Telegraph's Booker on the "climategate" scandal

Excerpts from the Telegraph:

A week after my colleague James Delingpole, on his Telegraph blog, coined the term “Climategate” (Note: Delingpole reports via email he got it from WUWT, commenter Bulldust coined the phrase at 3:52PM PST Nov 19th – Anthony) to describe the scandal revealed by the leaked emails from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit, Google was showing that the word now appears across the internet more than nine million times. But in all these acres of electronic coverage, one hugely relevant point about these thousands of documents has largely been missed.

The reason why even the Guardian‘s George Monbiot has expressed total shock and dismay at the picture revealed by the documents is that their authors are not just any old bunch of academics. Their importance cannot be overestimated, What we are looking at here is the small group of scientists who have for years been more influential in driving the worldwide alarm over global warming than any others, not least through the role they play at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

Professor Philip Jones, the CRU’s director, is in charge of the two key sets of data used by the IPCC to draw up its reports. Through its link to the Hadley Centre, part of the UK Met Office, which selects most of the IPCC’s key scientific contributors, his global temperature record is the most important of the four sets of temperature data on which the IPCC and governments rely – not least for their predictions that the world will warm to catastrophic levels unless trillions of dollars are spent to avert it.

Dr Jones is also a key part of the closely knit group of American and British scientists responsible for promoting that picture of world temperatures conveyed by Michael Mann’s “hockey stick” graph which 10 years ago turned climate history on its head by showing that, after 1,000 years of decline, global temperatures have recently shot up to their highest level in recorded history.

Given star billing by the IPCC, not least for the way it appeared to eliminate the long-accepted Mediaeval Warm Period when temperatures were higher they are today, the graph became the central icon of the entire man-made global warming movement.

Since 2003, however, when the statistical methods used to create the “hockey stick” were first exposed as fundamentally flawed by an expert Canadian statistician Steve McIntyre, an increasingly heated battle has been raging between Mann’s supporters, calling themselves “the Hockey Team”, and McIntyre and his own allies, as they have ever more devastatingly called into question the entire statistical basis on which the IPCC and CRU construct their case.

There are three threads in particular in the leaked documents which have sent a shock wave through informed observers across the world. Perhaps the most obvious, as lucidly put together by Willis Eschenbach (see McIntyre’s blog Climate Audit and Anthony Watt’s blog Watts Up With That), is the highly disturbing series of emails which show how Dr Jones and his colleagues have for years been discussing the devious tactics whereby they could avoid releasing their data to outsiders under freedom of information laws.

Read the complete essay at the Telegraph

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Curmudgeon Geographer

It will be interesting to watch the output of the climate science journals in the coming months to see how they any have been affected by this. The quality of reviews, quality of publication, etc.

Phillip Bratby

Please support Christopher by putting in comments below his article. I have.

Lee

Maybe, just maybe the MSM will look further and deeper into the murky depths of this scandal. And a scandal it is………

J.Hansford

Booker writes a damning article…. and rightly so. The scientific conduct of CRU is nothing less, then an absolute scandal.
The people, as our Politicians repeat over and over again, who Write the “Science”, are nothing less then proven scoundrels, who have been caught cooking the books.
The hypothesis of AGW is flawed and a fraud to boot.

yonason

But they were right, things are “heating up.”

Dr A Burns

Meanwhile back at the ranch, our Sydney Morning Herald today runs this headline : “Commonwealth unites against climate change” and as you guessed, still no mention of ClimateGate !
Is the silence of the mainstream press just politics and/or are the media mogels somehow set up to make mega bucks out of emissions trading ? Follow the money for a real story.

Phillip Bratby

But the BBC remains largely silent on the issue. Is this internal bias or government pressure? UK citizens, complain to the BBC and write to your MP.

