The Guardian’s new style guide

It seems that the Guardian is changing the language it uses about the environment. It’s updated it’s preferred terms to include climate emergency, crisis or breakdown, instead of climate change and global heating, instead of global warming. Maybe most controversially, it is suggesting using climate science denier instead of climate sceptic.

One of my most read posts is a guest post by Richard Betts arguing that we should label the behaviour, not the person. Although I haven’t always succeeded, I have tried to follow this basic suggestion; I try to avoid labelling an individual, even if I do sometimes discuss the existence of people who deny climate science. I think this has helped to avoid some discussions degenerating.

However, even though these discussions don’t degenerate, this doesn’t make them particularly worthwhile; they’re pleasant, but mostly pointless. It also hasn’t avoided people accussing me of engaging in name-calling. It seems that this is just a convenient excuse that some use to justify why they can’t engage in meaningful discussions with those they regard as alarmists.

So, I’m in two minds about the Guardian’s new style guide. I think avoiding using terms like climate science denier can help a little to improve the overall tone of the dialogue. However, it doesn’t really seem to encourage any kind of meaningful discussion and avoiding it doesn’t seem to really change that some will still throw around accusations of name calling.

My guess is that it will make little difference. Those writing for the Guardian are almost certainly not trying to reach those dismissive of the risks associated with climate change; this probably isn’t actually possible. It may even seem appealing to their regulars. It could, potentially, put off some of those who are undecided, but I don’t think anyone knows what really works, so it may be worth a shot.

Links:

The style guide at the end of the world, by Joe Smith.

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66 Responses to The Guardian’s new style guide

  1. John Hartz says:

    Another recent article on the matter of new descriptors for “climate change”:

    Does the term “climate change” need a makeover? Some think so — here’s why. by Jeff Berardelli, CBS News, May 16, 2019

  2. Now that Barack Obama and James Hansen have been labeled deniers by no less than Naomi Oreskes and Greg Laden, the term seems to have little utility other than a deligitimizing form of insult. But then, I guess that’s a feature, not a bug for most who employ it.

  3. Joshua says:

    Tom –

    What do you think is the utility of “alarmist,” or “climate concerned”?

  4. John Hartz says:

    thomaswfuller2 : Please provide documentation of your assertions about statements supposedly made by Naomi Oreskes and Greg Laden.

  5. JH,
    Tom is probably referring to this Guardian article by Naomi Oreskes. I’m not sure when Greg Laden has done so. However, I don’t see the point in focussing on this, so let’s not do so.

  6. John Hartz says:

    ATTP: Re Obama being labeled a “new class of climate denier” by Oreskes, it’s definitely not in the article you cited. To the best of my knowledge, Obama has never called for a massive infusion of new nuclear power plants because renewable energy by itself cannot do the job.

  7. Willard says:

    > Re Obama

    You’ve been asked to drop it, JohnH. Please drop it.

    And mind sealioning when it helps peddlers peddle with “what about this guy or that gal.”

  8. Clive Best says:

    Climate Science is not an exact science, so trying to control the language used about it seems a bit extreme.

  9. Clive,
    Except, this isn’t really the language science, it’s about the narrative associated with climate change. It’s clearly aimed at promoting climate action, which is not hidden.

  10. susurrus says:

    I am in favour of using the most powerful words we have. If the majority of scientists have this right, are we not looking at a holocaust? Often we don’t want to say it because we don’t want to think it, but by saying something, we have a better chance of addressing it.

  11. susurrus,

    Often we don’t want to say it because we don’t want to think it, but by saying something, we have a better chance of addressing it.

    I think the problem is that when you get to the stage where you’re trying to convince people that we need to do something and, in this case, something quite disruptive, the language that is used can be important. It may well be that the Guardian is perfectly justified in using the terms that it’s now going to use, but that might be rather irrelevant if it ends up putting off people who might otherwise be convinced. If I learned anything in the last few years, it’s that I don’t think anyone really knows what works and what doesn’t.

