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14 November 2012

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A fan of  Black Pearl

How about checking out the 'Cabinet' meeting that made the decision to invade Iraq in the Blair years? Who chaired the meeting? Was he an elected politician and member of the cabinet? Who else was present?....might make very interesting reading.....how we are governed and by whom...

John Jolley

Good work !
I love to see common-sense winning through.
Climate change is just an excuse for more taxes on the sheeple.

Gillyches

In Gibraltar recently, Oct 21/22 or thereabouts Al Gore was invited at an astronomic cost to the residents of Gibraltar(about 200,000 Euros, I believe) to speak about Global Warming and green matters in general. (http://www.theolivepress.es/spain-news/2012/10/22/al-gore-urges-gibraltar-to-become-climate-change-role-model/)

However, Lord Monckton also offered to offer counter arguments for FREE and because of - let's be kind and say 'government bungling' the emails that were sent to set this up were 'lost'. However, Lord Monckton did speak at The Elliott Hotel the following night and the event was well attended. He got virtually no press coverage at all... whilst Gore's coverage was extensive.

If governments like those in Gibraltar are anything to go by... then we are all expected to follow the 'party line' and believe this stuff without demur!

Dezzie

Nowadays the 'debate', if worthy of that description, is less about science which few, including scientists, fully understand and is inevitably less than conclusive. It is more about other, mostly politically inspired, agendas. Science like everyone else must 'sign up' to the zeitgeist if they want money.

Grumpy Oldman

Quote:

the attendee from the UEA who has already been busted for fixing the evidence on climate change

Wonder if his lawyers are reading???

prohyp

I believe that this wonderful exposure of the bias which exists at the Beeb and the lengths they are willing to go to to advance their agendas, accurately reflect the corrupt nature of the culture which exists in what should be a wholly impartial institution of which we could be proud.

Given the mess the Beeb is currently in, I can help but wonder if this is not a classic example of "how you sew so you reap"

Terry Smith

Gillyches: Yes, Mockton’s an impressive performer.

Terry Smith

Grumpy Oldman: Let’s be clear I was referring to the UEA being “busted” not the individual attendee.

Scientific Alliance

If you dig deeper, you find that this was one of a series of events organised by the International Broadcasting Trust which "has been lobbying the BBC, on behalf of all the major UK aid and development agencies, to improve its coverage of the developing world."
Frankly, no credible broadcaster should be basing its policy on an important technological issue on the output of a workshop organised by a group lobbying on behalf of the development sector (or any other sector, come to that).

David Strahan

Terry, let's see if you are 'balanced' enough to allow this comment:

The BBC isn't 'balanced' in its reporting of climate change: but the facts aren't 'balanced' either

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/tomchiversscience/100189497/the-bbc-isnt-balanced-in-its-reporting-of-climate-change-but-the-facts-arent-balanced-either/

Alcuin

Another spectacular own goal for the BBC, and very illuminating of their closed mindset. That they always have to take a Manichean position on major issues is a big intellectual problem, and completely counter to the entire ethos of Scientific enquiry.

That said, as a retired Engineer, I am quite convinced by the AGW thesis, which I have described elsewhere.
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100114292/lying-cheating-climate-scientists-caught-lying-cheating-again/#comment-350708666.

The current static period may be partly due to reduced solar activity. I don't try to convince anyone of this as even if we all knew it were true, we would not stop what we are doing. What will be, will be.

Nick B.

I doubt if there are any climate change sceptics who dispute that CO2 has an impact on atmospheric temperatures. What is disputed is the scale of that impact. The workings of the climate are so complex that it is likely near impossible to build a reliable model, and more important, actually test that the model is reliable. Cutting CO2 is akin to the old medical practice of bleeding people – spectacular and painful, but not very effective.

The real problem is resource usage and abusage, the availability of a free sink for all manner of domestic and industrial pollutants and the inability of Earth’s natural systems to keep up with the rate at which man (and woman) uses Earth’s natural resources. If this problem is to be dealt with the politically correct obsession with man made CO2 emissions and the pouring of tax payers cash into wind farms, solar panels and climate change conferences has to stop.

I fear the lights will go out and we will go bust before common sense prevails.

Terry

At the heart of this and ever other exposure is the pan-institutional conspiracy to replace national democracy with a one world global dictatorship.

Andrew

I suppose if we're discussing the shape of the Earth, regardless of whether most people would agree that it's round, we should have someone on from the Flat Earth Society and give them equal time to express their views.

