Thursday, July 12, 2012

Mirror Mirror on the Wall Who is Adjusting Climate Data Most of All?

Here are two quotations from two of the world’s leading climate scientists. The first is from Phil Jones, head of the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia at the time:

Last week, scientists from the United States Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said that a study of temperature readings for the contiguous 48 states over the last century showed there had been no significant change in average temperature over that period. Dr. (Phil) Jones said in a telephone interview today that his own results for the 48 states agreed with those findings. (Feb 4th 1989).

The second is from James Hansen of NASA:

Empirical evidence does not lend much support to the notion that climate is headed precipitately toward more extreme heat and drought. The drought of 1999 covered a smaller area than the 1988 drought, when the Mississippi almost dried up. And 1988 was a temporary inconvenience as compared with repeated droughts during the 1930s “Dust Bowl” that caused an exodus from the prairies, as chronicled in Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath…..
in the U.S. there has been little temperature change in the past 50 years, the time of rapidly increasing greenhouse gases — in fact, there was a slight cooling throughout much of the country. (1999).

What has happened since then is the actual temperature record – data recorded by observers – has been systematically adjusted upward by the Goddard Institute for Space Science Studies (GISS). Every one of the 840 data points has been altered. Every alteration adds a fraction of warming (average is 0.8F), which accumulates over time. Their argument for doing so is so as to correct for human error, heat anomalies etc. As one critic has observed, it is strange that every error always requires upward adjustment (see here). Human error isn’t always systematically in one direction, especially when so many different people are involved. 

In fact that adjustments themselves account for all the claimed warming in the US. Put another way, without these adjustments that would be no warming in the US and without this warming, there would be little elsewhere in the world.

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