Singing the same old (off-key) song

Anthony Watts at WUWT is still attacking the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Project and finding ways to avoid having to admit he was wrong about the Urban Heat Island effect.

The posts are coming thick and fast (is there a hint of desperation at WUWT perhaps?), and one of the more recent ones was a reprint of a letter by Dr Fred Singer to the Washington Post.

In the letter, Singer clutches at several straws (a third of the stations examined didn’t show warming, which tells us nothing about the overall trend), tells a few whoppers (the satellite record doesn’t show warming according to him), and finishes like this:

“The Berkeley results in no way confirm the scientifically discredited Hockeystick graph, which had been so eagerly adopted by climate alarmists.  In fact, the Hockeystick authors have never published their temperature results after 1978.  The reason for hiding them?  It’s likely that their proxy data show no warming either.

One last word:  In their scientific paper, submitted for peer review, the Berkeley scientists disclaim knowing the cause of the temperature increase reported by their project.  However, their research paper comments: “The human component of global warming may be somewhat overestimated.”  I commend them for their honesty and skepticism.”

The hockey stick, far from being discredited, has become a hockey league, with multiple different lines of evidence showing the same graph – tree rings (dendrochronology), sea sediments, ice cores, and of course the instrumental temperature record itself.  I think it was Prof Scott Mandia who pointed out on Skeptical Science that the probability of all these time series being wrong in the same direction was vanishingly small.  But Singer understands the value of propaganda.

The second paragraph, in which he commends the scientists for their “honesty”, was dealt with here: http://www.gamadoelas.net/blogs/malice-in-wonderlandhtml .

This was part of a paragraph which hypothesized about two possible scenarios, neither of which was examined in the paper, but Singer has, like the GWPF, presented it as a conclusion.

That’s a bit off-key, Dr Singer.

Meanwhile, a post on Climate Progress reports that a new study has found that there is an 80% probability that the July 2010 heatwave in Russia, which killed 56 000 people, would not have happened in the absence of global warming.  NOAA’s original study found no link to global warming, but the authors of the new study took month and year averages and subjected them to a Monte Carlo analysis.  They also observed (ironically, given the BEST results earlier in the week) that one of the problems with the NOAA analysis was that Urban Heat Island effect had been overstated.

Not a sausage on this one on the skeptic sites yet.  Perhaps they’re trying to work out how to accuse Al Gore of having murdered 56 000 Russians to make global warming look worse than it is…

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