The IPCC’s response to the leak of three data sticks is typical of that organization. It expects us to accept its version of reality at face value. Its statement provides no opportunity for the public to draw its own conclusions.
Last week I published three stories about the Secret Santa Leak – see here, here, and here. Nearly a gigabyte of material resides on the three data sticks released by a whistleblower from within the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The examination of this material has only just begun.
This blog surpassed all previous traffic records last week. A community of people around the world helped make that happen. Foremost among these was the California-based blog, WattsUpWithThat. Years of round-the-clock hard work by Anthony Watts and his team of volunteers have built that blog into a remarkable megaphone. Anthony kindly lent me that megaphone so that I might alert the world to this leak.
In the UK, Andrew Montford’s Bishop Hill blog helped spread the news – and published the above image by Josh the cartoonist. It made me giggle. Also in the UK, James Delingpole let people know about the leak and said kind things about Canada. In Australia, Joanne Nova told her audience about the leak and posted download links.
Translations of my stories also began to appear. By Friday, the France-based Changement Climatique blog had posted a translation of the first piece. The Internet address for that blog is www.SkyFall.fr, a reference to an Asterix storybook character, a village leader who believes the sky is falling.
Chris Frey, a novelist from Germany, not only worked on the German translation of my book-length IPCC exposé (available in bookshops throughout Germany and Austria), he has now translated all three of last week’s stories into German. Read them here.
The IPCC itself responded late on the day of the leak with a three-paragraph statement totally in character for that organization. As usual, it expects the world to take its word for it.
That statement provides no information that would permit people to compare the IPCC’s version of events with reality. It contains not the slightest hint of which blogs or individuals brought this leak to the public’s attention, or where information about the leak might be found. Anyone reading the IPCC’s statement will have to figure these things out on their own.
Please note that my approach is the exact opposite. Whenever I say anything about the IPCC – or any other organization or individual – I provide direct links. With the click of a mouse readers can go check things out for themselves. They can form their own opinions about whether my views are reasonable and whether I’ve characterized matters accurately.
The IPCC, in contrast, has never been in the business of treating people like grownups. The last thing it wants is for the public to examine the pros and cons and make up it own mind. The IPCC believes only its side of the story should be heard. Which is why all five of the hyperlinks in that statement take you to one place only – its own website.
But the IPCC statement does contain this revealing bit of prose:
The quality of IPCC reports and the integrity of the IPCC process depend on thoughtful comments from the widest possible range of experts, representing the full spectrum of scientific views. The Working Group II review process is open to anyone interested in submitting comments. All scientific comments submitted through the review process will be considered and addressed by authors. [bold added, backed up here]
This is a great example of IPCC doublespeak. The word “scientific” is used twice. The word “expert” also appears. Yet the IPCC also admits that its review process – in which outsiders read draft versions of its report and then provide feedback – isn’t restricted to those with scientific credentials.
Rather, the IPCC says that anyone interested can read its drafts. That’s a far cry from how it has described this process in the past. Here’s the graphic that accompanied the release of the IPCC’s last major report:
The first line in that graphic doesn’t say that 2,500 people who were merely interested participated. It says “2500+ scientific expert reviewers” helped out.
Slowly, one data point at a time, the degree to which the IPCC has been misrepresenting, fudging, and exaggerating becomes clear.
Much of the feedback those people have offered the IPCC is therefore not thoughtful. It is not scientific. Rather, it amounts to a lobbying barrage – IPCC authors are being repeatedly and aggressively urged to cite activist-produced literature.
The IPCC’s expert review process has been highjacked by pressure groups. Any genuinely scientific organization would hang its head in shame at this revelation. But the IPCC trundles on.
An upcoming post will examine media coverage of the Secret Santa leak. Please send me links to any you’ve stumbled across: firstname.lastname@example.org