Trenberth reacts: edits speech to fix copying, leaves "deniers"

Well that’s what I get for taking a nap today. I had been checking Dr. Trenberth’s manuscript regularly at the AMS website, and of course while napping he (or somebody) changed it. Of course Steve McIntyre caught it and points out the changes. Good for him.

For those that wish to examine the original, I saved it here.

And now here’s some of the changes that Steve McIntyre points out:

==============================================================

Steve writes:

This post has obviously been brought to Trenberth and/or AMS’s attention, as they have deleted the original version of Trenberth’s presentation and replaced it with an amended version, without a change notice.

The amended version picks up most of the problems raised in the previous CA post. Here are the points raised in the CA post and Trenberth’s changes:

Trenberth originally stated:

Scientists make mistakes and often make assumptions that limit the validity of their results. They regularly argue with colleagues who arrive at different conclusions. These debates follow the normal procedure of scientific inquiry.

The amended version:

Hasselmann (2010) further notes that scientists make mistakes and often make assumptions that limit the validity of their results. They regularly argue with colleagues who arrive at different conclusions. These debates follow the normal procedure of scientific inquiry.

Trenberth’s originally statement about tactics to use against “deniers”:

It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers. Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.

The amended version:

It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010). Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.

He fixes things that would likely get him in trouble, but leaves the insults.

Steve writes:

Trenberth did not submit a comment to Climate Audit thanking us for enabling him to mitigate the problem prior to the actual formal presentation of his speech or otherwise thank us at the AMS webpage at which the changes were made.

=================================================================

Are you honest enough to thank a person who helped you, Dr. Trenberth?

Read all about it here over at Climate Audit here

Be sure to thank Steve McIntyre. I’ll lead by saying it first:

Dr, Trenberth owes Mr. McIntyre a debt of gratitude for heading off an embarrassing and potentially troublesome academic inquiry. The very least he could do is leave a comment at Climate Audit.

In my opinion if Dr. Trenbert values the public interpretation of his integrity, and that of the AMS, he should drop the offensive term “deniers” and replace it with the word “skeptics”. It is as easy as doing “search and replace” in Microsoft word. 10 seconds of work:

Dr. Trenberth, please see below how easy it is to do in a word processor.

Since Dr. Trenberth put his own email address out there in his original document made public on the AMS website,

ClimategateThoughts4AMS_v2 (PDF)

*Corresponding author: Kevin E Trenberth, NCAR, PO Box 3000, Boulder, CO 80303.

Email: trenbert@ucar.edu

…and because he is a paid public servant of the United States, I ask that any Americans who are offended at his continued use of this term after issues have been brought to his attention, email him at the address provided, and ask him politely to make this simple change.

IMHO there’s no academic freedom when it comes to name calling. He knows what the right thing to do is, let’s just make sure he listens to himself.

– Anthony Watts

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Fed Up

[snip – while your comment is perhaps funny to some, we don’t need to contribute to racheting up the rhetoric any further. Let’s give him an an opportunity to respond and then decide – Anthony]

I love it when people call us skeptics. It implies they aren’t skeptical, as scientists should be.

Ben

Got this when I asked him to change “deniers” to sceptics:
I will be on travel in Europe until 19 January 2011. [Bern ISSE 9-14; Grenoble ECRA 15-18] I will have only limited access to email. Please contact my admin asst, Lisa Butler (lbutler@ucar.edu) or x 1366for further information or if this involves travel.Your mail regarding “xxx” will be read when I return.RegardsKevin

Henry chance

Can someone contact him and get an explanation? It is the worst for him if he blocks contact and refuses to discus his errors and corrections.

“Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.”
This is an amazing statement to me. If folks like Trenberth have scientific evidence that is “unequivocal”, wouldn’t producing it be obviously the best approach? Isn’t refusal to debate climate scientists and other skeptics, when you have the evidence to back up your claims, the worst possible approach?

Fed Up

ODE TO KEVIN TRENBERTH
Yet another
Onerous climate disagreement
Universal rancor everywhere
As we
Raise our
Environmental concerns
Always and forever like this?
Can’t we get along?
Love one another?
In spite of our differences?
Murder
Ad hominem is
Tasteless,
Evil!
Ah!
Sorrowful day
Sorrowful climate of science
Have we no hope?
Our reserves of integrity
Lessen
Everyday.

