When Results Go Bad …

Guest post by Willis Eschenbach

One of the claims in this hacked CRU email saga goes something like “Well, the scientists acted like jerks, but that doesn’t affect the results, it’s still warming.”

I got intrigued by one of the hacked CRU emails, from the Phil Jones and Kevin Trenberth to Professor Wibjorn Karlen. In it, Professor Karlen asked some very pointed questions about the CRU and IPCC results. He got incomplete, incorrect and very misleading answers. Here’s the story, complete with pictures. I have labeled the text to make it clear who is speaking, including my comments.

From Jones and Trenberth to Wibjorn Karlen, 17 Sep 2008 (email # 1221683947).

[Trenberth]Hi Wibjorn

It appears that your concern is mainly with the surface temperature record, and my co lead author in IPCC, Phil Jones, is best able to address those questions.  However the IPCC only uses published data plus their extensions and in our Chapter the sources of the data are well documented, along with their characteristics.  I offer a few more comments below (my comments are limited as I am on vacation and away from my office).

[Karlen to Trenberth]Uppsala 17 September 2008,

Dear Kevin,

In short, the problem is that I cannot find data supporting the temperature curves in IPCC and also published in e.g.  Forster, P. et al. 2007: Assessing uncertainty in climate simulation. Nature 4: 63-64.

[My comments] Here is the figure from Nature, Assessing uncertainty in climate simulations, Piers Forster et al., Nature Reports Climate Change , 63 (2007) doi:10.1038/climate.2007.46a

Original Caption: Figure 1: Comparison of observed continental- and global-scale changes in surface temperature with results simulated by climate models using natural and anthropogenic forcings. Decadal averages of observations are shown for the period 1906 to 2005 (black line) plotted against the centre of the decade and relative to the corresponding average for 1901–1950. Lines are dashed where spatial coverage is less than 50%. Blue shaded bands show the 5–95% range for 19 simulations from five climate models using only the natural forcings due to solar activity and volcanoes. Red shaded bands show the 5–95% range for 58 simulations from 14 climate models using both natural and anthropogenic forcings. SOURCE: http://www.nature.com/climate/2007/0709/full/climate.2007.46a.html

Here is the IPCC figure he is referring to, Fig. 9.12, once again with the black lines showing the instrumentally measured temperatures:

Original Caption: Figure 9.12. Comparison of multi-model data set 20C3M model simulations containing all forcings (red shaded regions) and containing natural forcings only (blue shaded regions) with observed decadal mean temperature changes (°C) from 1906 to 2005 from the Hadley Centre/Climatic Research Unit gridded surface temperature data set (HadCRUT3; Brohan et al., 2006). The panel labelled GLO shows comparison for global mean; LAN, global land; and OCE, global ocean data. Remaining panels display results for 22 sub-continental scale regions (see the Supplementary Material, Appendix 9.C for a description of the regions).…

Note that around the globe, temperatures are shown as rising from 1900 to about 1930, falling or staying level until the mid ’70s, and then rising sharply after that.

So these are the curves that Professor Karlen is attempting to reconstruct. Note that the IPCC chapter identifies these as “sub-continental regions” and shows separate data for ocean regions.

[Karlen] In attempts to reconstruct the temperature I find an increase from the early 1900s to ca 1935, a trend down until the mid 1970s and so another increase to about the same temperature level as in the late 1930s.

A distinct warming to a temperature about 0.5 deg C above the level 1940 is reported in the IPCC diagrams. I have been searching for this recent increase, which is very important for the discussion about a possible human influence on climate, but I have basically failed to find an increase above the late 1930s.

[Trenberth] This region, as I am sure you know, suffers from missing data and large gaps spatially.  How one covered both can greatly influence the outcome.

In IPCC we produce an Arctic curve and describe its problems and character.  In IPCC the result is very conservative owing to lack of inclusion of the Arctic where dramatic decreases in sea ice in recent years have taken place: 2005 was lowest at the time we did our assessment but 2007 is now the record closely followed by 2008.

Anomalies of over 5C are evident in some areas in SSTs but the SSTs are not established if there was ice there previously.  These and other indicators show that there is no doubt about recent warming; see also chapter 4 of IPCC.

[My comment] As I will show below, everything he says about the ocean and the sea ice and the sea surface temperatures (SSTs) is meaningless. The IPCC figure is solely for the land.

