UK Telegraph falls prey to photo cherry picking

They say a picture is worth a thousand words right? Depending on what you are trying to present, that picture can make or break any presentation.

So it was with great interest that I noticed this picture in the article from the UK Telegraph with this alarming title:

Climate change is ‘faster and more extreme’ than feared

climate change is 'faster and more extreme' than feared
Arctic sea-ice in September 1979 and 2007, showing the biggest reduction since satellite surveillance began. Photo: Fugro NPA Ltd

Hmmm…right below it there was a link to the World Wildlife Fund, and in the body of the article, was the source of this “news” story.

WWF’s report, Climate Change: Faster, stronger, sooner, has updated all the scientific data and concluded that global warming is accelerating far beyond the IPCC’s forecasts.

I didn’t realize that the WWF was a scientific organization, and that they could update the data and conclude our current situation worse that findings of the IPCC. How stupid of me to not pay attention to this.

CNN also picked up this WWF press release. See CNN’s story here.

Maybe WWF should “update” their findings with this picture from 2008:


Click for a larger image direct from the source

Yes a picture is worth a thousand words, isn’t it? For those of you that visit these other blogs, be sure they see this updated picture and send my regards. While you are at it, ask them at the Telegraph to provide the source data and methodology for the creation of the two images used in the report. They look more like artist renderings than data based 3D models. The images were not part of the WWF report.

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110 thoughts on “UK Telegraph falls prey to photo cherry picking

  1. I would agree on the photoshop, just by looking at the small details, like some of the channels and pennisulas in the ice, they have remarkebly not changed at all in the near 30 years between photos.

  2. You can compare ice extent in the Arctic for any two given dates from 1979 at the Cryosphere site of Univ of Illinois.

  3. Correct me if I’m wrong, but weren’t they screaming about global COOLING in the late 1970’s?
    I can certainly see how they were just as easily mislead back then as they are now.

  4. it even appears from the Cryosphere picture that the ice near the pole is thicker (i.e., the color is more purple) than it was in 1979. i guess they wouldn’t have had much of an argument if they had used the 2008 data!

  5. MVosters may be on to something.

    Photoshop is just not THAT accurate. But then neither are the satellite data interpretations.

    Maybe William Chapman uses Paint Shop Pro?

    For those who are interested they could follow Wilson Flood’s advice, have a look at the Cryosphere today web site and assess what they see, then contact Dr. Chapman and ask him which program he uses. Clearly the lack of changes in the 30 year period – Greenland is still WHITE for heavens sake – shows a worrying lack of attention to detail.

    Of course if this was an image from a fully interactive Google Earth type system we could fly down and see if WWF have got any tour groups at Churchill feeding the Polar Bears at this time. See the WWF travel web site for further information. Looks like they go to some really interesting places but I suspect the Carbon Indulgence payments they promote are compulsory.

  6. “Summer sea ice is now forecasted to completely disappear in the summer months sometime between 2013 and 2040 — something which hasn’t happened for over a million years.”
    FORCASTED!!
    Perhaps they should just learn English before they attempt science!
    Dave.

  7. I wonder how it is that there is apparently no trace of cloud to be seen in either picture. This would seem to point some sort of ‘adjustment’ of the images. If The Telegraph is so confident of its position perhaps it would like to comment?

  8. James Hansen sets up his modeled prediction in 1988 containing a 1.1° C rise in 20 years. On the anniversary of his testimony to Congress the UAH MSU data showed that it was actually cooler in 2008 than when the testimony was first given.

    How is it that WWF can conclude climate change is “faster, stronger, sooner”? They have set themselves up for some severe embarrassment.

  9. Well I’ve noticed that the summers are way warmer than the winters so there must be something to this.

    You will recall that 1975/6 was when there was all the talk about a devastating ice age in ten years; so it is not surprising that the 1979 ice was very advanced,

    No fair comparing a most advanced situation with a most retracted. Ok we expect it has been warming coming out of the last ice age, and it will go up and down, but 1979 was just the start ofthe polar satelite age. Who knows what it looked like in 1975/6

  10. WWF are basically a campaining/ fundraising organisation. Like Oxfam they have been around for a long time and seem to assume this gives them some sort of gravitas

    It might do in the provision of aid to wildlife or people but it means very little when they prognosticate on climate change. As RC might say, how many peer reviewed scientific papers has each organisation ever produced?

  11. I graduated from high school in 1977 and they were teaching us the next ICE AGE coming! 1978 was very cold as well.

    I have no idea why this game is being played out, it must have something to do with global energy somehow. It has nothing to do with just CO2.

    thanks,
    Steve

  12. Can I suggest that followers of “Global Warming”, “Climate Change” or what ever jargon you prefer to believe, read Christopher Booker’s regular aricles in The Telegraph each Sunday. He seems to have access to more facts about this subject and will enlighten you regarding the Polar ice caps, nuclear power, CO2, and wind farms. He will also show you how much effort and money is wasted by our politicians who have little understanding of the subject and are using it as a spring board to gain votes and keep the “greens” happy.

  13. If the Arctic sea ice is on the mend and its September extent slowly increases over the next several years, I expect to see that 2007 photo {or something comparable} for many years to come. Much like the AGW proponent who speaks of climbing temperatures and, if temperatures don’t cooperate, moves the start point on a temperature graph back to the 19th century.

    Just more journalism science.

    BTW, just look and compare the snow cover {or is that cloud cover} on the landmasses in the two photos. Sloppy work.

  14. “We Want Funds” ?

    They have no shame nor any regards for wildlife. WWF is designed to solicting funds by splashing the most cuddily creatures or scary scenarios in front of the most guilt ridden society. The fact they fudged a pic to fill their coffers matters not a bit.

  15. That was photoshopped. Take a look at the crystalline pattern between Greenland and the Arctic Ice Sheet. The pattern is identical. Everywhere you look where there is still ice and not the blue, identical ice patterns. For ice that has been thawed, melted and refrozen for almost 30 years that is darn near miraculous. The snow cover on Greenland shows the identical pattern. Wasn’t it supposed to melting like crazy. Where is the new island uncovered by global warming?

  16. I have visited the site of the UK Telegraph and read the comments!
    I think that they will think twice before publishing any other climate related article.

    WWF have lost part of their budget when a certain Iceland bank went bust.
    They sell IPCC data multiplied by a factor three to really scare people.
    They should be saving primates.

