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Nov 23, 2011

Climategate II: 5000+ new emails released sparking climate conspiracy despite evidence

Reminiscent of the ridiculous "Climategate" scandal, over 5000 hacked emails and documents from climate scientists at the University of East Anglia have been leaked just weeks before

Reminiscent of the ridiculous “Climategate” scandal, over 5000 hacked emails and documents from climate scientists at the University of East Anglia have been leaked just weeks before the crucial UN climate negotiations in Durban. Last time the now infamous 2009 Climategate emails were leaked just as UN negotiators and world leaders were ramping up for climate talks in Copenhagen.

The emails all involve climate scientists debating scientific issues and events, including working papers for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

If the original Climategate emails conspiracy confused you, check out Skeptical Science’s breakdown of the whole event, including a rundown of the nine different reports and panels that examined the emails — all of which cleared the scientists of any scientific wrongdoing — and a through explanation of the “hide the decline” catchcry.

Just to clarify, none of the 5000+ recently released emails are new. 

Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Centre at Penn State University and a scientist whose name appears in several of the emails, dismissed the latest email release as “truly pathetic”. He instead said the hackers were “agents doing the dirty bidding of the fossil fuel industry know they can’t contest the fundamental science of human-caused climate change. So they have instead turned to smear, innuendo, criminal hacking of websites, and leaking out-of-context snippets of personal emails in their effort to try to confuse the public about the science and thereby forestall any action to combat this critical threat. Its right out of the tried-and-true playbook of climate change denial.”

In a statement from the University of East Anglia it noted that all of the “new” emails date back to the original 2009 hacking incident:

“…these emails have the appearance of having been held back after the theft of data and emails in 2009 to be released at a time designed to cause maximum disruption to the imminent international climate talks.”

This appears to be a carefully-timed attempt to reignite controversy over the science behind climate change when that science has been vindicated by three separate independent inquiries and number of studies – including, most recently, the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature group.”

Sceptics were quick to get excited about the latest leaked emails.

“Michael Mann, Phil Jones, Ben Santer, Tom Wigley, Kevin Trenberth, Keith Briffa — all your favourite Climategate characters are here, once again caught red-handed in a series of emails exaggerating the extent of Anthropogenic Global Warming, while privately admitting to one another that the evidence is nowhere near as a strong as they’d like it to be,” declares conservative blogger James Delingpole at The Telegraph. He goes on:”In other words, what these emails confirm is that the great man-made global warming scare is not about science but about political activism.”

Herald Sun columnist Andrew Bolt was quick to announce the emails “expose scientists working for ‘the cause'”. “I have not read through the emails to establish the context,” writes Bolt, “But this selection will strengthen strong suspicions that a tight group of insiders have treated a questionable scientific theory as a cause that needs to by hyped.”

One of the key details to come out of the original Climategate debacle was that email quotes taken out of context failed to convey their true meaning.

Climate change deniers grab on to the quotes from scientists that show they are sceptical and require evidence on everything. Meaning, doing exactly what scientists should do, writes Shaun Lawrence Otto on Huffington Post:

“Geez. Another shocker. A leading expert of temperature reconstructions is skeptical of temperature reconstructions but still lets the data guide his ultimate conclusions. Isn’t that sort of skepticism what we want?”

Climate deniers shouldn’t get too excited, these latest emails don’t show a global conspiracy by climate scientists, just a bunch of scientists emailing each other and reviewing their work, says the BBC’s Richard Black:

“Robust debate? You bet.

A desire to prevent material being released through Freedom of Information (FoI) requests? Absolutely — as acknowledged, apologised for and dealt with during the 2010 inquiries into the incidents of 2009.

But a concerted plot to deceive the world?

I’ve yet to find it; and, judging by what he/she has highlighted, so has FOIA 2011 [the codename adopted by the email hacker], despite having had the unique opportunity to scour the emails for two years.”

It seems that even though the Climategate conspiracy has been proved wrong, many can’t process that fact, says a post on the Get Energy Smart Now! blog:

“Sadly, the basic nature of human psychology works against the corrective process: a falsehood, once embedded is extremely difficult to turnaround. And, sadly, the very efforts at correcting often reinforce the falsehood. And, this is even without dealing with the fact that there is a massive fossil-foolish machine (with the serious support of Faux News and the rest of the Murdoch disinformation empire) seeking to reinforce and expand on that disinformation.”

