Sunday, February 28, 2010

Don't trust Wikipedia when it comes to climate issues

When you are researching on the Internet, Wikipedia has become the "place to go" for most research.  However, when it comes to climate issues, particularly those related to Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW), Wikipedia can't be trusted.  This has been well documented by several researchers -- if you make a change to an AGW article which mentions climate skeptics favourably, the change will be reversed quickly.

Climategate: the corruption of Wikipedia – Telegraph Blogs
If you want to know the truth about Climategate, definitely don’t use Wikipedia. “Climatic Research Unit e-mail controversy”, is its preferred, mealy-mouthed euphemism to describe the greatest scientific scandal of the modern age. Not that you’d ever guess it was a scandal from the accompanying article. It reads more like a damage-limitation press release put out by concerned friends and sympathisers of the lying, cheating, data-rigging scientists

Which funnily enough, is pretty much what it is. Even Wikipedia’s own moderators acknowledge that the entry has been hijacked, as this commentary by an “uninvolved editor” makes clear.

Unfortunately, this naked bias and corruption has infected the supposedly neutral Wikipedia’s entire coverage of Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) theory. And much of this, as Lawrence Solomon reports in the National Post, is the work of one man, a Cambridge-based scientist and Green Party activist named William Connolley.

The American Spectator : Wikipedia Meets Its Own Climategate
.... the use of Wikipedia itself to inflame the political debate by permitting activists to rewrite the contributions of others. All by itself, that surely is a contributor to online incivility.

The issue that I am particularly thinking about is "climate change" -- or global warming as it was once called (until the globe stopped warming, about a decade ago). Recently the Financial Post in Canada published an article by Lawrence Solomon, with this remarkable headline:
How Wikipedia's green doctor rewrote 5,428 climate articles.
Solomon draws attention to the online labors of one William M. Connolley, a Green Party activist and software engineer in Britain. Starting in February 2003, Connolley set to work on the Wikipedia site. I continue with a two-paragraph direct quote from Mr. Solomon's article:
[Connolley] rewrote Wikipedia's articles on global warming, on the greenhouse effect, on the instrumental temperature record, on the urban heat island, on climate models, on global cooling. On Feb. 14, he began to erase the Little Ice Age; on Aug. 11, the Medieval Warm Period. In October, he turned his attention to the hockey stick graph. He rewrote articles on the politics of global warming and on the scientists who were skeptical of the band [of climatologist activists]. Richard Lindzen and Fred Singer, two of the world's most distinguished climate scientists, were among his early targets, followed by others that the band [of activists] especially hated, such as Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, authorities on the Medieval Warm Period.

All told, Connolley created or rewrote 5,428 unique Wikipedia articles. His control over Wikipedia was greater still, however, through the role he obtained at Wikipedia as a website administrator, which allowed him to act with virtual impunity. When Connolley didn't like the subject of a certain article, he removed it -- more than 500 articles of various descriptions disappeared at his hand. When he disapproved of the arguments that others were making, he often had them barred -- over 2,000 Wikipedia contributors who ran afoul of him found themselves blocked from making further contributions. Acolytes whose writing conformed to Connolley's global warming views, in contrast, were rewarded with Wikipedia's blessings. In these ways, Connolley turned Wikipedia into the missionary wing of the global warming movement.
Lawrence Solomon: Climategate at Wikipedia - FP Comment

A perfect storm is brewing for the IPCC - Telegraph

VERY good article about why the IPCC is dead in the water.

A perfect storm is brewing for the IPCC - Telegraph

Friday, February 26, 2010

Graphical proof of a long-term global cooling trend

The big picture: 65 million years of temperature swings « JoNova
David Lappi is a geologist from Alaska who has sent in a set of beautiful graphs–including an especially prosaic one of the last 10,000 years in Greenland–that he put together himself (and which I’ve copied here at the top).