Then we should let the viewer/listener decide what's true.

To do anything else would involve the BBC abrogating its responsibility to be impartial.

John pd

@ Terry, you are correct, but this monster has to be attacked one step at a time.
The McAlpine fiasco was a smokescreen thrown up by the BBC to divert attention away from 28gate, which is a scandal on a different order of size. This story has legs.

@ Alcuin, the science is not settled sir.
The size of man's impact on global climate cannot yet be scientifically determined. For instance there is good evidence that C02 levels rise AFTER temperature increases.
WWW.wattsupwiththat.com
www.jonova.com
www.bishophill.com
are illuminating.

@ David Strahan, it is not the sceptic side of this debate which is, rather pathetically trying to claim that "the science is settled", it is the warmist alarmists.

At the moment, I believe there are no fewer than 30,000 scientists anxious to see Michael Mann in court as he has threatened to sue The National Review for publishing an blogpost by Mark Steyn, describing Mann as " the man behind the fraudulent climate-change 'hockey-stick' graph, the very ringmaster of the tree-ring circus "

Mann wont sue, he knows he will get trounced, as Lord Christopher Monckton trounced Al Gore in a british court.

@ Andrew, the whole point of this entire blog is that 6 years ago, the BBC made a formal decision to be impartial, IMPARTIAL,in the debate on a subject which is costing this country billions.

And yes I believe the science is settled, the earth is (almost) round). :)

Andrew

John pd seems not to have grasped my analogy so let me be a bit more explicit: there is a broad consensus of opinion on the science of climate change. (1) Therefore, while journalistic impartiality in reporting on climate change issues is required, giving equal time to dissenting views on this topic is not.

In fact, doing so creates an opposing bias because it lends undue weight to a distinctly minority viewpoint.

I'm not sure if anyone's actually bothered to read the BBC's remarks on this subject, so let me quote them verbatim:

"The BBC has held a high-level seminar with some of the best scientific experts, and has come to the view that the weight of evidence no longer justifies equal space being given to the opponents of the consensus. But these dissenters (or even sceptics) will still be heard, as they should, because it is not the BBC’s role to close down this debate. They cannot be simply dismissed as ‘flat-earthers’ or ‘deniers’, who ‘should not be given a platform’ by the BBC. Impartiality always requires a breadth of view: for as long as minority opinions are coherently and honestly expressed, the BBC must give them appropriate space. ‘Bias by elimination’ is even more offensive today than it was in 1926. The BBC has many public purposes of both ambition and merit – but joining campaigns to save the planet is not one of them. The BBC’s best contribution is to increase public awareness of the issues and
possible solutions through impartial and accurate programming. Acceptance of a basic scientific consensus only sharpens the need for hawk-eyed scrutiny of the arguments surrounding both causation and solution. It remains important that programme-makers relish the full range of debate that such a central and absorbing subject offers, scientifically, politically and ethically, and avoid being misrepresented as standard-bearers. The wagon wheel remains a model shape. But the trundle of the bandwagon is not a model sound." (2)

Now, you can sit there and complain (with some justification) that Claire Foster isn't a climatologist but then I think that every time I see "Lord" [sic] Monckton's mug on my teevee screen. What seems more important than the "who was there?" is the "what was decided and why?" and on the latter I think the BBC's position is correct: you don't expect "Flat Earthers" to have equal time when discussing the shape of the earth.

Two final points. First on Terry's original post. a) Objectivity is a tough thing to nail down. We must accept that everyone has a view on a topic and that journalists are still human. That said, the BBC in the paragraph above, is quite explicit about the need to maintain objectivity on this topic. b) The UEA was not "busted for fixing evidence" (3). Second, to return to John pd's comment, the topic of CO2/temperature lag isn't the bombshell some people think it is. (4) Also, Mann actually has sued (5).

(1) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_opinion_on_climate_change
(2) http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/18_06_07impartialitybbc.pdf (p.40)
(3) http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/feb/09/climategate-bogus-sceptics-lies
(4) http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/04/the-lag-between-temp-and-co2/
(5) http://legaltimes.typepad.com/files/michael-mann-complaint.pdf

Terry Smith

Andrew: Talk is cheap: what a pity the BBC didn’t actually comply with the fine intentions embodied in those words.

