Climate for Corruption

by Judith Curry

Corruption and climate change? Most people don’t see a connection. This is likely because they aren’t in the habit of thinking of climate change as a multi-billion dollar global industry. And wherever money flows plentifully, corruption is quick on its heels. – Alice Harrison, Transparency International’s Climate Governance Program

Global Corruption Report:  Climate Change

About a year ago, Transparency International compiled a report entitled Global Corruption Report:  Climate Change [global corruption climate change. About Transparency International:

Space for Transparency is the official blog of Transparency International, the global coalition fighting against corruption. It provides an independent space to start a conversation on corruption, governance, transparency and accountability with authors from the anti-corruption movement on how to overcome corruption worldwide.

From the Executive Summary:

A robust system of climate governance – meaning the processes and relationships at the international, national, corporate and local levels to address the causes and effects of climate change – will be essential for ensuring that the enormous political, social and financial investments by both the public sector and the private sector made in climate change mitigation and adaptation are properly and equitably managed, so that responses to climate change are successful. 

Good governance of the climate can enhance the process, making it more transparent, accessible and equitable for all. Climate change is not just a challenge to established approaches to governance, however; it also transcends established typologies of corruption. Corruption is defined by Transparency International as the abuse of entrusted power for private gain.

Entrusted power is not only the power a citizen confers to a public office holder. It is the power that future generations have vested in all of us, in our stewardship role for the planet. Likewise, abuse for private gain goes beyond corruption in the forms it so often takes – the misappropriation of funds, bribery in the awarding of contracts, and nepotism, all of which undermine good climate governance – and extends to new arenas. These include the distortion of scientific facts, the breach of principles of fair representation and false claims about the green credentials of consumer products – evidence of which is documented in this report. Such practices can be devastating in a policy arena in which uncertainty abounds and trust and cooperation are essential.

Why is corruption, in particular, a risk in addressing climate change? As the Global Corruption Report explores at length, the efforts to prevent and respond to climate change will have an enormous price tag. Where huge amounts of money flow through new and untested financial markets and mechanisms, there is always a risk of corruption. Some estimate total climate change investments in mitigation efforts alone at almost US$700 billion by 2020. Public investments of no less than US$250 billion per annum will eventually flow through new, relatively uncoordinated and untested channels. In addition, pressure already exists to ‘fast-track’ solutions, further enhancing the risk of corruption.

Corruption risks are also high because of the level of complexity, uncertainty and novelty that surrounds many climate issues. Essential concepts, such as what should count as a forest, or how to establish additionality (meaning whether projects could happen in any case without support), are still being debated. Rules for geoengineering, perhaps the most risky and consequential human intervention in our biosphere, are still largely absent. New tools to measure the environmental integrity of carbon offsets are relatively untested. Early evidence presented in this report suggests that there are many regulatory grey zones and loopholes that are at risk of being exploited by corrupt interests. Careful monitoring, quick learning and an active approach to closing entry points for corruption are essential to ensure that strong governanc enables the success of these new tools and instruments at this most critical stage.

An article at the Oil Drum provides the following summary:

If climate governance is not prepared for corruption, corruption will undermine climate governance. The GCR does not just raise the alarm, it provides a risk map of ways to make climate change measures more effective.  Recommendations include:

  • All conferences and meetings where climate change targets are set should be open to the people they impact and transparent at the international and local levels
  • Experts monitoring and verifying projects must be independent and not paid from the budget of the project they are overseeing
  • All climate measures should have strong, well-resourced oversight bodies
  • Civil society must monitor government commitments to reduce emissions and be involved in development and oversight of national plans for mitigation and adaptation.

A more recent update comes from Transparency International’s blog, in an article Climate Change: Rising Waters, Rising Corruption?

Recognising the point at which corruption and climate change might intersect, Transparency International (TI) this year launched its Climate Governance Programme. This involves TI chapters in Bangladesh, the Dominican RepublicKenya,Peru, the Maldives and Mexico, all of which suffer high levels of corruption and all bracing themselves for an uncertain climatic future. Like most of the countries at risk of climate disasters, the Dominican Republic is in the lower tier of the CPI, scoring three out of ten.

It is our hope that building robust checks and balances into the state’s climate finance architecture as it takes shape will set a precedent for good governance more generally, and eke out the corruption that has long made public funds mysteriously disappear.

At present this landscape involves a labyrinthine network of funds, government agencies, companies, finance institutions and contractors. It is complex, and relatively uncoordinated and untested, meaning money risks vanishing through blind spots or loopholes, decisions might be ill-informed, processes poorly managed and results substandard or misrepresented. Perversely, this could put populations and the natural environment at even more risk of climate extremes than they’d otherwise be.

Visibility will help ward against this. At TI we want more open policy, procedures and finance, we want public scrutiny and consultation, and accountable decision making. As yet, many of the people and institutions governing our climate show little sign of this.

Out of Africa

These challenges are illustrated by this article about Africa:  Africa to launch own fund to manage climate cash.

African leaders plan to launch a fund this year to help the continent access and manage its share of money from the global U.N. Green Climate Fund, a U.N. official said.

Climate negotiators have yet to establish the Green Climate Fund, which the United Nations wants to be able to deliver $100 billion a year by 2020. The idea of the fund was one of the few agreements to come out stalled climate talks in 2009.

The resources will help poor countries brace for the effects of climate change while also investing in projects that mitigate it, such as renewable energy and protecting forests.

The global cost of combating and adapting to climate change is estimated at $46 trillion up to 2050, or $1 trillion a year.

Ibrahima Dia, a senior U.N. and African Union official involved in the talks, said the African Development Bank would establish and manage the fund, which is needed as African states individually lack the knowledge and technology to secure their share of global climate funds.

The fund will be launched at COP17, the next round of climate change talks in South Africa in November. African leaders have been trying to firm up a united position for the continent, which experts say will be one of the most affected by climate change because of its susceptibility to drought.

“(The message is) we go united to COP17, we don’t scale down, and we put an emphasis on adaptation,” Dia told Reuters on the sidelines of an African Union summit in Equatorial Guinea, where leaders discussed climate change amongst other issues such as Libya’s conflict.

World Bank

Whereas money is slow to materialize in the UN Funds, the World Bank does have funds and is spending them as part of their Climate Adaptation Program.  It seems that most of these funds are in the form of loans, although there are some grants.  This article from Bangladesh raises additional issues: Why Bangladesh doesn’t want climate adaptation loans.

…Offering Bangladesh climate loans through the World Bank is a form of trickery that will push us deeper into poverty, with no means of escape. Loans for climate adaptation are supposed to help countries cope with the worst impacts of global warming. They are not intended to fund income-generating projects, so no new money will be created to repay them.

Rezal Karim Choudhury in the Poverty Matters blog at the Guardian (UK) has a “no! in thunder” for the World Bank: This week in Cape Town, the World Bank will decide whether to approve new climate adaptation loans for five countries. In Bangladesh and around the world, campaigners are resisting these loans and urging their governments not to accept new debt for climate change. More than 50 organisations from countries due to receive the loans recently signed a statement opposing the concept of climate loans, which was initially invented by the UK.

The World Bank cannot be trusted to deliver climate finance. Instead, we need the UK to help us adapt to climate change through democratic and representative institutions, like the UN Adaptation Fund. The UK has so far failed to put a single penny into this fund. And by pouring money into the World Bank’s climate investment funds, it is undermining the UN fund…

Corruption Perception Index

TI also publishes a Corruption Perception Index.

JC comments

This topic has been sitting in my ‘draft’ file for quite awhile.  Two events this past week motivate my focusing on this topic.  The first was a discussion with a colleague about concerns of cherry picking (or possibly altering) of climate impacts data from  developing countries.   The second was the IPCC announcement that membership of the IPCC Bureau will have geographic quotas.  From the New Scientist article:

The IPCC is an intergovernmental body, but its reports are written by scientists. In the past these have been chosen largely on their scientific merit, but from now on the 30-person IPCC bureau – which oversees all publications – will have geographical quotas. For instance Africa will have five members and North America four. In addition, each of its three working groups must now include at least one person from every continent in their eight-person bureaux.

Richard Klein, an IPCC stalwart from the Stockholm Environment Institute in Sweden, told New Scientist this was mostly a formalisation of current practices. “Membership has always been based on expertise, geographical balance and gender.” But Krug said it represented a breakthrough for involvement of developing-world scientists.

The IPCC Bureau seems a bit mysterious to me, but basically they are in charge of the IPCC.  We have previously discussed sources of bias in the IPCC, including groupthink, noble/Nobel cause ‘corruption’, green politics, etc.  But these kinds of biases pale in the face of the potential for scientific corruption associated with billions of dollars at stake for the developing world in the various UN climate funds.  They dynamic of the whole thing has changed with the prospect of these funds
I am particularly concerned about WG II, which has a large membership from the developing world.  Apart from torquing of the entire enterprise by the Bureau, what kind of pressure might the participating scientists be under from their governments (esp those ranking very high on the corruption index) to make their country look the neediest for these funds, by cherry picking or even ‘cooking’ data, or otherwise torquing the the Reports?  This is made easy by much of the information cited by WG II is not peer reviewed.
And lets not forget WG III, where specific projects and technologies may benefit participants in terms of people providing or developing the technologies, and those benefitting from projects in their countries.
Re WG I, lets hope the sources of bias remain groupthink etc., and we don’t have to worry about any actual corruption.
Consider the following analogy.  Employees from pharmaceutical companies are on the editorial board of journals publishing articles on pharmaceuticals.  The pharmaceutical companies clearly have financial interests in seeing some papers get published and other papers get buried.  No one would expect unbiased editorial activities here.
In response to the IAC Review, the IPCC is supposed to be implementing conflict of interest guidelines.  It seems to me that these guidelines need to be broadened to consider the kinds of conflicts associated with the emerging UN climate funds.

271 responses to “Climate for Corruption

  1. Not all corruption is financial.

    • I agree. Money is one goal of selfishness. The seven deadly sins include: Lust; Gluttony; Greed; Sloth; Wrath; Envy; Pride

      These human weaknesses compromised financial, scientific, publishing and government institutions, and their respect for the dignity of humans, especially in science prior to 1543 and after 1945:

      Human life reflects the benevolent fountain of energy Copernicus discovered at the core of the solar system in 1543.

      The US Declaration of Independence affirmed that Divine core:

      “”We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

      Today society is at a crossroads. We will either restore integrity to our institutions and their respect for humans, or we will accept a totalitarian government that controls information and uses electronic surveillance to monitor individuals, as George Orwell described in the futuristic novel he wrote in 1948 and titled “1984”

      With kind regards,
      Oliver K. Manuel
      Former NASA Principal
      Investigator for Apollo

    • I think that a good definition of corruption is breach of contract.

      If the purpose of government is to take bribes, then taking bribes wouldn’t be corruption.
      Therefore in the US, a violation of the US constitution is corruption.
      Or since US constitution allows various types laws to passed, and one has a law against bribery, if one violates the law regarding bribery then one has a criminal.
      A contract can have implicit agreement so in terms of governing, politicians are also guided by implicit agreement.
      If a people wish to ruled by robber and thug, if such ruler is a thug and robber, one shouldn’t call this corruption.

      Of course the tendency is call something corruption based a person’s standard what proper conduct for a government.
      And if want to objective about it, one should have published or stated standard of how you are defining corruption.
      What is corruption for communist would be different from a “capitalist”
      For Communistic or Socialist State taking personal wealth is not corruption for government officials to do.
      What could considered robbery or taking bribes of a state could be in accordance with contract- it is not a breach of contract.

      So the fact that any person has any wealth could seen as a choice of the state. It common for socialist to argue that a person doesn’t really own money- it’s the state’s along with all other aspect of wealth.
      You don’t even own your own body. The all encompassing idea is for all of it to be managed/controlled by the state.

      Or one could say that with self identified socialist states, they moving towards the more perfect State, and in meantime citizen are doing their bit by managing their personal wealth until such time as government is capable of doing it.

      So corruption in socialist state is people who still have too much money. Or the 7 year old selling lemonade is corruption.

      Or the action of the sovereign is not corruption, whereas in a republic the people are sovereign- what the people want isn’t corruption.
      In socialist state the State is sovereign, so what it wants is not corruption- only it’s subjects can be violating or corrupting it’s will. So the peons in the State bureaucracy could be considered to be perverting the State’s will- but peons of the bureaucracy and the subjects would be essentially the same thing.

      So from socialist view the corruption is with the peons, with more civilized society the corruption is mostly concerned with policy and actions of top government officials [whether regional or national]- the idea being that government leadership guides and is responsible for the entire government.

      • David L. Hagen

        Corrpution is far wider than “contract”.
        The US Code is founded on USC-Declaration of Independence-1776:
        “We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions,”
        In the final analysis, the standards of the Supreme Judge are what count.

  2. Rob Bradley

    We often think of ‘market failure’ in terms of climate change, but the question posed here is about ‘government failure’ in response to market failure–and ‘analytic failure’ in terms of bad incentives/corruption also.

    The existence of government failure and analytic failure is an argument for not having government get involved with alleged market failure. Far too many climate economists, including William Nordhaus, assume perfect knowledge of the problem and the solution to the problem and that an ‘envrionmental pope’ will be in charge. Realism, anyone?

    • Rob, I’ve written before about “government failure” being more widespread and more damaging than alleged market failures. Claims of market failure tend to be made when the market outcome doesn’t suit the claimant’s agenda.

  3. From Transparency International: “Climate change is not just a challenge to established approaches to governance….”

    From the Oil Drum: “If climate governance is not prepared for corruption, corruption will undermine climate governance.”