Emmess

IWth all due respest it didn’t take much imagination to coin the term ‘Climategate’
Almost every scandal since Watergate has included the suffix -gate

kuhnkat

Excellent article. Not too much technical gibberish. Gets the relevant points across nicely!!

maksimovich

Russia Today has 2 clips online,one has an interview with Ex Uk minister.
“A group of scientists are so loyal to each other that they’re determined to agree with each other even more than they are determined to agree with the facts. So if the facts no longer correspond with their theories, they try and change the facts rather than their theories. And the people who benefit from it are the scientists themselves: they feel morally superior leading a crusade apparently to save the world and they get large grants from the government,” Lilley said.
http://rt.com/Top_News/2009-11-24/scientists-rather-change-facts.html

Gerard

Here in Aus there is still very little reporting in the msm – except of course from Andrew Bolt, unfortunately he is labelled a denier who doesn’t care about the future. The rest of the MSM especially the ABC see the whole issue as irrelevant. From what I read of the scandal so do most of the governments of the world and it is full steam ahead with Emission Trading Schemes and Copenhagen. Surely some government needs to say whoa, lets check the facts

RobinL

That’s it. Impossible to cover up, beyond the inevitable attempts we will have to witness from the political establishment. Booker appears in actual print. Delingpole, bless his cotton socks, has been banging the drum in the online only edition. The Times is finally reporting too.
Largely thanks to you at WUWT, and the commenters here.
I’d be ecstatic if it wasn’t for the collateral damage these guys have caused, to science, their honest colleagues, to fantastic old institutions like the Royal Society – motto ‘Nullius in Verba’, On the Word of No-one.
Sad. But so relieved.
Now to turn the tanker round.

Bull Dust dubbed it first and I recorded his contribution for posterity.
“TonyB (16:11:29) :
Bulldust (15:52:36) : said
“Hmmm how long before this is dubbed ClimateGate?”
At 15:52:36, Bulldog”
Tonyb

Michael in New Zealand

I do science for a living and I am apalled! Deleting raw data is the most heinous crime that can be committed by any scientist. The actions of the CRU are criminal by all scientific principals and ethics, That they are supported by other climate scientists around the world (in both hemispheres) is disgusting!

Michael in New Zealand

oops, “principles”… I am so angry I hit submit too soon

Pingo

Astounding article. I never thought I would see something like this in MSM print. Even the Economist has been a lot more guarded with its two articles on Climategate this week. 100+ years of high integrity history or advertising revenue for them to consider.
The 9am Andrew Marr show (BBC) has just started and they have the leader of the green party in, with no counterweight by the looks of it. A mention of global warming science being overplayed but it’ll just be a whitewash. Now I do make myself angry for this Sunday by watching it or not…!

Graham

BBC REPORTED SUPPRESSED LEAKED EMAILS
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1231763/BBC-weatherman-ignored-leaked-climate-row-emails.html
“The BBC has become tangled in the row over the alleged manipulation of scientific data on global warming.
One of its reporters has revealed he was sent some of the leaked emails from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia more than a month ago – but did nothing about them.
Despite the explosive nature of some of the messages – which revealed apparent attempts by the CRU’s head, Professor Phil Jones, to destroy global temperature data rather than give it to scientists with opposing views – Paul Hudson failed to report the story.
This has led to suspicions that the scandal was ignored because it ran counter to what critics say is the BBC’s unquestioning acceptance in many of its programmes that man-made climate change is destroying the planet. “