  12. dikranmarsupial says:

    I personally am not in favour of calling people “deniers”, but mostly because it is an invitation to move away from a discussion of the science, economics or politics onto a (usually unproductive) “nature of the debate” debate. If that is not what you want to discuss, then better to stick to “skeptic”, even if it isn’t accurate (can always leave the quotes there) so you can continue on a battlefield of you own choosing.

    I also think if you want to discuss the science, it is a mistake to use terms that confuse the science with economics, or political values (so I am happy with “climate change”).

  13. russellseitz says:

    The Guardian and Observer style guide changes reflect an event hosted by The Nation and Columbia Journalism Review, and enlivened by the delivery of a cheque for a megabuck b Bill Moyers of the Schumann Foundation

    As noted in The Nation:
    The Nation and the Columbia Journalism Review hereby announce Covering Climate Change: A New Playbook for a 1.5-Degree World, a project aimed at dramatically improving US media coverage of the climate crisis. When the IPCC scientists issued their 12-year warning, they said that limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius would require radically transforming energy, agriculture, transportation, construction, and other core sectors of the global economy. Our project is grounded in the conviction that the news sector must be transformed just as radically…The project will launch on April 30 with a conference at the Columbia School of Journalism in New York City—a working forum where journalists will gather to start charting a new course

    It was received with predictable enthusiasm by some:
    https://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2019/05/the-golden-age-of-existential-threat.html

    But not all
    https://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2019/05/who-can-argue-with-angela-merkelthe.html

  14. Clive Best says:

    So it is just political activism then.

  15. Clive,
    The Guardian isn’t a scientific publication, it’s a newspaper. It certainly seems to have an agenda, and is clearly in favour of taking action to minimise the impact of climate change. So, this change seems broadly consistent with that agenda (although some think it won’t be an effective way to achieve it).

    Just out of interest, do you regard political activism as a bad thing?

  16. John Hartz says:

    The CBS News article that I linked to in my initial post on this thread is based on the results of research conducted by SPARK Neuro, a neuroanalytics company that measures emotion and attention to optimize advertising and entertainment. SPRAKNeuro’s research and findings are documented on this webpage:

    https://sparkneuro.com/case-studies/rebranding-climate-change/

    I do not know whether or not the Guardian based its decision on this particular research or not.

  17. Clive Best says:

    No there is nothing wrong with political activism, although some of the cheer leaders are climate scientists so should really take a more balanced position.

    If it is a political issue whether we face an imminent climate emergency, then you must also accept those who express opposing viewpoints expressing an opinion. There are good arguments as to why some knee jerk “green” imposed switch to renewable energy would end up a total disaster.

    The Guardian and apparently most climate “scientists” want to shut down informed debate on future energy options in the name of some “emergency”. The transition from fossil fuels to something else inevitably has to be slow. Something else is probably some form of nuclear energy. Let’s stick to the original Paris agreement of 2C giving us over 30y to do it.

  18. Clive,

    If it is a political issue whether we face an imminent climate emergency, then you must also accept those who express opposing viewpoints expressing an opinion.

    Why must? One option is to try and engage with those who express opposing viewpoints. Another is to try and win the political fight by making them seem ridiculous. The latter seems more common than the former (politics doesn’t typically involve reaching a consensus with other parties).

    There are good arguments as to why some knee jerk “green” imposed switch to renewable energy would end up a total disaster.

    If you’re really concerned about this, maybe you need to engage with those who express opposing viewpoints?

  19. John Hartz says:

    Speaking of nuclear power, here’s a nicely-written overview of how nuclear power compares to wind and solar.

    As Hitachi and Toshiba abandon plans for new British nuclear reactors, Damian Carrington assesses the merits of the technology…

    Nuclear power can be green – but at a price by Damian Carrington, Environment, Guardian, Jan 17, 2019

    The basics haven’t changed much since Carrington’s was published in January of this year.

