The Australian's War on Science 74: Spinning the IPCC Extreme Weather report

The IPCC Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and
Disasters to Advance Climate Change
Adaptation (SREX)

Regarding the future, the assessment concludes that it is virtually certain that on a global scale hot
days become even hotter and occur more often. "For the high emissions scenario, it is likely that
the frequency of hot days will increase by a factor of 10 in most regions of the world", said Thomas
Stocker the other Co-chair of Working Group I. "Likewise, heavy precipitation will occur more often,
and the wind speed of tropical cyclones will increase while their number will likely remain constant
or decrease".
"Nevertheless, there are many options for decreasing risk."

Or, according to the two news stories in The Australian:
"Review fails to support climate change link" and "Climate change effects unknown: IPCC report".

Roger Jones examines The Australian's misrepresentations and concludes:

On climate change, The Australian is behaving like the media equivalent of a fog machine. Its unreliable reporting should be avoided by those with an interest in factual scientific information.

He also has some comments on the way The Australian is relying on Benny Peiser.

More like this

Graham LLoyd gave uncertainty [another spin today](…) linking the last IPCC report and the latest " Climategate' release. A little [extra spin](…) on the e-mails is provided by Amos Aikman and LLoyd.
And for the finale, Aikman has pounced on Schmittner's research to proclaim that [climate forecasts are exaggerated](…).

It's The Antipodean Journal of Epistemic Closure!

Like all true fanatics, as more and more evidence mounts against their position their view only becomes more hardened and they are prepared to scramble to increasingly greater heights of absurdity in order to shout their case.

What we are seeing here is an implosion brought about by the extreme gravity of Denial - not just on AGW, either - leading inevitably to sequestration from the known Universe.

I, for one, won't miss them.

I'd like to hear Aikman's defence of that little piece of editorialising.

On his blog, he claims to be an ex-scientist, so he surely understands the difference between exaggeration and new research that may narrow the likely range of the variable in question.

#2&4,there is a comment in Aikman's article attributed to lead author Schmittner that 3K can be considered the upper bound to equilibrium climate sensitivity to doubled CO2.However,I cannot find such a statement in the media from OSU,or in the paper itself...where did it come from?


It was there in the usual cautiously worded way ie. - Assuming our models are correct, the upper bound of CS is likely to be 3K, with much higher levels having very low (non-zero) probabilities.

But in Oz speak - scientists have been exaggerating!!

Squirm squirm squirm. This IS funny to watch ! :-)

By Billy Bob Hall (not verified) on 24 Nov 2011 #permalink

The real headline should have been,,,,,
can you pick it?

so what if Gavin Schmidt is correct in his assessment. were they going to tell us about the BUZZ?

Professor Colin Prentice from Macquarie University says he is not surprised by the results.

"What it means is we can be a bit more sure about the sort of range of temperature changes that will result from the given change in the amount of fossil fuel and CO2 and other greenhouse gases," he said.

"The key point is that there has been ongoing buzz about the possibility that the climate sensitivity may be way, way higher than in mainstream climate models.


By john byatt (not verified) on 24 Nov 2011 #permalink

I was at a presentation on 'climate myths' by John Cook of tonight at Tweed Heads.

A few steroetypical 'skeptics' turned up late for the Q&A to lob poo-grenades. Even though John dealt with them deftly and with grace, there is no doubt that they were there to talk, not hear.

One of them opened his longwinded monologue with "On the front page of today's Australian there was a story, which I have here, under the title 'Climate Forecasts Exaggerated: Science Journal', which shows that the extreme fearmongering forecasts are wrong...."

At the conclusion of the event one of the organisers made a few excellent points: We must get big corporations and their money out of our democracy, and we MUST get a much greater diversity of ownership of our media.


You're exactly right, StopMurdoch @ #9. I've just been reading on [Jerry Coyne's blog](…) that in the US the Discovery Channel is showing only the first six parts of David Attenborough's seven-parter about the polar regions, because the seventh part is about climate change and thus "controversial" in the eyes of the deliberately miseducated US public . . . whose miseducation will be perpetuated, of course, by this decision of the Discovery Channel.

To get an idea of the magnitude of the hatchet job perpetrated by Aikman, have a look at this comment from one of the authors of Shmittner et al 2011;

"While our statistical analysis calculates that high climate sensitivities have very low probabilities, you can see from the caveats in our paper, and my remarks in this interview, that we have not actually claimed to have disproven high climate sensitivities....Our study comes with a number of important caveats, which highlight simplifying assumptions and possible inconsistencies. These have to be tested further."

Benny Peiser ... you're referring to the celebrated climate scientist there, are you Tim? After all, he passes all the denialist tests for "climate scientist":

  1. Arts graduate (sports sociology)
  2. Will shout "doomsday scaremongering" at every opportunity
  3. Coined new word for real scientists, namely "apocalyptics"
  4. Will not reveal his funding

He gets a big â on all fronts!

All I want to know - is where is barton fink now.
Looking through the 'magic round window' now no doubt :-)
Timbo, all your 'horses and kings men' are well and truly up,the proverbial creek. And about time.
I've won the internet ! :-)

By Billy Bob Hall (not verified) on 25 Nov 2011 #permalink