Lopsided science or skewed news—you choose

an Argo buoy

An Argo buoy held by Dana Swift, University of Washington.

The NZ Herald reports that one of the world’s leading oceanographers, Professor Dean Roemmich, is in New Zealand to examine data from the Argo floats.

The Herald reporter directing the public perception of climate science, Jamie Morton, claims:

Hundreds of robotic instruments deployed across the South Pacific have begun to reveal dramatic new insights into the impact of climate change upon oceans in our corner of the world. (emphasis added)

He briefly describes the technological marvel of the widely dispersed Argo floats, saying there are enough now “to measure every degree of latitude and longitude of the world’s oceans four times a year.” The lat/long lines form squares about 110 km on a side. So, on average, four floats every year will enter each square—nice accomplishment.

Now for some misdirection. Prof Roemmich asserts that for some time he and colleagues have seen “an ongoing trend of change in the South Pacific Gyre,” saying that the amount of water transported by it over the past decade “had increased about 10 per cent”—the same as in each of the previous two decades.

In the context, you might assume this had been observed by the Argo floats, but you’d be wrong. For a) the numbers of Argo floats became significant only about ten years ago and b) Roemmich says current changes were “mainly being driven by winds,” and the floats are underwater most of the time so they can’t detect the winds.

The good professor asserts: “the changes so far seen in ocean circulation were linked to climate change.”

Of course, just about everything can be “linked” to climate change, but to insinuate that man-made warmth changed the ocean circulation cannot be justified. For neither the Argo floats nor the satellites nor the terrestrial thermometers show any warming for about 20 years, and by what mechanism could that non-existent atmospheric warming influence ocean currents?

Professor Roemmich directly echoes a common theme among warmists eager to persuade the uninformed: that it’s possible for the air significantly to heat the ocean. He seems unaware that the claim defies physics.

Unfortunately for him his false claim also voids his final assertion, that climate change had “contributed to a heavily evidenced warming of oceans over the past 50 years.”

Because if it’s impossible, it did not occur.

He praises New Zealand’s contribution to global oceanography, though:

Without the contribution of NIWA, which has deployed about 1200 floats from its Kaharoa vessel, the Argo programme could not have succeeded, Professor Roemmich said. “New Zealand has been absolutely critical for achieving a global array.”


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56 Thoughts on “Lopsided science or skewed news—you choose

  1. Alexander+K on 17/01/2015 at 1:59 pm said:

    The Herald reporter named should be renamed as the ‘Alarmist’ reporter, as his ‘reportings’ have little connection with science as we understand the term but focus on the theme ‘we’re all gonna die!’.

  2. Andy on 17/01/2015 at 4:37 pm said:

    That is quite a nice photo of the rainbow with the pot of gold at the end of it known as “climate change research funding”

  3. Mike Jowsey on 18/01/2015 at 5:46 pm said:

    So a trend is evident after only 10 years of sparse data. Riiight…. can you say “Cherry Picking”? Speaking of which, a lovely hot dry season has produced the best cherries from my orchard in 6 or 7 years. About time this global warming started working around here! Cheers and cheerio!

    • Richard Treadgold on 18/01/2015 at 6:14 pm said:

      So a trend is evident after only 10 years of sparse data.

      I missed that! Thanks.

      It’s great to hear about your good season!!!

    • Richard C (NZ) on 18/01/2015 at 9:04 pm said:

      >….can you say “Cherry Picking”?

      You can Mike. And good news too.

  4. Andy on 19/01/2015 at 9:58 am said:

    Apparently 2014 has a 38% chance of being the “hottest year ever”.


  5. Andy on 19/01/2015 at 10:45 am said:

    “Dry weather could empty Lake Opuha”

    I am going to write to our leaders and urge them to take action. This is unacceptable. Somebody just has to do something

    • Magoo. on 19/01/2015 at 2:42 pm said:

      That’s a vicious lie, the taniwha’s been drinking it all. Maybe if we pay some more tax and give it to the UN?

