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Saturday, November 28, 2009

No science is possible: CRU has destroyed the original data 


The Times of London is reporting in its Sunday edition that the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia has destroyed the original data used to construct the historical climate record that purports to show a temperature increase. That is, the hope that independent scientists could assess the "adjustments" made to the raw data is now dashed, for the raw data no longer exists. This fact has actually been known for months, but the mainstream media ignored it -- no doubt intentionally -- until the email scandal broke last week.

SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.

It means that other academics are not able to check basic calculations said to show a long-term rise in temperature over the past 150 years.

The UEA’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) was forced to reveal the loss following requests for the data under Freedom of Information legislation....

In a statement on its website, the CRU said: “We do not hold the original raw data but only the value-added (quality controlled and homogenised) data.”

The CRU is the world’s leading centre for reconstructing past climate and temperatures. Climate change sceptics have long been keen to examine exactly how its data were compiled. That is now impossible.

Roger Pielke, professor of environmental studies at Colorado University, discovered data had been lost when he asked for original records. “The CRU is basically saying, ‘Trust us’. So much for settling questions and resolving debates with science,” he said.

So, basically we are being asked to restructure the entire economy of the planet on the say-so of a few "scientists" whose work cannot be verified or even reconstructed. Is there any intellectually honest person who thinks that is a good idea?

In a few days this has gone from being a kerfuffle over a few snotty emails and some academic source code to a full-blown political and policy catastrophe. Any government that supports greenhouse gas regulation based on the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which relied heavily on the CRU data, would be derelict in its own obligation to do due diligence. Climate "skeptics" have been saying this for some time and dismissed as cranks for it. Months ago conservative bloggers were writing that these data had been destroyed (based on an admission on the CRU's own web site), but the mainstream media sat on the story as if it were irrelevant. Now, with the excuse of the CRU hack, even the Times of London is writing about it breathlessly.

Better late than never, but it still leaves this scary question: What if these wholly discredited "scientists" who threw away their raw data and are asking us to change the world on their say-so are actually right?

57 Comments:

By Blogger Dawnfire82, at Sun Nov 29, 12:21:00 AM:

If they were right, they wouldn't need faked data and circled wagons.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Sun Nov 29, 12:42:00 AM:

Brian has been mighty quiet these past few days.

I remember reading about the loss of the original data a while back.

An observation follows about those who claim that there are still "thousands if not tens of thousands" of papers with good data that support AGW. Consider a case of police corruption. If it is a case of one beat cop getting free coffee and doughnuts, the argument could be made that one case does not indicate widespread corruption. However, if the chief of police is caught with a bag of money, the entire police department is cast under suspicion. The CRU was in many ways, the top dog in the global warming scheme of things, so is analogous to a corrupt chief of police.  

By Blogger Gary Rosen, at Sun Nov 29, 01:32:00 AM:

"Brian has been mighty quiet these past few days."

He doesn't need to post. If you don't take his bet, that is proof of AGW. Faked data? Brian doesn't have to show you no steenking badges!  

By Blogger Donald Douglas, at Sun Nov 29, 02:25:00 AM:

American Power tracked-back with, 'Al Gore's Inconvenient Lie'.  

By Blogger Noumenon, at Sun Nov 29, 03:15:00 AM:

This seems like a very substantive scandal. It is going to take a lot of explaining to make me take AGW seriously again.  

By Blogger Purple Avenger, at Sun Nov 29, 03:22:00 AM:

What if these wholly discredited "scientists" who threw away their raw data and are asking us to change the world on their say-so are actually right?

Then we try to do something -- starting with the quick/cheap/easy SO2 plume scheme that's been floating around. That buys us some time on the cheap.

Before flushing a few trillion down the drain and blowing up the world economy, maybe we spend a couple of billion constructing this missing data from scratch again.

I'm willing to spend an extra billion to insure a potential trillion+ dollar loss.

Saddle up the field teams and start darkening the skies with planes full of data collection staff. Time is wasting.  

By Blogger Purple Avenger, at Sun Nov 29, 03:30:00 AM:

I would also add that its been my experience living on this rock for just over 50 years now, that whenever someone emphatically implores you to "trust me" because something is just too complicated, 99.9% of the time they're not telling the whole truth.

The only person on this planet I ever trusted when they said "trust me" is a friend who is a world class bookmaker and "fixer" of horse races and sporting events. If Richie said something was fixed and it was a sure thing to bet on it, it was. 100% of the time ;->  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 08:04:00 AM:

So remind me again why Obama announced this week he is going to Copenhagen to announce climate concessions? This willful ignorance of changing factual landscape, and the headwind it places on jobs and the economy in a recession that he is making worse by boneheaded tone-deaf moves like this is astounding. I repeat: why would any sane businessperson invest or create a job while this kind of uncertainty, not based in reason, hangs over them?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 08:21:00 AM:

That's the thing that scares me too: presumably the initial data at least suggested warming, I don't think those people would have had the gall to start the whole hullabaloo otherwise. But they thought it didn't look good enough to convince people, so they 'played' with it a bit to make it look better. Maybe not right in the beginning, but the thing grew, their funding and their careers got going, and perhaps they even really were concerned about the world, and the data they kept getting just didn't look good enough... they tell a few small lies or exaggerate a bit in the beginning, then after a while realize that they have to keep on doing it, or else.