If you wonder where today’s temperature fits in with the grand scheme of time on Earth since the dinosaurs were wiped out, here’s the history. We start with the whole 65 million years, then zoom in, and zoom in again to the last 12,000 from both ends of the world. What’s obvious is that in terms of homo sapiens history, things are warm now (because we’re not in an ice age). But, in terms of homo sapiens civilization, things are cooler than usual, and appear to be cooling.

Then again, since T-rex & Co. vanished, it’s been one long slide down the thermometer, and our current “record heatwave” is far cooler than normal. The dinosaurs would have scoffed at us: “What? You think this is warm?”

With so much volatility in the graphs, anyone could play “pick a trend” and depending on which dot you start from, you can get any trend you want. — Jo

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

AGW High Priest says Medieval Warm Period real, no warming since 1995

No surprise here.

Armed and Dangerous » Blog Archive » Phil Jones blows the gaff
The AGW true believers who determinedly reasserted their faith after the Climate Research Unit emails leaked have just been embarrassed by one of the high priests of the cult. Phil Jones, the former head of the CRU, now admits that there has been no statistically significant global warming since 1995.

Reading this is an entertaining counterpoint to the sight of the five-foot-long icicles hanging from the eaves outside my office window. Dunno whether it means anything — probably doesn’t — but the last time I saw icicles this size was during the bizarre six-day-long ice storm that socked Philadelphia early in, I think, 1993.

Jones himself claims to still believe in AGW, but he’s also now conceding that temperatures in the Medieval Warm Period (Remember? That thing Mann and the Hockey Team tried to flimflam out of existence?) may have averaged higher than today’s. And he trots out the reliable old “the dog ate my primary data” excuse for another walk.

Stay tuned. As bad as it looks now, I’m pretty certain that the depths of embarrassment and disgrace waiting for AGW true believers have not been fully plumbed even yet.
Climategate U-turn: Astonishment as scientist at centre of global warming email row admits data not well organised | Mail Online
The academic at the centre of the ‘Climategate’ affair, whose raw data is crucial to the theory of climate change, has admitted that he has trouble ‘keeping track’ of the information.

Colleagues say that the reason Professor Phil Jones has refused Freedom of Information requests is that he may have actually lost the relevant papers.

Professor Jones told the BBC yesterday there was truth in the observations of colleagues that he lacked organisational skills, that his office was swamped with piles of paper and that his record keeping is ‘not as good as it should be’.

The data is crucial to the famous ‘hockey stick graph’ used by climate change advocates to support the theory.

Professor Jones also conceded the possibility that the world was warmer in medieval times than now – suggesting global warming may not be a man-made phenomenon.

And he said that for the past 15 years there has been no ‘statistically significant’ warming.

The admissions will be seized on by sceptics as fresh evidence that there are serious flaws at the heart of the science of climate change and the orthodoxy that recent rises in temperature are largely man-made
No kidding.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

ESR on Naming and Shaming the AGW fanatics

Well said, good explanation of the AGW crowd.

Armed and Dangerous » Blog Archive » Naming and shaming the AGW fraudsters
James Delingpole, in Climategate: Time for the Tumbrils, noting the public collapse in credibility of AGW “science” utters a fine rant summed up in this wise (parochial references to British political figures and organizations omitted):

I’m in no mood for being magnanimous in victory. I want the lying, cheating, fraudulent scientists prosecuted and fined or imprisoned. I want warmist politicians booted out and I want fellow-travellers who are still pushing this green con trick to be punished at the polls for their culpable idiocy.

For years I’ve been made to feel a pariah for my views on AGW. Now it’s payback time and I take small satisfaction from seeing so many rats deserting their sinking ship. I don’t want them on my side. I want to see them in hell, reliving scenes from Hieronymus Bosch.