  20. John Hartz says:

    Interesting developments on the power generation front in Minnesota. You can bet your sweet bippy that Excel Energy has not been taken over by environmentalists.

    Xcel Energy’s Plan to Eliminate Coal and Boost Solar in Minnesota by James Cignac, Union of Concerned Scientists, May 20, 2019

    While the plan does not call for the construction of any new nuclear power plants, it does call for keeping the Monticello nuclear plant in operation.

    The article says this about the role nuclear power.in Minnesota…..

    With respect to nuclear, while it is not part of our consensus proposal, Xcel’s preliminary plan also includes an expectation of relicensing its Monticello nuclear plant and operating it at least until 2040. (To date, no nuclear reactor in the United States has received approval from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to extend its operating license beyond 60 years, but three applications are currently pending.) This concept will require close examination by stakeholders and regulators on whether it is the most cost-effective path toward a 100% carbon-free electricity future and whether the plant can continue to operate safely beyond 60 years.

  21. Richard Arrett says:

    100% carbon-free electricity means getting rid of natural gas plants also. Not only will Minnesota have to keep its two nuclear power plants, we will have to build several more.

  22. Willard says:

    > If it is a political issue whether we face an imminent climate emergency […]

    A climate emergency looks like a climatic issue to me.

  23. Clive Best says:

    “Another is to try and win the political fight by making them seem ridiculous. ”

    Of course you can try to do that if you want but if you were to win then it will undoubtably rebound on you, because there is no looming climate disaster, instead there would be a far more dangerous energy crisis.

  24. Clive,
    Seems a bit alarmist?

  25. Clive Best says:

    “There are good arguments as to why some knee jerk “green” imposed switch to renewable energy would end up a total disaster.”

    “If you’re really concerned about this, maybe you need to engage with those who express opposing viewpoints?”

    i always engagie with such people. The idea that renewable energy could support 8 billion peoplle without fertililizers, concrete, roads, shipping, trade isa delusion.

    It worries me that any physicist could pretend otherwise.

  26. Clive,

    The idea that renewable energy could support 8 billion peoplle without fertililizers, concrete, roads, shipping, trade isa delusion.

    Yes, this does seem rather unlikely. This is why I think we should consider all possible solutions.

    It worries me that any physicist could pretend otherwise.

    Funny the things that seem to worry you.

  27. John Hartz says:

    The introductory paragraphs of the above cited article about Excel energy’s plan for Minnesota…

    Today, Xcel Energy released a preliminary plan to phase out its remaining coal-fired power plants in Minnesota and replace them primarily with wind, solar, and energy efficiency—moving the company forward toward its goal of 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050.

    Part of the plan involves a consensus proposal joined by the Union of Concerned Scientists, other clean energy organizations, and the Laborers International Union of North America.

    Below are some of the noteworthy items included in the consensus proposal and Xcel’s plan—and how they relate to Minnesota’s clean energy future.

    It doesn’t appear that the greens even had a seat the table. Perhaps they controlled the planning process through the use of secret radio beams. 🙂

  28. John Hartz says:

    If what is described in the following article comes about, would it constitute a “climate emergency”?

    Climate change: sea level rise could displace millions of people within two generations by Jonathan Bamber & Michael Oppenheimer, The Conversation US, May 20, 2019

  29. John Hartz says:

    A more detailed description of Xcel Energy’s long range plan is presented in this article:

    Xcel’s plan to 2030: Close two coal plants, extend nuclear plant, add more solar by Mike Hughlett, Business, Star Tribune, May 21, 2019

    What’s happening on the ground in Minnesota is a more valid indicator of how US electric utilities are likely to build out new capacity than are the platitudes posted by Clive Best.

  30. John Hartz says:

    Richard Arrett: You wrote::

    100% carbon-free electricity means getting rid of natural gas plants also. Not only will Minnesota have to keep its two nuclear power plants, we will have to build several more.

    Minnesota’s biggest electric utility, Xcel Energy apparently disagrees.

