How many times do we have to do this?

I’ve just discovered that the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) have enlisted top scientists to examine adjusted global warming figures. Their justification seems to be two articles by Christopher Booker, which just goes to show that when I think that an organisation like the GWPF can’t get more ridiculous, they go ahead and prove me wrong. The top scientists are here.

I’ve only personally encountered two of them. I’ve had discussions with Roger Pielke Sr in which it appeared that he did not understand the term forcing. I should add, however, that there is no question that Roger is a top scientist, with an impressive academic record. Roman Mureika was one of those who helped Nic Lewis to claim that Marotzke & Forster had made some kind of basic, embarassing mistake in their analysis. In my brief discussions with Roman, he also seemed to not understand what a forcing was, or why Marotzke & Forster hadn’t made the silly mistake that he claimed they had. I think it’s now clear that the claim was not true but – unless I’ve missed it – it has yet to be retracted. I think I’ve heard Petr Chylek’s name, but can’t remember why. The others I haven’t heard of or encountered.

The basic issue, though (well, apart from using Christopher Booker as motivation) is that this has been done before. This was the motivation behind Berkeley Earth (BEST), and what did they find? In addition to BEST, there are also the HadCRUT, JMA, NOAA, and NASA datasets, all of which produce results that are largely consistent.

So, how many times does this have to happen before people accept the basic evidence? Also, how seriously should we take an attempt that appears to be motivated by Christoper Booker? Can’t the GWPF even be bothered to try and make their motivation seem sensible? Well, okay, I guess it is tough for them to find a better motivation, so maybe it’s simply the best they could do? Who can blame them; the alternative would probably be to simply accept what almost everyone else regards as broadly correct, and that – presumably – just won’t do.

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132 Responses to How many times do we have to do this?

  1. Actually, I’ve just realised that the article to which I linked on the GWPF page was also written by Christopher Booker. So, I guess, he would promote his earlier articles. Still doesn’t make it not silly.

  2. T-rev says:

    “So, how many times does this have to happen before people accept the basic evidence? ”

    Betteridge’s Law of headlines doesn’t seem to apply here 🙂
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betteridge%27s_Law_of_Headlines

    Assuming the question is not rhetorical. How many ? Indefinite, as there is already more than enough science and evidence to refute “deniers”. More science and evidence will only reinforce their “beliefs”, not discourage them. An analogy might be found here

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/antivaccination-parents-dig-in-heels-even-after-receiving-medical-info/

    Other examples might be those not accepting the Science of Evolution. How much evidence or science do they want ? You could never have enough for them.. You can see why Richard Dawkins gets similarly frustrated with evolution deniers 🙂 I am not suggesting you have to be an evolution or vaccination denier to be a climate science denier but the processes of clinging to nonsense are the same.

    So the answer to the question is, forever … or perhaps using the Max Plank’s idiom of, one funeral at a time, which of course will be waaaay to late for mitigation to be effective.

    On a personal note I think engaging with them is the wrong tact, they will never accept the science so why engage, it’s like whack-a-mole. All it does is frustrate and take energy away from the real issue, which is … when will those who accept or understand the Science start acting inline with those convictions to ensure we get change ? Currently that group are often prodigious emitters, who don’t even vote for politicians who say they will undertake effective mitigation… I am not sure how they drive that square peg of inaction through the round hole of cognitive dissonance but getting those people (a significant minority) to act inline with their stated convictions and convince their friends, family and peers to act similarly is the only way out of this quagmire.

    or we can keep doing exactly what’s been done in the past…

  3. Rob Nicholls says:

    How many times do we have to do this? An infinite number.

    Those claiming, like Booker, that “the fiddling with temperature data is the biggest scientific scandal” do not seem open to having their views on this issue modified by evidence, so no amount of repetitions of the surface temperature data analysis will be enough. The result is endless audit, and endless postponement and delay to the urgent action needed to cut drastically greenhouse gas emissions and minimise the risk of serious irreversible damage to ecosystems and to the human civilisation that is dependent on those ecosystems.

    If, for some reason, HadCRUT, JMA, NASA GISS and NOAA global surface temperature analyses weren’t enough, then Berkeley Earth (BEST) should have settled it. http://berkeleyearth.org/about says “From 2010-2012, Berkeley Earth systematically addressed the five major concerns that global warming skeptics had identified…”

    The description of the chairman of the GPWF’s international temperature data review project made me chuckle: “As well as publishing many research papers on the metabolism and cell biology of human skin, Professor Kealey has written two books to show that there is no economic case for the government funding of science.” Nice.

  4. I know of Terence Kealey who, according to one of his ex-students at Buckingham—who happens to be one of my nephews—is an out and out ‘pseudo-sceptic’, who takes every opportunity with his students to indoctrinate their impressionable minds with climate denial memes.

    It constantly amazes me how such highly-qualified academics as the GWPF have assembled manage to be swayed by conspiracy theorists. Let’s hope, like the BEST team, when they actually start researching the subject it will suddenly dawn on them that there is no conspiracy and then their consciences lead them to bite the hand that feeds them.

  5. John Hartz says:

    Think Paris climate summit!

  6. MikeH says:

    Oh good. A new project to confirm what we already new – that the GWPF are a bunch of loons.
    I hope Richard Tol as a member of their Academic Advisory Council will turn up to justify this. It could be an interesting discussion.

  7. lerpo says:

    Richard Tol… Richard Tol… Richard Tol…

    Did it work? Did I summon him?

  8. Soos says:

    Rather cruelly, I find myself reminded of this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who%3F_Who%3F_Ministry

  9. Eli Rabett says:

    Now some, not Eli to be sure, might remember that it was old Roger who touched off the surface station nonsense that gave Watts his start. However, it was shown by Peterson that

    As Davey and Pielke (2005) documented and Peterson (2006) acknowledges, several USHCN stations are poorly sited or have siting conditions that change over time. These deficiencies in the observations should be rectified at the source, that is, by correcting the location and then ensuring high-quality data that are locally and, in aggregate, regionally representative. Station micrometeorology produces complex effects on surface temperatures, however, and, as we show in this paper, attempting to correct the errors with existing adjustment methods artificially forces toward regional representativeness and cannot be expected to recover all of the trend information that would have been obtained locally from a well-sited station.

    Homogeneity adjustments recover regional (and thus continental) and global trends BUT, of course local information is lost and it would be better to have better stations. Let the perfect be the enemy of the useful and tally-ho.

  10. The WG Policy Foundation calls it a review. Thus I do not think the team will actually do the work and compute a the global temperature themselves. The team is also much too old for that, I would expect that their programming skills are mostly rusty. They will just write a report with some doubts and the Policy Foundation will write a nice press release about it. The Telegraph will embarrass itself by writing a positive article about it.

    I hope I will be shown wrong.

    Strange that the Policy Foundation will not investigate BEST. I am unable to understand the article on its homogenization, which is published in an Indian no-name journal.

    Booker: The figures from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) were based, like all the other three official surface temperature records on which the world’s scientists and politicians rely, on data compiled from a network of weather stations by NOAA’s Global Historical Climate Network (GHCN).

    No, the Climate Research Units gathers a large part of its data itself. (BEST also some of its data.)

    Booker: But here there is a puzzle. These temperature records are not the only ones with official status. The other two, Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) and the University of Alabama (UAH), are based on a quite different method of measuring temperature data, by satellites. And these, as they have increasingly done in recent years, give a strikingly different picture.

    The long-term trend is basically the same. The satellites just see natural variability much stronger, which make them better suited for cherry picking short periods, if one is so inclined, or for single months, if one is a Policy Foundation.

    Booker:In particular, they will be wanting to establish a full and accurate picture of just how much of the published record has been adjusted in a way which gives the impression that temperatures have been rising faster and further than was indicated by the raw measured data.

    None of the studies using the global mean temperature will match this criterion because contrary to WUWT wisdom the adjustments reduce the temperature trend.

    Prof William van Wijngaarden at least has worked with climate data. (Not to be confused with Janet Wijngaard, a Dutch climatologist with expertise in homogenization.) He has several recent articles in Theoretical And Applied Climatology (TAAC). Articles in this journal are on average cited 1.742 times per year in the first two years (Impact Factor).

    And I found an article using absolute homogenization. This is not a good idea. Especially in this case because they test no break against one break, but many stations will have multiple breaks. If the observations at a station do not follow a linear trend well enough they remove this station. The article suggests that there was a change in observational methods in the entire network. Thus also the stations that were somehow not removed have a non-climatic change.

    This was publish in the Journal of Climate. Pro tip: if you have an article with bad homogenization methods submit it to an American climate journal.

