Adversaries, zombies and NIPCC climate pseudoscience

Sep 26, 2013 by Michael J. I. Brown, The Conversation
Dead science lives on, thanks to the Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change. Credit: Scott Beale

The warm start to Australian spring has been accompanied by a deluge of pseudoscience. Anti-vaccination campaigners andaliens made appearances, but the deluge was primarily climate pseudoscience in the Murdoch Press and talk radio.

The deluge included interviews with, and an op-ed by, retired scientist Bob Carter, a lead author of the Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC) reports.

What is the NIPCC? Is it just like the IPCC, but with an "N"?

Well, no. The NIPCC is a group of climate change "sceptics",bankrolled by the libertarian Heartland Institute to promote doubt about climate change. This suits the Heartland Institute'sbackers, including fossil fuel companies and those ideologically opposed to .

The NIPCC promotes doubt via thousand-page reports, the latest of which landed with a dull thud last week. These tomes try to mimic the scientific reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), right down to the acronym. However, unlike the IPCC, the NIPCC reports are works of partisan pseudoscience.

Consensus and adversaries

We know 97% of have concluded, based on the evidence, that anthropogenic climate change is real. Contrary to recent claims in the media, there is remarkably good agreement between models of climate change and the .

There has been 0.12 degrees of warming per decade over the past 50 years, which is very similar to the expected warming of 0.13 degrees per decade.

How does the NIPCC spread doubt, given the and consensus of professional scientists? The answer is manufactured partisanship.

The IPCC (no N) produces a comprehensive and critical overview of science for governments. It is written by hundreds of scientists, anyone can volunteer to review drafts, and those comments appear online.

IPCC reports openly discuss the strengths, weaknesses, criticisms and uncertainties of the science. The reports provide policy makers with a range of plausible outcomes given rising atmospheric CO2.

Heartland's NIPCC partially mimics the IPCC, but with key differences. It is written and reviewed by dozens of people, almost exclusively drawn from the "sceptic" community, and is consequently highly partisan.

Indeed, the NIPCC advocates an adversarial approach to assessing climate science, with partisan "teams" arguing for different positions.

This call for an adversarial debate has also been repeated in recent op-eds by Bob Carter, Judith Curry and Gary Johns.

The call for adversarial debate is a variant of the debate ploy, a common pseudoscience tactic. At first glance having two teams present competing positions seems entirely reasonable, but this approach only works if the intended audience can effectively assess the arguments presented.

Can a general audience or policy makers distinguish truth from fiction when it comes to technical aspects of climate science?

Will a general audience know when someone is deliberately confusing transient climate response (TCR) with equilibrium climate sensitivity (ECS)? Will they know that TCR and ECS differ by roughly a factor of two? Perhaps not.

Will they triangulate the truth, assuming technical arguments they don't understand have equal merit? Quite possibly.

The comparison between global temperatures (red) and models (grey) is actually very good, contrary to some claims in the media. Credit: http://tamino.wordpress.com/2012/01/23/best-case-scenario/

This is the fundamental problem with trying to resolve scientific questions via an adversarial approach, and this problem isn't new. Back in 1920, a large audience wasunable to assess competing claims about the general relativity when Albert Einstein debated Phillip Lenard. That debate generated column inches and acrimony, but did nothing to advance science.

In this context, the IPCC's comprehensive approach to evaluating climate science makes sense, with experts providing an overview of the science for policy markers. It also explains why the minority wishing to delay action are promoting an adversarial approach.

Zombie science

Does the NIPCC fairly and robustly assess the science? No. It is all too easy to find "debunked" papers getting a second life in latest NIPCC report.

Sea levels around Australia have risen by roughly 100mm during the past century, but Boretti (2012) claimed sea levels rose by only 50mm over that period. However, John Hunter and I found that Boretti's own flawed analysis gives an answer of 78mm. While Boretti himself grudgingly accepts that 50mm is wrong, this erroneous value is reported as fact by the NIPCC.

IPCC AR4 concluded that CO2 is the cause of increased global temperatures, with natural variability not playing a major role. It was thus surprising when McLean et al. (2009) concluded that global temperatures were varying largely in response to the El Niño–Southern Oscillation.

