The Australian's War on Science 50: 'one-sided' reporting

The Australian's coverage of the story of the emails stolen from CRU has been extensive -- my Factiva search found that there have published 85 articles so far that mention the matter, with repeated allegations that the emails showed that the scientists were corrupt, had acted dishonestly and that the science could not be trusted. In February they reported on the Independent Climate Change Email Review:

The university had already announced a wide-ranging probe into whether its researchers manipulated information about global warming. That review, headed by senior British civil servant Muir Russell, began work yesterday and called for submissions by March 1

So how did they deal with the fact that the Review resulted in vindication for the CRU scientists? Simple, they didn't report on it all. If you look at their page indexing their climate stories, it's not there. They do, however, have a story by The Times' Ben Webster with the headline UN's climate report 'one-sided'.

And the irony doesn't end with the headline, because the story is about the PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency examination of AR4 on regional climate change. PBL concluded:

PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency has found no errors that would undermine the main conclusions in the 2007 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on possible future regional impacts of climate change.

That contradicts the dozens and dozens of one-sided stories that The Australian and The Times have been running about alleged errors in the IPCC report, so this is barely mentioned and buried at the end of the story. Instead, Webster focused on the negative in the report:

A summary report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on regional impacts focused on the negative consequences of climate change and failed to make clear that there would also be some benefits of rising temperatures.

The report adopted a "one-sided" approach that risked being interpreted as an "alarmist view".

When you see one and two word quotes, especially from a journalist with form, it's good to check for quote-mining, and sure enough, here's what the report said:

The section on 'risk-oriented approach' (3.3) reveals that, at summary level, the most important negative impact projections have been highlighted. This approach is understandable and justifiable, but it has not been made explicit. We believe that such a risk-oriented approach, although essential, is also one-sided.

So rather than PBL saying this approach was wrong, as Webster claims, it said that it was "essential", but should be made explicit.

And the irony does not end there. Webster purports to give three examples of errors identified by PBL in the chapter on Australia and gets two of them wrong.

For example, the IPCC had stated that 60 per cent of the Great Barrier Reef was projected to suffer regular bleaching by 2020 but had failed to make clear that this was the worst projected outcome and the impact might be far smaller.

In fact, PBL did not find anything inaccurate in this statement. They did identify a citation error - the IPCC cited Jones (2004b) when they should have cited Sheehan et al (2006).

The report, which underpinned the Copenhagen summit last December, wrongly suggested that climate change was the main reason communities faced severe water shortages and neglected to make clear that population growth was a much bigger factor.

Compare with what PBL states:

By 2030, water security problems are projected to intensify in southern and eastern Australia and, in New Zealand, in Northland and some eastern regions.

This statement is fully supported by the underlying material.

For more comments on The Australian's one-sided reporting on the PBL report, see Andrew Macintosh and Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.

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You can barely trust any newspapers to accurately report on any scientific issues, because most of the time the journalists are not qualified / experienced in the subects they report on, they have political biases and they don't have the same level of peer-review that proper science has. The Australian is an absolute train wreck in this regard.

By Squeaky Woo Woo (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

The PBL also includes the following:
In addition, the
investigated summary conclusions tend to single out the most important negative impacts
of climate change. Although this approach was agreed to by the IPCC governments for
the Fourth Assessment Report, the PBL recommends that the full spectrum of regional
impacts is summarised for the Fifth Assessment Report, including the uncertainties.

and
The PBL has labelled this as a ârisk-orientedâ approach, which had
been implicitly endorsed by the governments that constitute the IPCC (including
that of the Netherlands).

It was the member states that asked for the negative impacts to be highlighted, so it was not the choice of the IPCC.

By Turboblocke (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

The skewed reporting of climate change matters by The Australian is sufficiently grievous that the ABC's Mediawatch could usefully cast their eye over the subject again.

I hope that their researchers/producers are taking note...

By Bernard J. (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

just plain out horrible. denialist spin machine in action. zero connection to reality, and apart from the blogosphere nobody calling them out.

a travesty.

a story by The Times' Ben Webster

Any word on Jimmie Blanton's opinion?

By Ezzthetic (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

With all this talk of an imminent climate change policy I am expecting the Australian to return to form with an all out attack on climate change evidence. My predictions, based on past performance, are as follows:

Again there will be multitudes of bizarre and loopy letters to the editor; editorials bleating that coral bleaching is overstated; and pontificating columnists â think Christopher Pearson blessed by George Pell â lecturing us that climate change is just a leftie scam/hoax/plot/fraud designed to lead to our ruination as a leading capitalist nation.

Publication in the Australian will give credibility to the geologists - Carter, Plimer and Asten â whose utterances, with the assistance of Andrew Bolt, will bounce merrily around the blogosphere. There will be many follow up comments stating that climate change is a greenie scam/plot/hoax/fraud.

Expect some old codger who swims at the same beach, day in - day out, for 85 years to tell us that he knows that sea level rise definitely isnât happening. The real scientist will be buried in a one liner in the second last paragraph. On the following day there will be letters to the editor stating sea level rise is a scam/plot/hoax/fraud.

Every cold weather and snow story - and they just love snow in December - will be markedly amplified. Silence will, of course, reign when the hot weather strikes again.

There will be the endless rehashing of articles from the other Murdoch outlets, particularly articles from The Times attacking the IPCC report and reporting bias by the UN.

Any more suggestions?

I read somewhere a while back that The Australian managed to print something in the region of 400 anti-AGW articles in one year alone. Talk about a crusade.

Can anyone give a short summary of which major Aussie newspapers and news websites are either pro or anti AGW? The news websites I usually read are ABC News, Sydney Morning Herald and for international news - BBC News. Don't know about SMH, but the ABC and BBC are usually pretty sensible and rational when it comes to reporting on climate change issues. Just done a quick check and I see that the Aussie Telegraph is just as bad as the British Telegraph.

By Squeaky Woo Woo (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

The phrase, "when in a hole, stop digging" comes to mind for some reason.

I wonder how Rupert's paywall on the Times is working out? :)

---

Shirley:

> Silence will, of course, reign when the hot weather strikes again.

I've noticed a new tactic from the deniers: when someone makes a connection with the latest record killer drought / heatwave to global warming, they start shrieking that single weather events don't prove climate change. At least they're capable of learning something - even if it will be forgotten when the first snowflake falls in winter.

Geez, there's lazy and disingenuous adherence to simplistic ideas of "balance," and then there's the Australian's utter abandonment of even the pretence of journalistic principle.