Sent. It has and continues to puzzle, that such highly educated people as Dr. Tremberth, behave no better then any “true believer”, here being used in the most unsavory sense of the term.

janama

“Perhaps we should stop accepting the term, ‘skeptic.’ Skepticism implies doubts about a plausible proposition. Current global warming alarm hardly represents a plausible proposition.”
Dr. Lindzen

u.k.(us)

I sent a polite email, noting that it will be included in our National Archives, and requesting I be called a “skeptic”.
Kind of fun.

Louis Hissink

Oh how I wish I were a gun ammunition salesman – I would become a millionaire supplying all the ammo used in the “shooting one’s foot” syndrome some academic people seem to specialise in.

Tom t

Janama: Dr Lindzen is doing great work, but I don’t think you can only be skeptical about plausible things.

Brian H

Tom t;
I’m with Lindzen. He wants to be called a “denier”.

crosspatch

When it comes to changes in temperature, I don’t think anyone is denying or skeptical that it has occurred. That isn’t the issue. The issue is if the change is anything unusual in either rate or magnitude. So far nobody, to my knowledge, has shown that any warming in the 20th century (no statistically significant warming trend seen so far in the 21st century) was outside the norm of natural climate variation or if there is anything we can do about it even if we wanted to.

wayne

Dr. Trenberth,
I’ll lay this out for you one more time:
With the world now weighted with general populace and scientists rightfully skeptical of your insistence that mankind has actually warmed this sphere we live on of any meaningful amount, actually if any, and I find them mainly skeptical of just the anthropogenic part of your theory. Most feel the earth has warmed a small amount from some not yet demonstrable reason, many think it is solar related and we just don’t have enough absolute accuracy in instruments to sense just how hot the sun was in the immediate previous decades, just why are you pouncing and picking on the some less than 1% deniers who are such a very tiny component of this debate.
I must be honest, I rarely come across anyone who deniers that man has no effect on this world, including pollution, urban sprawl, plastic, etc, or that we haven’t been a little warmer that usual back in the 1980’s and ‘90’s.
I can only take it that those very few deniers are the people against who you place the thrust in your speech. Shame on you. You should pick on the skeptical group or some one else your own size!
I just can’t believe you are so incredibly dense that you don’t understand this reality.

dp

“It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010). Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.”
Hey Doc – how about we all play that game, except we don’t pay you to play it anymore? How would that work out for you?
This is really not necessary – just show us your work. It will speak for itself and save you the effort.

Frank

We are not deniers, because we know the historical context of that word. We are not skeptics, because we do not merely sit back and ignore the words of the ‘elite’. We are refuters, because we actively seek the truth and are not afraid to proclaim it.

I’ve already declared if a senior scientist uses the word “denier” against me personally and in print/media as a pejorative meant to damage my scientific reputation, I will haul their ass into federal court.
These scientists need to be much more careful to control their vitriolic language and stick to the science lest they be opening up their checkbooks. If a pattern is established, then punitive damages would ensue. The use of “black-lists” and labels by non-governmental groups or blogs such as Joe Romm’s must also be careful to stick to the science otherwise they are going to see the same summons to federal court.
Enough of this shit.

Mark Twang

Dilberth.

Rhoda R

This really isn’t OT but NoFrakkingconsensus is running a story about a ‘scientist’ that is trying to get the IPCC to declare climate ‘scientists’ to be exempt from FOI requests. He doesn’t identify the ‘scientist’ that is calling for this.
http://nofrakkingconsensus.wordpress.com/2011/01/16/is-the-ipcc-a-scrutiny-free-zone/

Konrad

Kevin has certainly demonstrated his skills with cut and paste, so find and replace should not be too much of a stretch. Perhaps there is a problem with his version of Word?
http://i51.tinypic.com/6sb28i.jpg
My apologies to Anthony for the miss use of his artwork 🙂

(ryanm: bonus points for being witty)

Harold Pierce Jr

AGW is not possible since the most of the humans live in poverty.

Jimmy Haigh

So Trenberth’s getting more air miles on another jaunt to Europe. More CO2 needlessly pumped into the atmosphere… Don’t these guys have any conscience?

