Royal Society of NZ refuses to reveal evidence of man-made climate change

1 June 2018                                                           FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Royal Society of New Zealand (RSNZ) has been accused of concealing evidence for its claims of man-made climate change. The society has also been accused of being in breach of its own Code of Ethics.  The accusations are made in a statement released today by the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition, which says:

“When Jacinda Ardern said we must battle climate change, it became clear that our new Prime Minister believes the temperature of the earth can be controlled by man. But the leading climate scientists of the RSNZ have refused to reveal evidence that supports her belief.

“Perhaps they have no evidence? That would raise the alarming possibility that, without evidence, our leading climate scientists persuaded the Prime Minister there’s a national crisis. But if evidence exists, why did the RSNZ conceal it?

“The society published two studies in 2016 based on the assumption that man-made greenhouse gases cause dangerous global warming, but presented no evidence for it. In June that year, they issued a statement: ‘New Zealand is already experiencing more frequent floods, storms and droughts, scrub and forest fires causing damage to the environment and people’s livelihoods’.

“These claims are not true. Scientific evidence resists a conclusion of increasing floods, storms, droughts and bush fires. The evidence even opposes the claims that New Zealand is warming or sea level rise is accelerating.

“The NZ Climate Science Coalition (NZCSC) wrote to the  RSNZ last November asking for: ‘indisputable evidence supporting the hypothesis that man-made greenhouse gases cause dangerous global warming.’

“We told them any reasonable person reading these reports from our premier scientific institution would assume that there was solid evidence behind them.

“Indeed, the whole country would like to believe that the RSNZ, advisors to our Government, would have had decisive evidence that the Prime Minister was on the right track. For if she was contradicting the science and in conflict with what they knew to be true, they would certainly point out her mistake, even in private.

“Responding to our request for evidence, the RSNZ at first suggested we search ‘the Internet’ and scientific papers in general. When we asked again, they mentioned three specific but wholly unhelpful papers of many hundreds of pages. When we pressed them to say precisely where in those references the proof lay they stopped talking to us. This appalling response clearly breached their own Code of Ethics.

“This is intolerable. At the very heart of this paragon of rectitude, at the pinnacle of scientific diligence and the search for truth, they committed a breach of their own rules. The RSNZ Code of Professional Standards and Ethics enjoins its members to tell the truth, to communicate their knowledge to the public and, in dealing with the wider community, at all times present themselves and their knowledge in an ethical and responsible manner.

“These are rules that apply in academia, commerce, industry, indoors or the wild outdoors—wherever scientists study the world.

“NZCSC laid a formal complaint alleging a breach by the Chief Executive of the RSNZ’s Code of Ethics in making unjustified statements alleging fact, refusing to authenticate statements in official reports and imperiously silencing our dialogue.

“After examining our complaint, a panel of members of the RSNZ determined that a lack of evidence underlying the greatest challenge of our generation, the PM’s nuclear moment and a lack of courtesy in the various responses, all clearly covered under the Code, were breaches ‘insufficiently grave to warrant further pursuit.’”


Ends (578 words)

NZCSC contact: Richard Treadgold, tel 0275 340 641   email:

Views: 1236

16 Thoughts on “Royal Society of NZ refuses to reveal evidence of man-made climate change

  1. Simon on 05/06/2018 at 11:58 am said:

    No evidence of your press release on This is probably a good thing for your credibility. Your complaint appears to be that the Royal Society provided you with lots of information which you couldn’t understand. That is not the fault of the Royal Society.

  2. Richard Treadgold on 05/06/2018 at 12:37 pm said:

    Do you claim that the AR5 gives evidence of a human link to dangerous temperatures?

  3. Simon on 05/06/2018 at 1:21 pm said:

    AR5 Summary for Policy Makers Page 12:
    Human influence on the climate system is clear. Yet determining whether such influence constitutes “dangerous anthropogenic interference” in the words of Article 2 of the UNFCCC involves both risk assessment and value judgments. This report assesses risks across contexts and through time, providing a basis for judgments about the level of climate change at which risks become dangerous.
    Neither Royal Society report explicitly uses the word ‘dangerous’, because this is a value judgement requiring a risk assessment. You have inserted the word as an intentional misrepresentation.

  4. Richard Treadgold on 05/06/2018 at 4:08 pm said:


    Thank you for locating this passage. I’m glad you bring it up, as it’s quite significant. The IPCC is certainly constrained by Article 2 of the Framework Convention, the relevant words being these:

    The ultimate objective of this Convention … is to achieve … stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.

    From which, as you can see, the IPCC is prevented from examining the causes of climate change, whether natural or man-made, and thus has no idea of where the boundary might lie between natural variation and a human influence. The effect of that is the attribution of many effects to a human influence, simply because of uncertainty. Note that it was decided in 1988 that man was without doubt affecting the climate, they had to be stopped and the IPCC was required to avoid examining those two decisions.

    But it is also constrained by the document Principles Governing IPCC Work, which “lays down the role of the IPCC, its organization, participation in it and its key procedures, and establishes comprehensiveness, objectivity, openness and transparency as guiding principles of IPCC work.” Coming on the heels of hobbling a proper scientific examination of the climate, the claim to establishing “comprehensiveness, objectivity, openness and transparency as guiding principles” rings very hollow. If you believe it, you will agree that doublespeak is a useful tool of government.

