Interview with Roger Pielke Sr

In terms of climate change and variability on the regional and local scale, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, the Climate Change Science Program (CCSP) report on surface and tropospheric temperature trends, and the U.S. National Assessment [of Climate Change] have overstated the role of the radiative effect of the anthropogenic increase of carbon dioxide (CO2) in relation to a diversity of other human climate- forcing mechanisms. Indeed, many research studies incorrectly oversimplify climate change by characterizing it as being dominated by the radiative effect of human-added CO2. But while prudence suggests that we work to minimize our disturbance of the climate system (since we don’t fully understand it), by focusing on just one subset of forcing mechanisms, we end up seriously misleading policymakers as to the most effective way of dealing with our social and environmental vulnerability in the context of the entire spectrum of environmental risks and other threats we face today.

What is your criticism of the IPCC?

Mainly the fact that the same individuals who are doing primary research into humans’ impact on the climate system are being permitted to lead the assessment of that research. Suppose a group of scientists introduced a drug they claimed could save many lives: There were side effects, of course, but the scientists claimed the drug’s benefits far outweighed its risks. If the government then asked these same scientists to form an assessment committee to evaluate their claim (and the committee consisted of colleagues of the scientists who made the original claim as well as the drug’s developers), an uproar would occur, and there would be protests. It would represent a clear conflict of interest. Yet this is what has happened with the IPCC process. To date, either few people recognize this conflict, or those that do choose to ignore it because the recommendations of the IPCC fit their policy and political agenda. In either case, scientific rigor has been sacrificed, and poor policy and political decisions will inevitably follow.

Read the entire interview at ECOworld

44 Responses to Interview with Roger Pielke Sr

  1. Woody December 8, 2007 at 2:06 am #

    It won’t be any time before Luke claims that we shouldn’t listen to Pielke, because he sleeps with goats.

    Global warming is not a science debate and never was inteneded to be one. Just look at the motivations of those who led this march.

    Road to Bali
    Peter Foster, Financial Post
    http://www.financialpost.com/analysis/story.html?id=eec03f41-5fa7-41b9-b179-614151eaf15e&k=87348&p=1

    “Bali is not about climate; it symbolizes the continued assault on freedom by those who seek — or pander to — political power under the guise of concern for humanity.

    “Just at the point where Marxism was being consigned to the dustbin of history, the more or less concealed power lust that had fed it found a new cause in the environment. The fact that the UN’s 1992 Rio conference followed hard on the collapse of the Soviet Union represented almost the passing of a poisoned baton. Capitalism had once been the enemy because it was alleged to make people poor. Now it was the enemy because of the alleged side effects of making them rich.”

  2. Catalina December 8, 2007 at 7:13 am #

    I stumbled into your blog and I´m glad I did.It´s very interesting. I´ll keep on reading! Thanks for writing!

  3. Paul Biggs December 8, 2007 at 7:29 am #

    Many Thanks! Sorry I can’t read Spanish!

  4. Luke December 8, 2007 at 9:40 am #

    Nah Pielke is OK. Just that he’s not always correct. He’s your Clayton’s type of sceptic – the sceptical stance you have when you want to be both sceptical and respectful.

    OK Woody you’re right. I give up. We are hell bent on taking over the world and ruining western civilisation as we know it. Why – coz we like wearing hair shirts and working on communes (Comrade).

    I just peeked under my bed and found it was red.

  5. Nexus 6 December 8, 2007 at 10:18 am #

    OT, but I note the Loehle reconstruction has been broken. So sad, provided a glimmer of hope to the crazies for a few weeks there.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2007/12/past-reconstructions/#more-506

  6. Luke December 8, 2007 at 10:26 am #

    A nasty mauling.

  7. SJT December 8, 2007 at 12:57 pm #

    10/10 for sheer creative thinking Woody. Other than that, I don’t know what a work of fiction is doing here.

  8. proteus December 8, 2007 at 5:40 pm #

    For a review of RC’s review of Loehle 2007 see this:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2496#comments

    Again, one law for the lion and another law for the lamb.

  9. chrisgo December 8, 2007 at 6:28 pm #

    I was about to include the same link.

    Incredible, the crowd that produced this….
    http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/slides/large/05.24.jpg
    …….are nitpicking Loehle.

  10. Luke December 8, 2007 at 7:31 pm #

    No retro whiney’s now guys – McIntyre wants to progress the debate and rachet up standards – so there’s no going back. You would expect Loehle to be fully reamed out. After all isn’t that what ClimateAudit would want?

    So we’d expect a little less “teacher’s pet” nonsense – McIntrye should can the lip and either defend or capitulate the various points and move on. Unless of course it’s a game?