John F. Hultquist

crosspatch says:
January 16, 2011 at 8:26 pm
When it comes to changes in temperature, I don’t think anyone is denying or skeptical that it has occurred.

You haven’t said ‘warming’ but I think that is your intent.
I made a comment similar to this a year or so ago and was promptly informed that I was wrong. The idea seemed to be that at the end of the last glacial stage the “global temperature” rose rapidly and since than, by hiccs&ups, it has been in decline. Further, with the understanding that CO2 concentration lags temperature, that too was declining, toward a level that would have been troubling for plants. Thus, the use of fossil fuels may be preventing a catastrophe on Earth for plants and animals.
To get back on topic: I would say that the comments on CA and WUWT and maybe some others are – Are you ready? – peer review.
I do not wish to disparage Steve McIntyre in any way, that is, by implying that Dr. T. is his peer. But it would be impolite, would it not, to say that Dr. T’s paper was reviewed by his . . . . (I’m off to inspect a thesaurus. — Betters?)

a jones

What I find fascinating about this is the sheer power of the blogosphere.
And how little the establishment. scientific, political and to a lesser extent commercial nexus, understands how that might is changing the world.
A self appointed grandee of the climate science establishment, indeed a doyen of it, is forced within a day or two to drastically modify his great speech with its grandoise ideas by a handful of bloggers and their websites.
Unthinkable even a a year or two ago when he could have relied upon the MSM to laud him to the skies for his wondrous insights.
Truly the world is changing, and faster I suspect than any of us here could have imagined.
Kindest Regards

Frank K.

“In my opinion if Dr. Trenberth values the public interpretation of his integrity, and that of the AMS, he should drop the offensive term “deniers” and replace it with the word “skeptics”. It is as easy as doing “search and replace” in Microsoft word.”
I don’t really think he cares. Being a climate science ruling class elitist entitles you to denigrate your opponents with impunity.
Since we know a large portion of the AMS membership are deni.. skeptics (you know, all those frontline meteorologists who have to be “reeducated”), I wonder how receptive his audience at the AMS conference will ultimately be…someone needs to get a camera in there to record his speech and post it to YouTube!
[ryanm: i’ll be there and sitting right in front/center, tho i am certain ams will have a video feed, webex presentation]

Jeremy

So Trenberth’s solution to stating the ridiculous about how to defend a position in science is to attribute what he’s saying to someone else in some other paper?
Bravo, Mr politician, Bravo. Like the true IPCC alumni you are Mr Trenberth, you simply shifted the burden of failure to someone else. So why should anyone listen to what you have to say?

John from New Zealand

‘Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.’
Well he has that right. As soon as there’s a mention of the non-existant atmospheric hot-spot, the science of AGW self-detructs.

Ryan Maue says:
January 16, 2011 at 8:38 pm
[snip]
Enough of this shit.

Hear, hear.

damn Ryan, you rock.

Toto

Let’s see, Dr. T., with your idea about flipping the null hypothesis, the terminology would be “reject” not “deny”.

David Chappell

“I will be on travel in Europe until 19 January 2011. [Bern ISSE 9-14; Grenoble ECRA 15-18] I will have only limited access to email.”
However, he does have sufficient access to amend his manuscript, apparently.

Trenberth is a bad guy. No one should be surprised by anything that this consummate liar does or says.
He keeps digging the hole deeper and deeper. He will be buried when it all collapses. I look forward to that day.
John Kehr
The Inconvenient Skeptic

BigWaveDave

“It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010). Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.”
In other words, because there is no science supporting the contention that anthropogenic CO2 is changing the climate, or otherwise bad; climate scientists must use non scientific arguments against those who point out this failing.
Not very novel, Kevin, but it gets more than a little annoying when you start inciting lynch mobs..