[Karlen] In my letter to Klass V I included diagram showing the mean annual temperature of the Nordic countries (1890-ca 2001) presented on the net by the database NORDKLIM, a joint project between the meteorological institutes in the Nordic countries. Except for Denmark, the data sets show an increase after the 1970s to the same level as in the late 1930s or lower. None demonstrates the distinct increase IPCC indicates. The trends of these 6 areas are very similar except for a few interesting details.

[Trenberth] Results will also depend on the exact region.

[My comments] I cannot find the NORDKLIM graphic he refers to, so I have calculated it myself. I used the NORDKLIM dataset available at http://www.smhi.se/hfa_coord/nordklim/data/Nordklim_data_set_v1_0_2002.xls. I removed the one marine record from “Ship M”. To avoid infilling where there are missing records, I took the “first difference” of all of the available records for each year and averaged them. Then I used a running sum to calculate the average anomaly. I did not remove cities or adjust for the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect. Here is the result:

You can see that, as Professor Karlen said, this does not show what the “Northern Europe” part of the IPCC graph shows. It is exactly as Professor Karlen stated, in the NORDKLIM data it rises until 1930, there is a drop from 1930 to 1970, followed by an increase after the 1970s to a temperature slightly lower than the 1930s. (In fact, the rise from 1880 until 1930 dwarfs the recent rise since the 1970’s). Here, for comparison, is a blowup of the “Northern Europe” graph from Fig. 9.12 above:

This claims that there is a full degree temperature rise from 1970 to 2000, ending way warmer than the 1930s. You can see why Professor Karlen is wondering how the IPCC got such a different answer.

[Karlen] I have in my studies of temperatures also checked a number of areas using data from NASA. One, in my mind interesting study, includes all the 13 stations with long and decent continuously records north of 65 deg N.

The pattern is the same as for the Nordic countries. This diagram only shows 11-yr means of individual stations. A few stations such as Verhojans and Svalbard indicate a recent mean 11-year temperature increase up to 0.5 deg C above the late 1930s. Verhojansk, shows this increase but the temperature has after the peak temperature decreased with about 0.3 deg C during the last few years. The majority of the stations show that the recent temperatures are similar to the one in the late 1930s.

In preparation of some talks I have been invited to give, I have expanded the Nordic area both west and east. The area of similar change in climate is vast. Only a few stations near Bering Strait deviates (e.g. St Paul, Kodiak, Nome, located south of 65 deg. N).

My studies include Africa, a study which took me most of a summer because there are a large number of stations in the NASA records.  I found 11 stations including data from 1898-1975 and 16 stations including 1950-2003.

The data sets could in a convincing way be spliced. However, I noticed that some persons were not familiar with ‘splicing’ technique so I have accepted to reduce the study to the 7 stations including data from the whole period between 1898-2003. The results are similar as to the spliced data set andalso, surprisingly similar to the variability of the Nordic data.

Regression indicates a minor (if any) decrease in temperature (I have used all stations independent of location, city location or not).

[Trenberth] Africa is notorious for missing and inaccurate data and needs careful assessment.

[Karlen] Another example is Australia. NASA only presents 3 stations covering the period 1897-1992. What kind of data is the IPCC Australia diagram based on?

If any trend it is a slight cooling. However, if a shorter period (1949-2005) is used, the temperature has increased substantially.

The Australians have many stations and have published more detailed maps of changes and trends. There are more examples, but I think this is much enough for my present point:

How has the laboratories feeding IPCC with temperature records selected stations?

[Trenberth] See our chapter and the appendices.

[My comment] I have looked at these. The source for Fig. 9.1.2 is given as “(HadCRUT3; Brohan et al., 2006)”. HadCRUT3 is produced jointly by CRU and the Hadley Centre.

[Karlen] I have noticed that major cities often demonstrate a major urban effect (Buenos Aires, Osaka, New York Central Park, etc). Have data from major cities been used by the laboratories sending data to IPCC?  Lennart Bengtsson and other claims that the urban effect is accounted for but from what I read, it seems like the technique used has been a simplistic

[Trenberth] Major inner cities are excluded: their climate change is real but very local.

[My comment] It is true that the IPCC Chapter 3 FAQ says this:

Additional warming occurs in cities and urban areas (often referred to as the urban heat island effect), but is confined in spatial extent, and its effects are allowed for both by excluding as many of the affected sites as possible from the global temperature data and by increasing the error range (the blue band in the figure).