The blame for much of the Climategate scandal lies with lazy reporters, argues Brad Johnson at Think Progress:

“Climategate was a scandal of corrupt, deceitful, and shoddy reporting.”

Hopefully Climategate II won’t work in the same way.

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26 thoughts on “Climategate II: 5000+ new emails released sparking climate conspiracy despite evidence

  1. kd

    Umm, don’t bother listening to Frank. I’m not remotely well-known in the sense you want to impart. Some names are distinctive enough that you don’t want to give them more google juice than they already have though.

    “Cherry-picked quotes”? Nope, I just skimmed throught the ones you considered notable, and picked out a couple at random. Rather than the baseless assertion you give in post #22, try giving me an argument with either scientific substance (i.e. not based on overtly political statements, or factual mistunderstandings or misrepresentations), or admitting that you lack the scientific knowledge to have a rudimentary understanding of the climate science field.

    FWIW, my scientific understanding is good enough to: a. be able to recognise dodgy statistics when they’re presented, a good part of the time. b. understand that the fundamental theories underpinning climate change are more-or-less the same theories that enable the technology which support civilisation, and c. that a scientific theory is not the same as a mathematical law.

  2. Frank Campbell


    As I said above about KD: “So your initials (if that’s what they are) are so famous they can be recognised?

    More than strange, KD”

    I have no idea who “KD” is. But if he is a scientist working in climate or a related field he exemplifies the punitive zealotry which has damaged the very positions which he represents.

  3. Karl Scott

    By the way – if I am right than I would like to say that I have enormous respect for your intellect, motivations and your achievements – based on what I have read about you and your life – although I reserve the right to disagree with your position on certain matters and look forward to the ongoing debate.

  4. Karl Scott

    KD said – “You’ve (understandably) clearly not worked very hard to work out my real name. I’d call this quasi-anonymity on my part.”

    Hmmm, famous/well known person with initials KD who has more than a passing association with the environment and/or climate issues. I’m going to assume Male based on writing style and approach. Lets see.

    Kevin Dudd (sorry, my leetle joke)

    I know – what about renowned futurist Dr Doug Cocks – Kenneth Douglas, or KD Cocks?

    Author of Deep Futures and Use with Care, amongst other learned tomes. That KD Cocks. Well known as a researcher and writer on environmental issues and a senior principal research scientist with the CSIRO, KD’s current research interests include human ecology, building scenarios of Australia’s future under diverse socio-political philosophies and long walks on the beach (before it disappears under rising sea levels caused by anthropogenic globla warming).

    Do I win a prize?

  5. Karl Scott

    kd, if we excluded non-scientific, political statements the alarmists would be in deep trouble. In any event I disagree with your cherry picking dismissal of these scientists who are clearly qualified to have an opinion on the “consensus” position. In any event, as one commentator has pointed out – Concensus only has meaning if there is no pressure to conform in either direction. In relation to the specific issue you raised, I can give you links to any number of sources of data that show no warming in the last 10 years – good, solid, reliable DATA from satellites etc that hasn’t been “adjusted”.

  6. kd


    Nice collection of quotes. However many of the quotes you’re recycling there are non-scientific, political statements (e.g. “The ‘global warming scare’ is being used as a political tool to increase government control over American lives …” ) and many statements based on an incorrect understanding of the science, or scientific process. Some of the scientific statments (e.g. cooled since 1998 are demonstrably false and based on patheticaly naive data analysis). There’s also a good number of quotes from people talking outside their area of expertise (retired scientists ‘gone emeritus’ syndrome, like Plimer the poster boy for counterfactual climate nonsense).

    Anyway you’re presenting a variant of the there’s no consensus argument with no attempt to provide a critical reflection on the quality of the argument. Let me summarise a large and complex topic for you: the “there’s no consensus” argument requires a conflation of political and counterfactual scientific arguments, and ignoring well understood and coherent bodies of scientific work.

  7. Karl Scott

    “your argument seems pretty much indistinguishable as that of the discredited in the pay of the fossil fuel interests anti-science denier brigade.”

    Anti Science? Here are 700 Scientists who have issues with the IPCC’s position.