And then they get caught.

A lot of prestige has gotten tied to this idea, and not just that of the original perpetrators. It might keep on going because it has gotten too heavy to stop easily. Or it might, with time, slowly fizzle out (because the press and the powers that be can't allow it to die with a bang). Or the scandal might even break fully out (at least in my country there has been very, very little coverage of the whole in news. Instead we do get the exact same stories of the climate change we have been getting during the last couple of decades. Plenty of people have no idea this has been going on). But whatever happens wont affect the real world. It just makes it that much harder for us to believe things if the warming, and the reasons for it, actually are real. Or when the next time comes when some group of scientists cry wolf. There may be times when the wolf actually is there.  

By Blogger JPMcT, at Sun Nov 29, 08:33:00 AM:

A few random thoughts:

* To what extent is there a CRIMINAL element in this scam. Let's face it...a lot of people stood to make a whole lot of money from this game, all at the expense of the American taxpayer. Shouldn't a few prominent people be doing the "perp walk"? Where's Eric Holder when we actually need him?

* Then there is the whole issue of the Nobel Prize and Al Gore.

* If Congress forges forward with Cap& Trade in the face of this information...what does that tell us about the true agenda, representative government and malfeasance?  

By Blogger TOF, at Sun Nov 29, 08:57:00 AM:

What if these wholly discredited "scientists" who threw away their raw data and are asking us to change the world on their say-so are actually right?

They are not right. They would not have destroyed the data if they were the least bit right.  

By Blogger Don Cox, at Sun Nov 29, 09:18:00 AM:

"They would not have destroyed the data if they were the least bit right.  "

They did not "destroy" data. They failed to preserve the raw data that they received from various countries around the world in the 1980s, keeping only the normalised figures.

This was surely a mistake, but do you remember what computer data was like in the 1980s? Do you have all your 8 inch or 5 1/4 inch discs from then? Did you back up everything you should have done?

The raw data in question should still be available from the meteorological services of all the states around the world. No doubt they all have perfect backup systems.  

By Blogger Don Cox, at Sun Nov 29, 09:24:00 AM:

"a lot of people stood to make a whole lot of money from this game, "

Money is certainly the reason this topic has become so political. The people who make windmills, nuclear power stations and solar panels stand to make a lot of money, and those oil companies which do not diversify into renewable energy stand to lose a lot.

The US economy should gain from any reduction in oil imports.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 10:19:00 AM:

So then you would agree with McCain, "Drill, baby, drill!".

Scientists who engage in "failing to save raw data" are the same as those who "destroy raw data", for in science a practitioner always understands that their experiments need to be replicable and without the raw data this would not be possible. The "failure to save" sophistry is merely an admission of the nefarious actions of the researchers involved.

The anthropogenic aspects of this debate were always teetering. Relying on roughly defined and untested models of poorly understood complex systems was always an intellectual stretch that relied on crowd hysteria to be advanced. This latest set of scandals just makes the underlying situation worse since it raises now an even more basic question of what sort of climate change can be said to be factual.  

By Blogger JPMcT, at Sun Nov 29, 10:35:00 AM:

Gee...I guess it's a good thing Albert wrote down his Theory of Relativity and Issac made a few notes on the physics of gravity.

Couldn't resist a bit of cynicism.

Actually, how exactly does one "peer-review" a hypothesis, prove it...or disprove it..WITHOUT the original data?

Sorry, Dan....this goes beyond frayed Fortran cards and magnetic errors on floppy discs...wholesale alteration of data, followed by erasure of the original data set, can only mean two things:

The original researchers were sloppy and stupid.

OR....

The original researchers were frauds.

Either way...not good.

But, what the hell....let's all go to Copenhagen and trash our economy anyway....just for the thrill of it all!!!  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 11:16:00 AM:

The Christopher Booker article linked in TH's post above is simply devastating to AGW, even to GW itself. Read it all.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 11:38:00 AM:

Don Cox speaks with forked tongue.

1) Nuclear plants were never in the "Green Economy" mix, and they still aren't. If we were a serious country we could have built a lot of modern nuclear plants for a trillion or two dollars -- and be in a much better position economically and geo-strategically, and be Greener. Win-Win-Win. If we were a serious country we'd be exploring use of thorium reactors and mini-nukes.

