the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

The State of Climate Science – Fox Special

Posted by Jeff Id on December 21, 2009

Fox News Hour special on climate science. Featuring Steve McIntyre, Ross McKitrick, Pat Michaels, Bjorn Lomborg and others. Fox wasn’t able to get too many believers, but they did get Gerry North who happens to simply lie his butt off to the reporters in support of the AGW cause. I’ve used that L word pretty often lately here, but in my opinion there is no other word for it. North chaired the NAS panel which reviewed the validity of Mann’s hockey stick after Wegman reported his conclusions. The panel ended up trying to find a balance between the reality that it’s crap and the need for it to exist.

Anyway, we’re used to the advocacy angle here, Fox did a nice job of the special. Steve and Ross were particularly good – of course I’ve spent the last year reading up on their work and doing my own, so I might be biased 😀

It’s good to see the climate scientists on the hot seat for a while. We do have an opportunity to see some sanity break out in the near future but billion dollar industries don’t change easily.

Climate Audit thread on this special thing is here.

25 Responses to “The State of Climate Science – Fox Special”

  1. Foz said

    Missing part 5… two part 4’s?

  2. Kevin said

    Cool…thanks for posting.

  3. Jeff Id said

    Fixed thanks.

  4. G. B. Val said

    In the just published paper “Reaffirming climate science”, NATURE, 18 December 2009, Hans von Storch and Myles Allen.are saying: “But, at the same time, it is crucial to point out that no grounds have arisen to doubt the validity of the thermometer-based temperature record since it began in about 1850.” At:; They call themselves climatologists, requiring in the concluding sentence that: “…to rebuild that trust while ensuring that uncompromised knowledge about ongoing and future anthropogenic climate change continues to be perceived as valid.”. They do not lie; but they are ignorant, naive, and unscientifically.

  5. Gerry North

  6. Jeff Id said

    Thanks Bishop

  7. Peter said

    The point they keep missing is that there is no evidence that man is the cause of what little global warming there is, and that it will send the climate into some warming Armageddon. In fact, the world has been cooling, and cooling rapidly at high altitudes. So, one could even start asking the question, has the world (land+sea+atmospheric) in fact warmed at all over the past 100 or so years? To me the data shows the total temperature of the climate (not just the land surface) has on average changed very little. So what’s all the fuss about?

  8. stan said

    #4 No grounds to dispute the thermometer record?!! Here’s some more to add to the already long, long list.

    BTW — not a bad special. What I’d really like to see is balance in the way that Limbaugh says he represents equal time. Given all the one-sided alarmist crap we’ve had shoved down our throats, I’d like to see someone with a real grasp of all the incompetence and corruption lay it all out for an hour on TV. I guarantee that if Fox gave me an hour to lay out the case (using only solid, confirmed evidence), no one who watched would believe in global warming ever again. Just lay it out like a closing argument with all the evidence to impeach Mikey Mann, his climate KGB buddies, their fellow travelers, and the enablers who stood silently by while they cranked out the garbage.

  9. Simone82 said

    Excuse for my ignorance, but what mean “after Wegman”?
    reviewed the validity of Mann’s hockey stick after Wegman

    Simone82 from Italy

  10. Jeff Id said

    #9 Here is a good link. I’ve updated the text again.

  11. stan said


    On the CA thread on this topic someone put this link in a comment.

    Not a smoking gun, but interesting that someone in NZ 30 years ago was pointing out what Watts has found here in the US.

  12. Simone82 said

    #10 Thanks Jeff! 🙂

  13. G Howe said

    Exxx-celll-eent. (rubbing hands together).
    Is this being rebroadcast on Wednesday?

  14. P Gosselin said

    Nice little slam dunk it was.

  15. A very good spread.

    Markey is an idiot – EPA voted in democratically? When I hear certain BS statements like that, and see the wax-faced Lisa Jackson, I go into terrier mode… sniff out those rats…

    There are still a whole lot more science issues to unravel. Still silence regarding the Ice Hockey Stick. Still silence regarding exactly how much the CO2 rise is even due to our emissions (if we allow properly for that most basic law of physics, Henry’s Law, working in the huge, huge, huge arena of the oceans.) And still even skeptics talk about global warming despite the recent cooling AND the suspect surface temperature records.

    ClimateGate is percolating nicely through the fabric of society, drip by drip as well as wave by wave. It has still further to go, to give power to the reforms needed throughout Science, the universities, the research / grants system, and media responsibilities re science reporting. I get emails all the time from ordinary people who say they have been helped by my Primer to understand something of the real science. This is still building. And look at Jeff here. What a growth.

  16. DeWitt Payne said

    #15 Lucy Skywalker,

    Oceanic release of significant CO2 requires a large temperature change over a long time. The change in the isotope ratio of deuterium to hydrogen (deltaD), a fairly good proxy for temperature, in the Dome C core from the end of the last glacial period was -440 to -395 ppm. That produced a change in CO2 from ~180 to ~280 ppmv with a time constant of 2500 years (assuming the dating is correct)(see my post here). The most recent deltaD at Dome C from a slice covering 38 to 102 years BP is -391 ppm. The average for the last ten data points covering 1000 years is -398 ppm. There is no way a temperature change that small could have produced a rise in CO2 of an additional 100 ppm in less than 100 years.

