Monday, February 15, 2010

Climategate U-Turn

That's not my headline, it's the Daily Mail's headline. It turns out that Dr. Phil Jones, the guy who headed the Climate Research Unit, has organizational skills that are "lacking" and can't account for data he's published.
The academic at the centre of the ‘Climategate’ affair, whose raw data is crucial to the theory of climate change, has admitted that he has trouble ‘keeping track’ of the information.

Colleagues say that the reason Professor Phil Jones has refused Freedom of Information requests is that he may have actually lost the relevant papers.
However, the good professor goes further, saying that:
Professor Jones also conceded the possibility that the world was warmer in medieval times than now – suggesting global warming may not be a man-made phenomenon.

And he said that for the past 15 years there has been no ‘statistically significant’ warming.
Okay, let me get this straight. First he tells us he's lost the raw data, then he tells us that the medieval period may have been warmer than now, then he tells us that there has been no significant global warming for the past fifteen years. And this is the guy who was head of the Climate Research Unit.

A couple of questions. First, if he's lost the data, how can he be sure that the planet isn't getting warmer? If he had the data in the first place, how confident was he when his research predicted global warming?

This guy's supposed to be a scientist, yet he's giving us no real science.

I admit that there is anecdotal data that the polar icecap receded in the past several years. I will also admit that there is anecdotal data that Central Louisiana had two measurable snowfalls this winter. Neither one of those data points proves that the climate is getting colder or warmer. That's weather. Weather is local in nature and subject to variations from the norms.

Climate is global and requires hard data. Dr. Jones can't supply any data. Therefore, his hypothesis is bullshit. Interesting bullshit, but bullshit nonetheless.

It gets worse. Hot Air links to an article in the London Times quoting Dr. John Christy, professor of atmospheric science at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, a former lead author on the IPCC. Dr. Christy says that an analysis of the data that does exist shows huge problems with the siting of temperature recorders and that the raw data is skewed. Siting is critical in taking temperature measurements and if the siting changes over time the data can become irrelevant. (Example: If you put a temperature gauge in a grassy field then five years later the field becomes a paved parking lot, the gauge will show increased temps, not because of climate change, but because the site is changed.)

Hat tip to The Smallest Minority and Hot Air.

1 comment:

Windy Wilson said...

Siting is the reason temperature data from Los Angeles is all screwed up.

I think Dr. Jones can't account for anything because he made the data up in the first place, and it was conveniently "lost". We used to call numbers like that PIDOMA, or "Pulled It Directly Out of My A**".