Environment/Nature

Most speakers at the 6th International Conference on Climate Change misidentified as scientists

The sixth International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC), a large gathering of human-caused climate disruption deniers that is sponsored by the Heartland Institute, opens tomorrow morning. The frontpage for the conference website makes a number of misleading or false statements, but one phrase that caught my eye was “The scientists speaking at this conference…” This list of speakers contains so few actual scientists (and even fewer climate scientists) that labeling the speakers as “scientists” is misleading.

Let’s take a quick look at the speakers:

  • Tim Ball: Ball has a PhD, but in geography, not climatology, and so calling him a “scientist” may or may not be accurate. Regardless, Ball has a history of padding his resume and filing lawsuits against people who point out that he’s padded his resume. For a long list of Ball’s ethical challenges, please visit DeSmogBlog’s profile.
  • Joseph L. Bast: Bast is the president and CEO of the Heartland Institute. He is not a scientist, but he does have a history of making misleading and false statements on climate science and about climate scientists.
  • Larry Bell: Bell is a professor of space architecture and a former urban planner. He is not a scientist.
  • Barry Brill: Brill is a barrister and solicitor (lawyer) in New Zealand. He is not a scientist.
  • Alan Carlin: Carlin is a former EPA economist. He is trumpeted as a “whistleblower” on the EPA but internal EPA documents show that his views were considered and that he was not “muzzled” by the EPA as some climate disruption deniers have accused. He is not a scientist.
  • Robert “Bob” Carter: Carter is a marine biologist geologist who has made a number of climate-related claims that have been shown false. He is a scientist.
  • Paul Chesser: Chesser runs the right-wing American Tradition Institute. He is not a scientist.
  • Scott Denning: Denning is an atmospheric scientist at the Colorado State Univerisity. He is a scientist.
  • Steve Goreham: Goreham is an electrical engineer and author who runs a climate think-tank. He is not a scientist.
  • Ken Haapala: Haapala is an economist who is executive vice-president of the Science and Environmental Policy Project, a science-denial advocacy organization founded by S. Fred Singer. Haapala is not a scientist.
  • Tom Harris: Harris is the executive director of climate disruption denial think-tank International Climate Science Coalition and a former advertising executive for APCO. He has degrees in mechanical engineering. He is not a scientist.
  • Christopher Horner: Horner is a lawyer working with the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute. He is not a scientist.
  • Craig Idso: Idso has degrees in geography and agronomy and runs a denial website. He is a scientist.
  • James Inhofe: Inhofe is a U.S. Senator from the state of Oklahoma. He has made innumerable erroneous statements on climate during his term in the Senate and has published lists of scientists who supposedly reject the scientific basis for human-caused climate disruption. When checked, these lists are found to be filled with scientists whose papers have been misinterpreted and who actually do accept the science. Inhofe is not a scientist.
  • Robert O. Mendelsohn: Mendelsohn is an economist, not a scientist.
  • Patrick J. Michaels: Michaels has a degree in climatology and so he is a scientist. However, his scientific papers have been found to be largely incorrect (confusing degrees for radians in one paper with Ross McKitrick) and his statements largely not supported by climate data. See Michaels’ SourceWatch entry for more information.
  • Marc Morano: Morano is a former reporter, former aide to Sen. Inhofe, and current editor the Climate Depot website. He was one of the sources of the smear campaign “Swiftboat Veterans for Truth” against Sen. John Kerry and is the person who collected Inhofe’s error-filled lists of scientists. He is not a scientist.
  • John Nothdurft: Nothdurft is a “legislative specialist” for the Heartland Institute. He is not a scientist.
  • Nicola Scafetta: Scafetta is a physicist who believes that the cause of climate disruption is not human activity but rather solar variation. He is a scientist.
  • Harrison Schmitt: Schmitt is a former astronaut, retired geologist, and former New Mexico politician who has recently made erroneous statements about Arctic ice and failed to retract the statements when they were shown to be in error. Schmitt used to be a scientist but whether or not his lack of ongoing scientific work should disqualify him from claiming to be a “scientist” is open to debate. For the purposes of this analysis, however, we’ll consider him a scientist.
  • David Schnare: Schnare is a lawyer who also has advanced science degrees. He therefore qualifies as a scientist for the purposes of this analysis.
  • S. Fred Singer: Singer is a physicist with a long record of denying scientific data (secondhand smoke, climate disruption, acid rain, etc.) in service of an anti-communist, libertarian/objectivist ideology as extensively documented in the legacy tobacco documents and in the book “Merchants of Doubt” by Naomi Oreskes and Eric Conway. While he is a scientist, his long history of lying should cast a pall over his scientific accomplishments.
  • Willie Soon: Soon has degrees in engineering but works presently as an astrophysicist for the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He has published a number of seriously flawed papers on the source of climate disruption, including one that was so bad that four editors of the publishing journal resigned in protest. These resignations were one of the subjects of the CRU emails and the multiple reviews that exonerated the scientists of wrongdoing. Soon is a scientist.
  • Roy W. Spencer: Spencer is a climatologist and expert on satellite measurements of atmospheric temperature. He has claimed that internal variability from clouds is the driving force behind climate disruption, instead of human emissions of carbon dioxide. His recent book has been extensively debunked by climate science geochemistry professor Barry Bickmore (see part 1 here). Spencer is a scientist.
  • James M. Taylor: Taylor is a lawyer who edits a Heartland Institute climate and environment publication. He has made demonstrably false statements about climate science and misrepresented data from the National Snow and Ice Data Center. He is not a scientist.
  • David G. Tuerck: Tuerck is an economist and the executive director of the libertarian Beacon Hill Institute. He is not a scientist.
  • Anthony Watts: Watts is a weathercaster for the AM radio station KPAY and the editor of the climate disruption denial blog Wattsupwiththat.com. While he studied electrical engineering and meteorology at Purdue, he has never said if he graduated. Watts is not a scientist.

