A Whistle-Blower Details How Scientists Conspire To Depublish Non-Consensus Papers

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From climatechangedispatch.com


There’s nothing new about mainstream climate scientists conspiring to bury papers that throw doubt on catastrophic global warming.

The Climategate leaks showed co-compiler of the HadCRUT global temperature series Dr. Phil Jones emailing Michael “Hockey Stick” Mann, July 8, 2004:

I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin [Trenberth, a colleague] and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!

Thanks to a science whistle-blower, there’s now documentation of a current exercise as bad as that captured in the Jones-Mann correspondence. [emphasis, links added]

This new and horrid saga – again involving Dr. Mann – sets out to deplatform and destroy a peer-endorsed published paper by four Italian scientists.

Their paper in European Physical Journal Plus is titled A Critical Assessment Of Extreme Events Trends In Times Of Global Warming and documents that extreme weather and related disasters are not generally increasing, contrary to the catastrophists feeding misinformation to the Guardian/ABC axis and other compliant media.

The witch-hunt has Australian elements. Last September, The Australian’s environment writer, Graham Lloyd, highlighted the paper [archived here] and its conclusion that the “extreme events emergency” was overblown.

Sky News Australia, which twice reported the study, picked up more than 400,000 views and thousands of comments.

The green-left Guardian countered with a hit piece by in-house catastrophist Graham Readfearn featuring professors Lisa Alexander and Steve Sherwood, both of NSW University. They alleged cherry-picking and misquoting.

Their main specific complaint was that the Italians’ paper had drawn on the 2013 Fifth IPCC Report rather than the recent Sixth Report. (The Italians say they submitted the paper before the Sixth Report emerged).

The Guardian’s fuss caught the attention of Agence France-Presse’s (AFP) Marlowe Hood, who modestly styles himself “Senior Editor, Future of the Planet” and “Herald of the Anthropocene”.

He penned his diatribe for The Australian[archived and also here] against the Italians’ paper. Jumping the gun on any editorial inquiry, AFP branded the study “faulty” and “fundamentally flawed”, involving “discredited assertions” and “grossly manipulated data”.

This abuse was normal since AFP and The Guardian are leaders of the Covering Climate Now (CCN) coalition of some 500 media outlets with a reach of a 2 billion audience.

These outlets signed the CCN pledge to hype catastrophism and rebut and censor any skepticism about our planet’s forecast fiery fate.

The whistle-blowers’ documents reveal how this media pile-on – as distinct from reasoned scientific complaint — led the journal’s owner, Springer, to demand “action”.

Springer aimed to force the editor to publish at least an erratum and, preferably, retract it altogether, restoring climate right-think.

The publishers have now decided on the retraction and the axe will fall any day now. But the process was ratbaggery in place of the normal rigorous and honorable protocols.

Meanwhile, unabashed Italian authors Alimonti and Mariani successfully published last week an updated version of their paper, also peer-reviewed and in a different scientific journal.

Chapter and verse on the controversy are available at The Honest Broker, the blog of Dr. Roger J. Pielke Jr., a world-leading expert in monetary loss trends from extreme events.

Noted climatologist Dr. Judith Curry tweeted,

Reprehensible behavior by journal editors in retracting a widely read climate paper (80,000 downloads) over politically inconvenient conclusions. Journal editors asked me to adjudicate, and my findings were in favor of the author.

The controversy turns on how the IPCC Sixth Report is interpreted, as it seems to place [two bobs each way] on trends in extremes.

In all fairness, you can read a detailed argument here by an advocate for the paper’s retraction. But even Andy Revkin, a leading US journalist of warmist persuasion, has explained,

Despite headlines and spin, it’s still tough to disentangle global warming and natural variability in long-term heat wave patterns in the United States. That might seem surprising but was a clear conclusion of both the last U.S. National Climate Assessment and IPCC reports.

I’ll now background the Italian defendants in this politicized fracas. They enjoy prestigious reputations, but that doesn’t mean, of course, that they’re right.

