An interview with Dr. Susan Crockford on the Harvey et al. attack paper over polar bear research

Dr. Susan Crockford, photo from 2011

As many readers know, there was a erroneous and malicious paper recently published by The journal Bioscience titled Internet blogs, polar bears, and climate-change denial by proxy, (Harvey et al. 2017) covered here and here by WUWT, along with a request for retraction here.

The person who was the focus of the 14 authors of the Harvey et al. paper was Dr. Susan Crockford, and I decided to send her a series of interview questions so that she could tell her side of the story. She graciously responded within 48 hours of my request. This Q&A is unedited in content, with only two spelling and punctuation corrections plus font style changes to fit the format of this website. – Anthony Watts

Q. Why do you think this paper by Harvey et al, with 14 authors, specifically names you?

I suspect it’s because earlier this year I published a rather scathing scientific critique of the predictive model used to get polar bears placed on the endangered species list in the US (Crockford 2017), which is primarily the work of Steve Amstrup. Although my paper can be reviewed easily online, none of the scientists whose work I criticized have challenged my claims. I believe that instead, they enlisted the help of the other 13 authors of the Harvey et al. paper denigrate my reputation in the hope that this will reduce the amount of influence I am clearly having with the public. Previously, they tried enlisting the media for this purpose but it didn’t go too well. The most obvious example happened in February 2015, when they got the UK-based Carbon Brief to challenge my claims after I was given a bit of attention by the UK media.

But that was obviously not enough, since I doubt if it did any good at all. This Harvey et al. paper is their attempt at “trench warfare” (their words, not mine), to knock me off my Internet high-horse. I think they are particularly frustrated with the Internet as a source of information because they can’t control it.

Q. Has any of the 14 authors replied to you, queried you, or otherwise contacted you prior to this publication?

No. I heard about the paper from a journalist requesting a comment the day before the paper was published and she sent an advance copy of it a few hours before the embargo was lifted.

Q. What are your credentials in zoology?

I have a Ph.D. and more than 40 years of experience. I have written more than 30 papers for peer-reviewed journals or book chapters on a variety of topics, including evolution, paleoecology, genetics, and zoogeography (how and why the distribution of animals changes over time). I am a general interest zoologist and that has allowed me to build a successful career outside academia: I have a firm foundation in zoology and read widely across the discipline. Evolution and evolutionary theory are my primary interests and I take my cue from the point once made (Dobzhansky1973) that nothing in biology makes sense without evolution.

Q. What relevant publications have you made related to the zoology of Arctic animals, and specifically, ursus maritimus?

The dissertation I wrote for my Ph.D. on speciation including a discussion of polar bears (Crockford 2004). In addition, I have an article on evolution in a peer-reviewed journal in which polar bears are prominently featured (Crockford 2003), and two official comments, with references, on polar bear hybridization (which is how these were handled in these two journals at the time (although some have argued these are not strictly peer reviewed, they were vetted by the journals at the time: it wasn’t like a posting a comment at a blog, they had to be approved). I also have a paper in a peer-reviewed book chapter on ringed seals, the primary prey of polar bears (Crockford and Frederick 2011), and a peer-reviewed journal article on the paleohistory of Bering Sea ice, the habitat of Chukchi Sea polar bears (Crockford and Frederick 2007).

While it is true that these peer-reviewed papers are not the result of field or laboratory research on polar bears and most do not focus exclusively on polar bears, they do deal with the history of polar bear habitat, the ecology and physiology of their primary prey, and the evolution of polar bears as a species (which requires a firm understanding of their zoogeography, ecology, genetics, physiology, behaviour, and life history). I don’t believe that the definition of a peer-reviewed paper on polar bears implies it be only about polar bears. These topics are all valid aspects of polar bear biology and cannot be dismissed as irrelevant to my expertise. The citations to these papers are listed on my blog “about” page, but I’ve copied them here.

Crockford, S.J. 2004.“Animal Domestication and Vertebrate Speciation: A Paradigm for the Origin of Species” (filed at the National Library under “Zoology”).

Crockford, S. J. 2003. Thyroid hormone phenotypes and hominid evolution: a new paradigm implicates pulsatile thyroid hormone secretion in speciation and adaptation changes. International Journal of Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A 135(1):105-129. [peer reviewed journal, includes polar bear evolution discussion]

Crockford, S. and Frederick, G. 2007. Sea ice expansion in the Bering Sea during the Neoglacial: evidence from archaeozoology. The Holocene 17 (6):699-706. [peer reviewed journal, an Arctic sea ice paper]

Crockford, S. J. 2012. Directionality in polar bear hybridization. [Official comment with references to Hailer et al. 2012], Science 336:344-347.

Crockford, S. J. 2012. Directionality in polar bear hybridization. [Official comment with references to Edwards et al. 2011], Current Biology 21: 1251-1258.

Crockford, S. J. and Frederick, G. 2011. Neoglacial sea ice and life history flexibility in ringed and fur seals. pg. 65-91 In T. Braje and R. Torrey, eds. Human and Marine Ecosystems: Archaeology and Historical Ecology of Northeastern Pacific Seals, Sea Lions, and Sea Otters. U. California Press, LA. [a peer reviewed book chapter]

I now have an intimate knowledge of the huge body of polar bear and Arctic sea ice literature because I have studied it for more than 10 years. My big-picture, evolutionary perspective and the fact that I am so well versed with the polar bear literature makes it possible for me to critically comment on recent polar bear papers, reports, and news stories with reference to previous work on the topic. I am also qualified to raise issues that are worth discussing regarding that body of knowledge, although that doesn’t mean everything I conclude is correct.

Q. How does a person become a “polar bear expert”? What qualifies people to comment on polar bears from a scientific basis? Is there an accredited degree program for becoming a “polar bear expert”?

Polar bear researchers usually have general degrees in zoology or biology, but might also have degrees in ecology, wildlife management, or conservation biology. In other words, their academic backgrounds might be quite general or they might be one of a number of subfields of biology that pertain to all species: a degree program in ecology or wildlife management provides background on a wide range of species. So, no, there is no degree program for becoming a “polar bear expert”.

Q. Are any of the 14 authors of the Harvey et al. paper certified as “polar bear experts” ?

Two of them are the most senior members of the specialty: Ian Stirling and Steven Amstrup. Both are a bit older than me. Ian Stirling did his undergraduate degree in zoology at the same university that I did (University of B.C. in Vancouver), only a few years earlier.

Q. The Harvey et al. paper has some glaring inaccuracies in it (according to people who have examined it and commented on it). Do you have any comment on those inaccuracies?

See my letter requesting a retraction of the paper, which you have conveniently copied on your site. One statement that’s particular galling is that I criticize the work of “real” polar bear experts without supporting evidence. Anyone who has read my blog knows this is far from the truth.

Here’s one example, from February 2015, within the time frame of their blog analysis, where I made my point with extensive quotes from the scientific literature and gave a rather substantial list of references (with links).

Q. If in fact the Harvey et al. paper has clear inaccuracies, how does such a paper get past “peer-review” which is designed to catch and correct such issues?

I think it is highly likely this paper was rushed through review and as a consequence, no one took a really close look at it. The misspelling of “principle” in “principal component analysis” should have been caught by a competent reviewer, for example (there were apparently three reviewers of this paper). That suggests there was little hope that more important errors would have been caught. In addition, it appears that no one who reviewed the paper saw the supporting data or the obvious errors in that document would have been corrected as well. I wonder if all 14 of the co-authors even saw that supporting data?

As Steve Mosher pointed out on another blog, Bioscience has particular requirements regarding multi-authored papers:

“Everyone listed as an author of an article must have made a substantial contribution to the manuscript. In the case of multiple-author contributions, please upload as a supplementary file a brief statement detailing the contribution of each author.

1) Authorship should be restricted to those individuals who have met each of three criteria: (a) made a significant contribution to the conception and design of the article or the analysis and interpretation of data or other scholarly effort, (b) participated in drafting the article or reviewing and/or revising it for content, and (c) approved the final version of the manuscript.

2) In the case of papers with multiple authors, the corresponding author has the responsibility for: (a) including as coauthors all those who meet the three criteria defined in part 1 of this policy and excluding those who do not; and (b) obtaining from all coauthors their agreement to be designated as such, as well as their approval of the final version of the manuscript. Of course, any person can refuse to be a coauthor if he or she elects to do so.

3) Coauthors assume full responsibility for all work submitted under their names and, as a coauthor, acknowledge that they meet each of the three criteria for authorship as defined in part 1 of this policy.

4) Honorary or courtesy authorships are inconsistent with the principles of this policy and, as such, are unacceptable.”

This makes me wonder what major contribution Michael Mann made to the paper. I would love to see the supplementary file submitted that details the contribution of each of these 14 authors.

Q. Is the “AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES” an appropriate place to publish such an article, or are there better places to publish articles about polar bear populations?

I can’t think of a journal that would be an appropriate venue for this paper. But then, this paper isn’t really about polar bear populations: it’s about trying to shut down dissenting voices and enforce a consensus of opinion on a scientific topic with a strong political component. Maybe there’s a journal for that but I’ve never heard of it.