    So where’s this leave us – probably no data that’s really worth anything. All we know about the last 2000 years is some blurry bumps and hand picked anecdotes of how wonderful the MWP was for Europe while much of the Americas, Africa and China reeled under multi-year droughts. Bye bye Maya.

    Meanwhile does it help the present situation – not a lot.

  11. Ender December 8, 2007 at 9:47 pm #

    “Mainly the fact that the same individuals who are doing primary research into humans’ impact on the climate system are being permitted to lead the assessment of that research.”

    The IPCC are not assessing the research. They are presenting in a reasonably concise form the current state of climate science.

    “There were side effects, of course, but the scientists claimed the drug’s benefits far outweighed its risks. If the government then asked these same scientists to form an assessment committee to evaluate their claim (and the committee consisted of colleagues of the scientists who made the original claim as well as the drug’s developers), an uproar would occur, and there would be protests”

    However the IPCC are not assessing a drug. The analogy that Pielke uses is false. The nearest analogy could be is that the IPCC is evaluating the germ theory of disease and the possibility that certain drugs may be effective in treating diseases by killing bacteria.

    You cannot make your point with a false analogy – he should know better.

  12. SJT December 8, 2007 at 11:57 pm #

    The IPCC are the producers of the summary of the research, not the reviewers. They have driven the whole thing from start to finish, against incredible odds, resistance and personal attacks.

  13. Mark December 9, 2007 at 2:00 am #

    IPCC – Can you say “Food For Oil”?

  14. SJT December 9, 2007 at 10:16 am #

    A cryptic comment indeed, Mark.

    What does it mean?

  15. mccall December 9, 2007 at 10:07 pm #

    from Mr Ender: “The IPCC are not assessing the research. They are presenting in a reasonably concise form the current state of climate science.”

    from Mr SJT: “The IPCC are the producers of the summary of the research, not the reviewers. They have driven the whole thing from start to finish, against incredible odds, resistance and personal attacks.”

    How absurd — Dr Mann was lead TAR author of the section that featured the HS. If someone else had been (like Dr von Storch for instance), no way that busted graphic get such featuring! The summary still makes claims of CWP is “warmest in” 1000 and now 1300 years, while updating of proxies are not done or are rejected when there is divergence.

    Spit out the Kool-aid…

  16. Ender December 10, 2007 at 8:26 am #

    mccall – “Dr Mann was lead TAR author of the section that featured the HS. If someone else had been (like Dr von Storch for instance), no way that busted graphic get such featuring! The summary still makes claims of CWP is “warmest in” 1000 and now 1300 years, while updating of proxies are not done or are rejected when there is divergence.”

    Who else would you get to co-ordinate a section on paleo-climate but a scientist that is an expert on it. What is your point? There were at least 30 or 40 scientists involved in that section of the TAR and Dr Mann, I am sure, did not rule with an iron fist. The best science at the time got included. 4AR includes all the other proxy studies that still show much the same thing as the original.

    How about you stop looking for conspiracies and start looking at the actual science.

  17. Paul Biggs December 10, 2007 at 8:35 am #

    Nexus 6 – feel free to continue making a fool of yourself here by defending RC hypocrisy.

    Ender – total BS.

  18. SJT December 10, 2007 at 9:19 am #

    Paul

    pithy comments, but what’s you’re evidence on the science?

  19. Ender December 10, 2007 at 9:47 am #

    Paul – “Ender – total BS.”

    So obviously you have reached the end of your knowledge so you can contribute nothing more than insults.

    Why not, and this is an idea to run up the flagpole, try including some science.

  20. Ender December 10, 2007 at 9:48 am #

    Paul – “Nexus 6 – feel free to continue making a fool of yourself here by defending RC hypocrisy.”

    BTW the only person that seems foolish is one that seems to assess science on whether it makes a catchy headline – now who would that be????

  21. proteus December 10, 2007 at 11:38 am #

    Lubos Motl on Schmidt’s criticisms of Loehle:

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2007/12/climate-reconstructions-loehle-vs.html

  22. Luke December 10, 2007 at 12:13 pm #

    zzzzzzzz

  23. SJT December 10, 2007 at 1:20 pm #

    “As far as I can say, Gavin Schmidt learned these principles from McKitrick & McIntyre and other independent climate experts because they have been carefully checking these things in the context of older climate reconstructions such as the infamous Mann et al. hockey-stick reconstructions for quite some time.”

    Motl, when you have no evidence, just make up an opinion. Seems to have built up a legion of fans.