    Prof em. Richard McNider wrote the other game changing article (next to the Watts et al. (2012) manuscript), according to Pielke Sr. At least McNider’s article on the influence of the greenhouse effect on the stable boundary layer and temperature measurements therein was nice and may one day lead to more insight.

  11. JCH says:

    It’s the satellites that need some review. When it comes to surface air temperature, they’re way off: 5 La Nina events versus 2 El Nino events (not counting the El Nino ongoing).

  12. Willard says:

    > Can’t the GWPF even be bothered to try and make their motivation seem sensible?

    That would make them look even more stealthier than they already are:

    In short, yes, I think that GWPF is both an advocacy group and also engages in stealth advocacy. It signals this stealth advocacy via its logo (temperature trends) an also its frequent proxy arguments about science, which are really about politics. I don’t think this is a surprise or controversial.

    http://www.staatvanhetklimaat.nl/2014/05/14/bengtsson-resigns-from-the-gwpf/#comment-5993

  13. John Mashey says:

    Among the “top scientists” is Peter Chylek, whose DeSMog profile is still useful. However, he was the Chair for the Third Santa Fe Conference on Global and Regional Climate Change in 2011. People might open the Conference Program Guide to pp.107-108, scan the list of people there, and see if any names cause nervousness, then search for names in the PDF to see which if nay talks they gave.
    Hint: a certain Viscount spoke, and he was not alone.
    See Trip report by Bark Boslough at RealClimate for a first-hand view … and if you ever get a chance to meet Mark, he has more good stories to tell.

  14. Jai Mitchell says:

    mcnider co-authored a pathetic op-ed with Christy in the Wall St. Journal attempting to discredit John Kerry’s assertion that global warming is a national security threat. op ed here: http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052702303945704579391611041331266

    How long will it take before these sociopathic ideologues are tossed out on their ears? We have already wasted too much precious time and the permafrost is beginning to decompose. I am certain that we have already locked in over 2.5C of additional warming at CURRENT co2 abundance levels (if albedo, ocean acidification impacts on DMS and carbon cycle feedbacks are taken into account)

    This means that we have already lost massive food production capacity and the UN warnings of a 40% shortage of water for food crops by 2030 is prescient. This is already going to be a catastrophic event. If we continue much further we are looking at over 250 million human lives lost to climate induced drought-heat and food shortages. These things are already happening as regional instability has been spurred by climate change in Syria and Yemen.

  15. Eli Rabett says:

    Bark is a real dog.

  16. dhogaza says:

    Booker:

    “they will be wanting to establish a full and accurate picture of just how much of the published record has been adjusted in a way which gives the impression that temperatures have been rising faster and further than was indicated by the raw measured data.”

    In other words, an objective review of the record free of bias!

  17. izen says:

    The GWPF are just being skeptical.
    By checking just once more if ‘you really have stopped beating your wife’ or fraudulently altering the records, will help them guide policy on global warming by giving their own assessment of the legitimacy of the temperature record.

    While the final conclusion will be anodyne, if ever reached, there will be far more discussion of the adjustments/homogenisation done to the land surface record increasing the trend to account for TOBs changes than there is of the adjustments done to sea surface that reduced the trend in the raw data.

    Any problems with satellite data will be ignored, implicitly left as the Gold Standard. However the same respect and consideration will not be granted to satellite data on sea level rise that independently confirms the scale (pause free!) of the temperature trend.

  18. dana1981 says:

    I was hoping this had just been published by GWPF but sadly no, The Telegraph is still publishing Booker’s factually inaccurate tinfoil hat rubbish.
    http://www.thegwpf.com/top-scientists-start-to-examine-adjusted-global-warming-figures/

    It just amazes me that a newspaper that I assume wants to be considered a reputable source of journalism keeps publishing this tinfoil hat bullsh*t. For christ sakes, of NASA GISS, NOAA, and HadCRUT, Booker says

    All of them are run by committed believers in man-made global warming.

    “Committed believers in man-made global warming,” also known as climate scientists.

    Given how Booker keeps bragging about the number of comments his conspiratorial rants are getting, it’s pretty clear that The Telegraph sees traffic as a far higher priority than real accurate journalism. And that’s just sad.

  19. Nick says:

    “How many times do we have to do this?”
    In Booker’s case indefinitely, because he’s confident he won’t get sued for re-heating this piece of particularly soggy and tired denialist chum as it involves a collective slander.

  20. What’s wrong with replication and review? You claim that climate change is a big problem, worth spending billions of tax-payer dollars on. So what’s wrong with a private foundation spending private money on testing a key data-set? You claim that the temperature record is fine, so you’re best guess should be that the GWPF will shoot itself in the foot — either by confirming that there is no systematic bias, or by producing a dodgy piece of research. You should welcome this.

  21. Richard,

    What’s wrong with replication and review?

    Where did I say there was something wrong with replication and review? Oh, I know, I didn’t.

    So what’s wrong with a private foundation spending private money on testing a key data-set?

    Nothing, they can waste their money if they wish.

    You claim that the temperature record is fine

    No, I didn’t say it was fine.

    You should welcome this.

    I don’t actually really care. I think it’s silly and deserves mocking.

    Is your reading comprehension really this bad? It’s hard to believe.

  22. Victor,
    You should just email your comment to the GWPF and say “here, I’ve done the review for you”.

    They will just write a report with some doubts and the Policy Foundation will write a nice press release about it. The Telegraph will embarrass itself by writing a positive article about it.

    Yes, this is probably exactly what will happen

    I hope I will be shown wrong.

    I suspect it may simply be ignored, which might be the wrong strategy.

  23. According to the Daily Mail, FWIW, quoting Kealey… [ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3055646/Did-exaggerated-records-make-global-warming-look-worse-Scientists-investigate-adjusted-temperatures-skewed-data.html ]

    “We hope that people who are concerned with the integrity of climate science, from all sides of the debate, will help us to get to the bottom of these questions by telling us what they know about the temperature records and the adjustments made to them.”

  24. Willard can probably clarify, but isn’t this called begging the question

    We hope that people who are concerned with the integrity of climate science

  25. From Steve Bloom, here is a link to a report called what does Climategate say about science, written by Terence Kealey. It says some interesting things, but the first paragraph rather sets the tone

    The emails sent by members of the climatic research centre at the University of East Anglia have provoked international outrage, as have the many flawed global warming papers that have appeared in recent years such as those describing the hockey stick graph1, to say nothing of the flawed predictions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) over such issues as the rate of disappearance of the glaciers in the Himalayas.

    where the “1” refers to MBH99.

  26. jsam says:

    Will the decibel level of the resultant quacking be loud enough to overcome the revving engine of the GWPF clown car?

    You have to keep doing this until you get the right answer. Obviously.

  27. You should just email your comment to the GWPF and say “here, I’ve done the review for you”.

    Given that it is a Policy Foundation and we know which policies they advocate, I know were that email will end up. Naturally the Telegraph and Daily Mail report on this team being formed. That is one of the main reasons such a team is formed. I hope they did not explicitly write: let’s wait with any policy until the report is out, but that is surely what the policy foundation and its journalists want the reader to think.

    I am not expecting serious journalists to write about this, but just in case. Here is an overview of real work to ascertain the quality of the station temperature trend by a scientist who actually works on the topic. That is, one of those people the Telegraph and the Daily Mail are not interested in and one who is under moderation at WUWT because its readers should not be confronted with too much science.

    Yes, we did the review for them. In a blind validation study we showed that homogenization methods reduce any temperature trend biases for reasonable scenarios. For this blind validation study we produced a dataset that mimics a real climate network with known non-climatic changes, so that we knew what the answer should be.

    We have a similar blind validation of the homogenization method used by NOAA to homogenize its global land surface data.

    The International Surface Temperature Initiative (ISTI) is now working on a global blind validation dataset, with which we could not only say that homogenization methods improve trend estimates, but also get a better numerical estimate of how much. (In more data sparse regions in developing countries, the methods probably cannot improve the trend estimate much, the previous studies were for Europe and the USA).

    Then we have BEST of physicist Richard Muller, a group of non-climatologists who started working on the quality of station data, and basically found the same result as the mainstream climatologists. They actually put in work, developed an independent method to estimate the climatic trends, rather than just make a cheap review. The homogenization method of this group was also applied to the NOAA benchmark and produced similar results. (See their AGU poster, I do not know of this being published yet.)

    We have the review and guidance of the World Meteorological Organization from 2003.

    And the Task Team on Homogenization (TT-HOM) of the WMO is working on an update of that review.