Q. Have you ever seen a paper published in a zoology journal that would pass peer-review using pejorative labels such as “denier”?

No. And polar bear researchers – including Ian Stirling, Steve Amstrup and the ever-strident Andrew Derocher (the only one of the polar bear group who is really active on Twitter) – don’t use that kind of language in their peer-reviewed scientific papers, no matter how emphatic or passionate they might get about their conclusions. It’s hard to imagine what led Stirling and Amstrup to decide such reprehensible language was appropriate for a paper in this journal.

Q. There’s a lot of claims on reduced sea ice causing shrinking polar bear populations and that being an indicator of climate change. What’s the real history of polar bear populations over the last 50 years?

Fifty years ago polar bear numbers were low in many areas due to unregulated sport hunting. By 1960, they may have been reduced to between 5,000 and 15,000 animals worldwide (no one knows for sure, but we do know that a number of regions were being severely impacted – most of Russia, the Barents Sea, Western Hudson Bay, Southern Beaufort Sea – while other regions like the Central Canadian Arctic where most bears actually live may not have been impacted at all). An international treaty in 1973 stopped the most dangerous practices and by 1996, numbers had recovered so much that the IUCN Red List not longer considered them to be in trouble (officially “Least Concern”).

The evidence from surveys that count bears suggests that in most regions this recovery process is still taking place. Negative impacts on survival from the amount of summer sea ice reduction that has taken place so far have been minimal. The IUCN Red List in 2015 put the global population at 22,000-31,000 but oddly, even though Polar Bear Specialist Group members wrote the 2015 assessment, they don’t use that number on their website. Instead, they say there are about 25,000 bears on average.

Q. Are polar bears adaptable in their feeding habits? Is sea-ice an absolute requirement for their survival?

Polar bears are relatively adaptable. They will scavenge, for example, or try new prey that presents itself, like dolphins trapped by ice in Svalbard a few years ago. Sea ice is an absolute requirement for their survival but they don’t need it year round. Polar bears need sea ice in the fall through spring, with spring being the critical season. Bears eat little in the summer whether they are on the ice or on land, and eat little through the cold and dark of the Arctic winter. Most food is consumed in the spring (2/3 of the yearly total) and the second most important time is fall, when bears that have fasted over the summer can recoup some of the weight they have lost. This ability to fast through the summer as well as through the depth of winter is clearly what has made it possible for polar bears to survive previous warm periods that had low amounts of summer sea ice.

Q. How much money do you receive to publish on polar bears (both in literature and on the Internet as commentary) and what are the sources for such grants?

First off, no one pays me to write my blog: I don’t even have a donate button. The Global Warming Policy Foundation has on several occasions approached me to write summary briefing papers that are largely compilations of material from by blog posts. Those were reviewed by board members and I got paid for the final product. One exception is my Arctic Fallacy paper, which was a piece of original work that I wrote first because I wanted it written. I approached GWPF and asked if they would publish it. Several of their board members reviewed it (tough reviewers!) and I was paid for the final product. The fees paid for these articles only partly compensates for the time taken to write them and has varied for different products, generally £500-3500.

I have written a few articles for Range Magazine, for which I am usually paid US$300.

All of the ballyhoo about me being on the “payroll” of The Heartland Institute (or “supported” by them) that keeps making the rounds is nonsense. From 2011 to 2013, I was paid $750 a month (the equivalent of one day’s income for me, on a contract), to make summaries of published papers relating to vertebrate animals (my specialty) that I thought might not be covered by the IPCC report.

These were to be included in the NIPCC report to ensure that a balanced perspective of the literature was available to the public, which the Heartland Institute published. Heartland had no input on what papers I looked at or what I wrote. The monthly payments ended (as did the contract) when my work on the NIPCC report was finished in early 2014. I have not received any money from Heartland since, except for travel expenses to their 2017 conference.

I must say it is insulting beyond words to suggest, as many continue to do, that the output of a respected scientist like me could be “bought” in this way at all, let alone bought so cheaply. Those who make those accusations imply I am not just a whore, but a cheap whore!

Ian Stirling took tens-to-hundreds-of-thousands of dollars worth of oil money during the course of his career to carry out his polar bear research in the Arctic, yet no one questions if this biased his work.

That is the correct response: I have no reason to believe it ever influenced his work one way or another. Despite my criticisms of what Stirling has done recently, I have never suggested that what kind of organization paid for his research over the years ever biased his results.

I have worked on contracts for most of my 40+ year career but no one has ever accused me of bias before I took a contract from The Heartland Institute.

Q. In your estimate, how much grant money is there globally for polar bear research?

It has to be in the millions because Arctic research is so expensive. I did a post on this a few years ago that some might find interesting because it was inspired by a complaint that polar bear researchers are underfunded According to a presentation by Andrew Derocher and Ian Stirling, in 2011 there were 29 people employed full time to do polar bear research worldwide, most with government organizations. Graduate students and those without full time jobs get their salaries from research grants. But full time researchers can’t do field work without help, so if there is no funding for students, the work doesn’t get done even if the senior researchers are getting paid. Now, there are even more students working on polar bears than ever before and there is an even greater demand for research funds. If grant money dries up so will field and laboratory research.

Q. If the consensus conclusions about polar bear populations and sea ice loss are wrong, why do you think more people such as yourself have not come forward to point out such inaccuracies of the conclusions?

Just look at the flack I take! Look at what the Polar Bear Specialist Group did to Mitch Taylor in 2009 (recent review here: In my opinion, what the PBSG did to Mitch was a clear warning to any other colleagues who thought they should speak out: do so and you’re out. The PBSG operates on consensus (it states as much in their terms of reference) and the way you get consensus when there are dissenting opinions is to coerce, bribe, or bully to make everyone fall into line. If the dissenters won’t toe the line, expulsion is the only answer. There is nothing democratic about it.

Feel free to add any additional comments or response you wish.

My letter of complaint and request for a retraction of the Harvey et al. paper has now been published. Readers will note that I included a number of emails that show exactly what polar bear researchers have been hiding from the public since 2012: that a high-level IUCN Red List official heavily criticized the model used to put polar bears on the endangered species list in 2008. The Harvey et al. paper implied that no one else besides me had ever questioned the work of “real” polar bear experts but co-authors Stirling and Amstrup both know that’s not true. Now the evidence is out there for all to see.

I might never have done anything with those emails. I got them too late in 2014 to derail the renewal of the ESA listing for polar bears and it was not obvious how they would make an impact all by themselves. But the publication of the Harvey et al. paper created the context I needed to show the world what these groups (PBSG, IUCN, USGS, USFWS) have been up to while pretending to be dedicated scientists whose only interest is the preservation of polar bears.

As of late in the day 6 December, I have not heard from the Bioscience editors or any of the co-authors.


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December 7, 2017 12:26 am

I think there has to be some serious sexism goin on in climate science. Mann seemingly can’t cope with strong willed women contradicting him. This is the second promo]inant female critique after Judith Curry to be got at.

John of Cloverdale, WA, Australia
Reply to  JuatAnotherPoster
December 7, 2017 2:20 am

Credit to these 2 ladies that they don’t play the easy sexism card. They take it on the chin and fight back. Good luck Dr. Crockfort, you have many supporters out there. And thanks to Anthony.

Jay Hope
Reply to  John of Cloverdale, WA, Australia
December 7, 2017 10:28 am

Yes, John, credit to these ladies!

Reply to  JuatAnotherPoster
December 7, 2017 2:23 am

Dear Reader,

Please google “Prof. dr. Jeff Harvey” and view a picture of what appears to be Jeff, along with some details of his work.

And do you, dear reader, like moi, wonder what would possess a man of Jeff’s years (he has a white beard, after all) to choose, as his photo for a professional, technical site, a “selfie”, with him all got up as an age-inappropriate, retro-hippie, rock-star (luv the shades!) wannabe? So what’s the deal here, anyway? Are we, perhaps, lookin’ at someone, belatedly, albeit heroically, and in his own way, tryin’ to recast himself, late in life, as a “Cool Kid”, even as he wrestles with the demons, possibly school-nerd related, of his youth (kids can be so cruel)? Or what?

And then there’s Jeff’s guitar. I mean, like, I don’t know too much about guitars, but that sure looks like an electric guitar that Jeff’s slingin’ in that photo of his. And if my surmise is right, what’s the skinny here?–does Jeff maybe think he’s a privileged-white-dork, too good for a carbon-free acoustic guitar? But who knows, for sure. And, again, if my surmise right, and Jeff’s “axe” is, indeed, an electric guitar, doesn’t he need to get a power cord and plug that gitfiddle in? You know, like, how Jimi Hendrix used to plug in his electric guitar, and everything!

And on the same site we see that Jeff’s areas of expertise are “Life history strategies in parasitoids and hyperparasitoids” and “plant-herbivore-parasitoid interactions”.