    Ferdinand Englebeen, no warmer, also makes a very strong case that the recent rise in CO2 must be a result of fossil fuel combustion.

    The application of Henry’s Law to dynamic buffered system like sea water isn’t trivial either.

    It’s the computer climate models’ application of physics, not the fundamental physics that are the problem. Concentrating on points that are easily refuted, like radiative transfer physics of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and the human origin of the recent rise in CO2, makes people ignore your more substantive arguments. It isn’t fair, but to most people it’s wrong in one, wrong in all.

  17. Kenneth Fritsch said

    I agree whole heartedly with DeWitt Payne at Post #16 – and he has made this point previously, here and at other blogs. It would appear that the consensus crowd looks at their critics for the bridge too far, the over stated case and the cases argued without a good understanding of the underlying fundementals.

    Then we get derailed from the real contentious points as with Mann replying to Palin. I personally do not see much good coming out of the replies made by the other side to Al Gore. It is not like a politician has never made a specious statement favoring action on pet project. More worrisome are the climate scientists who defend Gore.

  18. Lady in Red said

    A recent post on DeepClimate about the Wegman Report got me thinking.

    DeepClimate discovered that some parts, for example the explanation of the importance and use of tree ring proxies, was “lifted” from another source. That’s uncool, tacky. Unethical, but, also, not particularly germane to the report’s thrust, does not negate the report’s conclusions, in particular, that the climate science peer-review process is, at least, inbred and that climate scientists need more cross-disciplinary mathematical expertise in their work. (I also believe that Mann made some apology/correction to his “hockey stick” as a result of the Wegman Report, but I understand nothing about this.)

    I would be interested in reading two overviews of the chronology of climate science, dating back, say, to the 1970’s, done by both skeptics and believers in AGW. If science is to build on prior science, should not all interested individuals have access to everything upon which peer-reviewed and published papers are based, including the selected data and models?

    I envision only a couple of pages, with head-to-head comments by the “other” side appended to each – but written for the intelligent lay community. Allowed comments being like “direct hits” instead of diversionary and distracting sideways slings.

    In the 1970’s, I believe, persons attempting to understand the world’s oceans, and others studying the atmosphere were called oceanographers and meteorologists and atmospheric scientists. Mostly, scientists focused on a narrow swath, like the biology of the ocean, or a study of its currents. Air-sea interactions were very complex, nuanced mysteries, I thought.

    When was “climate science” invented as a discipline, separate from previous earth sciences? What are the course requirements, what universities confer degrees in “climate science,” instead of, or alongside, traditional earth sciences? How much math, statistics, and physics are required for a “climate science” degree?

    Below is a succinct explanation of the difference between science and engineering and why we should open our confusing “settled science” about climate to qualified engineers:

    Who were the first persons to attempt to do long-range, climate predictions? When? What were the predictions? In the 1970’s some folk were predicting a new Ice Age. The source most often referenced is a Newsweek article, which is derided by the AGW community as not authoritative, or peer-reviewed. I find it hard to believe that, one week, Newsweek went over the top and reported something completely without any scientific basis whatsoever. So, what was the genesis of that article? Who did the research and what became of them and their work? When did the consensus view shift from global ice to problematic warming?

    When did the IPCC issue its first report and how have its predictions borne out over time? How does the IPCC build upon its earlier predictions with each new report? What is the IPCC overall predictive track record?

    I am confused, and there appears to be controversy whether the last decade was the warmest in history (excluding 1934, possibly…?), is getting somewhat warmer, or is cooling. I’ve seen a U-Tube video of a ten year old and his father doing an analysis of US temperature data outside of urban centers which is a flat line, and read about cherry-picked data and temperature sensors mounted atop buildings beside air conditioning units. Why is the temperature record — from just the past ten years! — so controversial, more complicated than a junior high school science project, binary list of do’s and don’ts? Why isn’t satellite data incorporated more into contemporary analyses of global temperatures?

    In the past months I have read DeepClimate, ClimateProgress and RealClimate on the AGW side of the aisle.

    ClimateProgress reports today that a new, independent study by the British Met Office in conjunction with the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasting has – so quickly? – determined that prior HadleyCRU global warming predictions have been more conservative than the data and analysis now indicates and includes a terrifying, new hockey stick graph of warming from 1860 to the uptick present. The problem, of course, is that I have no confidence in the independence of this analysis and wouldn’t know if the graph were upside-down. (I am, however, impressed with the rapidity of this analysis and am left wondering why, if so easy and fast, this data cannot be analyzed by independent statistical experts and engineers.