To check this claim, I took the list of temperature stations used by CRU (which I had to use an FOI to get), and checked them against the GISS list. The GISS list categorizes stations as “Urban” or “Rural”. It also uses satellite photos to categorize the amount of light that shows at night, with big cities being brightest. It puts them into three categories, A, B, and C. C is the brightest.

It turns out that there are over 500 cities in the CRU database that the GISS database categorizes as “Urban C”, the brightest of cities. These include, among many others:






































So the CRU is using Tokyo? Beijing? Seoul? Shanghai? Moscow? Their claim is entirely false. In other words, once again the good folk of the CRU are blowing smoke. I can understand why it took me a Freedom of Information request to get the station list.

[Karlen] Next step has been to compare my results with temperature records in the literature. One interesting figures is published by you in:

Trenberth, K., 2005:  Uncertainty in Hurricanes and Global Warming. Science 308: 1753-1754.

As you obviously know, the recent increase in temperature above the 1940s is minor between 10 deg N and 20 deg N and only slightly larger above the temperature maximum in the early 1950s. Both the increases in temperature in the 1930s and in the 1980s to 1990s is of similar amplitude and similar steepness, if any difference possibly slightly less steep in the northern area than in the southern (the eddies slow down the warm water transport).

Your diagram describes a limited area of the North Atlantic because you are primarily interested in hurricanes. The complexity of sea surface temperature increases and decreases is seen in e.g. Cabanes, C, et al 2001 (Science 294: 840-842).

[Trenberth] As we discuss, there is a lot of natural variability in the North Atlantic but there is also a common component that relates to global changes.  See my GRL article with Shea for more details. Trenberth, K. E., and D. J. Shea, 2006: Atlantic hurricanes and natural variability in 2005.  Geophys. Res. Lett., 33, L12704, doi:10.1029/2006GL026894.

[Karlen] One example of sea surface temperature is published by:

Goldenberg, S.B., Landsea, C.W., Mestas-Nuoez, A.M. and Gray, W.M., 2001: The recent increases in Atlantic hurricane activity: causes and implications. Science 293: 474-479.

Again, there is a marked increase in temperature in the 1930s and 1950s (about 1 deg C), a decrease to approximately the level in the 1910s and thereafter a new  increase to a temperature slightly below the level in the1940s.

One example of published data not supporting a major temperature increase during recent time is: Polyakov, I.V., Bekryaev, R.V., Alekseev, G.H., Bhatt,U.S., Colony, R.L., Johnson, M.A., Maskshtas, A.P. and Walsh, D., 2003: Variability and Trends of Air Temperature and Pressure in the Maritime Arctic, 1875-2000. Journal of Climate: Vol. 16 (12): 2067ñ2077.

He included many more stations than I did in my calculation of temperatures N 65 N, but the result is similar. It is hard to find evidence of a drastic warming of the Arctic.

It is also difficult to find evidence of a drastic warming outside urban areas in a large part of the world outside Europe. However the increase in temperature in Central Europe may be because the whole area is urbanized (see e.g. Bidwell, T., 2004: Scotobiology – the biology of darkness. Global change News Letter No. 58 June, 2004).

So, I find it necessary to object to the talk about a scaring temperature increase because of increased human release of CO2. In fact, the warming seems to be limited to densely populated areas. The often mentioned correlation between temperature and CO2 is not convincing. If there is a factor explaining a major part of changes in the temperature, it is solar irradiation. There are numerous studies demonstrating this correlation but papers are not accepted by IPCC. Most likely, any reduction of CO2 release will have no effect whatsoever on the temperature (independent of how expensive).

[Trenberth] You can object all you like but you are not looking at the evidence and you need to have a basis, which you have not established.  You seem to doubt that CO2 has increased and that it is a greenhouse gas and you are very wrong.  But of course there is a lot of variability and looking at one spot narrowly is not the way to see the big picture.

[My comment] Professor Karlen was quite correct. The claims made by the CRU, and repeated in the IPCC document, were false. Karlen was looking at the evidence.

[Karlen] In my mind, we have to accept that it is great if we can reduce the release of CO2 because we are using up a resource the earth will be short of in the future, but we are in error if we claims a global warming caused by CO2.

[Trenberth] I disagree.

[My comment] No comment.

[Karlen] I also think we had to protest when erroneous data like the claim that winter temperature in Abisko increased by 5.5 deg C during the last 100 years. The real increase is 0.4 deg C. The 5.5 deg C figure has been repeated a number of times in TV-programs. This kind of exaggerations is not supporting attempts to save fossil fuel.

