Former CRU chief admits warming may not be unprecedented

posted at 10:54 am on February 14, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

In a rather stunning series of admissions, the suspended chief of the East Anglia CRU now admits that the warming seen in the late 20th century may not be unprecedented after all, that the planet has stopped warming for the last 15 years despite the predictions of AGW advocates, and that his own record-keeping has been poor.  Phil Jones, who stepped down at least temporarily from his position at the CRU when its e-mails exposed a series of embarrassing attempts by climate scientists to undermine careers of skeptics and to hide contradictory data, now says that the entire basis of the “hockey stick” graph could have been invalid:

The academic at the centre of the ‘Climategate’ affair, whose raw data is crucial to the theory of climate change, has admitted that he has trouble ‘keeping track’ of the information.

Colleagues say that the reason Professor Phil Jones has refused Freedom of Information requests is that he may have actually lost the relevant papers.  … The data is crucial to the famous ‘hockey stick graph’ used by climate change advocates to support the theory.

But that’s just the start:

Professor Jones also conceded the possibility that the world was warmer in medieval times than now – suggesting global warming may not be a man-made phenomenon.

And he said that for the past 15 years there has been no ‘statistically significant’ warming. …

And he said that the debate over whether the world could have been even warmer than now during the medieval period, when there is evidence of high temperatures in northern countries, was far from settled.

Sceptics believe there is strong evidence that the world was warmer between about 800 and 1300 AD than now because of evidence of high temperatures in northern countries.

But climate change advocates have dismissed this as false or only applying to the northern part of the world.

Professor Jones departed from this consensus when he said: ‘There is much debate over whether the Medieval Warm Period was global in extent or not. The MWP is most clearly expressed in parts of North America, the North Atlantic and Europe and parts of Asia.

‘For it to be global in extent, the MWP would need to be seen clearly in more records from the tropical regions and the Southern hemisphere. There are very few palaeoclimatic records for these latter two regions.

‘Of course, if the MWP was shown to be global in extent and as warm or warmer than today, then obviously the late 20th Century warmth would not be unprecedented. On the other hand, if the MWP was global, but was less warm than today, then the current warmth would be unprecedented.’

The “hockey stick” graph has already been shown to be mainly a creation of graph-scaling bias, but this gets to the heart of the entire argument.  During the MWP, farmers grew crops on Greenland for a couple of centuries.  Until now, AGW advocates insisted that the warming only took place in the northern hemisphere.  If that warming was indeed global, then it dwarfs anything seen in the 20th century, as these two charts from Climate Audit, via  Sonic Frog, demonstrate:

If the massive warming seen in Europe occurred around the world, then what we have seen in the 20th century would be almost certainly a moderate, natural, cyclical warming coming out of a cold trough.  It would also call into question what exactly a good temperature would be for the Earth.  After all, even if the second graph only applied to the northern hemisphere, the increased temperatures didn’t cause the end of life on the planet; indeed, food became more plentiful, and the melting of the polar-region ice didn’t create massive catastrophes.  Further underscoring this interpretation are the cooling cycles seen in the mid-century and last fifteen years or so, expecially since the 1940s saw a huge increase in carbon emissions due to wartime production.

Jones’ late admissions demonstrate that there is nothing “settled” about AGW, and that the process and the data are too murky for any declarations of certainty.

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Good. Now lets put a stop to Lisa Jacksonand her progressive agenda. She thinks the job of the EPA (the Carbon Police) is to “work for environmental justice”. Read the whole memo.

batterup on February 14, 2010 at 12:50 PM

BREAKING:

SUN EXPECTED TO SUPERNOVA ON TUESDAY; Al Gore says global sun tax needed to prevent

BobMbx on February 14, 2010 at 12:52 PM

Al Gore needs to be arrested…

… Isn’t bilking a world wide shame costing Billions of dollars an infraction of some sort?

Seven Percent Solution on February 14, 2010 at 12:54 PM

‘For it to be global in extent, the MWP would need to be seen clearly in more records from the tropical regions and the Southern hemisphere. There are very few palaeoclimatic records for these latter two regions.
Does this sound as stupid to everyone else as it does to me?

chemman on February 14, 2010 at 11:35 AM

There is lots of evidence of the MWP in the southern hemisphere, the AGW crowd has just been averting their eyes. Great collection of studies put together by the Idso clan at http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/mwpp.php

Take a look. Organized by region, so it’s easy to find info on the area you’re interested in.

iurockhead on February 14, 2010 at 12:54 PM

Well, crap. Is it safe to go back to buying green bananas and planning for retirement now that we are not facing eminent global destruction?