    While the scientists contained in this report hold a diverse range of views, they generally rally around several key points. 1) The Earth is currently well within natural climate variability. 2) Almost all climate fear is generated by unproven computer model predictions. 3) An abundance of peer-reviewed studies continue to debunk rising CO2 fears and, 4) “Consensus” has been manufactured for political, not scientific purposes.

    On the basis that people don’t click links, here is what a few of the scientists in the above mentioned Report said. If they are all discreditied nutjobs or corrupt oil industry mouthpieces, I’d be happy to read the evidence.:-

    Highlights of the Updated 2008/2009 Senate Minority Report featuring over 700 international scientists dissenting from man-made climate fears:

    “I am a skeptic…Global warming has become a new religion.” – Nobel Prize Winner for Physics, Ivar Giaever.

    “Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly….As a scientist I remain skeptical…The main basis of the claim that man’s release of greenhouse gases is the cause of the warming is based almost entirely upon climate models. We all know the frailty of models concerning the air-surface system.” – Atmospheric Scientist Dr. Joanne Simpson, the first woman in the world to receive a PhD in meteorology, and formerly of NASA, who has authored more than 190 studies and has been called “among the most preeminent scientists of the last 100 years.”

    Warming fears are the “worst scientific scandal in the history…When people come to know what the truth is, they will feel deceived by science and scientists.” – UN IPCC Japanese Scientist Dr. Kiminori Itoh, an award-winning PhD environmental physical chemist.

    “The IPCC has actually become a closed circuit; it doesn’t listen to others. It doesn’t have open minds… I am really amazed that the Nobel Peace Prize has been given on scientifically incorrect conclusions by people who are not geologists.” – Indian geologist Dr. Arun D. Ahluwalia at Punjab University and a board member of the UN-supported International Year of the Planet.

    “So far, real measurements give no ground for concern about a catastrophic future warming.” – Scientist Dr. Jarl R. Ahlbeck, a chemical engineer at Abo Akademi University in Finland, author of 200 scientific publications and former Greenpeace member.

    “Anyone who claims that the debate is over and the conclusions are firm has a fundamentally unscientific approach to one of the most momentous issues of our time.” – Solar physicist Dr. Pal Brekke, senior advisor to the Norwegian Space Centre in Oslo. Brekke has published more than 40 peer-reviewed scientific articles on the sun and solar interaction with the Earth.

    “The models and forecasts of the UN IPCC “are incorrect because they only are based on mathematical models and presented results at scenarios that do not include, for example, solar activity.” – Victor Manuel Velasco Herrera, a researcher at the Institute of Geophysics of the National Autonomous University of Mexico

    “It is a blatant lie put forth in the media that makes it seem there is only a fringe of scientists who don’t buy into anthropogenic global warming.” – U.S Government Atmospheric Scientist Stanley B. Goldenberg of the Hurricane Research Division of NOAA.

    “Even doubling or tripling the amount of carbon dioxide will virtually have little impact, as water vapour and water condensed on particles as clouds dominate the worldwide scene and always will.” – . Geoffrey G. Duffy, a professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering of the University of Auckland, NZ.

    “After reading [UN IPCC chairman] Pachauri’s asinine comment [comparing skeptics to] Flat Earthers, it’s hard to remain quiet.” – Climate statistician Dr. William M. Briggs, who specializes in the statistics of forecast evaluation, serves on the American Meteorological Society’s Probability and Statistics Committee and is an Associate Editor of Monthly Weather Review.

    “The Kyoto theorists have put the cart before the horse. It is global warming that triggers higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, not the other way round…A large number of critical documents submitted at the 1995 U.N. conference in Madrid vanished without a trace. As a result, the discussion was one-sided and heavily biased, and the U.N. declared global warming to be a scientific fact,” Andrei Kapitsa, a Russian geographer and Antarctic ice core researcher.

    “I am convinced that the current alarm over carbon dioxide is mistaken…Fears about man-made global warming are unwarranted and are not based on good science.” – Award Winning Physicist Dr. Will Happer, Professor at the Department of Physics at Princeton University and Former Director of Energy Research at the Department of Energy, who has published over 200 scientific papers, and is a fellow of the American Physical Society, The American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the National Academy of Sciences.

