By Michael S. Coffman, Ph.D.
Thousands of highly compromising emails and documents, some shocking, were hacked or leaked in late November from the British Climatic Research Unit University of East Anglia (CRU). The CRU is one of the worldâ€™s leading research centers on climate change as well as the repository of all surface temperature data worldwide. It played a key role in the IPCCâ€™s fourth Assessment Report in 2007. The IPCC Assessment provided the scientific basis of policy negotiations at the Copenhagen Climate Conference last December and the current cap and trade legislation in the U.S. Senate. The general picture of the series of emails is one of collusion, exaggeration of warming data, manipulation of data, conspiracy, possible illegal destruction of data and embarrassing information, and organized resistance to anyone who defies them.
Skeptics of man-caused global warming have long suspected that top-level alarmist scientists were cooking the books to provide the â€œproofâ€ man was causing global warming. The only way that the integrity of the data could be verified is to use the raw data and duplicate the summarization process. That data is only housed in Britainâ€™s Climate Research Unit (CRU). For years, dozens of requests by well qualified scientists to obtain a copy of the data have been refused by the CRU because of alleged confidentiality agreements. The only data the CRU gave the scientific world was summarized, harmonized for continuity and cleaned of outlier data (data outside normal error limits). The shocking revelations of these emails and documents written by scientists associated with gave proof that skeptical scientists were partially, if not totally correct in their suspicions
Allegedly Independent Data Sources Use Same Source
Data to â€œproveâ€ that major global warming has occurred over the last half of the twentieth century came from four sources, the British CRU (including the Hadley Center),Â the U.S.â€™s NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency) and NASA (National Air and Space Administration), and Japanâ€™s JMA (Japan Meteorological Agency).
There is good agreement (Figure 1) between the four data sources. Alarmists and mainstream media have repeatedly assured us that even if the CRU data has been corrupted, the other three data sources have not and therefore can be used as substitutes. Since they show the same dramatic rise in temperature starting in the 1970s, what happened to the CRU data is irrelevant.
Therein lays the first major deception. Dr. Roger Pielke, one the leading climatologists in the U.S., provides strong evidence that 90 to 95 percent of the NOAA, NASA, and JMA data sets are derived from the same CRU summarized data set. If the summarized CRU data is corrupted, all data sources are corrupted in exactly the same way. This also explains why there is such tight agreement between the four sources, and why skeptical scientists repeatedly requested only the CRU raw data and not the others.
Stonewalling FOI Requests for Data
For years the CRU stonewalled any request by skeptics to obtain the CRU raw data to validate its summarized data set. This is one of the foundations of science. Other scientists, especially skeptical scientists, must be able to duplicate results using the same data. That the man-caused global warming hypothesis was accepted as accepted theory without this validation is highly unusual.
In 2000 the British Parliament passed a freedom of information act that took effect in 2005. This caused all kinds of panic within the CRU group as evidenced in this February 2, 2005 email from Phil Jones, the head of CRU and Michael Mann, principle author of the totally discredited hockey stick curve:
“Just sent loads of station data to Scott. Make sure he documents everything better this time! And don’t leave stuff lying around on ftp sites – you never know who is trawling them. The two MMs [Stephen McIntyre and Ross McKitrick, who proved Michael Mannâ€™s hockey stick curve was bogus] have been after the CRU station data for years. If they ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I’ll delete the file rather than send to anyone. Does your similar act in the US force you to respond to enquiries within 20 days? – our does ! The UK works on precedents, so the first request will test it. We also have a data protection act, which I will hide behind. Tom Wigley has sent me a worried email when he heard about it – thought people could ask him for his model code. He has retired officially from UEA so he can hide behind thatâ€¦.”
Phil Jonesâ€™ email to Michael Mann clearly shows a pattern of deliberate stonewalling. If Jones did deliberately delete the raw data, it would be a criminal act. The CRUâ€™s fears were realized in subsequent years when Stephen McIntyre and others repeatedly tried to use the freedom of information act to obtain the raw data. Their attempts proved fruitless, however, when Jones stonewalled them. Finally, in 2009 Jones notified McIntyre that the raw data was somehow â€œaccidently deleted.â€ When that created a firestorm of controversy, Jones changed the story, now claiming the deletion of the raw data was necessary because they â€œneeded the computer space.â€ Again, after a firestorm of controversy, Jones said that they found it wasnâ€™t all deleted. The CRU, he said, would shortly release the data that still existed. As of this writing, massive confusion still reigns. All these machinations suggest that Phil Jones may have deleted that part of the raw data that blows their man-caused theory apart, just like he said he would do in his 2005 email to Michael Mann.