So, out of 27 speakers, we have between 10 and 11 speakers who qualify as scientists – the rest are lawyers, economists, etc. That’s less than half of the speakers who have scientific credentials, and only seven have directly relevant climate science expertise.

With so few scientists and climate scientists, it’s misleading for the ICCC to be labeling the speakers as scientists on the conference website’s frontpage.

31 replies »

  1. I have a PhD in Communications. Am I a climate scientist? I never thought so, but by this crowd’s standards I may well be, and I want to make sure that my resume reflects it.

  2. I love data. Especially meaningful data, as provided in this post.

    Most reporting that debunks proclamations of “truth” is so often just being willing to do the hard work of finding basic information — such as who is and who is not a scientist.

    Nice work, Brian.

  3. The ICCC website does not state that “all the speakers are scientists”. If there are, as you admit, at least 10-11 scientists speaking then it is absolutely acceptable to state “the scientists speaking at this conference”. You are just silly.

    • I don’t claim that they say that all the keynote speakers are scientists, but rather that the language on the frontpage is misleading.

      I also point out that many of the scientists have, shall we say, checkered pasts with regard to their activities, and some have demonstrated that they value their ideology more than their ethics. The same is true of many of the non-scientists as well.

  4. The ICCC has a higher proportion of scientists than the IPCC. Climate alarmists cannot argue the science, so you just defame them with smears like “climate denial”. No honest person would quote hate sites like SourceWatch or deSmogBlog.

    • I didn’t use “climate denial” – that’s a misnomer of your creation. I said “human-caused climate disruption” denial, and that’s entirely factually accurate. Anyone who denies that climate disruption is human-caused is a denier of that cause, plain and simple. I use “denier” because it’s factually accurate and because it’s shorter than “rejectionist” or all of the other synonyms I could use for “deny.”