I have numerous diagrams illustrating the discussion above. I don’t include these in an e-mail because my computer can only handle a few at a time. If you would like to see some, I can send them by air mail.

I am often asked about why I don’t publish about my views. I have. Just one example of among 100 other I could select is:  Karlen, W., 2001: Global temperature forces by solar irradiation and greenhouse gases? Ambio 30(6): 349-350.

Yours sincerely


[Trenberth] I trust that Phil Jones may also respond

From: P.Jones

To: trenbert

Subject: Re: Climate

Date: Wed, 17 Sep 2008 16:39:07 +0100 (BST)

Cc: Wibjorn Karlen

[Jones to Professor Karlen, same email]Wibjorn,

I’m in Athens at the moment. Unless you’re referring specifically to the Arctic the temperature curves in IPCC Ch 3 all include the oceans.

[My comment] Absolutely not. The legend for Fig. 9.1.2 (see above) says “(see the Supplementary Material, Appendix 9.C for a description of the regions)” Appendix 9.C in turn describes the calculations:

6. Apply land/ocean mask on observations. Plots describing observed changes in land or ocean areas were based on observed data that was masked to retain land or ocean data only (necessary to remove islands and marine stations not existent in models). This masking was performed as in Step 3, using the land area fraction data from the CCSM3 model.

Note that the ocean is entirely masked out of the observations.

And the regions are described as:

Note 2: List of Regions

The regions are defined as the collection of rectangular boxes listed for each region. The domain of interest (land and ocean, land, or ocean) is also given.


Global, GLO, 180W to 180E, 90S to 90N, land and ocean

Global Land, LAN, 180W to 180E, 90S to 90N, land

Global Ocean, OCE, 180W to 180E, 90S to 90N, ocean

North America, ALA, 170W to 103W, 60N to 72N, land

North America, CGI, 103W to 10W, 50N to 85N, land

North America, WNA, 130W to 103W, 30N to 60N, land

North America, CNA, 103W to 85W, 30N to 50N, land

North America, ENA, 85W to 50W, 25N to 50N, land

South America, CAM, 116W to 83W, 10N to 30N, land

South America, AMZ, 82W to 34W, 20S to 12N, land

South America, SSA, 76W to 40W, 56S to 20S, land

Europe, NEU, 10W to 40E, 48N to 75N, land

Europe, SEU, 10W to 40E, 30N to 48N, land

Africa, SAR, 20W to 65E, 18N to 30N, land

Africa, WAF, 20W to 22E, 12S to 18N, land

Africa, EAF, 22E to 52E, 12S to 18N, land

Africa, SAF, 10E to 52E, 35S to 12S, land

Asia, NAS, 40E to 180E, 50N to 70N, land

Asia, CAS, 40E to 75E, 30N to 50N, land

Asia, TIB, 75E to 100E, 30N to 50N, land

Asia, EAS, 100E to 145E, 20N to 50N, land

Asia, SAS, 65E to 100E, 5N to 30N, land

Asia, SEA, 95E to 155E, 11S to 20N, land

Australia, NAU, 110E to 155E, 30S to 11S, land

Australia, SAU, 110E to 155E, 45S to 30S, land

So no, that excuse won’t wash. Once again Professor Karlan is quite correct. The observations simply don’t match the CRU/IPCC claims. Phil Jones’ story about the regions including the ocean is false.

[Jones] Fennoscandia is just a small part of the NH. When I’m back next week, I’ll be able to calculate the boxes that encompass Fennoscandia, so you can compare with this region. As you’re aware Anders did lots of the update work in 2001-2002 and he included all the NORDKLIM data. I can send you a list of the Fennoscandian data if you want – either the sites used or their data as well.

I guess you’re attachments are in your direct email, which I come to later.

One final thing – we are getting SST data in from some of the new sea-ice free parts of the Arctic. We are not using these as we’ve yet to figure out how to as we don’t have normals for these ‘mostly covered by sea ice in the 1961-90’ areas.



[My comments]Now, I have not taken a stand on whether the machinations of the CRU extended to actually altering the global temperature figures. It seems quite clear from Professor Karlen’s observations, however, that they have gotten it very wrong in at least the Fennoscandian region. Since this region has very good records and a lot of them, this does not bode well for the rest of the globe …

My best to everyone,



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Phillip Bratby

Professor Wibjorn Karlen would seem to be a refutenik.


Frankly this is scary. Are we living in a democracy, or is a group of about 2,000 people running our lives and feeding us information as it pleases?
Keep up the good work!