    There is no “climate governance” yet, and with any luck there never will be. It’s funny reading these musing about how to avoid corruption after the CAGWers have taken control of “climate governance,” when there is an election in the U.S four months away that may drive the consensus train right off the rails. If the U.S. pulls back from the CAGW economic abyss, who will fund the new world climate order?

    And God help the people of Africa if a bunch of progressives get their hands on hundreds of billions of “climate governance” funds.

    I’m here from the government, and I’m here to….

    • From the Oil Drum: “If climate governance is not prepared for corruption, corruption will undermine climate governance.”

      The just had this epiphany now?

      • John Kannarr

        “Power tends to corrupt, …” and power over large sums of other people’s money …

    • /

      Africa’s a huge and diverse continent. National problems are not all equal there. For instance, on the topic of transparency, the USA fares worse than five African nations.. and 30 other nations as well.. though still edging out Australia.

      Not saying I find the list entirely convincing. Just so..

  4. Groupthink is corruption.

    • That’s no way to talk about below-the-line at Climate Etc.

    • Groupthink is blind stupidity fed by Dunning-Kruger confidence. Corruption is purposeful self-serving manipulation.

      • I disagree. Even purposeful self-serving manipulation comes from ignorance, IMO. Corruption literally means destruction. It also means decay, decomposition. In general, it’s deviation/departure from truth or from what is pure or correct.

        If a scientists, for example, puts collegiality first, and science second, that’s corruption. We’re all corrupted, because we’re humans.

      • We’re all corrupted, because we’re humans.

        Maybe so, Edim, but some are more corrupted than others.

        And the word eventually gets around who these are.


      • Dunning-Kruger is Godwins Law for the 21st Century, you just lost the argument.

  5. Latimer Alder

    ‘This is likely because they aren’t in the habit of thinking of climate change as a multi-billion dollar global industry’

    They don’t? Where have they been hiding for the last twenty years? Mars?

  6. Judith – apart a couple of authors, I cannot for the life of me see anything serious / positive / trustworthy coming out of AR5. How about you posting a blog elucidating what if anything GOOD you expect out of that mighty mess?

  7. Fred Harwood

    I can’t name them now, but very many have noted the obvious from, say, the late 1980s. I trust that scholars will ferret them out and give them their due in this topic.

  8. It is important to admit simple truths about Climatists when the truth is right in front of us. For starters, in truth the grid blocks that are used in the constructions of GCMs are too large. They cannot accurately simulate any of the real-world climate conditions such as thunderstorms, hurricanes and other natural processes that transfer huge amounts of energy from the surface of the Earth to the stratosphere. How can we fix this shortcoming? Needless to say there are no ‘parameters’ that can be applied to stand in for what is missing – to account for what cannot be captured or quantified or even conceptualized – and then call the result reality.

    • Wagathon,
      Do you want to model weather or climate?
      I think the modelers know their model grid size is too big to model tornados or thunderstorms.
      The longest tornado track ever measured would fit inside one cell of the HadCM3 model.
      Even though climate model grid sizes have decreased, they are no where near the 1km grid size in modern weather models, besides which they havn’t been able to further constrain climate sensitivity numbers in spite of their increased resolution.
      At some point we need to realize that there is no further improvement in the models that is worth the expense.
      And take to heart the answers they are giving us.

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Thanks, bob. So … the models don’t give better answers to questions like climate sensitivity despite getting larger, faster, and using smaller grid sizes … and your conclusion is that because they have not improved, we should trust them?

        For me, that’s an excellent reason not to trust them. It indicates that they are not accurately modeling reality. If they were, they would have given better answers as they got larger, faster, and used smaller grid sizes … but they continue to give the same answers. I see no reason to conclude from that situation that their answers are correct or even approximately right.


      • It gets worse Willis. It may surprise you to learn, that in studies involved in the proposed lead ban (yet another UN Ponzi Scheme using assumptions and presumptions instead of science, using the same exact methods as used with climate, but more easily visible), ballistic performance from a COMPUTER GAME! is used as if it has real world ballistic significance for lead replacement ammunition!
        For insight, I was once head of training for a large online gaming group (over 3.500 ,members), training up people to take part in international competitions. Unfortunately, with all the practice, I was getting too good with the standard weapons, eventually going against the trainees with a pistol. I got so good with that pistol in a GAME, that I could compete and win at range with players using sniper rifles with optical sights (and when you are competitive it is hard to deliberately miss, which you need to do when training people).
        How can such abuse of reality be included in ‘scientific’ reports? Well it has been, and it is used in them, and that is the degree to which corruption has already taken hold.
        Also, something else that has been found out with this corruption surrounding the lead issue (along with so much else), is when organisations have signed off on reports, extra blocks of text get added later without the signatory party’s knowledge or consent. Extras that completely change what was originally signed off.
        Some of those signatory bodies are now in the process of demanding the removal of their names from the reports as a result (it took them a long time to find out what was being done to them, because they had trust in the process, and their trust was abused).
        We have a huge corruption problem. When the corrupt are those seeking to make the rules surrounding corruption, what do you think we are going to get? Those entrusted with the enforcement of the Law, are already refusing to do what they are paid to do.
        Every table in the Casino is now rigged. When you leave the Casino, every table outside the Casino is now rigged too.
        This will not end well, but end it most certainly will.

      • Pepper,

        Perhaps you have provided the solution. We need to judisciously apply some of that lead to organizations using the UN in their name. Two problems solved. Danagerous lead gets esquestured and the degree of corruption (and interference in our lives) is reduced.

        PS – loved the bit about how a computer simulation allowing you to outcompete someone with a sniper rifle.

      • What you are willing to take to heart whould never make the grade in most other areas of human endeavor where consequences are something that must be seriously considered. All you are doing is explaining why you feel justified throwing out the scientific method and not being accountable for the results. Try getting a new drug introduced using that kind of logic.

      • Ironically, that is what I do, Amyvid for example. Google it.

        You set your standards for testing before you run the tests.

        How about hearing what the standards to test the models should be beforehand, not just this after the fact GIGO unscientific nonsence opinions.

        Let me predict that none of you skeptics will set in writing a standard for the accuracy or precision of a model output in comparison to real world data in order to judge the performance of that model. With some real numbers please.

        None of you will do it.

        My point was that attempting to model the world climate response to increasing CO2 levels with a model that has the grid size small enough to model thunderstorms is not feasible.

        (Troll mode on)

        We have the answers we need, so it’s time to start wrecking the world economy, instituting one world government, and stealing all the moneys from the rich western economies, and not to mention causing the deaths of as many people as possible.

        (Troll mode off)

      • A good start would be models that at least get the major aspects of what we should expect to see somewhat close to what happens. How much do we know about the stratosphere when the models say it should cool and it doesn’t for 16 years? How about a model that doesn’t exhibit a tropospheric hot spot since we don’t appear to have one in our observations? This isn’t nitpicking, this represents a fundamental lack of knowledge in how our climate works.

      • AGW True Believers simply assume global warming is manmade. There are no peer-reviewed studies that rule out ‘natural, internal climate cycles’ — i.e.,‘natural, internal variability’ – as the real cause of 20th century warming.

        And, that is the ‘null hypothesis’ of global warming. The ‘null hypothesis,’ according to Dr. Spencer, has never been rejected, i.e., “THAT NATURAL CLIMATE VARIABILITY CAN EXPLAIN EVERYTHING WE SEE IN THE CLIMATE SYSTEM.” ~Dr. Roy Spencer, 2-Feb-2011 [Emphasis added]

      • Steven, what about the stratosphere cooling do you fail to understand?

        Do you even research a point before you try to make it?

        As for the tropospheric hotspot that is supposed to be there when we get to 2x CO2, right we aren’t there yet, it seems to be coming out of the noise as we speak.

        Wagathon, according to the IPCC, natural variability can’t explain the 20th century warming.

      • Steven, I can only conclude that I misunderstood you when you said that the stratosphere was cooling, when you meant it wasn’t cooling since 1995.

        I guess I also misunderstood you when you said there wasn’t a tropospheric hotspot, because your cites say there is a hotspot, only that it isn’t as big as the ones predicted.

        “While strong observational evidence
        indicates that tropical deep‐layer troposphere warms
        faster than surface,”

        That’s prima facie evidence for AGW!

        And it’s from your cite.

        We are saying the same things!

      • well, I said the models said it should cool and it hasn’t for 16 years. I’m not sure how that could have been confusing. The troposphere I’ll give you. I should have said instead of a hot spot there is only a luke warm spot. The author seems to believe this is an important discrepency and at only 50% of the expected rate I would guess his opinion is correct.

      • Just as a matter of precision, a luke warm spot in the upper troposphere is not evidence of AGW since any warming would be expected to induce the same reaction.

      • Steven,
        Warming from solar causes would not be expected to produce a tropospheric hot spot. Straight out of IPCC AR4.

      • bob, for some reason my link won’t work but go to real climate and look up the post: tropical tropospheric trends. They have posted model run results of increases in co2 and increases in solar. You will find they look very similar including the hot spot.

      • bob droege

        Do you want to model weather or climate?

        Neither one until we have much more knowledge than we do today.

        At some point we need to realize that there is no further improvement in the models that is worth the expense.
        And take to heart the answers they are giving us.

        They aren’t giving us any useful answers, Bob (check Tamsin Edward’s blog). It’s still GIGO.


      • No Max,

        It’s a fact that we don’t like the answers that we are getting.

        It’s unfortunate that the costs of burning fossil fuels eventually outweigh the benefits brought from them.

        And I am not asking for a repeat of your garbage in garbage out analysis.

      • “They [models] aren’t giving us any useful answers”

        They are to my mind. They are telling us that physically we cannot rule out 5C climate sensitivity and physically 1C climate sensitivity is inexplicable.

      • How can it be 1C when we already have 0.8C and are not quite halfway to 2x CO2?
        1C would still be enough to melt a good portion of the icecaps if we burn all the coal, oil, gas, shale etc that we can find. I am in favor of preservation of some historical sites if possible. Venice comes to mind but there are others.

        I think I’ll go for a bike ride and enjoy some of this hell and highwater we are getting in the US this year. It’s only the hottest day ever for June here in STL.

        I dont think we’ll be turning much corn into ethanol this year and the cows are leaving Texas.

      • I hope that the CO2 contribution so far has been less than 0.8C

      • How can it be 1C when we already have 0.8C and are not quite halfway to 2x CO2?

        As the response is logarithmic, I think you’ll find we’re considerably past halfway in terms of forcing.

    • But – but – but … you mean this story in today’s Australian has no basis??!!

      Heat danger looms for outback

      by: Mark Schliebs From: The Australian June 28, 2012 12:00AM

      THE traditional owners of the region surrounding Lake Eyre are being warned by university researchers to prepare for 4C rises in average temperatures in the South Australian outback over the next century as a result of climate change.

      A study to be released today by the University of Adelaide has found temperatures will rise and annual rainfall will drop across the Arabunna people’s land over the next century. Plant species and soils were expected to be most affected by the drier and more fire-prone conditions, having a flow-on effect on traditional hunting and cultural activities, the researchers found.

      “We’ve looked at the climate-change projections based on the best available science,” author and geography, environment and population lecturer John Tibby said yesterday. “This science will be taken out into the community and a conversation will be held between the community and people on our project on the best ways to adapt to climate change in the future. There’s going to be some substantial changes that will occur that will affect people, which will require adaptation.”

      Data from the CSIRO and the weather bureau were used to make the projections.

      Aaron Stuart, chairman of native title body the Arabunna Ularaka Association, said he feared damage to culturally significant sites from the increased risk of bushfires and dust storms due to climate change.

      • Here’s my letter to the editor about it:

        The University of Adelaide warns that “based on the best possible science” residents in the South Australian outback should prepare for 4C temperature rises over the next century (“Heat danger looms for outback,” 28/6). This is the same science that told us temperatures would rise in line with CO2, and can not explain why there has been no rise for 15 years; the same science that admits that its models have high degrees of uncertainty and that they are not fine enough to make regional forecasts. Not to mention that those warned will have much more urgent issues to deal with than the climate in 2112, and will very sensibly ignore such warnings.

      • UAH shows 0.08C/decade warming in the past 15 years.

        I think that can be explained

      • Latimer Alder

        Less than half what was predicted by the IPCC.


        I’m sure not trusting them to forecast the winner of the Melbourne Cup.

      • The IPCCs projections are for the mean, ie they aren’t predicting future solar cycles and when ENSO events happen to fall.

        They couldn’t know that 2002-2005 would be full of el ninos and 2009 and 2011 would be la ninas, or that there would be a low solar minimum.

      • Latimer Alder


        ‘They didn’t know this, they didn’t know that, they couldn’t foresee the other’

        Well they aren’t much bloody good at predicting things then are they?

        Sign seen outside IPCC Fortune Tellers tent:

        ‘Closed today due to unoforseen circumstances’…..

        And like the man said..’Making predictions is hard, especially about the future’. Wise words.

      • The truth is right in front of us if we want to understand and we can begin with understanding how amazing is the kangaroo. They survive 130 degree heat with nothing more than the shade that a scraggly will-o’-the-wisp of a bush dares afford. That kind of adaptation does not happen overnight.

  9. Willis Eschenbach

    The part I liked the best was this quote:

    If climate governance is not prepared for corruption, corruption will undermine climate governance.

    After all of the corruption that has already been exposed in the carbon markets, and in the “carbon credits” programs, and in the various “sustainable development” funds related to climate, the future tense of “will undermine” is laughable—friends, we have met the future already.

