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Climategate – by Andrew Walden

Posted By Andrew Walden On November 30, 2009 @ 12:05 am In FrontPage | 48 Comments

Geoff Jenkins is the self-described “front man explaining climate change.”  The UK Guardian in 2004 called him, “the man Tony Blair turns to for the facts about climate change.”  And as the mid-1990s global warming hype was being cranked up to full volume, Jenkins in 1996 formed a “cunning plan”, “inventing” temperature readings, and releasing fake “estimates” of temperature data for the year even before the year is over.

In a November 22, 1996 email to other top global warming scientists, Jenkins writes:

“Remember all the fun we had last year over 1995 global temperatures, with early release of information (via Oz), “inventing” the December monthly value, letters to Nature etc etc?  I think we should have a cunning plan about what to do this year….”

According to Jenkins, the fake temperature information would be fed “selectively to Nick Nuttall (who has had this in the past and seems now to expect special treatment) so that he can write an article for the silly season.”

Nuttall is the Spokesperson and “Head of Media” for the United Nations Environment program.  Global warming is not Nuttall’s only media manipulation enterprise.  In October, 2008 his claims that Somalia had been used as a dumping ground for European toxic waste were immediately picked up by Islamists to justify Somali pirate attacks.

Another source seemingly preferred for the execution of Jenkins’ “cunning plan” is Neville Nicholls, the Senior Principal Research Scientist and Leader, Climate Forecasting Group at the Bureau of Meteorology Research Centre, Melbourne Australia.  Does this explain Jenkins’ “via Oz” remark?  According to his online CV, Nicholls is, “an editor of the Journal of Climate, and was a Convening Lead Author of the IPCC Second Assessment Report on Climate Change.”

Jenkins’ chosen mouthpieces would create a media frenzy “for the silly season.”  Then when the real temperature data comes out: “We relesae (sic) the final estimate on 20 Jan, with a joint UEA/MetO press release. It may not evoke any interest by then.”

Jenkins is not exactly a household name.  But he has been at the center of the global warming movement since the beginning.  The UK Guardian explains:

Jenkins began in the climate prediction business in 1988 when, in response to scientific concerns, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was set up with Sir John Houghton, then head of the Met Office, as chair of the first scientific group.. Jenkins’s job was to pull together the science from round the world and put together 1990′s groundbreaking Group One report. “It was huge fun. It was not political in those days, it was scientists pooling their best knowledge to produce the best report. They were great days.”

Margaret Thatcher’s enthusiasm for science led to the establishment of the Hadley Centre, programmed to begin to find out how the climate would change over the next century or so with more carbon dioxide being pumped into the atmosphere.

Jenkins was among the 25 original staff in May 1990 – now the staff has tripled. “At first we were entirely in the business of predicting what would happen in the future. It was all very academic, with universities and research institutions. We were the sort of people whose outlets for information were papers in Nature.”

Once the first Earth Summit in Rio had taken place in 1992, the Hadley Centre began to move into the policy area and how to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. This eventually led to the Kyoto Agreement of 1997, which was to be the first step to reducing emissions from industrialised countries.

But by 2000 the mission had changed again – particularly with the floods of that year. The environment department had set up the UK Climate Impacts Programme in Oxford to start dealing with adaptation – something that had not even been considered when the Hadley Centre opened.

The hacked global warming emails are now posted online in a searchable database.  Jenkins’ addressees are led by Phil Jones.  Jones, along with now-discredited tree-ring fraudster Keith Briffa, led the CRU’s defense of the so-called “Hockey Stick Graph” which relied heavily on Briffa’s bogus tree-ring data to falsely show a relatively stable temperature pattern followed by steady temperature increases which coincide with the beginning of the industrial revolution.  The fraudulent chart was included several times in an IPCC report even though its faked data neglected to include neither the well-established “little ice age” nor the equally well-documented “mediaeval warming period”.

Searches for the names of Mann, Jones, and Briffa each bring up about 500 emails.

Mann is a leading author on the global warming blog “real climate”.  Scientific American in 2005 tagged Real Climate, “A refreshing antidote to the political and economic slants that commonly color and distort news coverage of topics like the greenhouse effect, air quality, natural disasters and global warming.”

The scientists do not work alone.  As RealClimate explained in 2005: “…our domain is being hosted by Environmental Media Services, and our initial press release was organised for us by Fenton Communications….”

Activist Cash explains what EMS and Fenton are:

If you’ve ever been advised to steer clear of a food, beverage, or other consumer product based on the claims of a nonprofit organization, you’ve likely been “spun” by Fenton’s multi-million-dollar message machine — and Environmental Media Services (EMS) has probably been the messenger.

EMS is the communications arm of leftist public relations firm Fenton Communications. Based in Washington, in the same office suite as Fenton, EMS claims to be “providing journalists with the most current information on environmental issues..” A more accurate assessment might be that it spoon-feeds the news media sensationalized stories, based on questionable science, and featuring activist “experts,” all designed to promote and enrich David Fenton’s paying clients, and build credibility for the nonprofit ones. It’s a clever racket, and EMS & Fenton have been running it since 1994….

