How IPCC AR4 authors defended the Briffa data deletions

I recently received a copy of how IPCC authors answered the review comments, including their answers to the requirement of one reviewer that the deleted Briffa data be restored (and an explanation given for the inconvenient bits.) You may recall the observation of one reader in the discussion of Swindle, the reader observing:

If a practising scientist selected a 1987 data set over more recent versions, failed to cite it correctly, altered the appearance of the data without a clear explanation and didn’t include the data from the last 20 years then I think we’d all be asking serious questions about their professionalism.

I observed that there had been a serious alteration of the Briffa et al 2001 reconstruction in which diverging post-1960 values were simply chopped off. One of the IPCC 4AR reviewers called for the deleted post-1960 values to be shown both for Briffa et al 2001 and Rutherford et al 2001. Here’s how the authors responded. It’s pretty amazing, maybe even “gobsmacking”.

Reviewing the bidding first. I recently discussed the truncation of Briffa et al 2001 in the IPCC TAR spaghetti graph here. Below I show what the TAR spaghetti graph looked like and what it would look like without the Briffa truncation. See original post for clearer images. This was a cynical piece of data manipulation that would give pause to the most flagrant stock promoters. Actually, it would be illegal in a stock promotion.

An AR4 reviewer noticed the same thing in AR. He said (and, in this case there is no problem with reviewer copyright as the reviewer has permitted the comment to be posted at CA):

Show the Briffa et al reconstruction through to its end; don’t stop in 1960. Then comment and deal with the “divergence problem” if you need to. Don’t cover up the divergence by truncating this graphic. This was done in IPCC TAR; this was misleading. (Reviewer’s comment ID #: 309-18)]

A sensible comment, in my opinion. It’s a fundamental principle of public disclosure that you have to disclose any bad news. Promoters can then try to justify the bad news as best they can, but they can’t conceal it. The reviewer then made a similar comment, see below, about the deletion of the inconvenient divergence for Rutherford et al 2005. (OK, I was the reviewer. Neither Bradley nor Mann had a fit of conscience.)

If you do show Rutherford et al, you must show their values after 1960, as with Briffa et al 1960. Not to do so gives a very misleading impression. (Reviewer’s comment ID #: 309-20

Here’s what the IPCC authors said in defence of their deletion of the inconvenient bits.

[ 👿 SNIP

Mr. McIntyre, you know better than this. The IPCC knows all and sees all and will not permit you to present actual author responses, which have accordingly been hereby deleted. Readers, if you wish further information on how IPCC authors justified the deletion of the bad bits, please write to FOIA at and ask for the IPCC Working Group I Fourth Assessment Report, Expert and Government Review Comments on the Second-Order Draft. Mr McIntyre, you will not be warned again, 👿 ]

UPDATE: Subsequent to this post, reviewer comments were placed online here. The review comment said only:

Rejected – though note ‘divergence” issue will be discussed, still considered inappropriate to show recent section of Briffa et al. series


  1. L Nettles
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 2:56 PM | Permalink

    (OK, I was the reviewer. Neither Bradley nor Mann had a fit of conscience.)

    Like we couldn’t have guessed.

  2. steven mosher
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    Hey I got my ACKNOWLEDGMENT letter from NOAA FOIA office!!!

    You’ll like this. If you think
    it’s out of line go ahead and snip me.

    Anyway, I check my mail. and see this incoming mail from from MelindaLove.
    Huh? With an attachment?

    To click or not to click?

    I click. Whew! no porn thank god. It’s a response from NOAA.

    I had to laugh. Dirty mind you know.

  3. John A
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

    When the author starts trolling his own blog, you know its time to go to sleep.

  4. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    I may be confused but what I ascertain from these comments is that Steve M could have looked into the reviewer comments for the WG1 of the AR4 and could not find his comments critical of the reporting of the Briffa cut-off — and that Steve M could not report that his review was missing in so many words.

  5. drscroogemcduck
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 5:33 PM | Permalink

    no. i think steve wants to post the reply to his review comment but he is not allowed to because of copyright restrictions.

  6. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 6:14 PM | Permalink

    My review was included in the AR4 collation and received a reply.

    There are some curious legal aspects to the most recent IPCC delivery. From IPCC, I requested a copy of the review comments in the form that they were sent to review authors(presumably digital) because IPCC had an open archive policy. In my initial request, I hadn’t thought about asking for the authors comments as well. When IPCC tried to make this difficult, it annoyed me and I looked further at other possible request routes.

    I sent a FOI to NOAA who employs Susan Solomon and many other IPCC authors and both Manning and Solomon have used noaa email addresses in all material correspondence. Between my request to IPCC and my request to NOAA, I noticed a step in the WG1 timetable in which authors sent their responses to comments back to the TSU and I asked for that as well in my NOAA request.

    In respect to IPCC, the inclusion of the author responses, while appreciated, was unsolicited from them, although it was requested under NOAA FOI regulations. I have been unable to locate any published IPCC policy which authorizes Manning to attach confidentiality conditions to material exchanged as part of the “transparent and open” review process. I asked Manning to cite a policy authorizing him to attach confidentiality conditions and he failed to do so. For all that I know, Manning and Solomon are free-lancing.

    Even if the author responses were entitled to be copyrighted (and I’m not persuaded that they are but haven’t fully formed a view on this), people quote from copyrighted material all the time. As I understand it, this is permitted under “fair use” and quotations would be permitted under that. So your legal speculation here is off base. The issue is that Manning has purported to attach confidentiality conditions to the delivery. I’m trying to clarify what legal right, if any, he has to do so. At this point, I think that there is a reasonable chance of obtaining the entire package from NOAA or some other government organization free and clear of any purported restrictions so I’d rather keep pursuing that aspect and see what they say. In addition, I’d rather keep pressure on IPCC to live up to their “transparent and open” policies and see what happens under that system. If they want to play games, well, I guess that I’ll reluctantly play their little game. 🙂

  7. Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 6:42 PM | Permalink

    The IPCC knows all and sees all…

    That was you that wrote this, right? Please tell me they didn’t write this!

  8. Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 8:49 PM | Permalink

    Tell them you will publish in one week unless they provide you with a written submission as to why you should not including relevant legal issues which would prevent such publication

  9. Pat Frank
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 9:26 PM | Permalink

    #6–“For all that I know, Manning and Solomon are free-lancing.

