Home > AGW, Climate Change, Global Warming, IPCC, Omniclimate, Policy, Science, Skepticism > Glaciergate “Faulty Communication” Explanation Makes Things Even Worse For The IPCC

Glaciergate “Faulty Communication” Explanation Makes Things Even Worse For The IPCC

Andy Revkin has just published on dotEarth a James Kanter article titled “Explanation Offered for Error in U.N. Climate Report“. Apparently,

Faulty communication allowed an unsubstantiated estimate of the melting rate of Himalayan glaciers to make it into the landmark 2007 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a senior scientist and panel official said Monday. […] The official, Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, a vice chairman of the climate change panel, said that a glaciologist, Georg Kaser at the University of Innsbruck, in Austria, had sought to correct the information about the glaciers before it was published by the panel but that the correction came too late and never reached the people who could fix the statement.

This “explanation” obviously explains very little and simply opens up a series of new questions:

  • Why didn’t Dr Kaser think it worthwhile to voice his concerns in any form (public, or private) after the publication of the IPCC report in 2007?
  • What made Dr Kaser place more importance on his colleagues potentially ill feelings about being criticized, than on scientific truth?
  • And if a relatively well-known published scientist such as Dr Kaser finds himself forced into some kind of self-censorship and reluctance to speak out, how poisonous, impermeable to criticism and ultimately anti-scientific has the world of the IPCC become?

Words of wisdom to the big cheeses at the IPCC: please stop digging!

Advertisements
  1. 2010/03/18 at 23:52

    See my article on this topic at WanderingEducators.com:

    http://www.wanderingeducators.com/best/traveling/crying-himalayan-meltdown.html

  2. ScientistForTruth
    2010/01/27 at 13:52

    Here:

    http://buythetruth.wordpress.com/2010/01/26/un-ipcc-rotting-from-the-head-down

    I demonstrate conclusively that the scientific community knew about these Glaciergate errors by their being exposed in a peer-reviewed journal in 2005, which was essentially the substance of a chapter from a book published in 2004 by an authority on the Himalayas. Syed Hasnain’s pronouncements are shown to be myths, and worse. The paper appeared in Himalayan Journal of Sciences, entitled

    “Himalayan misconceptions and distortions: What are the facts? Himalayan Delusions: Who’s kidding who and why — Science at the service of media, politics and the development agencies.”

    In light of that, I find it almost certain that Pachauri and a lot of others knew that these were lies years before AR4 was published.

    • 2010/01/27 at 14:48

      I have just posted the below at “buythetruth

      ======

      I think we are on the verge of discovering a “Himalayagate 2”.

      Have you noticed…Ives is mentioned by the IPCC only once, in the TAR WG2 Chapter 11, at page 553 for a 1989 book titled “The Himalayan Dilemma”

      This is the IPCC text:

      In recent decades,
      the hydrological characteristics of watersheds in this region seem to have undergone substantial change as a result of extensive land-use change—leading to more frequent hydrological disasters, enhanced variability in rainfall and runoff, extensive reservoir sedimentation, and pollution of lakes (Ives and Messerli, 1989).

      The book has a wholly different tone. Read the preface by Maurice Strong (of all people!):

      This book challenges the assumptions arising from these alarmist reports that the Himalayan region is in an advanced stage of irreversible environmental destruction. The authors, Jack Ives and Bruno Messerli, bring to this subject the insights and experience of two of the world’s leading experts on mountain environments and have an intimate knowledge of the Himalayan region. They have analysed its problems with the disciplined objectivity of science and demonstrated that their roots are basically socio-economic and political rather than narrowly environmental.

      […] Their excellence as scientists lends to this book an authority and credibility that is unique in its field. Its value is multiplied immeasurably by the thoughtful and incisive manner in which the authors have translated their findings into a set of guidelines for the politicians, officials and practitioners on which the future of the region so largely depends.

