Climate Gate

Mon, 2011-12-19 05:58Chris Mooney
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The Climate-Media Paradox: More Coverage, Stalled Progress

For those of us who care about global warming, 2006 and 2007 felt like pretty good years. Al Gore won the Nobel Peace Prize for An Inconvenient Truth, sharing it with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Media attention to the issue soared, and it was positive attention. Given all the buzz, I—and many others—figured the problem was all but solved.

The next steps appeared deceptively simple. Elect Barack Obama, pass cap-and-trade, go to Copenhagen in the snowy winter of 2009 and take it global—or so I advised in Scientific American. I didn’t expect “ClimateGate,” or the dramatic consequences that an overseas non-scandal (for so I perceived it to be) could have for U.S. climate policy.

Nor did I imagine that virtually the entire Republican Party, rather than just some part of it, would come to reject climate science on this flimsy basis. I expected out-and-out climate change deniers like Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe to be further marginalized, not mainstreamed.

Needless to say, I now look back on all this and shake my head.  Clearly, I–and many other people who felt the same way–was missing something rather big. We were far too optimistic in thinking that our governmental and media institutions were up for dealing with this type of problem.

Recently, a new book has helped bring the nature of their failure–and particularly the media's failure–into sharp focus.

Thu, 2010-02-25 11:18Kevin Grandia
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Common Sense and the Attack on the IPCC

When all logic leaves an argument, which is something that seems to happen on a daily basis in politics, it is good to step back and lay things out in black and white. Give some perspective to a situation to show just how ridiculous the situation has become.

The unprecedented attack on the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) has reached new heights with Republican Senator James Inhofe now calling for criminal investigations into the work of prominent climate change scientists.

Inhofe makes some very broad claims, based on a very narrow band of evidence, saying that, “the Minority Staff believes the emails and accompanying documents seriously compromise the IPCC-based “consensus” and its central conclusion that anthropogenic emissions are inexorably leading to environmental catastrophes.”

Inhofe is claiming that based on statements made in 3 emails, by a single person, he has enough evidence to now claim that decades of research by thousands of scientists is “seriously compromised.” Like I said, politics and logic rarely go had-in-hand.

To lay out in black and white, below I have compiled a list of the scientific references used in just two of the forty four chapters of the last IPCC report. There are thousands of papers, by thousands of scientists, over decades that make up this body of research.

Even if the so-called “climate gate” turned out to be the scandal Inhofe wants it to be, you could throw out that research and there would still remain thousands of papers, by thousands of scientists.

Take a quick look below at the list and you’ll see what I mean. That is, of course, if you’re willing to allow common sense back into the conversation on the subject of climate change.

Mon, 2010-02-01 20:28Kevin Grandia
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Why Climate Gate is bogus and based on lies

Writing for the UK’s Gaurdian news today, Fred Pearce has a very in-depth analysis of how the ‘climategate’ scandal is bogus and based on climate sceptics’ lies.

Pearce explains that,

“Almost all the media and political discussion about the hacked climate emails has been based on brief soundbites publicised by professional sceptics and their blogs. In many cases, these have been taken out of context and twisted to mean something they were never intended to.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself. The so-called ‘climategate’ has been hyped by an over-the-top right-wing press and an over-excited gang of bloggers who use everything other than actual scientific research to prove their point.

Sun, 2010-01-24 12:24Kevin Grandia
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Nature takes on stolen emails

There’s a great editorial in the most recent edition of the scientific journal Nature Geo Science that takes on the illegal hacking of emails at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit.

The editorial is behind a firewall, so here’s a few of the main points for those who don’t have a subscription:

Amidst the calls for more caution in communication, it must be remembered that e-mails are an essential scientific tool when research groups span continents and schedules are tight. Yes, there is a limit to what should be put in writing. But in messages that are not meant for the public eye, there must be room for an open-minded and opinionated discussion, for example, of the quality of papers published by other authors. And when writing to someone who is familiar with the context, there is generally no need to choose every word quite so carefully.

And this:

“The alternative — making every private e-mail between scientists unambiguous and fit for public consumption — would seriously hinder the progress of science.”

 

Tue, 2009-12-29 10:15Kevin Grandia
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The Daily Mail's Distracting ChinaHack Theory

The Daily Mail is reporting that it might be, “Chinese hackers linked to ‘Warmergate’ climate change leaked emails controversy.”

The Mail’s revelation came about after they tracked a convoluted trail of IP (internet Protocols) addresses, through to a, ” Chinese environmental institute, the Research Institute of Forest Ecology and Environment Protection, based near Beijing.”