MikeA on February 14, 2010 at 1:02 PM

The EPA was yet another Left foot in the Door to lay the groundwork for raping
the taxpayer, this time in the name of the environment. Which department is designed to protect the taxpayer? Anyone?
The only “science” being advanced by the Left, is the science of lying in any medium that they’ve infiltrated by – you guessed it – LYING.
To be fair, the Left is also advancing the “science” of shouting down and ridiculing anyone with the temerity to question intertwined scams.

ontherocks on February 14, 2010 at 1:10 PM

Hollywood to the rescue in 3..2..1…

Sharke on February 14, 2010 at 1:16 PM

How is Chuckles coping with this? I should imagine the poor chap is twisting himself into pretzels of denial.

Incidentally, the lgf excerpt which comes up when you Google Charles Johnson at this time is hilarious!

Sharke on February 14, 2010 at 1:23 PM

Charles,just because you fell for the Himalayas disappearing in 35 years,don’t take it out on the rest of us.Now go ride your bike into a moving bus and

LMAO! From Google.

daesleeper on February 14, 2010 at 1:26 PM

Current Snow on the ground and depth in the United States

Holger on February 14, 2010 at 1:08 PM

Hmmm….looks like the warmers were right after all….look at all the land mass covered with water.

BobMbx on February 14, 2010 at 1:35 PM

When 100s of million people have their cause of death written on their death certificates as AGW then I will be convinced.

fourdeucer on February 14, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Um, no its really simple.

When the people telling me its a crisis start acting like its a crisis, then I’ll believe.

But when the people telling me millions will die if I don’t change my light bulb live in giant mansions and fly around on private jets …. um… no.

Dark Eden on February 14, 2010 at 1:37 PM

I’d prefer to see the graph that shows the increases in AWG funding as these pseudo-scientists like Jones continued to exaggerate or out right fudge the data.

chickasaw42 on February 14, 2010 at 2:18 PM

I’d prefer to see the graph that shows the increases in AWG funding as these pseudo-scientists like Jones continued to exaggerate or out right fudge the data.

chickasaw42 on February 14, 2010 at 2:18 PM

There’s where the real hockey stick lives.

petefrt on February 14, 2010 at 2:26 PM

American Power tracked-back with, ‘Phil ‘Hide the Decline’ Jones Admits Faked Data’.

Donald Douglas on February 14, 2010 at 2:30 PM

If the massive warming seen in Europe occurred around the world

There are already “peer reviewed” studies that show the MWP in the creek beds in Peru

J_Crater on February 14, 2010 at 2:45 PM

Most of the weather in Europe is at least indirectly controlled by the Atlantic gulf stream. Changes in the flow of warm gulf currents can dramatically affect Europes temperature.

One more proof that the earths climate is based on many factors of which CO2 is the least significant.

docdave on February 14, 2010 at 2:59 PM

Hmmmm.

I don’t buy it. Not one bit.

So Jones was/is bad at recordkeeping? Not organized?

Then why didn’t the ClimateGate emails reflect this? Wouldn’t the people who have to work with Jones and collaborate with Jones all the time not realize that he’s a schmuck with organization? Why wouldn’t management at the University not realize that Jones is ham-handed when it comes to organization and replace/demote him?

Fact is that this “explanation” is nothing less than a bald-faced lie designed to keep Jones from going to jail. And it’s also being used to prevent Jones from being kicked completely out of what passes these days as the polite scientific society.

Monumental asshole with organization issues? Ok no problem. We all understand but don’t let it happen again.

Deliberate falsification of data, coercing fellow scientists, lying to the media and violating the law of FOI requests? Out you go and don’t let the door hit you in the arse.

Which would you choose?

memomachine on February 14, 2010 at 3:04 PM

See that bottom graph…..see the orange rise like a delicate “a” cup breast? Imagine the chart goes left, back to 8000 BC, the delicate breast becomes a freak show “QQQ” Cup that goes for a few thousand years. Call it the garden of Eden for that is when we left the caves and forests and began high human civilization. History is fascinating and full of interesting things. Full of scoundrels and slow heads as well.

BL@KBIRD on February 14, 2010 at 3:27 PM

There is a reason these guys are part of the GREEN movement and it has little to do with trees and grass. Follow the $$$$$.