This is extremely serious. Raw data is never deleted in science because it would prevent research results from ever being verified and duplicated using the original data. This is at the core of the scientific method. This entire affair tends to discredit every research study that used the CRU summarized data. It may mean that there is no longer any original empirical scientific data that even suggests that man is responsible for the twentieth century warming. Even the computer models used to prove man-caused global warming are made invalid because they all use CRU data in their models.
Jones may be facing criminal charges if it is shown he did delete the data. Amazingly, rather than resigning to protect the CRU from being dragged through a political and legal nightmare, Jones has refused guilt in doing anything wrong and has proclaimed his innocence by yet another email. He was finally forced to step down the first of December pending an investigation.
There are over 50 emails dating back to the 1990s that clearly show a continuing pattern of collusion, conspiracy, vicious attackson prominent skeptical scientists. Any science that disagrees with their man-caused dogma was automatically declared as â€œcrapâ€ and â€œjunk science.â€ This is laughable. It was this same CRU group, lead by Michael Mann, who published the infamous Hockey Stick paper.
The Hockey Stick curve became the centerpiece of the 2001 IPCC report. The paper and its respective curve derived from tree rings were later exposed as fraudulent because inappropriate statistics were applied. Then, after years of stonewalling, the Hockey Stick authors were forced to release the raw data they used to construct the curve. Just like their emails implied, key data were deliberately left out and CRU surface temperature data substituted when the tree ring data did not show warming after 1960. When the missing tree ring data was included in the curve computation, the late 20th century temperature spike disappeared (Figure 2).
The CRU group even attack peer-reviewed science publications that publish a skepticâ€™s article. In another series of emails they discussed the need to get rid of an editor they didnâ€™t like from Geophysical Research Letters, one of the premier publications publishing scientific papers on global warming. They eventually succeeded. In another email an editor asked for suggestions as to which reviewers to send a skeptics paper to in order to get it rejected. Jones responded with a list of reviewers saying â€œAll of them know the sorts of things to sayâ€¦without any prompting.â€
In one case Michael Man and Phil Jones threatened to actually discredit Climate Research, a science publication that published several of the skepticâ€™s papers. In another, Jones told Michael Mann that he was going to make sure none of the skeptics peer reviewed papers were used in the 2007 IPCC Assessment Report (AR-4). True to his word, the articles were not used and Jones requested that all emails concerning this effort be deleted from the computer of everyone who was involved. Again, this is against the law. In yet another email, Jones admitted using Michael Mannâ€™s approach of using CRU temperature data after 1960 â€œto hide the declineâ€ of global temperature shown by tree ring data.
In an October 2009 email by Kevin Trenberth, the CRU group even admits to itself that, â€œThe fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment, and it is a travesty that we can’t.â€ But how can they when Trenberth also admits that â€œwe are not close to balancing the energy budgetâ€¦and whether clouds are changing to make the planet brighter.â€ Yet, the same group of scientists continues to insist that It was commonly understood within the scientific community for the past 50 years that as cities grew and expanded that the cityâ€™s surface temperature would increase. As grassland and forests were replaced by asphalt roofs and streets, more of the sunâ€™s energy is absorbed and released in urban areas. This is called the urban heat island effect and can raise temperatures by 8oC. The heat island effect is highly localized and has nothing to do with the ambient temperature of the region.Â warming will resume with a vengeance. This same email also suggests putting pressure on the BBC not to print stories that even hint that this is not a settled science.
The Urban Heat Island Effect
Suspicions by skeptical scientistâ€™s go back to the very first days of the global warming controversy in the late 1980s. This is a critical issue as passage of cap and trade legislation in Congress or the ratification of any international treaty will profoundly affect every person in a very negative way.
It was commonly understood within the scientific community for the past 50 years that as cities grew and expanded that the cityâ€™s surface temperature would increase. As grassland and forests were replaced by asphalt roofs and streets, more of the sunâ€™s energy is absorbed and released in urban areas. This is called the urban heat island effect and can raise temperatures by 8oC. The heat island effect is highly localized and has nothing to do with the ambient temperature of the region.
Four global surface temperature databases exist at the All show very steep global temperature increases in the last half of the twentieth century, which allegedly â€œprovesâ€ man is causing global warming. Skeptics suspect that all four temperature data sources (CRU, NOAA, NASA, and the JMA) likely contain significant corruption from the heat island effect. Yet, most of this data has not had the heat island effect removed. Why? Because a series of questionable research studies allegedly showed the heat island effect was not significant. This led the IPCC to say in their 2007 report; â€œThus, the global land warming trend discussed is very unlikely to be influenced significantly by increasing urbanization.â€ It was this report that the IPCC claimed a 90 percent certainty that man is causing global warming.