    “Nature’s regulatory instrument is water vapor: more carbon dioxide leads to less moisture in the air, keeping the overall GHG content in accord with the necessary balance conditions.” – Prominent Hungarian Physicist and environmental researcher Dr. Miklós Zágoni reversed his view of man-made warming and is now a skeptic. Zágoni was once Hungary’s most outspoken supporter of the Kyoto Protocol.

    “For how many years must the planet cool before we begin to understand that the planet is not warming? For how many years must cooling go on?” – Geologist Dr. David Gee the chairman of the science committee of the 2008 International Geological Congress who has authored 130 plus peer reviewed papers, and is currently at Uppsala University in Sweden.

    “Gore prompted me to start delving into the science again and I quickly found myself solidly in the skeptic camp…Climate models can at best be useful for explaining climate changes after the fact.” – Meteorologist Hajo Smit of Holland, who reversed his belief in man-made warming to become a skeptic, is a former member of the Dutch UN IPCC committee.

    “The quantity of CO2 we produce is insignificant in terms of the natural circulation between air, water and soil… I am doing a detailed assessment of the UN IPCC reports and the Summaries for Policy Makers, identifying the way in which the Summaries have distorted the science.” – South Afican Nuclear Physicist and Chemical Engineer Dr. Philip Lloyd, a UN IPCC co-coordinating lead author who has authored over 150 refereed publications.

    “Many [scientists] are now searching for a way to back out quietly (from promoting warming fears), without having their professional careers ruined.” – Atmospheric physicist James A. Peden, formerly of the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh.

    “All those urging action to curb global warming need to take off the blinkers and give some thought to what we should do if we are facing global cooling instead.” – Geophysicist Dr. Phil Chapman, an astronautical engineer and former NASA astronaut, served as staff physicist at MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

    “Creating an ideology pegged to carbon dioxide is a dangerous nonsense…The present alarm on climate change is an instrument of social control, a pretext for major businesses and political battle. It became an ideology, which is concerning.” – Environmental Scientist Professor Delgado Domingos of Portugal, the founder of the Numerical Weather Forecast group, has more than 150 published articles.

    “CO2 emissions make absolutely no difference one way or another….Every scientist knows this, but it doesn’t pay to say so…Global warming, as a political vehicle, keeps Europeans in the driver’s seat and developing nations walking barefoot.” – Dr. Takeda Kunihiko, vice-chancellor of the Institute of Science and Technology Research at Chubu University in Japan.

    “The [global warming] scaremongering has its justification in the fact that it is something that generates funds.” – Award-winning Paleontologist Dr. Eduardo Tonni, of the Committee for Scientific Research in Buenos Aires and head of the Paleontology Department at the University of La Plata.

    “Whatever the weather, it’s not being caused by global warming. If anything, the climate may be starting into a cooling period.” Atmospheric scientist Dr. Art V. Douglas, former Chair of the Atmospheric Sciences Department at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, and is the author of numerous papers for peer-reviewed publications.

    “But there is no falsifiable scientific basis whatever to assert this warming is caused by human-produced greenhouse gasses because current physical theory is too grossly inadequate to establish any cause at all.” – Chemist Dr. Patrick Frank, who has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed articles.

    “The ‘global warming scare’ is being used as a political tool to increase government control over American lives, incomes and decision making. It has no place in the Society’s activities.” – Award-Winning NASA Astronaut/Geologist and Moonwalker Jack Schmitt who flew on the Apollo 17 mission and formerly of the Norwegian Geological Survey and for the U.S. Geological Survey.

    “Earth has cooled since 1998 in defiance of the predictions by the UN-IPCC….The global temperature for 2007 was the coldest in a decade and the coldest of the millennium…which is why ‘global warming’ is now called ‘climate change.’” – Climatologist Dr. Richard Keen of the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences at the University of Colorado.

    “I have yet to see credible proof of carbon dioxide driving climate change, yet alone man-made CO2 driving it. The atmospheric hot-spot is missing and the ice core data refute this. When will we collectively awake from this deceptive delusion?” – Dr. G LeBlanc Smith, a retired Principal Research Scientist with Australia’s CSIRO. (The full quotes of the scientists are later in this report)

    How do you dismiss all of that (and this is just a tip of the iceberg summary) and say “the debate is over” and “the science is settled” and “there is no relevant number of dissenters and they’re idiots anyway”? Its clearly nonsense and it’s insulting to have those lines thrown at you with the expectation you’ll shut-up and go sit in the corner on the naughty chair for having the temerity to ask questions.

