Holy Mother Market !

Video Credit : Democracy Now

Of all the macroeconomic proposals put forward over the last two decades for consideration by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the most ridiculous has to be Carbon Trading.

To imagine that a market can be created for something that the industrialised country economies are highly dependent on is an hallucination.

Carbon Dioxide emissions are in lock-step with economic growth, the creation of liquidity, if not wealth. To try to price Carbon Dioxide emissions would be to attempt to give a negative value to a positive commodity. It just won’t work. Nobody will want to buy it. And if they’re forced to buy it, they won’t want to pay much for it. And nobody can think of a way to force the developed countries to pay for their Carbon Dioxide emissions.

Even before the “serious” negotiating week of Cancun begins, the Kyoto Protocol has been pronounced dead on arrival :-

http://www.democracynow.org/2010/12/6/climate_talks_in_jeopardy_as_industrialized

Nobody ever said the “KP” was perfect – it only committed countries to a very small level of emissions cuts. Some commitment ! Few of the countries in the KP have taken their responsibilities to cut emissions seriously. And if they have, they’ve just outsourced them to China.

But the Son-of-Kyoto Post-Kyoto Protocol Protocol could have been something, you know, if the industrialised countries admitted they needed to back down significantly from rising and large emissions profiles – if developed nations had not tried to lean on the “flexible mechanisms” that effectively legalised offsetting their emissions with emissions reductions in other peoples’ countries.

But, no.

It appears from Wikileaks that the United States of America have been scuppering the United Nations’s best efforts :-

http://www.democracynow.org/2010/12/6/bolivian_un_ambassador_pablo_solon_reacts

“Secret diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks have revealed new details about how the United States manipulated last year’s climate talks in Copenhagen. The cables show how the United States sought dirt on nations opposed to its approach to tackling global warming, how financial and other aid was used by countries to gain political backing, and how the United States mounted a secret global diplomatic offensive to overwhelm opposition to the “Copenhagen Accord.””

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/dec/03/wikileaks-us-manipulated-climate-accord
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/dec/03/us-basics-copenhagen-accord-tactics

It wasn’t China’s fault, (or only China’s fault) as Mark Lynas and many other commentators have asserted :-

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/22/copenhagen-climate-change-mark-lynas

If, as reports state, the United States are continuing to use any leverage they can to push countries to accept the doomed Copenhagen Accord, there can be no progress on Climate Change.

We may have just found the real Climategate.

You cannot buy or sell the atmosphere.

There is only one solution – that is to displace High Carbon Energy with Low Carbon Energy and that means goodbye to Tar Sands, Shale Oil, Tight Gas, deepwater Petroleum, dirty Petroleum, Coal, Coal-to-Liquids, anything that you can dig out of the ground and burn.

We have to stop mining for energy.

And that has serious implications for a number of international energy corporations and state energy enterprises.

Unless this basic issue is addressed, we are all heading for hell and high water.

The Climate Change talks have been window dressing for unworkable hypothetical macroeconomic policies, and continue to reduce chair people to tears :-

Adam Fleming : BBC Complaint

Dear BBC

I am writing to complain about a short news article presented as online video, narrated by Adam Fleming, which contains a number of inaccuracies regarding the operation of Climate Change science and the results of inquiries into it.

The piece that I am referring to is here :-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11574503
“Doubts over scientists’ climate change debate claims”

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

TEXT ON WEB PAGE

19 October 2010
Last updated at 13:48

Press coverage has cast further doubt on climate scientists’
claims that man-made global warming is real and adversely
affecting the planet.

Polls show that the public are becoming increasingly confused
about the issue. Adam Fleming reports.

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO IN FILM PRESENTATION

It’s the year that “uncertainty” became the buzzword in the
climate change debate, even for scientists who are convinced
that human activity is warming the planet.

Last year saw the publication of private e-mails written in
these buildings, the Climatic Research Unit at the University
of East Anglia. Experts spoke of doing “tricks” with numbers.
They hinted at the deletion of data that didn’t fit their
theories.

This summer, an inquiry, the last of three, left the
scientists’ reputation intact, but told them that they had to
be more honest about how they reach their conclusions.

Then came “Glaciergate”. In 2007 the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change, the group of international scientists that
inform global environmental policy, had written a report
saying that most of the glaciers in the Himalyas could melt by
2035, but that was proved to be wildly inaccurate.

The head of the IPCC, the Indian academic Rajendra Pachauri
came under pressure to quit. In future [the] chairman will
serve just one term, and again the academics were told to be
more honest about the question marks in their research.

Back at home, David Cameron has pledged the “greenest
Government ever”, but there are limits. This week the Coalition
announced it wouldn’t fund tidal power in the Severn Estuary
because the bill was too high.