    Or as Pogo remarked, “We have met the enemy, and he is us” …


  10. Why are we talking about how to do climate governance and how many ways it can be corrupted? Why are we not talking about the corruption that is making us do that in the first place? How can something that is based on corruption not be corrupt? The Climate Models have forecast dangerous warming for fifteen years that has not happened yet. There is no actual Earth Temperature Data that shows that we are above one degree above the average temperature of the past ten thousand years. Climate Model Output extrapolates to extreme conditions. Earth Temperature Data shows that when Earth is warm, it always gets cool. Earth Temperature Data shows that when Earth is cool, it always gets warm. Earth Temperature Data shows that the Temperature is bounded.
    Consensus Climate People, I will not say they are Scientists, Scientists are always Skeptic and they tell us that they are not, say that what is going to happen in the future is nothing like what has happened in the past.

    History does repeat and I do say:
    This is Stupid. The Emperor has no clothes on. Look at the actual data.

  11. Ray Boorman

    The starting point should be the continuing corruption of the data on which the whole edifice of “climate change” is built. Until the alarmists come clean & admit that the “instrumental temperature record” they manage is corrupt, then they are the ones responsible for all the subsequent financial corruption by the shysters in the political & financial arena.

  12. Judith writes:

    In response to the IAC Review, the IPCC is supposed to be implementing conflict of interest guidelines. It seems to me that these guidelines need to be broadened to consider the kinds of conflicts associated with the emerging UN climate funds.

    Interestingly (h/t Richard Betts), the IPCC has just issued a Press Release in which it declares (inter alia):

    Over the past two years, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) undertook a complete review of its processes and procedures – effectively the IPCC’s “constitution”. Decisions on governance and management, conflict of interest, and procedures were taken by a meeting of the Panel, the IPCC’s governing body, at its 35th session in Geneva on 6-9 June 2012. The Panel also adopted a communications strategy.
    “These latest changes further strengthen IPCC operations as it prepares to release its Fifth Assessment Report in 2013 and 2014. With the completion of the review, the IPCC can now focus fully on its mandate to assess in a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of the risks of climate change, its potential impacts, and options for adaptation and mitigation,” IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri said. [emphasis added -hro]

    The last time I looked at their new, improved “conflict of interest” guidelines, they struck me as being so “open” that one could drive a virtual truckload of advocacy interests through ’em!

    As for “transparent” … well …Even in their listing of AR5 key personnel (i.e. WG Co-Chairs, CLAs, LAs, & Review Editors) . they deemed it sufficient to declare only each person’s respective geographical location and organizational affiliation – with no indication of expertise and/or other possible “affiliations” (which might give rise to what Jane Q. Public might consider a conflict of interest!)

    Not to mention that their CoI process & procedures will be conducted behind closed doors and screens.

    In short, IMHO, this Press Release would have been far more honest if instead of claiming, “These latest changes further strengthen IPCC operations …” Pachauri had said, “These latest changes further tighten the stranglehold …”

    I believe we have already seen several examples of the “new, improved” policies, procedures and guidelines – and “transparency” – in the way that the IPCC has: a) selected key personnel; b) muzzled the voices of expert reviewers – and precluding (or at least attempting to preclude!) any external discussion of the drafts; c) disappearing the “rule” regarding flagging of non-peer-reviewed literature in the chapter references.

    But perhaps, unbeknownst to the rest of the world, they’ve redefined “open” and “transparent” ;-)

  13. You don’t really have to go very far afield to discover problems with money spent on climate mitigation. The mafia swarmed all over Italy when feed-in tariffs and the Conto Energia made it profitable to put up wind turbines. The same was true in Spain–even the UK faced problems. In China, as in Italy, many wind turbines were built to qualify for subsidy payments but never hooked up to the grid. I think they call that modern art…

    Carousel VAT fraud has been common throughout the EU in large climate projects. Carbon trading and offsets have also all had large amounts of money fraudulently spent. These stories are well documented in the press and the amounts head into the billions, taken together.

    I find the Bangladeshi attitude refreshing. I wonder if the World Bank will try and shove those loans down their throats. I don’t think it would be the first time.

  14. Climate science — all politics all the time. The IPCC makes Oil for Food look like a paragon of virtue. We should expect the scientists to be no more honest than the hockey team, the bureaucrats to be no more free of corruption than the third world countries they come from, and the politicians to have no more integrity than they normally display. And that’s a best case scenario.

    Climate scientists are to science as UN Peacekeepers are to professional soldiers. And the rest of the process is going to be much worse.

  15. “The resources will help poor countries brace for the effects of climate change while also investing in projects that mitigate it, such as renewable energy and protecting forests.”

    How sad. How utterly deluded. Bracing? What a tragic waste of resources.

    How does one brace exactly? And how much does bracing cost?

    It will all be stolen anyway…disappearing into the night just as permanently as professor Forest’s data.

  16. What may be viewed as corruption by say a Western viewpoint, nepotism, tribalism, attaining government jobs to dispense largess to friends and relatives, this is the norm for the vast majority of the world. We regularly hear of the tribal lands, tribal customs, tribal hierarchy as applied to the Arab and Muslim world, Africa, China, India, Southeast Asia, Pacific and Indian Ocean Island, as well as sections of North and South American society with family as the focal point of social and financial behavior. Until the decline in arranged marriages in Western Society, family trumped all social norms.
    Corruption as viewed today in Western Culture has become synonymous with drug cartels, liquor gangs, smugglers, etc. But corruption has meaning in tribal culture as not following the gifting, tithing traditions.
    When fresh revenue flows into non-Western viewpoint societies those monies disappear in the usual channels because it isn’t corruption to the people who receive these pennies from heaven. Its good fortune.
    Setting up agencies and monitors for following the money only escalates the cost of the money laundering, not its perception nor destination. Monitoring the flow of funds, looking for a tribal…king…leader…religious person…to suddenly abscond with funds and live in the South of France, misses the major reason why the person became king, leader, priest; he (and it is usually a he) dispenses the largess to his friends and relatives per tradition. No one, and I mean no one is going to tell tales that will interrupt such a financial windfall.
    My take on all this: one needs to teach the person to fish and not provide the fish. For environmental sakes, provide cheap energy, do not insist on renewable so that the woodcutter does not need to go into the “protected” forest to cut trees to make charcoal so that he can sell it/use it to cook tonights dinner.
    The only humane way to assure resources from Western countries are used in accordance with Western ideals, i.e., no corruption: compact energy for survival, communication, education; wiring somewhat extra, refrigerators, stoves and computers…what the market will bare.

  17. Maybe climate corruption is the corruption the developed world has to have? If the experimental physicists did the experiments proving that CO2 traps no heat, then what happens. The economies of the developed nations come tumbling down….. After the global financial crisis and Euro zone crisis, coudl it be too much to bear?

  18. Beth Cooper

    RiHo08 =1 for yr insightful comment on tribalism.

    • …..example of tribalism.

      • MIchael,

        You know, Michael, it is actually touching to see your Pavlovian, oafish, doltish devotion to the hive even as the hive has rejected big-time your despised, white-boy butt.

        But you know, Michael, don’t you, that desperate, needy comments like your last won’t win back the favor of your betters. Rather, such pathetic comments only provide your hive-masters with confirmation that you are, indeed, a doofus screw-up a verified good riddance.

      • Michael,

        Please correct my last to read, “…a doofus screw-up and a verified good riddance.”

        Many thanks

      • much better

      • Michael,

        Yr: “much better”

        Hey, Michael!–this last is good stuff. Snide, subtle, superior, and retort-proof. My sincere compliments, guy!

        So see, Michael, what just a little time and distance from the hive, even if it was an enforced separation, has done for you. I mean, like, you’re already morphing into a not-half-bad-at-all, regular guy and real human being! I mean, like, there’s a whole world out there, Michael, beyond the ingrate hive and its fickle, feckless parasites where industry, technical acumen, integrity, and a track record of solid accomplishment are the respected and rewarded measures of a man–I mean, even if you’re a white-boy who has just found himself on the left’s enemies-list and all!

        You know, Michael, the hive doesn’t want or need you any longer–you’re the wrong gender, wrong race, and the place you call home is located on the wrong continent–but, think about it, you don’t need them, either, do you, Michael? See what I mean, Michael?

        So stop your hopeless struggle to win back your eco-sincure, Michael, and just accept your new-found, permanent, pariah status among your former, fair-weather enviro-cronies. I mean, like, as you know better than me, Michael, it is futile to oppose the hive’s fads and purges once its Stalinist, collectivist, group-think mind is made up and the winners of its latest, back-stabbing power-play–the empowered, pale-face-phobic man-haters in the most recent example–are on a roll. Right, Michael?

        Rather, use this opportunity to kick your hive-aholic addiction, Michael, and free yourself, at last, from all those pathetic, contemptible, dork-booger, girlie-man, weakling dependencies that have tied you to the hive’s apron strings all these years.

        So, Michael, try this: Drop your squeaky smart-mouth, hive-sissy old ways and with a macho, hombre-dude growl in your newly-discovered, testosterone-powered, grown-a-pair, bass voice invite your erstwhile, gulags-a-go-go, greenshirt leech-mates to kiss your liberated white-boy butt and, then, move on without looking back. It’ll be the best move you ever made

      • As eloquent as it was brief.

      • Michael,

        Yr: “As eloquent as it is brief.”

        A surprisingly snappy come-back, Michael! But, alas, a google-search reveals 7 verbatim previous examples of the phrase. So not original–but a good steal.

      • any port in a storm, huh?

  19. The climate “authorities” are criminal tyrants, on every level–first and foremost the activist, alarmist scientists, whose incompetent “science” underlies the political fraud. Others say the agenda is to control the world; I only say it is an agenda guaranteed to produce World War III (and I am beginning to seriously think it may be a deliberate incitement of just that end).

  20. Beth Cooper

    er + )

  21. The plot to install a one-world UN dictatorship, ie “global governance”, is further exposed!

  22. The perversions are turbulent and chaotic.

  23. Do you fear of Big Oil making big dollars and destroying the world with their products? If so, then why don’t you also fear the products of the Anthropogenic alarmism industry and all of the money they are hauling in making believe humans are destroying Earth?

    For example, Head government science authoritarian, John Holdren — friend of Paul Ehrlich — calculated in 1980 that famines due to climate change could leave a billion people dead by 2020. He also championed ‘population control measures’ and believed 280 million Americans would likely be ‘too many.’

  24. Certainly there is the tendency towards corruption simply based on the flow of dollars to be controlled, directed, and skimmed.

    Of greater concern to me is the tendency of the vast amounts of research dollars to influence not only what gets studied but the very results themselves — the oldest rule in research is ‘you get the results you pay for’.

    If grant money is not made available ‘without prejudice’ we will continue to get the ‘guided’ results we see now – the vast majority telling the same predetermined story of CO2’s uncanny influence on every aspect of weather and climate — and thus we are unlikely to see the whole true climate story emerge for many years to come.

  25. Scratch an old hippie and you get a recycled old commie cloaking anti-capitalism in green robes.

    Confessions of a Greenpeace Dropout:

    “A lot of environmentalists are stuck in the 1970s and continue to promote a strain of leftish romanticism about idyllic rural village life powered by windmills and solar panels. They idealize poverty, seeing it as a noble way of life, and oppose all large developments. James Cameron, the multimillionaire producer of the most lucrative movie in history, Avatar, paints his face and joins the disaffected to protest a hydroelectric dam in the Amazon.” ~Patrick Moore

  26. The bad news is that a good part of the expected “climate cash” will end up in the Cayman Islands and the Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich.

    The good news is that there will most likely never be any significant “climate cash” payouts, as the whole CAGW hysteria fizzles.

  27. Michael Ozanne

    For an insight into the strokes that were pulled in the AIDS relief effort see Elizabeth Pisani’s “Wisdom of Whores” Now imagine that degree of venality cubed, that’s a lower bound on the waste, stupidity and theft that would happen under a UN sanctioned global “Carbon Relief” program.

  28. The preface in the report begins with the inevitability of climate change. Since the climate undergoes continuous change all the time this seems too little a reason to begin worrying about corruption; “The world is normal – beware the corruption!” Obviously what remains unspoken in the report is that unnatural climate change is inevitable and only people can cause unnatural climate change. Now we can talk about something. So I would ask: Show us first the proof that unnatural climate change is at work in the world, and that it has to lead to corruption. Then tell us who the corrupted are. If the initial proof is missing don’t bother with the corruption analysis associated with climate change – tell us about the corruption associated with promulgating without proof the notion that contemporary climate change is not normal.

    Meanwhile how about we all just re-read the Climate Gate 1 and 2 emails and documents and ponder the corruption already obvious in climate science and acknowledge that we don’t need climate change to find evidence of corruption. It appears as a founding principle of climate science. It has been there since the beginning of the climate alarmist movement.

  29. I have seen this elsewhere:

    each of its three working groups must now include at least one person from every continent in their eight-person bureaux.

    I keep wondering who these citizens of Antarctica are. Are there as many as three? Is there even one?

  30. But how do you define what is corrupt in international transactions. Many people believe that if they are doing their governmental bidding their actions could not be corrupt. We see this with international contracts when the payment of bribes becomes standard practice. In some countries the situation is that poorly paid officials have to negotiate contracts involving money beyond their wildest dreams. Corruption is a bottomless pit.

  31. Wag wrote: “Scratch an old hippie and you get a recycled old commie cloaking anti-capitalism in green robes.”

    I’m an old hippie and all you get when you scratch me is iron poor blood.

