Some questions for the BoM’s FOI executive

Warwick Hughes’ request under the Australian Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), has been declined by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) on the grounds that it might divulge information supplied “under an obligation of confidentiality” by a foreign Government to the Australian Federal Government.

The Court ruling which established this exemption to the FOIA dealt with a case involving intelligence-sharing with the Australian Security Intelligence Office (ASIO). In contrast, Mr Hughes’ case dealt with old weather records.

Several questions arise

1. Did NIWA impose an obligation of confidentiality on the Bureau?

It seems clear that neither party even thought about confidentiality until the request was made. Continue Reading →

Lindzen dismisses Hansen’s defamations

Tobacco/cancer comment mere malicious slur

Answers his critic as a true gentleman

See UPDATE below

I was disturbed about the comments I posted last night from a member of ‘Slick’ Hansen’s audience in Massey the previous evening. In an astonishing, unprovoked outburst, Hansen suddenly turned on the absent Dr Dick Lindzen, besmirching his character with outright lies. After trying to verify Hansen’s claim that Dr Lindzen doesn’t believe smoking causes cancer, I sent Lindzen the following email.

Dick’s reply is most thoughtfully written and I commend it for your consideration. As an outstanding example of fine thinking under personal pressure it’s a pleasure to publish it. Jim Hansen should be ashamed of himself for repeating misleading slurs and outright lies. I’m certainly ashamed of him. Continue Reading →

What are the Aussies hiding?

Australian storm

In Australia, Warwick Hughes has followed with interest our attempts to obtain from NIWA details of their adjustments to the NZ temperature record. When the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) supplied a letter apparently certifying the Bureau’s “peer review” of NIWA’s review of the temperature record, he noted our complaint that “there must be more than this.”

Hearing of my request to NIWA for records relating to that review by the Bureau, he was minded to help. So, back in February, he filed a Freedom Of Information (FOI) request with the Australian Information Commissioner.

In response to that FOI request, the Bureau submitted to the Information Commissioner a Schedule of Documents dated 6 May 2011.

Somebody at the Bureau has put in hours of work tracking these documents down, describing them, analysing their relevance to Warwick’s request and assessing whether they met the provisions for exemption. Well done, them.

The schedule describes 159 relevant documents, amounting to several thousand pages, and what do you know? The BoM claims full exemption from the FOI Act in respect of every single page! Who could have predicted that? Continue Reading →

Slick Jim Hansen slanders Lindzen

he has nothing else — his climate predictions have failed

he’s a disgrace

James Hansen under arrest

I received a report about Hansen’s address at Massey last night. Don says:

I have just returned from James Hansen’s lecture at Massey. The Japan Lecture Theatre was packed; I didn’t count, but there were probably about 200 people in the audience.

At the end I got to ask a question. I was very polite, and said how grateful we all were that such a distinguished expert had come to talk to us about his beliefs, but I was concerned that his whole talk rested on the premise that the science is settled. He had said the only dissenters are those in the pay of the oil industry, and I expressed regret that they hadn’t offered any lucre to me.

Dr Richard Lindzen

His reply was polite, but condescending. He conceded there are a few scientists whose chronic skepticism blinds them to the truth. For example, he said, he knows Richard Lindzen, who is a nice guy, but doesn’t dare, when he’s with other scientists, talk the kind of nonsense he writes in his newspaper columns. Also, Lindzen has never accepted that tobacco causes cancer, so obviously his judgement can’t be trusted.

Afterwards a few members of the audience came up and thanked me for what I had said.

The belief is strong in that one

Thanks for that, Don. That’s an intriguing look into ‘Slick’ Hansen’s attitudes. Continue Reading →