The Royal Society & the Scottish Referendum

Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

Why did a scientific organization issue a statement about the Scottish independence vote?

royal_soc_scottish_ref click for source

The Royal Society, the world’s oldest scientific academy, is supposed to be about science. When one of its officials gets quoted, we naively imagine that Science – with a capital “S” – has spoken.

But the past few presidents of the Royal Society have demonstrated little ability to erect a firewall between their own personal views and precise, scrupulous science.

I can image no better illustration of this than the fact that Paul Nurse, its current president, thought it appropriate, prudent, and wise to issue a public statement in the wake of last week’s referendum on Scottish independence.

What was this man thinking? Why would he go near that nakedly political topic with a ten-foot pole?


Again and again in the climate debate, we’re told that prestigious organizations such as the…

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Mike’s NYT trick

Climate Audit

There still seems to be a lot of confusion among Mann’s few remaining supporters as to why Phil Jones credited the “trick of adding in the real temps” to Mann’s Nature article (MBH98). Today I will review that topic.

Let’s first see what the Great Master himself says about the issue in his book of Fairy Tales:

In reality, neither “trick” nor “hide the decline” was referring to recent warming, but rather the far more mundane issue of how to compare proxy and instrumental temperature records. Jones was using the word trick in the same sense — to mean a clever approach — that I did in describing how in high school I figured out how to teach a computer to play tic-tac-toe or in college how to solve a model for high temperature superconductivity. He was referring, specifically, to an entirely legitimate plotting device for comparing two datasets

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The Met Office – The Lies of Ommission

If they put forward a reasoning, it can be debated. The silence is rather telling.

WeatherAction News

This comment is awaiting moderation. They may not release because it’s a reblog comment (understandable ~ish) …or because it’s associated with WeatherAction and Piers Corbyn is one of their fiercest critics, according to the Independent anyway.

This is what I thought was a reasonable comment


Even the BBC mentioned the Antarctic on the 22nd September [emphasis added];

Computer models are doing a better job at forecasting the losses [in the Arctic] but they still underestimate the changes that are occurring.

In the Antarctic, the research problem is a very different one.

This austral winter will be the third year in a row that sea-ice extent has reached a satellite-era maximum, and it is the first time that this record has jumped above 20 million sq km.

Traditionally, the greatest cover is not reached until early October, so there should be time for the south to accumulate even more marine cover.

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Quote of the Week – models, climate sensitivity, the pause, and psychology

Watts Up With That?

There’s a saying that “even a blind squirrel will find a nut occasionally”, and while I don’t think of Steven Mosher as anywhere close to a blind squirrel, he does have the habit of posting comments on climate blogs that appear sometimes as staccato and drive by style incomplete. I attribute that to trying to use a smartphone when a desktop and keyboard is really needed. This time, he’s produced a comment that is in my opinion, a home-run, because it cleanly and linearly sums up the issue of models, climate sensitivity, and “the pause”, along with a  dash of psychology thrown in about the value of model based approaches to climate sensitivity compared to observational based approaches.

He writes on Judith Curry’s blog:

it [the new Lewis and Curry paper] wont change much.. But the longer the pause…

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