[ExI] Don't obsess over "climategate"

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Fri Nov 27 18:39:56 UTC 2009

On Fri, Nov 27, 2009 at 11:10 AM, Anders Sandberg <anders at aleph.se> wrote:
> Max:
>> While not at all surprised by what has been revealed in those emails,
>> I think some skeptics of climate catastrophism are obsessing too much
>> over them.
> Sounds a bit like what my colleague Nicholas Shackel is writing:
> http://www.practicalethicsnews.com/practicalethics/2009/11/climate-scientists-behaving-badly-part-1.html
> His argument is that the important revelation here is the low epistemic standards the researchers hold themselves to, not any revelation about the data or world itself.

### I wouldn't be sure about that. Pielke was apparently booted off
NCDC temperature review panel because he was asking too many questions
about the validation of current surface temperature data:


This is something not directly related to CRU but pointing to a
problem with another of the three sources of global temperature
reconstruction data, the NCDC. As Pielke describes, there are large
uncertainties in the reconstruction methodology of current global
temperatures and therefore truly independent reconstructions should
produce correlation coefficients noticeably less than 1 - yet, the
CRU, NCDC and GICC reconstructions correlate to 0.98. This tells me
that the three institutions are not producing their reconstructions
independently but rather collaborate closely - which means that they
are not independent sources of evidence. This is not how good,
reliable science is done.

The IPCC claimed that they are "90%" confident that carbon dioxide is
the primary driver of contemporary climate change, and the recent
cooling trend directly falsified this belief. This and the spuriously
high correlation of temperature reconstructions point to a pervasive
lack of quality control in the workings of the three major sources of
evidence on current climate, or as you wrote, low epistemic standards
- but low epistemic standards of the purveyors of data should make the
data itself suspect, shouldn't it?

And one doesn't need to posit a global conspiracy, just Phil Jones,
Thomas Karl and James Hansen working together to get the impossible
0.98 correlation.


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