PhilW
Old Goat

I left a comment, and usually do. I just think that for the most part we are really going to get nowhere. Just watching the Marr show on BBC with Mariella Frostrup and Matthew Paris reviewing the papers. They (and everybody else on the telly, for that matter) seem to accept that there will be agreement and eventually legislation on climate change, and they all seem to accept that it’s real and something needs to be done. No-one questions that the science could be wrong, or that the figures are fiddled, climate change is just happening, and it’s all out fault, and by introducing global governance it’s all going to be stopped dead in its tracks. Marr also interviewed that horrendous green woman, Caroline Lucas and hung on her every word without question.
She said, in defence of the CRU, that “you can’t equate climate to temperature”, amongst other things when the question of the E mail leaks was raised, and just brushed over the whole issue as a “bit of an embarrassment”, and that “although temperatures over the last 10 years may have shown cooling, over the last 100 years, they have been rising”
It’s truly unbelievable how apparently intelligent people can take all this on board without question, or batting an eyelid – are they aware of the possible consequences? Do they care?
It’ll all be too late, soon. We’ll’ be sold down the river, our economies ruined (more so than they are already), deprived of our way of life, robbed of our cash and probably freezing to boot.

Old Goat

“out fault” should, of course be “our fault”. Fingers not working this morning.

debreuil

I think what is happening is this is causing people who never otherwise would have, to take a look at the other side. Instead of finding wild loonies intent on destroying the planet, they are finding a much more methodical and open approach that has uncovered some serious doubts that need to be discussed.
There is the email, which leads to the code, which leads to the non reproducibility, which ultimately leads people to look how some of this is actually derived. At that point you see things like temp records being grafted onto truncated proxy records, you see data being adjusted to fit models, you see intentional misrepresentation in graphs, and everyone with high school math gasps. You just can’t do some of that stuff, not even when baking a cake.
Then another article gets written.

CheshireRed

There seems to be a substantial separation between the power brokers – politicians, media, activists and the self styled ‘urban elite’, and the bulk of ordinary people.
The uprising is occurring in phenomenal numbers against what they’ve passively seen for years as a blatant fraud / con trick, but have previously viewed merely as a minority issue fit for green cranks and extremists. Now it’s at the forefront of the political agenda and the threat is suddenly very real.
We’ve had enough and the people are revolting!

Roger Knights

[snip]

Colin Porter

Thank you Christopher for being almost the only source of information and comment in the UK on the climate fraud.
It’s a pity that The Telegraph has such a Jekyll & Hyde attitude on the subject and that much of your good work is often neutralized by the propaganda writings of Leane, Gray et al. Don’t the editors ever read the response to the numerous articles on both sides which show a massive majority of its readers don’t believe the AGW rubbish and that the Telegraph is doing a great disservice not only to truth, but to the opinions and interests of its own readership and the interests of the UK and society as a whole?
Perhaps in view of these latest revelations, you will now be allowed to report on that other great scandal emanating from the same institution, the UEA CRU and on which you have been noticeably silent, the “One Tree” Briffa saga.

martin brumby

We certainly need a high profile Public Inquiry into Climategate. (Whether we get one is another matter.)
It is absolutely the case, however, that Lord Rees is absolutely unacceptable as he has completely bemired himself – and the Royal Society – in the AGW hoax.
Lord Rees would be as good a choice as getting Harold Shipman to Chair an Inquiry into Health Patient Care or to use Tom Cruise to conduct an Inquiry into religious cults.
It is no good suggesting Lord Monckton, obviously. But the Inquiry has to be Chaired by someone like a senior High Court Judge who has no entrenched views on AGW.
I have written to my MP and Phil Willis MP who chairs the House of Commons Select Committee on Science & Technology, urging this course of action. Isuggest other UK readers do the same.
I don’t think we’ll succeed. But we must try.

JP Miller

Booker’s article is the best summary of the leaked materials and their implications. It will stand scrutiny from anyone reading the raw material. Send it to everyone you can think of: in government, in MSM, in academia, in your social circles. If the MSM won’t deal with this, then we have to. “Viral” commuincation can make a difference if everyone does their part. Investigations are being launched in the UK and US, but they will only have legs if it is clear that people are paying attention and give a hoot.

Phillip Bratby

Expat in France:
You say “It’s truly unbelievable how apparently intelligent people can take all this on board without question, or batting an eyelid – are they aware of the possible consequences? Do they care?” They either suspend belief or are just born liars, so it’s not unbelievable. It’s the politics of lie, lie, lie.