“Life history strategies in parasitoids”?….Hmmm…well I’m not gonna claim that I’m some sort of ivory-tower Mr. Smarty-Pants, and everything, but unless I miss my guess, I’m thinkin’ this area of Jeff’s expertise involves the study of greenwashed, trough-seeking good comrades in on the Gaia-hustle deal.

“Plant-herbivore-parasitoid interactions”…Hey! no question what this area of Jeff’s expertise is all about! And let me just say that it’s about time that the “academic community” is takin’ note of the “Vegan Flatulence”, greenhouse-gas plague that the lefty-puke vegetarians have unleashed on that precious, fragile “blue marble”, that we all call our own dear planet Earth!

And is it just moi, or does anyone else think it odd that the eco-flake hive-bozos are all, without apparent exception, a bunch of truly strange, possibly even mutant weirdos? I mean, like, really!

Reply to  mike
December 7, 2017 2:43 am

Wait until Jeff find out the truth about Santa and flying reindeer.

In the meantime…

Nigel S
Reply to  mike
December 7, 2017 3:34 am

Prof. Brian Cox is a similar ‘rock god’ scientist (he was in two real bands too for extra points).

Reply to  mike
December 7, 2017 10:54 am

Brian Cox is a tart.

Reply to  mike
December 7, 2017 6:06 pm

nope, not just you mike. you are spot on.

Andy Pattullo
Reply to  JuatAnotherPoster
December 7, 2017 8:51 am

When your best feature is a flaccid hockey stick of diminishing prominence any strong woman looks like a threat.

Jay Hope
Reply to  Andy Pattullo
December 7, 2017 10:32 am

Ha ha. Wonder if Mr Coxie has learned about lunar phases yet, or if he still thinks the Moon sometimes looks ‘like a banana’ because of Earth’s shadow. Stick to pop music, boy!

Carbon BIgfoot
Reply to  JuatAnotherPoster
December 7, 2017 12:53 pm

After having seen Dr.Crockford at the Heartland Conference I decided to give my four great grand children copies of her Polar Bear books designed for children as Christmas presents.

That’s how you deal with this nonsense. Everyone on this site I highly recommend you purchase copies for your children for this Christmas Season to help Dr. Crockford.

Reply to  Carbon BIgfoot
December 7, 2017 1:32 pm

Great thought but I’m afraid you have ordered the book for older teens rather than the one for 7 years olds and up, which is called “Polar Bear Facts & Myths” and has a blue cover.

So get them both! Outstanding Survivors will be ready and waiting for them when they are ready (which might be sooner than you think).

Here’s another idea, if you have kids who are learning French or German at school: get a copy of Facts & Myths in English AND French (or English AND German) and let them compare the text.

It all helps support the work I do and is much appreciated.


Carbon BIgfoot
Reply to  Carbon BIgfoot
December 8, 2017 4:42 am

Susan I actually order both as my oldest are 10 & 13. The youngest are 7 & 5. The oldest help the younger ones read and understand the Polar Facts & Myths. I’m also going to buy and donate both to our local school district elementary, intermediate and high school libraries.
Thank you for helping young minds learn the truth.

Jay Hope
Reply to  Carbon BIgfoot
December 11, 2017 12:59 am

Good idea, CarbonB!

Santa Baby
Reply to  JuatAnotherPoster
December 15, 2017 8:48 am

She is up against Neomarxism promotion their radical change of Society trough politicized “science”. It’s not about polar bears. Polar bears are among many just the means to promote leftist change of society.

Warren Blair
December 7, 2017 12:32 am

Read this . . .
then have a chat to . . .
Daniel T. Ostas, J.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Legal Studies
Harlow Chair in Business Ethics
Price College of Business
University of Oklahoma
Norman, OK 73019

December 7, 2017 12:33 am

Belief and “Denial” are the words of zealots, not scientists.

The fact that you have taken on the climate establishment and criticized their failed doomsday theories, with regards to their favourite catastrophe mascot – the cuddly polar bear – “with supporting evidence is precisely why these “leading researchers” feel so threatened and why the paper had to be written.”

It is not surprising that you are being targeted by serial smear merchants like Michael E Mann et al. How dare anyone question their religion and threaten its veracity with solid data and evidence?!

You’ve hurt them and their melting credibility even more with your excellent, objective, data-driven science. Well done Susan!

The truth really does hurt.

Peter Miller
December 7, 2017 12:42 am

Sounds like another classic case of klimate alarmists trying to enforce their philosophy of:

“Don’t confuse me with the facts, my mind is made up.”

Joel O’Bryan
December 7, 2017 12:46 am

”Maybe there’s a journal for that but I’ve never heard of it.”

With the abysmal state of climate science, Nature or Science journals and their editors are both up to the task of a political hit job-smear paper. Powerful, very deep moneyed concerns are at work now trying to undermine the RedTram/Blue Team push, the Trump US withdrawal from Paris, the Pruitt EPA rein-in.

For them on the Climate Change – Left eco-religion, one must recognize it is desparate times for them. They never saw Trump coming until he won. Now it is down to desperate measures.
Very desparate measures. Very desparate times.

Reply to  Joel O’Bryan
December 7, 2017 3:44 pm

I have terminated my subscriptions to “Science”, “Nature” and all their subordinate “journals” because they have become nothing more than political propaganda publishing agencies. I’ve done the same with the 10 “professional” organizations of which I used to be a member.

December 7, 2017 1:12 am

Dr. Susan, I am a man who has scientific heroes. Dr. Spencer. Dr. Christy. Dr. Singer. Dr. Soon. And you. Folks who do science the right way and are willing to defend it in public. You were on my list of heroes even before this recent scurrilous attack, and now, even more so.

Yours is a voice of sanity and reason in these parlous times, and it is most welcome.

My very best wishes to you and yours,


Ian Magness
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 7, 2017 1:26 am

I would like to second all of that Willis.
All power to your elbow Dr Crockford!

Nigel S
Reply to  Ian Magness
December 7, 2017 3:28 am

Yes, and all with style and wit, very impressive!

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 7, 2017 7:40 am

Well said Willis, and congratulations Dr. Crockford on your integrity and your courage to speak the truth in this climate of academic deceit and intimidation.

The Harvey et al gang have disgraced themselves – that will be their lifelong legacy for this baseless attack.

Best regards, Allan MacRae, P.Eng.

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 7, 2017 8:01 am

+1 Willis

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 7, 2017 10:14 am

I think Susan should be appointed to the Red Team, as a polar bear specialist, by President Trump.

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 7, 2017 11:03 am

Yes, I’ll 3rd or 4th Willis’ comment.

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 8, 2017 12:06 am

Lets not forget Dr Curry.

December 7, 2017 1:25 am

The “climate change” swamp is very extensive and very deep and full of nasty creatures. You need a very thick skin (armour-plated) if you even so much as dip a toe into the swamp. Well done Dr Crockford for joining other luminaries who have taken the plunge and taken on the swamp-dwellers.

Reply to  Phillip Bratby
December 7, 2017 12:25 pm

They are terrifying monsters that have yet to find their place on the phyletic tree.
comment image

We all know which one Knobby is.

December 7, 2017 1:29 am

Ian Stirling can tell you everything about polar bears as they currently exist. He can’t tell you how the bears survived earlier warm periods. I’m not sure Susan Crockford can accurately explain that either. The point is that the bears did survive the earlier warmer periods and Crockford documents that. link

Reply to  commieBob
December 7, 2017 5:55 am

the survival of the polar bear 6-8 k years ago when the arctic was largely ice free defies the common wisdom that bears are dependant on ice for survival.

a likely explanation is that polar bears are smart enough to change their feeding habits when food supplies change. I suspect they are more. adaptable to climate change than many climate scientists.

john bills
December 7, 2017 1:50 am

where is Nick Stokes on this?

Frank K.
Reply to  john bills
December 7, 2017 7:39 am

No. The more important question is: “Where is Griff on this?”

You know, Griff, the renowned climate and polar bear expert, who shared her knowledge right here on WUWT!

Reply to  Frank K.
December 7, 2017 2:39 pm

I had a strange thought while reading this article. Griff did claim at least one of the things claimed in the smear paper. Is there a chance he’s one of the authors?

Some here know who he is. Just wondering aloud, it’s unlikely.

And as an aside, aren’t the new replacement trolls better than Griff?

Reply to  Frank K.
December 7, 2017 3:03 pm


Javert Chip
Reply to  Frank K.
December 7, 2017 5:25 pm

Griff’s absence makes quite a statement when presented the choice of defending his/her/its views in dialog with Dr Crockford, or turning moral coward and crawling deeper under his/her/its rock

I’m assuming Griff is using this “down time” to comb the Guardian to stay current on scientific developments, or developments, or whatever

December 7, 2017 1:52 am


Shows how desperate they are to cover up their lack of scientific ability that they have to group together & attack you in this manner.

But to me, one name stands out head & shoulders below the rest in the list of 14 authors –
The Mann has proved himself a ‘distinguished’ liar, cheat, fraudster & bully, a poor researcher & is a disgrace to science; all round, he looks like a thoroughly bad egg, (you get the picture).