      As for the ICCC having a higher proportion of scientists, could you provide a reference that proves your point? You may be right (at least, if you consider Working Group (WG) 2 and WG3 as well as WG1), but I have a very hard time believing that would be the case of the scientific report written by WG1.

      Given that the theme of the ICCC this time is “restoring the scientific method,” it’s probably fair to say that the comparison should be made most directly to WG1. In that case, however, the vast majority of authors were climate scientists.

      Note also that Willie Soon has degrees in engineering, not science, but because he works as a physicist these days, I still identified him as a scientist. So individuals such as Gavin Schmidt (who is a computer scientist by education) would also qualify as scientists in my analysis.

  5. Climate change science has done to science what abusive priests did for respecting the Catholic Church;
    When we look our children square in the eyes and tell them that our impact on the planet is causing catastrophic climate change from CO2, it’s then we come the closest to the truth. The truth that climate change is a comfortable lie we all live with but denying it in this peer pressure world of political correctness makes it a comfortable compromise. “We must be doing something to the planet!”, is not climate change, its’ is wise observation we should all respect and live by but climate change isn’t about sustainability, it was a specific 25 year old CO2 death warrant to billions of future children. Meanwhile, the UN and the entire SCIENCE world had allowed carbon trading to trump 3rd world fresh water relief, starvation rescue and 3rd world education for just over 25 years of climate control instead of the obviously needed population control.
    As the world walks away from climate change where even Obama chose not to even mention the “crisis” in his state of the union speech, continued support is dividing environmental efforts and wasting billions on studying effects, not causes. I for one am happy and relieved that scientific consensus was perception, not reality. And if one applies the same scientific method to investigating if climate change as a sad exaggeration giving birth to false perception of consensus, it’s easy to see that there is no comet hit of CO2 emergency heading our way. If you love the planet, stop wanting this CO2 misery to be true for it is not. If on the other hand you still choose to condemn billions to a CO2 death, at least start acting like it’s the greatest emergency ever to be faced by the planet and humanity. Our lie has become so transparent that expecting voters to still vote yes to taxing the air to make the weather colder is unsustainable and begs the question of just who is the denier and who is the fear monger.
    This former believer is happy a crisis is averted and I don’t have to scare my kids anymore with false panic just to get them to turn the lights out more often. For our children’s sake let’s lead us all into the future with courage, not fear of the unknown.

    • You commented here a while back and I asked you to express your point more clearly – you never did. Would you please, in a couple of sentences, explain the point you’re trying to make? Because I can talk to a bunch of points that I think you’re making, but I don’t want to make assumptions and be wrong.

      The only point I’m reasonably sure of is that you are claiming that climate science has destroyed the credibility of science in general. How? For that matter, the credibility of climate science remained intact through the many attacks on it during the investigations into the content of the CRU emails, as I’ve reported on here, here, here, here, and here.

  6. This article is an absolutely perfect example of the logical fallacy of argumentum ad hominem, the deliberate focus upon the persons of those articulating points of contention in order to duplicitously evade addressing the substance of the points these persons are making.

    In formal debate, this loses you points, and probably the debate itself. In the real world, it marks Mr. Angliss as a bloody liar.

    Anybody with an education in the sciences can tell when a credentialed charlatan is violating scientific method, “cherry-picking” data, manipulating computer simulations (climate models) to “draw the curve, then plot the points,” concealing his raw observational data sets from properly skeptical examiners, corrupting academic peer review (both to suppress the publication of colleagues’ studies casting doubt upon the reviewing officers’ pet hypotheses and to ensure that the submissions of “The Team” do not suffer impediments to publication), and concerting all these violations of professional ethical standards by way of back-room confabs and some of the most incredibly stupid e-mails this side of Enron’s “Smartest Guys in the Room.”