CWforFreedom on February 14, 2010 at 4:27 PM

In the nearly two millennium context afforded by the NHreconstruction presented here, the broad period fromapproximately AD 800–1400 is observed to be moderately
warmer than multi-century periods both preceding and
following it. This warmth is, however, dwarfed by late20th century warmth which is observed to be unprecedentedat least as far back as AD 200. The coldest periods are the6th, 15th, 17th, and 19th centuries.
[...](Figure 2d), suggesting that anyimpacts of thermohaline circulation variability on hemispherictemperatures [Delworth and Mann, 2000; Bond et
al., 2001] are small in comparison with the recent warming.

Global surface temperatures over the past two millennia
Michael E. Mann
Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia, USA
Philip D. Jones
Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK

GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 30, NO. 15, 1820, doi:10.1029/2003GL017814, 2003

ted c on February 14, 2010 at 5:32 PM

Reconstructions of hemispheric mean temperatures
over roughly the past two millennia employing proxy
surface temperature data networks with sufficient spatial
and seasonal sampling, temporal resolution, and retention of
millennial-scale variance, support previous conclusions
with regard to the anomalous nature of late 20th century
temperature at least about two millennia back in time for theNorthern Hemisphere
.

Mann and Jones et al. 2003.

http://www.meteo.psu.edu/~mann/shared/articles/mannjones03.pdf

ted c on February 14, 2010 at 5:34 PM

I know the answer to this already:

WHY IS OBAMA PUSHING GLOBAL “CLIMATE CHANGE”?

Haunches on February 14, 2010 at 5:47 PM

ted: I thought everybody knew about the medival warming period. Why would Mann and Jones make such a rediculous statement in direct contradiction to the obvious facts?

Haunches on February 14, 2010 at 5:50 PM

Al won’t care anymore either since he’s made his millions and got his prize.

jeanie on February 14, 2010 at 11:02 AM

Mebbe, mebbe not. If this hoax keeps unraveling at its current pace, there will be some unhappy securities holders wondering where their equity went. And no shortage of underemployed plaintiffs’ attorneys eager to help them search.

Barnestormer on February 14, 2010 at 6:05 PM

I’m still looking for the humans who killed the Sahara. It was somewhat green for a while, until about 10,000 years ago. Humans move in and it started turning into one of the biggest deserts in the world.

That’s what happened the last time people refused to listen to the climate scientologists. They warned them.

neurosculptor on February 14, 2010 at 6:14 PM

Isn’t it striking how the elites demand billion-dollar double-blind testing regimes for new drugs, yet accept with little argument the (clearly conflicted by need for financial support well beyond tenure and salary) claims of 2nd and 3rd rate schools’ academics. Shades of Laetrile. “Well, it didn’t do any harm to take it and I felt better.” (Granted, I’ve no use for the guilds and regulations that preserve them in the drug and medical business. Sooner we return to a free market in health care, the sooner the least of us will live longer and healthier – and those without common sense will make an earlier exit).

We need to erect a statue to Michael Crichton who spent his last years when he should have been in a sickbed raising this criticism of politics corrupting science, especially with regard to the environment and AGW. A (still) unsung hero and one of the smartest (educated :-) people I have ever met.

aritai on February 14, 2010 at 6:38 PM

Latest New York Times corrections page: http://optoons.blogspot.com/2010/02/corrections-page.html

Mervis Winter on February 14, 2010 at 6:38 PM

What kind of idiot climate person doesn’t know about the Medieval Warm Period? That’s why there are ancient streets in London named Vineyard St. Grapes actually grew there then. That period is also when the great gothic cathedrals were built – it was finally warm enough to do so. It was a very positive period in Euro-history.

In any case, we seem to approaching that crucial point in the crumbling of Global Warmism when it can finally and truthfully be said that the debate is over… and not a minute too soon.

PoodleSkirt on February 14, 2010 at 7:48 PM

[www.meteo.psu.edu]

Recently, a study regarding the risk of autism as a result of childhood vaccinations was pulled by the journal Lancet.

Why was this done? Because, the science underlying the claim was debunked by subsequent studies, and the Lancet pulled the study that originally purported a link between a vaccination and autism.

Now, what journals that have published Michael Mann’s and Phil Jones’ work will do the same in light of this new evidence suggesting that the work they published was misleading, not reproducible, falsified or all of the above?