Douglas DC

This will grow further,more and more data and people will come forward.This will be the 800 lb. Gorilla in the room at Copenhagen. He has bad Flatulence too…

John Skookum

Fine work.
To any journalists reading this, do you want to go on being the spoon-fed handmaiden of liars and frauds who would enslave and impoverish humankind, to the detriment of your own circulation/viewership? Or do you want to be out front, scooping the scandal of the millennium? Follow leads like this, and you can bust this scheme wide open.
The first mainstream media organ that chases this story as vigorously as they’d pursue a tobacco or pharma corporation engaged in similar fraud will have a loyal audience for decades to come.

I’m going to try to ask this question as politely as possible:
When peer reviewed by scientists who were not part of the “CRU peer review team”, has anything reported by the CRU been shown to be accurate or acceptable?
At this point, it would sure seem that all that came from the CRU peer review team is suspect, is it not?

Henry chance

Looks like the climate data is being changed
Looks like the temps are only fluctuating.

Joanna Lumley

hang on – but the bandwidths in the nature paper account for decreases in the standard error but overall shows a warming trend – as does your graph. Despite the variation all the figures show an overall warming trend. Have I missed something here?

NZ Willy

Professor Wibjorn Karlen did a fine job and it would be very interesting to get his take on this.


This article might raise a laugh or two.
The Cooling World
Newsweek, April 28, 1975
Read the whole article, with pictures, here
“There are ominous signs that the Earth’s weather patterns have begun to change dramatically and that these changes may portend a drastic decline in food production – with serious political implications for just about every nation on Earth….To scientists, these seemingly disparate incidents represent the advance signs of fundamental changes in the world’s weather. The central fact is that after three quarters of a century of extraordinarily mild conditions, the earth’s climate seems to be cooling down. Meteorologists disagree about the cause and extent of the cooling trend, as well as over its specific impact on local weather conditions. But they are almost unanimous in the view that the trend will reduce agricultural productivity for the rest of the century.”
Having raised the prospect of world-wide famines, they go on…
“…Reid Bryson of the University of Wisconsin points out that the Earth’s average temperature during the great Ice Ages was only about seven degrees lower than during its warmest eras – and that the present decline has taken the planet about a sixth of the way toward the Ice Age average. Others regard the cooling as a reversion to the “little ice age” conditions…”
And now it’s time to suggest some solutions…
“Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any positive action to compensate for the climatic change, or even to allay its effects. They concede that some of the more spectacular solutions proposed, such as melting the Arctic ice cap by covering it with black soot or diverting arctic rivers, might create problems far greater than those they solve. But the scientists see few signs that government leaders anywhere are even prepared to take the simple measures of stockpiling food or of introducing the variables of climatic uncertainty into economic projections of future food supplies. The longer the planners delay, the more difficult will they find it to cope with climatic change once the results become grim reality.”


You are a complete moron.


Dear Mr Eschenbach
A very good post.
Professor Manley’s Central England Temperature record between 1659 to 1973. Quarterly Journal Royal Meteorologist Society 100.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Manley scroll to page 14 pdf
Now the Met Office Hadley centres graph
There is something wrong?
The first series of graphs shows no hockey stick the second does.
Maybe it is because the good scientist was a geologist and not a climate scientist 🙂
Dear Moderator for my post it would be very helpful if you could post the graphs? Or if Anthony has covered previously then a link?
I have posted this previously but would appreciate if you Mr Eschenbach or someone else could have a look?

OT. Sorry, I don’t know if anyone else has posted this but the UK Met Office have released the Winter forecast:
“For northern Europe, including the UK, there is a 20% chance of a colder winter, a 30% chance of an average winter and a 50% chance of a milder winter.”
Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is what’s called hedging your bets! As for rain, they say:
“For northern Europe, including the UK, signals for precipitation are weak, with near equal chances for each of the three categories. There is a 30% chance of a drier winter, a 35% chance of an average winter and a 35% chance of a wetter winter.”
We’re all weather forecasters now.


