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« Horner's latest FOI success | Main | Green fizzics - Josh 174 »
Saturday
Jul072012

Redwood writes

Senior Conservative MP John Redwood has written an open letter to the new director general of the BBC, discussing its institutional bias. Coverage of global warming is mentioned.

The same problem [of institutional bias against certain views of the world] dogs the Corporation’s treatment of climate change theory. The BBC takes the view that the “science is settled”. Any intelligent person should know that by definition the science is never settled. Newtonian physics was a gerat breakthrough, which settled the view of the heavens. In the twentieth century its was challenged and improved. Many intelligent people have many different reaons for disagreeing with  pure climate change theory and more importantly with the policy conclusions that flow from it in the debate. The BBC does all too little to give these dissenting voices decent airtime,to explore their disagreements and to allow viewers and listeners to make up their own minds. If the conventional theory is as all conquering as the BBC says, it should be able to handle grown up examination of its alleged shortcomings from its critics. Tackling fuel poverty and promoting more industry in the UK, two popular causes even with the BBC, are difficult to combine with carbon puritanism.

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Reader Comments (68)

Fine words utterly wasted on the thermosexuals at the BBC they don't care because they
1= have no fear of any reprisals !
2= guaranteed tax money so no commercial pressure to behave !
3= the utter unflinching support of the nice but dim types who cannot think for themselves and who agree with every single ideal held by the BBC ! which is just weird talk about conformists ??
4=make extra money out of the scam so why stop it! all they have to do is spread the income around to the lurvies / activists /scientists /jurnos and post flaming internet trolls and the craven train will just keep on!
5= they hold all the keys as they run the media in the UK what isn't wrecked by the BBC cartel is a target for their political games to destroy commercial rivals !
Money and power that's all they are about you can stick a dress on it and call it auntie but it's still a corrupt corporation of greedy gits and their hired thugs!!

Jul 7, 2012 at 10:22 AM | Unregistered Commentermat

John Redwood is quite correct. "The science is settled" and "concensus" are phrases used by non-scientists, especially those in the media and in environmentalism. The BBC should provide information from scientists from both sides of any scientific hypothesis, be it "man-made global warming", the Higgs-boson, dark matter, dark energy, the big bang, cold fusion etc etc, all of which are ongoing controversial scientific hypotheses.

Jul 7, 2012 at 10:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

My personal take would be the marked divergence of the behaviour of the leaders of the climate change camp to what they exhort the rest of us to do.

I will believe there is a crisis when those who tell me there's a crisi act like there's a crisis.

The rank hipocrisy of Pachauri flying first class back to India from the USA for the weekend to do no more than watch his local cricket team to fly back to the ''climate change meeting he was attending ....How can anyone square this?

I would guess the board of governers of the BBC have rather grand lifestyles too.

Maybe I'm just jealous?.Easy charge to throw I suppose.

Jul 7, 2012 at 10:23 AM | Unregistered Commenterjohns

Indeed -- Climategate showed the main players in consensus climate 'science' to be unscrupulous charlatans who would do anything to achieve their goal; Lysenko's spiritual children.

Jul 7, 2012 at 10:25 AM | Unregistered CommenterRick Bradford

By Redwood's reasoning, all the recent CERN coverage should have also included creationists claiming everything started a few thousand years ago

I suppose it's a change from the usual linking of sceptics to Holocaust deniers.

The CERN coverage in the preceding years, at least where I lived, did actually include opponents of the hunt for the Higgs Boson. Stephen Hawking in particular.

If the experiments are thrown into doubt, I don't imagine the media will circle the wagons as they do for climate science though. They didn't for CERN's amusing neutrino blunder.

Jul 7, 2012 at 10:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterMooloo

The BBC's political correctness is making me think I'm becoming racist, but it logically must be the other way round.

85% of the UK population are ethnic British. Over 90% are white Europeans. But any BBC news report asking the (wo)man in the street his/her opinion will have an even Euro-Afro-Asian balance.