  8. Davies Ben

    Yeah climate change is not real just like all the failed banks in America doesn’t exist either!!!!!!!

    Just have a look at our river system or if you live in Melbourne the Yarra River. These people are not interested in HUMAN BEINGS JUST MORE WAR FOR AIPAC AND ISREAL!

    To whom it may concern,
    2 prime ministers same speech check it out what harper is now doing in canada libertarians in the 1930’s
    colin powell’s weapons of mass destruction speech the biggest lie thus far this century

    Have a great weekend,


  9. kd


    I’m amused by your nice pair of false dichotomies there. To deal with things in order: 1. I’d be less hung up about “anonymous” posting on the internet if I were you. If my name was John Smith or Frank Campbell, I would happily use it in these kinds of forums. Those of us with distinctive names need to be somewhat careful.

    2. This is an even bigger false dichotomy. I am saying that you make full use of discredited denier arguments to try to maintain your position which you claim is not that of a denier. However the main substance of your argument seems pretty much indistinguishable as that of the discredited in the pay of the fossil fuel interests anti-science denier brigade.

  10. Frank Campbell

    So your initials (if that’s what they are) are so famous they can be recognised?

    More than strange, KD.

    Truly a weird belief.

    And like all Crikey climate partisans, you can’t bear the thought that there can be positions other than “denier” and “believer”. That’s the essence of any cult. And the guarantee of its ultimate extinction.

  11. kd


    You’ve (understandably) clearly not worked very hard to work out my real name. I’d call this quasi-anonymity on my part. I stand my my comment that you deny being a denier but continue to trot out the denier propaganda nonetheless.

  12. Frank Campbell

    The usual anonymous grunt from KD. There’s a whole busload of anonyms on Crikey who have…nothing to say.

  13. kd

    [ The partisans (both sides) don’t care. They know what they want to say in advance. ]

    Translation: Frank doesn’t care, he knows what to say in advance (i.e. claim to not be a denier then trot out the denier cult propaganda that has no basis in fact anyway followed by angry mumbling about the “real environmnet”).

  14. Frank Campbell

    Foro: I can’t see how anyone can read 5000 emails in a couple of days. Reading this stuff is like wading through treacle. Took me 3 weeks, off and on, to read the first lot (3000), though I was editing as I went.

    The partisans (both sides) don’t care. They know what they want to say in advance.

  15. Son of foro

    [“I have not read through the emails to establish the context,” writes Bolt]

    Talk about stating the obvious!

  16. Frank Campbell

    Planetary Partner;

    wow, that really is an apocalyptic classic…

    -sends that “mormons at the front door” shiver down me spine…

  17. Eponymous

    But 2Dogs, the economy! It will be rooned! Now is not the right time for this sort of reform. What about China? Coal! Jobs!

    As you say, those opposed will always have a reason to do nothing.

    For me, the question is this: what is worse, wrecking the economy or wrecking the environment? The economy will recover. Christ, all the modelling we’ve done says it won’t even be wrecked, more like shaving 1% off GDP growth over 30 years.

    Even on cost, it seems sensible to me: what will cost more to fix, the environment or the economy? The wasteful, profligate stimulus package was only $40b or so. Compared to say, what if the actually wreck the Murray-Darling basin? The Coorong goes toxic and the southern ocean fishery fails, what do you reckon that’s worth? On and on it goes.

  18. 2dogs

    Here is the problem as I see it. I do not see much difference between this debate and the debate that we had over the link between cigarettes and lung cancer. The warning signs for lung cancer and cigarettes were being reported in the 1930`s but as late as 1996 the tobacco industry was still funding research to the contrary (with some speculating that it was still going on until 2001). Their constant argument? The science is not settled, sound familiar?
    I am not stating that there is a huge conspiracy for all research that runs counter to Climate Change however we are never going to get indisputable proof before it is too late. There is clearly a link between the release of greenhouse gases and the rise in climate that we are currently witnessing. Yes the the time/degree ratio that this will take is up for debate (just the same as cigarettes) as it is an exceptionally complex, interconnected system that we are dealing with however the very end result is not, a radical change in our planets ecosystem that will have sever consequences for all inhabiting it.
    If we have it, within our means, to start the process of change so that future generations do not have to deal with the severity of the consequences I fail to find any reason why we should not start this.