♦ Professor Gianluca Alimonti, Milan University, and senior researcher, Italy’s National Institute of Nuclear Physics. Many of his papers involve work on the 7000-tonne ATLAS detector at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. He lists 300+ publications and presentations.

♦ Renato Angelo Ricci, Padova University, Padua. He’s worked with Legnaro National Laboratories, one of the four major research centers of the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN). He’s of such prestige that INFN dedicated to him its tenth annual Varenna Conference on nuclear reaction mechanisms[1] The corrupted Wikipedia Italy dismisses him as a climate skeptic.

♦ Luigi Mariani, Milan University, also of INFN. He’s with the Lombard Museum of Agricultural History and has published 137 papers.

♦ Franco Prodi, National Academy of Science, Verona and Italian National Research Council – Institute of Atmospheric Sciences and Climate. 193 publications, 2300 citations: “Main fields of interest are physics of clouds and precipitation, hail and precipitation growth, aerosol physics, atmospheric radiation, severe storm studies, and radar-meteorological investigations, satellite meteorology and nowcasting [very short term weather forecasting].”

The Guardian noted that three of the four Italians had signed a “no emergency” skeptic declaration last year as if that disqualified them from proper research.

The Guardian didn’t mention that the same declarationwith its 1,600 signatorieswas led by two Nobel Laureates in Physics, John Clauser (2022) and Ivar Giaever (1973).[2]

The comments of Michael “Hockeystick” Mann, of Pennsylvania University, about Alimonti and Ricci are illuminating. He described their journal article as:

…another example of scientists from totally unrelated fields coming in and naively applying inappropriate methods to data they don’t understand. Either the consensus of the world’s climate experts that climate change is causing a very clear increase in many types of weather extremes is wrong, or a couple of nuclear physics dudes in Italy are wrong.

Mann himself is a connoisseur of wrong (and self-evidently in need of remedial courtesy classes). His notorious 1999 Hockeystick paper purportedly proved unprecedented 20th-century global heat.

His 1,000-year graph was used as a corporate logo by the IPCC in its 2001 Third Report [3]which subsequently downplayed it to near-invisibility in its Fourth Report six years later.

Mann had committed the scientific no-go of furtively patching measured global temperatures from 1961 to his proxy-reconstructed temperature graph derived from tree-ring sampling[4]

This was done, in the Climategate words of Dr Phil Jones (Nov 16, 1999) to “hide the decline” of the 20th-century proxy trend, which threatened to render Mann’s entire temperature reconstruction spurious[5]

Australia’s top catastrophist is Macquarie University’s Distinguished Professor of Biology Lesley Hughes, whose specialty is entomology, e.g., ant-tended butterfly ejaculations, though more recently she’s been publishing on Lethal consequences: climate change impacts on the Great Barrier Reef. (It’s had record coral cover for the past two years).

Her Climate Council colleague and dud prophet Tim Flannery is a mammologist.

The Italians’ desk review spends 20 pages arguing from 82 relevant papers. Their English is well expressed though the syntax is slightly unusual. It’s their conclusions (below) that have generated such recursive fury [6] among the anointed climate crowd:

From the Second World War, our societies have progressed enormously, reaching levels of well-being (health, nutrition, healthiness of the places of life and work, etc.) that previous generations had not even remotely imagined. Today, we are called to continue on the path of progress respecting the constraints of economic, social and environmental sustainability with the severity dictated by the fact that the planet is about to reach 10 billion inhabitants in 2050, increasingly urbanized.

Since its origins, the human species has been confronted with the negative effects of the climate; historical climatology has repeatedly used the concept of climate deterioration in order to explain negative effect of extreme events (mainly drought, diluvial phases and cold periods) on civilization. Today, we are facing a warm phase and, for the first time, we have monitoring capabilities that enable us to objectively evaluate its effects.