It’s called “black marketing,” and Environmental Media Services has become the principal reason Fenton Communications is so good at it. EMS lends an air of legitimacy to what might otherwise be dismissed (and rightly so) as fear-mongering from the lunatic fringe. In addition to pre-packaged “story ideas” for the mass media, EMS provides commentaries, briefing papers, and even a stable of experts, all carefully calculated to win points for paying clients. These “experts,” though, are also part of the ruse. Over 70% of them earn their paychecks from current or past Fenton clients, all of which have a financial stake in seeing to it that the scare tactics prevail. It’s a clever deception perpetrated on journalists who generally don’t consider do-gooder environmentalists to be capable of such blatant and duplicitous “spin.”

The first rule of this game is that it’s strictly pay-for-play. For a price, you too can promote your product by maligning the competition with junk-science smear tactics. To Fenton Communications, you’ll be a “client”; down the hall at EMS, though, you’ll join the ranks of its “project partners.” And nobody will be the wiser.

Environmental Media Services was founded in 1994 by Arlie Schardt, who would later serve as communications director for Al Gore‘s 2000 Presidential campaign.  Schardt in the 1970s left his position as a Sports Illustrated writer to head the Environmental Defense Fund.  He was also a project director for Teresa Heinz Kerry’s and George Soros’ Tides Center, then chaired by ACORN founder Wade Rathke.  In 2005, shortly after the RealClimate admission, Schardt retired and EMS was renamed the Science Communication Network.  Their website carries a running feed of articles they have planted in the media on behalf of “organic” food processing and marketing clients of Fenton Communications.

Why would Jenkins want to cover up the real data?  Well, even with the faked data, he did not look forward to having to explain that 1996 was in fact cooler than 1995.  So he suggested:

“We explain why the globe is 0.23k (or whatever the final figure is) cooler than 95 (NAO reversal, slight La Nina). Also that global annual avg is only accuirate (sic) to a few hundredths of a degree (we said this last year – can we be more exact, eg PS/MS 0.05K or is this to big??)”

In spite of this, their scam was noticed at the time–but not by Fenton’s spoon-fed media outlets.  For instance, on March 18, 1996 Michael Fumento of the Washington Times wrote:

In early January, the Climatic Research Unit at England’s University of East Anglia made headlines, including the New York Times, with a preliminary report saying 1995 was the hottest year on record. But their data were for only 11 months. Rather than risk December’s temperatures spoiling everything, they jumped the gun and sent out their press releases.

Their fears were fulfilled when December’s average temperature came in at the lowest in 17 years. “It was a pretty ordinary year,” said NASA scientist John Christy, who has been analyzing satellite data on temperature since 1979. And James Hansen of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, who pretty much started the whole global-warming scare, admits his study of land areas – where the effects of global warming would be most severe – revealed that 1995 was about 0.02 degrees celsius cooler than 1990.

In Jenkins’ email, “NAO reversal” refers to an inconvenient cooling of ocean temperatures labeled: “North Atlantic Oscillation.”  “Slight La Nina” refers to an equally inconvenient cooling of the Pacific called the the South Pacific Decadal Oscillation.  The same excuses for global cooling are still being used 13 years later.  For instance, consider this item from an October 9, 2009 BBC article titled, “What happened to global warming?”:

But those scientists who are equally passionate about man’s influence on global warming argue that their science is solid.

The UK Met Office’s Hadley Centre, responsible for future climate predictions, says it incorporates solar variation and ocean cycles into its climate models, and that they are nothing new.

In fact, the centre says they are just two of the whole host of known factors that influence global temperatures – all of which are accounted for by its models.

In addition, say Met Office scientists, temperatures have never increased in a straight line, and there will always be periods of slower warming, or even temporary cooling.

What is crucial, they say, is the long-term trend in global temperatures. And that, according to the Met office data, is clearly up.

Tom Wigley is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science described as “one of the world’s foremost experts on climate change and one of the most highly cited scientists in the discipline..”  He has argued that the global warming alarmists are not alarming enough asserting: “the human-induced changes that are expected over the next 100 years are much, much greater than any changes that societies experienced in the past.”  In an October 14, 2009 email, Wigley discusses similar methods for making cooling look like warming by manipulating the data:

…here are some notes of mine on the recent lack of warming. I look at this in two ways. The first is to look at the difference between the observed and expected anthropogenic trend relative to the pdf for unforced variability. The second is to remove ENSO, volcanoes and TSI variations from the observed data.  Both methods show that what we are seeing is not unusual. The second method leaves a significant warming over the past decade.

While trying to figure out what degree of inaccuracy they could get away with asserting, and dithering over how to play with numbers to make cooling into warming, Jenkins had no problem peddling the wildest global warming claims.  For instance the September 28, 1996 London Evening Standard reports:

An alarming picture of how London would be affected by global warming was painted by the Government’s top climate change adviser today.

Dr Geoff Jenkins fears that summer temperatures could hit 45C (113F), raising the spectre of thousands dying through heat-related illnesses; the number of days of extreme heat will rise 20-fold and rainfall will be down by a fifth making droughts a common occurrence.

What rain we get will be in heavier bursts and, as it hits parched ground, will increase the threat of floods threefold. Rising sea levels will see the Thames rise by 3ft, requiring billions to be spent on flood defences …

That was the propaganda required to peddle global warming in the mid-1990s.  But in the next decade, global warmers sought to look past their wild claims and pretend that a “consensus’ exists.  Jenkins, in lockstep, provided the “scientific” veneer for these claims telling the BBC July 27, 2004:

“We’ve reached the point where it’s only by including human activity that we can explain what’s happening.”

Doing their part to make up the story, the emailing global warming scientists are just cogs in this machine.  But if the cogs seize up, the machine breaks down.


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