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Showing posts from November, 2009

Travelling Devil

Your humble Devil is briefly back at Hell Towers the now, and I would like to offer up a big thank you to those fine, upstanding contributors who weighed in with their excellent contributions over the last few days.

I have a great deal to write about... oh, loads of stuff. Especially CRUdgate.

However, tomorrow I am peripatetic once more: this time I am travelling to Bristol for the LPUK AGM.

Back on Sunday.

UPDATE: as some of you have heard extraordinarily quickly, your humble is, indeed, the new leader of the Libertarian Party of the UK. Thank you all for your good wishes—let us see what the new year brings...

CRUdGate - Why this can't be swept under the carpet

(NB, It's me, the P-G)

As others have commented, ad nauseam, the response from the proponents of AGW essentially boils down to the following main components:
The mail (often there is only one, not several thousand threads of multiple mails and it's usually only mail, rather mail, code, data and commentary) was hacked and that's frightfully naughty. Aren't hackers nasty? Particularly when they are Russian.
This does not merit any response beyond laughter.
The science is peer reviewed and it withstood that process.
Still an appeal to authority and, more importantly, dealt with damningly here.
This is but one part of the literature, it's only a handful of bad apples and the structure is utterly unchanged even without it.This is the main charge that our great friend George Monbiot lays out here and that must be tackled. That is what, with your permission, I shall make a hesitant attempt to start the process to do.

Firstly, we must understand how the whole thing hangs together…

CRU: How to stifle scientific debate

[NB Author's note: I am not the Devil, merely a minor minion]

While DK is on the road, I'll take the liberty of pointing readers in the direction of two unmissable posts on the unfolding Climategate scandal. First up is a superb piece at Climate Skeptic which warns of the dangers of the monoculture or groupthink that has grown up around AGW. In particular, Warren considers the idea of "peer review", which alarmists constantly brandish as proof of the indisputability of their findings:

Peer review was never meant as a sort of good housekeeping seal of approval on scientific work. It is not a guarantee of correctness. It is really an extension of the editorial process — bringing scientists from relevant fields to vet whether work is really new and different and worthy of publication, to make sure the actual article communicates the work and its findings clearly, and to probe for obvious errors or logical fallacies.

Climate scientists have tried to portray peer review as…
UPDATING:a list of The Kitchen posts concerning the CRU Emails.

And, just as a reminder, feel free to browse the searchable database.

UPDATE: posts are going to be a little more spamodic, as I am talking to other people about the analysis of the actual data.

UPDATE 2:Bishop Hill is still trawling the emails and I've added them to my post.

I am away travelling across the country with work for the rest of this week—typical!—so any updates are likely to be brief and sporadic. I do hope that my colleagues will keep the momentum up on this...!

Reporting the CRU to the Information Commissioner

Further to the excellent and intriguing work the Devil and others have been doing digging through the leaked/hacked CRU emails, Kitchen readers may be interested to know that the TPA are reporting Prof Phil Jones and colleagues to the Information Commissioner for what appears to be a deliberate attempt to breach the Freedom of Information Act. Our full post on the importance of defending FoI, and how it applies to this case is here.

If anyone is found to have deliberately destroyed information after an FoI request was made, the law states that they may be subject to a criminal conviction and a fine of up to £5,000.

Data horribilia: the HARRY_READ_ME.txt file

With the CRU emails having been examined, it seems that some people—mainly techies—are really starting to dig into the data files. These files are, as far as we can tell, temperature data, modelling results and other such useful files, i.e. these are the files produced and worked on by the CRU teams, as well as considerable amounts of information on—and code from—the actual computer modelling programmes themselves.

In other words, these are the guts of CRU's actual computer models—the data, the code and the applications.

And they are, by all accounts, a total bloody mess.

++++ START INSERT ++++

So, come with me on a wonderful journey as the CRU team realise that not only have they lost great chunks of data but also that their application suites and algorithms are total crap; join your humble Devil and Asimov as we dive into the HARRY_READ_ME.txt (thanks to The Englishman) file and follow the trials and tribulations of Ian "Harry" Harris as he tries to recreate the published …

Planning or coincidence?

The Global Warming Policy Foundation logo…

EU Referendum's round-up makes it clear that the MSM are just starting to pay attention to the CRU documents and coincidentally, Professor Philip Stott points me towards a new think-tank
Today, Nigel Lawson, Lord Lawson of Blaby, will launch a new, high-powered, all-party (and non-party) think-tank, the Global Warming Policy Foundation, which he hopes, as he writes in this morning’s Times, “may mark a turning-point in the political and public debate on the important issue of global warming policy.” And so do I; we have long-needed such a body to fight for common sense about climate change in the UK. At last, as the Times headline reads, there is a senior politician in the UK brave enough to state that “Copenhagen will fail - and quite right too. Even if the science was reliable (which it isn’t), we should not force the world’s poorest countries to cut carbon emissions.”

