Suspended at Hot Topic!

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It seems I inspire anxiety in warmist minds around the world. Real Climate, home of the infamous Mike (the Hockey Stick) Mann, and Tamino at her blog, Open Mind, have both banned me for asking questions, and now at the little-known New Zealand warmist site, Hot Topic, I have been “suspended”!

I argued with a silly, alarmist story at Hot Topic about a tiny rise in atmospheric methane levels. I knew I risked a high level of personal abuse, and that I had already been declared “unwelcome”, but I was unwilling to let such unfounded, anxiety-peddling nonsense go unchallenged.

Here is the comment with which Gareth Renowden greeted my first remarks this morning (the first comment of mine at that site for a number of weeks):

[Richard: Until you withdraw your shonky “report” on NIWA’s temp record and apologise for smearing the reputations of senior scientists you remain unwelcome here. GR]

And this, dear reader, is what the redoubtable Bryan Walker has done to my response to others’ comments at about 1:10 this afternoon:

Bryan Walker February 25, 2010 at 1:33 pm
Richard, I have put your latest comment on hold until Gareth returns this evening and can decide what to do about it. So far as I am aware you remain unwelcome on this site, but your appearance caught me by surprise and I’ve let your first comment stand since it has attracted other comments. Please make no further comment in the meantime.

Until the great man returns to apply some much-needed reason to the problem of my comments, you can read them here:

Gareth, I thought you were on holiday, how nice to see you put in an appearance.

“unwelcome here” – yes, yes. I always was, nothing new. It seems to be what comes of being reasonable amongst the unreasoning.

You complain, again, about our paper, but do you know that NIWA acknowledge our reasoning? They are, actually, reconstructing the very schedule of adjustments that we asked for and have already published all the adjustments for the seven-station series, along with a detailed discussion of reasoning for Hokitika and notes on Nelson. You may not have noticed that.

We don’t need to apologise. Nobody else in New Zealand thought to investigate the matter; their lack of imagination is not our responsibility, but they might say sorry we didn’t think of it. The temperature record is being improved as a result of our efforts, which should please everyone, don’t you think?

Nobody wanted either a faulty or an unsubstantiated record forming the basis of important public policy and expenditure, surely? Don’t forget, we don’t care about warming or cooling, only accuracy.

Kiwiiano and others,

The relative contribution of methane to the greenhouse effect (including water vapour, which most people conveniently ignore) seems to be about 0.36%. Please note that that says nothing about an anthropogenic contribution.

An increase to this small effect of 0.4% is quite properly described as trivial, despite your protests. It is incredible that permafrost, far below freezing, might have been melted by the “near-zero” global warming recorded so far this millenium, although there may be some being caused by regional warming, but so what?

There has been no evidence offered of the cause of the increase, but unless the total methane concentration of about 1750 ppb was all produced by human activities, then human activities can have been responsible for only some unknown portion of the 0.4%. No cause for concern has been established. You seem to be wasting your time.


Try to address the topic.


Please stop ignoring water vapour, the most amazing greenhouse/thermostatic/life-giving gas we know!

You should know that our paper rebuts nothing. Scientifically, there’s very little to it, please read it. It shows NIWA have made adjustments, which they did not mention or describe anywhere, it lists and graphs the adjustments and it asks what those adjustments are for — nothing more. There are some strongly-expressed opinions, but so what? You find them here, too, nobody cries that you should apologise! Those opinions helped to get them talking to our scientists after thirty years — three decades! — of discourteous silence.

As I mention above, they have responded to the pressure and are now working on providing the adjustments we asked for. Well done, them.


It’s not much, is it? From the response, you’d think we’d committed a crime. The only crime I can identify is a certain bunch of public so-called “servants” in charge of NIWA engaging in pervasive obstruction and citing references to us and the New Zealand public which proved to be entirely empty. They said the material we sought was there and it was not there.

One day soon they must account for that. They must also account for misleading their minister in guiding him to false replies to the Parliament.

