12/17/2009 (11:44 am)
The English edition of Ria Novosti yesterday ran an article reporting that on Tuesday, the Moscow-based Institute of Economic Analysis published a paper claiming that the embattled Hadley Center for Climate Change Research had probably tampered with their data from Russian surface stations deliberately to make the warming of the planet seem more believable.
The IEA believes that Russian meteorological-station data did not substantiate the anthropogenic global-warming theory.
Analysts say Russian meteorological stations cover most of the country’s territory, and that the Hadley Center had used data submitted by only 25% of such stations in its reports.
Over 40% of Russian territory was not included in global-temperature calculations for some other reasons, rather than the lack of meteorological stations and observations.
The data of stations located in areas not listed in the Hadley Climate Research Unit Temperature UK (HadCRUT) survey often does not show any substantial warming in the late 20th century and the early 21st century…
IEA analysts say climatologists use the data of stations located in large populated centers that are influenced by the urban-warming effect more frequently than the correct data of remote stations.
The scale of global warming was exaggerated due to temperature distortions for Russia accounting for 12.5% of the world’s land mass. The IEA said it was necessary to recalculate all global-temperature data in order to assess the scale of such exaggeration.
Here are the caveats:
First of all, nobody I know of has read the actual report, which is published in Russian using Cyrillic lettering. The scientific bloggers are asking for help translating, so they can perform this task and find out what’s really been said. Second, the IEA appears to be a Russian think tank, probably along the lines of the Heritage Foundation. I do not know anything about their politics, nor about their reputation, nor about their involvement in the climate change debate generally. And third, the claim that the data were selected deliberately is difficult to prove, resting, as it does, on an assertion regarding the intent of the scientists that cannot be known with certainty. The facts say only that the Hadley Center’s dataset reports only 25% of Russian surface stations, and that those 25% have a warm bias; they don’t say that there exists no plausible explanation for the selectiveness other than deliberate manipulation.
That said, the Climategate story does provide a backdrop of factual evidence against which the assertion rings true that these particular scientists have been manipulating the data to produce a specific effect. The scientists at the Hadley Center have been refusing to release the raw data on which they based their adjusted data set, and have not published anything meaningful regarding how the data were adjusted, so they cannot be checked by appropriate peer review. Reports that the raw data have been destroyed did not help their credibility. Some of the commented data files in the Climategate ftp file suggest a filtering process about which calling it “haphazard” represents comic understatement (google HARRY READ ME). And according to Steve MacIntyre at Climate Audit, an email from Dr. Phil Jones to Dr. Michael Mann in 2004 from the Climategate set highlights Jones’ manipulation of the peer review process to stifle discussion of the Russian data:
Recently rejected two papers (one for JGR and for GRL) from people saying CRU has it wrong over Siberia. Went to town in both reviews, hopefully successfully. If either appears I will be very surprised, but you never know with GRL.
The Russian data are particularly important to the case that the earth is warming as told in the HadCRUT data set, the data set generated by the Climate Research Unit at East Anglia University. According to Jeff Id, guest-posting at Watt’s Up With That (with his emphasis, not mine),
This is a very powerful accusation, which if true could change much about the climate science debate. Many papers are based on this dataset which has the highest trend of the major ground datasets.
The graphical illustration below, borrowed from Id’s article and representing global temperatures as reported in the HadCRUT data set for 2003, shows significant hot spots over Europe and what looks like the Ural mountains in Russia. If, as is allegedly reported in the IEA paper, the actual readings from Russia show no warming trend at all, the case for the claim that the globe is actually warming becomes much less credible. This is the same point being made by Andrew Watt’s Surface Stations Project, which has reported that possibly as much as half of the reported warming of the 20th century is the result of urban encroachment around temperature reading stations that has not been accounted for in adjustments for the urban heat island effect. Click on the image for a larger, clearer image.
In related news, the UK Guardian reports that the UK’s Secretary of State for Energy and Climate, Ed Miliband, warned from the Copenhagen summit meeting that the draft agreement was badly behind schedule, and that the delay, as 115 world leaders descend on the conference expecting to discuss a draft political document, threatens to turn the conference into “a farce.” My own reaction is that far more than just the failure to reach an agreement threatens to farsify the Copenhagen summit.
1 Comment »
Comment by Ken
Nobody is accountable anymore.
Idiot Al Gore says BOTH polar caps will be completely melted in 5 years.
Al Gore, a few re-evaluated chad votes from becoming POTUS, makes this moronic statement, and nobody will hold him accountable next week, let alone in five years.