The following letter has been sent to Chairman of the House Science Committee, Lamar Smith, regarding NOAA’s “pause buster” data shenanigans that we highlighted back in the summer of 2015.
The issue is with bad data, as Dr. Pat Michaels Dr. Richard Lindzen, and Dr. Chip Knappenberger observed related to the switch from buckets on a rope to engine water inlets for measuring sea surface temperature:
“As has been acknowledged by numerous scientists, the engine intake data are clearly contaminated by heat conduction from the structure, and as such, never intended for scientific use,” “Adjusting good data upward to match bad data seems questionable.”
I’ll say. As Bob Tisdale and I wrote back in June:
“If we subtract the ERSST.v3b (old) data from the new ERSST.v4 data, Figure 11, we can see that that is exactly what NOAA did.”
“It’s the same story all over again; the adjustments go towards cooling the past and thus increasing the slope of temperature rise. Their intent and methods are so obvious they’re laughable.”
The letter sent to Chairman Lamar Smith says:
“We, the undersigned, scientists, engineers, economists and others, who have looked carefully into the effects of carbon dioxide released by human activities, wish to record our support for the efforts of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology to ensure that federal agencies complied with federal guidelines that implemented the Data Quality Act,” some 300 scientists, engineers and other experts wrote to Chairman of the House Science Committee, Texas Republican Rep. Lamar Smith.
“In our opinion… NOAA has failed to observe the OMB [Office of Management and Budget] (and its own) guidelines, established in relation to the Data Quality Act.”
For those that don’t know, Federal agencies that collect data for public use and policy decision are required to adhere to the Data Quality Act by law. The purpose is to:
“…ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information, including statistical information.”
In my opinion, both NOAA (Karl and Peterson) and NASA (Gavin Schmidt) regularly flout this law. They need to be taken to task for it.
The letter follows along with a list of signatories.
January 25, 2016
Chairman Lamar Smith
Committee on Science, Space and Technology
House of Representatives
Congress of the United States
Dear Chairman Smith,
We, the undersigned, scientists, engineers, economists and others, who have looked carefully into the effects of carbon dioxide released by human activities, wish to record our support for the efforts of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology to ensure that federal agencies complied with federal guidelines that implemented the Data Quality Act. This is an issue of international relevance because of the weight given to U.S. Government assessments during international negotiations such as the IPCC.
The Data Quality Act required government-wide guidelines to “ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information, including statistical information,” that was disseminated to the public. Individual agencies, such as the EPA, NOAA and many others were required to issue corresponding guidelines and set up mechanisms to allow affected parties to seek to correct information considered erroneous.
We remind you that controversy previously arose over EPA’s apparent failure to comply with these guidelines in connection with its Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding, which was the subject of a report by the EPA Office of the Inspector General in 2011, see http://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-10/documents/20110926-11-p-0702.pdf In that case, EPA failed to comply with peer review requirements for a “highly influential scientific assessment” and argued that the Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding was not a “highly influential” scientific assessment. If it wasn’t, then it’s hard to imagine what would be. (For a contemporary discussion of the EPA’s stance see
In our opinion, in respect to Karl et al. 2015 and related documents, NOAA has failed to observe the OMB (and its own) guidelines, established in relation to the Data Quality Act, for peer review of “influential scientific information” and “highly influential scientific assessments.”
We urge you to focus on these important compliance issues. For your consideration we attach a draft letter which directly connects these issues to your committee’s prior request for documents.
(List of signatories and tag lines)
as of 1/20/16: Signatories_HCSST_20Jan2016 (PDF)
UPDATE: The final list of signatories is here: 300_Signatories (PDF)