  17. Steve,
    Energy runs the global economy. He who controls the economy, controls everything. If increasing energy usage is deemed to be “bad” somehow, then that opens it up to taxation and wealth redistribution. It also allows governments to funnel tax dollars away from “bad” energy producers (read “coal, nuclear, etc.”) and toward “good” energy producers (read “wind, solar, etc.”). Finally, if the energy supply is rationed and the weather turns colder, people will become more dependent upon the government than ever before. Government can then swoop in and “solve” the problem they created.

    CO2 is the innocent bystander that becomes the target of the “frame up”. Unfortunately, in all end-of-the-world hoopla, the actual benefits of increased CO2 levels get overlooked…..very sad.

  18. Thanks, ‘Martin’.

    Your pixel difference picture shows, at the very least, that the edges of the snow/ice in the 1979 picture were altered and smoothed with what appears to be an airbrush technique (bottom-right quadrant of 1979 picture). Contrast that with the well-defined edges at the bottom of the 2007 ice sheet picture.

    Then, look at the airbrushed bottom edges on Martin’s difference picture. The left-side of the bottom edge looks airbrushed and smooth. It is difficult to conceive of why the 1979 photo was altered for any reason other than to increase the ice sheet disparity with the 2007 picture. Next time, they’ll probably photoshop in thousands of drowning and starving polar bears (with the starving polar bears being eaten alive by the ravenous cannibal polar bears :)

    BTW, Martin, what software did you use to examine the pixel difference?

  19. My first response was about the ridiculous title and premise based on the hard data. However, after looking carefully at the images and the notion of them being “PhotoShopped” I don’t think we can really jump to conclusions. At first glance, the snow and ice extent on shore in the two images (1979 and 2007) looks remarkably (read: exactly) the same. This might lead one to conclude that one of the two images was PhotoShopped and based on the other. However, when one looks at the Univ. of Illinois Cryosphere Today animations, the snow and ice extent on shore doesn’t change either. I suspect the ice extent is based on data not on an actual satellite image. One satellite composite image was probably used as the base image upon which the sea ice extent data was animated. If this is true, we shouldn’t expect the land ice and snow to show up in these images as that is not interest of the Cryosphere folks.

  20. I expect the claims of the alarmists to become more bizarre as the evidence continues to “fail them”.

    Why? I would suggest the following…
    1. Cognitive Dissonance for the true believers.
    2. Cynical Manipulation for the charlatans and con-men.
    3. “Catastrophy Sells” for the MSM editors seeking to keep their jobs.

  21. I went bizerk last night when I saw a 60 second spot about polar bears going extinct by guess who….. WWF! I didn’t know they we even around anymore. Looks like a concerted effort to get more donations. Does anyone know why the WWF uses a panda bear as a logo? Are they going extinct too?

  22. For Thomas Gough; not too surprising for the Arctic to be cloud free. The air is much colder than the surface and the humidity is likely too low most of the time for cloud formation. And a lot of the land in that area is at considerable elevation too. But I’d be surprised if those cameras haven;t been updated since 1979. The Telegraph doesn’t say exactly which satelite(s) took which photo.

    If you want to get really cloudless freaked out, just read Al Gore’s book where he has some BS PS photos, with all the clouds removed all over the globe. Average global cloud cover is aorund 505 so I’m told.

    Take a look at the famous earthrise shot from the moon to see how the earth is dominated by clouds. If the air wasn’t so blue light scattering, most of the oceans would look near black, since they are quite close to black body radiators with about 975 emissivity (based on surface Fresnel reflection), and Kirchoff’s law.

  23. Ok…it seems to me that either the images at the top of this post are bogus, or the Cyrosphere images are bogus…something has to line up somewhere, or they are both bogus.

    I saved the newspaper images to my pc, then opened them up and rotated them 180deg so that the orientation matches what’s displayed over on Cryosphere Today.

    The “1979” image comes pretty close to matching a Sept 1979 image over on Cryo, but I can find no month on Cyro for 2007 that shows anywhere near the amount of open water shown in the newspaper images.

    All of this is pretty much meaningless anyway. We don’t know the source, but more importantly, if confronted with irrefutable proof that the images were intentionally altered, the retraction would likely be printed on page 36.

    When images/headlines like this come out, the damage is already done.

    I believe that what real science needs to do is go on the offensive, instead of continously playing defense.

    Not sure what that game plan would look like, but it would be great to watch.

    Jim

  24. make that 50 uppercase 5. The albedo seems to be cloud dominated to me, with not a whole lot of influence from polar ice; I’m sure the experts have data on that, and I’m just guessing from the visual appearance of satellite photos.

    Total outer space photos of earth are relatively uncommon, because even at stationary orbital altitudes of 23,000 miles or so, the earth still subtends a sizeable angle (40 deg). Many of them were from returning moon missions so somewhat ancient cameras.

  25. @PearlandAggie

    Agreed.

    Unfortuanately the assumption that the government will be able to actually solve the problems that they have created is just that – an assumption.

    I note that your solve is “Solve” – nuanced.

  26. I went looking for the report at the WWF UK (and US) site, but all I could find was the press release at http://wwf.org.uk/news_feed.cfm?uNewsID=2274 . That page does _not_ have the Telegraph’s image, just a photo of a gorgeous summer day at a glacial pond.

    Does anyone know where the report is?

    Other coverage:

    CNN wrote their own story and interviewed “the report’s author, geoscientist Dr Tina Tin,” see http://www.cnn.com/2008/TECH/science/10/20/wwf.climate.report/

    http://euobserver.com/19/26962 says “The WWF report was issued to coincide with a meeting of EU environment ministers in Luxembourg on Monday, who are to discuss new proposals aimed at tackling climate change.”

  27. “Summer sea ice is now forecasted to completely disappear in the summer months sometime between 2013 and 2040 — something which hasn’t happened for over a million years.”

    Exactly how do they know it hasn’t happened for over a million years? Most likely the north pole was free of ice before the onset of the most recent series of ice ages (which may have sparked human evolution) over 3 million years ago, but I seriously doubt the pole has been iced over the entire 3 million years.