  32. False markets do not serve mankind well.

    A theory of potential global warming has been morphed into Climate Change which has proved to be the epitome of a false market. If you are on the plus side enjoy it whilst you may, but be aware the fallout left by such markets can be very strong and the potential for subsequent repercussions to grow in magnitude should not be ignored.

    We should not let a false market destroy homo sapiens inherent trust in the tried and trusted scientific method that has benefitted him so well.

    PS, a little awareness by the scientific elite a few years ago may well have
    reduced the risks we now all face.

  33. Beth Cooper

    Rio bacchanal
    talk fest. Where’s the Report?
    It’s don’t ask … don’t tell.

  34. Hi Judith and all others,

    I have been following here and at ClimateAudit for a few years and I would like to thank you for your efforts. It occurred to me last night that there may be a link between the way money is being handled for ‘the cause’ of climate change and the absolute corruption by the heads of the big financiers in Wall St after watching a doco (Inside Job) on the GFC.

    If the plan is to make people poor in the hope that they will die…. the numbers of people (quoted in the doco) affected by the GFC was in the order of 50 Million world wide.

    Can there be a link and how would we make the connection?


  35. If you have 54 minutes, and sincere desire to understand the Economics behind the problems of corruption discussed in this topic, I can recommend:

    And.. for an interesting resource:

    • Nice socialist ideas, Bart.

      • jim2 | June 27, 2012 at 9:46 pm |

        You’ll have to be more specific, jim2.

        I endorse understanding ideas, not necessarily the ideas themselves.

        Though you’ll notice that a three-year-old presentation was remarkably prophetic about Syria today.

        Or do you mean that transparency in government is a socialist idea?

        That being against corruption is socialist?

        That opposing socialism requires surrendering America’s energy security?

        Details of your grand theory of what socialist means, please.

  36. Belief in AGW is a tell-tale sign of corruption.


  37. Apart from the point that TI appear to accept the CAGW case (what expertise do they have to assess it, I wonder), I take issue with the statement that: “Entrusted power is not only the power a citizen confers to a public office holder. It is the power that future generations have vested in all of us, in our stewardship role for the planet.” It appears that TI not only seek to address what is commonly regarded as corruption (a huge task in itself), they want to impose a particular moral viewpoint with which many concerned about “real” corruption would argue. The future is highly uncertain, everyone will have a different view about it (if they think about it at all), and we will all be wrong. So let’s deal with the world as we find it and not over-hypothesize about the concerns, values and capacity of those who will long remain unborn.

  38. The most obvious area for corruption was not mentioned, where industries that feel their profits are threatened by new regulations channel money into the political system to prevent regulations from being enacted or to buy exceptions or offsets in existing ones. The items were biased to one side.

    • When you think of data handling think of ‘dangling chads’ in Florida with no one looking over the shoulder of the Gore supporter from Illinois who volunteers to go over the ballots.

    • John Carpenter

      Sounds like lobbying… though I have mixed feelings about lobbying, is it really corruption? Unless legislators are taking money directly from industries to buy votes… I don’t see the corruption in your example. What industry willingly accepts any legislation that impacts their bottom line? Don’t they get a chance to challange such legislation? Be more specific in your claim.

  39. Daniel Suggs

    “These challenges are illustrated by this article about Africa: Africa to launch own fund to manage climate cash.”
    As a former student of African Geography, this makes my skin crawl. Africa is a ‘continent’, made up of many diverse countries, governments, races, cultures, religions, languages, and per capita income levels. They can not agree on anything! I hate to show my age, but when I went to school, I would not have graduated without this basic geographical knowledge.

  40. “Some estimate total climate change investments in mitigation efforts alone at almost US$700 billion by 2020. ”

    Who are these mysterious “some” ? If say a model Climate Etc citizen like Wagathon were to revise this estimate upwards to say $1 trillion you’d then be able to claim “some estimate a $1 trllion or more”

    What is the global spend on climate mitigation per annum? Are the resident denier/skeptics on Climate etc interested in the true figures or do they prefer made up ones?

    • steven mosher

      Hmm figure anywhere between 1-3% of global GDP per year.

      If climate sensitivity is lower, then of course, we have some time to wait until replacement technologies mature. Every degree you can lop off the upper end of the climate sensitivity number is worth on the order of a trillion dollars in avoided costs.

      Kinda makes you want to support massive auditing of any and all work done on estimating sensitivity..

      na. throw the data away.

      • Latimer Alder

        Nah. Nic Lewis hasn’t disclosed his full career to tt’s satisfaction.

        Ergo, the sensitivity estimates are bang on the money. It is extremely rude to nice Mr Forest to even suggest that he could have made an error. And what’s a 1,000,000,000,000 US between friends…loose change!

      • Steven Mosher

        In case tt wonders I took the numbers from for costs.
        global GDP is 65.Trillion 1 % is 650B. thats per year. costs.

        Obviously if the world has less evil people like tt, we could do with less military spending and easily afford mitigation.

      • maksimovich

        Not known for their understatements the ipcc (bert bolin) 2001 suggested that the cost would be $18,000,000,000,000,000 this century. That it was incorrect by 10^3 $ and reduced, is admitted by the IPCC

        We now have very large error bars with a substantial mean value.

      • “The cost would be $18,000,000,000,000,000 this century. That it was incorrect by 10^3 $ and reduced, is admitted by the IPCC ”

        US could probably 1/2 it’s emission of CO2 for Zero costs.

        About half of US CO2 emission is from electrical production. and large part of the emission from electrical production, is from burning coal.

        The major cost of nuclear power plant is the capital outlay needed to built the power plant. Which quite different then coal or natural gas power plants. Or for coal or natural gas the larger cost is the fuel costs.

        Related story. California high speed rail is dead.
        “After encountering criticism from environmental groups, Gov. Jerry Brown signaled Wednesday that he plans to withdraw his controversial proposal to protect the California bullet train project from injunctions sought by environmental lawsuits.

        Brown’s staff told key environmental groups that he would no longer include modifications to the California Environmental Quality Act in a package of legislation this month asking for $6 billion to start construction of the high-speed rail project.”
        The reason is such lawsuit would delay the construction.
        “California must begin construction on the project before December 31, 2012 or they will not be eligible for any more high speed rail stimulus dollars”

        “Studies show that the average time to complete the NEPA process is 6.1 years. And NEPA is designed to be a preventative statute. Federal courts routinely issue injunctions to stop projects before they ever begin. ”
        So Gov. Jerry Brown could chosen to stop such process, but didn’t want the heat from environmental lobby.

        A major cost of building a nuclear power plant [or any power plant] is these laws. So it could could zero money, if these environmental “safeguards” are waived. So of course you still have safety standards, though one also have same safety but streamline process also, thereby significant reduce the time of constructing nuclear power plant. And if only did this with nuclear power plants, it well lower the cost of nuclear power below anything else [coal or even cheap gas power plants].

        So the first thing you do is study it, put few dozen experts together, give them 1 year deadline, have write a report, have reviewed by everyone, then bring in a different team that evaluates, report and any challenges to report. Have whole thing open and transparent, so critic follow the process, and give them and deadline 6 months after final report is issued, and second team can also follow entire process, and then get another 6 months for the final report.
        So premise of such study would be the fact that that government would waving these environmental laws and also be looking a way to streamline governmental approval, so that it’s the actual construction time which is the limiting factor and not the court cases, approval process which adding all the time to building nuclear power plants.

      • I think it’s a fair bet that is lowballing the numbers severely. Ever looked at the Seattle monorail project? The one that was never built after real bids came in 5 times the original estimate?

      • andrew adams

        Kinda makes you want to support massive auditing of any and all work done on estimating sensitivity.

        Not really. If, say, Forest’s work is found to be badly flawed it doesn’t invalidate the numerous other papers which put sensitivity within the 2 – 4.5C range. We need to narrow that range as far as possible and the only thing which will do that is new research.

      • Sort of like declaring each year of Enron’s accounts were fine and the only thing of interest is what the next set would bring?

      • Latimer Alder


      • andrew adams

        No, I didn’t say that auditing was a bad thing per se, just that there are limitations to what it will tell you.

      • Latimer Alder

        If Forest’s work is found to be badly flawed, seem to me that the last thing we will need is more flawed research. At least until we have checked all the ‘numerous other papers’ for similar flaws first.

        If we are going to need to spend 1,000,000,000,000 or more in mitigating the problem, we at least need to be sure that the work on which it is based is not riddled with bad science, lost data, unreproducable results, unchecked sums, dodgy conclusions and all the other trappings of unprofessional behaviour that we see almost every time we look inside the cimatology sausage machine.

        Lots of people believed that nice Mr Madoff was a fine upstanding businessman with the Midas touch. Just because lots believed it doesn’t mean it was true.

      • Latimer Alder

        To expand a little.

        It is starting to look like ‘flawed research’ is not a one-off regrettable incident or an occasional oversight, but that it is endemic to the whole field of climatology.

        That they take such a cavalier approach to any form of Quality Control, an aggressively hostile stance against any outside review of their work and refuse to seek any advice from those with relevant professional expertise, speaks to me of a closed and inward-looking group of ‘scientists’ with a siege mentality. These are not mental characteristics that produce high quality confident work.

        So whether they have ten papers about sensitivity or a hundred or a thousand is immaterial. As products of the mindset mentioned above, they all need to be given a thorough external review.

        It will be very very interesting to see just how much more data has been ‘unfortunately lost’ when the auditors come looking for it.

      • andrew adams

        If Forest’s work is found to be badly flawed, seem to me that the last thing we will need is more flawed research. At least until we have checked all the ‘numerous other papers’ for similar flaws first.

        Sorry, but this is nonsense. Other payments have completely different methodology, so even if (which has not been proven) Forest’s paper is flawed it does not cast doubt on other papers.

      • andrew adams


        It is starting to look like ‘flawed research’ is not a one-off regrettable incident or an occasional oversight, but that it is endemic to the whole field of climatology.

        This is an absurd generalisation. There are already existing mechanisms in science for flawed papers to be identified and for this to be brought to wider attention through comments and rebuttals. If climate science was as badly flawed as you suggest this would already be apparent. That’s not to say that there aren’t improvements to be made – I’m all in favour of moves to improve openness and retention of data, but that does not mean we need to throw all previous research out of the window and start again.
        The people who claim that CS is lower than the “consensus” estimate have already had ample time to find flaws in the numerous other papers supporting the consensus position. When the likes of Lindzen and Spencer produced papers purporting to show low CS it didn’t take those on the “consensus” side long to find the flaws in their papers.

      • andrew adams

        My earlier post should read “other papers“, I’m not sure where “payments” came from.

      • Latimer

        It is the Uk’s govt aim to cut co2 emissions by 80% by 2050. As you know we have a law to ensure that and green taxes are being extracted to pay for mitigation efforts by way of green energy etc that have zero emissions and will reduce temperatures (the aim of DECC). Lets leave aside the huge cost of green energy and its faults and benefits and we can determine that the UK is is currently paying some £43 Billion in green taxes annually

        The estimate for green measures worldwide is just over 1 trillion $ per year
        Unfortunately our govt-and I’m sure they are not unique- have a habit of grossly undestimating real costs and on past track record you can triple that figure.

      • Latimer Alder

        @andrew adams

        You say

        ‘. There are already existing mechanisms in science for flawed papers to be identified and for this to be brought to wider attention through comments and rebuttals’

        And yet we know that they do not work in climatology. Jones testified to Parliament that in over 200 published paper, none of the peer-reviewers had asked to see his code, data or methods, We knwo from Foster that there is no culture of saving essential data in case it is needed to check the results. And we know that when people do eventually succeed in tracking down the climatologists methods – for example in the Hockey Stick – the work is basically a pile of crap, and patience and persistence that found the errors years after publication. No working climatologist, I submit, would dared to have faced the wrath of Mann and the team and stuck to his guns to do so.

        Seems to me taht after all these revelations of dodgy practice, we need a thorough independent audit of all that has gone before. It is a terrible indictment of climatology as a ‘profession’ that it is the outside amateurs that find the problems. not those we pay to act on our behalf.

        Your comment about Lindzen puzzles me. Whatever the merits of his papers do not affect the work of the others. Even if Lindzen is wrong in what he says (I have no knowledge of this area), it doesn’t mean that all the others are somehow right.

        And of climatologists find such an audit/examination inconvenient or embarrassing, that’s just their tough shit for not doing a proper job the first time around.

      • Latimer Alder

        @andrew adams

        ‘This is an absurd generalisation. There are already existing mechanisms in science for flawed papers to be identified and for this to be brought to wider attention through comments and rebuttals. If climate science was as badly flawed as you suggest this would already be apparent.’

        How would anybody know? We know that at no point in the ‘quality control’ efforts does anybody even bother to check the work at the most basic level. Peer reviewers don’t ask, and by the time the paper is published all the relevant data has been ‘lost’, so that an independent review is – to all practical purposes – impossible. We know that it took nine years of perseverance for McIntyre to show that Mann’s hockey stick was as dodgy as a nine bob note. Now we see Lewis being given the runaround by Forest – maybe for real work and health issues – for a year

        This does not look to me like a field of endeavour that is getting the regular an intense scrutiny it’s supposed importance deserves.

        And your general approach – that climatologists are the best guarantors of each others work and that the existing processes are quite adequate to verify their work is frankly laughable.