  31. Joshua says:

    Clive –

    The Guardian and apparently most climate “scientists” want to shut down informed debate on future energy options in the name of some “emergency”.

    Do you think that “most climate scientists” works agree with your characterization of what they “want?”

    If not, then consider that maybe your impression of what they “want” is colored by your own biases. You know, judging other people’s intent can be very difficult. Over-confidence in one’s ability to judge the intent of others is, IMO, a common sign of a failure to control for bias.

  32. Joshua says:

    “works”= would

  33. Steven Mosher says:

    this is known as cry wolf harder.

  34. John Hartz’s link is a masterpiece.
    “The company expects its electricity production — including nuclear power — to be 75% carbon-free by 2030. However, that is short of its previous goal of 85% carbon-free power by then.
    Xcel’s announcement was part of a long-term resource plan it must file with Minnesota utility regulators every few years. In the last plan, Xcel, Minnesota’s largest utility, announced it would close two of its three big Sherco coal generators in Becker in 2023 and 2026, respectively.”

    In short- the state mandated that Xcel produce a report showing how it will go carbon free sometime in the future. The new report dials back previous goals (because they were obviously unrealistic).
    The story also says that Xcel will not build any new wind farms, but will only replace existing ones. It will take on some, but not much, new solar- all the solar coming from “a state-mandated program”.
    So where is the juice going to come from to replace the coal plants? The story mentions that too- they’re going to build a giant natural gas plant and extend and expand the nukes. And, of course, the closure of the coal plants is a “goal” set for 11 years away and, conveniently, without a price tag for consumers. In other words, lots of time to change their minds once people see what their glorious new electricity rates would be.

  35. Willard says:

    > What’s happening on the ground in Minnesota is a more valid indicator of how US electric utilities are likely to build out new capacity than are the platitudes posted by Clive Best.

    Clive’s platitudes are at least more relevant to the thread than your spamming, JohnH. Once again you’re being baited. It’s boring, and it’s more work for me.

  36. John Hartz says:

    jeffnsails850 : I have cited Xcel Energy’s long-range plan to demonstrate that a very large electric utility in the US not included building new nuclear power plants in its long-range plan. I used this example in response to Cliff Best’s general pronouncement that nuclear power has to be the predominate way of generating electric power in the future. It ain’t going to happen because bringing new nuclear power plants online is way too damn expensive compared to the alternatives.

  37. Jeff says:

    “The story also says that Xcel will not build any new wind farms, but will only replace existing ones. It will take on some, but not much, new solar- all the solar coming from “a state-mandated program”.
    So where is the juice going to come from to replace the coal plants?”

    Minnesota has never had *any* fossil fuel resources (unless you want to talk about a few peat bogs),. Half the state sits on top of a granite bedrock. We realize that fossil fuels are the result of the luck of the draw and whatever boom there was elsewhere is nearing its end.

  38. Willard says:

    > I used this example in response to Cliff Best’s general pronouncement that nuclear power has to be the predominate way of generating electric power in the future.

    And JeffN is baiting you because he’s into “but nukes,” a discussion that goes over there:

    https://andthentheresphysics.wordpress.com/2017/11/29/going-nuclear/

    This is a thread about the Guardian’s New Style Guide.

    Not a thread about “but nukes.”

    Thanks.

  39. John Hartz says:

    Thank you for the clarification. I will comply.

  40. russellseitz says:

    ATTP;
    It’s rather brave of Clive refer to something many cwould rather leave forgotten–The Energy Crisis. It dominated policy polemics of the 1970’s and was advertised as an existential threat to civilization as widely as the climate crisis is today

    While justifying R&D on alternatives like wind, solar, and ethanol, the OPEC embargo “Oil Crisis” led in political reality to the wholesale expansion of coal fired electricity, because, all thenational academied concurred, America’s vast reserves of cheap coal promised energy independence for generations to come.