    I.e., making it up as they go along. Otherwise known as stone-walling, obstructing, and weaseling. They could help constructively in a flash, if they so-desired.

    One thing has come into focus over the years you’ve been involved, and blogging your results, Steve. That is, central elements of AGW crowd are consciously duplicitous. In a word, lying.

    That’s just my personal opinion, of course. No opprobrium should reflect back on Climate Audit or on Mr. McIntyre consequent to the airing of my own opinion here. Free personal speech, and all that.

    That’s anthro-CO2 global warming. Evidence is all around: ablating glaciers, melting ice caps, earlier bird migrations, increasing asthma, expanding malarial range, burgeoning extinctions, etc. Look at Al Gore’s movie. It’s full of mysterioso happenstantial evidences; all completely inexplicable except by the all-encompassing AGW hypothesis. Therefore, the divergence problem *must* be an artifact and therefore *must* be ethically removable from IPCC graphics. And denying Mr. McIntyre the right of public airing of grievances *must* be the moral thing to do. If it wasn’t, they’d have to critically examine their explanatory framework. god forbid; after all, it is true.

  10. Roger Dueck
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 9:47 PM | Permalink

    Steve, perhaps you should publish and wait for the publicity that an IPCC legal challenge to publicizing purportedly public information would bring.

  11. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 10:02 PM | Permalink

    The documents were sent to me by the IPCC TSU containing only the following legend:

    The following compilation of review comments and author responses
    is supplied by the Working Group I Technical Support Unit as a
    record of the process used to prepare the Working Group I report.
    These comments and responses are not to be edited and/ or redistributed
    in part or in full to others.

    Please note that under IPCC procedures authors are required to take
    account of all substantive review comments in both review rounds.
    Thus responses to individual comments may be influenced by
    comments from other reviewers.

    Now that I think about, does quoting a specific response constitute “redistribution in part or in full”?

  12. Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 10:44 PM | Permalink


    I do not know what laws apply in Canada or elsewhere, however Australia has what I understand are rather strict copyright laws compared to many other countries, and short extracts of copyrighted material reproduced for purposes of research and fair comment are quite legal here.

    I am not a lawyer, and perhaps some legal advice may be appropriate before proceeding, however my understanding is that the restrictions being put on you in this instance would probably be viewed in a legal sense as not being applicable if you restrict your presentations to short extracts each accompanied by fair comment, which is precisely what the legal exceptions written into copyright law are designed to enable.

    If you were to put whole documents or extended extracts online, that could be a breach of copyright.

  13. Posted Jun 16, 2007 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

    That does not sound like they are claiming a copyright, that sounds like they’re trying to claim it is some “top secret” level or confidential document, it is unlikely that the IPCC has any authority to make or enforce something like that in one country, let alone world wide.

    The exception would be if you signed some sort of non-disclosure agreement with them.

  14. Roger Dueck
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 1:09 AM | Permalink

    Steve, I really think that a Supreme Court challenge would be a total embarrasement for the IPCC. Some legal advise might be useful, but I think the media would love to unearth a cover-up in the Great Global Warming Swindle. It is very unlikely there would be any action taken as the above quotation is not definitive in regards to what legislation governs re-distribution and any reasonal man (woman) could argue that it is in the best interest of society in general to re-distribute these opinions. Come to think of it, you have already re-distributed the legend, which is in part!

  15. MarkR
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 1:57 AM | Permalink

    #11 SteveM

    ….These comments and responses are not to be edited and/ or redistributed in part or in full to others.…..

    Is this the internal instruction to the IPCC or NOAA? And if it is, have they not already breached them, by sending the whole lot to you? And secondly, doesn’t copyright have to be stated on the face of the document?
    And thirdly, can one copyright what someone else said? ie Suppose one of the authors decides to publish what he said? Ooops, SteveM just did that.

    So many questions. Where is LawyerMan when you need him?

  16. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 2:13 AM | Permalink

    Re#11 and redistribution.

    Play with words. Before there can be a redistribution, there has to be a distribution. The distribution happened when the original, single report was first given to others. What you have is already a redistribution. If you wanted to argue, you could say that sending this document to someone else is a re-re-re (etc) distribution and so is not against the compliance sought in the delivery instructions. You could argue that redistribution that had already occurred to others before you nullified your responsibility because the material had been released already.

    More careless wording. “These comments and responses are not to be edited….” then…. If you do not edit them, that is, change their meaning, there is no restriction at all on releasing them in virgin form.

    Besides, you might have a stranger do a break and enter, make off with the goodies, then print them. What obligations are you under to secure their contents? Have you signed a confidentiality agreement? Does anything prevent you standing on a street corner with pages displayed, while passers-by photograph them? Otherwise, who is expected to pay for your safe?

    The whole scenario is a ridicule. Call the bluff. Send them to me – I’ll publish them without a second thought. They have no protection other than what some officials have inveted after the fact.

  17. Gabriel Presley
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 2:36 AM | Permalink

    This is to Steve McIntrye
    Even you can’t yet publish the author responses as to why certain parts of Briffa and Rutherford have been deleted, can you tell us if their responses were compelling?

  18. James Lane
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:40 AM | Permalink

    Re #17

    I’m incredibly interested in the response to the Briffa truncation. Steve, is it possible to precis the response? I know you hate it when people don’t quote you directly, but since you (maybe) can’t, isn’t some form of summary acceptable?

    I find it incredible that the IPCC wants to limit distribution of this material. Why? On the one had they seem to suggest that this would corrupt he review process ( because people wouldn’t speak honestly – why not?). Then the recourse to objection to selective quotation. Why? Every scientific paper or newspaper article is subject to selective quotation. What’s so special about the IPCC?

    That said, I’m not so sure that Manning et al are trying to hide anything – it looks more like administrative arse-protecting to me. I suspect that if you push, they will fold.

  19. Reid
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 4:49 AM | Permalink

    I’d like to know why the media isn’t interested in why the names and comments of the 2,500 scientists are classified. Recall when VP Cheney refused to release the minutes of meetings with energy companies from his energy policy task force the press and Democrats went ballistic. Where are the skeptical big media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal and National Post on this matter? It appears they have moved on.

    The IPCC actions are a sophisticated delay game. If these comments are published they will not take legal action since that will atract big media attention. If anyone out there who has access to the comments wants 15 minutes of fame publish the names and comments on an open access website.

  20. Papertiger
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    What would the New York Times do if said document were containing secret war plans>?