    Paragraph 2 lays down the main principles:

    2. The role of the IPCC is to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation. IPCC reports should be neutral with respect to policy, although they may need to deal objectively with scientific, technical and socio-economic factors relevant to the application of particular policies.

    From this you can see the disconnect inherent in the IPCC’s principles. The Framework Convention insists they stabilise greenhouse gas concentrations, which necessarily means implementing suitable policies, while their governing principles instruct them to remain neutral with respect to policy.

    I feel sure you’ll agree that this is about as fake as sham can get. Finally:

    You have inserted the word as an intentional misrepresentation.

    You will quickly have observed that they brought up the idea of “dangerous”, in their founding document, no less — it wasn’t me. If you find that anywhere, now or in the future, I have made an “intentional misrepresentation” then I hope you’ll give me an opportunity to explain before making vicious, intentional misrepresentations of your own.

    Finally, finally: there’s no evidence in that passage you cite of a human link to dangerous temperatures, just an assertion. Don’t you know the difference? Maybe you think I’m a politician and hearing the words is enough as I wouldn’t understand the evidence anyway? What’s the evidence???

  5. Andy on 05/06/2018 at 5:55 pm said:

    So it’s a “value judgement” but if your judgement deviates from the orthodoxy of implied danger then you are shunned from polite society

  6. Richard Treadgold on 05/06/2018 at 6:18 pm said:

    Quite. We should also note the coyness with which on the one hand the IPCC counsel caution in making a value judgement while on the other hand tell us the world is about to end. If not quite that, then they make no move to correct their over-eager followers as they announce climate catastrophe. Hypocrites and dissemblers all. I fall more and more out of love with them.

  7. Man of Thessaly on 05/06/2018 at 8:10 pm said:

    you say:

    You will quickly have observed that they brought up the idea of “dangerous”, in their founding document

    Once again you mention the IPCC’s “founding document”. Last time you claimed not to have a reference handy, but now you’re quoting it, so I presume you’ve found it. Can you please provide a reference?

  8. Richard Treadgold on 05/06/2018 at 9:14 pm said:

    Well, I didn’t have a reference then, you irritating man, and I’m not quoting it now. This is the founding document of the UNFCCC in 1992, not the IPCC in 1988.

    However, I just searched some more and found this UN resolution of December 1988. You might have done it yourself, you know, made yourself useful. It seems that both these documents, plus further resolutions, are required for a full picture of the IPCC.

    Note that the UNFCCC didn’t create the IPCC, though it seems to act as an umbrella organisation—or perhaps a framework.

  9. Man of Thessaly on 05/06/2018 at 9:38 pm said:

    Well, I’m sorry you’re irritated by being shown to be wrong. Really, you could have been more gracious.

    Congratulations on finding the link I sent you two weeks ago.

    Nothing you have provided supports your assertions that the IPCC brought up the idea of “dangerous”, or that “… the founding document of the IPCC strongly forbids policy recommendations” somewhere other than in the “Principles Governing IPCC Work” (which I also provided you two weeks ago). It seems they were baseless after all.

  10. Mack on 06/06/2018 at 12:37 am said:

    Meanwhile, as the Dork of Thessaly nitpicks on about whether or not his AGW is “dangerous”….it’s only the start of June and the people in Central Otago are already having their asses frozen solid.

  11. Simon on 06/06/2018 at 8:00 am said:

    I assume you will be retracting your press release now that it has been found to be materially incorrect. Interestingly, there is no evidence of any news outlet actually publishing it.

  12. Stephanie Hawking on 06/06/2018 at 5:20 pm said:

    … as NASA’s Dr Gavin Schmidt has pointed out, the IPCC’s implied best guess was that humans were responsible for around 110% of observed warming (ranging from 72% to 146%), with natural factors in isolation leading to a slight cooling over the past 50 years.

    Similarly, the recent US fourth national climate assessment* found that between 93% to 123% of observed 1951-2010 warming was due to human activities.

    These conclusions have led to some confusion as to how more than 100% of observed warming could be attributable to human activity. A human contribution of greater than 100% is possible because natural climate change associated with volcanoes and solar activity would most likely have resulted in a slight cooling over the past 50 years, offsetting some of the warming associated with human activities.

  13. Mike Jowsey on 07/06/2018 at 12:22 pm said:

    Stephanie – best guesses are not evidence that man-made emissions cause dangerous global warming, for which RT is asking.

  14. Andy on 07/06/2018 at 1:23 pm said:

    i wonder what their best guess is for the pre-1950s warming that no one talks about ?

    Also, I wonder if the cooling that is “natural” isn’t partially caused by the aerosols that we don’t know much about?

  15. Maggy Wassilieff on 13/06/2018 at 9:28 am said:

    Judith Curry outlines the Climate-Change debate and presents her approach to dealing with Climate warming.

  16. Ian Cooper on 13/06/2018 at 12:57 pm said:

    I have just finished reading that Maggy. Nice timing. As usual Judith Curry was very succinct in her presentation, one that is not only aimed at those in the know on either side of the debate, but for those who are new to the fact that there is still a debate!

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