    The TT-HOM has decided to focus on monthly mean data used to establish global warming. Being a volunteer effort we do not have the resources to also tackle the more difficult topic of changes in extremes in detail. If someone has some money to spare, that is where I would do a review. That is a seriously difficult topic where we do not know well how accurately we can remove non-climatic problems.

    And like mentioned above a good review of the satellite microwave temperature data would be very valuable. It is affected by strong non-climatic changes and almost all of its trend is due to homogenization adjustments; a relatively small error in the adjustments thus quickly leads to large changes in their trend estimates. At the same time I do not know of a (blind) validations study nor of a estimate of the uncertainty in its trend. I tried to get the code of the data processing of the UAH dataset. Wrote a friendly email some time ago. Did not get any reply back yet. This seems to confirm the rumour that this code is closed. (The software for the station datasets being audited by the Policy Foundation are open, so is their raw data.)

    If someone has some money to spare, I hope it would be someone interested in science, no matter what the outcome, and not a Policy Foundation with a clear stealth agenda, clearly interested in a certain outcome, putting together a strongly biased team of auditors. It is good that we have science foundations and universities to fund most of the research, who are interested in the quality of the research rather than the outcome.

  28. Nick Stokes says:

    Richard Tol: “What’s wrong with replication and review? “

    I see no suggestion that they are planning replication (of what?). And do we expect an objective review?

    As ATTP has said, Booker seems to have been influential here, and his Tele article is prominently featured by Benny Peiser. But with a subtle change. Peiser’s version of the headline is:
    “Top Scientists Start To Examine Adjusted Global Warming Figures”

    But Booker’s actual headline was:
    “Top scientists start to examine fiddled global warming figures”
    Doesn’t sound like an objective review.

    FWIW, my initial thoughts are here.

  29. OPatrick says:

    There would be nothing wrong with replication and review, beyond a waste of resources beyond a certain point, if it were being done in a genuine spirit of scientific study. However, it looks very much as though the process of doing this is the point. Doubt can be stretched that little bit longer by pointing to the review and telling us all to wait (yet again) until the results are in. I wonder if Richard Tol will be willing to advise the GWPF not to discuss this ‘review’ until the work has been finished? What scientific reason is there to advertise the process?

  30. Ned W says:

    … Replication and review …

    If a “re-” word is needed, probably the best descriptor would be regurgitation.

  31. I can imagine how the review will go, padded out with nice little sound bites including scare quotes; “yes, our team of internationally-renowned expert scientists can confirm that climate researchers have been ‘adjusting’ the data from weather stations right across the globe for the last 30 years…”, including of course some carefully cherry-picked examples—shit, I could even write it for them—but nothing to explain why adjustments are necessary or that without homogenisation the data can even exaggerate the warming.

    Of course it’s a rather like the Lomborg situation that John Mashey so expertly analysed in his post. The GWPF’s propaganda task force are not interested in the truth, just in playing a political game, generating denial memes, with the aim of delaying action on climate change as long as possible. One day I’m guessing their tactics will be recognised by the whole of society to have been a criminal act.

  32. Ned W says:

    Petr Chylek was the author of a fundamentally dishonest paper about climate sensitivity and dust forcing at the LGM. Annan and Hargreaves nicely showed that its conclusions were the direct result of cherry-picking unrepresentative data points from a time series. Details here and here .

  33. Joshua says:

    The Daily Mail’s article is really quite something.

    My favorite parts:

    ==> “Did exaggerated records make global warming look worse?”

    Panel of leading experts formed to ask scientists whether they’ve stopped beating their wives.

    ==> “Panel drawn from leading universities includes experts with differing views.”

    That’s probably true. Their views run from the records are skewed but it was probably unintentional to the records are skewed in an outright attempt to defraud the public.

    ==> “The panel, convened by the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF),… will focus on thousands of ‘adjustments’ that have been made to temperature records …”

    And we all know what “adjustments” means (wink, wink.)

    ==> “I’’m [William van Wijngaarden,] a scientist. I’m not going into this with any preconceptions.”

    I’m sure that the GWPF interviewed him before putting him on the panel to make sure that he had no preconceptions. Indeed, there is certainly no reason to think that any of the people involved have any preconceptions.

    David Rose is really quite something.

  34. Joshua says:

    Actually, thinking about it more, I realize that there’s probably more diversity on the panel than I previously considered.

    The range probably goes from seeing the data as skewed but unintentionally so, to the data being skewed to defraud the public, to the data being skewed to advance the agenda of establishing a oneworldgovernment, destroying capitalism, and starving millions of poor children in Africa.

  35. chris says:

    Petr Chylek is perhaps included for his expertise in selecting sparse and unrepresentative data points for analyses in pursuit of low climate sensitivity:

    http://www.clim-past.net/5/143/2009/cp-5-143-2009.pdf

  36. BBD says:

    Petr Chylek.

    And he’s a Heartland Expert..

    Chylek has the distinction of authoring flawed attempts to lowball sensitivity which left James Annan unimpressed not just once but twice.

  37. BBD says:

    chris – I’m sorry, we crossed. This happens to me constantly 😉

  38. So we can summarise this a bit.

    We have Kealy who has written on Climategate and thinks Andrew Montford’s book is excellent

    We have Petr Chylek who has written at least two papers claiming that climate sensitivity is low and which James Annan has shown to be in error, and is a Heartland expert.

    We have Roger Pielke Sr who is a strong critic of the IPCC, climate models and was associated with Anthony Watts’s surface station project.

    We have Roman Mureika who seems to be a regular on ClimateAudit and was involved in the critique of Marotzke & Forster.

    There are two others about whom I know little. Of course none of this means that they are incapable of carrying out an unbiased and objective review, but it does seem hard to conclude that the panel is somehow balanced.

  39. JCH says:

    It’s obvious the thermometer series is wildly manipulated by evil people. Look at the pause. Who claims never ending warming and then sticks in a pause. What a bunch of sick mothers.

  40. Joshua says:

    ==> “Who claims never ending warming and then sticks in a pause. ”

    Who says that the data are fraudulent but then says that the data prove a pause that proves low sensitivity that proves ACO2 is plant food?

  41. Willard says:

    > What’s wrong with replication and review?

    When will the GWPF audit the satellite data, Richard?

    Don’t forget to ask for the code.

  42. Eli Rabett says:

    Victor, the code for RSS and UAH is here. NOAA and NASA are committed to open publication of such things. As Eli did, you can write to John Bates at NOAA and he should be able to help you get what you need

  43. Actually, I’ve just noticed this, which says

    Professor Kealey has written two books to show that there is no economic case for the government funding of science.

    I know Terence Kealey has been Vice-Chancellor of Britain’s only private university, but that just seems a little silly. I can see someone arguing for some kind of different funding model but the statement there is no economic case for the government funding of science seem patently absurd.

  44. As Nick’s post points out, there’s some hints of a Goddard influence as well as an influence from Paul Homewood, who is being explicitly credited by Booker. Is it possible for the GWPF to motivate this using less credible sources?

  45. BBD says:

    What leaves me shaking my head is that still, after all this time and all the failures to demonstrate anything whatsoever, the contrarians are pushing the meme that there’s something… wrong… with the ‘adjustments’. IOW, a thinly-veiled conspiracy theory.

  46. he contrarians are pushing the meme that there’s something… wrong… with the ‘adjustments’. IOW, a thinly-veiled conspiracy theory.

    Indeed, but what I’m finding more interesting is that this is pushing the GWPF right into crackpot territory – well, okay, in a more obvious way than maybe was the case before.

  47. BBD says:

    Yes, the mask of pseudo-science and pseudo-rationality has rather slipped off, hasn’t it?

    All in all, I think the GWPF has done itself no favours, but of course the rest of the (sane) world should be duly grateful for the pratfall.

  48. BBD says:

    I loved this bit (from the GWPF article by Booker; my emphasis):

    Their inquiry’s central aim will be to establish a comprehensive view of just how far the original data has been “adjusted” by the three main surface records: those published by the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (Giss), the US National Climate Data Center and Hadcrut, that compiled by the East Anglia Climatic Research Unit (Cru), in conjunction with the UK Met Office’s Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction. All of them are run by committed believers in man-made global warming.

  49. It does exist!! Code and ATBD.

    Eli, thank you very much. You deserve a few carrots. I had looked on the UAH homepage, googled and wrote to UAH, but did not have any success.

    I did remote sensing before climate, not that much passive radiometer work, but maybe I could contribute some to this line of research. Let’s see.

  50. BBD,
    In fact, when you read that, there’s a strong case for simply arguing that they the manner in which this is being promoted suggests that the result will be a foregone conclusion. They’re not even trying to tone it down. It’s quite remarkable really. Are they really this lacking in basic common sense; at least try to seem balanced?