O/T but I seem to have been banned from LGF, having posted a few sceptical comments…

Excellent points by prof. Karlen. We often hear horror stories about melting Greenland, Arctic, permafrost. fountains of methane or whatever BS. But when I looked for station data at NASA GISS station selector page, I have found exactly the same overall trend as in Polyakov or NORDKLIM: temperatures barely reached those in 40ties.
Those charts in the IPCC report are pure art, or straightly put, fabricated data with no real basis. But hear what that a$$ Trenberth responds:
[Trenberth] You can object all you like but you are not looking at the evidence and you need to have a basis, which you have not established. You seem to doubt that CO2 has increased and that it is a greenhouse gas and you are very wrong.
I think that the real global climatic warming/cooling during the 20th century should look a lot like the Arctic, with smaller amplitude. Truly rural stations in Central Europe show we are barely above 1940s as well.
One has to think, how the HadCRUT global mean hockey stick is fabricated, even without the fact that many stations are urban, e.g. skewed upwards. It must be Mann made factor, or the added value™ for sure.


My, my, look at those odd ~11 year wiggles in the pink line. Now remind me what has a period of about 11 years…

P Wilson

When we take NZ raw data v adjusted, as with this series, then it seems that the CRU technique to replicate global temperatures is adjusted in every respect, so It seems to be a global phenomenon to massage observed data, which then becomes processed by CRU and passed onto the IPCC. Note that this already processed data contains fudges and manipulations before its re-processed
The only fix to the problem is to have all raw data from 1850-present, with independent statisticians to process it.
When Trenberth says that c02 causes warming then the IPCC claims that 0.2C is attributable to AnthroCo2 over 150 years. (lets not bring in the water vapour multiplier fraud here)
My comment is that 0.2C over 150 years averages as 0.0013C per year or 0.013 per decade and such paltry numbers when offset against recorded yearly and decadal temperature changes couldn’t have done anything of repute, even presuming that c02 since 1850 did cause this change, which is scientifically implausible.

Thank you Willis. You are putting in sterling groundwork to show people we need to rebuild the temperature records – transparently.
I confess I didn’t follow the part about sea measurements being excluded and have to take your word for it 🙂
I’d like to again draw people’s attention to this U-tube on the Urban Heat Island effect, done by comparing pairs of GISS US temperature records. It is something that schoolchildren like Pete who opens the video can check – and it is very well done as science and as presentation.
Appreciating the full effect of UHI is also IMO one of the first jobs needing doing, to show with science that there is no AGW to worry about. First because it is simple and basic and checkable by lots of people, and by itself is enough to undo AGW and question all the rest of the science. IMHO. And with that comes the Surface Stations work.
This essential work we can continue to do as “amateurs” while the “professionals” institute the necessary reforms and restructuring of Science that we need for checkable transparency.

David Ball

Very clear presentation of the issues these emails have raised. Excellent work W.E. I am confident that time will reveal more of this type of deception. These are not just a “couple of e-mails among colleagues”, as is the claim. The perpetrators of the lie should be very worried indeed. The public has to be made aware that even with the “augmented” rise in temperature, we are still within the bounds of natural variability. This shows clearly that Co2 has little or nothing to do with temperature. Sadly, even an ice age would not convince a majority of the most fervent believers.

Colin MacDonald

Those crazy Vikings eh?
Of course they have been espousing global warming denialism for quite some time.
Apparently they published (non peer reviewed) sagas around AD 1200 purporting to show a Medieval Warm Period!

Steve in SC

If the results don’t match the theory, change the data.

Skeptic Tank

Can we please stop perpetuating the term “hacked emails”? I’ve heard no evidence of a “hack” and it portrays the CRU as the victim. The emails and program source code files were leaked by an inside whistle-blower.

Two things come out of this for me. First, anywhere where independent analysis is done, like this posting, like the work that E.M. Smith or A.J. Strata is doing, like the NIWA/CCS study, the independent analysis always comes out with lower recent warming figures than the IPCC-accepted studies, i.e. no crisis.
Second, we’re using different methodologies to each other to come up with those figures. Which ones are right?
Rather than decrying this latest miscarriage of justice, I think we would be better off discussing what is best practice for measuring the data properly.
CRU have announced that they will be releasing the full dataset that they use over the coming months, possibly along with the methods, although we have those thanks to FOI2009.
We can also be pretty sure that when that happens they will also have a full explanation for applying the methods they do to come up with the temperatures that they have. But will those methods be right?
Unless we can come up with a robust set of principles for handling things like station additions and deletions, elevation and microclimatic changes, UHI effects, then we’re still going to be none the wiser as to whether the plaqnet has heated up and by how much. Anthony’s work with surfacestations.org and his upcoming paper on those is going to be crucial to setting up these principles, if we are going to avoid the back and forth point scoring that just ends up generating more heat than light.

