security of our country by their CO2 cap-and-tax schemes.
Trick No. 1: You Destroy Conflicting Data:
Phil Jones, who directs the Climate Research Unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, was emphatic in his 21 February 2005 e-mail to American Mike “Hockey Stick” Mann and two others: “I'm getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data. Don't any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act!”
Here Jones appears to violate a basic rule of scientific research, namely, that you make your raw data available on request so that others can verify—or disprove—your hypothesis. Why would the CRU director not be happy to turn over his evidence of climate change, unless . . . his original temperature data didn’t show any convincing rise in temperature at all and it had been conveniently “lost” in consequence?
And it is not his temperature data anyway. The whole CRU was in fact set up in the early 1980s (with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy!) to produce the world's first comprehensive record of surface temperature. Phil Jones and Tom Wigley were sent data gathered over the course of decades by thousands of temperature recording stations located in dozens of countries. This “Jones and Wigley” record, as it is called, served until 2007 as the primary reference standard for the UN climate panel.
After years of stonewalling, Jones now admits that he “merged the data we have received into existing series or begun new ones. . . . Data storage availability in the 1980s meant that we were not able to keep the multiple sources for some sites, only the station series after adjustment for homogeneity issues. We, therefore, do not hold the original raw data but only the value-added (i.e., quality controlled and homogenized) data.” (See Phil Jones to Graham F Haughton, 27 October 2009)
In other words, this valuable data set, compiled at great expense . . . was discarded. It doesn’t require an advanced degree in the hard sciences (which I have, by the way) to understand that you never, ever, under any circumstances destroy raw data. (The claim that “data storage” was lacking is nonsense.)
Did the raw temperature data contain an inconvenient truth? Can anyone spell c-o-v-e-r u-p?
Trick No. 2: You Cherry Pick Your Data to Show a Recent Rise in Temperatures:
Mike Mann is the author of the now famous “hockey stick” graph, which asserts that global temperatures remaining virtually fixed for centuries, then shot up in the last few decades. The “hockey stick” was Exhibit Number One in the UN’s 2001 climate report, which went on to claim that this dramatic increase in temperature was the result of human activity. (See Graph 1)
The graph was questioned even by the Global Warmers themselves, one of whom wrote that “Mann is an outlier though not egregiously so.” (Curt Covey to Christopher Monckton, 5 February 2007).
Mann refused to release either his data or his algorithm for years, but the Climategate e-mails reveal an even more disturbing instance of cherry-picking data.
The story is too complicated to tell in detail (the whole sordid tale can be found here,) but it involves another famous “hockey stick” graph, this one based on tree rings from Yamal, Russia. This was crafted by another CRU Global Warmer, Keith Briffa. It went on to be used in a dozen other temperature reconstructions, all of which the UN climate panel said validated Mann’s original graph. But Briffa, like Mann and his own boss, Phil Jones, for ten years refused to release the data on which he based his graph.
When Briffa’s hand was finally forced a few weeks ago, it turned out that he had used only a tiny, biased fraction of the raw data available. When skeptic Steve McIntyre calculated a revised chronology based on more complete data, the sharp temperature increase at the end of the twentieth century simply vanished. The twentieth century now showed no significant trend. The blade of the Yamal hockey stick was gone.
Phil Jones later claimed in an e-mail to Graham F. Haughton on 27 October 2009 that “The claims of [Steve McIntyre] are exaggerated.”
Left unanswered is the question of why his Institute seems to specialize in cherry-picking data to bolster the case for “Global Warming,” while keeping the original data—which weakens the case—under wraps?
Trick No. 3: You “Adjust” Away Inconvenient Trends That Threaten to Derail Your Hypothesis:
The warming trend of the early Twentieth Century, which ran from 1910 to 1940, is a major embarrassment for the Global Warmers. They can’t simply ignore this “bend” in the hockey stick, because it is too well-known and too well-documented. But neither can they blame it on people and their infernal combustion engines, since atmospheric CO2 scarcely increased over this time period.
Instead, they go to great lengths to try and “adjust it away,” as Tom Wigley explains to Phil Jones:
Here are some speculations on correcting SSTs [Sea Surface Temperatures] to partly explain the 1940s warming blip. . . . The land also shows the 1940s blip . . . So, if we could reduce the ocean blip by, say, 0.15 degC [degrees Centigrade], then this would be significant for the global mean—but we’d still have to explain the land blip. . . . I’ve chosen 0.15 here deliberately. This still leaves an ocean blip, and I think one needs to have some form of ocean blip to explain the land blip. . . . My 0.15 adjustment leaves things consistent with this, so you can see where I am coming from. . . . It would be good to remove at least part of the 1940s blip, but we are still left with ‘why the blip.’
