The WUWT Hot Sheet for Tuesday August 27th, 2013


Bloomberg news: People Don’t Fear Climate Change Enough


With respect to the science of climate change, many experts regard the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as the world’s authoritative institution. A draft summary of its forthcoming report was leaked last week. It describes the panel’s growing confidence that climate change is real, that it is a result of human action, and that if the world continues on its current course, it will face exceedingly serious losses and threats (including a significant rise in sea levels by century’s end).

Climate change lacks other characteristics that spur public concern about risks. It is gradual rather than sudden. The idea of warmer climates doesn’t produce anger, revulsion or disgust. Depletion of the ozone layer was probably the most closely analogous environmental concern; public attention to that problem was easier to mobilize because of fears of a huge rise in skin cancer.

In this light, it should not be surprising if people don’t get much exercised by the IPCC’s forthcoming report.  (h/t to milodonharlani)


WUWT reader Jimbo says:

Richard Tol is onto John Cook.He has written to the University of Queensland demanding all the data from Cook in an open letter.

I found that the consensus rate in the data differs from that reported in the paper. Further research showed that, contrary to what is said in the paper, the main validity test in fact invalidates the data. And the sample of papers does not represent the literature. That is, the main finding of the paper is incorrect, invalid and unrepresentative.Furthermore, the data showed patterns that cannot be explained by either the data gathering process as described in the paper or by chance. This is documented. I asked Mr Cook again for the data so as to find a coherent explanation of what is wrong with the paper. As that was unsuccessful, also after a plea to Professor Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, the director of Mr Cook’s work place,…


WUWT reader Gareth Phillips says:


How environmental news works.

A) Headline, Puffin numbers show good recovery 19 July 2013

B) Puffin number in serious decline. 23 August 2013


The drifting “North pole” cam is back to its frozen state, not a hint of water:


Meanwhile, after the coldest summer on record for the DMI dataset, 80N and above temperatures are below the freezing point of seawater and headed down at a normal pace now.



Time for the BBC to ban the ‘D’ word?

It was at it again this morning on one of its regular Scientists: Aren’t They Marvellous?!!! programmes, this one presented by a particularly fulsome and slobbering Jim Al Khallili. [The audio is here but for God’s sake keep a towel handy to wipe off all the drool. Oh, and a sick bag too.] Khallili was giving the O Mighty Genius, How Shall We Praise Thee? treatment to a dreary-sounding woman named Joanna Haigh who is apparently head of physics at Imperial College London. Presumably Freeman Dyson and Richard Lindzen weren’t available.

Anyway, when she’s not swanning around her department radiating goodness, light, truth and beauty (so various recorded tributes told us), Haigh is a fervent believer in the IPCC, in man-made global warming, sections on “climate change” in Geography GCSEs and so on. She also has no time for climate sceptics who, she said, she prefers to call “deniers”.

Once might have been forgivable. But Al Khallili used in his intro too, for all the world as if the very nature of climate scepticism is so outre and unacceptable that it is perfectly acceptable to dismiss such miscreants with whatever insults one will.


At Bishop Hill in comments, apparently a number of people complained, and one of them got some results from Joanna Haigh.

I fired off an email before the programme ended. After a courteous discussion (confined to the use of the word “denier”) Prof Haigh has agreed to avoid the term in future.

Aug 27, 2013 at 2:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterSkeptical Chymist
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August 27, 2013 2:55 pm

You’re welcome.
Notice also the WaPo editorial, a position unlikely to be revised under new owner Bezos.
The IPCC drumbeat has begun, touting the parade of deadbeat government-funded liars.

August 27, 2013 3:04 pm

Puffin numbers : Interesting how one article had actual facts and data, while the other was strictly a puff story (no pun intended)

August 27, 2013 3:05 pm

I hope that Royal Society President Paul Nurse follows Joanna Haigh’s good example in eschewing “denier”.
Luckily for the advancement of science, phlogiston denier Lavoisier didn’t have to rely on government funding for his chemical research, hence no need to worry about offending the powerful phlogiston lobby.

August 27, 2013 3:06 pm

Am I missing the catastrophic sea level rise data???? Can someone link me to data that shows more than 10″ per century increases???? Is this more or less than what has been seen in centuries past???? How will this catastrophic sea level rise occur when temps are stable????? Such a quandary …

August 27, 2013 3:07 pm

“In this light, it should not be surprising if people don’t get much exercised by the IPCC’s forthcoming report.”
But, we are exercised–the planets are aligned, the insects are attuned, the birds have already flown to Mars.
We are all going to die tonight!
(There, have I added to the fear-mongering enough?)