Ron de Haan

Add it to the pile.
We are building a fraud case here.
Thanks for the insights, tremendous job.


Just seems to get worse and worse for CRU and crew.
Good stuff Mr Eschenbach.

Colin Porter

From IPCC Chapter 3 FAQ says this:
From IPCC Chapter 3 FAQ says this:
“Additional warming occurs in cities and urban areas (often referred to as the urban heat island effect), but is confined in spatial extent, and its effects are allowed for both by excluding as many of the affected sites as possible from the global temperature data and by increasing the error range (the blue band in the figure).”
Willis Eschenbach has just demonstrated that major urban sites are retained in the record and not eliminated. Further, no attempt seems to be made to compensate for these retained heat islands as IPCC Chapter 3 says that the compensation is by way of an increased error band. Who looks at the error band when you still have that little black line relentlessly wriggling its way to the top right hand corner of the graph? The urban heat island enhancement is still present in these graphs as it is in all the other derivatives and these are the results that people look at and refer to.
It is hardly surprising therefore that Phil Jones does not want his raw data nor his “value added adjustments” to be revealed. I suggest that all or most heat islands are retained and no compensation is made to them.
So which gives the more faithful reflection of the temperature record, Phil Jones’s urban conurbation record, or our other erstwhile favourite, or should I say favorite and still waiting in the wings, James Hansen’s Nasa/Giss world airports record?
Willis Eschenbach has just demonstrated that major urban sites are retained in the record and not eliminated. Further, no attempt seems to be made to compensate for these retained heat islands as IPCC Chapter 3 says that the compensation is by way of an increased error band. Who looks at the error band when you still have that little black line relentlessly wriggling its way to the top right hand corner of the graph? The urban heat island enhancement is still present in these graphs as it is in all the other derivatives and these are the results that people look at and refer to.
It is hardly surprising therefore that Phil Jones does not want his raw data nor his “value added adjustments” to be revealed. I suggest that all or most heat islands are retained and no compensation is made to them.
So which gives the more faithful reflection of the temperature record, Phil Jones’s urban conurbation record, or our other erstwhile favourite, or should I say favorite and still waiting in the wings James Hansen’s Nasa/Giss word airports record.

I find the fraud and lies presented as fact by these charlatans of the CRU, IPCC and GISS to be an affront against humanity. How many young people have been targeted by these liars and heir supporters who wish to profit from the climate hoax. For the last 8 to 10 years students have been told a lie.
Exposing the AGW myth is good news really. AGW will not turn the planet into a burned out cinder, We’re not all gonna die. Thank goodness the USA did not sign the Kyoto accords and now we can put the dangers of Copenhagen to rest. How do we undo the damage. How do we tell students that everything they have learned with respect to AGW is false. It’s time to rewrite the science text books.
There will still be those who will continue to try and beat their AGW dead horse down the road.

Ern Matthews

We need a refutenik symbol to identify the resistance to the Copenhagen treaty. It must look cool and recognizable and can be reproduced quickly.
We need to organize a mass rally against them so get on twitter; face book and other new media get the word out. That we will resist you, the truth will come out and the guilty punished.

Colin Porter

p.s My quality control seems about as good as that of a typical East Anglian University dabbling in climate science. I hope the moderator has proof read my recent submission and removed my duplication. If so please delete this comment also.

Richard M

Great work, Willis. Claims that this is not intentional have just been made moot. You’ve shown clearly that the culprits were shown real data that did not match their claims. Rather than looking for scientific reasons why this might be the case, they lied and went on their merry way.
I wonder if the difference in the charts matches up with the “valadj” vector?


Wow, Willis. That is twice that you have laid out the story in easy digestible fashion, and promptly been ignored by the ‘newsmakers’. What gives?


It would be interesting to hear from a psychologist about this type of lie/conspiracy.It seems impossible to me that something of this scale could get off the ground unless the perpetrators knew they had ongoing political protection. 2. Is it known which ‘scientists’ were consulted by the BBC in coming to their decision that the Science was ‘settled’ and it was no longer necessary to give equal airtime to sceptics? (In the BBC Trust document: ‘From Seesaw To Wagonwheel’).Maybe a FOI request is in order?


I remember Steve McIntyre saying that once he got Jones’ data he didn’t expect to find much wrong with it.
It really is worse than we thought.


“[Trenberth] You can object all you like but you are not looking at the evidence and you need to have a basis, which you have not established.”
Does Trenberth mean a starting point from which to begin your investigation – ie wanting to test the theory that more CO2 = more warming? If Prof. Karlen is acting as part of the peer review process by trying to review the data and conclusions no such basis is needed. You do not need to have a competing theory to investigate someone else’s published material.


