In a prior piece in this series (Part V), I reported back on June 7 on an article that had just come out in Science titled "Possible Artifacts Of Data Biases In The Recent Global Surface Warming Hiatus." The article was written by a team of government scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), led by one Thomas R. Karl. Readers here will recognize the name of Mr. Karl as one of the foremost global warming zealots living on the taxpayer dime.
Although the Karl article itself is behind a paywall at Science, its issuance was accompanied by a lengthy press release from NOAA summarizing it and touting its conclusions. The idea behind the article was explicitly to refute the growing chorus pointing to a near-twenty-year "pause" or "hiatus" in the rise global temperatures as undermining the narrative of a coming catastrophic global warming. Mr. Karl stated that purpose in this quote in the press release:
"Adding in the last two years of global surface temperature data and other improvements in the quality of the observed record provide evidence that contradict the notion of a hiatus in recent global warming trends," said Thomas R. Karl, L.H.D., Director, NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information.
But despite Mr. Karl arguing that the data in this article supported such a broad conclusion, many things about the article were literally bizarre. Most notably, neither the article nor the press release so much as mentioned the main source of the data that establish the "pause," namely the NASA satellite data as processed by UAH and RSS. (Do they think we don't know about that data? The UAH data are here.) Then there was the fact that the article dealt only with a tiny portion of the surface temperature record, namely sea surface temperatures in the Arctic. And then, within just a few days after the article came out on June 4, numerous critics had pointed out other gigantic flaws, like the facts that the "new" data included "homogenization" based on extraneous data that would clearly bias the results toward increasing any warming trend, such as using nearby land temperatures to fill in gaps in temperatures over the water at times when the water has ice on the surface. Read more about these flaws here. From a critique by Michaels, Lindzen and Knappenberger reproduced at that link:
The treatment of the buoy sea-surface temperature (SST) data was guaranteed to put a warming trend in recent data. They were adjusted upwards 0.12°C to make them “homogeneous” with the longer-running temperature records taken from engine intake channels in marine vessels. As has been acknowledged by numerous scientists, the engine intake data are clearly contaminated by heat conduction from the structure, and they were never intended for scientific use. On the other hand, environmental monitoring is the specific purpose for the buoys. Adjusting good data upwards to match bad data seems questionable, and the fact that the buoy network becomes increasingly dense in the last two decades means that this adjustment must put a warming trend in the data. The extension of high-latitude arctic land data over the Arctic Ocean is also questionable. Much of the Arctic Ocean is ice-covered even in high summer, so that the surface temperature must remain near freezing. Extending land data out into the ocean will obviously induce substantially exaggerated temperatures.
Read that and lots more at the link, and you come away with the conclusion that this study was completely preposterous. On the other hand, it can well be explained by its timing: it came out just as EPA was getting ready to issue its so-called Clean Power Plan, otherwise known as the complete takeover of the energy sector of the economy and the forced closure of all power plants that burn coal; as well as a few months before the big planned climate meetings in Paris in December where our government would like to commit us to forced reductions in fossil fuel usage and a "skyrocketing" of the cost of our energy.
Anyway, now for the latest. It seems that the House Science Committee, chaired by Lamar Smith of Texas, subpoenaed NOAA for data and communications relating to the Karl article. Yesterday, the Hill reported that NOAA is refusing to comply with the subpoena, claiming some kind of "confidentiality" of scientific communications.
The federal government's chief climate research agency is refusing to give House Republicans the detailed information they want on a controversial study on climate change. Citing confidentiality concerns and the integrity of the scientific process, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said it won't give Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) the research documents he subpoenaed.
This is not any kind of "confidentiality" that I've ever heard of. Confidentiality as against Congress as to things funded by the taxpayers? Huh? At the Global Warming Policy Foundation they ask "Why is NOAA withholding climate documents from Congress?" and whether this is "the next Climategate?" The editorial at Investors Business Daily is headed "Did Federal Agency Commit Climate Fraud? Sure Looks Like It." Excerpt:
The American people have every right to be suspicious when NOAA alters data to get the politically correct results they want and then refuses to reveal how those decisions were made," [Congressman] Smith said this week. We agree. For too long, global warming proponents, both inside and outside government, have tried to halt debate over their extreme conclusions and data manipulation, all in the name of "science." Looks political to us. Taxpayers pay for this research, which is being used to justify massive new federal spending and regulation. They deserve to know what NOAA and other federal agencies are doing -- and whether they're being honest or serving an unspoken extreme political agenda.
As usual, the mainstream media are paying no attention whatsoever. How long are they going to be willing to cover for this fraud?