Tag Archives: Environment

Check out those climate change claims on the internet

This looks interesting. Skeptical Science has introduced a Firefox add-on which enables an internet surfer to rapidly check out the arguments found on web pages and blogs. Great for those without a specialist knowledge in the area of climate science. So much of this information on the internet is distorted or downright wrong. This could save the interested surfer the time and effort required to research claims for themselves.

As the image above shows  the report includes information on the real science. I can see people wishing to place comments at an offending blog using this feature.

The add-on also enables interested surfers to make their own reports on blogs and web pages. Those supporting the science as well as the offending ones.

This will provide a chance for the more interested surfer to contribute information and links to the Daily Climate Links email and Global Warming Links page. A chance to contribute to a very useful resource.

Go to Skeptical Science Firefox Add-on: Send and receive climate info while you browse for more information on the add-on. Looks like it could be fun.

You can download the SkS Firefox Add-on at Skeptical Science 1.0.

See also: Get your climate change science on the run for details of Skeptic Science’s iPhone and ipod Touch application. Another useful way of checking our the science of climate change.

Similar articles

Enhanced by Zemanta

Why we deny climate change

Book Review: Requiem for a Species: Why We Resist the Truth About Climate Change by Clive Hamilton

Price: USD$16.47; AUD $24.99; NZD$29.99

Hardcover: 240 pages
Publisher: Earthscan Publications Ltd. (May 2010); Allen & Unwin (March 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1849710813
# ISBN-13: 978-1849710817

I think this book has three messages, but two of them resonated strongly with me. Effectively these are the title and subtitle.

The problems presented by global warming are so large we may never solve them (hence Requiem for a Species – us). The more I discover about the science of climate change the more I become aware that if we don’t take protection measures soon the results for our species will be dramatic.

Socially and psychologically we want to deny the problem (Hence Why we Resist the Truth About Climate change). Psychological and sociologically, as individuals and collectively, we are in denial. This inhibits our capacity to take the actions needed to protect us from the results of human induced climate change.

Those messages come through strongly. The third message, ideas and suggestions for getting us out of these problems is far weaker, probably because it is less specific.

Continue reading

Scientific misconduct and skepticgate

I have been interested in scientific misconduct recently – partly as a result of the Hauser scandal. Consequently I was reading about a recent conference on the subject. The documents included plagiarism right up there with the more commonly accepted forms of misconduct like falsification of evidence.

Plagiarism is the use of text from others’ writing without attribution. Now I realised that this was a big issue for student assessment at universities but apparently it is also an issue for scientific journals. Many journals now use a computer programme to check out submitted papers for plagiarized content.

Just imagine, though, there is a whole field of scientific publishing where such things would not be routinely checked. I am referring to popular science articles, newspaper articles – and reports to clients, including governments.

Well, the proverbial seems to be hitting the fan for one such report – the Wegman report. Gareth at Hot Topic briefly reports this in his article Wegman investigated for plagiarism, “skepticgate” looms.

Continue reading

Nicholas Stern to present Robb Lectures

Nicholas Stern

Here’s an opportunity for New Zealanders to hear an international expert talk about the economics of climate change, policies for adaption and mitigation and the issues involved in obtaining a global agreement on these.

The Sir Douglas Robb Lectures 2010 are to be presented by Lord Nicholas Stern next week.

Formerly Chief Economist of the World Bank, Lord Stern is IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government and Chair of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Continue reading

After NIWA, God?

Local blog Imperator Fish has a nice little satirical comment on the impending legal case being taken against NIWA by New Zealand critics of climate change science (see A desperate plea to be noticed?). If They Win is a fictional news report of legal action taken by the  Climate Science Coalition (CSC) alleging breach of a court order that ruled climate change was not occurring. That is it assumes the CSC will be successful in its current case.

The CSC sued the Crown Research Institute NIWA over weather data issued by the institute, and obtained a ruling by the court last year that NIWA’s data was invalid.

But the CSC are concerned that global temperatures may have risen, in defiance of the court order.

CSC spokesman Terry Dunleavy said the recent atmospheric activity was concerning.

“It may just be an anomaly, but we would certainly be very concerned if temperatures were on the rise, in defiance of the judge’s order.”

Problem is who is responsible? Who do they sue now?

Auckland University Associate Law Professor Nigel de Blath said it was not absolutely clear who or what was behind the recent temperature changes. But if it was God He may have a case to answer.

“On the face of it He appears to have breached the spirit of the court order, if not the actual express language of it.

“I think we all accepted when the ruling came out last year that climate change was at an end. The judge made his views very clear on the subject.”

Mr de Blath said the latest temperature anomalies made a mockery of the entire judicial process.

I nice little story, illustrating the stupidity of thinking one should take legal action in an attempt to change reality.

Enhanced by Zemanta

A desperate plea to be noticed?