  51. In fact, it’s this kind of stunt, how they’re presenting it, and what they’re promoting that makes me wonder who’s advising the GWPF……oh, wait……

  52. Willard says:

    Will the GWPF run a concurrent program to inspect Nicola Scafetta’s data and code, Richard?

  53. Willard says:

    > Or even Richard’s?

    Gremlins are already taking care of that, AT, and all they need are a bit of water and a cookie after midnight.

  54. Brandon Gates says:

    Victor,

    Not unsurprisingly, WUWT has picked up this story. In the interest of full scientific integrity and sensibility, Anthony saw fit to fully represent the entire scope of the “problem” with this one and only one graphic in his post:

    In all such moments, I recall your post about Zeke Hausfather’s truly global view of things as you detail in this post on your blog: http://variable-variability.blogspot.ch/2015/02/homogenization-adjustments-reduce-global-warming.html

    I am wondering if Zeke provided you with a similar adjusted less raw set of plots when he did that analysis?

  55. JK says:

    It seems to me that one of the major limitations of this inquiry, as against, e.g. BEST, is that it is not setting out to make a new estimate of global temperature.

    In that sense it has the limitations of ‘audit science’. Performing an audit can be a useful. But it is limited.

    Take their first question:

    Are there aspects of surface temperature measurement procedures that potentially impair data quality or introduce bias and need to be critically re-examined?

    I think the answer is unequivocally yes. We will never get to ‘the truth’ about the temperature record. We will just get closer to it (hopefully on a reasonably monotonic path).

    Furthermore, I would be quite surprised if anyone can find a climate scientist (as opposed to e.g. a climate psychologist or economist) who thinks that the temperature record is in some sense ‘finished’. Who believes that a next generation reanalysis will never be justified? Who believes that more data rescue will never be justified? Who believes that all work on bias and homogenisation is wasted? Answer: no one.

    In fact, constant small scale tinkering with temperature records that some skeptics seem to find suspicious is in fact a result of the fact that scientists are never satisfied that they have found ‘the truth’.

    Their second question:

    How widespread is the practice of adjusting original temperature records? What fraction of modern temperature data, as presented by CRU/GISS/NOAA/BEST, are actual original measurements, and what fraction are subject to adjustments?

    This really reveals the limits of ‘audit science’. If they started with the question ‘how can we use existing data to estimate regional or global temperature anomalies’ then it would be much clearer that this is a red herring.

    If the question is ‘what was the reading on this thermometer at the time of the reading on this day?’ then obviously an ‘adjustment’ may be suspicious.

    What if we have a different question, ‘what was the global average temperature anomaly in the month of the reading?’ Then saying that the best we can do is simply incorporate the reading in to a simple global average would be a symptom of the fact that we don’t have a better handle on the relationship between the individual thermometers and the global average temperature anomaly statistic we are interested in.

    A priori, a simple average may be the best we can do with present knowledge. For sure the adjustments are wrong and introduce bias. But the question is whether the resulting estimate is better than a simple average. If not, it seems to me that the answer would be to work on improving the understanding of the connection between the data we have and the global average temperature anomaly. The answer, if it could be found, could only be a more sophisticated ‘adjustment’ procedure.

    Third question and fourth questions:

    Are warming and cooling adjustments equally prevalent? Are there any regions of the world where modifications appear to account for most or all of the apparent warming of recent decades?

    On three, I’m not sure why they think it’s interesting whether the bias in a simple global average is positive or negative. Surely it has to be one or the other? On four presumably the question is how small must you go to find such regions?

    Fifth question:

    Are the adjustment procedures clearly documented, objective, reproducible and scientifically defensible? How much statistical uncertainty is introduced with each step in homogeneity adjustments and smoothing?

    So long as resources are available there’s nothing wrong with making documentation and reproducibility as transparent as possible. Perhaps the GWPF could consider raising funding for such projects.

    As for ‘objective’ and ‘scientifically defensible’, making assumptions as explicit as possible is always useful. I think that’s what this is getting at. More useful is to look at how sensitive the analysis is to alternative assumptions. Again that goes back to the need to go beyond ‘audit science’.

    Finally, ‘How much statistical uncertainty is introduced with each step in homogeneity adjustments and smoothing?’ seems to me a very interesting question. From the questions here it looks like their best chance of producing an original contribution, which I hope they do.

  56. Brandon Gates says:

    Joshua,

    Who says that the data are fraudulent but then says that the data prove a pause that proves low sensitivity that proves ACO2 is plant food?

    People who, with a straight face, who say things like, “Because now they know we sceptics are keeping an eye on things.”

    Or, “Because satellites.” Leaving out, of course, all the bias adjustments and model infilling that goes on in those data products.

    The sort of folk who hardly ever have an answer to my pointed question: Why then do the falsified observational series not more convincingly match the motivated output of “teh modulz”?

    The one time I can recall someone directly addressing that properly sceptical question, the answer was a waffle: Nobody is saying that surface temps are outright falsified, the argument is that research bias leads them to nudge things a little.

    It’s like trying to reason with a toddler, but without the cute factor … and an adult-sized portion of mucus and drool.

  57. Isn’t all this ‘adjusting data’ conspiracy stuff putting air between these conspiracy theorists and the Ecomodernists? Will it end in an argument, I wonder? Or is that a naive thought and we’re just observing alternative tactics from independent teams united in a common cause? That is; delay.

  58. Kevin ONeill says:

    JK: “For sure the adjustments are wrong and introduce bias.

    Huh? Where do you get this from? The bias is already in the data, e.g., TOBS, station moves, canvas buckets, etc. The adjustments are to correct for this bias. If they are wrong – then you need to publish and correct them.

  59. JK says:

    To me it looks like the tactical motivation of the GWPF is much like that of the Cook et al 97% paper, just from the ‘other side’.

    You make an obvious statement such as 97% of relevant literature agrees that warming is real and man is responsible for more than half of warming since the middle of the twentieth century.

    Only a fringe of skeptics disagree, but there are enough of them to make it look like a real point of debate.

    People who try to point out 97% of the relevant literature does agree on that, but the Cook et al. methodology is total junk come off looking like idiots in internet debate formats.

    Then you get Obama to tweet that 97% agree that warming is real, man made AND DANGEROUS!

    Then you to tweet Lomborg is wrong, because 97%.

    Of course Lomborg agrees that warming is real and man made. Heck, he even agrees that warming is dangerous – although not on just how dangerous.

    I predict that the result of the GWPF inquiry will follow a similar dynamic.

    They will come up with a headline such as ‘scientists compensate for uncertainty in temperatures with unjustified assumptions’.

    People who try to point out that all assumptions are by definition unjustified will come off looking like idiots in internet debate formats.

    Then the GWPF will tweet that unjustified assumptions are RESPONSIBLE FOR WARMING!

    Who knows, maybe they will be right – just they leave aside the question of how much warming!

    People say to Lomborg: ‘The Cook study found 97% agree warming is real and manmade. If you disagree you’re outside reasonable debate.’ Some skeptics will try to say an analogous thing to climate scientists: ‘The GWPF study found that temperature records are a work in progress. If you disagree you’re outside reasonable debate.’

    In other words, it looks like this may just be another attempt to waste everybody’s time.

  60. Well, there are problems, errors and uncertainty with all measurements which probably persist in all the published series.

    That being said, the trends from surface, raob, sst, and MSU estimates are all positive and reasonably consistent. Not identical ( we wouldn’t expect them to be ), but consistent.

  61. JK says:

    Kevin ONeill: Huh? Where do you get this from?

    Maybe I wan’t completely clear. When I say the adjustments are wrong I just mean that they are not perfect. I agree that the net bias is almost certainly reduced by current adjustments. If think that means saying adjustments ‘introduce bias’ then I’m happy to find different language. However, in principle the error on the adjustments almost certainly has non-zero mean. If I knew what the errors and biases were then I would publish them. But I don’t. This is similar to the fact that e.g. I don’t know the error in our best estimate for the age of earth. If I did I would publish it. In both cases I think that the values in the scientific literature are close to the best we have, but more research is needed and always will be for the foreseeable future.

    Of course, the existence of uncertainty is not the same as saying uncertainty is large for decision making purposes. That’s a different discussion.

  62. Marco says:

    “Finally, ‘How much statistical uncertainty is introduced with each step in homogeneity adjustments and smoothing?’ seems to me a very interesting question. From the questions here it looks like their best chance of producing an original contribution, which I hope they do.”

    As Nick Stokes points out on his blog:
    “Well, it will be interesting if naysayers finally bring themselves to read the papers of Menne and Williams etc.”