Mark T

I agree, John. We are responsible for our actions under the influence of drugs and alcohol so the excuse that these people are simply caught up in some psychological effect of constantly being around those that think like they do is hogwash. Adults know this sort of behavior is wrong, they should pay the price when the time comes.
Mark

Andrew Holder

I sent this mail – I kept it polite even though I would have liked to use some other words!
************
Dr Trenberth,
Please, if you really want to be taken seriously, can you amend your vocabulary on future documents so that fellow scientists and colleagues can still have some semblance of respect for each other. As you point out quite eloquently, debate is indeed healthy and if you continue to lose the moral highground even your most loyal followers may start to feel uneasy.
Just so you know, I am an open mined maths graduate who follows weather related media material closely and I really feel that both camps have some solid scientific literature in the field. Please don’t succumb to frustration – let your science do the talking for you.
Best regards
Andrew Holder
BSc Mathematics Graduate
Amateur weather enthusiast.
********

BioBob

“Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.”
I agree. We are well past that point now.
I propose we move directly to criminal and civil lawsuits and indictments on whatever appropriate laws and basis are available. I suggest misappropriation of federal funds, failure to comply with lawful FOI requests, fraud, conspiracy and racketeering, and any others that come to mind. These crooks NEED to spend some time behind bars getting cavity searched instead of spewing vacuous theories of Armageddon.
There are those who say let the scientific interplay decide this. I disagree. My pockets have been picked for too long and I am fed up. Twenty years of hyperbole and alarmism without any reliable proof is WAY too long. It is past time to make these bad boys cry for their mommies and let the grownups try to restore the science to something approaching respectability again.
Come on all you lawyers – step up to the plate and do your duty to science and man.
Sue their posteriors.

LightRain

In the movie the Princess Bride
Vizzini: HE DIDN’T FALL? INCONCEIVABLE.
Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
Substitute Trenberth for Vizzini, Lord Monckton for Inigo Montoya and unequivocal for Inconceivable and we’ve got ourselves a movie!

Michael

Watts Up With That Rocks in the Crowd Sourcing World! Hands Down!

Al Gored

“It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010).”
So. To justify his continuing use of the term “deniers” as a ‘scientist,’ he cites Hasselmann as his reference, as though that means anything. He didn’t directly quote him using that word. Did Hasselmann’s research demand its use?
But it does seems fitting that someone named Hasselmann supports the use of this term which effectively hassles the skeptics.
How about this? Trenberth is a %*#k@$g weasel (Angermann 2012).

40 shades

I wonder why the AMS didn’t just get Hasselmann to deliver the speech. He seems to have written most of it.

Jimbo

McIntyre should have kept quiet about the copying issues until after Trenberth’s speech. ;O) As for the term ‘deniers’ it may become clear over the next few years which group is living in denial. The term smacks of Lysenkoism. There are number of sceptics who have brought forward strong arguments against AGW and yet they are referred to as ‘deniers’.
Here are a few examples of why sceptics must persist despite the insults.
————–
June 4, 1999
“Warm Winters Result From Greenhouse Effect, Columbia Scientists Find, Using NASA Model”
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/06/990604081638.htm
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v399/n6735/abs/399452a0.html
Nov. 17, 2010
“Global Warming Could Cool Down Northern Temperatures in Winter”
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101117114028.htm
http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2009JD013568
————–
“…(CO2) in the atmosphere will slow the Earth’s rotation.”
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/1816860.stm
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2002…/2001GL013672.shtml
“Global warming will make Earth spin faster”
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn11555
http://www.mpimet.mpg.de/fileadmin/staff/landererfelix/landerer_07_GRL.pdf
———–
“…much of the North Atlantic Ocean has become less salty…”
http://www.livescience.com/environment/050629_fresh_water.html
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/308/5729/1772.abstract
“The surface waters of the North Atlantic are getting saltier,…”
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn12528
http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2007/2007GL030126.shtml
———–
Avalanches may increase
http://www.taiga.net/nce/schools/lessonplans/snowstudy_impacts.html
Avalanches may reduce
http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/igsoc/agl/2001/00000032/00000001/art00029;jsessionid=27gjw6f50jw2.alice
———–
“Declining Coral Calcification on the Great Barrier Reef”
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/323/5910/116.abstract
“Doom and Boom on a Resilient Reef”
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0005239
———–

Jimbo

“It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010). Debating them about the science is not an approach that is recommended.”

Yet he changed his speech after, I assume, reading about his copying issues from the so called ‘denier’ blogs. I hope Trenberth reads this:
Have you ever thought about if you are wrong about AGW? What if we enter a prolonged cooling trend lasting 20 years or more how foolish are you going to feel? Where will your career be then? Think about it and be more like Judith Curry – a believer who is not frightened of debate.