Quite a few local bloggers* have commented on the legal action some New Zealand climate deniers are taking to get NIWA to change its national temperature record. This is only the latest step in a nasty little campaign by these people to deny the reality of climate change. Nasty because it distorts the data and facts and makes outrageous attacks on the integrity and honesty of New Zealand scientists. The latest step – but I do wonder if it is the last step – seeing it is likely to backfire.Initially this campaign attempted to take advantage of the “climategate” email hysteria to whip up local anti-science feelings. Of late, as this hysteria has dispersed the local deniers have deteriorated to a small but vocal clique making carping and dishonest attacks on NIWA. I guess they see this legal action as a way of somehow revitalising their campaign.

Continue reading

It’s politics, not science

I am currently reading Clive Hamilton‘s book “Requiem for a Species: Why We Resist the Truth About Climate Change.This figure in the book intrigued me. It’s taken from the report Global Warming’s Six Americas: An Audience Segmentation Analysis.

I think this demonstrates clearly that much of the public debate on climate change is politically based. Too often the real issue for those who argue against the science of climate change is political or ideological. The actions required to deal with climate change are seen as a threat to “free enterprise” because they require collective action to restrain the self-interest of individuals.

I just wish people with these concerns would be honest and stop trying to discredit the science and the scientists. After all, one can’t change reality, and it is only sensible to deal with the real issues. To deal with the politics. As I argued in Liability of scientific denialism to political conservativism attempts to discredit the science are really only a cop-out from the real political issues.

Warning

By the way – you shouldn’t read the wrong things into the above figure. The data is simply displaying the proportion of each classification (Alarmed, to Dismissive) who were liberal or conservative. “Moderates” are not shown hence the totals are less than 100. The figure does not indicate what proportion of the population is in each classification.

Another figure from this report gives this information (see below). As you can see only a small proportion of the American population is dismissive or doubtful about climate change.

Permalink

Similar articles

Enhanced by Zemanta

Share

Liability of scientific denialism to political conservativism


I have often thought that political conservatives who promote climate change denial are cutting off their nose to spite their face. Sure, I can understand why conservatives may be opposed to collective action required to deal with the problem of global warming. Or at least some of the political and economic measures that have been discussed. But if they are serious about their political and ideological stance, and their desire to promote it, they should be in there debating the adaption and mitigation procedures that have been advanced. Or advancing some of their own.

Instead, they choose to leave themselves “outside the tent pissing in,” when they avoid the political process taking place and instead claim there is no need.

Continue reading

Support John Abraham against Monckton’s bullying

Six weeks ago I posted a slideshow of a talk by John Abrahm’s (see Don’t trust Monckton!).

It was a calm and objective investigation into the claims made by Christopher Monckton in one of his lectures. If you didn’t watch it I highly recommend you do so.

Trouble is, Monckton is not used to such exchanges and has climbed out of his tree. His has written a 99 page “rejection” of Abraham’s talk and sent threatening letters to both Abraham and his employers (University of St Thomas, Minnesota). Asking for the presentation to be removed form the web site and demanding money – which has all the implication of possible legal action.

Now he is further organising his minions via climate change denier blogs to send similar letters to  the University of St Thomas.

Monckton can’t be allowed to succeed in this campaign. I has all the earmarks of those campaigns by Stalinists against dissident Russian scientists, or the German Nazis against Jewish scientists.

It is important that supporters of science make the university aware that this sort of bullying is just not acceptable.

Gareth at Hot Topic is organising a way for you to make your support for Abraham known. Just leave your name on a comment at his post Support John Abraham. He will ensure these messages of support get to Abraham’s employers.

Effectively Gareth is asking us to support the statement:

We the undersigned offer unreserved support for John Abraham and St. Thomas University in the matter of complaints made to them by Christopher Monckton. Professor Abraham provided an important public service by showing in detail Monckton’s misrepresentation of the science of climate, and we applaud him for that effort, and St. Thomas University for making his presentation available to the world.

UPDATE 10:30 am, July 16: I am heartened at the huge support Abraham is getting – currently over 630 people have added teir names to Gareth’s post at Hot Topic (Support John Abraham). In contrast Mockton provides copies of three (3) letters sent to the University of St Thomas as a result of his campaign (see Letters to Father Dease in support of Monckton). Some of Monckton’s supporters are starting to question his wisdon in this attack and threat of legal action.

I believe it important that everyone who is concerned with protecting science from this sort of censorship add their names to the list at Hot Topic. Unfortunately science employers can sometimes be influence by threats of legal action to employ self censorship. However if the University is aware that there is a groundswell of public support for both them and Abraham I am confident they will not give in.

Enhanced by Zemanta

A regular climate science podcast

Here is a podcast for those who want to follow the latest news and events involving climate science and the activity of those who wish to deny the scientific consensus. Irregular Climate is hosted by Dan Moutal* and Graham Wayne*. Currently it has reached six episodes and appears to aim for a weekly appearance. The web site includes show notes which appear quite useful with extra diagrams and videos.

I have listened to all six episodes and found it useful. I am happy to recommend it. So try it out.

*About Dan Moutal: He lives in Vancouver, ofdan.ca is his website. He has a blogtweets, and occasionally takes some pretty pictures.

*About Graham Wayne: He is a writer and journalist, does a little IT work, drawing on his corporate background as CIO of a group of companies, and composes and records music. He blogs at gpwayne.wordpress.com

Permalink

Similar articles

Enhanced by Zemanta

Share