  63. Brandon Gates, not sure if I understand your question, but the graph shown by WUWT is basically right, just an enormous cherry pick. The adjustments necessary for the USA land temperatures happen to be large, about 0.4°C.

    That is explained by two major transitions: a change of the time of observation from the afternoon to the morning (about 0.2°C) and the introduction of automatic weather stations (AWS), which in the USA happens to have produced a cooling bias of 0.2°C. (The bias due to the introduction of AWS depends on the build of the AWS and the local climate and thus differs a lot from network to network.)

    Like you wrote, for the global mean temperature the net effect of all adjustments is a reduction in the warming. The raw records show a stronger warming due to non-climatic changes, which climatologists reduce by homogenization. The opposite of what happens to the USA land temperatures and does not fit to their narrative of activist scientists, this is thus not advertised by the activist movement against mitigation.

  64. entropicman says:

    Plant the uncertainty, help it grow by repeating what your pet scientist say. Reap doubt and delay.

    Same old same old, right out of the tobacco industry playbook. 🙂

  65. Rob Nicholls says:

    “Professor Kealey has written two books to show that there is no economic case for the government funding of science.” Glad you picked up on that, ATTP; I thought that was hilarious when I read it.

  66. Willard says:

    > To me it looks like the tactical motivation of the GWPF is much like that of the Cook et al 97% paper, just from the ‘other side’. You make an obvious statement such as 97% of relevant literature agrees that warming is real and man is responsible for more than half of warming since the middle of the twentieth century.

    If we disregard that the GWPF’s makes the opposite of a true statement, and as Richard said earlier, maybe. Let’s follow through the similarity by recalling C13’s motivation, as stated in the paper:

    Despite these independent indicators of a scientific consensus, the perception of the US public is that the scientific community still disagrees over the fundamental cause of GW. From 1997 to 2007, public opinion polls have indicated around 60% of the US public believes there is significant disagreement among scientists about whether GW was happening (Nisbet and Myers 2007). Similarly, 57% of the US public either disagreed or were unaware that scientists agree that the earth is very likely warming due to human activity (Pew 2012).

    http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/8/2/024024/article

    Does it mean the GWPF’s project seeks to correct a public perception in favor of the robustness of the data series involved?

  67. BBD says:

    Booker’s article implies that the GWPF has assembled an independent team of scientists to investigate these ‘manipulations’ and ‘adjustments’ of the temperature data. Booker does not mention that Kealey is a long-serving member of the GWPF’s Academic Advisory Council.

    But never mind impartiality. This is too serious a matter for trivial details like that to count:

    But only when the full picture is in will it be possible to see just how far the scare over global warming has been driven by manipulation of figures accepted as reliable by the politicians who shape our energy policy, and much else besides. If the panel’s findings eventually confirm what we have seen so far, this really will be the “smoking gun”, in a scandal the scale and significance of which for all of us can scarcely be exaggerated.

    We must root out the conspiracy!

  68. The Independent now has an article which refers to a “leading group of climate change deniers”. Oooh, I can hear the complaints already.

  69. BBD says:

    It also headlines with ‘fake controversy’. Contrarians will need to fight on two fronts if they wish to contest the substance of the Indy article.

  70. Brandon Gates says:

    Victor,

    … not sure if I understand your question, but the graph shown by WUWT is basically right, just an enormous cherry pick.

    I’ll rephrase the question. The plot posted by the GWPF on their website for this project, http://www.tempdatareview.org/ , and reposted by Watts is final minus raw for USHCN only, in Fahrenheit. I’d like to know if Zeke generated final minus raw plots as part of his analysis for GHCN, HADSST3 and the two combined for a more apples to apples comparison so that I can quantify the cherry-pick.

    In lieu of that, and perhaps better, is if the data output from his analysis is available, then I can do the conversion to Farhenheit and have a true apples to apples comparison. Perhaps best is if I email him directly and ask, though BEST only lists Mosher’s email address so far as I can tell. I asked you first because you’re here, you know me better than they do, and I thought there might be an off-chance you could serve the request.

    Like you wrote, for the global mean temperature the net effect of all adjustments is a reduction in the warming.

    Indeed. I have already, and not for the first time, linked to Zeke’s three plots hosted on your site as well as the link to the post itself. Predictably, they don’t want to hear it anymore than they did the last time I did this. Here’s a representative comment:

    just a small point on the GHCN monthly data ;
    ftp://ftp.ncdc.noaa.gov/pub/data/ghcn/v3/
    There are 2 files QCU (unadjusted ) and QCA (adjusted) . However the term “adjustment ” only applies to the procedures carried out after the raw data has been received and makes no allowance to any corrections to the original field data that was collected by different organisations or stations. They make this clear in their README file.
    I do not think that we should assume that it is not the original field data that is the object of this enquiry , unless , Brandon , you have inside info of which the rest of us are unaware.

    I particularly like how it’s my duty to disprove his implication that the data are being massaged prior to it even hitting NCDC’s uptake process. What goes on inside these guys’ heads????

    Thanks for all your answers, as usual they’ve been helpful.

  71. Brandon Gates says:

    More dithering from the cognitively dissonant: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/04/26/inquiry-launched-into-global-temperature-data-integrity/#comment-1918756

    Me: So, which would you rather have, the “raw” data or adjusted?

    WTFUWTter: The notion that SST can be accurately reconstructed via 100 year old thermometer measurements taken by throwing a bucket overboard and pulling some water up to stick the thermometer in, by sailors who kinda sorta know exaclty where they were, strikes me as unreliable to begin with. No amount of adjustment can compensate for the data being at best spotty in the first place.

    Me: That doesn’t answer the question I asked. Which do you want, the raw or adjusted data? Going back in time to take new readings the “right” way is not an option.

    I think Uncle Jack said it best:

  72. Eli Rabett says:

    Victor, in any case you should write John Bates and complain that UAH is hiding the cheese by not responding to you. Anyhow that will be useful information the next time the auditor throws a fit.

  73. I particularly like how it’s my duty to disprove his implication that the data are being massaged prior to it even hitting NCDC’s uptake process.

    That would make the conspiracy pretty big. There are more weather services than nations.

    Conspiracies do exist, but are normally short term projects for a clear goal over a short time span.

    No, sorry, I do not have a graph for the US in °C. I am not used to Fahrenheit. Just noticed that their bias of 0.5F corresponds to only 0.3°C. Less than I thought. 🙂

  74. I had hoped people would just ignore this all, especially after such a bad launch part for the poor review team of the Policy Foundation. But given that The Independent also writes about it and possibly others will follow, I have written a post explaining how bad the launch party was. I would have resigned from the review team.

    Two new reviews of the homogenization methods used to remove non-climatic changes

  75. Eli, if I had written such a code, I would try to hide it as well. I especially like the sub-directories with the names: Spencer, Braswell and Christy. In other words, there is not really a processing software package. Just chaos ready for an audit. Not something I would base policy on. 🙂

  76. The software engineer in the climate “debate” now understands “why UAH v6 is so late…

  77. Willard says:

    > Not something I would base policy on.

    Beware your wishes, Victor. Coding is poetry:

    All.go.rhythm Paul Hertz

    include everything.*;
    void wonder(Universe u) {
    while (ever || never) {
    for (Poem i in u.now()) {
    Word dust = u.speak(i);
    for (Moment mote in dust) {
    wonder(new Universe(mote));
    }
    }
    }
    }

    http://stanford.edu/~mkagen/codepoetryslam/

    There’s even a hook to rhyme with Grrrowth.

  78. anoilman says:

    Victor, as much as I would like to blather on about crap code, I would like to point out that almost all professionals now wind up doing some sort of coding. Its a matter of necessity, not talent. So, I try not to poop and those who produce that junk. But I do try to avoid those projects. Its also harder to update and replace large scale applications than most people think, just ask Netscape.

    I’m self taught too. However in a formal military code review I had the reviewers in tears. They didn’t know you could write code so clear and easy to read. Some would call me a code poet.

  79. harrytwinotter says:

    Going by what I have read so far, the GWPF are starting off with a conclusion they are hoping to confirm.

    The cynic in me says the GWPF are just trying to impress their donors, and are engaging in a FUD exercise.

  80. Brandon Gates says:

    harrytwinotter,

    Funny, I just “told you” more or less the same thing over at WTFUWT, just not as economically in terms of word count … 🙂

  81. Brandon Gates says:

    anoilman,

    Some would call me a code poet.

    Nothing, but nothing, is so beautiful as code written by someone who cares about the aesthetic of it. You’re right, I should probably get out more.

    Willard: +1 for that poem.