  19. Eponymous

    Ahahaahahaah. Thanks Frank. I see your Concern Trolling skills have been sharpened in the lay off.

  20. Planetary Partner

    What IS it about human beings which make us cling so tightly and viciously to our dogmas and doctrines and rigid beliefs – like drowning people cling to lifebuoys?
    And, just as the drowning person can fight like crazy with the one who swims out to save them – we can fight like crazy to “defend” our dogmas and doctrines and rigid beliefs – if necessary – to the death!!
    By the time enough of us are all “THAT CERTAIN”, Planet Earth will be well on its way to becoming just like Planet Mars. But by then, it will all be far, far, far, TOO LATE! (But, we’ll all be “CERTAIN”, won’t we. No room for questions, no need for uncertainties, then. No need anymore to fight or quarrel. ))
    What it would be smart and wise and life-supporting and life-affirming for us all to come to grips with this – is this – REGARDLESS of whatever we say or deem or believe are the causes:
    > The place is getting DAMN HOT – and more hot more often in more places.
    > The forests are getting slashed and burned more and more and more.
    > The oceans are degrading of dynamic life at an alarming rate.
    > The quality of the air we breathe is getting funkier and funkier in more and more places.
    > The ice is melting – more of it is melting and more often and faster than the past.
    > The winds are getting stronger and more often.
    > The storms are increasing in magnitude – and more often and in more places.
    > Good quality, fresh water may soon become an “endangered species”. (In some
    parts of the world – it ALREADY IS .)
    > Our consumption rates of EVERYTHING are already beyond the planet’s ability
    to deal with it in a healthy fashion – and sustain it all.
    > All manner of flaura and fauna are either near extinction, endangered species already – or under real threat of becoming so in the near future. Not too significant, you think? Think again. In some parts of the planet, the humble bee is suffering greatly. No problem you say? Think again. Without the humble bees who work so tirelessly and thanklessly to polinate what is so necessary to US all, then we will be without so much of what we have become so accustomed to EATING !!
    So, regardless of whatever we all say or believe are – or are not – the various causes,
    what IS common and universal to ALL of us here are the CONSEQUENCES. The current
    “as is”. And they are HERE and they are NOW.
    The planet is going through great distress and the upheavals and the consequences that we are experiencing all around us are the planet’s own, impeccably wise, supreme self-interest for its own health and wellbeing and SURVIVAL and THRIVING.
    Which it has ALWAYS done and will ALWAYS continue to do – REGARDLESS of how it affects the lives and lifestyles of human beings. OUR (human beings) health and wellbeing are NOT the planet’s prime priority or responsibility. It’s prime priority and
    prime responsibility is to ITSELF. Planet Earth is its OWN MASTER – NOT the servant of human beings! It will simply NOT just roll over and do whatever human beings THINK IT “SHOULD DO” or hope it might or will do !
    The planetary “soul”, the planetary spirit, the planetary intelligence – call it whatever you will – IS the “El-Supremo” here – NOT human beings. It is we human beings who have the power relationship all wrong and upside down. IT is the “master” and we are the beneficiaries – or not – whichever the case may be.
    It is we who need to work in partnership with the planet – NOT the other way round.
    And, depending on what we do or do not do, the planet is either patting us on the head and thanking us – or it is giving a king hit to the head or whipping our butts!
    It is for us human beings to grasp our true place in the scheme of things – not for the planet to grasp its place in OUR SCHEMES. It’s not about cajoling or forcing the planet to play servant to our prosperity and economics and economies – it is about our prosperity and economics and economies being in PARTNERSHIP WITH THE PLANET.
    I think it is THESE NOTIONS that we need to understand and embrace – rather than merely quarrel and argue and fight over what are the causes of “climate change”.
    Meanwhile, “Rome is burning” – but we are all busy simply debating and arguing in the Senate and being entertained and distracted at the Collosseum !!
    When ARE we all going to wake up??? When planet Earth is just like planet Mars??
    “Too late! Too late!” she cried. But hey. Whats’a matter! By then we will all be CERTAIN. No need for “conspiracies”. No need for “positions” or rigid dogmas or doctrines. No need to jealously guard or fight for our theories then. No need for mud-slinging. No need for power stuggles then. Hardly anything to fight over or about then. Hardly anybody to fight with ! Because the planetary lifeforce will have died and we human beings will pretty much be “history”.
    But hey – we were all such great talkers and debaters and quarrellers and fighters and thinkers – were’nt we?? (And we all got our “certainties”. ) Only FAR FAR FAR TOO LATE.