August 27, 2013 3:42 pm

I think the public should by now have learned that they are being lied to all of the time; they had more than a decade to get used to it.
In a short while we’ll all be forced to publically praise the authorities at every opportunity or its off to forced medication; at which point everybody will simply always say the opposite of what he means to say.
“Comrade, have we aleady achieved perfect socialism?”
“What? No, it’ll get much worse.”

August 27, 2013 3:45 pm

So, as the temperature trend stays zero, the government scientists+media simply do a 1/0 and get infinity; and accordingly; are more certain than ever that climate change is happening. Maybe they’re already using this “saying the opposite” tactic to avoid being Breitbarted/Hastingsified.

August 27, 2013 3:51 pm

I have yet to see the evil in warmer temperatures. The alternative (colder temperatures) seems to be much worse.

August 27, 2013 3:54 pm

” It describes the panel’s growing confidence that climate change is real ”
If they weren’t confident 15 years ago, WTF was Kyoto about?

Lauren R.
August 27, 2013 3:56 pm

Has the IPCC ever NOT been confident that humans are the major cause of global warming? What does “growing confidence” mean? They were 90% confident back in 1990 and now they’re 95% confident 24 years later? With so much more science on climate change in the last two decades, why is the public less confident now that humans are the major cause of global warming?

August 27, 2013 3:56 pm

Commenter nickr at Delingpole’s blog.
“I remember back in 1972 one of my history masters discussing the self-evident truth of the 1890s. This received wisdom predicted that before long London would be overwhelmed by horse manure.
A few years later with the electric tramcar and the internal combustion engine this predicted future of a London buried under horseshit disappeared and became utterly laughable. However, for a while it was taken very seriously.
Today, there is still plenty of horseshit around and much of it appears to emanate from the mouths of the “experts” that the BBC continues to sponsor in its supposedly impartial output.”

August 27, 2013 4:39 pm

OOPS. That North Pole camera shot is from April!
The current shot is definately all snow and ice–but that’s not it.

August 27, 2013 4:51 pm

We don’t fear climatechange enough? I was disappointed that said article did not actually provide valid reasons for fear.

August 27, 2013 4:58 pm

Back in March a book came out called The End of Power: From Boardrooms to Battlefields and Churches, Why Being in Charge Isn’t What It Used to Be. With financing through the Carnegie Foundations it kindly informs us we are to be the governed and need to get used to the idea of turning over power to governments to tackle problems like AGW and overpopulation.
I explained it here . The NGOs make AGW the excuse for all their fund raising. Connected Big Business has been told go along and regulators will include you in public/private partnerships. The OECD and UNESCO and other UN entities have a lot of tax free salaries and pensions promised and these people need something to oversee. Like Happiness and Well-being. I am not kidding. And the politicians at all levels have been told they get to plan the new economy.
The vision of the future attached to AGW promises to support all major urban areas in perpetuity despite rampant dysfunction and federal revenue sharing is now geared to pushing regional equity and green growth/ICLEi visions.
There has to be warming due to humans in the IPCC report. There’s an entire unstable House of Cards staked on it.

Dave Wendt
August 27, 2013 5:07 pm

There’s only one thing left to be said…So long and thanks for all the fish!

Scottish Sceptic
August 27, 2013 5:10 pm

Today after the Haigh libel, was the first time in a while I’d got involved in climate for a while. So, for a laugh I went to Wikipedia to see what the climate zealots have been up to recently. Couldn’t see much doing. The last few comments looked like they were automated bots about grammar or something. So, read a few comments in the talk page.These re-iterated what many sceptics have said many times: “the whole article is too long, too one sided and too complex for anyone to read”.
The reply was the usual “they aren’t one of us so we will not only ignore them, but also hide their comments”. I made a feeble attempt at replying but found I really couldn’t be bothered — I don’t expect I will go back to look at any replies as I doubt anyone reads them these days.
So, it looks very much as if we sceptics have won … but not at all in the way I imagined. The eco-zealots in their enthusiasm to evangelise the word have pissed off everyone else … and now that even mother nature is not on their side … the eco-zealots have all gone elsewhere (I presume to save the badgers or other such things).
It really is beginning to look like a dusty old ruin with some numpty called “NewsandEventsguy” who looks like a front for Connolley and is quite incapable of changing anything. Now the article is clearly outdated and of almost no interest to anyone except a few wet-behind the ears students forced to write an “essay” on something they have no real interest in but no one has yet removed from the syllabus. (I say essay, but as few seem capable of spelling or even stringing together a sentence, I doubt their “essay” can have many words which aren’t cut and pasted)

Cynical Scientst
August 27, 2013 5:23 pm

Wasn’t the IPCC report leaked ages ago? So this would be … a releak?