    That this “army of Davids” – largely unpaid and underfunded volunteers working to provide the error-checking that “The Team” (as in Michael Mann’s “Hockey Team”) have been deliberately subverting for decades – is assembling at this conference to share the information and other insights they have gained marks yet another step on the job of taking a flamethrower to the unlimed outhouse the “climatology” cabal have made of the disciplines of meteorology, atmospheric physics, oceanography, and allied disciplines over the past several decades.

    And that cleansing fire comes none too late. If the departure from scientific method and professional integrity of “The Team” has been hateful and destructive to the physical sciences throughout the Western world, the activities of the mainstream media, our politicians, our financial sector, and our “environmentalist” screaming hysterics have been nothing less than criminal fraud, for which they deserve the harshest punishment imaginable.

    • I think you just committed the “fallacy fallacy,” Tucci – identifying something as a fallacy that is not actually a fallacy.

      I’ve pointed out that a minority of the keynote speakers are not scientists. This is a simple, verifiable fact. I’ve pointed out that the ICCC identified the speakers as scientists, which is also a simple, verifiable fact. Neither of these points are in contention. I’ve said nothing positive or negative about their arguments as I’m not familiar with anything they’ve said at the 6th ICCC. So I’d like to know where you see the ad hominem here.

      Is it that Tim Ball has a history of padding his resume? This is simple, verifiable fact, and when a scientist claimed Ball had padded his resume, Ball sued. In response, the scientist proved that Ball had made claims in his resume that were not factual, and Ball dropped the lawsuit as a result.

      Is it that Joseph Bast has made errors of fact in his claims regarding Arctic ice and the Sandia National Laboratories scientist Mark Boslough? Again, this is simple, verifiable fact – the scientists at the NSDIC wrote a response to the Santa Fe New Mexican that said that Schmitt (and by extension Bast, who made similar claims) had misinterpreted their data.

      I also ask how you can support the idea that the ICCC was organized by the underdogs, given that millions of dollars were donated by some of the richest families in America, to the co-sponsors of the event, as documented in detail here.

      Furthermore, there have been something like 8 separate and independent reviews that resulted from the illegally hacked emails, and every one came to the same conclusion – the emails were certainly impolitic and there was insufficient openness on the part of the CRU and the University of East Anglia, but that the science underlying the IPCC’s conclusions and the CRU’s was sound. See the five links I referenced above for my reports on several of them as well as my own analysis of how much context can be ascertained from an email record.

      In addition, last year I performed an analysis of the amount of money globally available for climate research of all types. I found that the amount of money available in the fossil fuel-related industries (coal, oil, and natural gas production, transportation, and immediate consumption) exceeded the money available for academic and government-funded climate research by approximately 2,500 times. As such, if scientists were motivated largely by financial gain, they would likely not be working as academic climate researchers. In addition, academics are prevented from making lots of money from academic grants by the federal government and by university policies, as described in detail by meteorology professor Scott Mandia here.

      So I ask again, where is my ad hominem? And how will you correct the many errors in your own argument?

  7. 9. “Climate change science has done to science what abusive priests did for respecting the Catholic Church”

    I think you’ll find it’s highly paid contrarians and nonprofit organisations. Take astronomer Willie Soon, who’s had $1 million from the fossil fuel and energy industries, and was already conspiring in 2003 to attack IPCC AR4 WG1 four years prior to publication. SPPI’s Bob Ferguson, who received almost a quarter of a million dollars from Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide run by the Idsos. What gives with SEPP, run by Fred Singer, and its assets (2009) of $1,502,589?

    990 Finder for a lazy Sunday afternoon.

  8. I don’t care if they are cartoonists (like John Cook of SkepticalScience.com) or PR men (like James Hoggan of DeSmogBlog.com) as long as they know how to present what science actually exists that refutes AGW claims.

    Your smear job stinks of desperation!

    Here I present A Global Warming Digest:

    [Edit: links removed]

    -=NikFromNYC=- Ph.D. in Carbon Chemistry (Columbia/Harvard)

    • Nik, the admin removed your links because you have been spamming those links all over the internet in the last month or two.