I think Tim is doing incredibly good and useful work here, patiently exposing their mendacity again and again and again. But sometimes I despair. That wad of bog-roll is being read by thousands of people. Not all of them could possibly be rusted-on denialists; some of them are just plain being misinformed, and don't know about it. How do we get noisy enough to get through to these people that they need to look elsewhere?

@Squeaky Woo Woo: Unfortunately there aren't really any newspapers or news outlets in Australia that are consistent or principled enough that you could call them pro or anti. Obviously the Murdoch newspapers (the majority, sigh) are not worth the dead trees it takes to print them. The SMH is often OK, although a while back they did print a column by Plimer without any disclaimer, let alone the necessary one ("In the interests of spurious 'balance', we have decided to waste valuable space on a rant by a delusional lunatic.")

MG! Jst stmbld pn ths sd lttl rfg fr fllwrs f th GW Clt! Th fct tht y hv s rdl ccptd th Wht Wsh Tblts hndd t y b yr hgh prsts shws wht brnwshd smpltns y r! Bt h, dn't thnk fr yrslvs nw, s tht wld b hrs! dts!

By Ed Straker (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

@Straker
..says the person peddling third hand metaphors.

What a maroon.

No evidence, no brains.

Hey Straker.. I have been coming to this site for a long time and Tim hasn't changed his class clown act, nor have his freinds that hang out here. I have been called all sorts of names, water off a ducks back. Tim really believes that the UEA has been vindicated but that is not true. The only reason they have not been fined or jailed is because of the six months statues of limitations. They were guilty but could not be punished.

Tim, great article, thanks for taking the time to bring this together. One small query - shouldn't the beginning of the third para say

And the irony doesn't end with the headline...

...?

*[Yes, fixed, thanks]*

My above ^^^ = doesn't. Derr...

:)

six months statues of limitations

What the heck are statues of limitations, and why do they only last six months? I suppose they may be bio-degradable statues :)

A little more seriously: a six-month statute of limitations? Where is this documented and what does it limit for investigation?

#13: oh yeah, exactly guilty of what?

Sorry for the multiple posts, but it looks like a slow day.

I just found this from dailyKos, which shows The Australian is not the only deceptive media outlet, and [Media Matters](http://mediamatters.org/press/releases/201007070031) calls for proper journalism to be committed.

Getting a bit jumpy, Tim! Bad sign, mate.

Rixaeton #16 & #17

I believe Kent is referring to the FOI Act of the UK and the e-mail re: deleting data. As is usual, the facts have little to do with it, but IF the Information Commission/DPP in the UK had decided to prosecute for the deliberate alteration/deletion of data and IF the appropriate court in the UK had found that such a breach had occurred, the maximum penalty that could have been imposed is 5000 pounds. It's not an offence that has imprisonment as a penalty. There is, however, a six month limit to the time available to bring a prosecution, which is where the bio-degradable statues come into it.

This is assuming that (a) data had been altered and/or destroyed (which didn't happen - it was talked about but never occurred) and (b) the FOI requests weren't found to be vexatious and therefore it not being necessary to comply with them and (c) the data wasn't exempt from FOI requests because it was (i) freely available (ii) already in possession of the person requesting it (iii) commercial in confidence or (iv) too costly to gather and produce. Considering that one and/or all of the above exemptions applied to the various bits of data, let alone that it wasn't altered or destroyed, the odds of a prosecution happening is - well, nil.

I also have to say that gathering information for FOI requests is an extremely lengthy and difficult task and involves more photocopying than is good for the planet. CRU was not set up, in any way, to handle the type of FOI requests they were getting. I imagine there was panic and flailing when they realised that they were being asked to do what would amount to probably many person-years of work to gather all the data and THEN determine it was exempt (you have to do the gathering before you can exempt it). They probably wouldn't have been aware of the exemption for vexatious requests at the time, which would have allowed them not to simply refuse the requests without having to do the gathering first. Panic is not an unreasonable response at the first moment, followed by getting in the lawyers and getting some proper legal advice re: FOI.

But, of course, all of the above constitutes investigation of the evidence and understanding reality as it exists in relation to FOI law. As evidence and reality are not relevant to climate change deniers, "they were all guilty and would have been imprisoned!" seems almost mild. After all, it's slightly less wrong/fantastic than the current "the world's getter cooler" meme or "Arctic sea-ice is recovering, really, truly" which I have seen pop up on a few sites lately.

> What the heck are statues of limitations, and why do they only last six months?

Interpretive sculptures illustrating constraints and ... well, limitations?

They only last six months because if they lasted forever they would be unlimited, and unlimited limitations would blow some tiny little minds ;-)

By Lotharsson (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

Having been on the receiving end of FOI requests, I know from experience where post 20 is coming from. The department I once worked for was on the receiving end of a number of FOI requests from various people including a local politician. The politician's request asked for so much data that if we'd accepted the request, it would have taken 2 weeks with every one of us working flat out to meet his requirements, which we simply didn't have the time to do given that the project we were involved with required us to get the project finished asap. Plus it would have cost the politician around £3,000 in labour and resource costs, which he would never have been prepared to pay. So I can sympathise with the UEA getting frustrated about being on the receiving end of such FOI bombardments.

By Squeaky Woo Woo (not verified) on 10 Jul 2010 #permalink

Please ignore my extraneous "not" in one of the sentences in post #20. It should read "They probably wouldn't have been aware of the exemption for vexatious requests at the time, which would have allowed them to simply refuse the requests without having to do the gathering first."

Squeaky Woo Woo: I've been involved in FOI requests where the estimate for gathering the data was in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. People who have never been (even peripherally) involved in FOI processing have absolutely no idea how much time and how intensive the requirements are and how MUCH paper they use! Also, love your nym :)

Hey, 19 - Graham is it?

Getting a bit jumpy, Tim! Bad sign, mate.

Seems you're the one with a problem, mate. You obviously have a grudge against Tim so if you can't fess-up openly, you should just have private correspondence with Tim.

Both Crikey and the Australian Financial Review are pretty good when it comes to covering science stories. Also on Wednesdays one can sometimes have the treat of the Australian's "Higher Education Supplement" which covers news from the university sector saying one thing about the science while a hysterical comment piece in the main rag says the complete opposite.

By James Haughton (not verified) on 11 Jul 2010 #permalink

I donât expect newspapers to be pro or anti global warming/climate change but I do expect them to be balanced in their reporting, which clearly Murdoch and his press are not. Shame really. The Times of London was once highly regarded as the global journal of record. That was before Rupert got his hands on it.