  28. Shame on UK Telegraph, with its lies and propaganda!

    (This AGW bandwagon is so huge now. A law student recently commented on my blog that I have no right to blog because my interrests are wrong. Every day politicians says we shall force evil industry to shut down – happy Asia…)

    Anyway, a tip:

    At Niche Modelling Ferenc Miskolczi shows an analysis of optical depth, which shows that during the last 60 years there has been no increase of greenhouse gases!!!!!!!!!!!

    All the CO2 increase is compensated by less water vapor! (…which probably further prove Miskolczi’s model.)

    http://landshape.org/enm/significance-of-global-warming/

    (And meeanwhile no listen to the truts about the emperor’s new clothes the politicians in the western world talk about (Gore’s) the climate emergency, and about draconical emission cuts from cars and industries, which makes industries less competative and force them to be replaced by Chinese plants.)

  29. Leon Brozyna – I spent several thousand flying hours sitting atop a 2MW radar transmitter and subsequently fathered two sons, so this study is rubbish (mind you, my kids can see through walls…)

  30. Anne,

    I graduated from High School in 1978 and it was the mantra of the decade. Peer review? Look at any Science Text Book from that time. They crammed it down our throats much the same as the reverse is being done today.

    Personally, I bought that story hook, line and sinker and was AFRAID to move from Miami to any other part of the country…for DECADES.

    Peer review and Science textbooks. Now that would be a novel concept.

    Seriously, though, I did find a handy-dandy ‘timeline’ published by Farmers Almanac that documents the see-sawing of scientific/political/public opinion over the past century. You may find it informative or at least as a spring board for you to do your own investgations.

    Here’s the address, I don’t know how to do links-yet.

    http://www.almanac.com/timeline/

  31. Technically, the WWF is a BINGO (big international non-governmental organization).

    Founded in 1961 in Switzerland, in 1986 they changed their name to the World Wide Fund for Nature. The national divisions of World Wildlife Fund in the United States and Canada refused to change their name, and after the resolution of a legal battle with the U.S-based World Wrestling Federation, the universally adopted name became WWF.

    Presently headquartered in Gland, Switzerland, the WWF had a reported operating income of $160.8 million in 2007. They have a staff of ~4,400 and operate in over 90 countries. Investments are over $1 billion.

    According to Source Watch, the WWF is sponsored by numerous multinational corporations including Weyerhaeuser, Alcoa, Citigroup, Bank of America, Kodak, J.P. Morgan, Bank of Tokyo, Philip Morris, Waste Management, Coca-Cola, and DuPont. They present an annual conservation award funded by and named after the late oil baron J. Paul Getty. The WWF routinely subverts national governments in Africa and SE Asia, pandering (a pun) to First World interests by usurping property rights of indigenous Third Worlders.

    This latest propaganda is designed to do exactly that: raise false alarms about wildlife in order to justify and fund land grabs in poorer countries.

    As BINGO’s go, WWF is one of the Big Five but a small fry compared to the giant, The Nature Conservancy. TNC has income of over $1 billion per year and assets worth ten times that. TNC is in the land grab business worldwide, but especially in the U.S. where former TNC Chairman and current Sec. Treasury Hank Paulson just engineered the largest robbery of the US Treasury in history. TNC is all about real estate, and receives over $100 million per year directly from Congress to purchase private land in this country.

    Just so you know. It’s always a good idea to keep tabs on the enemy. Don’t for a minute think that AGW is a science project. It’s all about shakedowns, takeover, and global-scale robbery.

  32. WWF are world-class envirocrits. They arrange expensive tours for the well-to-do to go around the globe, but their website has stuff about carbon credits, etc. Outfits like this just jump on the bandwagon to keep the money rolling in.

  33. When scientists are using their grant money to explore the vagaries and unknowns of Nature, they are, more often than not, “surprised” by the “unexpected” “extremes” and “faster changes.” :-) /sarc off

  34. A simple trick used by 3-D photographers is to fuse the two images by crossing the eyes. The alterations to the 1979 image instantly stand out in bold relief while the rest of the image lies flat indicating that one or the other was indeed manipulated.

    Is the ice growing or shrinking? Doesn’t matter now. The WWF’s lies in the name of their socilalist agenda are exposed. The ironic part is that their shenanigans intended to bring attention to the plight of the polar bear will probably do more harm than good.

  35. Source of data needed: What satellite was able to take a photo like this in 1979? If the photo wasn’t faked, I would be admiring the skill of the modern satellite operators in positioning the camera to duplicate the old photo. I also agree that the ice patterns are impossibly identical north of Canada…unless that wrinkled stuff is all land. But taking it at face value, the photo shows the Bering Strait at the bottom, thus the North Pole should be … wow, look at all that water near the North Pole in 1979 and 2007!

  36. I’m sure the source image is not a single photo but a montage, like one of those “Earth from Space” posters. They photograph different areas at different times when they happen to be cloud-free and stitch the shots together. For the Arctic as a whole to have no clouds at all is effectively impossible.

    The elevation of the viewpoint appears to be at several thousand kilometres, too high for normal photo-surveillance satellites but too low for geostationary, (which only hover above the equator anyway).

    Any real photo of the whole Arctic in September would have to have part of the Earth in shadow (night), as the terminator would be less than 10 degrees from the Pole.

  37. WWF Report author Tina Tin:

    Tina conducted her Ph.D. research on the thickness of Antarctic sea ice at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (US) and holds a Masters of Engineering from the University of Cambridge (UK). She participated in two research cruises in the Ross Sea and presented papers at a number of international scientific conferences. Her passion lies in the protection of wilderness areas – in the polar regions and worldwide. When she is not focused on Antarctica, she works with WWF and other environmental organizations to promote climate change science and policy in Europe and elsewhere.

  38. Even if I were to “believe” the graphic depiction of waning sea ice … I would be left with the OBVIOUS question:

    What SCIENTIFIC conclusions can we draw from Arctic Satellite photos spanning such a short period of time from 1979 – 2008 ?

    It is utter nonsense to identify any long term … let alone catastrophic … trend from this very small set of data.

  39. Well well well. I’ve done a nice little gif animation of this year’s ice increase, only a month’s worth, right at the top of my primer (link to it through my name) and if you click on the pic you can see it fullsize 31 days’ worth.

    WATCH BABY ICE GROW!

  40. Interesting complementary information:
    “Less Ice In Arctic Ocean 6000-7000 Years Ago”

    From a “believer”:

    “…”Changes that took place 6000-7000 years ago were controlled by other climatic forces than those which seem to dominate today,” Astrid Lyså believes.”

