Exxon-backed Fraser Institute readies attack on IPCC

Tue, 2007-01-30 08:40Richard Littlemore
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Exxon-backed Fraser Institute readies attack on IPCC

The Fraser Institute, which has received $120,000 from ExxonMobil over the last three years, has issued a media advisory promising to release “an independent summary of the latest United Nations (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report on climate” on February 5, 2007.

The FI advisory derides the IPCC report as “a brief document produced through negotiation by government bureaucrats. It is neither written by nor reviewed by the scientific community and has been criticized for its promotional tone and failure to adequately communicate the complexity and uncertainty of the underlying science around climate change.”

The Fraser Institute report's lead author is Canadian economist Dr. Ross McKitrick, best known for his attack on the now-famous “hockey stick ” graph by Michael Mann, et al.

The DeSmogBlog will follow later in the day with more background on McKitrick and Fraser Institute's other “climate experts” involved in this anti-IPCC report.

Previous Comments

Who cares what the Fraser Drunkstitute has to say. The global warming debate is over and the deniers have lost. Bush, Harper and Howard–the 3 biggest political obstructionists–have surrendered and more and more corporations are doing the same every day. So it’s doubtful the Fraser Drunkstitute’s report will even get noticed. The debate has now moved on to the best way to combat global warming and the opponents, having put almost all of their eggs into the denial basket, are woefully behind. They’re going to lose this one too.

McKitrick didn’t “attack” Mann’s hockey stick, he criticized it from a scientific and statistical point of view. His concerns were serious enough that the National Academy of Science intervened to oversee the dispute.

Mann’s hockey stick was found to have a 400 year period of credibility with little statistical significance for its 1000 year claim.

One can hold the view supporting action on AGW and the refinement of the science at the same time. Regards,

BS. Again, Paul, you’ve misquoted or misinterpreted the NAS and Wegman reports.

They said that MBH’s conclusions for the last 400 years were credible. They also said that MBH’s conclusions for the last 1000 years “were plausible at best,” meaning that their conclusions are likely accurate, but further work is needed to raise the degree of certainty. This is vastly different than saying there was “little statistical significance for its 1000 year claim.”

Also, McKitrick doesn’t aim to refine the science. He is out to squash it the best he can so those who support his “work” financially will benefit.

And you are misrepresenting the NAS report Stephen. Or are you next going to say that the National Academy of Sciences is a tool of the fossil industry also?

“Plausible” does not imply much. If my car will not start, the following things may be “plausible”:
1) battery is dead
2) car is out of gas
3) starter is kaput
4) fuel pump is defective
5} engine is flooded
Plausible does not assign a value of probablility; which is why this specific word was used in critiquing Mann’s 1000 year reconstruction. Regards,

Paul, you do not know the definition of plausible, then, or at least you wish not to know for ideological reasons.

Here is the Merriam-Webster Dictionary’s definition:

“plau·si·ble
Pronunciation: ‘plo-z&-b&l
Function: adjective
Etymology: Latin plausibilis worthy of applause, from plausus, past participle of plaudere
1 : superficially fair, reasonable, or valuable but often specious
2 : superficially pleasing or persuasive
3 : appearing worthy of belief
- plau·si·ble·ness noun
- plau·si·bly /-blE/ adverb”

I’d say the NAS report uses definition #3, which would indicate that the 1000-year reconstruction of MBH appears to be worthy of belief.

“Worthy of belief”? What level of certainty does that imply? Many things may be worthy of belief; and all can be plausible. However, only one can be true, which the NAS did not apply with a high degree of confidence to Mann’s 1000 year reconstruction.
“Worthy of belief”? What level of certainty does that imply?

Well take for instance the electron which is a small particle of charged mass no one has ever seen but is ‘worth of belief’ due to multiple lines of evidence. Kind of like the way science has been working for the last hundred years which saw the most significant leaps and breakthroughs.

As for Mann’s study, there are only nine other paleoclimate reconstructions that replicated the same result and the NAS would like to see more.

You can disagree but you’ve got to do better than cherry picking only one statistical method on one nine year old study people claim to ‘prove’ global warming which isn’t by the way… ‘worthy of belief.’

Geoff, I think you miss the subtleties of the criticisms that the National Academy of Science made. If any of the other nine paleoclimate studies provided a higher standard of proof then Mann’s study, there would have been no inquiry.

Another criticism of the other paleoclimage studies is their overreliance on the same proxy data, making it possible that none of the studies were truly independent enough to provide standalone verification of Mann’s data. Regards,

febrifuge farthingless uncrevassed harmonial eremitic meaty uncaria literary
Tavares Masonic Lodge No. 234 – Tavares http://www.bucknerblvdplumbing.com/

One trick McKitrick tried was to generate hockey-stick-shaped leading principal components from random noise and then claim that because a hockey-stick-shaped leading principal component can be extracted from a random noise sequence, Mann’s hockey-stick was nothing more than a statistical artifact. However, there’s a major problem with McKitrick’s reasoning. Do you know what that problem is? (Hint: it has to do with eigenvalue magnitudes).
Much of McKitrick’s argument were based on nonsense that appeared in Energy and Environment, a journal that is not peer-reviewed. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_and_Environment

These people wouldn’t know what truth is even if it hit them on the head.

“A brief document produced through negotiation by government bureaucrats. It is neither written by nor reviewed by the scientific community and has been criticized for its promotional tone and failure to adequately communicate the complexity and uncertainty of the underlying science around climate change.”

These scoundrels are either completely ignorant of what they are reporting on or are blatant liars. Take your pick since either option should have shown years ago that they are unfit for their jobs.

By the way, does anyone know if the FI receives any Federal funding?

a brief document produced through negotiation by government bureaucrats.

true…

It is neither written by nor reviewed by the scientific community

ummm…not quite true…

and has been criticized for its promotional tone and failure to adequately communicate the complexity and uncertainty of the underlying science around climate change.

Complete bonkers. (Though, I have to say, technically true…)

Sigh… I guess the Fraser Institute has forfeited its opportunity to be a constructive voice on the issue. Personally my intuitions tend towards massive government intervention in response to AGW, but I’m 100% open to serious, diverging opinions because the issue is really important. Too bad the Fraser Institute doesn’t want to join in that debate, it looks like they’ve decided to piss in the wind a little longer…

Richard Littlemore,

You say “The FI advisory derides the IPCC report as a brief document produced through negotiation by government bureaucrats. It is neither written by nor reviewed by the scientific community…”

What’s your the problem - that’s entirely accurate isn’t it?

IPCC founded, funded and flamed by politicians.. reports written with and agreed by governments.. base research IPCC scientists criticising lead IPCC authors for making claims about climate they say is not there in the science it is based loosely on. That’s not fictio, it’s a fact. True?

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