    It took less than a decade for the loud consensus on energy shortage as the wave of the future ( CF the Club of Rome Report )to implode into silence- between 1976 and 1984 as the Energy Crisis morphed into the Oil Glut

  41. Clive Best says:

    The OPEC oil embargo led to France starting their huge nuclear energy programme, because they previously depended on oil power stations. Over the next 15 years France installed 56 nuclear reactors, satisfying all its power needs and now export electricity to other European countries including Britain. The France/UK interconnector supplies a near continuous 2GW power supply to the UK national grid, and regularly outperforms all ~10,000 on-shore and off-shore wind turbines.

  42. Dave_Geologist says:

    Russell, might the strange behaviour of the world during and after the OPEC crisis, unlike either conventional supply-and-demand or rational planning for a future world, have had something to do with the fact that it was an artificially created crisis, politically motivated and implemented by a supply-side boycott?

    Just a thought.

  43. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:


    It dominated policy polemics of the 1970’s and was advertised as an existential threat to civilization as widely as the climate crisis is today
    …..
    It took less than a decade for the loud consensus on energy shortage as the wave of the future ( CF the Club of Rome Report )to implode into silence- between 1976 and 1984 as the Energy Crisis morphed into the Oil Glut

    While Clive Best may be brave for his reference to what many would rather leave forgotten, it is downright heroical for Russell Seitz to compare the Club of Rome’s “Limits to Growth” of 1972 (!) and similar futurist conjecture to the work of tens of thousands of climate science researchers spanning decades.

    And I thought the “4 C of climate change will be like living 5 degrees closer to the equator” argument was a bit brazen.

    Anyway:
    Since America survived OPEC, there is no existential threat to civilization to be concerned about.

    Except, perhaps, the vast over-abundance of bravado caused by the fallacy of false analogy.

  44. Clive- and by choosing a “very expensive” option, electricity prices in France are… ahem… ~20% below the Eurozone average.

  45. Willard says:

    FWIW:

    OPEC soon lost its preeminent position, and in 1981, its production was surpassed by that of other countries. Additionally, its own member nations were divided. Saudi Arabia, trying to recover market share, increased production, pushing prices down, shrinking or eliminating profits for high-cost producers. The world price, which had peaked during the 1979 energy crisis at nearly $40 per barrel, decreased during the 1980s to less than $10 per barrel. Adjusted for inflation, oil briefly fell back to pre-1973 levels. This “sale” price was a windfall for oil-importing nations, both developing and developed.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1973_oil_crisis#Decline_of_OPEC

    While we may indulge in Clive’s Madeira! luckwarm moment, it might be unwise to fall for historical revisionnism.

  46. russelseitz said:

    “It took less than a decade for the loud consensus on energy shortage as the wave of the future ( CF the Club of Rome Report )to implode into silence- between 1976 and 1984 as the Energy Crisis morphed into the Oil Glut”

    This is more than a bit brazen. If you look at the world crude oil production data up to 1975, anybody that would look at the curve below on the left would naively forecast an exponential growth for the ensuing years. Eyeballing a trend, it should have taken about another 5 years before the world hit 85 million barrels a day. But you look at what actually happened ~45 years later, conventional crude oil barely nudged 85 million and it is below that level today.

    It was never a real “Oil Glut” in geological terms. Exponential growth was unsustainable, so the world economy adjusted.

  47. russellseitz says:

    While Clive Best may be brave for his reference to what many would rather leave forgotten, it is downright heroical for Russell Seitz to compare the Club of Rome’s “Limits to Growth” of 1972 (!) and similar futurist conjecture to the work of tens of thousands of climate science researchers spanning decades.

    Thanks to Jeb too, for reminding us of the cyclic nature of apocalypptic rhetoric in media culture. Now as in 1972, or 1988, poplar perceptions are driven more by choral doomsaying by soi-disant climate communicators on prime -time than tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves

    As Death Valley and The Empty Quarter earned their epithets long before the Energy Crisis, the prospect of serious deserts being rendered even more deserted by AGW is a less serious policy concern than growing desertification in populous regions like western China.

  48. John Hartz says:

    russellseitz: You wrote:

    Now as in 1972, or 1988, poplar perceptions are driven more by choral doomsaying by soi-disant climate communicators on prime -time than tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves

    Are you suggesting that tens of thousands of researchers should each be directly engaged in informing the public?

    Has here ever been a time a in modern history when the vast majority of published research papers were read by other than fellow researchers?

  49. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:


    Now as in 1972, or 1988, poplar perceptions are driven more by choral doomsaying by soi-disant climate communicators on prime -time than tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves

    Poplar (sic) perceptions of science have been more driven by the tee-vee and print meeja than those nerdy scientists and all their intra-disciplinary jargon and high-falutin’, low-Nielsen-rating publications?

    Perhaps the apocalypptic rhetoric would bother you less if you were to inject some more of that “soi-disant” into your own learned self-affirmations.


    As Death Valley and The Empty Quarter earned their epithets long before the Energy Crisis, the prospect of serious deserts being rendered even more deserted by AGW is a less serious policy concern than growing desertification in populous regions like western China.

    OK, then.
    Since some places have had scary names since before Fourier and Tyndall, and since we have identified at least one serious policy concern that might be more serious than AGW, it certainly follows that the climate crisis is choral doomsaying.
    That’s just great.

  50. russellseitz says:

    Poplar (sic) perceptions of science have been more driven by the tee-vee and print meeja than those nerdy scientists and all their intra-disciplinary jargon and high-falutin’, low-Nielsen-rating publications?

    Here, in response to your question marks, is the high-Nielsen rating President of the Planetary Society taking a bite out of jargon on prime time:
    https://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2019/05/and-now-word-from-president-of-plnetary.html

  51. Everett F Sargent says:

    “This is more than a bit brazen. If you look at the world crude oil production data up to 1975, anybody that would look at the curve below on the left would naively forecast an exponential growth for the ensuing years. Eyeballing a trend, it should have taken about another 5 years before the world hit 85 million barrels a day.”

    1975? Hmm, err, kind of hard to tell since the graphs presented begin in either January 2003 (lhs) or 1990 (rhs), respectively. :/

  52. John Hartz says:

    russellseitz:

    John, are you asking for more Oregon Petition clones ?

    Absolutely not.

    How you could infer such from my comments/questions is just plain weird..

  53. John Hartz says:

    russellseitz: You wrote:

    Now as in 1972, or 1988, poplar perceptions are driven more by choral doomsaying by soi-disant climate communicators on prime -time than tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves

    With respect to climate science, the scientific findings of “thousands of researchers publishing papers” have been and continue to be synthesized by the IPCC on a scheduled basis. These syntheses are published posted for the whole world to see,. They are closely scrutinized and referred to people in both the public and private sectors and by the media. Do not these synthesis reports give voice to the tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves.

  54. Everett F Sargent says:

    But you look at what actually happened ~45 years later, conventional crude oil barely nudged 85 million and it is below that level today.

    The graph clearly states “World Peak Aug 2015 96.9 mb/d” hmm, err, I wonder what the IEA sez ….
    https://webstore.iea.org/download/direct/1062?fileName=Market_Report_Series_Oil_2018.pdf
    (requires free registration and then login for free download afaik)
    “World oil demand is set to increase by 6.9 mb/d to 2023 at an average of 1.2 mb/d a year. ”

    Table 1.1 Global oil product demand, p. 16 (or p. 17 of PDF)
    Year, mb/d
    2017,97.8
    2018,99.2
    2019,100.4
    2020,101.5
    2021,102.6
    2022,103.7
    2023,104.7

    PS: Oil is oil = Conventional + Unconventional (translates directly into carbon burned)

  55. Willard says:

    Guardian.

    New.

    Style.

    Guide.

    Please.

