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Light blogging

Blogging will probably be a little intermittent until the start of next week - a combination of half-term and a couple of engagements.

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Reader Comments (19)

Bah - we never had half terms at my school. It's a cissy English habit.

Feb 16, 2011 at 1:29 PM | Unregistered Commenterdearieme

I wonder whether any of Eric Steig's maths students wish that Ryan O'Donnell had accepted the offer to replace him?

Feb 16, 2011 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charley

A formal request to audit the Australian BoM has been sent to our Auditor General. I don't know how this will pan out or whether it will even be accepted as a case by the AG, but it could be interesting. It has an Upper House Senator as one of the signatories so it might carry a little more weight than others might.

See here and here

Feb 16, 2011 at 2:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterGrantB

That's ok, Bish!
If Anthony cancels his invitation to the Lisbon Love-In because of his commitment to his son, then you can certainly allow yourself some light blogging at half-term.

Meanwhile, here's a nice read to keep you all occupied:

Feb 16, 2011 at 2:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterViv Evans

@The Bishop. OT I know, but let’s get behind Jo Nova’s initiative.

Worth a brief topic?


Feb 16, 2011 at 3:38 PM | Unregistered Commenterpointman


Sperm whale paper here.

My only question is - if it's full of iron, how come it floats?

Feb 16, 2011 at 4:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterDreadnought

Do sperm whales have internal fusion engines to make the iron?

Or, perhaps, is it in their food? In which case, surely they just recycle.

Feb 16, 2011 at 6:32 PM | Unregistered Commentersteveta_uk


Thanks for the link: the curiosity of the human mind never ceases to amaze me!

To answer your question: it depends on what shape the iron is:)

Feb 16, 2011 at 6:42 PM | Unregistered Commentersimpleseekeraftertruth

For those interested in the BoM audit story, there is a related thread on the NZ NIWA case.
Australian BoM recently audited NIWA during their recent rework of the seven station series, which came about as a result of pressure from the NZ CSC (climate science coalition)

A recent Official Information Act request for correspondence between BoM and NIWA was declined on the grounds that it "was not in the public interest". The case is now with the Ombudsman.

Link here

Feb 16, 2011 at 7:10 PM | Unregistered Commenterandyscrase


Many thanks. I've put it on my desktop.

Feb 16, 2011 at 7:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterDreadnought

Viv Evans, Thanks for the link to Dellinpole blog. Normally I come down on the side of Dellingpole but his latest article does our cause no good whatsoever.
After Buerk's comment on The Morale Maze, which some classed as irony (I did not), I have to say that I feel Dellinpolepole has stooped to a level that I never thought he would go to. He has gone seriously down in my estimation and is now in full attack mode, at the gutter level, in the propaganda war.
After the link to holocaust deniers and the deliberate change from climate sceptics to climate deniers, Dellingpole has entered the melee by tarring "the other side", as eco -Nazis!

Feb 16, 2011 at 7:41 PM | Unregistered Commentercalvi36

The Beeb is currently highlighting new research from Oxford Uni suggesting rising co2 can/has caused floods. Anyone have any more details on this?
It seems to refer to flooding in 2000 (at the peak of the warming period before the increases flatlined). From what little info that was given it seems to be forwarding the idea that increased warming caused the floods, rising co2 caused the warming, therefore man caused the floods. If this is the case then it all falls flat as we know there is no corolation between co2 and temps.

Feb 16, 2011 at 8:46 PM | Unregistered Commentersunderland steve

@sunderland steve - check out unthreaded ;-)

Feb 16, 2011 at 10:01 PM | Unregistered Commenterwoodentop

Here's the post again, the papers have been widely reported in the media (as proving without caveat that climate change is caused by man's release of CO2 of course):

There are a brace of “precipitation” papers in today’s edition of Nature – both based on computer models of course and both featuring some of the usual suspects:

Human contribution to more-intense precipitation extremes

Seung-Ki Min, Xuebin Zhang, Francis W. Zwiers & Gabriele C. Hegerl

Anthropogenic greenhouse gas contribution to flood risk in England and Wales in autumn 2000

Pardeep Pall, Tolu Aina, Dáithí A. Stone, Peter A. Stott, Toru Nozawa, Arno G. J. Hilberts, Dag Lohmann & Myles R. Allen

Feb 16, 2011 at 10:15 PM | Unregistered Commenterwoodentop

Sunderland Steve - it's all bollocks. There have been extreme floods all over the British Isles for centuries, long before CO2 was even identified as a greenhouse gas. For example, the Tyne (Newcastle not Haddington) flood of 1771 has been estimated as being > 3000cumecs. The River Findhorn had the 'muckle spate' of 1859 - this is a comparatively small highland river with no significant tributaries, yet the flows were reckoned to be greater than the River Tay flood of 1993 (c. 2500 cumecs). The Tay itself has a long and well documented history of major flooding in Perth: the earliest recorded inundation being 1210, when spring tides and heavy rains were reported to have resulted in 'half the town being swept away'. The town has suffered some 34 significant floods between 1210 and 1993 - spread fairly evenly throughout the intervening centuries - IIRC an Stirling University academic (Gilvear) did a lot of research on the historical floods on the Tay (and Forth iirc) in the 1980s.

The point about the River Tay is that, as happened in January 1993, it usually takes at least a week of heavy rain/snow and then warm front to come over the whole catchment (causing simultaneous high and low level snow melt) before the flows become greater than the river channel in Perth can cope with. A major summer thunderstorm and rainfall event even over a good chunk of the catchment will not make much impact on the river level at Perth, as the river channel has plenty of spare capacity - it has to be able to drain a good chunk of the Southern Highlands, and the flood wave takes less than 24 hours to get from the Ben Lui, Glen Lyon and Rannoch to Perth - that's a lot of water in a short time.

Which is why the 1771 Tyne and 1859 Findhorn events are truly amazing - to have produced bigger flows than the Tay, they must have been the result of massive thunderstorm/rainfall events, of much greater magnitude than the usual winter/spring snow melt + rain floods. Hence it would seem that the recent rainfall events in Cumbria are not unprecedented or anything unusual. But people have short memories and that makes it easy for the catastrophists and the Blacks and Harrabins to equate any recent flooding with the slight warming of the late 20th century.

Feb 16, 2011 at 10:42 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

The Beeb is currently highlighting new research from Oxford Uni suggesting rising co2 can/has caused floods. Anyone have any more details on this?

I saw that, they compared the weather from the period with a model running with the same conditions but without the 'Greenhouse gases' and concluded the 'Greenhouse gases' is wat dun it guv .

As soon as the word model appears I smell rats in abunance.

They also ran the models on peoples home PC's in some sort of cloud array, which is all soft and cuddly.

Feb 17, 2011 at 7:53 AM | Unregistered Commenterbreath of fresh air

Please avoid "a couple of engagements". Marriage to one woman for 46 years has been struggle enough for me.

Feb 17, 2011 at 11:34 AM | Unregistered CommenterGeoff Sherrington


I know that, you know that, but do they? Seems not

Feb 17, 2011 at 5:35 PM | Unregistered Commentersunderland steve

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