Calgary Engineers in Denial pt. 327
Discussions regarding climate change appear to have moved far beyond the fundamental questions that good science demands answers to, proceeding instead to making assumptions as if they were proven facts.
One of the first principals I was taught was to question the void. Unfortunately, due to the large number of scientifi- cally unskilled people, including the news media and politi- cians, involved in this debate, unsubstantiated claims are accepted without careful study. Instead, intuitive logic and highly selected correlations are taken as scientific proof, which of course they are not.
By my last count there were 14 different variables that affect the temperature of the Earth, of which CO2 is but one. Until the effect of the other 13 variables are known, it is impossible to evaluate the impact of any CO2, human-made or natural. Many of these variables have only been able to be studied since the beginning of the satellite observations in 1979.
Thus all data prior to 1979 regarding global temperatures are subject to a wide error margin. Attempting to correlate global temperature with CO2, when the effect of most of the other variables could not be tracked, is total nonsense.
Data sets continually referenced as gold standards and indisputable are the average global temperatures produced by NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, the United States Historical Climatology Network, and the Hadley Climatic Research Unit.
The data are distributed by the research unit — and processed by all three organizations, using their own computer programs. They employ their own selection methods to decide upon data they consider worthy of inclusion in their analyses.
Therein lie several major sources of error. First, which meteorological stations were selected since 1880? There has been no consistency in the number of stations or even the location of the stations and there are often gaps in the data which are filled in by the ever-present computer.
Next, after the selection process, the data are homogenized by a computer program no one is allowed to audit. Then, since the stations are land based, there are no data for the oceans (71 per cent of the world’s surface) and many remote land masses, so a second computer program has to be employed to fill in all the missing data. Again, no auditing allowed.
The Goddard institute is constantly revising its computer programs and reprocessing data back to 1880 so the global average graphs get steeper each year. This information is in the public record, yet our news media and other special interest groups totally ignore it.
So when the news media scream “hottest decade” or “hottest year,” one has to ask by whose measurement? And how valid are those statements?
The temperature rise as calculated from the satellite data since 1979 is about half that published by the Goddard institute and others. Unfortunately, satellite data are rarely referenced — they just don't have the shock appeal.
BARRY MOORE, P.ENG. Calgary [From ’The Peg’, the organ of APEGGA, February 2011]