      All those who love the Himalayan region and are concerned about its future owe a great debt of gratitude to Jack Ives and Bruno Messerli. Not only have they produced a book that is thoroughly engaging, brilliantly written and enjoyable to read, but in it they present the most up to date, comprehensive and thoroughly researched analysis available today of the complex forces that are shaping the future of the Himalaya. The conclusions and recommendations that result from this provide the basis for the new attitudes, policies and practices which can produce a new era of hope for that unique, beautiful and imperiled region, and its wonderful people.

      And yet…there is nothing about that book in the FAR (1990), SAR (2001) or 4AR (2007) and just a short sentence or two in the TAR (1995).

      Back to the book. Chapter 13:

      Much of Lauterburg’s study of erosion records of test plots and small catchments parallels the discussion in Chapter 5. He concludes that, at the local (micro) level, soil erosion is highly influenced by human impact and that corrective measures could reduce this dramatically. We also wish to reemphasize the positive aspects of certain forms of human intervention. Lauterburg also supports our earlier contention that the conversion of mountain lands under natural vegetation to an agricultural landscape does not automatically result in an increase in soil erosion (accelerated erosion) since soil loss is not dependent upon natural versus domesticated soil cover but on a conservation factor; an extreme case, for instance, is the positive influence of carefully tended agricultural terraces

      And

      In terms of reservoir sedimentation it also follows from the foregoing discussion of the micro-watershed that soil-conservation measures can be extremely valuable in correcting a damaging situation for reservoirs in small catchments. However, the next sections will demonstrate that for meso-scale and macro-scale watersheds high reservoir sedimentation rates probably must be considered as an inevitable natural phenomenon.

      This last quote appears to contradict the text of the IPCC TAR mentioned above.

      Is this another case of gross misrepresentation of the Literature, thereafter conveniently disregarded as not playing the party line?

  3. Anthony Watts
    2010/01/26 at 23:57

    “Faulty communications”

    Reminds me of the Metric -vs- English measurements debacle at NASA which crashed the Mars Climate Orbiter into the surface.

    http://www.cnn.com/TECH/space/9909/30/mars.metric/

    Another great moment in “climate” history.

    • 2010/01/27 at 00:40

      thank you Anthony…who knows, perhaps they had their SPAM filters set up to filter out all criticisms. (ha ha ha)

      To me, the “explanation” reminds of this…

  4. Dubl
    2010/01/26 at 16:09

    POINT THAT EVERYONE IS MISSING:

    The predictions about Glaciers were a fraud WHETHER OR NOT THEY WERE ACCURATE.

    I defy anyone with any level of understanding of the theory of Anthropogenic Global Warming, Dr. james Hansen included, to tell me which part of the theory deals with glacier melt at altitudes between 20000 and 25000 feet.

    Last I checked the shoddy CRU data dealt with SURFACE temperatures. As does the GISS and UAH. Global Circulation models deal with atomospheric circulation and neither contain inputs nor generate outputs involving Himalayan glaciers. To be sure there is NOTHING, ZILCH, ZERO, NADA in the entire theory and all of the published papers that provides one credible shred of scientific anything that would enable a valid multidecadal prediction on Himalayan Glaciers. Right wrong or otherwise.

    That it has taken a blatant admission of wrongdoing for people to see the absurdity of ANY such predictions EVER being made, tells me that people ARE in fact as stupid as the IPCC takes them to be. So I would save all the gloating over their present situation. You are a small island in a sea of stupid. Don’t get too cocky just because the tide is low for a brief spell…

    • 2010/01/26 at 16:15

      Dubl – you are right of course. Max Beran talked about AGW’s “missing step two”/”and then a miracle occurs” attitude in this site a couple of weeks ago.

      There has been plenty of shooting-in-the-dark and anything-goes in matters of present-day evaluation of the effects of climate change. In a normal world, the IPCC AR4 WG-II report would now be discarded altogether.

  5. Blouis79
    2010/01/25 at 23:40

    I think the evidence is that the body of scientists working for the IPCC knows the real science and that some in positions of editorial power have created a lot of spin from the science assisted by political masters.

    See: “The IPCC report: what the lead authors really think” where Professor Ann Henderson-Sellers reports a mixture of workshop participant comments and her own view.
    http://environmentalresearchweb.org/cws/article/opinion/35820

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: