Global Warming Dogma Melts in Glaciergate


Recent history has been unkind to those who maintain that human activity is leading to catastrophic climate change.

Two months ago, we had “Climategate,” the scandal that revealed how the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit had conspired to manipulate data and to bully scientific publications in order to silence scholarship that failed to affirm the global warming gospel. Last month, the failure the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to reach any kind of meaningful agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions dealt another hammer blow to the cause. The latest setback came last week, when the world was presented with a new climate scandal: Glaciergate.

In the latest case, it turns out that the IPCC employed shockingly sloppy science to suggest that, as a consequence of global warming, Himalayan glaciers were on the verge of destruction. Specifically, the IPCC fabricated a non-existent link between climate change and natural disasters. In its 2007 report, IPCC claimed that:

“…glaciers in the Himalayas are receding faster than in any other part of the world, and if the present rate continues, the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high if the Earth keeps warming at the current rate.”

That statement, it turns out, was not based so much on science as on speculation. It was based on a report published by the World Wildlife Fund in 2005. That report in turn was based on an article published in New Scientist in 1999, which had no scientific grounding at all. Glaciers don’t – can’t – melt that fast. If the current rate of melting continues, Himalayan glaciers might disappear in hundreds of years, not twenty five, which is the kind of “rounding error” that seems to permeate climate science.

The IPCC should have known better that to publish anything so patently ridiculous, and there were plenty of skeptics who told them so. “The absurdity was obvious to anyone who had studied the scientific literature,” Patrick J. Michaels, a senior fellow in environmental policy at the libertarian Cato Institute said. “This was not an honest mistake. IPCC had been warned about it for a year by many scientists.”

The chair of the IPCC, railroad engineer Rajendra Pachauri, acknowledged the grievous error in a press release, stating that the report presented:

“…poorly substantiated rates of recession and date for the disappearance of Himalayan glaciers. In drafting the paragraph in question, the clear and well-established standards of evidence, required by the IPCC procedures, were not applied properly.”

Obviously this is an isolated incident, NASA scientist and global warming apologist Gavin Schmidt wrote at his website, Replace Gavin’s “The IPCC Is Not Infallible” header with “The IPCC Is Not Credible” and he might be a bit more believable. The more we learn about the way the IPCC does things, the less reason to entrust the future of the planet to this organization.

Speaking of “isolated incidents”, the 2007 IPCC report also said:

“Once the data were normalized, a small statistically significant trend was found for an increase in annual catastrophe loss since 1970 of 2% a year. Once losses are normalized for exposure, there still remains an underlying rising trend.”

This statement form the basis for alarmist claims that global warming is causing more severe weather around the world. We now know that this statement was based on a research paper authored by Robert Muir-Wood of Risk Management Solutions of London, a paper that was not actually finalized until 2008, a year after IPCC 2007 was published. And this will come as no surprise: the Muir-Wood concluded that there is no linkage between natural disasters like hurricanes, tornados, etc. and “climate change”.

Again, many scientists have dismissed the supposed causal relationship between the two for a long time. “All the literature published before and since the IPCC report shows that rising disaster losses can be explained entirely by social change,” Roger Pielke professor of environmental studies at Colorado University said. “People have looked hard for evidence that global warming plays a part but can’t find it. Muir-Wood’s study actually confirmed that.”

Which brings us to the United States’ very own version of Climagate. Legendary meteorologist John Coleman hosted a special broadcast aired by San Diego television station KUSI last week. According to Coleman and the Weather Channel’s Joseph D’Aleo NOAA has altered its method of representing global temperatures in order to inflate temperature increases. Coleman and D’Aleo say that NOAA reduced the number of global weather stations it uses from over 7,000 to less than 1,500 in order to artificially inflate temperatures. Consider one telling example from the broadcast: NOAA records temperatures in California based on weather stations in San Francisco and Los Angeles only. Weather stations located in the cooler, more upland regions of the state are no longer part of the data set.

NOAA doesn’t see any problems with its methodologies, relying heavily on the techniques developed by NASA’s Dr. James Hansen to estimate worldwide temperatures. Of course, the fact that Hansen is one of the nation’s most ardent global warming alarmists makes one wonder why anyone would entrust him with the task of proving a theory he has already declared to be irrefutable. According to the NOAA:

The analysis method was documented in Hansen and Lebedeff (1987), showing that the correlation of temperature change was reasonably strong for stations separated by up to 1200 km, especially at middle and high latitudes.

“Reasonably strong?” Not exactly a ringing endorsement. Nor does NOAA explain why, when trying to take the temperature of an entire planet, less data is better than more. It all strikes this scientist as very suspicious. But then this is the same NOAA that has simultaneously claimed that 2009 is one of the warmest years on record and that the summer of 2009 is the 34st coolest season recorded. The CRU scandal; disappearing glaciers that remain stubbornly in place; relying on research that doesn’t actually exist; more fun and games with temperature data – how many more blows can the alarmists take?

Three years ago, thirty eight per cent of Americans thought that global warming should be a top policy priority. The most recent Pew survey now pegs the number at twenty eight percent. Himalayan glaciers won’t disappear in the next twenty five years, but the more fragile science upon which global warming theory is built comes to light significant public support for alarmism may melt away in a tenth of the time.

  • Steve Chavez

    Freezing weather! Blocks of SNOW the size of refrigerators removed from roofs! Great skiing in every ski valley here in New Mexico! Flagstaff buried in SNOW! Massive SNOW storm coming tonight with up to a foot of SNOW which is very uncommon!

    AL GORE QUOTE: “I just hate when it freezes and snows like this but hey, I’ll still fool the masses with my SNOWJOB!” (Okay, I made it up!)

    • intlctlrdnck

      Ahhh, but don't you know the freezing temps just PROVE global warming is real? All part of that Orwellian Newspeak that brings us "Jobs created or SAVED", Scott Brown's Mass. Senate win means we want MORE socialized medicine, etc., etc. . .

  • davarino

    How many more times are we going to let them cry wolf and we are going to believe them? Their credibility is shot and from now on we have to require scientific inquiry not hocus pocus, feel good, you wanna be cool, scare mongering.

    I guess the next push will be to shrink the sun so its not so hot. Please donate to the Shrink the Sun foundation, your money will be put to good use : )

  • JeffT

    Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. These frauds should be brought up on charges against humanity. What a disgrace. Any fallout coming their way?

    • Rich Trzupek

      I suspect that Rajendra Pachauri (IPCC head) will be out of a job pretty soon. He's alleged to be deeply involved in corruption within IPCC, they're calling for his head in India and Lord Monckton is going after him. Once he's history, I suspect we'll find out a lot more.

  • Gleeper

    The most unfortunate part of the whole climate fraud is the unbridgeable credibility gap for all scientists. Since this has revealed how feeble and frail humans posing as scientists have proven they are unreliable or colored by a priori conclusions already reached; even well researched and value neutral science will and should be suspect to all intelligent persons. This is a tragedy for public policy, science, environmental activists, and proves that government grants for research are a fertile ground for fraud. We see once again the perils of government choosing winners.

    • Raymond in DC

      In 1975, I was sitting before a panel at the U of Michigan to determine whether I was "worthy" of advancing from the Masters into the Ph.D. track. The panel was taken aback when I suggested there was a tendency for research to migrate according to trends and the availability of grant money. I called it the "sociology of research". They mocked, but we're seeing exactly that process in AGW research. That's where the money is, and heaven help you if you run counter to the "settled truth".

      But true science is never settled. That's something AGW true believers don't understand.

  • Barry Cooper

    In my own speculations on the topic, I have isolated the transition point from when you become well-meaning to a person who is a de facto member of a cult at that moment when you do or say something which you know is not right. For the IPCC members, it is when they remain silent when patent BS like this is published. If you say nothing, you are complicit.

    The relevant movie scene is from "Judgment in Nuremburg" when the old judge–played if memory serves by Gregory Peck–says to Spencer Tracy "how could I have known it would lead to this?"

    Tracy replies: "You knew the first time you sentenced an innocent man".

    Human psychology is such that it cannot stand cognitive dissonance. People will feel bad about doing things they know are wrong, for a time. At some point, though, they will get angry at those who still insist on telling the truth. They will kill the messengers. That is a disease which is VERY difficult to cure, and one which is absolutely resistant, in most cases, to the use of reason and fact.

    To tell the truth, then, is to kill a large part of your life. That takes courage.

    • Rich Trzupek

      Nicely said Barry – I couldn't agree more. And I think Dr. Roger Revelle is an prime example of that kind of courage. Most readers probably know the story, but I'll repeat it for those who don't. Revelle was one of the earliest supporters of global warming theory and did a lot of research in the area, aided in part by his young protege: Al Gore. Later in life, Revelle came to believe that carbon dioxide was not a particularly significant greenhouse gas and apologized for his role in stirring up this mess. (And Gore then declared that his mentor was "senile" – very classy). That couldn't have been easy for Revelle to do, but I sure admire the man for doing it. He was a true scientist, as compared to the bunch of schmoes at IPCC.

    • saul sorey

      Burt Lancaster in Judgment at Nuremberg as Judge Ernst Janning

  • Manuel Pastore

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  • WRJonas

    In addition to the comments here pointing out the disgrace and shame science has engendered upon itself ; there are larger questions involving evolution , the self interest of medical science associating itself with government agendas and perpetually funding science which never produces anything tangible.
    All of these endeavors consume gigantic sums of money which makes their exixtence self perpetuating.
    For example , the recent H1N1 epidemic . It was all public promotional scare . No restraint was ever exercised and the companies producing the vacine are still making medicine which will never be used . At most a few hundred cases were proven and treated . Not to flog a dying horse here but how many people will mistrust and express skepticism the next time medical scientists warn of another pandemic .
    Another example is the generational squandering of research dollars in pursuit of fusion energy. While some advancement has been realized the science is a failure and the scheme never creates anything but appropriation pleas . And its been going on over fourty years. It has become a science grant seeking industry. Their product is using science to create a scientific field that is always just a little short of achieving a sustained reaction.
    And the "science " of evolution has become so corrupted and distorted the evidence of its fraudulent premise is apparent to serious scholars and laymen alike.
    Adding the global warming scam to this mix is not a formula for improving public confidence .

  • USMCSniper

    Global warming is a politically motivated leftist hoax. It is worse than bad science. It is openly high-jacking public policy. It is the greatest single bullshit scam in history.

    Global Warming Petition states: "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth." Signed by almost 33,000 scientists to date of which 9,000 have PhDs in the phuscial sciences.

  • Fred F.

    What is the temperature right this now? Where is the reporting station, gathering the temperature information, and broadcasting it on the web. It's easy to do. Somehow it doesn't exist because Mr. James Hanson says you have to average 5 years worth of data together to calculate the global average temperature. Strange beliefs that one has.

  • John A. Jauregui

    This is MediaGate, not ClimateGate! Are you angry about this obvious RICO Act fraud and the national media’s complicity in the cover-up, misinformation, reframing and misdirection of the issue and the related “carbon derivatives” market Obama’s Administration is spinning up? Why pay for propaganda? Take responsibility and take action. STOP all donations to the political party(s) responsible for this fraud. STOP donations to all environmental groups which funded this Global Warming propaganda campaign with our money, especially The World Wildlife Fund. DEMAND they take you off their donors’ mailing list. They have violated the public trust. KEEP donations local, close to home. MAKE donations to Oklahoma’s Senator Inhofe, the only politician to stand firmly against this obvious government/media coordinated information operation (propaganda) targeted at its own people. Senator Inhofe, the only politician to refuse the GREEN KOOL AID. Senator Inhofe, the only senator to stand between us and the collective insanity of the ruling class of elitist hucksters led by Al Gore. WRITE your state and federal representatives demanding wall to wall investigations of government sponsored propaganda campaigns and demand indictments of those responsible. WRITE your state and federal Attorneys General demanding Al Gore and others conducting Global Warming/Climate Change racketeering and mail fraud operations be brought to justice, indicted, tried, convicted and jailed. Carbon is the stuff of life. He (Obama) who controls carbon, especially CO2, controls the world. Think of the consequences if you do nothing! For one, the UK is becoming the poster child for George Orwell’s “1984”. The mendacity of UK’s John Beddington, Robert Watson and Ed Miliband prove the point. The US government’s sponsorship of this worldwide Global Warming propaganda campaign puts it in a class with the failed Soviet Union’s relentless violation of the basic human right to truthful government generated information. Given ClimateGate’s burgeoning revelations of outrageous government misconduct and massive covert misinformation, what are the chances that this Administration’s National Health Care sales campaign is anywhere near the truth?