Best wishes from the UK, stick with it as truth will out……eventually.
Nil illegitimo in desperandum carborundum

December 7, 2017 2:08 am

Dr. Crockford, will you consider legal action for defamation if they refuse to retract this paper ?

Reply to  rogertil
December 7, 2017 3:12 am

I’d happily contribute to Dr. Crockford’s legal fund, should the need arise. My guess is that many others would do the same.

Nigel S
Reply to  Don132
December 7, 2017 3:21 am

Stay away from lawyers and doctors is my advice.

Tom in Denver
Reply to  Don132
December 7, 2017 8:24 am


Reply to  Don132
December 7, 2017 2:41 pm

As they say here in Oz, “you don’t get much law for a quid!”

Reply to  rogertil
December 7, 2017 6:14 am

the legal system was designed to protect people with money from people without money. if you want justice compete the following: “justice is mine” sayeth the ____.

George Lawson
December 7, 2017 2:09 am

Q. Has any of the 14 authors replied to you, queried you, or otherwise contacted you prior to this publication?

No doubt the 14 authors are all invited to comment here on Susan Crockford’s response to their paper!

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Beijing
December 7, 2017 2:24 am

It is interesting that merely reporting the current status of polar bears vis-a-vis their improving numbers is taken to be a ‘denial of climate change’. What the heck is that? By ‘proxy’? How can talking about malfeasance in the counting and health and prognosis for polar bears constitute disagreement with claims that CO2 emissions from burning fossil fuels constitutes an existential threat to most living creatures on this planet? Isn’t that what ‘denial by proxy means’? If so, it’s nuts.

Even the title of the paper is conceptually deficient.

Javert Chip
Reply to  Crispin in Waterloo but really in Beijing
December 7, 2017 5:30 pm

Speaking of proxies, at least the gang of 14 wasn’t stupid enough to use tree rings as proxies for missing bears…were they?

NW sage
Reply to  Javert Chip
December 7, 2017 6:36 pm

I believe they did: It was their family tree – and they didn’t identify it.

Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 2:29 am

Mr Mann appears in the author list for the same reason that Pontius Pilate figures in the Catholic Credo: by juxtaposition. Pilate was alive at the same time. For a vainglorious character like Mann such happenstance appears to be reason enough to wriggle himself into anything and everything. The rest of mankind is therefore blessed that there is only one of him.

Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 2:57 am

If I recall correctly, what happened with Jesus had a huge impact on Pontius Pilate, a positive one or at least mixed. Not sure what it would take to turn mann around, don’t believe it is possible.

Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 3:33 am

The article seems to imply that there may be a Principal Component Analysis (PCA) involved.

Dr Mann’s expertise on PCA’s is very well documented in Montford’s book, appearing to the left on my screen while writing this, so I assume that he may be an important contributor to this smear.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  RPT
December 7, 2017 10:45 am

If by “expertise” you mean “artless implementation”, I can agree with that.

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 5:03 am

I have a rather low opinion of Mr Mann’s analytical powers.

Sheldon Walker
December 7, 2017 3:01 am

It looks like Alarmist Climate Scientists are using the serengeti strategy to attack their skeptical opponents. This is ironic, since Michael Mann was the first person to complain that his opponents were using the serengeti strategy to attack him. Is it ethical to use a strategy that you have publicly denounced?

Reply to  Sheldon Walker
December 7, 2017 3:50 am

Mann and ethics , an oxymoron
Although to be fair ethics and climate ‘science’ is an oxymoron as an area its shown a number of times that ‘effective PR’ is what is valued most , and if that means outright lying or scientific malpractice, then that is fine.

Reply to  knr
December 7, 2017 2:46 pm

As I read once in a scathing attack on a fellow lawyer:

“He gives the impression of having attended ethics classes, not as a means to learn ethics, but as a means to learn how to avoid them.”

(probably an inaccurate recall)

Non Nomen
Reply to  Sheldon Walker
December 8, 2017 2:27 am

Is it ethical to use a strategy that you have publicly denounced?

It perfectly is if you believe that you are at war you must win. He’d even risk a global th*rmonucl*ear war just to prove he is right. The only positive thing about that is that he wouldn’t survive either. Cockroaches? Who said that???

Nigel S
December 7, 2017 3:19 am

This seems to have more to do with psychogeography and psychozoology than zoogeography, territory protection really. Amstrup’s batchelor degree was forestry, perhaps that’s the connection to Mann. He got the Our Earth Bambi Award in 2012 (Wiki but I really hope it’s true!).

Lewis p Buckingham
December 7, 2017 3:35 am

It was with great interest that I have followed Dr Crockford’s analysis, that warming in the Arctic means other brown bears extend their territories and interbreed with Polar Bears, preventing Polar Bear destruction were they to breed in a closed population.
So but for such warming this population would become endangered.
Her work is an ornament to scientific inquiry.

Pity the poor ‘Yeti’, in its mountain redoubt.
‘“Brown bears roaming the high altitudes of the Tibetan Plateau, and brown bears in the western Himalayan mountains, appear to belong to two separate populations,” she said. “The split occurred about 650,000 years ago, during a period of glaciation.”

The two subspecies have probably remained isolated from one another ever since, despite their relative proximity, she speculated.’

‘Today, the Himalayan brown bear — Ursus arctos isabellinus — is listed as “critically endangered” on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List.’
It would appear that the biggest threat to the Himalayan Bear is grazing.

December 7, 2017 3:46 am

Even if you ignore its factual errors and its use of ‘name calling ‘ what stands out is, how did such a light weight paper really need ‘14’ authors .
The answer is of course is it did not , most probable only added their name to the list to either give it ‘weight ‘ or as a sign of their unquestioning loyalty to AGW. You have to finger Lew paper as being one of the real authors as it has all the hallmarks of his pseud-psychological and his down and dirty style which sadly has proved such a success for him. Other than that who actual wrote it is a good question .

Reply to  knr
December 7, 2017 5:45 am

Rather than “need” 14 authors, I’m more intrigued that 13 people signed on to such an appalling hit piece that is laden with so many errors. I assume it was mostly written by the 14th.

Reply to  Ric Werme
December 7, 2017 3:06 pm

Ric there was a group letter in support of RICO ? 2 years ago now.
The main authors got into a lot of trouble and the rest wished they had never got involved.
Maybe the same will happen here?
I forget.

Reply to  Ric Werme
December 7, 2017 6:23 pm

Yes, Jagadish Shukla. Leading an attack on climate “deniers” while misappropriating NSF research grants is not a good exercise in morality. I don’t know where all that wound up, it’s probably still in the court system. is one of many posts, but a pretty good one.

Reply to  knr
December 7, 2017 6:21 am

firing squads are used so everyone can deny it was their bullet. safety in numbers for people who would otherwise be too afraid.

Non Nomen
Reply to  knr
December 8, 2017 2:32 am

Maybe they wanted to outweigh Jesus, who got along with 12 disciples.

December 7, 2017 3:57 am

The evidence suggests that the 14 authors of the Harvey et al smear job are rats.

So what are the rats going to do when their global warming sc@m becomes obvious to all?

Tim wrote:
“The level of inventiveness will astonish as rats desert the sinking ship.”

I had similar thoughts, and wrote this in 2012:

I was searching for some famous quotations about rats, but only found one, which coincidentally was about rats finding a way out:
When the water reaches the upper level, follow the rats.
– Claude Swanson (1862 – 1939)

Eamon Butler
December 7, 2017 4:14 am

Best wishes Dr. Crockford. I’m thinking the Streisand effect may come in to play for Harvey et al.

It’s an extraordinary paper devoid of any attempt to conform to intelligent scientific practice. While this is indeed a dreadful personal attack on your integrity, it does have, and has had impact on the rest of us too. The defamatory contents have already been pushed in my face, like this is the proof that undermines everything that’s sceptical of CAGW.

Willis has said it in his comment above, what many of us are thinking.

December 7, 2017 4:27 am

What did “Internet Blogs, Polar Bears, and Climate-Change Denial by Proxy” do? It was an exercise in framing. It chastised blogs for not presenting a topic objectively, honestly, and with context: “any topic can be framed in exactly the way a communicator desires if it is not presented objectively, honestly, and with context.”

It is now clear that the intent of “Internet Blogs, Polar Bears, and Climate-Change Denial by Proxy” was to frame the topic of dissent among honest scientists as a matter of “science-denial” on the part of those who oppose the consensus view, singling out Dr. Crockford in particular, and the paper could only accomplish this by not presenting the topic of polar bear populations “objectively, honestly, and with context.”

In a larger context the authors of this paper are attempting to frame scientific debate as illegitimate if it opposes the consensus view. “…[S]ome media outlets consistently misrepresent our fundamental understanding of AGW. This may be partially because framing AGW as a ‘scientific controversy,’ with ‘opinions on both sides,’ may be more profitable than differentiating unsubstantiated opinions of climate-change deniers from the broad and evidence-based ‘scientific consensus.'” It should be noted that suddenly the “science deniers” have been transformed into a entity that is very rare indeed: a “climate change denier.” There are very few scientists– or even bloggers– who deny that the climate is changing. In any case, those scientists who are on the other side (i.e., oppose CAGW) of this legitimate scientific controversy do not do offer “unsubstantiated opinions,” as an “objective, honest, and in context” perusal of the work of any of the scientists who oppose the consensus view will demonstrate. That, as we well know, is and always has been a flat-out lie.