What I deplore about The Australian is that its journalists are so willful in their reporting on matters of global warming and climate change. Being biased is one thing, being fundamentally and knowingly dishonest is quite another.

Such lack of integrity casts much wider doubt on journalism per-se and taints ones confidence in material on other subjects appearing in that newspaper. It also gives the lie to Murdochâs assertion that his editors have complete freedom - presumably as long as their publications reflect his views.

The Fairfax Press is more balanced, as is the ABC. Both have published material that would be approved of by the most ardent âdenierâ as well as information which would satisfy climate scientists as being balanced and reasonably accurate.

It's hysterical (as in ROFL) that the CRU scientists are *still* being criticised - lack of 'sufficient' rigour, for example - in the MSM editorials and opinion pieces, and yet these write-for-cash MSM editors and idealogues are the sloppiest of the lot. I seldom read the MSM for information (on climate science or policy): instead I concentrate on the science journals and libraries, and what the scientists say in their words on their websites and blogs.

The great irony now is that some of our best science communicators are in fact the very same climate scientists the MSM claims aren't able to communicate effectively. Compared to what? Milloy? Leake? Bolt?

Scientists communicate *science*, for the greater part. Various journos and editors spread propaganda, pure and simple. Others just toe the line in the rush to meet deadlines. A few do a great job at staying objective in spite of editorial agendas and misinformation campaigns.

By Donald Oats (not verified) on 11 Jul 2010 #permalink

Meanwhile in the real World ... A friend of mine just called me from a Marine Ecology conference in Melbourne.

She's beside herself with bordom as scientist after scientist gets up and presents yet another paper demonstrating that the ocean and atmosphere are warming and that it is really really bad for the marine environment. In her words: "Yeah yeah yeah, we know, we know for pities sake! It's warming of the coast of Tasmania, it's warming in Victoria. Western Australia is burning up, NSW is all hot and sweaty, the great barrier reaf is half way to being stuffed already. We get it. Isn't it about time we move on and work out what the hell we are going to do about it."

We then had a good laugh working out how she could drop her own paper and instead get up and try to argue the Plimer-Mockton line just to spice things up. I advised her to wear a crash-helmet and a smock when she did it, and that it might do permanant damage to her IQ.

By Craig Allen (not verified) on 11 Jul 2010 #permalink

What are you smoking, Agnostic? The media should not be out to "balance" this issue. They should not be publishing material to "please the ardent denier". They should be exposing the campaign waged against climate science from the likes of News Ltd. and oil funded think tanks like the IPA, both of which have strong links to the Liberal party. In their quest to vilify climate scientists (how many exonerations will it take?) they're missing the big story.

I think newspapers should publish in line with the climate scientists. If 97% of climate scientists think the planet is warming, then 97% of the articles should be pro-AGW.

I don't outright expect newspapers to be pro/anti-AGW but I expect them to be scientifically *correct*, not choosing their position based on political lines.

Put it on the table Agnostic - I've read your snivelling two-faced posts on this site before. What's your view on AGW?

Just what do you mean "balanced", agnostic? You think there's something to be said for having one part bullshit to balance every part fact?

Get a grip.

'Balanced' like the pathological need to mine a quote from a godbotherer every time evolution is discussed...

If anyone expects to see anything emanate from Rupert Moloch's FoxNewsLtd sewer and the denizens that dwell therein,but straight, Rightwing,agit-prop,utilising every tool of smearing,lying, misrepresenting, selective quotation, the taking out of context of facts, that the yellow press has mastered over centuries, then they are terminally deluded. FoxNewsLtd is an engine for imposing Rupert Moloch's world-view on humanity. Anthropogenic climate change is but one example of FoxNewsLtd's modus operandi. Every subject, whether it be the role of the US in the world and this country's relationship to that Empire, the Israel/Palestine question, the neo-imperial wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, labour relations in this country,public education, refugee policy, Aboriginal policy etc, the FoxNewsLtd response is identical. Absolute bias to the most extreme Rightwing position, a Manichean portrayal of the other side as evil incarnate and ferocious attempts to intimidate politicians to adhere to Rupert Moloch's line, under threat of the sort of media disinformation and hate campaign recently waged against Rudd, and as prosecuted against Whitlam in the 1970s. It just goes to show,yet again, how thoroughly rotten and corrupt our so-called 'democracy' really is when one,in my opinion, truly wicked,individual,and his menagerie of hired disinformationists, and those who share his ideology,can so pervert our society that it becomes, essentially, suicidal.

By Mulga Mumblebrain (not verified) on 11 Jul 2010 #permalink

Great post Deltoid.
You produce the hard figures on what I had suspected...
The Australian has pathetic and skewed coverage of climate news.
I have taken steps to remedy - subscribed to Crikey and cancelled The Australian.

Thanks AmandaS #20 for the reply and clarification. I don't know much about UK FOI laws. The closest I got to FOI was when it was first introduced in Queelsland back in last centuary when I was a public servant :)

I sent an email this afternoon to every Federal politician I could find an e-dress for, and that's almost all of 'em.

It called for a Royal Commission into Climate Change Denial.

Let's try putting the spotlight onto the Deniosaurs and the petrol-funded doublethinktanks and the bent editors and the so-called 'journalists' who are peddling this stuff.

Hey - the Brit govt ran a whole slew of enquiries into the so-called 'Climategate'. So, they all came up blank, like the successive witchhunts against Mann. Surprise, surprise. But they also set a precedent - climate science is a matter of intense public interest, and rightly so.

So let's have another enquiry; this time into allegations of collusion and systematic misinformation being spread by climate change deniers. The 'Climategate' allegations are false - but who spread them? Why did they spread them? Should a newspaper or other media outlet be held accountable if they knowingly spread falsehoods about matters such as these, which are of such pressing importance to every Australian citizen?

And who is going to set the record straight on the matter? Ordinary citizens don't have the reach, but a Royal Commission does. Hey - they set one up into the collapse of an insurance company. That was a tragedy for many thousands of Australians, sure - but what's gonna happen to us all if it turns out that we can't rely on self-appointed 'experts' to give us the actual facts on climate change?

Handy hint - contact details for members of both houses can be found right here:

http://www.aph.gov.au/whoswho/index.htm

...if it ever actually happened we could have all the fun of the fair watching the Deniosaurs screaming 'WITCH-HUNT!' and 'SHOW TRIAL!'

Then you point out that you're just asking them to be held to the same standards they had the CRU et al held to, promising astonishing revelations of malfeasances which never were uncovered...

...just a thought...

By Zibethicus (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

The truth is one side, so those who tell are "one-sided".

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

At least some in the media aren't white washing climategate. If you still believe in CAGW, consider the following:

A surface temperature increase from 287K to 290K (the mythical 3C rise) requires an increase in surface power of about 16 W/m^2. The consensus is that doubling CO2 adds 3.7 W/m^2 of forcing (I can argue that the actual surface forcing is about 1/2 this), resulting in 16 W/m^2 at the surface after all feedbacks have been accounted for. This requires an incremental power gain, relative to surface power, of 4.3 (or 8.6). Considering all incident solar energy, the surface power gain relative to solar forcing is only about 1.1 (385 W/m^2 surface, 341.5 W/m^2 incident), considering only those watts of solar power that reach the surface (239.1 incident), the gain is about 1.6. Why is it that each incremental watt of CO2 forcing arriving at the surface is between about 3 and 8 times as powerful at warming the surface as an incremental watt of solar forcing entering the system at the same place?

Here is a picture illustrating the absolute and incremental gain of the climate system (modeled as solar power in, surface power out), just in case you think they are different.

http://www.palisad.com/co2/fbe/is.png

The 2 dotted lines are reference lines for a gain of 1.0 and 1.2 and the X marks the current operating point based on global averages.

If you think the climate responds too slowly to react to the change, then try and explain why the global average temperature varies by about 2-3 degrees p-p during the course of a year, moreover; the N hemisphere change by over 12C (no this is not caused by a transfer of energy between hemispheres, but caused by the Earth's thermal mass heating and cooling).

If you think that there is 'hidden' heat in the system, consider that the Sun has been burning for billions of years and any delayed effects should surely be represented in the response.

If you think that GHG forcing power reaching the surface is really as much as 8x times more powerful than solar power reaching the surface, then you are a lost cause.

If you think you know the answer, post it here, where the same question was asked at post 127. I'm sure Jo will allow you to post uncensored as long as you remain civil. One of your brethren has been making a fool of himself over there and it would be useful to have someone more knowledgeable defending your position. It's just too easy ...

http://joannenova.com.au/2010/07/the-unskeptical-guide-to-the-skeptics-…

George

Jason,

Yes, I fully agree. It clearly illustrates just how biased and one sided the peer review process is with regard to climate science papers.

George

I've come across this 'CAGW' quite often recently, all on denier sites. It's not a scientific term AFAIK, least I don't think it's used in published papers, nor do any AGW acceptants use it... and true enough, Google Scholar just produces [nine results](http://scholar.google.de/scholar?hl=de&q=%22catastrophic+anthropogenic+…) - all political rubbish. So [co2isnotevil](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/the_australians_war_on_science_…): What is this bollocks? Why the need for hyperbole with the 'catastrophic'? Feeling insecure?

[George](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/the_australians_war_on_science_…), I'm sure you've heard of Ockham's razor. Applied here, the graph is not insinuating a grand conspiracy or bias and one-sidedness, but simply the fact that AGW is quite real, and the better versed the scientists are in the matter, the more fully they understand the scope of it, and the more concerned they are. Simple, innit?

Then again, I might as well save my breath - after all, with a strawman username like yours your mind seems nicely made up already.

Jason,

CAGW means Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming. This is what the IPCC is predicting, that the small intrinsic effect of CO2 (not even warmists claim this to be over about 1C) is amplified by massive positive feedback and that the result will be catastrophic to mankind. The catastrophic claim is by your side, which is required rhetoric in order to warrant doing anything about it.

I don't deny anything. I'm a skeptic of CAGW. I'm not insecure either as I'm 100% certain that the physics and data is on my side. You may think that your precious peer reviewed papers support CAGW, but as your graph points out, climate science peer review has virtually no value.

I've found that most warmists are the ones feeling insecure, especially after they've talked to me for a while. Are you feeling lucky?

George

Jason,

I'm well aware of Occam's Razor, but that CAGW is real is not the simplest explanation, nor is it even a plausible choice. If CAGW was demonstrably real, there would be few. if any, red dots, especially red dots who are renowned climate scientists with stronger credentials than most who publish pro CAGW papers.

You must keep in mind that all scientists want to publish, so it's reasonable to assume that skeptical scientists will write as many papers as warmist scientists. The fact that they are getting anything published, even in extremely CAGW biased publications like Science and Nature, shows that there is some validity to the many varied arguments against CAGW.

Of course, most skeptics have been aware of the biased peer review process long before climategate confirmed that Mann, Jones et all claimed ownership of the right to change the peer review process to prevent certain authors from being published.

I use the co2isnotevil handle because it's easier to google. My name gets too many millions of hits (it's on my URL), although I am the top hit for my name followed by climate.

George

Well, George, you can start off by showing where exactly the IPCC (or any scientist for that matter) uses the term 'Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming'. 'Minor detail', I hear you say? You brought it into play. So go on, educate this poor layperson, as well as the interested professional crowd that hangs around here. Oh, and I don't buy your "peer review is biased" crock. It's a boring, persistent meme that was old twenty years ago. Lindzen, Christy, Pielke Sr. and Jr., they all manage to get their stuff published, and they're hardly 'warmists', aren't they?

Oh, look, another troll rained in.

[co2isntevil](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/the_australians_war_on_science_…), we're discussing the one sided portrayal of science by The Australian, who continue to push articles of opinion disguised as news or science.

If you're interested in discussing the scientific validity or otherwise of climate change, please kindly remove yourself to [Open Thread 50](http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/06/open_thread_50.php)

It's already late here in Europe, but the heat is preventing sleep right now, and I couldn't let this one pass:

long before climategate confirmed that Mann, Jones et all claimed ownership of the right to change the peer review process to prevent certain authors from being published.

I can't believe anyone's still peddling that. They __claimed__ in private e-mail correspsondence that they would do something to that effect, and probably in anger over rubbish research papers marring the reputation of an acclaimed journal, due to bias of the editor. Hey, I can claim in e-mails to have won ten million or that I'll crown myself Emperor of Xanadu next Friday, none of it having bearing to what I can or will do in reality.

MFS,

I'm pointing out just how one sided climate science itself is, which is the topic of this thread. Anyway, Jason brought up the corruption of the peer review process, not me. BTW, to me, trolls are people who come in to sites with opposing view and derail the discussion with personal attacks, citing irrelevant references, blindly reciting talking points, refusing to answer questions and basically being a waste of bandwidth. If I derail this thread, it will be to discuss the science, not to act like the typical CAGW troll on a skeptic site.

Here we have an article that complains that the Australian media is fairly reporting about both sides of the climate science issue. The complaint seems to be that the media should only report news that supports CAGW. Meanwhile, the science itself is horribly one sided, as convientently illustrated by Jason's scatter diagram.

It sounds to me like this debate is degrading into censorship, which certainly can not be tolerated.

George

George, have you ever considered even the possiblity that the climate science is "one-sided" because it really does contain verifiable overlapping lines of evidence and therefore is true?

I think it is silly to claim that the only reason AGW is accepted is because (nearly) all climate scientists are corrupt.

*sigh* the complaint is not that news reports should only show "CAGW". I would be quite happy if they show the valid proportion of climate science that shows AGW is real, and the tiny fraction that say maybe it is not.

Science is only "horribly one-sided" when the actual evidence is overwhelmingly supportive of the "one-side" position.

co23isnotevil, what the heck do you mean "I'm pointing out just how one side climate science itself is"?

The science is either right or it's wrong.

Do you think journals should publish papers that are wrong to "balance" those that are right?

Do you think the Australian is providing some sort of balance by its barrage of misleading stories, to make up for all those published elsewhere that happen to be accurate?

That is completely idiotic, even for a climate science denier, and that's really saying something.

What planet are you from?

Jason,

Might I suggest you read the Summary for Policymakers attached to any of the AR's. While they don't use the term CAGW, none the less, they claim catastrophic worst case effects as a consequence of inaction. If you don't think that catastrophic consequences will result from man's CO2 emissions, then what's the point in complaining, when the cost of mitigation is sure to destroy western economies? Do you really want to see China become the worlds only industrial economy?

And yes, Christy, Pielke, Lindzen and a few others are the lone red dots in a sea of blue. This just proves my point. The bar is so high for skeptical scientists, that only a few can make arguments that are too powerful to ignore. Meanwhile, the quality of the pro CAGW papers shows just how low the bar is if you subscribe to the propaganda.

George

Oh, and co2isnotevil, wouldn't you think that, if you were one of the 15 million or so Bangladeshis facing inundation by rising sea levels in the coming decades, or the 60 million or so Chinese in the same position, do you think you'd still be quibbling with the term "catastrophic"?

Then there's the reduction in croppable land area, species extinction, increased risk of extreme weather events, disruption to water supply, resulting military conflict, etc etc.

What would you prefer - "inconvenient", or "rather annoying", perhaps? Maybe instead of "anthropogenic global warming" we could have "anthropogenic little spot of bother".

Get your head out of the sand, troll.

Gaz,

No, the science is always right, it's skeptical hypotheses, like water vapor amplifies CO2 absorption with catastrophic effects, that are frequently wrong. Science tells us how to tell the difference. Look up the concept of falsification, with regard to the scientific method. The definitiveness of falsification was one of Einstein's biggest anxieties.

I don't believe that journals should predicate the acceptance of an article on whether or not it adheres to a specific point of view when the subject matter is highly controversial. Climate science has been controversial for a long time, despite the vacuous claims by Gore and others that the science was settled.

Almost every climate related article I see in the mainstream press is one sided and inaccurate, to say the least. I would also say that this is true for articles I've seen on both sides, although despite the fewer number of skeptical articles, they often tend to make better arguments.

George

trolls are people who come in to sites with opposing view and derail the discussion with personal attacks, citing irrelevant references, blindly reciting talking points, refusing to answer questions and basically being a waste of bandwidth.

Well, there you go.

If I derail this thread, it will be to discuss the science, not to act like the typical CAGW troll on a skeptic site.

So much intellectual dishonesty you have.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

the science is always right

What idiocy.

Look up the concept of falsification

Yeah, because we've never heard of it and no nothing about it.

You're a clown, George; people here know about science and can see that you don't.

although despite the fewer number of skeptical articles, they often tend to make better arguments

If you weren't such a foolish troll you wouldn't make such transparently silly ideological assertions that guarantee that no one here will take you seriously.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

co2isnotevil:

The bar is so high for skeptical scientists, that only a few can make arguments that are too powerful to ignore.

A few? I think that's an overestimate. Please name one argument against what you call CAGW that's too powerful to ignore.

despite the fewer number of skeptical articles, they often tend to make better arguments.

Or perhaps they merely reinforce you own preconcieved idea on what the truth is? Are you sure you are not subjecting yourself to confirmation bias? I have to check myself when I read articles on AGW as well. Whenever there is a new disaster, and GW is mentioned and I am interested enough, I try to check if the GW link is correct, and usually it isn't. That does not say that AGW is incorrect, just the lax standards of reporting means being skeptical of what we read.

I don't deny anything. I'm a skeptic of CAGW.

You're a blatant liar, because everything you have written here, starting with "If you still believe in CAGW" is denial of CAGW, not skepticism -- a concept that, like science, you show no sign of understanding.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

And yes, Christy, Pielke, Lindzen and a few others are the lone red dots in a sea of blue. This just proves my point.

You also have no understanding of proof. This is an entirely circular argument; the evidence you mention only supports your position if one has already accepted it.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

John @ 29

What I do believe in is the right of anyone to express a view, even if it is scientifically challenged or clearly wrong. There are plenty of climate scientists who will correct those they believe to be in error.

John @ 30 asks âWhatâs your view on AGW?â

100% acceptance of the science which in my view not only supports but proves the reality of AGW and the dire consequences of failing to deal with it. We should heed the repeated warning of climate scientists that global greenhouse gas emissions should peak by 2015. Judging by the fine example set by the Australian government, what do you think the chances are of avoiding the likely outcomes of AGW?

Rixaeton,

There are far more lines of evidence that suggest CAGW is not real. The only evidence supporting CAGW are the selectively sampled, adjusted and homogenized surface temperature data sets and a few similarly processed proxies. All of the satellite data, including the ISCCP data from GISS, contradicts both the models and the CAGW theory. I believe satellites more than sparse surface measurements because the satellites have 100% surface coverage across time and space and it's a lot harder to fudge the data.

The satellite data tells us that for most of the last decade, it's been cooling. The satellite data also tells us that the water content in the atmosphere has exhibited a downward trend consistent with lowering temperatures. Whatever is causing the current cooling is powerful enough to have more than offset any presumed increase from CO2 that should have occurred during the last 25+ years. What really happened was that climate scientists mistook natural climate variability for a presumed trend caused by CO2 emissions.

The physics tells us a lot as well, see post 39.

The reason many climate scientists have it wrong goes back to a 1988 paper by Schlessinger, first published as a DOE report in 1985, which quantifed climate system feedback and is the model most often used today. He made a serious error when he assumed, without justification, that the open loop gain was only 1 (which he seems to have inherited from a 1984 paper by Hansen which made the same, unjustified assumption). It was also at this point that the sensitivity started being expressed in units of degrees per W/m^2, which obscured the error even more. Since few scientists are skilled with control theory, it's not surprising that the error hasn't been formally discovered yet, although I know for sure that Schlessinger is now aware of it. Oddly enough, he stopped communicating with me once he realized how serious the error was.

The point is that the current quantification of climate system gain, sensitivity and feedback is meaningless relative to the actual system and in fact based on a math error.

The simple reason is that the feedback system modeled by Schlessinger assumes that surface temperature is the controlled variable. The surface temperature is dependent on a feedback loop, not the one Schlessinger assumed, but the top level feedback system which maintains the Earth's energy balance. This also affects cloud temperatures, cloud coverage, cloud and surface reflectivity, weather and a lot more, all of which are interdependent. The point is the variable controlled by the Schlessinger feedback loop is under control of a completely different feedback control system.

George

Gaz, re 57

How about 10 off the top of my head (I have many, many more).

1) The relationship between water vapor and temperature is inconsistent
with the requirements for a climate driven by water vapor driven
positive feedback.

2) Measurements of the net climate system feedback by many different
methods shows conclusively that the net feedback acting on the climate
is negative, while strong net positive feedback is required to support
CAGW.

3) CO2 lags temperature in all paleo reconstructions and the lag when
temperatures are falling is significantly larger than when temperatures
are rising.

4) The ratio between the incident surface energy and radiated surface
energy (the climate system closed loop gain) is only about 1.6 and it
needs to be at least 4 to support CAGW.

5) During the last interglacial, the multi-century, global average
temperature was about 3C higher than today, with far lower CO2 levels.

6) In deep prehistory, CO2 levels were orders of magnitude larger than
today, yet temperatures did not spiral out of control and even ice ages
still occurred.

7) There is no detectable monotonic trend in the global average temperature
corresponding to the monotonic increase in atmospheric CO2.

8) The existence of the MWP, LIA and recent cooling, shows that the forces
driving natural variability can easily overcome even the exaggerated
claims of the effects of anthropogenic GHG.

9) The absorption spectrum of CO2 is mostly saturated and increasing
concentrations do not trap enough incremental energy to cause a 1C
rise, let alone 1.5C-4.5C with a nominal value of 3C.

10) All measurements of the climates sensitivity to forcing derived from
satellite data are far too small to support CAGW.

To the rest:
I won't respond to abusive posts, so feel free to pontificate, but if you want a real discussion, be civil.

George

Last night was the highest tide of winter. You have probably seen reports on the Easter I. eclipse with the sun and moon in line well it is during these astronomically produced king tides that the average person can check if sea level rise is really occurring providing they have a long term benchmark to gauge from.
I am happy to report that last night's highest astronomical tide was lower than last January's and around 40 cms lower than king tides of nearly 50 years ago.
There was no weather to influence SL to account for this big difference.
The low tide was extremely low, possibly a record going on channel depths, [I have no benchmark for that] but SLR in my area is not occurring.

By spangled drongo (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

co2isnotevil (aka George) @62,

Sorry, but yawn. Please don't recylce/parrot long debunked myths about AGW/ACC. It might work at Jo Nova's and denialist sites, but not here.

Some advice, if you want people to take you seriously, using the term "CAGW" as you do does not help your case or credibility at all.

And as others have reminded you, your posts are OT.

By MapleLeaf (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

so feel free to pontificate

Oh the irony. Your pontication of your talking points fools no one who is familiar with the science. If you don't want abuse, then you shouldn't waltz in here abusing everyone with hostile crap like "At least some in the media aren't white washing climategate. If you still believe in CAGW, ...", troll.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

Oddly enough, he stopped communicating with me once he realized how serious the error was.

The point is that the current quantification of climate system gain, sensitivity and feedback is meaningless relative to the actual system and in fact based on a math error.

George scores well on the [crackpot index](http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/crackpot.html).

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

Truth Machine,

Any estimate of what George's score is on the crackpot index?

By MapleLeaf (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

"I don't deny anything...."

You're a blatant liar, because everything you have written here, starting with ...

I should have said: starting with your handle. Why is it so hard for so many deniers to honestly own their position?

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

MapleLeaf.

Go ahead, give it a shot. Put your brain where your mouth is. See if you can debunk the significance of the question I raised in post 39.

I don't know what you mean about OT. It seems that based on the comments by the regulars, this thread is showing just how biased climate science really is. Of course, the bias is in the opposite direction of that claimed by the article.

You want something on topic, how about this. I live in the heart of Pelosi country. The first mention of climategate in the local news (print and local TV) was about a month after the story broke. It was mentioned in a letter to the editor complaining that they haven't been covering it. A few days later, there was a white washed article about it surrounded by half a dozen pro CAGW articles. This is a far more egregious act of biased climate science coverage than the more balanced approach of the Australian that you seem so incensed about.

George

Agnostic,

>What I do believe in is the right of anyone to express a view, even if it is scientifically challenged or clearly wrong.

How noble. I disagree. If a view is scientifically wrong it doesn't deserve space in a major metropolitan newspaper. One may think the moon is made of cheese but that doesn't mean any kook deserves media space to publish those views.

>There are plenty of climate scientists who will correct those they believe to be in error.

So when the damage has been done? How about we limit the damage by not publishing material we know is wrong in the first place?

>100% acceptance of the science which in my view not only supports but proves the reality of AGW and the dire consequences of failing to deal with it. We should heed the repeated warning of climate scientists that global greenhouse gas emissions should peak by 2015. Judging by the fine example set by the Australian government, what do you think the chances are of avoiding the likely outcomes of AGW?

This is interesting, because your name and previous comments would suggest to me that this isn't your view at all.

I don't know what you mean about OT.

See #47, moron.

You want something on topic, how about this.

No, sorry that isn't, idiot; it's a tu quoque fallacy.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

George,

With respect, I try and not feed the trolls. You are but one of several players who have passed though here (I think someone called Brent was a recent example) who claim to have refuted the theory of AGW. The claims that you are parroting here are nothing new, and have been addressed in the (reputable) scientific literature-- so no need for me to waste my time addressing long debunked denialist/contrarian speaking points.

Before you leap to the defense of the Australian-- might I suggest reading Tim's series on the various mangled efforts by Rose, Leake, Nova etc.. Then also have a look at DeepClimate's expose's on Solomon, Corcoran, Gunter etc.

Finally, if you are indeed a true skeptic, then I'm sure you will find the science presented at SkepticalScience of much assistance in addressing your misconceptions about climate science.

All the best.

By MapleLeaf (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

George writes:

>*1) The relationship between water vapor and temperature is inconsistent with the requirements for a climate driven by water vapor driven positive feedback.*

Really George [do tell](http://www.desmogblog.com/skeptics-handbook-carbon-dioxide-climate-chan…).

>*2) Measurements of the net climate system feedback by many different methods shows conclusively that the net feedback acting on the climate is negative, while strong net positive feedback is required to support CAGW.*

Conclusively George? Then where is your conclusive evidence? What period does it look at? I'd be interested in reading what evidence you deem to be conclusive? Interesting to see where you set your standards of conclusive (and how that might change to suit different arguements).

>*3) CO2 lags temperature in all paleo reconstructions and the lag when temperatures are falling is significantly larger than when temperatures are rising.*

Really George, you need to [be better informed](http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch6s6-3-3.html).

George, have you heard of a [google galelao](http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/google-galileo-five-…)? How did you get so certain yet so wrong?

What I do believe in is the right of anyone to express a view, even if it is scientifically challenged or clearly wrong.

How noble. I disagree.

As has been pointed out numerous times before when people have offered bogus pleas about freedom of speech, everyone has the right to express a view, but they do not have a right to have it published by someone else.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

It seems that based on the comments by the regulars, this thread is showing just how biased climate science really is.

In the same way that, if someone posts on a math board that triangles can be trisected with compass and straightedge, pi is rational, or that Cantor's diagonalization argument about the cardinality of the reals is fallacious, the comments by the regulars will show just how "biased" mathematics really is.

Yours is a circular argument, George, but you're too D-K to understand that.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

>The first mention of climategate in the local news (print and local TV) was about a month after the story broke. It was mentioned in a letter to the editor complaining that they haven't been covering it. A few days later, there was a white washed article about it surrounded by half a dozen pro CAGW articles.

What newspaper? I will check this out.

Truth masher,

As a theoretical physicist myself, I'm a fan of Baez's crackpot index. But unlike the CAGW crackpots you may be familiar with, I can defend everything I say.

How about, I don't deny anything about valid climate science. I certainly reject the speculative hypothesis that small CO2 forcing is amplified by water vapor to cause catastrophic consequences, but not because of denial, as that would imply ignoring the truth. My rejection of this flawed hypothesis is based on first principles physics, empirical evidence and 4 generations of climate models that I've developed.

Here's where Schlessinger's error was first introduced. This is a copy of figure 1 from his paper.

http://www.palisad.com/co2/fbe/sh1.png

It;s quite simple, so I'm sure you can follow it. The output is equal to J times Go. The delta J feedback term is the output times F, where f = Go * F. Solving for delta J, we get delta J = f * J.

The term f is defined as the feedback fraction, a number between -1 and 1, which indicates what fraction of the output is fed back to the input. The output of the sum block is the input to the gain block, except that the feedback term is tapped of ahead of the gain block. What's the purpose of introducing F in the first place? All it does is undo Go and give the false impression that Go is the source of gain in the system. It's not. The open loop gain is only 1. The error is introducing the relationship f = Go * F, which he does without foundation or explanation. Oddly enough, Hansen does almost the same thing in his 1984 paper, except he's really confused and mixes up the gain and feedback terms.

This isn't even the biggest error, which is that the modeled system has no relationship whatsoever to the actual physical processes driving the system.

George

But unlike the CAGW crackpots you may be familiar with, I can defend everything I say.

Even if that were true it would be irrelevant.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

George writes:

>*Go ahead, give it a shot. Put your brain where your mouth is. See if you can debunk the significance of the question I raised in post 39.*

Easy: 5 degrees is the difference betweent he last ice age and now. Hiding the scale doesn't reduce the impact. What is your next [google galileo](http://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/google-galileo-five-…) knock me down point?

4 generations of climate models that I've developed

Another 20 points for

11. 10 points for beginning the description of your theory by saying how long you have been working on it. (10 more for emphasizing that you worked on your own.)

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

John,

The San Jose Mercury News.

Maple,

I'm still waiting for you to debunk the relevance of my point that CAGW 'science' treats power from CO2 absorption as being 4 or more times as powerful, on a watt by watt basis, as forcing power from the Sun.

Jackerman,

http://www.palisad.com/co2/fbe/wc_st.png

This shows the relationship between atmospheric water content and surface temperature. The data comes from the ISCCP data supplied by GISS. The cyan dots are monthly averages for 25 years of data and for each 2.5 degree slice of latitude. The blue and magenta dots are the 25 year average for each latitude slice. Over 1 year, the cross slice flux is very small, relative to incident energy. Over 25 years, it becomes vanishingly small. This facilitates extraction of the response from a spatial distribution of means, each of which is at a slightly different spot on the response curve. The differences between the response of the 2 hemispheres is due entirely to topographical differences.

From this picture it's very clear that increasing atmospheric water content has no effect above about 300K. From the next picture, you can see that the climate gain above 0C is about 1.1, while below, it's about 1.5. The open loop gain can be calculated by the ratio of surface power to emitted power in the presence of nominal atmospheric absorption and no clouds. This is about 1.3. Below 0C, the climate is dominated by positive feedback effect, while above 0C, it's dominated by negative feedback.

http://www.palisad.com/co2/fbe/is.png

You should also take a look at DomeC ice cores. These have a far better temporal resolution than the Vostok cores. The temporal relationship of CO2, CH4 and temperature is very clear. I should also point out that the same relationship between atmospheric water content and temperature is reflected in the ice cores, where the number of years per fixed width slice is much larger during glacial epochs than during interglacials. The relative relationship between temperature and precipitation in the ice cores reflects the same relationship seen in the above plot.

George

Jackerman,

I forgot to tell you what the is.png plot is. It's a plot of incident solar energy and emitted surface energy. This permits specifying gain in meaningful units as a ratio of power to power, rather than in the nebulous units of degrees per W/m^2.

Also, your answer to my question was meaningless. The difference in how forcing power is treated vs solar power has nothing to do with ice ages. You should pay more attention.

