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« Mann in WaPo | Main | 10:10 Comedy gold »

Victory for Kiwi sceptics

John O'Sullivan, via GWPF and Retephslaw.

In the climate controversy dubbed Kiwigate New Zealand skeptics inflict shock courtroom defeat on climatologists implicated in temperature data fraud.

New Zealand’s government via its National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) has announced it has nothing to do with the country’s “official” climate record in what commentators are calling a capitulation from the tainted climate reconstruction.

As the story makes clear, there are interesting parallels to Climategate, with government scientists resisting requests for data and then claiming the data was lost. With the raw data apparently showing no warming trend, something that only appears once these scientists have homogenised and adjusted the figures, it does look suspiciously as if books may have been cooked.

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Reader Comments (66)

Ross: "But the comments and blogs are based on the words of NIWA's statement of defence."

Not the comments referring to "shock courtroom defeat" and "temperature data fraud". Neither are based on NIWA's statement of defence. Rather, they are creative interpretations.

"Gareth Renowden is the guy who thought the 10:10 video was very funny and anyone who was offended lacked a sense of humour."

I criticised Gareth for his views. But opinions about the 10:10 video have nothing to do with the NIWA case.

Oct 8, 2010 at 10:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterBrendan H

The Law (From Statement of Defence)

„Public record‟ is defined in the PRA as:
“(a) ...a record or a class of records, in any form, in whole or in part, created or received (whether before or after the commencement of this Act) by a public office in the conduct of its affairs; and (b) includes—

(i) a record or a class of records declared under section 5(1)(a)(ii) to be a public record for the purposes of this Act; and (ii) estray records; but (c) does not include— (i) a special collection; or (ii) records created by the academic staff or students of a tertiary education institution, unless the records have become part of the records of that institution”

„Special collection‟ is defined in the PRA as:
“(a) ... records collected by a public office for purposes such as research or the preservation of records; but (b) does not include public records;”

The Defence

(b) The NZTR is not a record and is not a public record for the purposes of the PRA;

[i.e. NIWA's "out" is that yes the CliFlo "Database" is a Public Record but the NZTR derived from it is not]

The Defence again

(d) The Database is a public record;
(e) It is a controlling public office in respect of the Database; and
(f) It is not a controlling public office in respect of the NZTR, 7SS, 11SS or Marine Measurements for the purposes of the PRA.

[The Plaintiff will have to prove that the NZTR is a public record]

[But NIWA inherited custody of the NZTR via heritage asset transfer from the assets of the Meteorological Service of the Ministry of Transport. So is it not a public record even though it is not "Database" or "Special Collection"?]

[It remains that the NZTR is a heritage asset]

From NIWA's Financial Report 2009

16. Heritage assets

NIWA has one collection and three databases that have been defined as heritage assets. Heritage collection assets are those assets held for the duration of their physical
lives because of their unique scientific importance and databases are maintained as an incidental part of existing business operations.

NIWA has the following heritage assets:

Type Description
Marine Benthic Biology Collection
A national reference collection of marine invertebrates.

National Climate Database
A national electronic database of high quality climate information, including temperatures, rainfall, wind, and other climate elements.

Water Resources Archive Database
A national electronic database of river and lake locations throughout New Zealand, including levels, quality, and flows.

New Zealand Freshwater Fish Database
A national electronic database of the occurrence of fish in the fresh waters of New Zealand,
including major offshore islands.

The nature of these heritage assets, and their significance to the science NIWA undertakes, makes it necessary to disclose them. In the directors’ view the cost of these
heritage assets cannot be assessed with any reliability, and accordingly these assets have not been recognised for reporting purposes

[So CliFlo is a heritage asset of NIWA (the Crown owns NIWA) but is not the NZTR spreadsheet part of "A national electronic database of high quality climate information, including temperatures"? If the NZTR is not "high quality" then why is there a "passing off" of it on NIWA's website. Is this not an economic tort?]

Oct 8, 2010 at 10:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

This snippet from Defence is interesting

13. It denies paragraph 13, and says:
(c) There is no material statistical difference between the trend in the 7SS and the global trend;

There should be!