Andrew

OK, I'll buy the "actions speak louder than words" argument. So that raises the obvious question: what's the evidence that "the BBC didn't comply with [those] fine intentions"?

BLACK PEARL

What I find 'sinister' is that the main stream news have made nothing of this, free bit of Beeb bashing.
Conclusion... those at the top are all 'silently' in it together not to upset the apple cart, to keep the CO2 dollars rolling, for without this make believe 'unfair tax' the economics would be in deeper poop.
If the world temps continue to decline
http://us4.campaign-archive2.com/?u=c920274f2a364603849bbb505&id=8ac196facf&e=f4e33fdd1e

I wonder what imaginative hypothesis the 'funded people' at the "Centre for Climate Change" will come up with ?
and its Climate change act against nature.

BLACK PEARL

SKY NEWS 08:20am Scientist & Enginneer Jonny Ball absolutly Slating Wind Farms as billions wasted
Also giving the IPCC a poking.

A must watch if you can find a link
A last a major broadcaster telling the truth !

Nick B.

See this Open Letter to the Secretary-General of the United Nations - Current scientific knowledge does not substantiate Ban Ki-Moon assertions on weather and climate, say 125 scientists.

Will it be covered on the BBC? How long can the "It's man made CO2 driven climate change stupid" gravy train continue? Should I build a seawall or a wind turbine? etc.

http://opinion.financialpost.com/2012/11/29/open-climate-letter-to-un-secretary-general-current-scientific-knowledge-does-not-substantiate-ban-ki-moon-assertions-on-weather-and-climate-say-125-scientists/

Andrew

@Nick B.

Hmm...an "Open Letter" that bases its entire argument on a dodgy graph in the Daily Mail?

I don't know if the BBC will cover such an important story... my guess is: probably not.

http://www.skepticalscience.com/latest-pre-bunked-denialist-letter-in-lieu-of-science.html

http://metofficenews.wordpress.com/2012/10/14/met-office-in-the-media-14-october-2012/

Nick B.

Andrew: Never mind about the dodgy graph in the Daily Mail, the whole "Honey I warmed the earth" story is supported by dodgy graphs and even dodgier politics. The whole of scientific progress is based on dodgy graphs that have to be thrown away when a better theory comes along. The key thing is to keep an open mind and think it possible one may be mistaken.

Have a look at this dodgy story about met office warming stuff in the Times. http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/environment/article3651191.ece Also reported on the BBC. Getting warmer - but not just yet!

What I would like to know is what is the correct global temperature? If we need to do something because the world is too warm, what is the normal temperature that it has warmed from? Having spent a good part of my working life in the tropics I often found it a touch too warm. In retirement in the UK it is often a touch too cold. But what is the correct temperature?

Andrew

Nick: For the record, the Times article is also incorrect. See here (1), here (2) and here (3). That said, I'm not really interested in playing Whac-A-Mole with you: rebutting each piece of "evidence" you provide only to have you say well, never mind that, look at *this*!

Skeptism has an important role to play in any debate - not least this one: it helps raise the bar in terms of the burden of proof that must be met.

The corollary to that, however, is that as a skeptic you must be able to identify what that "bar" is. At what point will you be convinced of an argument's merit? If you haven't thought about that then you're really just indulging in pseudoskepticism.

"The whole of scientific progress is based on dodgy graphs that have to be thrown away when a better theory comes along."

Ignoring the hyperbole in that claim, the reality is that Climate Change science is based on a large body of evidence and is backed by an overwhelming consensus in the scientific community. In order for us to "throw away" all of that, Climate Change deniers are going to have to come up with a "better theory".

Since they have comprehensively failed to do that so far, I would suggest that they should: "keep an open mind and think it possible one may be mistaken".

Finally, to your point about the "correct global temperature", that depends on what you're measuring (surface, ocean, or atmospheric temperature or some combination?) and for how long (last 100 years, holocene period, quaternary?). The Times story above is about a short-term (decadal) forecast: the Met Office used the last 60 years as reference and used only surface temperatures (the effect on ocean temperatures is much greater). Also, forecasts tend to use temperature variations rather than absolute numbers for the reasons noted here (4).


(1) http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/news/releases/archive/2013/decadal-forecasts

(2) http://www.skepticalscience.com/news.php?n=1814

(3) http://www.carbonbrief.org/blog/2013/01/all-the-reasons-why-global-warming-hasnt-stopped

(4) http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/abs_temp.html

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