Since this cannot be from chance, it must be due to deliberate selection, which almost by definition means that the BBC is institutionally racist. This feeds directly into the BNP paranoia, and so makes the problems worse.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:18 AM | Unregistered Commentersteveta

Mr. Redwood, if you read this excellent website, there's a political opportunity here. Too many of your colleagues take the easy route of going along with carbon monomania for a quiet life. We need good men and true to state thatthe king has no clothes. Future generations will look back on the historic squandering of resources on this non problem and applaud the first politicians to speak out loud and clear against the disatrous policies based on a scientific hoax.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrent Hargreaves

This bias is well illustrated with respect to our recent UK weather.

This morning on the BBC news channel the news team plus the Met team had an extended discussion about the series of severe flooding incidents affecting the UK.

The poster of the UK with the Jet Stream south of the UK was produced.
This poster was first shown by BBC less than a month ago.
Its almost identical to a Piers Corbyn graphic shown almost 4 months ago

All are agreed now that its a Jet Stream problem.
But they wont give any credit to Piers who mentioned it first and has a theory to back up his projections.

The Met men said “lots of research going on” melting ice caps was mentioned as being a cause.
Solar activity influencing the stratosphere was not mentioned.
The Met men were trying to portray that the Met was ‘ahead of the game ‘.
In reality the Met team seem to be predicting the past.

Piers was not mentioned even though he and his forecasts are well known and in the public domain.
The whole discussion carefully avoided the ‘Piers elephant in the room’.
Is the BBC as an impartial broadcaster of weather/climate news?
It stinks all the way to the stratosphere!

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterBryan

Good luck to John Redwood, but I am not holding my breath. I spent a whole year complaining about Paul Nurse's disgraceful "Horizon" programme, but I didn't get anywhere.

I have more sympathy for the BBC concerning the Higgs. With the amount of spin (no pun intended) generated by CERN (announce a press conference, hold a press conference - even before publication) what is anybody to think, particularly after the neutrino fiasco? I would like to know who exactly predicted the Higgs at 125 GeV - I thought it was expected at a much higher energy.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:33 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoger Longstaff

http://conservativehome.blogs.com/platform/2012/07/tony-lodge.html
...is also well worth a read. It is an effective demolition of current UK energy policy.

This not the first time that John Redwood has raised the issue of UK energy policy. He remains, however, a rare voice in the HoC wilderness. It is difficult to see much chance of the fundamental change required while this coalition government remains in power and Cameron continues to cock a snoot at his backbenchers.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:48 AM | Unregistered Commenteroldtimer

"Tackling fuel poverty and promoting more industry in the UK, two popular causes even with the BBC, are difficult to combine with carbon puritanism."

Indeed. Pointing out the inconsistency in the consensus views is a very good way of changing the consensus itself. Most people are troubled when they find their beliefs inconsistent with one another. No one else is worth arguing with.

Oh, and "carbon puritanism" has a resonance to it.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterNicholas Hallam

The BBC does not just lack impartiality when dealing with CAGW, but also promulgates it using the licence fee. Expensive programmes like "Meltdown" and "Climate Wars" which heavily promoted the hockey stick and Micheal Mann, were made. Climategate 2 email 1683 indicates a complete lack of impartiality.

The BBC used its public funding to contribute to Myles Allen's ClimatePredction.net which appeared to produce erroneous software

www.fortran.bcs.org/2007/jubilee/saunby_​ftn50.ppt
http://www.bioedonline.org/news/news.cfm?art=2484

Jul 7, 2012 at 12:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterConfusedPhoton

There is coincidentally an excellent critique of the idiotic UK energy policy currently on Conservative Home by Tony Lodge, a researcher for the Centre for Policy Studies, enlarging on the whole sorry mess the green leaning politicians have dropped us in:

http://conservativehome.blogs.com/platform/2012/07/tony-lodge.html

Jul 7, 2012 at 12:26 PM | Registered CommenterPharos

http://www.bioedonline.org/news/news.cfm?art=2484
Jul 7, 2012 at 12:07 PM ConfusedPhoton


"After much soul-searching, we've decided to start everyone over again," says the project's principal investigator, Myles Allen.

Haha.