  21. jae
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 8:35 AM | Permalink

    Wow, another great chapter in the Great Global Warming Swindle. #9 is spot on.

  22. pk
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

    Seems very odd to classify a document that is available under FOI.

  23. steven mosher
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 1:45 PM | Permalink


    Is this the stuff that is squirrelled away at harvard?
    If so, then I suppose, if you provided the page number,
    Somebody could go in and copy it. Right?

    I wonder if Harvard imposes the same restrictions? especially when they permit
    copying. Wonder how they impose the re distribution restriction?

  24. Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

    We need to hire Sandy Burger to get those documents.

  25. peter
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 2:42 PM | Permalink

    Thank you so much for your work on this. Its an extraordinary contribution to intellectual honesty and rigour. You will be remembered when the history of this disgraceful episode is written. If I had not seen it displayed here, I would never have believed that reputable academics could sink so low

  26. TAC
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:20 PM | Permalink

    What motivates IPCC to behave this way? Are they trying to encourage skeptics (and those prone to conspiracy theories) to wonder what IPCC is trying to hide? If so, they are their own worst enemies.

    IMHO, IPCC would be more effective if it adopted the default policy of making everything available to everyone, recognizing that people will find lots to quibble about. They should not fear this. Heated debate is a symptom of a healthy scientific discipline, and it would be particularly appropriate for climate science because: The climate system is complicated and not well understood; for both practical and theoretical reasons, the state of the climate is hard to measure; scientists seem to have a bad habit of cherry-picking data and results to support pet theories; the models are still evolving and, at the moment, are not capable of producing predictions that are testable within a relevant time frame; etc.

    It would be particularly troubling if IPCC is limiting access to review comments, comments which undoubtedly raise myriad questions about IPCCC conclusions (this is normal, btw), because it wants to preserve the illusion of “censensus”.

    On the other hand, if IPCC is intent on embarrassing itself, I suppose it has the right to do so…


  27. Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:30 PM | Permalink

    One can only hope that there is an investigative journalist out there reading this blog who will see a very good story here.

  28. Rob
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:44 PM | Permalink

    If Steve is being muzzled, why isn’t James Hansen jumping up and down, decrying the “censorship”?

    hmm, can we spell double-standard?

  29. James Erlandson
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:45 PM | Permalink

    From The Prestige by Christopher Priest. Page 49. (Mass Market Paperback Edition)

    Magicians protect their secrets not because the secrets are so large and important, but because they are so small and trivial. The wonderful effects created on stage are often the result of a secret so absurd that the magician would be embarrassed to admit that that was how it was done.

    The magician naturally wishes to preserve his secrets, so that he may go on earning his living from them, and this is widely recognized. He becomes, though, a victim of his own secrecy. The longer a trick is part of his repertoire, and the more often it is successfully performed, and by definition the larger the number of people he has deceived with it, then the more it seems essential to preserve its secret.

    The effect grows larger. It is seen by many audiences, other magicians copy or adapt it, the magician will let it evolve, so that his presentation changes over the years, making the trick seem more elaborate or more impossible to explain. Through all this the secret remains. It also remains small and trivial, and as the effect grows so the triviality seems more threatening to his reputation. Secrecy becomes obsessive.

  30. MarkW
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    You have to remember that those who drive the IPCC process are not scientists. They are politicians. Even those with science degrees are acting in the role of politician.

    Many of these politicians fall into the role of true believer. As the lady from the Canadian ministry is quoted as saying. It doesn’t matter if AGW is true or not, since the things that AGW would require us to do, are things we should be doing anyway.

    IE, reducing man’s impact on the environment, reining in the US economy to the benefit of third world countries, etc.

    True believers often react with horror and outrage when ever someone questions them.

  31. Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 4:42 PM | Permalink

    The “true believers” are now at a stage where doubting their own judgement is not an option. Political parties, those in power and those in opposition, have supported the AGW theory lock, stock and smoking gun. Why would they want to expose themselves to ridicual? The financial markets are spending millions and millions just trying to set up carbon trading markets. Are they want to going to hear someone say “hold it folks, we think we got it wrong!”

    Have no fear of the courts. Any case will have to include discovery which the IPCC will not be able to control. Publish and be damned.

  32. Roger Dueck
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 6:02 PM | Permalink

    #31 I think this is in line with my thinking. The ridicule the IPCC would face in trying to sue for secrecy would be suicidal to the agency.

  33. Ken Fritsch
    Posted Jun 17, 2007 at 8:40 PM | Permalink

    I would think, if Steve M were not sworn to secrecy in his initial entry into the IPCC process, that Manning’s current admonitions are merely his personal wishes and this becomes particularly apparent from his lack of documentation from the IPCC or an agency representing them that would confirm his stated wishes. I would strongly suggest that the IPCC has handled this matter on a very ad hoc basis and that there are no legal consequences for revealing this material outside of a veiled threat of perhaps peer disapproval.

    The US mainstream media would not necessarily be in a big hurry to advocate for someone attempting to reveal this information as they tend to pick and chose their targets. They certainly would not be inclined to do much without the reviewers’ comments being in their possession and then the contents would have to understood by them to be news worthy. One could test the waters I suppose by sending a letter to the editor of a big city newspaper. I would guess that the reviewers’ comments would be of much more interest to the climate bloggers, but probably far too nuanced to strike a chord with the general public and particularly so without a good deal of journalist spinning.

    It has been my experience (think Y2K) that legal people when asked will give advice that will very nearly hamstring the effort from the beginning. Without a financial tie to the organization and/or a hard and fast nondisclosure contract, the organization would have little control over what one might feel proper to reveal about them.

    The rationale of not allowing distribution of the information because revealing (quoting) only part of the comments is misleading goes so much against what is done every day by the media, by scientists and scientific organizations that it is laughable.

  34. rwnj
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 3:55 AM | Permalink

    Why don’t you ask IPCC for official documentation of the secrecy policy? f it exist, it will be interesting in its our right. If not, it was just a lone official trying it on.

  35. Stan Palmer
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 7:41 AM | Permalink

    My guess at the reasons given would be that the divergence of the proxies from temperature isn the 20th century was anthropogenic in origin. Therefore the proxy data in the alte 20th century was of no value. However this did not affect the proxy data prior to that time. This data has a valid temperature signal and reconstructions generated from it can be accurate.

    This is a variation on Catch 22 — we are right so we cannot be wrong even if we are.

