Met Office in the Mail on Sunday

I was thinking of writing a brief post about today’s Daily Mail article by David Rose that discusses both the leaked IPCC AR5 draft and Nic Lewis’s response to the Met Office report about climate sensitivity. Given that I’m feeling a little lazy, I though I would instead reblog this Met Office post that does quite a good job of discussing both (although it doesn’t say much about the leaked draft as it – quite rightly – suggests that we should wait for it to be published before discussing it in detail). I may write a bit more about this at a later stage though.

Official blog of the Met Office news team

An article appears in the Mail on Sunday today focusing on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) forthcoming Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) which it bills this as the ‘world’s most authoritative climate study’.

It’s fair to say that AR5 is expected to be the most comprehensive review of climate change science to date. The first part of the report, from its Working Group I (WGI), has been worked on by more than 800 scientists from around the world who have assessed more than 9,000 scientific publications and taken into account more than 50,000 comments from over 1000 expert reviewers.

The WGI report is now in its final stages and the major conclusions will be finalised and released on 27 September. It is at that point that we should debate its findings and their implications.

Further parts of the report, from its Working Group II and III, as well as…

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13 Responses to Met Office in the Mail on Sunday

  1. BBD says:

    Of course David Rose isn’t trying to mislead the British electorate about the state of scientific knowledge in the run-up to the release of AR5 WG1. Perish the thought.

  2. BBD says:

    I’m not going to say much about Rose’s article except that it is the usual tripe. I noticed the obligatory megaphoning for the GWPF:

    Climate change sceptics are more outspoken. Dr Benny Peiser, of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, described the leaked report as a ‘staggering concoction of confusion, speculation and sheer ignorance’.

    As for the pause, he said ‘it would appear that the IPCC is running out of answers .  .  . to explain why there is a widening gap between predictions and reality’.

    I know I posted this link only recently, but for anyone who may have missed it, here is a very illuminating backgrounder on the… special relationship between the Mail and the GWPF.

  3. Yes, your link is quite illuminating. A bit too large to simply be a statistical fluctuation.

  4. While nothing needs to be said about the stupied Denier-nonsense spouted by Rose, I’d like to make a short comment on Nic Lewis “techno-bubbling” on Met Office report.

    First off, his excessive devotion to TCR/ECS makes me think of a mathematician rather than a trained atmospheric scientist. Nothing wrong with that as long as one doesn’t put all its faith into these numbers. Tom and I, we’ve already mentioned elsewhere how sensitive the results of Otto et al. even are to even tiny changes in the forcing assumptions. Yet, this is what he bases most of his argument on. For example, he repeats one claim made in the original paper (with respect to the data for the decade 2000-09), which is simply wrong:
    Although caution is required in interpreting results for any short period, arguably […] the estimate based on the most recent decade’s data is the most reliable since it has the strongest forcing and is much less affected by the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo.
    It’s the last decade where we have least confidence in the external forcing! We might have better ocean heat data now than ever before, but everything else takes some time to be sorted. That he seems to trusts these results, strikes me as extremely odd.
    I stopped reading the whole document as I don’t care too much about it anymore. Seems the MetOffice is going to be drawn in a fight about single words and hundredth’s of decimal degrees in TCR/ESC numbers. But hey, that’s certainly more entertaining than focussing on the results of the AR5 report once released … at least for some …

    Nic, in case you are reading here: In general, I appreciate your efforts (and is was good having talked to you briefly on your way out of the Lab), but why is it so hard for you to embrace the whole body of evidence? There isn’t just one model, and there are many more TCR/ECS studies than you make your readers believe. Of course, not all of them are in support of the low-ball estimate you seem to defend so fervently, but yet they exist. After all, I certainly agree with many things you say in your comment, but I can’t see how the nitpicking style and the slightly offensive attitude towards the MetOffice helps to make your case.

  5. BBD says:


    I’m suspect I know why NL acts as he does, and I suspect you suspect you know too 😉 It has nothing to do with scientific objectivity.

  6. 😉 … However, I strongly believe he considers himself totally objective. For this to explain, we probably have to borrow from an entire different branch of sciences.

    Btw, I should really make it a habit to read my postings before I submit them. The previous one is downright riddled with mistakes. Luckily, only spelling mistakes 🙂

  7. Thanks Karsten. I was considering writing a bit more about Nic Lewis’s response to the Met Office report but you’ve pretty much said all I was going to say.

  8. BBD says:

    Yes, he “knows” he is correct.


  9. Somewhat related:

    Seems that the auditors are having a hard time distinguishing errors, misrepresentations and misleading claims.

    Search for “auditing bias” in that page.

  10. Pingback: IPCC Report Leaked | Prepper Podcast Radio Network

  11. This might lead to the crux of the matter:

    Basically, Nic Lewis reclassifies one study, picks his favorite short-term span for his estimate, converts everything using medians instead of means, and then whines about misrepresentations.

  12. Yes, I saw that comment. I suspect you may indeed be correct 🙂

  13. Pingback: Mail on Sunday 92% wrong on climate change | cartesian product

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