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Firstly, and most importantly, Adam Fleming repeats not once, but twice, the erroneous view that scientists were instructed by the “Climategate” inquiries and the IPCC review to be more “honest”.

That is not only a poor choice of word, it completely undermines the results of the inquiries and the review, which recommend more “openness” about data and methods, whilst at the very same time vindicating scientists of any wrongdoing whatsoever. Much of Climate Change science is very public already. Many data sets are totally within the public realm, and all the research papers are widely available. There are moves to publish more of the data and more of the methods for the models and computer programming. Some of the data and methods have been proprietary, or countries, universities or even individual researchers have placed restrictions on their use. The basic problem is that a non-expert cannot look at some of the data and understand it without background information (“metadata”) on how the data should be treated, how it was assembled and which adjustments should be made to make sense of it in a variety of frames of reference. For example, if I were to give you a database about road traffic accidents at a variety of blackspots and I didn’t tell you what the data measured, the parameters for how data was included, or how information was collected, how could you understand what it really signified ?

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is to undergo reform in order to deal more effectively with the public, including the media, as it appears that the media consistently get the messaging wrong. The IPCC is not going to undergo reform in order to change its basic discoveries from the science. The science still stands, and the scientists are still right. The implications of the synthesis of Climate Change science is that there are very real risks of very serious disruption to the Earth’s climatic regime, and the evidence is constantly accumulating to back up this projection.

Uncertainty did not become a “buzzword” last year. Way back in 2007, the IPCC published (for free, on the Internet) their Fourth Assessment Report, which contained very clear summaries of which parts of Climate Change Science are robust and where the uncertainties are.

The use of the phrase “even for scientists who are convinced that human activity is warming the planet” suggests that there is a significant portion of scientists who are not convinced that human activity is warming the planet. This is misleading. Of those scientists who have researched Climate Change, the overwhelming majority accept that human activity is warming the planet. Global Warming from humankind’s emissions of Greenhouse Gases is basic Physics, and it’s ridiculous to even suggest otherwise.

The “Climategate” e-mails were not put to “publication” last year. It would be more accurate to say that they were “leaked”, but the actual process of how they came to be in the public domain is more complicated than that. It appears that a number of people had access to the material well before it was broadcast as the e-mails were released with additional material alongside suggesting all manner of nefarious goings-on that could not be drawn from the e-mails themselves, when read in their proper context. A more accurate description would be to say that the e-mails were “stolen” and their contents “hacked” with unfavourable commentary before they were released onto the Internet in a carefully staged campaign to create maximum disturbance to the Copenhagen UNFCCC conference.

“Experts spoke of doing “tricks” with numbers.” This sentence is incorrect. The “tricks” were not to change the numbers in the data, but ways to present the data to reveal certain trends.

“They hinted at the deletion of data that didn’t fit their theories.” That claim is “wildly inaccurate”.

“…told them that they had to be more honest about how they reach their conclusions.” This is incorrect. The three inquiries sought to persuade Climate Change science as a whole to share more data and methods than they currently do, so that others can understand how the data is used to come up with the conclusions. It is a call for full disclosure, not a reprimand over deception.

“Then came Glaciergate.” That is incorrect. The typographical reproduction error regarding the fate of the Himalayan glaciers was discussed in the media before “Climategate” unleashed badly commented confidential e-mails on the world. If you don’t know that, you haven’t done your research properly.

“…that was proved to be wildly inaccurate.” The use of the word “proved” is contentious, as it suggests that somebody did some science that contradicted what was in the IPCC. Not a bit of it. There are still ongoing discussions as to the speed of glacier melt, and its extent, and data collection is continuing. “Glaciergate” was an error in transmission, with an unsupported source. It was like a genetic coding error that leads a cell to a cancerous state. But the medicine is now available – the IPCC will be much more rigorous in future in double-checking what they report from.

“[the IPCC] had written a report saying that most of the glaciers in the Himalyas could melt by 2035”. It was not the IPCC who wrote the original error. Since Adam Fleming does not appear to know, it needs to be said again – the IPCC only reports on other peoples’ work – it doesn’t do any scientific research of its own. Minor mistakes in IPCC reports do not break Climate Change science.

“…the Indian academic Rajendra Pachauri came under pressure to quit”. The so-named “pressure” has only from the Climate Change sceptics and the dogbark media. I do not know of any person in the Climate Change science community who is applying “pressure” of any kind for Rajendra Pachauri to quit.