However, McLean's analysis effectively subtracted out the long-term trend caused by CO2, so they only measured the (natural) causes of short-term variability.

Foster et al. (2010) thoroughly debunked McLean et al., and McLean perhaps debunked himself by predicting 2011 would be the coolest year since 1956. That year was anything but cool. However, the McLean et al. conclusions are reported as fact in the latest NIPCC report, with no mention of the Foster et al. commentary.

Dead science lives in the NIPCC reports: Boretti and McLean are just the tip of the iceberg. Houston & Dean (2011), Scafetta & West (2005) and others also appear, all without mention that these papers were followed by highly critical commentaries.

It is this deliberately partisan, selective, and uncritical approach to evidence that marks the NIPCC report as a work of pseudoscience.

Bob Carter's op-ed for the Daily Telegraph was titled "Report gives the truth about climate at last", but I prefer a different description of NIPCC reports – one that may not be fit for publication.

Explore further: UN climate experts stress solidity of new report (Update)

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Birger
4.6 / 5 (18) Sep 26, 2013
The name "Murdoch" does not correlate well with truth and well-researched journalism...
Scottish Sceptic
1.5 / 5 (34) Sep 26, 2013
Well, no. The NIPCC is a group of climate change "sceptics",bankrolled by the libertarian Heartland Institute to promote doubt about climate change.

You forgot to add: "despite all this they are right".

Although if yoy think the few million to this man and his dog outfit in anyway compares to the 100s of millions from oil corps to wind lobbyists, government funding to greenspin and all the obscene propaganda.

... and despite the fact they out gun us something like 1000:1 on the finance.

WE ARE WINNING.

Because we've got one huge asset on our side: mother earth! Mother earth just keeps ignoring all those idiots who tell us she should be getting warmer.
Michael Brown
4.8 / 5 (22) Sep 26, 2013
Reporting 78 mm as 50 mm would seem to be inconsistent with "despite all this they are right".
antialias_physorg
4.8 / 5 (21) Sep 26, 2013
You forgot to add: "despite all this they are right".

Erm. If a group has a stated agenda before doing any work that's a pretty good sign that they are wrong (be it religions or such pseudo-science groups as the NIPCC).

Reason being: If you do the work first (in an unbiased way) the right stuff will come to light. If that happens to coincide with your opinion then you don't need to state your opinion beforehand.

WE ARE WINNING.

Are you sure? It's hard to eat money when your head is below the surface of the ocean.

Luckily policy is made by people who have access to scientific experts - and don't need to rely on stated propaganda institutes like the NIPCC.
no fate
4.7 / 5 (14) Sep 26, 2013
Reporting 78 mm as 50 mm would seem to be inconsistent with "despite all this they are right".


But that is the kind of "logic" one encounters when dealing with people who disregard actual evidence in favor of personal belief.


ScooterG
1.3 / 5 (36) Sep 26, 2013
"It's hard to eat money when your head is below the surface of the ocean."

Unbridled hysteria and panic - someone get this person some prozac!
cantdrive85
1.3 / 5 (37) Sep 26, 2013
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!
shavera
4.6 / 5 (22) Sep 26, 2013
cantdrive, unlike chicken little who observed an acorn hitting him on the head and decided it was the sky falling, modern climate science has made a wide range of observations of real world physical data and models that match the real world data that do distinctly observe rapid climate change that is only properly explained when including human CO2 emissions. These models then show future warming from the current CO2, and even more warming from the CO2 we've yet to add to the atmosphere.

It's called denialism because in the face of all these facts about our world, some people choose to deny the science and engage in wishful thinking, a belief that humans could not ever drive changes on our planet. It really amounts to so many heads buried deeply in the sand.
shavera
4.8 / 5 (20) Sep 26, 2013
Scottish Sceptic: A sceptic is someone who, when presented with sufficient evidence to support a claim will believe the claim to be true. What evidence would you need to see yet to believe humans are driving climate change?
Claudius
1.3 / 5 (28) Sep 26, 2013
...there is remarkably good agreement between models of climate change and the temperature data.