  36. MarkW
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 8:29 AM | Permalink

    We already know that if things are hotter or drier, it’s because of AGW. If it’s colder or wetter, it’s because of AGW. And if nothing has changed whatsoever, it’s still because of AGW.

  37. L Nettles
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 8:54 AM | Permalink

    A peculiar saving grace in terms of the individuals involved is that the delusional piety makes the fraud an innocent one.

    For the USA contingent this would be known as the Nifong Defense.

  38. Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 10:36 AM | Permalink

    Off-topic but Mr. Watts has found himself some media coverage:

  39. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 10:37 AM | Permalink

    RE#35, certainly that’s probably the official reasoning as to why the chapter authors would gloss-over the divergence problem. But the act of actually physically altering the figures to hide it is completely inexcusable and cannot be seen as anything other than an intentional revision of a supporting document to suit the authors’ own ideas.

    If it’s ok to truncate the last 50 yrs or so of a 600-yr record, is it also ok to truncate the last 100 yrs or so of the hockey stick?

  40. Pat Frank
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    #37 — I mostly agree with your point, Michael. The fulcrum of the issue is *pious* delusion, though. A delusional person doesn’t necessarily operate unconsciously. It’s a conscious modification of the data, and the delusion comes in because the author of the modification sincerely thinks the ‘adjustment’ is justified. The history of delusional operation is that the piously deluded react with emotional hostility when confronted with objective evidence of their error. With AGW, science itself has now been afflicted, and corrupted, with this disease. RC is a modern example of the hostile response of the pious to objective contradiction.

    A friend of mine in Denmark, a very good scientist, remarked in an email today that Bjorn Lomborg is “hate object no.1 in Denmark.” This despite the fact that Lomborg has been thoroughly absolved of the charges mounted against him, that the points he made in his “The Skeptical Environmentalist” have largely been verified after the most punctilious examination, and that his public discussions of pollution and AGW have been entirely reasonable.

  41. Gord Richens
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

    Gord’s general theory on human nature:

    Conceit Trumps Concience.

  42. Reid
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

    Pat Frank says “The fulcrum of the issue is *pious* delusion”

    In other words, AGW has become a religious belief.

  43. John Baltutis
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 1:26 PM | Permalink

    Re: #43

    Exactly. The green religion in action, abetted by socialists who want to shut down the booming economies and guarantee equal outcomes, no matter the policies restricting their economies. Since energy is the main driver of economies and transportation systems, what better way to shut them down than by claiming energy usage is destroying the planet. Mankind is Gaia’s enemy and should go the way of the mammoths.

  44. Richard deSousa
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 3:53 PM | Permalink

    Re: #39… it’s so popular I couldn’t log on!…

  45. Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

    Re: #39 and 45

    Anthony took down the data base server before it crashed and burned form heavy traffic, and is moving it to a larger server. He was not looking for publicity, he just wanted to do some good science, but the newspaper discovered his blog, and then Drudge picked up the newspaper article.

  46. David
    Posted Jun 18, 2007 at 7:31 PM | Permalink

    The cat is out of the bag now. Radio talk show hosts like Greg Knapp are mentioning Anthony and the article on their radio shows now. Now if only the site were up…

  47. MarkW
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 5:19 AM | Permalink

    I hope Anthony is doing some quality control on what is being entered into his site.
    With the attention he’s been getting, there’s likely to be a crank or two out there, who would like nothing better than to discredit Anthohy and his work. They could do this by entering obviously bogus information and pictures, then advertise that Anthony can’t be trusted, and prove it by pointing people to the pictures that they entered.

    Are there people who would do this? You bet. In there minds, they are serving the greater good, by destroying all who doubt the new “green” wisdom.

  48. Earle Williams
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 10:21 AM | Permalink

    Re #48


    You’re right in that some people are of the mindset to do such a thing. Whether anyone in fact does is up in the air. I doubt one can make a system that solicits public input immune to thast sort of sabotage. What makes Anthony’s site useful though is that all the information is publically available and anyone can verify anyone else’s work. The open source model should work in data gathering. Compare this to the closed source model whereby all you get in the way of site verification is “Trust us, these are high quality sites.”

  49. jae
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 2:49 PM | Permalink

    44, John: Steve Milloy agrees with you.

  50. Mark T.
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 3:30 PM | Permalink

    Unfortunately, Steve Milloy’s opinions are “bought by big oil.” Or so says the Team.


  51. John Baltutis
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 3:52 PM | Permalink

    Re: #50

    My utterances aren’t original, just common sense about what’s been going on.

    Re: #51

    However, mine aren’t; especially since I haven’t been getting any checks!

  52. Mark T.
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    Nor have I. I’m wondering when this windfall will arrive. Steve M. is apparently waiting as well, along with many of the rest of us in here. Not much of an employer in my opinion, or we’re really cheap labor.


  53. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 4:58 PM | Permalink

    My employer is promoting AGW hysteria.

  54. DemocracyRules
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

    Re: # 44
    Beautifully and well said!

    However, it’s irrelevant. It is a mistake to dwell upon the motives for malfeasance. If you examine the unfolding of this thread, it becomes more about the politics of deception, and less about the actual data. The data can be disputed, and discrepancies resolved. The effort to attribute motivations to the malefactor are very difficult to prove.

    The key scientific points that come from this thread are that, (1) there is consensus here that the missing data is critically important and necessary to interpret the entire figure, (2) the missing data cannot be interpolated or extrapolated or in other ways derived or imputed from the existing data that is given, and (3) the entire line of reasoning which rests upon this figure must be considered invalid until the missing data are made publicly available.

    It is best to dispute the essential findings of the report until the data are rendered accurate. As always in science, the null hypothesis is the correct hypothesis until it can be satisfactorily disproved. In this case, the null hypothesis is that there has been no significant global temperature increase in the last century. Until we can see all the data available, scientists cannot assess whether or not the null hypothesis has been disproved. Period.

    But I will dream tonight of quote #44… There I see Gaia, fighting with the cancer of humankind…

  55. Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 10:30 PM | Permalink

    # 55

    Mark T.,

    Is Steve Milloy a scientist?

  56. Philip B
    Posted Jun 19, 2007 at 11:35 PM | Permalink

    I’m not a lawyer but I did have occasion to look into copyright in detail at one time.

    Copyright vests automatically in the creator(s)/author(s) of the original work. There is no need to publish, register or go through any formal process to obtain it.