“…again the academics were told to be more honest about the question marks in their research.” This is incorrect. The IPCC are already very open about the “question marks” in their research. If Adam Fleming were to take the time to actually read the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report, (note well, Richard Black, senior environmental reporter has admitted that he has not yet done this), you would discover the normal academic presentation of both sides of every argument about every facet of the science. They could not be more “honest” about how they arrive at their conclusions. What will change is that they will start to be more “transparent”. There is a major media initiative going on in the IPCC management to use modern communications techniques to present the findings to the public in a more structured, accessible way, in order to restore public confidence in the work of Climate Change science.

I don’t expect the BBC to answer this complaint in the time period that they pledge, and I don’t expect them to answer correctly.

I don’t expect the BBC to start getting their Climate Change information right at the moment, but when the IPCC media team get to work, I can assure you the BBC will be changing its tune.

The BBC has proved consistently that it cannot report accurately on Climate Change. It would be far better if they outsourced their reporting on Climate Change to people who actually know something about it, instead of repeating Climate Change sceptic arguments as if they were the truth. This article by Adam Fleming is a revision of history and the current state of play and is not only “wildly inaccurate” to use his own phrase, it is “informationally contentious” in a manner that is misleading and ultimately incorrect.

BBC : Licence to Manipulate ?

Another Earth-shatteringly ridiculous piece on the practice of Climate Change science has dribbled from the loudspeaker of the BBC :-

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11574503
“Doubts over scientists’ climate change debate claims”

Why am I surprised that they seem content to repeat falsehoods and rehearse a patronising tone ?

Where’s the proper investigative journalism ? Why get somebody so young and fresh-faced as Adam Fleming to tear up his good reputation so soon into his career ? I mean, he’s only done kids’ TV before now, as far as I know. Why was he only briefed with Climate Change “sceptic” fantasy nonsense ? And what will the University of East Anglia Press Office do to react ?

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Date: Tue 19 Oct 2010
From: Jo Abbess
Subject: The BBC Gets It Completely Wrong Once Again
To: Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia Pres Office

Dear Press Office at CRU UEA,

I am completely astonished at the paucity of the latest
offering from the BBC on so-called “Climategate” (see
forwarded e-mail I have sent to Professor Phil Jones).

I would see this as a prime moment to correct the BBC
publicly, and you could be the people for the job, which is
why I am drawing this to your attention.

I’m sure you don’t need me to pinpoint the inaccuracies in the
BBC piece, but I can offer comments if you would like to hear
them.

Regards,

Jo Abbess

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Date: Tue, 19 Oct 2010
From: Jo Abbess
Subject: The BBC Gets It Completely Wrong Once Again
To: Professor Phil Jones
Cc: Dr Ben Santer, Dr Gavin Schmidt

Dear Professor Jones,

I can’t help asking myself why it is that the BBC has got
Climate Change science so, so wrong yet again.

Can’t they read ? And who have they been listening to ?

This is a really appalling re-write of recent history from the
BBC (see below). It’s insulting, judgemental and just plain
inaccurate.

They couldn’t have done worse if they had been deliberately
trying to be annoying, in my view.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11574503
“Doubts over scientists’ climate change debate claims”

I counted at least 10 “revisions of history” in a piece of
film shorter than an ad break.

Surely some of your colleagues have the energy left to
complain ?

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

TEXT ON WEB PAGE

19 October 2010
Last updated at 13:48

Press coverage has cast further doubt on climate scientists’
claims that man-made global warming is real and adversely
affecting the planet.

Polls show that the public are becoming increasingly confused
about the issue. Adam Fleming reports.

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

TRANSCRIPT OF AUDIO IN FILM PRESENTATION

It’s the year that “uncertainty” became the buzzword in the
climate change debate, even for scientists who are convinced
that human activity is warming the planet.

Last year saw the publication of private e-mails written in
these buildings, the Climatic Research Unit at the University
of East Anglia. Experts spoke of doing “tricks” with numbers.
They hinted at the deletion of data that didn’t fit their
theories.

This summer, an inquiry, the last of three, left the
scientists’ reputation intact, but told them that they had to
be more honest about how they reach their conclusions.

Then came “Glaciergate”. In 2007 the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change, the group of international scientists that
inform global environmental policy, had written a report
saying that most of the glaciers in the Himalyas could melt by
2035, but that was proved to be wildly inaccurate.

The head of the IPCC, the Indian academic Rajendra Pachauri
came under pressure to quit. In future [the] chairman will
serve just one term, and again the academics were told to be
more honest about the question marks in their research.

Back at home, David Cameron has pledged the “greenest
Government ever”, but there are limits This week the Coalition
announced it wouldn’t fund tidal power in the Severn Estuary
because the bill was too high.

=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=x=

Met vriendelijke groeten,

jo.

Lords of Timewasting ?