As they say: “any topic can be framed in exactly the way a communicator desires if it is not presented objectively, honestly, and with context.” The Harvey paper is a masterful example of that.

Reply to  Don132
December 7, 2017 4:44 am

… scientific controversy do not offer “unsubstantiated opinions”

Reply to  Don132
December 7, 2017 6:35 am

The Harvey paper is a masterful example of that.
the paper is a lame example at best. clearly someone didn’t like having it pointed out that polar bear population models are as worthless. it is especially irksome that the person doing the pointing was armed with facts. these sorts of things are just not done in science. otherwise the taxpayer is likely to discover they are paying huge sums for a bunch of malarkey.

Reply to  ferdberple
December 7, 2017 10:40 am

You’re right. I’m not attempting to defend the paper, lest I’m misconstrued. Another way to put it is that the Harvey paper is a masterful piece of deception, and deliberately so. It will work, and it is working, isn’t it? That’s why I think it’s important to call out this “framing” nonsense for what it is.

It’s extremely interesting, really. What should we call it? “Projective framing,” wherein one projects onto another the sort of framing one is oneself doing, in an attempt to subvert the truth and win adherents to one’s own viewpoints?

Upon further reflection, I think you’re wrong: the paper isn’t a lame example. It’s a beautiful example– a near-perfect example, in fact. It’s projective framing at its finest, with all the proper authorities signing on to give it an illusion of authority and righteousness, yet it completely and utterly ignores that nearly all of the scientific criticisms of the consensus are substantial, and Crockford’s criticisms regarding polar bear populations are especially pertinent. Here is a concise summary of the paper, supplied by the paper itself: “not presented objectively, honestly, and with context.” What they’ve done is, in a way, an absolutely beautiful deception. It’s stunning.

Ya gotta hand it to ’em.

Dave Fair
Reply to  ferdberple
December 7, 2017 11:44 am

The same as with scientists/observers pointing out the inaccuracy of IPCC climate models.

People must break through the “peer review” gatekeeping for the upcoming IPCC AR6. Somehow, people must show the inaccuracies of the unvalidated climate models.

Reply to  ferdberple
December 8, 2017 12:32 am

Don writes “What they’ve done is, in a way, an absolutely beautiful deception. It’s stunning.”

I agree. The vast vast majority of AGW advocates and supportive journalists will never actually read the science and will only ever look up references that support their position if they ever look anything up at all. This paper’s existence is enough.

Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 4:48 am
Reply to  Ed Zuiderwijk
December 7, 2017 2:00 pm

The article in the Guardian was written by Dana Nuccitelli, second author of the Cook, et al., 2013 paper promoting the discredited 97% “consensus.”

Javert Chip
Reply to  Chris
December 7, 2017 5:46 pm

Since this 97% consensus was supposedly determined by a survey (study, whatever), why hasn’t anyone simply demanded the names of 100% of entire population, both for & against?

It’s time to demand to see the data.

December 7, 2017 4:55 am

Use of sophisticated statistical methods (PCA) on such a trivial issue is breathtaking, the word contrived springs to mind. Susan Crockford gets most of the citations on sceptical blogs and websites simply because she is one of the few scientists in the world that questions “the consensus” in this area and that dares to write about it. This is not a scientific paper, it is merely a morale raising post on blogs of consensus enforcement.

That is my peer review of this paper, I recommend rejection.

Malcolm Chapman
December 7, 2017 5:31 am

If some fool at the Guardian thinks that ‘keystone’ and ‘domino’ could share a metaphor, then they need to go away and learn to think.

This is all playing out rather nicely. Thank you Susan, and Anthony, and all the commenters.

December 7, 2017 5:47 am

The day that polar bear science jumped the shark. Or should that be jumped the beluga? Or simply jumped the polar bear? Or ran off the ice?

December 7, 2017 5:59 am

“it’s about trying to shut down dissenting voices and enforce a consensus of opinion on a scientific topic with a strong political component.”

This is of course Michael E Mann’s secondary area of interest and forms a useful adjunct to his primary speciality in junk science.

You are a light in a very dark and dank place Dr. Crockford. Many of us take a great deal of comfort from it and from your indefatigable courage. Thank you.

Coeur de Lion
December 7, 2017 6:09 am

“Beargate!” (Sorry, Delingpole)

Dave Fair
Reply to  Coeur de Lion
December 7, 2017 11:46 am

Bear scat.

Coeur de Lion
December 7, 2017 6:11 am


Tom Schaefer
December 7, 2017 6:40 am

“I now have an intimate knowledge of the huge body of polar bear” !? Not something a lady of repute would want taken out of context 😉

December 7, 2017 6:44 am

Susan, I salute you! Well put, all of it. That actual science has to be defended in the public sphere tells us how low the bar has gotten due to the “political science” of global warmism. You’re obviously a heretic, and by their lights must be destroyed.

December 7, 2017 7:50 am

Thanks all of you for your kind words and support. It means a lot to me.

Note that this morning the National Post as a comment by Terry Corcoran on the issue:

“The most dangerous threat known to man and bear alike is lurking among the icebergs: Junk science”

Reply to  susanjcrockford
December 7, 2017 10:32 am

Good article.

And excerpt: “Climate scientists in the Amstrup/Mann/Lewandowsky camp have apparently had enough of Crockford’s steady debunking of many of their polar bear alarmist claims and have set out to destroy her and her reputation via what can only be called a vicious personal attack.”

That’s exactly right.

This personal attack on Susan may just backfire on the perpetrators.

Dave Fair
Reply to  susanjcrockford
December 7, 2017 12:03 pm

Thank you, Dr. Crockford.

I note that you, as I once did, work for numerous and varied entities to produce useful products. Your work must meet high standards for it to be accepted and generate repeat work.

I note your detractors, in the main, are academics operating under sinecures and poorly managed government grants. Under which one of your detractors wrote a computer program that was wildly off target.

Typical that it took an outsider to point out that “a member of the Team” had no clothes.

Reply to  susanjcrockford
December 8, 2017 6:53 am

Thank you Dr. Crockford for posting this article.

This part really dropped my jaw:

““You don’t have to read far in her material to see that it is full of unsubstantiated statements and personal attacks on scientists, using names like eco-terrorists, fraudsters, green terrorists and scammers,” Amstrup claimed.

A few days later, Motherboard published a slithery retraction. After Crockford complained that Amstrup’s comments about her were “a lie” and that she has never used such terms, Amstrup “clarified” his comments. He said that when he accused Crockford of calling scientists fraudsters, he really meant to accuse “climate deniers as a whole, rather than Crockford in particular.””

He is so arrogant that he doesn’t see the hypocrisy in that statement. He falsely accuses her of name-calling and when called out he calls her a name. I guess he believes that only alarmists have that privilege.

Dave Fair
Reply to  DCA
December 8, 2017 11:54 am

“““You don’t have to read far in her material to see …”

And he denies he was referring to Dr. Crockford specifically.

Wonderful “editors” at that journal. More like “partners in crime.”

December 7, 2017 7:55 am

This is all about money. nothing to do with science. once every year scientists are forced to stand up on their hind legs and put on a brave face while explaining why they should get even more money when last year they got so many things wrong.
this year they have the pleasure of standing up and saying there is a peer reviewed paper that proves they were right all along. never mind that they wrote the paper. it is peer reviewed so that means it is right.

O Olson
December 7, 2017 8:33 am

“This makes me wonder what major contribution Michael Mann made to the paper. I would love to see the supplementary file submitted that details the contribution of each of these 14 authors.”
Q. Have you ever seen a paper published in a zoology journal that would pass peer-review using pejorative labels such as “denier”?
“No. And polar bear researchers – including Ian Stirling, Steve Amstrup and the ever-strident Andrew Derocher (the only one of the polar bear group who is really active on Twitter) – don’t use that kind of language in their peer-reviewed scientific papers, no matter how emphatic or passionate they might get about their conclusions. It’s hard to imagine what led Stirling and Amstrup to decide such reprehensible language was appropriate for a paper in this journal.”

It appears to me that Dr Crockford answered her own question regarding what Michael Mann’s significant contribution to the paper was.

Tom Halla
December 7, 2017 8:39 am

Good interview, and go for it, Dr Crockford.
There is one arguable typo–“Flack” relates to press agentry, “Flak” relates to drawing metaphoric fire. As this is press agentry producing the black bursts of shrapnel, it sorta works either way, but I think it could be inadvertent.

Non Nomen
Reply to  Tom Halla
December 8, 2017 2:40 am

Reading between the lines will become more and more important, a rare art the Alarmistas will never understand.