"GCMs generally reproduce the broad climatic behaviours at different geographical
locations and the sequence of wet/dry or warm/cold periods on a mean monthly scale.

However, model outputs at annual and climatic (30‐year) scales are irrelevant with
reality; also, they do not reproduce the natural overyear fluctuation and, generally,
underestimate the variance and the Hurst coefficient of the observed series; none of the
models proves to be systematically better than the others.

The huge negative values of coefficients of efficiency at those scales show that model
predictions are much poorer that an elementary prediction based on the time average.

This makes future climate projections not credible."

Assessment of the reliability of climate predictions based on comparisons with historical time series http://itia.ntua....nfo/850/
cantdrive85
1.1 / 5 (30) Sep 26, 2013
Here's a nugget, clearly denialism is rampant around here.
http://sciencespe...roof.pdf
VendicarE
3.7 / 5 (19) Sep 26, 2013
Figures 2 and 3 in Can'tDrive's link are fraudulent.

cantdrive85
1.1 / 5 (29) Sep 26, 2013
They must be if AGW is correct, you have documentation?
VendicarE
4.5 / 5 (17) Sep 26, 2013
Figure 2 is fraudulent because it shows IPCC projections with an expanded vertical scale unrelated to the scale shown at the left, and by starting the IPCC projection at the peak of a weather fluctuation rather than at the median where the IPCC projections start.

Figure 2, does not show the global average for the virtually non-existent MWP or LIA, which were regional temperature fluctuations and not generally global ones.

Can't Drive Too Stupid has been told this on multiple occasions. He has other things in mind rather than Honesty.
VendicarE
4.2 / 5 (11) Sep 26, 2013
"Unbridled hysteria and panic" - ScooTard

The only people I see panic are the denialists and their corporate sponsors.

That is why they are always caught lying their asses off.
VendicarE
4.3 / 5 (11) Sep 26, 2013
"The sky is falling, the sky is falling!" - Can'tDriveTooStupid

Not falling, warming.

Get back to us when you learn how to add, subtract, multiply and divide.
VendicarE
4.2 / 5 (11) Sep 26, 2013

"and despite the fact they out gun us something like 1000:1 on the finance.

WE ARE WINNING." - ScottishTard

I see, so you are a willing member of the dishonest, corporate propagandists.

How much do you get paid to lie?
VendicarE
4.2 / 5 (11) Sep 26, 2013
"Mother earth just keeps ignoring all those idiots who tell us she should be getting warmer." - ScottishTard

http://www.woodfo...to/trend

The link above proves you to be a liar.

Again, how much to you get paid per lie?
RealityCheck
2.9 / 5 (23) Sep 26, 2013
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

Fair's fair, Cantdrive. :) In history, when advance warnings are made by observers of imminent/eventual disaster, reactionaries motivated by political/mercenary/ego self-interest call them 'alarmists'. Remember Ozone Hole which threatened health/crop UV damage havoc if not minimized? Remember the Environmental threats from Dioxins and other persistent man-made chemicals? Remember the threat to resources by the throw-away mentality which was also a huge threat to the environment/health? Remember all the warnings of massive pollution for centuries if Nuclear Power/Weapons use/manufacture/processing? And the Tobacco damage to health? In each case the political/mercenary/ego 'reactionaries' ridiculed the warnings/messengers as 'alarmist' etc. If it wasn't for the tireless selfless efforts of those motivated for the greater good, future generation health etc, we would already be 'toast'. Let's learn from history/mistakes, not repeat them. :)
freethinking
1.5 / 5 (30) Sep 26, 2013
I agree with antialias_physorg that If a group has a stated agenda before doing any work that's a pretty good sign that they are wrong. I would like to add Evolutionists, Atheists, Progressives and even AGW believers into his list.

I'm currently on the Anti AGW bandwagon, why? Because the evidence leads me to believe there is no Man Made Global Climate Change. Even IF there was evidence for this change, then those on this board who believe it should be outraged by the hypocrisy of the elite who "say" they believe, yet fly private jets, drive monster cars, own multiple energy inefficient mansions.