      If you care to actually add something to the discussion, you’re welcome to do so. However, link spam does not add anything to the discussion.

      I’ve generated a standard response to your link spam, by the way, that I’ve started putting up in response to every comment of yours I stumble across. If you care to address each of these points, then that alone would provide significant evidence that you actually care about intelligently discussing the issues. If not, then that demonstrates you’re a troll.

      —-

      You claimed that the “Thermometers” image proves that the “hockey stick” in the Northern Hemisphere is false, yet you don’t have anywhere near enough data points to support that claim. Two thermometers along the Atlantic coast of North America, three thermometers in central Europe, one in England, and one by the Great Lakes is not sufficient spatial coverage to make claims about the temperature of the Middle East, India, China, Japan, Mexico, etc. Your claims are not supportable by your data and you have continued to repeat your unsupportable claims even after this was pointed out to you.

      Your “Oceans” image shows raw tidal gauge data for certain cities around the world, and you claim that sea level rise and acceleration are disproved by those few gauges. However, you neglected to do any data analysis, claiming that “eyeballing is very useful when the signal overwhelms the noise since the noise is only monthly and yearly but there is not much noise decadely, which there isnt.” You’ve also failed to use the data properly and haven’t corrected the gauge readings for post-glacial rebound, land build-up due to silt deposition, land elevation changes due seismic events, or subsidence due to ground water pumping or soil compaction, all factors that the PSMSL (your data source) says must be corrected before using the data. Your claims are not supportable by your data and you have continued to repeat them even after this fact was pointed out to you.

      (For proof of my own claims against NikfromNYC, I invite interested readers to follow the entire comment thread here: http://www.scholarsandrogues.com/2011/05/18/milloys-op-ed-riddled-errors/)

      Your “Ice” graph shows that you are continuing to make claims that are not supported by the data and that you feel “eyeballing” data is still a sufficient substitute for actual data analysis.

      Retract your incorrect claims, Nik, or modify them to accurately represent the caveats present in the data as you’re using it.

  9. Hi Nik and Tucci,I think you have touched a raw nerve here,well done,I couldn’t have put it better myself.I would believe people like Michaels,Plimer,Vincent Gray,Watts,and many others before the Hockey stick Mann,activist Hansen,or hide the decline Jones.

  10. Well. the idea that one has to disprove a proposition that somebody can foretell the future is entertaining enough. Certainly your reaction to the article saved in a laRouche file a while back was more of the same…the LaRouche association was enough to spark a hissy fit of indignation and scorn.
    But you’re toast. Arguing personalities is politics. And though the essence of propaganda is endless repetition of the same lie – or as Rove proved, slightly refocused – it absolutely shrieks ‘denial’…of scientific method based on mutual respect and free exchange of ideas.
    Not even Monck’s hyperbole is as ridiculous.

  11. “Well. the idea that one has to disprove a proposition that somebody can foretell the future is entertaining enough.”

    Modelling how the universe works is part of the backbone of scientific theory, as is making predictions based on that how that model works. A scientific theory is, in effect, a model.

    “it absolutely shrieks ‘denial’…of scientific method based on mutual respect and free exchange of ideas.”

    As published in the scientific journals for all peers to test. A shame the contrarians don’t do it mroe often, but you do need to be able to come up with coherent and plausible work, so no surprises there, really.

    “But you’re toast. Arguing personalities is politics.”

    Looks like it’s arguing credentials and credibility, to me. “Trust me, I’m an economist”, is bad enough. “Trust me about climate, I’m an economist”, is even worse.

  12. Tim Hetherington
    You commit the primary logical ad hominem falacy – attacking the person instead of the argument. In doing so your further slander the speakers. e.g.