The not-widely-awaited “investigation” into the official inquiries into “Climategate” from the Nigel Lawson “social experiment”, the “Global Warming Policy Foundation”, looks to me rather like a botched piece of cosmetic surgery on first scan.

I’d recommend avoiding it, as it seems to me like a total waste of valuable time, based, as I believe it is, on an obvious absence of leg-shaped support.

I wouldn’t have bothered spending five vacant minutes commenting on it unless I knew my various sceptic readers were standing by, eagerly salivating over tearing me to shreds about any statements I might make.

Lunch, boys ?

If you are a proper Climate Change researcher, unless you’ve got the time and funds and staffing to launch an investigation into how the Climategate Media circus was ever allowed to happen, I’d suggest you avoid entering into any kind of discussion about this latest seemingly vapid wraith of veneer.

http://www.thegwpf.org/climategate/1532-damning-new-investigation-into-climategate-inquiries.html

I am sure you will detect what looks like irascible sniping from Andrew Montford (as known as “Bishop Hll”) in various newspaper reports that follow on from this outpouring of apparently obsessive introspection into a non-scandal that’s deader than a century-old donkey’s fetid tail.

But nothing will trounce the ultimate truth – Climategate will never breathe another modecule of serious Media oxygen, even if it lives on in rabid obscurity in Internet zombie-blog-land.

Let’s Read the IPCC (1)

If there’s one thing about Climate Change nobody could be able to disagree on, it’s that there’s a huge amount of literature on the subject.

I figure it would be impossible for any one person to have a good grounding in the totality of the Science, spanning, as it does, most of humankind’s discoveries about the physical world.

It would be hard too to have an exceptionally well-rooted understanding even of the Synthesis of the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports.

A human mind is surely not capable of remembering all the facts and figures and how everything relates. My personal forgettery is quite active in selecting what to drop after not using it for a while, and I’m sure others experience the same thing.

For example, I’m sure Dr Judith Curry, accomplished as she is in Earth Sciences, does not remember the entire field, and does not have the tools to look everything up quickly. Which is why she gives shorthand vague, answers on web logs which annoy other people so much :-

http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/08/curry_jumps_the_shark.php

I reckon, though, people should give her a break for a while to let her compose herself, and get over the shock of the Anthony Watts “tribe” eating her heart out with steak knives after she published a proper piece of Science.

Continue reading Let’s Read the IPCC (1)

Hell Freezes Over : BBC Apologises

Jaw-droppingly, the BBC have apologised for the contents of a Today Programme. Not the one that caused poor, deceased Dr David Kelly so much embarrassment, God rest his soul. No, the one that featured the breaking of the “Climategate” e-mail scandal :-

http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/08/bbc_apologizes_to_university_o.php

The BBC picked the wrong scandal story to run with, it appears.

The real scandal of Climategate is how the scientists’ e-mails were “liberated” from the University of East Anglia, and then annotated to give heavily biased interpretation, then released to the general public via the Internet, and how the Media were taken in.

Certain people at the BBC chose to go with the fake scandal, it seems – the narrative fabricated and dictated to them by Climate Change deniers.

Anyway, now the BBC have made an apology, of sorts. Better late than never, but all the same, it would have been better earlier rather than later.

Thankfully, despite the late apologies, this particular alleged witch-hunt didn’t end with a suspected suicide. Although it did include reports that Professor Phil Jones had, in fact, contemplated suicide; the reporting of which just added to his completely groundless public humiliation at the hands of the Press. Which they should apologise for, in my humble opinion. Just as good (old) George Monbiot had the good grace to offer some regret for :-

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cif-green/2010/jul/07/russell-inquiry-i-was-wrong

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/7180154/Climategate-Professor-Phil-Jones-considered-suicide-over-email-scandal.html
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7017922.ece

http://www.uea.ac.uk/mac/comm/media/press/CRUstatements/rebuttalsandcorrections/johnhumphrys

“BBC apologises to University of East Anglia for “incorrect” remark”

“The BBC has apologised for an “incorrect” remark made by John Humphrys that UEA researchers had “distorted the debate about global warming to make the threat seem even more serious than they believed it to be”.”

Continue reading Hell Freezes Over : BBC Apologises

Tim Holmes : Wrong on Balance

PLEASE IGNORE ANY ADVERTISEMENT THAT MAY PLAY AT THE START OF THIS VIDEO. Video Credit : The Guardian

At risk of tumbling after The Guardian newspaper journalists into a deep dark rabbit hole of possible intellectual compromise falls young Tim Holmes, who attended the Guardian’s “some parts of the debate have been edited out for legal reasons” Climategate event on 14th July 2010 :-

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/video/2010/jul/15/climategate-guardian-debate

What on Earth were The Guardian thinking, inviting Steve McIntyre and Doug Keenan to share a platform with Professors Trevor Davies and Bob Waston at a public meeting ?