Climate Change Research:
Institutions Ranked by Citations
http://sciencewatch.com/ana/fea/09novdecFea/

Stoic

PhilW (01:29:14) :
“Maybe it’s time to give Nick Griffin our support, he’s off to Copenhagen…..”
For the information of those non-UK visitors to this blog, Griffin leads a racist party of the far right. As a sceptic I would strongly suggest shunning him and his views. I hope that PhilW was being ironic – but remember many Americans don’t do irony!
Regards

KimW

Expat in France stated that a prominent AGW pusher said, ““although temperatures over the last 10 years may have shown cooling, over the last 100 years, they have been rising”. She simply cannot get the fact that the data has been so manipulated – and we cannot check it now against the original data – that we DON’T KNOW if it has been rising or not or by how much if it has. That’s the problem.

Hat trick – more tricks
UEA and CRU have not, it seems, stopped their tricks. Here, at the bottom of their recent release, are two graphs. The first graph was prepared for the WMO and it shows three separate proxy temperature reconstructions (from Jones et al, Mann et al, and Briffa et al) smoothly spliced to the proper thermometer record. The second looks like it has been prepared in a hurry… separating the coloured proxy curves from the black temperature curves.
Superimpose the second graph on the first to glimpse the differences
Home in closer – the first is to “hide the decline” but – oops – it’s clearly there in all recons when the thermometer records are separated out.
Home in still closer to count six tricky tricking tricks.
(1-3) Each proxy record starts to show a decline from 1960 on, the red (Jones), the blue (Mann), the green (Briffa).
(4) The splices used in the original graphs SOAR up to year 2000 – to outdo both the proxies and the thermometer record. [snip]
(5) The original is said to be anomalies from 1961-1990 baseline. But when we see the 1961 and 1990 lines, the baseline looks way off. [snip]
(6) There are TWO black temperature lines. The notes say instrumental temperatures (annual & summer in black) shown separately but summer temperatures should be consistently higher than annual, not criss-crossing as here. [snip]
Reply: You know better Lucy. ~ ctm

debreuil

The EU sending Nick Griffin, an obvious racist and as it happens also a skeptic, is clearly an attempt at ‘slander by association’. This may be OT as it is obviously the political side vs the science side, but if people finally decide to have a closer look and it ends up coming from that guy, it will be the last look most will ever take.
I think it is very important to call this one for what it is, and do so early.

Phillip Bratby

Pingo: don’t watch, it’s bad for the blood pressure. There are far better things for you to do. Comment on the Telegraph site and show support for Christopher. Email your MP. Complain to the BBC.

rbateman

The kingpins of AGW Science have been shown up to no good.
Now, the World+Dog is getting it: The wheels came off the hayride.
If the IPCC & UN try to run thier Carbon Emission scheme, the foundations of such are known publicly to be based on monkeybusiness.
All claims of legitimacy are shot.
A lot of people who have hitched their wagons to AGW are in for a very rough ride and ruination.

Phillip Bratby

Martin Brumby:
I’ve written to my MP (LibDem) suggesting he put my name forward to sit on the inquiry (based on two physics degrees, experience of Fortran since mid 60s and extensive knowledge of scientific methodology and quality management systems). Based on experience of the real world of politicians, expectation = zero.