    Dr. Tim Ball, one of the first Canadians to hold a Ph.D. in climatology, wrote his doctoral thesis at the University of London (England) using the remarkable records of the Hudson?s Bay Company to reconstruct climate change from 1714 to 1952. A doctorate in climatology is not a scientist?

    Allan Carlin has a BSc in Physics as well as PhD in Economics He published:
    A Multidisciplinary, Science-Based Approach to the Economics of Climate Change, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol. 8, No. 4, April, 2011, pp. 985-1031.

    Economics is central to the catastrophic anthropogenic global warming argument. See IPCC’s WG3 “WG III analyses the costs, benefits and risks of the different approaches to mitigation, considering also the available domestic instruments and policy measures as well as international arrangements. ”

    Your further mischaracterize Fred Singer. See his Testimony under oath before Congress.
    “I am Professor emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia and the founder and president of The Science & Environmental Policy Project (SEPP) in Fairfax, Virginia, a non-partisan, non-profit research group of independent scientists. . . . I received a Special Commendation from President Eisenhower for the early design of satellites.In 1962, I established the U.S. Weather Satellite Service, served as its first director, and received a Gold Medal award from the Department of Commerce for this contribution.

    Early in my career, I devised instruments to measure atmospheric parameters from satellites. In 1971, I proposed that human production of the greenhouse gas methane, through cattle raising and rice growing, could affect the climate system. This was also the first publication to discuss an anthropogenic influence on stratospheric ozone.” etc. He coauthored Climate Chaneg Reconsidered, the 880 page 2009 review of the evidence left out by the IPCC or since it’s AR4.

    The topic was “Restoring the Scientific Method”. Consequently, every scientist, engineer, economist, lawyer, mathematician, statistician, logician and mining consultant, familiar with the scientific method with basic understanding of the scientific method is able to understand and address fallacies in the scientific method.

    Try applying the scientific method, searching for fallacies in its application, and restoring the scientific method” rather than a rogue causing fear through political alarmism.

    The real challenge before us is NOT climate change but the rapid deplition of light oil and critical need to transition to new/alternative fuels. To tackle the real world problem, sink your teeth into Robert Hirsch
    The Impending World Energy Mess

    Can you rise to the level of professional scientific debate? Or will you dwell in the gutter of slander?
    I challenge you to rise to the standard of the founders of the USA as they stated in the Declaration of Independence:
    “appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions,”

    • David, I refer you to the Statement of the Defensesubmitted by Dan Johnson to the court in response to Tim Ball’s defamation lawsuit. In it, Johnson demonstrates that Tim Ball got a PhD in geography, on a topic of historical geography and meteorology, not in climatology as Ball claimed. Johnson also demonstrates that Ball claimed at one point that he was the first climatologist in Canada, a claim that Johnson demonstrated to be false both by demonstrating that Ball was not a climatologist, but also by listing a small but significant number of Canadian climatologists who got their degrees in actual climatology before Ball got his degree in 1983.

      Johnson also demonstrates that Ball claimed in several of his online bios to have been a professor of climatology for 28 years, a statement that is only now chronologically possible (1983+28=2011), yet Ball was making such claims as early as 2004.

      Before Ball’s tenure as an actual professor, he was varying types of lecturers at the University of Winnipeg, not a professor. Not only that, but Ball was a professor of geography at the University of Winnipeg from 1988 through his retirement in 1996, a tenure of only eight years, not 28 as Ball claimed. Ball didn’t even have his BA degree from the University of Winnipeg until 1970, making the duration of his “professorship” a chronological impossibility (1996-28=1968) another way.

      Ball also claimed different things in bios at different websites. At one website he claimed to be a professor 28 years while claiming to be a professor of 32 years at another. He’s claimed to be an Emeritus Professor when he is not one – Ball is simply retired and has not had Emeritus bestowed upon him by the University of Winnipeg.

      I could continue, but I invite you to read Johnson’s entire defense. There’s a reason that Ball dropped his defamation lawsuit against Johnson – the truth is always a defense.