Jul 7, 2012 at 12:26 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

Perfect example from today's news at the BBC, University of East Anglia " flooding across UK set for years to come" who only a few weeks ago were saying the South East is as dry as the Sahara

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-1874418 http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18744189

Jul 7, 2012 at 12:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterJones

Telegraph, March 2008


This drought-prone area is expected to expand significantly because there is expected to be less summer rainfall as a result of global warming

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/3334871/South-East-same-as-Sahara-for-drought-risk.html

Jul 7, 2012 at 1:23 PM | Registered CommenterJonathan Jones

From the Ecclesiastical Uncle, an old retired bureaucrat in a field only remotely related to climate with minimal qualifications and only half a mind.

The new DG: “ Gosh! I’ve only been here a few days! Come on, Mr John - you must guess that I told the Board that I was going to run things just like before - or I wouldn’t be here would I?. Too soon to change things now.
I know, I’ll tell him his views will be carefully considered –which may be true enough in due course when there a few dozen letters from politicians about editorial policy. But by then, if we push around a bit we can make sure that he's isolated – but we don’t have to tell him that!

Take a letter, Miss.

Dear John, “

Jul 7, 2012 at 1:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterEcclesiastical Uncle

Met Office March three month outlook :-

Period: April – June 2012 Issue date: 23.03.12

SUMMARY – PRECIPITATION:

The forecast for average UK rainfall slightly favours drier than average conditions for April-May-June as a whole, and also slightly favours April being the driest of the 3 months. With this forecast, the water resources situation in southern, eastern and central England is likely to deteriorate further during the April-May-June period. The probability that UK precipitation for April-May-June will fall into the driest of our five categories is 20-25% whilst the probability that it will fall into the wettest of our five categories is 10-15% (the 197-2000 climatological probability for each of these categories is 20%).

CONTEXT:

As a legacy of dry weather over many months water resources in much
of southern, eastern and central England remain at very low levels.
Winter rainfall in these areas has typically been about 70% of average,
whilst observations and current forecasts suggest that the final totals for
March will be below average here too. The Environment Agency advises
that, given the current state of soils and groundwater levels in these
areas, drought impacts in the coming months are virtually inevitable.

Met Office collaborator UEA CRU's Clare Goodess on BBC this week:-

"Flooding across the UK set to stay for years to come"

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18744189

These people have given up their last vestiges of scientific credibility now and are simply (with the enthusiastic collaboration of the BBC) - trying to con the most credulous sector of the populace in much the same manner as those Romanian card sharps on Westminster Bridge.

Maybe Richard Betts will drop by in a minute, to give us one of his cheerfully earnest and side-splitting explanations of how all of this fits together in the magical and mysterious world of climatology.

I could do with a laugh & it's too wet to go for a walk.

Jul 7, 2012 at 1:55 PM | Registered CommenterFoxgoose

steveta - "Since this cannot be from chance, it must be due to deliberate selection, which almost by definition means that the BBC is institutionally racist. This feeds directly into the BNP paranoia, and so makes the problems worse."

Unfortunately Steve it doesn't work like that. According to the Lefties, racism can only be displayed by those in the majority! Apparently those in the minority can say whatever they like about anybody without fear of criticism as they are the real victims. It's perverse thinking typical of the horrible Marxist types that infest the BBC.

Jul 7, 2012 at 2:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterScooper

It's hard to watch the BBC without becoming annoyed at the way their smug brand of climate alarmism has invaded most BBC programming.

I've decided the time has come to surrender my TV license and let them know why. It may be a pointless gesture, but it will save some cash and make me easier to live with.

Jul 7, 2012 at 2:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterChris S

For far too long the BBC have been getting away with

"being the objective impartial (ho ho) BBC that we are"

(Alex Kirby BBC environmental correspondent writing to Phil Jones who had complained about an online piece sceptic of global warming science)

http://foia2011.org/index.php?id=4844

I do rather resent having to help fund their preferred brand of propaganda!

Jul 7, 2012 at 3:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterMarion

Jonathan: thanks for the warning. Seven years of floods followed by seven of drought is it? Exactly what the OECD said in 2008. And did we listen? And implement carbon trading to benefit developing countries and ensure temperature didn't rise by more than 2degC?