2) The US economy won't gain from a reduction in oil imports unless it's done the right way. "Cost per BTU" is always relevant to this calculus. Replacing cheap foreign oil with expensive and impractical solar and wind power was always a dumb idea. In light of Climategate, it's dumber still. More domestic oil drilling is short-run, but important. Natural gas has untapped potential.

The next month will be interesting.

Can MSM suppress Climategate past Copenhagen? Some cracks are showing -- the likes of the NYT, Time and Newsweek are running silly climate change headlines but sometimes with hints of revelation in the text. I'm learning to read these stories the way Russians used to have to decode Pravda. Also, these stories have become a platform for commenters to vent and ridicule. Any honest journalist would have to be embarrassed by the disconnect of the inane drivel they're writing compared to the red meat Holy Shit headline that the commenters are pointing out. We may see a revolt of the honest journalists yet.

The narrative before Copenhagen is uncertain. Understand that just because Fox and Rush are covering Climategate, doesn't mean that most Americans are hearing it. Independent sources in Britain and Penn State University may drive this. Recall it was a child who first declared that the emperor had no clothes.

This week's distraction is Obama's triangulating Afghanistan. I can't see how Obama can deliver a speech like this without trying to blame it all on George Bush. But a mini-surge won't accomplish anything. As I told my leftie friends before the election -- Obama won't get us out of Iraq and Afghanistan any faster, and may even be slower. Is this the prime time speech that drives most of America over the edge?

Climategate-Copenhagen could be the thing that costs Obama middle America. Or not. The future isn't written. It'd be nice for this to break while Healthcare is still on the table. Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus.  

By Blogger mockmook, at Sun Nov 29, 11:57:00 AM:

"Better late than never, but it still leaves this scary question: What if these wholly discredited "scientists" who threw away their raw data and are asking us to change the world on their say-so are actually right?"

What if any of a billion unlikely things that make life difficult on Earth occur? We will be surprised--and cope if possible.  

By Blogger mockmook, at Sun Nov 29, 12:00:00 PM:

Isn't the "data lost" story suspect, since they said they would destroy data?  

By Anonymous Mr. Ed, at Sun Nov 29, 12:50:00 PM:

We are dealing with processes that span far more years than the window of opportunity for an individual scientist to make his or her mark on the history of knowledge.

I remember in my college days seeing a movie about a scientist who had concluded a line of research spanning 20 years (about cancer). What he found was that his theory was wrong. Now some would say glory deferred, 20 years down the drain, but I say, "Now that was real science." Science honestly done is about finding fact and fiction, and knowing which is which.

Given that the processes we are concerned with are decadal or longer, there is no need to accept the panicky bleats of alarmists that we must do something right now even if we do not know what we are doing.

Losing the data is just so astounding. Didn't we can a President for that?

We all need to take a deep breath. Respectable scientists and science publications need to step up to the plate and call for new data and new research, and a new mindset that encourages an even handed pursuit of the truth. To the extent also that our government assists in the funding, let's insist that the awarding of grants serves only the interests of truth and not left or right wing political agendas.

There should also be a couple high profile changes intended to show the public that fraudulent science will not stand. CRU should be shut down and disbanded. Leave a marker on the spot, a black obelisk or something. IPCC should be disbanded for 10 years. US should defund the UN if it will not do this.

I'm hoping that those who said we need to engineer climate change, to correct the problems we created, knowing now that we neither understood the problem nor the solution, will just go back to their geodesic domes and stay there for a few years.

M.E.  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 02:01:00 PM:

Do critics (I won't use the loaded "denialist" term) of AGW actually believe that more than 2,500 scientists from around the world over the past decade, if not longer, have overlooked or denied or ignored (whatever characterization you wish to use) contradictory evidence of AGW?

That the tens of thousands of peer review articles published in hundreds of scientific journals in 50+ countries were all, well, wrong?

I respect that view but it is just not, for me, a sensible view.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 02:17:00 PM:

To SMGalbraith

That's exactly what we're saying: 2,500 scientists went along to get along, and are now proven wrong.

How is that possible? We're dealing with a hypothesis that has to explain many complex variables. You can't test it in a lab. You have to test in the field over decades, or even longer.

So far AGW hasn't even fit the data of the last decade -- it's been 180 degrees off, actually. Not a surprise actually, if you accept that the books were cooked.

Climate science is immature. It's long-dated, by necessity. Mann & Co's theories look to have gone from gospel to the dustbin in less than 20 years. That's a fraction of a second on the geological clock.  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 02:43:00 PM:

That's exactly what we're saying: 2,500 scientists went along to get along, and are now proven wrong.

So all of them for more than a decade along with the peer review process involving thousands of more researchers and editors and others all missed this?