Don’t The Guardian know that the general public have had their views so seriously warped by the Climate Change sceptic-deniers that no serious, open discussion/debate would be possible ? All you seem to get from sceptic-deniers is hot-and-cold insults, sniping and over-detailed analysis of minuscule slithers of Science. Their position is rock-solid anti-Science, from my analysis. There is nothing to be gained from talking to them in my opinion.

Continue reading Tim Holmes : Wrong on Balance

Note to Steve McIntyre

Dear Steve,

Following Dr Judith Curry’s appeal on ClimateProgress regarding the recent RealClimate post from Tamino, that Joe Romm, and all of us, should be reading your work, I decided to take a brief look at your output on ClimateAudit in order to see what all the fuss from Judith Curry was about :-

http://climateprogress.org/2010/07/25/hockey-stick-real-climate-montford-judith-curry-tamino-gavin-schmid/

“19. Judith Curry says: July 25, 2010 at 9:19 pm : …So if any of you have actually read as much as I have on this topic including Montford’s [Bishop Hill] book and the climateaudit threads particularly McIntyre’s most recent post, well then we might have something to talk about. Otherwise, we can just sit back and all be entertained by tribalistic wardances.”

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/the-montford-delusion/

“107. Judith Curry says: 23 July 2010 at 12:44 PM : Once more people have read the [Montford, Bishop Hill] book, and if Montford and McIntyre were welcomed to participate in the discussion, then I would be interested in participating in a more detailed discussion on this.”

Continue reading Note to Steve McIntyre

Phil Jones : Back At Work

Glad to see Professor Phil Jones is back at work and enrolling students for the autumn on the Climate Change MSc postgraduate degree programme at the University of East Anglia (UEA) Climatic Research Unit (CRU) :-

http://www.uea.ac.uk/env/courses/msc-climate-change

This course would probably be useful for a number of mainstream media journalists to follow. Even if they don’t have an appropriate background in Physics, Chemistry, Geography, Environmental studies or similar, it could be of benefit to ameliorate their world view.

They could learn something from the lectures and coursework – that the Science of Climate Change is a serious and rigorous endeavour – unlike the apparently lax behaviour of their own profession over the last year or so.

Investigative journalism without the “investigation” part appears to be a mishmash of unverifiable facts and unfounded opinions. You need to know who is credible at the very least, and you can’t get that from following the vindictive views of public contrarians.

If you want to understand Climate Change, you need to study the Science, not just read denier-sceptic web logs or talk to Steve McIntyre, Benny Peiser, Marc Morano, Anthony Watts, Doug Keenan, Nigel Lawson or Christopher Monckton, and think that you have thereby become sufficiently informed.

“Climategate”-style attacks on Climate Change Scientists by negatively-motivated commentators are completely unacceptable. Media workers need to learn to identify those whose opinions they cannot trust.

George Monbiot : Bunkum Masquerading As Insight ?

[ CORRECTION FROM JOABBESS.COM : David Adam has had his name struck from the list of journalists at The Guardian who have given the impression of blaming the quality and speed of UEA media relations for the Climategate pseudo-scandal. ]

I was in telephone conversation with somebody in the Climate Change policy arena in the last two weeks (names will remain unnamed for obvious reasons), and they complained to me about George Monbiot’s position on Climategate.

I could sense incandescent rage, even at the other end of the phone line, as the person expressed extreme displeasure with George Monbiot, and asserted that he was a “nasty little man”.

I don’t agree with that summary. For a start, George Monbiot is probably taller than the average Briton, so the epithet is literally inaccurate. I don’t even agree that George Monbiot is “little” in terms of influential, public figures, either. I think George Monbiot is very smart, usually highly accurate and incisive, assiduous in his research.

His pieces are factually rich, and he is often on the money. But on this particular train of events I believe he is most assuredly wrong, even after backtracking from his original position.

Continue reading George Monbiot : Bunkum Masquerading As Insight ?

Climategate Review : Delaying Tactics

The Climate Change Science hasn’t changed, the scientists haven’t changed, and the Earth System hasn’t suddenly become healthier, so why did we need a review into e-mail traffic between researchers ? What was it all for ? Answer : to delay progress. Clue : follow the old revolutionaries, still trying to create a fuss.