  82. Zeke Hausfather says:

    Its a bad sign that this new effort features one graph on their website: USHCN version 1 adjusted minus raw. Unfortunately, USHCN v1 was replaced by USHCN v2 (with the automated PHA rather than manual adjustments) about 8 years ago. The fact that they are highlighting an old out-of-date adjustment graph is, shall we say, not a good sign.

    Brandon,

    You can see a detailed breakdown of Contiguous U.S. (e.g. USHCN) temperature adjustments in Figure 5 here: http://www.skepticalscience.com/understanding-adjustments-to-temp-data.html

  83. Zeke Hausfather says:

    Its worth reposting this old article from the last time that adjusments were under attack in the media: http://rankexploits.com/musings/2013/a-defense-of-the-ncdc-and-of-basic-civility/

    I’ll probably put together an updated synthesis of arguments about adjustments as a blog post and “submission” to this new effort (for all the good it will do…).

  84. Zeke,
    Thanks. I think it would be good if you were to put something together about this.

  85. lord sidcup says:

    I have an image in my head of a shot to pieces zombie standing upright and staggering along.

    It’s a “review”, not a reanalysis. I anticipate they will report some cherry-picked instances of adjustments that go one way, and that will be it.

  86. Andrew Dodds says:

    I’m sure I should have an ethicsectomy and join the GWPF, at least I could come up with some novel half-baked criticisms of climate science..

  87. Ray says:

    How many times do we have to do this? I think that we will keep getting this for as long as there is an audience for those who just don’t want to believe the facts.

  88. Rob Nicholls says:

    I like the link provided by Zeke Hausfather, and also I’ve just re-read https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2015/02/09/guest-post-skeptics-demand-adjustments/ . I think these are both really good posts for non-experts like me and for newcomers who are confused and bewildered by the accusations of “fraud” regarding temperature record adjustments which are very common in the blogosphere.

  89. Steven Mosher says:

    Dr. Tol.

    “What’s wrong with replication and review? You claim that climate change is a big problem, worth spending billions of tax-payer dollars on. So what’s wrong with a private foundation spending private money on testing a key data-set? You claim that the temperature record is fine, so you’re best guess should be that the GWPF will shoot itself in the foot — either by confirming that there is no systematic bias, or by producing a dodgy piece of research. You should welcome this”

    Since we provide working code and our data can you please ensure that the team actually looks at the code or runs it.

    GISS and CRU also provide this as does nCDC

  90. anoilman says:

    I seem to recall that there’s isn’t much difference in global temperatures from the adjustments. Although, 1998 is a bit higher from them (meaning, what they call the ‘hiatus’ is an artificial construct).

  91. anoilman says:

    Richard Tol, businesses (such as the PR firm, the GWPF) rarely do science. There is far to much risk in it, and no sign of a payout.

    Although if you do it for political reasons, advertising it now in order to pretend to be doing something valuable, is always an effective way to pretend there’s a controversy. Since they aren’t concerned about their consistent failures, they can just drop it later on, controversy manufactured.

    Anyways, here’s what happened with Koch Industries funded an examination of global temperatures;
    http://berkeleyearth.org/summary-of-findings

    Yup. Koch Industries has proven that we are the cause;

  92. izen says:

    Climateball(tm) judo…{grin}

    The temperature record HAS been significantly ‘adjusted’, 70% of the surface record has been changed by scientists to REMOVE almost 25% of the warming from the record.
    If we use the raw observations instead of the manipulated data products from climate scientists then the warming since 1900 would already be over a one degree Centigrade or 2 degF.

    The fiddling of the data has hidden a larger rise in surface temperature than is claimed by the IPCC.

    http://variable-variability.blogspot.ch/2015/02/homogenization-adjustments-reduce-global-warming.html

  93. Steven Mosher says:

    My plan for submission is a little different.

    A. Note ALL submissions will be published. Now, I realize that some people would take this as an opportunity to do submissions on tangentially related topic. I hope that no one would do a submission on, say the funding of GPWF, but technically they say all submissions will be published.
    that means every blogger who has ever done a post on temperature could submit their work. I dont know how the team will go through all that dross. Will tey look at every submission? judge every submission? or just republish the good stuff with the crap.

    I will stay on topic with my submission. And I can only hope that people dont flood them with all manner of stuff ( Tol, lewandowsky, Koch, sky dragon stuff etc etc)

    B. Noting that Roman M is on the panel I will try to ressurrect his code for calculating a global average. Then the plan would be to submit a version of the global series using their own experts code. I would urge Nick Stokes to do a submission using his code. His approach is
    wicked fast AND very good, top of class stuff. I’d use his code, but seeing that Roman M is on
    the panel I will focus on Romans stuff ( there is nasty error condition in the SVD library of R that I will need to fix or work around)

    C. I’ve only got sixty days, so The question will be how much stuff I can get done in 60 days. My plan would be to submit working code in R since Roman M can run R. So, while this is my plan, executing it will essentially be my third job– so its twinkies, rockstar and nicotine time

    D. Looking at their terms of reference

    1. Are there aspects of surface temperature measurement procedures that potentially impair data quality or introduce bias and need to be critically re-examined?

    I expect Pielke will go crazy writing this section of their report. he will reference every piece he
    has ever written and argue that it ALL needs to be critically re -examined. So in items 2-5 they will not find fraud. They will find that adjustments warm the record, sometimes and places it is important. Then, they will hammer the point above and argue that it ALL needs to be re examined
    because pielke has a 100 papers talking about a bunch of different things. micro site etc.

    2. How widespread is the practice of adjusting original temperature records? What fraction of modern temperature data, as presented by HadCRUT/GISS/NOAA/BEST, are actual original measurements, and what fraction are subject to adjustments?

    a) hadcrut dont adjust, but they use adjusted data
    b) Giss adjust (UHI) and they use adjusted data
    c) Noaa adjust
    d) Best doesnt technically adjust, we provide an estimate of what would have been recorded.

    Basically this term of reference just allows them to say what we already know. However, I can put some numbers on the number of records we leave unadjusted

    3. Are warming and cooling adjustments equally prevalent?

    Yup. I did a quick look at ours. take the vector of all raw, subtract the vector of all adjusted
    the mean is zero. thats one way of looking at it. If you look at it on a series by series basis
    you’ll probably see a small positive adjustment, BUT its dependent on the time and place
    of series. The answer to this is HIGHLY dependent on your metric and what you decide to cherry pick. You can cut adjustment data hundreds of differrent ways to serve any purpose

    4. Are there any regions of the world where modifications appear to account for most or all of the apparent warming of recent decades?

    Since adjustments vary in time and space this will allow them to single out certain parts
    of the world where the adjustments create warming, and to ignore those areas on the past or other areas where adjustments cool.

    5. Are the adjustment procedures clearly documented, objective, reproducible and scientifically defensible? How much statistical uncertainty is introduced with each step in homogeneity adjustments and smoothing?

    The code for NCDC has been out there for sometime. Our code has as well. My bet is that they will not look at the code and they will never run it. They will complain that there is not enough documentation, or that they could not understand it. They will never send an email asking for assistance. When they try to run the code and find out that it takes weeks, they may argue that its not reproducable.

    basically they are trolling the science. some folks say dont feed the troll. At this stage my approach will be to give the troll more food than they can eat. With a 10 page limit it may take several submissions if the twinkies and nicotine are in good supply.

    thats the plan at least.. haha I need a go fund me

  94. MMM says:

    Space-scientist Richard Tol might say:

    “What’s wrong with replication and review? You claim that [space exploration is important], worth spending billions of tax-payer dollars on. So what’s wrong with a private foundation spending private money on testing a key [historical event]? You claim that the [men actually landed on the moon], so you’re (sic) best guess should be that the GWPF will shoot itself in the foot — either by confirming that [men actually landed on the moon], or by producing a dodgy piece of research. You should welcome this.”

    Given that Richard Tol is on the GWPF board, it would be interesting to hear whether he has an opinion on whether this is a good use of their resources, rather than, say, spending resources on trying to figure out “why the blip” or setting up Climate-Reference-Network caliber stations in non-US countries or any number of other potentially useful temperature-record issues. Or, hey, can he at least tell us if there is any reason why this investigation is any more worthwhile than investigating the moon-landing conspiracy.

    -MMM

  95. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:

    izen:

    The fiddling of the data has hidden a larger rise in surface temperature than is claimed by the IPCC.

    It’s even worse than that.

    Apparently, surface temperatures may not be the only metric that is relevant to the issue of the Earth’s future climate.

    Apparently, there is all manner of independent physical evidence consistent with the notion that the climate is changing rapidly and that anthropogenic emissions are the cause.

    Mosher to Tol:

    …can you please ensure that the team actually looks at the code or runs it.