Aims of the GWPF

The aims of the GWPF are simple. The “main purpose is t…

The significance of the CRU emails

Whilst your humble Devil is waiting for the rest of the world to finish watching Strictly Come Dancing and the XFactor and catch up with the fact that something quite momentous has happened, I thought that I would point out the significance of the CRU emails.

The whole of the anthropogenic climate change reporting and response is co-ordinated by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which produces substantial reports every few years on the current state of the science and economics.

The last of these reports—Assessment Report 4 (AR4, as it is referred to throughout the emails)—was released in 2007.

The scientific parts of the IPCC's reports have been based heavily on the research and reconstructions produced by The Club—particularly on the temperature reconstructions of Michael Mann and Keith Briffa. These reconstructions (usually involving a hockey stick graph) have been constantly attacked—and usually destroyed—by sceptics such as Steve McIntyre.

What these emails sh…

Mike's Nature trick

This post is mirrored from Watt's Up With That which is, inturn, from ClimateAudit.org which is terribly overloaded.

Mike’s Nature trick

by Jean S on November 20th, 2009

So far one of the most circulated e-mails from the CRU hack is the following from Phil Jones to the original hockey stick authors – Michael Mann, Raymond Bradley, and Malcolm Hughes.
From: Phil Jones
To: ray bradley ,mann@xxxxx.xxx, mhughes@xxxx.xxx
Subject: Diagram for WMO Statement
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999 13:31:15 +0000
Cc: k.briffa@xxx.xx.xx,t.osborn@xxxx.xxx

Dear Ray, Mike and Malcolm,

Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or first thing tomorrow.

I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline. Mike’s series got the annual land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999 for NH c…

Were the CRU materials hacked—or leaked?

Now the story about this CRU material is that a server was hacked: but what if that is not the case?

Although he is careful to state that he knows "nothing of the provenance of the FOIA.zip that is not in the public domain", Steve McIntyre seems to be implying that the file is, in fact, one that was examined under his FoI request.
On Nov 18, 2009, I received the letter attached below from Jonathan Colam-French, Director of Information Services of UEA, turning down my appeal. The letter is dated Nov. 13, 2009. In the letter refusing the appeal, Colam-French says that he consulted a file on the matter.

Now consider the following chronology.

On Nov 17, 2009 at 9.57 pm occurred the first public notice of the 63 MB CRU file entitled “FOIA.zip” came at Jeff Id’s blog by a poster called “FOIA”, who stated:
We feel that climate science is, in the current situation, too important to be kept under wraps.

We hereby release a random selection of correspondence, code, and documents. Hopefully…

A note on the authenticity of the CRU emails

It is worth noting that we still do not know for certain that the CRU leak is all genuine and unaltered. However, it does seem that 60MB of mainly text files would take a significant amount of time to fake.

Further, there are no "we know that AGW is fake but we shall propagate it anyway, aaahahahahaa haha haha!" type emails, so any alterations have been done very subtly. Further, much of the correspondence does confirm many of the statistical tricks that we know were used to boost the credibility of the AGW narrative.

And we do know, for instance, that Steve Mcintyre's correspondence is unedited and unaltered.

What is, I think, most telling is that Real Climate published a post which is pure damage limitation—and did so on the assumption that this material is genuine.

Which would be a a real "so what?" moment—and then you remember that Real Climate is run by Michael Mann and other members of The Club involved in the emails and documents.

A couple of FoI requests hav…

CRU Emails #8: an interesting conversation at random

Looking through the CRU documents provides some enlightening conversations. Here's one that I'd particularly like to draw your attention to, since it illustrates a number of points worth considering.

The relevant bit starts, on October 2nd 2009, with Benny Peiser sending a round-up of articles and blogposts concerning the Yamal Implosion to a group called CCMedia (Climate Change Media?). In reply, Alan White (this Alan J White?) asks...
more of the same. what gives with these guys?
Surprisingly, it seems that Alan is not referring to the sceptics, but the people who have faked bollocksed up the Yamal data, i.e. Mann, Briffa and the rest of "The Club" (as I shall now call them), because Eugene I Gordon (a respected physicist) replies as follows: [All emphasis in this email and the following ones are mine.]
Thanks for the extensive and detailed e-mail. This is terrible but not surprising. Obviously I do not know what gives with these guys. However, I have my own suspicions…

Some CRU email summaries #4

ROLLING UPDATES
Last update at 15.23 21/11/09

Shug Niggurath's database has been updated to read the references that Bishop hill quotes: I shall be going through the list and applying links.

Bishop Hill has been trawling the communications and come up with some basic pointers—the reference number after the summary is the email number.
Phil Jones writes to University of Hull to try to stop sceptic Sonia Boehmer Christiansen using her Hull affiliation. Graham F Haughton of Hull University says its easier to push greenery there now SB-C has retired. (1256765544)
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 "Natu…