They are all corrupt? Consciously or not? Greed. Power. Money. Fame. Peer pressure. Approval. Notoriety.

And none of them blew the whistle?

Again, I'll respect that judgment but I simply don't believe it.  

By Anonymous Mr. Ed, at Sun Nov 29, 02:52:00 PM:

Are we to believe that all the men of science, and all the clergy, being far more educated in matters of the Heavens than other members of society, could be wrong, all of them wrong, about something so fundamental as to whether the sun revolves around the earth?

When it comes to deniers, my favorite was Galileo Galilei.

Men of science have been known on many occasions to have headed in the wrong direction, even in mass, realized it, and then come completely about in the reverse direction.

Change we can believe in.

M.E.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 03:05:00 PM:

So all of them for more than a decade along with the peer review process involving thousands of more researchers and editors and others all missed this?

That would be the peer reviews that the released emails have shown are being jaw boned, yes? Freezing out editors and publications that don't toe the line?

Also, how many of these "peer reviewed" articles are based on, ahem, normalized data provided by CRU? Aren't they the leading institution for that kind of historical data? Wasn't CRU responsible for 25% of all data provided the IPCC? Seems to me, the sensible thing to do would be to demand all raw data be released along with the code that normalized that data. I see no reason to trust anyone who does not do exactly this.  

By Blogger Simon Kenton, at Sun Nov 29, 03:11:00 PM:

"This was surely a mistake, but do you remember what computer data was like in the 1980s? Do you have all your 8 inch or 5 1/4 inch discs from then? Did you back up everything you should have done?"

-- Don Cox

This is not what computerized natural resource data were like in the 1980s. In fact, it was in the late 80s that we put on CD

-- the USGS daily and peak streamflow values,
-- WATSTORE
-- the National Climate Data Center's Summary of the Day, Hourly, and Quarter Hourly datasets.

Some of these datasets go back more than 200 years. You can see the data products at

http://www.hydrodata.net/

The source data was tapes, not floppies. Perhaps this remark is true for the datasets from other countries, but it is poppycock for US surface data.

Once we had the data it was of interest to take some first-cut whacks at it with spreadsheet analysis. As of the late 80s, (1) long-term rural stations betrayed no discernible up-trend in temperature (2) the signal/noise ratio (in this case, the annual variance) completely overwhelmed the highest predicted AGW increases, and 3) beginning in the 20s the urban heat island effect was pronounced for all long-term urban-station data sequences.

Note - I have not been associated with these efforts in 20 years, and have no financial interest in the company and successor company which still produce these products.  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 03:13:00 PM:

At the very least we (the US? UN? someone) need to have a type of "Team A vs. Team B" examination of this science.

It simply is not possible to make the fundamental changes in our lives that AGW proponents say is necessary when there are these critical questions about the science left out there.

I'm sceptical of the sceptics but increasingly sceptical of the non-sceptics. Enough to say before we make these far-ranging changes, "I need more evidence."  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 03:18:00 PM:

What's been a recent revelation to me is that such a small clique had such control over the data, the computer modeling and the peer review process. You'd only need twenty or so to pull this off. Their names are all over the e-mails. A few names keep popping up -- Michael Mann's included. Without his hockey stick, there'd be no "Inconvenient Truth", no Al Gore Nobel Prize. Mann's hockey stick has already been debunked, which in retrspect should have gotten more attention.

We recently had a similar phenomenon in our mortgage crisis. A critical juncture was when the rating agencies agreed around 2003 to look at mortgages with little or no downpayments no differently than those with traditional 20% downpayments. A few years of data supported this conclusion -- and it was profitable for all concerned to go along. But the data came from a short timeframe that enjoyed low interest rates and a rising real estate market. A very small group of people were involved in creating this new paradigm, but for several years thousands of our leaders in business and government accepted it. mostly without thinking. This had enormous consequences because mortgage securitizations are built on models that project defaults and losses. If defaults are higher than expected, assumptions about what's AAA blow up. This has cascaded through trillions of financial paper we created this decade.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Sun Nov 29, 03:27:00 PM:

SMGalbraith Do critics (I won't use the loaded "denialist" term) of AGW actually believe that more than 2,500 scientists from around the world over the past decade, if not longer, have overlooked or denied or ignored (whatever characterization you wish to use) contradictory evidence of AGW?

Put it this way. If they used the corrupted CRU data, their conclusions are invalid until proven otherwise. Original data is lost, and the data has been massaged all over the place: BY THE ADMISSIONS OF THE CRU PROGRAMMERS, TO BEGIN WITH.
Like they say: garbage in, garbage out.

Instead of going on and on about "more than 2,500 scientists," you would be advised to find us some research that did not use CRU data. Then that can be discussed.