The Independent Climate Change E-mail Review :-

http://www.cce-review.org/

“Sir Muir and the Review team held a press briefing at the Science Media Centre in London on 11 February 2010…”

Transcript of Sir Muir Rrussell’s opening remarks on 7 July 2010 :-

http://www.cce-review.org/pdf/MR%20Launch%20intro.pdf

“Good morning – good to see you all here again. A lot has happened since February! I hope you have enjoyed reading the fruits of our labours. Thanks first to Fiona Fox [Director of the Science Media Centre] and her team for hosting us this morning…”

Just who is Fiona Fox ? And what is the Science Media Centre ?

http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/pages/about/staff.htm

“Fiona Fox : Director : Fiona has a degree in Journalism and 15 years experience in media relations. She held the position of Senior Press Officer for the Equal Opportunities Commission for six years, followed by two years running the media operation at the National Council for One Parent Families. A total change of environment followed as Fiona became Head of Media at CAFOD, one of the UK’s leading aid agencies. She founded the Jubilee 2000 press group, which helped to force serious Third World issues onto the media and political agendas. Fiona is an experienced public speaker and a trained journalist, who has written extensively for newspapers and publications, authored several policy papers and contributed to books on humanitarian aid.”

What’s not to like ?

Continue reading Climategate Review : Delaying Tactics

Retraction City

I’m still waiting for some notable reporters, web loggers and commentators to retract, to take it all back on Climategate, which was a “pseudo-scandal”, according to Chris Mooney, in reviewing “The Climate Files”, a book on the stolen University of East Anglia e-mails, written by Fred Pearce :-

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20727671.300-the-climate-scandal-that-never-was.html

Continue reading Retraction City

Scientists Advised To Avoid Media

Following the BBC Panorama “investigation” into Climategate, broadcast yesterday evening, scientists are being advised not to be interviewed alongside Climate Change sceptics and deniers.

“It was extremely ill-advised for Bob Watson to agree to appear in the same programme as Bjorn Lomborg” was one opinion voiced, “it creates the illusion that Bjorn Lomborg might be right. Whereas, of course, he is not.”

Bob Watson was effectively tricked. He was asked to give an authoritative opinion, which was then presented side by side with the views of the discredited Bjorn Lomborg and John Christy.

As for Bob Ward, he should never, ever have agreed to appear alongside Bjorn Lomborg. He should have realised he could not get his message across properly.

Continue reading Scientists Advised To Avoid Media

Amazongate : Jonathan Leake Retracts

Another chapter in the ongoing saga of the exhausting struggle to educate the mainstream media journalists to check their Climate Change stories thoroughly before publishing.

You may have heard of “Amazongate” – the Amazon would seem to be capable of withstanding more frequent drought caused by Global Warming – according to one interpretation of an isolated piece of research.

However, if you believed that take on things, you’d be very much mistaken in doing so. And the person you’re most likely to be able to have believed on this story would be Jonathan Leake, writing in The Sunday Times.

An article that he wrote, published on 31 January 2010 has been retracted after a submission to the Press Complaints Commission by Dr Simon Lewis. The link to the original article has been removed from the Times Online website :-

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7009705.ece
“UN climate panel shamed by bogus rainforest claim”

Searching for this article title using Google produces thousands of pages that refer to the original publication :-

http://www.google.co.uk/search

The retraction is apparently published here, but I have no access to it, because it requires subscription, which I will not register for, so I do not know what it says :-

http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/article196428.ece

Continue reading Amazongate : Jonathan Leake Retracts

Sceptic Backlash : Questions Answered

Last Wednesday’s “Sceptic Backlash” meeting ended with a lively Question and Answer session. Here it is as I recorded it :-

http://www.campaigncc.org/scepticsmeeting


Q. (from Christian Hunt, a plant in the audience from Greenpeace)

– You say it’s just the journalists who are the sceptics. What happens if another Government comes in and scepticism gets political footholds ? [ reference to Conservative Party Climate Change sceptics ]

A. (Phil Thornhill, Campaign against Climate Change)

– People shy away from the problem if they can’t find solutions. We propose a million Climate jobs – there are lots of ways of dealing with the crisis. That’s the kind of thing we should be emphasising.

Q. Andrew Neill interviewed Caroline Lucas and asked her about the Phil Jones interview with the BBC where he said there had been no “statistically significant” warming in the last 15 years. Has there been no statistically significant warming or not ? Why wouldn’t Caroline Lucas, head of the Green Party, say “you’re wrong” ?

A. (Phil)

– I wrote her a rather long e-mail. You can’t really debate Science in the popular Media. Most people don’t understand.

– The tip for answering this kind of question is – in 15 years, it’s hard to spot a trend against the background noise. It’s a difficult thing to explain.

– It’ a clear case of how once you start debating the Science it gets twisted. She should have said “this is a typical case of the misrepresentation of Science”.

A. (Ben Stewart, Greenpeace Media)

– She was fine to say “I’ll take a pass on that”.

