IPCC lies, cheats, distorts again. Yes, all right, it is a bit of a “dog bites man” or “pizza found to contain mozzarella and tomato resting on dough base” kind of story. But on the day in which Britain’s new Prime Minister announced in the Queen’s speech that one of his government’s main goals is to “combat climate change”, it’s perhaps just as well to remind ourselves of the kind of junk science and misinformation that is inspiring his green policies. (Hat tip: Barry Woods)
This one comes from the great Canadian blogger Donna Laframboise, who has noticed that the most recent report (2007) by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change liberally cited a scientific paper which wasn’t published until 29 months after the cut off date for submissions.
“Ah what’s 29 months between friends?” you might say. But as Laframbroise rightly observes it strips the process of its integrity.
If IPCC authors are to accurately describe the scientific literature, an agreed-upon cutoff date is required. If expert reviewers are to comment on the IPCC’s use of that literature, they must be afforded adequate opportunity to examine it.
More sinister still, though, is the way the IPCC report has twisted the paper – by one David G Vaughan of the British Antarctic Survey – for its own ends. Here’s what Vaughan’s paper said about the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS).
Since most of WAIS is not showing change, it now seems unlikely that complete collapse of WAIS, with the threat of a 5-m rise in sea level, is imminent in the coming few centuries.
Note that phrase “it now seems unlikely”.
Now see how the IPCC interprets Vaughan’s paper:
If the Amundsen Sea sector were eventually deglaciated, it would add about 1.5 m to sea level, while the entire West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) would account for about 5 m (Vaughan, 2007).
Yes, yes, IPCC no doubt it WOULD. But as the report you cite to prove it made pretty explicit: IT AIN’T GOING TO HAPPEN.
Still, as the IPCC has twigged by now, tell a lie often enough and it becomes part of the “consensus”.
That’ll be why Vaughan’s paper appears to have become almost as big a poster child for the Fourth IPCC report as Mann’s hockey stick was for the earlier ones. Just see how many times Vaughan is cited:
- Working Group 1, Chapter 4 lists a D. Vaughan (UK) as a contributing author
- WG1, Chapter 10 lists a D. Vaughan (UK) as a contributing author
- WG2, Chapter 15 lists a David G. Vaughan (UK) as one of two coordinating lead authors
- WG2’s Summary for Policymakers lists a David Vaughan as a drafting author
- WG2’s Technical Summary lists a David Vaughan (UK) as a lead author
Maybe the IPCC were hoping that if they wrote his name in slightly different ways we wouldn’t notice. Bad luck IPCC. We did.
Oh and while we’re on the subject of things that could happen as a result of “Global Warming” but which aren’t going to, check out this story about Polar Bears. Apparently they’re all doomed – again – because a bunch of Canadian scientists have worked out that this is the sort of thing that might happen if you punch a few scary figures into a computer. (Hat tip: Mike Daly)
Dr Molnar, Professor Andrew Derocher and colleagues from the University of Alberta and York University, Toronto focused on the physiology, behaviour and ecology of polar bears, and how these might change as temperatures increase.
“We developed a model for the mating ecology of polar bears. The model estimates how many females in a population will be able to find a mate during the mating season, and thus get impregnated.”
Ah. So it’s not actually based on counting real polar bears or noting how in the last 10,000 years they’ve survived much more drastic changes in global climate than the ones we’ve experienced recently.
The latest US assessment of the conservation status of polar bears included the only two previous studies to assess the impact of climate change, but these extrapolated population trends, rather than directly modelling how the ecology of polar bears may alter.
The new study by Dr Molnar’s team offers a way to improve these predictions, and suggests the potential for even faster declines than those found by the US assessment.
“Canada has about two-thirds of the world’s polar bears, but their conservation assessment of polar bears didn’t take climate change seriously,” says Dr Molnar, a flaw noted by the IUCN/SSC Polar Bear Specialist Group last year.
“Our view is that the Canadian assessment should be redone, properly accounting for climate change effects.
“The status of polar bears is likely much more dire than suggested by the Canadian report,” he adds.
Yes! Yes! I trust this man. He clearly knows what he’s doing. Let’s give him another research grant – a really big one this time. With enough money, I’m sure he and his team will be able to model the entire polar population off the planet by 2013 at the latest.