And regarding the CRU losing the original data, of the two possibilities: charlatans or incompetents, I am inclined to believe charlatans. I work in transforming data into more workable forms, and I would never consider throwing out the originals. In fact, I have the originals or copies of them in three different places, just for safekeeping. Two copies are read-only, and off the computer so they cannot be tampered with, and will not be lost if the hard drive goes down.

They are all corrupt? Consciously or not? Greed. Power. Money. Fame. Peer pressure. Approval. Notoriety.And none of them blew the whistle?
You are setting up a straw man. Those responsible at the CRU are corrupt, yes. Most of those who used the CRU data did so in good faith, not realizing it had been massaged out of all recognition. Such researchers are not corrupt, but their results are corrupted because they used corrupt data.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 03:34:00 PM:

"At the very least we (the US? UN? someone) need to have a type of "Team A vs. Team B" examination of this science."

Did you read the Booker article? The thousands of AGW articles rest on the CRU dataset that was "adjusted" and then the originals were destroyed. No "examination" is now possible.

Statistical examinations of the data provided over the years have several times brought charges of manipulation forward, and those "teams" are now shown correct.  

By Anonymous Stephen Burgoyne Coulson, at Sun Nov 29, 03:50:00 PM:

They do not say that they destroyed the data, simply that they do not hold it. The original data would have come from other researchers and would be held by them. There is no responsibility for other agencies to hold that data for the original owners.

The CRU only holds the results that it generated, which is all that it is really obliged to or has the right to hold.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Sun Nov 29, 05:03:00 PM:

Stephen Burgoyne Coulson, at Sun Nov 29, 03:50:00 PM:
They do not say that they destroyed the data, simply that they do not hold it.
From the article:
SCIENTISTS at the University of East Anglia (UEA) have admitted throwing away much of the raw temperature data on which their predictions of global warming are based.
Such fine parsing of the English language. So throwing away is not destroying. OK. When you ultimately delete, you destroy. And “delete” is the term used in computer speak, not throw out.
Those who transform data and do not "hold on" to the original in order to show how the transformation was done are either charlatans or fools.In either case, they have lost credibility. Neither a charlatan nor a fool is credible.

Granted, one may be able to find the original data using sources from which the CRU collected the data, but that does not change the fact that the CRU messed up big time.

The CRU only holds the results that it generated, which is all that it is really obliged to or has the right to hold.
So the CRU is not obliged to show the world how it generated the numbers it generated. If one does not have the original data set, one may as well conclude they generated those numbers out of a hat, which judging by the programmer's comments, is what they did to a large degree.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 05:04:00 PM:

Again, this is pure bunk. Even if the worldwide data sharing agreements CRU signed didn't specifically state they were to preserve the data (and I'd bet they did specify that), CRU was required to preserve the data for scientific purposes. Without the source data no one can effectively replicate or challenge their "results". That's ridiculous, and it also is no basis for doing science. Hence, they were obligated to keep the data if they have any scientific pretension.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 05:06:00 PM:

That last comment referred to the Coulson comment.  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 06:31:00 PM:

You are setting up a straw man. Those responsible at the CRU are corrupt, yes. Most of those who used the CRU data

No straw man. Just asking a question for those that reject AGW out of hand. I.e., How can we explain a decades-plus long study involving thousands of scientists from dozens of countries leading to such fundamentally incorrect conclusions?

Greed? Confirmation bias? Peer pressure? Libido sciendi?

This involves more than the CRU data. E.g., studies showing sea levels rising, arctic melting, others events indicating a warming of the planet some (much? all?) of it caused by human activity.

All of it wrong? Or caused by the sun? Or natural unseen causes?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 06:46:00 PM:

Sounds like SMGalbraith is moving from "denial" into "bargaining." Can "depression" and "acceptance" be far behind?  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 07:12:00 PM:

Sounds like SMGalbraith is moving from "denial" into "bargaining." Can "depression" and "acceptance" be far behind?

Hah, good.

I've stated from the start (in this thread and elsewhere) that I believe that the weight of evidence supports AGW.

Still do.

But there's no doubt that these revelations cause me pause. Enough to say that before we make the sweeping changes that AGW advocates say we need to take that further re-analysis must be done.

Until this entire matter is settled, we need to wait.

No denial, no bargaining, no resignation; just asking the doctor for a second opinion.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Sun Nov 29, 07:35:00 PM:

SMGalbraith:
I previously stated:
Instead of going on and on about "more than 2,500 scientists," you would be advised to find us some research that did not use CRU data. Then that can be discussed.

Instead of answering this, you simply rephrased your previous sentence, thusly: How can we explain a decades-plus long study involving thousands of scientists from dozens of countries leading to such fundamentally incorrect conclusions?

I refer you to my previous posting: garbage in , garbage out. If you use bad data,- and the CRU data is definitely bad data ( good old fudge factors, throwing out raw data),you come up with bad conclusions. I already answered your question: you ignored it.