        You may have missed the recent article in Nature by Geoffrey Boulton who chaired the Royal Society committee on openness. Here is the relevant passage

        ‘We also need to be open towards fellow citizens. The massive impact of science on our collective and individual lives has decreased the willingness of many to accept the pronouncements of scientists unless they can verify the strength of the underlying evidence for themselves. The furore surrounding ‘Climategate’ — rooted in the resistance of climate scientists to accede to requests from members of the public for data underlying some of the claims of climate science — was in part a motivation for the Royal Society’s current report. It is vital that science is not seen to hide behind closed laboratory doors, but engages seriously with the public’

        I fear that even the scienitfic establishment is beginning to question the wisdom of relying solely on the existing processes to persuade outsiders that they are right.

        The day of ‘Trust Us, Denier Scumbags – We Are Climate Scientists!’ is thankfully drawing to a close.

      • andrew adams


        Again you are over generalising. You say “We know from Foster that there is no culture of saving essential data in case it is needed to check the results” but all we know from Foster is that one guy seemingly didn’t properly archive his data, which he himself has admitted was wrong. No doubt there will be other examples but it is simply wrong to assert that published papers in general can’t be properly assessed due to missing data. The surface temperature record has been analysed to death for example.
        Similarly you say “And we know that when people do eventually succeed in tracking down the climatologists methods – for example in the Hockey Stick – the work is basically a pile of crap”, but again the whole HS furore is about one paper (two if you include Mann’s 2008 paper). Even if one accepts your assessment (which unsurprisingly I don’t) – you can’t use it to make generalisations about the whole of climate science. And I have to wonder why, if indeed climate science as a whole is so badly flawed, the “skeptics” always seem to come back to the hockey stick, or indeed climategate.
        I don’t pretent to be particularly well versed in the specifics of peer-review, but I do know that the reviewers are not there to try to reproduce the finding of a paper from scratch and would not require every bit of code, data etc., but I would be very surprised if they asked for no information about methodology. It might be interesting to see a study of how peer-review works in climate science compared to other fields but I see no obvious reason to think it is much different. But in any case peer-review is only the first stage in a paper becoming widely accepted – after it is published people will consider its conclusions, methodology etc. and if they think it wrong there are, as I said, mechanisms for challenging it in the peer-reviewed press. That’s not to say that the other forums for discussion which are now available cannot also be valuable, although for those without the necessary knowledge it can be difficult to distinguish between commentary which is well informed and that which is not.
        The example of the Lindzen and Choi paper is relevent for a couple of reasons – firstly as an example of the mechanism for challenging a paper in the peer reviewed press actually working (you could cite the O’Donell paper as an example from the “skeptic” side). You are right to say that the fact that Lindzen’s paper did not stand up to scrutiny does not mean that the papers which claim higher CS are correct, but ultimately people who claim that CS is low are not going to prove this by “auditing” papers such as Forests, they will only do so by publishing papers giving evidence for low CS which can stand up to scrutiny in a way that Lindzen’s did not.
        It is simply not possible to go back and “audit” every single climate science paper – there are thousands of them. But there are plenty of people out there who would like to prove the “consensus” position wrong and seem to think they are competent to pass judgement on the published science, so by all means let them try if they wish. But I have to wonder why they haven’t been more successful so far in exposing bad papers if climate science is as dodgy as you say.
        None of which is to say that climate science is perfect, as I said before let’s have better standards for openness and data retention. But let’s not pretend these kind of issues are unique to climate science and don’t exist in other fields.

      • If I were out to save the world people wouldn’t have to ask me if they could audit my work. I’d be asking everyone to take a look and see if they could find a problem. I can picture the lonely climate scientist, on a desert lanscape that used to be a lush green valley, “I could have prevented this but it would have violated my intellectual property rights! Get away from me you bratty grandkids and scavange us up some food.”

      • andrew adams

        Firstly, auding is not going to prevent such a scenario happening.
        Secondly, if I were a scientist and had confidence in my past work I would concentrate on developing and improving my understanding of my field rather than asking people to double check everything I’d done previously.

      • And having someone check your work instead of fighting to keep them from checking it is going to slow up your continuing research how?

      • Yeah, that’s peer review.

        If someone thinks they’ve found an issue, or have a better approach, they can publish…..

      • Michael, I don’t care if you wish for the science to progress in the normal way. I have all the time in the world. I’m not the one claiming to be saving the world.

      • andrew adams


        No, I don’t think that scientists should waste time fighting to stop people examining their work. Nor do I think they should have to spend time justifying every single decision, every line of code, to absolutely anyone who asks.
        Science advances through people publishing better work than that which already exists, not through examining the minutae of every previously published paper.

      • Perhaps they should be happy to justify every line of code if that’s what it takes to save the world. Sort of my point actually. But if they aren’t that concerned I guess I won’t be either.

      • andrew adams

        Why is that going to help save the world?

      • It would help to convince those that currently aren’t convinced that something needs to be done if the code was supportable. Proper annotation is always more convincing than mysterious calculations.

      • andrew adams

        I’m not so sure. Take climate sensitivity for example – the main objection to the consensus position seems to be “it’s all models” – that’s not going to change because someone checks someone else’s sums.

      • True, and some people will never change their mind no matter how much the evidence tells them they should regardless of which side should be changing their mind. It might let us come to some agreements. Reducing the volume of what we argue about might be helpful. Having the code lets the argument progress faster as people no longer have to guess why they have different results. They can read the code and see where the differences are and zero in on those differences. The situation between Scafetta and Rasmus comes to mind as an example of where code sharing would facilitate the conversation. I’m sure there are many others.

    • Latimer Alder


      I think your question is better directed to the guys at ‘Transparency International’ in whose report is the figure you dispute..

      Nothing to do with us climate realists here struggling manfully against the overwhelming power, money and influence of the multinational hydra that is the AGW Establishment.

      • tempterrain

        Latimer , Steven and other skeptic /deniers

        So, do you know if this $700 billion is an amount which is projected may be needed, in the future, or an amount actually spent now?

        And is this a per annum figure or a commulative total?

        Or, do you just like the impression that mention of these huge amounts gives and you don’t particularly care about the details, or even if the figures are accurate?

      • Latimer Alder

        I have no opinion. Until you mentioned the subject, I was unaware of this estimate. Address your question to the guy who wrote the article. His address is in the extract.

      • tt – from page 13 of the report:

        “In developing countries alone, mitigation and adaptation may require funding of some US$250 billion annually, dwarfing total official development assistance (ODA) of US$100 billion a year. World Bank, World Development Report 2010: Development and Climate Change (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2009), p. 257.”

      • tempterrain

        “may require” isn’t the same as “will require”

      • Steven Mosher

        TT. You are an evil piece of shit. I am not a denier. the figures of 1-3% of global GDP per annum are the numbers from Do yourself a favor and just google mitigation costs. You could pull up any number of IPCC reports.

        here is what you miss. supporters of mitiagtion never mention the dollar figure. they mention 1-3% of GDP.

        In any case its hundreds of billions of dollars per year for decades to come. You could figure that it is non the order of money spent on military.

        Not an outrageous sum in global terms, but large enough that we need to be concerned about corruption. After all its one thing to buy a weapon that does work, its another thing to pay for fake mitigation.

      • tempterrain

        You need to work on your insults Steve. “Evil piece of shit” isn’t brilliant, is it?
        Try reading Christopher Hitchens. For example: “If you gave [Jerry] Falwell an enema he could be buried in a matchbox” is pretty good , don’t you think?

      • tempterrain

        You need to work on your insults Steve. “Evil piece of sh*t” isn’t brilliant, is it?
        Try reading Christopher Hitchens. For example: “If you gave [Jerry] Falwell an enema he could be buried in a matchbox” is pretty good , don’t you think?

      • I figured that Temp was talking about the ‘lower case’ steven.

        Little stevie is quite the poseur putz. If not, better recalibrate Temp, as there is a dearth of reasoned analysis here, and Mosh is one of the few capable ones.


      • Judith

        Not weather related but contemporary to Shakespeare and with his flourish, that I found In Devon Records office

        ‘1592 several of the city butchers having riotously abused the country butchers who kept the market and forcibly taken their meat from their stalls were committed to prison.’

      • WHT –

        Is Steven Mosher a poser?

      • Joshua

        Excellent Shakespearean resource.

        It is interesting how language changes. I found this contemporary reference in in the West Country Studies library In Exeter.

        “1n 1346 bishop grandisson instructed his archdeacon to bar a ‘sect of malign men who were constantly jeering at the leather dressers in Exeter theatre.”

        It could be straight out of Chaucer who lived in this era

        So, can you direct us to a Chaucerian insult site?

      • tony –

        No. But a quick use of The Google returned this:

        Slanders, slurs and insults on the road to Canterbury: Forms of verbal aggression in Chaucer’s Cantebury Tales

        With all the geeks here, I imagine someone could use that paper to derive some algorithms that could be used to create a Chaucer insult generator. Judith could add it as a button on the comment interface. Would save everyone a lot of time, but those so inclined could still create their own. Chief is probably the best at that with mike running a close second. Too bad neither has anything else of value to add to the conversations.

      • Joshua

        We could develop an insult app. Just select your preferred era.

      • That’s a million dollar idea, tony.

        I’ve already got a VC on the phone. I’ll give you a cut.

      • Joshua

        Look forward to getting rich. Nice to see you back by the way

      • Finally got paroled, tony.

        But it’s conditional. They’re only letting me out periodically and for short periods of time.

    • Why would you not add to the cost of what filing cabinets of global warming alarmism pseudo-science, all of the dollars that are funneled to the Mideast and folks like Hugo and all of the foregone oppoutunities here at home, not to mention the damage to the culture and the toll it has taken on scientific integrity?

  41. Climate for corruption

    To hide the cyclic nature of global mean temperature trends =>

  42. “But these kinds of biases pale in the face of the potential for scientific corruption associated with billions of dollars at stake for the developing world in the various UN climate funds.”

    This is so naive it can’t be taken at face value. It completely minimizes the deep partisan culture that Dr. Curry is in fact part of. So I take this comment as another hypocrisy which it is. Money might drive hacks in academia to be sure but the entire rent-seeking welfare state attachment to climate change policy has much more to it then just money. It’s about social control and imposing values on would-be captives. Political validation is far more essential to the core AGW fanatic class. The best comparison of a similar faulty idea would be saying crusaders or colonialists were mostly driven by money in their pursuits. While there were many money moments in either event it would be equally simple minded to think people were driven to massive personal risks, war and death largely over money alone. Dozens of social forces were at work including misguided idealism so harping on money could very rationally be dismissed by any Zealot/cult based social movement which AGW is an example of. AGW is about imposing a leftist, green ideology first and foremost on the entire world. It doesn’t “pale in the face of potential for scientific corruption associated with billions of dollars” and the petty matter of financial greed and self-serving interests of rent seekers.

    Dr. Curry misses (distracts) the main points of the AGW agenda setting again largely because the truth of the situation touches far too close to her own ethos. It’s politics first and money is a sidebar regardless of the scale. Focusing on money flatters some, absolves others and is ineffective argument to the core AGW advocates that make the base. They by nature live in a world self-delusion that their views are more moral in general, similar to a mob burning a witch who doesn’t conform to their social norms. It isn’t about money at all to the core that drives AGW agenda policy. The largest traits of the social/political left is collective peer conclusions that are expanded to authority and actions. Money is rationalized after the fact. Demonizing humans to punish and rationalize moral taxes and regulations are a core feature of the AGW movement but few of the advocates will ever view themselves as direct beneficiaries of the extortion processes such as AGW “funding” results. Dr. Curry is only listing one corruption to avoid discussing the the larger one in the room which is humanity hating socialism in the broadest sense of the term, encompassing most of the AGW advocate society not just the bottom fish science and administrative class making a buck off climate funding or the political hacks selling the message to the willful ignorant mob who pretend it isn’t another tax and spend scheme that might expand their handouts. Without the domestic failures of the AGW agenda in the Western developed world there would be no reason to be concerned by the usual bad actors in the developing nations. Again, in another way Dr. Curry is pinning the rose on weaker parties rather than look in the mirror for her and her political associated culture that are the root of the problem.

  43. Spartacusisfree

    What has been developing for the past 20 years is the development of policy to suit the commercial interests of special interest groups. In the UK these were predominantly from those who had attended a group of private schools.

    The windmill programme was set up to enrich these people, who also controlled the renewables’ companies, classical crony capitalism..They are also connected to the forestry companies displacing indigenous populations in the Third World, a form of neo-colonialism to get the carbon credits to underpin the Euro.Other scams included people trafficking under the EU entry rules. The Law was corrupted, so was the Border Agency.

    In the US, as well as the above but with a different client group, the TSA is the most visible aspect of this headlong flight toward fascism, the ultimate Green regime: The Amero was to have paralleled the Euro but the carbon taxation was still born.

    The IPCC corruption of climate science has been an integral part of this frightening new politics.

  44. Some words of warning about the Corruption Perceptions Index. The methods of Transparency International (in their construction of the CPI) have been widely criticized in the last half-dozen years. One of my former colleagues did some work on this here:

    The punchline here is that there can be a divergence between the perception of corruption and experience of corruption. The CPI is based on answers to perceptual questions, posed to people with wide international experience (for instance international business travellers), while there are other measures of the experience of corruption (posed to people in countries who interact with police, courts, bureaucracy and so forth). There seem to be many predictable divergences between perceptions and experience, and the overall relationship between the two is poor (the standardized beta in a regression of one on the other is at best about 0.5).

    Don’t bet the ranch on the CPI.

  45. Beth Cooper

    Sparticus, the Martin Durkin history overview is relevant…who benefits?