Continue reading Sceptic Backlash : Questions Answered

David Adam : Liberal Pacifier

Dr David Adam, Environmental correspondent at The Guardian newspaper, the “home” of the political Left and Liberal in the United Kingdom, was disappointingly pacifying at the “Sceptic Backlash” event in London yesterday evening.

“Please don’t over-estimate the damage being done by Climategate”, he urged the audience, comparing the sceptic bug-bear to the Bush-and-Cheney narrative about dangerous terrorism which used to get people so worked up, (riled enough, remember ?, to sacrifice their youth and their entire Economy to the new American project of killing innocent women, children and men in the Middle East. Such a good decade for Big Business !)

I read that David Adam used to write about scientific research in Nature magazine before he became Science, and then Environment correspondent at The Guardian.

Funnily enough, I seem to recall meeting somebody who could well have been David Adam in First Class on the Eurostar train service from London to Brussels some time in the late 1990’s. If it was David Adam, his declared profession had nothing to do with journalism, or even chemical engineering (which David Adam studied). I can’t be sure. I don’t always remember faces from more than ten years ago, especially people I have only met once, but his expressions and mannerisms when I saw him yesterday triggered the same reactions in my mind. How strange…but anyway…

I was incensed. Outraged. Deflated, by David Adam’s liberal dismissiveness of the power of Climate Change scepticism, to divide a nation, to cause countless arguments – classic divide-and-rule tactics.

Continue reading David Adam : Liberal Pacifier

James Delingpole Warmly Invited

Here is a copy of the contact I just submitted at JamesDelingpole.com :-

http://jamesdelingpole.com/contact/


Dear Mr Delingpole,

You are cordially invited to a presentation, with question and answer session, on the nature of Climate Change scepticism in the Media :-

http://www.campaigncc.org/scepticsmeeting

This will take place tomorrow, Wednesday 14th April 2010, 6.30pm (or 18:30), at the School of Oriental and African Studies, Thornhaugh Street, off Russell Square, in Venue G2. Entry for you, as for all attendees, will be free and for gratis.

As you will be able to see from the fact sheets and articles associated with the event, Climategate features quite highly in the analysis, and presumably will be one of the main subjects of the debate :-

http://www.campaigncc.org/sceptics

http://climatesafety.org/climategate-a-briefer/

Now, as one of the principal architects of the Media scandal known as Climategate (in fact, if I’m not mistaken, you named it), I am sure you would like to contribute your insight and experience to the discussion, and that your contribution would be most welcome.

In addition to hearing your erudite commentary in person, I am sure that your presence at the event will contribute an enormous amount in terms of raising the profile of the subject of the Media treatment of Climate Change.

It would also be an opportunity to meet some of your opponents in person, in a public space, and talk things over in a calm, civil manner, which I’m sure you would appreciate; perturbed, as I know you are, by the whole subject of Climate Change communications.

I fully intend to attend the event myself, and it would be a pleasure to meet you in person, shake you warmly by the hand, and thank you vigorously for raising the level of Climate Change urgency in the Media.

Happy Days,

Ms J. Abbess BSc


Let’s see if the great man responds…

Media Gets Obama Bypass

It seems like Team Obama will be bypassing the mainstream Media in their Climate Change communications :-

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/apr/12/us-document-strategy-climate-talks

“…A document accidentally left on a European hotel computer and passed to the Guardian reveals the US government’s increasingly controversial strategy in the global UN climate talks…Top of the list of objectives is to: “Reinforce the perception that the US is constructively engaged in UN negotiations in an effort to produce a global regime to combat climate change.” It also talks of “managing expectations” of the outcome of the Cancun meeting and bypassing traditional media outlets…”

There you have it. I’m not surprised, given the appalling behaviour of some of the Gentlepersons of the Press in recent months… Continue reading Media Gets Obama Bypass

Phil Jones : My Hero

Phil Jones – untarnished, innocent, heroic. Clean as a recently, cleanly, cleaned clean whistle.

The Media are beside themselves. No longer do they have a public victim to hold up, for us to mourn. No longer can they build the case for Phil Jones as scapegoat. No longer than they dangle Phil Jones out over the evil toothy fishes from the end of the sweating, shaking, rickety gang plank.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7081921.ece

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8595483.stm

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/7538446/University-of-East-Anglia-refused-to-share-information-on-global-warming.html

http://news.sky.com

Continue reading Phil Jones : My Hero

Institute of Physics Nosedive

Is the Institute of Physics “prestigious” ?

Well, of course, they are highly honoured, and have prestige, but I’m talking about the other meaning, of a sense of cunning, that lingers on in the French word for conjurer or magician : prestidigitateur : the speed of thinking gives capacity to move the fingers almost undetectably to create an illusion.