I repeat my point. FIND the research papers that do NOT use CRU data. SHOW us that they do not use any data from the CRU. While the CRU is the Big Kahuna in global warming data, it has been totally discredited. No reputable research organization throws out raw data that is the base for subsequent publication.Period. Science deals with verifiable results, which is rather hard to do when the raw data has been thrown out.

At this stage, the onus is on the AGW proponents to show a given research paper did not use the corrupted CRU data.Then we can discuss them.

You have brought up the "How can 2,500 scientists be wrong" meme in different phrasing around five times so far in the past few days. Your "how can 2500 scientists be wrong" meme reminded of the " XX million people can't be wrong" meme that comes up when one side loses an election. (For at least the third time: they can be wrong when they use bad data, when they produce results that cannot be verified...)  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 07:43:00 PM:

refer you to my previous posting: garbage in , garbage out. If you use bad data,- and the CRU data is definitely bad data ( good old fudge factors, throwing out raw data),you come up with bad conclusions. I already answered your question: you ignored it.

Sorry, I can't do the reading for you. You have to make an effort on this matter.

There are dozens if not hundreds of sites on the internet that publish this material. Material - studies, research, analysis - on this topic that, as I understand it (note the qualifier; I didn't interview each and every author) did not use this corrupt data.

Science magazine, Journal of Atmospheric Science, Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, Journal of Geophysical Research et cetera et cetera.

Good luck and happy hunting.  

By Blogger SMGalbraith, at Sun Nov 29, 08:02:00 PM:

Here, for example, is a 1991 article in the Journal of Climate magazine examining how higher amounts of sulfur dioxide in the atmosphere may reduce - reduce - the projected increase in global temperature caused by higher CO2 levels.

Link: http://ams.allenpress.com/perlserv/?request=get-abstract&doi=10.1175%2F1520-0442%281993%29006%3C1241%3AMSOTCC%3E2.0.CO%3B2

In 1991 they were projecting increases in global temperature due to greenhouse games.

The CRU data has simply not corrupted all of the science on this matter.

More at the link.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Sun Nov 29, 08:42:00 PM:

So SMGalbraith, why do you believe that "the weight of evidence supports AGW?"

Until recently, I wasn't a harsh critic of AGW. But because of the politics, my BS meter had started to register.

Then I did some digging. I was surprised that AGW was built on only the last 1,000 years. That it didn't want to connect with what's known about Ice Ages. That it ignored any effects of the Sun, a fortiori. That it relied on computer modeled projections of many variables. Then I dug into flaws in the data, the debunked hockey stick, etc. Surprisingly, for a long time now most of the adverse facts have been out there to be found. For me it put AGW into serious doubt. It's not as if we've seen the oceans rise a foot, have we? The clincher was when people like Brian always had too pat an answer ... my BS meter went to 11. You don't have to be Colombo.

To amplify an earlier point, bad data and groupthink foreclosed pursuit of alternative theories. As these studies weren't pursued, they never got a chance to be published. If you were an aspiring climatologist at anytime over the last two decades, you wouldn't have been supported to study the effects of sunspots etc. etc. Had you tried, you'd have been confronted with a mass of bad data that would have proved you were wrong before you even started. You'd likely have been ostracized for even raising the idea. So the scales to weigh the evidence were all one-sided.

Mann & Co have set back their field by at least a generation.

Are you listening Brian? I want to go medieval warming on their ass and yours ... a pair of pliers and a blowtorch.

Climategate for me just explains how we got to where we are. Too few people had control of the data, the models and the entire process. There's precedent for this ... Lysenkoism ruined Russian agriculture for a generation.  

By Anonymous Boludo Tejano, at Sun Nov 29, 10:08:00 PM:

Myself: I repeat my point. FIND the research papers that do NOT use CRU data.

SMGalbraith: Sorry, I can't do the reading for you. You have to make an effort on this matter.
So you are asking ME to find material which proves YOUR point. Nice.
You DID go to the effort to locate a study . Thank you. Unfortunately for you, the paper proves my point: CRU data has corrupted a lot of climate research papers.

SMGalbraith:
Here, for example, is a 1991 article in the Journal of Climate magazine examining how higher amounts of sulfur dioxide in the atmosphere may reduce - reduce - the projected increase in global temperature caused by higher CO2 levels….In 1991 they were projecting increases in global temperature due to greenhouse games.The CRU data has simply not corrupted all of the science on this matter.

You thought you found a resarch paper that did NOT use CRU data.

I went to the abstract you linked to:Model Simulations of the Competing Climatic Effects of SO2 and CO2. And I quote:
The model predicts that by the year 2060 the SO2 cooling reduces climate warming by 0.5°C or 25% for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) business as usual (BAU) scenario and 0.2°C or 20% for scenario D (for a slow pace of fossil fuel burning).
I downloaded and printed out the complete paper .The authors use IPCC scenarios for graphs on pages 1244, 1246,1248, and 1249.