    In Britain, a fortuitous shift, (for the general populous) from agriculture based, illiberal, nobility elites was helped by its island, seafaring geography and primogeniture, its inheritance structure, the eldest son inheriting the estate. No large catholic church bureaucracy to go into and the younger sons often turned to commercial activity. Kinda freed things up over time.

    • Beth your 3.28


      I had just this second written this for my article, taken from my notes during my research at Exeter Cathedral. It is taken directly from a translation of the original 14th Century Continous rolls

      —– ——
      ‘From 1346 so little work was going on (building/repairing the Cathedral) that wage rates cannot be equated with the earlier period.’(Immediately after the Black Death years) ‘no regular skilled work recorded until 1353 when 3 out of 5 masons employed at much higher rates due to the great dearth of skilled labour’ (there was a statute of labourers to hold rates at previous lower levels prior to Black death which seemed impossible to enforce.)

      Labourers (as opposed to skilled people) employed right through the Black Death to dig out conduits 1348-9 (aquaductum)”
      ____ ____
      I had just written this after reading another note from my research.

      ” My ref from Cathedral records concerning the demand for higher wages by those digging the aqueduct after the black death surely marked the beginning of the end of the feudal system and led directly to the Peaants revolt of 1381″

      • Wat Tyler led the peasants to capture the Tower of London. It remained inviolate from 1381 to 1964, when I led its capture by students as a stunt to kick off Rag Week (when students go wild nominally to raise money for charity).

  46. Beth Cooper

    Er ..’Spartacus’ ( I’m thinking of giving up on spelling corrections on blogs:-(

    • Spartacusisfree

      Don’t worry, I’m free….

      PS the attempt to create in the UK a new Green Nazism was real and originated near where Moseley used to live and had a house until his death.

      The man who controlled the renewables’ industry and was connected to the Midlands’ Mafia for whom renewables are a variation of property scams, died a few weeks ago.

  47. When I first joined the American Physical Society sixty-seven years ago it was much smaller, much gentler, and as yet uncorrupted by the money flood (a threat against which Dwight Eisenhower warned a half-century ago).

    Indeed, the choice of physics as a profession was then a guarantor of a life of poverty and abstinence—it was World War II that changed all that. The prospect of worldly gain drove few physicists. As recently as thirty-five years ago, when I chaired the first APS study of a contentious social/scientific issue, The Reactor Safety Study, though there were zealots aplenty on the outside there was no hint of inordinate pressure on us as physicists. We were therefore able to produce what I believe was and is an honest appraisal of the situation at that time. We were further enabled by the presence of an oversight committee consisting of Pief Panofsky, Vicki Weisskopf, and Hans Bethe, all towering physicists beyond reproach. I was proud of what we did in a charged atmosphere. In the end the oversight committee, in its report to the APS President, noted the complete independence in which we did the job, and predicted that the report would be attacked from both sides. What greater tribute could there be?
    How different it is now. The giants no longer walk the earth, and the money flood has become the raison d’être of much physics research, the vital sustenance of much more, and it provides the support for untold numbers of professional jobs. For reasons that will soon become clear my former pride at being an APS Fellow all these years has been turned into shame, and I am forced, with no pleasure at all, to offer you my resignation from the Society.

    It is of course, the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists, and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life as a physicist. Anyone who has the faintest doubt that this is so should force himself to read the ClimateGate documents, which lay it bare. (Montford’s book organizes the facts very well.) I don’t believe that any real physicist, nay scientist, can read that stuff without revulsion. I would almost make that revulsion a definition of the word scientist.

  48. Here in Australia, our carbon tax (breathing tax) starts on July 1 in three days, and businesses are increasing their prices and blaming it on the carbon tax. There is bureaucracy to police whether the increase in price is justified. A lot of opportunity for corruption! In the mean time, our energy prices have skyrocketed.

    • Yeah, just look at the rise in the price of oil over the last decade – bloody carbon tax !!

      • Michael

        You can’t be British. Environmental taxes now cost Britons £43 Billion per year.

        Our Petrol is £10 per Gallon (75% tax) and Air passenger duty (environmental tax) has increased year on year. Green taxes on energy for homes soon to reach 20% of cost. We are being absolutely hammered..

        When I asked DECC what temperature reduction this would all result in they wouldn’t answer. Might be worth doing a FOIA on them. To save me and the taxpayer money perhaps you know the answer?

      • …and of course you’ll find that most of your petrol taxes have absolutely nothing do to with ‘green taxes’.

        Taxes existed long before climate change.

      • andrew adams

        …and “green taxes” are not necessarily aimed at reducing temperature. For example a chunk of the extra cost on domestic fuel bills is to fund energy saving measures (home insulation etc), which does have a (small) impact on emissions but is mainly aimed at cutting fuel bills for the poorest.

      • Michael

        Please read the lnk which explains where the green taxes are levied.The purpose of the UK law to reduce Co2 emissions is to reduce temperature according to the Department for Climate Change.

      • andrew adams

        But that just reinforces Michael’s point. The large majority of “environmental taxes” are raised from measures which either long pre-date concerns about emissions reduction, ie fuel duty, road tax, VAT or have nothing to do with reducing CO2 (landfill tax, aggregates levy). The only measures specific to reducing emissions are renewable energy obligations, the climate change levy and air passenger duty (easily the most lucrative). Together these add up to less than £3.8bn out of £43.3bn

      • Andrew adams

        No. Many of these taxes are new and some ‘morph’ into a green tax. For example the fuel tax escalator was introduced around 8 years ago, the renewables obligation on energy about the same and if you drive intro London the congestion charge has become the Emissions charge.

        The APD is forever going up and as you say is especially lucrative and as Holland found-counter productive.

        Personally I wouldnt mind the renewables obligation so much if it was spent on something sensible. Britain is an island and its high time we made use of wave/tidal power instead of wind farms and solar farms. Solar farms! In Britain!!!

      • “morph into”??

      • Michael,

        Yr: “morph into??”

        So what’s the deal, Michael? You got a problem with the word “morph” or something?

        I mean, like, the word “morph” can even be applied to you, Michael, you know. I mean, like, I clicked on your name and pulled up that “Climate Nonsense”, doofus, loser blog of yours that is, obviously, a sicko, sibling-rivalry, vastly inferior imitation of willard’s brilliant, scintillating, original, world-famous “neverending audit” blog. And it is clear, in viewing your pathetic, sorry excuse for a blog, Michael, that your insane envy of willard’s spectacularly successful counterpart has caused you to “morph into” a tormented, inferiority-complex ridden, willard-wannabe copy-cat

        So, Michael, did you catch how I worked “morph into” into the above remarks? I mean, like, I’m tellin’ yah, Michael, it’s a good word, guy.

      • Oh poor mike.

        Simply there is no morphing, ie the congestion charge was and still is, related to reducing traffic congestion in London. They just changed it’s name.

        Blaming AGW for taxes is bonkers.

      • andrew adams


        The fuel escalator was scrapped in 2000, I’m not sure what you are referring to there. I’m not disputing that we have had new taxes, I mentioned the renewables obligations and the air passenger duty, I’m just pointing out that they represent a fairly small, although rising, proportion of the total. It may be fair to include the congestion/emission charge as well, but as Michael points out whatever they call it the purpose was to reduce traffic congestion although it will have had an effect on emissions as well.

      • Andrew

        Not so, the Treasury still refers to it as a fuel duty escalator and the emissions tax is levied on emissions of vehicles coming into London so the nature of it has changed from a congestion charge. The end result of course is that we are all poorer

      • tempterrain


        ” Environmental taxes now cost Britons £43 Billion per year.”

        And where does this £43 Billion per year, assuming it’s an accurate figure, get spent?

        You are implying that, if there were no environmental taxes, the UK government would have less tax revenue and the British public would suddenly find that their tax bills were much less.

        I’m not an economist but I’d say that was quite unlikely. I’d say it was much more likely that the government would just levy other taxes to make up the amount lost. Governments tend to be like that the world over!

      • tempterrain

        As you say, youre no economist as I remember from our discussion on the Euro. :)

        Govts will always find ways to tax us its just that many green ones are so inefficient in the manner they are collected and spent. As you know we are a small country and the wind farm subsidy is threatening many of our loveliest areas for very little return. People are just waking up to the fact of the hidden costs, monetary and visual as new transmission lines are required beause these new rural power stations are nowhere near where the existing transmission lines are.

        As you know I favour nuclear and wave/tidal. The former has been put on the back burner for twenty years whilst wave/tidal has never been properly investigated. Strange seeing as how we are an island.

      • tempterrain

        ” many green ones are so inefficient in the manner they are collected and spent.”

        Airport taxes, petrol duty? I can understand that you may not like them, but why are they any less efficient than, say, income tax? It would be the other way around surely.

        PS I seem to remember that you were predicting the Euro zone would break up by the end of 2011.

      • tempterrain

        I seem to remember predicting severe problems in the Eurozone.

        Businesses are being asked to account for their actions in a increasing number of green related fields and there is considerable bureaucracy.

        I’ve no particular objection to a green tax being used for sensible purposes (provided its not double levied or unfair.

        our energy policy remains a joke. Our money could be spent much more effectively if we idnt have this obsession with wind and on the private household sector-solar.

        Are you talking to me because you know I won’t call you an evil s*i*
        That was totally uneccesary-you may have many faults but I certainly wouldnt put you in that sort of category. Perhaps its Stevens way of showing he likes you? :)

      • tempterrain


        I don’t think I ever doubted that there were problems in the Eurozone but I think I did say the Europeans would muddle through somehow, without the Euro having to be ditched. We’ll have to see how it turns out of course.

        But, you still aren’t answering my questions about Green taxes and why you think they are so inefficient.

        If you want an example of an inefficient tax I’d say it would have to be income tax. All those forms to fill in. All those “ifs and buts” when it comes to knowing what you can offset against your tax bill. You well argue it ends up fairer than petrol duty. But more efficient? I don’t think so.

      • “If you want an example of an inefficient tax I’d say it would have to be income tax. All those forms to fill in. All those “ifs and buts” when it comes to knowing what you can offset against your tax bill. You well argue it ends up fairer than petrol duty. But more efficient? I don’t think so.”

        A list of other costs:
        One argue about, but probably at least hundreds of billion dollars.

        “IRS budget for fiscal year 2011 would be $12.1 billion”

        Just the 12 billion for the IRS yearly budget is enough to consider it inefficient and complete actual costs is more than 10 times this amount.

        So in terms of wasted resources for entire process of transferring wealth to government. A petrol tax or any kind of consumption tax. Or fees charged to power plant for CO2 emission, should cost less to get the revenue and compared to hideous Federal and State tax return system.

        But I don’t think we talking about getting rid of the IRS, so any cost introducing this new tax and the yearly operation is inefficient compared to simply increasing the tax already paid via IRS.

        But it seems store owners and business owners are less likely to avoid paying the tax, and if want illegals paying more taxes, there also that benefit. And if you think the poor, taxi and truck drivers should paid more in direct taxes and you can’t imagine politicians adding complexity with exceptions and or bonuses for less CO2 emitting, etc.
        One should remember that Federal taxes didn’t start out complicated, but over the years vast complexity has been added.

  49. A little more overall insight and presentation of a more accurate picture, would be nice.

    WG2 includes objectives for evaluating socio-economic impacts. The so-called ‘geographical quotas’, in the context of an overall transparent and equitable framework, may be viewed as a support to inclusion – which is not just about economic issues but also research issues such as support for sharing of data between countries, something that this blog often overlooks in discussions of demands for data and reasons a researcher may not always be able to hand over data (i.e. another country’s data) to you. This needs to improve. This is just one element of support for improvement. A main issue is an adequate level of transparency and equity – demonstrated in the current organizational structure and information.

    WG2’s structure also reflects the fact that many developing countries have not had access to institutional membership in other international political and economic bodies, dominated by others.

    “WG II, which has a large membership from the developing world”


    So not really… at least, not disproportionately.

    Nothing mysterious about ‘the bureau’: two co-chairs, six vice-chairs. Of the two co-chairs, one is currently held by the United States. Of the six vice-chairs, seats are held by Australia, Spain and the Russian Federation. The ‘bureau’, in other words, cannot accurately be perceived as dominated by decision-makers in developing countries; and clearly, the writing team authorship is not a run-away prize for developing countries, either.

    Developing countries may have increased vulnerability to climate change and they also have responsibilities. WG2 reflects this.

    • Joe's World


      Temperature data has absolutely no meaning to all the factors that generate it.
      But the factors that generate it are ignored for the temperature data searching for that pattern that does not exist to project the future.

      Intelligent researching of our past will tell us what our future holds but not 150 years out of 4.5 billion. That is basic stupidity on a very short term data stream.

    • Steven Mosher

      Martha you have clearly drank the kool aid on the issue of asking scientists (Jones) to hand over other countries data. Your understanding of the issues involved is pathetic.

  50. Joe's World


    Ignorance breeds corruption.
    The search for knowledge should be open to criticism constructive or not.
    But it isn’t.
    Blind faith is our current system which has protected itself in the bubble of using uncertainty as a crutch rather than exploring the areas that have generated this uncertainty.
    Protecting our system currently in place and to ignore anything that may burst this bubble has generated vast ignorance to our past and present experts who are NEVER to be challenged.

    Through researching on my own and ignoring the vast consensus, I have made fantastic strides in understanding the whole system our planet has generated.
    But what I have found is vastly ignored as it is pure evidence and impinges on many areas that have been in place for hundreds of years. Even though most science is very much still uncertain through vast assumptions and theories.