December 7, 2017 8:48 am

I think that the spelling of “principal component analysis” is correct. It’s the principles of many researchers which seem to not be correct.

Andy Pattullo
December 7, 2017 9:02 am

It was nature that showed us all the polar bear models are wrong. Dr. Crockford merely documented the event in a very eloquent and accurate manner. The authors of the bioscience paper don’t have the courage to take up their arguments with nature (though I think there may be some who wish they would simply go and debate their models with the bears face to face). The best they can come up with is a petulant, rude and ignorant name calling exercise against a respected and intellectually more honest scientist who states facts as she finds them. How on earth can supposedly responsible journals be filled with the kind of nonsense that would embarrass a preschooler, and how did this gang of reportedly educated people stoop to such a low intellectual level, or is it possible there was no stooping at all as the base-line intellectual stature was measured in microns?

December 7, 2017 10:39 am

it must be hell being a polar bear scientist. you have this great theory. polar bears need ice. more co2 means less ice. co2 is increasing therefore polar bears will be decreasing.

you publish. China starts pumping out co2. ice starts dropping. you can smell the Nobel. you start working on your acceptance speech.

and the damn polar bears don’t cooperate. they refuse to die. worse yet. some uppity canuck writes about it. it is the hockey stick all over again.

bloody Canadians. all so polite to your face. but on the ice a different story.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  ferdberple
December 7, 2017 11:13 am

…but on the ice a different story.”

Well played sir, very well played indeed!

December 7, 2017 12:49 pm

While Florida is far from the Arctic and polar bears, we have had similar debates, personal attacks and name calling. Our most prominent “charismatic megafauna” the manatee was/ is the subject of heated debate and name calling. The past head of the regulatory program who was put forth as THE manatee expert was a freshwater invertebrate zoologists from Missouri. To say he based most of his propose regulation on questionable data would be a gross understatement. Anyone daring to challenge the endangered listing of manatees, question the veracity of the data being used, or even making recommendations on how to improve research was immediately attacked both face to face, in the media and within the regional scientific community. Interestingly the true manatee expert had retired back in the 1980s. He had written the definitive work on the state of manatees, turned it into his bosses at USFWS but they never would allow it to be published. His conclusion was that manatees had not been abundant for a long time, since native Americans, early settlers and others had long hunted them for meat. Until the late 1980s, while hunting had been banned early in the 20th Century, the ban was not strictly enforced. As hunting was eliminate the population began to increase. When a recent re-assessment was completed the environmental community and some government biologists went nuts. The ESA has been turned into a giant stick that is used by environmentalists allied with government regulators to stop human development, ANY human development no matter how environmentally sound.

M. Freeman
December 7, 2017 12:54 pm

14 authors listed for this ‘study’? It took a gang to work up the courage to take a stab at Julius Caesar too.

Richard M
Reply to  M. Freeman
December 8, 2017 5:34 am

That’s always the case with bullies.

December 7, 2017 2:03 pm

1saveenergy sends best wishes to Dr Susan Crockford from the UK. Here are my best wishes from Spain. You must be telling the truth about polar bears to have upset them so. Take their attacks as a form of congratulations.
ClimateOtter points out new papers supporting Dr Crockfords work on increasing polar bear numbers.

Elsewhere, 2 other papers point out that Arctic ice was less than present levels for most of the last 3000 years, and most of the last 10,000 years respectively. Polar bears obviously survived these periods of lower ice extent.

Reply to  Keith
December 11, 2017 1:22 pm

Yup, Keith.

Actually, the oldest polar bear fossils found to date go all the way back to near the beginning of the Pleistocene, about 2.3 MYA. Meaning, these hardy animals have survived and thrived through every glaciation and interglacial the planet experienced during the”ice age”, approximately one full cycle per every 100,000 years, on average. The disappearance of some ice floes for part of the year is clearly trivial in comparison with the drastic climatic changes experienced literally a couple dozen times throughout the history of the species.

December 7, 2017 2:50 pm

Using a sledgehammer to crack a nut in a a china shop and then finding the nut was in another building and perhaps was not a nut at all.

“We have clearly hit the target dead-on judging by the bitter response of the climate change skeptics and deniers. They are inadvertantly helping to spread the message.” Jeff H

As opposed to advertently helping, I guess.

Look Arctic Ice is down on all measures since satellites were “formally”” used to measure it.
The time span is short to know anything about long term trends.
If one shows CO2 increase, and then the CO2 increase shows the warming it is predicted to, then the ice will melt over the long term.
The long term result of this in thousands of years is that Polar Bears may or may not be endangered [they may or may not adapt].
Speculation on linking the two separate calamities if they eventuate is fraught with difficulty and should never have been poster childed in the first place.

Smoking Frog
December 7, 2017 2:55 pm

Does Dr. Crockford really think that PCA is “Principle Component Analysis”!? It’s not. It’s “Principal…” What possible sense would “Principle..” make? Did something go wrong in the transcription process?

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Smoking Frog
December 7, 2017 3:39 pm

@Smoking Frog
No, that was her criticism! Look at the paper yourself, that’s what they called it!

Reading; it’s fundamental. 🙄

Gunga Din
December 7, 2017 3:55 pm

Dr. Crawford,
When you’re attacked like this, consider the source.
When the source has little or honesty or credibility, neither does the attack.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Gunga Din
December 7, 2017 3:58 pm

“little or no honesty or credibility”

Of course, we all make mistakes.

Reply to  Gunga Din
December 7, 2017 6:21 pm

the measure of a man/woman is not making mistakes, but admitting them and correcting where possible. something that appears to never happen in climate science . says a lot about the practitioners.

Non Nomen
Reply to  Gunga Din
December 8, 2017 2:44 am

Of course, we all make mistakes.

A typical phrase a Mann could never accept, not to talk about honesty or credibility.

Mike Ozanne
December 8, 2017 4:07 am

“Maybe there’s a journal for that but I’ve never heard of it.”

Völkischer Beobachter , though it’s been struggling with it’s circulation since 1945…..

Reply to  Mike Ozanne
December 8, 2017 12:01 pm

Now dat be sum funny azz sheeat, dawg!

December 8, 2017 4:32 am

Was Mann adding his name to the paper, apparently without making any substantial contribution (as is required to be a co-author) another of his deranged ‘nobel’ moments?

Dave Fair
Reply to  ilma630
December 8, 2017 11:49 am

Ilma, Michael Mann became infamous for his misuse of PC analysis.

In the current paper, can anybody explain/support the validity of PC analysis on arbitrary “data” subjectively derived?

Jeff Alberts
December 8, 2017 6:49 am

“a erroneous”


Jeff Alberts
December 8, 2017 6:51 am

“Has any of the 14 authors”


Reply to  Jeff Alberts
December 8, 2017 12:07 pm

“Any” is singular.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Gabro
December 8, 2017 12:45 pm

“14 authors” is singular.

Reply to  Gabro
December 8, 2017 12:50 pm

So, fourteen authors is writing a story …


Dave Fair
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 8, 2017 1:03 pm

The “14 authors” is a single group, Willis. One would say “a group of 14 authors is writing a story.”

Dave Fair
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 8, 2017 1:04 pm

However, I should have stayed out of this.

Gary Pearse.
December 8, 2017 7:20 pm

Let me suggest what coauthors Mike and Lew contributed. The title CC d*Nile by proxy is the MO of the twins Lew and Dowsky. The use of PCA principle( sic) components anal. is the trademark of the other guy. He does tricks on nature with his personal variation which allows use of upside down contaminated proxies, heavy weighting of a selected sample that points the way he wants it to. Wanna hide a decline, or create a decline? Get your order in so we can make a proper selection. Want to freeze the Medieval Warm Period? Make a balmy LIA? We’ll PCA it for you! I think we should ask Steve Mac to look the machinations over and get this ugly beast retracted. It’s going to have to go along with 50,000other papers when the Great Correction comes.

December 8, 2017 11:46 pm

Dr Susan Crockford can not be condered an independent, credible scientist on the fate of polar bears and here is why.

1. The Heartland Institute’s Denialgate documents indicate that the spinstitute gives Crockford $750 per month. She is one of three Canadian university professors on the denier dole at Heartland, along with Madhav Knandekar and Mitch Taylor.

Greenpeace contacted the University of Victoria to raise conflict of interest questions relating to Heartland’s payments to Crockford, who has a history of denying climate science as a speaker for its anti-science International Climate Science Coalition. See Greenpeace’s letter to the University of Victoria.

2. One of Crockford’s colleagues at UVic had plenty to say about the disconnect between the university’s science-based position and the spin emanating from the Heartland Institute.

“It is regrettable that anyone affiliated with the University of Victoria participated in the activities of an organization like the Heartland Institute,” says Dr. Thomas F. Pederson, Executive Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions (PICS) at UVic. “The University prides itself on being an institution of higher learning that deals with facts and that is nowhere more true than in the field of science. Those who deny that the planet is warming as a direct result of human activity are denying facts.