    If the f-king Ross ice shelf slid into the f-king ocean tomorrow, we would still have the Moshers trying to make sure that the Tols make sure that the GWPF temperature-task-force makes sure that the numbers pass “review”.

    Once the temperature series eventually get GWPF-approved as gremlin-free, just maybe it will then be “time to do some negotiating and horse trading, and pray we get lucky.”

  96. @Steve Mosher
    I’m not in charge of the study, and I’m sure you can contact the team directly to make exactly that point.

    I did look at your code, by the way, and you did not hear me complain.

    @Willard
    Replicating Scafetta is an act of masochism on par with replicating Cook.

  97. Steven Mosher says:

    “The WG Policy Foundation calls it a review. Thus I do not think the team will actually do the work and compute a the global temperature themselves. The team is also much too old for that, I would expect that their programming skills are mostly rusty. They will just write a report with some doubts and the Policy Foundation will write a nice press release about it. The Telegraph will embarrass itself by writing a positive article about it.

    I hope I will be shown wrong.”

    ################

    Roman M writes good R. He even has produced with Jeff Ids help a global average. it was warmer than CRU.

    So per my plan above I will see if I can get Roman’s code to run and maybe submit a global series that is based on their own experts code.

  98. Steven Mosher says:

    “Strange that the Policy Foundation will not investigate BEST. I am unable to understand the article on its homogenization, which is published in an Indian no-name journal.”

    we are referenced in their terms of reference.

  99. Steven Mosher says:

    Victor; Submit your work. they promise to publish all submissions.

    dr. Tol? Can you promise that if Victor and I go to the trouble of creating submissions that they will be read and published?

  100. Steven Mosher, I had misinterpreted the above post to think that BEST was not included, but when I started writing myself, I also notice that BEST will be investigated.

    Welcome you are now part of the global Jewish Big Lie conspiracy. (If I may paraphrase Tim Ball from WUWT.)

  101. Steven Mosher says:

    “If the f-king Ross ice shelf slid into the f-king ocean tomorrow, we would still have the Moshers trying to make sure that the Tols make sure that the GWPF temperature-task-force makes sure that the numbers pass “review”.

    Once the temperature series eventually get GWPF-approved as gremlin-free, just maybe it will then be “time to do some negotiating and horse trading, and pray we get lucky.”

    this has nothing to do with any of that. It climateball integrity wars. pure and simple.

    also, my name is Steven, or you can call me Steve. I have not tried to make this an issue about you, I dont think I’ve ever made any issue about you. I’ve asked Dr. Tol for his promise, we will see if it’s forth coming.

    If you want to discuss horse trading, we can have that conversation.

  102. @Steve Mosher
    I’m happy to pass your submission along.

  103. Eli Rabett says:

    Richard Tol is not a space scientist, but he does car pool from Mars with Roger Pielke Jr.

    OK, this will be up for about 10 ns, but it was worth it

  104. Steven Mosher says:

    Victor

    ‘Welcome you are now part of the global Jewish Big Lie conspiracy. (If I may paraphrase Tim Ball from WUWT.)”

    haha I got two passports. I can pass for both sides.

  105. jsam says:

    Tol doesn’t like Cook, does he? Bless. It’s a right pisser when someone else does better work.

  106. Brandon Gates says:

    Zeke,

    You can see a detailed breakdown of Contiguous U.S. (e.g. USHCN) temperature adjustments in Figure 5 here:

    That’s quite helpful for me. As for the crew at WUWT, they’ve yet again proven beyond reaching with anything remotely resembling logic or staying on topic. Irrespective of that, I have something else specific yet dirt simple in mind. Rather than describe it, I’ve just sent Mosh a note to forward to you with a data request in hopes it will be easy for you to fill so that I can tinker with it myself.

    Thanks for all.

  107. Brandon Gates says:

    I cannot spell “blockquote” today to save my life ….

  108. anoilman says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    April 27, 2015 at 7:14 pm

    “If the f-king Ross ice shelf slid into the f-king ocean tomorrow, we would still have the Moshers trying to make sure that the Tols make sure that the GWPF temperature-task-force makes sure that the numbers pass “review”.

    I suspect they’d make a different argument, like, “Are you sure that’s the Ross Ice Shelf? You included an extra 40km, so it can’t be right.” Or, “The ice shelf in my freezer grew by 10 inches, so you’re wrong.”

    It just seems we’ll be seeing another form of BS in response, coupled with hyper quibbling over micro points. Like, “No, 97% of the Ross Ice sheet didn’t slide. Only 94% of the Ross Ice sheet slid! How dare you mislead the general public!”

  109. Brandon Gates says:

    And Then There’s Moderation: [snip – gates, tone it down, take a 24 hour time out – Anthony]

    I was just asking questions. Honest.

  110. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:

    Steven Mosher:

    also, my name is Steven, or you can call me Steve. I have not tried to make this an issue about you, I dont think I’ve ever made any issue about you.

    Note that I have a name also.
    It’s ‘The Very’, or you can call me ‘Reverend Jebediah’.


    this has nothing to do with any of that. It climateball integrity wars. pure and simple.

    Whatever you say, Mr. issue-maker.

    Look – You and Tol and the GWPF can do your ‘review’ thingy.
    Fight your integrity war.
    Have a climate-ball.
    Don’t care what the eventual outcome is, frankly.


    If you want to discuss horse trading, we can have that conversation.

    Well, many thanks, Mr. Hobson.
    This old climate cowboy must graciously decline – the hour is late, you have but one tired war-horse, and I have only an ass on the line.

  111. Pingback: Two new reviews of the homogenization methods used to remove non-climatic changes – Stoat

  112. izen says:

    @- Steve
    “So in items 2-5 they will not find fraud. They will find that adjustments warm the record, sometimes and places it is important. Then, they will hammer the point above and argue that it ALL needs to be re examined… basically they are trolling the science. some folks say dont feed the troll. At this stage my approach will be to give the troll more food than they can eat.”

    I agree with your analysis and admire your generosity in wanting to over-feed the troll!

    Unfortunately preparing a report on the veracity of the temperature record in the light of all the adjustments is not the primary purpose of this action by the GWPF. Consider their track record in delivering authoritative independent analysis of the science of global warming. And why bother when the WMO TT-HOM group exists with a history of reports.

    …unless the intention is to cast doubt and imply malicious intent at and on those curators and producers of our historical temperature record.

    The primary purpose of this announcement is to poison the well. The mere fact that an ‘independent’ review of the way in which the temperature record has been fiddled or adjusted, achieves most of the goal of the exercise. However much evidence you feed this troll that the adjustments are minor and beneficial it will not outbalance the weight that the NEED to doubt the temperature record will carry in the general perception of the scientific case. They are messengers to power who ensure they will not be shot by shaping the message to reflect the agenda and desire of the recipients and sender. It is not shaped by the evidence.

    It is difficult to detoxify a poisoned well. Undermining the credibility of a historical record and those that write it has no easy antidote. That is why I suggest, mostly in jest, taking their game and running with it.
    Accept the historical temperature record is dubious, mainly for logistical, technical and unintentional reasons. Emphasise that the direction of doubt is very much that the true warming has been underestimated.
    The scientists and IPCC have acted to hide the incline, 70% of the record has been shifted to reduce the amount of warming actually measured. The direction of distrust once the record manipulations are examined are clearly that the warming has been downplayed, the uncertainty is that there may be much more warming than we have been told. Of course the GWPF wants the doubt, uncertainty and suspicion of fraud to be unidirectional. But once you open that box… Why are government funded scientists hiding the larger size of the warming in the raw data? are things WORSE than they dare to tell us? If the historical temperature data has mainly been adjusted down to hide the warming then the fears about how bad it might get may be underestimates, the uncertainty the alteration of the records reveals might make it MORE likely that the warming is catastrophic!
    That is a logical extension of the position on the validity of the temperature records that the GWPF are taking. But is unlikely to be welcomed as an integral consequence of their analysis.

    Unless they discover that the adjusted record is internally coherent, and consistent with all the other established metrics of the changing energy balance on the planet surface.!

  113. Steven Mosher says:

    “Rob Nicholls says:
    April 27, 2015 at 12:44 pm
    I like the link provided by Zeke Hausfather, and also I’ve just re-read https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2015/02/09/guest-post-skeptics-demand-adjustments/ . I think these are both really good posts for non-experts like me and for newcomers who are confused and bewildered by the accusations of “fraud” regarding temperature record adjustments which are very common in the blogosphere.”

    #################

    Thanks. that means a lot

  114. Michael 2 says:

    “So, how many times does this have to happen before people accept the basic evidence?”