Phillip Bratby (00:29:51) :
”But the BBC remains largely silent on the issue. ”
Yes, and, as Graham says above, there is now talk (in Daily Mail) of them suspected of suppressing the story.
Another Telegraph, author Damian Thompson today discusses it as a suspected suppression of the story:
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/damianthompson/100018211/climategate-the-bbc-is-still-pretending-not-to-notice/
But these reporters may have this wrong…
Remember the BBC’s Paul Hudson who wrote blogged ‘Whatever happened to global warming?’ 9 Oct?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/2009/10/whatever-happened-to-global-wa.shtml
Well, last Tuesday Hudson made the claim that he had seen some of the emails that involved criticism of his story long before 17 Nov.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/
His language is not entirely clear about what he got, and then what happened at the BBC. Anyway, it appears to me that all he is saying is that he can authenticate some of the email – at least in the sense that he can find matches to the ones he was Cc-ed at the time.
It looks like these guys got it wrong…but not on lame coverage by the BBC and the real possibility that Hudson has been told to claim busy and leave coverage to his Alarmist colleagues.

chillybean

Stoic (02:02:33) :
For the information of those non-UK visitors to this blog, Griffin leads a racist party of the far right. As a sceptic I would strongly suggest shunning him and his views.
I think that the incoming Conservative government has only one term to fix this labour mess and then people will start voting for extreme right wing parties in their droves.
Griffins policies also include leaving the EU and leaving NATO and he accepts that Global Warming is a hoax, all of which I would agree with at the moment. But yes they are still a racist party so do not have mainstream support, but in 5 years time, who knows.

@stoic. And as Baldrick put it,steelery either 🙂 But back to business, the LA Times fails to mention Climategate in their edition Sat 28th but they do have a rant about nuclear power in which they continue to rattle on about climate change as if nothing has happened in the past weeks .This is an editorial no less.
http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-nuclear28-2009nov28,0,5919110.story

sorry ctm, I thought that one was ok, shall not do it again.

Charles. U. Farley

Neil Hamilton does a full page critique of the global warming scam in todays Sunday Express.

Mike from Canmore

Pingo and other Brits
According to Lord Monckton in an interview on the Roy Green Show yesterday (Nov 28), he was supposed to be opposite the Green Party head. Apparently, after she heard he was going to be sitting across from her, she refused to appear. In their spineless way, they told him he would not be on, instead of her. He now says he refuses to pay a licensing fee to BBC and told them to have him arrested if they wish.
You can listen to it on the CKNW audio vault. (http://www.cknw.com/other/audiovault.html), He was on sometime after 1 p.m. I caught the last couple of minutes and haven’t listened to the full interview yet. Lawrence Solomon is on immediately afterwards.

Spartan79

I’ve read the terms which usually accompany federal grants and contracts back in the day when I worked in a university environment. I’m going to be watching to see if any of “The Hockey Team” start lawyering up. There could be some serious criminal wrongdoing revealed in what some of the hacked/leaked documents reveal, to the extent the work was conducted under the auspice of US federal grants and contracts.

John Edmondson

Credibility Lost
Once lost it can never return. Which is bad news for CRU, GISS and Al Gore etc.
However it is very good news for those of us who seek the truth.
The climate models are the work of the people who have just lost their credibility.
Therefore, the climate models are finished in their current format.
Now a new debate can begin. The difference being CRU,GISS and Al Gore etc. will not be part of it.

John F. Hultquist

So given the enormous and sudden interest in all things climate, I suggest each WUWT-regular commenting on blogs around the world add a reference or two to a reputable item or report for the new lookie-loos to follow up on.
For example, it continues to get cold over the Arctic Ocean each NH winter season and ice still forms. Send them to the two side-bars posted here on WUWT.
http://ocean.dmi.dk/arctic/meant80n.uk.php
http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm

Bernie in Pipewell

Peter Hitchens in the mail on Sunday, Uk.
The inconvenient truths Mr Gore and his fanatical friends DIDN’T tell you about climate change.
Theres also a quite a long article on the coments page of the Sunday Express, UK. But I cant find it online. Perhaps some one who is more web savvey than me can.
Iv’e left both links to Hitchens, one I grabed myself, the other came free with the Headline
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1231694/The-inconvenient-truths-Mr-Gore-fanatical-friends-DIDNT-tell-climate-change.html#ixzz0YFR8uNIi
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1231694/The-inconvenient-truths-Mr-Gore-fanatical-friends-DIDNT-tell-climate-change.html