Yes, the OECD really said both of those in March 2008. Thanks again, FOIA, and the release of 17 Nov 09. In every sense.

Jul 7, 2012 at 3:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Drake

http://www.teesdalemercury.co.uk/teesdale-news/story,1284.html

Posted this a few weeks back when the Bishop was away

Couple of years ago there was a huge flood in the Thames Valley
Micheal Meacher was on Watchdog and was giving it large about so many millions of tons
of CO2 emmissions etc etc usual blah blah
Anne Robinson wasnt having none of it.
She was ripping back at him about why sucessive Ministers for the Enviroment he had relaxed the rules on planning permission for building on UK Flood Plains
Love to find that Watchdog eposode on Youtube

That would be a great survey
The number of planning applications rejected due to Flood Risk against population growth and Property Prices in prestige Coastal and river fronted properties .

Increased incidents of flooding must be due to population growth not climatic conditions.
About 76 million in the UK now

Jul 7, 2012 at 5:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamspid

@Jul 7, 2012 at 11:48 AM | oldtimer

We HAVE an energy policy? Well, there you go!

Jul 7, 2012 at 5:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

@Jul 7, 2012 at 1:55 PM | Foxgoose
"I could do with a laugh & it's too wet to go for a walk."

Get a dog (or dogs). Then you will have no choice. Sequester appropriate clothing and all will be well. I walk our hounds in woods in Somerset, on a riverside path that gets hugely muddy. Dryzabone, a proper hat and proper wellies, and you'll not notice it, rather enjoy the fact that at the moment, we could as well be in a temperate rain forest as an English wood.

Jul 7, 2012 at 5:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

@Jul 7, 2012 at 5:09 PM | Jamspid

I think that Prescott was in charge when they went big on the flood plain building. It figures. Everything he did in office was a fuck up, often major.

Jul 7, 2012 at 5:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

If people start to wonder if the AGW scam is right they might start to wonder why one must pay TVLtax in order to watch SKY??

We cannot have that.

Jul 7, 2012 at 5:32 PM | Unregistered Commenterptw

On the subject of flooding, notice that you never see old, "high status" buildings being flooded because they were built where they were not at risk. Buildings which flood are either modern or were built as low status where occasional flooding was accepted. In the latter case it wasn't a problem; without plastered walls, wooden floors, soft furnishings and electricity, flooding is a minor issue.

Jul 7, 2012 at 7:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterNW

Whilst I wholeheartedly agree with John Redwood's letter I must say that I have noticed in the last 6 months to a year a complete absence of any mention of climate change in the BBC news bulletins when discussing weather. Even with the extreme rainfall and flooding recently not a word has been uttered linking it to climate change, at least to my ears And I am hypersensitive to such comments from the BBC (just ask my wife).

Jul 7, 2012 at 8:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterThinkingScientist

Well done Mr. Redwood! My own Tory MP wrote me a letter saying that his private views on global warming were contrary to official government policy, but he was stuck with sending me the pro forma crap from the DECC. I think that when energy gets really tight this is going to be one of the issues which splits the Conservative party into ConKIP on the one hand, and ConDem on the other.

Meanwhile, the BBC pension fund must be whizzing away investing in the Solyndras and Vestas of this world....

Jul 7, 2012 at 9:16 PM | Unregistered Commentercui bono

The choice of people to interview by the BBC extends beyond the example quoted by Steveta. When maintaining a semblance of balance they will use a leftie who appears 'likeable and reasonable' and someone from the right who does not have those qualities - like for example John Redwood (Google 'Redwood vulcan' or 'Redwood Welsh' to get a flavour of what I mean. Or Nadine Dorries who called Cameron and Osborne 'arrogant posh boys'.

A few months ago they had a series "Great thinkers in their own words" with people like Beveridge, Millband senior and Tariq Ali from the left all seeming open and friendly with John Redwood (wandering airily through an Oxbridge quad), Keith Joseph (almost literally spitting at students) and Hayek very much in his dotage).

Something similar applies to climate change. Dellingpole (not that he is invited very often) fits their bill often coming across as someone who would oppose climate change on political grounds regardless of the science.