    In this case, a reviewer would have the exclusive copyright to their comments (to the extent they are original works). The IPCC could only obtain copyright by the reviewer formally signing over their rights to the IPCC.

    Steve M would know what he signed as an IPCC reviewer and whether he signed over any rights to his comments.

  57. Jonathan Schafer
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 10:38 AM | Permalink



    Read here about Steven Milloy.

  58. Jeff Norman
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

    Re:#49 Earle Williams,

    You’re right in that some people are of the mindset to do such a thing. Whether anyone in fact does is up in the air. I doubt one can make a system that solicits public input immune to thast sort of sabotage.

    I never signed up for the Oregon Petition because it too was subject to the kind of sabotage you mention.

    I remember the rebuttals offered up for the Oregon Petition were along the lines of; “Anyone can sign up. Even I signed up.” or words to that effect. IIRC this was an argument used by dano.

    My response to this was: Let’s assume what you say is true. Let’s go further and assume 99% of people who signed up are totally unqualified jokesters, what does that mean? It means that there are 170 legitimate climate scientists who do not agree with the so called consensus. What does that say about the so called consensus?

    The same thing applies to Anthony’s effort. A few bad apples will not in this case spoil the barrel. They will eventually be discovered and weeded out. All that will be revealed is that there are those who oppose Anthony et al who are in the end unqualified jokesters.

  59. Earle Williams
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 11:36 AM | Permalink

    Re #57

    Philip B,

    What you say about copyright in the US is true, with a few exceptions. Firstly, works by the U.S. are not subject to copyright. So any comments prepared by government employees on behalf of their employer cannot be copyrighted. Secondly is the issue of works for hire. Comments made by employees of an organization probably belong to that organization rather than the individual if the comments were made as a part of the employee’s job. As you say, US copyright vests automatically when the work is created, but it takes legal wrangling, usually in the form of a lawsuit, to determine who exactly the rights vested in.

    International copyright laws are very similar under the Berne Convention. It would be interesting to know which other countries have the same lack of copyright for works created by the government.

  60. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 12:18 PM | Permalink

    #60. I’ve got a couple of friends who are leading Canadian lawyers on copyright and libel, guys who go to the Supreme Court. I bumped into one of them the other day and mentioned this particular case. Off the cuff, he thought that copyright issues were completely irrelevant to citing. People cite copyrighted material all the time under “fair use”, which commentary on this blog would include. The question is only whether the comments are “confidential” given the “open archive” policy. Off the cuff, it didn’t make sense to him that IPCC could claim confidentiality for documents that were in an open, if inconvenient, archive.

    Right now, I like the strategy of trying to get the documents through NOAA FOI free and clear of these purported restrictions. I think that there’s a decent chance and I expect to hear back from them in early July. These FOI requests are a no lose proposition. They are easy to submit. They might work. Even if they don’t work, the organizations look ridiculous for refusing and documentation of their obstruction builds the case for action by a government somewhere.

  61. DemocracyRules
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 12:21 PM | Permalink

    My biggest surprise on this thread is the lack of interest in the red line. That is, the figure is only interesting because of what appears to be a stunningly sudden upward trend in surface temperature. How many here actually believe the surface temperature data? I am extremely sceptical of the capacity of existing surface temperature technology to detect such a small change in global temperature.

    The corrections for Urban Heat Islands appear to be incorrect, and real surface temperature estimates should be adjusted downward:

    From the Global Historical Climatology Network data base and the data base of Jones et al., for example (both of which can be accessed via our World Temperatures link), we calculate the mean global warming of the 20th century to have been 0.69 and 0.66ÌŠC, respectively, for a mean global warming of 0.675ÌŠC. Now, however, it appears that that figure should be reduced to something on the order of 0.4ÌŠC, or 40% less than what climate alarmists have long claimed it to be…….we can only conclude that the warming of the past century or so was nothing more nor less than the natural recovery of the earth from the global chill of the Little Ice Age…

    Land-based measures are highly flawed, and I don’t believe that the issues of Urban Heat-Island effects are settled yet. There are also terrible problems with maintenance and calibration of rural temperature sensors. Many remote temperature stations show a decades-long cooling trend:

    2) Three years ago, I tried to get a handle on whether UHI [Urban Heat Island] was responsible for the recent warming trend in most of the temperature datasets by comparing the trends for the UAH/MSU 2LT channel and the Jones et al. surface data for some of the world’s “empty places”.
    Location/ MSU (deg C per decade) / Jones et al. (deg C per decade)
    N Quebec / 0.317 / 0.327
    N Ontario / 0.413 / 0.533
    N Alb/Sask/Man / 0.424 / 0.470
    E Yukon and Nunavut / 0.101 / 0.666
    N Alaska / 0.191 / -0.008
    SW Alaska / 0.196 / -0.013
    Arabian peninsula / 0.021 / 0.328
    Sahara / 0.105 / 0.346
    W China / 0.335 / 0.328
    Outback / 0.007 / -0.057
    Amazon Basin / -0.183 / 0.171
    Patagonia / -0.013 / 0.049

    All trends from the Idso’s web-site world temperature calculator at The MSU and Jones et al. trends for these empty places are weakly positively correlated with r = 0.426. Notable in this data is how strong the warming in the North is and how different the Southern Hemisphere is.
    Comment by Jim Dukelow ‘€” 15 Dec 2004 @ 5:08 pm”

    Why is the correlation between these two data sets so poor? (Each data set explains only 17% of the variance of the other data set!) If we don’t know why, we’re in statistical trouble. Simply taking two error-filled data sets and averaging them is not satisfactory, unless one knows what is causing the discrepancy. Not only is it a case of garbage in garbage out’, but there are also the statistical problems of increasing the error variance more than one increases the certainty of the main effect. Many best fit’ trend lines will fit such error-filled data. Almost any trend line, from a quadratic to a loop – the – loop’ may fit the data with equal precision.

    Furthermore, if we have a ‘global climate’, then why would some areas (eg, the Australian outback) be getting cooler? Do we in fact HAVE a global climate?

  62. Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

    Alternatively, armed with the I think correct off the cuff opinion of your lawyer friend, you might consider publishing while you are waiting for the FOI request. It would be revealing if the IPCC were to come after you on copyright, NDA or confidentiality grounds.

    What have they got to hide?