  56. Ev said:

    “1975? Hmm, err, kind of hard to tell since the graphs presented begin in either January 2003 (lhs) or 1990 (rhs), respectively. :/

    Sorry, that graph got screwed up. Here is the correct one.

    Note that world production looks like it is going through an exponential growth up to 1975. Can we imagine what levels of CO2 we would have in the atmosphere if this trend had continued for 40 years?

  57. John Hartz says:

    I applaud the Guardian for leading the way by adopting its new style guide.

  58. Guardian’s new style- ask people in the diplomatic corps if they think the best way to get a politician to do something is to more energetically and publicly denounce them. Then ask them if it works well if your goal is objectively bad policy.

  59. Willard says:

    Peddling is a cold sale technique. To get into your house, the peddler needs to make you open the door. Then he needs to insert his foot into the door frame. One way to do so is like any other confidence trick. First earn trust. e.g.

    [Earn Trust] Guardian’s new style- […]

    Then make a provactive enough claim to pique curiosity:

    [Pique curiosity] ask people in the diplomatic corps if they think the best way to get a politician to do something is to more energetically and publicly denounce them

    Finally, make your cold sale:

    [Sell] Then ask them if it works well if your goal is objectively bad policy.

    The sell is cold because the “objectively bad policy” is unsubstantiated and probably cannot. It’s just a bait. How to deal with baiting leads to a dilemma. On the first horn, if the bait is contested, peddling succeeds. On the second horn, if the bait is ignored, an implicit concedo can be perceived.

    Were it not for this comment, JeffN’s peddling would have been snipped. Or not – it’s not like me or AT are here on the look out each minute of every day. We try to minimize having to intervene, and so far it goes well.

    All this to say that some ClimateBall discipline goes a long way in saving everyone’s time. Please don’t take this comment as an opportunity to discuss moderation. It would be playing the ref, and comments to this effect will be deleted.

    Carry on.

  60. russellseitz says:

    JH:”and continue to be synthesized by the IPCC on a scheduled basis. These syntheses are published posted for the whole world to see,. They are closely scrutinized and referred to people in both the public and private sectors and by the media. Do not these synthesis reports give voice to the tens of thousands of researchers publishing papers read largely by themselves.”

    Not in my experience of the IPCC process.

    What has been “published posted for the whole world to see ‘ (sic) is Executive Summaries writen by a comparative handul of international committee members.

    They do not” give voice to the tens of thousands pf researchers.” because while researchers supply fodder for both analysiis and editorial ellipsis , most have no voice in writing the Executive Summaries,

  61. John Hartz says:

    russellseitz: You are correct about the IPPC’s summary report for policymakers, but not about the reports of the three Working Groups.

  62. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:


    They do not” give voice to the tens of thousands pf researchers.” because while researchers supply fodder for both analysiis and editorial ellipsis , most have no voice in writing the Executive Summaries,

    Censorship! Consensus police!

    Russell – The IPCC Reports contain these things that are called “citations”.

    If you want primary sources, you don’t even have to get out of your comfy-chair.

  63. russellseitz says:

    VRJ
    Have you been on an interdisciplinary paper chase lately?
    When the FAR came out, this university subscribed to 35,800 journals spread out over 108 libraries. Even after decades of consolidation , and on line access, active researchers still have to drop in on a half dozen journal rooms on a two mile circuit to peruse the scores of journals in play in academic climateball.

  64. The Very Reverend Jebediah Hypotenuse says:

    C’mon, Russell.
    You really ought to have your librarians: show you why they index those on-line subscriptions, point you to abstracting services, and maybe let you in on the inter-library loans secret.
    This information technology is available all over the world. Even in Canada.

    You don’t like Executive Summaries (not enough!), and you don’t like 35,800 journals (too much!).
    Your Goldie Locks approach to ClimateBall is hereby noted.

    Because what we really need is another “just right!” style guide for the end of the world.

  65. russellseitz says:

    Librarians? Most disappeared around the time the geology library was sent off to a repository to make way for more office space.

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