    You have to believe to get research funding…

    This should once and for all ‘kill’ the sad stories about bears drowning because there is not enough ice up there

    Great blog, I am reading it nearly every day!

  41. Out of interest I compared the prediction of 40 million tonnes loss of wheat, maize and barley with the news release from the actual paper which stated

    [quote] Using global yield figures for 1961-2002 from the Food and Agriculture Organization, Lobell and Field compared yields with average temperatures and precipitation over the major growing regions.

    They found that, on average, global crop yields respond negatively to warmer temperatures for several of the crops. Lobell and Field then used these relationships to estimate the effect of observed warming trends.
    “To do this, we assumed that farmers have not yet adapted to climate change, for example by selecting new crop varieties to deal with climate change,” Lobell said. “If they have been adapting – something that is very difficult to measure – then the effects of warming may have been lower.”

    Most experts believe that adaptation would lag several years behind climate trends, because of the difficultly of distinguishing climate trends from natural variability.
    The importance of this study, the authors said, was that it demonstrates a clear and simple relationship at the global scale, with yields dropping by approximately 3-5 percent for a one-degree Fahrenheit increase. “A key moving forward is how well cropping systems can adapt to a warmer world,” Lobell said. “Investments in this area could potentially save billions of dollars and millions of lives.”[/quote] Not quite the same impact has it

  42. As you all know but seem to “forget”, the anomaly in extent is strong in the summer but much less in autumn and winter – and this is known and has been predicted for a while. compare september 79 and 08 and you’l see the dfference.

  43. @barbee butts

    A pity you couldn’t come up with more substantial proof of your claim.

    The link you provided shows a timeline that contains more records of cold winters and hot summers than evidence of a ‘global cooling scare’. There really is not a shred of evidence of a conspiracy against humanity in there.

    The scares mentioned are (amongst others) from newspaper articles covering the sinking of the Titanic. I hope you don’t feel current day climate science is responsible for what these journalists wrote a century ago?

    When I google for ‘global cooling scare’ I end up on a Wiki page, showing very little. As far as I know, there is only 1 science publication mentioning the possibility of a cooler climate: S. Ichtiaque Rasool and Stephen H. Schneider, published in the journal Science in July 1971. But that was based on the assumption of a quadrupling of aerosols, which have a cooling effect.

    Then there seems to have been an article in the march 1, 1975 edition of Science News, which seem to have predicted a ‘a full-blown 10,000-year ice age’. Worth noticing is that ‘Science News’ is not peer-reviewed and not to be confused with the magazine ‘Science’.

    Really, there is not much substance to the claim, although any additional evidence of this global cooling scare is very welcome.

    barbee, I can not tell you what was in your school books and how your science teacher presented it. But if the consequence of that was being stuck in Miami, perhaps you should thank your teacher.

  44. I emailed a letter to the Telegraph about this yesterday but they probably won’t print it. They printed three of my letters last year, and one was about climate change.

    A poster mentioned Christopher Booker. Booker deserves huge credit for exposing this catastrophic delusion, but I would point out that he writes in the Sunday Telegraph, which actually handles climate change pretty well. It’s printed articles by Gore, Christopher Monckton and Bob Carter. In contrast, its sister publication is totally pro-AGW and never indicates that there are other opinions.

    About a year ago I entered into correspondence with the Telegraph deputy editor. I was considering lodging a complaint with the UK Press Complaints Commission about an article about a Pacific island that was about to be drowned by rising sea levels. The caption on the photo said that the island could disappear in decades. The photo itself showed the island’s coastline: cliffs and steeply rising terrain. A quick check on Google Earth showed that the island’s average height was well over 50 meters. Obviously the good folks at the Telegraph are so blinded by AGW hysteria that they cannot see something so obvious.

    The editor’s main defence was that they they were merely quoting the island’s leader (quite possibly they were trying to extract cash from Australia). I accepted that. However, the article still contained several statements that were not quotes. And clearly the caption was not just wrong, but nonsensical. Although I would probably have lost, I really wish I had lodged the complaint.

    Unfortunately the same defence would apply here, for example to the list of claims. They are probably all false, but they are presented as claims by WWF, so the Telegraph is probably in the clear on that one. However, in the middle it says: “40 million The amount of grain in tons lost each year due to rising atmospheric temperatures”. This is presented as a fact, and not a WWF claim (although it is also a WWF claim). Is this true? Some time ago I looked up data from the World Agricultural Organisation, which showed that global food production per head had been steadily rising.

    I think I may email the deputy editor to ask for information on the two images. If it could be shown that they had been doctored then that would probably be a good basis for a complaint to the PCC (not to be confused with the IPCC!).

    Finally, here’s the letter I emailed to the Telegraph yesterday. They almost certainly won’t print it, although they did print three last year. Maybe they didn’t print any of my letters this year because I’m on their black list!

    Chris

    Letter to Daily Telegraph:

    Sir,
    Once again the Telegraph unquestioningly prints the nonsense
    that emanates from the climate change fanatics (20th October, page
    14). As the WWF report was timed to coincide with the meeting of
    EU environment ministers it’s hardly surprising that it’s wildly
    exaggerated. And since when has the WWF been a scientific
    authority able to contradict the IPCC? The carbon dioxide delusion
    has given rise to the bizarre and almost medieval practice of carbon
    offsets. So here are a few truth offsets:
    The warming is not speeding up as the headline claims. Global
    temperatures in recent years have been falling, with dramatic falls
    this year.
    Sea levels have been falling for the last two years.
    Although still low, the Arctic ice in 2008 was about 7% greater than
    2007 and currently it is rising at a dramatic rate.
    The Pugh kayaking expedition to the North Pole failed hundreds of
    miles short. The reason? Too much ice. And too much cold.
    The Arctic ice melt is caused by a temporary shift in water currents
    and probably has little to do with global warming.
    The highest Arctic temperatures occurred in the 1940’s and there
    was a similar ice melt that peaked in 1922.
    The Antarctic has been growing colder for some years and the ice
    extent is close to record levels.
    Data from the World Agricultural Organisation shows that the
    amount of food grown per head of population has been steadily
    rising.

    We’re going to have to face up to reality sooner or later: the warming
    in the 20th century was primarily natural and now the earth is showing
    distinct signs of cooling.