Where does the IPCC get its data? From the CRU, for the most part. Example: from the IPCC website we find the following web page with the following header: Download 30-Year means of the CRU data. If you use IPCC data, odds are overwhelming you are using data the IPCC got from the CRU.

Like I said, the CRU is the Big Kahuna. It would be a challenge to find a global warming paper in the last 20 years that did not use its data in some form.  

By Anonymous davod, at Mon Nov 30, 12:42:00 AM:

"As these studies weren't pursued, they never got a chance to be published."

Some studies were pusued but the scientists wre hounded out of polite (Conforming) society.

"Obama’s Science Czar John Holdren involved in unwinding “Climategate”

"Baliunas and Soon were authors of excellent work confirming the existence of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) from a multitude of sources. Their work challenged attempts to get rid of the MWP because it contradicted the claim by the proponents of anthropogenic global warming (AGW). Several scientists challenged the claim that the latter part of the 20th century was the warmest ever. They knew the claim was false, many warmer periods occurred in the past. Michael Mann ‘got rid’ of the MWP with his production of the hockey stick, but Soon and Baliunas were problematic. What better than have a powerful academic destroy their credibility for you? Sadly, there are always people who will do the dirty work.”


Go to the link to see what Holdren did.

Remember Obama's promise to take the politics out of science?  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Nov 30, 12:43:00 AM:

Q: "What if these wholly discredited "scientists" who threw away their raw data and are asking us to change the world on their say-so are actually right?:

A: "Then we try to do something -- starting with the quick/cheap/easy SO2 plume scheme that's been floating around. That buys us some time on the cheap."

Yes, I think that about nails it. We'll do something.

But what about other problems? Are there any that at present trump the possibility that AGW may be true, Climategate notwithstanding?

For example: What if we find out a huge asteroid's on a collision course with earth? Now, that seems at least as possible as AGW's being real, AND (I think) it would represent a far bigger (and certain) threat than the planet's possibly warming by a few degrees, no?

Or how about the spread of radical Islam in Western democracies? Unlike AGW, we know this problem actually exists, as radical Muslims are perfectly clear about their goals vis-a-vis the west. Well, I don't share those goals, and I think most of my fellow-Americans would agree with me, IF they knew what was going on.

So, since the problem of radical Islam's cancerous growth in the west (a) is verifiable and (b) clearly has the potential to become even nastier in the future if swept under the rug today, shouldn't educating our citizenry about radical Islam be prioritized over possibly-nonexistent AGW?

Also, tangentially, wouldn't our dollars and time be better spent preparing for a germ or nuclear terrorist attack than they would be on AGW? After all, given what we *know*...

"What if?" is a fine question, as are most questions. But given what AGW's leading proponents have been caught doing, it seems to me that some what-ifs are more important to address than others.

Not that we won't look into the matter of AGW -- but I think a little common-sense prioritizing is in order.  

By Blogger JPMcT, at Mon Nov 30, 01:08:00 AM:

Regarding "peer review".

The two sine-qua-nons of a successfully vetted scientific article are:

1. Independent confirmation of the data and result.
2. A prospective study using the suggested theorum successfully predicts the behaviour of the subject.

As far as I can see, we are 0 for 2 here with AGW.

Also, peer-review is (or at least used to be) an independent process. Anybody with a "dog in the fight" - a contract, salaried position, ownership of stock, any vested interest - must declare that interest when he writes a scientific rebuttal.

It would seem that these guys declared their vested interest...they just did so in private e-mails between themselves.

Frankly, being skeptical of just about everything, I did not see this AGW foolishness ending well. I simply don't think that there are a sufficient number of idiots in the general population to pull this con. I guess, given our current educational prowess, they should try again in about 20 years.

We should be about ready by then.  

By Blogger Dave Minnich, at Mon Nov 30, 01:45:00 AM:

"So all of them for more than a decade along with the peer review process involving thousands of more researchers and editors and others all missed this?

They are all corrupt? Consciously or not? Greed. Power. Money. Fame. Peer pressure. Approval. Notoriety."

Well, this is the problem with non-experimental "science". Without the hard irrefutable evidence of controlled experiments, any field of study can become politicized, especially when trillions of dollars are at stake. Peer review, designed for quality control, instead becomes an enforcement of the party line. Sorry to burst your bubble, but yes, many fields of scientific study have become almost hopelessly corrupted by money and politics.  