Fearing a climate emergency without this being supported by data, means altering the framework of priorities with negative effects that could prove deleterious to our ability to face the challenges of the future, squandering natural and human resources in an economically difficult context, even more negative following the COVID emergency. This does not mean we should do nothing about climate change: we should work to minimize our impact on the planet and to minimize air and water pollution. Whether or not we manage to drastically curtail our carbon dioxide emissions in the coming decades, we need to reduce our vulnerability to extreme weather and climate events.

Leaving the baton to our children without burdening them with the anxiety of being in a climate emergency would allow them to face the various problems in place (energy, agricultural-food, health, etc.) with a more objective and constructive spirit, with the goal of arriving at a weighted assessment of the actions to be taken without wasting the limited resources at our disposal in costly and ineffective solutions. How the climate of the twenty- first century will play out is a topic of deep uncertainty. We need to increase our resiliency to whatever the future climate will present us.

We need to remind ourselves that addressing climate change is not an end in itself, and that climate change is not the only problem that the world is facing. The objective should be to improve human well-being in the twenty-first century, while protecting the environment as much as we can and it would be a nonsense not to do so: it would be like not taking care of the house where we were born and raised.

While a tad sentimental, it’s not over the top compared with say, the IPCC’s UN head Antonio Guterres announcing last month that we’re now suffering “global boiling.

And the late Professor Will Steffen, who steered Australian federal climate policy for two decades, alerted the Royal Society that climate change might well end the Homo Sapiens species[7]

The Guardian’s attack piece quoted Professor Lisa Alexander, a UNSW rainfall-extreme specialist, saying that, contrary to the paper’s “selective and biased” claims, “there is definitely an increase in precipitation extremes” and it’s “attributed to human activity”.

The paper had “totally misrepresented” her own papers’ findings, she said. She wanted the paper rejected or heavily revised.

So far so trenchant, but when you look up one of her two co-authored papers cited by the Italians, you discover that it messed up Figures 2,3,4,5,7,8, and 9 – which is all but three of its ten Figures[8] The journal had to run a corresponding erratum and update.

An unkind critic might mention pots calling kettles black. Incidentally, Alexander’s UNSW team, led by Andy Pitman (famed for his inadvertent candor that “warming doesn’t cause droughts”attracted a giant Australian Research Council (ARC) taxpayer grant of $32,134,273, no less.

Her other paper, with no corrections, was supported by an ARC grant of only $356,402.

In both papers, Professor Alexander commendably stresses the massive data uncertainties in her field of rainfall extremes, caused by unreliable rain recordingmissing data across swathes of entire continents, and too-short records.

As she warned:

Despite our best efforts, there are still parts of the world where data are sparse or the temporal coverage is inadequate for a data set designed for long-term monitoring … Efforts are underway to augment current global collections of data to improve the data available for all users.

As for allegedly misrepresenting her work, I don’t see it. In the Italian paper’s first reference, it accepts her conclusion about rain generally increasing. [9]

In the second reference, the Italians show concern – as she does — about data quality for extreme downpours. (The Italians mention inter alia that bugs often climb into the gauges and their corpses upset the mechanism).

AFP’s Marlowe in his hit piece quotes Richard Betts (UK Met Office) bagging the Italians. In a masterpiece of bitchy innuendo the AFP snarked, “Betts stopped short of calling for withdrawal, drawing a distinction between cherry-picking data and outright fraud.”

Other critics quoted were Friedericke Otto, of the UK’s Grantham Institute, along with Stefan Rahmstorf from the dark-green Postdam Institute.

Otto complained the Italians were writing “in bad faith” — whatever that means. Rahmstorf’s gripe was that the research was published in a physics journal rather than a climate one (the latter, of course, 97 percent captured by the catastrophe crowd as peer reviewers).

“I do not know this journal, but if it is a self-respecting one it should withdraw the article,” Rahmstorf said.

Otto agreed, demanding that it be withdrawn “loudly and publicly”, presumably to scapegoat the authors. An Exeter University professor said he wouldn’t go that far, fearing bad publicity about censorship – a good point.

Now for the whistle-blower’s documentation:

Read rest at Quadrant