“The Heartland Institute is one of a collection of so-called think tanks that have been extensively supported by elements within the American fossil fuel industry,” says Pederson. “Their mission is quite clearly not to think, but instead to sow confusion with respect to the global warming issue.”


2. A 2015 study from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature that ranked climate change as the single most important threat to the world’s 26,000 polar bears. Researchers – who described the bears as the canary in the coal mine – found a high probability that the population would decrease 30% by 2050 due to the changes in their sea ice habitat.


3. There is clear evidence that climate change is having a negative impact on polar bear numbers

“As climate change boosts Arctic temperatures, sea ice – crucial to the bears for hunting, resting and breeding – is melting earlier in spring and refreezing later in autumn. The growing number of ice-free days could push the species past a tipping point with widespread reproductive failure and starvation in some areas.

Satellite data published last year revealed that the number of ice-covered days across the 19 Arctic regions inhabited by polar bears declined at a rate of seven to 19 days per decade between 1979 to 2014.”

This video footage in the link below, captured in Canada’s Arctic, offers a devastating look at the impact climate change is having on polar bears in the region. It shows an emaciated bear clinging to life as it scrounges for food on iceless land.

Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 4:53 am

… and popcorn futures go through the roof …

I’ll let Dr. Susan defend herself, she’s more than capable.

I will note that accusing someone of “denying climate change” marks you as either a rank amateur in the field or a dedicated alarmist or an idiot … but I repeat myself.

Dude … climate ALWAYS changes and it always has. Nobody denys that. You are just babbling words that you think make sense. Protip. They don’t.

Now, popcorn and watch the show.


Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 9, 2017 4:57 am

ivankinsman’s inability to count is a clue to his/her cluelessness…

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 9, 2017 5:03 am

Good one. Dude … climate ALWAYS changes and it always has.

So, what about the man-made CO2 emissions that have been pumped out since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution. Ah – it just disappears into thin air and is never seen again, and no … absolutely zero negative impact on the planet’s ecosystem. Go and tell that to the fairies my friend…

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 9, 2017 5:18 am

ivankinsman December 9, 2017 at 5:03 am

Good one. Dude … climate ALWAYS changes and it always has.

Hey, you’re the genius claiming that someone is “denying climate change”. It marks you as a rank amateur. Think about what you are saying, it might force you to change your puerile accusations to something less idiotic.

So, what about the man-made CO2 emissions that have been pumped out since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution.

Excellent question. What about it? I made no claims about that.

Ah – it just disappears into thin air and is never seen again,

Now you are trying to put words in my mouth, and I won’t wear it. I said no such thing. That is you trying to deceive the credulous.

and no … absolutely zero negative impact on the planet’s ecosystem.

Another lie. I didn’t say that, that’s all you.

Go and tell that to the fairies my friend…

You’ll have to point me to where they live, I’ve never seen them … are they friends of yours, or just acquaintances?


Non Nomen
Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 9, 2017 7:32 am

@ Willis Eschenbach 5:18 a.m.

Go and tell that to the fairies my friend…

You’ll have to point me to where they live, I’ve never seen them … are they friends of yours, or just acquaintances?

I have reason to believe that ivankinsmans siblings live at Trollshavn, Hordaland, Norway. :=)

Reply to  Willis Eschenbach
December 9, 2017 8:17 pm

” absolutely zero negative impact on the planet’s ecosystem”

Yes we KLNOW that CO2 has absolutely zero negative impact on the planet’s ecosystem.

Totally beneficial…. the fundamental building block of all life on Earth.

Non Nomen
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 7:25 am

Are ther no real facts concerning the payments Dr. Crockford is said to have received? You ought to be able to show, for example, copies of the paychecks, payslips, bank account statements, affidavits or any evidence of good standing for you allegations? Deschmockblog certainly is not a source to be trusted.
if you cannot provide the readers with evidence of immaculate credibility, you’d better hold your gob.
Criminal defamation occurs when one purposely communicates to any person, orally or in writing, any information which he or she knows to be false and knows will tend to expose any other living person to public hatred, contempt, or ridicule.
Have a nice day.

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 12:22 pm

Sheese, Ivan:

1) $750 per month for a period of time to select and review self-identified related publications will corrupt anyone? Not. How about the people on Greenpeace’s payroll? Rockefeller Foundation? Government grants and payroll? Get real.

2) What in the world does The Heartland Institute’s position on CAGW have to do with Dr. Crockford’s analysis of data relating to polar bear populations growing in the face of ice loss volumes predicted to decimate their populations? Poor use of a propaganda technique on your part.

2[sic]) Again, Polar Bear populations are increasing under the conditions described by “researchers” at the Union for the Conservation of Nature that would lead to a 30% population decrease. The CAGW-ers are again using models in lieu of hard data.

3) “There is clear evidence that climate change is having a negative impact on polar bear numbers” Have you no self-awareness? No shame? You also throw out data that “experts” would imply decreases in Polar Bear numbers, but the numbers increase. Again, poor use of a propaganda technique on your part.

Is someone paying you to be such a CAGW partisan, Ivan? Lies to support the noble cause?

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 9, 2017 9:15 pm

Where is your data about polar bear numbers increasing? If you are predicting future results of course you are going to have to rely on some type of modelling – what else can you use if an event has not happened yet. Christ – modelling has been used in the commercial world for decades now for forecasting future trends.

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 10, 2017 2:03 pm

Increasing Polar Bear numbers are reported by the involved governments. Do your own research, Ivan.

I know modeling, you obviously don’t. I spent much of my career developing and analyzing engineering, economic and financial models.

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 9, 2017 9:19 pm

The researchers combined polar bear generational length with sea ice projections based on satellite data and computer simulations.

They worked out the probability that reductions in the mean global population size of polar bears will be greater than 30 per cent, 50 per cent and 80 per cent in the space of three generations.

While the likelihood of a more than 30 per cent loss was high, there was little chance of populations crashing to near-extinction levels.
Writing in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters, the team, led by Dr Eric Regehr from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, concluded: “Our findings support the potential for large declines in polar bear numbers owing to sea ice loss.”

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 10, 2017 2:08 pm

“Dr Eric Regehr from the US Fish and Wildlife Service … potential for large declines in polar bear numbers owing to sea ice loss.”

Well, we had the sea ice loss without the potentiality being realized. What does that tell you about the forecasting ability of the good doctor and his cohorts, Ivan?

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 9, 2017 9:32 pm

Polar bears live right through the early Holocene, flourished.. when the Arctic was often summer ice free.

These twerps seem to think that the extreme ice of the LIA is the norm..

Shows JUST HOW LITTLE they actually are aware of.

Their computer simulations are almost certainly a load of GIGO !!

Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 3:14 pm

ivankinsman writes:
This video footage in the link below, captured in Canada’s Arctic, offers a devastating look at the impact climate change is having on polar bears in the region. It shows an emaciated bear clinging to life as it scrounges for food on iceless land.

How old was that polar bear? Do polar bears ever get too old to hunt? Do they ever get arthritis or other degenerative or debilitating diseases? What percentage of an arbitrary cohort of pre-AGW polar bears, e.g., those born 1900-1920, have died? When old polar bears die, how do they die? Was that bear autopsied to determine its cause of death? Do you know anything about the lives and deaths of polar bears in general? Aside from what can be seen from that video, do you know anything at all about that particular bear? If not please acknowledge that your video is presented purely as propaganda and is absolutely worthless as an argument. Thanks.

Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 7:35 pm

Also from the article accompanying the video; “The bear eventually comes across a trashcan used by Inuit fishermen, rummaging through it with little luck.” So this is a bear that has been interacting with human populations, not out feeding naturally. It may have been shot or poisoned for all we know. Stories like this are a disgraceful attempt to influence public perceptions.

Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 8:19 pm

comment image

Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 8:22 pm
Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 9:09 pm

This large male bear was not old, and he certainly died within hours or days of this moment.

The source states that this bear died from starvation so why would they lie about it? Why do you talk about an ‘old bear’ when this bear is patently not old but just completely emaciated? Because you do not want to see a causal link with climate change and will argue to kingdom come – like Scott Pruitt at the EPA – that anything that happens is always the result of something else other than AGW.

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 10, 2017 1:53 pm

Ivan, what about all the increasing number of Polar Bears that didn’t starve?

Dr. Crockford simply pointed out the documented increases in bear numbers, in spite of model predictions that current ice extents would result in a 30% reduction in bear numbers. Where is your argument concerning those facts? Filming a starving bear proves nothing.

Get a grip, Ivan. Quit pulling Griffies. [I had a hapless brother named Mike, and whenever someone screwed up we called it pulling a Mikie.]

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 12, 2017 11:17 pm

You need to start doing more reading Dave so that you don’t end up like hapless Mikie when you find that everything you believe in is a hoax.

The Arctic is a refrigerator that cools the planet. Climate change is the equivalent to leaving that refrigerator door wide open – get it?

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 13, 2017 11:52 am

Is there some message in your random collection of words, Ivan? What do they have to do with my observation that Dr. Crockford was correct in her criticism of others’ model of bear numbers?