  51. A beautiful passage on the Scientific Method

    “Now comes the moment of verification and truth: testing the theory
    back against protocol experience to establish its validity. If it is not a
    trivial theory, it suggests the existence of unknown facts which can be
    verified by further experiment. An expedition may go to Africa to watch
    an eclipse and find out if starlight really does bend relatively as it
    passes the edge of the sun. After a Maxwell and his theory of electro-
    magnetism come a Hertz looking for radio waves and a Marconi building a radio set. If the theoretical predictions do not fit in with observable facts, then the theorist has to forget his disappointment and start all over again. This is the stern discipline which keeps science sound and rigorously honest.”

    The Scientist
    Life Science Library
    Margenau & Bergamini

  52. The actual data shows that temperature is well inside the bounds of the past ten thousand years. That data is valid. Only Climate Model Output is outside the bounds of the past ten thousand years

    • which actual data is that?

    • the real actual data….you know, the stuff that tells Herman what he wants to believe.

      Everything else is illusion.

    • steven mosher


      1. Our knowledge of the temperature bounds of the last 10000 years is not that certain.
      2. Our knowledge that adding C02 to the atmosphere will warm the planet is more certain than our knowledge about past climate.
      3. Whether or not current temperatures lie outside the boundaries of the past 10K years is utterly beside the point.

      The point is this. We know that adding C02 warms the planet. By how much, that’s harder to tell. Whether it goes outside the envelope of past warming is uninteresting. The question is what will the warming do to us and future generations. And, knowing that our actions will have consequences, perhaps dire consequences, for future generations, what do we owe them?

      Given that we are dumping carbon in the atmosphere at potetially dangerous levels, we at the very least owe others an open minded look at the possibility that we might be harming others.

  53. “Taxes existed long before climate change.”

    No. Climate change has been with us from the moment the earth developed one. Taxes have been with us for what at a guess? 5000-10,000 years, in one form or another.

    • The Witch Doctor just rattled his bones, dying for more sacrifice.

    • Taxes have existed for as long as social animals had social order. The alpha wolf always ate well. The queen bee never worried about where her honey was coming from.

      • Overly broad P.E.. But even if we allow your point, climate change has still been around a a few billion years longer.

      • I’ve known a few queen bees who were overly concerned about the comings and goings of their honey, but ymmv.

      • tempterrain

        Previous changes in climate have generally been slow and gradual. This allows life to evolve and adjust to changed conditions. When they have been sudden, such as happened 65 million years ago with a possible asteroid strike the result was mass extinction of the majority of the Earth’s species.
        If it happens again humans will be the ones badly affected even if it may not bring about human extinction. We may not be able to do much about an asteroid strike, although I’m sure we’d try to deflect one if it could be detected early enough.
        Don’t you think we should even try to avoid serious human induced climate change which will devastate the Earth’s environment?

      • Latimer Alder


        Let’s see.

        An asteroid strike is a very sudden event. The initial impact is probably over in a few seconds. And the subsequent darkening of the sun might last for a decade. We’d expect a very very sudden change in climate …maybe by ten degrees or more in a week. No summer at all. No harvest that year..probably very different rainfall patterns. All the things that were predicted to happen in a ‘nuclear winter’. Very very bad news.

        Compare and contrast with ‘global warming’. The change so far has been at the rate of 0.8C in a century. Simple calculation shows that this is about 1 C per 1,000,000 hours.

        The asteroid strike however might have altered temperatures at the rate of 1 c per 20 hours….50,000 times faster.

        I do not think that your examples are comparable, nor that you can extrapolate from Nature’s ability to adapt (or not) to a circumstance 50,000 times slower,

      • tempterrain


        Your scientific knowledge is lacking. The rate of change of atmospheric CO2 is unprecedented. It may not be instantaneous like an asteroid strike, or seem to instantaneous according to our perceived scale of time, but on a geological scale it is. Try reading this.

      • Latimer Alder


        It is not the rate of change of CO2 that matters.

        It is the supposed warming effects that affect the planet. And on your own idea – this rate is not unprecedented. There is no evidence whatsoever of any bad effects from such a rise. 1C per 1,000,000 hours is a very gentle increase.

        Unless you can provide some real evidence that there are any species that cannot tolerate such an increase, I will not be losing any sleep over it.

        And for the life of me I do not see what the geological time scale has to do with it. We do not live in geologic time.

      • Latimer Alder

        PS I am deeply unimpressed by Veron’s paper that you linked to.

        ‘It must be X because we couldn’t think of anything else that happened 400 million years ago’

        is not a compelling argument for me.

      • tempterrain

        Latimer, So, there’s no evidence that CO2 produces any significant warming but even if it did the rate of warming is so slow that life would have no difficulty adjusting to it?
        And because we, as individuals, have a very short lifespan when compared against the length of time that climate will continue to change, it doesn’t really matter what those long term changes might be. After all, we’ll all be dead in a few years anyway so, why bother worrying about future generations?
        Is that what you’re saying?

      • tempterrain

        “I do not see what the geological time scale has to do with it. We do not live in geologic time.”

        This actually one of the few arguments against doing anything about AGW which makes any sense. I dare say that few of us on this blog will expect to live beyond about the year 2050. I may be wrong, but I wouldn’t expect anything too bad, climate wise, to happen by then. We’ll all probably be OK in our lifetimes. So why bother?

        We seem to have managed to convince ourselves to look slightly beyond that date and the end of the current century is the new horizon. But we’ll all be just as dead in the year 2100 as we will in the years 2200, 2300 etc by which time I would suggest that the very adverse effects from AGW really will start to be felt. So I’m not quite sure why everyone, including Judith, seems to think the 21st century is the only important one.

      • “This actually one of the few arguments against doing anything about AGW which makes any sense. I dare say that few of us on this blog will expect to live beyond about the year 2050. I may be wrong, but I wouldn’t expect anything too bad, climate wise, to happen by then. We’ll all probably be OK in our lifetimes. So why bother?”

        There you go, tempterrain has said something rational.
        But we add to this.
        Why should we know more about climate now as compared to by 2050. Next why I or tempterrain am smarter or wiser than those living in 2040 to 2050. Or how can a past generation know what best for a generation in the future.
        And finally no one talking or desiring much change such things as level of global CO2 or changes in global temperature. Instead it’s on the order lowering temperature by .005 C and maybe [at best] lowering CO2 by 10 ppm. Assuming everything goes as plans. Which so far it has not gone as planned.
        Would those future generations be happy or saved by such small change as compared to all things we failed to do because our “relativity” small resources were largely expended doing this. Is not possible they would even want increase by .005 C and increase by 10 ppm.

        For example wouldn’t future generation benefit more by experiments of fertilizing the ocean, done decade earlier, than anything we do about lowering CO2 and/or temperature.
        Or considering how much hydrates deposits in the ocean, it seems a future generation could greatly benefit knowing whether mining such deposit is or is not economically viable. Such knowledge is real asset to future generations.
        And of course there other aspects, some say in 15 years we will have more certainity about this whole climate change issue. I think 10 years will be enough time, even 5 years. If tend at present level, for 5 years, that means something. If we cool very slightly that means something else, and we warm slightly it means another thing. Whereas if we were rise in temperature so quickly as to meet UN projections of future warming, that would exciting moment for IPCC [with zero bad consequence.] If there is more than this warmer, if the arctic polar sea ice completely melts within 5 years. The skeptics are going to wrong aren’t they? No opposition, little in compromising. And as I said before the real losers will those currently in charge- they will be fired, because we need more capable people managing this whole thing. Or things would change, the government would actual do something because, first because they would have mandate, and second, they want to actually do something. Or A Bill Clinton is not going to ignore the Al Gore.
        We aren’t doing anything now, other waste tax dollars, no amount of cheerleading will change this. What will have dramatic effect is if it’s supported by the science. If mother earth will indicate significant warming.
        So we don’t need to wait until 2050, instead we could wait until there is stronger [or any] evidence that some kind action is needed.
        If we get to point that some action is needed, it seems extremely unlikely that the solution that billion humans will come up with is increasing taxes of carbon. If simply a dumb solution.

      • “We seem to have managed to convince ourselves to look slightly beyond that date and the end of the current century is the new horizon. But we’ll all be just as dead in the year 2100 as we will in the years 2200, 2300 etc by which time I would suggest that the very adverse effects from AGW really will start to be felt. So I’m not quite sure why everyone, including Judith, seems to think the 21st century is the only important one.”

        I don’t why you think you predict 100 years into the future.
        I don’t why you imagine anyone who can do this.

        China plans to go the moon by 2020. Can predict what will be the consequence of this. One could assume the repeat what US did. But
        that fails, in fundamental way. The reason the US went to the Moon was a race against the Soviets. China is not in a race with anyone.
        Some assume they doing for prestige, which somewhat acceptable, but for China to go to the Moon, and repeat what America did, seems like leads to vast loss of face. And Chinese unlike Americans really care about the prospect of losing face.
        And even though to the uniformed it may seem like US isn’t going back to the Moon [false] there are many countries other than China or US which actively planning to go back to the Moon.
        So describe what going on with the Moon by say 2040.
        Another space related issue is suborbital space travel, I give 50% chance of this occurring within 2 years. And within 5 years, not only does seem probably, but rather than just be mostly a “US thing” it goes international. Where this is in ten years is very hard to predict.
        Many billionaire would interested if you could give a good guess.

        Now where could subobirtal space travel lead by say 2040.
        Obviously harder to know than by 2022. And similar to predicting flying cars or fusion. Obviously my optimism has already been not met [whether it’s suborbit or lunar exploration or many other things] so
        I am just say what is conceivably possible. First, suborbital is a space related market. And what needed is a market in space- we already have one- the satellite market. So starting the satellite market, suborbital space travel could affect that market. The next market suborbital could affect is airline industry. In longer timeframe, one use suborbital travel go much faster than airline travel. Or much faster than the Concorde flew.
        Airplane travel in the beginning was mostly about entertainment, and suborbital travel is following this same path. But everyone expects the cost of suborbital travel to lower significantly in terms of cost per seat.
        And the lowering of cost per seat, allows more people to use it, and allows further things to be done- there is a desire for a better suborbital trip. Evenually one get to point of being a better way to travel than airlines. part of why it’s “better” could still be entertainment, mostly. But one also could better in terms getting somewhere fast. Whether package or person. I mean if have to get something halfway around the world in less than hour, and will pay for it, then some people will value this ability. And this continue the point where it’s cheaper and faster than any airline [airline is replaced, unless someone prefer to travel on plane the same way some people like to travel long distance on train or oceanliner.
        Now going halfway around the world cheap, also means getting to space is cheap. Whether this can happen within fifty years depends on many things. One thing it might depend upon is what is happening on the moon by 2040 to 2050.

        I think space is easier try to predict than what going to happen in terms of computers and nanotechnology and microbiology.

      • tempterrain

        “Why should we know more about climate now as compared to by 2050.?”

        So we wait and do nothing until then?

        This reminds me of an argument that I heard a few years ago that it was better to wait for a year before buying a PC. They’d be so much better value for money then. Of course, after another year, and then another, the same argument applied so logically no-one should have ever bought a new computer ever.

      • tempterrain,

        If you can put off buying a PC (or believing in Global Warming) for year then obviously you don’t need to buy (believe) it, jacka$$.


      • Until she was dead. Colony collapse disorder and all that

  54. Joe's World


    I have a very good idea for an experiment that tests the validity of temperature gathering.
    This experiment just strictly deals in gathering temperatures and how they change when imposing different parameters.
    A graph can be created showing the different temperature changes.

    Now the other hand will show what is introduced to change those temperatures and ridiculousness of this process when all other parameters are ignored strictly for temperature gathering and guessing at what changed them.

  55. Why not talk about something real, like banks manipulating the LIBOR interbank interest rate for fun and profit. Since many of your mortgages are tied to LIBOR that might be something real to really get upset about

    • Latimer Alder

      I don’t have a mortgage.

      And btw – pointing to the distant horizon and saying ‘the bad guys went thataway’ only fools the dumbest of posses. Nor does wrongdoing elsewhere excuse it closer to home.

      Your transparent ploy fails.

      • You have a credit card? The rates are often pegged to LIBOR. You have a CD or a bond, guess what bucky. What you don’t know can hurt you

      • The scam here was to get the facts (real interest charges) to match Barclay’s (and other Banks) projections.
        Then all the derivative trades would balance out in Barclay’s favour.
        In fact in Britain most mortgage holders won out of this deal because Barclay’s wanted to force LIBOR down.


        Where in Climate Science did we hear of manipulating data to fit in with a preconceived agenda?


        Why of course with cut and paste Michael Mann and the vanishing MWP and LIA !

      • That appears to be your answer to everything. Blame Michael Man First. OTOH, Eli supposes you can now tell him how MBH 1998 disappeared the MWP

        Just to be clear tho Barclay was not balancing it’s trades on derivatives by manipulating the LIBOR, but profiting from them, and the smoking email indicates that people at Barclay’s did it for pals at other banks.

        Sorry Charlie.

  56. tempterrain

    The argument seems to be:
    1) climate mitigation involves the spending of money.
    2) whenever money is involved there is always the potential for corruption, 3) that corruption should be avoided by shutting down all climate mitigation programs.

    OK. So is this argument going to apply to the arms trade too? The level of corruption is enormous. So that should be shut down too?

    In fact, this argument could be used to end world trade in just about everything.

    • Latimer Alder


      Convince me that your argument isn’t just that two wrongs make a right.

      And there may well be an ‘Arms Trade Etc’ blog on which you can argue your point.

    • Steven Mosher

      No temp the argument goes like this

      1) climate mitigation involves the spending of money.
      2) whenever money is involved there is always the potential for corruption,
      3) climate mitagation plans should be subject to the same kind of
      controls as other enterprises that deal with huge sums of money.