George

Dear everybody, discussion with co2isnotevil belongs in the Open Thread. I can't move comments from one thread to another, so any further ones will be deleted and it will be up to you to post them in the correct place.

By Tim Lambert (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

Sorry for being OT, but it is about the MSM. The Union of Concerned Scientists have decided to get proactive on the subject of Murdoch's NewsCorp allowing the likes of Fox News to get away with all sorts while the parent claims to be concerned about the environment. They've set up an online letter which you can sign and automatically send to NewsCorp demanding they get their house in order. Commenters here may want to give it a go.

Tell Rupert Murdoch: Get the Facts Straight!

They're also asking for help with Promoting Climate Science for the Public Good.

So, "co2isnotevil", from where can I download and audit your climate models?

All generations, please.

Documentation and turnkey operation as well are both required.

By Derecho64 (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

>*From this picture it's very clear that increasing atmospheric water content has no effect above about 300K.*

Unfortunately most of the atmosphere is well below 300K and still will be even with a rise of 20k. Back to to the drawing board galileo.

Tim,

I looked at the open thread and the signal to noise ratio is far too low. I think I'll pass.

As for Derecho's question, the model will be available some time in the future. The problem is that since I'm self funded, it's not that high on my to do list. However, if you are a serious researcher, I would be happy to share. Currently, I only support Solaris (sparc and x86) and Linux.

Jakerman,

This is surface temperature, not atmospheric temperature. As I told you before, you need to pay more attention.

I'm done here.

George

I looked at the open thread and the signal to noise ratio is far too low.

You didn't look at the right one, idiot.

I'm done here.

Goodbye, troll.

By truth machine (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

Yes CO2isnotevil was way off topic on this thread, but isn't it salient that nobody bothered to answer his questions. Lots of "idiot" and "moron" and "it's all been answered before by scientists" but no real answers. Stumped are we?

By Baa Humbug (not verified) on 12 Jul 2010 #permalink

Since when was a reference to published work by a scientist not a real answer?

I'm sure everyone's happy to provide further info and more references if the paper or publication in question doesn't satisfy.

Well, that is puzzling; George puts forward a point about the inconsistency of IPCC CO2 forcing compared to solar and that water is not the +ve feedback required by AGW and jakerman responds with some PETM shibboleths. The PETM temp increase occurred before the increase in CO2, declined geologically quickly while CO2 was still high and temps during the PETM were exceeded during the Cretaceous and were about the same during the Eocene optimum [optimum, get it?] which had lessor atmospheric concentrations of CO2. Also perhaps relevant, at the PETM there was no ice at Antarctica, there was minimal thermohaline and ocean bottom water was about 15C.

Despite all this, if you still assume the CO2 pulse did the trick the demonstrated sensitivity is much less than AGW levels:

http://www.nature.com/ngeo/journal/v2/n8/abs/ngeo578.html

Funny. Someone comes out with some half-baked bollocks and as long as it's saying "the IPCC is wrong" cohenite "the skeptic" accepts it uncritically.

Not only that, but he attempts to support his claims by citing a paper which -- as has been explained to him numerous times -- suggests that global warming will be __worse__ than the IPCC says.

Cohenite writes:

>*The PETM temp increase occurred before the increase in CO2*

Evidence cohenite? Or just your fantasy?

Let me guess which.

jakerman, I only come here to explore my fantasies, but alas it is true the temp increased before the carbon pulse:

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v450/n7173/full/nature06400.html

Incidentally, while we're on fantasies, I don't understand Dave's comment about the Zeebe paper which clearly shows IPCC sensitivity much higher than PETM evidence. Oh well, one man's fantasy is another man's great moral crusade; pity about Rudd, eh? Toodeloo.

Just to note: The Australian actually published a couple of letters today refuting Des Moore's nonsense denialist cant of a couple of days ago. One written by that denizen of the evil greenie socialist conspiracy: a Professor!

Well written too: neatly addressed the science in clearly understandable terms. Recommended reading for those looking for good examples of communicating the science.

Re. 98 cohenite

Own goal I'm afraid.

"Climatic Chain Reaction Caused Runaway Greenhouse Effect 55 Million Years Ago

ScienceDaily (Dec. 27, 2007) â There are new findings regarding a phase of rapid global greenhouse warming that took place 55 million years ago. This period of climate change is regarded as the best fossil analogue to current and future greenhouse warming.
[...]
The new research confirms that global warming can stimulate mechanisms that release massive amounts of stored carbon into the atmosphere. Current and future warming will likely see similar effects, such as methane hydrate dissociation, adding additional greenhouse gases to those resulting from fossil fuel burning."
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071221222544.htm

John @71

There you go! Judging the book by its cover. But where the existence of God is concerned, well I am definitely Agnostic.

Truth machine @75

And what is the truth? Broad scientific understanding at this point in time? Is that as near as we can get to a definition? If so âtruthâ can change, even where AGW is concerned. While I fully accept the present views of climate scientists on AGW and its likely consequences, I reject the contention that no other view should be heard, though I do expect alternate views to be explained.

Agnostic, correct me if I'm wrong but other views have been heard - during most of the 20th century. Scientific understanding of AGW is long past that stage.

"And what is the truth?"

The truth is what exists when you have your eyes shut.

Science tries to attain the truth.

Anti-science tries to hide from it, or hide the truth itself.

"I reject the contention that no other view should be heard"

So you

don't like truth in advertising (marketing have the view that their product is THE BEST),

support suppression of free speech (government has the view that what was said was wrong, baseless and illegal)

support lies (someone has the view that what they're saying is the right thing to say)

?

"though I do expect alternate views to be explained."

Explaining isn't enough because your explanation has to be TRUE or SUPPORTABLE.

I can explain that the earth is flat. That's it explained. The earth. Flat.

Doesn't help really when it comes to finding the truth about the earth's flatness...

This is why science is the persuit of truth and anti-science hiding from it.

In ten years time we look back and say the deniers are proven wrong, but we let them get away with it. Most of these people must have progeny, who should know what their peers did, namely, delay proper action at the cost of wide spread misery. And for a few miserable dollars.
My remedy is: let us list all the deniers who publish and advocate their views, including the dates of their publications. Also let us list the lazy, careless and irresponsible journalists who propagate denier's views.
Hopefully such a public list might raise awareness and show these people in years to come what callous fools they were and the damage they caused.

By baldwin van Maanen (not verified) on 19 Jul 2010 #permalink