  24. SJT December 10, 2007 at 1:24 pm #


    It is a standard policy at RealClimate.ORG that the authors of the articles don’t offer the criticized article itself to their undemanding readers. Gavin’s recent text is an exception – a link to Loehle’s paper was later added to Gavin’s article but it is still difficult to find it. What’s important for the readers is not to learn something or compare arguments for various statements and their robustness. Instead, what they expect is their daily prayer, Oh the global warming, you’re so great and holy, and oh the climate skeptics and the climate traitors, they are oh so evil. Gavin Schmidt and others are optimized to write this inexpensive material for this kind of people.”

    Oh Yes, Lubos, tell me more. You are my Hero Lubos.

  25. proteus December 10, 2007 at 3:33 pm #

    Sour grapes, indeed.

  26. Nexus 6 December 10, 2007 at 7:57 pm #

    Paul, making a fool of myself is what I do at work Christmas parties. Endorsing an excellent RC post doesn’t constitute that. Perhaps you’ll explain the faults in said post? Maybe also destroy the excellent new post on Michael’s’ and McKitrick’s guff?

  27. Paul Biggs December 10, 2007 at 9:15 pm #

    The problems with RC/Loehle have already been explained:

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=2496

    RC’s perspective is well known and blatant. Perhaps they can move on to another peer reviewed study when they have finished with M & M:

    Unresolved Issues with the Assessment of Multi-Decadal Global Land-Surface Temperature Trends:

    http://climatesci.colorado.edu/publications/pdf/R-321.pdf

    http://climatesci.colorado.edu/2007/12/07/out-on-a-limb-the-2007-bali-climate-declaration-by-scientists/

  28. sJT December 10, 2007 at 10:27 pm #

    “blatant”? Curious word to use. In what way is science “blatant”?

    As for realclimate vs climateaudit, what are RC to make of a place that is mostly just a collection of immature catch cries of “Where’s Waldo”, “Go for the ice” and on and on, all the while sounding like an earnest bunch boy scouts. It’s not science, and scientists worked out years ago it’s can’t be a part of science.

  29. Paul Biggs December 10, 2007 at 11:46 pm #

    SJT – RC backed a loser in the hockey stick. Whilst proxy data studies can be criticised, Moberg is related to Loehle, so the much of the critique of Loehle also applies to Moberg.

    Nothing immature about Steve McIntyre – he’s filling a gap in climate science – a gap that exists because it generates data that is inconvenient for the ‘consensus.’

  30. Luke December 11, 2007 at 6:52 am #

    Paul – I’m convinced – we know nothing about past climate. All reconstructions and proxies are crap.

  31. Ender December 11, 2007 at 8:25 am #

    Paul – “Nothing immature about Steve McIntyre – he’s filling a gap in climate science – a gap that exists because it generates data that is inconvenient for the ‘consensus.'”

    How do you know what he is filling in the gaps with is correct?

    I do expect an answer BTW.

    Answer: AR4 cites 5 peer reviewed articles by M&M, Wegman/NAS, and he is writing up the latest stuff, I believe, plus I trust him and he has nothing to gain.

  32. Ian Mott December 12, 2007 at 1:57 pm #

    Note how RC is going out of its way to highlight variances with the recent temp record, but is not adjusting for the cooling from Pinatubo which, when adjusted according to the 0.5C of Church et al, gives us a plateau since 1992. And all this just 11 months after 2007 was predicted to be the warmest year on record but is apparently now on track to become the coolest since 1995.

  33. Ender December 12, 2007 at 3:17 pm #

    Paul – “Answer: AR4 cites 5 peer reviewed articles by M&M, Wegman/NAS, and he is writing up the latest stuff, I believe, plus I trust him and he has nothing to gain.”

    However not one of them specifically disproves PCA analysis of proxy records. The only one that is peer reviewed deals with centering.

    So what published papers does he have on the enhanced greenhouse effect? Your trust means nothing.

  34. Paul Biggs December 12, 2007 at 5:50 pm #

    Ender – There is no proof – it’s up to the alarmist doomsayers to provide proof.

    Steve McIntyre has no specific interest in the greenhouse effect – he has asked for a full exposition of how 2xCO2=2.5C, and he is still waiting. Currently he is presenting at the AGU meeting.

  35. Luke December 12, 2007 at 7:07 pm #

    Hey Motty – get your butt over to RC and share your theories – give them a killer post. ROTFL.

    Here’s the right sound track for when your’re writing your RC and IPCC doomslayer destructor piece and some eye candy to spur you on.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g4rPIjWqMRc

    hehehehehe

  36. Ender December 13, 2007 at 8:30 am #

    Paul – “Steve McIntyre has no specific interest in the greenhouse effect – he has asked for a full exposition of how 2xCO2=2.5C, and he is still waiting.”