Scottish Sceptic
August 27, 2013 5:23 pm

DirkH says: “I think the public should by now have learned that they are being lied to all of the time;”
Not quite that, but I met a lorry driver and started talking about their loads. He told me he hauled wind parts and then spontaneously (without any prompting from me) called them Alex Salmond’s folly.
It was only afterwards, that the full enormity of this hit home, because of all the people, those who I’d expect to be most in favour are those who are making money from wind. So, if this guy is so hostile, then it is almost certain that most other people like him are hostile.
The only problem of course, is that this guy nor those like him are not in power … but come the election when the politicians go through their ritual of pretending to listen … they might just hear a few home truths about what people really think of Alex Salmond’s folly (I love that phrase … Alex Salmond’s folly … in ten years, I can see that all anyone remembers about this guy is that he failed to get Scottish independence and that he is responsible for all the rusting lumps of metal littering Scotladn)

Bill Illis
August 27, 2013 5:30 pm

Tracks leading up to the North Pole Webcam#1 on August 5th. Speculation is they are from a polar bear that circled around for awhile and then came back 5 hours later and swatted the camera down so it is stuck in the snow now. Hard to tell they are from a polar bear.
On the other hand, just 5 minutes before these tracks showed up, Webcam #1 mysteriously malfunctions right where the tracks were being made.
Alright just having some fun with this. Webcam #2, however, is still working and shows no signs of the polar bear on August 5th. A little above Zero right now at 84N lined up with the Fram Strait.

Gunga Din
August 27, 2013 5:42 pm

” People Don’t Fear Climate Change Enough”
Recommended action: Call the University of Oregon and see if someone there knows how to up the voltage on our cattle prods.

August 27, 2013 6:41 pm

Poor Tom Midgley. He didn’t even get a mention in this. Maybe it’s best we leave him out of the conversation but aren’t there still companies producing CFC’s for parts of the world or did that just end?

August 27, 2013 6:41 pm

milodonharlani says:
August 27, 2013 at 3:05 pm

Luckily for the advancement of science, phlogiston denier didn’t have to rely on government funding for his chemical research, hence no need to worry about Lavoisier offending the powerful phlogiston lobby.

Lavoisier did offend the powerful government lobby (that lobby whose spokesman leaders in academia and government were exemplified by Rousseau – the “model” of today’s socialist who declared after his trial “France has no need for scientists.”) Lavoisier’s arrest, trial, and execution did not need peer-review: The entire affair was over in less than three hours.

Frank K.
August 27, 2013 6:50 pm

“Bloomberg news: People Don’t Fear Climate Change Enough.”
Fear is all the warmists have now. It must be a miserable existence waking up in fear everyday.

Brian H
August 27, 2013 7:22 pm

The Bloomburg link now gives 404, but this should work:

Brian H
August 27, 2013 7:25 pm

Bloomberg, of course.

August 27, 2013 7:32 pm

Fearing Climate Change.
The Bloomberg article includes this second observation: ……. people tend to be especially focused on risks or hazards that have an identifiable perpetrator, and for that reason produce outrage. Warmer temperatures are a product not of any particular human being or group, but the interaction between nature and countless decisions by countless people. There are no obvious devils or demons — no individuals who intend to create the harms associated with climate change. For terrorism, a “we-they” narrative fits the facts; in the context of climate change, those who are the solution might well also be, or seem to be, the problem. In these circumstances, public outrage is much harder to fuel.
In fact there is a lot of talk about engendering disgust, indeed another sentence quotes The idea of warmer climates doesn’t produce anger, revulsion or disgust.
Why is fomenting this relevant? Doesn’t Prof Cass R. Sunstein not understand the manipulative and motivated reasoning and how transparent the corruption of this thinking?

August 27, 2013 7:35 pm

Every Washington Post article about climate is an opportunity to educate readers of the Post to the actual science.

Theo Goodwin
August 27, 2013 7:54 pm

Seems to me that Sunstein made a pretty good case that there is little or no reason to fear climate change.
However, if Sunstein wants to take the matter more seriously, I have a suggestion. Please explain what reason there is to believe in climate change aside from the propaganda agency known as the IPCC and a bunch of so-called climate scientists whose models were always toys and who have admittedly not solved the “forcings and feedbacks” riddle that must be solved if we are to know how much warming CO2 can cause.
The only reasons to believe in CAGW are the propagandistic output of the IPCC, the worthless models, and the failed attempt to attach an empirical meaning to the “forcings and feedbacks” claimed for CO2. There is no evidence available to the ordinary citizen or the ordinary Phd. There is no mass movement of people calling for relief.