Jul 7, 2012 at 9:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterRon

mat

you can stick a dress on it and call it auntie but it's still a corrupt corporation of greedy gits and their hired thugs!!
I like your style, but calling them limp-wristed luvvies one moment and hired thugs the next does little for our reputation for rational criticism.
May I say a word in defence of the BBC? They may be a bunch of effete trots who can’t sound their “r”s , but they’re our bunch of etwcstrs (pronounced etcetewas).
A Beeb man (or person) can phone a minister anywhere in the world and ask for a statement and maybe get one. A CNN minion can’t do that. A Beeb producer can invite Delingpole and not fear the sack. This counts. Every attack on their left leaning political correctness is an echo of Orwell’s attacks on their right-leaning political correctness when he worked for the BBC during tha war.
Tony Newbery of Harmless Sky pointed out our trump card a while back - journalists hate being told what to write. That’s why the Steve Jones report is a dead letter. In a commercially owned newspaper, resisting the prevailing opinion is more complicated. At the risk of offending His Grace’s finest instincts, I’ll say what never gets said: a large part of the prevailing green flow is probably due to the taste of media magnates for airheaded young totty with time on their hands who like to strike fashionable poses in public to balance the unfashionable poses they have to adopt in private. Juvenal and Martial said it all two millenia ago. The Beeb may be run by idiots, but not that kind.

Ron's criticism (Jul 7, 2012 at 9:23 PM) is much nearer the mark.

Jul 7, 2012 at 11:03 PM | Registered Commentergeoffchambers

Whilst watching Wimbledon tennis the other day, there was a rain break and the commentator said it would be over shortly according to the forecasts that Wimbledon uses, and they were usually pretty accurate. They were French.

Jul 8, 2012 at 12:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterDennisA

The amount of precipitation is important to those that have the ability to spend somebody else’s money like water.

The BEEB has never experienced a drought and until it does it will remain both liquid and thirsty.

Jul 8, 2012 at 12:36 AM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

It's even worse than you thought. Surprise, surprise. Not only do Greens hate living humans they even carry their spite over into the grave. Dear old Auntie just ran a world service rant about how anthrodisposal is ruining the planet! All that pollution, all the crime against the planet.
Seriously these lunatics are in charge of UK media.
I'm seriously starting to believe that I actually wouldn't spit on these hooligans if they were on fire. Madness!

Jul 8, 2012 at 1:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoyFOMR

Question

How many "weather" people does the BBC employ?

Lots of stuff on the BBC websites eg:-

http://news.bbc.co.uk/weather/hi/about/newsid_8480000/8480772.stm

But watch your local and national forecasts and watch how many appear that are not on the lists.

Also why do we need BBC Weather "people" do we not already employ THE best weather people at the MO?

Spend it like water! Slosh, slosh, slosh....

Jul 8, 2012 at 1:52 AM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

For the strong of stomach only, here's the link:-
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p00tx6d6/One_Planet_One_Planet/

Jul 8, 2012 at 2:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoyFOMR

geoffchambers

a large part of the prevailing green flow is probably due to the taste of media magnates for airheaded young totty with time on their hands who like to strike fashionable poses in public

Some of us attended a Guardian sponsored debate in London a couple of years ago, Mr Alder was there and also Josh. after a presentation some of us were lucky enough to ask a question and we had no more than 20 seconds to ask one.
All except one attractive blond airhead who got to ask repeat question after repeat question. I believe she was Monbiot's assistant and George was running the show ^.^

Jul 8, 2012 at 3:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterDung

Bet she was prettier than you or I, Dung. Maybe Georgeous George has now decried Peak Oil but that doesn't mean he's still aspiring to peak elsewhere!
Keeping to run the show, just unless you misunderstand, of course.