  45. The bottom right ‘ice cover’ appears similar to the effect obtained using the ‘smudge’ tool in my old Adobe PhotoDeluxe BE 1.0!! The edges are rounded and not natural.

  46. I submitted a comment last night asking if the WWF paper had been published and peer reviewed as they seem to be implying it is a scientific study. They have moved the article today to the Earth Section and removed all traces of the comments.

  47. wait, wait, wait. Here, in Czech republic, there is a scientific magazine and in the newest issue, there is a picture from 12th June 2008 and it’s absolutely same as this one from 2007.

  48. And what do you think about what’s happening rightnow to the arctic ice?

    Typical of winter ice extension?

    REPLY: Look again, there apparently was a graphing error. Your conclusion was premature. Yes what ice is plotted there now is on the increase, and quickly. – Anthony

  49. Obviously, what’s happening here is that the actual ice growth is MASKING the underlying shrinking trend.
    (Sarcasm off)

  50. Chris Wright (04:33:52) :
    “40 million The amount of grain in tons lost each year due to rising atmospheric temperatures”. This is presented as a fact, and not a WWF claim (although it is also a WWF claim). Is this true?

    Now you’re in my field of expertise! Definitely, a resounding no!! The relationship between temperature and yield is less that 50% of the relationship between precipitation and yield (other variables held constant) and is empahtically not linear. It is also species, plant family, and plant developmental stage dependent. Most species are especially susceptible to both precip. and temp. during pollination. C-4 plants (corn, milo, bermuda grass, hemp?) enzymatically thrive up to 92-96 F, but can be damaged during flowering at those temps, dramatically so if also under H2O stress. The linear causation the authors are ascribing to temp is as useless as the relationship between TSI and GISS (per Leif).
    Anecdotally, if you recall this spring, wet conditions delayed corn planting in the Midwest (up to 35% of the corn was planted later than the “ideal” window)(USDA), leading to predictions of a corn shortage. However, in July-August during pollination the temps remained less than 95 F (plants don’t read GISS) and we received ample precipitation leading to treadline yields (increasing over time). Recent global warming is associated with rising precipitation in North America, which has increased yields (it has also been associated with tornados and flooding, but I digress) . My mother in law is currently harvesting 240 bu. corn in SW Nebraska (best ever). However, wheat pollination occurs in late April/early May. Last year about 30% of the wheat in Sumner County, KS (largest wheat producing County in Kansas by volume) was destroyed by an very abnormal (less than 3 years/100years) three week early freeze (apparently caused by continuing AGW). Did anyone notice the price of wheat then? /sarc off. This hadn’t occurred since the early 90’s. I want you all to look at the last time a solar minimum coincided with a PDO shift. Can you say DUST BOWL. Climatically, a negative PDO is unfortunately associated with higher SW USA/lower Midwest temps and lower precipitation (Bob Tisdale probably has a link). Since the USA is the world’s largest producer of exportable grains (USDA), I prefer the current warmth.

  51. Why is everybody her up in arms about that picture? I know it was a generated image, not a photo. But if it accurately depicts the minimum ice extents from 1979 and 2007, why then is it a lie? As far as I can tell it’s only this picture projected onto a globe.

  52. anne: Quite wrong, on the extent of the global cooling scare. This is some of the literature I have on the subject.

    My summary of an NOAA paper on the history of climate offices:

    1972 – Kukla-Mathews publishes in Science, an article about the end of the current inter glacial. Also writes a letter to Nixon in 1972, specifically warning about global cooling.
    1973 – First Climate office started in Feb 1973 (ad hoc Panel on the Present Inter Glacial). This was after a meeting of 42 of the most prominent climatologists, and apparently there was consensus about cooling. Especially as the NOAA, NWS and ICAS were involved.
    1974 – Office of Climate Dynamics opened.
    1978 -Carter signs Climate Program Act, partly due to the SEVERE WINTER experienced the preceding winter.

    http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/outreach/proceedings/cdw29_proceedings/Reeves.pdf

    A NYT article, on scientists agreeing on cooling, circa 1961:

    http://select.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F00B11FB385B147A93C2AA178AD85F458685F9

    From the founder of the Hadley Climate Center, H.H. Lamb:

    ….an abrupt return to conditions as they were before the well known warming of climates in the early twentieth century….

    http://www.jstor.org/pss/1792334

    Again from Lamb, circa 1969.

    He stresses that the growing season may be shortened. A subscription is required. He also references MANY sources about cooling in this paper.

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v223/n5212/pdf/2231209a0.pdf

    From a UNESCO meeting in 1961, published in 1963. The meetings discussed cooling, and its implications on the world. Some 115 scientists from 36 countries took part in the symposium. The following is from the wrap up speech.

    Perhaps the most interesting part of the evidence presented by Dr. Murray Mitchell, Dr. Rodewald and some of the other speakers is the way in which it falls into a pattern. Not only air temperature, but also subtropical rainfall, the tendency of hurricanes to move along certain tracks or seasurface temperatures, show a reversal of the preceding [warming] climatic trend during the last one or two decades. The true physical signiñcance of Dr. Murray Mitchell’s result lies perhaps in the combined evidence, based on so many different variables.

    it has been extremely difficult by this means to avoid the conclusion that the warming trends [up to the 1940s] for the world as a whole, and for the Northern Hemisphere in particular, are truly planetary in scope. On the other hand, it cannot yet he demonstrated in this way beyond a reasonable doubt that the net cooling since the 1940s has likewise been planetary in scope. That this cooling is of such nature, however, seems reasonable and this should be verifiable if the cooling in the data areas were to continue for another decade or two in the future.

    All authors have been able to show, by using records dating back to the end of the eighteenth century that the warming up of large parts of the world from the middle of the nineteenth century until recently has been statistically significant. However, as pointed out especially by J. M. Mitchell and also shown for sea temperatures by M. Rodewald this increase in temperature has recently declined.

    http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0006/000698/069895mo.pdf

    I have more, if you want. Note that the recent AMA bulletin by Petersen et al, regarding consensus on cooling, did not mention any of the above papers.

  53. Anne (04:18:39) :

    Like @barbee butts I graduated high school in the mid-70s (’76) and I vividly remember the ice age fear mongering that took place. My most memorable image is “we are 10,000 years over due for an ice age” which probably arose from the article you sited. Unlike barbee, I lived in Buffalo, NY where we had a mini ice age each November through April and I was able to finance my first year of college by shoveling snow. I also moved away to a warmer clime as soon as I reached the age of consent.