I too long to see the frauds and the fellow-travellers in the hell they’ve earned for themselves. But revenge, while it’s a tasty dish that long-time public “deniers” like Delingpole and myself are now thoroughly enjoying, isn’t the best reason to hound them and their enabling organizations out of public life. The best reason not to relent, to name and shame the fraudsters and shatter their reputations and humilate them — ideally, to the point where there’s a rash of prominent suicides as a result — is this:

If we don’t destroy them, they’ll surely ramp up yet another colossal, politicized eco-fraud to plague us all.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

More Climategate fallout, this time from the UK Guardian

Here's another story about (probably fraudulent, certainly unverifiable) data being used in a now-discredited story that forms one of the cornerstones of the rapidly-crumbling AGW edifice:

Chinese Urbanization Study | Climate Skeptic
Why it matters

The Guardian writes:

[I]t is important to keep this in perspective, however. This dramatic revision of the estimated impact of urbanisation on temperatures in China does not change the global picture of temperature trends. There is plenty of evidence of global warming, not least from oceans far from urban influences.

This is correct. Further, it is absurd to deny the world has warmed over the last 150 years as the little ice age of the 17th and 18th centuries was one of the coldest periods in thousands of years, and thus it is totally natural that we have seen warming in recovery from these frigid times.

But here is what it is important to understand: The real debate between skeptics and alarmists is not over whether the Earth has warmed over the last century or whether CO2 from man contributes incrementally to warming. The real debate is over whether the climate’s sensitivity to CO2 is high or low. Skeptics like me argue for low sensitivity, on the order of 0.5-1.0C per doubling once all feedbacks are taken in to account. Alarmists argue for numbers 3C and higher.

The problem alarmists have is that it is very, very difficult to reconcile past warming to high-sensitivity forecasts. It takes a lot of mathematical contortions, from time-delays to cooling aerosols to ignoring ocean cycles and natural recovery from the little ice age to make the numbers reconcile. Halving the actual historic warming by attributing the other half to measurement biases makes it even, uh, more impossible to reconcile high sensitivity models to actual history.

Reason series on Climategate - Update 1: The China Syndrome

Climategate Update 1: The China Syndrome* - Hit & Run : Reason Magazine
Climategate just gets more interesting all the time doesn't it? The Guardian is reporting that the Climatic Research Unit (the U.K. research group at the center of the Climategate affair) has somehow lost critical temperature data again, in this case data from Chinese weather stations that are supposed to prove that the urban heat island effect accounts for a neglible portion of the warming trend found in temperature records. The abstract for the study published in 1990 in Nature reads:

Read the rest of the Reason article at the link above.
In any case, Phil Jones and the CRU crowd are in the process of finding out the truth of the old adage, "It's not the crime, it's the cover up" that eventually brings someone down.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Surprise, surprise, CO2 increase may cause COOLING ....

» Study: Earth Self-Regulation Discovery may make Carbon Credits, Etc. Irrelevant Dvorak Uncensored: General interest observations and true web-log.
Despite the apparent bias of many climate researchers, they do have one thing right; carbon levels have risen notably over the twentieth century from about 300 ppm to 375 ppm. While still far from the estimated levels of around 3,000 ppm during the time of the dinosaurs (appr. 150 MYA), the rising levels do mark a legitimate trend. However, there is increasing evidence that the rising carbon, contrary to alarmist reports is actually having remarkably little effect on global temperatures.

A new study authored by Susan Solomon, lead author of the study and a researcher at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder, Colo. could explain why atmospheric carbon is not contributing to warming significantly. According to the study, as carbon levels have risen, the cold air at high altitudes over the tropics has actually grown colder. The lower temperatures at this “coldest point” have caused global water vapor levels to drop, even as carbon levels rise.

Water vapor helps trap heat, and is a far the strongest of the major greenhouse gases, contributing 36–72 percent of the greenhouse effect. However more atmospheric carbon has actually decreased water vapor levels. Thus rather than a “doomsday” cycle of runaway warming, Mother Earth appears surprisingly tolerant of carbon, decreasing atmospheric levels of water vapor — a more effective greenhouse gas — to compensate.

Describes Professor Solomon, “There is slow warming that has taken place over the last 100 years. But from one decade to another, there can be fluctuations in the warming trend.”

The study was published in the prestigious journal Science.