Thank you Willis. It would seem the only sensible thing to do now is file the IPCC reports in the round cabinet.

Regarding this countering argument in the AGW media about the recent polar ice melting:
Forgive me if you have covered this, but I have long wondered about that “flatline” reading on the U of C’s Cryosphere Today “365-day Current NH Sea Ice Area” chart which occurred just before mid-November. (The IJIS website actually shows TWO of these flatliners, one in October and another in November).
Is this a dropout? If so, why did they just pick up again where they left off as if nothing had happened?
Also, I notice Cryosphere Today is using 30% concentration sea/ice as their defnition of sea ice. Again, I may be wrong, but I thought they had been using 15% concentration until recently.

Leon Brozyna

Talk about misdirection. In trying to follow the exchanges, I felt like a mutt chasing his tail.


I’m beginning to wonder, has anyone OUTSIDE of the HadCru/Mann nexus actually been able to replicate the results? Has anyone done the calculations themselves and come out and said they agree (and shown their workings)?


Willis – Second great post in a row. Very helpful pulling together of the issues. What is interesting is how below my radar Prof. Karlen’s comments are. Was anyone else aware of his viewpoint? Had he tried to publish – I found the email comments a bit confused on this point. It would be interesting to get Prof. Karlen’s viewpoint on the CRU emails and data issues.

tim c

Again I say thank you to all the good scientists out there(here).

Anthony et al,
I cannot even begin to tell you how much I appreciate what you’ve been doing here. I don’t mean just since climategate either. However, the work during climategate has indeed been stellar.
Thanks to you all and a few others, I always knew global warming was not happening on the scale the warmmongers said (if at all) and that humans had little or nothing to do with it and little or no power to alter it. As an engineer, I’m disgusted by these socalled scientists. I realize that they can likely only be prosecuted for the FOI refusals/delays/denials/and data deletions but I do hope they ARE prosecuted and recieve maximum sentences. In my opinion, it’s the only way to restore the reputation of science and scientists in general.

Ron de Haan

“[Trenberth]Hi Wibjorn
It appears that your concern is mainly with the surface temperature record, and my co lead author in IPCC, Phil Jones, is best able to address those questions. However the IPCC only uses published data plus their extensions…”
Would that be peer review ‘published data’ or any data publicly available? If it’s only the peer review process manipulated by CRU, then they could completely control the IPCC results even if an unbiased scientist participates in the IPCC process.
Any chance Wibjorn could be persuaded to get his temp analysis published, either with or without a comparison with IPCC’s results? If it gets published, sooner or later a comparison will be published by someone.

John Silver
Fred from Canuckistan . . .

With all that smoke & mirrors I am surprised the CRU Team didn’t rediscover N Rays.


Of course the IPCC doesn’t include much information on natural or solar changes. Those are outside its role. It’s supposed to investigate human-induced climate change, not natural climate change.

The role of the IPCC is to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the scientific basis of risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation. [1]

John G

I take it the IPCC ‘Figure 9.12. Comparison of multi-model data set 20C3M model simulations containing all forcings (red shaded regions) and containing natural forcings only (blue shaded regions),’ which show temperature observations tracking in the red shaded regions and departing drastically upward from the natural forcings (blue shaded regions), are a prime piece of evidence presented by the IPCC to support the AGW hypothesis, at least since 2006.
Given the rest of the CRU leaked e-mails I’d say this is now a piece of discredited evidence. How much more will it take to bring down the whole IPCC house of cards?


I have big problem with this nordclim dataset. Does any Finland city have average temperatures over 23 deg in july? It’s impossible! (See row > 577 in first sheet).


I find this exchange of e-mails possibly the most damning of all those I’ve so far read.
If anyone can read what Trenberth has written and still believe these people aren’t working like Trojans to hide a manifest falsehood, then they reading from the same script as he is.
For a long while I’ve resisted the international conspiracy theory as being too far-fetched. However, the more I read of this stuff, the more I star to think I was wrong.
This is neo-Marxist post-modernism working its way through academia and politics, finally having found the vehicle it has been looking for to create a post-capitalist, post-democratic world.
It didn’t need a secret meeting to arrange, just the poisoning of several generations of ‘elite’ minds, leaving them ripe for the perfect plan when it came along.
AGW is that perfect plan.