    I didn’t read much peer reviewed literature at the time (Mad Magazine and High Times being my favorite publications) but, the coming ice age was deeply ingrained in the MSM much like global warming is today regardless of its scientific credibility. Some people bought it hook, line and sinker (sorry barbee) and others viewed it skeptically as I did and I do AGW.

    So, I have two questions for you.

    Since you do not appear to be old enough to remember the anecdotal evidence, why don’t you ask someone who is (and you trust) to help you better accept the reality we experienced in the past.

    While you are at it, why don’t you Google “Global Cooling” leaving off the word “scare”? I got 23.5M results and investigating them might help you realize that in fact GC was the GW of the 70s.

  54. Hey! I’m old and summers were always hot and it snowed every Christmas in my day so don’t anybody try to confuse me with the facts. Whatever it is, it’s all our fault and we will have to pay more zzz……..

  55. @edcredwatch
    I used Photoshop where the 1979 image was cut and put as layer with a difference mask on top.

  56. @Les Johnson

    Thanks for the additional info. I have read the links with interest. Indeed I found a snippet of the letter to president Nixon by Kukla-Mathews, in which they warn about impending cooling. Did this letter by the way receive any attention in the media? And do you have a link of the complete letter? I would like to read it in full if possible.

    In this document I found the following interesting quote:

    An international Study of Man’s Impact on Climate (SMIC) was held in the summer of 1971 near Stockholm. William Kellogg, organizer, offered the following speculation: “Though we may have influenced the climate already, it has so far probably been in a small way.” “ . . . one can, and probably should, conclude that man can influence the climate of his planet Earth. The direction that this influence will take in the decades to come, if man continues to demand more energy to satisfy his craving for an ever improving standard of living, coupled with his increasing population, must be that of a warming, especially in the Northern Hemisphere.”

    This proves there was no concensus about global cooling in scientific circles.

    1978 -Carter signs Climate Program Act, partly due to the SEVERE WINTER experienced the preceding winter.

    Let me add from the linked document: followed by a SEVERE SUMMER HEAT WAVE in the United States.
    Yet again, not just talk about cooling, but also heating up of the climate.
    ——————————-
    I can not read the NYT article you link to, but the headline says: SCIENTISTS AGREE WORLD IS COLDER; But Climate Experts Meeting Here Fail to Agree on Reasons for Change

    This statements contains an assertion, which to my knowledge is correct and expresses uncertainty about the cause. What is exactly the scare here?
    ————————-
    I do not see how the long quote from the wrap up speech of the 1961 unesco conference indicates a fear of global cooling. I quote from the quote:

    On the other hand, it cannot yet he demonstrated in this way beyond a reasonable doubt that the net cooling since the 1940s has likewise been planetary in scope. That this cooling is of such nature, however, seems reasonable and this should be verifiable if the cooling in the data areas were to continue for another decade or two in the future.

    He IS talking about cooling, but uses the word ‘reasonable’, and also expresses the opinion that it is too early to draw any conclusion about the cause. And he also mentions the warming trend before 1940.

    Quickly glancing over the report of the 1961 unesco confertence, at least gives me the following quote: It is now generally accepted that the most striking feature of climatic fluctuations during the period of the meteorological record has been a warming in many parts of the world since about 1850 until a decade or two ago when in some places, but not all, there appears to have been a levelling-off or a fall of temperature.

    Note the use of the words ‘appears’ and ‘levelling-off’.

    The overall picture that is beginning to emerge is more that of uncertainty than that of firm and wide-spread belief (a.k.a. ‘concensus’) that we were heading into an ice age.

    And last but not least, let’s not forget that at the time this all took place, global temperatures had indeed been falling for 30 years.

  57. Dan McCune (10:32:12) :

    Perhaps a stupid question: What is MSM?

    My most memorable image is “we are 10,000 years over due for an ice age” which probably arose from the article you sited.

    Have you ever asked yourself how anyone could have taught you that, when the last ice age ended around 10.000 years ago, a fact well known at the time?

    I live in The Netherlands and what I distinctly remember from my childhood were the longings for typical Dutch winters (snow & ice). Everybody was complaining about the mild winters and therefore lack of skating opportunities. Little chance of heated debates about an impending ice age under those circumstances.

    Btw I am from 1965, so I think I should remember something from it.

  58. James S (17:38:17) :

    Sorry, missed your comment, that’s why I answer you last.

    I read the page you linked to, and I will tell you right away that I am strengthened in my belief the global cooling scare is an exaggeration of what went on. I’ll try to explain.

    The article quotes the report of the 1961 unesco climate conference.

    From the 471 pages the author manages to find a paltry 4 quotes that are according to him more proof of a global warming scare. Read the four quotes and make your own judgement. This is mine:

    Quote 1 talks about a ‘reversal of preceding [warming] climatic trend’, followed by: The true physical signifiance of Dr. Murray Mitchell’s result lies perhaps in the combined evidence, based on so many different variables. This last sentence expresses a large degree of uncertainty.

    Quote 2 says the downward temperature trend is significant from a physical point of view, but not from a statistical point of view. Again, doubt. And don’t forget that the temperature trend WAS negative at the time. This quote is more a discussion of what was going on than a prediction of things to come.

    Quote 3 was the one I already found myself and responded to in my previous post to Les Johnson.

    Quote 4 repeats more or less the same message as quote 2 and is also expressing uncertainty.

    So 4 quotes that stretch my imagination to its limit to interpret it as anything resembling a global cooling scare.

    —————–

    You might also be interested in my response to Les Johnson.

  59. Oops,

    In my previous post:

    ….to him more proof of a global warming scare….

    should of course be:

    ….to him more proof of a global cooling scare….

  60. Anne: your

    And do you have a link of the complete letter? I would like to read it in full if possible.

    The full letter is in the link I gave. Both pages.

    your This proves there was no consensus about global cooling in scientific circles.

    “Consensus” means most, not all. One dissenting voice does NOT mean, NO consensus. Also note, that Kellogg never stated that there was NO cooling. Just that man had little effect on the current climate.

    Yet again, not just talk about cooling, but also heating up of the climate.

    You are imagining something that is not there. Nowhere in that section regarding Carter signing the climate bill, does it mention followed by a SEVERE SUMMER HEAT WAVE in the United States. Unless you think 1972 follows 1978?