KKKhristianity
1.6 / 5 (28) Sep 26, 2013
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Neinsense99
2.8 / 5 (20) Sep 26, 2013
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

Thanks for that nursery rhyme science.
Shootist
1.6 / 5 (28) Sep 26, 2013
And to end this foolishness as I always end this foolishness,

"The polar bears will be fine". - Freeman Dyson

Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are. He understands climate change better than you do. And he finds Mann, Hanson, et. al's. models to be inaccurate and their statistics to be flawed.
Kiwini
1.2 / 5 (26) Sep 26, 2013
Freeman Dyson, on fudge- http://appliedcli...d-fudge/
JohnGee
3 / 5 (24) Sep 26, 2013
He's also ancient and that's a blatant appeal to authority. He does not understand the climate better than the preponderance of climatologists.

The only fool is you shootist. You are as full of shit as your namesake.
Sinister1811
3.6 / 5 (20) Sep 26, 2013
The sky is falling, the sky is falling!


Says cantdrive85. Shouldn't he have his license yet? Eh, it's probably suspended.
VendicarE
3.8 / 5 (14) Sep 27, 2013
"Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are." - ShooTard

Shootist can't distinguish between intelligence and Alzheimers.

Fools never can because they don't have any basis to judge the difference.

Dyson on the other hand can't distinguish between his own results in climate modeling and the modern climate models that produce the same numbers.

Bahahahahah........ Alzheimer's.
Neinsense99
2.7 / 5 (21) Sep 27, 2013

VendicarE quoted Shootist: "Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are." - ShooTard
---
How ironic it is that they can quoted Dyson and yet claim we are the ones that rely on group think and authority!
Sinister1811
2.9 / 5 (17) Sep 27, 2013
"The polar bears will be fine". - Freeman Dyson


That's what he said about the Dodo and the Wooly Mammoth.
obama_socks
1.5 / 5 (24) Sep 27, 2013
The IPCC is itself a big corporation that is money hungry. I will accept AGW as truth only when there is no longer a call for redistribution of wealth from rich nations to those in the third world. And I will consider it when those AGWites like AlGore and the other arrogant high and mighty start riding tricycles like Venditardietardtard..E to work and shopping instead of their fancy gas guzzlers. And they should also forego getting on a plane or helicopter for every trip to some meeting when they can use their computer for digital meetings using the correct program such as "Go To My Meeting". They can even do it in pajamas.

There is too much phony baloney going on with these people insisting on hoi polloi giving up certain comforts and conveniences while the rich and famous AGWites continue their high living while looking down at "the little guy" with a squinted jaundiced eye to make sure that he is not somehow emitting CO2.
casualjoe
4.2 / 5 (5) Sep 27, 2013
not sure if this has been posted yet, but I would like to see this wholly related campaign hit 500,000 signatures.. http://www.avaaz....;v=29589
VendicarE
3.6 / 5 (12) Sep 27, 2013
"The IPCC is itself a big corporation that is money hungry." - SoxTard

All of the scientists who work on the IPCC report are unpaid by the IPCC.

Once again the Republican Loser ObamaSox is found to be living in a retarded world of self generated fantasy.

He must eat a big steaming bowl of Republican RetardieOats for breakfast every morning.


obama_socks
1.5 / 5 (24) Sep 27, 2013
Again Venditardietardtard misinterprets what I said.

I said "The IPCC ITSELF is a big corporation that is money hungry.

Nowhere did I say anything about the scientists themselves. I have no idea if they're paid or not.
It is now evident that, just like Theghostofottoskorzeny1923 and his sockpuppet, BAKOON, VD may require medication to combat the disease of jumping to conclusions without comprehending the meaning of my comment.

It is a fatal disease, as one can tell from reading ghostofotto's own retarded improvisations.
runrig
3.8 / 5 (12) Sep 27, 2013
And to end this foolishness as I always end this foolishness,

"The polar bears will be fine". - Freeman Dyson

Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are. He understands climate change better than you do. And he finds Mann, Hanson, et. al's. models to be inaccurate and their statistics to be flawed.