In case you didn’t get all that, let me translate what Wigley is saying into plain English:
“I am fudging the data to take out as much of the ocean warming as I can. I can’t take out all of it, because then we would have no explanation for the land warming, which would raise suspicions. But even with my fudge factor, we still don’t have a convincing explanation for why the ocean warmed during this period.”
Why the blip, indeed.
By the way, the Climategate deniers who dissed the e-mails as “ten years old” should note that the date on this one is 27 September 2009.
Trick No. 4: You Cherry Pick the Model to “Prove” Global Warming is Real.
This 14 October 2009 e-mail from insider Tom Wigley to Mike “Hockey Stick” Mann speaks for itself:
“The figure you sent [from Gavin Schmidt] is very deceptive. As an example, historical runs with PCM (Parallel Climate Model) look as thought they match observations—but the match is a fluke. PCM has no indirect aerosol forcing and a low climate sensitivity—compensating errors. In my (perhaps too harsh) view, there have been a number of dishonest presentations of model results by individual authors and by [the UN climate panel].”
The response, from Schmidt himself, makes it clear that he was working backward from the recent cooling trend to salvage the Global Warming models. “The kinds of things we are hearing, “no model showed a cooling”, the “data is outside the range of the models,” need to be addressed directly,” Schmidt explained.
His “very deceptive” figure was an effort to make the real world data showing static or cooling temperatures appear not to contradict the model predicting Global Warming. You get the idea.
You won’t hear them talk like this in public, of course, where they close ranks in defense of their increasingly discredited theory.
Trick No. 5: You Spend a Lot of time Promoting Your Views with the Media—and Publicly Attacking Your Skeptics.
When the BBC finally—after a decade of no global warming—began to tentatively question whether temperatures were rising after all, the Global Warmers circulated frantic e-mails entitled the “BBC U-turn on climate.”
The reaction of Mike “Hockey Stick” Mann was to go after the reporter:
xtremely disappointing to see something like this appear on BBC. It’s particularly odd, since climate is usually Richard Black’s beat at BBC (and he does a great job). From what I can tell, this guy was formerly a weather person at the Met Office (British Meteorological Office). . . . it might be appropriate for the Met Office to have a say about this, I might ask Richard Black what’s up here? (Michael Mann to Phil Jones, Tom Wigley and others, 13 October 2009)
Trick No. 6: “The Science is Settled. The Science is Settled.”
Realizing that their models are open to question, the Global Warmers have tried frantically to shut off debate by chanting in unison: “The science is settled. The science is settled.” Critics are mocked and derided.
When one scientist suggested that skeptics like Fred Singer and Lord Christopher Monckton be taken seriously, “Hockey Stick” Mann exploded: “I can’t believe the nonsense you are spouting, and I furthermore cannot imagine why you would be so presumptuous as to entrain me into an exchange with these charlatans.”
What set him off was Lord Monckton’s comment, forwarded in an e-mail, that the UN climate reports were unreliable:
I understand that the IPCC's [the UN climate panel’s] 2007 draft does not contain an apology for the defective “hockey-stick” graph, which the US National Academy of Sciences has described as having “a validation skill not significantly different from zero.”
In plain English, this means the graph was rubbish. It is difficult to have confidence in a body which, after its principal conclusion is demonstrated in the peer-reviewed, scientific literature and in numerous independent reports as having been useless, fails to make the appropriate withdrawal and apology. Worse, the UN continues to use the defective graph. This failure of basic academic honesty on the IPCC's part was the main reason why I began my investigation of the supposed climate-change “consensus”.
Contrary to what you may have heard, the science of “man-made Global Warming” was never settled. Now that these e-mails have exposed the duplicity of that theory’s chief backers, perhaps we can begin trying to understand what, if anything, is really happening with the earth’s climate.
For, as Kevin Trenberth admitted to Mike “Hockey Stick” Mann on 14 October 2009: “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 e-mails do prove one thing, however. They make abundantly clear that much of what was presented as objective “scientific research” by the Global Warmers was nothing more than cleverly disguised advocacy for the radical environmentalist, radical anti-people belief that man is slowly destroying his planet.
At the end of the day, it may turn out that the only thing “man-made” about Global Warming is the hysteria and hot air that has been generated by theory’s heated backers. That is certainly anthropogenic.
Steven W. Mosher is the President of the Population Research Institute.