      As for Fred Singer, I’m not denigrating his past accomplishments in any way, and if you recall I put him in the “scientist” category. However, there is a long a paper trail showing that Singer, who is a physicist by training, misrepresented medical research on secondhand smoke and was paid by the Alexis de Toqueville Institute to do so. Oreskes and Conway documented a significant number of cases in “Merchants of Doubt” where Singer made false claims in the media that were demonstrably (and demonstrated to be in letters to the editor and editorials) false, but Singer never retracted those claims. So while Singer qualifies as a scientist, he is certainly not an ethical one, and there is a great deal of supporting data to prove it for anyone who cares to look.

      Finally, while economics may be critical to your definition of “catastrophic” anthropogenic global warming, economics says nothing about the science underlying the projections of sea level rise, the physics of Arctic amplification, changes to albedo that lead to greater warming that may lead to significant releases of methane clathrate deposits, regional projections of reduce (or enhanced) precipitation, and so on. Economics has a role to play in determining the “best” way to mitigate and adapt, but it has no role to play in something like “restoring the scientific method” when the scientific method as practiced by climate scientists is not now and has never been in doubt.

  13. “He coauthored Climate Chaneg Reconsidered, the 880 page 2009 review of the evidence left out by the IPCC or since it’s AR4.”

    For which his outfit, SEPP, received $143,000. But Tamino shows how the NIPCC Report you link to is a pack of nonsense: Skeptics: Real or Fake?.

    Tell us, David, did you notice this about the NIPCC Report while “searching for fallacies in its application”, or did you just uncritically swallow the lines?

    “But the NIPCC report staunchly refuses to consider the graph of sea ice extent or show it to their readers. Think about that. The whole point of subsection 4.2.2 is to discuss Arctic sea ice extent and thickness, but at no point does the NIPCC report show a graph of either.”

  14. Your web site greets me with this catchy exhortation “Think. It ain’t illegal yet…” Brian Angliss is obviously a thinker, otherwise why would he post here?

    Brian, using the hackneyed phrase “a number of misleading or false statements” is the non-thinker’s way to sound erudite. It is especially lazy when you provide no evidence to back up what should be a serious accusation.

    The first page of the Heartland conference web site that you linked to quite forthrightly states that their panels will include scientists, scholars, and economists. The page makes no attempt to hide their past sources of the funding, and therefore their ideological bent.

    The page also states the scientists at the conference would talk about the application of the scientific method in current climate research, and that they think the hypothesis of man-made climate change has failed. Rather than misleading, this is consistent with Heartland’s efforts in the past, and with the opinion of the majority of those scientists you cite.

    Perhaps, with the pressures of the approaching holiday, Brian took his thinking cap off. After the holiday, when he is well rested, Brian should return his thinking cap to his head and conclude this blog with his apology to his readers for misleading them and the Heartland folks for smearing them.

    Making a false statement about the promotional web page to a conference is rather ridiculous, isn’t it? After all, there’s so much more grist to review in the minutes of these conferences put on by Heartland. Dozens of past ICCC talks are available as video, audio and powerpoint files free of charge at the Heartland website.

    Most of the talks are refreshingly clear and accessible, as if the goal of the presentation is to help you understand rather than to bully or impress you. The speakers rarely descend into jargon or pull obscure references out of thin air. It’s quite a good resource for understanding the issues in climate science, if you do let your eye get “caught” on the first page…

  15. “Most of the talks are refreshingly clear and accessible”

    Then the alarm bells should be going off, especially given the favourite denialist canard of “The climate is too complex to… “.

