A global warming hoax meme is born – in New Zealand too!

I have said it before – these militant climate change denial/contrarian/pseudosceptics do live in a different world – or at least a different hemisphere (see Australia’s “New Normal?” and Climate contrarians/deniers are cherry picking again). But here I want to illustrate their behaviour in their denial internet echo chamber where they pass on every scrap of information supporting their conspiracy theories of the great “global warming hoax.”

The easy copy and paste key commands on computers has a lot to answer for.

Consider this latest bit of silliness at Richard Treadgold’s local blog – Climate Conversation Group. Richard Cumming, who Treadgold, or at least Richard Cumming himself, considers a very bright scientific investigator, is continually pasting links to scientific papers and other blogs in the echo chamber. Extensive quotes of abstracts and analysis.

His posting frequency is so high I sometimes think Richard Treadgold’s claim the blog receives more than 1,400,000 visits a year may be correct.*

Today he posted a link purportedly to a new paper in Nature Climate Change: Atmospheric verification of anthropogenic CO2 emission trends by Roger J. Francey et al. It’s behind a pay wall so those without institutional access will have to make do with the abstract.

But see how Cumming presents this paper (in a comment on the ironically titled post by Treadgold “ IPCC created and controlled by activists). He implies an abstract completely different to the real abstract (see table below).

Abstract as implied by Richard Cumming at Climate Conversation Group blog Actual abstract at Nature Climate Change, 3, 520–524, (2013)
New paper demonstrates temperature drives CO2 levels, not man-made CO2. A recent paper published in Nature Climate Change finds a disconnect between man-made CO2 and atmospheric levels of CO2, demonstrating that despite a sharp 25% increase in man-made CO2 emissions since 2003, the growth rate in atmospheric CO2 has slowed sharply since 2002/2003. The data shows that while the growth rate of man-made emissions was relatively stable from 1990-2003, the growth rate of atmospheric CO2 surged up to the record El Nino of 1997-1998. Conversely, growth in man-made emissions surged ~25% from 2003-2011, but growth in atmospheric CO2 has flatlined since 1999 along with global temperatures. The data demonstrates temperature drives CO2 levels due to ocean outgassing, man-made CO2 does not drive temperature, and that man is not the primary cause of the rise in CO2 levels. International efforts to limit global warming and ocean acidification aim to slow the growth of atmospheric CO2, guided primarily by national and industry estimates of production and consumption of fossil fuels. Atmospheric verification of emissions is vital but present global inversion methods are inadequate for this purpose. We demonstrate a clear response in atmospheric CO2 coinciding with a sharp 2010 increase in Asian emissions but show persisting slowing mean CO2 growth from 2002/03. Growth and inter-hemispheric concentration difference during the onset and recovery of the Global Financial Crisis support a previous speculation that the reported 2000–2008 emissions surge is an artefact, most simply explained by a cumulative underestimation (~ 9 Pg C) of 1994–2007 emissions; in this case, post-2000 emissions would track mid-range of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change emission scenarios. An alternative explanation requires changes in the northern terrestrial land sink that offset anthropogenic emission changes. We suggest atmospheric methods to help resolve this ambiguity.

Complete misrepresentation, or what!

Actually his implied abstract is just a blog post he has copied and pasted straight from The Hocky Shtick - a companion blog in the denial echo chamber.

A humourous aside though Richard Treadgold lapped up this brilliant bit of research copy and past by Cumming. He commented:

“A gamebreaker! The paper shows quite a different curve from the Mauna Loa graph so they must have used different data ;. . . . .this looks like dynamite.”

Poor soul. Treadgold doesn’t understand that this new paper plots atmospheric CO2 flux – the rate of change of C – not the actual levels themselves as in the Mauna Loa graph (see below). Of course the curves will be different you fool!

So another climate change denial meme has been born – actually a double barreled one thanks to Treadgold’s little burst of joy:

  1.  Francey’s paper “demonstrates temperature drives CO2 levels, not man-made CO2.”
  2. It also proves that the classic plot for atmospheric CO2 levels at the Mauna Loa Observatory may be a hoax!

co2_data_mlo

Trouble is – both memes are completely wrong.

Let’s see if they have legs though. Which  will be the next blog in the echo chamber to pass the meme along?

As Richard Cumming commented somewhere else “The internet will do the rest.”


* We only have his word for that – he has never allowed public access to the statcounter he used to have installed and has recently removed it. He claimed there was something faulty with it because it gave him the wrong results!

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35 responses to “A global warming hoax meme is born – in New Zealand too!

