Many readers here marvel at the scope of adjustments that NASA GISS performs on weather station data.
Along those lines, Michelle at Read N Say points out something interesting in Jim Hansen’s NASA page.
Below is an excerpt from her post:
This is his background copied from the official NASA GISS web page:
As a college student in Iowa, I was attracted to science and research by James Van Allen’s space science program in the physics and astronomy department. Since then, it only took me a decade or so to realize that the most exciting planetary research involves trying to understand the climate change on earth that will result from anthropogenic changes of the atmospheric composition.
One of my research interests is radiative transfer in planetary atmospheres, especially interpreting remote sounding of the earth’s atmosphere and surface from satellites. Such data, appropriately analyzed, may provide one of our most effective ways to monitor and study global change on the earth. The hardest part is trying to influence the nature of the measurements obtained, so that the key information can be obtained.
I am also interested in the development and application of global numerical models for the purpose of understanding current climate trends and projecting humans’ potential impacts on climate. The scientific excitement in comparing theory with data, and developing some understanding of global changes that are occurring, is what makes all the other stuff worth it.
He actually says, in the second paragraph, “The hardest part is trying to influence the nature of the measurements obtained, so that the key information can be obtained.”
To me this sounds like spin for “The hardest part is making the numbers show what I want them to”. Let’s see how long it takes for that sentence in the NASA GISS website to get changed.
The above in italics is from Michelle’s post.
In Hansen’s defense, perhaps what he meant was something along the lines of trying to extract useful information from a noisy signal.
On the other hand, with a plethora of issues with GISS data, including adjustments to pristine data, failing to catch obviously corrupted data, significant errors in splicing and reporting pointed out by bloggers, and pronouncements from the man himself that such people are “jesters” and that vandals in England should be defended and energy company executives should be put on trial, one wonders if Hansen really wasn’t just speaking his mind.
Blink comparator of GISS USA temperature anomaly – h/t to Zapruder
UPDATE 1/26 Lucia at The Blackboard wrote to Jim Hansen to get his take on it. Surprisingly, he emailed back.
This sentence refers to satellite measurements. You could look at the report “Long-Term Monitoring of Global Climate Forcings and Feedbacks”, which is available from my office — but you could also find several papers that I wrote in the early 1990s if you go to http://www.giss.nasa.gov, then Publications, Authors, my name.
But now a new question arises. Why doesn’t then GISS embrace satellite measurements?