    This statement you quoted, was referring to the 1972-1973 el Nino. Carter signed the climate bill in 1978, partly due to the severe previous winter. The reference was “a severe winter of 1976-77″. I gave you the time line, but you didn’t follow it.

    SCIENTISTS AGREE WORLD IS COLDER; But Climate Experts Meeting Here Fail to Agree on Reasons for Change

    This statements contains an assertion, which to my knowledge is correct and expresses uncertainty about the cause. What is exactly the scare here?

    ummmm….that its getting colder? Which the scientists seemed to agree on. And which you agree on as well, going by your statement.

    Are you under the misapprehension that we are saying the consensus was that the recorded cooling, was anthropogenic? Some scientists said natural, some said anthro, some said both, some said insufficient data.

    He IS talking about cooling, but uses the word ‘reasonable’, and also expresses the opinion that it is too early to draw any conclusion about the cause. And he also mentions the warming trend before 1940.

    Yes, and it was also 1961. By 1970, the consensus was indeed, cooling. Witness Lamb’s papers (1965 and 1969), that you conveniently ignore.

    And last but not least, let’s not forget that at the time this all took place, global temperatures had indeed been falling for 30 years

    Hardly. The UNESCO meeting was 1961. The world had been cooling for only a few years at this point. No more than 10-15 years.

    Do you want the other references I have, or should we continue to thrash this out first?

  61. Anne: your The true physical signifiance (sic) of Dr. Murray Mitchell’s result lies perhaps in the combined evidence, based on so many different variables. This last sentence expresses a large degree of uncertainty.

    You couldn’t be more wrong. What the statement is saying, is that Dr. Mitchell’s results are remarkable because of the many different variables that agree.

    reread that again…..

  62. @Les Johnson

    You couldn’t be more wrong. What the statement is saying, is that Dr. Mitchell’s results are remarkable because of the many different variables that agree.

    I stand corrected.

  63. These researchers assert that the Arctic Ocean had periods of ice-free conditions on the north coast of Greenland 6000-7000 years ago: http://www.ngu.no/en-gb/Aktuelt/2008/Less-ice-in-the-Arctic-Ocean-6000-7000-years-ago/

    Maybe their research will simply be ignored, rather than attacked. It would be inconvenient for many people if the Arctic conditions thousands of years ago were like they describe, and inconvenient if those conditions so long ago sowed more seeds of doubt.

    Too bad — it would be better to have a scientific examination of such things, rather than the stuff we usually get these days.

  64. Pingback: ------ THE SKY IS FALLING ------ - Page 312 - The Environment Site Forums

  65. Les Johnson (13:58:15) :

    You are correct that 1972 does not precede 1978. I was fooled by the fact that the link appeared below the mentioning of Carter signing a bill in 1978. I’ll honestly admit I didn’t read all your links from start to end, time is too short. You can quickly lose the attention of another poster. It’s usually no use coming back 2 weeks from now with a complete analysis. That’s why I also missed the full letter. Thanks for pointing that out to me.

    Let’s go over your other comments.

    “Consensus” means most, not all. One dissenting voice does NOT mean, NO consensus.

    Correct, I’ll have to do better than that. But it will take time to find more examples, don’t expect anything soon though.

    Also note, that Kellogg never stated that there was NO cooling. Just that man had little effect on the current climate.

    I quote Kellog again:

    The direction that this influence will take in the decades to come, […] must be that of a warming (emphasis added)

    Worse, he explicitly states that he expects a warming.

    that its getting colder? Which the scientists seemed to agree on. And which you agree on as well, going by your statement.

    See below, my final remark.

    Are you under the misapprehension that we are saying the consensus was that the recorded cooling, was anthropogenic?

    No.

    By 1970, the consensus was indeed, cooling. Witness Lamb’s papers (1965 and 1969), that you conveniently ignore.

    I did not “conveniently” ignore these papers. Why assume malice? I couldn’t access the second one, you warned me for that. The first one didn’t struck me as particularly heavy on ‘cooling’. Having read it more thouroughlyin the mean time (English is not my native language) , there is mention of “a return to the regime that prevailed over long periods before 1895″, in this context that means cooling. And yes, there it is, one of the rare forward looking statement about cooling I encountered: “On this evidence, something like the climatic regime over the years since 1960 should probably be expected to persist till the end of the century or beyond”.

    Hardly. The UNESCO meeting was 1961. The world had been cooling for only a few years at this point. No more than 10-15 years.

    Only a few years? 10-15 years? Which is it? May I pick an option? Then I’ll pick 20 years, quoting from the unesco report: “..a warming in many parts of the world since about 1850 until a decade or two ago when in some places, but not all, there appears to have been a levelling-off or a fall of temperature…”.

    This was my reaction. Have fun.

    Final remark: I have come to the conclusion that I have to make a distinction. Yes, I agree that in the early 70’s many scientists (concensus or not, that still to figure out for myself) were of the opinion that the temperatures were falling. When you look at the temperature record, that comes hardly as a surprise. Temperatures WERE falling from 1940-1970.

    What I object against is that there was a ‘scare’. The majority of references I have seen so far merely comment on the temperature developments at the moment. To qualify as a scare, there must also be a forward looking statement, projecting adverse consequences. There are very few of such statements. The only one I could perhaps label as such is the Kukla-Mathews article and letter.

    And what was it that the scientist lobbied for? Taxes? Regulations? Public education? No, more research.

    Now then there is the press coverage. I will need to dig into this deeper. Apart from the 1975 Newsweek article, I am not is sure what more there is.

    Do you want the other references I have, or should we continue to thrash this out first?

    Bring it on.

  66. From Fox news,

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,435202,00.html

    Move over Al Gore. Swankier carbon charlatanism has come to town in the form of the World Wildlife Fund’s luxury getaway called “Around the World: A Private Jet Expedition.”

    “Join us on a remarkable 25-day journey by luxury private jet,” invites the WWF in a brochure for its voyage to “some of the most astonishing places on the planet to see top wildlife, including gorillas, orangutans, rhinos, lemurs and toucans.”

  67. Yes, there was an obvious error with the NSIDC graph, but it was too tempting to use this famous climate-skeptic technique consisting in jumping on whatever seems to go more or less in the direction of no warming.