“‘Because this is an open relay mail server, the emails could have been sent through it from anywhere in the world. It is just as likely to be someone outside Malaysia as someone within the country.”
Tue, 2009-12-08 22:12Richard Littlemore
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Watergate Redux: Another Paranoid Right-wing Break-in

Great Richard Grave piece on Huffington Post points out the parallel’s between the curret “gate” - Climategate - and the original paranoid right wing break-in that gate rise to the unimaginative, but in this case appropriate suffix.

As Graves points out, Watergate showed the worst side of a paranoid right-wing group clinging desperately to power. They committed a quite famous break-in, got nothing useful for their troubles and then crashed historically trying to cover their tracks.

This “gate” began the same way. We can only hope it ends with similar calamity for the perpetrators.

Tue, 2009-12-08 20:59Kevin Grandia
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Stolen email shows scientist happily sharing climate research data

At least one of the scientists being accused by industry groups and right-wing think tanks of hiding their climate research data, appears in an email we found in the stolen files to be more than happy with sharing his data.

Not only does he share it, but he does so with a person he’s never even met before!

Now that our research team has completed a thorough analysis of the entire 1000+ email record, we’ll be publishing a lot of the information in the coming days that runs counter to the claims made by those using these leaked emails to further their own political agendas.

Here’s one we came across between East Anglia researcher, Dr. Keith Briffa and a Russian scientist, Leonid Klyashtorin, in which Briffa gladly sends along research data to Kylashotrin, a person he has never met:

Mon, 2009-12-07 12:30Jim Hoggan
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Revisionist History and the CRU East Anglia stolen emails - the Baliunas example

One of the more egregious examples of the public relations spin on the East Anglia hacked email story involves a six-year-old research paper authored by Sallie Baliunas, an American astrophysicist affiliated with at least nine oil-industry-funded organizations.

In the stolen East Anglia emails, there is a conversation between scientists about and her paper, which argues that the current global warming trend is not unique and that an even more dramatic episode occurred centuries.

The conversation contained in the email is being made to appear like it was an attempt by climate scientists to “muzzle” the Baliunas research paper. Congressman James Sensenbrenner (R-WI), claimed last week that the exchange between academics amounts to a case of “scientific fascism.”

 

Thu, 2009-12-03 17:50Jim Hoggan
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The oily echo machine behind "climategate"

The most vocal organizations around the University of East Anglia hacked email story (aka. “climategate”) have been involved in a decade-plus campaign to delay action on climate change.

The goal of this campaign, which began around the time of the first Kyoto Protocol negotiations, was to assemble a group of like-minded “free-market” think tanks and pseudo-experts that would bring into question the scientific realities of climate change, create doubt with the public and politicians and effectively delay the introduction of clean energy policy in the United States.

It’s no coincidence that the groups pushing this story the hardest have a long history of taking money from oil and coal companies to attack the conclusions made by climate scientists.

What I wouldn’t do to have a few of these organizations private emails over the years!

Here’s a few of the groups I’m talking about and a very brief background on their previous activities, as well as funding sources:

Center for a Constructive Tomorrow: owns and operate ClimateDepot.com, which has been a main clearinghouse for the right-wing climategate echo chamber. ClimateDepot.com is managed by Marc Morano, former aide to Republican Senator James Inhofe. CFACT has received grants from Exxon Mobil, Chevron, and well-known right-wing foundations like the Carthage Foundation and the Sarah Scaife Foundation.

Thu, 2009-11-26 09:48Kevin Grandia
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Climate Cover Up kicking denier books all over Amazon

Jim Hoggan and Richard Littelmore’s new book Climate Cover Up is putting the climate deniers’ books to shame in the rankings on Amazon.com this week.

In the broad category of Environment, Climate Cover Up is sitting at #22 with only Christopher Booker’s The Real Global Warming Disaster in the way of us taking the lead over all climate denier, anti-environmentalist screeds in the category.

We’re out there promoting Climate Cover Up hard, but we need your help! Surprisingly, it doesn’t take much.

Here’s a few things you can do:

1. TWEET IT: Post a link on your Twitter account, urge people to buy a copy as a must read. Send something like: Climate Cover Up is a must-read book, even Leonardo DiCaprio thinks so! http://bit.ly/EPPXK

2.CHRISTMAS GIFT FORSKEPTICALFRIENDS: What better than Climate Cover Up for your “skeptical” friends, family and work colleagues!

3. FACEBOOK: Write a status update or message your Facebook friends about Climate Cover Up.

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