By Blogger Georgfelis, at Mon Nov 30, 12:44:00 PM:

Actually the CRU had an accidental deletion on the tape that stored the data. It seems that 18 ½ minutes of the tape was erased when Rose Mary Woods accidently hit the record button. “The buttons said on and off, forward and backward. I caught on to that fairly fast. I don't think I'm so stupid as to erase what's on a tape”. Full details are found on the documentary Iowahawk Geographic: The Secret Life of Climate Researchers

See. Just an accident. No intentional data deletion here. Move along.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Nov 30, 05:04:00 PM:

It certainly looks like a desperate act, like so many other lies,that politics CONSIST of. The risk of having these data centralised is obvious. That brings to mind another equally strange arrangement; the guy who owns the cameras (Nasa cant afford their own?) that is fotografing Mars, has the "right" NOT to publish the findings for at least 6 months!  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Nov 30, 05:18:00 PM:

If those experts in climate had ever LOOKED at the climate outside their papers and graphs, that is in the real world, they could have done us all a favour and detected the CHEM-TRAILS that have a profound influence, here and now, on the population having millions of tonnes of Barium,Aluminium, Strontium and organic tissues from green monkeys poured over their heads for 10 (ten) years now.Climate-changes may be attempted with the H.A.A.R.P.-system, but more and more it seems that the "responsible" powers are "mad scientists" who have no idea about what they are fumbling with, and even less of the consequences.  

By Blogger Forrest Higgs, at Mon Nov 30, 11:50:00 PM:

It is ironic that a research unit empowered to reconstruct historical climate is, if you are charitable, incapable of reconstructing its own weather datasets.

I think that "Professor" Jones did exactly what he threatened to do in his emails, viz, destroyed his datasets so that his data cooking couldn't be proved.  

By Blogger Noumenon, at Tue Dec 01, 08:49:00 AM:

When I learned from Kevin Drum that the data destruction took place in the 1980s, that part of the post suddenly looks like someone misled TigerHawk on purpose to think it was recent.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tue Dec 01, 12:18:00 PM:

Data destruction sounds sexy, but it's missing the elephant in the room.

Everything Mann & Co has done is based on their 1,000 year temperature history. If this data is bad, their science is bad. It's that simple. Their data is mostly based on tree rings.

By 1998, many of these guys had invested years and even decades of work based on tree ring data. It's in 1998 that the "divergence problem" was first recognized: starting in 1960, tree ring data diverted from actual instrument readings.

This is actual scientific proof that tree ring data is suspect. If tree rings don't work for the last 40 years, why do we think they'd work over the last 1,000. If the tree ring-based data is suspect, everything that Mann & Co have done is suspect. QED There are other issues with their metholdolgies, but this is fundamental. This is the elepahnt in the room.

They say that the "trick" to "hide the decline" was over how to splice the old tree ring data with new data from instruments. So they're not denying the elpehant in the room. They just hope we don't see it.  

By Blogger TigerHawk, at Tue Dec 01, 12:20:00 PM:

Noumenon - I certainly knew the information had been discarded in the 1980s -- that much is clear. So, no, nobody who has paid attention thinks that this is all some contemporaneous cover-up.

But...

1. This fact was published by CRU on its web site in August, and only bloggers reported it. the legacy media farted it off, presumably intentionally, because it is huge news that the thousands of adjustments that in effect created the famous "hockey stick" chart are not reproducible. The rather comprehensive suppression of this story by the media (to the point that the Times of London reported it as if it were new when 5 seconds on Google would have revealed otherwise) until it became uncontainable is itself "interesting," to say the least.

2. The story has enormous policy implications, because we now have to take these adjustments to the original on faith, and that faith has to reside in people who have now been revealed in emails to be pursuing a particular outcome.  

By Blogger Noumenon, at Tue Dec 01, 12:29:00 PM:

Okay, I guess it was just me who misread "we just learned about it" as "it just happened." You're right, it's about as important either way (except it doesn't look as ideologically motivated any more).  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Dec 02, 01:17:00 AM:

No respectable scientist, engineer or researcher would EVER destroy the original data. The entire purpose of publishing results in science journals is not only to inform the scientific community about your discoveries, but to allow your scientific 'peers' to evaluate your methods, your theories and your results. This allows other scientists to reproduce the results through their own means. If your discoveries don't hold up to scrutiny (ie. your results can't be reproduced), it may mean there is a flaw in your experiment or your analysis. Allowing others to review your work ensures there are no errors or falsehoods.

This is just how the scientific community works. It is very open. The type of 'research' the CRU performs is not science. It is a dictatorship on beliefs that does not allow the real scientific community to review their work.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Dec 02, 02:10:00 PM:

I agree with that last completely.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Dec 02, 02:17:00 PM:

By the way, I no longer buy the New York Times (hoping to add my little pittance to forcing the Sulzbergers to get real jobs as a result), but I assume the Newspaper of Record's lead story this week in Science Times was on this subject. This is the Madoff of science scams, after all.

So, they published...right?  

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