      • tempterrain

        “climate mitagation plans should be subject to the same kind of
        controls as other enterprises that deal with huge sums of money.”

        OK if you say so.

        Maybe you could give me some examples of “other enterprises” involving “huge sums of money”. Just what are these “same kind of controls” for which you are advocating?

  57. Web, I have the feeling I did something to upset you. Can you tell the class what it was?

  58. Willis Eschenbach

    tempterrain | June 29, 2012 at 4:27 pm |


    Your scientific knowledge is lacking. The rate of change of atmospheric CO2 is unprecedented. It may not be instantaneous like an asteroid strike, or seem to instantaneous according to our perceived scale of time, but on a geological scale it is.

    And on a geological scale, the movement of LA towards San Francisco is instantaneous as well, due to the relative motions of the two sides of the San Andreas Fault. In no (geological) time at all, LA will be part of the San Francisco Bay Area, a scary thought indeed.

    However, they’re not talking about merging the City Councils quite yet. Why? Because instantaneous on a geological scale may mean nothing to humans …


    • However, large portions of the cities may disappear first because of sea level rise.

      • Evidence, rabbit, evidence.

      • To use the words of Thomas Knutson you recall the question of Ellsaesser: “Should we trust models or observations?” In reply Eli notes that if we had observations of the future, the bunnies obviously would trust them more than models, but unfortunately observations of the future are not available at this time.

        So yes, the best model evidence says glugg glugg coming soon enough to cities near the ocean.

      • Eli

        Problem is that model simulations are NO “evidence” at all, just plain ol’ “glugg-glugg” GIGO – only for the very gullible “wabbits”.


      • Of course, you know this because you believe it, but please address the point about how can one even start to make any meaningful prediction of the future without a model and without models policy making and preparation is a hopeless task. The rejection of all models by many here is an embrace of ignorance (think carefully about what that word means before you spew please).

  59. tempterrain

    A question for you.

    We have an observed phenomenon:

    UN + $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ = corruption

    Is there any logical reason to assume that this phenomenon will not repeat itself with the “climate $$$$$$$$$$$$$$”, if these are administered by UN agencies or panels?


    • tempterrain

      You think the UN will divert the $$ into its ‘New World Order Fund’ or its “Subvert the US Constitution Fund” ?

      Your argument is that AGW isn’t real, or if it real it isn’t a problem (and may even be a good thing), or even it is a problem we can afford to do anything about it, or even if we could afford to do something in an ideal world we can’t in the real one because of the danger of corruption.

      Have I missed anything out?

      • tempterrain

        Should be “….we can’t afford to do anything about it….”

      • tempterrain

        Yes. You have missed something.

        It is CAGW, which is not substantiated by empirical data.

        Until it is, there is no valid reason to discuss spending $$$$$$$$$$$ to combat it.

        And, even if it were, the UN would be a poor candidate for administering $$$$$$$$$$$$$$, based on its past history of corruption when $$$$$$$$$$$$$$ were involved.


      • tempterrain

        And just what does the catastrophic mean in CAGW. The Venus effect?

      • tempterrain

        You think the UN will divert the $$ into its ‘New World Order Fund’ or its “Subvert the US Constitution Fund” ?

        Not really, but how about various private bank accounts in Cayman Islands, Switzerland, Singapore, etc.?


  60. It’s nice to fret about how the administration of the climate megabucks will need to be monitored and policed in order to avoid rampant corruption.

    But let’s first make sure the “science” supporting the need for all these proposed megabucks is not already corrupted.

    Geographical quotas for contributing “scientists” does not seem to be a good formula for this.


    • tempterrain

      You deniers could set us all a good example by being truthful about your own motivations. Saying that you once accepted the IPCC line, but then noticed flaws, inconsistencies etc , which you decided to research, when its quite obvious from your previous writings you did no such thing is a form of corruption too. Wouldn’t you say?

      • tempterrain

        Investigating a subject and then forming a new opinion on it is not “corruption”. There are quite a few examples of individuals who have done exactly that with relation to IPCC’s stance on CAGW. Some may have become “believers”in this view, while others may have become “skeptics”.


      • But you’ve never had a new opinion. You claim in your denizens entry that you took a considered view of the IPPC AR4 report , which came out in Jan 2007. Your doubt arose after initially accepting it. But by March 2007 you were calling the AGW issue a “hoax”.

      • tt,
        I was a believer in AGW in the late 1980’s all the way to the late 1990’s.
        If I have not conveyed this to your satisfatcation does that make me a liar?

      • I seem to remember you stating I was a liar because I had not conveyed to your satisfaction my political views. What does that make you?

  61. Willis Eschenbach

    manacker | June 30, 2012 at 6:12 am |


    Problem is that model simulations are NO “evidence” at all, just plain ol’ “glugg-glugg” GIGO – only for the very gullible “rabbits”.

    Eli Rabett | July 1, 2012 at 3:44 pm |

    Of course, you know this because you believe it, but please address the point about how can one even start to make any meaningful prediction of the future without a model and without models policy making and preparation is a hopeless task. The rejection of all models by many here is an embrace of ignorance (think carefully about what that word means before you spew please).

    Eli, you lump all models together, and then accuse people of rejecting “all models”.

    Me, I don’t do that. I reject lousy, untested, inaccurate models.

    In particular, it is crucial to distinguish between mathematical models (e.g. the Black-Scholes model), and iterative models, such as climate models. Iterative models are very different beasts.

    Iterative models use the output of one cycle as the input for the next cycle. As a result, they are very difficult to keep from running off of the rails, and often need special methods and mechanisms to even give an approximate answer. They are also subject to a variety of hidden problems because they are “tuned” to give the desired answers. Finally, they often are severely time-limited, providing reasonable answers for a short time horizon but losing the plot entirely as the length of the prediction increases.

    Since you object to the “rejection of all models”, let me make the same point with respect to the acceptance of all models, which is an even bigger problem in climate science than in most fields. In just about any other field of study, models are tested, and only the best ones are used.

    But in climate science, if you have a model, as long as it is complex enough, you’re in, your model gets as much weight as the next model. There is no minimum requirements, no need to demonstrate accuracy, no bar to get over. Make a model, and you’re in … pathetic.

    So please, spare us your simplistic claims that all models are created equal, or that we reject all models. Surely, even a bunny must know that some models should be rejected …


    • Steven Mosher

      except Willis that Black scholes is solved by iterative operations.and perturbation methods, also used in climate science.

      • Rob Starkey

        Except that no model should be used for anything of importance before it has demonstrated what criteria it has been able to accurately forecast, within what margin of error over what timeframe.

        Can you think of any general circulation models that pass these simple criteria???

      • Willis Eschenbach

        Steven, a number of exact equations are solved by iterative methods. I fervently hope that you are not comparing these to an iterative model of a dynamic system like the climate, since all they have in common is the word “iterative”.


    • A *FAN* of *ON TOPIC* discourse

      Iteration is a method, not a model. If it converges, it converges. If it doesn’t, it doesn’t. It’s not an inherently bad way to solve some problems, it’s just that sometimes it blows up. But you always know if it blows up.

  62. A *FAN* of *ON TOPIC* discourse | July 2, 2012 at 2:07 pm |

    Actually, you don’t always know if an iteration blows up; there are some categories of iterative sequences that cannot be predicted by parametric means. Some such iterative sequences only ‘blow up’ after a very large number of iterations, or there may be huge numbers of potential and indistinguishable sequences among a candidate set only a few of which will blow up soon, and that no good filter can anticipate short of testing them all.

    While it’s true that often the time it would take for the iteration to blow up exceeds the age of the Universe, and so might be less interesting in a practical sense, shouldn’t our discourse be mathematically correct, as well as on topic?

    Rob Starkey | July 2, 2012 at 2:06 pm |

    “ model should be used for anything of importance before it has demonstrated what criteria it has been able to accurately forecast, within what margin of error over what timeframe.”

    If this criteria were applied to experiments of the past, then very many Nobel Prize winners would have to give back their awards.

    Also, some models just aren’t for forecasting at all, or are for forecasting different vectors than interest some readers. While forecasting, margin of error, timeframe, and accuracy are important topics, you misrepresent their utility. The famous funnel-drop experiment ( cannot accurately forecast where the marble will land, or any of a number of other things about the drop event, yet it tells us a great deal about many things. You’re preaching a standard of impossible perfection that has never been any part of the Scientific Method.

    • Rob Starkey


      Can you identify any models that were previously used in science or engineering that were of importance where we did not understand what the models were able to accurately predict within stated margins of error?

      • Rob Starkey | July 2, 2012 at 2:29 pm |

        Asked and answered. didn’t assume foregone conclusions before it was first done. As a model of management decision-making in process improvement, it didn’t bother to predict where the marble would land. See how that works? The experiment isn’t what the manager sees, it’s how the manager behaves.

      • Rob Starkey


        Perhaps you missed the part where I asked if the models had been used for something of importance. It is probably ok to use a model of unknown accuracy if doing so does not really matter to society. In the case of climate modeling that is not the case. The decisions that are being made as a result of these models are quite important

      • Rob Starkey | July 2, 2012 at 2:41 pm |

        I’d think you’d have to take up the importance of Deming’s experiments to society with the business community at large. Since Deming’s been a major influence in the leadership and management of much of the business world for decades, and specifically in the science of decision-making (including that of making decisions about climate policy), it seems you’ve overlooked something.

      • Rob Starkey


        I actually had the opportunity to be taught by Demming personally in the early 80’s and I am an advocate of the management approach. Demming did not use models that had not been of known accuracy. Actually, Demming is very big on understanding the manufacturing process in great detail and to remove variability from the process.

        In summary you example fails. Further, it is not one of much importance.

      • A *FAN* of *ON TOPIC* discourse

        Demming would be in McIntyre’s camp. Don’t cut corners.

      • Rob Starkey | July 2, 2012 at 3:03 pm |

        One ‘m’. Deming.

        Or was it some other guy you studied under?

      • Rob Starkey

        My typing and spelling skills are poor. Same guy. It was pretty interesting being taught by him. It was early in my career and I had had a great deal of sucess and he proceeded to teach me that I had been lucky and not actually as good as I thought I was at the time. The lessons took a bit of time to really sink in, but they became fundamental for me

      • I’ll take you at your word that the lessons sank in, but given that, why do you persist in discussing current rates of SLR as being somehow useful in evaluating the predictions of ~ one meter of SLR by ~2100?

      • Rob Starkey


        Simple- because the rate of SLR will need to show evidence of a significant the change in the rate of rise for it to go up by 1 meter by 2100. When there are only unproven models with very large margins of error claimed as acceptable initially after the models are run I am skeptical of the models abilities to accurately forecast future conditions.
        There has been no evidence of the change in rate while at the same time CO2 was rising at a rapid rate. This would seem to be evidence to draw any reasonable person to the conclusion that a rise in sea level of 1 meter by 2100 to be unlikely based upon available evidence today.

      • Simple – the rate of SLR in 2012, ~3.2 mm py, is totally irrelevant to the prediction of ~one meter by 2100. It says nothing. ZIPPO.

        If it were dropping by 1 foot a year, yeah!

      • Rob Starkey

        With all due respect, the current rate of rise is only unimportant in your view because it does not support your conclusion of a feared potential outcome. Imo the current rate of rise is the best data available and it therefore the most important piece of data we have.

        Let me try a different question for you. How long does the current rate of rise need to be maintained for you to believe that a rise of 1 meter by 2100 to be highly unlikely?

      • Wrong. I have no fear of the potential outcome. I own no property that could be impacted by any potential outcome, and not only that, I’ll be quite dead, as will my children. The fact is the models make no prediction for 2012.

        There would be no point to it. It would not validate the model. A correct prediction would be indistinguishable from a WAG, or a dart toss.

        Within reason it could be up; it could be down; it doesn’t make a flippin’ bit of difference.

        I just coded a model. It predicts the rate of SLR for 2013 will be 3.35 mm per year, +or- whatever, 0.5. This is how my model works. I bend over and pull the prediction out of my…

      • Rob Starkey

        Your fear (Imo) is tied to your belief that more atmospheric CO2 will lead to a worst future for humanity. You have invested time and energy in the issue and do not wish to be wrong in your conclusions.
        Our exchange started by you stating that the actual performance of the system (or in this case the current rate of rise) to be unimportant in predicting whether it will rise by 1 meter by 2100. I stated that the actual rate of rise it the best indicator of future performance and the most appropriate method to validate or invalidate any potential model.

        To have a model that would predict a rise of 3.5 mm per year +/- .5 mm in 2013 would make some sense although I would think the margin of error to be unacceptably great. What I read about the forecast accuracy is about models predicting a rise of 3.0 mm per year with a + 2.0 mm and – 1.0 mm margin or error. Imo the margin of error for these forecasts make the models of no value.

        In any case, it appears you have realized that the actual historical rate of is very important in predicting what will happen in the future—as I stated. I noticed you did not answer my questions, but I think I did yours

      • Rob Starkey


        My real point is that in no other area that I am aware of are major decisions being made based upon the output of models where we understand less about the capability of the models to accurately represent the forecasted outcomes.

        You certainly would not get on an airplane who’s flight control systems had been tested via a similar process!

  63. There’s only one preventative that will work effectively to stop corruption from totally dominating climate mitigation funds: avoid them entirely, set such funding at zero, don’t go there!

    The science and politics of the issue have already been subordinated to very special interests, and there’s no rescuing them. It’s in the bone.