Climate Dynamics
Nuovo Cimento
Geophysical Research Letters
Journal of Climate
Journal of Geophysical Research
Reviews of Geophysics
Paleoceanography
Earth and Planetary Science Letters
Global and Planetary Change
Science
Nature
Energy
Physical Review
Molecular Physics
Global Change Biology
Eos
Annu. Rev. Earth Planet. Sci
Geophys. Res. Lett.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci
Holocene
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology
Clim. Past

Does any of the work on the “hockey stick” appear in these journals? Sure, it does. Has Phil Jones now thrown the hockey stick under the bus? Yes, he has. Will any of these journals that published that work now consider retracting that work, in the name of their own public image, or will they stand behind the work as it is written and squander any reputation that they may have previously enjoyed with the greater public? I would encourage my fellow thinkers to pursue all avenues of approach and challenge the journals in the name of science, and truth. It would be the right thing to pursue in light of these revelations.

ted c on February 14, 2010 at 7:55 PM

“Of course, if the MWP was shown to be global in extent”

Which is interesting, considering the alleged current global warming hasn’t been shown to be global in extent.

xblade on February 14, 2010 at 8:56 PM

Okay, can we drill for oil and mine coal now? Can we reinstate our aerospace program now? Can we get rid of the EPA now?

SilentWatcher on February 14, 2010 at 9:19 PM

I’m upset with the “experts” that feel it necessary to massage data, withhold information and out right lie in order to keep their positions and we the minions of the world are expected to pay to keep them as well as correct for their collective mistakes.

Here’s my take in 250 words or less.

1.Regardless of the position “We all need to be better stewards of our environment.
Man-up to it “Yes Sir NO EXCUSE Sir
2.Climate changes, it always has and it always will, with or without the collective input of mankind. Arguing the cause benefit only those who argue. It would be beneficial to mankind if their efforts were “what do we do to keep the economic model working when the global (A) (B).
Substitute
(A) = TEMPATURE / MOSITURE / SEA LEVEL / GLASIERS
(B) = INCREASES / DECREASES
3.Weather and Climate are totally different. Much is know about weather and it can be predicted with accuracy and detail to about 36 hours, after that it starts to wane. Man can effect the weather of an area for some time. Climate is less accurate and has less detail, and may last thousands of years. Man can still effect the climate. This debated that has no viable answer and becomes mute when you fall back to point (1).
4.The solution seems to be, go immediately to point one (1) get started on point two (2) and fire everyone involved with point three (3).

Thanks I needed that

Joe Price
jprice11@comcast.net

jpcpt03 on February 14, 2010 at 9:21 PM

I think Phil Jones’ ‘temporary’ stepdown is about to become permanent.

Timothy S. Carlson on February 14, 2010 at 9:26 PM

“Now is the time to end the promotion of global warming.” There is NO global warming.

Taking an expression out of Obama’s rhetorical playbook.

Who the heck made him the world’s Time-Keeper anyway? How come he gets to decide what time it is? Did that ugly rapper from that dumb TV show give him one of his clocks? “Here, bro, so you can know what time it is!”

SilentWatcher on February 14, 2010 at 9:28 PM

Jones’ late admissions demonstrate that there is nothing “settled” about AGW, and that the process and the data are too murky for any declarations of certainty.

It’s more than a little that frightening that common sense has suffered such derision while propaganda received a free ride.

I can’t even stomach the money and time wasted, while simple people suffer the cruelty of an insane world.

Saltysam on February 14, 2010 at 10:33 PM

That warm period during the medieval times was when England was producing wine that was better than the stuff the French and Italians were putting out. As you can see on that second graph there was a serious dip in temperature. That is what scientists call the mini ice age. Because of that weather, it helped the spread of the black death, Washington while crossing the Delaware was really having to deal with a frozen river and the famous portrait wasn’t an embellishment, and people in London were able to put on ice fairs on the frozen Thames until the mid 19th century. I don’t know about you all, but I’m looking forward to some great English wine.
What I find to be so funny is I’ve known about all that for years because for years scientists have been talking about the mini ice age and the warm period before that. That right there is proof that global warming isn’t man made but apparently no one expected us average idiots figuring that out. They prefer to politicize the science and try to trick us into believing in junk science to further their goals of controlling the masses.

mizflame98 on February 14, 2010 at 10:40 PM

What I find startling is Obama can come out with a straight face and declare that we must push through cap and tax or green jobs for the sake of our planet. Hello, did he not get the memo on climate gate? All these revelations will not stop the green police.

mizflame98 on February 14, 2010 at 10:45 PM

Someone once said:

If someone is accused of murder, they get front page headlines (AGW is realz, yo!)

