NIWA’s ghastly blunders — now read the official letters

NIWA Wellington office

NIWA blundered in not keeping track of some important records that justify the country’s warming since the 19th Century, even if it inherited the problem from its predecessor in the Met Service, or the early behaviour of Jim Salinger, who did the work. It blundered again when, instead of being honest, it attacked the CCG and the NZCSC when we asked to know the Schedule of Adjustments.

Now NIWA has admitted in writing that it lost the original data. This settles our original question for the moment and sets them free to go about repairing the situation. Their general counsel, Tim Mahood, made the admission a few days ago, and here’s the letter to prove it.

The NZ Climate Science Coalition had asked NIWA under the Official Information Act last December for the details of the adjustments. This is the original request.

Finally, here’s the hard-hitting letter the Coalition sent back to Mr Mahood, setting out the defects in his official OIA response the day before. Have a look at it — it’s dynamite.

Now we’re waiting for them to finish re-creating the adjustments to the NZ temperature record and to post them on their web site. They told us today it should happen this month. We’re on tenterhooks and can’t wait to have a look at it.

A month ago, when Hot Topic was berating us as unscientific and demolishing our case against NIWA, how many people thought our request was unjustified? How many thought NIWA could do no wrong? How many will apologise to us? Yet who has proved truly scientific? Who has helped to actually improve New Zealand’s temperature record?

For that will be the long-term result of our efforts. What a wonderful thing!

Having (no doubt painfully) admitted to losing Salinger’s working documents, NIWA is now free to pick up what old records it has and work on them afresh. Without the confession the old records must have languished untouched, their taudry reputation defended less and less vigorously by an organisation tarnished by its neglect of verity. A new spirit of honesty will invigorate the place, for truth sets everybody free. The result must be a more accurate dataset and more confident predictions for the future.

I wonder what Hot Topic makes of that?