    So he has no interest in the Enhanced Greenhouse effect however is waiting for an explanation of climate sensitivity??????????????

    This is of course the new double speak isn’t it. How can you have a figure for climate sensitivity without including the enhanced greenhouse effect.

    Has McIntyre heard of Google??? Or even using the vast scientific databases and search out the relevant literature. Or does he require someone to explain it to him step by step like he shrilly demanded for PCA analysis. Why doesn’t he just go to Uni and study the subject like the real climate scientists did.

  37. Ender December 13, 2007 at 8:34 am #

    Paul – BTW a Google Scholar search on “Climate Sensitivity” returned 641 000 results. I am sure Steve would find what he is looking for in there somewhere.

  38. James Mayeau December 14, 2007 at 2:13 pm #

    You all should check out the UN’s World Heritage list.
    The thing that is amazing about it is how many of the worlds cultural heritage sites where built during that fictitious Medieval Warm Period.
    Machu Pichu in Chile. The Mayan Pyramids of Yucatan. The Great Wall of China (as well as the Forbidden City). Angor Wat of Cambodia.

    All of these past civilizations just happened to reach their pinacle of culture at the same time.

    But we know it couldn’t have had anything to do with the weather because Micheal Mann says…
    And just because Loehle used peer reviewed climate reconstructions, minus the Mann tree cores, this gives no weight to the reconfirmed MWP.

    BTW I tried finding that CO2 warming signal with the two bottles – and just like Luke said – there was no warming.
    Two bottles, one filled with co2 and the other with just air, both maintain the same temperature no matter how much sunshine you put them in.
    This is a test should be made mandatory for every eighth grade science lab.

  39. Luke December 14, 2007 at 2:46 pm #

    James you numb nuts – we told you the bottles would be the same temperature – what did you expect – if you think that’s greenhouse you’re a twit. You’re measuring convection. Are you that silly?

    And amazing how the Mayans also got into trouble with drought in the MWP too. Life was cheap – how many perished building all that stuff James?

  40. James Mayeau December 14, 2007 at 6:55 pm #

    Convection in a bottle – And you have the nerve to call me stupid?

    Where is the climate change Luke? – CO2 is your booger man but that dog don’t hunt. No temperature change for co2.
    Where is the climate change Luke?
    Better switch to methane warming, ozone warming, or whatever the flavor of the week is, because co2 don’t get ‘er done.

    But it’s nice, you acknowledging that the living
    was easy for the Maya during the MWP.
    Quetzalcoatl must be pleased with your show of faith.

  41. Luke December 14, 2007 at 9:54 pm #

    Well that’s the way it works in a glasshouse greenhouse dumb bum.

    Where’s the climate change – umm – are you mental – seen the Arctic lately?

    And Quetzalcoatl was an Aztec deity you boof brain.

    errr – the Maya civilisation fell apart in the MWP. Add bad droughts in the Americas an Asia too. All the clever intellectual stuff was actually done in the LIA.

  42. Rouleau January 9, 2008 at 12:40 pm #

    I agree with the initial concept here :-Mainly the fact that the same individuals who are doing primary research into humans’ impact on the climate system are being permitted to lead the assessment of that research-: though I wouldn’t express it the same way. Climatologists, there institutions and journals all have a vested interest in creating hype and concern about what is happening so they can get ever increasing government grants. They publish their data but do not allow analysis and journal articles that are accepted are therefore almost incomprehenceable and have no conclusions. This adds to the panic and since no one, either inside or outside their field, can figure out what it means they can all show up, hat in hand, for more money next year.

  43. Rouleau January 10, 2008 at 8:42 am #

    Follow up on James Mayeau Dec. 14 :-Better switch to methane warming, ozone warming, or whatever the flavor of the week is, because co2 don’t get ‘er done.-: That is another trick of the climatology community. They measure CO2 and temperature profiles and it looks like they might tell us something-their funds might be cut. So they shelve that data and measure something else like methane and then claim there is a match even though it is obvious that methane levels are an effect rather than a cause.

    Since we are talking about the fate of civilization this is the biggest scandal of all time.

  44. Rouleau January 28, 2008 at 2:00 am #

    The extent of the scandal may be judged by the sheer volume of words written on the subject and in a language that is completely incomprehenceable. At a guess there is maybe 20 tons of journal articles going back to 1900 in the Meteorlogical Service library and they tell me there is more for earlier centuries in the basement. I have seen articles from Russia and Isreal that are as bad so it is likely universal and all prevading. The scam has to be taught in universities and anyone not going along is drummed out of the “profession”.

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