Crispin in Waterloo
August 27, 2013 8:05 pm

I think it is worth pointing out that there is some clever wording in the AR5 claim for ‘certainty’.
Look carefully: AR4 said that there was a certain level of confidence (90%?) that “mankind was largely responsible for the temperature rise over the last 50 years”.
AR5 doesn’t say that. It doesn’t extend that claim. The new version says they are “95% confident that mankind is responsible for at least half of that warming. That is a heck of a climb-down.
But note how the spin is being placed on the message. It is being advertised as increased confidence instead of being a little more sure that about half the warming is anthropogenic. I am not sure they are weasel words because it is plainly stated: humans have apparently caused a lot less warming than was hitherto claimed, so says the IPCC.
They could be even more certain if the AG contribution was reduced. Maybe 98% sure it is AGW if it is only 20% of warming. If they could get to 1% of warming I’ll bet 100% agreement is possible.

Gunga Din
August 27, 2013 8:46 pm

Crispin in Waterloo says:
August 27, 2013 at 8:05 pm

I know I’m 100% sure I’m more than skeptical of anything they say.

Michael Combs
August 27, 2013 9:35 pm

The IPCC’s ever increasing confidence reminds me of my Budget Officer experiences at a US Air Force base in England at the tail end of the Vietnam War. Funding was tight, but at the end of each fiscal year we would get additional funds (called “fall-out”) as excesses in better funded programs were identified and reprogrammed to short-funded bases. In 1970 we got a large measure of fall-out money in the last month of the fiscal year after being told all year that we wouldn’t. At the beginning of fiscal year 1971 we were told that this year we really would not get any fall-out money; we got more than in 1970. In 1972 we were told we really, really would not get any fall-out money; we got twice as much as in 1971. You guessed it. In 1973 we were told we really, really, really would not get any fall-out money; in the last month of the fiscal year we made out like Saudi potentates. The IPCC engages in the same rhetoric; they are really, really, really, really confident now. Why? Because they have left themselves nowhere to go. Once you are really confident about something, the only thing you can be is even more confident. Any less sows doubt amongst the masses, who only believe what they are told with conviction and passion. As with Ponzi schemes, the IPCC has to keep doubling down on future catastrophic scenarios to distract attention from the reality that the IPCC are natural climate change deniers. Climate change has always been, is now, and ever more will be. But the IPCC says this time it’s different and for proof offer half of half a century of modest warming, which follows two centuries of the warming rebound from the Little Ice Age. And follows four warmer periods in the past 10,000 years. “There are none so blind as those who will not see”; for the IPCC and its acolytes, belief has clouded vision.

August 27, 2013 9:44 pm

Sunstein’s life’s work has always seemed to me to involve the manipulation of idiots, such as his efforts to get people elected whose own life’s work has in turn involved becoming adulated by idiots. But what blooming idiot wants to do either?

August 27, 2013 10:14 pm

milodonharlani says: “Notice also the WaPo editorial, a position unlikely to be revised under new owner Bezos.”
“Careful not step on WaPoo.”

gopal panicker
August 27, 2013 11:11 pm

there is a Wapoo road in Charleston SC

August 28, 2013 12:10 am

The puffin comparison it truly interesting, because there was another story on NPR about a week ago, about puffins, no less, in North America, and how they were suffering because the primary food of the chicks was being driven north. The replacement fish, butterfish, is supposedly too large for the chicks to eat.
I did a quick search on puffins and climate change, and it appears that they are the poster-animal this summer for climate change. Articles all over the media, in the UK and the US, about puffins and how their chicks are all dying because their preferred food is too big to swallow The arguments all sound similar, like someone wrote one heart-rending press release, with local options to use the preferred fish in North America or in the UK, depending on the target market for the article.
I wonder if Fenton Communication has had a hand in this…

August 28, 2013 1:50 am

Only now do I realize that the Bloomberg article is from the inventor of the government sockpuppet, husband of current UN ambassador for the US, and newly appointed member of the NSA oversight comittee, Cass “Comrade” Sunstein.
This would have deversed an extra exclaimer. As his pontifications are not from some random Fellow of Climate Communications like the esteemed Comrade John Cook – Comrade Cass is smack bang up there in the centre of the politbüro elite!

August 28, 2013 8:06 am

@geran says:
August 27, 2013 at 3:07 pm
The insects are “attuned”? And here I thought they were going about their daily business. Lots of bees going after the flowers, mosquitoes biting and ants crawling. Even the birds (ours haven’t left the planet yet) are around. Thankfully the majority of people are ignoring the fear-mongering. Now – to get that majority to stir up enough to kick out the money-wasting politicians and “scientists”. It seems that they are busy doing other stuff – like living and trying to earn a living.

Theo Goodwin
August 28, 2013 10:27 am

DirkH says:
August 28, 2013 at 1:50 am
Frightening, isn’t it? Yes, he has acquired an amazing amount of power. And he is just another professor. Not many years ago, the ascension of someone with his “professional experience” and intellectual bent would have brought forth powerful criticism.

Grey Lensman
August 29, 2013 12:13 am

Seems the BBC getting it wrong again.
Melting ice reveals clothing and tools. I.E. it was warmer then!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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