  63. Mike
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 5:14 PM | Permalink

    The question is: Does the IPCC have a legal right to make that demand in the first place, or is it all bluster….

  64. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 20, 2007 at 6:34 PM | Permalink

    #63-64. Let’s just wait and see what NOAA does. I’ve got a couple of other irons in the fire as well. But for readers who’ve commented here: please send your own FOI request to NOAA or some other government agency. I don’t mind the suggestions but there’s a lot more chance of success if other people take some initiative as well. A few people have, but any reader who’s taken the time to comment here, should have taken the time to make his own FOI request. I’ve given a template and address.

  65. John Baltutis
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 1:39 AM | Permalink

    Re; #65

    I’ve given a template and address.

    Mind posting a link? A search of this site for FOE template didn’t reveal it.

  66. Bob Weber
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 3:37 AM | Permalink

    #66. See Comment 16 at


  67. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 4:28 AM | Permalink

    Is there a written agreement between Harvard Library and the IPCC or colleagues, which allows the use of Harvard local rules on info that does not belong to Harvard? Surely, if Harvard cannot comply with the open access policy, it would be honourable for Harvard to hand the data back and say that its policies do not allow proper dissemination of science. It would be dishonourable to keep it after it has learned of the repression its rules are causing.

  68. DavidH
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 5:40 AM | Permalink

    In the UK DEFRA make it easy. Just fill in

    Click to access rif1.pdf

    I’ve cut and pasted Steve’s as follows:

    I request that a copy of any DEFRA records (documents, memoranda, review comments, reports, internal and external correspondence or mail including e-mail correspondence and attachments to or from DEFRA employees) be provided to me on the following subjects:

    (1) review comments on (a) the Second Order Draft and (b) the Final Draft of the Fourth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group I, including, but not limited to, all expert, government and review editor comments;
    (2) all annotated responses to such comments by Chapter Lead Authors.

    All review comments were submitted in digital format; collations have already been made and all the requested information should be easily located by the primary sources.

    The last paragraph of section 4.1 of the IPCC’s Appendix A to the Principles Governing IPCC Work ( states:

    “All written expert, and government review comments will be made available to reviewers on request during the review process and will be retained in an open archive in a location determined by the IPCC Secretariat on completion of the Report for a period of at least five years.”

  69. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 8:51 AM | Permalink

    #68. That’s a good point. The “DO NOT CITE” was only the pdf copy emailed to me. If the Harvard copies say the same thing, then you’re right: HArvard should be asked not to participate in such deception. But I don’t know what the Harvard copies say – maybe someone can look and see?

  70. MC
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

    Just as an aside, recently I saw a paper by Peter Laut showing how to correctly interpret the Henrik Svensmark data concerning solar effects on low level cloud formation and how this effect in turn causes temperature changes in the atmosphere. In the paper they state that when new data is correctly filtered there is a marked divergence of the temperatures derived from solar effects from the measured atmospheric temperature increase i.e. ‘hockey stick’. The conclusion was then that ‘no the sun does not play a role in the observed atmospheric heating over the last 20 years or so’ (I can’t recall just now the time period).
    However reading the details of the analysis you and Ross McKitrik did on correct PCA method and on what the ‘hockey stick’ curve should really look like, is there a better agreement using Briffa (not truncated) to the Laut calculated temperature variation due to solar effects? It appears on first glance that there may be.
    Laut appears to support the Mann data and yet may have handed the scientific community a much more powerful data set in understanding climate change.

  71. jae
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 6:03 PM | Permalink

    71: See here for a rebuttal of Laut’s claims.

  72. John Baltutis
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    Re: #66

    Thanks. Despite my FOE template typo, I actually searched for FOI template and didn’t find it.

  73. John Baltutis
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 6:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: #71

    Read the sunspots.

  74. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 7:24 PM | Permalink


    My employer is promoting AGW hysteria

    I found out the other day that mine is, too. Of course, the $$$ signs of the consulting work to be done in the name of AGW is astounding. And every little bit of the hysteria feeds another sector. Work begets work. If my company didn’t participate in the AGW hysteria, they’d miss-out on an immense amount of related work. And since a major part of consulting is the relationships one has with clients in the first place, name recognition, etc, missing out on the AGW sector means it’s harder to get unrelated work from those clients, too.

    I did a little background look into our young corporate “climate change expert” – no revelvant education background, just a few years of experience as an activist, an admittedly difficult time getting a public sector job, and surprise at being hired by my employer.

  75. DemocracyRules
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 9:06 PM | Permalink

    Re: THE SUNSPOTS as noted in #74

    Here is the ‘money quote’
    (Article written by R. Timothy Patterson, professor and director of the Ottawa-Carleton Geoscience Centre, Department of Earth Sciences, Carleton University.)

    However, there was a problem. Despite this clear and repeated correlation, the measured variations in incoming solar energy were, on their own, not sufficient to cause the climate changes we have observed in our proxies. In addition, even though the sun is brighter now than at any time in the past 8,000 years, the increase in direct solar input is not calculated to be sufficient to cause the past century’s modest warming on its own. There had to be an amplifier of some sort for the sun to be a primary driver of climate change.

    Indeed, that is precisely what has been discovered. In a series of groundbreaking scientific papers starting in 2002, Veizer, Shaviv, Carslaw, and most recently Svensmark et al., have collectively demonstrated that as the output of the sun varies, and with it, our star’s protective solar wind, varying amounts of galactic cosmic rays from deep space are able to enter our solar system and penetrate the Earth’s atmosphere. These cosmic rays enhance cloud formation which, overall, has a cooling effect on the planet. When the sun’s energy output is greater, not only does the Earth warm slightly due to direct solar heating, but the stronger solar wind generated during these “high sun” periods blocks many of the cosmic rays from entering our atmosphere. Cloud cover decreases and the Earth warms still more.

    ERGO, most of the variance in the ‘red Line’ in the figure can be explained by the combination of increased solar radiation and reductions in cloud fomation.

    For me, this is a bit of a bother, because I strongly doubt the surface temperature data that was used to develop the ‘red line’ in the first place.

  76. Mark T.
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 10:34 PM | Permalink

    My employer is promoting AGW hysteria

    I found out the other day that mine is, too.