    Some years ago my son was assigned to do a history project in middle school (he was abour 14 years old) using “primary sources”. He chose the internment of American citizens of Japanese ancestry, an event taking place during World War 2. He headed for the internet. “Whoah, that’s not primary source! You have to go there, see it, touch it, interview people; feel it, BE it, live it.”

    So we headed on a lengthy road trip. Little GPS receivers had just become available or I might never have found the Topaz relocation center. We took photographs, made movies turning over bricks and revealing many scorpions under every stone and brick. Biting ants everwhere that wasn’t occupied by scorpions. Burnt clay for soil that can barely grow thorny weeds.

    With all that sharply in mind, he produced a compelling report, complete with video, of the Topaz internment camp. It was and is a horrible place. 39° 25.083’N 112° 46.402’W

    So what evidence do you propose to offer? If I cannot see it, touch it, measure it; it isn’t evidence. It is a claim. To be sure, some claims are more believable than others, but that’s a different topic.

  115. Marco says:

    “To be sure, some claims are more believable than others, but that’s a different topic.”

    No it isn’t. At some point you have to accept the ‘testimony’ of others. That Topaz relocation center is in itself not evidence that Japanese Americans were locked up, not even in that camp. It is just a very, very tiny brick in a chain of evidence, and clearly you and your son have accepted much of that other evidence without seeing it, touching it, living it.

  116. anoilman says:

    Michael 2: “If I cannot see it, touch it, measure it; it isn’t evidence. It is a claim.”

    [Mod: a bit unnecessary]

    There are many methods commonly and frequently used in industry to verify project results and otherwise perform due diligence. Since you never learn anything I won’t bother telling you what everyone in industry knows.

    Did you ever bother reading all the source code that you demanded to see for climate models, and claimed that you couldn’t find, and were therefore barred from being able to understand it, that we all found for you? Or did you just sleep on that too?

    Marco: I dated the daughter of an internment camp survivor. The family seemed more upset than he was. Oh, and he’s also been recognized for all his efforts in understanding ocean currents, and how they are affected by global warming.

  117. M2, cleanup on aisle 4, your condescension is dripping.

  118. Izen: “That is why I suggest, mostly in jest, taking their game and running with it.
    Accept the historical temperature record is dubious, mainly for logistical, technical and unintentional reasons. Emphasise that the direction of doubt is very much that the true warming has been underestimated.

    I know that not many are interested in my scientific posts, it needs a joker with silly loaded questions to generate sufficient drama, but your suggestion is not a jest.

    Why raw temperatures show too little global warming

    Unfortunately most climatologists seem to think that the observational data is close to perfect. Orders of magnitudes more scientists work on analysing trends from available dataset than there are scientists working on the suitability of this data for trend analysis.

    Homogenization is too much of a blind spot in climate science. As Neville Nicholls, one of the heroes of the homogenization community, writes:

    When this work began 25 years or more ago, not even our scientist colleagues were very interested. At the first seminar I presented about our attempts to identify the biases in Australian weather data, one colleague told me I was wasting my time. He reckoned that the raw weather data were sufficiently accurate for any possible use people might make of them.

    One wonders how this colleague knew this without studying it.

  119. Richard Muller is now certified member of Tim Balls Jewish Big Lie World Conspiracy.

    Muller tells Carbon Brief:

    “From a scientific point of view, it would be irresponsible not to adjust … it would be considered poor science to avoid such corrections … [and] they do not affect the substantial results.”

  120. izen says:

    @- Victor Venema
    “I know that not many are interested in my scientific posts, it needs a joker with silly loaded questions to generate sufficient drama, but your suggestion is not a jest.”

    Victor, I only ever jest about serious things.
    I am only ever serious about things that are silly.

    @-“Unfortunately most climatologists seem to think that the observational data is close to perfect. Orders of magnitudes more scientists work on analysing trends from available dataset than there are scientists working on the suitability of this data for trend analysis.”

    As this Blog declares – ‘and then there’s Physics!
    But there is also the frontline infantry in the scientific battle. Out in all weathers, thinking creatively and experimenting with ways to give all those physicists something suitable to work on. Physics requires good evidence. The Asimov essay on degrees of right in science makes the point that our ability to measure accurately, driven by technological and conceptual advances had as much to do with new knowledge in science as new ideas.
    People who do clever things with lidar and radar to improve the performance of both and generate a new measurement ability from the combination of improved measurements deserve more than a Hirsch index!

  121. dhogaza says:

    Michael 2: “If I cannot see it, touch it, measure it; it isn’t evidence. It is a claim.”

    So there’s a pile of bricks, out in the middle of nowhere. Apparently scorpions are interned there.

    The primary evidence for the internment of Japanese-Americans during the war is not a pile of bricks in the middle of nowhere.

  122. dhogaza says:

    RPSr’s involvement reminds me that it is he who gave Watts his start, with the surface stations project. And a couple of years ago, Watts published a preliminary version of a paper which supposedly proved that the real trend in the US is only half that computed by mainstream scientists, due to bad siting, evil adjustments, and the like. RPSr was a vocal advocate, IIRC. The errors in that paper were so bad that McIntyre (originally listed as co-author without, he claimed, his knowledge) withdrew his support, and it was never submitted as far as anyone knows.. Evan Jones took over and spent the next year or so claiming that they were closer and closer to fixing the problems, making it suitable for pubication, and that the results would shock the world.

    Publication has never happened. The world remains unshocked, while warming.

    However, I suspect that much of the argumentation that has gone into that effort, as unpublishable as it is, will work its way into this new effort due to RPSr’s involvement … It’s hard to imagine that he’ll let all that work he’s championed over the last decade or so (rooted in the surface stations project) not be put to use in a politically-driven “review” that doesn’t need to past scientific muster. FUD is all they want or need.

  123. VV said:


    Unfortunately most climatologists seem to think that the observational data is close to perfect. Orders of magnitudes more scientists work on analysing trends from available dataset than there are scientists working on the suitability of this data for trend analysis.

    At first I thought the data was full of noise, but then one discovers that there is a real signal in there. That is not noise but a forced response. The data is what it is and perhaps maybe it is perfect … at least for what I want to demonstrate.

    http://contextearth.com/2015/04/28/climate-science-is-just-not-that-hard/ Say #WHUT?

    I would phrase it as too few people working on simple models of climate. The data is useless without a model.

  124. Would it be somehow possible to show how silly and loaded the 5 Policy Foundation questions are by transferring them to anther field where the public is more knowledgeable? Math, biology, physics, astronomy, planetary science?

  125. I had a quick look, but I couldn’t see a way of transferring them to physics/astronomy without them seeming really silly, which may have been your point.

  126. WebHubTelescope, you cannot look at data without a model, at least a model in your head. Some people may not be aware of their model, but models and observations always go hand in had. Either without the other is nothing. The naivete so often displayed at WUWT that you only need to look at the data (with then in all agony also is their cherry picked miniature part) is completely unscientific.

    But you need the right model. Assuming, without much study, that non-climatic temperature changes are not important is bad science. We know that much by now. It would be great if more people would help us quantify this.

  127. you cannot look at data without a model, at least a model in your head. Some people may not be aware of their model, but models and observations always go hand in had.

    Yes, exactly.

  128. izen says:

    “About thirty years ago there was much talk that geologists ought only to observe and not theorise; and I well remember some one saying that at this rate a man might as well go into a gravel-pit and count the pebbles and describe the colours. How odd it is that anyone should not see that all observation must be for or against some view if it is to be of any service! ”
    Darwin.

  129. The temperature data records are more than good enough. I suggest we start looking at simple models of climate science. My gawd, you can look at coral proxy records and can reconstruct the equatorial SST data going back hundreds of years.

    My simple ENSO model can model the temperature going back 130+ years and then to top that off, when I use that as a training interval , it can show agreement going back to 1650 !

    As Dessler says, this is not the area to be concerned about.

  130. izen quoted Darwin:


    “About thirty years ago there was much talk that geologists ought only to observe and not theorise; and I well remember some one saying that at this rate a man might as well go into a gravel-pit and count the pebbles and describe the colours. How odd it is that anyone should not see that all observation must be for or against some view if it is to be of any service! ”

    I used this quote in the preface to my book The Oil Conundrum.
    http://books.google.com/books?id=oY2ZPn5EOTQC

    If you think the temperature records are bad (which they aren’t), you have not seen the records kept in the oil industry! There we have real collusion occurring to make the data as inaccessible as possible. And whatever data is made available is used to justify BAU. That’s not to say that the oil records are unusable, but that corresponding models can fill in the gap.

    I stand incredulous that we can’t use the temperature records as is and do good work with it.

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