If that person is aquitted of all charges, it shows up on page 12. (AGW has been proven to be a money making ponzi-scheme by Al Gore, and his d-bags.)

Al Gore should be arrested under the RICO act. AGW is nothing more than a highly publicized racketeering scheme.

viviliberoomuori on February 15, 2010 at 12:36 AM

There is something additional to consider from the graphs. The older the data the more diffuse the data. Year by year data is contaminated by our ability to accurately date them. Was the prior warming period really started so gradually? Or did it show the same rises and falls we see today were somebody present to actually take readings? I suspect the latter. I suspect the El Nino/La Nina cycle in the Pacific has been going for hundreds of millennia at least. That would lead to the warming trend being chopped up to look something like what we see today – if we really have a warming at all.

It’s all about keeping the proles compliant and taxable. With the Internet that’s getting, thankfully, a little harder to do today.

Now, who can find some tar and feathers. Let’s have a party at Al Gore’s home.

{^_^}

herself on February 15, 2010 at 2:55 AM

Someone please refresh my memory…..Cap and Trade, and carbon credits are intended reduce carbon dioxide, which you and I exhale as a pollutant thanks to the Supreme Court; and we want to reduce carbon dioxide because it causes……what? Climate change? Could you be more specific? What kind of climate change?

olesparkie on February 15, 2010 at 7:54 AM

…and the husky. pony-tailed blogger continues to turn a blind eye…

rightside on February 15, 2010 at 7:56 AM

Sorry Warmers. Your house of cards has not only fallen, it is on fire.

IronDioPriest on February 14, 2010 at 10:57 AM

Maybe that is what caused global warming.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:37 AM

There was a period of even warmer temperatures than the MWP, it was the holocene maximum. Further evidence, global warming is not man made.

nazo311 on February 14, 2010 at 11:05 AM

The Roman Warm Period of about 2000 years ago was warmer than the MWP, but not as warm as the HM. There was another warm spell about 3000 years ago.

Hmm, warm spells every thousand years. Sounds like a possible cycle there.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:40 AM

There’s a reason why, according to the warmers, history began 30 years ago.

Look at all the charts they produce. They all start in the mid to late 70′s. Even when data is available for further back, they all start at the same point. Could it be that they have deliberately choosen the coldest year of the last 200 to make the recent warming seem alarming?

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:43 AM

‘For it to be global in extent, the MWP would need to be seen clearly in more records from the tropical regions and the Southern hemisphere. There are very few palaeoclimatic records for these latter two regions.

Translation.
I admit that there are southern hemispheric records that show the existance of the MWP, but I’m going to declare that there aren’t enough, and hope that this will give me a few more years to push this scam.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:50 AM

Looks like the warmers have a weaker case to stand upon than do birfers.

ted c on February 14, 2010 at 11:48 AM

If twice nothing is still nothing, then what is half of nothing?

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:51 AM

globe was on average 75 C warmer

Holger on February 14, 2010 at 12:10 PM

I’m hoping you meant 7.5C. 75C would be deucedly unconfortable.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 9:54 AM

Why is there no data from the Southern Hemisphere? Because

Sekhmet on February 14, 2010 at 11:46 AM

1) There is data from the SH, just not as much.
2) Most of the temperatures records from this time period are in the form of geological records. Things like measuring isotopic ratios in mineral formations.
3) There is something like 3 or 4 times as much land surface north of the equator, as south.

The equator goes through the thickest part of S. America. All of N. America is north of it.
The equator goes through the bottom of the thickest part of Africa. All of Europe and Asia are north of the equator.

What land masses are in the southern hemisphere.
Less than half of S. America.
About half of Africa.
Australia.
Antarctica.
A number of southeast Asian islands.

That’s about it.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 10:00 AM

But when the people telling me millions will die if I don’t change my light bulb live in giant mansions and fly around on private jets …. um… no.

Dark Eden on February 14, 2010 at 1:37 PM

Just one of Al Gore’s swimming pools, from one of his several mansions, uses more energy than the average American home. And American homes on average, use more energy than homes anywhere else in the world.

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 10:03 AM

Didn’t one of the e-mails quote Jones as advising his team to destroy the data, rather than surrender it to any of the deniers?

MarkTheGreat on February 15, 2010 at 10:06 AM

We must throw Al Gore into a volcano to placate Gaia, just to be sure.

profitsbeard on February 15, 2010 at 12:46 PM

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