    I have yet to meet an engineer that believes in the hysteria. Certainly I’ve met many that believe in GW as that is a scientifically supportable concept (in spite of the Jones/Hansen charade). Since I work for a small company owned by an engineer… well, no hysteria in the office for me. 🙂


  77. Anthony Watts
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 10:43 PM | Permalink

    RE48, 49

    I’ve got a system that looks at the JPEG data that will work I beleive, to detect if the photos have been altered. While not perfect (as no system is, even the new one from Dartmouth) I’m fairly confident it will work. As much as I like the open source model, this is the one technique I can’t share. New entries will start having a “pending approval” stamp attached to the album.

    I’m going to rely on the eyes of many readers like you folks too, to help spot any frauds. Though some photo fakeries are very had to detect, we do have a check system – Google Earth.

    Lets say somebody tries to place a building or heat source next to the Stevenson Screen. We should be able to verify this in Google Earth.

    Maybe somebody would liek to send me a blind test of three photos and ask me to spot the fake?

  78. Anthony Watts
    Posted Jun 21, 2007 at 10:58 PM | Permalink

    Speaking of open source models, Tim Orielly’s blog has an article on how the prominent scholarly journal Nature has recently launched an open-access service for pre-publication research and presentations.

    Called Nature Precedings, all content is released under a Creative Commons Attribution License, and can be commented and voted on. The service will cover research in biology, chemistry, and earth science, much like does for physics, mathematics, and computer science.

    Now if only we could get something like this going for climate science. We could call it but it appears that domain and its reverse is taken by some bloke in London.

  79. Hans Erren
    Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 7:31 AM | Permalink

    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Assessment Report
    Climate Change 2007:
    Synthesis Report
    U.S. Government Review

    Comments are due 27 June 2007 via syr-4ar-USGreview AT climatescience DOT gov

    US Government Review Process
    At the behest of the U.S. Department of State, the Climate Change Science Program Office (CCSPO) coordinates the U.S. Government Review by implementing the following process:

    Open solicitation to all interested parties via CCSPO listserves and a Federal Register Notice publicizing the review of the draft document
    Maintenance of both public and password-protected web pages to facilitate review of the draft document by U.S. citizens and resident aliens
    Recruitment of Federal program managers and scientists — from all agencies participating in the CCSP — to serve on a panel evaluating the scientific and technical merit of submitted comments
    Collation of submitted comments by the coordination office — stripping individuals’ names and affiliations and appending a reviewer numbering scheme so that the evaluation of scientific/technical merit is performed anonymously (with an index maintained by CCSPO should clarification be needed from particular reviewers)
    Planning and conduct of an expert panel meeting
    Preparation of a set of key issues and concerns that emerge as part of panelist deliberations, which serve as basis for the Department of State transmittal letter to the IPCC
    Transmittal to the IPCC by the mandated deadline
    The transmittal letter, a listing of the panelists, and the final collation will be made available upon request so that reviewers can see ultimate disposition of submitted comments.

  80. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    RE: #77 – A good many EEs, programmers and managers in Silicon Valley are true believers. No surprise, given the dominent politics in urban coastal California.

  81. Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 9:48 AM | Permalink

    # 58

    Thank you Jonathan. Thus, Steve Milloy is not a scientist in the sense of the concept. Am I right?

  82. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

    re: #82,

    In what sense of what concept? Obviously Steve Milloy has science training. Obviously he’s been studying and reporting on various science subjects for a couple of decades. It doesn’t appear he writes for peer-reviewed journals, but AFAIK that’s not the definition of being a scientist.

  83. Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    # 83

    Dave Dardinger,

    Are there many concepts about what a scientist is? I’m referring to factual sciences. I respect Milloy’s work and agree with much of his deductions, but he’s not a scientist, he’s a writer, a compiler. I don’t mean that his critics and papers are wrong or that are pseudoscientific; most of his work is correct. I just said that he’s not a scientist on factual sciences.

    There are many reporters that pretend to be “scientific advisors” without a minimal training in sciences. Those are the people that are distorting the Climate Science, the Life Sciences, etc. That’s not the case of Steve Milloy, but he’s not trained on factual sciences, but on formal sciences.

  84. Dave Dardinger
    Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 1:04 PM | Permalink

    re: #84 Nasif,

    Steve Milloy, … he’s not trained on factual sciences, but on formal sciences.

    Perhaps your distinction is between experimental vs theoretical sciences? I’m not sure in any case if it’s a particularly useful distinction. Let’s see what this thread is supposed to be about and I’ll try bringing it back on topic.

    … Hmmm. The topic is how manipulating existing [factual as it were] data can be justified. So who do we want doing such a thing, someone with a training in data gathering or one trained / practiced in manipulating data? Most of the discussions here concern meta-analysis of pre-existing data. And most of the papers in the journals discussing a supposed AGW is concerned with analysis of evaluating data with an eye toward how it relates to AGW as well. Sure a lot of ‘factual’ scientists tie their research to the hot meta-science topic, in this case AGW. When I was in graduate school it was Cancer, later it was Aids. For a while the earth sciences were mostly concerned with Plate Tectonics. Now it’s climate modeling and paleoclimate. But I don’t think we can be too narrow in what we count as science nor as to what tools to bring to the table. What we mostly need to adhere to is the scientific method:

    1. Data gathering
    2. Theory formation
    3. Prediction
    4. Testing
    5. Loop (to 1, 2, or 3 as indicated)

    This site is mostly concerned with #4.

  85. Posted Jun 22, 2007 at 9:45 PM | Permalink

    # 85

    Dave Dardinger,

    Thank you, Dave. I was only asking. I like the toil of Steve Milloy, but some times I’ve seen that he overstresses some points.

    About the objective of this thread, I consider that there is no justification for manipulating data. I’ll merely speculate about the future of sciences ‘€”of all sciences- if we persist on tolerating the distortion of the past and present knowledge.

    I think, and it is my opinion, that the force of solipsism is acting on almost all scientific spheres. We can name this because it is one of the crucial goals of some politicians, if not from all. I’m talking about the hunt for limitless power on people’s budget, the manipulation or the domestication of the science in favor of social or economic favors by people that has no idea about how science works, and the appropriation of the knowledge by selective groups.

    A good example is what has happened to Dr. McIntyre and the IPCC-AR4. I call it “occultation”. Another example is that the science from Media is released by people who get power from a microphone or from a Newspaper column, but who don’t know a speck of sciences. Probably I’m seeing pirates on the coast, but I have experienced some thorny problems with the Media that I don’t wish to comment here.