In my “suspended” comments there is nothing untrue, insolent or vaguely insulting. I wonder what gives Walker and co. such difficulty with it? Could it be the simplicity of the facts? Could it be that they cannot stomach the fact that we’re getting a good response from NIWA? Could it be that they hate the idea that “sceptical” thinkers have achieved something useful?

In a day or two I might check back there to find out what Renowden decided tonight.

UPDATE 3:15 pm:

I threw caution to the wind and posted a further comment. We’ll see what happens.

Screen dump from Hot Topic

UPDATE 4:00 pm:

My comment lasted about an hour before being deleted.

Views: 417

8 Thoughts on “Suspended at Hot Topic!

  1. You continue to ignore that your “paper” was discredited. It’s claim of no site effects and no need for adjustments (the whole basis of the paper and justification for your attacks on NIWA) was shown wrong.

    You refuse requests to provide methodology that you used (my analysis so far indicates something wrong with your calculation of anomalies in recent years) or the spreadsheet used. This despite initially agreeing to supply this.

    So, your report has been discredited, you obviously don’t have any confidence in it yourself (why else deny requests for information) and your “science team” (which initially you denied was involved) “wishes to remain anonymous.

    What a fiasco.

    But, then again, your aren’t interested in the science are you? Your admit you have political agendas.

    For that science can be sacrificed!

  2. Ken,

    Its claim of no site effects and no need for adjustments (the whole basis of the paper and justification for your attacks on NIWA) was shown wrong.

    Our paper does not say what you allege. It says that NIWA gave no reasons for adjustments, NIWA did not reveal the size of the adjustments and NIWA didn’t even mention that adjustments had been made.

    Your continual statements about our paper are far from the truth and you have no evidence for them.

    Our report tells the truth and cannot be discredited. Tell me one false thing that it says. Look at the individual station graphs and tell me where NIWA gives the sizes and reasons for those adjustments.

    That’s all we want. By the way, NIWA are now working on giving us that very information.

  3. Richard – you are being disingenuous. Surely your memory is not that bad. We have been through this several times. Why not face up to the facts, acknowledge your mistakes (as Vincent Gray did) and apologise?

    However, in the interests of other readers I will place again your words against the misinformation of “Our paper does not say what you allege” I quote from your discredited report:

    ““the station histories are unremarkable. There are no reasons for any large corrections.”
    and of course you went on to produce graphs ignoring the real site effects (Even you now acknowledge that there are site effects and adjustments are necessary – as does your mate conspiracy theorist Ian Wishart).

    Your report also included the following hysterical statements:
    Scientists “created a warming effect where none existed.” That “the shocking truth is that the oldest readings were cranked way down and later readings artificially lifted to give a false impression of warming.” And “we have discovered that the warming in New Zealand over the past 156 years was indeed man-made, but it had nothing to do with emission of CO2 – it was created by man-made adjustments of the temperature. It’s a disgrace.”

    Come on Richard. You can’t have it both ways.

    Or will you deny that the words I have quoted are in your report.

    Truth will always win in the end.

  4. Pingback: Climate Conversation Group » Our paper is misinterpreted — have you read it?

  5. Ken,

    You’ve partly inspired a whole post.

  6. Hi Richard, you are now using diversion as a tactic to try to distract from the fact that I undermined your whole argument about 7ppb pa being “nothing”.

    The Water Vapour Challenge (Watergate?) is covered well by Crock of the Week it was first known to be an important gas by Tyndall in the 19th Century. By the 1950’s it was well understood how it could be that CO2 and CH4 could have a warming effect despite water absorbing most of the spectrum at sea level. You might like to try reading a history book on global warming, your ignorance is showing (to be charitable).

    • Hi Sam, thanks for dropping in. And thanks for being charitable!

      Methane is not acting as a poison, so your analogy is inapt. It’s the heat capacity we’re interested in, nothing more. As for the argument being about the existence of a greenhouse effect: pish tosh! What a straw man. I’ve never argued with it, just disagreed it will ever be dangerous. It never was in the past.

  7. Pingback: Sorry seems to be the hardest word

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