    (There are often dismissive references from within the climate science community about the importance of trusting only peer-reviewed articles written by those with the appropriate academic degrees, the only ones entitled to have opinions on matters pertaining to climate. There is a modest, thin, little-known book by the late, great Jane Jacobs, an intellectual gadfly of great proportion, titled Dark Age Ahead – a subject not ungermane to matters at hand. There are three chapters of particular note: Credentialing Versus Educating, Science Abandoned, and Self-Policing Subverted. The entire book is an easy yet compelling read. Look it up. Read it.)

    I also read WattsUpWithThat, The Air Vent, and, of course, ClimateAudit. Frankly, I find them more closely aligned with facts, with science and with numbers. Somehow, I feel that if Steve McIntyre woke up one morning with a realization that Michael Mann’s hockey stick was accurate – and McIntyre could prove it – he would. And Watts and JeffId would applaud. I like that.

    I am sending this request to all six mentioned blogs – somewhere! I hope it’s not snipped, can be addressed in a constructive way.
    PS: Pls pass to ClimateAudit. I’m intimidated about interrupting a thread thought train……

  19. boballab said


    Lady in Red the modern AGW theory has its begining way back in the late 1950’s with the founder of Scripps Oceanagraphic Institute, Dr. Roger Revelle and in many ways is the cause of all this. I will give you a couple links that you can go to and you will see how “history” is not that clear and you can then make up your mind.

    Now here you get the AGW spin on Dr. Revelle. The reason I say this is that if you have read the articles on Dr. Connolley you can see why but here is a link to the discussion page where you see how Connolley argued with John Coleman the founder of the Weather Channel over this.

    Now this whole trying to re write history actually ended up headed for court when Dr. Fred Singer was involved with a paper he wrote with Dr. Revelle shortly before Dr. Revelle’s death. The link I will provide also shows how one Albert Gore got involved with AGW.

    Click to access 20060531_01.pdf

    As shown Dr. Revelle the modern father of AGW before his death diputed it.

    Hopefully that gives a frame work for every thing that later comes about in the world of “Climate Change”.

  20. Lady in Red said

    Thank you, Boballab, but no, this doesn’t help me.

    Freeman Dyson said recently, in the NY Times, that he knew Revelle and Revelle was a skeptic, as is he.

    Walter Orr Roberts, original director (I think), of NCAR, toyed with this in the mid-1980’s, but dismissed it.
    There was no “climate science” then.

    I think Hank Stommel was a skeptic, but not sure. What about Walter Munk? I wonder what his views on all this
    are now.

    Of course, you may have read that NASA’s Joanne Simpson is tactful, but wary and Hansen’s former “boss”
    — unknown to Gavin Schmidt — John Theon is pretty rabid on the subject of Hansen and warming, but….

    I think these are all old wise codgers.

    But, this doesn’t help me with a larger picture of “when it happened,” the role of the IPCC and the validity
    of its predictions, and the rest. There is too much ball-bouncing over the net for me. I would like an
    honest head-to-head. ……..Lady in Red

  21. Blous79 said

    Perhaps Al Gore’s book “Our Choice” provides some clues to how it all started. No new nuclear power plants in the USA for 26 years. How can nuclear interests make nuclear competitive? Carbon has negative externalities that should be taxed. He notes the organized propaganda campaign of big oil.

    Apparently Al Gore Snr was a member of the Atomic Energy Committee.

    IPCC and Gore got a Nobel Peace Prize – the prize committee numbers only 5.

    CRU has lots of nuclear interests as funders.

    Some bright spark comes up with a strategy to enlist vociferous environmental groups to demonize carbon.

    Hansen and Trenberth appear key players in the Global Energy Budget – Global Climate Model tag team match which ensconses CO2 as a baddie.

  22. Blous79 said

    Maybe there are some more clues to the beginning here:
    Climtegate 30 year timeline
    and IPCC Chair’s business dealings

  23. rogerthesurf said

    There might be global warming or cooling but the important issue is whether we, as a human race, can do anything about it.

    There are a host of porkies and not very much truth barraging us everyday so its difficult to know what to believe.

    I think I have simplified the issue in an entertaining way on my blog which includes discussion on the CO2 issue.

    Please feel welcome to visit and leave a comment.



    PS In my country a porky is not a fat person but refers to a statement or assertion of gross falsehood or extreme exaggeration.

  24. Confused said

    As a lay person who lacks the skills to examine the technical aspects of the science I just can’t see how any reasonable person can be anything but unsure. There seems to be good evidence to support some of what the ‘warmists’ say and good reason to doubt other things. Given that state of affairs, I can’t arrive at a conclusion and can’t see how other lay types can either except that a given position aligns somehow with their views about other things i.e. political leanings, natural contrarianism or whatever. And that is not a sound basis for judging scientific arguments. I honestly haven’t got a clue, but I’m glad that WUWT, tAV, CA etc are doing what they’re doing. As far as I’m concerned that kind of scepticism (minus the side arguments) will either be right or improve the science. Both are good outcomes.

  25. Hi, it looks like your site

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