  16. Zeno – you’d like support for my claim that the frontpage makes a number of false and misleading statements? Fair enough – I didn’t bother because anyone who’s followed the issue for more than a few months should be able to identify them without assistance, but here’s a list of the false and misleading statements:

    The scientific theory of global warming due to IR absorption and scattering due to CO2 is a mere hypothesis: this is false, as over 100 years of research into how the climate works and the physical properties of CO2 has shown.
    The scientific theory of global warming has been disproven. The theory represents the only scientific theory that fits all the facts as we understand them today.
    The scientific theory of global warming does not rely in any way on any consensus of scientists. Instead, the consensus of scientists is a direct result of the strength of the data and the underlying theory and fundamental physics/chemistry.
    “Climategate” was not a scandal because between five and eight independent investigations found that, while there were some issues with data sharing, the issues were nowhere near as severe as so-called “skeptics” had claimed and they did not impact the accuracy of the scientific conclusions in any way, shape, or form. Put another way, five to eight investigations showed that the scientific method was alive and well in climate science.
    There have been less than 10 errors in the entire IPCC AR4, and none in the science section of Working Group 1. Because of the nature of Working Groups 2 and 3, they are naturally forced to accept some information that has not been vetted as well as the peer-reviewed information in WG1. Given the several thousand pages that comprise the IPCC, fewer than 10 errors (and none in the science section) is pretty damn good. It’s misleading at best, dishonest at worst, to claim that the IPCC has abused peer review given these facts.
    The frontpage implies that climate science to date has not been “real,” while the many errors made by the speakers as well as their serious credibility issues (Willie Soon’s infamous paper, another paper more recently with Noah Robinson that made up data, Spencer’s flawed book on climate sensitivity, Singer’s history since about 1990, Schmitt’s uncorrected error in a NASA paper, Bast and Taylor’s lies in defense of Schmitt, and so on) suggest the opposite – the speakers at the ICCC are the ones attempting to falsify the science.
    Heartland’s Climate Change Reconsidered (ie NIPCC) was a reply, but was full of major scientific errors that essentially reduced it to a propaganda tool for the Heartland Institute.

    I’ve provided links throughout the original post and the comments following to sources that demonstrate each of the above points.

  17. Hello Brian,

    Thank you for pulling all that together, not everyone can keep tabs on the issue. Not to be argumentative, but to let you know where I’m coming from I’ve replied to some of your points. I don’t care about personality’s; the nature of science is that most scientists are wrong most of the time. I do care about the details of the work and the arguments supporting their conclusions. I generally don’t have time to wade through links and web sites but I can listen to the presentations from Heartland conferences. I would find it ideal if I could listen to presentations from scientists at conferences that present the opposite side of the argument. Any suggestions…

    1. – 3.The scientific theory of global warming …

    I would like to see the theory coherently presented as well as the plan for testing and the results as far. As I understand it some of the questions are: Where is the energy (as per Trenberth’s (?) exasperated comments)? Do water and aerosols really do what the models need them to do? Why isn’t CO2 evenly distributed, and does it matter?

    4. “Climategate” : exoneration by ” five and eight independent investigations” doesn’t change the what’s in the published e-mails. My reading of the samples I have seen shows clear intent to break the law and to subvert the peer-review process. To me that is scandalous.

    5. It is difficult for IPCC AR4 WG1 to be found wrong since they seem to have adopted a strategy of assigning percentages ands odds to their estimates of the relative importance of different climate processes. AR4 says more study is needed about too many of these for me to be comfortable.

    Some reviewers, probably skeptics, have reported irregularities with the review process during the preparation of IPCC reports. If the ICCC didn’t address this claim during the conference, then it is definitely their bad.

    6. I take the climate science to date has not been “real” statement as bravado in a cantankerous debate.

  18. Zeno, your point #5 is how science has worked for a very long time. Pointing out uncertainties are a necessary prerequisite, and the IPCC have admirably tried to make sure that everyone understands them by quantifying them.

    Damned if they do, damned if they don’t.

  19. J Bowers,

    I wish I could listen to conference presentations from scientists that present the opposite side of the argument from Heartland . Any suggestions?

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