What Fresh Hell Is This?

August 17, 2013

They're Cherry Picking Again

And by that I mean the Tribune-Review editorial boards recurring (and yet always failing) science denial.  From this past Thursday:
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says 2012 “was among the 10 warmest years on record.” But as climate blogger Pierre Gosselin notes, the report fails to mention that last year was one of the coolest of the decade. “(T)he report gives the ... impression that warming is galloping ahead out of control. But (NOAA's) data show just the opposite.” There's “science” and then there's science.
[Bolding in original.]
Before I get to deconstructing the braintrust's "conflict" I'd like to point out a bit of "gee, maybe I dunno, Wally" plagiarism.  Take a look at this from CNSNews:
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently released its “State of the Climate in 2012” report, which states that “worldwide, 2012 was among the 10 warmest years on record.”

But the report “fails to mention [2012] was one of the coolest of the decade, and thus confirms the cooling trend,” according to an analysis by climate blogger Pierre Gosselin.

“To no one’s surprise, the report gives the reader the impression that warming is galloping ahead out of control,” writes Gosselin. “But their data shows just the opposite.”
How much closer could these two passages get?  But is this really plagiarism?  Considering the fact that it's from the "Cybercast News Service" and that the "Cybercast News Service" used to be the "Conservative News Service" and that the "Conservative News Service" is owned by the Media Research Center and Tribune-Review owner Richard Mellon Scaife is a huge financial supporter of the CNS, I suppose that even if it is plagiarism, Barbara Hollingsworth (writer of the CNS piece the braintrust filched) probably can't protest about it that much.

Back to the  braintrust debunking.  Let's look at Gosselin's blogpost first.  It's a typical case of cherry picking the data as you can see from his first chart:

See how it just goes back to 1998?  That's the first clue there's selective data choosing going on.  Gosselin goes on to say that the NOAA report actually "confirm(s) precisely what the skeptics have been claiming all along" ie that "The Earth has stopped warming."

Except that it doesn't.

We've dealt with this "no global warming since 1998" myth before.  If you focus on the last decade and a half it certainly looks like a stoppage in the warming.  But if you expand the view and take a rolling average, this is what it looks like:

See the upper right hand corner? That's just about all the data from the last decade or so (more or less exactly what Gosselin's basing his "the warming stopped" story on).  Looking at more than a century's worth of data, how anyone can say the warming's "stopped" is beyond me.

Indeed, there's no conflict between the two statements the braintrust wants you to think are in conflict.  It is possible for 2012 to be "among the warmest on record" and for it to be "one of coolest of the decade."

How?  Well, as NOAA says on the page describing the report:
Including the 2012 temperature, Earth is warming at a rate of 0.06°C (0.11°F) per decade since 1880 and a more rapid 0.16°C (0.28°F) per decade since 1970.

So only by a careful selection of the data can you show that "the Earth stopped warming" in 1998.

So the braintrust is right, there's "science" and there's science.  Too bad they're wrong in thinking they're quoting science - when they're quoting non-climatologists (oops, did I fail to mention that he's not actually a climate scientist?  My bad.) like Pierre Gosselin, they're only dabbling in "science."

On the other hand, the data used by the NOAA report is actually "peer-reviewed."

So you can decide which is more scientifically reliable.


Hutch said...

You guys are laughable,it's funny because you really can't believe we are going to spontaneously combust but you do. Bike lanes the size of normal lanes in Bloomfield to cut down on carbon emissions and the prohibition of fracking are ridiculous.You should come on my show and explain why you love Agenda 21 http://www.spreecast.com/events/scrtv134

Zeus0209 said...

Nice straw man "spontaneous combustion" to get in the plug for your show

Dayvoe said...

Ha. Agenda 21. The only time I've EVER mentioned Agenda 21 is to point out that it's yet another crazie conspiracy theory - World Net Daily says it's a plot to impose fascism worldwide in the guise of environmental regulation.

About as crazie as those FEMA concentration camps or the technology NASA uses to trigger earthquakes from space.