Jul 8, 2012 at 3:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoyFOMR

missing word=not

Jul 8, 2012 at 3:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoyFOMR

"I like your style, but calling them limp-wristed luvvies one moment and hired thugs the next does little for our reputation for rational criticism. "
Sorry but the thugs are hired they don't work for the BBC directly but for crapita the the BBC staffers are limp wristed that's why they contract out the imprisoning of the poor and objectors !
I

Jul 8, 2012 at 8:36 AM | Unregistered Commentermat

Jul 7, 2012 at 1:55 PM FoxgooseMet Office

March three month outlook :-
Period: April – June 2012 Issue date: 23.03.12
SUMMARY – PRECIPITATION:
The forecast for average UK rainfall slightly favours drier than average conditions for April-May-June as a whole, and also slightly favours April being the driest of the 3 months. With this forecast, the water resources situation in southern, eastern and central England is likely to deteriorate further during the April-May-June period. (etc etc)

"Our climate models are tested seven days per week, as they are also used for weather forecasts"

Met Office


(I could not put my hands on the exact quote - help me out anyone? - but it was not far from that.)

Jul 8, 2012 at 9:23 AM | Registered CommenterMartin A

I wonder if the BBC knows that the positive feedback in the models appears to arise because they claim input energy is about 40% higher than output energy, then offset it by incorrect cloud physics?

Jul 8, 2012 at 9:40 AM | Unregistered Commenterspartacusisfree

New title for the BBC and their CAGW BS

BULLDUST BROADCASTING CONGLOMERATE

Jul 8, 2012 at 9:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterMaurice@TheMount

Anyone would think that the BBC's pension fund depended on CAGW.

Jul 8, 2012 at 10:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterDiderot

I think John Redwood's words on climate science and BBC/media coverage, are spot on. I hope they carry behind them, his intentions to shift matters in practice - eg supporting legislation for archiving and availability of data and metadata (methodology), and forcing public debate on the science.

What John says about "the science is settled" mantra is indeed beyond party politics. Unfortunately, but perhaps unavoidably, the other two issues he comments on, can easily be seen as party-linked (EU and taxation).

Jul 8, 2012 at 11:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterLucy Skywalker

I've written to (emailed) John Redwood as follows:

Dear John Redwood

I was delighted to read your open letter to the new DG of the BBC, regarding your stance on the BBC handling of Climate Science. I discovered it through the "climate sceptics'" blog Bishop Hill. Without endorsing every detail of every comment there, I can still thoroughly applaud its existence.

From being a "warmist" myself I became a "sceptic" five years back, after having explored the science and the human shenanigans in considerable detail.

What appalled me most of all was the realization that Climate Science had been taken over by a crowd of usurpers - whose game was to get people into key positions from which they could suppress the debate and claim, falsely, that "the science is settled" - and use appeal to ignorant people's rightful concerns for planetary stewardship, to do so. This was, to my understanding, outrageous. It was an abuse of all that Magna Carta stood for, and above all, freedom of speech. It was a tactic of rogues, not justice.

I trust that you will uphold the drive for legislation to make this kind of behaviour, this usurping by bad science, impossible in future, or at least, much harder. In particular, we ask for all data and metadata to be archived and made available to the public, for auditing, whenever such data is the basis for expensive political decisions. This should be obvious and already enforced, but it is not. Key data is still unavailable. Therefore this issue needs legal backing, with the wording for such a law being advised by "climate sceptics" who currently are virtually shut out of having any voice.

What "climate sceptics" are calling for above all is public debate. In such debate, the BBC should be leading, not suppressing or avoiding. They should be inviting Lord Monckton to speak.

I look forward to your considered reply.

Sincerely
Anne Stallybrass

I cc'd Chris Monckton. Yes, that's my name outside the Internet.

Jul 8, 2012 at 12:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterLucy Skywalker

Re: Jul 8, 2012 at 11:54 AM | Lucy Skywalker

"I hope they carry behind them, his intentions to shift matters in practice - eg supporting legislation for archiving and availability of data and metadata (methodology), and forcing public debate on the science."

Lucy, I think this is an incredibly important point, particularly on the metadata

For example the Surface Temperature Records : Policy Driven Deception Report by Joseph D’Aleo and Anthony Watts June, 2010 was quite an eye opener - Their summary for Policy makers detailed so many things that were wrong with the data -

1. Instrumental temperature data for the pre-satellite era (1850-1980) have been so widely, systematically, and uni-directionally tampered with that it cannot be credibly asserted there has been any significant “global warming” in the 20th century.

