Icecap is reporting that there is going to be a major ethics scandal breaking on Monday. Apparently someone in the Obama administration has a major conflict of interest regarding green jobs and the stimulus. There are links to Al Gore it seems.
Remember Falck Renewables, the Italian company whose UK arm was headed up by Lord Oxburgh? Observers wondered if the chairman of a green energy company wasn't quite the right choice for the head of the investigation into CRU.
Tom Fuller has been doing some research into the company and has discovered that the Italian side of the business seems to have been implicated in a mafia investigation.
An interesting programme on the BBC's science coverage, in which we learn that Richard Black and Roger Harrabin have been central to the push to sideline sceptic opinion.
Does this explain why they avoid reporting the facts over Climategate and its associated inquiries?
Yesterday I did a long live interview for the Dennis Prager show, a syndicated radio programme broadcast from California. I think there is a podcast available. It seemed to go OK although as a sales pitch for my book I could have performed better. Dennis was kind enough to plug it several times.
Also a friendly review from Seth Roberts, who is Professor of Psychology at Qinghua University in Beijing and a successful blogger too.
If only I had a US publisher to enable me to take advantage!
Richard Lindzen points out some of the problems with the recent letter to the FT by Ralph Ciccerone and Martin Rees:
Consider a letter of April 9 to the Financial Times by the presidents of the U.S. National Academy of Science and the Royal Society (Ralph Cicerone and Martin Rees, respectively). It acknowledges that climategate has contributed to a reduced concern among the public, as has unusually cold weather. But Messrs. Cicerone and Rees insist that nothing has happened to alter the rather extreme statement that climate is changing and it is due to human action. They then throw in a very peculiar statement (referring to warming), almost in passing: “Uncertainties in the future rate of this rise, stemming largely from the ‘feedback’ effects on water vapour and clouds, are topics of current research.”
Who would guess, from this statement, that the feedback effects are the crucial question? Without these positive feedbacks assumed by computer modelers, there would be no significant problem, and the various catastrophes that depend on numerous factors would no longer be related to anthropogenic global warming.
The European Geophysical Union is going to be discussing paleoclimate at its annual meeting at the start of next month. The papers to be presented look pretty interesting.
Do have a look through and let us know if there is anything exciting in there. I just peeked at Ljungqvist et al which looks at the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age to see if they were really localised, as is argued by those on the other side of this debate. While the paper only looks at Northern Hemisphere proxies, the authors seem to have reached a rather different conclusion.
We find evidence of a widespread medieval warming culminating in the 10–11th centuries, followed by a gradual cooling into the 17th century, succeeded by a warming from the 18th century that accelerated in the 20th century. Our result also indicate that the warmth in the 10th and 11th centuries was as uniform as in the 20th century. However, with a resolution of only 100 years it is not possible to assess whether any decade in the past was as warm as any in the late 20th or early 21st century.
I struggle to make sense of Lord Oxburgh and his report. The investigation they performed was so cursory and the report they produced so brief, it is hard to credit that they thought that they would get away with it. The report is a whitewash, but it's a really bad one, since there is no attempt to make it look as if they looked diligently into the question of the integrity of the CRU. Why would a group of intelligent people involved in a coverup not make more effort to cover their tracks?