  21. heavylambs

    The reporting of the Schmittner et al paper by The Australian should get your BS detector going,Frank. The new paper does not make claims that “dramatic” forecasts have been “exaggerated”. The only thing that the paper is confident about is that equilibrium climate sensitivity to doubled CO2 is not 6K,thus they have claimed to increase certainty that the more extreme distributions are less likely. They introduce a number of caveats which makes a mockery of the media stridency.

    The IPCC,as a review/synthesis report should, reported a spread of findings arrived at by various methods in the previous decades literature,arriving at a likely central figure of 3K,not that dissimilar to Schmittner et al’s 2.3K. In no way should their diligent laying out of the arguments be described as an ‘adoption’ of ‘extreme’ scenarios;they are obliged to discuss the range. Their most likely position was more conservative. Once again,The Oz is actually the obstacle to clarity.

    I suggest you source Schmittner’s actual remarks from the media release at Oregon State University. You may note that a comment-to the effect that 3K should be seen as the upper bound- attributed to Schmittner by The Oz is nowhere to be found,though the university’s piece is clearly the source of most else in the newspaper article. Having read the Schmittner et al work,I cannot see how he’d make such a claim.

    I’m not familiar with Kevin Anderson’s prediction–I’ll search it up–but I’d assume that he is taking a holistic view based on the impinging pressures we are placing on the biosphere. We may well slit each others throats in fruitless primal competition well before the worst effects of climate change arrive,given the record of destruction in the global commons thus far.

    I do agree there are less than useful comments coming from some who should be more cautious and less naive of the media’s gentle ways,but I think that the fundamental reluctance of kept politicians,and the huge clout of their keepers, always was going to make rapid focussed reaction most unlikely.

  22. kd

    Of course there’s no expectation that you’ll correct your misunderstandings and misinformations. You clearly regard your faulty rationale as consistent with the external evidence (your main problem here is that you regard all sources of evidence as of equal weight, possibly giving more credence to the denier propagandists), and there’s clearly no hope that you will change your mind any time soon.

  23. kd

    [ I haven’t been “suckered” by anyone, HL. I’ve spent eight years examining the evidence myself. ]

    You haven’t been doing a very good job then. All we hear over here is an incoherent mismash of denier propaganda followed by a disclaimer that you’re not a denier.

  24. Frank Campbell

    I haven’t been “suckered” by anyone, HL. I’ve spent eight years examining the evidence myself.

    As I’ve predicted often here, the retreat from climate millenarianism is, ummm, predictable: caveats will be slipped in, then slowly amplified. Career-wise, it’s too risky to slam the entire ramshackle structure (in which hypothesis is bolted onto hypothesis, each one magnifying the margin of error)- so the temperature, as it were, will be gradually reduced. From boil to simmer: hence we have today’s news-

    “DRAMATIC forecasts of global warming resulting from a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide have been exaggerated, according to a peer-reviewed study by a team of international researchers.

    In the study, published today in the leading journal Science, the researchers found that while rising levels of CO2 would cause climate change, the most severe predictions – some of which were adopted by the UN’s peak climate body in its seminal 2007 report – had been significantly overstated.

    The authors used a novel approach based on modelling the effects of reduced CO2 levels on climate, which they compared with proxy-records of conditions during the last glaciation, to infer the effects of doubling CO2 levels.

    They concluded that current worst-case scenarios for global warming were exaggerated.

    “Now these very large changes (predicted for the coming decades) can be ruled out, and we have some room to breathe and time to figure out solutions to the problem,” the study’s lead author, Andreas Schmittner, an associate professor at Oregon State University, said.”

    So absurd extremists like Prof Kevin Anderson (virtual extinction starting in 38 years), no FlanneryFool – he’s the deputy boss of Tyndall CC, will be marginalised.

