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More Amazonian knockabout

The Amazongate story looks as though it may run for a considerable time. We have had, in rapid succession, a crowing article from George Monbiot, a fighting response from Delingpole and now articles from Booker in the Telegraph and North on EU Referendum.

It seems clear that the Sunday Times withdrew its article without a adjudication being made - it's not on the PCC's list of cases adjudicated and Monbiot says that the ST withdrew the article in order to avoid an adverse ruling. Strangely though, the case doesn't appear in the list of cases resolved - i.e. negotiated settlements - either.

The more interesting questions are the ones raised by Booker and North though. Just where did the IPCC's claim that 40% of the Amazon was at risk from climate change come from? The original source was a WWF report, which both Monbiot and Booker/North agree shouldn't have been used. Monbiot says however that the claim was indeed based on the peer-reviewed literature:

The projection was drawn from a series of scientific papers by specialists in this field, published in peer-reviewed journals, some of which are referenced in the first section of the IPCC's 2007 report (pdf).

Now this should be enough to set the alarm bells ringing - Monbiot appears to be saying, in essence, that the correct citations are in the WG1 report somewhere. But where? He links to one chapter of WG1, when the dispute is about a statement made in the WG2 report. And which paper or papers is he actually citing?

This skirting round the question of the actual papers that support the allegation that 40% of the Amazon is at risk from climate change suggests strongly that there are none. What is more one is tempted to conclude that George Monbiot knows it.



English version of the solar story

The Czech sceptic who wrote the original piece about the IPCC's handling of the question of a solar influence on climate has posted a proper translation, which can be seen here. The man in charge of the satellites used for collecting the data makes this rather damning assessment of Lean and Frohlich.

Fröhlich made unauthorised and incorrect adjustments...  He did it without any detailed knowledge of the  ACRIM1 instrument or on-orbit performance...The only obvious purpose was to devise a TSI composite, that agreed with the predictions of Lean's TSI proxy model.



Josh 24


First select committee members

The FT is reporting the first appointments to select committees. These appointments are ongoing.

The Science and Technology appointments so far are as follows (colour-coded by party):

  • Andrew Miller (chairman)
  • Graham Stringer
  • Stephen Metcalfe
  • David Morris
  • Stephen Mosley
  • Alok Sharma

A quick Google suggests that none of these have expressed strong opinions on climate change.

The other commitee of interest is Environmental Audit

  • Joan Walley (chairman)
  • Martin Caton
  • Zac Goldsmith

US outlet for the Hockey Stick Illusion

Stairway Press is now stocking the Hockey Stick Illusion in the USA.

Buy here.


Another IPCC scandal?

Another problem with the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report seems to have emerged. Apparently a sceptic blog in the Czech Republic is reporting that the IPCC's conclusions on the lack of a solar influence on climate were based on a single paper by Lean and Frohlich and the IPCC ignored reviewers' objections over the lack of support for the idea. What is worse, Lean and Frohlich are accused of adjusting their data in an inappropriate fashion.

Story here.


Josh 23 - the battle of Amazongate

More cartoons by Josh here.


Bad boys exaggerated my graph and ran away!

The BBC Editors' blog gives us a glimpse of their forthcoming Panorama documentary about global warming in the wake of Climategate.

They interview Bob Watson, John Christy, Bjorn Lomborg and Michael Mann, the latter quoted as 'regretting the way his so-called "hockey-stick graph" was put in the spotlight by politicians' (!)

Read the whole thing here.


The Team gets the paleo job...again

Tip of the hat to Marcel Crok for alerting me to the release of the names of the chapter authors of the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report.

No Briffa, Jones or Mann, but the paleoclimate chapter includes Tim Osborn.  Having someone from CRU onboard might well be seen as somewhat controversial if not downright provocative. Other familiar names are Eystein Jansen, Bette Otto-Bleisner and Juerg Luterbacher.

Marcel advises that many of the authors were also on board for AR4. Perhaps nobody else wants to be involved any more.


Spiked on the Hockey Stick

Spiked has an article about yours truly and the Hockey Stick. There is also a photograph.


Call for IPCC openness

Nick Barnes, the man behind Clear Climate Code, is putting together a petition to the Interacademies Council inquiry into the IPCC. This calls for the opening up of the IPCC on a number of fronts, particularly regarding the underlying research papers and their data and code.

Sign up here.


The Kelly paper

The most interesting of the attachments to Professor Hand's emails is a paper by one of his fellow panellists, Michael Kelly, who is Professor of Electronics at Cambridge.

The paper records Professor Kelly's impressions as he reads through some CRU papers. I can't really do justice to this paper as a short summary. For the moment, I've extracted the relevant pages from the full download and you can just read it. I think Steve M will probably have something to say on Kelly's work, which seems fairly frank.

The download is here.

Kelly on CRU


The Hoskins emails

The Hoskins emails are much fewer in number but there are still some gems:

Click to read more ...


The Hand emails

These are the key issues from the Hand emails (excluding the attachments, which will be considered separately).

Click to read more ...


+++Behind the scenes at the Oxburgh inquiry+++

Slowly, but surely, the curtain is being lifted on Lord Oxburgh's inquiry into the science of CRU. Today I received a response to my FoI request for the emails of Sir Brian Hoskins and Professor David Hand (both of Imperial College, London) related to the Oxburgh inquiry. They are going to make a bit of a splash I think.

The emails can be downloaded here. There's a file for each man's correspondence and another for the attachments to Hand's emails. There's a lot of administrative stuff, but there is much of interest and some that made me laugh out loud.

I particularly liked the bit Oliver Morton of the Economist asks Oxburgh who chose the papers for the inquiry. Oxburgh replies:

Thanks for your message - the answer is that I don't know! What I received was a list from the university which I understand was chosen by the Royal Society The contact with the RS was I believe through [redacted - probably Martin Rees] but I don't know who he consulted. [Name redacted], when I asked him, agreed that the original sample was fair.

 A summary of the Hand emails is here. The Hoskins emails are here. Just the attachments to do.