    But I would say the rate is decreasing now, actually slower than 2007 at the same date.

  68. Mike Kelley (19:47) : “WWF are world-class envirocrits. They arrange expensive tours for the well-to-do to go around the globe”

  69. I emailed the Telegraph yesterday, mentioning the possibility of a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission. Here is the reply from the Consulting Editor:

    “This article summarised a report published by WWF, a well known charity describing itself as a leading independent environmental organisation. It takes the findings of the IPCC report of 2007 as its starting point but claims that important aspects of climate change have been underestimated.

    We are perfectly entitled to publish a fair and accurate summary of the contents of the report whether or not you agree with it. I attach a copy, so that you can take up the issue of the grain loss with Messrs Lobell and Field whose research you challenge.

    So far as the photographs are concerned, we obtained them from Philips Universal Atlas of the World (copy attached). We suggest you refer any accusations of doctoring to them.”

    End of quote.

    The atlas doesn’t appear to be online and it will cost you more than £100. This also probably explains why the image is a year out of date – though a cynic might observe that the 2008 image would have shown more ice.
    I have the print version of the Telegraph article and the images are higher resolution. I’ve looked at them carefully. I have no doubt that they’re one and the same, with one crudely painted over to show the extra ice. Many parts of both images are identical. The extra white area’s edges are blurred, so it was very obviously paint-brushed in. The outlines also look unnatural. Whoever is responsible did a very crude job. He must have been in a hurry.

    But the question remains, given that it was crudely air-brushed, how accurate is the portrayed image? The caption states that the images are for September. I therefore changed the Cryosphere dates to 14th September – and the air-brushed image is not so very different. I believe the data shown is reasonably accurate. It still seems questionable to present an air-brushed version from a different time and I’m surprised that Philips would publish something so crude, but on the question of accuracy it’s probably acceptable.

    That just leaves one possible complaint: as always they are careful to effectively surround everything with quotes so they can’t be held accountable for any untruths. But the claim about 40 million tons of grain a year is presented as a fact and, as another poster stated, it almost certainly isn’t true. The editor quoted Lobell and Field, which I assume appeared in the WWF report.

    I’ll look into this, but it looks as if a complaint to the PCC would fail. Foiled again….

    Chris

  70. Anne, you have believed the lies that finance less scrupulous people than yourself. Global warming is not the issue here. The Mars “polar caps” are also “melting”. And it is true on other planets in our solar system. Jupiter’s original red spot is no more. Climate changes throughout the solar system signify a sea of change for all planets here, not just Earth. Sometimes I get the feeling that human egos are to blame for the myth that we are causing the climate changes here, when, in God’s eyes, we are mere fleas on its back!

  71. Steven Hedge

    I disagree – Mr Booker has good point regarding politics of EU and other oddities of man made political systems and also egg scares.
    On Global Warming he’s applied the wrong standards to a complex question best analysed by science and then acted upon.

    I personally think there is also a bigger question involved in deliberately changing the composition of the atmosphere .
    What exactly are all of the consequences over an extended timescale?

    Would you be happy to find that we deliberately changed the level of background radiation by thinly distributing radioactive waste across every part of the planet . It would only be a small change and it would solve the issue of storing radioactive waste.

  72. Today’s Telegraph has a brief news report stating that the Arctic ice has rebounded this year. That’s progress, I guess….

    Chris

  73. And in Australia, the latest information from our government-owned TV network is that “Action on climate change is more urgent than ever”.

    “Scientists are concerned that the will to tackle climate change has waned in the midst of the financial crisis, with the latest data showing climate change is moving more rapidly than they ever expected.”

    This is from a news commentary program entitled “Lateline” – the transcript, featuring Dr Pachauri and some Australian IPCC contributors, is at:

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2008/s2399646.htm

  74. I’ve spent a week looking at the comments on this forum . It is unique in that no one is allowed to have an opinion supporting global warming
    This is a ‘non-sceptic’ free zone and is self reinforcing.
    Curiously …. it’s made me far more suspicious of the views presented here ( apart from the dangers of Scotch tape :-) ) … which was not the reason I originally visited this site.

    I am sure it is possible that there are many well thought out articles and comments referred to here -however they are lost in the manipulation language used . Try counting the number of times you seen extra influencer words/phrases inserted into answers like sham , con , hysteria .

    I think the best description of this web site is a ‘high pressure’ sales environment or a ‘cult’ mentality (…and I do know a bit about sales techniques)

    My main concern – we are knowingly introducing ( or rather reintroducing) CO2 into the atmosphere at a measurable rate without having a clue about the long term consequences.

    I’m not adding anything further – but for those happy with the status quo … keep gambling.

    Reply: Please re-read your first two sentences. Note that you are free to post your opinion. ~Smokey, moderator

  75. The 1979 image was taken at the end of a 30-year cool cycle and the new one at the end of a 30-year warm cycle. When will these folks get the message that arctic changes are not linear with time–they are cyclic! To have any scientific signicance, you need to compare the ice at the end of a warm period (1977-1998) with the end of the previous warm period (1915-1945)!

  76. Pingback: 2chコピペブログ » Blog Archive » 【IT】地球シミュレータ更新 ピーク性能は131テラフロップスへ[08/10/22]

  77. Don J. Easterbrook (07:47:55) :
    The 1979 image was taken at the end of a 30-year cool cycle and the new one at the end of a 30-year warm cycle. When will these folks get the message that arctic changes are not linear with time–they are cyclic!
    If they are cyclic, wouldn’t the end of a cycle be at the same point as the beginning of a cycle, in other words: at each change of period to the other period, wouldn’t the values be the same?

  78. Mark Jacobs (13:52:49) :

    Jupiter’s original red spot is no more.

    Quite the contrary, it has temporarily developed a few new ones. As of this day, the Big Red Spot is still there.

    Care to elaborate on what links Jupiter’s Red Spot and the Earth’s climate?

    Anne, you have believed the lies that finance less scrupulous people than yourself

    How do you know how scrupulous I am? What more do you know of me?

  79. Don J. Easterbrook (07:47:55) :

    When do you get the the message that:
    1. These images were not ‘taken’. They were generated by using satellite data and Photoshop. (and as far as I know, they accurately depict actual minimum sea ice extent for those years). If you don’t believe me, compare for yourself on The Cryosphere Today.
    2. There were no satellites monitoring Arctic sea ice before 1979.

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