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A Brief Summary of Climate-Gate

John on November 24, 2009 at 10:08 am

I’m stealing this from the always excellent Doug Ross. Someone has put up an executive summary of Climate-Gate which really gives a sense of the scope of malfeasance involved. A sample:

  • Michael Mann discusses how to destroy a journal that has published sceptic papers.(1047388489)
  • Tim Osborn discusses how data are truncated to stop an apparent cooling trend showing up in the results (0939154709).
  • Phil Jones describes the death of sceptic, John Daly, as “cheering news”.
  • Phil Jones encourages colleagues to delete information subject to FoI request.(1212063122)
  • Phil Jones says he has use Mann’s “Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series”…to hide the decline”. Real Climate says “hiding” was an unfortunate turn of phrase.(0942777075)
  • Letter to The Times from climate scientists was drafted with the help of Greenpeace.(0872202064)
  • Mann thinks he will contact BBC’s Richard Black to find out why another BBC journalist was allowed to publish a vaguely sceptical article.(1255352257)
  • Kevin Trenberth says they can’t account for the lack of recent warming and that it is a travesty that they can’t.(1255352257)
  • Tom Wigley tells Jones that the land warming since 1980 has been twice the ocean warming and that this might be used by sceptics as evidence for urban heat islands.(1257546975)
  • Tom Wigley say that Keith Briffa has got himself into a mess over the Yamal chronology (although also says it’s insignificant. Wonders how Briffa explains McIntyre’s sensitivity test on Yamal and how he explains the use of a less-well replicated chronology over a better one. Wonders if he can. Says data withholding issue is hot potato, since many “good” scientists condemn it.(1254756944)
  • Briffa is funding Russian dendro Shiyatov, who asks him to send money to personal bank account so as to avoid tax, thereby retaining money for research.(0826209667)
  • Kevin Trenberth says climatologists are nowhere near knowing where the energy goes or what the effect of clouds is. Says nowhere balancing the energy budget. Geoengineering is not possible.(1255523796)
  • Mann discusses tactics for screening and delaying postings at Real Climate.(1139521913)

This is about a third of the total summary. Jump over to Doug Ross’ site to read it all. The multiple references to massaging data to reach pre-determined conclusions should be enough to call their entire output into question. Beyond that, the big picture is of a bunch of schoolyard bullies determined to elbow in the ribs anyone who threatens their status. One certainly does not get the impression that this is science divorced from politics and personalities. On the contrary, this is us vs. them.

Incidentally, it’s the same attitude that we saw when e-mails from the Smithsonian institution were published. In that case one individual was blamed for allowing the publication of an intelligent design paper in a journal. It’s the same tone.

Seems to me the truth should be a little more robust than that. It shouldn’t involve a cabal of scientists/politicians eager to hide the problems in their theories and knee-cap anyone in their way.

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Category: Climate Change & Environment, Science & Tech |

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