James Renwick has confirmed by email that he did not blame global warming for the recent drought. 10:00 pm 16 May 2013
First I defended Rodney. Later I pointed out that the NBR took exactly the same message from Renwick’s interview as Rodney had. It reported: “Dr Renwick told the programme that global warming was the only explanation for the drought.” In a detailed analysis of the interview and its introduction I show how this was the reasonable conclusion.
Now, our reader Andy has turned up a TVNZ press release dated 17 March that fully corroborates NBR’s interpretation, Rodney’s and mine. TVNZ states it as clearly as the NBR did:
Dr Renwick told the programme that global warming was the only explanation for the drought, saying the average around which temperatures vary is changing and will be hotter over time.
Some have noted that the interview doesn’t seem to mention the drought — at least not as broadcast. For instance, David says: “I have gone over the transcript and nowhere does Dr Renwick say “that global warming was the only explanation for the drought.”
Nonetheless, viewing the video clip, especially including Susan Wood’s introduction, it appears from the participants’ body language, timing and tone of voice that Renwick was asked about the drought and answered accordingly.
However, this impression was mistaken, as James has confirmed.