  1. Science denialism: Only the labels change.

    “Creationists regularly misrepresent geology, evolutionary biology, and other sciences. Although many creationist writings display frank ignorance of mainstream science, cleverer creationists cite legitimate peer-reviewed research in an effort to prop-up their conclusions with an assumed air of scientific respectability. However, they cite such research using very selective “quote mines” that always reinforce their anti-evolutionary positions, even as they distort the meaning and data of the original articles. Crucial details are omitted, caveats are discarded. Creationists also misrepresent peer-reviewed research with “anomaly mongering,” where they seize upon some minor observation, superficially irreconcilable with evolution, that they then proffer as irrefutable “evidence against evolution.” The intelligent design creationists are especially nimble in their use of rhetorical techniques to demonize Darwin and evolution, weakening public support for the teaching of evolution. Such techniques are rampant in creationist literature, and illustrate the importance of defending science from creationist assaults.”

    http://ncse.com/node/12347

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  2. As Richard Cumming commented somewhere else “The internet will do the rest.”

    Yes. Yes it will.
    I have no doubt it will thrive on the internet.
    Should you trust your doctor or the internet? (Adam Kokesh)

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  3. militant climate change denial/contrarian/pseudosceptics

    What is the difference between these types?
    What is a pseudosceptic?
    What makes a “militant pseudosceptic” different from a normal pseudosceptic or even a normal sceptic?

    I am not jacking off. These are reasonable questions

    Don’t you think so?

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  4. Phil, think about all the adjectives and adverbs you guys always use to describe Professor Dawkins. Imagine what the hell you mean by them and then just apply the same terms to the climate question.

    If all else fails try Wikipedia.

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  5. Phil, think about all the adjectives and adverbs you guys always use to describe Professor Dawkins. Imagine

    What do you mean “you guys”?
    I don’t describe Dawkins at all. I don’t know what you mean by “you guys”.
    What the heck do you mean by this statement?

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  6. Huh. “Pseudoskeptic” is an actual word. This is a very useful addition to my vocabulary.

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  7. Huh, “Idiot” is an actual word. This is a very useful addition to my vocabulary.

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  8. Yes Chris, Wikipedia says:
    “Pseudoskepticism (or pseudoscepticism) refers to a philosophical or scientific position which appears to be that of skepticism or scientific skepticism but which in reality fails to be so, for whatever reason.”

    It gives a useful definition:

    “1:Denying, when only doubt has been established
    2: Double standards in the application of criticism
    3: The tendency to discredit rather than investigate
    4: Presenting insufficient evidence or proof
    5: Assuming criticism requires no burden of proof
    6: Making unsubstantiated counter-claims
    7: Counter-claims based on plausibility rather than empirical evidence
    8: Suggesting that unconvincing evidence provides grounds for completely dismissing a claim”

    I think this does quite well describe most people who call themselves climate sceptics. And it is probbaly a lot more accurate than the very loose term “denier.”

    Good, Phil. You now know soemthing about that word you have been hearing a lot for ages.

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  9. So, Ken, of all the genuine climate sceptics out there, as opposed to the “pseudosceptics”, can you give me one example, one name that springs to mind?

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  10. Phil, there are of course thousands – scepticism is the normal requirement in science, despite our all too human desire to find support for our pet ideas. The social nature of science and the constant checking and validation against reality helps to keep scientists honest.

    Plenty of names spring to mind – but what about Michael Mann, to start with. He’s done some great work, and despite attempts by political interests to slander him he has survived. Others have confirmed and extended his work, and he has taken on board criticisms made in good faith and worked to correct them (consider his 2008 paper).

    And just look at the way the period splice treat his work then look at the Wikipedia list above.

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  11. Michael Mann, a climate change sceptic?

    (* struggles to contain raucous laughter *)

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  12. The reaction I expected from you Phil. But it’s always a good test for someone’s ability to think rationally on climate questions.

    Responses say a lot – especially when they have to be emotional rather than factual and reasoned.

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  13. Phil, after your emotional, rather than reasoned, outburst your silence is very telling.

    I would like to think that you are reviewing my list above and trying to come to grips with the shallowness of your position on climate change.

    But I suspect that is only wishful thinking on my part. You seem to fit the above list so well.

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  14. But I suspect that is only wishful thinking on my part. You seem to fit the above list so well.

    Based on what?

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  15. Your response:

    “Michael Mann, a climate change sceptic? (* struggles to contain raucous laughter *)”

    It was emotional, unreasoned, and non-factual and disparaging.

    You obviously cannot discuss the man intelligently – another sign.

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  16. It’s just that I wasn’t expecting you to name Michael Mann as a sceptic. Steve McIntyre maybe.

    Obviously, if you refer to all scientists as sceptics, then any of them would do. But you know that is not how the term is generally used in the climate arena. So, naturally, I had a little chuckle.

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  17. Phil, you expectations are determined by your bias. Clearly I rate Steve McIntyre as a pseudosceptic (according to my list). And it is hardly surprising to identify scientists with scepticism.

    I think you must have developed some very lazy ways of thinking to attribute bias and political correctness (of the right wing sort) to scepticism. And your emotional response was a real giveaway.

    You were caught out and revealed yourself.

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  18. Clearly I rate Steve McIntyre as a pseudosceptic (according to my list).

    No, not clear. Why is this?

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  19. Read the list and make an assessment, Phil.

