A letter sent to the NZ Herald on 25 August that remains unpublished.
In “Exercise degrees of common sense“, on Wednesday August 18, Brian Rudman loses his journalistic poise and jeers gracelessly at the “flat-earth” members of the NZ Climate Science Coalition.
When he asserts that they deny “man-made global warming” he is dead wrong. He is welcome to interview us, which might stop him from consulting his imagination. The Coalition does not dispute that human activity possibly has an influence on the climate but it questions the magnitude of that influence.
The IPCC also questions it, for it claims only a 90% to 95% probability of human influence. Note that is an opinion without evidence, unless one considers flawed climate models to be evidence.
The Coalition knows there are good reasons to adjust temperature records; Rudman ignores the fact that, rather than challenging NIWA for making changes, we just asked them what the changes were. He should wonder why they have still not told us. If they did, we would promptly stop asking for them.
He might also wonder why NIWA repeatedly give the example of an altitude change to the Thorndon/Kelburn temperature record, when they didn’t actually make any altitude-based changes to any stations.
Rudman’s reference to “mystery money-bags funding the coalition” is offensive nonsense. Members analyse, consult and write about climate matters in their own time for no payment. The Coalition is made up of volunteers, it is not wealthy and will rely on fund-raising if the suit must go to court.
The only “money-bags” able to buy staff and consultants in the climate debate are the great NGOs like WWF and Greenpeace, with annual budgets of around $600 million each. The giant enviros far out-muscle the marketing budgets of any group of sceptics. The energy companies climbed aboard the warming bandwagon long ago and don’t fund sceptics.
But our suit is not about the global warming debate. It asks for simple clarity and accuracy in public temperature records. We cannot submit a paper “backing our claims”, as some suggest, because we’re not making any claims — we’re wanting to review the national temperature record and we’re asking a couple of questions that NIWA hasn’t answered.
Since being asked by the Coalition to describe how they obtained the temperature record and finding they were unable to do so, NIWA are recreating it from scratch.
The sooner these simple facts are acknowledged by responsible journalists the sooner reason will return to this important matter of public interest. Kiwis deserve to have a national temperature record they can trust but at the moment it is dubious.