Discounting urban heat island effect so totally has never passed the smell test to skeptical scientists. Although some attempts have been made to remove this source of error from the global temperature record; most of it has been in the United Statesâ€™ NOAA and NASA data sets. When the corrected NOAA and NASA U.S. surface temperature data are used, the resulting graph (Figure 3) does not show the same late twentieth century record-breaking increase in temperatures as found in the global temperatures. In complete contrast to the global temperature data, the corrected U.S. data show the 1930s and 40s to be warmer than the 1980s to 2000s. It is very unlikely the U.S. data could be so strikingly different than the global data, especially since the U.S. data is admittedly much more accurate than the global temperatures.
Even more alarming, when the allegedly â€œcorrectedâ€ U.S. data since 1880 from urban weather stations is compared to rural data
(Figure 4), the urban data still show much more warming than the rural data after 1950 when U.S. urbanization kicked into high gear. This strongly suggests that the heat island effect is still corrupting the â€œcorrectedâ€ U.S. data.
This conclusion is supported by U.S. satellite temperature data (satellite temperatures are not affected by heat island) which does not show extra urban warming when comparing urban areas to rural areas. It is also supported by comparing 120 year ocean vs. land data sets. While the ocean data set is admittedly very sparse, it obviously is not affected by the urban heat island effect. This temperature data shows the same widening temperature disparity since the late 1960s as Figure 4.
Another peer-reviewed global study in 2005 compared population growth, economic development, coal consumption and other socio-economic indicators with the temperature trends for the respective areas. If there were no urban heat island effect, there should be no difference between high growth and low growth areas around the world. Instead, they found a large and significantly correlated relationship between population growth (i.e. land use) and temperature as measured by surface stations in the area. Like the U.S. urban vs. rural areas, there was no correlation when surface satellite temperatures were used for the same areas.Â When the surface station data was corrected for the heat island effect they found, the warming since 1989 would be reduced by half
There is other evidence the global temperature data is badly contaminated with urban heat island effect. One study supporting the mantra that global temperature data is not contaminated was challenged by Dr. Douglas Keenen in a scathing peer-reviewed paper published in Energy and Environment in 2007. Keenen even accused the work as fraud. While Phil Jones, the head of the CRU mocked Keenenâ€™s work, the internal emails that were released by a whistleblower or hacked in November 2009, clearly showed that Dr. Timothy Wigley (arguably the leader of the CRU alarmist group of CRU scientists) admitted Keenenâ€™s attack was valid, â€œSeems to me that Keenan has a valid pointâ€¦someone must have known at the time that they were incorrect.â€ Yet, Phil Jones still discounted this compelling evidence for the urban heat island effect in subsequent reports.
This is not science; it is possibly the greatest political fraud in the history of the world; supported by an extremely political IPCC claiming it is a scientific institution; and led by extremely biased scientists with a â€œtake no prisonersâ€ mentality. It is readily apparent their own arrogance has blinded them to any conclusion that disagrees with theirs.
The release of the CRU emails clearly show that most of CRUâ€™s work and input into the IPCC process should be seriously questioned. With NASAâ€™s data also being seriously challenged under the Freedom of Information Act, there is sufficient cause not to ratify any Copenhagen Agreement, nor pass any cap and trade legislation.
The cap and trade legislation (H. R. 2454) in the U.S. House of Representatives was based entirely on the results from all the research done using CRU data. This even includes the computer climate models. The same is true for the pending Senate cap and trade bill; S. 1733. Years of negotiating for the Copenhagen Agreement were also based on this data. The entire house of cards supporting man-caused global warming is collapsing. Yet, this did not stop the scaremongering coming out the December Copenhagen Climate Meeting. Other than some peripheral skirmishes, the agenda ground on as if these revelations never occurred. This meeting and the parallel U.S. cap and trade legislation are too critical to the creation of world government for it to fail.
It is critical that we all demand that our Senators do not pass S. 1733, nor ratify anything coming out of Copenhagen. Go to www.nocapandtrade.us and become educated. Pass along the link (especially the page having the YouTube videos) on to your email list. The United States will lose its free market system and freedoms that have made America the wealthiest and most powerful nation on earth if either the cap and trade legislation or the treaty is signed into law.
Note: These and all 3000 emails can be found at www.eastangliaemails.com.Â A growing summary and links to the respective email can be found at http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2009/11/20/climate-cuttings-33.html
Dr. Michael Coffman is President of Environmental Perspectives, Inc. and CEO of Sovereignty International, a non-profit education organization. He has led a multimillion research effort in global warming and has authored several books. He has produced two DVDs, Global Warming, Emerging Science and Understanding (emergingscience.us) and Global warming or Global Governance (warmingDVD.com)