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  20. Do Richard Muller and his team count as sceptics?

    http://arstechnica.com/science/2011/10/climate-skeptics-perform-independent-analysis-finally-convinced-earth-is-getting-warmer/

    I have mixed feelings about Muller, but he certainly set about independently checking the evidence.

    If we are excluding anybody who, having been initially doubtful, went through the evidence for themselves and concluded that climate change was happening, well, that doesn’t seem a reasonable definition of “sceptic.”

    Rather, you would think that a sceptic was somebody who, while they might well have formed a conclusion, would be willing to modify that conclusion on the presentation of new information (having, of course, taken a sceptical approach to determining whether said new information was reliable).

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  21. Muller doesn’t think very much of Mann’s work.

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  22. Phil, surely this displays your own bias, or at least, ignorance.

    ” If we are excluding anybody who, having been initially doubtful, went through the evidence for themselves and concluded that climate change was happening, well, that doesn’t seem a reasonable definition of “sceptic.””

    Why exclude people who change their mind after reviewing evidence? As long as that change is based on evidence and reason and not emotion. Whatever one’s staring position (and let’s face it this is usually ignorance) a sceptic will not just accept assurance on faith (as you do regarding Michael Mann). They want to see evidence, and if possible check the evidence – hopefully against the real world.

    If a person is originally doubtful, but changes their mind when they review the evidence, then surely they are sceptical.

    That’s the way honest science works.

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  23. I guess that makes Muller a pseudosceptic, as he criticizes Mann

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  24. Ken, everyone agrees that climate is changing, and that the world has gotten about 0.8 degrees warmer in the last 150 years. It is not the issue as you know

    Clearly dishonest of you

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  25. Isn’t it traditional for a video clip about NASA at this stage?

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  26. Don’t be silly Phil. Go back and read the list.

    Criticism is an integral part of science. However, when it deteriorates to playing the man rather than the ball (as it does when you guys hear Michael Mann’s name and your knees start jerking) then it is not honest scientific criticism.

    But everyone’s work, every submitted paper, will contain things which required changes or modification. Criticism plays a vital role.

    I think you also need to accept that scientists are human. They can get quite emotional themselves at times. And there is always the problem of professional jealousy. Fortunately the scientific process, it’s social nature and validating ideas against reality that helps overcome these negative, but human, problems.

    Although in some case people have sold their souls to the devil and abandoned real science altogether. This is quite common for retired scientists and engineers who get into consulting. These people often do not have the discipline of peer review or checking against reality. They gat paid for saying the things their employer likes to hear.

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  27. Phil – stop this ” Isn’t it traditional for a video clip about NASA at this stage?”. It’s childish.

    If you attempt to sabotage discussion by such pathetic taunting I will arrange for your comments to go to spam.

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  28. They gat paid for saying the things their employer likes to hear.

    What if the employer is the IPCC?

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  29. Give me the names of the scientist “employed” by the IPCC who are writing scientific papers or carrying out reviews..

    No, I don’t mean officials such as secretaries.

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  30. You know what I mean Ken
    By the way, here is a book you might be interested in

    http://www.lulu.com/shop/vincent-gray/confeassions-of-a-climate-sceptic/ebook/product-17978924.html

    Notice that Dr Gray was born in 1822. He is doing pretty well for someone nearly 200 years old.

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  31. Phil, do you mean I can’t take you at your word?

    That you don’t mean what you say?

    Or that you are trying to imply something dishonestly which isn’t true by using certain words?

    So that is how you avoid answering my question. The fact that you do so should tell you something.

    It’s not a matter of knowing what you mean – you are either being dishonest or ignorant – hence my question.

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  32. “Employed by” = “People who are selected as lead authors or similar for the IPCC”

    Is that clear enough?

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  33. Clearly not the same thing – as you well know.

    Actually, those persons who do get selected as reviewers and authors for this work are not usually broken down retired mining hacks or engineers. They usually do have a background in the research area. What would be the point otherwise, the organisation would have no credibility and governments who pay for the findings would quickly withdraw from such a sham? They might as well just contact The Heartland Institute.

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  34. Interestingly, Phil, regardless of Muller’s opinion of Mann’s work, he seems to have gotten past it and gone on to look at the wider body of evidence as a whole. Indeed, one assumes that, if he judged the paper in question as unreliable, he would not have counted it as evidence when doing his research. I believe it’s been pointed out to you in the past that climate science does not stand or fall on the work of any one individual.

    I can’t say that it strikes me as reasonable to determine whether or not somebody’s a sceptic on the basis of their opinion of a particular individual’s work. Though I suppose there are certain people who have produced such a large quantity of all-round dreadful stuff that a person’s opinion of them serves as a pretty good indicator of whether they’re a genuine sceptic. Always assuming they’ve heard of the person in the first place, of course.

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  35. Brandoch Daha

    Thanks, Ken, well spotted – yet another example of Richard Cumming “making stuff up” and Richard Treadgold being taken in, hook, line and sinker!

    Like

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