Comparison of Northern Hemisphere / Southern Hemisphere / Tropics (includes global)

Oct 8, 2010 at 11:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

Jim Salinger gets mentioned a bit in the East Anglia emails.

e.g from Phil Jones:
I'll have to find a new contact in NZ now Jim Salinger has been sacked - but it's only a small country

Oct 8, 2010 at 11:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterandyscrase

My comment Oct 8, 2010 at 10:48 PM,

is better viewed at this post on Joanne Nova’s Blog

There are formatting functions that enable bolding, block quotes etc.

Much easier to follow, debate, draw out key issues etc.

Oct 9, 2010 at 12:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

The NZ temperature record is probably more important than it would seem from a first look. NZ is surrounded by ocean, and if I understand things correctly, the NZ record will be projected to surrounding ocean sectors, thus making a rather larger impact on the Global Mean Temperature. I suggest that this is a reason why it was important that Salinger/NIWA found it necessary to make the 'adjustments'.

Oct 9, 2010 at 4:22 AM | Unregistered Commentermondo

A lot of the background to this case can be found here (including some temperature

The interesting bit is the unadjusted data. Some of the seven stations show a small cooling. In some cases, there was a station move (Wellington, for example, which required a correction because of this).

There is a bit more on some of the adjustments here

The climatic variability of NZ, and the use of 7 stations to come up with a "mean" temperature should be enough to give concern to any scientist.

Oct 9, 2010 at 5:26 AM | Unregistered Commenterandyscrase

The NIWA “Seven-Station” Temperature Series (includes adjustment schedule)

What much of the Statement of Claim addresses.


"the entire warming trend shown in the 7SS is derived from
the Adjustments, which were proposed only by the
untested, unexamined and subjective methodology of the
Salinger thesis"

Oct 9, 2010 at 6:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

mondo Oct 9, 2010 at 4:22 AM

I think it's the CliFlo data that goes to CRU, not the NZTR.

The CliFlo data is then "adjusted" by the experts at CRU (coached by Salinger).

But the NZTR is still one of the sets that supports the "scientific" rationale for the NZ ETS.

“The conclusion that New Zealand has warmed since 1900 is not based only on the 7- station data set, or indeed on the additional 11 pristine sites mentioned above. Information from ship measurements of sea-surface temperatures and marine nighttime air temperatures over the oceans surrounding New Zealand indicate a warming trend through the twentieth century that is in close agreement with land-based temperature measurements (Folland and Salinger, 1995).”

Oct 9, 2010 at 6:29 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

"The New Zealand Temperature Record is not a record"

So you selected the name "NZT Record" because...?

Oct 9, 2010 at 12:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

Have to share this.

My Google News this morning (Al Gore's is/was an adviser):-

global cooling »

We're sorry, we were unable to find any content for this section.

Oct 9, 2010 at 11:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

Re economic tort I mentioned up-thread.

Got this answer at JoNova

RichardC @ 5 & 7; the possible tort actions you describe have been largely superseded in most Western nations by the legislative equivalents of Fair Trading and Trade Practice Acts ; basically they codify misrepresentation.

Think I’ve got those Acts somewhere………

Oct 10, 2010 at 1:46 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

Since the team seem to want to change their headline acronym away from CAGW or CACC perhaps they should consider CACRM (catastrophic anthropogenic climate record manipulation).

As a follow on, perhaps the IPCC can morph into IPCSM (intergovernmental/ngo panel on climate science misrepresentation)

More appropriate 'fit for purpose' acronyms, seemingly more in tune with increasingly apparent perceived mandates.

Oct 10, 2010 at 9:12 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandy C

Salinger spreading the gospel to the ends of the earth with fervor befitting the true religion?

Oct 10, 2010 at 9:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandy C

@Lord Oxburgh's Mum:

"See, the[y] should 'ave 'ired my Ron. E'd 'ave sorted them a[h]t."

I hadn't previously realized that Phil and Ron were half-brothers. But it makes a lot of sense.

Oct 10, 2010 at 9:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterJane Coles

I crack myself up!

At JoNova “The scientific world is fracturing”

Rejoinder to a passing troll (oh dear)

Recent Comments

* oh dear: Someone who is not a climate scientist r…
* oh dear: Another thing – has anyone here actually…
* Ron Kilmartin: Dear Oh Dear! “…an independent commis…
* oh dear: Hi Ron #28 You say You…
* Richard C (NZ): @ 27 Dare doubt dumb danger dear….

Oct 11, 2010 at 4:38 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard C (NZ)

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