by Judith Curry
A few things that caught my eye this past week.
We haven’t done a post on the climate soap opera lately, here are a few items to discuss.
The Michael Mann saga
The big news, as per the WaPo, is Penn State climate professor sues think tank, National Review. Excerpts:
In a 37-page complaint filed Monday in D.C. Superior Court, Michael Mann and his attorney John B. Williams, charged the National Review and the Capitol Hill-basedCompetitive Enterprise Institute with six counts including libel and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Michael Mann has been discussing this via twitter, one statement in particular is creating a stir:
“IPCC certificate acknowledging me ‘contributing to Nobel Peace Prize. Do they want my birth certificate too?”
Mark Steyn, who is the focus of the lawsuit, strikes back with this statement in the nationalreviewonline Nobel Mann Takes on Revolting Peasants. Excerpts:
I’m still working on my formal, bland, carefully lawyered official response, so for now just let me do cheap ad hominem cracks.
I was intrigued to see in Dr. Mann’s press release of his suit the following biographical detail:
Dr. Mann is a climate scientist whose research has focused on global warming. In 2007, along with Vice President Al Gore and his colleagues of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for having “created an ever-broader informed consensus about the connection between human activities and global warming.”
I confess I wasn’t aware Dr. Mann “was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.” The official Nobel site makes no mention of him; there are no speeches, no citations, no pictures of him with the King of Norway, no namecheck on the 2007 Nobel diploma.
Well, the fact checkers have taken a look, examiner.com has an article entitled Professor Mann claims to win Nobel Prize; Nobel committee says he has not. Excerpt:
Geir Lundestad, Director, Professor, of The Norwegian Nobel Institute emailed me back with the following:
1) Michael Mann has never been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
2) He did not receive any personal certificate. He has taken the diploma awarded in 2007 to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (and to Al Gore) and made his own text underneath this authentic-looking diploma.
3) The text underneath the diploma is entirely his own. We issued only the diploma to the IPCC as such. No individuals on the IPCC side received anything in 2007.
Lundestad goes on to say that, “Unfortunately we often experience that members of organizations that have indeed been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize issue various forms of personal diplomas to indicate that they personally have received the Nobel Peace Prize. They have not.”
So it would appear that not only did Mann not get awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, but that the “text underneath the diploma is entirely his own.” This calls into further questions of what else may not be factual in the legal suit over the highly publicized hockey-stick graph and defamation suit.
And finally, Michael Mann says attacks on climate science could weaken next IPCC report. Repeated attacks on climate scientists could lead to the true impacts of global warming being ignored in the next major international assessment scheduled for 2014.
“I see this with individual scientists, I know this is happening because I talk with colleagues – they are afraid to talk to the media, afraid to weigh in on the side of climate change being a problem, because they know they will immediately be the subject of attack from right-leaning websites, subject to a slew of orchestrated, angry and nasty emails and calls to departments calling on them to be fired”.
JC message to Michael Mann: Mark Steyn is formidable opponent. I suspect that this is not going to turn out well for you.
PBS climate of doubt
After interviewing ‘skeptics’ Richard Muller and Anthony Watts (with a very brief cameo by JC), now it is the consensus turn to trash the skeptics, with a Climate of Doubt. Heartland, Climate Depot, etc trash the PBS special. All this is so predictable that it is boring, and I don’t have much to say about it.
One interesting article emerged: PBS Frontline cites bogus consensus. This is well worth reading. Excerpt:
When one eliminates reviewers with clear vested interest, we end up with a grand total of “just seven who may have been independent and impartial”, according to Australian climate data analyst, John McLean (see his report). And, two of those are known to vehemently disagree with the statement. Prominent climate scientist and IPCC insider Dr. Mike Hulme even admits that “only a few dozen experts in the specific field of detection and attribution studies”, not thousands as is commonly asserted by the IPCC and others, “reached a consensus that human activities are having a significant influence on the climate” (p. 10, 11 of Hulme’s April 12, 2010 paper in “Progress in Physical Geography” at http://tinyurl.com/2b3cq3r). It is travesty that the UN permits this misunderstanding to continue uncorrected.
To meaningfully assert that there is a consensus in any field, we need to actually have convincing evidence. And the best way to gather this evidence is to conduct unbiased, comprehensive worldwide polls. Since this has never been done in the vast community of scientists who research the causes of global climate change, we simply do not know what, if any, consensus exists among these experts. Lindzen concludes: “there is no [known] consensus, unanimous or otherwise, about long-term climate trends and what causes them.” Frontline did a disservice to the public telling them otherwise.
I’ll do a post next week on this storm, but you knew this one had to be coming: God’s latest warning
Perhaps this weather scare that may well be much more than just a scare is God’s revenge for the refusal of the U.S. government to take action on the climate crisis.
Or maybe this is His way of inserting the climate issue into a Presidential election campaign that, astoundingly, has refused to discuss it. The words “global warming” and “climate” were not spoken by anyone, by the moderators or by the candidates, over the course of all four Presidential and Vice Presidential debates.