This is because said "Mr Dyson" is of course an omniscience sage of the first order and in fact only one part removed from God (whoever ever yours may be).
Mr Shootist thinks so anyway.
Strange how some people would rather believe a personality and quote psuedo-profundity rather than the evidence before their eyes.
Fond of Mr Ike as well?
Neinsense99
2.2 / 5 (16) Sep 27, 2013
FYI, Colombe is a bot or sock-puppet that has been systematically down-rating my posts and it has made zero comments since June when it was registered. Anyone else noticed it targeting them?
Neinsense99
2.5 / 5 (15) Sep 27, 2013
FYI, Colombe is a bot or sock-puppet that has been systematically down-rating my posts and it has made zero comments since June when it was registered. Anyone else noticed it targeting them?

Add to Colombe the bots/sockpuppets Father Brrencke, toot and open. Voting down on almost all my posts and never any comments.
Modernmystic
2.1 / 5 (11) Sep 27, 2013
He's also ancient and that's a blatant appeal to authority. He does not understand the climate better than the preponderance of climatologists.


Oh the irony....

And yes I think AGW is real. I also think people should check their premises before posting...
redpillminded
1.7 / 5 (17) Sep 27, 2013
Ask YOURSELF this: Is anthropogenic global warming research and "green" public policy worth the immense costs to civilization? Think about this for a moment... Does the earth and mother nature have ways of compensating for increased atmospheric carbon levels and global temperatures and has it done so in the past? Did the earth recover from the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs and darkened the skies for thousands of years? Didn't we just come out of a little ice age a several centuries ago? I thought temperature rises and falls were normal phenomena of the earth. Why are we freaking out about global warming in the last 50 years when, in reality, we have been in the rising phase of another natural cycle for the past couple of centuries?
SteveS
3.9 / 5 (11) Sep 27, 2013
And to end this foolishness as I always end this foolishness,

"The polar bears will be fine". - Freeman Dyson

Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are. He understands climate change better than you do. And he finds Mann, Hanson, et. al's. models to be inaccurate and their statistics to be flawed.


"The energy produced by the breaking down of the atom is a very poor kind of thing. Anyone who expects a source of power from transformation of these atoms is talking moonshine."
Sir Ernest Rutherford
JohnGee
2.9 / 5 (21) Sep 27, 2013
He's also ancient and that's a blatant appeal to authority. He does not understand the climate better than the preponderance of climatologists.


Oh the irony....

And yes I think AGW is real. I also think people should check their premises before posting...


I'm assuming you found irony in my calling Shootist out on a blatant appeal to authority while claiming the same for climatologists? Appeals to authority are only fallacious when the authority being appealed to is not an authority on the topic under discussion. Dyson is not a climatologist. Dyson being the "successor to Einstein" (whatever that means) does not make him an authority on the climate. In fact, I've never heard that claim before and would venture to guess only climate change denialists shower him with such titles.

The only mistake I will admit to is not putting "fallacious" in my original post, however it should have been understood to be there.
Neinsense99
2.6 / 5 (22) Sep 27, 2013
The IPCC is itself a big corporation that is money hungry...


Oh yeah, the IPCC is a real megacorp -- The Secretariat has a whopping twelve -- 12! -- personnel listed on the web site. Where do they put them all?
VENDItardE
1.2 / 5 (21) Sep 28, 2013
FYI, Colombe is a bot or sock-puppet that has been systematically down-rating my posts and it has made zero comments since June when it was registered. Anyone else noticed it targeting them?

Add to Colombe the bots/sockpuppets Father Brrencke, toot and open. Voting down on almost all my posts and never any comments.


because no comments are needed to downrate your posts, only knowledge.
Shootist
1.6 / 5 (25) Sep 28, 2013
VendicarE

Do you teach at Princeton?

Dyson is smarter than you are. He is better educated that you are. And he knows more about the planet's climate than you ever will. Plus as a leftist he has no political axe to grind.

"the polar bears will be fine." - Freeman Dyson.
kochevnik
2.7 / 5 (14) Sep 28, 2013
FYI, Colombe is a bot or sock-puppet that has been systematically down-rating my posts and it has made zero comments since June when it was registered. Anyone else noticed it targeting them?