2. All terrestrial surface-temperature databases exhibit signs of urban heat pollution and post measurement adjustments that render them unreliable for determining accurate long-term temperature trends.

3. All of the problems have skewed the data so as greatly to overstate observed warming both regionally and globally.

4. Global terrestrial temperature data are compromised because more than three-quarters of the 6,000 stations that once reported are no longer being used in data trend analyses.

5. There has been a significant increase in the number of missing months with 40% of the GHCN stations reporting at least one missing month. This requires infilling which adds to the uncertainty and possible error.

6. Contamination by urbanization, changes in land use, improper siting, and inadequately-calibrated instrument upgrades further increases uncertainty.

7. Numerous peer-reviewed papers in recent years have shown the overstatement of observed longer term warming is 30-50% from heat-island and land use change contamination.

8. An increase in the percentage of compromised stations with interpolation to vacant data grids may make the warming bias greater than 50% of 20th-century warming.

9. In the oceans, data are missing and uncertainties are substantial. Changes in data sets introduced a step warming in 2009.

10. Satellite temperature monitoring has provided an alternative to terrestrial stations in compiling the global lower-troposphere temperature record. Their findings are increasingly diverging from the station-based constructions in a manner consistent with evidence of a warm bias in the surface temperature record.

11. Additional adjustments are made to the data which result in an increasing apparent trend. In many cases, adjustments do this by cooling off the early record.

12. Changes have been made to alter the historical record to mask cyclical changes that could be readily explained by natural factors like multi-decadal ocean and solar changes.

13. Due to recently increasing frequency of eschewing rural stations and favoring urban airports as the primary temperature data sources, global terrestrial temperature data bases are thus seriously flawed and can no longer be representative of both urban and rural environments. The resulting data is therefore problematic when used to assess climate trends or VALIDATE model forecasts.

14. An inclusive external assessment is essential of the surface temperature record of CRU, GISS and NCDC “chaired and paneled by mutually agreed to climate scientists who do not have a vested interest in the outcome of the evaluations.”

15. Reliance on the global data by both the UNIPCC and the US GCRP/CCSP should trigger a review of these documents assessing the base uncertainty of forecasts and policy language"

http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/surface_temp.pdf

So it was particularly worrisome to read NCDC's conclusion that one of their 'lessons learnt'

"Metadata records are helpful, but we must be prepared to have less than comprehensive station histories"

(follow the link to Menne's power point presentation uner the heading "Take Aways from the Lessons Learned " last page)

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/09/23/more-dirty-pool-by-ncdcs-karl-menne-and-peterson/

Jul 8, 2012 at 12:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterMarion

Hi Lucy, thank you for allowing us to see your letter. Did you know that in the later 1940s, Hottell showed IR absorptivity/emissivity plateaus at ~200 ppmV CO2 in dry air in a long optical path and Leckner replicated it in the 1970s, information apparently unknown to the IPCC. In IR spectroscopy, the phenomenon is called 'self-absorption'. I'll leave it to you to work out the possible implication!

Jul 8, 2012 at 3:20 PM | Unregistered Commenterspartacusisfree

Jul 8, 2012 at 9:23 AM | Martin A:

A rain break at Wimbledon so I can provide the Julia Slingo (Met Office Chief Scientist) quote you're looking for. When giving evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on 1 March 2010, she said:

At least for the UK the codes that underpin our climate change projections are the same codes that we use to make our daily weather forecasts, so we test those codes twice a day for robustness.

The link is here. For some reason I cannot now open it. But you can find it here. (Go to page Ev 61.)

BTW here's Christopher Booker's comment in his Sunday Telegraph column (1 July 2012):

The Met Office’s projections of future climate change are viewed by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change with total reverence. So the £33 million super-computer which failed to predict the wettest April in more than a century is one of those on which the IPCC relies for its predictions of what the weather will be like in 100 years’ time. It is hard to know which has become more discredited in the past two years, the UK Met Office or the IPCC, both of which rest their faith on computer models as dodgy as one of those proverbial nine-bob notes.

Jul 8, 2012 at 4:57 PM | Registered CommenterRobin Guenier

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