  86. John F. Pittman
    Posted Jun 23, 2007 at 7:35 AM | Permalink

    #80 Thanks. I read with interest that IPCC claims to be open and transparent in “Principles Governing IPCC Work” Maybe they mean just to member nations and not individuals. I believe that SteveM should check out the Canadian site if it exits. I note in their procedures for the prep., rev., etc of IPCC reports (found here Technical papers are not accepted, approved or adopted but are finalized with the Bureau. “Finalized” is not defined. It states that “all written expert and government reveiw comments..will be made available…and will be retained in an open archive”. In 4.2.4 Reveiw 2nd paragragh claims the second governing principle for IPCC is “a wide circulation process, ensuring representation of independent experts”. The 3rd governing principle is that “the review process should be objective, open and transparent.” I think that Steve can do with the data whatever he needs in order to ensure wide circulation process and representation of independent experts. allows for non-government reveiwers, but they need to send their comments to the appropriate Working Group/Task Force Bureau co-chairs with a copy to their appropriate Government focal point.

    In section 4.3 it is stated that the Panel is to note any substantial disagreements in their Summary for Policymakers using Principle 10. “A Report of [Working Group X of]the IPCC” Principle 10…drum roll please…is about reaching concensus.

  87. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 23, 2007 at 7:56 AM | Permalink

    #87. I’ve cite that section to IPCC, and their position is that they have elected to achieve a “transparent and open” process by prohibiting citation of the comments sent to me. Doesn’t make any sense to me either.

  88. John F. Pittman
    Posted Jun 23, 2007 at 6:45 PM | Permalink

    Well Steve, I think I will object through my country’s representative that IPCC is not carrying out their own guidelines and as such, the USA should formally object to any content of the work until such time as it has been openly reveiwed. It frustrates me to agree that I can’t quote etc what I am reveiwing. But I will at least get to object if I can find anything in my areas of expertise. Gotta wait up to 12 hours before I can find out what I can object to.

  89. Mark T.
    Posted Jun 23, 2007 at 8:18 PM | Permalink

    RE: #77 – A good many EEs, programmers and managers in Silicon Valley are true believers. No surprise, given the dominent politics in urban coastal California.

    This is a puzzle. Any trained engineer should know and understand what is wrong with the way data are manipulated, algorithms distorted to create known outcomes, linear vs. non-linear systems, etc. Of course, they may not _know_ that any of this is going on, but simply trust the media is telling the true story.


  90. Steve Milesworthy
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 10:17 AM | Permalink

    I’ve just had the opportunity to ask an IPCC author about potential bias, given that authors might promote their own work. His response was that he felt you needed the experts to draw up the expert opinion and that there were multiple levels of reviews and that within the last two days review comments and responses have become available online:

  91. Spence_UK
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    Re #91

    About time! Since making the comments available was so obviously the right thing to do, it is just a shame that the only way to make them do the right thing is to point the spotlight at them. Most people are capable of doing the right thing without this kind of merry-go-round. It is pathetic that they still try to bound strict terms and conditions all over the site. It makes one think that they are scared of what might happen if people actually saw what was going on.

    Oh, and the response to Steve’s comment is an absolute disgrace, for the reasons Steve has already outlined.

  92. Jeff Norman
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

    Run that by me again?


    “very interesting chapter, fully relevant to IPCC”



    I’ve read numerous other sycophantises. And right after lunch too.

  93. steven mosher
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 12:20 PM | Permalink

    re 89.

    John, I’ve been looking at this DQA approach, related to another matter.
    What’s the process to initiate a lawsuit.

  94. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    Re#91, just had to peek and see the responses to a certain reviewer’s comments…awwww, it was widdle Mann’s furst (sic) time and that some widdle errors aside, it was a good widdle first effort. Thumbs up to MBH98 and a motherly pep-talk for the poor widdle Mann who had his feelings hurt.

    I hope I didn’t violate any rules for quoting “furst.” If I did, I’m sure the IPCC will forgive me, because it’s the furst time I’ve had to agree to such rules when reviewing what is supposed to be a public document with a transparent review process.

  95. cbone
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

    Wow. I am completely and utterly gobsmacked. Talk about dodging the issue…

  96. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:18 PM | Permalink

    I should have been clearer in #95 – not talking about the comments on Briffa that started this thread, but comments regarding MBH98…

  97. UC
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:19 PM | Permalink

    Hmmm, interesting stuff again

    “who showed the original Mann et al reconstruction to be robust with respect to the precise details of the method as long as the key underlying proxy data are retained”

    Credits to IPCC

  98. Steve Sadlov
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:27 PM | Permalink

    RE: #90 – “simply trust the media is telling the true story.”

    Yes. That’s the issue. They get their impression of what’s going on in the world from the SF Chronicle, SJ Mercury, and NPR or Pacifica.

  99. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

    Now that this is online, here is the comment and response:

    Show the Briffa et al reconstruction through to its end; don’t stop in 1960. Then comment and deal with the “divergence problem” if you need to. Don’t cover up the divergence by truncating this graphic. This was done in IPCC TAR; this was misleading .
    [Stephen McIntyre (Reviewer’s comment ID #: 309-18)]

    Their response:

    Rejected ‘€” though note divergence’ issue will be discussed, still considered inappropriate to show recent section of Briffa et al. series

    That’s it. Why the hell is it “inappropriate” to show the values past 1960. It’s “inappropriate” to delete the data. The response by the authors is absurd.

    This is a case of conflict of interest as Briffa is the section author and here he is taking a decision on Briffa et al 2001. Disgraceful.

  100. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    RE#100, I was just getting around to reading the comment responses relevant to this thread. I don’t think the IPCC likes the level of detail you put into your analysis. They seem to like broad strokes, no matter how misleading, and avoid noting any caveats.

    I guess some use “inappropriate” where others might use “silly and incorrect”

  101. UC
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    If these are “minimum uncertainty”, what is the estimated uncertainty? [Stephen McIntyre]

    Somewhat higher but not published


  102. jae
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 2:20 PM | Permalink


    Amen. And add reprehensible.

  103. John F. Pittman
    Posted Jun 26, 2007 at 4:35 PM | Permalink

    #94 an example of a lawsuit/prtition:

    Click to access 20a.pdf

    A place where the act is discussed. This one is worth reveiwing

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  1. […] things, the deletion of post-1960 Briffa reconstruction results – see for example here here here, where the lead author (Briffa) justified the deletion of adverse post-1960 results from his […]

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