Bernie in Pipewell

Too much excitement, forgot the authers name in the Sunday Express. It’s Niel Hamilton

Pingo

“According to Lord Monckton in an interview on the Roy Green Show yesterday (Nov 28), he was supposed to be opposite the Green Party head. Apparently, after she heard he was going to be sitting across from her, she refused to appear. In their spineless way, they told him he would not be on, instead of her. He now says he refuses to pay a licensing fee to BBC and told them to have him arrested if they wish.”
Shameful of Caroline Lucas, shameful of the BBC.
Same old story then.
Evasion of honest debate seems to be one of the hallmarks of these scammers.
PS Philip – I have emailed Hillary Benn, my local MP. I suggest all Britons do the same via the Find Your MP website. Make your voice count.

Richard

The battle is huge amidst media blackouts, complete silence by large sections of the press, even Google cencoring their search engine and Wikipedia giving the Realclimate version of “hiding the decline” and locking further editing – so much for it being The “Free” Encyclopedia.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climatic_Research_Unit_e-mail_hacking_incident
They do say “This page is currently protected from editing until disputes have been resolved.
This protection is not an endorsement of the current version. See the protection policy and protection log for more details. Please discuss any changes on the talk page; you may use the {{editprotected}} template to ask an administrator to make the edit if it is supported by consensus. You may also request that this page be unprotected. “

Vincent

“The EU sending Nick Griffin, an obvious racist and as it happens also a skeptic, is clearly an attempt at ’slander by association.”
Well debrieul, skeptics have already been associated with the far right in some eyes. I remember a recent newspaper article which contained the assertion that Conservative MEP’s were busy making alliances with the “Far Right” and “Climate change deniers.” Although it might be obvious that the Far Right and Skeptics are two different groups, they are seen as the same in many peoples eyes. Having beaten back the charges of “Moon landing deniers” skeptics now have to beat off the charges of being Far Right – whatever that means.

Julian in Wales

Booker is an excellent journalist and good communicator who exposes new and interesting stories every week. He has close associations with the EUReferendum blog which started as a forum for people wanting a referendum on the EU and where a researcher called Dr Richard North and his colleague Helen S. provides detailed news on the EU, the military and climate. Dr North also is a researcher for various members of Parliament.
I visit only two blogs; WUWT and EUReferendum and find this keeps me better informed than reading newspapers.
The bad news is that Booker and North are often shunned by the rest of the MSM. I do not fully understand why this happens, perhaps it is that they are too truthful and that others are jealous, I do not know. It sometimes feels that there is a conspiracy amongst the media not to take up the stories he and Richard find, that said Booker and EU Referendum have many influential friends. They never give up and always research their material meticulously. They have had substantial input on the debate inside government circles about military hardware in Afghanistan and Iraq and changed the landscape in the debate on the UK membership in the UK. You could not have better friends.
The reference to Nick Griffin of the BNP is a bit alarming to me.. This man does speak some sense sometimes but is widely seen as the closet racist leader of an extreme nationalist right wing party. The BNP are blackballed by the British media and for many people any association with this party carries a stigma. Somehow it has been engineered that the BNP will be carrying the banner of Climategate in the EU institutions, with all the other main parties being on the warmist side. Personally I think this is a disaster because the technique that the warmists like to use is to find labels to attack their opponents with, so for instance a conversation will go like this;
“global warming is a myth”,
“no it isn’t, the scientists all agree that it really is happening”
“no they don’t, haven’t you seen the business of throwing away and manipulating data at CRU”
“Oh you dont believe that stuff from that right wing racist Nick Griffin, he will say anything for publicity, are you a BNP supporter”
END OF RATIONAL CONVERSATION.
I cannot understand why not believing in AGW and wanting open and rational scientific debate is “rightwing”. I do dislike this label.