Using your own analogy, it is the function of the Arctic “refrigerator door” to remain open to bleed off planetary heat developed towards the Equator.

Reply to  Dave Fair
December 13, 2017 1:10 pm

Sorry Dave but you and other like-minded sceptics just don’t get it.

Like Trump you think that the status quo can be maintained. Innovation in renewable energy is taking place all around you and adaptation to climate change is now being implemented. You think life will continue as normal whereas in fact the US is already being left behind when it comes to innovation and investment in clean energy.

There are many in America who can’t wait to see the ejection of Trump and his side-kick Pruitt from public office so that the US can rejoin the 2015 Paris agreement. Short-term economic gain at the expense of long-term environmental degradation no longer makes sense financially, but the US sceptics are too blinkered to admit this. Time to get real instead of sticking your collective heads in the sand.

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 13, 2017 1:49 pm

Well, Ivan, I’ll go along with Bill Gates in his call for true technological innovation as opposed to technology dead ends such as the current, subsidized wind and solar.

The U.S. will always lead technology development. That is, unless we get another Obamaite in.

Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 9:35 pm

“so why would they lie about it?”

AGW Propaganda, of course, you brainless naïve little child-mind.

They LIE about so many other things in the name of their agenda.

Reply to  RalphB
December 9, 2017 9:42 pm

Ivan, there is absolutely ZERO evidence that human CO2 is changing the climate in any way, except giving an enhanced biosphere, which is a benefit to all life on Earth.

Feel free to post some REAL empirical evidence if you have any .

Arctic sea ice is currently in the top 90-95% of Holocene extents.. ANOMALOUSLY HIGH.

Polar bears survived/thrived during the first 7000-8000 year of the Holocene when there was MUCH LESS SEA ICE THAN NOW..
comment image

Reply to  RalphB
December 13, 2017 1:20 pm

“Short-term economic gain at the expense of long-term environmental degradation no longer makes sense financially”

You are talking about wind and solar, aren’t you ivan…

environmental degradation… most certainly

financially….. wind and solar are subsidy farming at best

It is noted that you STILL RUN and HIDE from a simple question… stop being a COWARD..

“How did Polar Bears survive the first 7000 – 8000 years of the Holocene , when sea ice was a LOT LESS than it currently is, often being summer ice free.” ?

Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 8:13 pm

Poor Ivan, still sucked in by the propaganda pap of desmog and the guardian.

They do NOT do facts, ivan… and you have to mighty GULLIBLE and brain-washed to even bother looking at them.

Polar bears lived through the full period of the Holocene, when Arctic was often summer ice free.

You are talking ARRANT NONSENSE, just like you always do.

Reply to  AndyG55
December 9, 2017 9:12 pm

That’s a load of BS and you know it. This is factual evidence – captured on video – but of course brushed aside as ‘ARRANT NONSENSE’ because you have no other answer to the facts. I think you are the one who is brain-washed my friend…

Reply to  AndyG55
December 9, 2017 9:29 pm

You are still the same brain-washed idiot you always were.

FACTS need never enter the green sludge that was once your mind.

Do you DENY that polar bears existed through the whole of the Early mid Holocene when the Arctic was summer sea-ice free.

Video is an old or sick bear, and you are tooooo blinkered to see it.

Reply to  AndyG55
December 10, 2017 3:45 pm

“you have no other answer to the facts”

Ivan old chap, it is patently obvious that you wouldn’t recognise facts if a swarm of them scuttled under your slimy, noisome bridge, leapt on you and sank their fangs into your leprous green snout.

Reply to  ivankinsman
December 9, 2017 10:04 pm

Average Arctic sea ice has not changed in 10 years.
comment image

1979 was an EXTREME extent of sea ice, up there with the extreme extents of the LIA.

Polar bears have survives the whole Holocene, when sea ice levels have been far lower than the currently anomalously high levels.

The Gaurdian is a blatant propaganda rag, nothing more, probably less.

There is absolutely NO proof that this poor bears plight was anything to do with climate change

You have been SUCKED -IN by propaganda aimed straight at brain-washed kool-aide quaffers like you.

Reply to  AndyG55
December 9, 2017 11:33 pm

And the freeze is happening EARLIER, not later
comment image

Reply to  AndyG55
December 10, 2017 1:02 am

Whenever a sceptic quotes ‘Holocene’ I always advise them to read this excellent article as a rebuttal:

Dave Fair
Reply to  ivankinsman
December 10, 2017 2:27 pm

The article supported the claims made here that temperatures have changed, up and down, significantly over the Holocene; temperatures today are not unusual and are actually between the ups of the Roman and Medieval Optimums and downs of the Little Ice Age.

Predictions of climate doom are based on speculation about the future and unidentified “tipping points,” not observational science, Ivan.

Reply to  AndyG55
December 10, 2017 4:23 am

Still the info from the gutter

You really have to get some reality into your life, or you will remain forever a monumental CRETIN.

Reply to  AndyG55
December 10, 2017 4:31 am

Really a PATHETIC attempt to avoid a simple question

“Come on Ivan, PLEASE EXPLAIN how polar bears survived the first 7000 – 8000 years of the Holocene when there was far less sea ice.”

December 9, 2017 12:22 am

Let me recognize top female scientists today:
Judith Curry
Sally Baliunas
Susan Crockford
Jennifer Marohasy
Jo Nova

They have something in common

December 9, 2017 2:00 am

Charles the Moderator – where is the comment I posted and why did it need to be moderated? Was if just because it was anti-Crockford?

[at 1146PM on this thread -mod]

Bob Hoye
December 9, 2017 9:13 pm

Ursus Maritimus


Sea Bear

Ivan Kinsman
December 9, 2017 9:23 pm

A new study by University of Washington researchers, funded by NASA and using satellite data from NASA and other agencies, found a trend toward earlier sea ice melt in the spring and later ice growth in the fall across all 19 polar bear subpopulations, which can negatively impact the feeding and breeding capabilities of the bears. The paper, published on Sept. 14 in the journal The Cryosphere, is the first to quantify the sea ice changes in each polar bear subpopulation across the entire Arctic region using metrics that are specifically relevant to polar bear biology.

“This study shows declining sea ice for all subpopulations of polar bears,” said co-author Harry Stern, a researcher with the University of Washington’s Polar Science Center in Seattle.

The analysis shows that the critical timing of the sea ice break-up and sea ice freeze-up is changing in all areas in a direction that is harmful for polar bears.

Reply to  Ivan Kinsman
December 9, 2017 9:49 pm

Again, don’t these idea-logs realise that polar bears lived through the whole Holocene?

Are they REALLY that IGNORANT of the fact that the first 7000 or so years of the Holocene had MUCH LESS sea ice than there currently is.

Why do they continue to display their ignorance, and why do twerps like ivan not WAKE UP to the facts.

Blind, Wilful, Ignorance can be the only excuse.

Reply to  Ivan Kinsman
December 9, 2017 9:53 pm

forgot chart
comment image

Reply to  Ivan Kinsman
December 9, 2017 10:13 pm

Come on Ivan, PLEASE EXPLAIN how polar bears survived the first 7000 – 8000 years of the Holocene when there was far less sea ice.

Maybe you should contact the guys at the Polar Science Centre, and see if they know? 😉

Reply to  AndyG55
December 9, 2017 10:14 pm

Or do you think Polar Bears only came into existence during the Little Ice Age?

Will be interesting to see how you slither your way around these questions. 😉

Dave Fair
Reply to  Ivan Kinsman
December 10, 2017 2:13 pm

“This study shows declining sea ice for all subpopulations of polar bears,”

But most all of the subpopulations are increasing. Negative impacts are pure speculation, not scientific observations. Peer review is a joke when papers deny the obvious.

Non Nomen
December 9, 2017 11:17 pm

@ ivankinsman
Where is the evidence of payments Dr Crockford has allegedly received? Where are copies of checks, bank statements, payslips etc?
Put them on the table, make them public right now or live with the sticker LIAR right on your face until climate stops to change.

December 10, 2017 9:54 am

I’m, trying to figure out how anyone could make an accurate polar bear count,
and why it would matter if they could.

The bears all look the same to me.

No one spray paints a number on their sides to identify them!

They blend in with the white snow.

If you get too close they will eat you.

And why would anyone care if the number changed from year to year?

In my suburban neighborhood, the peak number of deer
seen standing outside my full length living room windows,
changes a lot from year to year.

So far the record is 14 deer standing in my yard in the winter
looking for something green to eat at the same time.

Other years we never saw more than six deer at a time.

Of course we don’t spend the whole winter
staring out our windows … but I think we know
if there is more food that deer like,
there will be more deers around for us to count.

So I imagine the number of polar bears
is strongly correlated with the amount of food
available for them.

Why would bears care if it was slightly warmer at night
due to carbon dioxide in the air?

It’s still going to be damn cold.

bill billson
December 11, 2017 10:42 pm

I would like to see Comrade’s Ivan comment too.

December 15, 2017 12:50 pm

I get it. The debate is not about polar bears.

It’s about the new climate change icon, the polarized bears …


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