Add to Colombe the bots/sockpuppets Father Brrencke, toot and open. Voting down on almost all my posts and never any comments.

because no comments are needed to downrate your posts, only knowledge.
Knowledge of sockpuppetry gained by years of restarting your modem so as not to be caught downloading illegal porn?
Neinsense99
2.9 / 5 (19) Sep 28, 2013
FYI, Colombe is a bot or sock-puppet that has been systematically down-rating my posts and it has made zero comments since June when it was registered. Anyone else noticed it targeting them?

Add to Colombe the bots/sockpuppets Father Brrencke, toot and open. Voting down on almost all my posts and never any comments.


because no comments are needed to downrate your posts, only knowledge.

That knowledge, it would appear, consists of an intimate acquaintance with the contents of pseudoscience blogs and the application of the Dunning-Kruger effect.
VendicarE
3.6 / 5 (10) Sep 29, 2013
"Do you teach at Princeton?" - ShooTard

Nope, and neither does the Alzheimer's patient you are quoting.
runrig
3.8 / 5 (12) Sep 29, 2013
VendicarE

Do you teach at Princeton?

Dyson is smarter than you are. He is better educated that you are. And he knows more about the planet's climate than you ever will. Plus as a leftist he has no political axe to grind.

"the polar bears will be fine." - Freeman Dyson.


But why - just because he is "smart" would you think he is the font of wisdom on Climate science?
Do you not think that there are hundreds of smart people compiling the IPCC reports?
And neither do the scientists on the IPCC have a "political axe to grind". They are merely scientists and to think otherwise is bizarrely delusional.
casualjoe
4 / 5 (8) Sep 29, 2013
Freeman Dyson understands that agw is happening.
Noumenon
1.5 / 5 (23) Sep 29, 2013
"Remember chump, Dyson is smarter than you are." - ShooTard

Shootist can't distinguish between intelligence and Alzheimers.

Fools never can because they don't have any basis to judge the difference.

Dyson on the other hand can't distinguish between his own results in climate modeling and the modern climate models that produce the same numbers.

Bahahahahah........ Alzheimer's.


Do you have proof that Dyson suffers from Alzheimer's, or is that a typical leftist ad-hominem attack? He has done research on climate change before.
Neinsense99
2.6 / 5 (17) Sep 29, 2013
Again Venditardietardtard misinterprets what I said.

I said "The IPCC ITSELF is a big corporation that is money hungry.

Nowhere did I say anything about the scientists themselves. I have no idea if they're paid or not.
It is now evident that, just like Theghostofottoskorzeny1923 and his sockpuppet, BAKOON, VD may require medication to combat the disease of jumping to conclusions without comprehending the meaning of my comment.

It is a fatal disease, as one can tell from reading ghostofotto's own retarded improvisations.

Thanks for clarifying that. It's even easier to debunk. You have a very selectively distorted notion of what a corporation is and what comprises large in the corporate world.
VendicarE
4.4 / 5 (8) Sep 29, 2013
"Do you have proof that Dyson suffers from Alzheimer's" - NumenTard

Dyson was born in 1923, and at 90 years old his mind is still as sharp as a tack that... was made in 1923.

The sad thing about Dyson's mental condition is that he doesn't even remember the results of his own government sponsored analysis of the earth's climate that was done in the late 1960's, and which produced the same results as those of the current IPCC.

This video is a couple of years old and it is sad that he can barely keep on topic in his rambling, incoherent response.

https://www.youtu...0tXcNTPs

VendicarE
4.3 / 5 (8) Sep 29, 2013
"Freeman Dyson understands that agw is happening. " - CasualJoe

He does. He just doesn't know if he put on fresh underwear this morning.

Certainly he is smarter than NumenTard, but that can also be said of my cat, and I don't even own a cat.

cantdrive85
1 / 5 (19) Sep 29, 2013
Neinsense99
2.9 / 5 (15) Sep 29, 2013
Freeman Dyson, on fudge- http://appliedcli...d-fudge/

In your appeal to authority, you've ended up with fudge on a blog.