Several commentators have remarked on the similarity between the Institute of Physics submission to the Science and Technology Committee on “Climategate” and the arguments of several noted Climate Change sceptics.

The fact that James Delingpole loved it up should have been a clue to all the bug hunters out there that all was not well with the submission from the IoP :-

Continue reading Institute of Physics Nosedive

A Question of Pedantics

The Climate Change Science Obstructers, or “the obstructers”, who style themselves as “sceptics” (or “skeptics” if you are in other climes than the UK of GB and NI), love throwing any muck they can find, hoping that any little drab will stick.

Unfortunately, this does sometimes result in the breaching of semantic spaces, and false meanings can occur. Sadly, this seems to happen most often in the minds of journalists, who then write up the mistakes and publish them abroad widely.

Here is an example from a usually faithful reporter :-

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/7347658/Climategate-professor-admits-to-withholding-information.html

“‘Climategate’ professor admits to withholding information : The professor at the centre of the ‘climategate’ row, has admitted sending ‘some pretty awful’ emails refusing to send information on to other scientists. : By Louise Gray, Environment Correspondent : Published: 02 Mar 2010”

Dear Louise, I’ll have to interject right here : Phil Jones did not admit he refused to send data to other scientists.

Phil Jones explained that is is not “standard procedure” to include all the data in every research paper when it is published. That’s not the same as saying he “refused” to.

Continue reading A Question of Pedantics

“What’s Nuked, Pussycat ?”

[ NOTE FROM JOABBESS.COM : ALL UNEXPLAINED QUOTATIONS ARE TAKEN FROM TRANSCRIPTS OF THE SIMPSONS EPISODE “FRAUDCAST NEWS”, UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED. ]

[ AS AN INTERESTING ASIDE, IT’S CURIOUS THAT THE SIMPSONS CARTOON MAKES MORE SENSE THAN A GREAT DEAL OF THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA JOURNALISTS WHEN THEY ATTEMPT TO WRITE ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE. ]

“I’m going to change this town’s accurate impression of me – I’m going to buy every media outlet…It’s time to win back the love of those hateful morons.”

Amy Turner at The Sunday Times (“yeah ! I’m a feeeeeature cooooolumnist”), in my humble opinion, makes a really poor show of comprehending what’s really going on in the “Blogosphere” (“now there’s a thousand freaks xeroxing their worthless opinions”) :-

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/science/article7043753.ece

As the Blogger Tim Lambert (“the pen is mightier than the flaming bag of poop”) at the Deltoid makes clear, her article could easily be criticised as a blatant attempt to frame the whole Blogging world with her own narrative (or probably that of her ultimate boss, Rupert Murdoch), seemingly deciding on her readers’ behalf who to accept as the “big fish” in the Blogosphere, and who to dismiss as “the amateurs”; and then quoting one of her trusted “big fish” Roger Pielke Jr :-

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/science/article7043753.ece

“…Among these minnows are controversialist bloggers like Tim Lambert, who are professionally unqualified to engage in the substance of most debates (certainly the case with respect to my own work)..”

Continue reading “What’s Nuked, Pussycat ?”

The Media Cannot Be Trusted

When the BBC’s Roger Harrabin arranged a set of questions recently for Phil Jones, the unjustly smeared head of the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia (UEA), I just wish he had asked for advice from an expert on countering Climate Change denier tactics before answering :-

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8511670.stm

The questions made my Public Relations nerves twitch with embarrassment for Phil Jones. The trajectory of events was entirely predictable.

A friend or colleague with experience of having to face down the Climate Change deniers would have strongly advised Phil Jones to answer the questions with extreme care, especially the first one, and demand that anyone who quoted his answer quote him in full, in context.

Continue reading The Media Cannot Be Trusted

We Love You, Phil Jones

Phil Jones, we are a small, but growing, group, who just want you to know that we love you, respect you, and we think you should not only keep your job, but be awarded an honour for bravery in the face of a huge and nasty smear campaign.

Pay no attention to The Guardian newspaper. They just want to sell more newspapers, and they’ve worked out that giving off an insouciant whiff of Climate Change scepticism is edgy and popular, so they’re playing the field. It’s a dubious game in my view.

Don’t listen to George Monbiot either. He called for your resignation not once, but twice, adding to your woes. He really shouldn’t have. He should have had more respect for your mental condition. He’s been most unfair.

The “liberal” Media trying to take the high moral ground on Science is fine if they know what they’re talking about; but for journalists to mete judgement on scientists is not valid, when the journalists have no clue as to the context in which scientists are forced to work, and no proper appreciation of what the Science means.

Continue reading We Love You, Phil Jones