    Climate hysteria has already caused great waste: premature and ad hoc policy has burnt hundreds of billions globally- in useless infrastructure like wind turbines, geothermal, CO2 sequestration etc. Politically, the Right has been empowered, to the detriment of the environment. And rational action against AGW has been compromised, perhaps for a decade.

    For the record, I’m not against desal plants- just the scale and location: would you now back a $20 billion desal plant in gumboot-ridden South Gippsland? Or Brisbane?

    This is why I despise Crikey: it has relentlessly taken the most extreme alarmist position on AGW, and suppressed/ignored all contrary arguments.

  25. heavylambs

    The ‘small group of marginal scientists’ have been placed at the centre of this ‘controversy’,Frank,by virtue of the key-word detection software that has aggregated their fields and names. You fell for the trick.

    Few of them are modellers outright,though they use modellers expertise. The hackers are going after palaeoclimatologists and IPCC lead authors.

    As well,how ‘marginal’ in terms of research and admin are they really? Some of them are genuinely central to aspects of climate research: Phil Jones,temperature series specialist, in his role as director of UEA CRU for a good period of the time covered in the hacked communications,and Kevin Trenberth,whose meteorological and climate dynamics career has been long and distinguished,and who is a top twenty in most cited geophysicists, are examples. Mike Mann has long been a target for his role in producing an iconic study.Curiously,his equally illustrious co-authors,Bradley and Hughes,are spared the foaming outrage…perhaps because to pursue the three equally would be robbing the insane campaign of ‘focus’. Ya know,Satan is one guy,not the Holy Trinity.

    I think you have been suckered by the methodical campaign of the disinformers and hackers,Frank: attempt to reduce ‘climate science’ to a few people whose names will become familiar to the incurious through repetition,so as to put a face to the enemy. Recasting the entirely orthodox funding pathways of the sciences as paved with the gold of grants also plays well with the ignorant. Insinuate that ambition has no place in [passive,observant,patient]science,and is unseemly unless practised by [active] business warrior archetypes. Insinuate that climate science is a costume worn by a movement. Forget that climate change is observed widely,is occurring quickly in geological terms and that 1998 is an outlier.

    The desal plant in Perth is absolutely vital to that city’s present as well as future,and those elsewhere–while clearly examples of costly business/government rorting–will be vital quicker than you think,given strong population growth an demand.

    What are you trying to say about prospects for policy change? That economic short-termist irrationality damages future prospects,and politicians will co-opt climate science and destroy its traction? Sure,but in what way is this the fault of some individuals whose conversations have been stolen?

  26. Frank Campbell

    “the ridiculous “Climategate” scandal…”

    Jamieson’s piece is as blinded by partisanship as the anti-global warming websites…

    And no doubt neither side have actually read the documents in full.

    The Climategate emails are instructive. They don’t show a “worldwide conspiracy” as alleged by the paranoid hardcore denialists. They do show academics behaving normally, tendentiously defending their position, prepared at times to stoop to dirty tactics, excluding their “enemies” and indeed anyone in science who may not be quite “reliable”- doubters need not apply. Anyone who has worked as an academic knows this is par for the course.

    The emails also show how a small group of marginal scientists (East Bumcracks, literally) put themselves at centre stage by modelling climate- their work often exaggerated and misinterpreted by propagandists such as Gore and Flannery. Initial success has led to institutionalisation of the movement: career paths, massive grants etc. Inevitably, this also corrupts scientific process.

    The plateauing of global temperatures after 1998 has caused a crisis- why do you think Michael Mann et al are now researching the causes of this? One current popular explanation is Chinese sulphur emissions. We can expect more defensive hypotheses to emerge.

    Jamieson’s piece is not only partisan- it’s anti-intellectual. Truly awful journalism. There’s no mention of actual email evidence from the new batch. Any wonder the politics of climate change is terminal? We had a decade of blather about “permanent drought”,”no more rain” in S.E.Qld, etc. leading to demands for vast desal plants, the north-south pipe and a string of other idiocies ( geothermal in the lest prospective continent, useless wind turbines, domestic solar rorts…)

    Climate millenarianism is its own worst enemy. The implosion of global casino capitalism is the coup de grace. There will simply be no money placate climate zealots.

    The self-righteous middle class Savonarolas have bungled it.