Ol’ Kevin is stirring the pot
To hide the heat inside that is not.
Don’t play his games
By reacting to names
Ask him to show what he’s got!

Jimmy Haigh says:
January 16, 2011 at 9:02 pm
So Trenberth’s getting more air miles on another jaunt to Europe. More CO2 needlessly pumped into the atmosphere… Don’t these guys have any conscience?
whether they have a concience is another debate, what this shows is he doesn’t believe his own rhetoric.

Mike Haseler

What this evangelical crusade by Trenberth really marks is the attempt by a group of postmodernist “scientists” to take over science and mould it to their own political ends (i.e. left wing, anti-nuclear, environmentalist & Marxist !). The key thing about postmodernist “scientists” are that like Trenberth and his rejection of the Null Hypothesis, they doesn’t accept the fundamentals of science like the scientific method and instead they think science can be based on subjective criteria a bit like political/environmental studies.
For anyone interested I urge you to read the following article (assuming it hasn’t been got at in the meantime by the “team”)
“The science wars were [ARE] a series of intellectual battles in the 1990s, between scientific realists and postmodernist critics, about the nature of scientific theory. The postmodernists questioned scientific objectivity, and undertook a wide-ranging critique of the scientific method and of scientific knowledge,…The scientific realists countered that objective scientific knowledge is real, and accused postmodernist critics of having little understanding of the science they were criticising.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_wars

Geoff Sherrington

One of the best apologies is from “A Fish Called Wanda”, in this trailer at about 57 seconds. Best in the full movie.
http://www.alltrailers.net/a-fish-called-wanda.html

Mockery is something the petty minded can not deal with and is so much better than violent overthrow. Sent this.
Dear Dr Trenberth,
Describing those with whom you disagree as “deniers” is counterproductive to your warming cause. I would so much more prefer the term “flat earther,” mainly on the grounds that I personally do not enjoy struggling up steep hills, even if it is to escape the inevitable 500m rise in sea level.
Yours sincerely,
XXXXXXXXX

David L

David Chappell says:
January 16, 2011 at 10:43 pm
“I will be on travel in Europe until 19 January 2011. [Bern ISSE 9-14; Grenoble ECRA 15-18] I will have only limited access to email.”
However, he does have sufficient access to amend his manuscript, apparently.”
I agree. That’s BS. These guys have email access 24/7 (except for short periods of time while in the air, going through security, etc.) otherwise they constantly check in. It’s a dodge tactic.

David L

Al Gored says:
January 16, 2011 at 11:50 pm
“It is important that climate scientists learn how to counter the distracting strategies of deniers (Hasselmann 2010).”
So. To justify his continuing use of the term “deniers” as a ‘scientist,’ he cites Hasselmann as his reference, as though that means anything. He didn’t directly quote him using that word. Did Hasselmann’s research demand its use?”
This struck me as well. Apparently it’s okay to continue to propagate offensive and inappropriate words by a simple general reference to someone else. And at the same time society feels it’s necessary to change a certain word in Mark Twain’s fiction.

marcoinpanama

Since Dr. Trenberth’s talk is about communicating with the public, I wrote to him mentioning how effective events like Pachauri’s defense of the 2035 “mistake” was (God hath no rath like a woman scorned), or the current MET scandal is at creating long-term skeptics. (he agreed about Pachauri, didn’t know about the MET issue)
On the issue of deniars, I said:
“Finally, you should be careful about how you use the term denier. While
there are certainly people out there who have an anti-science agenda, it
would be better for you to address them specifically and call out their
lies so all could see and understand your concerns. You must also
recognize that there are millions of smart, educated scientists,
professional and amateur, who are just questioning the research in an
attempt to parse out the truth, in the best sense of the scientific
method. For you to lump all these people together under the term denier
smacks of McCarthyism and does not endear yourself to a large group of
potential supporters.”
He replied:
“I don’t. Scientists in general are skeptical, but deniers do not even
accept basic ‘facts’ such as the observed increased in CO2 and that humans
are responsible.”
He still doesn’t get the communication issue. By his definition, deniers would be the equivalent of flat-earthers at an orbital mechanics conference – not even worth paying attention to. But his continued use of the term further alienates the informed public and leads us away from a rational debate on the science.