  6. Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 9:23 am said:

    New Zealand and Australia 2014 temperature relative to other 21st century years:

    NIWA 7SS
    2000, 12.79
    2001, 12.90 4th
    2002, 12.67
    2003, 12.62
    2004, 12.17
    2005, 13.11 2nd
    2006, 12.40
    2007, 12.67
    2008, 12.86 5th
    2009, 12.31
    2010, 13.10 3rd
    2011, 12.80 =6th
    2012, 12.50
    2013, 13.40 1st
    2014, 12.80 =6th

    Annual Climate Summary 2014 | NIWA

    2013, 1st
    2014, 3rd

    ‘Warm oceans drive hottest year on record with more to come, US agencies say’ [Sydney Morning Herald]

    WMO estimate 2014 was Europe’s warmest in at least the past 500 years, beating 2007 by 0.3 degrees.

    Central North America among the areas posting cooler-than-average (“more to come” in the US?).

    Poor sods at NIWA have nothing to point to from the “warmest year ever”.

  7. Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 10:01 am said:

    ‘Pope’s climate-change stand deepens conservatives’ distrust’

    NZ Herald, 5:40 AM Tuesday Jan 20, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) ” Conservative distrust of Pope Francis, which has been building in the U.S. throughout his pontificate, is reaching a boiling point over his plan to urge action on climate change ” and to do so through a document traditionally used for the most important papal teachings.

    For months, Francis has been drafting an encyclical on the environment and global warming which he hopes to release by June or July. Encyclicals are written with the help of a small group of advisers working under strict secrecy.


    >”small group of advisers” ?

    ‘Pope Embraces the Green Religion’

    by James Delingpole30 Dec 2014

    Of course, the Pope’s views on climate change will only be as good as the “expert” advice he gets. And unfortunately, on this score, the auguries do not bode well – as we learn by studying the list of delegates at a workshop staged by the Vatican in May 2014 with the grisly theme “Sustainable Humanity Sustainable Nature Our Responsibility.” (H/T Bishop Hill)

    The event was a veritable Who’s Who of Climate Stupid. Delegates included:

    Naomi Oreskes, the social scientist at the University of California, San Diego (ground zero for the faux-science of ecology), who assiduously promulgates the myth that climate scepticism is a form of industry-funded “denialism” akin to the belief that smoking doesn’t cause cancer.

    Martin Rees, the astronomer who jumped on the global warming bandwagon and who, during his stint as President of the Royal Society, helped drag what was formerly Britain’s most distinguished scientific institution down to its current dismal level as a mouthpiece for the cause of global warming alarmism.

    Joseph Stiglitz, the left-wing economist.

    Hans-Jochim Schellnhuber, of the hard-left, deep-green Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, whose advice on environmental policy to Angela Merkel has been partly responsible for wiping out the German economy by driving up the cost of energy to unsupportable levels.

    and, perhaps most comically and depressingly, Peter Wadhams – the Cambridge professor who for years has been telling anyone who will listen that the Arctic ice is on the verge of vanishing due to man-made global warming but whose doomsday predictions have been so repeatedly confounded by real world events that even the alarmists have now disowned him.


    • Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 10:14 am said:

      AP/NZ Herald:

      Those on all sides of the debate will be watching for how far the pope will delve into the science around climate change in the body of the encyclical. In a news conference last August, Francis said that since the document is “doctrinal and needs to be certain,” less-certain scientific theories could be mentioned in footnotes. But the pope did not offer any examples.

      # # #

      Problematic if the man-made climate change encyclical is “doctrinal and needs to be certain”.

      But since when does the pope define the MM climate change certainties (if there are any)?

    • Andy on 20/01/2015 at 10:49 am said:

      Will all future decrees on “the warmest year ever” be announced in Latin from the Papal Pulpit?

    • Andy on 20/01/2015 at 11:18 am said:

      The Pope was also justifying violence in his recent commentary on the Paris massacre (comments about punching someone), so he’ll fit right in with the Modern Day Church of Climatology

    • Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 1:46 pm said:

      Wears fancy dress, a funny hat (see below), and kisses icons. Other than that, what was his message in the Philippines? And what did he effectively do? It was all a no-substance PR exercise.

      Meanwhile others actually do stuff, especially in the slums of Manilla where people routinely lose everything to typhoons:

      Philippine Christian Foundation (PCF) | ICARE

      Mission: To permanently improve the quality of life of the poorest Filipino communities, through education, nutrition, health, medical, and financial enhancement programs, regardless of religion, race, or political boundaries.

      Ethics: They aim to work to the highest standard, to be accountable and transparent, and to be guided by Godly values and beliefs. The Philippine Christian Foundation is a registered charity with Securities Exchange and Commission in the Philippines.

      Vision: To free every Filipino child and their family from the effects of poverty.


      [RC, I don’t know how you justify raising the next subtopic, as it’s not connected with the post and it’s prolix. Interesting, but is it your writing? Please practise brevity when so far off topic. – Richard T]


      Dagon was a pagan fish god of ancient Babylonia. Pagan symbolism is prevalent in The Vatican. The pope is simply restating Roman Catholicism’s pagan associations. They never could distance themselves from it (as say Judaism or Puritans below, and think ex-Nazi Ratzinger) or any other humanly instituted traditions. For example:

      ‘How Did Christmas Come to Be Celebrated on December 25?’

      A. Roman pagans first introduced the holiday of Saturnalia, a week long period of lawlessness celebrated between December 17-25. During this period, Roman courts were closed, and Roman law dictated that no one could be punished for damaging property or injuring people during the weeklong celebration. The festival began when Roman authorities chose “an enemy of the Roman people” to represent the “Lord of Misrule.” Each Roman community selected a victim whom they forced to indulge in food and other physical pleasures throughout the week. At the festival’s conclusion, December 25th, Roman authorities believed they were destroying the forces of darkness by brutally murdering this innocent man or woman.

      B. The ancient Greek writer poet and historian Lucian (in his dialogue entitled Saturnalia) describes the festival’s observance in his time. In addition to human sacrifice, he mentions these customs: widespread intoxication; going from house to house while singing naked; rape and other sexual license; and consuming human-shaped biscuits (still produced in some English and most German bakeries during the Christmas season).

      C. In the 4th century CE, Christianity imported the Saturnalia festival hoping to take the pagan masses in with it. Christian leaders succeeded in converting to Christianity large numbers of pagans by promising them that they could continue to celebrate the Saturnalia as Christians.[2]

      D. The problem was that there was nothing intrinsically Christian about Saturnalia. To remedy this, these Christian leaders named Saturnalia’s concluding day, December 25th, to be Jesus’ birthday.

      E. Christians had little success, however, refining the practices of Saturnalia. As Stephen Nissenbaum, professor history at the University of Massachussetts, Amherst, writes, “In return for ensuring massive observance of the anniversary of the Savior’s birth by assigning it to this resonant date, the Church for its part tacitly agreed to allow the holiday to be celebrated more or less the way it had always been.” The earliest Christmas holidays were celebrated by drinking, sexual indulgence, singing naked in the streets (a precursor of modern caroling), etc.

      F. The Reverend Increase Mather of Boston observed in 1687 that “the early Christians who first observed the Nativity on December 25 did not do so thinking that Christ was born in that Month, but because the Heathens’ Saturnalia was at that time kept in Rome, and they were willing to have those Pagan Holidays metamorphosed into Christian ones.”[3] Because of its known pagan origin, Christmas was banned by the Puritans and its observance was illegal in Massachusetts between 1659 and 1681.[4] However, Christmas was and still is celebrated by most Christians.

      G. Some of the most depraved customs of the Saturnalia carnival were intentionally revived by the Catholic Church in 1466 when Pope Paul II, for the amusement of his Roman citizens, forced Jews to race naked through the streets of the city. An eyewitness account reports, “Before they were to run, the Jews were richly fed, so as to make the race more difficult for them and at the same time more amusing for spectators. They ran… amid Rome’s taunting shrieks and peals of laughter, while the Holy Father stood upon a richly ornamented balcony and laughed heartily.”[5]

      H. As part of the Saturnalia carnival throughout the 18th and 19th centuries CE, rabbis of the ghetto in Rome were forced to wear clownish outfits and march through the city streets to the jeers of the crowd, pelted by a variety of missiles. When the Jewish community of Rome sent a petition in1836 to Pope Gregory XVI begging him to stop the annual Saturnalia abuse of the Jewish community, he responded, “It is not opportune to make any innovation.”[6] On December 25, 1881, Christian leaders whipped the Polish masses into Antisemitic frenzies that led to riots across the country. In Warsaw 12 Jews were brutally murdered, huge numbers maimed, and many Jewish women were raped. Two million rubles worth of property was destroyed.


      The popes encyclical should be a doozy if he’s true to historical form.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 3:39 pm said:

      >”Other than that, what was his message in the Philippines?”

      “Solidarity with the poor” apparently:

      ‘Pope arrives in Philippines, calls for solidarity with the poor’

      OK, so what exactly is “solidarity with the poor”?

      From the article:

      Recalling the outpouring of solidarity that followed Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) in November 2013, the Pope called for political leaders to “be outstanding for honesty, integrity and commitment to the common good” and to hearken to “the moral imperative of ensuring social justice and respect for human dignity.”

      “The great biblical tradition enjoins on all peoples the duty to hear the voice of the poor,” he said. “It bids us break the bonds of injustice and oppression which give rise to glaring, and indeed scandalous, social inequalities. Reforming the social structures which perpetuate poverty and the exclusion of the poor first requires a conversion of mind and heart.”

      # # #

      Turns out “solidarity with the poor” is all about”Reforming the social structures which perpetuate poverty and the exclusion of the poor” and “a conversion of mind and heart”.

      A conversion to what?

  8. Alexander+K on 20/01/2015 at 3:38 pm said:

    I have serious worries about the mental state of the current pontiff, who seems to be working hard to demolish what little goodwill he has engendered in the world at large by attempting to justify violence in any form when he echoes silly schoolboys of my experience who attempt to justify their own violent behaviour be whining that ‘He dissed me Mum!’
    I doubt that his new encyclical will be of much use when he attempts to ride it beyond the Vatican walls

  9. Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 5:56 pm said:

    ‘Pause Over Within 10 Years Says NASA’s Schmidt’


    Global temperatures will resume their long term growth trend within five to 10 years ending the so called pause in global warming, a leading climate scientist has predicted.

    The pause – which on some measures has gone on since the mid-1990s – continued into 2014 on the basis of global temperature data released last week by US space agency NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the US.

    However, the warming effect of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide will grow sufficiently to overcome the combined impact of various natural climate cooling factors, journalists on a telephone news conference were told last week by Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies.

    There is evidence that volcanoes and a slightly dimmer Sun have acted to cool the Earth recently and so offset the warming impact of greenhouse gases, according to Schmidt, widely seen as a strong advocate for the case that humans are causing climate change. But Schmidt said that he did not expect the global warming pause – which he referred to as the hiatus – to persist.

    This is because the warming impact, or forcing, due to greenhouse gases in the atmosphere would keep growing with continuing emissions of greenhouse gases, Schmidt said, and “in five to ten years time it is changes in greenhouse gases that will dominate”.

    Pause continues […]

    Duration […]

    Cause of the pause […]


    Good. Now we have Gavin Schmidt on record saying “”in five to ten years time it is changes in greenhouse gases that will dominate” – the acid test for CO2-centric climate science.

    Good luck with that Gavin.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 20/01/2015 at 6:14 pm said:

      >”….the warming effect of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide will grow sufficiently to overcome the combined impact of various natural climate cooling factors, journalists on a telephone news conference were told last week by Gavin Schmidt”

      So at present, to drive climate, CO2 forcing is inadequate at 400ppm and the highest anthro emissions ever. Therefore CO2 is currently an ineffectual climate driver in the presence of natural factors.

      Hmmm….interesting implication Gavin.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 8:00 am said:

      ‘Just How Stupid Are These People?’

      Posted on January 20, 2015 by stevengoddard

      One day after Gavin is quoted as predicting at least five more years of pause, Mikey pats Gavin on the back for saying the pause is dead. What are these people smoking?

      [See screen grabs – Twitter (Mann) and reportingclimatescience (Schmidt)]

    • Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 8:48 am said:

      [Schmidt] – “in five to ten years time it is changes in greenhouse gases that will dominate”

      Schmidt’s been wrong for the last five to ten years, what will make him right for the next five to ten?

  10. Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 7:38 am said:

    >”Lopsided science or skewed news—you choose”

    This one is just brainless, and a disturbing conflation:

    ‘Tackling poverty and climate change two sides of the same coin’

    By Vaidehi Shah Tuesday 20 January 2015

    In recent years, the development community’s efforts to eradicate extreme poverty, improve global health and increase access to education have involved little dialogue with global movements working to address climate change.

    But these goals will only be achieved if global leaders regard climate change and poverty eradication as two parts of a unified development agenda, said experts at a panel discussion on Monday.

    Hosted by the British High Commission at Eden Hall in Singapore, the discussion centred on 2015’s potential to be a ‘defining moment for sustainable development’.

    Panelist Michel Anglade, campaigns and advocacy director for UK-based non-profit Save the Children’s Asia Office, observed that Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in November 2013 and cyclones Sidr and Aila which struck Bangladesh in 2007 and 2009 respectively, had an adverse impact on child mortality and access to education.

    “This shows that the climate change and poverty eradication agenda are one. But it is not treated as such by the global community, and 2015 presents three key moments to develop a unified international agenda,” he told the 100-strong audience.


    Can it get any worse?

    • Andy on 21/01/2015 at 8:00 am said:

      Given that climate change policies are driving people into poverty (and are designed to by their very nature), it seems they have an interesting conundrum facing them.

    • Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 8:30 am said:

      I can’t get past how tropical typhoons have become climate change. And that they must be eradicated in order to eradicate poverty.

      Tall and costly order to create both Goldilocks weather and living standards – if that is even possible. I’m more inclined to think Daddy and Mummy Bear will be grumpier than ever (your conundrum Andy).

      But tropical typhoons are now climate change?

  11. Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 8:15 am said:

    ‘Massive Tampering With Temperatures In South America’

    By Paul Homewood, January 20, 2015

    One of the regions that has contributed to GISS’ “hottest ever year” is South America, particularly Brazil, Paraguay and the northern part of Argentina. In reality, much of this is fabricated, as they have no stations anywhere near much of this area, as NOAA show below.

    Nevertheless, there does appear to be a warm patch covering Paraguay and its close environs. However, when we look more closely, we find things are not quite as they seem.

    [See data coverage graph]

    There are just three genuinely rural stations in Paraguay that are currently operating – Puerto Casado, Mariscal and San Juan. They all show a clear and steady upward trend since the 1950’s, with 2014 at the top, for instance at Puerto Casada: [graph]

    It could not be more clearcut, could it? However, it all looks a bit too convenient, so I thought I would check out the raw data (which is only available up to 2011 on the GISS site, so the last three years cannot be compared). Lo and behold! [graph]

    As we so often see, the past has been cooled.

    GHCN show the extent to which they have adjusted temperatures, the best part of 2 degree centigrade. [graphs]

    Of course, there may be a genuine problem with Puerto Casada’s record, except that we see exactly the same thing happening at the other two Paraguayan sites. [Raw – Adjusted gif comparisons]

    So we find that a large chunk of Gavin’s hottest year is centred around a large chunk of South America, where there is little actual data, and where the data that does exist has been adjusted out of all relation to reality.

    Even by GHCN standards, this tampering takes some beating.


  12. Richard C (NZ) on 21/01/2015 at 9:17 am said:

    ‘The Most Dishonest Year on Record’

    By Robert Tracinski, January 19, 2015

    Last week, according to our crackerjack mainstream media, NASA announced that 2014 was the hottest year, like, ever.

    No, really. The New York Times began its report with: “Last year was the hottest in earth’s recorded history.”

    Well, not really. As we’re about to see, this is a claim that dissolves on contact with actual science. But that didn’t stop the press from running with it.

    If you follow the link I gave to the New York Times piece, you will see that this opening sentence has since been rewritten, for reasons which will soon become clear. But the Times wasn’t the only paper to start with that claim, and most of the headlines are still up. The Washington Post has: “2014 Was the Hottest Year in Recorded History.” The Boston Globe: “2014 Was Earth’s Hottest Year in Recorded History.” And so on.

    You can see how misleading this is. When you read the phrase “in recorded history,” you think we’re talking about a really long time—the time dating back to the first historical records in Sumeria, circa 3500 BC. (That’s what you’ll find if you look up the phrase “recorded history.”) That’s a time frame of 5,000 to 6,000 years. But in the case of the temperature record, it actually means only 135 years. Accurate, systematic, global thermometer measurements of surface temperatures go back only to 1880. That’s why the Times report, presumably after getting whacked for a wildly misleading opening sentence, changed it to: “Last year was the hottest on earth since record-keeping began in 1880.” Which is a whole lot less impressive.

    That “recorded history” gaffe is even worse when you consider that during “recorded history,” in the 5,000-year sense of the phrase, there’s good evidence that the Earth has been warmer than it is today.


  13. Richard C (NZ) on 22/01/2015 at 7:37 am said:

    ‘Is climate change really that dangerous? Predictions are ‘very greatly exaggerated’, claims study’

    Researchers claim global warming predictions are ‘greatly exaggerated’
    Large climate models typically require computers to perform calculations
    They consider factors such as animal numbers and tectonic variations
    By comparison, a team of researchers has created a ‘simple’ model
    It looks at levels of solar energy absorbed and reflected by Earth
    Using this simple model, they claim current predictions are wrong
    Once errors are corrected, global warming in response to a doubling of CO2 is around 1°C or less – a third of the predicted 3.3°C

    By Victoria Woollaston for MailOnline

    Published: 17:28 GMT, 21 January 2015 | Updated: 17:31 GMT, 21 January 2015

    Author Dr Willie Soon, an solar physicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics, said: ‘Our work suggests that man’s influence on climate may have been much overstated.

    ‘The role of the sun has been undervalued. Our model helps to present a more balanced view.’

    MailOnline has contacted the IPCC for comment.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2920311/Is-climate-change-really-dangerous-Predictions-greatly-exaggerated-claims-study.html#ixzz3PUJ9d5ff

    It will be interesting to read what the IPCC has to say, if they face the music that is.

  14. Richard C (NZ) on 22/01/2015 at 7:43 am said:


    New Zealand’s average temperature was only slightly above average in 2014.

    Niwa released its 2014 climate summary on January 9, which found the nationwide average temperature for the year was 12.8 degrees Celsius, 0.2C above the average from 1981-2010.

    The year as a whole was an unspectacular 23rd-warmest, based on Niwa’s seven-station series which started in 1909.


  15. Andy on 22/01/2015 at 11:06 pm said:

    Al Gore is promising is a huge party to gather 1 billion signatures to “urge” our leaders to take action on climate change.


    Apparently “humanity will harmonies all at once”

    Yeah, baby.

  16. Andy on 24/01/2015 at 12:02 pm said:

    The suggestion that Matt Ridley be beheaded (in the Guardian comments, see Bishop Hill) has put a bit of a dampener on discussion

  17. Richard C (NZ) on 26/01/2015 at 9:09 am said:

    ‘Nonsensus about the Senate’s non consensus on climate change’

    by Judith Curry

    On the politicization of ‘climate change’.

    On my recent post Raw politics, I made the following remark re President Obama’s tweet:

    ‘Climate change is real’ is almost a tautology; climate has always changed and always will, independently of anything humans do.

    Senate votes

    A few hours after I posted this, the U.S. Senate provides some interesting news, summarized in this article by Andrew Freedman:

    “The Senate made history on Wednesday by overwhelmingly passing a non-binding “Sense of the Senate” resolution stating simply that “climate change is real and not a hoax.” Previous climate change-related non-binding resolutions were not supported by such large numbers.

    In a development that seemed to surprise Democratic senators and environmental groups, the most prominent climate change contrarian in the Senate, Environment and Public Works Committee chairman James Inhofe, R-Okla., joined Democratic Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island in co-sponsoring the climate amendment, which was offered during debate on a Keystone-XL Pipeline bill.

    If Whitehouse’s amendment had included one additional word or phrase, such as “man-made,” it wouldn’t have drawn Inhofe’s support, or that of many of his Republican colleagues. Once he threw his weight behind it, the vote was a blowout, with senators voting 98-to-1 in favor. Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) was the sole “no” vote.

    Schatz’s amendment, which he said was intended to “restate the facts” on climate change, namely that “climate change is real and humans are contributing to it,” failed by a vote of 50 to 49.

    The amendment included the language that “climate change is real; and human activity significantly contributes to climate change.” The word “significantly” was cited by Senate Energy Committee Chairwoman Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, as a reason for a no vote.”

    ‘Climate change’

    As per twitter, many are at a loss as to how the vote could be overwhelmingly ‘yes’ on the first statement, and fail on the second statement.

    It all comes down to the definition of ‘climate change’. There is both a scientific definition and a political definition.

    Scientific definition. Here is what the IPCC TAR says: Refers to a statistically significant variation in either the mean state of the climate or in its variability, persisting for an extended period (typically decades or longer). Climate change may be due to natural internal processes or external forcings, or to persistent anthropogenic changes in the composition of the atmosphere or in land use.

    Political definition. Here is how the UNFCCC defines it : climate change is a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods.

    Surprisingly, if you google ‘climate change definition’, the political definition wins out:


    >”As per twitter, many are at a loss as to how the vote could be overwhelmingly ‘yes’ on the first statement, and fail on the second statement.”

    I was at a loss as to why the distinction just doesn’t get through to people but now I see why thanks to JC – “the political definition wins out”

    [JC] – ‘Climate change is real’ is almost a tautology; climate has always changed and always will, independently of anything humans do.

    Tell that to TIME JC:

    ‘The Senate Discovers Climate Change!’
    TIME – ‎Jan 23, 2015‎

    As if.

    • Richard Treadgold on 26/01/2015 at 11:53 am said:

      Yes, pretty straightforward. Much of the confusion in the climate change debacle comes from very plain words and processes being ill-defined or ill-described. So it’s good to hear the great Curry speaking to these simple points and describing them so well. People listen to her.

    • Andy on 26/01/2015 at 2:00 pm said:

      Bishop Hill recently had a great quote. It said the phrase “climate change is caused by humans” is a bit like saying “alcohol causes babies”

    • Richard Treadgold on 26/01/2015 at 2:11 pm said:

      That’s a good one.

  18. Richard C (NZ) on 27/01/2015 at 9:28 am said:

    ‘Named and shamed: the shoddy, rent-a-quote “scientists” ‘

    By Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

    IT IS time to be angry at the intellectual bankruptcy of climate “science” today. We should also be fearful of the UN’s gruesome plan, aided and abetted by ministers and bureaucrats worldwide, to establish a global climate “government” by an irrevocable treaty in Paris this December on the basis of what is now known to be dodgy and even fraudulent science.

    No such treaty is needed. A climate science paper by Dr Willie Soon, Professor David Legates, Matt Briggs and me, just published in the Science Bulletin of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Orient’s equivalent of Nature (at http://www.scibull.com, click on “Current Issue” to find our paper) demonstrates that the billion-dollar climate models that have so profitably predicted Thermageddon are hopelessly wrong.

    Instead of 3, 5 or even 10 Cº of global warming in response to our doubling the CO2 in the air, there will be 1 Cº and perhaps less even than that. What “climate crisis”?

    On January 22, Victoria Woollaston reported our results at http://www.mailonline.com, the website of the London Daily Mail, under the heading Is climate change really that dangerous? Predictions are ‘very greatly exaggerated’, claims study.

    [ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2920311/Is-climate-change-really-dangerous-Predictions-greatly-exaggerated-claims-study.html ]

    What happened next demonstrates the sorry state to which climastrology has sunk.

    Within hours a blog funded by the wealthy but mysterious “European Climate Foundation” had gathered instant rent-a-quotes from half a dozen soi-disant climate “scientists” savagely but anti-scientifically attacking our paper.

    The propaganda piece was misleadingly, laughably called “Factcheck”. Each of the “scientists” who were quoted made untrue assertions. Several of these creatures can be proven not to have read our paper before shooting their unscientific mouths off.

    The “Factcheck” gets its facts wrong from the get-go. It says our paper had claimed that the major errors made by the huge computer models, each of which gobbles as much electricity as a small town, occur because the models are complex.

    No. We said the models were wrong because they were using a rogue equation borrowed from electronic circuitry and bolted on to the climate, where it does not fit. That equation, and that alone, leads the modelers erroneously to triple the small and harmless 1 Cº global warming we should expect from a doubling of CO2 in the air.

    From there, the propaganda piece went scientifically downhill. I now name and shame the shoddy, rentaquote “scientists”, and I demand their dismissal.

    Professor Richard Allan, a weatherman at Reading University
    Professor Reto Knutti of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology
    Professor Myles Allen, an earth scientist at Oxford
    Professor Piers Forster, a climastrologist at Leeds University
    Dr Jan Perlwitz, a NASA modeller
    Dr Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies


    • Richard C (NZ) on 27/01/2015 at 9:40 am said:

      Christopher Monckton, Willie W.-H. Soon, David R. Legates, William M. Briggs. Why models run hot: results from an irreducibly simple climate model. Science Bulletin, 2015, 60(1): 122-135.

      And see ‘Climate Models’ here:

    • Andy on 27/01/2015 at 9:59 am said:

      The various “pre-bunkings” of the Monckton paper are shameless in the fact that no one seems to have bothered reading it

    • Richard C (NZ) on 27/01/2015 at 1:45 pm said:

      I’ve read the text but haven’t picked apart the mathematical constructs except for cursory look. Can’t say I subscribe to the methodology (yet) because it will only have the appearance of validity if there is no cooling AT ALL in reality i.e. it is a luke-warm approach (although I may have this wrong by my understanding to date).

      Having said that, the fact that the application of the simple model by hand-held calculator yields a better result at present with more appropriate constructs than that from supercomputer versions is bound to ruffle feathers. I have a programmable scientific calculator that, if I had the inclination, could easily handle it.

      BTW, thanks to Gareth for his link to Monckton’s WMD article:

      ‘Equation spells doom for climate communists’

      Hugely problematic (“fatal”) for the catastrophists, or, as Monckton puts it –
      the “climate communists”.

    • Andy on 27/01/2015 at 5:06 pm said:

      “I shall demand their dismissal”

      I really wish CM wouldn’t do this. It just sounds pompous. He just plays into their hands

    • Richard C (NZ) on 28/01/2015 at 7:37 am said:


  19. Richard C (NZ) on 27/01/2015 at 2:25 pm said:

    And on the now ongoing topic (what it all appears to be about) of Monckton’s “climate communists”, Attorney Chris Horner’s “Richard Windsor” FOIA:

    March 09 EPA Strategy Memo to LPJ (PDF obtained via FOIA)


    ‘Outed by FOIA – EPA strategy memo reveals deep flaws in the integrity of the agency, and lack of integrity of the press’

    Anthony Watts / 10 hours ago January 26, 2015

    Attorney Chris Horner writes in with this bombshell which shows how “evangelism” has replaced factual analysis at the EPA, which is helped along by a compliant mass media. See the attached document obtained via FOIA.

    His take on it includes:

    * Obtained from the ongoing “Richard Windsor” FOIA, precisely as FOIA intended this allows the American public to see what bureaucrats and, in this case, ideological activists in government say among themselves and their pressure group allies, helping us keep a proper perspective about what these same activists tell the public.

    * What this memo shows is the recognition that EPA needed to move its global warming campaign away from the failed global model of discredited Big Green pressure groups and their icons, that it has proved “consistently — an unpersuasive argument to make.” In it we see the birth of the breathtakingly disingenuous “shift from making this about the polar caps [to] about our neighbor with respiratory illness…”.

    It also shows the conviction that if they yell “clean air” and “children” enough they, the media and the green groups will get their way.


    Notable points consistent with what critics of this evangelism have been saying include:

    – the analogy to religion and faith-based pursuit of the “mission” — “a monumental effort driven by a positive motivation” — to reach the “unchurched”, which framing they recognized “will undoubtedly raise some eyebrows internally”.


  20. Richard C (NZ) on 28/01/2015 at 8:27 am said:

    The Met Office said:

    “The HadCRUT4 dataset (compiled by the Met Office and the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit) shows last year was 0.56C (±0.1C) above the long-term (1961-1990) average. Nominally this ranks 2014 as the joint warmest year in the record, tied with 2010, but the uncertainty ranges mean it’s not possible to definitively say which of several recent years was the warmest.”

    – See more at: http://www.thegwpf.com/met-office-confirms-2014-continues-global-pause/#sthash.I8a8pMZH.dpuf


    An unspectacular graphical depiction. I like it.

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